Monday, January 30, 2012

A Fiesta of Flava!

Pin It
Sweet Potato & Black Bean Enchilada's
with a sweet corn cream sauce

Hola mi amigo's! Here I go again with yet another healthier option. But hey doesn't mean its not as delicious as my other sweet eats.

These here are actually quite amazing. I have been wanting to make them since I first came across the recipe at one of my favorite blogs, Sugar Plum.

I love enchilada's already and thought this vegetarian take on them sounded amazing. Well, I was right. They are amazing. You can really taste the sweet potato which is perfectly complimented by the smoky yet spicy sauce they are baked in. They are topped with a sweet sauce that calms the spicy down a bit but doesn't cover it up.

Again, I am going to tell you how easy these are, and maybe I sound like a broken record but, I really mean it when I tell you when a recipe is easy. This takes a few steps but you will be very impressed not just with the flavors but with yourself for cooking such a wonderful dish.

Many people can be skeptical to foods they know being made in a new way, but don't be afraid to get in the kitchen and try new flavors. Especially when they are this delicious yet super nutritious too. Learning to cook has taken me to so many new places in food. I am no longer that picky eater who would not even think of trying something new. Cooking has brought on a love of food and flavor and the urge to learn more about food and nutrition.

It's a fascinating world in food, so get out and explore new flavors!

And don't forget to keep exploring right here at Peace Love & Yumminess!

Gracias & Enjoy<3!

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Enchilada
w/ sweet corn cream sauce
  • 2 cups cooked mashed sweet potatoes- I cook in microwave for 10-12 minutes then peal and mash with fork.
  • 1 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups crumbled queso fresco cheese, divided. (Can't find queso fresco? I used reduced fat feta cheese)
  • 1/2 cup pepper jack (optional- I sprinkled some on top before baking)
  • 1 teaspoon ground chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups jarred fire roasted tomato-enchilada sauce
  • 2 tablespoons adobo sauce from canned chipotle chiles
  • 10 corn tortillas
  • 1/2 cup canned creamed corn
  • 1/3 cup reduced fat sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely chopped cilantro
  • Avocado slices, for garnish
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together sweet potato, black beans, 1 cup cheese, chili powder, cinnamon, and salt until well combined.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together enchilada sauce and adobo sauce and pour half of the sauce into a 13x9-inch baking dish.
  4. Warm tortillas in the microwave, covered in damp paper towels, for 1 minute.
  5. Place a heaping spoonful or about 1/4 cup sweet potato mixture on one side of a tortilla, roll up, and place in baking dish. 
  6. Continue with the rest of the mixture and tortillas.
  7. Drizzle remaining enchilada sauce on top of tortillas, and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.
  8. Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly. 
  9. Meanwhile, make the sweet corn cream sauce by pureeing the creamed corn and sour cream until well combined ( with a food processor or blender). 
  10. Stir in cilantro (optional- many people do not enjoy cilantro).
  11. Serve enchiladas with a drizzle of sweet corn cream  sauce, and top with avocado slices (optional as well).

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Oh hey there small fry....

Pin It
Baked Parmesan Zucchini Fries

Look at me! Not only did I yet two post in two days but both are a big change from my normal posts and quite healthy. These baked zucchini fries are one of my new favorite things. I could eat bucket loads of these. Mmm with a nice tangy marinara sauce. Delish!

These a healthier take on the fried zucchini you can order out at most restaurants, which are usually just frozen breaded zucchini thrown in a deep fryer. The ones I made are prepared not just in a healthier way, but a more delectable way which you can actually taste the zucchini and the Parmesan but still have that nice crunch.

The crunch is due to the use of panko bread crumbs. These are great & I use them on baked chicken fingers too. They crisp up much more than your typical homemade, or store bought breadcrumb.
So go ahead and whip these up for a snack or a nice side dish they don't take long and a taste amazing. I prefer to dip them marinara sauce but I have seen several recipes with onion dips as well. Ranch dressing would be great, but ranch makes everything taste better :).
If you are sticking with the healthier route go ahead and just use marinara its a perfect combo.

Enjoy <3!


  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 medium sized zucchini, cut into sticks


  1. Preheat oven to 425 and line a baking sheet with parchment or spray with non stick cooking spray.
  2. In a shallow dish or bowl whisk egg whites.
  3. Place Panko, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper in a zip top bag and shake to combine.
  4. Dip the zucchini into the egg and then into the panko mixture a few at a time, shaking gently to coat.
  5. Place on the baking sheet.
  6. Bake 20-25 minutes, until golden brown.
  7. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce.
*NOTE* By dipping the zucchini into flour before dipping into the egg will help the panko mixture really coat the sticks however I didn't mind the "rustic" coating I achieved by skipping this step. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

On The Lighter and Brighter Side of The Morning

Pin It
Baked Oatmeal
with Bananas and Blueberries

Hello hello! So I know this site is loaded with scrumptious baked goodness but I eat a lot more than just all these sweets. I surprisingly eat quite healthy and enjoy making nutritious meals and snacks. This recipe is a delicious but healthy breakfast loaded with sweet flavor from the blueberries, banana's, honey, and cinnamon.

I am someone who never skips breakfast, ever. I enjoy a huge Belgium Waffle every now and then but for the most part I actually crave a good bowl of oatmeal. I wanted to make it a little more amped up for a change so I decided to try a new way of making my oatmeal, as opposed to throwing it in the microwave.

So I decided to throw it in the oven :).
I have had baked oatmeal at a few breakfast joints before but its so overloaded with cream and sugar that you might as well chow down on those pancakes and syrup. So I decided to make this with out all the loaded fat and sugar. This can be done by just a few simple swaps. Using a natural sweetener like honey, and non fat milk. The rest of the flavor comes naturally from the fruit. I added quite a bit of cinnamon just because I can never have enough cinnamon flavor, but can ya blame me?!

This breakfast is a perfect well rounded meal with healthy carbs, fiber, and vitamins. It's also so delicious you can enjoy this as a snack or dessert.
Enjoy! <3

Baked Oatmeal
with Blueberries and Bananas 
  • 2 medium ripe bananas, sliced into 1/2" pieces
  • 1 1/2 cup blueberries
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 cup uncooked quick oats
  • 1/4 cup chopped almonds, walnuts might work better but I didn't have any
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup fat free milk 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°  & lightly spray a 8 x 8" or 9 x 9"  baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. Place the banana slices on the bottom of the baking dish.
  3. Pour half of the blueberries over the bananas with 1/4  of the cinnamon, and 1 tbsp of the honey.
  4. Cover with foil and bake for 15 minutes, until the bananas get soft.
  5. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the oats, half of nuts, baking powder, remaining cinnamon, and salt and stir together. 
  6. In a separate bowl, whisk together the remaining honey, milk, egg, and vanilla extract
  7. Remove the dish from the oven and pour the oat mixture over the bananas and blueberries.
  8. Pour the milk mixture over the oats and distribute as evenly as possible over the oats. 
  9. Sprinkle the remaining blueberries and nuts over the the top.
  10. Bake the oatmeal for about 30 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the oatmeal has set.
  11. Best served warm from the oven.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Cheese makes everything better....even dessert

Pin It
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cream Cheese Bars

How amazing do they sound?! Who doesn't love cookie dough? And cheesecake, who can resist? Well the blend of these two amazing flavors is beyond delicious! I recommend sharing them as soon as possible because you will not be able to resist eating the whole thing. They are that good people!

I know we are all supposed to be kick starting our healthy new years resolutions but just do as I do and either pretend they are healthy or just stay on the treadmill just a big longer because you won't want to miss out on a taste of these.

They are pretty easy just three set of steps but nothing involving too much work. If  you want you can lighten it up a bit by using low fat graham crackers and low far (not fat free) cream cheese. I'm pretty sure you won't even notice the difference.

Enjoy <3!


For the crust:
  • 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
For the cookie dough:
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
For the cheesecake filling:
  • 10 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line an 8x8 inch baking pan with foil or parchment paper and let hang over edges slightly.
  2. Mix the melted butter and graham cracker crumbs together and press the mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan and bake for 6 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, cream the butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, vanilla and salt until combined and smooth.
  4. Add the flour and beat until just combined. 
  5. Stir in the chocolate chips and set aside.
  6. For the cream cheese layer, beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth.
  7. Add the vanilla and egg and mix until just combined.
  8. Pour the cream cheese mixture over the prepared crust.
  9. With your hands, form the cookie dough into clumps and drop it on top of the cream cheese mixture, covering the entire dish.
  10. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the cookie dough mixture is firm and the bars are set when giving the dish a slight shake.
  11. Move the bars to a cooling rack and allow them to cool completely.
  12. Lift the bars out of the pan using the foil or parchment overhang. Slice into squares.
  13. Try, just try, to only have one :)!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Oatmeal Butterscotch Bars

Pin It
Oatmeal Butterscotch Bars
with brown sugar butterscotch glaze

Hello hello! Here I am way behind on posting again. But it was because I have been busy getting ready to move! I signed a year lease to rent a house at the beach. So lots have been going on with that. And don't worry the house has a brand new gas stove! That was literally one of the first things I checked. So lots of great dinners and cupcakes will be coming out of that oven :). So excited!

Since I will be needing some necessities once I move out I set out to my second home, Target, planning on getting a few more pots and pans, some kitchen towels, a vacuum, and things of that matter. However, I ended up leaving with only a wine rack, wine glasses, and cupcake liners. Obviously my priorities were right in order :).

Anyways I have been doing quite a bit of cooking lately and just a bit of baking here and there. These are a little creation I came up with the other day. I really wanted to make some blondies and realized I had a bag of butterscotch chips and thought, HMMM how about butterscotch blondies. But then I kept thinking of the giant case of oatmeal I bought assuming I'd be using it all the time to bake, but have yet to do so.

Feeling bad for the un-used oatmeal, I thought of adding oatmeal to the blondies and make oatmeal bars with butterscotch.

Well it was a success! They are super sweet but nice and hearty because of the oatmeal and brown sugar. I also added a glaze to the top just to add a little extra umph of flavor. I may have added it a little too soon and the bars were not quite cooled all the way. The glaze ended up mostly soaking into the bar rather than being a layer on top. Still, they were delicious!

Enjoy <3!


Oatmeal Butterscotch Bars
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour                                                                
2 cups quick-cooking oatmeal
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup butterscotch chips
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) butter
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract


1/4 cup butterscotch chips
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon water
1/8 teaspoon salt

**I recommend browning the butter however melted butter will be fine. I also toasted the oatmeal in the oven for a bit while it was preheating.**
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9X13-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, letting the foil hang over the edges slightly. Lightly grease the foil with cooking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, oats, baking soda, and salt.
  3. Place the 3/4 cup butterscotch chips in a large bowl.
  4. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat and let the butter cook until golden brown in color.
  5. Pour the butter over butterscotch chips and stir until melted and smooth.
  6. Whisk in the brown sugar until combined followed by the egg and vanilla.
  7. Stir in the flour mixture, just until incorporated.
  8. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top, making sure it is distributed evenly.
  9. Bake the bars until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs, about 16-18 minutes.
  10. While the bars are cooling, place the 1/4 cup butterscotch chips, brown sugar, water and salt in a small microwave-safe bowl.
  11. Microwave the mixture until melted and smooth, about 2 minutes on 50% power, stirring every so often.
  12. Drizzle the glaze over the bars. Let the bars cool completely in the pan. Remove the bars from the pan using the foil overhang and cut into squares. Serve.

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Year, New Adventures, New Food!

Pin It
Black and White Cupcakes &
Dark Chocolate Caramel Cupcakes

Hello hello! Welcome to the first 2012 post here at Peace Love & Yumminess! I have been m.i.a for quite some time lately but I am excited to be back and get rolling with some more posts. To make up for lost times I have two delicious cupcake recipes.

But first, how was everyone's holiday season? Mine was great and it was blast to share Christmas with my niece again this year. She was walking around the house saying Santa, Santa. Who knows if she really knew who he was but heck she knew his name so we were all excited. She also loved opening her presents even though she was a little confused. Handing out gifts seemed to be a little more enjoyable which made it fun for all us "big kids" too. 

is she not the cutest?

I also got quite a lovely present, a beautiful red kitchen aid stand mixer. Thank you Santa!!!!!

New Years came just as fast as Christmas did. But it was a blast and I got to celebrate it with great friends. It was also nice this past week because all of my siblings were in one place at the same time, which well that literally has not happened in centuries it seems. It was so warm out, like it has been lately, so we took some family pictures outside in the park.
me and the birthday girl on NYE

Me with my brother and sisters
It was a nice holiday and like always flew by way too fast. Now it's back to work and back to getting on track with lots of things like, blogging, eating better (I'll never give up cupcakes, ever), getting my butt back to the gym, being more productive, and well the list goes on as it always does every beginning to the new year.

I am leaving you with two delicious cupcake recipes but sad to say I only have one picture of each. I made these for the New Years party I went to which was also for my friends birthday and she requested anything chocolate. So I made dark chocolate cupcakes and one was topped with white chocolate cream cheese frosting(get it black and white lol), and the other was filled with caramel, and topped with a chocolate buttercream and I also drizzled some chocolate syrup over the top.
 I'll post the dark chocolate cupcake recipe first then the toppings after.

Enjoy and I wish you all a Happy New Year filled with lots of yummy food!

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes
makes 12 cupcakes
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • ½ cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon table salt
  • ½ cup sour cream
  1. Preheat to 350 degrees F.Line standard-size muffin pan with baking cup liners.
  2. Combine butter, chocolate, and cocoa in medium heatproof bowl. Arrange double boiler by bringing a small amount of water to a boil and turning the heat to low. Set the heatproof bowl over saucepan and heat mixture until butter and chocolate are melted and whisk until smooth and combined. Stirring often. OR microwave at 50% power, stirring every 30 seconds until completely melted. Set aside to cool until just warm to the touch.
  3. In a small bowl sift flour, baking soda, and baking powder.
  4. In a separate larger bowl whisk eggs then add sugar, vanilla, and salt until fully incorporated.
  5. Add cooled chocolate mixture and whisk until combined.
  6. Sift about one-third of flour mixture over chocolate mixture and whisk until combined; whisk in sour cream until combined, then sift remaining flour mixture over and whisk until batter everything is fully Incorporated.
  7. Divide the batter evenly into the cupcake liners, filling 2/3-3/4 full.
  8. Bake until skewer inserted into center of cupcakes comes out clean,  about 18 to 20 minutes.
  9. Cool cupcakes in muffin pan on wire rack until cool enough to handle, about 15 minutes, then remove to remain cooling on wire rack. 

Black and White Cupcakes
  • Batch of Dark Chocolate Cupcakes
  • White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting

White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 4oz white chocolate (I tend to use more)
  • 8oz cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 stick of butter, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2-3 cups powdered sugar 
  1. Melt white chocolate in a double boiler (as described above) or in a microwave stirring at 30 second intervals until melted and smooth. Set aside and let cool slightly.
  2. In a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer, beat together cream cheese and butter together until blended and mixed thoroughly.
  3. Pour in the melted chocolate that has cooled and mix together.
  4. Add vanilla.
  5. Gradually add powdered sugar, until your desired sweetness. I tend to sift my sugar in to make sure its extra smooth.
  6. Spread on cooled cupcakes or use a piping bag to top cupcakes.
*you might have extra icing with this recipe, but its so delicious you wont mind*

Dark Chocolate Caramel Cupcakes
  • Batch of Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with holes cut into the tops
  • Caramel sauce, homemade or store bought.
  • Chocolate Buttercream
  • Chocolate Syrup 
Chocolate Buttercream
  • 3oz semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Melt chocolate using double boiler (as explained above) or in microwave safe dish melting at 30 second intervals. Let cool slightly.
  2. In a large mixing bowl using an electric mixer, beat butter until fluffy, about 1 minute.
  3. Add cooled chocolate to butter and beat until blended.
  4. Add vanilla.
  5. Gradually add powdered sugar, adding more if wanting more sweetness. (again I sift the sugar to ensure smoothness)
Assembling the cupcake
  1. Fill each cupcake with caramel sauce and let sit while making frosting. The caramel will soak into the cake and need more filling.
  2. Fill again and then top with frosting, using a pipping bag works best since there is a whole in the middle and its uneven.
  3. Drizzle chocolate syrup over top. I lay foil underneath to make clean up easy. I also hold the chocolate pretty high to make sure I don't get any big drops on the cupcakes and instead just lines of chocolate.