Thursday, January 28, 2010

Italian Meatloaf

This is based on one of the versions of meatloaf in the Joy of Cooking. I found some Italian seasoned ground turkey at the grocery store last weekend and thought it would be a good accompaniment to the manicotti I was making.

Next time I’ll skip the seasoned turkey so I can I have more control of the flavor. It was a little spicy for me. I also think I’ll try sautéing shallots and red peppers, as well as adding some parmesan cheese.

Italian Meatloaf
1lb ground meat
1 to 3 eggs, depending on how dry your meat or bread crumbs are
¾ to 1 cup bread crumbs (I love panko breadcrumbs for meatloaf, but used herb & garlic this time)
1 to 2 cups onions or shallots (I liked the shallots myself)
1 t salt
½ t pepper
Seasonings of your choice: oregano, Italian seasoning, parsley, basil
½ cup of marinara sauce

Heat oven to 350. Mix ingredients through sauce and mound together in a greased pan. Spread marinara sauce over meatloaf and bake until thermometer reads 160 degrees, about 1 hour.

Bar Recipes?

Anyone have a good bar recipe? I swear, before moving to the Midwest I'd never really thought about bars, just cookies.

There's a place in Des Moines that makes a cookie/brownie bar where there is a layer of brownie on the bottom with what tastes like chocolate chip cookie dough on the top. I can't find a recipe like it online and I haven't searched my cookbooks, but thought I'd see if anyone has one yet. Or even just a link to one you haven't tried.

I'm open and I need a new baking recipe for next week!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Rose's Vinaigrette

This is the first recipe I've made from my new cookbook, Mad Hungry by Lucinda Scala Quinn. Yum!

Rose's Vinaigrette (makes 1 cup)
1 T minced shallot or garlic
1 t Dijon mustard
1 t light brown sugar
3/4 t coarse salt
1/4 t fresh ground black pepper
1/4 t Worcestershire sauce
2 1/2 T red wine vinegar
2 T fresh lemon juice
3/4 C extra-virgin olive oil

In bottom of well-sealable jar, mash together shallot, mustard, brown sugar, salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce. Pour in vinegar, lemon juice and olive oil. Cover tightly and shake well to combine and emulsify. Add salt and pepper to taste. Use immediately or store in refrigerator for up to six months.

I used garlic and I'm looking forward to making it with a shallot. I think it will give it a really lovely flavor.

Lemon Pound Cake

I have chronicled my search for lemon bread, but what I really should have admitted is that I was searching for something similar to Starbucks' lemon pound cake. This recipe from Dozen Flours is pretty darn close.

Her post is much more detailed, and gives some hints and tips. I'm just reposting the main instructions. I tend to shy away from four bowl recipes, but this one was worth it.

Better Than Starbucks Lemon Pound Cake
4 lemons
3 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, completely softened
3 cups superfine, Baker's or caster sugar
6 eggs, warmed for 10 minutes in hot tap water before using
1 cup full-fat sour cream, at room temperature

2 lemons
2 cups powdered-sugar*, sifted

Preheat oven to 325F. Grease a 16-cup tube pan and dust with cake flour; tap out any excess. Be sure to grease and flour the center column too.

Zest four of the lemons. With a very sharp paring knife, cut the tops and bottoms off of each lemon. With one cut side down on the cutting board, trim the pith off the lemon, vertically, going all the way around each lemon, exposing the flesh of the lemon. Over a bowl, cut segments from membranes, letting fruit and juice fall into the bowl, being sure to discard the seeds and the remaining membranes. With a fork, break segments into 1-inch pieces.

In a separate bowl, combine the sugar and the lemon zest. Work the sugar and zest together between your fingers until the sugar is moist, grainy and very aromatic. Set aside.

Sift the flour, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.

Beat the butter for 2 minutes at medium speed in the electric mixer. Add half the sugar and mix for 2 more minutes, then add the rest of the sugar and mix again for 4 minutes, stopping once to scrape down the bowl and the beater blade.

Remove the eggs from the warm water. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating just until combined after each addition (about 30 seconds). On the lowest setting, mix in the dry ingredients, then the sour cream. Lastly, gently fold in the lemon juice and segments. Transfer batter to prepared pan.

Bake cake until tester inserted near center comes out clean, about an hour and a half. Let the cake cool in the pan on a rack for 15 minutes.

While the cake is cooling, juice the remaining 2 lemons. In a small bowl, slowly add the powdered sugar to the and stir until smooth. It should look thick, opaque, and should be thin enough to it should be pourable. If it's too thin, add more powdered sugar. If it's too thick, add more lemon juice. Poke small holes all over the top of the cake using a fork or toothpick. Carefully pour about 1/2 the glaze over the tops and the sizes of the cake. Let the glaze harden for about 2 hours or overnight.

Cover the remaining glaze and keep at room temperature. About a half hour before you're ready to serve, pour the remaining glaze over the cake.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Crazy Easy Granola

I got this recipe from the Everyday Food Twitter feed and made it last night. My favorite kind of recipe: simple and tasty.

Here's the recipe in 140 characters or less: Simple granola: Mix 3c oats+ 1.5c nuts+ 1/2 cup ea maple syrup & olive oil. Toast at 350, then add salt & your fave dried fruit.

Simple granola
3 C oats
1 1/2 C nuts, chopped (I used 1 cup organic, salted cashews and 1/2 cup organic sunflower seeds)
1/2 C maple syrup (I don't think there's any point to making this if you don't use real maple syrup!)
1/2 C olive oil

Mix ingredients together and toast at 350, then add coarse salt and your favorite dried fruit (I used dried blueberries). In my oven and on a smaller rimmed baking sheet, this took about 20 minutes to toast up nicely.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Cream of Harvest Soup

I bought the Harvest Medley from Trader Joe's the other day and then didn't quite know what to do with it. That's where good ol' Google comes in and I found this recipe for Cream of Harvest Soup.

Rather than use the food processor in the first step, like the recipe says, I just cut the pieces a little smaller. Then I made the soup and at the end, I used my new stick hand blender.

The soup was good and my kids both liked it too. We added a little fresh parmesan on top as everything is better with cheese.

Baked Lemon Pasta

We made this Baked Lemon Pasta this weekend from The Pioneer Woman. OH MY! It was so good. The only problem was wanting to eat too much. Next time, I would probably make both a salad and grilled chicken or salmon to help fill up with something a little healthier. Mmmm, I'm definitely making this again soon. Beware, that clicking on the recipe and seeing the picture will make you instantly hungry.

Spinach and Feta Turnovers

I've been making these Spinach and Feta Turnovers from Everyday Food Magazine for a while but they don't have the recipe on their site so I never posted it. I was passing the recipe onto a friend and found the link listed.

As a side note, like one of the comments, I always have way too much filling left over. So, I either buy two boxes of puff pastry and freeze them with directions from the magazine. Or I will use the filling the next day (or two or three) cooked with scrambled eggs for breakfast. Sort of a Greek Breakfast Scramble, if you will. It is a win-win in my book.

To freeze: Freeze unbaked turnovers on baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Once frozen, wrap turnovers individually in plastic wrap; store in a resealable plastic bag in the freezer for up to 2 months.

To bake from frozen: Unwrap frozen turnovers, and bake as directed, adding 5 to 10 minutes to baking time.

Tomato sauce with butter and onions

I just saw this recipe for tomato sauce with butter and onions over at smitten kitchen and thought I'd share. It is beyond simple with only three ingredients but really does have rave reviews. I might have to try it one of these days.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Bacon and Artichoke Jambalaya

I’ve had this recipe from The Kitchn saved for at least a year or more. Made it last night and now its going into the rotation. Likes: one pot, little chopping, even more flavor reheated/after it has sat for a little while. Would add: maybe a hit of fresh Parmesan.

Bacon and Artichoke Jambalaya
1/2 pound bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
Red pepper flakes (optional)
1 can artichoke hearts, drained and cut into quarters
1 1/2 cups short grain rice (I used regular long grain Uncle Ben’s)
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 can diced Italian tomatoes, well-drained
1 can black olives, well-drained
3 cups chicken stock, or stock mixed with water
Fresh black pepper

Cook the bacon in a heavy Dutch oven or stockpot until cooked and getting browned. Add the pepper flakes and artichokes. Cook until fragrant, then add the rice. Fry until golden, then add the vinegar, tomatoes, and olives. Fry for a few moments, then add the chicken stock, and bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer, cover and cook for about 20 minutes.

Kale, Blood Orange and Hazelnut Salad for Two

Last night I adapted this recipe from Martha Stewart, found via The Bitten Word, for two instead of ten.

For two
1 bunch of regular kale tied up like you find at the grocery store. Stems and ribs removed, shredded
2 blood oranges
Maybe 1/8 cup roasted filberts
1 2/3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 2/3 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper

I peeled one orange and sliced it up, then juiced the other one. My neighborhood grocery store only had filberts, so I roasted those for about 15 minutes @ 350 until they smelled roasted. Then I rubbed them together with my hands to remove the skin. I poured the orange juice over the kale, orange slices and filberts, then combined the vinegar, oil, salt and pepper. Poured that over and let sit for 30 minutes.

For ten
1 1/2 pounds Tuscan black kale or regular kale, stems and ribs removed, leaves shredded
4 blood oranges, segmented, juices reserved
1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted and chopped
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

Combine kale, oranges and hazelnuts in a large bowl. Drizzle with vinegar, oil and reserved orange juice; toss. Season with salt and pepper. Let stand for 30 minutes before serving

It was really good. The roasted nuts really take over and the blood orange is delicious. 30 minutes was enough time to break down the tough kale leaves. It was yummy and seasonal! And good for you: antioxidants, fiber, vitamin A, calcium, beta-carotene and lutein.

Photo from here.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Omelet for Two

Mmmm, we started 2010 off right with this breakfast from Barefoot Contessa. What I liked most (besides the taste) is that everything is all mixed up together: meat, eggs and potatoes.

Omelet for Two
1/4 pound good thick-cut bacon
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 cup medium-diced Yukon gold potato
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
1 tablespoon minced jalapeno pepper
5 extra-large eggs
2 tablespoons milk or cream
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts 4 ounces extra-sharp Cheddar, diced, plus extra grated cheese, for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Cut the bacon crosswise in 1-inch slices. Cook the bacon in an 8-inch ovenproof saute pan over medium-low heat for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until browned. Drain the bacon on paper towels and discard the fat from the pan. Add the butter to the pan, and then add the potato and yellow onion. Cook over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, tossing occasionally, until the onion starts to brown and the potato is tender but firm. Add the jalapeno pepper and cook for 30 seconds.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, beat the eggs, milk, salt, and pepper together with a fork. Stir in the scallions and diced Cheddar. When the potato is cooked, add the bacon to the pan and pour over the egg mixture. Place the pan in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, (it took more like 30 minutes for me) until the omelet puffs and the eggs are almost cooked in the center. Sprinkle with a handful of grated Cheddar and bake for another minute. Serve hot directly from the pan.

The nice thing about this is that you could easily switched up the meat or cheeses, or add more veggies or use egg whites for a different flavor. I found I had enough cheese and did not have to add more at the end.