Food


Today is Monday. The thrid Monday of the month. So you kow what that means. SECRET RECIPE CLUB REVEAL!! Always a fun day. This month I was fortunate enough to be ‘assigned’ Rachel’s Blog The Avid Appetite. According to her short self description,

    A few years ago I could barely boil water.

Well, after reading through her blog and her gret collection of recipes and kitchen adventures I think she is LONG past that part of her life. So. Many. Good. Things. Way too many to try for just SRC. So after picking my way through lots and lots I ended up with Three quick tasty treats.

Starting with her Sweet Potato Pie Smoothie for Breakfast and ending with a quinoa dish for dinner. But lets not get ahead of ourselves.


BREAKFASTP1040933-001Rachel says if you don’t like Sweet Potatoes don’t try this one. And she is rght. It is a major flavor. And very simple. But you have to think ahead because the small sweet potato has to be cooked and cooled first. Then you just mix that with 1 C milk, 1/2 frozen banana
1 packet sweetener of your choice and a 1/2 = 3/4 Tsp of Pumpkin Pie Spice. Run it all through the blender with some ice cubes. Breakfast!


I needed something really quick for LUNCH one day. bingo – Rachel to the rescue.

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Skillet Tortilla Pizzas.

    1 8″ tortilla {I found these great low cholesterol tortillas at W-M by Ole Mexican Food – Sundried Tomato)
    1/4 C pizza sauce (easily spread with a pastry brush)
    1/4 cup cooked sausage and/or sauteed mushrooms.
    1/4 C Cheese of your choice {I used Fiesta Blend}
    2 tsp grated parmesean cheese
    2 tsp light butter

Lightly butter both sides of the tortilla and lay in a skillet over medium heat. When bottom starts to brown, flip it over.
Spread with the pizza sauce, cheeses, and other ingredients. Top with Parmesan.

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Making these little pizzas gave me a chance to use a little tool I found in My Mom-n-Laws kitchen. P1040927 It made cutting up the cooked sausage so easy.

And then for DINNER I added Rachel’s

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Mediterranean Quinoa

    2 C low sodium chicken broth (I used Veggie broth)
    1 C dry quinoa, rinsed
    1/3 C kalamata olives
    1 tomato, seeds removed & diced
    juice of 1/2 lemon
    2 handfuls baby spinach
    7 Spice {Found this at a local mid-eastern market: allspice, cinnamon, cloves, cumin, corieander, caraway, nutmeg}
    salt and pepper, to taste

Place the chicken broth (+ water) and quinoa in a small saucepan over high heat. Once boiling, stir, reduce heat to simmer and cover. Cook for 12 minutes.
After 12 minutes, stir in, olives, tomato, lemon, and spinach. Cover and cook 3 minutes more. Season with salt, pepper, and spice to taste. Serve warm.

The 7 Spice really added some good Mediterranean Flavor. I served it with some baked fish and it was perfect since I added a little 7 Spice to the fish coating. YUM!!

Now – about those other other recipes I have marked:

Thanks, Rachel, for some great tastes. I’m looking forward to some more of your recipes. And I reall think you ARE a long ways past BOILING WATER!!!!

Want to know what the other Group C members made for SRC. Check out these posts!

This week’s recipe, chosen by Chaya, was not one that would even have been on my radar. Because it called for white beans. I simply do not like beans and peas that are soft. Black eyed peas. Crowder peas, Red beans. White beans. YUCK!! So I almost skipped this one just because of the beans. I KNEW I wouldn’t like it.

    I. Was. Wrong!

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Wrong! Wrong! Wrong! So thank you, Chaya, for once again broadening my food horizons.

What we have here is a mix of cooked quinoa, brocalli, bacon (duh!), basil, mashed white beans, seasonings, and cheese. Then fried. How could this be wrong? The bacon and brocalli definitely cover the taste, and texture, of the beans which serve only as a filler. I am glad I didn’t make but 1/2 of the recipe because I could easily fill up on these. Easily!!

You can find the recipe on Donna’s website.And after you read the recipe check with

Chaya
Gaye

      who made hers with Couscous.

Sarah

and see how they liked the fritters.

I have had a bottle of Balsamic Vinegar in the cabinet for a while. Good thing it just gets better! I bought it for a recipe and then never made THAT recipe. Donna has come to my rescue with the recipe I chose for this week’s Wednesday with Donna hay.

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Chicken breasts (and thighs) marinated in balsamic vinegar mixed with chicken stock and garlic then browned and cooked in the marinade. So simple. Simply serve it over couscous infused with garlic. I found some tri-color couscous at World Market that was fun to use. But it made TONS of couscous. 1 cup dry yielded 4 cups cooked.

If you are a balsamic fan then you will love this dish. I am still trying to decide if I liked it. B was definitely NOT a fan.

How did Chaya, Gaye, and Sarah like it? Check out their posts.

The recipe is from Flavours on page 102. I also found it at Food.com

This week’s pick, from Kayte, is a mixed mushroom risotto. I love risotto and always look forward to making different ones so when Kayte chose this one I jumped in enthusiastically.

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What we have is a lovely seasoned risotto with dried porcini mushrooms as well as a mix of fresh. I used Portobello and white button and then threw in some dried mixed that I had on hand. What’s not to love about this one. A little red wine, a little garlic, some leeks. Yes indeed. LOVED it!!

The recipe is on page 138 of Donna’s modern classics: book 1. Check with

Two weeks ago the group made Veggie Laksa. I really wanted to make it but here in Podunk Laksa paste was not to be found. Lucky for me I travelled south to visit my Babies and just happened to visit a HUGE Asian market – Vinh Phat. It carries everything. And I do mean EVERYTHING anyone would ever need for Asian cooking. I have to admit I didn’t recognize a lot of the products but I found the two I really needed – Laksa Paste and Miso.

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I had never had Laksa before. It is a wonderful seasoned paste. Full of flavor and a little spicy. Why haven’t I had that before? The Veggie Laksa, which was Sarah’s choice last week, included sweet potatoes, bok choy, garlic, and snow peas in a rich coconut milk and Laksa broth. Donna said to serve it over Vermicelli noodles. I had also found some of the noodles made from Mung Beans. Altogethr I think I liked it. Next time I would cut the sweet potatoes and boy choy in smaller pieces. The recipe is on Donna’s Website.

Sarah made the Laksa as did Gaye so check out their posts.

I have been in a baking funk. I haven’t felt like doing ANY baking. Which is unusual for me. I LOVE to bake. Even when it’s hot. I bake. Until recently. Thank goodness for SRC because the blog assigned to me was so full of goodies to bake I just HAD to get back into the kitchen. In case you are wondering, SRC is the Secret Recipe Club. Each month we are assigned a blog to cook from and, in Group C, we REVEAL on the third Monday of the month. This month’s assignment was a good one because thanks to Jamie at Our Eating Habits I am out of my baking slump!

I usually pick two or three recipes to feature on the SRC post. Usually savory. But this time I went strickly for baking goodies.

We started out with Jamie’s

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    Blueberry Muffins

This is the first year our Blueberry bushes have yielded enough berries to actually use in something. So exciting to know I will have fresh berries in the freezer.

    3/4 cup milk
    1/4 cup vegetable oil
    1 large egg
    2 cups all-purpose flour
    1/2 cup Stevia
    2 tsp baking powder
    1/2 tsp salt
    1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

1. Mix together the milk , oil, and egg. Reserve 1 tbl dry ingredient mix. Add remaining dry ingredients to liguid and stir until just combined. Toss berries with about 1 Tbl flour mixture. Gently fold in blueberries.

2. Line muffin tin with paper liners (or grease) and scoop in batter. Bake at 400 degrees for 22 minutes. Original Recipe

I added a simple Lemon glaze. Perfect for Breakfast. Snack. Dessert. Blueberries!

Then we were completely out of cookies, so…..

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Oat Cookies

    1/2 cup butter, softened
    3/4 cup brown sugar
    1/4 cup white sugar + 1/2 cup Stevia
    3/4 cup peanut butter
    1/4 cup Eggbeater
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    3/4 cup all-purpose flour
    1/4 cup whole wheat flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 cup rolled oats
    1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

1. Beat together the butter, peanut butter, sugars and Stevia.
2. Add Eggbeaters and vanilla, beat together again.
3. Add flours, baking soda, and salt, mix until just comes together.
4. Beat in chocolate chips and oats.
5. Bake for 8 minutes at 375 degrees, transfer to cooling rack. Original Recipe

The cookies didn’t last long. Between the Peanut Butter and the Oatmeal in the cookies they made for one perfect cookie.

The Man eats sandwiches most days for lunch so I bake bread every week. This week I used Jamie’s recipe for

    French Style Baguettes

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Jamie’s recipe made 2 large baguettes but I made 4 by cutting the dough into smaller pieces. I also subbed out some Whole Wheat for some of the flour. These were good and made great sandwiches. Just the right amount of ‘chew’ with the WWF. So much better than ANY store bought bread. You can find the recipe HERE!

So I am out of my Baking Funk. Spending the day with Jamie in the Kitchen was just the therepy I needed. Of course with all the other recipes I pinned there will be more days spent in the kitchen with Jamie.

Discovering new foodie blogs through SRC is always good for one’s baking psyche. Check out the other discoveries from the SRC members below.


Last week I was in one of our local bookstores. They were having a BOGO $1 on the bargain books. Including a whole slew of cook books. I had promised myself I wasn’t going to buy Any.More.Cookbooks. I don’t need them. I have more than recipes I will ever use, which I know is NOT the reason we buy cookbooks, but I really DON’T need any more. REALLY! But this sale was just TOO good. So, since I have no self control…

ckbk

Bittman for $4.00. I could NOT pass that up. Or Krieger. Or Hay. So I buckled under and bought the books. Lucky for me POTLUCK this week so I am using at least one of my unnecessary purchases. Bittman for Potluck!

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    Wild Rice with Celery and Steamed Salmon

I have to admit I have NEVER cooked Wild Rice before. Eaten yes, cooked, no! I was a little leary. But while it took FOREVER {58 minutes} it was delicious. The celery, garlic, onions, bay leaf added so much flavor. And so much better than white rice. I loved the idea that the salmon was steamed on top of the rice before the rice was completely finished. It did make it a one pot meal. I think I would like to add some color to this one – red or orange bell peppers would be nice.

The recipe is HERE! It is delicious. Low cal. Dellicous. Healthy food. And, as Bittman would say – Food Matters!

Check out the other Potluck dishes at I heart Cooking Club.

Potluck

When I think of Summer I think of fresh fruits and veggies. When I think of Summer Fruit I always think of watermelon. And Blueberries. And PEACHES. Juicy, sweet, round, ripe orbs of deliciousness. What better fruit to put into a Bundt Cake!

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    3 cups all-purpose flour
    pinch of salt
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1 cup granulated sugar
    3/4 cup Stevia (or Splenda)
    1/4 cup unsweetened apple sauce
    1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled
    2 eggs
    1/2 cup Egg Beaters
    1/3 cup orange juice
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 29 oz can sliced peaches in syrup, syrup reserved.

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease a 12 cup bundt pan with Baker’s Joy. {All the batter fit into a smaller pan with a little extra left for a minie}
In a mixing bowl add the eggs, eggbeaters, and lightly beat them with a whisk. Stir in the orange juice, applesauce, butter, and vanilla extract.
Gently fold in the flour, salt, baking powder, and granulated sugar, and Stevia. The batter will be somewhat thick.
Mix in 1/2 can of the peaches, pureed.
{I placed slices of peach in each of the crevices of the bundt pan – looked nice.}
Pour batter evenly into the prepared pan.
Bake uncovered for 1 hour – 1 hour and 10 minutes. Let cool for 15 minutes before invert onto serving plate.
Cool completely.
Drizzle with warm Peachy Syrup

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The bundt was sweet but not too sweet since I subbed out some of the sugar. The added peach syrup increased the peachy flavor more than the pureed peaches did. Nice summer dessert.

Felice is our host this month so if you want to see all the luscious Stone Fruit Bundts hop on over to All That’s Left are the Crumbs.

#BundtBakers is a group of Bundt loving bakers who get together once a month to bake Bundts with a common ingredient or theme. You can see all our of lovely Bundts by following our Pinterest board right here. We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.

If you are a food blogger and would like to join us, just send an email to Stacy at foodlustpeoplelove@gmail.com. All recipes and photographs can be found on our individual blogs or our Pinterest board.

If you need something quick to cook up for breakfast or lunch (or dinner) you might try a Frittata. Similar to a quiche it is crustless and finished in a broiler rather than baked in the oven. This frittata of Donna’s is super simple, super quick and super tasty.

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This is her zucchini and ricotta frittata and it is loaded with zucchini and and flavor from the ricotta and Parmesean cheese. It requires 6 eggs but I think you could get by with less. The recipe is HERE on Donna’s site. It was Chaya’s choice for WWDH this week. Good one, Chaya! I am sure Gaye, Kayte, and Sarah enjoyed it as well.

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AHHHH! The Mediterranean.

    Italy!
    Spain!
    Morocco!
    Egypt!
    Greece!

The food! The sea! The Food! Experiences that are fun! Food that is, usually, good for you!

    Pasta!
    Spices
    Olives!
    Fruits!

All of these things line up when thoughts turn to that area of the world. Which is where our thoughts turned for this week’s I Heart Cooking Club when we did Mediterranean dishes from Nigel Slater.

I needed something simple so I went with pasta. With a sauce made from roasted eggplant and basil. I was leery that the sauce would be creamy as Nigel said but it was a lovely silky sauce that clung beautifully to the mini rotini pasta and turned out much better than I expected.

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While not very colorful it was very tasty. Eggplant, pasta, basil, olive oil, lemon juice. That’s it! Five simple ingredients! And then garnished with pine nuts.

Roast the eggplant and let it cool. Then remove the meat into a food processor. Process until smooth and gradually drizzle in the Olive oil until creamy. Fold in the basil, shredded, and a shot of lemon juice. Season wit salt and pepper.

Cook pasta until al dente. Mix with the eggplant sauce. Garnish with toasted pine nuts. Enjoy! You can find the original ingredients HERE. I made 1/3 of the recipe and it was plenty for two servings. And defintely repeatable.

What other dishes appear from the Mediterranean on the IHCC buffet. Well – click over and see!

When it comes to favorite foods I would have to list Seafood at the very very top. Any kind of seafood fixed any way. Any time! Including in a Paella. With lots of rice, various kinds of seafood and spices. I wish I had had more variety for this one. Kayte picked Donna’s Paella for this week’s Wednesdays with Donna Hay dish. Donna called for shrimp, clams, and mussels. And even though I live in a state with lots of seafood it does not include mussels or clams. The subbing of canned whole baby clams just didn’t do this dish justice.

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I am definitely looking into finding some mussels and clams in the shell so I can make this dish the way it should be. Until then, this isn’t a bad substitute.

The recipe is on page 144 in Donna’s Modern Classics

Did the other WWDH cooks find all their ingredients? Check with

And thanks, Kayte. Good choice.

If you would like to join us in Wednesdays with Donna Hay just leave one of us a comment. We are using

    Modern Classics: Book 1
    off the shelf
    Donna’s Website

for recipes.

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