Thursday Link Rodeo

Forget a roundup – this here is a link rodeo! It’s a collection of cool/exciting/delicious food news, recipes, and more that we’ve encountered recently. Yeehaw. Or something. 



1. Dinner in a Pumpkin? I’m there! Via The Mother Huddle.
2. It’s official. Wasabi Ginger Will Be the Next Lays Potato Chip Flavor. From Yahoo Food.
3. Easy peasy. This Graphic Shows How To Pair Ingredients for More Flavorful Salads. From LifeHacker.
4. Don’t Make the Mistakes I Made When Roasting a Pumpkin. From The Kitchn.
5. Oooooh, sounds dangerous! The Autumn Russian a la Kitchen Meets Girl.

Fast & Easy “Thai” Chicken Pasta


This is totally a cheater recipe – best for days where you’re craving something peanuty and kind of sweet, but are super rushed and not to be bothered with things like “authenticity.”

I made this last week in a last ditch effort to get something in my belly before passing out from sheer exhaustion and it totally hit the spot.

Be warned – it really is an extremely simplified version of Thai peanut sauce – so if you’ve got a specific flavor/texture in mind, you’ll want to pass this up. BUT, if you just crave something Thai peanut sauce-esque and are desperate for your fix RIGHT NOW, this is a pretty yummy substitute.


Hope you enjoy!

Fast & Easy "Thai" Chicken Pasta
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4 servings
  • ½ cup hoisin sauce
  • ½ cup smooth peanut butter
  • 1½ Tablespoons minced Ginger
  • 1 Tablespoon Sriracha
  • 2 Tablespoons warm water
  • 2 cooked & shredded chicken breasts
  • 1 box pasta of your choice (flat noodles work great, but I used penne here)
  • Cilantro (optional)
  • Sliced green onions (optional)
  • Lime juice (optional)
  1. Whisk together hoisin, peanut butter, ginger, Sriracha, and water until well combined. (If sauce is too thick for your liking, whisk in more warm water OR a little heavy cream if you're feeling adventurous).
  2. Toss with pasta and chicken.
  3. Garnish with cilantro & green onions.
  4. Add a little squirt of fresh lime juice.
  5. Enjoy!


Pumpkin Spice Rice Crispy Treats

Pumpkin Spice Rice Crispy Treats

I’ve been craving Rice Crispy Treats for a while now, and honestly I don’t think I would ever turn them down.

pumpkin spice rice cripsy treats 1


This week though, with Autumn upon us, I knew I wanted to add a little twist.

pumpkin spice rice cripsy treats 3

I found the Pumpkin Spice marshmallows in my grocery store and thought, “Perfect!”

These treats couldn’t have been any easier or quicker.

pumpkin spice rice cripsy treats 2

I highly suggest whipping these up for a snack, a dessert, or for bringing to any get-together in the Fall and Winter seasons.

Pumpkin Spice Rice Crispy Treats
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 9 squares
  • 3 tablespoons salted butter
  • 10 ounces Pumpkin Spice Marshmallows
  • 6 cups puffed rice cereal
  1. Melt the butter in a medium sized pot over medium head.
  2. Add the marshmallows and stir continuously until completely melted and remove from heat.
  3. Add the puffed rice cereal and stir until combined.
  4. Transfer mixture into a large buttered/greased glass baking dish and spread evenly, pressing down with a greased spatula.
  5. Cover the dish and refrigerate for 1-2 hours until chilled.
  6. Cut into squares of desired size and enjoy!



Thursday Link Rodeo

Forget a roundup – this here is a link rodeo! It’s a collection of cool/exciting/delicious food news, recipes, and more that we’ve encountered recently. Yeehaw. Or something. 

(Image from Yahoo Food)

(Image from Yahoo Food)

1. Oh My Bao. Field guide to Chinese Pastries. Via Serious Eats.
2. Pro-tip, don’t try and catch hot falling cake pans with your bare hands. 24 Ways to Stay Safe in the Kitchen. From Epicurious.
3. Tis the season! 16 Ways to Cook and Bake with Apple Cider. From Yahoo Food.
4. Forget those boring gourds. 5 Other Things to Carve and Light This Halloween. From Apartment Therapy.
5. The weather is FINALLY getting cooler! Cozy up with 30 Fall Soup Recipes from Cooking Classy.

Halloween Party Goodies

In need of some ideas for your impending Halloween par-tay? Look no further! Here are recipes from the Qwerty cafe crew that should work nicely for you!

Vampire Repellent (garlic devilled eggs) are a great appetizer (from Brie)


Maybe Homemade Corn Dogs are more your style? (From me, Cat)


Queso Blanco and chips make for another tasty option (from Brandie)


You’ll want to wash that all down with something. Maybe Alcohol-Free Peach Bellinis? (Handsome boyfriend not included. Recipe from Cat)


Or if you want something with a kick, how about the Brie-tini (Green Tea Mojito)? (From Cat)


And don’t forget the purrrrfect dessert - Pumpkin Whoopie Pies (a la Brandie)


There’s also always Chocolate Mousse Cake. Because Chocolate. And Mousse. And Cake.  (From Brie)


Hope these recipe ideas help. Happy planning!

Mac and Chili Cheese Tater Tot Casserole

Mac and Chili Cheese Tater Tot Casserole

I threw this quick dinner together a few nights ago without realizing just how delicious it was going to turn out.

mac and chili chesse tater tot casserole

This casserole was incredibly tasty, very filling, cheap, and above all, super easy.

I highly recommend trying this any night of the week.

Mac and Chili Cheese Tater Tot Casserole
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4 servings
  • 1 box Macaroni and Cheese
  • 1 can chili
  • Frozen tater tots, enough to cover the casserole
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Prepare the macaroni and cheese according to the boxes direction and mix in the can of chili.
  3. Spread the mac and chili cheese mixture into a large glass baking dish on top of which arrange the frozen tater tots in rows.
  4. Place the casserole in the preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes.
  5. Remove and sprinkle the top evenly with cheese, and return to the oven for another 10 minutes.
  6. Serve warm


Thursday’s Link Rodeo

Welcome to our Link Rodeo! It’s roundup of cool/exciting/delicious food news, recipes, and more that we’ve encountered recently. Hope you enjoy!

Full disclosure: I am totally obsessed with pumpkin right now. Can you blame me?


(Image from

1. From our own ridiculously-talented-and-actually-trained-in-this-stuff-Brandie, we’ve got Pumpkin Whoopie Pies (and golly, are they good!)
2. Here’s a tasty-looking Apple Pumpkin Bundt cake from Julia’s Album.
3. How about some Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls from Smitten Kitchen?
4. Perhaps a Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Cookie a la The Kitchn?
5. There’s always Pumpkin Pancakes to start your morning via My Baking Addiction.

Favorite Food Blogs

In case you hadn’t noticed, we’re sort of fond of eating around here. We love learning about it even more. The following are a few of the food blogs in the reading rotation here at Qwerty Cafe.

Food Wishes with Chef John

Besides delicious food, Chef John makes a series of recipe videos that are both educational and humorous. On occasion, you can find all of us sitting down to dinner together to watch him on the TV (well, a laptop hooked up to the TV. But still). I mean, just look at this:

Budget Bytes with Beth Moncel

Food, as far as habits go, can get kind of pricey. Thankfully, there’s Budget Bytes – where budget conscious meals are prepared with as few ingredients as possible (and it’s all absolutely delicious). So far we’ve tried Beth’s Dragon Noodles, Egg Drop Soup, Beef & Pineapple Enchiladas, and Italian Wonderpot. All are easy & incredibly flavorful. We recommend her recipes regardless of whether you’re pinching pennies.

Italian Wonderpot

(Image from

Smitten Kitchen with Deb Perelman

Oh goodness. Smitten Kitchen is a major favorite. I mean… just look at this stuff. We are particularly big fans of her lemon bars, but the gorgeous photography doesn’t hurt.


(Image from

My Baking Addiction with Jamie Lothridge

Admittedly, we’ve been a little obsessed with the My Baking Addiction Facebook page lately.  Not to be hyperbolic, but seriously, we almost died when we saw these strawberry cheesecake cups. Almost. ThisClose.


(Image from


Do you have your own food blog? Share the link & tell us about it in the comments!

Recipe Trials – In Search of the Perfect Chicken Cutlet Sub Sandwich

Recipe Trials – In Search of the Perfect Chicken Cutlet Sub Sandwich

When I lived in New Hampshire, there was a local pizza joint that we frequented and one of the things I would get most often was a Chicken Cutlet Sub. It was simple and delicious and my favorite.

I have much loved memories of getting a whole sub to myself while we watched the New England Patriots play in the super bowl; it felt super special.

Ever since I moved away I haven’t been able to find one quite like it. I don’t really see it on the menu around here either.

My craving became so intense that I decided to embark on a journey to make my own.


I didn’t realize it would be a journey at first though, I assumed that I would be able to just throw the ingredients together and have it be exactly what my mouth remembered, but clearly that was asking too much.

Although this recipe is delicious and tasty and yummy and such that Cat immediately wanted seconds, it’s not quite what I was hoping for. I’m determined to keep tweaking to see what needs to change. Maybe the bread?

Comment if you have any suggestions!

Chicken Cutlet Sub Sandwich - Take 1
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 2 Sandwiches
  • 1 chicken breast
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • ¼ cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup panko breadcrumbs
  • Oil for frying, enough to be half an inch deep in a medium pan
  • 2 sub sandwich rolls
  • 2 slices hothouse tomato
  • ½ cup shredded iceberg lettuce
  • 4 slices provolone cheese
  • Red onion slices
  • Mayonnaise
  1. Butterfly the chicken breast into halves and pound each half even.
  2. In one of two wide mouth dishes combine the egg and water (whisking with a fork), and in the other, the two breadcrumbs.
  3. Heat the oil on the stove to 350 degrees and while the oil is heating dip the chicken breast halves in egg to evenly coat, and then in the breadcrumbs to evenly coat.
  4. Fry the chicken in the oil on each side for three minutes or until golden brown.
  5. As soon as the chicken is ready, place them on a folded paper towel to drain and cover each with two slices of the cheese to begin to melt a little.
  6. Spread each side of the rolls with a generous layer of mayonnaise.
  7. On the bottom add half the shredded lettuce, two slices of tomato, and your desired amount of onion rings.
  8. Place the chicken on top and close up the sandwich!
  9. Slice in half and enjoy.


Thursday Link Rodeo

Forget a roundup – this here is a link rodeo! It’s a collection of cool/exciting/delicious food news, recipes, and more that we’ve encountered recently. Yeehaw. Or something. 

Image via Serious Eats

Image via Serious Eats

1. It’s decorative gourd season. Heh. Here’s how to carve a pumpkin, courtesy of The Kitchn.
2. Wanna make the coworkers jealous come lunchtime? Make Your Own Just-Add-Hot-Water Instant Noodles, a la Serious Eats.
3. Stop EVERYTHING. The World’s Cutest Bunny Bakes a Cake. Thanks, Yahoo Food.
4. Bacon-topped mac & cheese pie, and it’s all Reddit‘s fault.
5. Holy pumpkin upside-down cake! Go, Menu Musings of a Modern American Mom!