A good day for making some sweets!

Oh man, today was wonderful!  If I could describe the perfect day, it would probably be pretty similar to the day I actually had!  We did have to do a few chores but we got them done relatively quickly and painlessly.  First off, was a trip to the grocery store.  Our Kroger here is always packed on the weekends…like, circle the parking lot several times then eventually give up, packed.  So we went at 9:30 am (which felt like 8:30 am) and it was empty!  Awesome!  Got all of our weekly groceries and were home by 10:30.  I went for a 10.25 mile run and my husband joined me for the first 4.5ish miles!  It felt really easy and I held a consistent 9:05/mile pace until the last 3.25 miles which were about 10-15 seconds per mile faster!  Then I had a snack and my husband and I walked a few miles around our neighborhood, picking up our weekly coffee beans along the way.  I also stopped by the local running store and got a pair of toe socks (I’m hoping these help with my between-the-toes rubbing issues).  Then we watched some television, took a quick nap, and made an awesome dinner!  I’ll tell you about our dinner later this week, but the dessert was just as good as the dinner itself.  I wanted to try something else with the endive I bought last weekend and, besides a few small spots, it still looked and felt fresh enough for consumption!  I found this recipe and it seemed really easy and something I never would have thought of myself.  This dish came from My Columbian Recipes.  This dessert was really unique and amazing!

Here is my very slight adaptation to the original recipe of Endive with Herbed Cream Cheese and Caramelized Apples

I have made caramelized apples several times before and they make an excellent dessert by themselve!.  Like apple pie or apple cobbler filling!

Ingredients (for two):

2 heads of Belgian endive

Apple filling:

One apple (any kind you like)

1 Tbs butter (I used Land O’ Lakes, salted)

About 1 Tbs packed brown sugar

Dash of cinnamon

Herbed cream cheese:

Roughly 2-3oz. cream cheese (I used Philadelphia brand)

1 Tbs freshly chopped scallions

Dash of dried basil

A few leaves of fresh parsley (from my herb garden!)

Directions:

1.  Melt butter over medium heat in a small frying pan.

2.  Add peeled and chopped apple (as big or as small chunks as you like) and stir continuously.

3.  Let apples begin to soften.

4.  Add brown sugar and cinnamon and continue stirring until brown sugar caramelizes.

5.  While apples are cooking, add herbs to cream cheese and let soften slightly.

6.  Wash endive and peel off individual leaves (I removed the outermost layer and only used the next few layers containing the largest leaves).

7.  Spread the herbed cream cheese into the cups formed by individual endive leaves.

8.  Pour warm caramelized apples onto herbed cream cheese.

9.  Eat immediately.

These hit the spot!

As my husband said, “This is REALLY good!”.  It was a nice dessert that wasn’t too sweet or too savory but still managed to satisfy my out-of-control sweet tooth!

I also made some maple pecans today.  I didn’t get a picture because they were eaten too quickly.  I took about a half cup of raw pecan halves, added about a tablespoon of real maple syrup (no Mrs. Butterworth here) and a dash of cinnamon.  I then baked them at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 8-10 minutes, removing once to stir.  You could add more maple syrup if you want them sweeter, but I liked them just the way they were.  I should probably lay off the sugar now.

Dinner was followed by some Gears of War 3 (awesome Xbox game!) and some guitar practicing!  Now it’s time to relax a bit before bed!  Goodnight!

Happy eating!

-c

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