Notice in the picture that the olives are left whole and decorate the edges of the plate? Certain guests at the table refuse to touch black olives. However, I think they do add greatness to the vegetable dish. Sometimes, you have to just do what tastes good even if certain diners aren't too adventurous.
1/2 cup Frozen cherries, chopped in food processor
1/4 cup plus 1/16 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 tablespoon Vegetable oil
Soften ice cream about 15 seconds in microwave. (Microwaves vary. Mine is quite strong.) Add frozen cherries and mix together quickly. Line a container with sides with parchment paper. Spread ice cream carefully onto half of the cracker. Top with other half of the cracker and press down gently. Place the sandwich in the container. Repeat with the other graham crackers. Cover container and freeze overnight. (I believe Bon Appetit recommends at least 6 hours.)
When sandwiches are frozen, microwave the chocolate chips in about 15 second increments until they are melted and smooth. Add the oil. Working with each sandwich individually, cover one side of each sandwich with chocolate. Refreeze until chocolate is firm. I wrapped my sandwiches individually. They should have lasted a day or two if wrapped and protected in a sealed container.
Running low on time and with a cranky baby, I searched online for a simple dilled potato salad recipe. Finally, I realized I was wasting too much time and gave up the search hoping I could make up a good one on my own. It worked! And I was proud to say it was about as simple as I could ever imagine.
Recipe for Dilled Potato Salad
5 small-medium russet potatoes, diced bite-sized
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/8 teaspoon lemon
1 teaspoon dry dill
1 teaspoon herbed salt
1/4 teaspoon onion powder, optional but recommended
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder, optional but recommended
Boil potatoes in water until soft. Drain, rinse in cold water, and drain again. Put in large bowl and refrigerate to cool. When cooler (doesn't have to be completely cold), add the remaining ingredients to the bowl and stir with a spatula so as not to mash or break the potatoes. Transfer to serving bowl and garnish with sweet peppers, fresh dill, or item of your choice.
Spread butter thinly and evenly over one side of each slice of bread. Place buttered side down on flat pan set on medium heat. Place cheese and then tomato slices on the bread. Immediately top with the other slice of bread, butter side up. Cook about 5 minutes or until browned and flip over with spatula, cooking the other side of the sandwich until it's brown. If desired, place sandwich on a cutting board and slice in half wiht a pizza cutter.
Seasoning option: In the past, I have enjoyed a gentle sprinkle of onion and garlic powders on the buttered sides of the toast.
This was some Italian Ice we enjoyed a couple weeks back when friends were visiting. It was such a great little treat for a summer evening. . .a hot summer evening. All that being said, the big mistake I made last week was not focusing on summer-associated recipes for our dinners. This week will be different thanks to great deals at the grocery store and the realization that our summer is almost over. Let's all take advantage as long as it lasts!
If you're planning on going out and taking advantage of the BOGO for Toufayan Pita Bread Pockets at Publix this week, keep this in mind. The Oat Bran kind of pocket has 1 gram more fiber and at least 5 calories less per serving than the Multigrain or Whole Wheat kinds. Stunned? I was. Just one more way reading the label (occasionally) pays off!
When you have foods, you naturally need to find a way to use them. I had an odd selection of items that led to the creation of this recipe. Luckily, my husband was rather impressed with it, and we both enjoyed it. A warning: It was very filling, and for a light Sunday afternoon snack, we were happy eating just half for each of us.
Recipe for Spinach Pesto Quesadilla
2 Large Flour Tortillas
1/2 cup Spinach Basil Pesto
1/2 large tomato, sliced
5 black olives, sliced in thirds
1/4 shredded Parm/Reg or Jarlsberg Cheese
Warm a large skillet over medium heat. Place one flour tortilla on the skillet. Spread basil evenly to the edges of the tortilla. Top evenly with tomato slices and olives. Sprinkle cheese on top and cover with second tortilla. Warm until light brown and crisped on one side. Flip over
and cook on the other side. Slice with a pizza slicer (on a cutting board so you don't mess up your skillet).
Our apricots were perfectly ripe. It was time to experiment as much as I wanted! I mashed just one and served it over a scoop of vanilla ice cream with caramel cookies on the side. So fast. So easy. And healthier than many alternative toppings!
We're excited to be planning a shopping trip to Trader Joe's very soon. This weekend Paul and I decided to clean out our TJ's shelf in the pantry. Naturally, we're not completely done yet, but it's great to have a bare shelf to refill. One of the recipes we put together for using up our collection was a trail mix, which I was quite proud of.
Although I had planned to serve roasted cauliflower over the ravioli, the oven was in use on another baking project. And the tomatoes looked like they wanted to be eaten. And when all was said and done, my husband was just thrilled with the sauce and so was I. The creamy cheese filling of the ravioli offset the chunkier sauce and eliminated the need for a cheese topping. I was quite pleased how a little bit of ravioli goes a long way.
Cauliflower Tomato Sauce
1 cup chopped cauliflower
1/2 cup sliced onion
1 large tomato, diced
3 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 teaspoon each onion powder, garlic powder, salt
Sautee onion in 1 tablespoon oil on medium heat until half cooked, about 5 minutes. Add cauliflower and stir. Cook another 5 minutes. Add tomato and cook until done. Halfway through the cooking process, I like to add the extra oil and seasonings. Some people like the tomato cooked longer and therefore add it earlier. The choice is yours.
Easy and beautiful, this dessert was created out of desperation. I had Egg Roll Wrappers at the end of their life, and I had apricots getting soft. Surely I could do something with them. And just for the record, I couldn't make a shortcake or other sweet cake because I used the last of my sugar on a double batch of sweet potato muffins earlier in the week.
I spent a few minutes searching online and finally gave up, creating my own recipe.
Add the optional almond flavoring to the apricot and mix well. Divide the mashed apricot into four equal parts. Spoon the apricot into the center of a wrapper square. Brush water around the edges of the wrapper. Lay a second wrapper on top and seal by pressing edges together. Repeat with other wrappers and apricot filling. Boil ravioli in water about 5 minutes or until the ravioli floats. Drain and place on a plate, dusting with powdered sugar or beside a dot of honey.
You might call this a replay, but it didn't matter because it went over so well. I made kabobs alternating in new particular order carrot slices, sweet potato slices, Redi-Burger chunks, sweet pepper slices, and chunks of onion. It is recommended to pre-cook the carrots and sweet potatoes. Grilled would have been much more fun, but I was running out of time. Instead, I brushed the kabobs with oil and broiled them. Hence the crisped skewers.
I have a confession to make. Even though I my husband is very technology inclined, I am not. And most of the time, I have no desire to be so. However, he and his friend, Travis, are encouraging me to try out this application on my iPhone. Since my phone is less of a turn-off to me because I don't associate it with work as much any more now that I'm trying to hand over the supervisory reins, I'm happy to consider using iPhone apps to improve my organization and quality of life.
Last night's project requires a lot of explaining. One of the first contact emails I ever received on Eat Like a Rabbit was from my mother-in-law recommending the Cauliflower Paprikash recipe in Moosewood Cooks at Home. It has taken me these two years to get up the nerve to make it--with a few adjustments.
Yesterday, I made only my second run to the Food Pantry at the College. I was meeting some of Paul's coworkers for lunch. They are becoming good friends and fans of Eat Like a Rabbit, too! Anyway, they saw the bags as Paul was lugging them into Student Services and said it was so nice of us to do the giveaway. I kept insisting, I did not do it on my own. It was a combination efforts from friends, too. And we all love helping out those less fortunate.
Partly about sanity, partly about losing the baby weight, some of the other moms in the neighborhood and I get together and walk around the neighborhood. We enjoy the conversation between adults (even though it's often about the kids) and are proud to be instilling the early habit and value in our kids about Vitamin D, fresh air, and physical activity.
We're so glad our group is growing. And we're glad to finally have a baby boy in the group! Sorry, we don't have any boy clothes to share!
We didn't get around to making oatmeal this weekend. We didn't get around to stocking the freezer with PB&Js, either. But it's on the list for next week. What I did get done was a batch of sweet potato chocolate chip muffins, four of which went to friends down the street who greet us when we walk and four of which went to new neighbors with a new baby. I love sharing the happiness and goodness of life! Another batch is on the books for this week followed by a batch of banana bread.
I won a gift pack from Right at Home and SC Johnson! I was quite excited as I rarely win anything. Most everything in the box was something I would use regularly. . .except the Ziplock containers. We like glass. I took the freebie supply and this great post and came up with a foodie gift plan that I intend to use regularly from now on.
Ranch Dressing a la Claire
1 C mayonnaise
1 t onion powder
½ t garlic powder
¼ t celery seed powder
dash red pepper
1 t lemon juice
½ t sugar (optional)
1 t sweet basil
2 t parsley
1 t chives
¼ t salt or to taste
¼ C milk or ½ C milk
Mix mayonnaise, lemon juice, and dry ingredients. Add ¼ cup milk for dip or ½ cup milk for salad dressing. This makes a good dressing for cole slaw.
Variation: 1,000 Island: Add ¼ cup dill pickles, finely chopped and 1 tablespoon ketchup.
1 C sifted all-purpose flour
¾ t salt
¾ t Sugar (optional)
¼ C vegetable oil
2 T skim milk
Preheat oven to 475° (very hot), or according to recipe for filling. Mix flour, salt, and sugar in a bowl. Combine oil and milk in measuring cup and pour all at once over flour mixture. Stir with fork until mixed.
Shape into a ball, place on sheet of waxed paper, flatten, and cover with another sheet of waxed paper. Roll out with a rolling pin (dampen table top if necessary to prevent slipping) and peel off top paper. Turn dough upside-down over pie pan, peel off bottom paper, and fit dough into pan. Trim. If dough tears, mend without moistening. Flute edge. If crust is to be baked before filling is added, prick pastry all over with a fork and bake about 10 minutes. Cool before adding filling. If filling is to be baked with pie, do not prick crust, and follow directions of your recipe. (For a 2-crust pie, make double amount of pastry and divide into two balls.) Makes one 8- or 9-inch pie crust.
1 3/4 C sifted all-purpose flour
4 t baking powder
1 t sugar
1/2 t salt
1/2 t cream of tartar
1/2 C butter or margarine
2/3 C milk
Sift flour, baking powder, sugar, salt and cream of tartar. Cut in shortening until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add milk and stir with fork until soft dough is formed. Turn out on lightly floured board and pat or roll lightly until dough is 1/2 inch thick. Cut with floured 2-inch biscuit cutter. Place on ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 450° for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown. Yield: 16 biscuits.
1 C sifted al-purpose flour
1 ½ t baking powder
1 ½ t sugar
½ t salt
¾ C milk
2 T cooking oil
Sift together flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Beat eggs until thick; add milk and oil. Add flour mixture and blend until smooth. Pour 1 cup batter onto preheated grid. Close unit and bake until light goes off. Yield: 4 large waffles.
It's been weeks since my Sunday wasn't buzzing with business. I made sure I saved my kitchen duties until 2:00 so I could have an excuse to stay downstairs and listen to Splendid Table. And I didn't even care that it was a rerun!
My husband just sent me a link to Cook Mom Pics--ok, he actually sent it two days ago, but he claims I never feel his emails are urgent--about patterns for making felt play food. When I was growing up, we had the expensive stuff from Fisher Price. We had a lot of it! But with the felts, there are many more creative options than we ever had. I also suspect they will be easier to store because some of them would collapse.
We were very busy last week with the Hardinges, and I really appreciated being off on July 5 so we could spend the time with them at the beach. Now, my assignment is to mix-and-match all the leftovers into this week's meals.
There are no pictures to accompany this post. However, the meal really didn't look much different than our first trip. Unfortunately though, the situation was significantly more depressing than the first trip. And along with that, I must ask for sincere apologies for not pointing out previously that the rice is not vegetarian. I just found out myself.
Kraft sent me coupons to try out some products for free. Actually, it has nothing to do with my blog. Anyone can sign up for Kraft First Taste. Anyway, I decided to eat the individual deep dish pizza one day for lunch. I also have to share my opinions with Kraft. And I will be equally honest when I publish both reviews. I baked my pizza in the oven, and cannot imagine it coming out crispy in my office microwave, but might be acceptable in our more programmable microwave at home.
Lisa, a great inspiration to me as a chef and also to my aunt who has just been diagnosed with a wheat allergy, is here from Washington with her family. Naturally, cooking for her and two young-ens may be a challenge for me, but I'm totally up for it and am so excited that Brent, Lisa, Kyle, and Elena will be visiting us for the week! I wrote up a very detailed menu for my own benefit to make sure I don't forget anything in the hustle and bustle of our busy schedule.
How exciting! (And no, the marketing person did not tell me about this. It was just luck.) I just came across a coupon for Savory Choice Vegetable Broth on the $5 Dinners website. The value is $1/1, and you can print two coupons per computer. That makes these little gems $3.99 a pack for 12 cups worth of concentrated broth. Good thing I haven't gone to the grocery store yet!
The week was winding to a close. We had been having a blast. BUT I was doing my best to keep Nora on her schedule (which meant getting up at 0530 in Denver, 0730 our time, while keeping up with Paul, Brent, and Tim and their late hours. Not that I'm complaining. I'm just pointing out that it is a bit of a challenge remembering all the events of the evening when we dined here.
To make a really long story short, we misread our ticket and arrived only 40 minutes before our plane departed for Denver. Naturally, our bags didn't make it and we had to wait for the next plane from Orlando to deliver our clothes for the week and. . .more diapers. Paul did some research and found a vegetarian restaurant in downtown Denver where we could spend our time. Although the GPS took us an odd way through a not-so-nice area of town, we eventually got to Uptown and had no trouble parking near this amazing restaurant.
First I'll explain the photo as I'm sure it's getting more attention than the topic at hand. We were flying to Tennessee this past weekend, but we had to first stop off in Atlanta. The weather in Atlanta prevented us from even taking off from Orlando. We were delayed two hours, during which Nora was an absolute angel. She got lots of attention; plus the copilot asked Paul if he had a camera and let her visit the cockpit.
Mix flour and salt. Blend oil and cold water with fork (lots of bubbles). Add liquid mixture to flour and stir. Roll dough between 2 pieces of waxed paper. Place dough in pie plate. Flute if you have the talent. Poke 5 sets of holes in the bottom of the crust with a fork.
For this use, I pre-baked the crust just about 7 minutes. For other uses, it isn't always necessary.
Recipe for Zucchini Filling
1 good-sized zucchini, thinly sliced
1/3 onion, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 Tablespoons milk
1/2 cup cheese, finely shredded and divided [my mom had the four cheese blend]
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt or more to taste
Saute zucchini and onion in olive oil about 5 minutes just to soften. Beat eggs, add seasonings, salt, and milk. Beat together. Layer onions and zucchini on pie crust. Top with half of cheese. Pour egg mixture over vegetables. Top with remaining cheese. Bake at 400 degrees until top is golden brown, about 30-35 minutes.
As I mentioned last week, we sat with my grandmother over Memorial Day Weekend while my parents went away. My grandmother has difficulty chewing, and I was looking for soft foods that would pack on much of the summer flavor, but not be too difficult for her to enjoy. The zucchini tart and accompanying salad really fit the bill. I've even made the salad again since then. The key is to have the freshest ingredients. It helps when it comes out of your own garden! I believe the fresher the ingredients, the less salt and pepper you have to add.
Recipe for Tomato Corn Salad
2 ears corn
3 Patio tomatoes
2 Tablespoons chives, chopped (or more if you've got it!)
Dash lemon juice
1/8-1/4 teaspoon salt
2 twists pepper grinder
Cook corn in microwave. My mom's took 1:30 for one. Peal the corn and stand the ear up in a bowl. With a good knife, cut kernals of corn off cob so they fall into the bowl. (This is easier than it sounds.) Dice the tomatoes. Add all ingredients together. Serve immediately or chill one hour before serving.
There have been a number of websites repeating this fascinating story from Time Magazine about creating a meat substitute with the taste and texture of chicken. It intrigued me, and I had to think on the story for a couple days before forming an opinion.
I knew this recipe would be a challenge. It looked hard. But the onions were on sale, and I was feeling ambitious. I had enough batter leftover from this tart that I remade the broccoli and cauliflower tart with it later on in the week. That was a great time-saver.
Congratulations to our friends, Garret and Joy, on the launch of their new blog Cobblestone Rue. It's about living life to the fullest when your days are packed full. I'm excited and humbled to be mentioned among the first posts. I'm also happy I can now share my side of the story of Graycen and me playing with food in the kitchen. I've been holding off posting the story--mainly because it is so much cuter with pictures.
Last week we dined on our first zucchini and hope to have another one this week. It isn't a large haul, but it's enough for the two of us to enjoy. (We did eat the first one in pasta mixed with other veggies to serve to my parents as well.)
I'm sorry to say, this week is a little crazy. I don't have any brilliant ideas for food, but Paul and his sister went to the Maitland Farmer's Market yesterday to acquire a beautiful eggplant and some giant tomatoes. We'll be having excellent sandwiches and perhaps baked eggplant parm in the next couple of days.