Spinach Walnut Pesto Grilled Cheese

I can't believe I have never thought of putting Pesto on my Grilled Cheese before. After a few minutes of searching for a Spinach Pesto recipe I came across a picture of Pesto Grilled Cheese that I could not get out of my head. This sandwich is the marriage of two of my favorite food items, Melty Delicious Gruyere and Cheddar Cheese and Lemony, Garlicky Pesto. 

 Spinach Pesto Recipe

2 C Spinach
3 Cloves Garlic
6 tbsp Olive Oil
4 tbsp Walnuts
Juice of 1 1/2 Lemons, Zest
Salt, Pepper to taste

Add all ingredients to Processor and Blend


Key Lime Pie

Today was the first sunny day Portland has had in a while. In celebration, I decided to bake a Key Lime Pie (Actually, just a Regular Lime Pie) to keep with the Summer-y theme. I made the graham cracker crust by hand using Trader Joe's Graham Crackers, which happen to be extra delicious. 

I used this recipe and decided to just top the whole thing with whipped cream, instead of just a dollop. Besides having sort-of burned the crust, its not bad for my first Key Lime Pie!


Pork Chops with Strawberry Balsamic Honey Sauce, Mint Chocolate Ice Cream

These Pork Chops were delicious!! We Southern Fried the Pork and topped it with home made Strawberry Balsamic Honey Sauce.

2 Cups of Strawberries
1/4 C Balsamic
1 Tbsp Honey
1 Tbsp Sugar

Heat ingredients over high heat until Strawberries are fully cooked; mash remaining chunks.  Bryan thought the sauce was too 'Vinegar-y'. I disagree. A lot.

We decided to use up our extra Candy Canes by chopping them and adding them (and 1/2 C Peppermint Syrup) to Home Made Chocolate Ice Cream. Yum!


Monster Sammies & Caramel Apple Ice Cream

but first...

The Legend of Monster Sammy

The perfect combination to make you feel good about life at this time of year. Like the legendary sasquatch, the monster sammy is hard to photograph. Though it remains shrouded in mystery and local legend, we hear it involves sloppy joe beef, muenster, gouda, guacamole, baby greens and basil jalapeno ranch on a french hoagie roll...

This one appears to have a dangerous guacamole infection.

Spiced Apple Ice Cream

I was wondering what kind of ice cream we could make that would go well with the caramel sauce that I made the other day. I talked with my mom briefly and she mentioned that she was making a caramel frosting for an apple cake. I realized that a sweet cream ice cream accented with flavors of nutmeg, cinnamon and brown sugar would be a perfect match for the thick, syrupy caramel goo.

Make the apples first, they must chill completely after cooking.

Apple Swirl

2 or 3 Large apples of your choice, peeled and diced
(We used four very petite Pink Lady apples diced about 1/4" thick.
This can be varied based on your preference.)
1/4 - 1/2 cup brown sugar (also depends on preference)
1/3 cup water
1 tsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg

Combine ingredients in a medium cooking pot. Bring to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes, or until apples are tender and water is evaporated to the point that the apples are immersed in a thick brown sauce. Chill about two hours. I like the freezer for this.

Spiced Sweet Cream Ice Cream

1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup cream
1 cup half & half
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla flavor
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Combine sugar, eggs, flavors & spices in a large mixing bowl, beat until light and fluffy. Add cream/half & half and beat well. Chill thoroughly, and use according to your ice cream machine's instructions. I like to add just a touch more cinnamon and nutmeg halfway through the process.

Remove from ice cream maker. In a separate serving or storage container, fold apple mixture lightly into ice cream. Freeze at least 4 hours, or preferably overnight. Serve with caramel sauce. Tell me what heaven tastes like to you...


Chocolate Almond Ice Cream & Caramel Sauce

Last night we tried out our ice cream maker for the first time, and though it was absolutely delicious (only six ingredients: cream, eggs, milk, cocoa, sugar and flavor), I ended up lying awake thinking about caramel sauce. I looked up a recipe, and first thing this morning I set out to make it for myself. 

This fantastic recipe is not only easy to follow, but it is accompanied by some gorgeous pictures. I was a bit worried, since sugar turns brown very briefly before burning. Everything came out great though, I followed my instincts and it worked like magic! 

I pulled some of the ice cream out and it is now a perfect consistency after a night in the freezer, whereas before it was more like soft serve. 

The ice cream is a simple chocolate recipe, but since Kelly has recently acquired an adoring love affair with almond extract, we used that instead of vanilla. 

I can't wait to try this sauce on more things, it is soooooo much creamier and more flavorful than the store-bought kind.


Pesto, Pork Sandwich, and Engagement!

It has been quite a busy weekend!! A Roasted Chicken, Pork Roast, a new Food Processor and Electric Beater to experiment with, and...OUR ENGAGEMENT!! Bryan proposed last Friday at Pioneer Square, and I of course said yes!!

Thankfully we both had 3 days off together to celebrate, AKA cook food. Here is the delicious Lemon Almond Basil Pesto I made, with some Fresh Squeezed Grapefruit Juice in the background! 

 With his leftover Pork, Bryan made this incredible Sandwich. Beans, Home Made Ranch, Home Made Salsa, Cheddar and Gruyere Cheese, Pork and Greens!

And pictured below is my handsome fiancé using our new Mixer to make the most delicious Breakfast Quiche!!


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