Monday, December 27, 2010

Spinach & Cabbage Frittata

Here's the recipe to a quick, easy, healthy and filling dish.  Recipe taken from the first and to-date only cook book I have ever purchased; Pillsbury Fast and Healthy Cookbook. The original recipe can be found on their website here.

1 teaspoon oil
2 cups finely shredded cabbage
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
2 eggs (I used 1 egg and 2 egg whites)
1/2 cup skim milk
2 oz. (1/2 cup) shredded reduced-fat Cheddar cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup all-purpose or whole wheat flour
1 (9-oz.) pkg. frozen spinach in a pouch, thawed, squeezed to drain

  1.   Heat oven to 450°F. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Stir in cabbage, onion and oregano. Reduce heat to medium; cook and stir about 7 minutes or until vegetables soften.  

  2.   In large bowl, combine egg product, milk, cheese and salt; mix well. Add flour; stir until well blended. Stir in spinach and cooked cabbage mixture. Pour into ungreased ovenproof 9-inch nonstick skillet or 9-inch round nonstick cake pan.  

  3.   Bake at 450°F. for 13 to 15 minutes or until puffed and golden brown. If desired, serve with warm spaghetti sauce.

    This cookbook always posts to nutritional information... info for this recipe can be found below:
    1 Serving (Servings per recipe: 4): Calories 180 (Calories from Fat 45), Total Fat 5g (Saturated Fat 2g), Cholesterol 10mg; Sodium 350mg; Total Carbohydrate 21g (Dietary Fiber 4g, Sugars 4g) Protein 12g; Percent Daily Value*: Calcium Exchanges: 1 Starch; 1 Other Carbohydrate; 1 Vegetable; *Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

    Tips & Comments
    • I always want it to come out a little more hearty and less mushy. Next time bake longer than 15 minutes. 
    • Try adding mushrooms.
    • Sprinkle shredded cheese on the top for look.

    Wednesday, December 15, 2010

    Winter Squash Soup

     *Notes: I did not use celery. For White Wine, I bought a small bottle for $2.50 of Chardonnay at the wine store. 1 Squash = about 1lb = 1/4 of recipe which only serves 1.

    Recipe from Food & Wine Magazine's November 2010 edition.

    Monday, October 11, 2010

    Orange Lace Cookies - An Amature Trial

    makes about 60, even after casualties

    1 cup + 2 tablespoons (8 oz) sugar
    3/4 cup (3 oz) flour
    1/2 cup (4 oz) orange juice
    1 stick (4 oz) butter
    1 orange zest - I was lazy and simply used orange juice with pulp

    Silpat 11-5/8-by-16-1/2-Inch Nonstick Silicone Baking Mat - I don't have. Used parchment paper instead.
    Professional Offset Spatula Set, Ateco - I don't have
    . Used my hands, shhhh.
    Not the right way to do it...
    1. Stir together the flour and sugar in a large bowl.
    2. Melt the butter. I like to stick it in the microwave in 30-second intervals until it’s liquefied.
    3. Add the orange zest to the bowl with the juice…then pour the juice over the flour.
    4. Whisk until it’s smooth as a baby’s bottom.
    5. Then pour in the butter and whisk until that’s completely incorporated. There’s still stubborn butter pooling at the edges of this bowl. Better get that all incorporated.

    This needs to be refrigerated before proceeding. At least 2 hours or overnight. Actually this batter can be kept in your fridge for up to 3 days, as long as it’s wrapped tightly.

    6. Now it’s later and we’re ready to bake. First preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Then fill a pastry bag, outfitted with a small plain tip, with batter. (You can also fill a ziplock back, then snip off a bit of the corner.)
    7. Pipe nickel-sized rounds on Silpat-lined cookie sheets, spaced 3 inches apart. Yes, space them far apart. You’ll thank me later. And use the flattest sheet pans you’ve got or the batter will slide around. You will have way more batter than sheet pans, so you’ll need to bake them in batches. Or bake some today, and then some tomorrow.
    8. Bake for about 10 minutes. Keep a close eye on these. You want them golden orange. If they get into the brown palette, they start to get bitter.
    Fun crunchy cookies; not worth the work. Also, I thought I was supposed to squeeze them onto the cooking sheet as perfect dots and they would naturally spread out to form a lace shape. Turns out I was wrong, simply squeeze zig zag circle mess and it turns out to be beautiful crunchy lace.

    Tuesday, October 5, 2010

    Fun Fruit Marzipan


    • 8 ounces almond paste
    • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
    • 1/4 cup corn syrup
    • 3 drops any color food coloring
    Watch cute video of little girl making pumpkin marzipan and learn. Watch here.Okay let's be real and cut out the girl, this is a much faster and self explanatory video on how to make the shapes.


    Sunday, October 3, 2010

    Fruit & Vegetable Season Chart

    Green Onions
    Brussels Sprouts
    Fresh Herbs
    Daikon Radishes
    New Potatoes
    Green Beans
    Hot Peppers
    Red Radishes
    Winter Squash
    Winter Squash
    Sweet Corn
    Sweet Peppers

    Warm Granny Smith Apple Pie

    Fresh Apple Pie

    4-Ingredient Häagen-Dazs Vanilla Bean

    Here's How:
    ★ Recipe Serves 8  ★ Total Prep Time 25 Minutes. Total Bake Time 60 Minutes  ★  Serve Warm With Vanilla Ice Cream Scoop on the Side  ★

    1 box Pillsbury refrigerated pie dough (comes with 2 x 9" inch pie doughs) 

    from Judy's Perfect Apple Pie recipe. Modified version posted below.

    7 cups thinly sliced peeled baking apples (Approx. 7 apples. Recommend using Granny Smith apples. I also added in 1 Pink Lady and 1 McIntosh)
    2 tablespoons lemon juice (Approx 1 fresh lemon squeezed)
    1 cup sugar
    1/4 cup all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    2 tablespoons butter or margarine
    1 egg yolk

    1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
    2. In bowl 1, place peeled and cut all apples. Add lemon juice.
    3. In bowl 2, combine sugar, flour, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg. Mix and then add to bowl 1. Toss.
    4. Place pie dough into 9" inch pie pan. Pour filling into pie pan. Dot with butter on top of filling.
    5. Either decoratively cover the pie as I did in picture above, or cover flat pie dough on pie and cut slits in the middle. Seal top and bottom pie crust together and decoratively wave pie edges.
    6. Beat egg yolk and water; brush over pastry top.
    7. Bake at 425 degrees F for 14 minutes. Reduce hat to 350 degrees F and bake for an additional 40-45 minutes until crust is golden and filling is bubbly.

    Sunday, September 26, 2010

    Pumpkin Pie (Paula Deen, Food Network - modified)

    Prep Time: 20 
    Cook Time: 50 
    Ready In: 2 hours
    Servings: 7

    Original Recipe Yield 8.5" pie

    * 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
    * 2 cups canned pumpkin, mashed
    * 1 cup sugar
    * 1/4 teaspoon salt
    * 1 egg plus 2 egg yolks, slightly beaten
    * 1 cup half-and-half
    * 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) melted butter
    * 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    * 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    * 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, optional
    * sprinkle of nutmeg
    * 1 piece pre-made pie dough
    * Whipped cream and almond slivers for toppings.

    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

    Place 1 piece of pre-made pie dough down into a (9-inch) pie pan and press down along the bottom and all sides. Pinch and crimp the edges together to make a pretty pattern. Put the pie shell back into the freezer for 1 hour to firm up. Fit a piece of aluminum foil to cover the inside of the shell completely. Fill the shell up to the edges with pie weights or dried beans (about 2 pounds) and place it in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes, remove the foil and pie weights and bake for another 10 minutes or until the crust is dried out and beginning to color.

    For the filling, in a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese with a hand mixer. Add the pumpkin and beat until combined. Add the sugar and salt, and beat until combined. Add the eggs mixed with the yolks, half-and-half, and melted butter, and beat until combined. Finally, add the vanilla, cinnamon, and ginger, if using, and beat until incorporated.

    Pour the filling into the warm prepared pie crust and bake for 50 minutes, or until the center is set. Place the pie on a wire rack and cool to room temperature. Cut into slices and top each piece with a generous amount of whipped cream.

    Added to recipe nutmeg and almond slivers for toppings. Did not use the ground ginger. Highly recommend blind baking and using Pillsbury premade (but not prebaked) pie crust.

    Monday, September 20, 2010

    Lemon Tart Minis with Caramelized Sugar Crust

    That's right, this post reveals that I not only have my own kitchen potted garden, but also that my boyfriend for some reason or other decided to buy me a blowtorch for my birthday. In-home kitchen garden include 4 stevia plants, 2 basil stems grown from seeds, 2 lemon verbena trees and many wild grown mint stems.


    • (Let's be real) pre-mixed pie dough
    • 3 eggs
    • 1 cup white sugar
    • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
    • 1/4 cup lemon juice
    • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    • 2 tablespoon sugar for caramelized finish
    • Fresh mint leaves


    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
    2. Bake pie crust dough for 12 to 15 minutes or according to the packaging instructions.
    3. Combine eggs, white sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice and 3 tablespoons flour and mix until smooth; pour mixture over hot crust.
    4. Bake 15 to 20 minutes more, until firm. Let cool completely in baking dish. Sprinkle with sugar and cut into 12 triangles.
    5. OPTIONAL - with baking blow torch, circle with medium to light fire under sugar is caramelized and surface makes a tapping sound when tapped with spoon.
    6. Garnish with fresh mint leaves.
    Posted recipe is a modified version of Melissa's Lemon Tart Triangles recipe. View original here
    Tough enough to be part of the TM Team? I think so!

    Sunday, September 19, 2010

    Calzone Cupakes

    I love everything in cupcake form, which is why I immediately jumped on the Cupcake Calzone recipe the moment it was spotted. Created by the Cupcake Project, below is my slightly modified version:

    Yield: 12 calzone cupcakes

    1. Prepare your favorite dough.
    Cupcake project recommended Pizza Dough, however, I found I preferred the longer dough setting on my breadmaker.
    • 3/4 C water
    • 1 tbsp garlic olive oil (I used regular extra virgin olive oil.)
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 2 1/2 C flour (if making whole wheat, use 1/2 cup whole wheat flower and 2 cups white flower)
    • 1 3/4 tsp yeast
    Put all ingredients in a bread machine on the dough cycle according to the instructions for your model.

    2. Prepare your favorite calzone filling.
    • 1/2 large zucchini, roughly chopped
    • 1/2 large onion, roughly chopped
    • 1 clove garlic, minced
    • 1 tsp ground coriander
    • juice of 1 lime
    Mix everything together.

    3. Prepare the calzone cupcakes.
    • Filling (from above)
    • 2 C shredded mozzarella cheese
    • 1 C crumbled feta cheese
    1. Preheat oven to 450 F.
    2. Roll out the pizza dough about 1/4" thick and line the bottom and sides of the indentations in a cupcake tin.
    3. Put a thin layer of shredded mozzarella cheese on top of each piece of dough.
    4. Fill the cupcake with the filling.
    5. Top with another thin layer of mozzarella cheese and some crumbled feta.
    6. Top each cupcake with another piece of pizza dough and press firmly around the edges of the cupcake to seal it (as shown below). If necessary, use a butter knife to cut off any excess dough.
    7. Bake for 14 minutes. Don't turn off your oven yet. You'll need it for the next step.
    4. "Frost" the calzone cupcakes.

    • Hot unfrosted calzone cupcakes (from above).
    • 1 C pasta or pizza sauce
    • 12 slices of mozzarella cheese
    • 1/2 C shredded mozzarella cheese (optional)
    • 12 cherry tomatoes
    • Transfer the hot calzone cupcakes to a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
    • Spoon a small amount of sauce on top of each cupcake.
    • Use a cookie cutter or the rim of a glass to cut the mozzarella into circles that cover the top of the cupcake (as shown below) and place the cheese on top of the sauce.
    • If desired, top the cheese circles with a small amount of the shredded cheese. This makes the top of the cupcake look a bit bumpier - like it has sprinkles.
    • Put the cookie sheet of cupcakes back into the oven for one minute or until the cheese is just melted.
    • Remove from the oven, top with cherry tomatoes, and serve warm.

    Wednesday, September 15, 2010

    Poached Eggs

    After numerous run ins with poached eggs (Saturday diner breakfasts I rarely attend, scene from Julia & Julie, Southern Living website, Master Chef episode), I finally took the time to experiment on my own. Turns out it is quite easy to make an acceptable poached egg.

    I tried twice, using two different techniques and both outcomes were successful.

    The first technique (upper left) is to gently drop the raw egg into a simmering pot (water + vinegar) and constantly tuck spoon around the egg to maintain the shape. The second technique (bottom right) is to stir the simmering water + vinegar and while stirring, gently drop the raw egg in. This supposidely forms the shape quicker. With both techniques I immediately put poached egg into ice water and then on a paper tower to dry off.

    Some day I'll learn how to keep the water clean by preventing white yolk from dispersing throughout pot.

    Future poached egg recipes to try: Shrimp & Grits Eggs Benedict published by Southern Living,

    Thursday, February 18, 2010

    Paula Deen's Shepherd's Pie

    Servings: 8 to 10 lots lots lots; Prep Time: 30 mins; Cook Time: 1 hr; Ready in: 1.5 hrs

    1 small onion try only half - jonathan doesn't like a lot or any onions
    1 1/2 pounds ground beef
    2 (8-ounce) cans tomato sauce
    1 1/2 cups mixed vegetables or niblet corn, prepared
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    8 to 10 medium red new potatoes
    1 1/2 cups milk
    12 tablespoons butter
    1/2 cup sour cream
    2 cups instant biscuit mix
    any spices you would like to add...

    BEEF LAYER: Saute onions in 2 tablespoons butter. Add ground beef. After beef is browned, add tomato sauce; Mix in vegetables. Add salt and pepper, to taste.
    POTATO LAYER: Peel and slice potatoes 1/4-inch thick. Cook in boiling water for approximately 15 minutes or until fork-tender. Whip potatoes with electric mixer; mix until moderately smooth. Don't over beat them; a few lumps are nice. Add 1/2 cup heated milk, 1/2 cup butter, and sour cream. Salt and pepper, to taste. Whip until mixed. Adjust thickness by adding more milk, if desired.
    BISCUIT LAYER: Combine biscuit mix and 1 cup milk. The mix should be thinner than normal biscuit mix but not runny.
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
    Spray a 9 by 9 by 2-inch pan, or any similar casserole dish. Layer half way up with the mashed potatoes. Next, spread a layer of mixed vegetables or niblet corn on top of potatoes. Then add a layer of the meat. Pour biscuit mix over meat. Melt 4 tablespoons of butter and drizzle over top. Bake for approximately 35 to 45 minutes until top is golden brown.

    Recipe compliments of Paula Deen, see original recipe here.

    Monday, February 8, 2010

    Super Bowl Cookie Cake

    Last minute desire to make Super Bowl themed cookie cake. Inspiration from Brad back in college days. Lucky for me Mallory showed up drunk with the guts to color in the cookie so it was not too plain.

    Before drunk friend............................ After drunk friend. Much cuter!