Friday, November 29, 2013

Kitchen Gadget of the Month: November Edition

I hope everyone enjoyed their Thanksgiving day.  Mine was spent at my mother's along with my younger brother, an uncle and my sweetie.  Good food, some interesting conversations about family, and just normal weirdness that is a part of our traditional holiday celebrations.  But back to blogging for me now! 

It has been quite some time since I have mentioned my love affair with bacon.  For the newbies out there, plain and simply:  I adore bacon.  As I'm fond of saying, "Bacon is so good that they wrap other meats in bacon".  Nearly everything is better with bacon.  It does seem that lately everyone else is jumping on the bacon bandwagon.  About time they caught up is my opinion of this recent trend.  

How do you prepare bacon?  Most people just take a pound of bacon and fry it up in a pan on top of the stove.  It's easy, fast, and makes for tasty bacon.  I have made it this way myself for years and years.  But, is this truly the best way to prepare bacon?  

Nope.  It's not.  In my not-so-humble opinion, the absolutely best way to make bacon is to bake it in the oven.  Easy.  Pretty quick.  And you can do it nekkid.  Trying frying bacon in a pan on your stove top in your birthday suit.....owie!

Here's what you need to get started:
  1. An oven
  2. A cookie sheet - can even be a gross, baked on, you-would-never-consider-actually-using-for-food-you-would-eat cookie sheet.
  3. November's Kitchen Gadget of the Month:  Cooling Rack - Don't have one??  Get yours from my amazon store today!
Here's what you do:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Place the cooling rack on the cookie sheet
  3. Place the bacon on the cooling rack
  4. Place the bacon, cooling rack, and cookie sheet into oven
  5. Bake for 15-20 minutes until bacon is done - thinner bacon will take less time, thicker will take more.....OPEN THE OVEN DOOR AND LOOK AT IT FROM TIME TO TIME!!  It is a mortal sin to let bacon burn
  6. Remove bacon, cooling rack, and cookie sheet from oven and let cool for only a minute or so
  7. Eat bacon (some people like to put their bacon on a plate first, but this really isn't necessary)
Here's what it looks like before and after baking:

Notice the disgusting cookie sheet?  It don't matter - it's just there to catch the drippings.  (Save those drippings,'s an inexpensive grease strainer)   Notice how the bacon stays nice and flat?  It doesn't curl up in the oven like it does in a frying pan.  In addition, I think the flavor of the bacon is more rich and intense when it has been baked.  

What are you waiting for???  Bake some bacon today!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Kitchen Gadget of the Month: October edition (just a weeeeeeeeeeeeee bit late)

October was a sad and happy month - and very, very busy.  We lost my oldest brother on October 13 and my mother's health is continuing to deteriorate.   Our bright spot was the wedding of my favorite nephew to a truly lovely girl.  I couldn't be happier for them. is October's Kitchen gadget of the month.  A mini-donut tin - just in time for all things Pumpkin!

I've talked about getting my sweet fix on in earlier posts.  One of the things I have missed  since going grain and sugar-free is donuts and other pastries.  Lucky for me, I have found ways to make my own....that way I know what's going into the sweets and into my body.

My favorite donut recipe so far is Pumpkin Donuts.  Easy to make plus Amazon makes it easy to buy your own cute mini-donut tin. (Check out my Amazon Store at the top of my blog for a direct link to buy you own!) 

Here's the recipe: 

Pumpkin Donuts

1 1/2 cups almond flour 
1/4 tsp sea salt 
1/2tsp baking soda 
1 tsp ground cinnamon 
1/2 tsp each:  ground nutmeg , cloves, ginger
2 tbls Butter
1/2 cup sweetener of choice (xylitol and erythritol are available thru amazon and my Amazon store
3 eggs 
1 cup canned pumpkin 

In one bowl combine flour, baking soda, salt, and spices. In another bowl, mix butter, sweetener, eggs and pumpkin until smooth. Stir pumpkins mixture into the dry ingredients. Grease you new cute donut tins. Spoon batter into the tins making sure to leave your donut "hole" visible. Bake at 325° for 30-40 minutes. Cool. 

 Need it sweeter yet?? Try this cream cheese frosting: 

Cream Cheese Frosting

4 oz cream cheese, softened
2 tbls milk 
3 tbls Swerve Powdered Sweetener (to taste) 

 Stir until smooth and frost away!