theboxexperiment

Attempting to live a more sustainable lifestyle.

S’mores Graham Treats (similar to Rice Krispie Treats but different!) October 21, 2012

Filed under: Dessert,Snack — theboxexperiment @ 6:56 pm
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I know its been a very long time, almost a year. But it’s been a crazy year full of new roles at work and year 1 of grad school. On the grad school note, I am posting tonight instead of working on a paper. It currently seems like a good use of my time ¬†ūüôā

I found this recipe on Pinterest and expect it to a big hit with my students. It was originally from the Country Cleaver blog- check her out!

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag (10 oz) Mini Marshmallows
  • 1 cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate chips + 1 handful ¬†for topping (this seemed like a lot of chocolate chips, next time I’ll probably use less)
  • 1 box (12 0z) Golden Grahams Cereal
  • 6 Tbsp Butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla
  • Cooking Spray

Directions:

  1. Spray a ¬†9×9 inch baking pan with cooking spray.
  2. In a large non-stick pot over medium heat, melt butter.
  3. Add in marshmallows and stir together with butter until marshmallows have melted and become creamy.
  4. Stir in vanilla extract.
  5. Gently stir in Golden Grahams until everything is evenly coated.
  6. Mix in 1 cup of chocolate chips.
  7. Spread and press mixture into sprayed baking pan.
  8. Sprinkle remaining handful of chocolate chips on top of the treats, lightly press into top of treats to make sure they stick. Place into fridge for 10 minutes to cool.

Slice into bars and enjoy.

 

Vegan Brown Sugar Blondies February 21, 2012

Filed under: Dessert,Snack — theboxexperiment @ 5:00 pm
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I found this recipe while searching vegan/dairy free blogs. I’ve convinced myself this recipe is quite healthy (please don’t make me accept the truth ūüôā ). They are absolutely fantastic, JEM loved them. I am bringing them to school as well, hopefully the kids find them just as yummy.

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup¬†margarine¬†OR coconut oil, softened
  • 6 ounces coconut milk or soy yogurt
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 2 cups white flour, spelt flour, or whole wheat pastry flour
  • 8 ounces chocolate chips (chose dairy free if you want these to be truly vegan)
  • Sprinkles (again, if you want these to be vegan make sure you buy vegan sprinkles)

Directions:

  1. With a mixer, beat together the margarine, yogurt, and brown sugar.
  2. Add the baking powder, salt, and vanilla.
  3. Mix in the flour until just combine.
  4. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  5. Press into a lightly greased 9×9 baking dish, top with sprinkles.
  6. Then bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes, or until the edges of light golden brown.

Enjoy!!!

 

Original post can be found at: http://www.cheekykitchen.com/2012/02/vegan-brown-sugar-blondies.html

 

Thanksgiving Post December 1, 2011

It’s been a long time since I’ve posted- mainly because we haven’t really been trying many new recipes. I’ve got a couple new ones that I’ll post when I’ve got the time. But the main purpose of this is to post my Thanksgiving recipes! We are trying several new ones out that I’m pretty excited about!

Desserts:

Apple Crumble Pie (my family recipe)

Filling:

  • 1 Regular pie shell
  • 4-6 large granny smith apples (peel and cut)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 teaspoon cinnamon
Topping
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup butter ( 1 stick) — do not melt

Mix apples, sugar, and cinnamon. Put in pie dish. Mix flour, butter, and sugar by hand. Crumble on top of pie.
Bake at 400 for 45-50 min.

Texas Pecan Pie (JEM’s family recipe)

  • 1 9″ Unbaked pie shell
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 3 well-beaten eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups pecan (or more)

Mix sugar, corn syrup, melted butter. Add eggs and pecans. Fill pie shell. Bake 10 minutes at 400 then 30-35 minutes at 350. Cool thoroughly.

Pumpkin Pie

recipe coming soon…

Sides

Slow Cooker Candied Sweet Potatoes (adopted from Stephanie O’Dea: A Year of Slow Cooking)

  • 3-4 peeled and chopped sweet potatoes
  • 1 tsp t vanilla
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • a scant pinch of Kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup of orange juice
  • (optional) enough mini marshmallows to dot on top
  • (optional) roasted chopped pecans

Dump the chopped sweet potatoes and all ingredients into your slow cooker. Toss together. Dot enough marshmallows on top to satisfy young children. Cover and cook on low for 4-6 hrs or 2-3 on high. Top with toasted pecans and serve.

Roasting Pecans will bring out their flavor and is quite simple. Pre-heat oven to 350*. Lightly spray a cookie sheet with Pam. Spread out the pecans, pop in the oven. Pull them out once they become aromatic (~ 5 mins). Keep a close eye on them, they can scorch easily.

Chive and Sour Cream Mashed Potatoes

recipe coming soon…

Roasted Red Potatoes

  • 8 baby red potatoes
  • EVOO
  • chopped rosemary
  • chopped garlic
  • Salt and Pepper
Pre-heat oven to 400*. Peel potatoes (if you like, we normally don’t) and cut into bite sized pieces. Drizzle with EVOO till lightly coated. Sprinkle rosemary and garlic evenly, salt and pepper to taste. Really, all the spices are taste. Pop in the oven for ~45 mins. Half way through, toss the potatoes so all sides get nice and crunchy.

Cranberry Sauce 

  • 12 oz bag of fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1 c sugar
  • zest of 1 medium orange
  • juice of 1/2 a medium orange (~ 2 tablespoons)

Empty the cranberries into a saucepan and transfer 1/2 cup to a small bowl. Add 1 cup sugar, add orange zest and 2 tablespoons orange juice to the pan and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves and the cranberries are soft, about 10 minutes. Increase the heat to medium and cook until the cranberries burst, about 12 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and stir in the reserved cranberries. Add sugar, salt and pepper to taste and cool to room temperature before serving.

Roasted Asparagus

  • 1 bunch of asparagus
  • EVOO
  • S&P
Pre-heat oven to 350*. Trim the asparagus. Drizzle with EVOO, S&P to taste. Pop them in the oven until roasted till desired tenderness. About 15 minutes.

Homemade Bread

recipe coming soon…

Gravy

recipe coming soon…

Main Course
Brined Turkey 
recipe coming soon…
 

Homemade Pesto July 7, 2011

Filed under: Dinner,Snack,Vegetable — theboxexperiment @ 9:54 pm
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Earlier this summer, we’ve planted 3 basil plants that have really taken off. We have a lot of basil, definitely more than we can use for just the 2 of us. I made a test run of homemade pesto, it turned out fantastic so I am definitely going to make another bigger batch to freeze.

Ingredients for Small Batch

  • small bunch basil leaves (~1 cup)
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic chopped (depending on how much you like garlic)
  • 1/6-1/4 cup of macadamia nuts (most people use pine nuts but they were way to expensive at the grocery store)
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan
  • 1/4 cup ¬†extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt to taste
Steps
  1. Wash the basil leaves with water, dry in colander.
  2. Place basil leaves, nuts of choice, and salt into food processor. Pulse until finely chopped.
  3. Add the chopped garlic and the parmesan to the food processor. Pulse till combined.
  4. Add the olive oil and pulse till joined (the longer you run it, the smoother it will be).
 

Orzo Pasta Salad

Filed under: Dinner,Vegetable — theboxexperiment @ 9:06 pm
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This is one of our favorite summer salads, I first found it on Food Network from Giada De Laurentiis.This is a fresh, light, tasty salad. It¬†is an easy make ahead dish and keeps really well in the fridge for a few days. It’s a quick dish to make, the longest part is waiting for the pasta to cool off slightly. Some like this dish on the warm side (not hot!) and on the cool side. So if you don’t want to wait, you can make this while it’s warm.

Great for a summer potluck or a picnic at your favorite water-side place. It’s also fantastic¬†for a quick weeknight dinner.

Quick Note: the recipe below makes a very large amount of this stuff, I would make the full recipe if I were feeding 4+ people (it’s normally¬†perfect for about 6 with no leftovers). For just the 2 of us, I cut the recipe in half and we have enough leftovers for another full dinner side.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb orzo pasta
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups baby spinach (about 3 oz)
  • 3/4 cup feta cheese
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 12 fresh torn basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts (sunflower seeds, cashews, and macadamia nuts work well as well)
  • 3 tbsp of fresh lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
Steps
  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heats.
  2. Add the pasta. Cook until tender but still firm to the bite (about 8-10 minutes).
  3. Drain pasta and set aside to cool.
  4. Once the orzo is cool, transfer to a large serving bowl.
  5. Add the remaining ingredients.
  6. Toss gently to combine.
  7. Enjoy
 

Buttery Corn Bread June 30, 2011

Filed under: Bread,Dinner — theboxexperiment @ 9:44 am
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Last night we were going to grill pork, make garlicy green beans, and corn bread. The green beans were a bust- a few bad ones spoiled the bag so we had to resort to a bean and corn salsa¬† for our veggie. The corn bread turned out FANTASTIC, it is so light and airy. Fresh out of the oven it didn’t need any extra butter, this morning it still doesn’t need anything extra. This recipe doesn’t have a strong corn flavor. If you want it to taste more like corn, increase the amount of corn flour and decrease the amount of regular flour.

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 cup sugar (I made it a short cup and the bread still turned out sweet, next time I may use even less, say 2/3 cup)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 2/3 cups milk
  • 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
Steps
  1. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar.
  2. In a separate small bowl, combine the eggs and milk.
  3. In yet another small bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt
  4. Alternating, add the egg mixture and the flour mixture to the butter sugar mixture.
  5. Pour into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking pan.
  6. Bake at 400 degrees  for 22-27 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
  7. Cut into squares; serve warm.
  8. Enjoy
 

Flank Steak Marinade June 22, 2011

Filed under: Dinner,Meat — theboxexperiment @ 10:40 pm
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It was taco night and who doesn’t love taco’s? Well we had ground turkey AND we had some flank steak that was calling our names. So we made both and had way more taco fixin’s than 3 people should ever have. The flank steak turned out fantastic. So fantastic only JEM put it in taco’s, AbEm and I ate it on its own without all the extras. ¬†It is so simple to make and so very very good.

Ingredients

  • flank steak
  • 1 1/2 Tbs soy sauce
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 3 tbs green onion (optional)
  • tabasco to taste (optional)
Steps
  1. Score the steak.
  2. If you didn’t buy a clean piece of steak you will need to clean it- this means cutting off as much fat, skin, and veins that you can. Not removing as much excess can leave you with a tougher piece of meat.
  3. Mix the soy sauce, olive oil, thyme, lemon, onion, and tabasco.
  4. Put the steak in a plastic zip lock bag (for easy clean up) or into a sealable dish.
  5. Pour in the marinade, make sure the marinade hits every part of the steak.
  6. Store in refrigerator for about 4 hours (or as close to it as possible!)
  7. Grill for 4-5 minutes total (2.5 mins per side). Keep a close eye on it, this is a thin cut of meat and will cook very quickly.
  8. Let rest for 10 mins before cooking. This will help them meat retain some of it yummy juices.
  9. Cut on the diagonal, across the grain, about 1/4 inch slices. This is very important-cutting the meat wrong will lead to tough pieces that you won’t want to eat.
  10. Enjoy