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Showing posts from 2013

Zucchini Rollatinis

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This was a delicious discovery of a recipe I found in Martha Stewart Living magazine.  http://www.marthastewart.com/1033653/zucchini-rollatini  It was a great way to use the basil that's growing like weeds in my herb garden (also made pesto this week...so much basil!) You can even make the dish vegetarian by omitting the prosciutto.  It was very tasty, and pretty, and Reid even said the next morning, that was really tasty!

Zucchini Rollatini2 large zucchini (8-10 inches long), cut lengthwise into 1/8"-thick slicescoarse salt and freshly ground pepper1 tbs extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed5-6 oz. thinly sliced prosciutto1 lb. fresh mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced24 large fresh basil leaves, plus more for garnish (about 2 handfuls)-I think I used more like 3 handfuls2 c tomato saucePreheat oven to 425*.  Season zucchini slices on both sides with salt and pepper.  Heat olive oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.  Cook zucchini in single-layer batches until golden…

Chipotle Shrimp Tacos

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I've had this recipe in my arsenal since my sister and I lived together some 5 years ago.  Those were really awesome days and we cooked together all the time.  I've been making this recipe since 5 years ago.  The one hang up is finding good tomatillos.  Sometimes the tomatillos at HEB are a little sad looking, so I try to make this recipe when they look decent.  This recipe come from food network http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchens/chipotle-shrimp-taco-with-avocado-salsa-verde-recipe/index.html Sorry the pics are so blurry! That's what I get for always taking photos on my camera phone at night. I need to invest in a better camera, it's just camera phones make uploading pics so easy!
The avocado salsa makes tooooons, so I sometimes reduce the recipe for half or buy some tortilla chips to finish off the rest.  Also, the salsa gets pretty watery in the food processor, so try not to pulse too much.  I have also pan fried the shrimp when I did not have …

Homemade Pasta: Egg Pasta with Tomato Sauce and Meatballs and Spinach Pasta Chicken Alfredo

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A few weekends ago, Reid and I went to a techniques class at Williams-Sonoma.  Technique classes are basically free classes where they teach you...you guessed it...cooking or baking techniques.  You should check one out at your local store: Williams-Sonoma technique classes.  The one Reid and I attended was on how to make homemade pasta.  The pasta dough recipes I'm posting here are from the handout they gave us.  Williams-Sonoma Classic Fesh Egg Pasta Recipe and Williams-Sonoma Fresh Spinach Pasta.  The Alfredo sauce recipe is from Food.com. Better than Olive Garden Alfredo Sauce Recipe.  Did you know that Alfredo was a chef who created Alfredo sauce for his picky pregnant wife by tripling the butter and cream in a traditional pasta sauce? Thanks, Dinner Party Download! Dinner Party Download is an awesome Podcast, and I highly recommend it to everyone.  It starts with an ice breaker joke, has a drink inspired by history, dinner party topics, etiquette lessons, dinner party music …

Pizza Dip

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One of my former lacrosse teammates, Lizzy, introduced me to pizza dip.  She would bring it to lacrosse parties and get togethers and pretty much any other time we could beg her to bring it.  It's amazing! You dip tortilla chips in the dip and it literally tastes like pizza.   In your mouth.  But on a tortilla chip.  We used to have "Fun Food Fridays" on some of our rotations at vet school, which is pretty much an excuse for residents and interns and the doctors to get fed by the 4th year students.  Anyway, I brought this 1 or 2 times and it was a hit.  I also brought this to work once when we had a pot luck day.  It's super easy to make and definitely a crowd pleaser!  Great game day food, too.  I altered Lizzy's recipe a little by adding oregano and dried basil to the cream cheese base.

Pizza Dip
Ingredients:

8 oz. softened cream cheese1 tbs dried oregano2 tsp. dried basil3/4 c. tomato sauce1&1/2 c. shredded mozzarella cheeseabout 8 large pepperoni slices, c…

Salted Caramel Ice Cream

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So you know how I love my new ice cream maker? Well, if you didn't, I do.  I've made blueberry pie ice cream and vanilla ice cream.  My favorite so far is this salted caramel ice cream recipe from http://espressoandcream.com/2012/07/salted-caramel-ice-cream.html.  It's really good.  My parents were in town once after I'd made some and my dad kept on saying I needed to start selling it.  Yea, it's that awesome.   I think my dad even told my sister about it and said we needed to start selling it.  Hah!

The first time I made it the cream boiled over on my stove and made a huge mess, so watch it carefully! Don't leave even if you really have to go pee!  Also, the first time I made it I was really paranoid about the chunks of caramel that remained after adding the cream, but the second time I wasn't too worried and it turned out fine.  Espresso and Cream does not say when to add the vanilla, so I guessed.  Also, some of the directions were a little confusing, so…

Tequila Lime Skirt Steak

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Ok, I've been really slacking on my posts lately, so I'm about to unload so many. Hope you're prepared.
I found the inspirations for this recipe on Pinterest at http://cookingbride.com/main-courses/tequila-lime-skirt-steak/.  I googled Tequila Lime Steak and also found a Food Network recipe here: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/grilled-tequila-garlic-lime-flank-steak-recipe/index.html and kind of took from either one what I liked.  The result was a really delicious, flavorful, tender steak that both I and Reid really liked.  It was very easy to put together.  Plus, it uses skirt steak, which is super cheap! I served it with some roasted corn on the cob and potato salad I had made earlier in the week.
Tequila Lime Steak Ingredients: 1&1/2 lbs. skirt steak2 minced garlic cloves1/4 cup tequilla1 tbs. Worcestershire sauce1/2 c. squeezed lime juice (2-3 limes)1 tbs. soy sauce1 tbs. brown sugar1 pepper (Guy Fieri's recipe says jalapeno and serrano, I just used the pepp…

New York-Style Bagels

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Did you know that homemade bagels are AMAZE-BALLS?!!!!! Well, they are! OMG they are so good.  I don't know how anyone could ever give up carbs.  I mean, these bagels are so good.  They are totally worth the 2 days it took to make them.  Yea, it took two days to make them, but all of it wasn't hands on.  Most of the wait was waiting for them to rise for 24 hrs (and I didn't have time after work one night, so I actually let them rise for 48 hours).  I'd always been kind of nervous about making bagels because one super traditional recipe I read used lye to boil the bagels.  Lye? Like the caustic basic solution stuff? The recipe even had a note about how it's hard to purchase/illegal maybe to sell lye in the grocery store so you had to order it online.  Can't remember where I saw that recipe, Food & Wine or epicurious.  But yea, that put me off making bagels.  But then my friend Laura told me she made bagels with her mom and they were awesome.  And she did not…

Goi Cuon (Vietnamese Spring Rolls)

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Reid's parents were in Austin last week for work.  We met them up at Frank's hot dogs the first night they were in town.  Frank's is an artisinal hot dog restaurant in downtown Austin.  It was our first time there; I'd heard about it through friends and my old vet school counselor (thanks, Dr. Posey!).  It was really good.  They actually had currywurst on the menu! Currywurst is "a fast food dish of German origin consisting of steamed, then fried pork sausage cut into slices and seasoned with curry ketchup, regularly consisting of ketchup or tomato paste blended with generous amount of curry powder, or a ready-made ketchup-based sauce seasoned with curry and other spices" (thanks, Wikipedia!).  I'd had it almost any chance I could when I was studying abroad one summer in Germany during vet school and when I came back to the States, was saddened to never find it on any 'German" (aka Bavarian) restaurant menus in Texas.  Anyway, they had it so I h…

Belgian Waffles

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You know what one of the benefits of getting married is? New kitchen gadgets!!!!!!!! Oh yea, and gaining a lifelong partner to share the joys of life and family and all that jazz.  But seriously, so many gifts.  It's like Christmas times a gazillion.  So the next few posts will be of me trying out all of the new goodies.  Like our waffle iron:

Belgian Waffles
Ingredients:

1 c. flour1/2 tsp. salt1 c. milk1/2 tbs. melted butter1 tsp. baking powder1 tbs. sugar1 egg, separated Directions:

Sift dry ingredients together in a bowl.Beat whites until stiff; set aside.Add egg yok, butter and milk to the dry ingredents an dmix thoroughly.Stir 1/4 of the egg white into the batter to lighten it and gently fold in the remaining egg white.Bake according to directions for waffle baker.Coconut, nuts, or chocolate chips can be sprinkled over top before baking.  I chose to have slices of bananas and milk chocolate chips top one of my waffles, and strawberry sauce topped the other.  Strawberry sauce wa…

Food Adventures in Spain!

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Reid and I came back from our honeymoon in Barcelona and Majorca, Spain two weeks ago.  It was really amazing.  We spent five days Barcelona, getting our culture on visiting Picasso's museum, Miro's art museum, the Museum of Catalan Art, Sagrada Familia, Le Cathedral, Park Guell, and obviously eating and drinking.  Three days in Majorca was spent hiking, swimming, and just taking in the amazing beauty of that island.  It was really phenomenal.  We've made a pact to go back at least for our 25th anniversary.  
Of course, the food was wonderful.  We feasted on tapas, paella, sardines, sangria, and Estrella bear.  One dish that really surprised me was the Spanish omelettes we ate.  They were these fluffy but flavor-dense thick egg and potato omelettes with the perfect salty savory yumminess.  I really didn't think they were going to be that good, but they were! Especially as little bocadillos (mini baguette sandwiches).  I'll have to find a recipe for them because th…

Stuffed Green Bell Peppers

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I really liked the stuffed acorn squash I'd made in the fall, and thought I'd do a riff on it with bell peppers.  More season appropriate. Instead of chorizo, I used Italian sausage. It was really pretty and turned out really yummy. Too bad Reid worked late the night I made them. I got to eat it while watching some "Mindy Project". Reid got leftovers a few nights later and still thought it was good.

Stuffed Bell Peppers Ingredients 4 large green bell peppers 1/2 lb. Italian sausage, casings removed 1/4 medium onion, chopped 1 c. bulgar wheat, cooked 1/4 c. chopped Italian/flat leaf parsley 1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese or Parmesan cheese 1 tsp. salt 1/4 tsp. pepper
1. Over medium high heat, cook onions and Italian sausage in large skillet until no longer pink.   2. In a large bowl, combine sausage and onions, bulgar, parsley, cheese, salt and pepper. 3. Cut the tops of each bell pepper off and remove seeds and membrane.  4. Spoon sausage mixture into each bell pepper…

Spinach Quiche

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Last weekend I had my bachelorette weekend in Vegas and it was so fun. I think the best part was being able to see so many of my girl friends who live all over. My old roommate, Allegra, wrote me a card about some of the good times we had when we lived together and one of the things she mentioned was when I threw together a quiche with our leftovers. I had totally forgotten about that and it was such a sweet memory to remember. Anyway, it made me crave quiche and so I made this for lunch after work today. I don't know if it was because I was so hungry or because of some of the tweaks I made to my recipe, but it came out so pretty and yummy!  Also, if you want to make this quiche extra delicious, make Tartine's homemade pie crust**.  Reid will literally just eat the pie crust, it's so good!  It makes 2 pie crusts, so you can freeze one of them to make quiche another day.

Spinach Quiche

Ingredients:
1 c milk with 2 tsp Greek yogurt mixed in, allow to set at room temp for 15…

Warm Tofu with Spicy Garlic Sauce.

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We've been trying to have "Meatless Mondays" to cut down on how much meat we usually eat.  Nothing too crazy, just one day a week when we try to eat vegetarian.  It doesn't seem hard, but we're pretty bad at remembering.  My parents did something similar before my dad when totally vegetarian.  I know I won't be able to do that because I am not as amazing and creative of a cook as my mom, but I'll try.  My sister and her husband have been doing this too, so I thought we could give it a try.  One of the recipes I've made several "Meatless Mondays" is this simple tofu with soy sauce recipe.  It's easy to have a block of tofu on hand, and this prep is not too difficult.  Even though I work a little later on Mondays, I can still have dinner ready by 7:00pm when I throw this quick one together.  Plus, I get to use some of the green onions we've got growing in our raised vegetable/herb gardens (thank you, previous tenant).

Another plus of th…

Smoky Man n' Cheese

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Made this mac n' cheese this week for dinner.  Let me tell you, I have probably tried 80 million recipes for homemade mac n' cheese! Most times, I'm a little disappointed that they don't seem to taste any better than the blue box versions that only take 15 minutes to make.  I've tried all sorts of mac n' cheese recipes that range from baked bread crumb topped, with expensive cheeses, having to make a beschemel, to truffle oil mac n' cheese.  I love a nice creamy, cheesy, mac n' cheese.  And this recipe hit the spot.  And since it's 'smoky' it adds just another layer of tastiness.  I think having the Savory Smoky Hills Cheese Powder helps a lot.  Savory Spice Shop is a little spice shop that we found out about two Christmas' ago.  One of Reid's uncles friends owns one of the shops in downtown Austin.  It's an artisinal spice shop, which is awesome.  Reid got a set of BBQ spice rubs for Christmas once and I still use them every on…

Carrot Cupcakes

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We've gotten TONS of wedding gifts recently.  I'm trying not to use any of the gifts until I write Thank You's, just as an incentive to get those done in a timely manner, but some gifts just can't wait.  Like the KitchenAid Stand Mixer from Reid's Mom.  It was so pretty, I had to use it right away.  This is what I whipped up with it.  These made the house smell so good, that Reid ate one before they were cool enough for frosting.  The cream cheese frosting is really great, too!  I cut back on the original recipe's butter a little and didn't even notice.  Reid and I ate about 4 ourselves for dessert, and I brought the rest to work where they were quickly annihilated.
Carrot Cupcakes IngredientsFor the cupcakes:1 cup pecans1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled1 teaspoon ground cinnamon1/2 teaspoon table salt or fine sea salt1/2 teaspoon baking powder1/4 teaspoon baking soda1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg1 cup packed dark brown sugar1/2 cup canola oil1 …

Pad Thai

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We love Pad Thai.  Reid's always telling me we should try making it at home, but I know it's not easy.  My sister has told me how not easy it is to make.  And she was right! It's difficult to keep the noodles from getting mushy, or to balance that perfect median of sweet, spicy, salty, and sour.  I also learned that traditional pad thai is much lighter, drier, and sweeter/sour than the restaurant variety.  Also, these ingredients are hard to come by.  I spent an hour at our Asian grocery store trying to find the tamarind sauce!

Pad Thai
Recipe from http://www.thaitable.com/thai/recipe/pad-thai

2-3 Servings, Prep Time: 40 Minutes, Total Time: 40 Minutes

1-1/3 cup bean sprouts Optional
1-1/2 cup Chinese chives Optional
1 egg
4 teaspoons fish sauce
3 cloves minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon ground dried chili pepper
ground pepper
1/2 lime
2 tablespoons roasted chopped peanuts Optional
1 tablespoon preserved turnip Optional
1 minced shallots
1/2-1/4 lb shrimp Optional
2 tablespoon sug…

Austin Food & Wine Festival

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I spent my Sunday volunteering at the Austin Food & Wine Festival.  Since it was a weekend-long event, and I wouldn't have been able to enjoy the entire span of it if I'd bought tickets due to work, I decided to volunteer on my day off.  It was a really enjoyable experience.  I got to watch a few cooking demos and eat great food/sample yummy wines.  Here are a few pics I took while there.










Tidbits I learned:
The reason unsalted butter>salted butter is because salt acts as a preservative so usually unsalted butter is fresher than salted.  (I had always used unsalted because it was easier to control salt levels myself, plus, I like having one butter in the fridge for both cooking and baking)  Save shrimp shells for making a really flavorful, layered ramen brothGewurztraminer wines pair really well with spicy foods.