Sunday, February 28, 2010
Friday, February 26, 2010
I love spinach noodles so this recipe I had to try! It is not a traditional lasagne with ricotta and red sauce but a white sauce with a little bit of Parmesan cheese. It is the second time I made it and I still love it. It requires more attention that a typical weeknight dinner so make sure you have a lot of time when you do it. I served it with a salad and garlic bread.
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, sliced
1 pound veal, ground
1 pound pork, ground
4 ounces prosciutto, cut into small pieces
¼ cup tomato paste
1 cup milk
1 cup white wine
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups whole milk
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 pound fresh spinach pasta sheets, cut into long strips (or dried lasagne noodles blanched for 6 minutes and refreshed)
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
In a large heavy-bottom saucepan, heat olive oil and butter until butter is melted. Add onion, carrot, and garlic, and sweat over medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until vegetables are translucent. Increase heat and add veal, pork, and prosciutto to the vegetables, and brown over high heat, stirring occasionally and breaking up any lumps. Add the tomato paste, milk, and wine, and simmer uncovered, over low heat, stirring occasionally, until almost all liquid has evaporated but ragu is still moist – about 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and remove from heat.
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan, add the flour, and whisk until smooth. Cook over medium heat, stirring regularly, about 2 minutes. Do not allow the flour to become colored. Remove from heat. While flour is cooking heat the milk in a separate pan until it is just about to boil. Add the milk to the butter mixture, no more than a few tablespoons at a time. Stir steadily and thoroughly. As soon as the first 2 T. of milk have been incorporated add 2 more, and continue to stir. Repeat this procedure until you have added ½ cup milk; you can now add the rest of the milk, 1/2 cup at a time, whisking continuously until the sauce is very smooth. Place the pan over low heat, add the salt, and cook, stirring without interruption, until the sauce is as dense as thick cream. Remove from the heat and season with nutmeg.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Brush a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish with melted butter or oil, and layer in the following order from the bottom: béchamel, pasta, ragù, béchamel, and grated cheese (saving about 1 cup béchamel for last topping), making 5 layers of pasta, finishing with béchamel, and 1/4 cup of the Parmesan sprinkled over the top. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes, until the top is golden brown and the casserole is bubbling. Remove from the oven, allow to cool for 20 minutes, slice, and serve.
Thursday, February 25, 2010
This is definitely a quick meal for one of those busy nights. I love pesto and it is really easy to make plus it freezes well too!
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Monday, February 22, 2010
Here is a picture of my grill pan in the midst of grilling the eggplant and fennel.
I made this vegetable parmesan dish and added sauted chicken breast underneath it. The vegetables parmesan was delicious!! And the chicken was the perfect addition.
Olive oilKosher salt and freshly ground pepper1 medium eggplant, sliced into 1/2 inch rounds1 fennel bulb, sliced into 1/4 inch pieces1 yellow pepper, cut into 2 inch chunks1 orange pepper, cut into 2 inch chunks1 jar marinara sauce3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese1 cup grated Parmesan cheese1 cup plain bread crumbs4 pieces boneless, skinless chicken, pounded thin
Put a grill pan over medium-high heat or preheat a gas or charcoal grill. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Butter a 13 by 9-inch glass baking dish.
Brush eggplant slices, fennel slices and peppers with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Grill the vegetables for 3 to 4 minutes each side until softened.
Spoon 3/4 cup of the marinara sauce over the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Arrange the eggplant slices on top. Sprinkle with 1 cup of mozzarella cheese and 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese. Arrange the peppers in a single layer on top. Spoon 3/4 cup of marinara sauce over the peppers. Sprinkle with 1 cup of mozzarella cheese and 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese. Arrange the fennel on top and cover with the remaining sauce. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Scatter the bread crumbs over the cheese and drizzle liberally with oil. Bake until the top is golden and forms a crust, about 30 to 35 minutes
While the vegetables are cooking in the oven, heat 1 tsp olive oil in the same grill pan you used to cook the vegetables. Sprinkle chicken with kosher salt and pepper. Saute the chicken in the pan until cooked through. Keep warm until vegetable parm is done.
Remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes before serving.
Serve a piece of chicken with vegetable parm on top.
Note: The vegetables can also be baked in a 375 degrees F oven for 15 to 20 minutes until softened.
This recipe was adapted from Giada's Vegetable Parmesan recipe on foodnetwork.com .
Saturday, February 20, 2010
Tonight I served this dinner for some close friends. They loved it! The meatballs could also be accompanied by pasta if you want to do it that way. However if you do serve a meatball sandwich make sure you have good rolls... they are key. (If you live local, I got mine at Carlinos).
Friday, February 19, 2010
I made these this afternoon to take to a playgroup. The whole plate was gone so I think they were a hit! The kids kept walking by the table and popping them in their mouth! You could make them into actual pretzel shapes but for the kids it was easier to make them bite size.
Thursday, February 18, 2010
I love coconut so I love this chicken dish. My whole family likes it because it has a lot of flavor. My husband and I had a side salad along with our dinner. Also, I started with frozen spinach that I doctored up a bit. I didn't have time to thaw it so it was a little watery but still had a lot of flavor. If you have time, thaw the spinach and squeeze out the excess water before you cook it.
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Monday, February 15, 2010
This is an easy and healthy one pot meal. Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) is a grain with the highest content of protein. It is packed with all 9 essential amino acids, a great source of fiber, iron and magnesium. For an extra kick in this dish, Ben always puts hot sauce on it, but it is perfectly delicious without it too!
Sunday, February 14, 2010
Our main course for Valentine's Day. I rarely cook scallops but this recipe was easy and the sauce is very light and refreshing. I got the scallop recipe from a cooking class.
Saturday, February 13, 2010
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Black Bean Burgers
While snowed in today, we decided to get in the Valentine's Day spirit and make some cookies!
It is snowing here today so we will be busy working in the kitchen! Our first project is play dough. It is sooo easy to make and the play dough is much better than the kind you buy. It lasts, if you put it in the fridge in an airtight container, for about 6 months.
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Monday, February 8, 2010
Sunday, February 7, 2010
I always keep a container of this in my fridge instead of stocking up on cans or cartons of chicken broth. It is basically concentrated chicken broth. Mix one teaspoon of the base with one cup of water and you have delicious chicken broth! 100% Natural! See my "cooking must haves" list to buy it on amazon.
Thursday, February 4, 2010
2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tbsp olive oil
2 leeks, cut lengthwise and chopped
5 small Yukon gold potatoes, diced
1 bunch of asparagus (weighed almost 1 pound)
6 cups chicken broth
2 celery sticks, cut in half lengthwise and chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup whole milk (or heavy cream)
Trim the attractive tips from the asparagus. Cut the woody stems from each spear (or bend the asparagus towards the end and it should snap off.) Cut the remaining middle pieces of asparagus into 1/2 inch pieces.
Bring to a boil 4 cups chicken broth, add woody stems and simmer for 25 minutes.
Pull stems out with a slotted spoon and discard. Next add the asparagus tips to the broth for 1 minute. Pull them out with a slotted spoon and put in an ice bath to stop the cooking. Drain them and set aside on a paper towel. Save the asparagus infused chicken broth for later.
Meanwhile, melt butter and olive oil in medium pot. Add celery and leeks sauté until soft, about 10 minutes. Add garlic sauté for 1 minute. Then add asparagus pieces, potatoes, 1 tsp kosher salt, ½ tsp pepper, 4 cups of the asparagus infused broth and 2 more cups of chicken broth. Bring to boil, then reduce heat to simmer for 12 minutes or until asparagus and potatoes are tender. With an immersion blender (or food processor), blend until smooth. If serving right away, add milk (or cream).. if not, wait until just before serving, add asparagus tips and milk while heating soup up.
Adult Review: Soup was good, very flavorful. And salad was delicious! (Dressing was light and perfect compliment)
Kid Review: only ate veggies that we put on our salad and chicken salad- ate everything without complaints, didn't serve them soup.
Wednesday, February 3, 2010
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
Baked chicken (bone-in with skin chicken breasts) with kosher salt, pepper and other seasonings sprinkled on top at 375 until done.
Monday, February 1, 2010
So the recipe I followed said one tenderloin but my package came with two in them... this recipe is the way I did it so there was enough sauce for both, but you could definitely do half the sauce if you only want to make one tenderloin.