Friday, December 30, 2011

Local News | Seattle food bank to reopen | Seattle Times Newspaper

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The Sacred Heart Food Bank on Lower Queen Anne fell on hard times and closed on Nov. 18 because of a lack of funding from umbrella group St. Vincent de Paul. Volunteer Willem vanderLinden packages up pastries donated by Starbucks.
Local News | Seattle food bank to reopen | Seattle Times Newspaper

Great news to start the new year for the Seattle food bank in Queen Anne! Please pass on the info and donate if you can!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Peanut Butter Bacon Cookies!

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Nothing says the holidays like bacon and peanut butter, am I right?!  Okay maybe you're a bit skeptical that a recipe this weird-sounding, could taste so good...but don't knock it 'til you try it!  Just the right amount of sweetness with the saltiness of the peanut butter, really brings out the peanut buttery flavor in this new favorite of mine.  I found the recipe online, where else!  I thought how fun it would be to make these for stocking stuffers this year and watch people's reactions of "ewwww!" or "what???" or "ooooooooh awesome!"  And the added bonus is that you get to cook bacon before it all starts, making the house smell delicious!

(Recipe via JoytheBaker who adapted from The Gourmet Cookbook)

First, pre cook your bacon.
About 6 slices of bacon, cooked, cooled and diced or minced depending on how chunky you want it. I like to cook bacon in the oven for nice flat, evenly cooked slices. 400 degrees, 7 minutes one side, flip, 7 or 8 minutes the other side depending on how you like it.

Then put oven to 350 degrees F.

1 cup all-natural chunky or smooth peanut butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon baking soda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment & set aside or use a non-stick pan. In a mixer combine peanut butter and sugars until well combined, about 2 minutes. Add egg and baking soda and mix for another 2 minutes. Fold in cooked bacon. Roll into large walnut sized balls and create a criss-cross pattern with a fork. If you’d like, roll the dough balls in granulated sugar before making the criss-cross pattern. Eat one raw ball for good measure (hey, the original recipe said to, so!) Bake for 10 minutes, until lightly browned. They will seem still soft, but this is the secret to them being awesome. Cool on a baking sheet for five minutes, because they're still a bit crumbly. Then transfer to a cooling rack or plate to consume at will.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

I'm Back!

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Seems like it's been forever since I wrote or posted about food! But we're back from New Zealand, which was truly the greatest vacation we have ever been on in our lives. If you ever have a chance to go, you will come back feeling like you have touched the very heart of the planet. We took a ton of photos and yes, a lot were of food! I thought I would just post my favorites here (including some funny snacks!).

I guess I should also say HAPPY HOLIDAYS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR! Hope 2012 is filled with more recipe sharing and good eating.  Click on each photo to see them larger!

Lamb pot pie at Speight's Brewery in Christchurch - Quite nice; potatoes tasted funny though; salad lovely.
Added Bonus: Hubby's favorite US hockey team on the tube.

Naan bread with 2 chutneys and raita at 
located in the Catlins Coastal Conservation Park! Delish!

Best seafood chowder I think I've ever had at The Whistling Frog Cafe.
Everything from mussels, to white fish, to shrimp, in a rich creamy broth.
Darren's savory thyme pancakes! Quite lovely.

Farm fresh eggs from the Glacial Rock B&B Farmstay!

Lovely roasted garlic and herb butter with bread at Redcliff Restaurant and Bar
in Te Anau.

Darren's vegetarian couscous stuffed eggplant and salad.

My fresh daily fish special!  I couldn't tell you what kind though, just that
it was the best fish I had in New Zealand!

Dessert! I believe it was a passionfruit panna cotta. Mmm! 

I didn't eat these, but it made me smile.

A bit too weird tasting, sorta smokey salty flavored.

Simple toasted bagel for breakfast with preserves and cream cheese!

Savory muffin from Vudu Cafe, cheesy goodness with jalapenos!

Pastry and various goodies at Vudu Cafe, Queenstown.

Super rich and tasty french onion soup at

Green Pea risotto at Botswana Butchery, loved all the veggies and fried potato ring on top!

Beet Salad at Botswana Butchery.

Coffee at Vudu Cafe!

Buttermilk pancakes at Vudu Cafe, Queenstown.

Brioche french toast with bacon and caramelized banana! I had this one. 

Pork and veggie dumplings, shredded potatoes and greens at 
Barilla Dumplings in Auckland.

Totally forgot what the pub was called, but this is essentially just some hash browns,
eggs and veggies.

Overdressed prawn salad, but tasty.

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