Saturday, August 13, 2011

Chocolate Fizz



It’s soooooooo hot. In these dog days of summer, milkshakes are like, required.

This one’s special though. Cream soda, not milk.

Where have you been all my life chocolate fizz?

Before I go on –

– Oh my gosh –

Are those –

YUP, *who* happened to have chocolate cow sprinkles in her cupboard??

THIS girl.

High Five.

Chocolate milkshakes were my happy place. Chocolate milkshakes with cream soda?

Whoa. Hello new happy place!

Chocolate milkshakes have been a long time staple in my family. As the story goes, my grandmother was a teeny tiny woman, weighing a slender 95 pounds. Good gosh, I feel like a cow next to ol’ granny. She was sooo nervous on her wedding day (we’re a family of worriers), that she didn’t eat. Anthing. She actually fainted on her wedding day.


So, their solution? Milkshakes. She and Grandpa got a shake after the wedding, and drank herself sick. On milkshakes. It’s happened many times since. The milkshake part, I mean.

Grandma still enjoys her milkshakes. In fact, we just made her some for her 80th birthday party this year. She still says “You know what that slurping means Katie? Time for seconds!” So cute.

So… I got the idea from Sonic. I always get their blended float with Dr. Pepper. YUM.
Then one day I thought, hmmm, I want a blended float with a chocolate milkshake.
Unfortunately, it took too long to explain and they still had no idea what I was talking about, so I went home to make one…

Begin with Vanilla Ice Cream and chocolate syrup. This is imperative. I’ve seen *imposters* who attempt at making their milkshakes with chocolate ice cream and milk.



Vanilla ice cream. Chocolate Syrup.

We clear?

Enter our star, cream soda. I got the good stuff. HighFructoseCornSyrup and all. I mean, “corn sugar.” Apparently, your body can’t tell the difference. Ok. Sure, that’s why I crave 13 Oreos. Anyhoo.


Pour in cream soda slowly. We want to save those bubbles for your glass!

Teeheheeeee, are you excited?


Ok, so everyone likes their shakes different.

It’s a very personal decision, I tell you.

I like ’em thick. Like your cheeks hurt from sucking through the straw.

Some folks like ’em thin. Like, with a spoon.

With all the love in my heart, I make two batches.

Swirl more chocolate syrup in your glass before you pour that creamy, foamy shake in your cold mason jar glass, top with whipped cream after taking a self-serve spritz to the mouth, and find your chocolate cow sprinkles in the back of your cupboard.

~Peace, Love, and Shakes Ya’ll!

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Chocolate Fizz

Yield: serves 2

Total Time: 10 minutes


4 cups vanilla ice cream
4 tablespoons chocolate syrup
6 oz cream soda
whipped cream, sprinkles, toppings
straw. or spoon.


So, I'm going to be honest with you. Milkshakes are very personal. I really have to eyeball it. I will explain to you how I make them.

I fill up half the blender with the ice cream, packing it down lightly. Then I squeeze a good 3-4 seconds of chocolate syrup. Then I pour in my liquid until it reaches about halfway up to the ice cream level. Then I pulse the blender, pausing to push down the ice cream with a spoon and of course, taste test. Finish off with whipped cream, toppings, nuts, and a straw.

On a side note, I think this would make a great mudslide.
Next time, if I'm out of vodka, I'm going to try strawberry ice cream and 7-Up. Not Sprite. 7-Up.


Friday, August 12, 2011

German Red Cabbage


Whether your German, Czech, Polish, or Swedish, everyone just about has a version of Red Cabbage. This sweet and sour side is served hot, my favorite is alongside German beef and pork meatballs, capers, and noodles.

For those of you in Texas, or those of you that have visited, my favorite meal is from Der Lindenbaum in Fredericksburg, TX. Fredericksburg is a simply gorgeous German immigrant town, known mainly for its peaches. And German food. There are dozen different German restaurants, and twice that number of shops selling peaches.

Peach yogurt, peach ice cream, peach butter, peach cobbler, peach pie, peach buckle, peach gumbo, lemon peach, chocolate peach, peac-

…. Er, sorry, that’s Forrest Gump.

So, my mom could never get it quite right, and my Grandma wouldn’t even try. I was left on my own to experiment, until I finally got it the way I wanted.

I was amazed at how suprisingly simple it is. Why wasn’t I making this more often?


~Peace, Love, and Purple Veggies, Yo.

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German Red Cabbage

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 60 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes


1 head of red cabbage
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
3 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon cloves (The secret! The magical, delicous, make-you-want-more ingredient)


1. Place all items in pot. Wash and shred the cabbage first.

2. Stir.

3. Cook about an hour, on medium, until the cabbage is tender.

Feel free to serve with a Bratwurst, Polish sausage, or my favorite - Konigsberger Klopse.



Friday, August 5, 2011

My Favorite Quesadilla


Melted cheese. I think I could live on melted cheese for the rest of my life. That and ice cream, brownies, milk, and a treadmill.

Minus the treadmill.

These are my favorit-o quesadillas to make, and good for this summer…. dare I say it? HEEAAAT.

Agh. I think I’m sweating again. At least there’s no mosquitos.

This is another one of my favorite “start with a grocery store rotissiere chicken” recipes.
If you’re vegetarian, or pregnant and have an adverse reaction to the smell of meat, these would be great with black beans too.

I have a pregnant friend. (Hi Arlene!) Actually, quite a few!

Mmmm. I’m craving them now. Easier than nachos.

Fresh chopped tomatoes, cilantro, and fresh squeeeeezed lime juice.

In my honor, remember to put a band-aid over any open paper cuts before squeezing limes.
Thank you.

Cheese, glorious cheese!

My favorites are Colby Jack and Jalapeno Jack.

What’s up with that blue haze? I don’t have blue Jalapeno Jack.

HELLOOOO white balance.

My grandma never had a quesadilla and actually (no joke) ordered a “qwesa-dilllla” with “jalopy-noes” at Taco Bell with me once. The drive-thru attendant was not as amused as I was.

Melt some butter in a pan.

Butter, glorious butter.

This is that awesome panini press I was telling you about. QUITE handy.
Oops. Did I just admit that I like a gadget?

But, come ON! It’s, it’s NON-STICK!
And, and, it has, like a REALLY heavy lid that perfectly smooshes quesadillas and grilled cheese sandwiches!


Ok, so a girl like me tries to assemble the thing on the pan, and ultimately, spills it all over the pan and NOT the tortilla, SO – I assemble it off the heat now.

Cheese. Check.
Chicken. Check.
Tomatoes. Check.
Cilantro. Check.
SQUEEEZE the lime!

Squeal when the citric acid burns your paper cut.

Oh? Just me.


Move it to the pan, and add your top tortilla.
Grill over medium heat, flip when the bottom is golden and cook for a few more minutes.


Keep the heat on medium to avoid scorching your tortilla like I’ve done sooooo many times.


Cut into four pieces and thoroughly enjoy all that dripping cheese down your chin.



~Peace, Love, and Melted Cheese ya’ll!

What do ya’ll love to put in your quesadillas?

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My Favorite Quesadilla

Yield: serves 2

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes


1 1/2 cups shredded chicken
1/2 cup diced tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 cup shredded Colby Jack cheese
1/2 cup shredded Jalapeno Jack cheese
1 lime
4 tortillas


Melt a tablespoon of butter over medium heat. On the cutting board assemble the bottom half of your quesadilla with a handful of each type of cheese. Top with chicken, tomatoes, cilantro, and any other fillings you'd like. Top with juice from 1/2 the lime. Place a second tortilla on top and transfer to the hot pan. Cook 3-4 minutes until golden. Flip, and cook an additional 3-4 minutes on the other side. Cut into 4 pieces and serve!