Where in the World is the Honey Dijon Mustard?

I have been enjoying the summertime like nothing else lately. Not only have I been experimenting with the idea of breakfast pizza, but I’ve been reading into a lot of cookbooks I would love to try out and review. I really want to read the cookbook Vincent Price wrote with his wife in the 1960s. But most recently have had to come to the glaring reality of how complicated it is to buy mustard.

I didn’t use to like mustard, but thankfully I’ve grown into it. What fascinates me is the overwhelming choices you can get. The different brands. The different flavors. It’s like there’s a special kind of mustard for every personality. I mean, there is even the presence of horseradish mustard for the hard-core individual whose mouth was most likely burnt beyond all feeling by a pepperoni hot pocket.

But one day I found my favorite flavor: honey dijon mustard. I tried it a year ago and it quickly became a necessity in my fridge. It has the right kick, but a sweetness to keep me in the conversation. It doesn’t muck up a sandwich or distract from the other flavors. For me, it’s just right.

But for SOME REASON, it’s like I cannot find it anywhere. No grocery store where I live sells it!

Do you want some Grey Poupon? No.

Do you want French’s basic yellow mustard? No.

How about some whole grain mustard? Um, I’m good. No.

Honey mustard? Uggghhhhh…..

How about some horseradish mustard? Dear God NO!!

Why can none of these places give me what I want? So I have resorted to desperate measures.

I made my own.

I followed a basic honey Dijon glaze recipe from the Damn Delicious blog, but I added more honey and mayonnaise to make it sweeter and smoother to my liking. It’s so addicting, I even eat it on toast or a croissant in the morning. And night. And at second breakfast. And elevensies……

Honey Dijon Mustard Spread

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup Dijon mustard

1/4 cup basic yellow mustard

1/3 cup pure honey

  1. In a large bowl, combine the mayo, both mustards, and honey until well mixed. Taste and adjust ingredient ratios to desired flavor.
  2. Pour into empty mason jar and store in the refrigerator
  3. Eat on sandwiches, crackers, toast, or with deli meats.

Advertisements

Birthday Cupcakes

Today is my birthday, but a year ago today also became your birthday too. I woke up to a text message from my mom to come bring a leash to the field. Still half asleep and still in my pjs I met you. Your skin was bright pink, the little fur you had was matted, and your spine was easily distinguishable. Your short tail was likely broken, it waggled so funny. You were thrilled to have someone pull our dog Jack away from you. And so you followed us home.

The vet said you were already a year old already, but in retrospect I don’t think so, considering you’ve quadrupled in size. You were so pathetic and slept for most of the day. Although plenty of people jokingly called you the birthday puppy, I knew you couldn’t stay. How could I justify a new dog when we already had 3?

But time went on and no real homes came along. In the meantime, you kept yourself busy following me, crying for attention, chewing everything I owned, and sleeping at the foot of my bed. After a while, I’ll admit, you won me over. You even got a name for yourself: Dobby. Because the way you perked your ears made you look like the house elf. Not to mention your love of socks.

It was not too long until I realized you began to channel my emotions. When I was calm, you were playful. When I was stressed out of my mind, you became antsy and threw hissy fits with me. It did not help the situation I hope you know. I remember you insisting that I hold your rawhide chew to decompress your stress from watching me hastily put together final portfolios at 2 AM. The day after you were quite calm and content to sleep all day since I was at ease. At the start of grad school, you were very insistent on being a better help to me, and accompany me reading.

I have always told people about my “funny problem child”. I remember all the scowls and huffs when I tolerated your hissy fits when Bo would steal your rawhide chew. You walked away from it, you have no one to blame but yourself. But I think of the way he nibbles my toes. The fact that he howls at new people in his house. His love of coconut yogurt. The way that he gets freaked out at Bob Ross’ smiling face on the tv. The look on his face when I address him as “eey bby”. Or even how he has to channel his stress by licking/eating the wall. We’re going to have to fix that by the way…..

I’m sorry that you always look so grumpy, and that you cry actual tears when you see me leave the house sometimes. But I know you’re dedicated when you sit at the fence and watch me leave for the day. Some days you have given me a fair share of headaches when you decide to stay up late in the evenings. Other times, you have made me smile through tears on particularly bad days when you lick my face and waggle your stumpy tail.

So yes, my problem child, today is both of our birthdays. Between the countless “Dobby-Do’s” and “Dobby-dont’s”, you have brought joy, frustration, laughter, and a patience that I wouldn’t trade for the world. I wanted to get you a cupcake collar for your birthday because you’re sweet like one, and like a cupcake, even if it’s messy and gets everywhere, it was well worth the trouble. But instead I found you one with sprinkle donuts! So win-win I suppose. Happy birthday Dobby, my real-life spirit animal.

How Do You Solve a Problem Like Guy Fieri?: A Trip to Flavortown

I don’t always watch the Food Network, but when I do, it’s on a Friday and it’s most likely going to be Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives. I confess, I really haven’t understood society’s borderline obsession with the host Guy Fieri, but I am loving every minute of it.

Sure he drives a sweet car, and those frosted tips look legitimately good on the man, but I don’t think I could stand having him in my kitchen. I don’t think I would tolerate him sneaking bites of my ingredients. I’d have to tell him, “Guy! Don’t you be eating all my stuff! There won’t be enough for my recipe dammit!”

But in all seriousness I think quite highly of Mr. Fieri. He has a lot more personality than some of the other people on the network. You can tell he enjoys his job.

But recently I fell down the rabbit hole to Flavortown and haven’t come back just yet. It’s been too fascinating to even try to avoid. I have the Food Network app on my iPad and like to scroll through potential recipes that look good (most of them are complicated and include kale). I recently found out that you can search for recipes via your favorite chefs. Turns out Guy Fieri has 990 recipes. Oh. My. GOD!

So naturally I ended up putting on my scuba gear and deep diving into this mad world called Flavortown. Because I want to know why people are as crazy about him as they are. In the process I found a lot of tequila recipes, sliders, grilled beer chicken, and fries of various kinds. But by far his most popular recipes are those with clever names. I kid you not, there is “Just No Thang, Butta Chicken Wing”, and “Garden of Good and Evil Bulgogi”. Just look at how popular the “Need for Fried Cheese” holds up against the ones beside it. I believe the people have spoken:

By far though, my favorite part of this phenomenon are the jokes. Everything from memes to cards against humanity, Mr. Fieri is a part of pop culture. I mean, you can apparently buy hoodies with his face plastered all over them! Um. Yes please?

I feel like I should clarify something. Mr. Fieri, I hope you understand, but people are doing all these things because they love you. You bring a lot of joy to a lot of people. You’re not afraid to poke a little fun at yourself. As a result, you’ve become like a cult of personality to a lot of people. I hope you take all of this attention as a compliment, because people legitimately enjoy you. Now if you excuse me, I have a ticket to paradise and it’s name is Flavortown.

The Killer Sandwich

I’ve written once before on the immense joy I get from grocery shopping at the “food libraries” to quote Skwisgaar from Metalocalypse. Depending on what you get, it feels like Christmas but with food instead of stuff. My mom and I have recently found a new kind of bread that I for one have fallen in love with. It’s called Dave’s Killer Bread.

I love the fact that Dave plays guitar on the front. It’s pretty metal.

What I like about this brand is not just for the organic health claims it makes, but for the way it is fully loaded with seeds and grains. It says approximately 21 different kinds are put into each loaf and I can believe it. When I was a kid I hated bread like this. It had a funny texture and good Lord those crusts better be cut off for goodness sake! Thankfully my tastes changed. I love the way all the different flavors of the seeds combine to create such a savory taste that crunches with every bite.

The backstory behind the bread is really inspiring though. Apparently the company makes a point to hire former prison convicts because they believe in second chances. That’s who Dave was. After he got out of prison, his brother hired him in his bakery and Dave made this amazing loaf of bread. Today they hire all kinds of people with pasts in the prison system and so many of the stories are really inspiring. I usually try to steer clear of politics on this blog because that could lead to some headache-inducing arguments, but I find it absolutely wonderful that these people who have struggled so much of their life can have a chance to regain control and live life to the fullest.

So it tastes amazing and helps give people their lives back. It also makes amazing sandwiches. You can substitute anything you like for something else, but this is my standard go-to sandwich when I’m really craving something filling.

The Killer Sandwich

2 slices Dave’s Killer bread

Honey Dijon mustard

2 slices Swiss cheese

1 fried egg

1 slice Black Forest ham

Sliced orange bell pepper (or sliced tomato)

Handful of fresh baby spinach

  1. Toast the bread
  2. On both slices, spread an even coating of honey Dijon mustard
  3. On both slices, put one slice of Swiss cheese
  4. On one slice, put fried egg, ham, bell pepper (or tomato), topped with spinach
  5. Place the other slice of bread on top and cut sandwich in half

For more information regarding Dave’s Killer Bread, here’s a link to the site for many of the employees personal stories:

Dave’s Killer Bread

A Fine Day for a Recipe Hunt

I recognize how hard it can be to find the perfect recipe for anything. But I admit, I love the challenge of it. Lately I have been looking through Family Circle and Southern Living magazines that were passed on by friends of the family for recipes for absolutely anything. Besides, I need more ideas for new meals for myself.

I am finding out that I am a picky person.

Why do so many of these recipes sacrifice simplicity for the sake of being clever? For instance: “Za’atar-Roasted Carrots with Yogurt”. I bet it’s really good, but I don’t live in an area where I can find 2 teaspoons of za’atar or labneh! Where the hell do you find apple cider syrup?! I was not aware this was a thing!

And heaven help me, but I am so sick of all the crazy kale recipes. You know that fresh spinach is infinitely more tasty than kale right? So stop it! I love you Martha Stewart, I think you are a awesome, but you are part of this problem for me. I don’t want to make a meal that uses 15 different bowls to get dirty so I have to spend an hour cleaning up the kitchen. Ain’t nobody got time for that!

For the endless rummaging through pages and pages of crazy sheet pan recipes, I finally found a few decent recipes for green bean casserole and Parmesan Herb Angel biscuits I can try out one day. I may need to look into what an instant pot is, because apparently that’s a thing. Thank goodness I have the free time now to explore my options!

Quinoa Sushi: An Attempt at Experimentation.

I’m still not sure just how to pronounce this. I’ve heard as “keen-whaa” and “quin-oh-ah”. I’m sure there’s another way to say it that I’m not aware of. And I don’t know which one is right.

Quinoa is one of those superfoods you hear about in food books and nutrition manuals that apparently pack a whollop in the health department. But as much as I try, I just keep getting burned by it. I don’t know why I don’t learn my lesson and give up on it, but I guess I’m stubborn that way. I have yet to find a decent quinoa recipe. So one day I thought “girl, why not substitute it for rice in the sushi you make? Both are pretty bland by themselves. You may not tell a difference.” An excellent idea, self! So that’s what I did.

Well…I don’t think I’ll do that again.

The texture was just too weird. Although it didn’t fall apart in my hands, it still felt a little too soft. And to think I put in my favorite fillings too. At least it looks really pretty.

After several attempts at incorporating quinoa into my diet (and failing most of them). I have come to the conclusion that probably the best way to eat this stuff is just cooked with a bit of melted butter. Maybe a bit of garlic rub thrown in for taste. 

Fully Loaded BBQ Chicken Pizza 🍕

When my brother and I were kids, we had a thing for pizzas. My parents always had Red Baron or Tombstone pizzas in the freezer at any given moment. Although I never really got into Totinos pizza rolls as much as my brother. At one time we had frozen French bread pizzas just about once every week.

Even if I don’t eat those much anymore, occasionally on a weekend we’ll make French bread pizzas from actual fresh baguettes we get at the store. Most of the time we’ll put cheese and pepperoni on top and eat it like that. But I confess, I have grown very fond of putting a lot of toppings on pizza like I do baked potatoes.

I love the theory of bbq pizzas, but it seems like most of them made at pizza places only put one topping on them. THAT ENDS TODAY!!

I made this pizza to have chicken, onions, and even spinach (because I love spinach so much!)

Fully Loaded BBQ Chicken Pizza

1 French Bread baguette

4-5 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1 large onion

2 cups fresh spinach

1 cup really good bbq sauce

Shredded cheese

  1. Cook chicken breasts according to instructions on the bag (or at 375 degrees for about 45 minutes)
  2. Dice the onion and sauté in large skillet until translucent. Add the spinach and cook until wilted.
  3. Cut up chicken breasts into 1 inch pieces and add to onions and spinach. Mix well
  4. Add 1/4 cup of bbq sauce to the skillet and stir until all the contents are evenly covered.
  5. Remove skillet from heat
  6. Cut French baguette into three sections. Slice each section in half longways. Place on large baking stone or baking sheet.
  7. Spread the remaining bbq sauce on each French bread slice.
  8. Put the onion, spinach and chicken mixture on top of each slice (along with any other toppings you want)
  9. Sprinkle shredded cheese on top of each slice
  10. Place in oven and cook at 400 degrees for 10 minutes