Return to Normal (Chocolate Salted Caramel Tart)

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My last post was in August. August, people. I knew it would be hard for me to blog while I was student teaching, but I had no idea I’d all but abandon the blog during that time. It was next to impossible for me to find any time to cook for myself, let alone take photos, write posts, and publish them for you. My apologies for my absence. I’m back now. And so glad to be here.

Student teaching went well; who knew I’d grow so attached to 121 different 8th graders? I remember myself at that age and I recall it being a really tough time in my life. I’m sure it’s the same for most people, but to be in it every day for three solid months was a wake-up call, for sure. I had some tough days…days when I thought I just wasn’t cut out for teaching, but then those days would wind down and quickly be replaced by really great days in which I felt completely at ease and comfortable in front of the class. Student teaching ended just before Christmas, as well as my graduation. After all this time in school, it’s suddenly over. I feel a bit lost, to be honest, but I’m sure I’ll find my new normal routine again soon.

There are only two short days left in 2014, a year that had some really wonderful ups and some devastating downs for me. What better way to ring in 2015 than with chocolate and caramel, right? This dessert is SWEET. Now, if you know anything about me, you know that my sweet tooth is quite small, but for those of you who love rich and sweet desserts, this one is for you! I used some buttermilk to replace a little of the heavy cream in the caramel, so it has a bit of a sweet and tangy flavor. I quite like it, but if you are not as partial to buttermilk as I am, go ahead and use all heavy cream.
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Summer Hiatus

Hello all…

This is just a brief post to let you all know I’m still alive and kicking. I had a jam-packed summer and I can’t believe it’s over already. I had the chance to work for a couple of months as a prep cook/pastry cook for one of my favorite restaurants (more on that later), and I visited the UK for two weeks in July (again, more on that later).

At the moment I am spending my days as a student teacher in an 8th grade English classroom. My mornings are early, my days are long, and blogging, unfortunately, has been put on the back burner, so-to-speak. 

Never fear! I’ll get back to it soon. In the meantime, please enjoy a piece I recently wrote for the lovely ladies at COOP

It’s all about quick and delicious (and customizable) weeknight dinners for busy people…more specifically, Huevos Rancheros! Who doesn’t love that? Yum! 

Enjoy!

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Lemon Lace Cookies

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So, I pretty much have the biggest crush on Food 52. Have you heard of this amazing site? If not, head over there right this instant and get cooking! It’s like all your best friends and their grandmothers got together in one spot and started exchanging recipes and culinary tips – it has everything, even a lovely shop with all kinds of kitchen-related goodies.

I saw this recipe for their Buttery Lemon Lace Cookies and absolutely had to give them a go – I was looking for a simple, elegant, and light cookie to pair with some vanilla ice cream, and these beauties seemed perfect.

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Linguine with Fresh Spinach, Red Pepper, and Lemon

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I love going to the grocery store; I do it several times a week, if only for a few things. I know, I know, it is poor planning on my part, but I enjoy weaving through the aisles, checking out new and interesting ingredients I may have missed during my previous visit. I recall going to the grocery store with my dad when I was small. He would take a list with everything we needed but inevitably, we’d return home with something he wanted. I remember riding in the cart or walking alongside my dad down every aisle in the grocery store. He’d take his time, selecting a bottle of this, or a jar of that, turning it over in his hands, considering its use, before returning it to the shelf or placing it in our cart. Mom never really knew what he’d bring home. Sometimes it was a jar of pickled herring, sometimes it was a new mustard, and sometimes it was a package of cookies he’d open on the drive home for the two of us to sample.

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My Florida Connection via COOP

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I’m thrilled to share with you my second installment at COOP. For this post, I highlighted the many wonderful things I love about Florida. My husband is from the Sunshine State and is responsible for introducing me to crab legs, octopus, Gulf oysters, and sandy beaches; I wanted to pass along those experiences on to my best friend, Sophia. So, over Spring Break she and I spent five days enjoying what the Gulf coast of Florida has to offer. I plan to recreate in my own kitchen some of the dishes we enjoyed over our visit. Think: blackened grouper, fresh briny oysters, crab legs, and a refreshing glass of sangria. My Omaha kitchen will soon be my Florida oasis!


Puréed Vegetarian Mulligatawny Soup

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Guys, I’m sick. I caught a beast of a cold earlier this week and I am one grumpy Sara. I’m achy, I’ve been sneezing, and if I’d known this was coming, I’d have purchased stock in tissues. I’ve been spending a lot of time in bed, but I’m awake now and before I head back to the warmth of my blankets, I wanted to share this recipe with you. This soup won’t cure your cold, but it’ll sure make you feel better.

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My New Adventure

Guys, I have some super exciting news. The lovely ladies over at COOP have asked me to become their newest food contributor! I couldn’t be more honored or thrilled!  I am lucky to be working with such creative and inspiring women!

My introductory post can be found here.  And many many thanks to Hooton Images for the amazing photographs!  Here are a few of my favorites:

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