Archive for the ‘Recipe’ category

8-Ball Zucchini, stuffed

September 23, 2011
8-Ball Zucchini, stuffed (made by my fiance!)

 Have you ever heard of 8-Ball Zucchini? Don’t worry– I hadn’t heard of it either. Until our friend brought one over from his garden. This is what they look like before you cook them:

flickr.com/photos/krossbow/4882371688/

According to this farm website, it’s a hybrid variety of zucchini squash that’s become much more popular over the last several years; the size and shape make it ideal for stuffing. We had no idea how to cook this thing, so my fiance went to Google. He came across this Soupbelly.com recipe, and gave it a whirl.

First he  hollowed out the zucchini; then he mixed the guts, chopped tomato, chopped onion and cooked ground turkey (a replacement for bacon). He sauteed the mixture for a few minutes, removed it from the heat and added bread crumbs, cheese, salt and pepper. He spooned the stuffing into the zucchini, covered it with cheese and baked it for 40 minutes.

The result: fantastic. Such a perfect blend of flavors. I highly recommend this recipe to anyone!

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Yummy banana bread

May 3, 2011

I made some last night. I didn’t have a regular bread pan so I used this square pan.

The pan worked just fine. Here’s what two of the bread slices looked like.

I got my recipe from the Food Network’s website. It’s really quite easy. You cream together sugar and butter, and then beat in two eggs. In another bowl you mash up three bananas and add milk and cinnamon. In a third bowl you mix together your dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt). You add the banana mixture to the creamed mixture, followed by the the dry ingredients. After mixing everything up, you pour the batter into a buttered pan, and bake it for an hour or so.

The recipe calls for a stick of butter, but I only had a half-stick. Surprisingly, the banana bread still tasted great. In the future, I may continue to leave out the extra half-stick of butter.

Peach Riesling sangria

April 17, 2011

Me drinking peach Riesling sangria

A few weeks ago I made sangria for the first time. I hadn’t heard back from a sangria-making friend of mine about how she makes it, so I researched recipes online. I wanted to find one that didn’t involve adding sugar, fancy alcohols, or carbonated beverages. I came across a recipe that fit all of these requirements; it also included Dole peach/mango/orange juice, one of my favorite 100-percent juices. An added benefit was it called for Riesling, a wine type I highly enjoy.

The recipe is from an Illinois wine and cheese shop’s website (it’s the third recipe on the page). The first ingredient is two bottles of Riesling (it calls for a specific Riesling, but I just picked one that was very affordable). I actually bought two 1.5-liter bottles of Riesling, as I was making the recipe for a fair amount of people. You mix the wine with frozen raspberries, orange pieces, peach pieces, lemon pieces, and some of the juice (check the recipe for quantities). You cover the drink, refrigerate it, and serve it cold.

My grocery store didn’t have peaches, so I replaced them with mangoes (but I can still call my concoction “peach Riesling sangria” because it contained peach juice). I was very happy with the outcome and would highly recommend the recipe to anyone.

Lemon flounder with capers

January 26, 2011

Lemon flounder with capers and white rice

Craving a yummy fish meal but don’t have a l0t of time? If this is your situation, consider making the lemon flounder with capers recipe I tried out last night. The fish was very well perfumed with the various seasonings (garlic, dill, lemon zest, pepper, olive oil, and capers), and the whole recipe took about 10 minutes.

I based the recipe off one in my new cookbook, “The Everything Mediterranean Cookbook.” I changed three things. The recipe called for sole, but I used flounder instead. Shaw’s had run out of sole, and the fish guy said flounder is quite similar. The second change was instead of using one and a half pounds of fish, I used one pound. I was just cooking for my fiance and I, not for six people (which the recipe is based on). The last modification was using a teaspoon of capers instead of a half-teaspoon. You can never have enough capers, right (but really, a half-teaspoon is practically nothing)?

Here’s the adjusted recipe (for two):

3 cloves garlic

3 sprigs fresh dill, leaves only

1 pound flounder

Black pepper to taste

1 teaspoon fresh-grated lemon zest

1 teaspoon olive oil

1 teaspoon capers

1. Preheat oven broiler. Mince the garlic and chop the dill.

2. Place the flounder on a pan; sprinkle with garlic, pepper, lemon zest, and drizzle with the oil.

3. Place under broiler for three minutes.

4. Turn the fish carefully.

5. Broil for one minute longer.

6. Remove from broiler and top with dill and capers.

This dish surely goes well with white wine, but I had it with some Samuel Smith oatmeal stout. It was the perfect combination, though I’m convinced this beer would go well with most anything.

And on a side note, does anyone know what’s up with fresh green beans? They are never in Shaw’s anymore, and Stop & Shop didn’t have them the other day either. I’m also looking for a place that sells rhubarb (fresh or frozen).

Spinach and mushroom pinwheels, pork tenderloin with herbed breadcrumb crust, baked butternut squash, and strawberry blueberry pie

December 31, 2010

Leftover pork

Leftover pie

The dishes listed in this post’s title are just a few of the recipes I’ve recently tried out; they’ve all served me very well! I was invited to a friend’s going away party several weeks ago, and wanted to make a creative appetizer containing some veggies. I stumbled upon this spinach and mushroom pinwheel recipe from allrecipes.com (I really love this site!).

The recipe itself is very easy, though you need to start making the pinwheels several hours before your event. That’s because you need to chill the dough for 3o to 60 minutes, and then chill it for another hour once it’s been covered with the spinach/onion/mushroom/flour/oregano/salt/lemon juice/garlic powder/Parmesan cheese paste, and rolled up.

I made the pork tenderloin, squash and pie for a Christmas dinner. The pork was AMAZING. I was all worried about making a meat dish, since meat can end up too dry or just plain bland. Well, I found this wonderful recipe on epicurious.com.

Basically you buy three pounds-worth of pork tenderloin (typically two tenderloins), trim the exterior fat, and then prepare a breadcrumb mixture. Then, you roll the pork in egg followed by the breadcrumb mixture, brown the outside of the pork in a pan for five minutes, and bake the pork until it reaches 155 degrees Fahrenheit (for me this took about 55 minutes, but I had 3.4 pounds of pork).

The breadcrumb mixture contains crumbs from fresh French bread (I used a blender to make the crumbs), fresh chopped parsley, fresh chopped rosemary, and crumbled bay leaves. Deliciousness! The meat was so tender and tasty.

And the baked butternut squash (from cooks.com) just melted in our mouths (and kind of tasted like candy…in a good way). I chopped up the squash into little squares and covered it with cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar, butter, and lemon juice. Then I baked it for about an hour (15 more minutes than the recipe recommends).

The strawberry blueberry pie was sort of my own creation. I based it largely upon this allrecipes.com three berry pie recipe. Because I didn’t have raspberries I added one cup more strawberries and one cup more blueberries. That worked out fabulously. The recipe was sooooo easy. Obviously the blueberries didn’t need to be chopped, and the strawberries only needed to be halved. I mixed them up with some sugar and cornstarch and voila!, the filling was made. I didn’t bother making my own crust so that part was super-easy as well (though I’d love to find a good pie crust recipe one of these days).

I baked the pie for about an hour (with foil over the crust for the first half), and the thing was done.

Delicious roasted garlic potatoes

November 28, 2010
delicious-garlicky-potatoes

My leftover potatoes

I made delicious roasted garlic potatoes the other night. Here’s my recipe:

1. Wash and peel five potatoes.

2. Cut the potatoes into wedges.

3. Cook the potatoes in boiling water for six minutes, then drain.

4. Mix the potatoes with some chopped garlic (I used four cloves worth), oil (half a cup), salt (one tablespoon) and pepper (one teaspoon). Make sure the potatoes are coated with the other ingredients.

5. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

6. Divide the potatoes into two baking dishes.

7. Roast the potatoes for 35 minutes.

8. Sprinkle two tablespoons of parsley and two teaspoons of thyme on the potatoes . Turn the potatoes to coat them with the spices.

9. Roast the potatoes 20 minutes longer.

They will be golden brown and oh so tender (not to mention infused with garlic, and who doesn’t love garlic?!?).

Tomato and basil quiche and Finnish mushroom salad

July 19, 2010

I tried out two new recipes last week, and loved them both.

One was for a tomato and basil quiche, and the other was for a Finnish mushroom salad.

Here’s how the quiche looked when it came out of the oven:

A big reason why it tasted so yummy was the flavor from the tomatoes. Before adding the tomatoes to the quiche you cut and peel them, sprinkle them with flour and basil, and saute them in olive oil.

Here’s how the Finnish mushroom salad looked as it was being chilled in the fridge:

This was such a refreshing, tasty dish! I loved the slightly soft texture of the mushrooms after having boiled them for just a minute.

The sauce of chives, cream, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper was also great! And what’s best is the recipe is so easy to make.