Wednesday, April 07, 2010


Ok, I've made some really good recipes this past month and I want to share a couple of them with you!


Zupas dinner!

First, I would like everyone to notice...

1. There are pink tulips from Costco on my kitchen table
2. It is snowing outside... look closely
3.This meal is filled with yummy Spring berries

I don't know about all of you but my biological clock is telling me that it's Spring, Utah however, has decided that it wants to extend Winter a little longer than it should be.

Yes. It has snowed the past three nights in Provo. Yes it is April. No I'm not feeling good about it.

Anyway, in denial of the snow outside my window I've decided to take advantage of $1.50 strawberries at Macey's and make light Spring-ish meals! Take that Utah! :)

Being inspired by one of my favorite places to eat, Zupas, I started with a chicken panini! I had a rotisserie chicken in the fridge (yet another Costco purchase) so I shredded it, added a few dashes of salt, and put it in the sandwich. I then added basil pesto for the sauce, two slices of roma tomatoes, and a couple leaves of fresh spinach! I put it all together inside two slices of pugilese bread from Costco and slapped in on our trusty panini maker!

Now I loved the panini, but I'm going to be honest it's the salad that made the meal!
Let's just start by saying that I'm obsessed with the "Nuts about Berries" salad from Zupas...I don't know if I'll ever get sick of it!

This is my rendition of the salad...


  • Fresh strawberries
  • Fresh blueberries
  • Fresh blackberries
  • Fresh Spinach
Slice the strawberries vertically into thin strips. Then toss the fruit and spinach together with the nuts and dressing!
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1 cup of white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 cups whole almonds
This recipe is adapted from

Combine the water, sugar, and cinnamon in a saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil; add the almonds. Cook and stir the mixture until the liquid evaporates and leaves a syrup-like coating on the almonds. Pour the almonds onto a baking sheet lined with waxed paper. Separate almonds using forks. Allow to cool about 15 minutes.

Alright, here's the warning for this recipe! So I made these a few weeks ago and after laying the nuts out on waxed paper to cool for a few hours they never solidified! I thought they were a failure so I just put them in a ziploc bag hoping that I could use them for something later on. Well a few days later I found that they had solidified and they were perfect for this salad. I just chopped them up in my food processor and they were perfect! Anyway, if you make this recipe make sure you make it a few days before you need them!

  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup white vinegar
  • 1/8 cup white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
Ok, this dressing is the! I love it and it's so simple! Most of the ingredients will probably be in your pantry already! Just toss them all in a mixing bowl and mix with a hand mixer on high speed for 2 minutes! Make sure you taste it and make sure it has all blended properly! You shouldn't be able to detect the grainy white sugar! If it's still a little grainy make sure to mix it for a couple more minutes!


Mini Pies

These little beauties are just an adaptation from my Mom's boysenberry pie recipe! They're so fun though! I definitely recommend these if you need a little sweet fix!

Begin by making your pie crust, this recipe will yield about two batches of mini pies!

Pie Crust

  • 4 ½ cup of flour
  • 2 cups of shortening (or 1 ½ cups of Crisco and ½ cup of butter or margarine)
  • Cut shortening into flour
  • Add ½ cup of water
  • 1 TAB lemon juice
  • 1 egg
  • Chill at least 1 hour
Once you've made your dough roll it out until it's about as thin as it'll get!

After you've rolled out your dough you'll want to grease and flour a muffin tin. You'll then cut out circles in the dough that will be big enough to overflow your muffin tins.
I just estimate for the bottom crust but for the top crust I usually use a cup to measure!

Now you'll want to make your filling! This is a little out of place! I usually do this while my dough is chilling! I use the frozen three berry mix from Costco and they work perfectly! You need to first thaw your whole bag of berries (again two batches worth) then add...
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 2-3 heaping tablespoons of flours
Mix the berries, sugar, and flour together. Then eat a spoonful of the berries, they're really yummy :)

Next place your berry mixture into the muffin-sized pie crust! I put enough berries in to almost overflow the crust!

Then dot the top of the berries with a little butter!

"Is there anything better than butter? Think it over, any time you taste something that's delicious beyond imagining and you say 'what's in this?' the answer is always going to be butter. The day there is a meteorite rushing toward Earth and we have thirty days to live, I am going to spend it eating butter. Here is my final word on the subject, you can never have too much butter."

Name that movie...

Next, put the top of the pie crust on your pies and pinch the two pieces of dough together!

Cut a couple of slits in the top to allow for ventilation and then stick them in the oven at 425 degrees for 10 minutes and then 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes! Check them at fifteen minutes to see how they're doing, you'll know they're done when the tops are no longer shiny but matte! ENJOY!


  1. Yum!! I love the mini pies :) and everything for that matter! So fun!

  2. the movie is julie and julia! love it!

    what a little chef you are jess! everything looks delicious!

  3. Yep, it's Julie and Julia, and these mini pies are ingenious!

  4. Looks SO good! I need to try all of that.


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