This is as ridiculous as it sounds. But it is also delicious, filling, and if you’re keeping an eye on your carbohydrate intake, low carb. It also gives you all the flavor of a bacon cheeseburger without the bun. Either eat this on its own, or have it over a simple salad. I like to double the recipe, make 2, and freeze one of them for a few weeks later. In my experience, when eating a restrictive diet, the easiest way to set yourself up for success is having tons of “premade” stuff that is ready to eat – which is why I usually have already peeled boiled eggs, string cheese, salami, and jello in the fridge. This bacon cheeseburger quiche is one of those puzzle pieces. It keeps in the fridge for a full week easily, although we’ve never had it last any longer than that, if you know what I mean. 😉
Bacon Cheeseburger Quiche (makes 6 servings – photos show a double recipe)
Ingredients(one pie plate):
As part of my early spring yard cleanup, I trimmed back a ton of the huge rhododendron in the front yard to bring more light into the house, and finally deadheaded our huge hydrangea. I’ve been trying to make a point of keeping a somewhat closed system in the yard – that is, not throwing out topsoil/weeds if they can be composted and used in other parts of the yard, etc. Last year’s super hot summer showed that my hugel beds needed a bit more wood material to hold water, so I dug out the soil in the beds and put more wood in them.
I’d dig like 1/4 of the bed out, fill it with rhododendron trimmings and sticks from the hydrangea, then cover them up with more dirt, dig the next section, fill with woody material, lather, rinse, repeat. The woody stuff bumped up the volume in my raised beds, as every spring I find myself needing to add additional soil as stuff breaks down a little, but among my 3 different piles of compost I have going, none of them are ready for time in the garden, so I won’t have any new soil to add this spring.
As I dug through the soil, you can see the lighter brown spots where broken down wood was. It’s beautiful fluffy soil now.
I had some random scraps of untreated wood leftover from chicken pen construction and bits and pieces of bamboo that were used as stakes and impromptu fences years ago.
Every few years, I like to check on the status of the wood that the beds are made out of. Because it’s untreated, I have been a bit concerned that it’s going to break down. The bottom layer is now 7 years old, and the top layer is I think 2. Both seem to be in fine shape.
Then I just refilled and kind of releveled the bed. Then the stinker chickens decided that they had to make sure I did a good enough job. I guess the next step is making sure I can keep them out of the garden beds come the time I plant them!
This recipe is originally from the now neglected Not So Humble Pie. It has been heavily modified and dolled up to suit my increasingly picky tastes but is quite good. The secret to this recipe is the orange bakery emulsion. It gives you a strong and bright orange flavor that doesn’t bake out the way that an alcohol based extract does.
Orange Creamsicle Cupcakes
Makes 23 (I know, right?)
This is based off of Rose Levy Beranbaum’s Mousseline Buttercream. Simply put, it is the greatest base buttercream recipe. Period. It is just so stinkin’ delicious. The texture is light for a European style buttercream, it takes hardly any time to throw together, and it’s not too sweet. It retains a glossy appearance and since it doesn’t contain powdered sugar, it doesn’t dry out or get crusty, making it a perfect option for sitting out all day. The only caveat is that it needs to be consumed at room temp. If eaten out of the fridge, the texture resembles that of cold butter, and it is utterly unappetizing. You’ve been warned. The dual color technique looks super complicated, but I promise, it is super easy. It’s even way less messy than using a piping bag like normal. FWIW, if you want to look up some youtube videos, the technique is called icing plugs. Go ahead and do some watching. I’ll wait.
Orange Creamsicle Mousseline Buttercream
Makes enough to ice at least 36 cupcakes
I learned last minute that we would be celebrating a coworker’s birthday the next day. I just started at a new company a month and a half ago, so I am still in the phase where I’m doing my best to show them how incredible I am. Since this particular coworker eats satsumas and oranges all the time, I knew that my creamsicle cupcake recipe would do the trick. Unfortunately, I made it experimentally and didn’t do that thing where I actually noted down what I did, so to figure out what happened last time, I had to find old posts that I had made on chowhound to see if I had described how I made it. You see, orange curd is more difficult than you might expect. The acid in lemon juice is what is responsible for the thickening in lemon curd, and since I wouldn’t be using lemon juice, I had to come up with ways to thicken it. Gelatin is an option, but for something piped, getting a creamy consistency is a toughy. I used my super thick lemon curd recipe, doubled the egg yolks, and used orange juice concentrate. It came out thinnish, but useable as a cupcake filling. Usually when I’m baking cakes/cupcakes, I premake my cake and my fillings, then make the frosting the day of and go from there. I didn’t have the luxury of time, so I decided to go for it and cook the curd sous vide! I would call it a success, and I’m not sure that I’d make lemon curd on the stovetop again!
Sous Vide Orange Curd
Makes about 3.5 cups, or enough to fill at least 48 cupcakes
Instructions (Sous Vide):
This is a goody. Simple and satisfying as a small meal, or add a side of some sort and serve it as a “normal” meal.
Makes 5 servings, takes 45 minutes
I have shared a Manhattan recipe before, and it’s a great recipe. But it is also a few years old, and as I’ve aged, my tastes and understanding of cocktails have changed. In general, I now tend to prefer cocktails that are less sweet. The “perfect” Manhattan reflects that. The perfect Manhattan replaces half of the sweet vermouth with dry vermouth. It’s a simple substitution, but it makes the difference between a cocktail that coats your mouth, and one that’s easy to sip without feeling icky.
Perfect Manhattan (makes 2)
This recipe is so easy to scale. It’s essentially 2 parts whiskey, .5 parts each sweet and dry vermouth, and a couple dashes of bitters, plus some cherries.