Come On Up To The House

May 11, 2022
by Ashley

Beef Bourguignon


1 tbsp olive oil
8 ounces bacon, diced
2 1/2lbs chuck beef cut into 1 inch cubes
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 lb carrots, sliced diagonally into 1 inch chunks
2 yellow onions, sliced
2 tsp garlic, chopped
1/2 cup Cognac or Brandy
1 (750ml) bottle good dry red wine (Cote du Rhône)
2 cups beef broth
1 tbsp tomato paste
1/2 tsp dried thyme
4 tbsp butter, divided
3 tbsp all purpose flour (or cornstarch if gluten free)
1 lb frozen whole small onions
1 lb fresh mushrooms stems discarded, caps thickly sliced

1/2 cup fresh parsley

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.

Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven. Cook the bacon over medium heat until fully cooked and crispy, stirring occasionally. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon to a large plate.

Dry the beef cubes with paper towels and salt & pepper them. Sear the beef in batches browning on all sides. Remove seared cubes to the plate with the bacon and continue until all is browned. Set aside.

Add in the carrots, onions, 1 tbsp salt and 2 tsp pepper into the fat in the pan and cook for 10 – 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Add the Cognac, stand back and set on fire to burn off the alcohol. Put the meat and bacon back into the pot with the juices. Add the bottle of wine and beef broth to almost cover the meat. Add in the tomato paste and thyme. Bring to a simmer, cover the pot and place in the oven for 75 minutes or until the meat and vegetables are very tender when pierced with a fork.

Combine 2 tbsp of butter and flour with a fork. Stir the mixture into the stew. Add in the small onions.

In a separate pan, sauté the mushrooms in 2 tbsp butter for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Add the mushrooms to the stew.

Bring the stew to a boil on top of the stove and then lower the heat to simmer for 15 minutes. Season to taste.

Sprinkle with parsley.

May 4, 2022
by Ashley

Peanut Noodles

We love to make these noodles and let them sit over night for an easy lunch.


4 bundles dry egg noodles

2 tbsp sesame oil
4 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp Chinese sesame paste
1 tbsp smooth peanut butter
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp finely grated ginger
2 tsp garlic, minced
2 tsp Sambal Oelek
2 small cucumbers, cut into sticks
4 medium carrots, cut into sticks
1/4 cup chopped peanuts

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until barely tender, about 5 minutes. They should retain a hint of chewiness. Drain, rinse with cold water, drain again and toss with a splash of sesame oil.

In a medium bowl, whisk together sesame oil through the Sambal. Pour the sauce over the noodles and toss. Add in the carrots, cucumbers and peanuts.

March 7, 2022
by Ashley

Ricotta Brûlée


1 cup ricotta cheese (whole-milk)
1 tsp finely grated fresh lemon zest
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp sugar

Mix all of these ingredients together and split between ricotta mixture between two to four ramekins. Sprinkle granulated sugar over the top and brûlée with a torch. Serve by themselves or with fresh berries.

January 11, 2022
by Ashley

Snickerdoodle Mug Cake

This cake was great and super easy for the kids to make.


4 tbsp all purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp granulated white sugar
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3 tbsp half & half
1 tbsp melted butter
1/2 tsp vanilla

1/2 tbsp granulated white sugar
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

In a large microwave safe mug, mix the cake ingredients from flour through vanilla. Whisk until smooth.

In a small pinch bowl, mix the sugar and cinnamon.

Use a spoon to lift half of the cake batter out of the mug and sprinkle half of the sugar mixture over the cake. Top with the remaining spoonful of batter and pour of the rest of the sugar mixture over it.

Microwave cake at full power 1 minute – 1 1/2 minutes. Check to make sure you don’t cook it too long. Make one cake at a time and eat immediately. These don’t keep too long and will dry out.

October 1, 2021
by Ashley

Chicken Piccata

8 skinless chicken tenders
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 1/2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots or red onion
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 cup dry white wine
3/4 cup chicken broth
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp drained capers
3 tbsp fresh parsley

Pound the chicken tenders until about 1/2 inch thick. Place 1 tbsp flour in a small bowl and place the rest into a small shallow dish. Sprinkle both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper. Dredge chicken in flour in the shallow dish and shake off excess.

Melt 1 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp olive oil over medium high heat. Add chicken to the pan and sauté 4 minutes on each side until done. remove chicken from the pan and keep warm.

Heat remaining 1 tbsp of olive oil and sauté the shallots. About 3 minutes. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add wine, bring to a boil, scrap pan to loosen browned bits. Cook until liquid almost evaporates. Add 1/4 cup broth to 1 tsp flour; stir until smooth. Add remaining 1/2 cup broth to pan; bring to a boil. Cook until reduced in half, about 5 minutes. Stir in flour mixture; cook 1 minute or until thick. Remove from heat, stir in remaining 1 1/2 butter, juice and capers. Place 2 chicken tenders per plate with 2 tbsp sauce. Sprinkle with parsley.

April 5, 2021
by Ashley

Tea Sandwiches

This is really not a recipe, but more of a reminder to myself that these little tea sandwiches are wonderful and I should make them again.

Open-Faced Tea Sandwich Ideas –

I used only Pumpernickel Small Breads

Top with an Apple slice, Penta Creme Blue & Honey
Top with Horseradish Cheddar & Cucumbers
Top with Blueberry Jam, Double Cream Brie & a candied Pecan
Top with Cream cheese & dill, cucumber, sardines
Top with sliced Hardboiled Eggs, a drop of Dijon mustard and a drop of mayo
Top with sliced hardboiled eggs and Northwoods Fire salt

Also pictured are apple slices with peanut butter so the kids feel like they have an appetizer as well.

February 19, 2021
by Ashley

Chocolate Brownies with Black Beans

We have lovingly coined these as Bean Brownies now in our house. We were pleasantly surprised at how these turned out. I keep joking that my brothers worry about what is in my cookies (they hate flaxseed) but they would be shocked to find out that there are beans in these.


1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup butter, melted
3 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp all purpose flour (or corn starch to make gluten free)
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the beans in a food processor and whir until broken up into small pieces. Add in sugar through vanilla and process until smooth. Scrap down the sides to ensure that there aren’t any chunks. Add in flour and pulse until just combined. Stir in chocolate chips and pour into a silicone brownie pan. Mine is about 9×9.

Bake for 30 minutes.

You can choose to leave these as is, or add a topping. Powdered sugar might be nice, but I added 3 tbsp white chocolate with 1 tsp vegetable oil and melt it together. I drizzled this over the top. You can add crushed mints, other candies etc.

These are 2 purple points without the extra toppings.

February 17, 2021
by Ashley

Flourless Chickpea Chocolate Chip Cookies

I have never tried beans as a base in cookies before, so this was a first attempt. Isla loves them.


1 can chickpeas, rinse and drained
1 cup Creamy peanut butter
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 eggs

1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Get out the food processor for this one! Whir the chickpeas up as best as you can to break up any of the larger chunks. Add the rest of the ingredients (minus the chocolate chips) and whip until well combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.

Bake for 10 minutes or so. Makes 28 cookies.

3 Purple Points

February 15, 2021
by Ashley

Cheesecake – Light

Paul loves cheesecake, but it is sometimes just too much. I found this lightened up recipe and made it recently. It turned out really well and everyone loved it.

Lightened Up Cheesecake

3 eggs
3 cups Nonfat Plan Greek Yogurt
1 package Instant vanilla pudding mix
1 tbsp vanilla extract
3 tbsp sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Whisk all ingredients together until every thing is combined. Use cooking spray and coat a round spring pan. Pour in cake mixture and bake for 45 minutes – 50 minutes. Look to the sides of the pan to ensure they have browned and the middle has set.

Pull out the cheesecake and let set for 10 minutes. I will naturally pull apart from the sides of the pan. Release the pan and transfer the cheesecake to plate (leaving it on the bottom of the spring pan). Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours. Best if left overnight.

Serve with berries of your choice and whipped cream.

4 Smart Points