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Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Oh wonderous Sweet Cinnamon Zucchinni Bread

I could not believe how delicious this bread was when I first took a bite into it. I was so amazed and it really gives me a relief to try the rest of the recipes by Heather Van Vorous in her "Eating for IBS" book. I am SO excited and ready to try more recipes. This recipe makes 2 loafs, and by the end of the night, most of the first loaf was gone and today there is only one loaf left :-D. This is definitely a must try if you are looking for a recipe with no butter, no egg yolks or dairy. With only 138.49 Calories per slice, what more could you ask for?

Sweet Cinnamon Zucchini Bread from Eating for IBS

In a large bowl:
3 C flour
1 ts salt
1 ts bs
1 tbs Cinnamon
1/4 ts baking powder

In Mixer:
6 Organic egg whites, beaten light and fluffy
1/2 C canola oil
1 1/2 C brown sugar
2 C grated unpeeled zucchini
2 ts vanilla

Add dry ingredient to wet and mix till just blended. Pour batter in 2 greased loaf pans and bake for 1 hour at 325 degrees F. Cook on racks. Simple as that!

Retired Pizza

I hate to say it but sometimes the last thing I want to do after work is make a gourmet dinner. I'm more a baker than a cook, so that might explain it. I must admit that sometimes I make Pizzas for Brandon a little too much. hehehhee. Come on, it's easy, a lazy cooks dinner. So I must say farewell to the pizza for a couple of weeks so he isn't sick of them anymore.

Twice Baked Potatos and chilli chicken cakes

There are recipes that you enjoyed so much as a child that your mom would make for you as an after school snack. I had totally forgotten the amazing twice baked potatos my mom would whip up sometimes. They were so delicious and when I had remembered them, I decided to try it out. First off, I hate potatos because they take a butt load of time to cook but they are so yummy. I was running short on time, so I popped two potatos in the microwave for 10 minutes then wrapped them in foil and baked them at 400 Degrees F and they were baked in no time flat. I scooped out the flesh and mixed it with cooked diced onions, peppers, green onions, salt, pepper and cheese. I added mayo and bacon to Brandons and then mashed up the flesh and stuffed it back in the skin pockets, topped it with cheese and baked them at 350 degrees F for 10-15 minutes max.

Meanwhile, I diced up some chicken tenders and marinated them in soysauce, oyster sauce, pepper and salt and chili pepper flakes. I then formed them into patties and put them on the skillet. I topped them with avocado and tomatos mixed with lemon juice. Emm, easy and delicious.

Garlic Oregano Focaccia

I always try (try being the important word here) to plan my meals, especially for Brandon the couple days before since I basically can survive on veges and rice. I wanted to make him hamburgers but obviously would use the skillet since grilling in the snow typically isn't the thing I want to do after I get home from work. I didn't buy buns so I figured I would find a hamburger bun recipe and after looking a some, I realise I wanted to make good bread, not wonder bread like hamburger buns, so I browsed through and found an incredible recipe for Garlic Oregano Focaccia. It's made with the bread machine, so simple and ohhhh so delicious. It keeps moist for 3 days, by then all the bread should be gone!!!


I split the focaccia in half and made the patties with beef and diced onions and green bell peppers mixed in it and cooked that on the skillet with some bacon. I topped the patties off with American cheese, bacon and some Avocado. I hate ground beef and I wanted a huge bite off it. So viola, this bread is definitely amazing.


As you can tell, I have become obsessed with bread. I can't help it. They are just so delicious and now that I found out that carbs are actually good for IBS people, it is just the BEST excuse for me to bake and eat more. hahahaha.

This is a Turkish Country Bread, sweetened a little bit with some honey. It is SO delicious. It makes great sandwiches too the next day. It's thick enough that the mayonaise for Brandons sandwich won't make the bread snoggy by his lunch time.

Ekmek from Ultimate Bread book
1 tsp honey
1 1/4 C water
2 tsp yeast
3 1/2 C flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tb olive oil, plus extra to coat and glaze
Stir honey into 2/3 C warm water. Mix yeast with flour and salt and make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Pour in honey water and using a wooden spoon draw flour into honey water, adding half of remaining water and olive oil into dought. Add remaining water 1 tbs at a time as needed till a firm, moist dough forms.
Turn onto floured surface and knead till smooth, shiny and elastic about 10 minutes.
Put dough in a well-oiled bowl turning to coat dough and cover for 1 1/2-2 hours. PUnch down and let rest for 10 minutes.
Flatten dough on a floured surface into a 9 inch round dough and 1 inch thick. Place on floured baking sheet and cover for 45 minutes.
Brush with olive oil and using back of a knife make four parallel indentations across the dough and four more in opposite dirrection in a criss-cross pattern.
Bake for 40 minutes at 425 degrees F.

Pistolets (Split Rolls)

Another butterless, milkless and eggless bread recipe I found in the Ultimate Bread Book that my mom gave me is the recipe for Pistolets. Basically they are just a Baguette only shaped differently. Granted, mine look more like butt cheeks than split rolls, they still tasted great and I have come to realise that although making breads by hand takes forever, the result really is far superior and easier than I thought that it would be.

Pistolets (Split Rolls) from Ultimate Bread Book

2 1/2 tsp dry yeast
1 2/3 C water
3 1/2 C flour
1 1/2 ts salt

I used instant yeast so I added the yeast in the flour with the salt also. Making a hole in the center of the flour mixture, I poured 1 1/4 C of warm water into the center and used a wooden spoon to draw flour into the water and continued to add water if it was too dry until a sticky dough formed.

Turn onto a floured surface, knead for 10 minutes till smooth and soft.

Put dough in a clean bowla nd cover for 1 1/2 hours.

Punch down, recover and let rise 45 minutes. PUnch down and recover and let rise another 45 minutes.

Divide dough into 8 equal pieces and shape each into a smooth ball. Sift a dusting of flour over rolls and using a wooden spoon handle press down across the center of each ball to make an indentation. Dust with more flour in indentation. Cover and let rise for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 425 Degrees F and bake for 20-25 minutes.

Cheddar & Herb pull apart Bread

Ever since my new IBS diet has been instilled I have been obsessed with finding bread recipes without butter or eggs. Actually it turns out that not only are there lots but they taste just as good if not sometimes better than buttered roll recipes.

Cheese & Herb Pull-apart bread From The essential Baking Cookbook
7g Sachet dried yeast
1 ts sugar
4 C plain flour
1 1/2 ts salt
2 tbs chopping fresh parsley
2 tbs chopped fresh chives
1 tbs chopped fresh thyme
60 g Cheddar, grated
milk, to glaze ( I didn't glaze)
Mix yeast, sugar and 1/2 C warm water in a small bowl and stir well. Leave for 10 minutes. Bubbles should applear on the surface.
Sift flour and slat in a bowl and make a well in the centre and add yeast mixture and 1 C warm water. Mix to a soft dough. Turn out on floured surface and knead for 10 minutes or till smooth. Place in oiled bowl, cover and leave for 1 hour.
Punch down dough and knead for 1 minute. Divide dough in half and shape each half into 10 flat discs, 2 1/2 inches in diameter. Mix fresh herbs with cheese and put 2 ts mixture on each disc. Press another disc on top and repeat with remaing discs and mixture.
Grease a loaf tin andstand filled discs upright in the prepared tin, squashing them together. Cover and let rise 30 minutes. Preheat oven 415 degrees F. Bake 30 minutes.

Chinese New Year

So, Chinese New Year here in Dayton, Ohio was pretty much non-existant since the Asian population here is like, what 1. That would be including me. hehehe. No, probably a few more than just me, but no festivities held at all. Which is kinda sad. :-(

Anyways, I made 2 different dishes, one for me and one for Brandon. I made a rice noodle stir-fry consisting of carrots, onions and potatos and chicken.

For Brandon, I made him a sausage yakisoba stir-fry. Not Chinese I know, but he doesn't like the rice noodles. Picky, picky. I also made some more nian gao my mom sent me. Emm, delicious.

I also made some beef potstickers for the boy:

Valentines Day

Our first Valentines as a married couple began with a huge snow storm that basically snowed us in for the remainder of the day and the day after that. So, it was definitely a good idea that I had planned to make Valentines dinner at home instead of going out. Earlier that week I had gone to the Commissary to get a 7 lb chicken (obviously, I have never roasted a chicken before because 7 lbs is quite large for just the two of us, but hey we had chicken sandwiches for the rest of the week! ) Thankfully, I was nervous enough to put the chicken in the oven to roast at 3pm, since it didn't get done till 7pm, so sometimes be anxious about something is a good thing. lol. So, basically I just cleaned the chicken, stuffed lemon slices between the breast meat and the breast skin, then sprinkled on salt, pepper , olive oil and lemon zest all over the chicken and roasted it with potatos, carrots and onions. It turned out quite moist actually. It is definitely a must do since the meat really stretches out for the rest of the week.

I also baked a German Chocolate Cake for dessert. I actually used only 2 tablespoons butter, and the rest of the butter required I substituted it with homemade applesauce since with my IBS, I really can't eat butter much. I also added a quater of the yolks required and substituted the rest with just egg whites and you know what, it turned out really rather well. It was moist and very tasty. Still, the filling with condensed milk did make my tummy upset a little but all in all it turned out quite well.
I also decided to try out the chocolate caramel filled cookies I found while browsing on
She has such an amazing website. Her food looks delicious always. I just drool - literally.
It turned out quite well and we gave some to our neighbor since they so graciously gave us their extra shovel so we could unbury ourselves from the snow.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007


Am I thankful or what that I did not have to work today! It has been snowing since 12:30pm. I went to Barnes and Nobles for some IBS books and 20 minutes later, the place was covered in snow. I got outter there and drove like a turtle home. Scary, an oregonian driving in the snow. What's scarier are Ohioans driving - period!

By 3:30pm we had a good 3-4 inches of snow...

And it just keeps on a comin!


Momma sent me nian gao she made, from a recipe I found for her online somewhere. I forget where but I cut some up and dipped it in eggs than fried it and ate it....ahhhhh chinese food...drool!!!


Emm....butter + mashed up overripe bananas + white choc & milk choc chip swirls..................... Oh yeah, I didn't make it cause I wanted to eat it....

Yeah, it's for Brandon :-D


1 3/4 C whole wheat pastry flour
1 C unbleached flour
1 1/2 C sugar
1 1/2 ts ground cinnamon
1/2 ts salt
3/4 C unsalted butter, melted
1 ts vanilla extract
1/2 ts almond extract
1/2 C unsalted butter
1 C sugar
2 large eggs
1 C sour cream
1 ts vanilla extract
2 C whole wheat flour
3/4 C unbleached bread flour
1 ts bs
1 ts bp
1/2 tgs salt
confectioners' or glazing sugar for dusting, optional
Preheat oven to 350 Degrees F. Grease and flour one 9 X 13 inch cake pan
To make crumbs:
Whisk flours, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Melt butter and add extracts in. Pour butter into flour mixture and mix till butter is absorbed and crumb mixture is uniformly moistened. Set aside.
To make batter:
Cream butter and sugar till light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time and beat well after each addition. Scrape down bowl and beat in sour cream and vanilla. Whisk together flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt in another bowl. Add to butter/sour creammixture, mixing till evenly combined. Pour batter into prepared pan. Crumble the crumb mixture over top till batter is completely covered.
To bake cake:
Bake 30-35 minutes and allow to cool in a rack. Dust top with confectioners' sugar if desired before serving.
This truly is an amazing recipe and a must try. You really will notice the difference in using whole wheat pastry flour. It adds such a light, soft and crumbly texture to the coffeecake. I was amazed when I first tasted it. It's so easy to make and so yummy!!!!!


I suppose that making a Chicago Style pizza is a little more tricky than I had initially thought...results say ---> I will leave the stuffed pizzas for the Chicagoans.

The crust was too thick and the bottom was too hard. Blah!


If you don't already know what IBS is - it is 'Irritable Bowel Syndrome' and I have had it since I was 20, about 5 years ago. It usual beings late teens, early twenties but some people even younger than that. When I first self-diagnosed it, I went to my doctor and she told me to eat more fiber hence told me to buy metamucil, eat lots of veges, fruits and whole wheat. I loaded up on those, the metamucil giving me more gas than needed and didn't help with my constipation at all ( most people have diarrhea) since I was now spending about a good 2 hours a day in the bathroom trying to go. I was constantly bloated even though I may have eaten an apple, my abdomin hurt always. After following the doctors diet and not getting results after 5 very very painful years, I found a website that has not only relieved my pain but now I am not in the bathroom for 2 hours and I don't have to wake up 2 hours before work just to get there on time.

Basically, what the doctor had told me to eat is infact the very things that were hurting me. I needed a diet high in carbs, low in fat and because most veges and fruits have an insoluble skin which is the culprit for my symptoms, I now peels all my fruits and roast all my veges so I could eat the soluble fiber without the insoluble. Whole wheat come to find out is bad for me, so now I have switched to potato and white bread. The hull of the whole wheat is insoluble therefore not good for me. Red meat is out as it is hard to digest and quite frankly not that big of a deal for me since I am not that big of a fan of red meat but a good steak once in a while is quite yummy.

Anyhow, the first two to three days I was really upset cause I love fruits and veges and I had to change my whole diet. It was a little overwhelming all this new information and for a few days I was bummed because I thought that all I could eat was white bread and I was afraid my new high carb diet would make me gain weight and I was also so fatigued the first few days on my new diet that I was really really disappointed and felt like this was another bunch of lies. Researching more, I found that I could eat veges and fruits, I just had to puree peas, and brocolli and cabbage and roasting veges helps to minimize the effects that insoluble fiber has and peeling fruits and eating them slowly and in small bites would be okay. Plus no more chewing gum since it caused me to swallow more air hence more gas in my tummy. After 4 or 5 days on this new diet, I have noticed such a big change. My tummy is now hardly ever bloated, and my abdominal cramps are nill. I don't have a constant urge to go to the bathroom and not be able to go and today was the first day that I have spent only literally 5 minutes at the most in the bathroom. I was amazed, so if you or your friends have IBS, please refer them to this wonderful website which explains everything you need to know about IBS, about what foods are good for you and what is not and also has an amazing recipe index! I cannot tell you how benefical this has been. It literally is life changing.

Also, if you are more of a book person, there is a book called "Eating for IBS" which has a book full of recipes that are IBS safe. :-)

Good luck! I hope this helps for anyone who has IBS.


So, I got this recipe from King Arthurs Bakers Magazine, and the picture looked so much like Cosco's cinnamon muffins that I just had to try and make it. See, working isn't so bad when it's slow. I get to read magazines!


1/3 C brown sugar
1/4 C diced pecans
1/4 C rolled oats
1/2 C flour
3tbs soft butter

Mix till crumbly

1/3 C brown sugar
3 tbs melted butter
1 tbs cinnamon

Mix together


1/2 C butter melted
3/4 C milk
2 eggs
1 3/4 C flour
1/2 C rolled oats
2 tbs cornstarch
3/4 C sugar
1 tbs bp

1/2 ts salt
1/4 ts nutmeg
1/2 C cinnamon chips ( I used chocolate chips)

Whisk melted butter, milk and eggs. Whisk together dry ingredients and add to liquid. Dviide in half and fill 1/2 muffin tin then add 2 ts cinnamon filling and top with remaining batter. Sprinkle topping and press lightly into batter.

Bake at 400 Degrees F for 20-25 minutes.
Toptional icing: 3tbs cream and 1 C confectioners sugar. Ice after muffins are cooled.

Curry Puffs

When all else fails, the best thing to do for dinner when you are not feeling like cooking is to use left overs. Most times after work, cooking a whole new meal just doesn't seem like it's in the cards! hehehehe. So I had made chicken curry a couple nights ago and thankfully had left overs! I didn't feel like going out to buy puff pastry, nor did I feel like making it since we couldn't eat it till tomorrow and well...I wanted dinner, and dinner fast! So, I took just a simple empanada recipe using crisco and 20 minutes later, rolled out the pastry, cut it into circles, toped it with chicken curry, foled it and sealed it, baked it and viola! Dinner in under an hour! YES!

Empanada dough actually makes for a really great puff pastry substitute, it's not as flaky and light but it's definitely still flaky with a great texture.

Bay-guls or Bag-guls?

Whether you are from the midwest and pronounce Bag-guls or from every other state in the country and pronouce it Bay-guls, it is equally agreed upon how tasty these beauties are. Ahhh...pure joy. The smooth and silky slightly crunchy outter skin in the initial bite and then the chewy and dense sensation of the bulk of the bagel. Emmm...delicious. My recipe was from The essential baking cookbook.

1 1/4 ts yeast
1 ts sugar
1 tbs honey
4 C white bread flour
2 ts salt
coarse polenta, for dusting
Put yeast, sugar and 1 1/2 C warm water in a small bowl, stir till dissolved. Leave in warm place 10 minutes - should be frothy and increase in volume. Stir in honey.
Put 2 C flour in large bowl, making well in center and add yeast mixture and salt. Stir with wooden spoon, adding flour as necessary till dough is firm. Turn on floured surface and knead 10-12 minutes till smooth and stiff. Add more flour if necessary then divide into 8 portions and roll them into smooth balls. Cover for 5 minutes.
Roll each ball under your palms to form a rope. Do not taper ends. Dampen ends slightly, overlap by 4cm and pinch firmly together. Place one at a time around base of fingers and with overlap under paln, roll rope several times. Apply firm pressure to seal seam. Make sure thickness is same all the way around. Place on polenta dusted baking trays, cover with plastic wrap and refridgerate 12 hours.
Preheat oven to 475 degrees F. Line two baking trays with baking paper, remove bagels from fridge 20 minutes before baking. Bring large pan of water to boil and drop the bagels, in batches of 3-4 for 30 seconds. Remove, drain base-down on wire rack.
Place bagels on trays and bake 15 minutes. Cool on wire rack.
Although my bagels were the best I've made, I made a few mistakes. I didn't dust the baking trays with enough polenta, so when i tried to take the bagels off the tray to boil them, they were disturbed too much and deflated a bit. Also I didn't put in enough flour and so another reason they deflated so easily. One last thing, I am not sure if it made a difference but instead of rolling it into a rope and sealing the seams together, I merely made a hole with my index finger. Next time, I will be more careful!


I wanted to do a post to wish Gems good luck. We returned her to '4 paws for ability' a little over a week ago and we miss her so badly. She is being trained for tracking and doing a fabulous job (finding humans) and once she gets paired up with an immate for the prison program, we will get a picture and another update. We love you Gemini!

Gemini looking flashy in our christmas tree skirt! HOT!

Enjoying her last day with us, belly full of treats!


Working hard "pulling" our christmas tree cart.
(She actually never pulled it since she just sat down because it was too much work!)

Heavy as she was, Brandon loved to lift her up

Taking a break from one of her favorite toys

Hard to imagine but she could never sit still for a picture!

A sucker for an ear rub

Snuggling with our man :-)

Not the most photogenic she can be but boy is SHE comfortable on our bed

looking intently at a snack

Pouting for attention

Her purty hazel eyes

Lip smackin cute pup

This ones for you Gemini. Know we love you and miss you - Love mom and dad