Category Archives: Recipes by The Dinner Belle

Not Quite

My kids like Pop-Tarts. A lot. When we realized that Knox had a soy allergy, our selection of me-approved convenience foods was slashed down to a minuscule selection. I prefer to give my kids whole (unprocessed) foods, but adding extreme pickiness to an allergy doesn’t help matters. We discovered the Nature’s Path Organic Toaster Pastry, which saves the day most days. Knox is an addict. He could eat a box a day if I would let him (I don’t).

Now, if I had all the time in the world, I’d just make all of Knox and Brody’s food from scratch. However, with a full time job and a family to tend to, that’s just not the case. Also, when I try to substitute Knox’s favorites with homemade versions, he tends to rebel. For example, when I try to knock-off Chick-fil-a and make him homemade nuggets (complete with homemade bread crumbs… oh yes I did). He turns up his cute little nose. Even when I say “Knox, it’s Chick-fil-A!” To which my snarky four year-old gourmand replies “You NOT Chick-fil-a.” Burn.

I do try to bake a breakfast food at least once a week, so they can eat on it throughout the week. Generally, they’re a big fan of home-baked items like pound cake and muffins. This weekend, I got brave and attempted some homemade Pop-Tarts. I read through a bunch of recipes, collected ideas and made up my own:

Crust= Martha Stewart’s pie crust

Filling= 2 cups chopped strawberries, 1/2 cup sugar, cooked down over medium low heat for 30 minutes

Icing= 1 cup powdered sugar, smidge of vanilla and 1 tablespoon of milk.

Sprinkles= sprinkles… I’m not that talented

Y’all. There was measuring. Chopping. Pastry blending. Rolling. Flouring. Sweating. Bleeding (<– not really). Baking. Icing. Sprinkling.

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In short, it was a process.

10524721_701124073275128_1393863030918239242_n Easy homemade Pop-Tarts from mycoffeeiscold.comI was so proud of my cute little Pop-Tarts! I mean, seriously, they’re really cute.

Trevor and Brody, my dear, sweet boys, loved them. As I expected them to. Brody was beside himself knowing there were Pop-Tarts being created in the vicinity and was practically in tears by the time they were done just because HE NEEDED ONE SO BADLY.

10562979_701144983273037_9150796070698455169_nAnd Knox? When offered one by his father who said “Here Knox, look! A Pop-Tart!”, Knox covered his mouth and replied “Not quite.”

10563006_701145029939699_6576521310804058049_nThere’s just no pleasing some people.

 

Southern Peach Pie with Streusel Topping

Happy Tuesday, friends! Well, here in SC it’s blazing hot and the late peach crop is finally rolling in. My absolute favorite peach recipe is my mom’s peach pie. It’s seriously incredible- and to make it even more crazy good, it’s covered in a crumbly streusel topping. Yes, please, I’ll have some of that. It’s pretty much a necessity in life for you to have and make this recipe- you’ll thank me later!

Southern peach pie with a streusel topping- easy and SO delicious!! From mycoffeeiscold.com.

Southern Streusel Peach Pie

1 Pie Crust (homemade or store-bought)
4 cups peaches (peeled and sliced)
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg
2 tbl whipping cream

For the Streusel Topping

1 cup flour
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)

1) Put peaches in a bowl and sprinkle with sugar.

Southern peach pie with a streusel topping- easy and SO delicious!! From mycoffeeiscold.com.
2) Beat egg and cream together, then pour over peaches. Stir it up.

Southern peach pie with a streusel topping- easy and SO delicious!! From mycoffeeiscold.com.
3) Pour peach mixture into your prepared pie crust.

Southern peach pie with a streusel topping- easy and SO delicious!! From mycoffeeiscold.com.
4) Mix streusel ingredients in medium bowl. Mix with pastry blender (or two forks, if you don’t have one… you really should get one, though- they’re awesome) until mixture is crumbly.

Southern peach pie with a streusel topping- easy and SO delicious!! From mycoffeeiscold.com.Southern peach pie with a streusel topping- easy and SO delicious!! From mycoffeeiscold.com.
5) Sprinkle streusel over pie. Really pack it in there… don’t be shy! Take it all the way to the edge of the crust, too. Trust me. You’ll like it.

Southern peach pie with a streusel topping- easy and SO delicious!! From mycoffeeiscold.com.

Southern peach pie with a streusel topping- easy and SO delicious!! From mycoffeeiscold.com.

6) Bake at 425 degrees for 25 to 35 minutes. Check it after 25 minutes and add time, if necessary. Mine needed 35 minutes to get fully brown.

Southern peach pie with a streusel topping- easy and SO delicious!! From mycoffeeiscold.com.

Let pie cool, then refrigerate. Best served cold (in my opinion!). Sometimes, this pie can get very juicy (depending on ripeness of peaches), and it’s okay to pour off some of the juice if it makes its way up to the top. Trust me when I tell you that you NEED this pie in your life! Enjoy it!

 

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Homemade, Three Ingredient, 15 minute Cranberry Sauce

Did you know that cranberry sauce is the easiest thing ever to make? No, for real. If you can boil water, you can make this, and you’ll impress your family and friends with your culinary prowess. I love cranberry sauce, but I’ve always purchased/ eaten the canned variety. In my ever-expanding quest to eat whole foods and make everything from scratch, I decided to study up on cranberry sauce-making before Thanksgiving and Christmas this (or last, I guess) year. I perused the internet, got a general feel for the process, then made my own recipe. So here it is, the recipe that has already converted the cranberry sauce-haters in my family into cranberry sauce-lovers (my own husband, included).

cranberry sauce

Ingredients:

1 12-ounce bag of fresh cranberries (from the produce section)
1 cup sugar
1 cup orange juice (whatever variety you prefer)

1) Add all three ingredients into a sauce pan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil.

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*Be careful because it WILL boil over if you don’t watch it!

2) Once it boils, stir it and reduce the heat. The cranberries will “pop” and their skins will burst like this:

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3) Simmer over low heat for 15 minutes.

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4) Let cool. Refrigerate until cold, then serve.

You can prep this the day before your event or dinner, and it works perfectly. It stiffens up but doesn’t congeal- you still have chunks of soft cranberry. If you wanted to, you could definitely strain this before serving it, but I didn’t find it necessary because I liked the texture. The citrus gives this such a fresh taste, and it will make you a cranberry sauce fan, I promise! Enjoy!

Apple Doughnut Muffins

In my never-ending quest to gain weight (that’s a joke, guys), I have created a rather delicious breakfast option for our family. I grew up eating a wonderfully unhealthy concoction known as “French Breakfast Puffs” (aka muffins dipped in butter and rolled around in sugar), which my entire family loved. I still make these frequently, but I wanted to do a little something extra to them. My mom used to make “Apple Doughnuts” when I was little, too, but I couldn’t find the recipe, so I made one up by tweaking my recipe for Breakfast Puffs.

These are DELICIOUS, and you can even pretend that they’re healthy because they have grated apple in them, and we’ll just ignore the fact that they’re coated in sugar and butter, okay? Okay, good. These are a wonderfully moist, dense muffins, and they’re just as good zapped in the microwave for 20 seconds the next morning as they are right out of the oven.

APPLE DOUGHNUT MUFFINS

Dry ingredients:
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp salt

Wet ingredients:
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup melted butter
1 apple (peeled, cored and grated)

For the coating:
2 tablespoons melted butter
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon

1) Add the first five dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl, stir to combine and set aside.
2) In a small bowl, whisk the egg into the milk. Once combined, slowly pour the egg mixture into your melted butter while whisking rapidly. This allows the egg to be incorporated into the warm butter without cooking it.
3) Pour your wet mixture into your dry and stir just until totally combined. It will be lumpy.
4) Add your grated apple and stir until incorporated- it will be even lumpier.
5) Drop batter into a greased (or lined with paper muffin cups) muffin tin. Fill cups 3/4 full with batter.
6) Bake at 350 for 25-27 minutes, or until tops just begin to brown and a toothpick comes out clean.
7) While the muffins bake, combine your sugar and cinnamon for the coating. You can do this in a ziploc bag or on a plate.
8- When muffins are done, let cool for just long enough to be able to handle them. They should still be warm.
9) Brush tops of muffin with melted butter… you can also dip the whole muffin into melted butter, but I was trying to be a *little* bit better, calorie-wise!
10) Roll buttered muffin into the cinnamon sugar mixture. The heat from the muffin will allow the sugar to stick to the sides and bottom, if you choose not to butter those.
11) Serve warm and EAT!

I hope you guys will try and enjoy these as much as my family does! These are a BIG kid-pleaser!

“Piece of Cake” Coffee Cake

Now that we’ve discovered Knox’s soy allergy, I’ve really had to change the way I’ve been cooking. I used to cook all the time. We’re talking full meals, Southern-style, with a meat, starch, vegetable and bread. Every. Single. Day. I also used to bake occasionally (from scratch), but after having a second child, my grand culinary aspirations flew out the window. Because I learned that taking a shower was more important to me than cooking a huge dinner or baking a pretty cake. I’m pretty sure no one wants to eat a cake made by a smelly person, anyway.

However. Now that I’ve had to start checking nutritional labels on everything that comes into our house to weed out the dreaded soy, I have to say that I am APPALLED at the crap that is in our food. I mean, it’s really bad.  If there are more than 10 ingredients that you can’t pronounce listed on the box, chances are, it’s probably not all that good for you to be ingesting. Most of the “convenience” items that Knox can eat are way more expensive than the regular brands, and while I don’t mind buying a few boxes of Annie’s Organic Cheddar Bunnies for him to snack on, the real issue lies with breakfast foods. Knox really likes sweet food for breakfast. I used to whip up a boxed coffee cake mix or buy a grocery store bakery pound cake for him to eat most days, either that or he would eat an organic nutrigrain bar and yogurt. But now he can’t. Because all of that stuff is loaded with something that makes him incoherent and itchy… SOY. You’d be shocked at how many of our staple food items have soy in them- it’s not just for tofu anymore!

So, I decided that it was time to get back to my roots and start cooking from scratch once again, not only so that Knox can actually eat what we eat, but so that we get back to a more natural way of eating minus all of the preservatives and chemicals and what-have-you.  All that being said, I don’t have two hours to spare to make some meal you’d find in a high-end restaurant. This is real life. I work, I have two children, and I’d like to be able to sit down and relax with my husband for an hour in the evening instead of standing at my Kitchenaid mixer (even though it’s red and really pretty).

This delicious coffee cake recipe was one of the first things I ever learned to bake. I was probably 10 or so the first time I made it by myself, so yeah, I promise you can do it. It takes about ten minutes to prepare and 20ish to bake. Last time I checked, that is the same amount of time it took me to make a boxed coffee cake, too. And, oh by the way, this one tastes WAY better.

Here is how you make my “Piece of Cake Coffee Cake” (full recipe at the bottom):

Ingredients

For the Cake:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
3/4 c sugar
1/3 c melted butter (cooled)
1/2 c milk
1 tsp vanilla

For the streusel topping:
1/2 c packed brown sugar
2 tbl butter, softened
2 tbl flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 c chopped nuts (optional)

Directions:

1)Preheat your oven to 375 degrees, and grease an 8×8 (or 9×9) pan and set that aside.

2) Add all of the ingredients for your streusel topping in a small bowl (except the nuts). Mix together with a fork until the mixture resembles crumbs. You’ll need to smoosh (technical cooking term) your butter into your dry ingredients with the tines of your fork to break it up. Stop when it looks like this:

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Loosely mix in your nuts if you want that in your topping. I didn’t use any in mine. Set your topping aside.

3) Sift together your flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside. By this time, your side is probably kind of cluttered, but that’s okay because we’re about to use everything.

4) In a large mixing bowl, beat your egg until frothy. Beat in your sugar, melted butter, then your milk and vanilla. Stir until everything is combined.

5) Stir your flour mixture into your wet ingredients. It will look kind of like this:

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6) Then, you’re going to pour half of your batter into your greased pan.

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7) Sprinkle half of your streusel mixture over the batter.

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8) Top that with your remaining batter. It doesn’t have to be perfect- it’s okay if you can’t totally cover your first layer of topping.

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9) Top the whole thing off with the rest of your streusel topping.

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10) Bake at 375 for between 20 and 25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out cleanly. I know. It looks really good, right?

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That’s it! I like to make this on Sunday evenings and have it to eat on for a few days for breakfast. If you stick a piece in the microwave for ten seconds, it tastes just like it does straight out of the oven. Goes great with your morning coffee (or milk, in the case of my toddler).

Here’s the whole recipe written out, minus the pictures, so you can copy, paste and print it out for your recipe cards:

PIECE OF CAKE COFFEE CAKE

For the Cake:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
3/4 c sugar
1/3 c melted butter
1/2 c milk
1 tsp vanilla

For the streusel topping:
1/2 c packed brown sugar
2 tbl butter, softened
2 tbl flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 c chopped nuts (optional)

Directions:
1)Preheat your oven to 375 degrees, and grease an 8×8 (or 9×9) pan and set that aside.
2) Add all of the ingredients for your streusel topping in a small bowl (except the nuts). Mix together with a fork until the mixture resembles crumbs. Set aside.
3) Sift your flour, baking powder and salt together. Set aside.
4) In a large mixing bowl, whisk your egg until frothy. Stir in your sugar, melted butter, then milk & vanilla.
5) Stir your flour mixture into your wet mixture until everything is combined. There may be a few lumps.
6) Pour half of your batter into your greased pan. Top with half of your streusel topping. Pour remaining batter on top, then top with remaining streusel mix.
7) Bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes until a toothpick comes out cleanly.

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