Archive for Food & Recipes

Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins

….or what I refer to as “the time I was halfway through making a cookie recipe when I realized my baking sheet was at my friends house”

I know it’s been months since I blogged, but I’m determined to get back into it, and hope I can gather a following of even a few who will appreciate my blunders, creations, and activities I post on here!

Now back to the baking.

When I realized the only pan I had was a muffin tin, I hoped that the recipe would still work and not be too dense in the muffin state. Boy did I luck out. They were delicious! The major downfall to this was that instead of getting 3-4 dozen cookies, it only yielded one dozen muffins, so not as many people were able to enjoy them. And by that, I mean my male coworkers and roommates couldn’t have seconds ;-).

I adopted this recipe from Bakers Royale‘s Blog and took to it to make it suitable to my male-run kitchen. Try it either way, just beware. They are perfectly Fall-Suitable Delicious!


Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins
Yield: 12 good-sized muffins

1 3/4 Cup Old Fashioned Oats
3/4 Cup Flour
3/4 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Cup Butter, Browned
1/2 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Cup Pumpkin Purée
1 Tbsp Flaxseed + 3 Tbsp Hot Water (or use 1 whole egg)
Chocolate Chips to Sprinkle on top

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
In a pot (preferably do not use non stick), melt butter on medium heat, swirly occasionally until it develops a light brown flavor a nut-like smell
While (or after) the butter is browning, mix the first five ingredients in one bowl.
After the butter has cooled, In a separate bowl, mix the remaining ingredients (except the chocolate chips). Then combine the two bowls, stirring tuntil well combined.
Divide the batter into a greased muffin tin, topping each muffin with chocolate chips.
Bake in the oven for 23 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean

You can also put more chocolate chips inside the batter, I just goofed (as often happens with some of my recipes) and forgot them until it was time to put them in the oven!

Let me know what you think 🙂


Smoked Salmon Cucumber Cups


I had the opportunity to use my imagination today with some leftovers and was beyond ecstatic with the results. Ahead is the simple recipe for a basic salmon salad and two easy appetizers you can create with it

Baked Salmon Leftover Salad

Leftover baked salmon (I used filets that had been marinated in miso a few days before baking)
Amount depends on how many leftovers you have!
Equal parts mayonnaise and Greek yogurt
To Taste: Lime Juice
Wasabi paste
Salt and Pepper
Celery, small diced
Green onions, thinly sliced

Mix mayonnaise, yogurt, lime juice, wasabi, salt and pepper
Flake salmon
Mix all ingredients – should not be too wet, but want to stick together

As two appetizer options you can serve on top of toasted French bread as a crostini, or inside a scooped out cucumber cup as shown in the picture


Box Brownies Made Unboring

My grandma asked me the other day to make brownies for a potluck she was going to. Being the generous grandma she is, and not realizing I prefer to make things from scratch, she bought me a few boxes of Duncan Hines Boxed Brownies. Instead of being simple and following the directions on the box, I decided to spruce things up a bit. What an awesome idea that turned out to be! Such a delicious shortcut way to make unique treats!

The first one I tried was very simple and only requires a few ingredients

Duncan Hines Chewy Fudge Box Brownies w/Peanut Butter Frosting and Peanut Chocolate Chip Topping

  • Chewy Fudge Brownies (any type or brand is fine)
    • As well additional ingredients listed on box
  • 1/2 Cup peanut butter
  • 2 T butter/margarine, softened
  • Powdered sugar, use until consistency desired (~1 Cup)
  • Peanuts, chopped (optional)
  • Chocolate chips
  1. Follow box directions when mixing brownies
  2. Bake according to box (I used the 8×8 pan directions, lining the glass pan with foil)
  3. While brownies are baking, mix peanut butter, butter and powdered sugar until creamy and at consistency wanted. Pour in desired pattern onto finished brownies and top with peanuts and chocolate chips
  4. And voila!

The second batch took a little more thinking, and a few minutes with Google =)

Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate Fudge Box Brownies with Cream Cheese Swirl

  • Dark Chocolate Fudge Brownies (any type or brand is fine)
    • As well as the additional ingredients listed on box
  • 8 oz cream cheese tub (I used fat free)
  • Vanilla coffee creamer (1 Tbsp container)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Equal packet
  1. Follow box directions when mixing brownies and pour into 8 x 8 pan already lined with foil
  2. Whip together remaining ingredients for a minute
  3. Pour cream cheese mixture into brownie pan and using a knife, swirl around into a random design
       4. Bake brownies according to box directions
       5. Yum!!

Banana Bread Cookies!

These cookies are so amazing you would never guess they were vegan!

Recipe Adapted From: Veg Web

1 mashed banana

1 Cup brown sugar

½ Cup white sugar

Slightly less than 1/3 Cup oil

1 ½ tsp vanilla extract

1 ½ Cup flour

1 ½ tsp cinnamon

1 tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

¼ Cup water

2 ¼ Cup oats

Optional: ½ Cup semi sweet chocolate chips

Mix all wet ingredients

Mix all dry ingredients, then add to wet ingredients. Add water and oats and mix

Spoon onto greased cookie sheets and bake for 350 degrees for 13 minutes, or until the bottoms of the cookies are golden brown. Let cool on cookie sheet before storing

Yield: 3 dozen cookies



Food for Thought

As a new chef, people ask me all the time what my favorite food is to make or eat. The horrible thing is, I have no idea! I know I could eat eggs,  or turkey sandwiches every day if forced to – but those are things that don’t take a genius to make (for the most part).

Being the frugal girl I am, I loove a buffet every once in awhile. My favorite find is the $17 all you can eat sushi factory here in San Jose. Now I know it sounds shady, but at the particular place I go to, they actually make all your rolls to order, so it’s not like an actual

buffet where the fish is sitting under a lamp for hours on end. I’m not going to sugarcoat it, the service absolutely stinks. But if you’re nice enough to the

waitresses and don’t drink your water too quickly, they’ll seem adequate enough

for the price you’re paying.

* SUSHI FACTORY San Jose (408) 723-2598

So thinking about this abundance of food made me wonder: If you were given only one food to eat for the rest of the month, what would you choose?

Even More Spaghetti

After celebrating this national holiday (see previous post), I realized that even though I eat some sort of pasta dish every day, I never eat the same dish twice.

I guess what I should name this dish(es) is Pasta With Everything But The Kitchen Sink.

I usually start by boiling some dried whole wheat spaghetti/rigatoni/penne/etc. while searching the refrigerator and pantry for ingredients. You’d be surprised at the things I’ve realized taste good with pasta. I’ve gone from fava beans, tomatoes, and mozzarella (mediterranean Asian fusion spin?), to black beans, corn, tomatoes, and cheddar cheese (Taco Pasta).

My favorite pasta dish I created the other day because we were out of tomatoes and sauce (what was I do to?!) when I sauteed some onions, leeks, and mushrooms mixed in with the spaghetti, sriracha hot sauce, and Parmesan cheese. It was super simple and did not look like your typical pasta dish and I loved it!

Now it’s time to start writing down the additions to these bowls of deliciousness so I can recreate them!

But for now – the simplest pasta dish that will please meat lovers AND vegetarians =)

** Pasta Size! **

1 cup cooked whole wheat spaghetti


1/2 cup premade pasta sauce


1/2 cup tomato sauce

1/4 tsp oregano

1/8 tsp thyme

1/8 tsp tarragon


1 tsp sriracha hot sauce (or to desired heat)


1 boca burger, cooked as per package instructions


1. Heat pasta sauce on stove, add sriracha sauce

2. Add pasta to sauce

3. Pour pasta and sauce on top of boca burger

4. Top with parmesean cheese if desired

See? Simple yet delicious! Let me know if you like it =)