Tasty Thursday: One Pan, Two Plates Review

It’s that time of the week to discuss what we’ve been eating. When I sat down to start writing, I realized that everything we ate came from our favorite cookbook – One Pan, Two Plates by Carla Snyder.


We were introduced to this cookbook at Christmas when at my brother-in-law’s house. He and his wife loved it and we tried a few recipes from there, then Christmas rolled around and opened our gift – they had gotten us the book. I’ve been raving about it to friends and family ever since.

Continue reading “Tasty Thursday: One Pan, Two Plates Review”

Tasty Thursday: Baking Adventures and Mediterranean Flavors

So I admit that we’ve been eating out a bit more than I’d like to and leftovers have lasted a few more days than I anticipated. We also grilled a meal this week with friends, steak, it was delicious, but doesn’t really go towards the count. But I made a loaf of bread in the last week and admittedly it is the best photo I took of our food from this week.

Freshly baked.

A post shared by Jessica Hall (@jessicanicolehall) on

Continue reading “Tasty Thursday: Baking Adventures and Mediterranean Flavors”

Tasty Thursday: Our Food Challenge

We recently moved back to Fort Huachuca where we lived right after we got married. During the few months we were here then I didn’t repeat a dinner once (that we can remember, there were probably a few repeats but very few). So we decided to try it again.

My Pinterest boards are bursting with ideas, and I don’t have a commute to cut into cooking time, so that extra time is going right to food planning and cooking! Now, we realize that the next few months that we are here it is likely that we will repeat a meal, but we are keeping a food journal and came up with a few rules. The rules are: Continue reading “Tasty Thursday: Our Food Challenge”

My latest food obsession: Goldbely

Thanks to one of my favorite sites Brit + Co. I discovered Goldbely. The site offers regional favorites from across the U.S. to your day the next day, and as someone that lives far away from some of my favorite foods (both from Arizona and New York), this is a fantastic idea! And it lowers the cost a bit (I’ll explain).

So when I discovered that my husband’s all-time favorite food, I knew I had to buy them for his birthday. And…well, let’s just say: Best. Birthday. Present. Ever.

Maryland Crabs via Goldbely | More Than a Military Spouse
Maryland Crabs. Photo by Jessica Hall.

Continue reading “My latest food obsession: Goldbely”

Baking Bread: Challah

I have a confession to make: I am newly obsessed with making my own bread. It started last month when I caved in to years of prodding from James about it. On principal I had avoided baking bread because of the time it takes. Waiting for it to rise. And rise again. It’s a pain. I would make quick breads like banana and zucchini breads, which totally aren’t fast since they bake for A LONG TIME, but that’s besides the point, they don’t require rising, hence quick. Anyway, that is besides the point…I finally decided to face my fear.

I first made this french bread recipe from Our Best Bites. It was simple and ended up delicious. It was a basic bread, James said it could be a tad saltier. But all in all it was good. We used it for sandwiches, toast, and garlic bread. I enjoyed it…and forgot to take a photo.

But then I made my all-time favorite bread, and one that I have trouble finding a good one at all times of the year in Washington (except Trader Joe’s): Challah. The Jewish egg bread is SO GOOD. Seriously beyond versatile. You can make sandwiches, french toast, etc, etc, etc. It’s the best bread ever. I scoured the web over and over to find the perfect recipe. After looking at a lot, I settled on making some edits to a chocolate chip challah that I made (well helped make) with one of my best friends Anna a few years ago.

It turned out great! I will probably never buy challah again. For reals. Just look at how pretty it is! (And giant.)

http://instagram.com/p/bM67O-o6Cd/ Continue reading “Baking Bread: Challah”

Homemade Pretzel Bites

I have a blog post in the works that discusses my disdain for baking bread and my recent conversion to loving it, but I made these pretzel bites for a birthday party this past weekend and had to blog about them ASAP.

The party was German themed and my mind immediately went to pretzels. I remember seeing a few pins on Pinterest so started there for inspiration. I decided to use a recipe from Our Best Bites, a blog that I love and have had great luck with their recipes in the past. Here’s a sneak peek at the final result:

Pretzel bites

A post shared by Jessica Hall (@jessicanicolehall) on

Continue reading “Homemade Pretzel Bites”

The Perfect Strawberry Sauce

I am a huge fan of strawberries. Well all berries, but especially strawberries. So when I saw them on sale (I think 2/$5) the other day at the grocery store I snagged up 2 pints. Why I thought that these early strawberries would last awhile I’m not sure. So when they started to go a bit soft, my husband suggested to make something out of them before they went really bad. My hunt started on what I had already pinned, then to my favorite blogs for more inspiration. That is when I found THE recipe on Our Best Bites.

The completed sauce
The completed sauce. Photo by Jessica Hall

Continue reading “The Perfect Strawberry Sauce”

Baking Cakes in Jars

Note: This is repurposed from my old blog. New food/drink ideas coming soon! Gotta upload images from my camera and find time to cook!

When James was deployed I got a request to bake cake-in-a-jar, one of his soldiers had received a few so I thought I would give it a shot. I will say that I did buy big jars which resulted in me having to make the whole cake recipe in two parts (since I thought I would just half it to fill them, alas nope). So definitely take jar size into account when deciding how much to make of a recipe. Fortunately it was a simple recipe so it didn’t take too long to whip up another batch.

Overall it was simple, here’s how to get tasty cakes in a jar!

The final product

Continue reading “Baking Cakes in Jars”

Tips for Cooking for One

Last week I talked about deployment and how living alone can have its pluses. One of the major downsides though: cooking for one person. The absence of one person who eats  a bit more than me is a big deal, I think it took me months to get used to cooking for both of us, and having leftovers galore for lunch for both of us. And then boom, back to cooking for one! Here are my tried and true tricks:

Egg Salad, my go-to recipe for cooking for one

Continue reading “Tips for Cooking for One”