All-in-One Guide to Cake Decorating

This book was released on October 3, 2017. I received a copy through NetGalley.

If you’re at all interested in getting into cake decorating, this is a great resource. As cakes are something I dabble in a bit, I was interested in seeing what kind of advice this book had. It is very advanced in that there is a lot of information, but all of the step by step instructions are simple.

In this book you can learn tricks on making cakes, cutting them into shapes, icing, using fondant, even making decorations like the pretty flower on the cover. If there’s something related to cakes you want to learn, it’s in this book.

This is a great primer for anyone who wants to learn cakes because you can look up any part of the process you need help with to get steps and advice. Or you can follow along and try everything, starting with a simple round cake with buttercream, going up to a checkered cake covered in homemade fondant with hand-crafted decorations. Instantly elevate your cake making by learning something new.

Sheet Pan Suppers Meatless by Raquel Pelzel

This book will be released on October 3, 2017. I received a copy through NetGalley.

Just a note, the edition I have is labeled ‘Vegetarian’ instead of Meatless, not sure what the final title is. The ISBN leads to the meatless version on all sites except for NetGalley.

This is a collection of recipes all made on a sheet pan, from soups and salads and pastas, to breakfast recipes and desserts. There’s something for everyone in this book, with recipes labeled vegan and gluten-free as needed.

If you’re wondering how you can make soup on a sheet pan, so was I. You simply roast the ingredients on the sheet pan and then blend it up with the more liquidy stuff in a food processor. Some soups included in this book are Gazpacho, Avocado and Roasted Garlic Soup, and a chickpea stew with tofu.

As it’s meatless or vegetarian, this cookbook is deliciously vegetable-heavy along with grains and beans. If you’re looking for a new way to cook old favorites or try a new ingredient, there is something in here for you, such as Eggplant and White Bean Meatballs. The desserts sound delectable as well, from cakes to cookies and everything in between, especially the Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake.

If you want to try something new, this is the cookbook to get. Every recipe is very unique and the pictures showcase the recipes beautifully. It would make a great cookbook to explore in the coming colder months when you want to use your oven more.

Anne of Green Gables Cookbook by Kate Macdonald

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This book was re-released this month, I received a copy through NetGalley.

It’s no secret that I love Anne of Green Gables. L.M. Montgomery is my favorite author of all time. I had the earlier edition of this book back in high school but it’s gotten lost somewhere in my parents’ house.

I am so happy to see this new edition and all of the recipes that have been added to it. This edition also has gorgeous looking pictures of each recipe that make you want to try everything. Some of the recipes are straight from the books while others are inspired by them or true to the time period L.M. Montgomery lived through.

The dessert recipes are my favorite, like Mrs. Irving’s Shortbread or Miss Ellen’s Pound Cake. I want to try Anne’s ‘Liniment’ Cake, it looks so good. There’s also a recipe for Raspberry Cordial that looks refreshing, but is nothing like the bubbly Raspberry Cordial you can get on Prince Edward Island.

This book is a great addition to any kitchen, or a good gift for any Anne fan. Even cooler, the author Kate Macdonald is L.M. Montgomery’s granddaughter, so the book is as authentic as they come.

Creamy Pea Casserole

I’m revisiting some of my older food posts, updating them with new titles, new pictures, a nice pinnable image, and a recipe. This week is Creamy Pea Casserole, an updated and personalized version of the Creamy Ground Chicken Casserole I posted back in 2015.

It was a new recipe for me, but since then has become a part of my short list of good recipes I keep going back to.

creamy pea casserole

Look at all that creamy goodness. But it’s actually pretty good for you too! Check out my secret ingredient in the recipe.

Don’t feel you are limited in this recipe at all. You can use whatever ground meat you prefer, as well as any vegetable. I’ve tried this with green bell peppers, you could also try small bits of carrot, frozen okra, or maybe even edamame? The casserole has a very mild flavor that would complement nearly anything.

Creamy Pea Casserole

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked rice
  • Olive oil
  • 1 diced onion (or as much as you like)
  • 1 pound ground meat (beef, chicken, pork, turkey)
  • Garlic powder, oregano, salt and pepper (to your taste)
  • 1 [8 oz] can tomato sauce
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1-2 cups shredded cheese
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt


Directions

  1. Start cooking rice according to directions.
  2. Preheat oven to 350.
  3. Heat olive oil in a large oven-safe skillet.
  4. Cook the onion for a minute until soft, add ground meat, and season with garlic powder, oregano, salt and pepper.
  5. Cook ground meat until mostly browned.
  6. Stir in tomato sauce, chicken stock, peas and rice. Sprinkle with half the cheese and stir in. Let simmer for a few minutes to combine.
  7. Bake in oven for 15 minutes.
  8. After 15 minutes, spread remaining cheese and Greek yogurt on top of casserole. You can mix them together or just spread the yogurt on top of sprinkled cheese.
  9. Bake for an additional 15 minutes.


creamy pea casserole 2

Voila! It’s not the prettiest dish, but definitely delicious. Let me know in the comments if you tried it.

 

Creamy Pea Casserole Banner

Herbs by Judith Hann

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This book will be released on September 21, 2017. I received a copy through NetGalley.

This beautiful book is all about herbs, written by someone with an obvious passion for them. Not just a cookbook, this book not only explains how to use the herbs written about, but how to grow them as well. The book is divided into seasons, with each intro giving a list of things to do in that season to take care of your herb garden.

Each herb talked about has a history section as well as tips on cooking and growing before a few recipes where it has a starring role. Besides the section on each herb, interspersed throughout the book are pages on things that involve multiple herbs, such as a page on pesto, herb teas, and herb cheeses.

Personally, most of the recipes in this book are not to my taste, but it’s well worth checking out just for the loads of information on the different herbs and sections on making herb syrups, herb ice cream, herb preserves, and anything else you could think of. This would make a great gift for an adventurous cook or a gardener.

The Science of Cooking by Dr. Stuart Farrimond

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This book will be released on September 19, 2017. I received a copy through NetGalley.

The Science of Cooking is a great resource if you want to know the ‘whys’ behind cooking. You’ll probably like this book if you’re a fan of the show Good Eats. The inside looks like a textbook but is a lot more fun with tons of helpful diagrams and pictures.

Every section is prefaced with a good question about cooking, from ‘How do I know when meat is done cooking?’ to ‘Why do we eat oysters raw?’ The chapters are divided by food, such as meat and poultry, fish, eggs and dairy, and so on.

I learned that it’s apparently dangerous to reheat cooked rice, which is something to look into further. Each section has good tips on choosing the right ingredients as well as food safety and the chemistry behind how things cook, with special spotlights on things such as sugar, flour, herbs and more.

I wouldn’t recommend this to a beginner cook, as it might be a bit overwhelming with all the information, but it’s a fantastic resource for someone who wants to improve their cooking skill or just learn more.

Weekly Meal Plan: September 17 – September 23

This will be the last meal plan post for a while as I have my c-section scheduled for next week! I’ll be working this week on scheduling a bunch of posts to go up but I can’t imagine much meal planning will be going on (especially if husband is in charge of feeding us!).

Next week we get to meet our sweet baby, hopefully. They’ll send me home if he ends up flipping over at the last second so I can go into spontaneous labor. At this point I just want him out, I’m ready to start being a parent and so ready to be done with these pregnancy symptoms. Today my ankles swelled up pretty much twice their normal size. Ugh.

What we’re eating this week:

One Pot Creamy Sausage Pasta (pictured) — Going back to the classics this week, such a delicious easy dish, and it makes tons of leftovers!

Green Pepper Casserole — Another favorite, and super easy. I was in the mood for some gooey rice.

Honey and Soy Chicken — No idea what I’m serving with this, but I have so much chicken right now. And I might have bought a giant pack of chicken thighs again this week because it was super cheap. Oh well, husband will have to figure out what to do with them.

Chickpea Spinach Curry — Two of my favorite foods of all time? Yes please.

I planned to make spaghetti one night as well, but my mom actually invited us over to have spaghetti on Sunday night. I’m always a fan of one less day having to cook, especially right now.