Bacon, Gorgonzola, and Caramelized Onion Pizza

The Kiwi and I have been doing our fair share of traveling recently. After our two weeks in Marrakech and Paris we had about a week at home before we headed to Hong Kong where we are now for the Kiwi’s work conference {and a little sightseeing}.  When we get back, there are some big, big things a happening around the Kiwi and Peach house. But if I’m being honest y’all, I’ve been thinking more about the things to come rather than the stuff that is happening right now.I’m a planner, an organizer. When life gets hectic, taking a few minutes to make lists, think through things that are coming up and their possible outcomes is how I make sense of it so that I can focus on what is going on now. Most of the time, I consider this is a strength. Most of the time {okay, some of the time} it works, but when it doesn’t work, when it stops being a strength, is when it leads to worrying. Needless, needless worry of which I’ve been doing my fair share.

A couple of weeks ago, Sheena talked about her place. The place that made things make sense. The place that made your heart smile.

“Where is my place?” she asked. “That’s easy,” I answered—the mountains.

On our only free weekend in the whole of October, the Kiwi and I headed down to the Alps. This was the only chance we would have to see leaves in all their fall glory. This was the only chance we would have to breathe in the crisp mountain air and just wonder at the gorgeous mountains we were surrounded by. I was truly present for the first time in what felt like months, appreciating the beauty of this country, and so grateful for the chance to live here.

We came home, made our favorite pizza, alpine style, with lots of stinky cheese and thick slices of bacon, and talked about all of our travels this year. What a year it has been?!

What about you? Do you struggle with this as well? What are your tips?

Bacon, Gorgonzola, and Caramelized Onion Pizza from Kiwi and Peach

Bacon, Gorgonzola, and Caramelized Onion Pizza

{Makes one 12 inch pizza. It’s usually enough for both of us for dinner and my lunch the next day.}

1 batch of pizza dough {My go-to recipe uses honey, yeast, flour–spelt and all purpose, and butter or olive oil and takes less than an hour.}
2 ounces thick cut bacon, sliced
1/2 of a large red onion {sweet onions, pictured, work great too}
1 tbsp butter
about 4 ounces {2 cups} of gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
extra melted butter for brushing on the crust

Preheat the oven on low {120°F/60°C for me} and start heating a pan on medium heat.

First thing I do is to proof the yeast for the pizza dough.

While it’s proofing, slice your bacon and onion. Once the pan is hot, pop your bacon in there and cook for a couple minutes, just long enough to render the fat. Transfer to a bowl and sit it to the side. Return the pan to the heat.

Drop a bit of butter in there and then toss in the onions. Stir well, then cover, and reduce the heat to medium low. Give them a stir every 10 minutes or so until you’re ready to put the toppings on the pizza. This usually ends up being about 30 minutes for me.

Once the onions are on, I make my pizza dough and pop it in the warmed oven to rise for 20 minutes. Turn the oven off after you put it in to rise.

{Really, this pizza dough is so simple, y’all. Promise me you’ll give it a try? You’ll never go back to the store bought, pre-baked stuff I swear! I’ve even been known to get it out after just 10 minutes because I was in a hurry, and you know what, it was still delicious.}

Once the dough is finished rising, flour your hands and push it out to the size you want your pizza to be. Now let’s, layer this baby up with the goods!

I do a layer of gorgonzola, the bacon, the onions {which can come off the stove now, by the way}, then another layer of gorgonzola. The cheese is the key here folks. Lots and lots of cheese.  Brush the exposed crust with a little melted butter then pop it back in the oven on as high as your oven will go {for me that’s 475°F/240°C} and bake for 20 minutes.

Enjoy it y’all.

Bacon, Gorgonzola, and Caramelized Onion Pizza from Kiwi and Peach

Quinoa Fall Skillet

I’m trying really hard to think of a way to start this post without the phrase “One of my favorite things about fall is…” I think it is a well established fact that, as a people, we tend to love fall.

So I’ll try this…

What really gets me jazzed about fall…

is all the produce that starts turning up at the market. There is suddenly an abundance of whole stalks of cute little brussels sprouts, gourds, squashes, and pumpkins. So. Many. Pumpkins. Now, I love pumpkin as much as the next girl {really, I do!}, but it isn’t the end all be all of amazing fall veg.

What about all of those other delicious, beta-carotene packed, orange veggies?

Sure there are carrots, but I don’t want to talk about that. {Unless they’re in cake, then I fully support their existence.}

I want to talk about sweet potatoes. These babies are easily my all-time favorite veggie in the history of ever. You can boil them, mash them, stick ’em in a stew. You can roast them and put them in a salad. You can cook them with with bacon and some other fall favorites like apples and brussels sprouts and get this skillet that will make you want to go jump in a pile of leaves and watch Hocus Pocus on repeat until your boyfriend demands that you turn the drivel off.

It’s fall, in your mouth, minus the pumpkin.

Quinoa Fall Skillet from Kiwi and Peach

Quinoa Fall Skillet from Kiwi and Peach

Quinoa Fall Skillet

{Serves two. Adapted, barely, from a heart healthy recipe Prevention magazine. I reduced the recipe for two, and completely eliminating the heart-healthy aspect of the recipe, I used my normal chicken stock, and subbed thick cut bacon for the low-fat and let’s face it, low-flavor, bacon. If we’re going to eat bacon, let’s eat the real stuff from a nice non-factory pig, why don’t we? My method is also a bit different too because of the quinoa.}

The Quinoa
2 cups water
1 cup quinoa
dash of salt
1 Tbsp olive oil for crisping

The Chicken
1 chicken breast, cut into cubes
salt and pepper
dash of olive oil for cooking

The Skillet
2 ounces thick cut bacon, sliced
1/2 of a medium onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 small sweet potato, peeled and cubed
about 10 brussels sprouts, quartered
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and cubed
1 tsp fresh thyme
big pinch of cinnamon
little pinch of sea salt
1/2 cup chicken stock

First things first, let’s get the quinoa on. Boil your jug and start heating a medium pot and a large pan, both on medium high heat.

Once the jug has boiled, add your water to the pot and salt it. Bring it to a boil and add the quinoa. Remember to rinse your quinoa with hot water before you cook it to get rid of that bitter powder that coats it! Set your timer for 20 minutes and let it do its thing.

Cube your chicken and season it withe salt and pepper. {I usually go ahead and slice the bacon now as well since I already have the meat cutting board out. Just sit it to the side until we’re ready for it.} Once the pan is really hot, add a dash of olive oil and pop the chicken in there. I usually sear it on one side, then flip and let it cook for 4–5 minutes or so. You want to cook it until it’s a nice golden color. When the chicken is finished transfer to a bowl and set it to the side. Return the pan to the heat.

While I’m waiting for the quinoa to finish up, I go ahead and start prepping the veggies. They all go in at about the same time, so it’s good to have them ready before you start on the skillet. Dice your onion. Peel and press your garlic. Peel and cube your sweet potato and apple. {1/2 – 3/4 inch cubes should do it.} After rinsing your brussels sprouts, cut the bottom off like you would a head of cabbage and quarter them. I discard the leaves that fall off when quartering them since they can be a bit bitter anyway.

By now the quinoa should be finished. Now, this step is completely optional. I, personally, like my quinoa crispy, so it’s worth the extra step to me. It’s completely up to you. Before getting started on the skillet, I add some olive oil to the now very hot pan and transfer the quinoa from the pot to the pan. Stir a bit, let it sit, then repeat a couple times. Basically what we’re doing is getting rid of the extra water and frying it up a tad bit. The quinoa will get a little darker and some bits might blacken. That’s when you know you’re done. Transfer it back to the pot and set it off the heat.

Now. The skillet.

Add your bacon, onion, and garlic to the hot pan and let them cook for a couple of minutes. Add the brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes, cover, and cook for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Once the sweet potatoes are starting to get tender go ahead and stir in the apple, thyme, cinnamon, and salt and let those flavors cook for a couple minutes. Add half of the chicken stock and let it cook until it is mostly evaporated. {This will soften up those potatoes!} Add the chicken to the skillet along with the rest of the stock and cook for a couple minutes longer until the it is all nice and hot.

Stir the quinoa in and serve it up. Enjoy!

Quinoa Fall Skillet from Kiwi and Peach

The Stinky Burger

A couple of months ago the Kiwi and I were in Zermatt. And while we were in Zermat, we were introduced to the worst smelling, most fantastic burger we had ever put in our mouths.

The, aptly named, stinky burger.

Sound appetizing?

I thought so.

But really, it combines some of the tastiest {and stinkiest} ingredients like garlic, onions, and stinky, gorgonzola cheese into one burger that will blow your mind.

Naturally, once we got home after the trip, I set out to recreate this puppy and now, it’s a staple. {It’s one of the Kiwi’s favorites!} It’s the perfect dinner after a long day of hiking around the Matterhorn or, you know, just playing in these gorgeous, crunchy fall leaves.

The Stinky Burger from Kiwi and Peach

The Stinky Burger

{serves two, inspired by a meal at Brown Cow Pub in Zermatt}

The Toppings
drop of olive oil
1/2 of a medium sized onion, sliced
1 clove of garlic, minced
about 1/2 cup of gorgonzola cheese {or whatever stinky cheese you have on hand}

The Burger
10 ounces {300 grams} grass-fed ground beef
1/4 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
1 tbsp worcestshire sauce
1 tbsp whole grain mustard
1 clove of garlic, minced
salt and pepper

The Buns
2 buns {I like it best with kaiser buns with sesame seeds or with a pretzel roll fresh from the bakery.}
smidge of butter for spreading

Start heating up a pan on medium heat. Slice the onion and mince the garlic {or put it through a garlic press}. Once the pan is hot, drop a bit of olive oil in the pan and add the onions and garlic. Give it a stir then cover and let cook for about 10 minutes or until the onions are nice a soft. Once the onions are finished transfer them to a bowl and set aside. Return the pan to the stove top and turn it up to medium high heat.

While the onions are cooking, roll up your sleeves because we’re going to get a little messy. Add all of your burger ingredients to a bowl and get your hands in there. Mix all of that goodness together well making sure it’s evenly mixed. Divide the meat in half, form two patties, and drop them in the pan. Give it about 4-5 on that side and then flip.

Take about half of the onions and top the burgers with it. Cover each burger with the gorgonzola, put the lid on the pan, and let it cook away for another 4-5 minutes.

While the cheese is busy melting, slice your buns and butter each side. Turn the broiler in your oven on pop the buns in the oven on the top rack for about 3-4 minutes or until their lightly toasted. They should be done about the same time as your burger and then we can get started with the assembly.

Here’s how I layer it. Bottom bun, rest of the onions, burger, top bun. Done!

Take a big wiff and enjoy!

Oh, you might want to make sure your significant other eats it too.

What about you? Do you have any home adaptations of a favorite vacation meal? I want to hear about them!

Beer and Bacon Broccoli Cheddar Soup

I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a soup person.

Chili? Always.

Soup? Eh.

To be fair, soup in my house growing up meant Campbell’s. The tomato soup was always made with water. {Yuck.} The brothy soups were bland, not filling, and frankly the meat in them just creeped me out.

I’m not a soup person.

Except that, maybe I am.

Something seems to have changed this year.

Maybe it’s because Sheena keeps posting some of the most delicious look soup ever?

Maybe it’s because I’m incredibly stubborn and am seeing how long we can go before we have to turn the heat on, so a nice warm bowl of soup sounds like perfection?

Maybe it’s because soup made from scratch, while still ridiculously easy, is exactly one and a half million times better than soup from a can?

Either way, I’ve been making soup.

This soup is the gateway soup. Between the bacon, aged cheddar cheese, and the dark wheat beer, there really is nowhere this sucker can go but on the keepers list.

Beer + Bacon Broccoli Cheddar Soup from Kiwi and Peach

Beer and Bacon Broccoli Cheddar Soup

{I had been dreaming about a broccoli cheddar soup with bacon and a dark wheat beer. After looking at tons of recipes, I liked From Away’s method best and used it as my base and inspiration. I altered the amounts to serve two, added the broccoli, and omitted some of the other ingredients.}

4 ounces {120 grams} thick cut bacon, chopped into bits
1/2 of a medium onion
2 cloves of garlic
2 cups of broccoli {I used about 3/4 of a head and chopped it up pretty small}
1 Tbsp thyme
salt and pepper
1 cup of beer {I used a dark wheat beer. My recommendation: Schneider Weiss Aventinus or Franziskaner Royal}
1 cup of chicken stock
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp whole wheat flour
1/2 cup cream {I used soy.}
5 ounces {150 grams} of cheddar cheese

This is one of those recipes where its best to have everything prepped before you get started. So chop that bacon, onion, and broccoli. Peel the garlic and put it in the press.

Beer + Bacon Broccoli Cheddar Soup from Kiwi and Peach

Beer + Bacon Broccoli Cheddar Soup from Kiwi and Peach

Now let’s get started.

Heat a large pot in medium high heat.

Once hot, toss the bacon in there and cook it for a couple of minutes. You just want the fat to render and for it to cook up a bit. When it’s finished, transfer it to a bowl and set it to the side.

Back in the pot, throw your onion, broccoli, and minced garlic in and give it a stir. Cook for about 5 minutes or until it all starts to get tender. Stir regularly so all of that nice bacon grease on the bottom of the pan gets incorporated. Season the veggies with some thyme, salt and pepper.

Add about half of the beer {1/2 cup} to the pot and let it simmer away for 3 or 4 minutes until it has reduced by half. Then add the chicken stock.

While the beer and stock are reducing, we’ll make the roux to thicken this baby up. In a separate little pot, melt the butter and then whisk in the flour slowly to avoid lumps. Continue whisking for a couple minutes, then add it to the soup. Let this simmer for about 5 minutes while the whole thing thickens up.

Once the soup is coating your spoon, add the cream and the rest of the beer and give it a stir.

You can turn the heat off at this point, but leave the pot where it is. Add the bacon back in and start stirring in the cheese. It might take a couple minutes for the cheese to completely melt, but just keep stirring until the chunks are gone.

Serve it with bread. Serve it in a bowl. Serve it in a bread bowl. But most importantly, enjoy every bite!

Beer + Bacon Broccoli Cheddar Soup from Kiwi and Peach

Sage, Lamb, and Ricotta Ravioli with Sun Dried Tomato Pesto

The Kiwi and I are currently somewhere in the Sahara desert riding camels. {Clearly, I scheduled this to post.} If you want to keep up with our adventures be sure you’re following us on Instagram and Twitter.

Remember last week when I talked about making my own pasta? I mentioned that it all started because I was dreaming about ravioli. This, my friends, was the ravioli I was dreaming of.

It all started simple enough, flavors started building, and soon here was this idea. And it wouldn’t leave my mind, obsessive. I had to make it. So I did…

It’s earthy, it’s flavorful, and most importantly incredibly satisfying.

Sage, Lamb, and Ricotta Ravioli with Sun Dried Tomato Pesto from Kiwi+Peach

The Pasta
whole wheat pasta dough {I substituted 2 tbsp of the water for fresh pumpkin puree.}

The Stuffing
1/4 of a medium onion
4 ounces {125 grams} ground lamb
1 Tbsp sage
pinch of salt and pepper
1/3 cup walnuts, shelled
1/2 cup ricotta cheese

The Pesto
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes
1/3 cup walnuts, shelled
2 cloves of garlic
1 tsp lemon juice
pinch of sugar, salt, and pepper
1/3 cup olive oil

Before you get started on the stuffing and the pesto, roll out your pasta dough and go ahead and punch out your ravioli bases and tops. This will make your life a lot easier later. You can just set them to the side for later.

Start heating a pan on medium heat. Go ahead and dice up your onion {the smaller the pieces the better} and when the pan is hot toss them in there. Let them cook for about 5 minutes or until they’re soft and translucent. Add the lamb, using a spoon to break it up into small bits, and then sprinkle it with sage, salt and pepper. Cook for about 7-8 more minutes or until the lamb looks completely cooked. When it’s finished, transfer the mixture to a small mixing bowl.

While the onions and lamb are cooking, shell the walnuts. All in all I used about 12 walnuts. Break out the food processor and grind half of the shelled nuts {1/3 cup} into a meal and add them to the small mixing bowl. Add the ricotta cheese to the mixing bowl as well and then give the whole thing a good stir.

Boil your jug and start heating a large pot on medium high heat. Add the water to the pot and salt the water well.

Grab your ravioli dough and spoon a generous tablespoon of the stuffing onto each of the bases. Cover each base with a top and press the sides together with either your fingers or a fork. Once the water has returned to a boil, drop your raviolis in and let them cook for a quick minute. You’l know they’re finished when they start to float to the top. Drain the water and set the finished ravioli to the side because we need to make the pesto.

Combine all of the ingredients for the pesto in the food processor and grind it until you like the consistency {about 45 seconds on high for me}.

You’re finished. Plate it up and enjoy!

Kickin’ the ’cocks Boneless Buffalo Wings

{Disclaimer: I am aware this title is a bit on the edge. We are playing South Carolina this week and they’re the gamecocks. Come on, you know it’s funny. The twelve year old inside you is laughing right now.}

It’s Friday friends! It’s finally here. This week has been d.r.a.g.g.i.n.g. Why? Because the Kiwi’s parents are coming to town! We love having folks over, but we especially love it when those folks are our folks.

But before I run pick them up at the train station, I wanted to share a quick game day recipe for your tailgate this weekend. Last week was close, but my dawgs didn’t finish the drill. Hopefully they can make it happen this weekend, and hopefully I will be able to convince the crew that what they really want to do on their only Saturday night in Munich is watch an American football game.

Kickin’ the ’cocks Boneless Buffalo Wings

Kickin’ the ’cocks Boneless Buffalo Wings

The Chicken
2 chicken breasts
buttermilk

The Breading
3/4 cup almond meal
1/4 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
1 tbsp paprika
1/4 tsp chili flakes
salt and pepper

To Cook
1/2 cup canola oil {enough for there to be about 1cm of oil in your pan}
1 cup hot sauce {or for the lightweights, BBQ sauce}

Get started by slicing your chicken breasts into strips. Put the strips in a tupperware container and pour in the buttermilk until the chicken is just covered. Let the it soak in the buttermilk for at least an hour, but if possible, overnight is best.

When you’re ready to eat, start heating the oil in a frying pan on medium heat and preheat your oven to broil {or grill for the Kiwis}.

Mix together all of the breading ingredients in a shallow bowl. When the oil is hot, coat the chicken strips with the breading and pop them in the oil. Shallow fry for about 3-5 minutes on each side. When the breading is crispy, transfer the chicken to a paper towel and let some of that grease drain off. Discard the used cooking oil that’s still in the pan.

Grab a bowl and pour your hot sauce {or BBQ sauce} in it. One by one dip the chicken strips in the sauce and then return to the frying pan. Once all of your chicken is back in the pan, pop it in the oven for about 5-7 minutes. This will finish cooking the chicken and crisp that breading even more. Yum!

Serve it up with some blue cheese dipping sauce and dig in!

Honeyed Tequila Shrimp and Mango Tacos

Hey there buddy. Happy Labor Day! I hope you’re having a lazy day off from work as the summer days wind down.

Fall weather has well and truly made it’s arrival in Munich. That said, we are still getting a good amount of summer produce at the market so I snatched up a mango while the getting was good. {Unfortunately I think we’ve seen the last of the peaches though. Sad day.}

Since it’s not a holiday today for us here in Deutschland, we decided to celebrate last night with tacos! Actually, pretty much any summer celebration means tacos for us. We are big fans. {Okay, I’m a big fan. The Kiwi eats what I put in front of him.} The Kiwi says that these are his favorite tacos yet. {I believe his exact words were that they were “awesomely, deliciously, tasty.”} But really. The spicy and the sweet and the earthy flavors are all perfectly balanced into one little taco bundle that is begging to be eaten.

I also made a rosemary and maple bourbon lemonade and was going to make this fig and salted honey topped faux cheesecake but completely forgot I had to soak the cashews. Doh! {No worries. I made it today. Yum!}

I thought this was a perfect way to say farewell to summer. How are you celebrating today?

Honeyed Tequila Shrimp and Mango Tacos

The Wet
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp chili flakes
pinch of salt, pepper, and oregano
2 Tbsp tequila
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp honey

The Shrimp
4 oz shrimp, tails removed
1/2 of a sweet onion, sliced

The Assembly
6 wheat soft taco tortillas
3-4 leaves of red cabbage
4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
1/2 mango, cubed
a few dollops of sour cream {or plain yogurt}

Start heating a pan on medium heat. When it’s hot, pour a tiny bit of olive oil in the pan and toast the tortillas, one by one, lightly on both sides. Set them aside until you’re ready for the assembly.

While the tortillas are toasting, mix all the herbs and spices together in a small bowl. Whisk in the tequila, olive oil, and honey.

If you have some extra time, now is when I generally prep the goods for the assembly and slice my onion, but you can do it whenever.

When the tortillas are finished toasting, add a bit more olive oil to the pan and then pop your shrimp and onions in there. Pour in the wet and, stirring frequently, cook for 5-7 minutes or until the sauce has reduced by about a quarter and the shrimp are nice and pink.

Onto the assembly. It isn’t rocket science…load the suckers up! {I do a layer of cabbage, then the shrimp and onions, mango, top it with cheese, and if you feel so inclined, a big ole dollop of sour cream.}

Enjoy!