Garlic Knots (Garlic Lover's Version)

This recipe was inspired by Zoom Yummy

What you need:
3 cups Bread Flour
1 tbsp Granulated Sugar
2 tsp Instant Yeast
1 1/4 tsp Salt
1 tsp Oregano
1 tsp Basil
1 tbsp Granulated Garlic
2 tbsp Olive Oil
1/4 cup Milk
1 cup + 2 tbsp lukewarm Water
1 tbsp Minced Garlic

1/4 cup Butter
1 tsp Granulated Garlic
1 tsp Minced Garlic
1 tsp Italian Seasonings

What you need to do:
To start, place the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, yeast, salt, garlic and herbs) into a bowl and stir them to combine.

2. Then add the wet ingredients (olive oil, milk, water and garlic) and stir again just to combine.

3. Now, using the dough attachment of your electric mixer, mix the dough for about 8 minutes.

4. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, turn once to coat and cover with a plastic wrap.

5. Allow to rise for about 1 hour, or until doubled in bulk.

6. Turn the dough onto a very lightly floured surface and divide it into 8 equal pieces.

To do that I used a knife. I first divided the dough into halves. Then I cut each half into halves again so I had 4 pieces. And finally I cut each piece into halves again which resulted in 8 equal pieces.
(I personally think that they can be cut once more each ball, because these rolls turned out pretty big)

7. Use the palms of your hands to roll each ball into a 10-inch (26 cm) long rope.

If the dough is too sticky then use a little flour to dust it with. The ropes can’t be sticky because you wouldn’t be able to form the knots.

8. Now tie the rope into a knot.

9. Take the end lying underneath the knot and bring it over the top, tucking it into the center and take the end lying over the knot and tuck it underneath and into the center.

10. Transfer the knots on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and cover with a clean kitchen towel.

11. Let the knots rise for another 45 minutes.

12. In the meantime you can prepare the glaze.
Melt the butter and press the garlic into it.
Instead of pressing the garlic through the press you can just mince it finely.

13. When your knots are nice and puffy…
…brush the glaze onto them.

 16. Place the knots into a preheated oven (350 °F – 175 °C) and bake for about 15-18 minutes.

You can make these to escort just about anything, but I made it to go with my Minestrone.


(From Wikipedia) Minestrone (Italian: minestra [soup] + -one hence "the big soup," the one with many ingredients) is the name for a variety of thick Italian soups made with vegetables, often with the addition of pasta or rice. Common ingredients include beans, onions, celery, carrots, stock, and tomatoes.
Minestrone is one of the cornerstones of Italian cuisine, and is almost as common as pasta on Italian tables.

Note from me.

I'm not huge into Minestrone. Maybe because no one seems to make it right, lol, I don't know, but my husband loves it and so I decided to make him some and surprise him for lunch and it came out soooooo good! I plan on making this over and over again throughout winters to come!

What you need:

3 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 onions, chopped
2 cups chopped celery
5 carrots, sliced
2 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
4 cups tomato sauce (or 2 cans tomato paste, fill with water twice, each can)
1/2 cup red wine or red wine vinegar
1 can Pinto beans, drained
1 can Black beans, drained
1 can Navy beans, drained
2 cups baby spinach, rinsed
3 zucchinis, quartered and sliced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1/2 cup seashell pasta
Salt and pepper to taste

What you need to do:
1. In a large stock pot, over medium-low heat, heat olive oil and saute garlic for 2 to 3 minutes. Add onion and saute for 4 to 5 minutes. Add celery and carrots, saute for 1 to 2 minutes.

2. Add chicken broth, water and tomato sauce, bring to boil, stirring frequently. Add red wine vinegar. Reduce heat to low and add all beans, spinach leaves, zucchini, oregano, basil, salt and pepper. Simmer for 30 to 40 minutes, the longer the better.

3. Add in pasta. Some people like to boil it separately then add it once al dante, if you'd like to do it that way. 

Baked Egg Boats

Makes 4

What you need:
4 demi sourdough baguettes
5 eggs
1/3 cup heavy cream
4 ounces pancetta, finely chopped and fried until crisp
3 ounces gruyere cheese, grated
2 green onions, thinly sliced
salt and pepper to taste
(I added broccoli and red peppers.)

What you need to do:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Cut a deep “V” through the tops of each baguette until about a 1/2 inch to the bottom. Partially unstuff the baguettes. Set aside.
3. Place the eggs and cream into a mixing bowl and lightly beat together. Whisk in the remaining ingredients and lightly season with salt and pepper.
4. Divide and pour the mixture into each baguette boat and place onto a baking sheet.
5. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown, puffed and set in the center. Season with salt and pepper.
6. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes, cut and serve.

A Themed Baker's Sunday #21

Let's just dive right in!

Number 6
Earthquake Cake By: Life's Simple Measures

Number 5

Number 4
Over the Top Reese's Peanut Butter Cookies By: Picture Perfect Cooking

Number 3
Chocolate Bundt Cake By: Cupcakes with Sprinkles

Number 2
Kahlua Cake Trifles By: Just Putzing Around the Kitchen

Number 1
 White Chocolate Vanilla Bean Cheesecake By: The Kitchen Cookie

Congrats to everyone and thank you for participating!
Please grab the I was featured button if you'd please --->

Unto our next theme,

Menu Idea

Why have this?

 When you can have this??

What you need:
Picture Frame
Sticky Letters
Cute Scrap Book Paper
Dark Erase marker (or even those new chalk markers)

What you need to do:
Cut your scrap paper to the size of frame.
Stick your letters, how ever you'd like, on the paper. 
Frame it.
Write out your menu for the week!

Fun, quick, easy, inexpensive project that's super cute! :)

Cream Cheese Filled Snickerdoodles... Yum!

This was featured on:
literally inspired

So I came across this recipe from Cookies and Cups, as soon I read the title I knew I was in love!

The only thing that I would add/change is to cut the filling ingredients in half because I have a lot of cream cheese filling leftover. 

What You Need:
1 1/2 cups Sugar
1 cup Butter, Room Temp
2 eggs
1 tsp Vanilla
2 3/4 cups all purpose Flour
2 tsp Cream of Tartar
1 tsp Baking Soda
1/4 tsp Salt
1/4 cup Sugar
2 tsp Cinnamon

8 oz Cream Cheese, softened
1/4 cup Sugar
2 tsp Vanilla

What you need to do: 
Make the cream cheese filling by mixing the cream cheese, 1/4 cup sugar and 2 tsp vanilla. 
Cover the cream cheese mixture and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400°
Cream butter and 1 1/2 cup sugar until fluffy.
Add eggs and 1 tsp vanilla. Mix until combined.
On low speed mix in your flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt. Set dough to the side.
In a small bowl combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and 2 tsp cinnamon, set that aside as well.
Remove the cream cheese mixture from the refrigerator.

For each cookie you will need 2 flattened balls of dough, 1 Tbsp each. (The flattened disk will be approx 2″ in diameter)
Place 1 tsp of the cream cheese mixture on top of one of the flattened dough disks. Then place the other flattened dough on top of the cream cheese. Pinch the edges together to seal.

Carefully form into a ball and roll in the cinnamon sugar mixture.

Place on a plate as you finish making each and refrigerate. Before baking the cookies they should chill for 15 minutes.
When the dough is chilled bake on a parchment lined baking sheet 2″ apart for 8 minutes.
Transfer to wire rack to cool.


 I even wrapped some up for my new neighbors! 

Makes approx 24 cookies

Linked to THESE awesome blog parties!

Greek Nachos

What you need:
Pita shells
1 lb Ground beef or lamb, seasoned
Spinach, chopped
Crumbled Feta Cheese
Olives, if you'd like... we hate them.
Chives, chopped
Avocado, Chopped
Diced Roma tomatoes
Diced Onion
Squash Mix (Optional)
Click --> Tzatziki Sauce For the recipe I got

What you need to do:
Firstly, the beef. Start cooking it on a pan with a little olive oil. Add in whatever seasonings you'd like. I added salt, pepper, garlic, cumin, and thyme. Brown the beef and keep on low heat.

Secondly, mostly everything else. Chop up your spinach, olives, chives, tomatoes and onion. Set to the side.

You'll need to make the tzatziki sauce at some point as well.

Next, The pita shell. Place them, WHOLE, in the oven at 250-300 depending on how crunchy you want them and if you're going to make my squash mix. Check on them frequently. I like them a little crunchy, personally. Once you get them to the desired crunchiness, I like to cut them into small triangles, big enough to hold the meat and veggies. OOOOrrrrr.... You can place them in the grill. for a nice smoky taste to them :)

You're done unless you want the squash mix.

You'll need some Zucchini, Yellow Squash, Red Pepper, and Onion. This would be great to grill, but it's winter so I cooked them on a skillet, with just a pinch of olive oil. JUST A PINCH!
Dice them all to about bite size pieces. Once your oil is hot, add your veggies to the pan. From here you can choose to season them how ever you'd like. But I used salt, little bit of rosemary, thyme, cayenne pepper, chipotle seasonings and a little mrs. Dash.

You're done! Dish up!

How to make Tzatziki sauce

I am not Greek, I do not know some secret ancient recipe or anything, I just happen to like the sauce and tried to get as close as I could to it! 

What you will need:
2 English Cucumbers, peeled, seeded, and chopped
1 cup Sour Cream
1 cup Plain Yogurt (or Greek)
2 tbsp. Olive Oil
1/2 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Dill
3 tbsp. Minced Garlic

What you need to do:
 If you have a tiny food processor, like me, it'll be a slower process, but not too slow!
Puree your cucumbers and add in some sour cream and/or yogurt and puree together. 

Bring to a bowl and mix all ingredients together. 

I, personally, use this sauce on my Greek Nachos, which I will have the recipe posted soon. 

New Year - New Way of Life Part II

Eat to burn fat! 
I'm trying to incorporate some good for you foods into good eatin' foods.
Eating healthy can be a hard task, especially if you throw in working out. 
Well, here are a few things, along with a delicious smoothie I make before a workout, to help burn some fat.

1. Walnuts
All nuts contain some amount of the omega-3 fat alpha-linolenic acid, but most only contain trace amounts.
The real fat hero in most nuts is mono-unsaturated fats. Walnuts are actually a rich source of omega-3s.
One ounce provides almost 3g of alpha-linolenic acid. Try adding a side of this to your lunch or as a mid-day snack.

2. Ginger
Ginger has been used for centuries to help relieve digestive upset/disturbances, it can also help reduce inflammation, boost blood flow to muscles and aid muscle recovery.
I shred about a teaspoon into my morning smoothie because it has shown to boost calorie burn when eaten.

3. Oatmeal
This very slow-digesting carb keeps blood sugar and insulin levels low, so fat burning can stay high.
In fact, research has shown that athletes who consume slow-digesting carbs in the morning burn more fat throughout the entire day and during workouts than those consuming fast-digesting carbs. Some other slow digesting carbs are sweet potatoes, black beans and brown rice.

4. Avocado
The mono-unsaturated fats found in avocados are burned readily for fuel during exercise and actually encourage fat burning. Avocados also contain a very interesting carb called mannoheptulose, a sugar that actually blunts insulin release and enhances calcium absorption, both of which are critical for encouraging fat loss.

5. Salmon
This fish is one of the richest sources of the omega-3 essential fats EPA and DHA. Unlike flaxseeds, which provide a type of omega-3 that has to be converted into EPA and DHA, salmon provides your body a direct supply of them with no conversion required. This way you know you're getting a direct supply of the fats that turn on fat burning and block fat storage.

6. Soybeans
 Soybeans are the direct origin of soy protein, which has been shown to build muscle as efficiently as other forms of protein like whey and beef. Soy has also been shown to aid fat loss, possibly by decreasing appetite and calorie intake.

7. Water
Everyone knows you need water, but this just may be your best ally in fighting bodyfat. Studies have shown that drinking 2 cups of cold water can boost metabolic rate by 30%.
It has been estimated that drinking about 2 cups of cold water before breakfast, lunch and dinner every day for a year can burn 17,400 extra calories, which translates into a little more than 5 pounds of bodyfat!
Water just may be your best ally in fighting bodyfat.

8. Flaxseeds
 They contain the essential omega-3 fatty acid alpha linolenic acid. These omega-3 fats have been found to turn on genes that stimulate fat burning and turn off genes that increase fat storage.

9. Grapefruit
 A study from the Scripps Clinic (San Diego, California) reported that subjects eating half of a grapefruit or drinking 8 oz of grapefruit juice three times a day while maintaining their normal diet lost an average of 4 pounds over 12 weeks - and some lost more than 10 pounds without even dieting!

Results were likely due to grapefruit's ability to reduce insulin levels and to a chemical in grapefruit known as naringin, which prevents fat from being stored in the body.

10. Honey
 Yes, it's a sugar, but it's fairly low on the glycemic index. Keeping insulin levels low and steady is critical for maintaining a fat-burning environment in your body. 
Honey is also a rich source of nitric oxide (NO) metabolites; ultimately, that means it actually encourages fat release from the body's fat cells

11. Peanut Butter
 Another source of helpful mono-unsaturated fat that can actually aid fat loss. What's funny is that many food manufacturers make low-fat peanut butters!
Of course, they replace these healthy mono-unsaturated fats with carbs, namely sugar. Avoid these and stick with natural peanut butters that don't add the type of fat you surely want to avoid - trans fats.

12. Eggs
Research supports the notion that those who start their day with eggs not only eat fewer calories throughout the day, but also lose significantly more bodyfat.

13. Chili Pepper Flakes
 Hot peppers contain the active ingredient capsaicin, a chemical that can enhance calorie burning at rest as well as reduce hunger and food intake.
 The boost in calorie burn is particularly enhanced when capsaicin is used with caffeine.

14. Broccoli
This fibrous carb doesn't provide many net carbs or calories, broccoli can make you feel full - one reason why it's a great food for getting lean.
Broccoli also contains phytochemicals that can help enhance fat loss. So, instead of corn as a side with your pasta, throw in some lightly steamed broccoli with some garlic. Tasty and good for you! 

15. Olive Oil
 Like avocados, olive oil is a great source of monounsaturated fats.
 Not only do they lower levels of the "bad" type of cholesterol and improve cardiovascular health, but they're also more likely to be burned as fuel, which means they're less likely to be sticking around your midsection.

Ok... Onto my smoothie! I call it.... THE GREEN MONSTER!!!

So what you need, and what I have pictured up here:
Pineapple (and juice, if canned)
Yogurt - any flavor you'd like
Whey Protein
And a lot of fresh raw Spinach

What you need to do:
Basically... take as much as you want of each ingredient... and blend it.
Literally, take a handful of spinach and blend it in.

This is the whey protein that I use, I don't use a whole scoop just cause its very vanilla-y.


A Themed Baker's Sunday #20

Let's just dive right into it, shall we?

Apple Pie Cake By: The Sweet Swiper



Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars By: Itsy Bitsy Paper


Caramel Apple Pie Cupcakes By: Just Putzing Around in the Kitchen

Congrats everyone! Please take a I was featured button for your blog! --->

Now onto our next Themed Baker's Sunday!
The theme issss.....
White, dark, milk, etc!
Happy Baking!

New Year - New Way of Life

Hello everyone!
It is, of course, a new year (crazy... we're over half way through the month already!) and everyone's number one resolution is losing weight. Well, mine isn't so much losing weight as it is changing my life style. 
I want to incorporate new and healthy things into my life! 
Here are a few things that are good for your face, body, and weight loss!


  • Green Tea
    • Green Tea is full of antioxidants. It's also helpful for reducing redness. Rinse your face in cool green tea; It's is a great way to gently soothe skin.
    • Also, Green tea contains theanine, which calms you and helps you maintain clear concentration and focus

  • Avocado -Avocado is a bit spendy but if you get it at a great season and price it's great for all sorts of things
    • Excellent moisturizer
    • Great as a face mask
    • Mashed up in hair for some extra hydration
    • Avocado supports reproductive health as well. Avocados are a good source of folic acid. Folate  has been found to reduce the risk for cervical dysplasia, which is a precancerous condition.

  • Cherries
    • TONS of antioxidants. Great for evening out skin tone.

  • Oatmeal 
    • For a fast-acting soother, has major anti-inflammatory properties. 
    • You can drop it in the bath, slather it on your face, or even use it as a gentle scrub.
    • Oatmeal can soothe Eczema, as oats have anti-inflammatory properties. You can use it as a paste or poured into a bath. Soaking the affected area for at least 15 minutes. 
    • Oats are also thought to have an antihistamine effect by lowering levels of histamine, which triggers inflammation as part of the immune system’s recovery response.
    • Great for priming your muscles for a workout. They provide glucose, the fuel your muscles run on
    • It’s rich in beta-glucan, a fiber that slows digestion and keeps blood sugar on an even keel. For maximum results, choose whole oats. They’re digested more slowly than quick cooking or instant oatmeal.


  • Papaya
    • makes the best enzyme masks for decongesting your skin.


  • Lemon
    • The acid can whiten nails 
    • gives your hair natural-looking highlights
    • help slough off dry, flaky skin.

  • Egg White
    • Egg white masks is a nice way to improve tone and texture.
    • Egg whites pack a protein-rich punch for your hair
    • Including egg whites in your diet can help boost your hair's shine and body, egg whites can also play a starring role in your next homemade protein hair mask. 

  • Olive Oil
    • I personally use olive oil as a make up remover at the end of the day before I do my nightly regime.
    • Great for hydrating hair and smooth dry spots on skin
    • This healthy fat contains essential fatty acids that help skin resist UV damage.
    •  EFAs are also part of the cell membranes that help hold in moisture. The body can't synthesize EFAs, so consume about 1 tablespoon of olive oil daily to keep skin supple.

  • Honey
    • This natural antimicrobial also soothes and draws moisture into skin. Use it in masks or as a spot treatment.
    • I also hear that if you put a dab of honey on your fingertip and apply it to a pimple with a band aid to cover, that it will remove it!

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