Saturday, September 20, 2008

Spaghetti primavera

(I actually meant to post this in the summer, happy late summer!)
1 cup sliced zucchini
2 tomatoes, peeled and chopped (or a can of diced tomatoes, which is what I actually do)
3 T. olive oil, divided
3 cloves garlic, mashed, divided
Salt and pepper to taste
10 fresh mushrooms, sliced
8 T. butter, divided
1 1/2 cups brocolli pieces, blanched
1 1 /2 cups snow peas, blanched
6 asparagus stalks, blanched and sliced
1 lb. spaghetti, uncooked
1 cup heavy cream, warmed
Basil, chopped (to taste)
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
chopped parsley
Sauteed whole cherry tomatoes
Put zucchini in colander and sprinkle with salt. Set aside 20 minutes. Rinse with cold running water and drain. Pat dry with paper towels. Saute chopped tomatoes in 1 T. oil with 1 mashed garlic clove, salt and pepper, until tomatoes render their juice. In another pan, lightly saute mushrooms with remaining garlic in 2 T. butter and remaining oil. Add zucchini, broccoli, snow peas and asparagus; cook only until heated through. Cook spaghetti al dente and drain. Melt remaining butter. Toss spaghetti with butter and warm cream. Add basil, salt and pepper to taste. Toss with cheese and vegetables. Sprinkle with parsley. Garnish with cherry tomatoes. (You will feel like you are eating in a fancy italian restuarant. Don't cut down on the cream and butter though, I have tried and it doesn't taste so good!)

Golden Squash Soup

Celebrate fall!!
1 large onion, chopped
4 medium carrots, chopped
5 Tbl. butter
3 lbs butternut squash, peeled and cubed
6 cups chicken broth
3 medium zucchini, peeled and sliced
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/4 tsp. white pepper
1 cup half and half cream
1/2 c. milk
grated parmesan cheese, optional

In a dutch oven or soup kettle over medium heat, saute onion and carrots in butter for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add squash, broth, zucchini, salt, thyme and pepper; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes. Cool until lukewarm. In a blender or food processor, puree soup in small batches until smooth; return to kettle. Add cream and milk; mix well and heat through (do not boil). Garnish with parmesan cheese, if desired. 12-14 servings.

(I have omited the cream in this, and it turned out great--with less calories).

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Prosciutto Pasta Toss

1 pkg (16 oz) linguine
1/2 cup peas (didn't seem like enough, so I used 1 cup)
2 TB minced garlic (I didn't measure, just used a few cloves)
1 TB Italian seasoning
1 tsp pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 lb. prosciutto cut thin and into pieces, or use ham
1/4 cup shredded parmesan
Cook linguine according to package, during last 3 minutes of cooking add peas.
Meanwhile cook the garlic for a few minutes until golden in the olive oil, add seasoning, pepper and prosciutto, stir and cook a bit longer to heat meat. Toss into pasta and sprinkle with cheese and toss again.

This is a new recipe I tried out on Kim for lunch today. Thanks for being my guest and letting me try something new. By the way, we both thought it was a great recipe, that's why I'm sharing it. Enjoy!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Tomato-Basil Shrimp Skewers

1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup tomato sauce
2 TB minced fresh basil
2 TB red wine vinegar
1 1/2 tsp minced garlic
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 lb. uncooked jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
In a large zip lock combine first six ingredients and mush together, add shrimp. Marinate in the fridge for up to 30 minutes. Thread onto skewers and grill over medium heat for 3-5 minutes on each side, until shrimp turns pink. Serves 6-8.
Serve with:
Orzo with Parmesan & Basil
1 cup uncooked orzo pasta
2 TB butter
1 can (14 oz) chicken broth (or just water with bouillon cubes)
1/4 - 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tsp dried basil
1/8 tsp pepper
In a skillet saute orzo in butter for 3-5 minutes until lightly browned. Stir in broth and bring to boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes until liquid is absorbed. Stir in basil, cheese and pepper. 4-6 servings

This was a very successful meal that actually was eaten and enjoyed by everyone! I had my parents over for dinner and it was such a great meal for guests. We also ate french/baggett bread, grilled zucchini and watermelon. What a delight this meal was! You must try it.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Easy Bake Cheddar Biscuits

This comes from the Kraft magazine.
1 cup flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
6 TB cold butter, cubed
1 cup shredded cheese
1/3 cup milk
Preheat oven to 450. Mix flour, baking powder, cream of tartar, sugar and salt in medium bowl. Cut in butter with pastry blender until crumbly. Stir in cheese and milk and mix until forms soft dough.
Place on lightly floured surface; knead 8-10 times or until smooth. Pat out into a square and cut into 9 squares. Place on greased baking sheet.
Bake 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Serving suggestion: Chive & Onion cream cheese spread.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Rice Mix

Reading that last post reminded me of a mix that I made up earlier this year, after looking into a few different herb options this is what I liked. I'll even tell you a great gift idea that I did. It was a New's Year party and I filled this mix into a chineses take out box and then I tied a note that said, "Have a RICE New Year" and since it was for a group of close friends of ours, I actually said, "Have a RICE New Rear" I thought it was funny..This idea came from a darling book of my mother in laws, I think it's the Gooseberry something or other, which crafters out there will be familiar with (though they didn't suggest the "rear" word on the tag). This is a great gift all year long too!

Rice Mix:
2 cups rice
4 chicken bouillon cubes
1 TB parsley
1/2 TB basil
1/2 tsp garlic
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp salt
ground pepper
Mix together and store in container with lid.
To use: Boil 4 1/2 cups water. Add 4 TB butter, stir in rice and when it boils turn to low and cover for 25 minutes.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Honey-Baked Chicken & Linda's Rice Mix

This is so easy - I love it!

Honey-Baked Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/3 c. margarine, melted
1/3 c. honey
2 T. mustard
1/4 t. salt

Preheat oven to 350. Mix margarine, honey, mustard, and salt. Pour over chicken in shallow dish. Bake 1 hour.

*This made so much sauce this time. I think next time I will half the sauce recipe.

Linda's Rice Mix

3 c. uncooked rice (2 rice, 1 noodle may be used)
1/4 c. dried parsley
6 T. chicken or beef boullion
2 t. onion powder
1/2 t. garlic powder
1/4 t. dried thyme

Mix and store.

To cook, use:

1 c. mix
2 c. water
2 T. margarine

*I used Jasmine rice, which makes it extra tasty.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Dona's Ribs

This recipe, from my friend Dona, is so easy and great for company. Brooklyn was loving the leftovers today for lunch.

4 lbs. country style boneless ribs - seared in a frying pan with olive oil on all four sides
1 cup chopped onion
2- 8 oz. cans tomato sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 T. worcestershire sauce
1 T. dry mustard
1 T. French's mustard
1/4 t. pepper

Place seared ribs in crock pot with all ingredients. Cook on Low all day. The pork will be really tender and easy to shred. Great served with rice or mashed potatoes.

Crunchy Chicken Parmesan Chicken Tenders

This one is by Giada De Laurentiis
This was very quick and very easy with very little mess. My family loved the flavor and my kids loved that the sauce was on the side.

4 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup buttermilk 1 1/2 pounds chicken tenders (about 18)
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Freshly ground black pepper
1 1/4 cups freshly grated Parmesan
3/4 cup Italian-style seasoned bread crumbs

~Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. *
~Brush 1 tablespoon of oil over each of 2 heavy large lined baking sheets. *
~Place the buttermilk in a large bowl. Add the chicken tenders and stir to coat. Let stand at least 15 minutes and up to 30 minutes.
~Meanwhile, mash the garlic with the salt in a medium bowl. Whisk in the vinegar and then the remaining 1/2 cup of oil. Season the vinaigrette, to taste, with pepper. Transfer the vinaigrette to a small serving bowl.
~Stir the Parmesan and bread crumbs in a pie dish. *Remove the chicken tenders from the buttermilk and dredge them in the bread crumb mixture to coat completely, pressing to adhere. ~Arrange the coated chicken tenders on the prepared baking sheets, spacing evenly. Drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil over the chicken tenders and bake until they are cooked through and golden brown, about 12 minutes.
~Transfer the chicken tenders to a platter and serve the vinaigrette alongside for dipping.

*A few things I did differently-- I used boneless skinless chicken breasts and just sliced them into two halves lengthwise. Because they were a little thicker than tenders, I soaked them for the full 30 minutes in the buttermilk.
*I put the Parmesan cheese and bread crumbs in a gallon size zip lock and shook the chicken in the bag in stead of using a dish.
*I was able to put all the tenders on one cookie sheet.
* I cooked the chicken at 425 degrees for 18 minutes. The chicken breasts were a little thicker than tenders so I wanted to let it cook for longer at a lower temp.