Tuesday, June 19, 2012


After a lot of deliberation, a lot of procrastination, pestering my friends for advice, and then more deliberation, Half-Baked Housewife is getting a new name, a new look, and a new home. 



  [haf-beykt, hahf-]  Show IPA
insufficiently cooked.
not completed; insufficiently planned or prepared: a half-baked proposal for tax reform.
lacking mature judgment or experience; unrealistic.


I chose the original name to reflect my, um, laissez-fare approach to housekeeping. And for some reason, I totally underestimated how many people would assume it was a stoner reference. For the record: I don't smoke. This isn't a pot blog. And the only thing hidden in my brownies are Oreo cookies.

Seriously, though, I found that some people were shying away from cross-promotions because of the name. As someone who wears ripped pajamas to take the trash out to the curb, I was surprised that I actually gave a crap about what people thought -- but I do. So it's changing.

From today on, you can find all the HBH recipes -- and lots of new ones -- at Mom on a Wire.

I love the new name because it ties together the crazy balancing act of having two toddlers and running two businesses from home, while still trying to feed my family something semi-healthy every night and maybe occasionally attempt one of the 120923710293 projects I've pinned on Pinterest. 

There are also a lot of book reviews on the new site, because I've inexplicably decided I need to read more.

While I won't be updating this site, I'm leaving it up -- there are hundreds of pins linking to it on Pinterest, and dead links just bum me out. You have no idea how giddy I get when someone pins one of my recipes, so as a thank-you, the adobo pulled pork and all its friends will live on :)

One last favor: Can you like my new page on Facebook? Okay, now we're officially besties.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

RECIPE: Mexican Pulled Pork in the Slow Cooker

I think it's pretty well-documented that I'm addicted to pulled pork. So, without further ado, here's another way to make pulled pork! This time it's Mexican -- just in time for Cinco de Mayo if, like me, you're probably going to spend Cinco de Mayo eating nachos on the couch while watching Tosh reruns.

By the way, this recipe was a uniting force after this weekend's sweet potato war. Hubby and I both agreed that this recipe was a winner: "One of your best of all time," he declared.

You'll need:

  • 1 lb. boneless pork loin
  • 1/8 cup lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp Goya Salsita (or any green chile sauce)
  • 1 tsp Mrs. Dash's fiesta lime seasoning*
  • 1 tsp Papa Joe's salt
  • 1 tsp ground cilantro
  • 15 oz. can of diced tomatoes

Throw it all in the slow cooker. Cook on LOW for 8 hours. Shred it up and enjoy! I served it with a mix of corn, black beans, and fresh avocado with a few shakes of chili powder and Papa Joe's mixed in. Feliz Cinco! :)

* SUBSTITUTE: a few heavy shakes each of chili pepper, paprika, cumin and cayenne
** SUBSTITUTE: a few heavy shakes each of sea salt, ground black pepper, and garlic powder

Monday, April 30, 2012

RECIPE: Sweet Potato with Ham, Black Beans, Pineapple, and Swiss Chard Cheese Sauce (Jeez, is that title long enough?!)

"A house divided against itself cannot stand." -- Abe Lincoln 

Maybe Abe was talking about Swiss chard? Because the leafy green turned out to be extremely divisive at the dinner table last night. By which I mean I loved it, and hubby hated it.

It started with a LivingSocial deal for Suburban Organics. Basically, Suburban Organics will ship fresh organic fruits and veggies to your door. I have trouble resisting group buys to begin with, and I love getting mail, and I love eating, and I love when things are marketed as organic or local or free trade or any other feel-good words. So hellz yeah I was getting this deal.

My box arrived a few days ago, and it contained some old faves (avocado! bananas! a medium-sized grapefruit!) but it also contained Swiss chard, which I couldn't have picked out of a veggie lineup. I posted a plea for recipes on my Facebook page. Suburban Organics was cool enough to link me to a few recipes on their site, but their recipes were a bit too...well, straight-up chard. As a chard virgin, I felt more comfortable mixing the chard with a bunch of other ingredients.

Enter Brianne at Cupcakes and Kale Chips, a.k.a. my aforementioned former foodie roommate. She sent me a very complicated recipe for Mexican sweet potatoes. I dumbed it down big-time and added ham (I needed the bone for split pea soup this week). And it was nothing short of amazeballs.

Except hubby heartily disagrees with me. His exact quote was, "Eww, what's that smell?" followed by several affirmations that it tasted as bad as it smelled, and finally, the helpful suggestion, "Don't ever cook chard again."

Me? I LOVED IT. So tasty. There were, like 17 unique and delicious flavors going on in my mouth, and it was still delicious. Imagine throwing a party and inviting your work friends, your college friends, your gardening-club friends, and your Civil War reenactment friends and everyone miraculously gets along.

Anyway. You have to be your own judge, but I thought it was awesome. (P.S. I was also directed to this tasty-looking recipe at Smitten Kitchen, but went with the Mexican recipe because I had already eaten half a brick of havarti and figured an au gratin might not be the best idea for dinner. But I'm putting it in the mental database -- clearly, for a night hubby's not home!)

You'll need:

  • sweet potatoes (I made three)
  • Swiss chard (I used four big leaves or stalks or whatever they're called)
  • olive oil
  • Papa Joe's salt
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 15-oz. can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 Tbsp lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 1 cup canned pineapple chunks, drained
  • 1 tsp ground cilantro
  • 1 cup diced ham

STEP 1: Stab the sweet potatoes with a fork a few times, and cook them in the microwave on HIGH for about 10 minutes.

STEP 2: Rub some olive oil on a pan. Chop up the Swiss chard (I found a helpful tutorial here) and heat it in a pan with the garlic and a few shakes of Papa Joe's salt (or a mix of sea salt and black pepper).

STEP 3: In a bowl, mix the red pepper, black beans, pineapple, chili powder, cumin, cilantro, ham, and and lime juice.

STEP 4: The chard should be pretty soft now. Add the cheese and milk to the pan until melted, then puree the whole shebang in a food processor.

(No, seriously, this is the dumbed-down version! I am telling you, my friend is nuts in the kitchen.)

STEP 5: Cut open a sweet potato, scoop in some salsa, and pour a little bit of the cheesy chard sauce on top.

STEP 6: Ignore husband who clearly has no taste buds.

STEP 7: Steal hubby's rejected cheesy chard sauce and mix it into your eggs the next morning. OM NOM NOM all over again.

Thanks for the recipe, Brianne!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

RECIPE: S'mores Pops!

I'm feeling snackish today. Maybe it's because the last of the Easter candy finally ran out. I could literally eat a baker's dozen of these s'mores pops right now. (But I won't. Really. I won't.)

You may remember my recipe for portable s'mores from a little while ago, which was inspired by my love of campfire food and my fear of forest fires. These s'mores pops are inspired by both of the above, plus:

  • my annoyance with hauling my butt all the way to Joann Fabrics for melting chocolate every time I want to make something chocolate-covered;
  • several unsuccessful attempts at making cake pops. In fairness to myself, "unsuccessful" is a bit too harsh. I mean, no matter how fugly they were, they were still chocolate-dipped cupcakes. But they weren't adorable like cake pops are supposed to be;
  • a surplus of popsicle sticks;
  • an unexplainable competitive streak which made me determined to bring the cutest dessert of anyone at our most recent family gathering, nyah nyah nyah.

To get past the melting chocolate problem, I used my husband's oil trick from our recent chocolate-covered pretzel cookoff. See step 3.

You'll need:

  • a bag of marshmallows
  • a bag of chocolate chips (I used the Nestle minis)
  • about eight whole graham crackers
  • popsicle sticks
  • 2 tsp. vegetable oil
  • wax paper

STEP 1: Crush the graham crackers in a bowl.

STEP 2: Put a sheet of wax paper on a cutting board or plate.

STEP 3: Put the chocolate chips in a bowl and microwave on 50% power for 30 seconds. Stir, then microwave on 50% power for 15 seconds. Stir. Repeat in 15-second intervals until the chocolate starts to melt. Mix in 2 light teaspoons of vegetable oil and stir vigorously* until all the chocolate is still thick and goopy, but completely melted.

STEP 4: Hold a marshmallow by the edge and dip into the chocolate, followed by the crushed graham crackers. Lay the marshmallow "clean"-side down on a sheet of wax paper. Keep going until all the marshmallows are coated.

STEP 5: Put the marshmallows in the fridge for 15-20 minutes to set the chocolate.

STEP 6: Take the marshmallows back out and poke 'em with the popsicle sticks.

STEP 7: Do your cute little presentation thing, to really drive home to point of how awesome you are. I got these glass jars at Target for $5 and wrapped them with cheapo ribbon from Joann Fabrics -- clearly I can't escape that store even when I try.


* Kind of a favorite word of mine right now.

This recipe was featured on...
my foodgawker gallery
Perfect timing...I'm adding this recipe to the S'mores Week Roundup at CookiesAndCups.com!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

RECIPE: Baked Barbecue Tofu

Tofu is a weird food. The words "bean curd" freak me out, to be honest. I mean...is it curdled soy milk? I don't actually know the answer, and I've never Googled it because I don't want to know. Just in case I'm right.

The first time I tried tofu was at a Whole Foods near my old office. They had chipotle-lime tofu in the salad bar, and compared with the rest of the lunch options at Whole Paycheck, tofu had one distinct advantage -- the salad bar charges by the pounds, and tofu doesn't weigh much. I mean, a pound of tofu is the size of a brick. (Unlike tomatoes and watermelons, which are pretty much the biggest salad bar rip-offs ever.)

But then I tried to make tofu at home, and to say it didn't go well would be an understatement. I bought a lump of tofu, chopped it up, threw it into a pan with some seasoning, and after about 20 minutes I had a pan full of what looked like spicy curdled milk. So, I resigned myself to the fact that Whole Foods was working black magic on their tofu and I'd have to keep paying them $5.99 a pound to do so.

I waited four whole years before trying again. Luckily, in the interim, someone had tipped me off to the secret of slicing the tofu into 1/2"-thick slabs and pressing it between several layers of paper towels to absorb all the moisture. Once I had that little trick in my wheelhouse, it was a whole different story.

Until now, we've mainly been sautéing tofu in a teriyaki sauce. But then I came across a few recipes for oven-roasted tofu and figured I'd give it a try -- mainly because the cook time was only 25 minutes, and I was working on taxes all day and had forgotten to cook anything. I went with a barbecue theme because, well, those were the ingredients I had in stock.

Verdict: Delicious and so much easier than sautéing!

You'll need:
  • 1 lb. extra firm tofu
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • a few shakes of Frank's Red Hot

STEP 1: Mix everything but the tofu in a bowl and stir vigorously. Once you add the tofu, you're going to need to be gentle, so now is the time to get your aggression out with the whisk.

STEP 2: After drying out the tofu per the instructions above*, toss it (gently! did I mention gently?) in the bowl with the sauce.

STEP 3: Line a baking sheet with tin foil, non-shiny side up, and spread the tofu out in an even, single layer.

STEP 4: Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes or until edges start to look golden-brown.

That's it! I served it with a broccoli-cauliflower Steamfresh packet and Alexia sweet potato waffle fries. Yum! Perfect summer meal (since it's apparently already summer here in the Northeast).

* I slaved over a bright computer all night** writing this post for you! Read the paragraphs!
** Okay, I was primarily wasting time on Facebook. And yes, I just footnoted a footnote. That has to be some sort of new literary device -- can we name it after me?

This recipe was featured on....

Sunday, April 15, 2012

RECIPE: Slow Cooker Spicy Adobo Pulled Pork

So, if you're following along, you know that I've basically spent the past week torturing my family's palates with spicy foods (well, except for the less-adventurous toddler, who's been eating a lot of rigatoni and apple slices). This was the last installment of my self-proclaimed Spicy Food Week. It definitely has a kick, which you can mellow out by using less adobo sauce*.

You'll need:

  • 1-2 lbs. pork
  • 1 can chicken broth
  • 1 can of Goya chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 Tbsp ground cumin

Throw everything into the slow cooker and stir it around a bit. I plucked the peppers out after stirring, because I hate the soggy texture of canned peppers -- but pluck them out after you stir, because otherwise you'll waste a lot of sauce. (The chicken broth sort of "rinses" the sauce off the pepper. That's the best way I can explain it.) Cook on low for 6-8 hours.

I served it with a sliced avocado and Goya rice with pigeon peas**, but it would be the perfect meat for burritos, quesadillas, enchiladas, fajitas, or taco night***.

*This tip has been brought to you by Chef Obvious.

** One of those boxed mixes. I don't know what pigeon peas are, and I certainly don't cook with them of my own accord.

*** Have I forgotten any delicious uses for tortillas?

Thursday, April 12, 2012

RECIPE: Spicy Buffalo Chicken Dip

I know, buffalo chicken dip recipes are a dime a dozen. But this one is particularly simple, spicy, semi-healthy, and super-delicious...if I do say so myself. And I do. I'll put my money where my mouth is on this dip. Or actually, I'll put this dip where my mouth is, repeatedly, until the bowl is empty.

I think I got a little lost in that metaphor. And I made myself hungry.

Anyway, check out this bowl o' yum!

You'll need:
  • (3) 5-oz. cans of shredded chicken*
  • 4 oz. Philadelphia cream cheese**
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup Frank's Red Hot
  • 1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles
Mix it all in a bowl and microwave it for a minute or two, or put it in the oven at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes. Let it set for a minute or two before you start dipping. I like red peppers for dipping.***

* Or 2 cups of the real thing, but the canned stuff is shredded so nicely and I just don't have the patience.
** Well, any cream cheese will do, but I have to represent my home turf.
*** Not true. I like nachos. But let's pretend.