Category Archives: recipes

Chicken Fried Steak & Balsamic Brussels Sprouts

 When you are from the South, you’ve definitely heard of/tried/seen a chicken fried steak at some point in your sweet little life. Well, it also just so happens to be my husband’s all time favorite food. Whenever it’s on the menu, bam. That’s his pick. No question about it. I, on the other hand, loathe red meat. I don’t like to eat it, pick it up, look at it or even have it in my kitchen. Lucky for him, however, I happened upon a pretty interesting looking recipe for one and thought I’d try it out. You know how people always say “don’t judge a book by it’s cover?” Well, I’m guilty of that. I literally will check a book out at the library because I like the way the cover looks. I don’t even read the back of it. That’s pretty much what happened with the chicken fried steak recipe. The food blog was super aesthetically pleasing and they made that steak look good.
They won this red meat loathing girl over.
Judged it by it’s cover. Bought the ingredients. Fried it right up.

I will say, it was pretty intimidating because Chad stood behind me the whole time.
Judging me. With judging {i know how I like my chicken fried steak} eyes.
I have never fried anything in my entire life.
I might have sloshed some hot oil around and let out a little curse word.
But once I got the hang of it, I was frying that steak up like a boss.

I must admit, it was fun to try something new. And I evened out the playing field by oven roasting some healthy brussels sprouts. {my favorite}
Oh. And, Chad gave the clean plate of approval.
(and then I took a bow, did a happy dance, and enjoyed a cold beer)

Balsamic Oven-Roasted Brussels Sprouts


  • 1 1/2 pounds Brussels Sprouts
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar
  • Sea Salt, to taste
  • Fresh Cracked Pepper, to taste

How To:

Preheat oven to roast at 375°F.

Peel off the outer, beat-up layers of the brussels sprouts.
Trim the ends, then cut brussels sprouts in half.
Balsamic Brussel Sprouts

In a large bowl, toss together the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and fresh cracked black pepper. Then add the brussels sprouts and toss evenly.
Balsamic Brussel Sprouts 1 Lightly oil a cookie sheet and spread out the brussels sprouts. (cut side facing down) Roast in the oven for 15 minutes, flip the sprouts over, then roast them again for 10-15 minutes or until lightly browned.
Balsamic Brussel Sprouts 2


Chicken Fried Steak via (I’m A Food Blog):

Steak Ingredients:

  • 1 steak of choice (I chose a round steak from Whole Foods and pounded it for tenderization)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • oil for pan-frying

Gravy Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons duck fat   (I know.)
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • salt and pepper

How To:

(Depending on what type of steak you purchased, you might have to pound it a little to tenderize it. I did this for about two minutes on each side)

Chicken Fried Steak

Place the flour into a shallow dish (I used glass pie dishes, as they were shallow but large enough to hold the steaks) and mix with the salt and pepper. Crack the egg in another shallow dish and whisk lightly. Dredge the meat in the flour, then the egg, then the flour again.
Chicken Fried Steak 1

In a large frying pan, heat up about 1/2 cm of oil over medium-high. Once the oil begins to simmer, add the steak and cook until golden brown and crispy, about 4-5 minutes per side. (I ended up cooking each side a little longer on medium heat, as my cut of steak was a little thick) Remove from the pan and set aside while making gravy.
Chicken Fried Steak 2 In a sauce pot, melt the duck fat over medium heat. Sprinkle in the flour and cook while stirring until thoroughly mixed. While whisking, slowly pour in the milk, then the broth. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook, whisking occasionally until slightly thickened. Taste and season with salt and pepper. (This is a little difficult as it can thicken pretty just make sure to stir the whole time! I had Chad help me with this step!)

Chicken Fried Steak 3

Now, enjoy your chicken fried steak and balsamic brussel sprouts and then have your husband do the dishes and help you clean the hot oil from every corner of the kitchen!
Chicken Fried Steak 4

espresso chocolate chip cinnamon roll deliciousness

okay, everyone get their baking brains ready.
i posted these delicious sweet treats on instagram over the weekend, and had several people request that I put them up on the blog!
wish? granted.

i am not a huge coffee fan, so these weren’t my favorite. but chad just gobbled them up.
there are only two of those bad boys left.

these are a little time consuming, but the nice part is that when you are waiting for the dough to rise, you can run around the house doing other things like I did.
or go for a walk while they are baking (which is what we did, and I highly suggest), so that when you get home, you walk into a cloud of cinnamon deliciousness.
not to mention they will be right out of the oven ready.
and maybe that walk would cancel out the calories…right?

i found these on a wonderful recipe blog, Alaska From Scratch, and they are quite the tasty find, i tell you!

anyway, these are a great weekend treat, and are fun to make!



For Dough:
    • 2t yeast
    • 1T sugar
    • 1c warm milk
    • 1 egg, beaten
    • 4T butter, melted
    • 3c flour
    • 1t salt
For Espresso Syrup:
    • 1/3c brown sugar
    • 3T brewed espresso (+ more for glaze)
    • 1/4t cinnamon
For Filling:
    • 4T butter, soft
    • 1/2c semi-sweet chocolate chips
For Glaze:
  • 1-1/2c powdered sugar
  • 1/4t cinnamon
  • 1T butter, melted
  • 1/2t vanilla
  • 3t pure maple syrup
  • enough brewed espresso to make a smooth, runny glaze



To the bowl of a stand-mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, add the yeast, sugar, and milk. Mix together and allow to stand 5 minutes until foamy. Add the egg and butter and mix until combined. Incorporate the flour and salt until a soft dough forms and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. If too sticky, add more flour by the tablespoon until it comes together. Turn the mixer on medium-high and knead dough 5 minutes. Cover the bowl and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.

When the dough is done rising, put a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the brown sugar, espresso, and cinnamon. Stir until the sugar dissolves and the mixture becomes a glossy syrup. About 2-4 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside. Next, turn the dough out onto a floured work surface.

 And roll into a large rectangle. Using your fingers, spread the top of the dough with the soft butter. Sprinkle chocolate chips over the butter. Drizzle the espresso syrup over the top.

Roll the dough up, trim off the edges with a sharp knife, and slice into 2-inch-wide rolls. Place rolls into a round baking dish or pie plate, allowing room for them to rise.

Cover loosely with foil and allow them to rise another 45 minutes.

before rising:

after rising:

Preheat oven to 400. Bake the rolls with the foil for 20 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 10 minutes, or until golden brown on top and cooked through.

In the last 10 minutes of baking, whisk together the powdered sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, and maple syrup. Gradually incorporate espresso until a smooth, runny glaze forms. When rolls are done, pour the glaze over top while hot.

these are delicious when hot or warmed up! if you’re feeling a little adventurous? heck, slather a little peanut butter on the top!

however you eat them, enjoy!


peach crisp with a brown butter crumble

if you aren’t already enticed by the delicious title of this blog post, well then…
keep reading.

i was perusing pinterest for a summer dessert recipe in which i could use my farmers market peaches. and when i came across this one on a cozy kitchen, i just couldn’t help myself. i had to make it.
even after scrolling down to the amount of butter this scrumptious recipe called for.
it didn’t matter. i already had my apron on.

i promise you won’t be disappointed. plus there is fruit in it!
even if those little peaches are completely covered by a warm, brown sugary, tasty walnut crumble…i still see “healthy” in there somewhere.


4-5 peaches, pitted and sliced
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons corn starch
1 vanilla bean, scraped
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
Juice form 1/2 lemon (about 1 tablespoon lemon juice)

6 ounces (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, cold and diced, DIVIDED
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. To a large bowl, add the the peaches, brown sugar, corn starch, vanilla bean caviar, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg and lemon juice.

Toss all of the ingredients together until the peaches are thoroughly coated. Pour the peach filling into a 11 x 8 baking dish and set aside.

For the topping, start by making the brown butter. Add 2 ounces butter (1/2 stick) and place it in a saucepan.

ya know, just a little bit of butter.

Cook for 2-3 minutes, until butter has bubbled, crackled and turned a very, VERY dark – near black – hue. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

In a medium bowl, combine the cold butter, flour, walnuts, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.

 Rub the mixture with your hands until the butter is broken up into bits, resembling the size of peas. Pour in the cooled brown butter and mix until thoroughly distributed. Sprinkle the topping mixture atop the filling mixture.

this is where gertie really got interested.

Transfer the baking dish to the oven and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until the top is a light golden brown and the juices from the peaches are bubbling. Serve warm or at room temperature. We wished we had vanilla ice cream to top it off.
Next time.


spinach & ricotta pizza

it is a cold & rainy day here in texas.
so today, i’m sharing a yummy recipe i made for dinner this week.
we cheated a little, and made something with bread and cheese.
but when its cold..bread and cheese make me warm and fuzzy.
can i get an amen?

this pizza actually tasted  a lot like the ones i ate in italy when i lived there a few years ago. the sauce was homemade, and there was quite a bit of basil involved. so it tastes very authentic. my favorite!

so wrap yourself up in a snuggie, giant blanket, robe or whatever your little heart desires…pop this easy pizza in the oven. and enjoy the warm cheesiness and a good movie. you just can’t go wrong with that.


the dough:

y’all. we are such cheaters. whole foods makes the best pizza crusts. we used thin crust, but you can use whatever you want. or make your own! if you do, just know i am way lazier than you!

the sauce:

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 4 plum tomatoes, cored and roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped basil leaves (make sure you use fresh basil! it tastes so much better! trust me on this one!)

the toppings:

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups grated part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
  • One 6-ounce bag baby spinach, steamed, squeezed dry and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
  • Torn fresh basil, for garnish
  • Crushed red pepper flakes, for sprinkling.


for the sauce:
combine the oregano, tomatoes and garlic in a small skillet and bring to a simmer over medium heat. continue to cook, stirring and lightly mashing the tomatoes with a spatula, until the tomatoes have released their liquid and the sauce has become thick and jammy, about 15 minutes. remove from the heat, season with salt and pepper and stir in the basil.

for the topping:
preheat the oven to 500 degrees. evenly spread the pizza crust with the sauce, spreading about 1/2 inch from the edge, and then top with the mozzarella, parmesan and spinach. place pizza in the oven and bake until the crust is crisp and the cheese has melted and is browned in spots, 10 to 12 minutes, rotating the pan if necessary.

remove from the oven and place small spoonfuls of the ricotta on the pizzas and sprinkle with fresh basil. sprinkle the pizzas with salt and crushed red pepper flakes.

thats it! now grab that cozy blanket.
get yourself a big, cheesy slice.
and cozy up to your hubs and watch a movie like i did.