Citrus at Its Best: Orange Ricotta Pancakes

This weekend, I am so excited to be speaking at  Food Blog South, a conference and workshop in Birmingham, Alabama on Recipe Development along with the talented Virginia Willis. It’s going to be wonderful weekend filled with bloggers, writers, photographers and so many others from around the country. Proceeds from the conference go to support a charity to restore the Gulf, and also support The Desert Island Supply Company, a Woodlawn-based writing center for kids. Recently, I was working on a recipe development project for a client creating recipes made with citrus fruits. I loved how these Orange Ricotta Pancakes turned out: so light and fluffy with the perfect hint of orange flavor. This makes a great breakfast idea for this weekend since oranges are at their peak. Enjoy and have a great weekend!

Food Blog Conference With A Cause & Discount: Food Blog South

I am so excited to be a speaker at such a great event coming up on January 22, 2011 in Birmingham, Alabama: FoodBlogSouth. If you’re looking to be a better food blogger and be proud that you can tell the world where to find the best shrimp & grits, join in. With names such as Kim Severson, Lisa Ekus, Virginia Willis, Christy Jordan and more, this is a conference not to be missed.

This idea was Shaun Chavis’ brainchild.  Shaun Chavis is the Associate Editor at Health Magazine. She manages “The Birmingham Foodie Book Club” and wanted the club to do something to contribute to the community. Somehow that turned into a blogging conference to benefit the Desert Island Supply Company, the new non-profit writing center that started earlier this year in Woodlawn, AL. This is a place where volunteers teach after-school writing and blogging workshops to 4th and 5th graders. Shaun said, “I really think FoodBlogSouth has the potential to do other good things too… I think it’s cool to bring Southern food bloggers together to network, learn from each other, and talk about the things that are unique to Southern food bloggers. For example, Southern food is a big trend now. People are looking to us for comfort food, and there’s a revival of classic American flavors.”

To get $20 off your registration fee use the code: FBSingredients when you register, a special Ingredients, Inc. discount.

Here’s a look at some of the topics that will be discussed in this great event:

Chitlins and Boiled Peanuts in New York City?

Why Southern Food is Trendy Across the USA

Southern Seafood After the 2010 Oil Disaster Blogging for beginners

Developing recipes

Food photography

Videoblogging

Blog to Book: Becoming a published author

Food writing

Growing an audience and making money blogging

Mom&Pop.com: Blogging for small food businesses and restaurants

Reviewing restaurants

Wonderful Holiday Gift: Chocolate and Peanut Butter Cookie Bark

Holiday cookie baking has begun, and last week I taped some television food segments for NBC 13 “Daytime Alabama”. One will air in December on “holiday food gifts. I couldn’t decide between a cookie and a bark type dessert, so I decided to combine the two in Chocolate and Peanut Butter Cookie Bark. This recipe combines scharffenberger chocolate, pecans and peanut butter chips. It’s incredibly easy and fabulous!

Come join the fun at the My Baking Addiction and GoodLife Eats Holiday Recipe Swap sponsored by Scharffen Berger.

Fall Fest Fall Salad: Black-Eyed Pea Salad over Arugula

I have been working on some new fall salad recipes for upcoming television cooking segments this month. I was in the mood for a Black-Eyed Pea Salad and trying to increase the fiber in my kid’s diets. This recipe starts with a simple lime and chipotle vinaigrette combined with the black-eyed pea and black bean mixture. The mixture is served over peppery arugula which makes a fresh, flavorful and light salad. This is a great starter salad, but it would also be wonderful as a main dish topped with grilled or cooked chicken, shrimp, turkey or steak. This recipe is also a part of “Fall Fest” which is a continuation of Summer Fest, a cross blog recipe swap from various food blogs. These events were started by Margaret Roach of Away to Garden and Deb Puchalla of The Food Network. The theme this week is “fall salads” so I hope you enjoy this one.


Fall Breakfast or Snack: Apple Muffins

We are obsessed with apples at my house this time of year (Honey Crisps are one of my favorite varieties). I have been searching for an Apple Muffin recipe for the past week or so, and since I have been so busy with my upcoming cookbook and television appearances, I decided to adapt this one from King Arthur Flour. I love that this recipe includes nonfat buttermilk, and perhaps that’s why they are so moist. These make a great breakfast, dessert or after-school snack, and OMG did my kids love them!

Bakerella’s “Cake Pops” Book and Cookbook Giveaway

The first food blog I followed was Angie Dudley’s blog “Bakerella”. To me, it was (and still is) one the most incredible food blogs, and I patiently awaited each fabulous post clicking on her site day after day hoping for her to post again. I was contemplating starting my own blog at the time, and I emailed her and asked a number of questions. She was beyond sweet, helpful and resourceful, and I don’t know if I can ever thank her enough for all of her advice and encouragement. Recently, her incredible first book, “Cake Pops”, was released by Chronicle Books, and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on a copy. This book is filled with incredible ideas, photos and recipes on how to turn a cake ball and cake pops into incredible shapes and designs. This book offers step-by-step instruction on how to create these. A few weeks ago, I was so fortunate to meet Angie in person at a conference, and she was so humble, gracious, and nice. I am so excited about her success, and I couldn’t wait to feature her new book on my site. This book is perfect for anyone that loves creativity and food, and I highly recommend it (my kids took it to school the other day, and all of the parents were calling me how to get a copy).

Smiley Face Pops

I’m giving away one free copy so please make a comment and tell me your favorite baking recipe or blog. The winner will be award this Friday, October 1. Good luck!

Sheep Cake Pops

Fantastic Appetizer: Fig and Goat Cheese Crostini

Before fig season comes to an end, I wanted to share this incredibly delicious Fig and Goat Cheese Crostini appetizer recipe. It’s so easy to prepare and tastes out of this world. You can make these anytime of the year. Just substitute dried figs for fresh ones. The combination of flavors, orange, figs, honey and pepper, pair wonderfully with the goat cheese.

Note: The incredible platter in this picture can be found at Earthborne Pottery.

20 Minutes, Simple and Light: Lightened-Up Veal Piccata

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I love Veal Piccata and realized that it can be lightened up tremendously, and it is oh so easy -only 20 minutes to prepare. This recipe also works great with chicken cutlets and sliced pork loin, both easily found in the grocery store. Both of these options come thinly sliced which eliminates having to pound the meat. I used egg whites for the liquid and a simple whole wheat flour mixture for the breading. Then, I lightly fried in olive oil. Serve these with a salad and a vegetable, and dinner is on the table in less than 30 minutes.

Cool and Fresh: Greek Chicken Salad and Ingredients, Inc. T-Shirt Give-Away

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We have been eating a lot of cold dishes lately since it is beyond hot here in Alabama. I love trying new versions of chicken salad, and this Greek Chicken Salad is so easy and so flavorful. I used rotisserie chicken to make this recipe even easier. Serve on lettuce leaves or in a pita for a really simple main-dish.

T-Shirt Giveaway:

Enter for a chance to win an Ingredients, Inc. T-shirt by leaving a comment below telling me what’s your favorite cold-main dish and/or your favorite grilled cheese sandwich. I will select a random winner on Wednesday August 4th.

white cupcake frontbrown cupcake front

Special Snack Treat: Chunky Nut and Dried Fruit Granola

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One of my favorite things to snack on is granola. In town, Big Sky Granola is one of my favorites because it’s chunky like this Chunky Nut and Dried Fruit Granola recipe. I made this for a special treat for my friend who just had surgery, and she took one bite and said, “This granola rocks!” It is as good as it looks and full of wonderful ingredients.

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