Sunday, August 21, 2011

Foodbuzz Tastemaker: Birds Eye Creamy Primavera Risotto

I recently received a package of Birds Eye Creamy Primavera Risotto in the mail as part of the Foodbuzz Tastemaker program. I was excited to try this as I’ve never had risotto but have always wanted to try it.

Even though I’ve never had the dish before I had a good idea of what to expect from all the recipes and descriptions I’ve read. This did not disappoint.


The risotto was very creamy and the vegetables had a great texture. The peas were actually my favorite part and usually frozen peas are no bueno. I also love the fact that there are no preservatives. Plus you’ve got to love a side dish that doesn’t require dirtying any dishes! I think this would go really well with a pork loin or baked chicken though honestly I ate some as a quick dinner when I was on my own one night.

I will definitely be adding this to our freezer when it comes out this fall. Thanks to Foodbuzz and Birds Eye for the opportunity to try this product.

I was given this product free from Bird Eye as part of the Food Tastemaker program however the above views are totally my own.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake


Anyone else drooling yet? Because as soon as I heard the name of this cheesecake I know I was. This was actually one of the two cakes I made for Doug’s birthday (yes, I like that guy so much I made him 2 cakes) and he found the recipe himself – in a Redbook magazine sitting out in the break room at work.


This cheesecake is incredibly delicious. I knew it would be just reading the name and the ingredient list. Peanut butter? Reese’s cups? Oreo crust? How could it not be? Granted, I am a major lover of all things chocolate and peanut butter so of course I loved it. But the other 3 lucky people who got to try this loved it too. And I already know I’ll have to make at least one more of these this year – my peanut butter & chocolate loving dad was pretty sad he didn’t get any. And even though this is a little more labor intensive than any of the other cheesecakes I’ve made I’m cool with making it again – it is totally worth it.

P6090483 The middle of the cheesecake.

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake

From Redbook


1 1/2 Cups Oreos – broken up into crumbs

4 Tablespoons Melted Butter


4 – 8 Ounce Cream Cheese packages, at room temperature

1 Cup Creamy Peanut Butter

1 Cup Sugar

4 Eggs, Large at room temperature

1/2 Cup Sour Cream

2 Teaspoons Vanilla

3 Ounces Bittersweet Chocolate, melted

6 Regular Size Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, cut into quarters

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 inch springform with cooking spray and cover the bottom of the pan with a double layer of aluminum foil.

Combine the cookie crumbs and the butter and press into the bottom of the pan and 1/2 inch up the side. Bake for 10 minutes and then let cool.

Beat the cream cheese until fluffy. Then add in the sugar until smooth. Reduce the speed of the mixer and ad the eggs 1 at a time until just incorporated. Add the sour cream and vanilla.

Remove 1 1/2 cups of the batter and put in a separate bowl. Add in the chocolate.

Add the peanut butter to the remaining batter in the first bowl and combine until smooth. Remove 1 3/4 cups of this batter to a separate bowl.

Pour the remaining batter from the first bowl over the crust. Then place the quartered peanut butter cups evenly over this layer. Then alternately drop spoonfuls of the peanut butter batter you put in a small bowl and the chocolate batter over the layer of peanut butter cups. Then use a knife to swirl the peanut butter batter and the chocolate batter together until they look marbleized.

Place the springform pan into a larger pan and place in the oven. Then pour enough hot water into the larger pan so that it is 1 inch up the sides of the springform pan.

Bake for 1 hour or until the cheesecake barely jiggles in the center when you lightly shake the pan. Then remove the springform from the bigger pan and remove the aluminum foil. Use a thin knife to run around the edge of the cake to release it from the pan. Let cool completely and then refrigerate at least 6 hours.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Sour Cream Pancakes


I love pancakes. I have fond memories of having pancakes on weekend mornings growing up. Everyone would gather round the table in their pajamas to chow down on fresh pancakes and chocolate milk. Of course those pancakes always came from a box and, admittedly, the pancakes I made as a grownup did too. Until recently that is.

It is incredibly easy to make pancakes from scratch. Sadly this is something I had to learn as an adult. And these sour cream pancakes from The Pioneer Woman helped teach me that lesson. When I first got the Pioneer Woman’s cookbook these pancakes jumped out at me but I always put them off in favor of the ease that comes along with the box of pancake mix. But once I finally decided to give these a shot I realized that they really aren’t anymore complicated than my trusty mix. They only require a few more ingredients than the box of mix and have such a light flavor and texture that I no longer thing of the box when I think of pancakes. Instead I now think of these sour cream pancakes….. and then I go check to make sure I have enough syrup.

Edna Mae’s Sour Cream Pancakes

From: The Pioneer Woman Cooks Book

1 Cup Sour Cream

7 Tablespoons All Purpose Flour

2 Tablespoons Sugar

1 Teaspoon Baking Soda

1/2 Teaspoon Salt

2 Large Eggs

1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

Combine and sift the dry ingredients. Combine with the sour cream.

In another bowl mix the eggs and vanilla together with a whisk. Pour the eggs/vanilla into the sour cream/dry ingredients mixture. Gently stir until all ingredients are combines

Heat a pan (griddle, cast iron skillet, or frying pan) at medium heat until really hot. Melt 1 tablespoon of butter on pan.

Pour about 1/4 cup of batter onto the pan. This will make about a 4 inch diameter pancake.

Cook the pancake on each side for 1 to 2 minutes. Flip when the pancake starts to bubble and the edges are starting to brown.

Serve with butter and syrup or fruit and whip cream. This makes about 8 pancakes.