This recipe passed what I like to call the “By Noon” test. Which means if I bring it into work and it’s gone by noon, it’s probably a pretty decent recipe. If it lingers on past noon well then maybe I need to work on it some.
Of course, I cheated a bit because it is a coffee cake recipe so it’s best with, well, coffee which most people drink prior to noon.
But if you need further evidence that this is a solid coffee cake, it also passed the “Get it out of the house” test. If Betsy instructs me to get it out of the house, then it’s also probably pretty decent because she’s afraid she’ll eat it all.
Ok. I’ll stop with the various tests I’ve created. But really, this was very tasty stuff.
The recipe for this coffee cake is very straightforward and you can adjust it with all kinds of fun stuff. For this version I added some almond extract and fresh cherries. You could add real almonds of course if you want, but I just did the extract.
While Betsy and I don’t have any outside space to plant a garden of any sort, every Spring (or early summer) we try to get some fresh herbs growing in our windowsill. Granted we didn’t grow these from seeds, but so far these are really doing well!
As much fresh herbs as I like to use, I find that it noticeably cuts down on my grocery bill to be able to just snip off a few herbs instead of buying whole packages. I fantasize about having a garden full of every herb imaginable that way I could just stroll through and pick the ones I wanted!
Some guys fantasize about money or pretty ladies. Not me. Herb gardens people. Herb gardens.
Here’s the poll for the week!
And a few links!
Helping Nashville. Shameless self promotion… Betsy and I are pretty close to the 200 comments we were hoping for on this post from last weekend. If you didn’t see it, basically we’re giving $1 for each comment on the post up to 200. We actually just decided to give $200 no matter what but you should still check out the post and read all the great comments!
Eating Yourself Into Debt. This is one of the better written posts I’ve seen on the costs of poor diet. Well, actually it goes even further than that by addressing some areas like wastefulness and excessive drinking. The bottom line is that if you aren’t eating well, you’re costing your future self money even if you’re saving money in the present. (@ Man vs. Debt)
Classic Pepperoni Pizza. A pizza can be a simple thing, but man does this version look good. I think if there was one thing I could drill into the heads of American families it would be that take-out pizza is almost never worth it when, with just a tiny bit of equipment and effort, you can make something 100 times better. Mental Note: I haven’t made pizza in a while… (@ Recipe Girl)
High Tea. I was lucky enough to be on the invite list for this awesome High Tea. I had no idea what I was getting into! It was amazing. The tea was delicious and the scones! Oh the scones. I could talk for days about the damn scones! It’s also possible that I drank an entire glass of tea-flavored vodka… (@ Endless Simmer)
Homemade Tapioca Pudding. Tapioca pudding is one of my favorite things in the world. It’s also one of those things that never dawned on me that I could probably easily make. Man this looks good. (@ Pinch My Salt)
I got invited over to my friend Rex’s house to do some grilling last weekend. Actually, the point of the trip was not just to grill but to also check out the bar he just finished in his basement.
When someone tells me that they built their own bar, I usually assume it’s gonna be a rickety thing made mostly of cardboard because that’s probably how my bar would look if I made it myself. Rex, however, is no slouch. His bar is made of beautifully stained wood. It has a resin-coated finish. It has foot stools. He even has his own MegaTouch.
Rex was going to grill some seafood and you guys conveniently voted for seafood. So we had a lot of seafood to grill.
Prepping the grill...
Seafood is delicious grilled (what isn’t?) but it can be a bit tricky just because it’s a delicate subject. It can quickly become overcooked and then it gets chewy and not the best. A few quick tips to remember about grilling any seafood:
I think I like cooking because I’m still a kid at heart. I like to chop things, slice things, burn things, play with knives, and mix strange concoctions. All of these are obviously hobbies that translate very nicely to cooking.
For some reason one of my favorite things to do is stack food. I’m not really sure why but I get a lot of pleasure out of stacking things up and seeing how high I can go. I did this with great success for my Tostado Stack!
That’s why this recipe caught my eye. Not only does it include some of my favorite flavors (eggplant, mint, feta, paprika, and cumin) but I get to stack stuff!
So I present The Eggplant Stack!
This recipe is really simple actually and has some fantastic flavors in it. I could see getting the kids involved in this one.
Administrative Note:If you missed it over the weekend, Betsy and I are giving $1 for every comment (up to 200) to the Red Cross to help out with the Nashville flooding. We’re still a few short… We’d love to get to 200 so if you haven’t already, check out the post on Biscuits and Gravy and leave a comment! Thanks!
Mint is one of my favorite spring flavors. It has such a distinct flavor that even a tiny bit of it can easily be tasted in a dish. Mint doesn’t hide well. That’s why I was really intrigued when I saw a mint pesto. It doesn’t use mint as an accent. The dish is pretty much all mint.
Honestly, I wanted to try this because I thought it’d be interesting, but I was 100% ready to report that the mint was very over-powering. That’s what I assumed would happen. Shows how much I know. Mint pesto worked just perfectly.
What’s funny about this pesto is that if you just taste a single sprig of mint, the flavor is intense, but when you grind down a lot of them, they lose some of that intensity and mixed with the other ingredients it just becomes a really delicious, light pesto.
As most of you probably know, Betsy is from Nashville and while her family is doing okay from the flood, it’s been kind of devastating to look at the pictures and videos of the flood. I mean, we were just there like three weeks ago getting married and now all the places we went to are underwater or recovering.
Bets asked me to make one of her favorite Southern brunch dishes that she always used to eat in Nashville: Biscuits and Gravy. I was of course happy to oblige!
I surrender to your deliciousness.
This also happened to be one of my favorite brunch/late night dishes in high school as well. We had this awesome diner in town that was open 24 hours a day and we’d go there for a late night snack. Biscuits and gravy was one of my favorite things to get. Or as we used to call them in high school: The Bs and Gs.
Betsy and I decided to cancel our cable package this week. I have the vague impression that we’ll now watch less useless TV. That said, at the same time I figured out how to stream instant Netflix on our Wii so I’m sure that will be a time-suck trade-off. Also, the cable companies won’t tell you this openly, but it turns out that we still get a fair number of stations without paying a red penny.
Basically any show we have an interest in watching can either be seen on a local station, via instant Netflix, or over the Internet on Hulu or other instant watch options. Cable is so 2005 people.
White Pizza with Ramps – I alway see ramps this time of year and I’ve only cooked with them once or twice. This pizza might have to happen really soon for me though. Rivka’s dough recipe looks really solid. (@ Not Derby Pie)
Tipsy Affogato! Ok. So this looks delicious, but I’m mainly linking to it because it’s funny and apparently my cat’s name would also be a good first name for a drag queen. I can’t disagree with that. (@ The Bitten Word)