Cherry Pinwheel Danish

by amy on 15 July 2014

Cherry Pinwheel DanishI have very fond memories of breakfast pastries. Growing up, every once in a while as a treat, my dad would drive to the local bakery and come home with AMAZING freshly-made pastries and danishes for our breakfast. My personal favorite was a round-shaped one with raspberry, cherry or cream cheese filling in the center, drizzled with a super sweet, super delicious glaze. Mmmmm. I found myself thinking about those wonderful childhood pastries recently, so, one quiet weekend, I decided to try my hand at making homemade breakfast pastries for my family.

I made the dough on a Saturday morning, shaped + baked the pastries on Saturday evening, then made + drizzled the glaze over ‘em on Sunday morning, right before we ate them. And y’all, I’m pretty darn pleased with how my first foray into pastry-making went! The dough is delightfully soft, buttery, and just perfectly sweet. Paired with the delicious cherry and/or cream cheese fillings, and the fantastic glaze, these were such a fun treat. The only thing I didn’t like? The insanely large size. I expected them to shrink up a lot while baking, so I made them HUGE. Well, they didn’t shrink up at all, so I was left with gorgeous, but humongous pastries. Next time, I’m going to make them a more reasonable size, which should make the ratio of pastry to filling perfect. They really were super delicious, so I’m looking forward to perfecting them the next time around! =)

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Spaghetti with Oven-Roasted Tomatoes and Caramelized FennelI am an extreme vegetable lover. Truly, I don’t think there’s a single vegetable that I won’t eat. My friends know this, so when they wind up with a vegetable that they don’t like or don’t know what to do with, it frequently winds up on my doorstep. Recently, one of my friends got a big ol’ fennel bulb in her CSA delivery, + not being a fennel lover, asked if I wanted it. Uh, YES! I went to twitter for ideas on what to do with it (raw in a salad? shaved on a sandwich? baked into a casserole?) + my friend Amanda said that she loves fennel paired with tomatoes + pasta. Pasta is one of my favorite foods, + we grow tons of tomatoes in our garden, so I was sold on her idea. I found a fabulous-looking recipe for Spaghetti with Oven-Roasted Tomatoes and Caramelized Fennel, + got cookin’.

And y’all, this turned out wonderfully delicious, with an amazing combination of flavors + textures. The onions, garlic, and fennel – which can all be quite potent if served raw – mellow and sweeten up beautifully in the cooking process. Added to some pasta, the delightfully flavorful oven-roasted tomatoes, some spicy chiles, + topped with tasty parmesan + toasted breadcrumbs for texture, this dish is one of the most delicious vegetarian pasta dishes that I’ve had. Even my husband, who’s not a huge fan of meatless dishes or fennel, said that he loved it. I will absolutely be adding this to the regular dinner rotation, especially this time of year when tomatoes + fennel are in season locally!

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My Favorite Turkey Burgers

by amy on 1 July 2014

Our Favorite Turkey Burgers
I’ll be the first to admit that turkey burgers didn’t used to be my favorite meal. I’d had one too many overcooked, underwhelming turkey burgers, and had nearly given up hope of finding a delicious version. But, a couple months ago, I decided to go on a search for the perfect turkey burger, as I sometimes want something lighter and leaner than a traditional beef burger. And after trying many different recipes, I’m happy to report that this one is truly amazing!

The combination of the cheese, mustard, scallions and garlic worked into the burger is wonderful, making for a moist, tender, cheesy, and slightly tangy patty. I make these burgers year ’round, cooking them indoors in a skillet during the colder months, and outside on the grill in the warmer weather. (I’ve included instructions for both cooking methods below). While these are flavorful enough to entice an adult palate, they’re mild enough to appeal to kiddos, too. My 1-year-old daughter adores this meal – I crumble her burger into toddler-sized, easy-to-grab pieces, and she gobbles ‘em down. One meal that the whole family can enjoy? Always a win!

Kiddo-approved turkey burgers! continue reading →

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Cheesecake Brownies

by amy on 22 June 2014

Cheesecake Brownies | FearlessHomemaker.comToday, I’m participating in a fun blogger event — the Secret Recipe Club. How does it work? Every blogger is secretly assigned another blog + chooses a recipe from that blog to make. On reveal day (today!), all of our posts go up at the same time, + everyone gets to see who was assigned to their blog, which recipe they chose, + how it turned out. Fun, huh?

I was thrilled to be assigned Our Table For Seven this month. Erin’s blog is full of fab homestyle, family-friendly meals and desserts – we have very similar taste in food/recipes, so there was lots of comfort food, crock-pot dishes, and simple sweets for me to choose from. I knew I wanted to make a dessert this month + when I saw her Cheesecake Brownies, I had to try ‘em! And y’all, they turned out SO good – they were all gobbled up by our family + friends in record time. Rich, fudgy brownies topped and swirled with a creamy, sweet, smooth cheesecake layer. If you have the time, making the brownie layer from scratch (as described below) is ideal. However, there’s no shame in using a boxed brownie mix to shave off some time/ingredients, and I bet they’d still be amazing!

Thank you to Erin for introducing me to these incredibly tasty brownies + to the Secret Recipe Club for connecting me, yet again, with fantastic bloggers + amazing recipes! For all my previous Secret Recipe Club recipes, click here – there are TONS of awesome ones!

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Georgia Aquarium - Fearless Baby in awe!This giveaway is now CLOSED + the winner was selected using Congratulations to commenter #36, Ally – I’ll email you with details! aquarium-winner

I am a HUGE fan of aquariums. As a Boston-raised child, the New England Aquarium was one of my favorite places to visit, and as I have grown up, I’ve continued to enjoy exploring aquariums all over the country. So, when the folks at the Georgia Aquarium invited me, my husband, and Fearless Baby to come visit, I was SO excited. So, we loaded up the car and headed down to Atlanta (Baby’s first roadtrip!) to check it out. And y’all, this is an AMAZING aquarium – I’m so excited to share some of the highlights of our visit. The above picture of Fearless Baby was taken while she stared in utter awe at the creatures swimming in front of her. Neat, huh?!

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