Blackberry Crumble

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Did you know that September is the most popular birthday month? I missed it by 6 days (My birthday is August 26)… Bummer! McCormick didn’t miss the deadline, though. They’re celebrating their 125th birthday/anniversary on September 28th!

They’ve introduced a new version of vanilla extract to celebrate their birthday: Extra Rich Pure Vanilla Extract. The name says it all… it’s deep, flavorful, and rich. It’s twenty five percent stronger than the classic vanilla and is a mix between sweet caramel and bourbon-rummy flavors. Since vanilla extract is used in practically every dessert, it only makes sense to make it a bit stronger. Less is more, in this case!

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McCormick is also celebrating their birthday by giving back to communities around the world through stories and conversations about the importance of flavor in our lives through their Flavor of Together program. It’s a yearlong initiative to share 1.25 million stories about how flavor brings together people from around the world. For every story shared on McComick’s social sites and website, McCormick will donate $1 to United Way.

Come join the conversation at flavoroftogether.com or use the hashtag #flavorstory to help contribute to a wonderful cause!

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In elementary school, all I ever had was cake for my birthday. It was always an ice cream cake from our local ice cream chain store with lots of frosting and mini ice cream cones on the side. I LOVED it when I was little, but as I grew older, I realized that I didn’t really care for cake. There are so many other good desserts out there! Cake just seemed kind of… ordinary.

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For my latest birthday, I celebrated it with a peach and strawberry crumble. It was perfect– something sweet, but not too powerful, and felt just like home. Crumbles are something that I envision a grandma making for having her grandkids over. You know, something made when the sun is shining and the birds are chirping through the window.

I have no idea where I get these visions from. It’s just what crumbles to do me.

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They’re so easy to make, too. There’s no rolling out dough or cutting anything out. You simply lather one layer on top of another and bake away.

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Those butter slices kind of look like potato chips, don’t they?

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I had a lot of blackberries on hand from my end of summer haul and decided to use them to make a crumble in order to bring back birthday memories. It was everything that I hoped for and more.

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Seriously, it was perfect. Look at the beautiful color oozing out of the sides!blackberrycrumble-6

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The crumble on top was crispy, buttery, and crunchy.

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Thanks to McCormick, I’ve got a McCormick Anniversary Pack to give away to one lucky reader! It includes exclusive McCormick product, a McCormick recipe book, and a branded canvas tote. Enter in the rafflecopter below!

Blackberry Crumble

Ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh blackberries
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon McCormick’s Extra Rich Vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mash together the blackberries, sugar, vanilla, and lemon. Pour into shallow baking dish.
  3. In another bowl, mix together the oats, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and 1 tablespoon of the butter until coarse. Pour evenly on top of the blackberries.
  4. Cut the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter on top.
  5. Bake for 25 minutes. Serve warm.
http://lovintheoven.com/2014/09/blackberry-crumble.html

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This is a sponsored post, but the opinions expressed are my own.

Cinnamon Apple Oatmeal in a Rice Cooker

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Growing up in an Asian household, rice was a staple for every meal. It was even the first thing that I learned to make! My mom would call from work when I was in elementary school and ask us to make rice so that it would be ready by the time she got off of work. We used the finger method, never quite measuring the water to rice ratio. Once the water hit a certain spot on your finger, it was ready to cook.

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We only made rice in our rice cooker… nothing else. There was white rice, red rice, and sticky rice. Panasonic sent over an electronic rice cooker and gave me a challenge. I had to make breakfast using their rice cooker for their #RiseAndShine Better Breakfast Month Challenge!

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The cooker itself comes with a steaming tray. That’s brilliant! How come I never thought of that before? You could fill the rice cooker with water and then put your vegetables on top of the tray. Close the lid and let the vegetables cook.

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I’ve never owned a rice cooker that had more than one button. Usually, it’s just press down to cook and that’s it. I mean, it makes sense to have more buttons since brown rice takes longer than white rice to cook. For a more versatile rice cooker, you need to have more options. This does just that.
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I chose to make oatmeal. Steel cut oats, to be exact. I figured that since steel cut oats had to sit on the stove for a while to cook, a rice cooker would be just as efficient. I tossed the oats in with some liquids, spices, and apples.
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The finished product was a thick, fully cooked, flavorful, and chunky bowl of oats.

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The apples became really soft, so if you prefer a harder apple, toss in your chopped apples after the oatmeal is done cooking.

Now’s your chance to win your very own Panasonic Rice Cooker! All you have to do is enter using the Rafflecopter below. If you create your own #RiseAndShine meal and tweet the picture to @HomePanasonic and @kimberlywyn, you can earn bonus entries! This giveaway lasts for a week, so you better get on it quick! :)

Cinnamon Apple Oatmeal in a Rice Cooker

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup steel cut oats
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 2/3 cups almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 apple, finely chopped

Directions

  1. Mix together all ingredients in your rice cooker.
  2. Close the cover and press "porridge" to cook.
http://lovintheoven.com/2014/09/cinnamon-apple-oatmeal-rice-cooker.html

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This is a sponsored post, but the opinions expressed are my own.

Chicken Avocado Lime Soup

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I’ve never tried making soup on the stove before. I know, I know… it’s so simple. It’s just that I’m not that much of a cook. The Pampered Chef® sent over some of their Nourish bowls and the moment that I saw them, I knew soup was meant for the middle. 

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The Pampered Chef has teamed up with Feeding America® through The Pampered Chef’s Round-Up From the Heart® campaign. Did you know that 1 in 6 Americans face hunger? It’s an issue that is easily looked over, yet affects so many of us today.

According to Google, nourish means to “provide with the food or other substances necessary for growth, health, and good condition.” The word “nourish” is fitting for these bowls because $2 from every bowl bought goes to Feeding America, which provides 18 meals for those in need. The thing that I love most about Round-Up From the Heart is that the funds collected are used in the community where the donations came from. You get to support your local community through this campaign by buying your own Nourish bowl here (I have four!).

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This soup is easily made in half an hour. I had no idea that this much flavor could come from so few ingredients. I was afraid that the soup would be bland, but the jalapenos and lime came together beautifully. I liked the level of spiciness from adding the whole jalapeno, seeds and all.

I used Pampered Chef’s 1 cup prep bowls to place all of my chopped cilantro, tomatoes, green onions, jalapenos, and lime juice. It made cooking a breeze. Everything was prepared ahead of time and all I had to do was toss them in at the right time. Make sure your pot is big enough to hold all of that liquid. I’d recommend using the Rockcrok Dutch Oven since it has a lid as well.

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I chopped up my chicken prior to throwing them in the pot to cook, but I think shredding them would have been better. Either way, it doesn’t matter. Recipe from Cooking Classy.

Chicken Avocado Lime Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts (I used 4)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped green onions, including the whites
  • 2 jalapeños, minced (leave seeds if you want soup spicy, omit if you don't like heat)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 (14.5 oz) cans low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
  • 3 Tbsp fresh lime juice (I used one whole lime)
  • 3 medium avocados, peeled, cored and diced
  • Tortilla chips, shredded cheese, sour cream for serving (optional)

Directions

  1. In a large pot heat 1 Tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Once hot, add green onions and jalapenos and saute until tender, about 2 minutes, adding garlic during last 30 seconds of sauteing.
  2. Add chicken broth, tomatoes, cumin, season with salt and pepper to taste and add chicken breasts.
  3. Bring mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Then reduce heat to medium, cover with lid and allow to cook, stirring occasionally, until chicken has cooked through 10 - 15 minutes (cook time will vary based on thickness of chicken breasts).
  4. Reduce burner to warm heat, remove chicken from pan and let rest on a cutting board 5 minutes, then shred chicken and return to soup. Stir in cilantro and lime juice.
  5. Add avocados to soup just before serving (if you don't plan on serving the soup right away, I would recommend adding the avocados to each bowl individually, about 1/2 an avocado per serving).
  6. Serve with tortilla chips, cheese and sour cream if desired.
http://lovintheoven.com/2014/09/chicken-avocado-lime-soup.html

  This is a sponsored post, but the opinions expressed are my own.