Monday, December 16, 2013

Ultra-healthy Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream

This will be short! Another Pinterest recipe that I tried out yesterday was a simple recipe for peanut butter banana ice cream, and when I say simple, I mean simple.  There are two ingredients: Peanut butter and bananas.  Seriously.  The trick is that the bananas have to be frozen.  I just threw a bunch of bananas in the freezer for this, but it's better if you slice some, put it into a ziplock bag, and THEN freeze it for 2-3 hours.  After they're frozen, pulse the bananas in a blender until they form a soft-serve type consistency.  Add in a dollop (very exact measurement) or two of peanut butter and finish mixing!  It's not quite ice cream consistency, but it's refreshing and yummy! If you want a more ice cream feel, freeze the mixture after you've mixed it and eat it then!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Pinterest Pasta

Before my crazy finals week, I decided to have fun with some recipes that I found on Pinterest. Part of why I wanted to blog post this is because the link on the pin didn't lead anywhere useful. I've never done a recipe post, but I think this will be fun! This recipe has only a few ingredients, and you'll probably already have most of them at home anyways! The recipe calls for:
ziti noodles (the recipe didn't specify, but I found that 1 box of Barilla pasta works well!) 
1 lb of ground beef
1 package taco seasoning (I had a container of seasoning, so I just seasoned to taste)
1 cup water (this is for the meat. I didn't use it, but I'll discus that later!)
1/2 package of cream cheese (I used 4 oz.)
1 1/2 shredded cheese (I used a lot more!)

So, the first thing that I did was get my ingredients together!
I then set up my equipment. I set my oven for 350, got out a casserole pan, and started some boiling water (with a dash of salt and olive oil to prevent sticking).  I then got out a large pan, put some oil in it, and got to browning the ground beef!
There is no reason to have a tea kettle on the stove, by the way, mine was just there. Now, depending on how quickly you get your water to boil and what pasta you're using, you might do things in a slightly different order.  I browned the beef until there was no more pink anywhere. The recipe tells you to drain the meat, then add water before putting in the taco seasoning.  I used lean ground beef, so I decided not I drain and just used the oil that I had been cooking with while adding the taco seasoning. I just added some, mixed it up, then tasted a bit when I thought it was ready.  Then, I added the half a package of cream cheese and just mixed it together while still on low heat until it was creamy.  While/before/after this is going on, you want your pasta to be cooking. As soon as the water comes to a rolling boil, add the pasta and follow the directions on the box for aldente pasta.  When the time is up, strain it! 
Now that everything is individually cooked, the time has come to put it into a casserole! Start by spreading out the pasta in the casserole dish.
Then mix in about a cup of cheese, feel free to add more if you want it extra cheesy on the inside, but we'll be adding more on top!  Next you'll want to mix in your beef mixture and gently mix it all together.  Then add a liberal coat of cheese on the top, and the dish is ready to bake!
Bake uncovered for about 15 minutes and it should be ready to eat! My family ended up really enjoying it.  We pared it with some yummy rolls and a Caesar salad. Have fun!