shortbread cookies three ways


shortbread-cookies_lenasktichenblog12Holiday baking at my house is in full swing. We are baking dozens of these shortbread cookies to give away to friends, family, teachers and coworkers. I love this time of the year when the weather outside is cold, but it’s nice and cozy inside. We wear our pajamas most of the day while playing christmas tunes and making the house smell great while baking. There is nothing better than the combination of butter, flour and sugar to make these easy cookies. But I figured why not elevate them a bit and make three different flavors this year, every bite will be special. (more…)

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strawberry-rhubarb muffins


strawberry rhubarb muffins_closeup

The weather in Portland has been so beautiful lately, which means the abundance of berries are starting to show up everywhere along with the bounty of rhubarb. So the perfect marriage of strawberry and rhubarb inspired this recipe for the tasty and moist muffins that will make your house smell just amazing. These are so simple to make and would be so fun to make with your kids. (more…)

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Cardamom, Blueberry, Cream Cheese Croissant French Toast Casserole


cadamom blueberry croissant french toast_lenaskitchenblog
My husband and I spent the evening last night in bed after we put the kids down watching funny videos and food videos on BuzzFeed, then woke up craving french toast for breakfast. I went to get the ingredients from my local Fred Meyers. I usually get Challah bread and make individual french toast, but this morning I wanted something a little more different so i got some mini croissants, cut them into smaller chunks, added chunks of softened cream cheese and had some frozen blueberries… add the custard and you have a party in your mouth. (more…)

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Vegan Strawberry + Avocado Smoothie


I’m working on a few recipe developments for Fred Meyers using Strawberries + Avocados. Excited to share this Vegan Strawberry + Avocado smoothie. I wanted to add some beautiful colors and super foods to make this a great morning pick me up. It’s a versatile smoothie to add to your recipe box by making two smoothies in one.

This smoothie uses avocado, frozen bananas and cashew milk for creaminess, raw almonds for texture, baby greens, hemp seeds, ground flax seed and bee pollen for extra superfood for the green part. Strawberries, banana, pomegranate juice, cashew milk and mint to add a natural sweetness to the pink part of the smoothie. Be creative and add your own personal touch to the smoothie when you put it together. I wanted to make sure to keep this smoothie vegan so it’s a healthier choice for you to enjoy.

strawberry-avocado smoothie_ingredients

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caramelized pear upside down cake


pear upside down cake
My kids didn’t have school today, so my daughter and I spend the morning doing some baking together. I bought some pears the other day and have been wanting to bake something. There is something so soothing about spending time in the kitchen for me, especially when my daughter comes to help me out. So we put together this super simple cake. It’s a perfect fall time recipe to intrigue your sweet tooth. (more…)

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Cheese, Quince Jam & Raisin Blinchiki


Blinchiki with Cheese and raisins
Ever since my sister and I were little I remember my mom making her delicious recipe for blinchiki or how some people like to call them crêpes or blintz. The sweet aroma that fills the air when she carefully stands at the stove and makes one after another… which sometimes doesn’t even make the plate that she puts it on since my sister or I would take it and eat it right there and there with nothing on it. So in honor or my mom’s birthday today I want to share her recipe for these delicious blini, but with my own twist. (more…)

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Join us for a Russian Underground Dinner Experience in our backyard. My mom and I will be sharing some of our favorite Russian/Ukrainian dishes with you.

Starters and drink included in your admission ticket :
Pirozki (fried dough filled with meat and potatoes)
Cheese spread with paprika and scallion served with lavash
Blini with sour cream, smoked salmon and red caviar
A glass of (alcoholic beverage) Wine, Russian beer or
(non-alcoholic beverage) Kvas or Kompot
*** These will be served family style and you will be able to enjoy each dish. (more…)


Strawberry Apricot Rhubarb Cobbler


strawberry.apricot.rhubarb cobbler_finalI’m loving these little dessert in a mason jar that I made last night for our after dinner dessert. I love being inspired by spring and all of the abundant produce we are having now at the markets. I stopped by on my way home to one of my favorite fresh markets called Krugers Farm to pick up some produce and got inspired by these beautiful berries and fruits that are available locally now. I’ve never tasted red apricots before until last night… they are sweet and tangy at the same time, which I thought would go so perfect with local strawberries and rhubarb for a cobbler. This recipe is so simple and I thought I would share it, if you wanted to make some for your next party or to enjoy at home. (more…)


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