Search This Blog


Friday, October 21, 2016

Puff Pastry Apple Strudel

  •  I know I am currently posting a lot of recipes with puff pastry.  It's easily found in the freezer department of most grocery stores and creates such a light pastry.  Today I tried it with an apple strudel recipe offered on Pepperidge Farm's recipe page.  It doesn't take a lot of ingredients or time to make and creates one lovely strudel.
    1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 large Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and thinly sliced (keep Granny Smiths on hand- they are great for both baking and eating)
  • 2 tablespoons raisins
  • 1/2 of a 17.3-ounce package Pepperidge Farm® Puff Pastry Sheets (1 sheet), thawed
    Beat the egg and water together in a small bowl.  In a medium size bowl, combine the sugar, flour and cinnamon.  Add the apples and mix well.  Put several tablespoons of flour onto a counter top and place one sheet of the dough on to of the flour.  Roll out to about 16" x 20".  Dump the apple mixture onto the bottom half of th dough.  

    Then roll the dough into a log.  Place on a baking sheet.  Tuck the end under and make sure your seam is on the bottom.

      Brush with the egg mixture.  Cut 4 slashes into the top of the dough.  Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.  When cool dust with confectionary sugar if desired. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Mushroom Tart

I have had a nice rectangular tart pan that I haven't used yet.  When I saw this recipe I knew it was time to try it out.  The mushrooms in this recipe are bathed in a nice creamy cheesy sauce with a hint of herbs.  I served it alonside a bowl of homemade tomato soupa and it was spectacular.

  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 2 slices bacon, chopped (optional)
  • 2 tbsp minced red (or yellow) onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 8 oz cremini or mini bella mushrooms, cleaned and rough chopped, have another 1 or 2 extra for garnish, thinly sliced.
  • 1 tsp dry herbes de Provence
  • 2 tbsp dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup (half of a small tub) of light cream cheese
  • 1/2 tsp each of salt and black pepper
  • 1/3 cup shredded Mozzarella or Provolone cheese
  • 1/3 c. Parmesan cheese
  • Place dough into the tart pan.  If you don't have a pan you can put it on a piece of parchment paper on a cooky sheet and free form a rectangular shape with sides.
  • Cook the mushrooms, onions, and garlic in about 2T. olive oil.  Add bacon is=f desired.  Cook until mushrooms lose their moisture.  Add wine, cream cheese and cheeses.  Stir well until incorported.  Pour into tart and bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Spinach Enchiladas

Last week I went to a girls lunch out at a local Mexican restaurant.  I had their spinach enchiladaswith a nice cheesy white sauce, and they were so good I decided to try making my oven version at home.  These take a little prep but come together easily for a nice dinner with some rice and beans.

1 pkg. frozen spinach, defrosted and squeezed to get all the water out
4 oz. cream cheese
1/4 small onion chopped
1 c. corn
1 c. chopped cilantro
8 flour tortillas
1 c. milk
2 T. flour
2 T. butter
1 T. coriander
1 c. shredded cheese (your choice of type)
Mix spinach, corn, onion and cilantro.  Spread cream cheese on each tortilla.  Fill with spinach mixture and roll up.  Put the butter in a saucepan and melt over medium heat.  Add flour and whisk to incorporate.  Whisk in milk.  Mix in cheese.  As the cheese melts the sauce will thicken.  Put 1/4 c. of the sauce in the bottom of a sprayed baking dish.  Mine was a little smaller than a 13 x 9 pan.  Place tortillas on top of sauce.  Top with remaining sauce.  Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Reuben Sliders

Need a great football snack?  How about something great to bring to a potluck?  Sliders on Hawaiian rolls are all over the internet now and this is just another yummy version.  They are ready in under an hour including prep time.

  • 1 pkg. Hawaiian Sweet rolls, sliced open
  • 1/2 cup Thousand Island dressing
  • 1/4 to 1/2 lb of corned beef, sliced thin
  • 1 lb sauerkraut, drained
  • 1/4 lb Swiss cheese, sliced
  • 2 tbsp butter, melted
Slice open all rolls.  Spray a 13 x 9 bakind dish with cooking spray.  Put the bottom halves of the rolls in the pan.  Top each with a little dressing, corned beef, sauerkraut ad cheese.  Put tops on all the rolls.  Melt butter and using a pastry brush, brush the top of each sandwich with some butter.  Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes.

Crockpot Maple Pumpkin Chex Mix

This is a sweet and crunchy treat just full of fall flavors.  If you don't want to make it in the crockpot you can cook it in a 250 degree oven.

8  cups Chex cereal
2 cups nuts
2 cups pretzels
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 to 2+ tablespoons pumpkin pie spice
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Mix together the cereal, nuts, and pretzels.   Next stir together the butter, syrup, brown sugar, pumpkin pie spice and vanilla.  Pour over the cereal mixture and stir well.  Pour into a crockpot and cook on high for 2 hours, stirring every 20 minutes.  Spread out on a cooky tray and allow to dry about 2 hours to overnight.   If desired stir in 1 c. dried fruit.  Keep in a tightly closed container.

Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

Who doesn't love tomato soup and a good toasted cheese sandwich?  Comfort food at it's best.  My sweetheart and I have been enjoying the tomato basil soup served at Panera's.  I decided to try this recipe to see if we could get a bowl at home that was just as good.

  • 10-12 Roma tomatoes, seeds removed
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 28oz. can of crushed tomatoes
  • ¼ cup of sun-dried tomatoes, diced
  • 4 cups of low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 ½ cups of fresh basil, chopped
  • ¼ cup of cream cheese
Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Place seeded tomatoes onto a cooky sheet and drizzle with olive oil and some salt.  Bake for 40 minutes.  In a large Dutch oven melt the olive oil.  Add in the onion and garlic and cook until onions are transparent.  Add in the red peeper flakes, crushed tomatoes, sundried tomatoes and chicken broth.  Bring to a boil then add in the roasted tomatoes.  Simmer 10 minutes.  Add in the cream cheese and half the basil.  Stir well then blend with an immersion blender.  Serve topped with more basil.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Cinnamon Pecan Roasted Squash

This is a lovely fall dish served just with a salad, or as a side dish.  I happened to have some apple chicken sausage and they went very well with this dish.  The original recipe called for butternut squash, but you can use acorn too.  I used a type of squash that is like an acorn but a little sweeter.  Sorry but I don't remember it's name.  My local farmer suggested it to me.

  • 1 large butternut squash (about 3 pounds), peeled, seeded and cut in 1-inch chunks
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup pecans
Spread squash on a cooky sheet covered with parchment paper or a silicone mat.  Mix together the oil, syrup, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Pour over the squash.  Sprinkle with pecans.  Bake at 450 for 15 minutes.  Stir and bake an additional 15 minutes.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Crockpot Cashew Chicken

This is a nice easy work day meal.  Just put all the ingredients into the crockpot an it's ready when you get home.  Serve over some rice for a full meal.

  • 2 chicken breasts, cut into smaller pieces
  • 1-2 cups frozen broccoli, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 cup carrots, sliced
  • 1/2 cup cashews, chopped or whole – your choice! (unsalted works best so as not to oversalt the recipe)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup water or chicken broth
Put all ingredients into the crockpot an cook on low for 8-10 hours.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Tomato and Artichoke Gnocchi

  •  This recipe has a nice Meditteranean/Greek taste.  Before serving, if desired, you can sprinkle several tablespoons of feta cheese over each serving.
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 16-ounce package shelf-stable gnocchi
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 1 small red bell pepper, diced
  • 4 large cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano, plus more for garnish
    • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed
    • 1 14-ounce can no-salt-added diced tomatoes
    • 1 can artichoke hearts, chopped into quarters
  • 8 pitted and sliced kalamata olives
  • 1 T. red wine vinegar
  • Heat 1 T. olive oil in a large fry pan.  Add onion, peppers, and garlic.  Saute 2-3 minutes.  Add gnocchi and continue cooking for another 5 minutes.  Add in the oregano, chickpeas, tomatoes and artichokes.  Stir and cook over medium for 2 more minutes.  Add in olives and vinegar.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies

Can a title describe a cookie recipe any better?  Chock full of all these yummy ingredients, this makes a perfect fall combination.

Beat together:
1 C.  butter
1 C. white sugar
1 C. brown sugar
After these ingredients are creamy, add in:
1 t. vanilla
1 egg
1 c. pumpkin
Mix well again.  Then add in:
2 c. flour
1 t. baking soda
1 1/2 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. ginger
1/8 t. cloves
1/8 t. allspice
1/8 t. nutmeg
1 t. salt
Beat well, and then add in:  1 1/2 c. oameal.  Mix well and add:
1 c. chocolate chips
1 c. dried cranberries
1 c. chopped nuts (optional)
Drop dough onto parchment paper or silicone liners by tablespoons.  Bake at 350 degrees for 12 minutes.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Pinto Bean Sloppy Joes

      • This recipe comes from Eating Well's 30 day vegetarian meals.
      •  It is full of veggies and flavor.  If you do not want a vegetarian version, add some browned ground turkey or beef.
      • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
      • 2 medium carrots, sliced
      • 1 large white onion, sliced
      • 4 cloves garlic, minced
      • 3 tablespoons chili powder
      • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
      • 1 cup dry pinto beans, soaked (see Tip)
      • 1 large red bell pepper, diced
      • 1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
      • 1/2 c. water
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce or tamari
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 cups very thinly sliced green cabbage
  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped
  •  1 cup corn, fresh or frozen (thawed)
  • 3 tablespoons honey mustard
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 10 whole-wheat hamburger buns
  • In a crockpot put all ingredients except hamburgers buns.  Cook on low 8-10 hours.  Serve on the buns.

Cowboy Caviar

Now that it is football season, this little recipe is a perfect game munchie.  It goes together super fast, then you let it sit about an hour and it is ready.  Serve it with some nice tortilla chips.

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound Roma tomatoes,  diced
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 c.  corn
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
  •  1 cup chopped cilantro (1 bunch)
  • Mix the olive oil, sugar, vinegar, chili powder and salt.  This is the dressing.  Mix all remaining ingredients together in a big bowl and pour dressing over it.  Stir well and let sit at room temperature for one hour.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Asparagus Cheesy Rotini

  • This is a comfort food type recipe that I found on Eating Well.  It is like a super yummy macaroni and cheese with lots of healthy veggies thrown in.  It is great served with some garlic breadsticks or a salad.  If you would like some meat in it, I suggest ham, shrimp or chicken.  Just precook it and add with the pasta and vegetables.
  •  This recipe makes 8 servings, but can be easily halved for a smaller crowd.
  • 12 ounces whole-wheat rotini
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 cups sliced leeks, white and light green parts only
  • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups peas, fresh or frozen (thawed)
  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour 
  • 4 cups reduced-fat milk
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 2 cups shredded smoked or regular gouda cheese
  • 2/3 cup whole-wheat panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 c. shredded Parmesan cheese 
  • 3 T. butter

Cook rotini in boiling water for 8 minutes.  Drain.

Heat 2 T. oil in a saucepan.  Add in garlic, leeks, asparagus and peas.  Cook 6-8 minutes.

Spray a 13 x 9 baking dish with cooking spray.  Put the vegetables and pasta in the dish.  In a large saucepan melt the butter.  Add in the flour and then the milk.  Whisk on medium heat until it begins to thicken.  Add in the gouda cheese.  Stir until melted.  Pour over the pasta and vegetables, mixing well.

Mix 2 T. oil and the panko.  Sprinkle over the top of the casserole.  Then sprinkle Parmesan cheese over that.  Bake for 30 minutes at 375. 

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Puff Pastries

This easy link showed up on my Facebook page and I just had to try it.  These pastries are as easy as they look and will make you look like a gourmet chef!  Here is a link to the video directions:Here Are Four Ways To Make Incredibly Beautiful Desserts With Puff Pastry via @buzzfeed           Here are my finished pastries:

Pumpkin Pecan Pancakes with Whipped Cinnamon Butter

It is October so of course it is time for delicious pumpkin treats.  We are starting out our weekend with these super delicious pumpkin pancakes.  They are topped with a spoonful of whipped cinnamon butter and warm maple syrup...yum!

2 c. buttermilk( or substitute 2 c. milk with 2t. lemon juice or vinegar added in)
2 eggs
3 T. melted butter
1 c. pumpkin puree
2 t. vanilla
Whisk all these ingredients together well in a large bowl.
In another bowl mix;
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
Add dry to wet ingredients and mix well.  Use 1/3 c. measuring cup to measure out pancake batter.  Drop onto a hot griddle.  Sprinkle with 1 T. chopped pecans.
While pancakes are cooking mix 1/2 c. softened butter and 1 T. cinnamon.  Beat together well.
Serve pancakes topped with cinnamon butter and maple syrup.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Summer Vegetables braised with green sauce

This recipe comes from Eating Well magazine. It is a nice healthy recipe chock full of both vegetables and flavor. It requires a longer cooking time, so prepare for that. You will also need a Dutch oven and food processor for this recipe.

2 bay leaves
2 T. olive oil
Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven and add the bay leaves. Saute for 5 minutes undisturbed. Add in
 5 garlic cloves, chopped
2 onions, chopped
3 sprigs thyme
 6 fresh sage leaves
 Cover and cook for 3 minutes.
 Uncover and add in:
12 small carrots
 8 small potatoes
2 yellow or 1 delicata squash sliced
 1 small zucchini
1/2 # each of yellow and green beans
1 small can tomato sauce
15 cherry tomatoes
1 large orange or yellow pepper, sliced
1/2 t. salt
Cover and cook on medium low heat for 40-60 minutes. If it gets dry add a small amount of water. Green sauce:
1 small garlic clove, chopped
1/3 c. parsley
1/3 c. basil
 3 T. olive oil
 2 T. water
1/2 t. salt
Process in a food processor until smooth and serve spoonfuls on top of the vegetable mixture.

Pumpkin Graham Crackers

I know it is not offically October/pumpkin time yet but I just couldn't resist these graham crackers. The recipe calls for graham flour which I was able to find by Bob's Mills. If you can't find any you can substitute wheat flour.

4 T. butter
4 T. pumpkin puree
 2 eggs
 12 T. sugar
8 T. honey
 1 t. baking soda
4 t. water
2 t. ginger
2 t. nutmeg
2 t. cinnamon
1 1/2 t. allspice
1 1/2 t. salt
3 c. graham flour
1 1/2 c. all purpose flour
 In a bowl beat the butter, pumpkin, eggs, sugar and honey until very smooth. Mix the baking soda and water. Add to the bowl. Add the spices, flours and salt. If the dough is wet, add additional flour. Roll out on a graham flour covered surface until 1/8" thick. Cut into rectangles and place on an ungreased cooky sheet. Bake at 350 for 15 minutes. They will be soft when they first come out, but will harden up.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Jamie Oliver's Brazilian Fejoada

This is a nice classic stew from Brazil that is loaded with beans, sweet potatoes, veggies and is served on brown rice topped by a fresh salsa.  It comes together in only 35 minutes and is gluten free, and vegetarian.  If you want meat some nice beef, chicken or shrimp would go nicely.  Just add in what you like!

This recipe serves 2
1/2 c. brown rice
1 sweet potato
1 small onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 yellow or orange pepper
1/2 large or one small zucchini
1 T. ground coriander
1 can black beans
1 bunch cilantro
3-4 tomatoes
1/2 lime
3 T. plain yogurt
Put the rice into a pot, cover with 1 c. cold water.  Bring to a boil, then simmer for 25 minutes.  Add more water if necessary.  Drain.  While this is cooking...
Peel and cut into small cubes the sweet potato.  Cover with cold water in a saucepan, bring to a boil, cover and cook on medium for 15 minutes.  Drain.
Peel and chop the garlic and 3/4 of the onion, mincing.  Chop the pepper into small pieces.  Thinly slice and then cube the zucchini.  Heat 1 T. loive oil in a large pot.  Add the onion, garlic, peppers and coriander.  Cook over medium heat for 10 minutes.  Add the can of beans, including the water in the can.  Add the zucchini.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
Dice the tomato and chop the cilantro.  Combine remaining onion, tomatoes, cilantro, the juice of 1/2 a lime and 1 T. olive oil in a bowl.  Serve the stew:  Place rice into a bowl, top with zucchini mixture, then top that with the cilantro mixture.  Finally, place a spoonful of yogurt on the top.

Huli Huli Barbequed Chicken Bowls

I am serving this for a rehearsal dinner this weekend.  It is a beach theme, so we are having a little Hawaiian food.  You want the chicken to sit in the marinade for 24 hours-so you will have to plan ahead a little for this recipe.

For the marinade:
  • 1 cup unsweetened pineapple juice
  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup ketchup
  • ¼ cup chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger root, grated
  • 1½ teaspoons minced garlic
  • green onions, sliced for garnish
Whisk all ingredients well..  Reserve 1/2 c. of the marinade and put the rest into a large glass baking dish or gallon ziplock bag.  Then add about 10 chicken tenders.  Marinate for 24 hours.

Grill the chicken on the BBQ using the reserved marinade as a basting sauce.

You should also grill and baste these ingredients:
sliced zucchini
thick onion slices
thick pepper slices
pineapple spears
I have not put amounts, as you can do as much or as little as you like.

Cook enough rice for about 1/2-1 c. rice per person you are serving.

Put the rice in the bowl.  Arrange the zucchini, pineapple spears, peppers and onions on one side of the bowl.  Slice the chicken into thin strips and serve on the other side of the bowl.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Mini Tamale Pies

  • This is an easy little Mexican meal that pairs nicely with a salad, fresh fruit or even some Mexican rice.  
  • 1 can (15oz) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (15oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1 ear corn, shucked or 1 can  corn, drained
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp  garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 c. chopped onion
  • 1/4 c. chopped cilantro
  • 1 1/2 cups masa harina
    1/2 cup vegetable broth
    1/3 cups vegetable oil
    1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
      Mix beans, tomatoes, corn, spices , and cilantro in a saucepan.  Heat over medium heat for about 10 minutes.  While that is cooking mix the masa, vegetable broth and oil together.  Form into 8 balls.Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray. Press one ball down and up the sides of a muffin cup.  Repeat with remaining balls.  Put filling into each muffin cup over masa dough.  Bake for  20 minutes at 350 degrees. Remove from the oven and evenly sprinkle the shredded cheese over the filling. Return the pan to the oven and bake until the cheese is melted for 10 minutes.
       Let cool for 5 minutes. Run a knife around the edges of each well to loosen and remove the pies. Top with sour cream and cilantro.