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Culinary Creations

True to my declaration that I was going to get back in the kitchen and a little more creative with my eats again, I spent the quite a lot of time cooking and baking this weekend.

Here’s a look at some of the things that came out of my kitchen…sweet and savory!

Saturday I made homemade granola bars. Ever since I received the sample pack of Hungry Bars from Emily, I have been all about homemade granola bars. I don’t even want prepackaged bars anymore. These bars are no bake and only took me about 15 minutes to assemble. They are awesome and I will post the recipe this week!

Saturday night dinner was homemade pizza. Whole wheat pizza dough with marinara, spicy chicken sausage, artichokes, cherry tomatoes, portobello mushrooms and mozzarella cheese. Pizza night is my favorite!

This afternoon I baked blondies with white chocolate chips and a Nutella cream cheese swirl. These were also super simple to put together. I didn’t even have to get the mixer out. I’ll also be sharing the recipe for these this week!

I had a butternut squash that needed to be used so off I went to Pinterest for inspiration on what to do with it. I decided on butternut squash lasagna that I kind of made up as I went.

I roasted the squash and then layered it with a ricotta/cottage cheese/spinach mixture, goat cheese and noodles. I topped it all with mozzarella cheese. It turned out pretty well but it’s not recipe-share worthy. I’ll definitely still enjoy the leftovers this week though.

And then how can you have freshly baked blondies on hand and not top them with ice cream? Dessert tonight was a blondie with vanilla ice cream and chocolate syrup. A perfect end to a great weekend.

Did you cook anything new, different or just extra delicious this weekend?Β 

{ 41 comments… add one }
  • Matt @ The Athlete's Plate March 11, 2012, 8:42 pm

    I didn’t really cook anything new, but I had some delicious food this weekend!

  • Joanna Stebing March 11, 2012, 8:45 pm

    I hope you realize how much you inspire me, Jen! thanks for sharing these lovelies. I’ve been planning on making some homemade larabars for awhile now- but reading up on winemaking and veggie burger-creating has consumed my time as of late. πŸ™‚

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:44 am

      thank you joanna! i always bookmark and pin so many veggie burger recipes but never make them!

  • Tiffany March 11, 2012, 9:10 pm

    Everything looks amazing!! I am getting very hungry looking at all these delicious foods!

    Did you make the pizza dough yourself? If you did…would you share the recipe for that as well? πŸ™‚

    Ice cream and sweets are always a great way to end the weekend.

    I made vegan blueberry pancakes this morning and they were great! I’m planning to bake more treats as well as some lunch/dinner dishes this week. I have so many recipes bookmarked its hard to choose which to make first haha

    Hope you have a great start to your week πŸ™‚

    • Tiffany March 11, 2012, 9:11 pm

      By the way I am so excited for your granola bar recipe! They look so good!!

      • Kamaile March 11, 2012, 9:26 pm

        Me too! I’ll be waiting for that recipe! πŸ™‚

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:53 am

      tiffany – i did not make the dough. it’s trader joe’s whole wheat pizza dough.

      sunday morning pancakes are the best! πŸ™‚

  • Miriam@Bellaspire March 11, 2012, 9:11 pm

    I had some leftover pork tenderloin that I diced up and combined with some sauteed shallots and mushrooms. This all went in a wrap with some greek yogurt as a sauce. Delicious and spontaneous!! I saw your tweet about the brownies and nutella and have been jonesing ever since πŸ˜‰

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:44 am

      that wrap sounds amazing!

  • cat March 11, 2012, 9:18 pm

    I just found your blog today, and you had so many good meals that i never would have tried! I didnt really want to go to the gym today, but you motivated me to! and i just thought you should know that ive also decided to try a yoga class this thursday! πŸ™‚ Thank you ! keep up the great work

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:45 am

      cat – glad you found me and like my meal ideas…and that i could give you a little gym motivation. enjoy yoga! let me know if you have any questions!

  • Jillian March 11, 2012, 9:39 pm

    Looking forward to the recipes!! Everything looks delicious!

  • Emily March 11, 2012, 10:04 pm

    I can’t wait for the granola bar recipe, they look so good!

    PS. I commented about 6 months ago because I was thinking about taking a yoga class (I think I asked you if you wore shoes or did yoga barefoot… embarrassing..) but anyway, I did it and I loved it. I’ve been doing yoga 2-3 times a week ever since. Just wanted to say THANKYOU for inspiring me to give it a chance πŸ™‚

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:46 am

      emily – thank you so much for telling me about your experience with yoga. i’m so happy that you’ve started a regular practice and are enjoying it!

  • jennyv March 11, 2012, 10:06 pm

    My husband & I just did a new take on an old fave — chicken spaghetti. We used spaghetti squash, diced chicken, red/orange/yellow peppers, broccoli, grated sharp cheddar cheese and tons of spices. It turned out great!

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:46 am

      that sounds great! i need to give spaghetti squash another shot.

      • Linda March 12, 2012, 4:42 pm

        Here is a great spaghetti squash recipe. I’ve made it for several different friends and it is always a big hit. http://allrecipes.com/recipe/spaghetti-squash-i/ I change it up a bit, kalamata olives, evoo or grape seed oil, and lots of garlic and basil!

        • Jen March 14, 2012, 5:05 pm

          yum! thanks for sharing!

  • Stacy @ Say It With Sprinkles March 11, 2012, 10:53 pm

    I’m still on the lookout for a recipe for granola bars that hold together rather than crumbling when picked up – do these hungry bars hold up pretty well? Might have to give them a try, they look awesome!

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:47 am

      well, the hungry bars from emily hold together great but you have to order those from her. i made a completely different recipe that a friend shared with me. they seem to hold together but i froze them and am keeping them in the freezer.

  • Sierra @ Posh Meets Pavement March 11, 2012, 11:10 pm

    I made some chicken breasts coated in a mixture of pecans, coconut, and panko. I put it on a salad with a honey mustard dressing. I usually do breaded chicken breasts with parm and panko, but this was a nice change up. Love the sweet-savory combination.

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:48 am

      that sounds like the perfect salad topping. i love breading chicken for salads and honey mustard is my favorite when i do!

  • Ally March 12, 2012, 2:33 am

    Excited to see your granola bar recipe! I mentioned this on a previous post, I’m constantly making different versions of bars from Heidi Swanson’s here http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/video-big-sur-power-bars-recipe.html . I started with the original recipe and just keep tinkering, especially playing with sweeteners.

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:49 am

      ally – thanks for mentioning heidi’s bars again. i’ll definitely try her recipe as a base in the future.

  • Agatha March 12, 2012, 5:26 am

    “I don’t even want prepackaged bars anymore” – this is exactly the same with me after my eating habits transition to more organic, more raw and home-made food. Last time I wanted sth quick for dinner, and I went to the shop thinking to myself: today ready ravioli – as I did not feel like cooking. Then I read ingredients and straight away put it back on shelf. I got organic lentils and beans and I assembled dinner in 15 min.

    I guess once you got used to quality home-made food you don’t really want to stick with ready meals anymore.

    I’ll wait for your recipes:)

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:50 am

      agatha – i do the same thing. sometimes i get tempted to take shortcuts (or what i think is a shortcut) but after an ingredient/nutrition scan, quickly change my mind!

  • Amy March 12, 2012, 6:47 am

    I cannot wait for the homemade granola bars recipe!!! They look soooo good.

  • Brittany (Healthy Slice of Life) March 12, 2012, 8:19 am

    I didn’t get much of a chance to cook, but was very impressed by food at Galway Hooker in Cornelius. It’s an Irish pub, so I wasn’t expecting much, but WOW it was good!

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:50 am

      yum! what a fun march activity! πŸ™‚

  • Christina March 12, 2012, 10:43 am

    I made pizza on Sunday! It wasn’t new, but I worked on the technique and it came out pretty well. The butternut squash lasagna looks great – I think I prefer that version over the traditional tomato sauce-meat lasagna.
    Your granola bars have reminded me that I need to make a batch. I like having a relatively healthy snack on hand and granola bars are a favorite of mine.

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:51 am

      i love homemade pizza! this was my first time trying butternut squash lasagna. definitely room for improvement but still good! i was trying to avoid doing a cream filled version. do you have a good recipe?

  • Mary @ Bites and Bliss March 12, 2012, 10:58 am

    I wish I could be so creative in the kitchen! I haven’t even baked in MONTHS!

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:52 am

      i go through phases with it. i always like to bake but i’ve been doing it a lot lately!

  • Christina March 12, 2012, 11:05 am

    Perfect! I just bought a jar of Nutella this weekend (:

  • elizabeth March 12, 2012, 11:32 am

    Can’t wait for your granola bar recipe. I made these great bars over the weekend for the first time, http://colourmehappy.typepad.com/colour-me-happy/2011/08/granola-bars.html

    • Jen March 12, 2012, 11:52 am

      elizabeth – thanks for sharing the link!

  • Lizzy March 12, 2012, 12:10 pm

    I could eat these pics they look so delicious!!
    I made my lunches for the week and granola…none of which look nearly as appetizing as your pics πŸ™‚
    I hope your Monday is off to a great start!

  • Tiff @ Love Sweat and Beers March 12, 2012, 12:43 pm

    Yum! Pizza night is definitely my favorite too. I cooked up good stuff this weekend, but luckily all of it was super easy.

  • Danielle March 12, 2012, 1:47 pm

    That pizza looks great! It seems like you’ve been making a lot of veggie meals lately, does Brandon enjoy this, or does he miss he meat?? I know my own hubby gets annoyed if I try to make too many veggie meals in a week… he just doesn’t feel satisified.

  • Julianna @ Julianna Bananna March 12, 2012, 8:43 pm

    the granola bars look absolutely delicious! i love simple recipes so i can’t wait for that one!

    the butternut squash lasagna also looks intriguing- one of few foods that i haven’t gotten my hands on yet!

    this past weekend before i left to go out of town i made some cookies for my friend’s birthday. they were heavenly- birthday cake oreo stuffed chocolate chip cookies. lets just say it’s a really good thing that i was giving most of them away otherwise i would’ve been on the couch in a cookie coma all weekend! i have no self control when it comes to my raging sweet tooth πŸ™‚

    • Jen March 14, 2012, 5:05 pm

      um…drooling over those cookies. that sounds AMAZING!

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