Thursday, May 26, 2016

Sweet Musings: Pregnancy - Week 26



As usual, it's been a whirlwind the past couple of weeks. Tater girl is still growing and moving like crazy, and I believe that as the third trimester is quickly approaching, my days of easy comfort are starting to dwindle. I'm definitely starting to feel more discomfort in everyday things like, you know, sitting up straight. Yeah. The belly sitting on my legs seems to push things into my ribs, which is not the most comfortable, so I try to sit at least a little bit leaned back to offset it. That and bending over. Ugh. Granted, these things are trivial and minimally inconvenient, and I know this. But I also know that the bigger my belly gets, the harder these trivial things will become. I'm trying to mentally prepare. 

I'm not sure there's any way I really can, though. 

In other attempts for preparation, I went to a baby prep event this past weekend with some other pregnant ladies from a Facebook group I'm part of. J had to work, and he and I are taking other classes together at the hospital, so I figured I may as well. It was called Baby University, and it briefly touched on various baby-related subjects...swaddling, birth plans, breastfeeding, etc. And they were doing a raffle for lots of good stuff! I did not come out of that raffle with anything I could actually use, but I was happy to gift my membership to a baby wearing club to another girl in the group. Nothing wrong with baby wearing, at all, and I will gladly carry by baby girl in one of those backpack-type carriers, but the wraps and such are just not for this mama. 

We haven't made any more progress on the nursery, but at this point, other than clearing it out, cleaning, and setting up the crib, there isn't much we can do until after my baby showers. Her crib is set up, so really I just need to get in there and get the last few items that don't belong out and then do a really good, deep cleaning of the carpet, baseboards, window sill...you know, nesting kinda stuff. 

Meanwhile, I have decided that come what may, I have to get our office/guest room and kitchen cabinets done this upcoming weekend, since I have a long weekend. You see, when I cleared out the nursery, most of that stuff was just relocated to the office/guest room. So, I still have to sort through it, throw away, etc. And, because that room is over-run, my photography area was also displaced. Which means I haven't been able to take any photos of our food in a couple of weeks. Oops. And the kitchen cabinets...ay yi yi. I need to basically put everything out of all of them, donate what we don't use to Goodwill, and then re-assemble the cabinets in a more user friendly way. Meaning put the stuff I need to access most where I can easily get to it, and not have to be bending over, or worse-yet sitting on the floor to find stuff. Plus J hates the cabinet location I have tupperware in - which was the  main push to reorganize the cabinets, anyway. Ha!

So, either Saturday or Monday, those are on my to-do list! Must. Get. Stuff. Done. 

I look at my calendar and I can't help but panic a little inside. In June, I have something going on every.single.Saturday. July is about half right now. I'm not complaining, but it just makes me anxious and I wonder when I'll actually have time to get the things done at home that I want/need to. WHEN?! Yes, there are 6 other days in every week, but during the work week, when I get home, I do good to get dinner made and get my booty showered and in bed by 11 o'clock. So, adding in more "work" just isn't happening. And I feel like once I reach the third trimester (which is in a week and a half, btw), I will be even less willing to do more than is absolutely necessary in a single day. Weekends, when I can find/make the time are for baby preparations. It's just hard between baby showers (for me and others), family birthdays, graduations, time with my Little, and time at home. Hard, but doable. And I know that once our little girl is here, those struggles with time-management don't get any easier. All I can hope for now is that I can get myself together enough to get all the necessary stuff done before baby gets here, without losing my mind. I should note that J is always super helpful, but he's busy and gone a lot from home as well, which also makes making time to spend together difficult, and we're trying to get "us" time in while we can. A few months from now, that will be a thing of the past, for awhile at least!



Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Taco Tuesday: Salmon Tacos with Avocado Salsa

Hi friends, and happy Tuesday!! Can you believe we are almost through May already?? I know in some parts, Mother Nature hasn't gotten the memo that spring has come, and summer is almost here. I've heard people say that they are still getting freezing temps. That's crazy to me. We've had a LOT of rain lately, and while the garden loves it, and I know it's "better" than a drought, I'm over all the rain. It makes it so humid and sticky and muddy outside. Compound that with dogs going outside and bringing said mud back inside and...no thank you.

But, there isn't much we can do about good ol' Mother Nature, now is there? So instead, let's focus on a very delayed, but totally delicious Taco Tuesday recipe!

Salmon Tacos wAvocado  Salsa

J and I love salmon, this is no secret. And I love (adore, have a slight obsession with, perhaps) tacos, which is also no secret, so any time I have the chance to combine those two loves, I'm in foodie heaven. And these salmon tacos are amazing. The salmon is coated with great spices, baked to perfection, and then topped with a creamy avocado salsa. I mean, just look at that salmon!!

Baked Salmon Tacos with avocado salsa

And I love that the shredded cabbage gives a crunchy texture to what could be all soft filling. Crunchy cabbage, spiced salmon, creamy avocado salsa, all wrapped up in a tortilla. Yep. I'm pretty much in taco heaven right here. Oh, and cheese. We can't forget about the crumbled cheese on top! 

Basically I'm telling you that you need the tacos in your life. Tonight. AND, if it does happen to be warm in your neck of the woods already, you can alternately grill these or cook them in a pan on the stove, instead of turning on your oven, if you prefer! But whatever cooking method you choose, just make them soon! 

Salmon Tacos with Avocado Salsa
As seen on Cooking Classy

Ingredients
  • 4-6 salmon fillets, skin-on
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 3/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 3/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
For the avocado salsa
  • 2 medium avocados, peel and seed removed, diced
  • 3 Tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
For serving
  • 8-10 tortillas (I use a corn and whole wheat blend)
  • 2 cups thinly sliced red and/or green cabbage
  • 1/2 cup crumbled Cotija (or Queso Fresco) cheese

Preparation
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper and set aside. 
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the olive oil, lime juice, chili powder, cumin, onion powder, paprika, coriander, salt and pepper. Place the salmon fillets on the prepared baking sheet, and evenly rub mixture over the tops. Bake for 15-20 minutes, depending on thickness, or until cooked through. 
  3. Once done, use a spatula to gently separate fillets from the skin and place in a bowl. Use the same spatula to gently break the salmon into large chunks for the tacos. 
  4. While the salmon is cooking, combine the diced avocado, cilantro, jalapeno, garlic, lime juice, and olive oil in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper, taste and then add additional seasonings and/or lime juice to suit your tastes. 
  5. To assemble tacos, warm the tortillas, then top with a layer of shredded cabbage, salmon chunks, avocado salsa, and sprinkle with cheese. Voila! Dinner is served!
Salmon Tacos with Avocado Salsa

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Sweet Musings: Pregnancy - Week 24


Well friends, we have reached the 6 month mark, and things are moving along nicely. Tater girl is consistently moving like crazy, and I've sort of pinpointed her awake times. But, these vary if I am up and walking more, because apparently walking sort of rocks them to sleep, I'm told. She definitely moves more when I'm sitting or lying down. And I can count on her being most active around the 11pm mark every night. Like, ninja-style kicking, active. But we love it. J can feel her the best during that time. 

OH! And as of a few days ago, we have been able to see movement on my belly. It's very weird, but exciting. I got a video of it after a few failed attempts because she's a little stinker and would stop moving every time I'd reach for my phone. It's like she knows or something. 

I had a work conference last week and then our office was closed this Monday and Tuesday, so I finally got my booty in gear and got her room mostly cleared out so we can actually build and set up her crib. Now we just have to get it done. Fingers crossed that happens this weekend, so her room actually starts to look like her room. 

My belly looks like a big ol' basketball (J says beach ball and I tell him to hush it), and for the most part I feel like I'm gaining weight slowly and healthily. 10 lbs at this point, which I think is pretty stinkin' good going into the 3rd trimester. I have another doctor's appointment next week, and we're supposed to have  picked out a pediatrician and decided on a few other things by then. But do you think that's happened yet, with our crazy schedules?? Newp. I did finally look at all the paperwork today though so...that's progress. Ha! 

And here is little ol' me at 24 weeks:


Just a side note, I had this same exact outfit on in my 20 week photo and...there's a pretty noticeable difference in those 4 weeks...check it out!! Grow, baby, grow!! 


On a related note, this past Sunday was my first Mother's Day, and it was pretty fantastic. J has always been so sweet and thoughtful anyway, always getting or making cards from our fur-babies on Mother's day but this year, of course, was extra special since we have our little girl on the way. I had a card from the fur babies waiting for me when I woke up Sunday, but then when I got out of the shower later that morning there was another card and a gift bag full of goodies waiting on the bed for me.

Now, I'm not big on presents and whatnot, but I LOVE cards. Love them. And I'm not sure how I got so lucky, but this hubby of mine really is very thoughtful about gifts and writing sweet things in all my cards. Of course, I cried. Because...crybaby for life, right here. The gifts were assorted things. Things I've been wanting or needing (like, a replacement CHI flat iron since mine died on our honeymoon and the cheapy one we bought in Costa Rica was just not the same), and some adorable little outfits for Tater girl. I didn't expect anything for Mother's day. I mean, I know I'm going to be a mommy in just a few short months, but since she isn't here yet, I wouldn't have expected any real recognition on Mother's day. Well, besides my usual fur-baby card, of course. But my sweet hubby doesn't pass up an opportunity to do something nice for me, and I am so blessed for that.

I think the nesting phase has started, as I feel like I have 80-bagillion things that need to be done at our house, and no time to do them. Cue panic mode. Cue the ohmyGod our house is dirty and messy and her room isn't ready and I need to re-organize our kitchen cabinets..and now her room is cleared out but the office/guest room is a disaster..and when will we get it all done?!?! 

Because, that's a normal response at this stage, right? Please tell me it is. And tell me that 3 months is plenty of time to get everything ready. Being the planner that I am, I like to have everything done well in advance and feeling so unprepared at 3 months out makes my anxiety go through the roof. I want it all done like, yesterday. Not tomorrow. Not next week. Yesterday. So many events going on the next couple of months...baby shower for his niece that I'm helping host, then THREE showers for me, etc. When will I have time? WHEN?!?!

Neurotic pregnant chick, party of one. Right here. Thank you, Jesus, for my patient hubby who deals with my neurosis pretty well, most days. And he loves me all the same. He does tell the baby some mornings not to be making mommy be crazy, though - ha!

I hope you all had a wonderful Mother's day, whether you are a mommy yourself, or celebrated with the mom's in your life!

Friday, May 6, 2016

Raspberry Lemon Sticky Buns with Lemon Glaze #BrunchWeek

Well, helloooooo there! As #BrunchWeek is nearing the end, I couldn't leave you without one more sweet treat. I mean, there have been so many amazing recipes this week, so much amazing food to see and read about, and drool over. I know, I've been doing it right along with you!! Now you can add these to your drool-worthy list.

Raspberry Lemon Sticky Buns with Lemon Glaze

Lemon = love. Raspberries = love. Mix them together in a sweet roll with a sticky, sweet glaze and now you have so much food love your taste buds might not know what to do.

And with so many great #sponsor products from Dixie Crystals, Red Star Yeast, and KitchenIQ, it was easy to make such a delicious brunch treat.

Iced Raspberry Lemon Sticky Buns

I've never been a fan of cinnamon rolls (gasp, I know!), but how could I pass up these sweet rolls all full of raspberry deliciousness? I couldn't. Especially when you throw in the lemon component. Because...all things lemon, y'all. And while I say these are sweet rolls, they are similar to the lemon zucchini bread from earlier this week, in that they are not overly sweet.

In case you haven't noticed from my posts this week, I like tart and sweet mixed together. Like tart raspberries wrapped in lemony dough, and topped with lemony-sugar glaze. Yep. I'm all over that. And you will be too! Breakfast, brunch, dessert...these rolls are good for any time of day!

Sticky Buns Close Up

Be sure to check out this and other amazing recipes from today at the bottom of the post, and if you haven't already - enter the giveaway drawing!!  There are some amazing prizes to be had y'all, from some amazing and generous sponsors!! If you missed the earlier post, you can check out the prizes here.


Raspberry Lemon Sticky Buns with Lemon Glaze
As seen on Baked by Rachel

Ingredients

For the dough
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 1/4 tsp Red Star Platinum premium instant yeast
  • 1 tsp Dixie Crystals granulated sugar
  • 3 cups all purpose flour (I used white whole wheat)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup Dixie Crystals granulated sugar
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 eggs
For the filling
  • 1/2 cup Dixie Crystals granulated sugar
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 cups fresh raspberries
For the glaze
  • 2 cups Dixie Crystals powdered sugar
  • 1-2 Tbsp lemon juice, or to taste
  • 2-3 Tbsp water, or to desired consistency

Preparation
  1. In a glass bowl or measuring cup, heat milk to 115°F. Sprinkle the yeast and sugar on top of the warm milk and let sit until the top is foamy-looking, about 5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, add the flour, salt, sugar and lemon zest to the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the dough hook attachment, mix on low, then slowly add in yeast mixture, followed by lemon juice and butter. Finally, add one egg at a time, mixing to just incorporate before adding the next. Continue mixing, at medium speed now, until dough pulls together into a smooth-looking ball around the dough hook. Knead by hand if necessary. 
  3. Lightly oil a large glass bowl and place the dough in it. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for 1 hour, or until doubled in size. 
  4. While the dough is rising, combine the sugar and lemon zest for the filling in a small bowl. 
  5. When the dough is ready, prepare a large non-stick work surface to roll the dough out on. 
  6. Roll the dough out to a 10x20-inch rectangle. Brush entire surface with some of the melted butter, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Spread sugar mixture over dough, then top with the raspberries, pressing them gently into the dough. Drizzle with the remaining butter. 
  7. Prepare a 9x13-inch baking pan with parchment or foil, with some hanging over the sides for easy removal after baking.leaving enough overhang to grab later. Lightly spray the bottom and sides with cooking spray. 
  8. Starting at one of the shorter (10-inch) ends, tightly roll the dough , pinching ends and edges together well as you go. Using a sharp knife, carefully slice rolled dough into 12 equal pieces. Place in prepared pan, cover, and allow to rise for an hour, or until doubled in size. 
  9. Preheat oven to 350°F and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until centers reach 200°F.
  10. In a medium bowl, combine powdered sugar with 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and water. Mix well and then add additional lemon juice and/or water to reach your desired consistency and flavor preference. I like mine very lemony, so I added more lemon juice - of course!
  11. Drizzle glaze on top of the rolls (you can do this in the pan, or remove them first - I did a little of both!) and enjoy! These are great warm or at room temp!
Sponsors

a Rafflecopter giveaway Disclaimer: Thank you to #BrunchWeek Sponsors: Red Star Yeast, Dixie Crystals, Cabot Cheese, Vidalia Onion Committee, Sage Fruits, Nielsen-Massey, KitchenIQ, and Le Creuset for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #BrunchWeek. All opinions are my own. The #BrunchWeek giveaway is open to U.S. residents, age 18 & up only. All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Eight winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The #BrunchWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law.

Be sure to check out the rest of today's #BrunchWeek recipes!

BrunchWeek Beverages:
BrunchWeek Breads, Grains and Pastries:
BrunchWeek Fruits, Vegetables and Sides:
BrunchWeek Egg Dishes:
BrunchWeek Main Dishes:
BrunchWeek Desserts:

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Grapefruit Rosemary Mocktails #BrunchWeek

One change I've had to make since being pregnant is giving up beloved cocktails, which I don't mind one bit. I haven't missed them or craved them, or any of that. But it's a given that cocktails - like mimosas - will be present at a brunch. Especially a girl's brunch get together, which one of my besties had planned for us recently. So, when cocktails aren't an option, it's time to break out the mocktails! And let me tell you, they are every bit as good as a regular cocktail. Especially when they are made with rosemary simple syrup.

Grapefruit Rosemary Mocktails

And of course, a perfect addition to the beverage selection for #BrunchWeek! A big thanks to Dixie Crystals for the amazing #sponsor gift of so. much. sugar! It was perfect for the rosemary simple syrup. Along with fresh rosemary from our herb garden. And who doesn't love grapefruit??

Tart grapefruit juice mixed with rosemary simple syrup and sparking water...the perfect non-alcoholic option for your next brunch get together!!

Grapefruit Rosemary Mocktail CloseUp

Be sure to check out this and other amazing recipes from today at the bottom of the post, and if you haven't already - enter the giveaway drawing!!  There are some amazing prizes to be had y'all, from some amazing and generous sponsors!! If you missed the earlier post, you can check out the prizes here.



Grapefruit Rosemary Mocktails
As seen on The Casual Craftlete

Ingredients
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup Dixie Crystals granulated sugar
  • 3 sprigs of rosemary
  • 2 cups ruby red grapefruit juice
  • 1/2 cup of the rosemary simple syrup
  • 4 cups sparkling water
  • extra rosemary sprigs and grapefruit slices for garnish, if desired

Preparation
  1. Add the water and sugar to a small saucepan, over medium heat. Stir and dissolve sugar, but do not boil. 
  2. Once sugar has dissolved, pour the mixture into a heat safe container (I used a small mason jar) and add the rosemary sprigs. Leave rosemary in for at least an hour, then remove and discard. You can store the simple syrup in the fridge for up to ten days. 
  3. In a large pitcher, combine the grapefruit juice, 1/2 cup of the rosemary simple syrup, and the sparkling water. Stir to mix well, taste, and add more simple syrup, if desired. 
  4. Divide into glasses and garnish with rosemary and/or grapefruit slices, if desired!

a Rafflecopter giveaway Disclaimer: Thank you to #BrunchWeek Sponsors: Red Star Yeast, Dixie Crystals, Cabot Cheese, Vidalia Onion Committee, Sage Fruits, Nielsen-Massey, KitchenIQ, and Le Creuset for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #BrunchWeek. All opinions are my own. The #BrunchWeek giveaway is open to U.S. residents, age 18 & up only. All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Eight winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The #BrunchWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law.

Be sure to check out the rest of today's #BrunchWeek recipes!

BrunchWeek Beverages:
BrunchWeek Breads, Grains and Pastries:
BrunchWeek Fruits, Vegetables and Sides:
BrunchWeek Beverages: BrunchWeek Breads, Grains and Pastries: BrunchWeek Fruits, Vegetables and Sides: BrunchWeek Egg Dishes: BrunchWeek Main Dishes: BrunchWeek Desserts:

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Mexican Chicken Chilaquiles #BrunchWeek

The first time I had chilaquiles was about three years ago, when I was in Atlanta with some of the girls from my cooking board. We went out to have brunch before our day's excursions, and me and one of the other girls decided to try the chilaquiles. Since I'd never had it before, I wasn't sure what to expect, but it was divine. So of course when I saw this recipe, I knew I had to make it for myself at home!

Mexican Chicken Chilaquiles

And what better time to try it out and share it with all of you than during #BrunchWeek?? And I knew immediately that of all the delicious Cabot cheese that I had received, the pepper jack is what I would use for the chilaquiles. Because...duh. Even as I'm writing this, I am really sad that I don't have a casserole dish full of this to eat. It was amazing.

If I'm honest, I wouldn't have been able to tell you much about the chilaquiles that I had in Atlanta, other than I liked it. I didn't remember what all was in it, or what it tasted like, specifically. But this one, I couldn't forget. Not ever. It was well worth the time it took to make, and even that wasn't very long. I'd say straining the chile sauce was the most time-consuming part, and that took all of...5 minutes. If that.

Plated Chilequiles

You could make a big batch of the chile sauce and shredded chicken ahead of time, and throw together a casserole dish (or two) for a girl's brunch, brunch for your family, or brunch for yourself!

Tortilla chips, shredded chicken, a spicy chile sauce, and creamy pepper jack cheese make up this amazing dish that you will be raving about for weeks, or even months, after you've had it.

Mex Chicken Chilaquiles

Be sure to check out this and other amazing recipes from today at the bottom of the post, and if you haven't already - enter the giveaway drawing!!  There are some amazing prizes to be had y'all, from some amazing and generous sponsors!! If you missed the earlier post, you can check out the prizes here.


Mexican Chicken Chilaquiles
As seen on The Wanderlust Kitchen

Ingredients
  • 2 dried ancho chiles, stems and seeds removed, torn into pieces
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 (28 oz) can of whole tomatoes, drained
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 of a 13 oz bag white corn tortilla chips
  • 2 cups cooked, shredded chicken
  • 8 oz Cabot pepper jack cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro leaves
  • 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 4 Tbsp Queso Fresco cheese
  • 1-2 jalapeno pepper, sliced (optional)

Preparation
  1. Add the chile pieces to a large skillet, over medium heat, and toast for a few minutes until fragrant. Fill a medium bowl with hot water, add the chiles and set aside to soften for about 15 minutes. 
  2. Add the softened chiles, garlic, chicken broth and 1/2 cup of the liquid from soaking the chiles to a blender and puree. Add in the drained whole tomatoes and puree again. 
  3. Pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer back into the skillet. (This took some time for me...pour a little, use a spatula to help mash it through, and repeat until done.) Stir in the cumin, coriander, sugar, and salt. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook over medium-low for about 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cover the bottom of a 9 x 13 baking dish with half the tortilla chips and use your hands to press down and break the chips into smaller pieces. 
  5. Distribute half of the shredded chicken on top of the chips, then spoon half of the sauce over that. Sprinkle a little cheese, now. Repeat layering process with remaining chops, chicken and sauce. And then, with all the rest of that glorious cheese. 
  6. Loosely cover the baking dish with foil (you don't want it too close so that the cheese sticks to it) and bake for about 25 minutes. Carefully remove the foil and return to the oven for another 5 minutes, until the cheese is nice and bubbly. 
  7. Remove from oven and allow to sit for 15 minutes to cool and set. Top with cilantro, tomatoes, green onions, Queso Fresco, and jalapeno slices (if using). Serve warm.
Chilequiles Plated

a Rafflecopter giveaway Disclaimer: Thank you to #BrunchWeek Sponsors: Red Star Yeast, Dixie Crystals, Cabot Cheese, Vidalia Onion Committee, Sage Fruits, Nielsen-Massey, KitchenIQ, and Le Creuset for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #BrunchWeek. All opinions are my own. The #BrunchWeek giveaway is open to U.S. residents, age 18 & up only. All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Eight winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The #BrunchWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law.

Be sure to check out the rest of today's #BrunchWeek recipes!

BrunchWeek Beverages:
BrunchWeek Breads, Grains and Pastries:
BrunchWeek Fruits, Vegetables and Sides:
BrunchWeek Egg Dishes:
BrunchWeek Main Dishes:
BrunchWeek Desserts:

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Lemon Zucchini Bread #BrunchWeek

Welcome to day #2 of #BrunchWeek! I hope you had a chance to check out yesterday's posts from all the participants. There are some amazing recipes - so many I can't wait to try!

And this one here, is one that I definitely can't wait to make again.

Top Lemon Zucchini Bread

I mean...lemon bread, with some zucchini tossed in it? Yes, please!! I love all things lemon, which is no secret. But this bread...is just amazing. Thanks to Dixie Crystals, Nielsen-Massey Fine Vanillas and Flavors, and KitchenIQ for the amazing #sponsor gifts, that I was able to incorporate into this recipe.

This bread has a touch of sweetness, but is not overly sweet. Same with the lemon flavor - the lemon extract in the bread and the lemon zest on top give a nice lemon flavor, without being overwhelming. And the zucchini...well, that makes this a healthier bread, right?? Ok, so no one is calling this health food, but at least you get some veggies with your treat.

The original plan was just for lemon bread, but I had some shredded zucchini left over from some scones I made earlier, and I decided to add it to the bread because...why not?? I'm so glad I did. I took the bread to work the next day to share with co-workers and I devoured a couple of pieces pretty quickly. Then told J that he really missed out, not trying it before I took it.

Of course, then I promised to make it again so he could try it. That's my story, and I'm stickin' to it.

This lemon zucchini bread will make a great addition to your next brunch get together, and your guests will be asking you for the recipe. And wishing there was some left over so that they could take a slice home with them. But there won't be. Unless you make an extra loaf and hide it away for yourself for later. I highly recommend you do this. 

Sponsors1

Be sure to check out this and other amazing recipes from today at the bottom of the post, and if you haven't already - enter the giveaway drawing!!  There are some amazing prizes to be had y'all, from some amazing and generous sponsors!! If you missed the earlier post, you can check out the prizes here.


Lemon  Zucchini Bread

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup Dixie Crystals granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp Nielsen-Massey Pure Lemon Extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 Tbsp lemon zest, divided
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini (about half of a  medium-sized zucchini)
  • 1 cup Dixie Crystals powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp Dixie Crystals granulated sugar

Preparation
  1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Coat an 8x4 loaf pan with butter, oil, or cooking spray and flour, and set aside.  
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment (or in a large bowl if using a hand mixer), beat the softened butter at medium speed until creamy. Gradually add the granulated sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing until just incorporated after each one. Add the lemon extract and mix until just combined. 
  3. In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, and salt.  With the mixer on low speed, alternate adding the milk and the flour mixture, with the last addition being the flour mixture. Add one tablespoon of the lemon zest and the zucchini and mix into the batter. 
  4. Spoon batter into prepared loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes to an hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Start checking around 40 minutes as time will vary for each oven and loaf pan. 
  5. Remove from oven when done and allow to cool for 10 minutes in the pan before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. 
  6. When the bread is cooled, combine the powdered sugar and lemon juice in a small bowl, stirring until smooth. Spoon the sugar glaze evenly over top of bread, letting excess drip down sides. Mix the remaining tablespoon of lemon zest together with the granulated sugar and sprinkle on top of the glazed bread. Slice and serve!
Lemon Zucchini Bread Sliced

a Rafflecopter giveaway Disclaimer: Thank you to #BrunchWeek Sponsors: Red Star Yeast, Dixie Crystals, Cabot Cheese, Vidalia Onion Committee, Sage Fruits, Nielsen-Massey, KitchenIQ, and Le Creuset for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #BrunchWeek. All opinions are my own. The #BrunchWeek giveaway is open to U.S. residents, age 18 & up only. All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Eight winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The #BrunchWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. 

Be sure to check out the rest of today's #BrunchWeek recipes!

  BrunchWeek Beverages: BrunchWeek Breads, Grains and Pastries: BrunchWeek Fruits, Vegetables and Sides: BrunchWeek Egg Dishes: BrunchWeek Main Dishes: BrunchWeek Desserts:

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