Shark Week Cookies

nautical themed cookie cutters and freshly refrigerated dough
nautical themed cookie cutters and freshly refrigerated dough

My sister and I are mildly obsessed with shark week. And by mildly obsessed I really mean extremely obsessed, it’s slightly embarrassing. But I mean, it really should be a national holiday week, just sayin. Every year we take a day out of the week to bake some Shark Week inspired treats to share with friends while watching. Last year we made adorable cupcakes with fins sticking out (seen below). This year we opted for some nautical themed sugar cookies – although we didn’t actually have a shark cookie cutter, I think they came out pretty cute!

last year's Shark Week cupcakes - as admired by my dog Buster!
last year’s Shark Week cupcakes – as admired by my dog Buster!

To make the sugar cookies we followed the below recipe (note we only made half the recipe and it made around 20/25 large cookies) :

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups butter , softened

2 cups white sugar

4 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

5 cups all-purpose flower

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

Directions:

Combine the butter and sugar together in a bowl. Add in the eggs and vanilla until mixed throughout.

Mix together all the dry ingredients in a separate bowl. Then, slowly begin adding the dry mix to the butter mixture until fully incorporated.

At this point I recommend putting the batter in the fridge for a couple hours. Although this is not necessary, it will make the batter easier to work with when you go to cut out all your shapes!

Once your batter is ready, roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface (We used a cutting board for easier clean up!) At this point, start to preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Lightly flower the surface so that your cookies don't stick!
Lightly flour the surface so that your cookies don’t stick! We ended up using quite a bit of flower as out dough was particularly sticky.

Roll out the dough to your desired thickness. We did ours rather thin so they would cook and cool quickly. Next up, cut your dough in whatever shapes you like! These are great cookies to make for any occasion or around christmas time. You can decorate them with a group to go with any theme!

cutting cookies and watching shark week - Livin the Dream!
cutting cookies and watching shark week – Livin the Dream!

Once you have all your cookies ready to bake – put them in the oven for 8 – 12 minutes (depending on thickness). I have found it best to set the timer shorter than you think, and check on them every minute or two after 6 minutes. You want the bottoms of the cookies to be brown – but once the entire cookie looks brown they are usually a little overdone!

ready to bake!
ready to bake!

While your cookies are baking or cooling start working on the frosting. I don’t have a specific recipe for the frosting but essentially what we did is added a tablespoon of vanilla extract, half a bag of powdered sugar, and then some almond milk (prob around 1/4 cup) until we got the frosting to the consistency we wanted. (you can use whatever milk you prefer). We opted to have our frosting on the thicker side so it wasn’t watery when we went to frost the cookies. To fit in with the theme we also dyed our frosting blue!

Frosting in progress!
Frosting in progress! Simply mix powdered sugar, milk, and a tablespoon of vanilla extract to your desired thickness. So easy and so yummy!

Once our cookies were cooled (around 15 mins after coming out of the oven) we added our frosting and topped them off with some sprinkles! Now its time to enjoy the cookies and watch some sharks!

Final Product!
Final Product!

I hope you enjoyed the post and more importantly tune in to Shark Week!

xxoo Melissa

Breakfast of Champions – Spanakopita Inspired Scramble

My sister recently had a couple friends over for a little Greek BBQ. On our trip to Greece last year we took a cooking class with Eleni (see link at the end of the post for some of her other recipes) and have been pretty much obsessed with the food since. Anyways, we made spinach pies (or Spanakopita) and we ended up with a LOT of left over filling. Rather than wasting it all, we decided to freeze it and the next morning I used some for this delish scramble.

Finished Product: Spanakopita scrambled eggs with turkey bacon and wheat toast
Finished Product: Spanakopita scrambled eggs with turkey bacon and wheat toast

First – Spanakopita Filling:

To Make the spinach filling you will need (this can be scaled down to make a smaller batch):

2 lbs of fresh spinach
2 large leeks
2 green onions, sliced
1/2 cups olive oil.
1/2 cup cut up fresh dill
1/2 pound Greek feta cheese
4 eggs lightly beaten eggs

1) Chop the spinach, leeks, green onions and dill

2) Put the spinach, leeks,  green onions, and dill in a large mixing bowl. Add the olive oil, salt and pepper, and begin to “knead” the mixture until all the spinach has been broken down and is wilted.

3) Add the feta cheese and lightly beaten eggs. Mix everything together to create a uniform filling. Put the mixture aside.

4) Heat up a skillet and place the spinach mixture in the pan to begin sauteing everything.

Spinach mixture as we begin to saute
Spinach mixture as we begin to saute

Second – Adding Eggs and Tomato:

5) If you like, add a couple of small cut up cherry tomatoes (you can also dice a normal tomato)

6) Add your beaten eggs to the pan and scramble as they cook. I used 2 beaten eggs.

Spinach mixture cooking in with the eggs and tomatoes.
Spinach mixture cooking in with the eggs and tomatoes.

7)  Continue fold the eggs until the spinach is mixed in and the eggs are completely cooked.

8) Place your cooked eggs on your plate and sprinkle with some additional feta cheese! For a little extra spice add your favorite hot sauce :).

9) Add any additional items you would like to complete the meal – for example, I used turkey bacon and a piece of wheat toast. You could also add a fresh fruit salad or homemade potato hash!

I love this recipe and think it is a unique way to use leftovers. You can easily replicate this with a variety of leftovers. Who doesn’t love a delicious egg scramble filled with flavor – feel free to get creative!

I hope you enjoyed the post and are inspired to try out some new food!

Finished Product! Leftover Spanakopita Scramble
Finished Product! Leftover Spanakopita Scramble

See some of Eleni’s other recepies here: http://www.cookwitheleni.com/index.htm

xxoo Melissa