Stuffed & Fried Squash Blossoms.

I told you there was more to come from my farmers market visit this weekend. I have always wanted to make fried squash blossoms. I don’t know why. It’s so intriguing to me. Why did someone decide it was a good idea to pick a vegetable flower, stuff it and fry it? I have no idea. I needed to find out. And I am here to tell you that the crazy person who thought of this idea is a genius.

This was so simple to make. I stuffed the blossoms with cheese. Once you have washed the outside of the blossoms, carefully open the blossoms and stuff the cheese inside. Make sure they aren’t too full because you will need to twist the ends so the cheese stays inside. In preparation to frying the blossoms, you will need to dip each blossom in egg, then flour and finally in bread crumbs. After, fry on both sides and devour! It’s easiest to hold the flower by the stem and eat the blossom.

This is definitely out of the box, but I am positive you will enjoy it with no questions asked. I mean, it’s fried, obviously it will be good!

 

 

 

 

Dessert Pizza…is there any other kind?

Seriously, two words: dessert pizza. Oh so delicious. Fruit and nutella. What a combo. It’s the perfect way to get your chocolate fix while using summer foods. Strawberries, blackberries, blueberries and mint are at their prime. So why not take advantage of them and indulge in a non-traditional dessert.

This is how you do it:

I bought fresh pizza dough and rolled it out into small circles. Then I put nutella on top. In another bowl I had cut up strawberries, blackberries, blueberries and mint. The berries has been marinating in sugar and lime juice. I preheated the oven to 350° and put the pizzas in for about 15-20 minutes.

This is a fun, personalized and delicious dessert. I would recommend it for a night in or a dinner party. Everyone loves pizza, fruit and chocolate. What more could you ask for?

 

Lemon Tart with Rosemary Crust.

The other night I was in the mood to bake. Since I graciously received my kitchen aid mixer I have only used it a couple of times. I needed to use it. I wanted to use it. Since it’s summer I wanted to bake something citrusy and fresh tasting. I found this lemon tart on Happyolks. Instantly I decided it was what I had been searching for. It was such a simple recipe and so easy to follow. The rosemary and lemon went together so well. This is a very sweet tart. A small slice is all I could handle. The recipe called for the zest of a lemon. I realized I did not have a zester. After moving into my apartment I am finding I do not have a lot of gadgets I need. Anyway, since I did not have a zester I decided to use my vegetable peeler and put chunks of zest into the filling of the tart. It was just as delicious in my opinion and it gave the tart some texture.

I would highly recommend this tart. It’s light, citrusy and oh so delicious.

This is how you do it:

Lemon Tart with Rosemary Crust

for the crust

  • 1 1/3 cup spelt flour
  • 3 tablespoons cane sugar (I used regular sugar)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/3 cup cold butter, cubed
  • 1-2 tablespoon ice water

for the filling

  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup cane sugar (I used regular sugar)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest (I used lemon shavings)

Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Lightly butter a 9-inch tart pan and set aside.

Place the flour, sugar, rosemary, and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times. Add the butter and pulse until little pea sized bits start to form. Add in the ice water, starting with just 1 tablespoon. Pulse a few more times, then check the dough to see if it holds together when pressed between your fingers. If not, add the 2nd tablespoon. The dough may still seem crumbly, but as long as it holds together when pressed it will be perfect.

Dump the dough out into the prepared tart pan. Starting from the center, work your way out to the sides by pressing the dough firmly into the pan. Make sure you press it up along the sides evenly. Pierce the bottom with a fork a few times and place in the oven to bake for about 15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for at least 5 minutes before filling.

Meanwhile prepare the filling. Place the yogurt and sugar in a bowl and whisk until thoroughly combined. Whisk in the eggs, one at a time, then add the lemon juice and zest. Whisk until smooth and everything is evenly combined.

Pour the filling into the crust and bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until the center is set and only slightly jiggles when shaken lightly.

Allow to cool completely then place in the fridge to chill for at least 1 hour before serving. Tart can be made the day before and kept covered and chilled in the fridge.

Fried Egg Sandwich with Pancetta and Blue Cheese

A couple of posts ago I talked about my recent “egg kick”. Well, Smitten Kitchen is not helping me get off this egg kick. Once I saw her recipe for this fried egg sandwich I had to make it. This sandwich was extremely filling. I would recommend making them when you know you will be really hungry (or if you are eating with someone who could finish the rest for you… most likely a man).

Instead of bacon, I used pancetta. Since pancetta is in the shape of a circle, it just made more sense to me. Plus, it’s delicious. I also substituted frisée for arugula. This is only because I could not find frisée at the store, but the arugula was great on the sandwich. It added a little more pepper and spice to it. I would recommend this sandwich for any meal. Enjoy!

This is how you do it:

Makes 2 sandwiches

2 ciabatta rolls

1 1/2 cups frisée (French curly endive), torn into-bite size pieces (I used arugula)
1 bacon slice, preferably thick-cut (I used pancetta)
1 tablespoon minced shallot (from 1 small)
1 teaspoon smooth Dijon mustard
4 teaspoons red wine vinegar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese

1 to 2 teaspoons unsalted butter, divided
2 large eggs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Split your rolls and put them in to toast.

Place frisée (or arugula) in a medium bowl. Cut bacon (or put pancetta in pan) crosswise into 1/4-inch wide lardons. In a small heavy skillet, cook bacon over moderate heat, until pieces are crisp. With a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towels, reserving bacon fat in pan. Add shallot to bacon fat and cook for one minute, stirring. Add red wine vinegar and let hiss and bubble for 20 to 30 seconds, then remove from heat and whisk in Dijon. Immediately pour hot dressing over frisée and toss with drained lardons, salt and pepper. Don’t try the salad just yet or you will be tempted to eat it just the way it is when, I promise, it’s even better with an egg on top.

Toast the buns in the same skillet you cooked the pancetta in and divide frisee salad between each bottom bun. You’ll want to heap on more than seems feasible or needed, especially once you realize how tasty it is. Top each salad pile with half (2 tablespoons) of the blue cheese.

Reheat skillet over medium-high heat. Add the butter and swirl it to coat the pan. Crack one egg into the skillet, season with salt and pepper and reduce heat to medium. I like my fried egg to be cooked on both sides, but still have the yolk runny in the middle. This way the yolk is less likely to break when I put the sandwich together.

Remove the egg from the pan and place it on top of the bacon-frisée salad on the bun. Repeat with remaining egg. A perfect egg sandwich!

Roasted Cabbage.

What better place to blog than the airport? And that’s exactly what I am doing right now. DIA, coffee, breakfast, terminal C and my computer. I am on my way to San Antonio for one of my best friends wedding. I have been pretty  busy lately. Blogging from the airport has been on my agenda. So, here I am.

I found this recipe for roasted cabbage form Martha Stewart. It’s pretty genius. Who would have ever thought to cut cabbage up into wedges and roast it. I wish I would have thought of it first. This is a perfect alternative for a side dish or appetizer. It doesn’t take long to make and it’s satisfying. I was wondering how much flavor it would have. It actually has a lot of flavor. It’s not dull or tasteless at all. If you are a vegetarian, this would be a perfect vegetable to eat.

This is how you do it:

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 more tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium head green cabbage, cut into 1-inch-thick rounds
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon caraway or fennel seeds (This is what makes it so good!)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Brush a rimmed baking sheet with 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil. Place 1 medium head green cabbage, cut into 1-inch-thick rounds, in a single layer on sheet and brush with 2 tablespoons oil. Season with coarse salt and ground pepper and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon caraway or fennel seeds. Roast until cabbage is tender and edges are golden, 40 to 45 minutes.

Grilled Corn Salad with Cilantro Vinaigrette.

It’s a good thing I like to cook. I’m at the point where I can no longer not contribute to gatherings, even family gatherings. I must contribute now. I’ve always been one to want to contribute, or at least help cook. This Easter I was in charge of a side. I decided to make something light and summery. Grilled corn is definitely a summer staple in my book. So, a grilled corn salad it was. Now, I would love to say I came up with this recipe on my own. Not to say this isn’t the type of recipe I would make anyways, but (as much as I hate to admit it) I found this particular recipe on Pinterest (Authentic Suburban Gourmet).

Everyone loved this salad. It was crisp, light and refreshing. The only thing I would have done differently would have been to add fewer red onions. I found myself tasting onion all day, which isn’t always bad, but not always desirable. I ate on this the rest of the week and it remained just as delicious as the day I made it.

Avocado and Grilled Corn Salad with Cilantro Vinaigrette

5 Ears Corn, husk removed, brush with olive oil and grilled, remove corn with sharp knife
2 Avocado’s, diced and sprinkled with lemon juice to prevent browning
2 C. Tomatoes, red and yellow cherry variety or equivalent
1 Small red onion, finely diced
¾ C. Feta, crumbled
1 ½ C. English cucumber, skin on and chopped small dice

Add to a large bowl and refrigerate until ready to use.

Cilantro Vinaigrette

6 T. Olive oil

2 T. Sherry vinegar
1 t. Garlic powder
2 T. Fresh cilantro, minced
½ t. Salt
10 Grinds of fresh ground pepper

When you are ready to serve, toss the vinaigrette with the salad.

I would like to thank my brother for the amazing pictures. I am very jealous of his new camera. A camera will definitely be my next big purchase!

Baked Eggs.

I’ve recently been on an egg kick. I have never really been an egg person, but recently I am finding I can’t get enough eggs. A couple of weekends ago I decided I wanted to make baked eggs. I’ve also been searching for a reason to use my Le Creuset Cocotte’s. I decided to put one egg in each cocotte and add basil, parmesan and bacon.

I melted butter at the bottom of each cocotte before adding the ingredients. After the butter was melted I took the cocottes out of the oven. I cracked one egg in each. Then I added the chopped basil, bacon and finely grated parmesan. I cooked the bacon almost completely before adding it in the cocotte (I like my bacon crisp to the max!). Add a dash of salt and pepper on the top. I baked the eggs for 10-15 minutes at 375°. The cook time will vary depending on how you like your yolks cooked. I like my yolks a little runny.Once cooked, let the eggs cool a bit and devour!

Steak Fajitas.

Fajitas are delicious. There is no doubt about that. Last week we got a lot of snow and a friend came over for a night of food, wine and basketball. We decided to make steak fajitas. When it came down to it, I realized I had never made fajitas before. How hard could it be though, right? It wasn’t at all. We cooked a flank steak in my cast iron skillet. It was not lacking in flavor or juice.

We used corn tortillas, sauteed peppers and onions, cilantro, mexican cheese and sliced avocados. It was beyond delicious. The juicy steak made the entire fajita. We cooked the flank steak for about 8 minutes on each side and then cut it in thin slices. Put as much of the toppings as you want in each fajita and DEVOUR!

Smashed Potatoes.

Here’s a new take on potatoes. I wish I could take credit for this idea, but I have to give all the credit to Giada de Larentiis.

This could be another take on “fried” potatoes or another take on mashed potatoes. I decided to go with the mashed potato take by adding sour cream, chives and bacon bits on top. All you have to do is boil small red potatoes or small yukon gold potatoes. Once they are done let them cool. With the palm of your hand, smash the potatoes so they’re still intact, but flat instead of round. Saute both sides in butter (or olive oil) to your liking (I like mine crisp). Once done you can eat them as is or add any topping(s). That’s all there is to it, folks. Simple and delicious!

(Christmas) German Apple Pancakes

Merry Christmas!

A breakfast treat for you all! German Apple Pancakes are baked instead of flipped. They’re sweet, savory and filling. There is nothing like baked apples.

German Apple Pancakes

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 large apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • Confectioners’ sugar
  • Maple syrup (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

In a large mixing bowl, combine the beaten eggs, milk, flour, and vanilla, and whisk until just blended, being careful to not overmix. Set the batter aside to rest at least 20 minutes.

Position rack in center of oven and preheat the oven to 450ºF.

In a heavy ovenproof 12-inch skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over high heat. Add the apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt and cook, stirring frequently, until the apples are soft and lightly golden around the edges, about 6 minutes.

Add the brown sugar and cook, stirring, until the apples are caramelized and very soft, 2 to 3 minutes longer. Add the remaining tablespoon of butter and stir to melt.

Working very quickly, pour the batter evenly over the top of the apples. Using oven mitts or pot holders, transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the pancake is golden brown and puffed, about 15 minutes. Don’t be alarmed when you see the edges of the pancake puff up over the top of the pan–this is supposed to happen!

Using oven mitts or pot holders, remove the skillet from the oven and serve the pancake immediately, sprinkled with sifted confectioners’ sugar or drizzled with maple syrup, as desired.