Squash Blossoms – The Food of the Gods

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The days are hot, the sun shines in the sky long into the evening and the squash are throwing forth big bright beautiful blooms.  Yes it’s that enchanted time for squash blossoms.  A tiny window of wonder when the delicate flowers of your zucchinis or yellow crooks can be harvest with loving care in the cool morning air and stuffed with light fluffy cheese before being dipped in bubbling barely-there-batter and devoured in the blink of an eye.


I remember so vividly the first time I had this elusive delicacy.    Working at the Utah Shakespeare Festival in stunning Cedar City the cast and crew cultivated a garden.  Everyone pitched in, working together to water and weed as well as wine and dine on the fruits of our labors.  John Pryble, not only one of the best actors I have had the pleasure of sharing the stage with but a local farmer of Ashland Oregon, brought out a plate of what I could only describe as heaven, a plate of Squash Blossoms.

Living in a tiny studio in Manhattan didn’t allow me the luxury of having my own garden so the years passed with nary a cheese stuffed bloom.  The memories, however, remained as vivid, as ever.    Then one summer evening, my husband Matt and I treated ourselves to dinner and there on the menu they were; Squash Blossoms.   Before the waiter had time to ask us if we wanted flat or sparkling water I had fervently requested the appetizer.  It arrived in all its splendor and even though we ate with care, savoring every tiny bite it was gone all too quickly.  We ate the rest of our meal and when the waitress asked if we would like dessert I responded with all seriousness, “Yes, I’ll have the Squash Blossoms.”

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So imagine my elation when last week Matt brought home a bag full of squash flowers from a co-worker; he had harvested them but didn’t know how to prepare them.  Asking around the office he heard of Marcella Rose’s Blog and hit up my husband with a deal.  “A trade” he said,  “the flowers for a blog on how to prepare them.”  I like to think my husband answered him with a resounding slam of his hand on his desk paired with a loud, “BOOM! Done!!”  As this is how I would have responded to this Angel of a man.

Here is how to make heaven on a plate, but readers beware, these lighter than air treats will haunt you all year long.  You have been warned. [Read more…]

Peanut Butter Cup Protein Shake

Peanut Butter Cup Protein Shake

Protein shakes are really good to have, especially after a workout. For months, I have just had the regular powder in some water, and it can be not as satisfying as I would like.

Until, I came upon this recipe for a peanut butter cup protein shake. It is so delish and satisfies my sweet tooth and surprisingly really tastes like a Peanut Butter Cup! It also doesn’t add too many more calories, which I am all about!

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Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Centers & Cream Cheese Frosting

Chocolate Cupcakes with a Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Center and Cream Cheese Frosting

CCCCCDCCCF … aka Heaven in your Mouth

Hello lover.

I first discovered these beauties on a trip when my dear friend made a white cupcake with a peanut butter cookie in the middle and chocolate ganache frosting.  I thought to myself, “Self, these cupcakes are the devil but you should make your own version with way more chocolate in them because I’m sure you can do that and only eat 1, maybe 2 of them.”  This is how I talk myself into making rich, buttery treats and what follows is several justifications on why I should eat more than 1, maybe 2.  But that’s a post for a different day.  Right now, let’s get you started on making the most delicious cupcakes you will ever stuff into your mouth.

ingredients

Now, sometimes I’m all about baking from scratch.  It’s a real art and super satisfying when you take a group of ingredients and make it into something magical.  So, if you want to make your cake batter and frosting from scratch, you go girl.  I, however, have 3 kids
Cookie dough comacircling my feet at this very moment.  They are like sharks and the cookie dough is the blood they seek.  So, for this particular recipe, I’m going with a cake mix and pre-made frosting.  I do always make the cookie dough from scratch though, for 2 reasons.  1 – Raw eggs.  Now I’m not too good to put a dollop or 7 of cookie dough in my mouth if it has raw egg in it, but apparently, you are not supposed to do that.  I also have a niece with an egg allergy and who am I to tell her she can’t have one of my delicious cupcakes?  2 – There will be leftover cookie dough, oh yes, leftover delicious cookie dough that you can use specifically for eating cookie dough.


So first, you have to make some cookie dough.  Delicious cookie dough.  You can buy ready-made cookie dough in a tube or those already shaped raw cookie dough packages.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you about the raw egg thing though.  I go with the classic Tollhouse recipe, with the exception of the
eggs.  **For each egg, substitute 2 tablespoons of milk.

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Skinny Coffee Cake – Half the Fat & Calories

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Hi Everyone! My name is Stephanie and I blog over at Eat. Drink. Love. I’m so excited to be a contributor to My Cooking Spot!

One of my favorite parts about blogging is that I love the challenge of taking a recipe that would normally be considered to be unhealthy and lightening it up! Today I am sharing my low-fat coffee cake recipe with you. The typical slice of coffee cake can run anywhere between 400-500 calories and can have over 20 grams of fat! My version contains just 225 calories and 7.9 grams of fat for a generous slice!

One of my favorite parts of coffee cake is the crumb topping, but that crumb topping will cost you a lot of calories. I wanted to try to create a version that still gave me that cinnamon sugar flavor without having to do a crumb topping, so instead I did a swirl of cinnamon sugar inside the cake, and really, I didn’t even miss the crumb topping! I baked mine up in a bundt pan and then dusted the top with some additional cinnamon and sugar. This cake is perfect to serve for guests, or in my case, co-workers!


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