Category Archives: Recipes + Cooking

The Best Breakfast Cream Cheese Spread

The best breakfast cream cheese spread recipe -- with only three ingredients!

The best breakfast cream cheese spread recipe -- with only three ingredients!

I confess that I actually like the taste of fake syrup. But going to Vermont gives you a new found appreciation for real Maple Syrup, so I’ve been using that a lot more lately. Also, we’re out of the fake stuff and I just can’t let myself buy that corn syrup goop.

While trying to pump up snow day breakfasts this winter, I came across a recipe for carrot cake waffles that made additions to cream cheese to make it a sweet topping. Ever since then I’ve been doing my own cream cheese mixology.

Conversation Heart Cookies

Candy Heart cookies on The Thrifty Ginger

Candy Heart cookies on The Thrifty Ginger

With just days to Valentine’s, I’m still working out what I’m gifting to George. I’ve heard of couples where this is solely a holiday for the woman, but that seems like complete nonsense. Aren’t we celebrating love, after all? While thinking about iconic Valentine’s Day gifts, conversation hearts are an obvious contender. I made them a little more palatable, and used a cookie baking contraption, with these sugar cookie candy hearts.

Message in a cookie pieces to make conversation heart cookies

All White Gingerbread House

All white gingerbread house // On The Thrifty Ginger

All white gingerbread house // On The Thrifty Ginger

This weekend as snow covered upstate New York, George and I spent most of the weekend inside, working on projects. We also assembled our gingerbread house!

Candy supplies for all white gingerbread house

We decided to do an all-white gingerbread house, so we purchased a bunch of white candy: mini marshmallows, Lifesavers, white M&Ms, white chocolate chips, white candy melts, and white sugar sprinkles. Our house was from a kit purchased at Michaels.

Holiday Cocktail Party Menu

Cookie tray with chocolate crinkles and snowflake sugar cookies

This past weekend George and I hosted a little get-together at our apartment. I love to spread my holiday cheer around, and hadn’t shown off the “new” apartment to many people before this weekend.

One of the biggest struggles I had was figuring out the menu. We didn’t collect RSVPs, so it was a bit hard to gauge how many guests were attending. Based upon what people did say, we were expecting around 15-20 people. The party was on a Saturday evening, with listed hours of 7-10PM, so we needed light food, but not a full meal. I didn’t want to spend the party cooking, so I looked for display-ready foods that could be prepared in advance.

Cookie tray with chocolate crinkles and snowflake sugar cookies

For foods we prepared or purchased:

  • A large cheese plate, with five kinds of cheese (see below for details)
  • Triscuts, Wheathins, gluten free Lentil Crackers, and a sliced baguette
  • A veggie tray with peppers, celery, cucumbers, and carrots
  • Hummus, ranch dip, and guacamole
  • Tortilla chips and salsa
  • Deviled eggs
  • Tomato poppers (made without meat, but with breadcrumbs instead)

For sweets we had:

Easy Ratatouille Recipe

Easy_Ratatouille_in_pan_recipe

Easy_Ratatouille_in_pan_recipe

This summer George and I are participating in a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), so we get loads of fresh vegetables each week. It is a great way to eat healthier, but it is really hard for the two of us to keep up with everything we get in our weekly box. One of my favorite ways to use extra vegetables is to make ratatouille.

farm_fresh_CSA_vegetables_in_bowl_august

For ratatouille this week I used some fancy Fairytale Eggplants, yellow squash, onions, tomatoes, and a green pepper.

pretty_fairytale_eggplant_Ratatouille