8.28.2014

Classic Peach Pie


My Father-in-law has a peach tree that would knock your socks off. 

I grew up thinking that peaches were an every-other-year kind of thing, but it turns out, there are peach trees out there that explode with a zillion peaches every. single. year. Lucky for us, his tree is one of them. 

Each year, starting in the middle of August, through the beginning of September, that peach tree won't shut off it's magic. We always try to eat up those peaches as quickly as we can, because we know another bushel of peaches is most likely on it's way. 

Some of our favorite ways we've used up the peaches have been:


So we've been around the block before with these beauties. It's about time I share my favorite way to use up those gorgeous plum & juicy peaches... 

8.26.2014

Never Fail Perfect Pie Crust


For me, nothing tastes like Fall more than those gorgeous flavors of cloves, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, and nutmeg. They smell like Fall, they taste like Fall. 

Throw them into a pie with fresh-off-the-tree juicy ripe peaches? I mean, holy smokes. 

But all the lovely Fall spices and juicy peaches in the world wouldn't be worth it unless you had a perfect bed of flaky, buttery, pie crust to go with it. Which is why I have come to you today, friends, with a secret little gem of mine...

I've kept this recipe to myself for 7 years, and today, it's all yours. I want you all to be successful in the kitchen, and make the best pies of your life, and sometimes all you need is a dynamite sure-fire recipe. 

8.22.2014

Mexican Chicken and Rice Lettuce Wraps


I remember being asked quite often when I was a little girl what my favorite color was. From preschool through 6th grade, I was thoroughly convinced it was blue. My eyes are blue, my blue crayons were always used up the fastest, I loved blue dresses and clothing, and I loved drawing myself with a blue bow in my hair. 

Later, my favorite color merged to black. I LOVED black. I was fully soaked in my music, and the most professional thing we wore was our "concert black". I felt my best in black (not in a gothic-dark-stuff way), just in a holy-smokes-my-closet-is-half-black-shirts kind of way. 

Fast forward to my married life. I started to grow what little garden I could fit into my balcony pots. I loved to see everything grow. I grew to appreciate the life of a seed and it's journey to full planthood. I loved the deep dark greens, the neon yellow greens, and the gorgeous richness of the fruits they brought forth for us to eat. I grew to adore the magic of things that grow; how just a tiny little seed can burst into a juicy tomato, or a sunflower over 12 feet tall (15 feet as of yesterday - no joke!!!) Although green isn't my favorite color (black is still at the forefront), I use green so often in my kitchen. I try to make sure we have at least one green thing on our plate at each meal (including breakfast - green smoothies still going strong!) And can I just say, green is the PERFECT way to turn a regular casserole, into an AMAZING wrap! 

8.20.2014

Toasted Coconut Blueberry Muffins


Utah has started to throw in more and more thunderstorms here in the valley. From our balcony, we can usually see if one is rolling it's way in from the south. It starts pretty small, a couple of dark clouds here and there, and eventually it roars into this huge thunderstorm that makes our dry crusted little desert surroundings jump for joy from the impending torrential downpour headed it's way. We LOVE it. It gives me an excuse in the heat of the summer to fling open the windows and balcony doors, and turn on the oven for a little overcast baking. 

8.18.2014

Roasted Zucchini Bisque


Yep.

Another recipe attempt at proving zucchini can work in any way, shape, or form, and you know what? This veggie has been working overtime in my kitchen for the cause. Thankfully, soup is kind of the easiest medium there is, and I was able to create this recipe on the fly, using up not one, not two, but three of those lovely veggies begging to be used from my garden. 

Usually when I hear of people using up zucchinis from the garden in mass quantities, I hear the words chocolate zucchini bread fly out of their mouths at the drop of a hat. In my opinion, chocolate and veggies together kind of makes me angry at the universe. I'm not saying zucchini bread is gross, just chocolate zucchini bread. I bet there are recipe out there that totally rock, but this gal isn't going for it. 

It's kind of like making me eat pickles. Everyone and their dog loves it, but darn it, it 'aint happening in the blondie kitchen for a second. 

Now that I've lost half my pickle-and-chocolate-zucchini-bread-loving readers, let's read on about this velvety bowl of heaven, shall we? 

8.12.2014

Summer Squash and Corn Chowder



Soup in the summertime. You must think I've officially lost my marbles.

Nope. 

When you have summer squash and zucchini flying out of the garden, you've got to find a way to use up as many as you can in one dish to keep up! Soup is a delicious and super efficient way to knock down a few of those veggie giants sitting on your counter or out in the garden. If you don't have either of those going on right now, I'm sure they're super cheap at the grocery store or local farmers market. 

Once again, though, I'm faced with the constant challenge of a husband and son who can't stand this stuff. They won't eat the zucchini or yellow squash if they had the choice. I remember my husband even saying that squash and zucchini were weeds. 

Yes, weeds. 

Good grief, man. America is weeping. 

Fortunately, something called cream and bacon can easily bribe these dear men in my life.