From Cupcakes to Traditional Korean Food and Everything in Between

Jam, Easy & Homemade

I started making this jam when I was 10.  At the time, supper for my little brothers generally consisted of grilled hot dogs or spam with kimchi but at least we had fresh jam with our wonder bread and now I can’t remember the last time I had spam or wonder bread.  This jam is a straightforward 2 ingredient fix, sans the pectin and all the hoopla.

Just in case you were wondering what the main difference between jelly and jam is, jelly is made with fruit juice while jam is a combination of crushed fruits and sugar.

When jarring your jam, make sure everything is sterilized properly. Rule of thumb: hot jam goes into hot jars/cold jam goes into cold jars.

Easy Homemade Jam Recipe {No Pectin}

5.0 from 2 reviews

Jam, Easy & Homemade
 
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Ingredients
  • 12 oz berries
  • 1 c sugar*

Instructions
  1. In a heavy bottomed pot, tumble in your berries and set the heat on low.
  2. Slowly sprinkle in your sugar. Stir. Don’t allow the sugar to crystallize on the sides of your pot.
  3. Gently press the berries to begin to release some of its juices.
  4. Bump up the heat to medium and your berries will begin to softly burst.
  5. Your jam is ready when it’s reduced by ¼ of its original volume and when spooned onto a plate, gels up and takes its time to drip down.
  6. Store in sterilized jars. Mine kept for a month.

Notes
*You can certainly add more but this is how I like it

My favorite way to have this is with homemade greek yogurt.

Love,

Your Squishy Monster ^.~

Yogurt, Homemade + Greek Yogurt

Though we’re back to cold rainy days next week, at least someone got the memo about it being the first day of spring today.  Oh sunshine, won’t you stay?

For the following weeks, whether the weather decides to cooperate or not, I’ve planned an arsenal of fresh and light recipes for y’all, starting with my homemade Greek yogurt.

I enjoy eating yogurt but don’t enjoy the price, particularly the price of Greek yogurt.  Since I’ve begun making my own, I’ve been eating it almost everyday with homemade granola and homemade jam {recipes to come}, and even use some of it for a refreshing mask {try it with honey and lemon and your skin will thank you}!

The best parts of this yogurt are that it costs so much less, is an easy 2 ingredient fix, and once you’ve begun, you’ll always have a starter to begin another batch whenever you want.

How to Make Homemade {Greek} Yogurt

5.0 from 3 reviews

Yogurt, Homemade + Greek Yogurt
 
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Ingredients
  • 4 c whole milk
  • 5 tb yogurt

Instructions
  1. In a pot, slowly heat the milk to 180.
  2. Turn off the heat and allow it to cool to 115. This step is very important. An electronic candy thermometer will help.
  3. Whisk in the yogurt {I used prepared yogurt from my last batch but any high quality store-bought works here too}
  4. Pour the entire contents into a jar and wrap with a towel and set, undisturbed for 10-15 hours. It’s important not to jiggle it like I did the first time I made this.
  5. Chill for at least 3 hours before serving or, after it’s been chilled, line a container with cheesecloth/nylon/paper towels/coffee filter and scoop in the desired amount of yogurt. Allow it to strain {without touching the bottom} overnight.

Want more money saving tips?  Check out these tips + a $10 supper idea for 4 people with roasted chicken, kale salad, and cookies!  Also, if you live near a Rita’s Italian Ice, they’re celebrating today with a free treat!

Love,

Your Squishy Monster ^.~

Broccoli Cheese Soup

On this cold and rainy day, I felt like cuddling up with some warm, cheesy, and comforting soup and this broccoli cheese soup was just the trick.  Paired with some crusty bread, there’s nothing quite like dipping it into this golden ambrosia melted with thick cheesy threads with just enough broccoli for some welcomed texture {and for not feeling like you’re being too over indulgent} ;)

Broccoli Cheese Soup Recipe

5.0 from 3 reviews

Broccoli Cheese Soup
 
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Ingredients
  • 3 tb browned, melted, unsalted butter
  • ½ c sliced onion
  • 1 c broccoli florets
  • 1 tb unbleached flour
  • ½ c chicken stock {and extra for thinning if desired}
  • 2½ c warm whole milk
  • Pinch of nutmeg {optional}
  • Salt and pepper
  • ½ c tiny broccoli florets/shredded carrots {optional}
  • 3 c cheese {I used cheddar, parmiggiano, and gouda}

Instructions
  1. In a pot set over medium-low, slowly melt and brown the butter. Swirl it around and keep your eye on it so it doesn’t burn.
  2. Sauté the onions and broccoli with salt and pepper in the browned butter until softened.
  3. Sprinkle in the flour and stir well.
  4. Splash in the chicken stock to deglaze then slowly pour in the warm milk and stir, stir, stir {to prevent lumps}.
  5. Add a pinch of nutmeg and season with salt and pepper.
  6. At this point, you can break up the veggies if you’d like {with an immersion/standard blender, food processor, or potato masher} or keep it just as is.
  7. Return the soup back to the pot and add the carrots and extra broccoli {if using}.
  8. Introduce the cheese and allow it to slightly melt then serve with crusty bread.

Stay warm, my friends!

Love,

Your Squishy Monster ^.~

Loving Lately

My baby brother, David came home this weekend and we were able to finally celebrate his 21st birthday {from last month}.  Better late than never!  He and my other baby brother have birthdays just a single day apart.  Daniel, we all miss and love you so very much!  Cheers to another full and happy year!!

1

 

His first legal drink, beef bourguignon, and birthday cake.

2 A lazy day basking in the sun with baby brother after bellies filled with burritos and ice cream.

3 Thai with mama and kimbap with baby brother.

4 A collaborative effort of making jam.

pretzal

 

Homemade pretzels by J…

meme this + hot buttery pretzels: 2 reasons why I fell for J.

tea I discovered these on sale at my local market and boy am I loving these!  They’re light, delicate, and so aromatic, it’s like a spa experience in my mug!!  I’m also loving that these have bleach-free bags so I’m happy to toss them into a hot bath with me or in my compost pile too.

pasta Speaking of super sale, I scored 50 boxes of absolutely free pasta with an in-store promotion + manufacturer coupons.  These are happily finding a forever home at the local shelter for pack away hunger.
5 And a quick trip to the new Indian market.

Drunk in Love covered by Zoe Tauran, accompanied on guitar by Dominggus Pfaff

I hope y’all had a lovely weekend!

New video coming at you tuesday!

Love,

Your Squishy Monster ^.~

Curry/Basic Korean Curry 카레라이스

Growing up, we had this often.  So much so that there was a period of my young adult life where I refused to eat it for awhile.  But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve become wiser and realize just how delicious this stuff is.  I salivate when I think about how it tastes with kimchi which for me is its true partner.  Spaghetti and curry are my two favorite things to have with kimchi.  Whether you choose to eat yours with it or not, I hope you’ll try this basic recipe and encourage you to personalize it to make it all your own.

Basic Curry Recipe // How to Make Korean Curry 카레라이스

5.0 from 3 reviews

Curry/Basic Korean Curry 카레라이스
 
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Ingredients
  • 2 tb unsalted butter
  • 2 cloves sliced garlic
  • ½ c veggies {I used potatoes, carrots, onions}
  • 2 tb curry powder {You can use a Korean brand if you’d like}
  • 1 c meat {optional}
  • 2 c coconut milk {I like the whole cream/milk kind}
  • Salt & pepper

Instructions
  1. In a pan over medium-low heat, melt and brown the butter. Keep your eye on it so it doesn’t burn and swirl so it gets golden and smells nutty.
  2. Toss in the garlic and allow it to infuse just for 30-60 seconds.
  3. Sautee in the veggies and sprinkle with curry powder.
  4. Add in the meat {if using} and slowly pour in the milk.
  5. Season and stir. It will thicken as it cooks. Simmer for 30-60 minutes.
  6. Serve with hot rice. Kimchi is highly recommended.

Love,

Your Squishy Monster ^.~

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