Friday, December 9, 2011

oh Giada!

One day i would just love to meet Giada di Laurentiis, she is one of my idols!


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Brownies are the best study buddy for finals!

Just made Hershey's Triple Chocolate Brownies and they are really helping me study :).

I have a secret to making these even better.  That is add milk instead of water, add vanilla extract and 1/4 of coffee.  These three little steps make the recipe so much tastier and no one will ever know it is a box recipe.

xoxo Rachel

p.s brownies please give me an A on my finals

Monday, December 5, 2011


Last night me and my cookie had left over fresh calamari to use and half a pound of pasta shells.  So, of course nothing sounded better to me than to mix the two together here is what I did.

2cups of 2% milk
~3/4 cup of flour (sifted)

1/4 cup olive oil
 2 garlic cloves
 to taste chili paste or sauce
2 cups calamari ( fresh or frozen sliced)
2 cups of spinach (leaves chopped)
1 cup of tomatoes (chopped small)
2 large roasted red peppers (cut small)

1/2 lb of medium pasta shells

First cook the spinach tomatoes and red peppers in the olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper, just until wilted. Set aside.

In the meantime, start the pasta water.

Using the same pan, use slowly add milk and sifted flour, switching between milk and flour until the sauce is thick and yields about 2 cups.

Next add the chili paste or sauce.  Then, add the veggies, turn the heat down to low.

By this time the pasta should be about done.  Taste and if it has a little bite it is perfect! Also you will want to finish cooking the pasta in the sauce so that all the flavor is absorbed! (one of the best tricks I have ever learned! thanks Giada di Laurentiis)

Strain the pasta with a little pasta water and put it into the saucepan.  Keep the temperature on low.  Add the calamari and cook for less than 3 minutes.  Otherwise, it will get chewy and chewy calamari? yuck!

I hope you enjoy this! it was just kind of a spur of the moment thing.  Hence, the reason I love cooking.  You can use what you have and make an amazing meal.

xoxo Rachel

Sunday, December 4, 2011

dinner with my cookie

Hello to all,

With a busy day of doing math and never even taking my exam i needed to relieve some stress and decided to cook.

I ended up cooking with my boyfriend, Michele.  We made shell pasta in a spicy cream sauce with calamari (yum!) spinach tomatoes, roasted red pepper, garlic...should I continue? Needless to say it was amazing.  Don't forget that crispy garlic bread.

Couldn't imagine a better cure from too much math!

xoxo Rachel

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Happy Thnaksgiving

Made so much amazing food this past week.  I am not ready to get back to this campus lifestyle.

If only cooking school was actually a possibility, then I would be a happy girl.



Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Monday, October 31, 2011

Lemon Biscotti

What to make for Halloween?

Well anyways, I made some lemon biscotti this weekend with the following recipe! IT was very good.  I made a few slight changes that i have changed below!

 Luscious Lemon  Biscotti (slightly changed from recipe on
1/4 cup light olive oil

3/4 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons lemon zest
juice from 1 1/2 lemons
2 eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/4 cups (6-ounce) bar premium white chocolate, chopped

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. In a large bowl, mix together oil and sugar until well blended. mix in the vanilla and lemon extracts and zest, then beat in the eggs. Combine flour, salt, and baking powder; gradually stir into egg mixture.
Divide dough in half. Form two logs (12x2 inches) on a cookie sheet that has been lined with parchment paper. Dough will be very sticky; wet hands with cool water to handle dough more easily.
Bake for 35 minutes in the preheated oven, or until logs are light brown. Remove from oven, and set aside to cool for 10 minutes. Reduce oven heat to 275 degrees F.
Cut logs on diagonal into 3/4 inch thick slices. Lay on sides on parchment covered cookie sheet. Bake approximately 8 to 10 minutes, or until dry; cool.
Meanwhile, melt the white chocolate in a double boiler or using your preferred method. Mix in juice from half a lemon.  When the biscotti is cool, dip, spread, or drizzle white chocolate and allow the cookies to dry on a cookie sheet before storing in an air tight container.

slightly changed but the recipe came from

Friday, October 21, 2011

Dinner for Two at Zeppli's

My lovely boyfriend took me on a date to Zeppoli's tonight.  This hard to find little place is quietly tucked away in the streets on Blacksburg right near the Math Emporium.

I had a pasta dish with Chicken and Marsala sauce.  It was ok, the sauce was nice but the chicken dry and overcooked.  My boyfriend, Mic, had the combination platter for Vegetarians.  He too thought it was just okay.  Maybe we got the wrong dish.  But, I would rather cook myself.


Monday, October 17, 2011

Wish I could cook...

Went back home this past weekend and got to bake my famous chocolate cake with a twist of raspberry jam and beautiful fresh raspberries!  Also made a pasta recipe from my neighbors and it was perfect! Too much fun and enjoyment and now I'm back to school food! Although it is not bad, I still miss my cooking.

What restaurant should I try this weekend? I was hoping to try Zeppoli's near the math emporium or maybe even try a new healthy recipe.  Any ideas?


Wednesday, October 12, 2011


Cannot wait to go home, cook, and have some delicious chocolate in a cup.  Also have a little Mill and Mountain before I leave.  What a surprise tomorrow will be.

have a great weekend!

xoxo Rachel

Monday, October 10, 2011

Mill Mountain Coffee & Tea

I have just recently become addicted to Mill Mountain Coffee & Tea.  Their cappuccinos and mochas are to die for! I highly recommend going there for a visit.  And as a huge plus they are much cheaper than Starbucks and their coffee has a much deeper and richer flavor.  So save a little & enjoy the flavor!

xoxo Rachel

New blog!

Ciao to all!
I am a Freshman at Virginia Tech and have always wanted to start a blog! So here I am :) I will put up recipes I make and places I have been and review them as follows.  

I love to cook and bake and am always looking for new recipes and places to go!

Hope you enjoy reading my blog 

xoxo rachel