homemade ketchup? yes, please.

I hate to admit this, but my seven-year-old has recently entered the stage of all foods must be dipped in ketchup in order for me to eat this.

DIY ketchup | sagebrousseau.com

I pick my battles, so I go with it, the only problem was when we ran out of ketchup… this was an emergency situation! I did a quick Google search and learned that making my own ketchup was relatively fast and easy and I had all the ingredients on hand. Ketchup-crisis averted.

At first, I was skeptical. Would it taste as good as the brand I’ve always bought? Would it pass muster with the picky eater? To my surprise, homemade tastes far better than store-bought ketchup, and my child-tester LOVED it! Score! I haven’t bought any ketchup since.

DIY ketchup | sagebrousseau.com

Here’s my recipe for the best ketchup you’ll ever try (bonus: no high-fructose corn syrup):

DIY Ketchup

  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon molasses
  • ½ teaspoon worcestershire sauce
  • ½ cups water

Combine all ingredients in a small sauce pan over low heat. Simmer, stirring frequently to avoid spattering, for 20 to 30 minutes or until desired consistency. Adjust the flavors as necessary, you can add up to another tablespoon of sugar or a little more worcestershire sauce to get the taste you desire. Serve and enjoy!

P.S.: Happy New Year, I hope your 2015 is happy and healthy so far! I’ve been down and out with a massive cold, but now I’m back.

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not your grandmother’s rice pudding

You either love rice pudding or you hate it. I L-O-V-E it, and my grandmother’s recipe was actually pretty darn good.

coconut rice pudding | sagebrousseau.com

It’s so simple to make, and really may be my most favorite food. I loved when my Gram would make it for me when I was a little girl, it was her favorite too and we’d eat it together with spoons from the pot (“let’s not bother with bowls”), gobbling it down, right off the stove top.

Now, I savor every grain of warm, chewy rice before its warmth fills my belly, thinking about my Gram and imagining her here with me. It’s the perfect treat on a cool Autumn afternoon.

gram's rice pudding | sagebrousseau.comHere’s my spin on the classic recipe, scented of vanilla with a hint of cinnamon and coconut milk for a rich, creamy finish.

Coconut Rice Pudding

  • 1 14oz. can of coconut milk
  • 1 3/4 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup long-grain white rice
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  1. Combine coconut milk, milk, rice and cinnamon in a medium sauce pan. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce to a simmer. Simmer, stirring frequently for for approximately 30 minutes, or until the mixture is thick and no longer liquidy.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the sugar, salt and vanilla.
  3. Eat all of it immediately. Serve warm or chilled.

coconut rice pudding | sagebrousseau.com

I dream of donuts

Here are somethings you need to know about me: I love donuts, and recently I fulfilled two dreams in one shot…

Top Pot!

For twenty years (eep!) I had dreams of visiting Seattle and I’ve been dreaming of the donut shop mecca Top Pot Donuts since I first saw it on a TV travel show. In February, I lived my dream and it was awesome! Confession: I did not sample all of the flavors, but I had a few… I mean, I was there for three days, how could I not stop in each morning?

so many donutsTop Pot Neon

Since I couldn’t take the donuts, or Top Pot, home with me I just collect donuts on Pinterest now and dream of more local donut adventures…

Follow Sage’s board donuts! donuts! donuts! on Pinterest.

take-out at home: fried rice

I was never really a fan of the typical Chinese take-out fried rice. But this is now one of my go-to recipes when I want something fast and yummy.

Fried rice with eggBelieve me, I love the ease of take-out, now and then. But sometimes, making your take-out faves from scratch is as easy as picking up the phone (and even tastier). You only need a few simple ingredients, some of these things you might already have in your fridge…

fried_rice_ing… and there’s little, to no skill involved. I’ve adapted this recipe from one of Martha Stewart’s, but I think mine is better (don’t tell her)!

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 thick slice ham (8 ounces), cut into strips
  • 1 bunch scallions, white and green parts separated and cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated peeled fresh ginger (pro tip: I buy grated ginger in a tube found in the produce section)
  • 1 cup shelled edamame (thawed, if frozen)
  • 1 1/4 cups cooked white rice
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 4 large eggs

Directions:

  1. In a large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high. Add ham, scallion whites, garlic, and ginger. Cook, stirring frequently, until beginning to brown, 2 to 4 minutes.
  2. Add rice, scallion greens, edamame, vinegar, and soy sauce. Cook, stirring, until heated through, 2 to 4 minutes. Divide fried rice among four serving bowls.
  3. Wipe out skillet with a paper towel. Heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium. Gently crack eggs into skillet; season with salt, and cook until whites are set, 2 to 4 minutes. Top each bowl of rice with a fried egg. Garnish with scallions.

Enjoy!

pancakes, syrup and snowdays

Ok, so I’ve always really loved McDonald’s Flapjacks… at least I did as a kid.

pancakesIt’s been decades since I’ve enjoyed anything from McDonald’s, but I vividly remember eating and enjoying the McD’s pancakes and begging my mother to replicate their succulent flapjack-ness at home. We always made the fluffy Bisquick type of pancakes, which are tasty… but not the same. It’s taken me a few years to perfect my own pancake-making abilities, I think it really comes down to the recipe. Wanna know My secret?

silver dollar cakesDry buttermilk powder. Here’s my favorite recipe straight off the back of the buttermilk box:

  • 1 envelope of dry buttermilk powder
  • 1 cup of AP flour
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup of water
  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil

In a bowl whisk together the dry ingredients. Add beaten egg, water and oil. Beat just until batter is smooth. Drop from a spoon onto a hot, buttered griddle and cook until top is full of tiny bubbles and underside is brown. Turn and brown other side.

snowman cake

(Please excuse this quick-and-dirty action shot of someone enjoying her snowman pancakes). Today’s snowday was a perfect excuse to make and enjoy some homemade flapjacks!

soup-er bowl sunday

One thing I really can’t get enough of in the winter is soup!

IMG_3427_copy

There’s nothing like cozying up to hot bowl of soup with a good book, while the snow is falling. Easy for lunch, simple for dinner… I love soup! But soup from a can just doesn’t do it for me anymore now that I know how easy making a tasty batch of soup really is. This recipes for Sweet Potato & Chipotle soup is one of my go-tos this winter. Serve it with a little sour cream, and maybe a piece of cornbread, yum!

soup

avocado, meet chocolate

I am borderline obsessed with avocados. They look so pretty and taste delicious!

avocados

Since today is snowy and cold– school was already canceled by 7pm last night– I decided we would pass the time by playing in the kitchen! And because of my avocado obsession, I had a few on hand that we could whip into something tasty and fun. I’m a sucker for a good avocado smoothie, and I’ve seen chocolate paired with avocado before, initially I was thinking we’d make smoothies, but decided that was not snow-day-fun enough. Add a banana, or two, throw it all in the food processor and– voila— you’ve got chocolate pudding (and it’s vegan and dairy-free, if you’re into that).

avocado chocolate pudding

Chocolate-Avocado-Banana Pudding (serves 2 – 4)

2 Ripe Avocados

2 Ripe Bananas

1/4 cup + 2 Tbl. Cocoa Powder

1 tsp. Cinnamon

1 tsp. Vanilla

3 Tbsp. Honey

3 Tbsp. Chocolate Syrup (we used high-fructose corn syrup free Nesquik)

Combine all ingredients in bowl of food processor, process until smooth and uniform in color. Chill until ready to serve. Enjoy!

avo-nana