January 3, 2009

Mango, Coconut & Lime Mousse

new years dessert!


So now that Cooper is 3 months old I think it’s time to start being AGGRESSIVE with this watching my weight situation….and it’s 2009 so I might as well start my resolution to get rid of the extra baby weight.

I was waiting until the holiday gluttony was over….boy did I indulge this year.

To start the new year off, I made a very light dessert from the Williams-Sonoma Fresh & Light cookbook.
It was a very good palette cleanser after a night of over-doing-it. The perfect amount of sweet that had NO guilt attached to it. It felt like a little taste of a Hawaiian vacation!
But a little more light & fluffy 😉

Needless to say, this is something that was NECESSARY as we gorged ourselves on:

Linguini & Clams

i made linguini with clams

Garlic Bread (my biggest weakness)

i'm the garlic bread maker of the family

and TO-DIE-FOR Fresh Steamed Crab!

crabby crab putting up a fight

pretty fancy huh? my sister-in-law is the other “martha” of the family

my plate

A good way to end 2008 huh?

So let me show you more of this mousse—-

cubing mango juicing lime
puree of mango, lime, coconut extract & gelatin whisking the shit out of the evaporated milk
pouring the mousse into the martini glasses toasting coconut

Mango, Coconut & Lime Mousse
(Williams-Sonoma Fresh & Light Recipe)

Serves 4

(serves 4)

-1 1/2 lbs ripe mangoes
-1 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
-3 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
-1/2 cup Fat Free Evaporated Milk
-2 tablespoons sugar (i added a little extra because 1 mango wasn’t super ripe)
-1/4 teaspoon coconut extract
-2 tablespoons flaked coconut
-fresh mint for garnish

1. Place a bowl in the freezer to chill. Peel the mangoes and cut the flesh from the pits.

2. In a small saucepan, sprinkle the gelatin over the lime juice and let stand for 5 minutes. Place over low heat and stir until the gelatin dissolves, about 1 minute. Remove from heat.

3. In a food processor (or blender) combine the mangoes, gelatin mixture, sugar and coconut extract and process until smooth. Pour the mango puree into a large bowl.

4. Remove the chilled bowl from the freezer and pour the evaporated milk into it. Using a whisk, beat until thick and foamy, about 5 minutes. Fold the evaporated milk into the mango puree just until no white streaks remain.

5. Divide the mousse among 4- 3/4 cup bowls. Cover and refridgerate until set, about 6 hours.

6. While the mousse is chilling, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread the coconut onto a baking sheet and toast in the oven until golden. Should take about 5-8 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool.

7. Just before serving, remove the molds from the fridge and sprinkle each one with the toasted coconut. Garnish with mint and serve.

December 29, 2008

before i take it all down

here’s a brief glimpse of our Christmas decorations this year….

I am going to be sad when I take it all down!

the green one is mine.  boys get blue.


December 24, 2008

season’s greetings!

December 23, 2008

Rose’s Baked Artichokes

sooo good.

into my tummy you go

nuff said.

come to momma

if you like baked/stuffed artichokes but hate the hassle- try this recipe.

drain, rinse, shake out

you will crave it

layer it on the casserole dish

day and night

breadcrumbs and the lemon dressing

like me!

cleaning up my mess while it bakes

Rose’s Baked Artichoke Hearts
(recipe via Martha Stewart.com)
serves 8ish


-1 1/2 cups fresh breadcrumbs
-1/4 cup finely chopped fresh curly leaf parsley
-2 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated (1/4 cup)
-2 ounces Pecorino Romano, grated (1/4 cup)
-1 tablespoon mixed dried herbs such as thyme, oregano, and savory, or Italian seasoning blend
– 1 teaspoon coarse salt
– Freshly ground pepper
– 3 packages (9 ounces each) frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and drained
– 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for baking dishes
– 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
– 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
-2 garlic cloves, minced (2 teaspoons)

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Combine breadcrumbs, parsley, cheeses, herbs, and salt in a medium bowl, and season with pepper.

2. Brush oil inside one 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Spread artichokes into a single layer. Sprinkle breadcrumb mixture over artichokes, pushing it into cracks between hearts. Tap bottom of dishes on counter to settle breadcrumb mixture.

3. Whisk oil, lemon juice and zest, and garlic in a small bowl. Drizzle dressing evenly over breadcrumb topping. Cover dishes with parchment, then foil, and bake for 30 minutes. Increase temperature to 375 degrees. Uncover, and bake until breadcrumbs are golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve immediately.

December 20, 2008

Chewy Molasses Cookies

someone with ocd would be proud

i love this cookie. if i wasn’t already married, i could possibly marry it. (sorry honey!)
But i don’t think one of these cookies would look as good in a suit…so fantasy ABANDONED.

chewy ginger molasses parade

sugar bubbles

so please make these…and then send me some….cuz I fear I might run out soon!

Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies
(recipe from Martha Stewart’s Cookie Book)
Makes about 36


-2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
-1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
-1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
– 2 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
-1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-1 1/2 cups sugar
-3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
-1 large egg
-1/4 cup molasses


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. In a shallow bowl, place 1/2 cup sugar; set aside.

2. With an electric mixer, beat butter and remaining cup of sugar until combined. Beat in egg and then molasses until combined. Reduce speed to low; gradually mix in dry ingredients, just until a dough forms. Put dough in the fridge and chill it for at least an hour.

3. Pinch off and roll dough into balls, each equal to 1 tablespoon. Roll balls in reserved sugar to coat.

4. Arrange balls on baking sheets, about 3 inches apart. Bake, one sheet at a time, until edges of cookies are just firm, 10 to 15 minutes (cookies can be baked two sheets at a time, but they will not crackle uniformly). Cool 1 minute on baking sheets; transfer to racks to cool completely. Store in an airtight container up to 4 days.

December 18, 2008

11 weeks!

11 weeks have passed since Cooper came into the world. 11 weeks! I remember when 11 weeks of being pregnant felt like half a lifetime!!!

He’s the happiest baby! Right now he’s squealing and smiling…and I am totally smitten.

Having a child is worth all of the work. When you wake up grumpy and you look over and there’s the sweetest little face looking at you and smiling because they are sooo excited to see their momma- that’s love…. It’s the most precious thing I’ve ever experienced! And I am lucky that I get to spend my days with such a cute little man!

Even if he has some really foul diapers! 😉

December 17, 2008

Spicy Maple Glazed Walnuts

spicy maple glazed walnuts

Ummmmm if you want to save your diet, DO NOT MAKE THESE.

They are irresistible!

I’ve never had such a perfect blend of salty and sweet in my LIFE. I left them on the kitchen island last night and noticed that Casey had an affinity for them too! I told him to try some and he said “Believe me, I already have! I could eat the whole container.” Luckily he didn’t, cuz momma wants some too!

They are that good, folks!

I am trying to orchestrate all my baking/cooking so I am not doing it all at the last minute. I tried these yesterday so I could see how long they stay fresh. I figure they should be good for another few days. Although I have a feeling they won’t last that long to find out.

Oh yeah- the best part of them is that they require NO baking!

spices anyone?

2 cups of NUTS


stirring in progess. quiet please.

finishing up

a spicy/sweet mess

Spicy Maple Glazed Walnuts
(recipe from Rachael Ray Magazine)
Makes 2 cups


-1/4 cup sugar
-1 teaspoon salt
-1/4 teaspoon black pepper
-1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
-1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
-1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
-3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
-2 cups (about 7 ounces) walnuts

1. In a small bowl, mix together the sugar, salt, black pepper, cayenne, ginger and cinnamon; set aside. Pour the maple syrup into a large bowl and set aside.

2. In a large nonstick skillet, toast the walnuts over medium-high heat, stirring or shaking the pan constantly, until they are hot, about 5 minutes. Immediately add the nuts to the maple syrup and toss to coat. Stir in the spice mixture until the nuts are evenly coated. Spread the walnuts in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Let cool completely before serving, about 20 minutes.

So good when it hits your lips!