Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Blue Cheese Burgers

 How much do you do for your significant other? Are you a giver or a taker. Let me give you a heads up, you aren't both. If you are a giver, your day is spent trying to please others. If you are a taker, your day is spent sitting around, waiting for others to please you, or just sitting around doing nothing, because that is what pleases you. So many people are miserable in their relationships, and almost always it is the givers. They give and give and hope that one day the one they love will wake up and start giving as well. 

I am fortunate to be a giver, and my husband is a giver as well. You may ask how that works? It works beautifully. We are always aware of the other and always trying to make the others day better. It creates the term "power couple". Always moving forward, not just talking about moving forward. 

I know a lot of people who carry the load in their relationships and I watch them slowly fall apart, usually it ends up in a broken relationship. No one is meant to carry the whole load. 

Romantic Tip: Take a hard look in the mirror. See how you can turn it around and be a giver for your love, even if it means getting nothing in return. Try to do at least one unselfish giving deed for others each day. It will change your life and your relationships.

Now on to the food...
Happy National Cheeseburger day! I thought I would share with you my husbands favorite burger recipe.

Blue Cheese Burgers
3/4 pound freshly ground beef. 
1/2 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon Worcestershire 
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 ounces blue cheese
2 large Hamburger buns
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
8 ounces sliced mushrooms
1/2 teaspoon salt

Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan on medium heat. Add the mushrooms, stir briefly to coat with oil and cook without stirring for 5 minutes, Add onions. 

Stir and cook for another 5 minutes, stir
Flip so that the onions on the bottom of the pot are now on top, and cook for another 5 minutes. Flip one more time, lower heat and allow onions to caramelize, while you finish the burgers.

In a large bowl, mix ground beef, onion powder, Worcestershire, salt and pepper until just combined. Do not over mix, or your patties will be tough. 
Divide into two portions and form patties, without pressing too hard. They should be uniform in thickness. Smooth out any cracks using your fingers. 
Preheat your cast-iron skillet to high heat and add burger patties. 
Cook for about 2 minutes and then flip. Add enough blue cheese to cover completely, cover with a lid and cook for another 2-3 minutes for medium to medium rare. 
Remove patties carefully using a metal spatula and transfer to toasted buns. Top with caramelized mushrooms and onions, your favorite lettuce or greens (I love baby spinach on these). 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Homemade Multigrain Bread

I work from home. It can be a blessing and a curse. It is so easy to settle in and work in house clothes. After all, no one would know. Instead I make an effort every single day to look nice for my Man. He has been working hard all day too and I want him to come home to a nice clean house and a nice clean wife. It works. He greets me with a hug and kiss and a big smile. I am also more productive when I look nice. 

Romantic Tip: 1. Groom yourself, and try to look good for your partner.

My husband and I love our multigrain toast on the weekends. Because I love to cook and bake so much, I decided to stop buying the bread all together, and make it myself. I was so shocked when I started reading through recipes. I think I had read through at least 20 recipes before I just had to make one up myself. 

Since when is multi-grain or whole wheat full of white flour? I seriously was shocked. Most of the recipes call for 1 cup whole wheat and 3 cups all purpose flour. It is fine for those that want that, but I only want pure wholesome ingredients in my body. If I want junk, I will go get a loaf at the grocer. 

This bread is 100% whole grain bread. Full of seeds and all things wholesome. It is dense as you would expect of a wholesome bread not full of fillers. When I have this as toast for breakfast it keeps me satisfied. So much so, a lot of times I forget to eat lunch! Oops! 

Whole Grain Bread
Makes 1 loaf

1 1/2 cups lukewarm water
2 tablespoons butter or vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons pure cane sugar
1/2 cup nonfat dry milk
3 cups organic stone ground Whole Wheat Flour
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/4 cup old fashioned oats
1/4 cup flax seeds
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1 Tablespoon instant yeast
2 Tablespoons Vital Wheat Gluten

Combine all of the ingredients, and mix and knead—by hand, mixer, or bread machine—until you've made a smooth,dough. Place it in a lightly greased bowl, cover the bowl, and allow it to rise for 60 to 90 minutes, until it's expanded a bit. It won't have doubled in size, but should feel puffy when you squeeze it.

Lightly grease a 9" x 5" loaf pan. Gently shape the dough into a smooth log. 
Place it in the pan, smooth side up, cover the pan, and allow the loaf to rise for about 30 to 45 minutes. Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 375°F.

Bake the bread for 35 to 40 minutes.  Remove it from the oven, and turn it out of the pan onto a rack. Allow the bread to cool completely before slicing. 

Slice and store in an airtight container in the fridge. Don't forget to eat a fresh piece first!

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