Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

One of the things that Matt and I enjoy doing (especially before kids), is go snowshoeing, especially up in the white mountains.  We haven’t been able to go in about three years.  But when I saw that our friends Al and Andrea (check out her website!) own snowshoes, we jumped at the opportunity to get together with them and go locally.

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We had a great time!  It was nice to finally get outside!  I was sore and got some nasty blisters from my boots, but it was worth it!  After snowshoeing, we went out for lunch at one of our favorite local restaurants, The Grill Next Door.  For some reason, the red pepper hummus on the menu was calling my name.  I had never had this type of hummus before but knew I needed to try it!  Oh my god it was soo good!  So what did I do the next day?  Try to make it of course!

Any recipe where you can throw all the ingredients into the food processor at once is a great recipe.  And that is why you should make your own hummus!  I used this recipe from the blog Six Sisters’ Stuff.

IMG_20140126_175256And that’s all there is!

IMG_20140126_175414It doesn’t taste exactly like The Grill Next Door’s hummus but it is delicious!

I’ve made this twice already.

IMG_20140202_141057Once just to snack on and the second time was for our annual family dinner.

IMG_20140208_160316Not only is hummus so easy to make, it is a healthy snack!

IMG_20140208_160327Don’t forget to check out the recipe and give this amazing hummus a try!

My New Year Resolution (2014)

Happy New Year!

Source: Lucky WP

Source: Lucky WP

It’s a new year and resolutions of course come along with that.  I have gone back and forth about whether or not I want to post/document my new year resolution journey. But if I am going to stick to it, I need to.  I saw on the Steve Harvey show yesterday that you need to write down your goals and say them out loud.  So that’s what I’m going to do.

My new year resolution is to lose weight and get healthy.  I know, the typical new year resolution.  But now is the time.  I can’t keep putting it off.

This is more personal than what I like to share on my little baking blog.  However, I need to be held accountable.  I need something that is going to make me stick to it.  Along with the support of my husband and family, this will be it.  Not to mention seeing your before pictures (not ready to share those just yet)!

To get a jump start on my exercise, I got T25.  I have also been working on creating a weekly meal plan to help change my eating habits.   I will use my blog to share my progress with the exercise and the meals I am eating.  I hope to do this week by week.

But what about all of my baking?!  I don’t intend to stop. I am still going to bake the desserts that I want to.  I will just save it for a cheat day or my co-workers will be getting an increase in baked treats (you’re welcome guys!).   I will also start to incorporate healthier desserts into what I make.

Ok, so my goals within my resolution. Overall, I want to lose 35 pounds and develop a healthy lifestyle so it becomes second nature to me.  To start, I have smaller goals (in addition to exercising with T25):

  1. Lose 5 pounds – I need to start with a small, attainable number
  2. Break my coffee habit – I drink WAY too much and use WAY too much flavored coffee creamer
  3. Stop eating junk food every night

These are my goals I want to work on right now.  As I accomplish one, I will add another.

Source: Pinterest

Source: Pinterest

Today, I start T25 and tomorrow I start the meal plan (I have one more Christmas celebration).  Like I said, I hope to share my progress week to week, whether good or bad!

dont worry about failure

Brown Butter Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies

“I think this is the best cookie you have ever made” was Matt’s reaction to eating a Brown Butter Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookie.  And I can’t argue with him.  First of all, it has brown butter.  If you don’t know by now, I absolutely love using brown butter.  And it has both chocolate and toffee chips, a combination of two wonderful ingredients.

IMG_20131231_175543This was one of those recipes that I happened to have all the ingredients on hand.  I love that.  And, I was glad to use up the 3 almost empty bags of chocolate chips I had…oops! :)

What I also love is during the holidays, baking ingredients are on sale and there are coupons.  So I love to stock up on stuff like condensed milk, evaporated milk, and definitely things like chocolate chips and add-ins like that.  Having ingredients on hand like that makes it easier to make a dessert without having to run to the grocery store.

Now this isn’t an average size cookie.  Each cookie consists of a 1/4 of dough.  That’s a lot.

IMG_20131231_150815A great way to measure out the amount of cookie dough is using an ice cream scoop.  (I also use my ice cream scoop for making cupcakes.)

IMG_20131231_152526I could only fit four cookies at a time on the baking sheet.  And because I was using only one baking sheet and one piece of parchment paper, they took me over two hours to make.  It was well worth it!

Because the cookies are so large, I got 16 cookies out of the batter.  You normally get about 3 dozen with regular size cookies.

IMG_20131231_180435I tend not to repeat a lot of recipes because I am always looking for new ones to try.  However, this is one recipe that I intend to repeat frequently.  They are so good!

IMG_20131231_180623If you want to give these cookies a try, and I am sure that you do, make sure you check out the blog Mom On Time Out for this amazing recipe!