Friday, October 1, 2010

All about ME!!!

I was just lamenting over the poor quality of the photos in the last many posts I've done, not to mention the infrequency of recent posts. I was thinking of all my many reasons for the above and decided to let you guys have a little insight into my day to day life and the conditions I do my cooking under!

As stated in my profile, I'm a stay-at-home mama to two incredible little men. My oldest will be 3 next week and the other is 13 months old.

My oldest just started going to preschool (less than 6 hours a week right now, spread over two days). The preschool is a co-op. That means I work in the classroom about 2 days a month in addition to holding an aide position. My aide position is room mom/hospitality aide. Basically I help the teacher by prepping projects, cutting out things the kids paint, etc. as well as help with setting up various parent/family events. Anyhow, it's turning out to be a lot more work than I anticipated! Most recently I had to cut out 30 little traffic lights...I thought I might shoot myself by the end. It took FOREVER!!
On top of my new preschool duties, I'm also trying to start my own little baby/kid clothing line, Monkeyrama. I hope to have product up on Etsy within the next couple weeks, in addition to filling at least one custom order I already received for some adorable toddler yoga outfits.

My husband routinely works long hours during the week and sometimes weekends, too.

Have I mentioned I'm a stay-at-home mama to two kids?!!?

I love to cook, but more than that, I love to eat good food. Most of the time I cook it's pretty much just for my own personal consumption. My pre-schooler is getting pickier and picker and my little one still can't eat everything I make. About half the time I prepare a plate for my husband and cover it for when he gets home. Inevitably, these are the nights he calls and says he's getting dinner and not to save him any.

Generally when I cook it's with one kid playing and the other digging in the trash, playing in the pots and pans, or in general being a complete menace. Or they are both playing and fighting over a toy. Or I walk into the dining room to find the little one walking around on the table with a huge grin on his face. Thinking of all this, I would suppose one would understand why the only picture I was able to take of my food was with my iphone. I don't even know where the Nikon is these days, let alone the cord to transfer the pics onto my computer!

I don't do complicated recipes or ones that take forever to do. I don't have the time or the energy to slave all day in the kitchen while being a ref between two very opinionated and energetic kids. But I want my food to look and taste fabulous! I hope that's what you find when you come to my blog, fairly basic or easy recipes that still result in a meal or dish that you are proud to make for your friends or, more importantly, that you would excitedly make more than once for yourself.

I love that I am lucky enough to stay home with my children, cook fabulous and healthy food, participate in a co-op nursery school, have a slightly successful tomato garden, dream about having my own chickens and selling hand-crafted baby clothes. I live a great life, I just might not get great pictures of it!

Thursday, September 23, 2010


I am currently a complete fig addict. I will be sooo sad when the season ends. I've been eating them on bagels, dipped in mascarpone, in tarts, on pizza, plain, etc. etc.

As I kid I was always a fan of Fig Newtons. That was about the most exposure I had to figs. A couple years ago a friend (who also happens to be a chef) had a cheese plate at her party. It had all sorts of fancy cheeses, honey comb, blue cheese drizzled in honey and gorgeous halved figs. That was the first time I'd ever had a fresh fig. I was beside myself with how refreshingly delicious a plain, raw fig could be! I never knew! As the last couple years have passed I've randomly tried to obtain fresh figs only to not be able to find them (since I wasn't looking when they were in season).

A couple weeks ago I attended my very informal, extremely fun and wine-filled book club meeting at my sister's house. As an appetizer she had a giant platter of quartered figs with a bowl of whipped mascarpone, honey and vanilla. I must've eaten half the platter. The figs were from her tree in the backyard. Lo and behold, that very next week I received a ton of figs in my CSA box. I was beyond stoked (though sad to find that they weren't nearly as tasty as my sister's). At the book club there had been talk of making a tart with the figs, so that was what I did! I found a very simple recipe on line, which apparently is THE recipe since I found the identical recipe on about five different sites, each boasting it as their own. I don't know who's recipe it is, but it turned out fantastically, so here it is!

Caramelized Onion, Fig and Goat Cheese Tarts

(I went the lazy route and just used frozen puff pastry-you need one sheet, cut into fourths to make 4 tarts-but if you want to make your own, here's the recipe for the puff pastry: Puff Pastry)

Caramelized Onions

1 large onion
tablespoon of olive oil
1 heaping tablespoon of brown sugar
1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar

1. Peel and slice the onion thinly.
2. Heat a large sauté pan and add the olive oil and onions over a low heat.
3. Gently cook the onions without color for 10 minutes or until they’re very soft.
4. Add the brown sugar and balsamic vinegar and continue to cook over a low heat and stirring frequently for 20 to 30 minutes.
5. Once the onions are beautifully soft, ‘caramelized’ sticky and jam like, set aside to cool.
(I have to be honest, I didn't measure any of the above. I had a huge onion from my CSA box that I used. The recipe I followed called for 3 medium onions...with my one big onion I had more than enough. I just poured some olive oil and vinegar in when it was time, no measuring and did one big spoonful of brown sugar, though the recipe called for 2-3 tablespoons. I find onions tend to be quite sweet on their own, especially when coupled with balsamic AND figs.)

I split the onions into 4 equal portions and spooned into the tart shells. I pinched the edges of the puff pastry so that they sort of made a little bowl for the ingredients. Next I sliced about 2 figs (each into 4 slices) per tart and piled those in. I then crumbled goat cheese on top and popped into a preheated oven at 375 for about 25 mins, or until the puff pastry is a nice golden color.

SUPER tasty! Enjoy!!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Heirloom Tomato Salad

Ok, how many of you have paid $10-$15 for a so so "heirloom tomato salad"? I know I have on a number of occasions because apparently I'm a sucker for that kinda thing.

Anyhow, the day before yesterday I was starving and I had a ton of heirloom tomatoes from one of my CSA boxes (last week I experimented with getting not one, but two!! different CSA boxes in the same week).

An heirloom tomato salad is pretty much one of the tastiest, prettiest and easiest salads you can make. Here's how I made mine:

I sliced 3 different tomatoes, about 3 thin slices of each (I saved the rest for another salad later on). I placed them on the plate, then I sliced several thin slices of fresh mozzarella cheese and placed those on the plate. Took about 8-10 smaller basil leaves and sliced thinly. I tossed those on, then sprinkled salt, pepper and a tiny bit of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. I had some fairly tasteless but quite spicy radishes I got in my CSA box as well, I'd planned to microplane one on top just to give the salad a little kick, but I'd eaten the whole salad before I noticed the lone radish sitting on my counter, forgotten. So, that's an extra idea for you!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Roasted veggie salad!!

Ok, just made up a super yummy veggie salad today. I got a spaghetti squash in my CSA box and I needed to do something with it. I'm not a huge spaghetti squash fan, but I would happily make this salad any day!

Last night I roasted a yellow and red bell pepper in the oven. To roast a pepper (WAY better than store bought) is very easy. I just stuck both peppers on a cookie sheet in the oven at 400 degrees. I turned them over after about 15 mins and then after that point I turned them a little about every 5 mins or so for about 35 mins. I then put them in a bowl and covered it in seran wrap. The condensation helps the peels come off easily. Once they were nice and cool, I peeled the peppers and removed the seeds and stems. I reserved the liquid at the bottom of the bowl and put the peeled peppers back in the bowl once done. Since I did that part last night I just recovered the bowl and put it in the fridge for today.

Next I went ahead and roasted the spaghetti squash whole (pierce it all over with a sharp knife so it doesn't explode, cook it for about an hour at 400). Cut it open, scoop out the seeds and pulp (you can save the seeds and roast them on a pan with some salt just like pumpkin seeds!). Scoop out the flesh and set aside in a bowl.

Today I took about 1/2 an eggplant, peeled and chopped into 1/2"-1/4" cubes. I also minced 2 cloves of garlic and chopped 1/2 an onion (into 1/2 chunks). I tossed all of this on a cookie sheet with olive oil and a little bit of salt and roasted at 400 degrees for maybe 30 mins, flipping everything about half way through.

While the eggplant was roasting I sauteed some mushrooms. I normally slice my mushrooms but this time I cut the shrooms up in 6ths or so, about 1/2" chunks. I like so saute my mushrooms in a bit of olive oil, soy sauce and butter.

Now for the salad. I chopped about 2/3's of the peppers I roasted last night up and tossed them on top of the spaghetti squash. I also poured some of the juice in. (I reserved the rest for some tasty Italian sausage melts I plan on making tomorrow.) Next I poured the mushrooms in, along with the juice they were sitting in. I pulled the eggplant mixture from the oven and scraped everything right into the spaghetti squash bowl. I sliced several basil leaves and added this in to mixture along with a bunch of feta and a little bit of lemon juice!

Seriously, the salad is a little bit of heaven! It was soooo good! This salad makes me look at spaghetti squash in a whole new light! And if you really don't want to do the spaghetti squash you can always sub some orzo or quinoa in there. But I think the spaghetti squash makes this veggie salad extra light and fresh. Perfect for the summer!


Olive oil
About 10 basil leaves
Feta cheese
1 spaghetti squash
1/2-1 small eggplant (peeled)
1 1/2-2 bell peppers (red, yellow or orange)
About 10 white mushrooms (or your favorite kind of mushroom)
2 cloves of garlic
1/2 a large yellow onion
Soy sauce and butter for the mushrooms
1/4-1/2 of a lemon

I paired my salad with some yummy homemade pizza, YUM!!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

I promise to be better!!

I've been so bad! It's been forever since I've posted! And I've been cooking! I've been making cheese, and butter, and even a little baking! I recently discovered that I actually LIKE eggplant, especially farm fresh eggplant! I finally got the guts to drink raw milk-AND I liked it! I have TONS of great recipes I should have been sharing this whole time! And rhubarb! Why did I only just recently taste rhubarb for the first time??!? I've been gardening and growing gorgeous tomatoes, peas, cucumbers (well, the cucumbers haven't done so hot, I only grew 2 and now the plants are looking awfully sad), and I have about 40 green bean plants going nuts!

So, my friends, I promise to be better about posting at least once a week!
(bear with me while I try to figure out why my pictures aren't showing up correctly!)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Sliders-the right way!

I never want to do burgers for a BBQ if I'm inviting friends over. There is a reason for this. I feel that hamburgers should always be done with the works. I want bacon, avocado, sauteed mushrooms, caramelized onions, cheese, etc. Not just lettuce, tomatoes and fact, I can do with those if I have the other things! And when I'm doing a BBQ, I want to make something super easy and quick that allows me to do as little work as possible!

This week I found a pack of 8 little tiny sliders at Trader Joe's, in the meat section. Last night we ate them. Soooo good! This is what we had with them:

Sadly, I couldn't find any ripe avocados, so I had to do without that. But what we did have was some delicious maple bacon. I also had some super tasty micro greens. I sauteed some white mushrooms in a bit of soy sauce, butter and olive oil. I then quickly marinated some red onion in red wine vinegar (I unfortunately didn't think to marinate them earlier) and then caramelized the onion. The meat I cooked on high with some yummy seasoning, after browning on the first side I flipped and topped with some extra sharp cheddar. I quickly browned the second side and then turned the heat off and covered (to melt the cheese).

They came out amazing. It was so quick and tasty, I think we are going to be doing these more often! I absolutely loved the micro greens, so pretty, tasty and healthy!

Unfortunately I only got a fairly poor picture of my last slider with my phone, but here it is!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Experimental Tuesday

I failed at being consistent with "Experimental Fridays" so now I'm just going be experimental when I can!

Today I decided to try to put my kale to good use. I'm not a huge fan of kale, despite how healthy it is supposed to be for me. There are plenty of other greens that I really love to eat, I haven't felt the need to force feed myself one that I didn't like much. However, I get kale in my CSA box pretty much every week. Sometimes I use it, sometimes I give it away to my neighbors, and sometimes it just goes to waste and I end up tossing it.

This week it occurred to me that I could try to make chips with it. I turned my oven on to 400 and lined a cookie sheet with parchment paper. I then washed and drained my kale (something I should have done on Sunday before it even went in the fridge). I removed the stems (all the way up the leaf, so you are just left with the green part on either side). Then I tore the leaves into chip sized pieces and coated them with olive oil. I VERY lightly salted the chips and then used my microplane to grate some parmesan cheese on top. I popped the chips in the oven for 10 mins. They came out perfectly. Since it only took me about 5 mins to prep the chips my oven wasn't fully preheated to 400. For the second batch I reduced the heat to 375, repeated the 10 mins and they were perfect. So, if you fully preheat I wouldn't put the oven at more than 375 and 10 mins is the max I'd cook them at.

Even my toddler loved them. I liked them so much I had eaten 1/2 of the first batch before I remembered to take a picture!

Anyhow, these were a total hit and I'm pretty proud that I totally winged it with a green I'm not too fond of and managed to create something I love. And seriously, it took 15 mins max to make one batch of these from start to finish.

Beets, Beets and More Beets - Part Two

The beets keep coming. After my last beet post I was left with 6 beets. I got my next CSA box and there were TEN beets in it! So, I've continued being inventive with my beets.

I had been considering trying to make a cake with them, figuring it might come out similar to a carrot cake. I found a carrot cake recipe online that looked pretty good. I made a few adjustments to it, and of course used beets instead of carrots. It came out incredibly well! It was quite tasty and you seriously could not taste that it was made with beets! Here is the recipe:

4 eggs
1 1/4 cups vegetable oil
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour (I used whole wheat flour)
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (you can add nutmeg, too, if you like)
3 cups grated beets
1 cup chopped walnuts (or whatever nut you prefer)

1/2 cup softened butter
8oz soften cream cheese
2 cups confectioners sugar (could probably use even less, I actually cut the sugar from 4 cups to 2 and it was probably even a bit sweeter than I liked, but still good)


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9x13 inch pan.
2. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, sugar and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir in beets. Fold in walnuts. Pour into prepared pan.
3. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.
4. To Make Frosting: In a medium bowl, combine butter, cream cheese, confectioners' sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Frost the cooled cake.

Even the kidlet approved!

I also used some of my beets to make a roasted root veggie medley. I used this Wolfgang Puck recipe, again I changed it a bit.

I couldn't find all the veggies and some I simply didn't want to bother with (like potatoes, seemed like a waste of space when you are using such fun veggies already). Here is what I did:

I used 3 carrots, 1/2 a celery root (mine was huge), 1 head of garlic, 1 onion, 2 turnips (on the smaller side), 2 small chioggia beets, 1 large golden beet, 1 fennel bulb, olive oil, salt, pepper and about 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary, chopped. I also peeled my garlic, so it did start to fall apart a bit. I think I'd still peel it just to save everyone the hassle of having to deal with the paper skins after it's cooked. Oh, and I purposely did not use regular, purple beets as I didn't want all my veggies to be pink.

I cooked my veggies at 400 degrees for about 90 minutes, stirring every 30 mins or so. They were amazing. I think my favorite veggies were the celery root and fennel. I only got a picture of them before they went in the oven. But they sure were pretty!

This weekend I plan on trying my hand at pickling some of the beets I have remaining. It'll be my first attempt at canning. Expect more on the beet front in a week or so!

Happy cooking!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Fried Tomato and Bacon Salad

Well, Experimental Friday came and went with zero experimenting. Life got in the way, as it often does.

My house is currently much quieter than normal with the hubby and toddler on their way to their first solo camping trip. It's very weird to have such a quiet house. I have Pandora going and of course there is still munchkin number 2, but he's pretty quiet when he's happy. It's peaceful!

On Thursday I was starving and it was about 4pm...too early for dinner, but too late for lunch. I was sorely craving a very decadent fried tomato and bacon salad I've made in the past. I got the recipe from my friend Marlyn and we'll see how my arteries thank her in a few years! I'd literally eat this salad every day if I could.

So here is how the recipe goes:

You need some sort of green, I prefer spinach as the green is going to be slightly wilted by the dressing and tomatoes and there really isn't another green I like both raw and wilted. I think I'd like it with arugula, as well, but I've only done spinach. In the pictures I'm posting here, I used Bloomsdale spinach, which is why it's so curly.

At least 2 thick slices of tomato per serving of salad (if you cut the tomatoes thinly they will just fall apart when being fried). I like to use those big, meaty, purple/green heirloom tomatoes.

Bacon-I like at least 2 slices per serving, but you could do one (really, if you are worried about the fat and all that fun stuff you shouldn't be eating this salad!). My favorite is Whole Foods' black forest bacon you can get from the butcher. When I'm curbing my Whole Paycheck addiction, my second favorite is the Trader Joe's apple smoked bacon.

And lastly, whatever vinegar and herbs you'd like to use to make a dressing. I usually just use a little apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar and some Italian seasoning. Quick, easy and tasty.

First you prep your greens (wash, drain, etc.). Then fry up the bacon and set aside to drain on some paper towels. Keep the bacon grease hot (the hotter the better) and gently slide your tomato slices in. Tomatoes are full of water, water and hot bacon grease really don't go well together, so don't cook this wearing your favorite $200 top. Wear an apron and stand back! Now just wait and let the tomatoes fry. After you feel like you've waited long enough (a minute or so), you can gently check the bottom of one, see if they are browned at all, if they are, flip and repeat! As soon as the tomatoes are cooked to your liking, remove directly onto your plate of greens (you should put each individual serving of greens on their own plate). Turn the heat off and swirl in some vinegar and herbs with the grease. Again, this is going to pop like crazy and if you've ever heated vinegar, it's a good idea to turn a fan on so you don't shrivel your nose hairs. While the dressing is still bubbling and hot, pour over the salad. Next crumble your bacon (or in my case I just chopped the bacon) on top and voila! Eat immediately, while your tomatoes are still hot!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Bacon-wrapped Hot Dogs!!

Sweet Lord, there is an entire event dedicated to serving the gloriously greasy bacon-wrapped hot dog!!

Do they have these everywhere? On any given night out on the town in Hollywood you can find suspicious looking vendors selling bacon-wrapped hot dogs. It's smells divine, it's cheap, and hard to resist despite the well known fact that you'll probably regret it the next morning. Most often I've encountered these little carts outside of concerts. It's late, you've been partying hard and you come out to the cold night and there they are.

The event takes place next Saturday, the 22nd, at 12pm. I hope I can make it!!! YUM!

Echo Park Lake
751 Echo Park Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90026

Here is the Yelp Event.

And some tasty pictures at the LAist.

What do you want me to try?

Experimental Friday is tomorrow and I'd love to know if there is a recipe or crazy food idea you have that you would like me to feature on my blog tomorrow or for future Experimental Fridays. Post your idea or recipe in the comment section. I'm heading out to the store soon, so post quickly!

Gluten-free chocolate chip cookies!!

Great post about baking gluten-free!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Beets, Beets and More Beets

Most weeks I purchase a CSA (community supported agriculture) box from South Central Farmers. It's a huge box of organic veggies for only $15 (you can pay more if you would like to contribute more to the farm but the box is the same regardless of how much you pay). You never know exactly what is going to be in the box till you get it.

This week, along with many other veggies, my box contained 7 beets! I already had 2 in my fridge. So I have 9 beets I need to somehow plow through! The beets weren't all boring purple/red ones, there were two purple, two golden and two chioggia (candy-cane striped).

Miraculously I managed to get both kids to sleep at the same time this afternoon so I whipped out my beets to experiment with.

I have tried to make beet chips twice in the past. I burned them both times. I was following a recipe that had me cook them at 425 and they just kept burning. I decided to try again. I got a new mandolin this morning with a guard so I didn't slice my fingers off (which my old one didn't have). I sliced the purple and golden beets quite thin, but since the chioggia beet I had was so fat I had to slice it a bit thicker. I sprayed them lightly with oil and VERY sparingly salted them. You have to remember how thin they are and that they will shrink down when they cook, I learned this the hard way.

I cooked them at 375 this time and kept my eye on them constantly. I did the purple and golden beets together since they were thinner. I flipped them after about 8 mins and took them out after about 15-18 mins. I took some out sooner than others. I managed to not burn a single one! I can't imagine having the same luck if my kids were awake, though.

Then I cooked the chioggia beets. I cooked these for probably 20-25 mins. I did a full 10 mins on the first side and then flipped. I kept flipping them till they looked done. The chiogga chips came out the best. Next time I'll cut all the beets a bit thicker.

I took the remaining chunks of the golden and chioggia beets and julienned them along with a carrot (also from my CSA box). I added some sliced mint to the mix. I made a dressing with about 3/4 a tsp of horseradish mustard, 1/8 tsp of honey, a tsp of apple cider vinegar, and a tsp of olive oil. I also sprinkled the beets with salt and freshly ground pepper. Sooooooooo good!! The only reason I didn't use the purple beet, too, was because I wanted to see all the pretty colors in my salad and we all know how staining a purple beet is!

So, today was a very beety day. I'm not sure when I'll do the rest. I normally like to cut them up and roast them with some olive oil, salt, pepper and rosemary, but after today I'm not sure when I'll feel like more beets!

Cooking with the Munchkin

I decided to include my older munchkin in making dinner last night. This past week was exhausting, so we were making a super lazy, easy dinner: rainbow chard with Italian sausage and spaghetti.

I started off by teaching him what rainbow chard was. He thought it was pretty cool. I showed him how to take the stems off and how to wash it properly. I broke the chard up into big chunks (maybe 2 inch pieces) and let them drain in a colander.

I cut up 3 raw Italian sausages with my kitchen shears and cooked them on low till the chunks were browned on each side. This time I had some spring onions from my CSA box so I chopped one up and tossed that in, too. And I was drinking some chardonnay so I dumped a little of that in there just for kicks. I then shoved all my rainbow chard in the pan and squished it down with a heavy lid. I flipped it over a few times till it was all just wilted and all done! On the side I'd made some basic spaghetti, nothing fancy just regular dried noodles and a jar of organic sauce from Trader Joe's. I figure I can get fancy and start making my own sauce when my kids are older! I topped it all with freshly grated parmesan cheese and yum!!

I had meant to make our one little artichoke we got in our CSA box, but I never got around to it. It worked out because I was stuffed after just the spaghetti and chard! Anyhow, easy, healthier than just plain ol' spaghetti and quite tasty!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Experimental Friday

Last night we visited the South Pasadena Farmer's Market. There was a new mushroom vendor called LA FungHi. They had an amazing selection of mushrooms, a vast majority of them I'd never even knew existed. The woman running the stand allowed me to sample a variety of the funkier looking ones. While there, she divulged to me that one way she loved to cook her mushrooms was to bread them using eggs and whole wheat flour and fry them in piping hot olive oil. With my love of fried foods and mushrooms I couldn't believe I had never tried this before.

In the end I couldn't decide what to get so I purchased one of their $15 mixed baskets. It is a huge amount of mushrooms!

Today I picked out a variety of mushrooms to fry up. While I love fried foods, I don't fry a lot of foods myself, so this was a major experiment for me. I coated the 'shrooms with egg and then rolled them in whole wheat flour (which I added a bit of salt and pepper to). In the meantime, I'd poured a whole lot of olive oil in a small pot and had that going on the burner. I was able to get them done in two batches. They looked amazing.

I tried the more delicate mushrooms first and was sadly very disappointed. They were kind of tasteless (mostly just tasted like fried flour) and really a waste of good mushrooms that would have been delicious sauteed, raw or roasted. Then I tried the fatter ones...

Oh. My. God. They were insanely amazing. They were juicy and luscious and dripping in flavor. All I was missing was some hot ponzu sauce to dip them in!

My next experiment was a recipe I'd received from the lovely Monika at Hipcooks. The recipe was for a savory beet and goat cheese muffin. They sounded super yummy to me, but I wasn't sure how they'd actually come out.

The basic recipe is to grate a beet, toss in some walnuts and chopped rosemary. Then gently fold with the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder and salt). Then stir in the wet ingredients (butter, buttermilk and an egg). She also has you sprinkle Parmesan cheese in the pan before you put the muffin batter in. I then put chunks of goat cheese on the tops of each muffin. I had intended on putting goat cheese in the middle of the muffins, too, but I made these while holding a screaming baby, so that didn't work out. (Email me if you'd like the whole recipe and I'll forward the Hipcooks recipe to you).

They came out quite well and were extra tasty with more goat cheese spread on them while hot. They were even good with a bit of honey. I felt like I put a lot of beet in these muffins, but after they were cooked, you really could hardly taste them.