Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Toffee Cheesecake

Gingersnap crust:
  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 1 1/2 cups ground gingersnap cookies (about 7 1/4 ounces)
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons (packed) golden brown sugar

  • 4 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter, melted
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Caramel topping
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

  • 4 1.4-ounce English toffee candy bars (such as Heath or Skor), chopped

For gingersnap crust:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray bottom of 9-inch springform pan with 2 1/2-inch-high sides with nonstick spray. Stir ground cookies, butter, and sugar in medium bowl until moist clumps form. Press cookie mixture firmly onto bottom of prepared pan. Wrap outside of pan with 3 layers of heavy-duty foil. Bake crust until firm and beginning to darken, about 14 minutes. Cool crust. Maintain oven temperature.

For cheesecake:
Beat cream cheese and sugar in large bowl until smooth. Beat in butter, then eggs, 1 at a time, until just blended. Beat in vanilla. Pour batter over crust in pan. Place springform pan in large roasting pan. Add enough hot water to come halfway up sides of springform pan. Bake cake uncovered until filling is puffed around edges and moves slightly in center when pan is gently shaken, about 1 hour 10 minutes. Remove pan from water; remove foil. Place hot cheesecake uncovered in refrigerator overnight.

For caramel topping:
Stir sugar, water, and lemon juice in large saucepan over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat; boil without stirring until mixture turns deep amber, occasionally swirling pan and brushing down sides with wet pastry brush, about 9 minutes. Add cream (mixture will bubble). Reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer until reduced to 1 1/4 cups, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Chill until thickened but still pourable, about 15 minutes.

Spoon caramel over top of cake just to edges (do not allow caramel to drip down sides). Garnish top edges with chopped English toffee. Chill at least 2 hours and up to 6 hours.

OVERALL: Okay so, No I did not make the caramel topping, instead I added about 1/2 cup of chopped toffee candy. It turned out really good. It was not as smooth as I wanted, probably because I forgot to add the butter (oops), but my friend who I gave it too as a birthday cake enjoyed it. Next time I would add more toffee to the cheesecake and probably just buy some caramel to melt and pour on top... But it was very good.

Also, no pictures because I fail, so the photo is the stock photo from the original recipe.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Restaurant Watch: Designer Greens

So the really cute thing about this place is the "design your own salad" option. I really enjoy this option since I am a bit of a picky eater. But for $4.99 you can get a half salad (which is a lot).

I ordered a Waldorf Salad - spring mix letuce, granny smith apples, gala apples, candied pecans, and goat cheese with a dijon balsamic dressing. It was FABULOUS!

I am going here again whenever I crave a salad, which is more often than you think...

Friday, April 24, 2009

My favorite Visitor :P

So my Fiance was in town this week, which meant some cooking in, eating out, and forgetting meals because we're busy catching up.

Monday night we made Jerked Chicken and Cucumber Salsa. It was alright, the Salsa was the best part for me. I have no pictures but I wanted to share this awesome recipe...

Mango Salsa:
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1 mango, diced
  • 1 English cucumber, diced
  • 2 green onions, diced
In a medium bowl, combine sugar, lime juice, hot sauce, and ginger. Mix thoroughly and add the remaining ingredients. Toss and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Monday, April 20, 2009

5-Minute Slim Down Meals

Found Here by Lucy Danziger, SELF Editor-in-Chief

RICOTTA WRAP (350 calories): 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp nonfat ricotta, 2 tbsp slivered almonds, 1/2 cup berries and 2 tsp honey in 1 whole-grain wrap such as Flatout multigrain flatbread

YOGURT CRUNCH (350 calories): 5 oz plain yogurt, 4 walnut halves, 3 tbsp All-Bran, 1/4 cup granola and 3/4 cup cubed melon

BACON, EGG AND CHEESE MUFFIN (500 calories): Scramble 1 large egg in 1 tsp margarine and place on a toasted whole-grain English muffin spread with 1 tsp margarine. Top with 1 slice cooked turkey bacon and 2 tbsp shredded reduced-fat cheddar. Serve with 3/4 cup berries, 1/4 cup lowfat vanilla yogurt and 12 oz skim latte. Try this blogger's tips to cut the cooking time.

SHRIMP SALAD (400 calories): 10 cooked shrimp, 1/3 avocado, sliced, 1 tbsp slivered almonds, 2 tbsp each diced red onion and carrot, 1 tbsp prepared sesame dressing, tossed with 2 cups greens; 3 whole-grain crispbreads

TANGY TURKEY PITA (550 calories): 3 oz turkey breast, 5 olives, 3 tbsp feta, 2 tbsp each diced cucumber and tomato, 6 spinach leaves, 1 tbsp olive oil and 2 tsp balsamic vinegar in 1 whole-wheat pita; 1 large orange

PEAR ‘WICH (650 calories): 3 tbsp almond butter, 1/2 large pear, sliced, 1/8 tsp cinnamon on 2 slices whole-wheat bread. Serve with the other half of the pear.

FISH AND FRIES (400 calories): 4 oz cod rubbed with 1 tsp olive oil, seared (2 to
3 minutes per side); 12 Alexia Sweet Potato Fries, baked as directed on package; 1 1/2 cups sliced cabbage tossed with 2 tbsp reduced-fat dressing

CHICKPEA PASTA (550 calories): 1/3 cup chopped onion, 2 cups chopped zucchini, 1/2 cup red bell pepper, chopped, and 1/2 cup chickpeas sautéed in 1 tbsp olive oil. Mix with 1 cup cooked ziti, 2 tbsp Parmesan.

CHICKEN PILAF (600 calories): 3/4 cup cubed, cooked, skinless chicken mixed with 1 1/2 cups cooked Near East Whole Grain Wheat Pilaf drizzled with 1 tbsp olive oil; 1 cup steamed cauliflower with 1 tbsp lemon juice and 2 tbsp fresh parsley

Turkey and cheese roll-up (100 calories): 1 oz sliced turkey breast, 1 oz sliced reduced-fat cheddar rolled up

Chocolate milk with nuts (150 calories): 1 cup light chocolate soymilk, 13 pistachios

Orange spritzer and almonds (150 calories): 8 oz orange juice mixed with 4 oz sparkling water; 7 almonds


For the record, I would really only eat like 2 things on here. Chocolate Milk with nuts? No freaking way.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

New Show Addiction

So I've been watching Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern as my mind numbing weekending from my week of exams.

Damn this show is interesting, but I would never in my life eat anything featured on this show.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Teryaki Pork

  • Pork Shoulder
  • teryaki marinade
  • 2 tsbp Worcestershire sauce
  • paprika
  • cumin
  • salt & pepper
  • half diced red onion
  • 2 chopped scallions
1. Rub pork with Paprika, cumin, salt, pepper.
2. Put in crock pot. Add Teryaki until pork is coated.
3. add onions, Worcestershire sauce, scallion.
4. Low for 8-9 hrs

Overall: YUMMY! No pictures because I was lazy, but I was REALLY suprised because I was just throwing stuff together. lol... I'll revisit once I make again.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Frozen Pizza's

Every college student stacks up on frozen pizza. It's a necessity when you have a late night exam (as I'm writing this at 10:41 pm after a grueling physics exam) and you don't feel like cooking. Through my college experience, I have always had mini pizza in my freezer. Some hits, some misses.

You should note that I'm rating these pizza based on how well they microwave & how good they taste.

My Personal Favorite pizza is DiGorno Pizza's.

I love the traditional crust. It's a thick delicious pizza crust. One of the best things is that you can microwave and it's ACTUALLY decent pizza. The crust is crispy yet still fluffy. Also comes in Garlic Crust (greasy, not very good) and Thin crust (I'm not a thin crust girl)

Sadly, these are expensive. Normally about $3.50-$4.00 and SOMETIMES will go on sale for like 2 for $6.

Celesta Pizza

So I just picked up this brand to try something new. I always see it in our freezer from one my my roommates. Honestly, I probably won't by again. There is no where near enough cheese (I counted like 8 shredded mozzarella bits disbursed across the 8 inch pizza). The sauce had a bit of a peppery taste and overall did not cook well in the microwave.

The good news? 3 for $5!

Stouffer's French Bread Pizza

I stocked up on these when I was in my dorm with my mini fridge, because they are individually packaged and don't take up a lot of room. They are alright. I mostly cooked them in the oven because I don't remember if there were microwave instruction or if the microwaved pizza was crap. But the bread gets hard & crispy throughout. It feels like you are eating stale bread with pizza toppings.

These are expensive as well, running about $4. They are occasionally on sale here.

Red Barron Singles

Alright. Good thing is they have lots of cheese. They microwave alright. Although you should eat fast because after a while the cheese gets kinda gross.

I haven't bought these in a while I think because for the size and amount you get it's cheaper to just get another pizza.

Easter Presents :P

Happy Easter!
Wonderful present from my mom :)

Friday, April 10, 2009

Chocolate Chili Cookies

Chocolate Chili Cookies

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup coco
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
1. Combine dry ingredient in bowl.
2. Add butter & chocolate chips make sure butter is cooled so it doesn't melt the chocolate
3. Bake in a 300 degree oven for 14 minutes.

OVERALL: So these were suppose to be chocolate chip cookies. Then one ingredient led to another and before you know it, these babies were born. These were so freaking good. I brought them to my study group the following day and were gone within 10 minutes of me getting there. The only thing I would do differently is play with the amount of chili powder, maybe adding some more because you couldn't taste it. But over all these were wonderful

Now I leave you with Cookie Porn...

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


Just an update through exams.

I tried Lawry's 30 Minute Marinades


I bought Lemon & herbs, and Tequila & Lime.

Haven't tried the Tequila one yet, but I'm not holding my breath since the Lemon one was not very good.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

happy times

This post brought to you by my hectic exam week and this delicious cream cheese & strawberry jelly sandwich...

Friday, April 3, 2009

Another Article:

Best Foods for a Flat Belly
By Lucy Danziger

What if someone told you that the way you eat could whittle your waistline? Sure, you'd think. Give up carbs and rely on rabbit food. Not true! I'm happy to tell you that there are other, yummier ways to go. Certain foods and styles of eating can indeed help flatten your belly (and everywhere else, for that matter). Try these tips and you'll uncover an amazing middle in no time.

Gimme a C: I love pink grapefruit and that's a good thing, since research has found that foods that are naturally rich in vitamin C—think citrus fruit, cantaloupe and red peppers—can help reduce fat absorption. In fact, skip it and you may see your middle expand, since diets low in vitamin C have been linked to bigger waistlines. Meet your daily goal of 75 milligrams by snacking on an orange or a cup of strawberries. See how these small changes can add up to big results.

Tea up: Women with the highest consumption of catechins, the plant-based antioxidants in tea that may boost fat burn, put on fewer pounds over 14 years than those who drank less tea, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reveals. Try to choose green or white varieties, which contain the most catechins. Learn how to maximize the benefits of tea and other superfoods.

Peel it off: Reach for a banana and you'll banish bloat faster than you can say Buddha belly. The fruit contains 422 mg of potassium, which controls the amount of puff-producing sodium in your system. Toss a banana in your bag for a fabulous ab-flattening snack. Try our Flat Abs Fast plan for more bloat-reducing tips and tricks.

Go low: Consuming just one meal of low-glycemic-index foods, those that your body digests slowly, can help you feel fuller all day so you're less likely to pack your tummy with treats, a study in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition reports. Low-GI foods include oatmeal and vegetables (sorry, not potatoes), as well as some fruit like grapefruit and blueberries. Oatmeal Meatballs are a tasty way to curb cravings.

Stroll away your sweet craving: Loco for cocoa? Me, too. A little dark chocolate is fine, but if you've already hit your limit, try lacing up your sneakers! Chocolate lovers who walked for 15 minutes reported reduced hankerings during the walk and even afterward, according to a study in the journal Appetite.

Ditch high-fructose corn syrup: Scan labels and you're likely to see high-fructose corn syrup on many ingredient lists...even on things like tomato sauce! When you do, put down that jar and look for something else. Why? High-fructose corn syrup can cause a surge in your blood sugar, and some research suggests it messes up your hunger and satiety signals, like leptin, leaving you less satisfied and causing you to eat more. When leptin responses fail, it's tougher to control appetite. The result: Extra calories get deposited as fat. To prevent this, trade packaged foods with high-fructose corn syrup for ones with healthy fats and fiber—think veggies, hummus, nuts or sunflower seeds.

Snap your snack: Taking a photo of your plateful of food can keep you slim. People who took pictures of everything they ate for five days reported consuming fewer snacks and being less likely to go back for seconds than during a week-long period in which they kept a written food diary, a study from the University of Wisconsin at Madison finds. Try capturing your meals for a week to help eyeball portion sizes as well as color variety—aim for more green, less white (unless it's cauliflower). See an example of this, and get ideas for healthy, photo-worthy meals of your own, at Eat Like Me.