• Welcome!


    Chiropractor Mama Dr. Dolly and professional photographer Elisa B. share about adventures in intentional and natural parenting while living in Virginia's beautiful Blue Ridge.
  • Popular Reads

  • Shop

  • Categories

    • Alltop. We're kind of a big deal.
  • Stats

    • 356,836 Visitors

For Her & Him: Cooking Up Love (part II)

Welcome to the Valentine’s Day Gift Guide on Traveling with Baby.  Even though Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, I still have a few great ideas and giveaways for the whole family that I want to share with you.  You’ll even have the opportunity to win some of the products featured on the Gift Guide–isn’t that lovely?  For every giveaway featured prior to February 13th, all drawings will still take place on February 14th.  However, all giveaways featured February 13th or later will have draw dates on February 28th.

————————————————————————————————-

I am SO excited to share with you some of my most favorite items for Valentine’s Day that focus on the heart of the home, the kitchen.  With, loving hands, I prepare delicious and hearty meals for those whom I cherish.

My new go-to place for ideas for kitchen adventures is Kitchen Kapers–a family-friendly kitchenware store that’s been inspiring a little homemade fun in kitchens since 1975.  With 14 locations in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware, Kitchen Kapers specializes in quality kitchenware at affordable prices.

Kitchen Kapers has so many great options for Valentine’s Day. 

Are you and your spouse coffee drinkers or tea lovers?  Kitchen Kapers’  his and her asian mug set ($19.99) is a fun way to enjoy your weekend tea time for two (or it’s a great gift for a couple celebrating an anniversary in a keepsake box).  By the way, today is Chinese New Year!

Want something more daring and romantic?  Think of plump and ripe strawberries dipped in fondue chocolate in this electric fondue set from Cuisinart available at Kitchen Kapers for $59.99–50% less than listed retail price!

This cœur a la crème “cream of the heart” mold is perfect for making your own sweetened cream cheese covered in wild strawberries. Yum!  And, a 4-inch ceramic mold retails for a mere $4.99–hosting tea parties with cheese and crackers will never be the same again.

Besides carrying great kitchenware online, Kitchen Kapers flagship store and culinary academy, located in Moorestown, New Jersey, is where foodies can find an extensive range of cooking classes from knife skills to learning the art of French cooking or creating beautiful cakes.  Foodies can develop an international cooking skill set from Sicilian, Tuscan, Cuban, or Sexy Szechuan in the couples cooking classes–that’s the kind of date night I would LOVE.

For the younger set, Kitchen Kapers has classes for children (ages 5-12) and teens (ages 12-18).  I love that they have a class just for young boys to create fun and boy-inspired foods in Emma’s Boy Brigade.  Some of the other classes are aptly titled, “How to Cook Better than Your Parents.”  When my son is older, we may need to visit Morristown to acquire a family culinary adventure.

For Valentine’s Day, it is this passion-red porcelain enamel on cast-iron Le Creuset heart-shaped casserole dish that makes me smile every time I walk into our tiny kitchen.  This sweet little dish looks like it’s reaching out to give a hug with the little red handles on the sides.

See?

The tight-fitting lid seals in the flavors and creates a blanket of heat for gently cooking food.  The enameled surface allows for even heating, longer heat retention, and it doesn’t react to acidic foods.

I can make perfect sticky rice every single time.  Stir-fry bell peppers?  Simple.  Deep frying chicken thighs for chicken cacciatore?  Easy to do, easy to clean.  I essentially created every part of a chicken cacciatore all in this one little 2 quart casserole (just for the cooking experience), and then I served the rice along side the chicken cacciatore for dinner.

Tonight, I used the “heart pot”, as my son so tenderly refers to it, to prepare a berry crisp with hints of cinnamon and cocoa.  The heart-shaped casserole dish from Le Creuset retails for $200, but it’s $50 less on the Kitchen Kapers site.  My little family can celebrate Valentine’s Day every day with this passion-red beauty.

___________________________________________________________________

Gluten-Free Berry Crisp

Ingredients:

  • 1 10 oz. bag of frozen organic strawberries
  • 1 10 oz. bag of frozen organic blueberries
  • 2 T of cocoa powder
  • 1 T of cinnamon
  • 1 cup of buckwheat flour
  • 1/3 cup of sukenot or turbinado sugar or honey or brown sugar
  • 2 T sukenot or turbinado sugar or honey or brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup of butter
  • 1 can of organic coconut milk (optional)

Directions:

First, preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Next, grease an 8 x 8 inch baking dish or use an ungreased porcelain enamel cast iron oven–the Le Creuset 2 qt heart casserole dish is perfect.

Pour thawed and drained blueberries and strawberries into baking dish, and mix the 2 T of sukenot into the berries.  Then, dust with cocoa powder.

In a separate mixing bowl, combine the buckwheat or other gluten-free flour with the 1/3 c. honey/sukenot/brown sugar/turbinado sugar and cinnamon. Add butter and cut with a knife or pastry cutter until crumbly.

Then, Layer the flour-cinnamon-sugar mixture over berries in dish.  Note that buckwheat flour is already earthy brown, even more so when mixed with cinnamon and brownish sukenot.

Bake about 30-35 minutes uncovered and try to distract yourself with something else like eating dinner.

Remove it from the oven and the cinnamon-cocoa-berry smell will bring anyone within wafting-distance standing within two paces of you…or closer.

See how the finished crisp is only a slight shade darker than before it went into the oven?  I love the bubbly berries peeking through the crisp!

This dessert should be served warm. It can be drizzled with coconut milk and a little more honey, or topped with ice cream, whipped cream. It makes 6-8 servings.

Gooey berry goodness.

Note: if you haven’t worked with coconut milk before, here’s a little tutorial.

First, never. ever. NEVER. buy the lite coconut milk.  It’s a waste of money and nutritional value.  All the good stuff is in the rich and fat of the milk (medium-chain mono-unsaturated fats…good for you!).

Second, open the can and use a spatula to pour the coconut water and the milk into a mixing bowl.

It’ll be a chunky and congealed mess. So, take your trusty whisk and beat away until the chunky congealed goop becomes a smooth white liquid.

There, now you can use it!  Take a spoon and drizzle it over your gluten-free berry cobbler.

Store the remaining coconut milk in a sealed glass container.  It will last in the refrigerator up to 7 days.

I love to use it in smoothies, soups, and sauces.  In fact, for Valentine’s Day, I’m using coconut milk to make thai chicken and peanut sauce from the New Intercourses cookbook.

For more “Cooking up love” ideas, read part I of this post series.

*I received samples from Le Creuset  and Kitchen Kapers for the purpose of this review.  Read my full disclosure policy.
Subscribe // Twitter me: drdolly

For Her & Him: Cooking Up Love (Part I)

Welcome to the Valentine’s Day Gift Guide on Traveling with Baby.  Even though Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, I still have a few great ideas and giveaways for the whole family that I want to share with you.  You’ll even have the opportunity to win some of the products featured on the Gift Guide–isn’t that lovely?  For every giveaway featured prior to February 13th, all drawings will still take place on February 14th.  However, all giveaways featured February 13th or later will have draw dates on February 28th.

_____________________________________________________________

Do you need ideas for preparing a romantic, home cooked meal?  First, let me tell you that I have been pouring over this creative and poetic cookbook ever since it arrived in my hot little hands.

I’ve got strawberries on the brain.  But, this cookbook helps get something else on the brain.  Note: this is not a family-friendly cookbook, but it is perfect for couples who want to remember that they are first and foremost, a couple–secondly, they are parents of small children. Sometimes, we need a reminder and a little inspiration…and the 10th anniversary edition of The New Intercourses: An Aphrodisiac Cookbook by Martha Hopkins and Randall Lockridge is a valentine for couples everywhere who love and cherish food as well as one another.Every married couple who loves to cook would safeguard a cookbook treasure that entices you with sumptuous recipes that create a mood for love.  The New Intercourses Cookbook delivers and completely surpasses my expectations.

This playful cookbook covers 19 sensual foods, ranging from traditional favorites like oysters and strawberries to lesser-known but just as potent foods such as pine nuts and asparagus. Including histories of aphrodisiacs and uses of the featured foods, humorous and smoldering couples’ anecdotes, this beautiful and innovative cookbook features over 135 couple-tested recipes as well as edible massage oil recipes.

The photography is just gorgeous.  Beautiful foods are photographed in artful and provocative arrangements on human bodies.  There is nothing utterly inappropriate, however, if a bustier made entirely of pine nuts (and nothing else) is too steamy for the eyes in your home, then this may not be the choice cookbook for you.

While featuring some of my favorite foods, it opened my eyes to the lush and aphrodisiac nature of cooking for my husband, or preparing food together.  Most of the recipes are fairly simple with only a few ingredients.  Some of the more involved recipes include the baked artichoke and crab dip, grilled vietnamese gingered beef rolls, spicy ginger shrimp, and black bean shepherd’s pie with corn pudding.

By involved, I mean those recipes may require more ingredients, but not necessarily more time or high skill.  In fact, the beauty of this cookbook is in the attitude of cooking.  You’re invited to become emotionally engaged and creative throughout the process, and the end result isn’t always about gastronomic satisfaction.

Even if the goal is to prepare a romantic dinner for two, these recipes are sure to please at dinner parties or even adventurous family meals.  My little guy enjoyed the tomato basil soup paired with a grilled cheese panini.

You don’t have to spend a full day sweating in the kitchen–there are several simple recipes for main courses and desserts.  In fact, for Valentine’s Day, I’m making the thai chicken with peanut sauce followed by easy strawberry empanadas.  Easy. peasy.

With more snow on the way early next week, we’re going to settle in with the Mexican hot chocolate and snuggle on the couch.  There’s seasonal recipes, and ideas for pick-me-ups at any time of day.

This cookbook is my new go-to gift for my bridal friends entering wedded bliss since it’s bound to inspire many romantic cooking exploits.

Check out a few free sample recipes from the New Intercourses Cookbook online.  It retails for $29.95, and you can purchase this cookbook directly from Kitchen Kapers, the Intercourses shop, or Amazon.com.

————————————————————————————————-

We’re going to return to wellBEing weekends soon enough, but I wanted to share with you the health benefits of sex via WebMd.  It may surprise you to learn that aside from burning calories and relieving stress, having sex once or twice a week can also boost immunity, improve heart health, decrease cancer risks, increase self-esteem and intimacy, decrease pain, and improve sleep.

For more “Cooking up love” ideas, read part II of this post series.

Bon appétit!

*I received a sample from Terrace Partners for the purpose of this review.  Read my full disclosure policy.
Subscribe // Twitter me: drdolly