Cookbooks


I will be the first to admit Donna Hay comes up with some interesting flavor combinations. Pasta and lemons? Ehhhhh…. But, folks, wrap that spaghetti around your fork ’cause this is GOOD stuff!!

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You bite into the pasta and a hint of lemon enters your senses. Then you bite into a caper and it bites back with a little salt, a little tart. The rocket adds a little bitter and the Parmesan adds a little sour. {And if I had used the chilies it would have added a little heat.}

I was not expecting to like this AT. ALL. I was so wrong.

Slip on over the Wednesdays with Donna Hay and see how the others liked this pasta – Sarah’s choice this week. The recipe is on page 130 of Donna’s modern classics: Book 1 and I found it on Michelle’s blog, too if you want to try it.

Any time you would like to join us just leave a comment on the WWDH site. Love to have you.

Limencello! I have seen that name several times as ingredients for recipes. I know it is an Italian lemon liqueur but really hadn’t thought about it much. When I saw it was used in this week’s Baking Chez Moi cupcakes I knew I would have to find some. And I did, but it was WAY more than I would ever need. After considering the alternative – NOT making the cupcakes – I decided I would see if I could make some. Fortunately there are LOTS of recipes out there. I made just enough to make these cuppys and have a little left over.

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I have to admint it would not be something I would actually DRINK as many in Italy and France do, but it does make a nice little cupcake and frosting.

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I was really afraid we wouldn’t like the cupcakes since we didn’t like the liqueur at all but it just adds a little kick to the whole treat.

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And then the orange marmalade adds to the sweet side.

The recipe is on page 194 of Dorie Greenspan’s Baking Chez Moi. I am sure the other cupcakes made this week by the Doristas are quite lovely and very tasty so click on over to view all of them on the Tuesdays with Dorie Website.

The limoncello recipe I used – The Kitchen

I have heard of pasta ‘fazool’ but I never really knew what it was. Thanks to Ellie and her newest book Weekend Wonders I now know the answer.

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Pasta ‘fazool’ is a twist on the Italian word FAGIOLI which simply means BEANS. Pasta with beans. Who knew? Well, probably everybody but ME!!

Ellie’s version uses Whole Wheat elbows {I used Whole Grain} and adds in zucchini. While many recipes use some kind of meat – sausage, pancetta -this one is totally meatless and totally delicious.

Now, I have to admit I. Don’t. Like. Beans! but in this dish they were ‘disguised’ with the Parmesan Cheese and zucchini. “WHEW!”

The only change I made – While Ellie lists a can of no-salt added diced tomatoes I have jars of tomatoes from the garden –

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with no salt added – I didn’t think Ellie would mind.

While this is supposed to be a soup, I served it as a side with less liquid. It IS a great soup, though. And I think I mite make it this winter (9 months from now) and add some of that sausage. But meanwhile – it’s a side dish here.

The recipe is on page 70 of Ellie’s Weeknight Wonders and check with the other Eaters on the Eating with Ellie webpage for their ‘fazool’.

AND if you want to join with us we are cooking just from Ellie’s newest book – Weeknight Wonders. Leave us a comment HERE!!

My choice this week and I wanted something super simple.

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And this one definitely fits the bill

Ricotta cheese mixed with fresh basil, black olives, and parsley and then added to cooked rigatoni. The only change I made was to add some pasta water to the mxx so it wouldn’t be too dry. I have found that ricotta tends to dry out quickly.

Super Simple. Super Good.

You can check with the other “Hayers” on the Wednesday with Donna Hay Website.

The recipe is on page 148 of Donna’s modern classics Book 1

Want to join us? WE cook from several of Donna’s books. Just leave a comment HERE!!

There is just something about Mark BIttman’s recipes/dishes that keeps calling me back. I know you know the feeling. You find a chef/cook/baker you really like and then you just want to keep making their goodies. I am that way with Madjur Jaffrey, Donna Hay, and Mark Bittman, among others..

So when it came time to do another potluck for I heart Cooking Clubs I went with Bittman – again.

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    8 ripe pears peeled, cored, and roughly chopped into smallish pieces
    1/4 – 1/3 cup sugar
    1 tablespoon cornstarch
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    8 – 10 sheets whole-wheat phyllo dough, thawed
    4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
    Powdered sugar for dusting

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine the pears, sugar, cornstarch, and cinnamon in a large bowl.
Set the phyllo on your work surface and cover with a piece of plastic and a damp towel to keep it from drying out. Remove one sheet and put it in front of you, brush it with some butter and fold in 1/2 length wise.

Put about 1/8 of the pear mixture at one end of the phyllo strip and begin folding the filled section of the phyllo to form triangles back and forth along the length of the strip, like folding a flag. Keep folding the triangle back and forth until you reach the end of the sheet.
Transfer the turnover to the prepared baking sheet, seam side down, and brush it with a little more butter. Repeat with the remaining phyllo sheets and apple mixture. You should have 8 turnovers.

Bake the turnovers until deeply golden and crisp (it’s okay if they ooze a little juice), 25 to 35 minutes.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar or


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    cinnamon sugar.

These were quick, crispy, flaky, tasty and the perfect light dessert. They are on page 565 of Bittman’s The Food Matters Cook book

For the other Pot Luck picks visit us over at IHCC

Spring is here which means garden season is not far away. Fresh veggies every day! But until then we can eat them ‘fresh’ from the grocers in this simple and tasty veggie sauté.

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So simple – zucchini, spinach, and corn mixed with some onion and garlic and quickly cooked in a little olive oil. It just doesn’t get any better. Really!

Thanks to Chaya for this one. Loved it!

Check out the other’s veggies on the Eating with Ellie website.

The recipe is on page 254 of Ellie’s weeknight wonders the only book we are cooking from right now.

If he recipe has the word CURRY in it you can bet I am going to make it. The word just conjures up far away places and exotic flavors. Kayte’s pick for this weeks Wednesdays with Donna Hay did just that. I opned up new food fast to read the recipe and found I had already made it for IHCC last December and it wasn’t one of my fave dishes.

But I decided to make it again with a couple of tweaks!

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While Donna says to simply halve the chicken thighs I cut them into smaller pieces. I also cut the sweet potato into smaller bites. I made only 1/2 the recipe but kept the Red Curry Paste at 3 Tbl. MUCH better. And then I added a touch of salt which brought out the flavors more. I thickened the broth some and served it with some browned rice. Also much better. But…. there is still something lacking to my taste buds. I want to like this but it just isn’t there for some reason.

Did the other Ladies of WWDH like Kayte’s pick? Check out their posts by hopping over to the WWDH Website where we all leave our links.

The recipe is on page 67 of Donna’s new food fast.

And anytime you want to join us for some really good food just leave a comment for one of us or on the website. We would love to have you.

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