bacon and egg cups with cremini mushrooms

I knew immediately when I saw this post on Joanne’s amazing blog, Fifteen Spatulas, that I would be making mini bacon and egg cups. After all, it’s got three of my favorite things – bacon, eggs, and cheese. The beauty of a recipe like this one is that it can be easily customized to our own particular tastes.  The eggs can be cooked over easy, medium, or even scrambled. There are many varieties of cheeses that would work well.  Proscuitto may be substituted for the bacon.  You see, the possibilities are endless.  For my version, I added some crimini mushrooms that I sautéed in butter with a little garlic and chives.  For the bread on the bottom, I cut rounds from a couple of slices of buttermilk bread. Continue reading


classic comfort food: bacon mac and cheese

I have a confession to make.  I’ve never had mac & cheese from that iconic blue box.  While eating the neon orange concoction was a childhood rite of passage for most of my friends, Kraft’s version was never very appetizing to me.  However, this made-from-scratch mac & cheese, oozing with cheesy goodness, is a whole other story!  Adding bacon to this is just pure genius!  Thanks to my friend, Patti, who posted a photo of her mac & cheese on facebook, for reminding me that I had this recipe from Lori at RecipeGirl that I’ve been wanting to try. Continue reading

jalapeño cheese bread

You will all be relieved to hear that there will be no jalapeño posts for awhile since we have used up the few remaining peppers to make this bread and some salsa. To be honest, I only bought the jalapeño seedlings because I thought the little peppers were “cute.” I had no idea that I would harvest more than 50 peppers from them this summer. Through my enjoyable gardening experience, I discovered that I like the flavor of jalapeños, but I am running out of ideas on how to use them. Of all the jalapeño recipes I’ve tried, this one’s my favorite. I had a slice right out of the oven with some butter and it was fantastic!

Jalapeño Cheese Bread
Yields 1 loaf

1 packet yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
1/4 cup warm water
4 tablespoons melted butter
1 egg
2 1/2 cups bread flour, plus more if needed
1 cup semolina flour
1 cup of buttermilk
1 teaspoon of sugar
2 teaspoons of salt
1 cup (or more, to taste) jalapenos, stemmed, seeded, and diced
1 1/2 cups of cheddar cheese (or more, to taste), grated

Mix together the yeast and water in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together the melted butter, egg and buttermilk and add to yeast and water. Add the salt, sugar and bread flour to the liquids and mix well. Then incorporate the semolina flour to the dough. If the dough is too wet, gradually add more bread flour 1/4 cup at a time. Place dough on a floured surface and knead for five to ten minutes until dough is smooth. Form dough into a ball and place into a bowl greased with butter. Cover the bowl, and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size—about an hour.

Turn out dough on a floured surface, and slowly knead into the dough the jalapenos and cheese, a little bit at a time. (I used the “lazy swirl method” I described yesterday since I really didn’t want to knead the dough again, hence, the swirly appearance.) When cheese and jalapenos are incorporated into the dough, place dough into a greased bread loaf pan. You can also sprinkle semolina in the bread pan for additional friction. Cover the pan and let dough rise until doubled in size (it should be at the top or a bit over the top of the pan)—about an hour.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake bread for 40-45 minutes on a center rack (when you thump the top and it sounds hollow, the bread is done). Let cool for ten minutes, and then slide it out of the pan, slice and enjoy!

Adapted from HomesickTexan

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