Recipe: goat cheese stuffed baked apricots

I had the best time yesterday at the market in Boston. It was the coolest thing I have ever seen. It was also the cheapest produce I have ever purchased! I grabbed some necessities like green peppers and asparagus, but I also bought some things that sounded like a good time, such as apricots and a papaya. I still haven’t decided what to do with the papaya, but that’s a post for another day.

So apricots, aside from eating them raw, I was interested in finding something else to do with them because while, yes food can be consumed in its natural state, that’s just not as much fun.

Pinterest apricot screen shot

So after a few quick searches on Pinterest, I decided that 1. I was over thinking this and 2. I really wanted to eat them with breakfast and to eat them hot. So baking them it was.

Sundays are my favorite day to play with breakfast recipes. Probably because after lifting legs nothing is more satisfying that a big breakfast, but also, I have nothing else to do on Sundays except eat and relax – my two favorite things.

What You’ll Need

  • Whole apricot
  • Goat cheese
  • Cinnamon (optional)
  • Cooking spray
  • Knife
  • Baking sheet
  • Oven

Directions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees
  2. Lightly spray your baking sheet. I used a mini pie pan since I was only making enough apricots for myself, I didn’t want to dirty up a larger dish than necessary.
  3. Cut your apricot in half and remove the pit. Then cut a little bit off of the end your apricot. This will give you a flat bottom and your fruit won’t roll around in the baking dish. I ate the ends, but do what you feel.
  4. Using a small spoon, scoop your goat cheese and slightly shape it into a ball. This will go into the hole where the pit was. I used maple pecan goat cheese I found at the store, but you can use any kind. If you don’t like goat cheese, you can also use another soft cheese like cream cheese or mascarpone.
  5. Place your fruit on the baking sheet and dust with cinnamon.
  6. Bake for about 5-7 minutes or until the cheese is soft and slightly melty

 

 

 

Step 3

 

 

Step 4 and 5

 

Baked apricot

I ate these with my breakfast, but I’m sure if you made a lot of them you could use them as an appetizer. I did find a recipe that used apricots and goat cheese, but wrapped them in bacon- it just seemed like a bit much for me. I have a few more apricots, so I may play with them this week leading up to surgery. We will see!

❤ Cristina

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Recipe: Breakfast “grilled” cheese

As a lover of food, I am constantly searching for new recipes and ways to use ingredients I want to get rid of quickly. Most of my ideas come from having a small amunt of something left over that I don’t want to throw out. However, sometimes my ideas come from tweaking recipes that I have come across.

I may be guilty of purchasing the Food Network Magazine every time it comes out. So much so that for my birthday JP bought me a year subscription. Well, before he did that. I found an issue that had a number of sandwiches in it. Here’s the link for the online slideshow that has the 10 spins on grilled cheese. I definitely want to try the apricot and brie grilled cheese!

Here’s how I made my grilled cheese.

What You’ll Need

  • 2 slices of whole wheat cinnamon bread with raisins, somehow this has less macros and sugar than their regular cinnamon raisin
  • a serving of soft cheese – I’ve used vanilla blueberry goat cheese, cinnamon cranberry goat cheese, cream cheese with pumpkin pie spice and maple pecan goat cheese
  • baking sheet
  • oven

Directions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Measure out a serving of the cheese of your choice and gentley spread it on both sides of bread. The most recent cheese I used was maple pecan goat cheese, which is a soft cheese, but also tough to spread without ripping the bread. So treat your bread nicely, ha!
  3. Put your bread together, place on the baking sheet and place in the oven.
  4. Bake on each side for 3-5 minutes or until cheese is melty/bread is toasty.

That’s really it. I know many of you know how to make grilled cheese. Some use butter on each side to help with the toasting and creation of the perfect crunch. Some use mayo – don’t make a face, some do! If you wanted to do this stove top you could use butter or cooking spray to cut down on fat. I prefer mine baked so I don’t have to worry about the grease or added fat. I also care more about creamy, melty cheese.

 

Create your own spread

When I’ve used plain cream cheese I’ve added spices and seasoning to it. A serving of cream cheese is 2 tablespoons and I’ll add 1 teaspoon of whatever spice I want. Here are some of the spices you could add:

  • Pumpkin pie seasoning – if you don’t have this on hand, mix: cinnamon, cloves, ginger and nutmeg
  • Flavor God Chocolate Glazed Donut Seasoning
  • Italian Herb spices – if you don’t have this on hand, mix: oregano, salt, pepper, rosemary, thyme, garlic

Picking a bread

I prefer my breakfast “grilled” cheese to be sweet, but you could play with pairings. if I want savory, I typically make a yolky egg to dip my sandwich in.

Here are breads I’ve used when creating in the kitchen:

  • Cinnamon raisin
  • Whole wheat
  • Olive and herb
  • Italian

Let me know what kinds of pairings you think may be good to try. Are there any cheeses that you think would be perfect this way?

❤ Cristina

 

Recipe: Mexican Hot Chocolate + PB overnight oats

For my refeed I planned some things that I don’t typically get to eat in the same day or get a chance to eat often. I had mentioned before that I’ve been adding oats into my diet as a way to change up my breakfast and this morning I made Mexican hot chocolate overnight oats, but I added peanut butter because peanut butter makes everything better.

I used my basic overnight oats recipe that I shared a few weeks ago, but here’s what I added.

2 tablespoons of chocolate PB2

When the oats were still dry, I added the PB2 so I could mix it in thoroughly.

1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon

I add cinnamon to my basic recipe as well, but it’s more of a dash. For this recipe I added an exact amount to get the spice that I wanted.

1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper

Mexican hot chocolate is hot cocoa with a kick and aside from cinnamon, the kick comes from peppers. Historically, cocoa wasn’t eaten and to drink it herbs and spices need to be added so it wouldn’t taste so bitter. I added cayenne pepper on top of my oats for this kick. Some recipes I’ve seen for from scratch Mexican hot chocolate call for chile pepper.

Mixed in, the oats are spicy without making your mouth burn up. I know some people say they can’t handle spicy foods, but this is just enough and with Trader Joe’s PB cups this was a perfect way to start my refeed day.

 

Enjoy!

❤ Cristina

Recipe: egg stuffed tomato

I love eggs. I eat them all the time, but I’ve been playing with how I make them so I can incorporate more veggies into my day as well as keeping my meals interesting. I’ve seen posts of people baking eggs in muffin pans to make mini quiches or egg cups with ham or bacon. I figure I could do something similar, so I tried baking an egg in a tomato. While I was disappointed that the yolk was completely cooked, it was still soft.

Since tomatoes are low in carbs,I  paired it with a flax and oat pita, which gave me something to put it on and not just look like a crazy lady shoving a tomato into her mouth.

This week I made them again, except one came out running and I was so pumped. I also got a great baby loaf of olive and herb bread from a local bakery to use with it. Cream + Egg + Tomato = freakin’ heaven.

So enough about me stuffing my face, here’s the recipe.

What you’ll need:

  • whole tomato a little smaller than a fist
  • 1 egg
  • cooking spray
  • small baking dish or muffin pan

Directions

Pre-heat your oven to 350.

In your baking pan or muffin pan spray a little cooking spray. Your egg will overflow out of the tomato and this will allow it to come right out and not stick.

Cut the top of your tomato off. Try to not cut off too much tomato.

With a spoon, cut and scoop out the seeds in the middle. I scooped out a little meat to make room for the egg, but I didn’t need to cut out a bunch.

Place tomato in baking pan so that it doesn’t move around.

Crack your egg into the tomato. It’ll overflow so don’t be worried, that’s what the cooking spray is for!

Place pan in the middle of the shelf, for me this meant about 4-6″ from the edge of the shelf. Bake your tomato for about 15-25 minutes. When I cooked 2 it was closer to 25 minutes. I kept checking on my tomato every 5 minutes or so to see if the white of the egg was cooked since that’s what I care about.

After your satisfied with the doneness of your egg/tomato, pull it out of the oven and use a fork to loosen any egg white that poured over into the pan. I also used the fork to lift the egg out of the pan so it doesn’t roll around. I didn’t do this with the first egg out of two this morning and the fully cooked yolk popped right out. I was sad for a minute and then put it back in place once it was safely on my plate.

Macros – depends on the size of the tomato mostly. I used 200g of tomato between two tomatoes + 2 whole eggs = 9.4f/9.8c/13.8p

Have fun cracking!

 

❤ Cristina