Category: Family


Tonight’s dinner got rave reviews!

I’ve been craving turkey, just not all the work, so I bought a frozen Butterball white and dark turkey roast.  I rubbed the frozen roast down with a chicken rub (from Stonewall Kitchens) and put it in the crock pot with some pieces of onion (about 1/2 C.) and about 1/2 C. white wine, and cooked on high for 3 hours and then low for about 2.  The cooking directions said 4 hours on high or 8 hours on low.  I was just looking for an internal temperature of 170F.  When it was done, I removed the string (they come wrapped in string to hold it together) and shredded it,  leaving it in all the juice to stay warm while I roasted some veggies in the oven.  It soaked up all the juices and was moist and delicious.  The boys said it was the best turkey they’ve had in a long time.

Fresh Market sells veggie skewers with red peppers, portobello mushrooms, zucchini, and yellow squash.  I pulled them off the skewers and laid them out in baking dishes.  I also had a bag of mini Yukon gold potatoes that I cut in half and a head of cauliflower I broke apart and placed in baking dishes.  I sprinkled everything with a new Saltopia salt blend I got  called Maui Wauwie, some garlic powder, a little of the chicken rub, and drizzled grapeseed oil over everything.  Bake at 400F for 45 minutes.

There were NO LEFTOVERS except a little turkey.  It was that good.  I will buy more turkey roasts in the future!

20200622_205203 I used the same dough as the pierogies I made recently. The filling is beef and lactose free cottage cheese.

Dough:

2 1/2 C. bread flour

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1 c. plain Kite Hill almond yogurt (the original recipe called for sour cream)

1 large egg and 1 large egg yolk

Whisk dry ingredients in stand mixer.  Add in yogurt and eggs and run with dough hook about 8 minutes.  Sticky, sticky, elastic dough.

Wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least one hour (I refrigerated it overnight)

Filling:

1/2 c. ground meat

1/2 c. cottage cheese (or ricotta) I used Lactaid cottage cheese

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. seasoned salt

2 tsp. Italian seasoning

3 Tbsp. pesto

1 c. vegan mozzarella style shreds

Cook meat and add seasonings.  Add cheeses and pesto.  Simmer until shreds melt.

Refrigerate for use later.  Must be cold or your dough will melt.

Assembly and cooking:

Line baking sheet with parchment and dust with flour.

Roll out dough and cut into 3 inch circles.

Place 1 tsp. filling on each circle.  I tended to overfill, and still had filling left over that I will freeze and add in to my next lasagna.

Seal as  you would an empanada in half moons and set aside on the prepared baking sheet.

I refrigerated them until I prepared the rest of the meal.

I prepared a marinara sauce in a large skillet on one burner and boiled some water with salt and garlic in a large dutch oven on another.

Boil the ravioli in two batches until they float (about 4-5 minutes) and use a slotted spoon to place in the marinara, turning to coat evenly.   It stays warm nicely in the large skillet until serving.

I will admit this is more work that I’m usually in the mood for – but sooooo worth it!

 

 

We love cornbread and we love chili.  The two of them together is a definite winner!

Cook the chili in the crockpot, and bake the cornbread about 1 1/2 hours before you want to serve the casserole.

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Combine:

2 lb. cubed pork (use any meat, or even plant based “meat”)

1 jar Newman’s Own Pineapple Salsa (any salsa will do)

1 can black beans, drained

1 can white kidney beans, drained

Place in crockpot and cook on low 8-10 hours, or high 4-5 hours.  Keep warm until the cornbread is baked.

Spray 13 x 9 baking dish with cooking spray.  Preheat oven to 350 F.

Combine the following:

2 boxes Jiffy cornbread mix

3 eggs

1 can creamed corn

1 can whole kernel corn, drained

1/2 c. almond milk

3 Tbsp. honey

Stir until blended.  Pour into prepared baking dish and bake until golden, about 40 minutes.

Pour chili over cornbread, and sprinkle with shredded cheese.

I used 1 c. Daiya mozzarella style shreds.

Bake another 20 minutes until cheese is melted.

Serve topped with sour cream.

Back before everyone was suddenly into baking bread during quarantine, I happened across an amazing and easy peasant bread recipe on alexandracooks.com.  It caught my eye because it said No-Knead.  I followed Alexandra’s basic peasant bread recipe.  However, instead of making two smaller loaves, I make one big loaf in a pyrex bowl that has a capacity of 2 Qts.

I also like to experiment with different flours and add ins.  However, after binge-watching hours of British Baking Show, be warned that any deviation from the basic recipe can change proofing time.   Today’s experiment was a success!  The best bread I’ve ever made!

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4 C. flour (I used 3 c. AP, 1/2 c. flaxseed meal, 1/2 c. millet flour)

2 tsp. salt

2 c. tepid water

2 tsp. sugar

2 tsp. yeast (I used Fleischmann’s Active Dry Yeast)

2 Tbsp. butter.  I wasn’t good about taking pictures.  They all started to look the same LOL.

First Place flour in large bowl and wisk in salt.

Boil water (you will need 1/2 c. boiling with 1 1/2 c. tap water to get “tepid water”)

I melt the sugar in the boiled water in a large mixing cup before adding in the tap water to make sure the sugar is dissolved.  (I actually forgot to do that today, and it still turned out okay).

Sprinkle water with yeast and let activate for 15 minutes.

Stir into flour/salt mixture until no pockets of flour remain.  Cover with plastic wrap and proof about 1 hour.  It should be doubled in size.

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Meanwhile, get the bowl(s) you will be baking the bread in ready by spreading butter over it’s entire inner surface.

Deflate proofed dough using two small forks, pulling dough in from the sides of the bowl onto itself.  It is really sticky and hard to scrape from the sides.  That’s normal.

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Put is into the bowl you are baking it in (just sort of plop it in there) and use a spatula or metal spoon to get as much of the dough out of the original bowl as possible.  You won’t want to waste any of it.  Trust me.

Preheat oven to 425F.

Sit bowl of dough on the stovetop where the heat comes out of the oven.  Let the dough have a second proof (about 20 minutes).  It will double in size again!

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Place bowl in the 425F oven for 15 minutes.  Reduce heat to 375F and cook 15-17 minutes more.

Immediately turn the bread out onto a cooling rack.

The video from Alexandracooks.com is great:

My Mother’s Peasant Bread: The Best Easiest Bread You Will Ever Make

 

 

 

Tonight’s dinner was such a hit, the boys said to write down what I did differently so I can recreate it!  One part I don’t want to recreate is having a stove that only has one working burner (a small one) and an oven (no broiler).  I didn’t really know that some of the minor changes I made would make it so much better, so I didn’t take pictures as I went along.  It was, however, pretty, so I took a picture of a serving of the finished product.

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1 lb. elbow macaroni

2 Tbsp. minced garlic

2 tsp. seasoned salt

1 8 oz. container vegan or lactose free cream cheese

1 large sweet onion, finely chopped

1 C. finely chopped turkey ham

4 Tbsp. butter

1 Tbsp. grapeseed oil

2 tsp. Italian seasoning

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. seasoned salt

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

1/2 c. leftover roasted (charred) broccoli, finely chopped

1 pouch vegan mozzarella style shreds

Cook elbow macaroni.  I use the Alton Brown method of putting the pasta in a large pan with enough cool water to cover it by about an inch.  Stir in minced garlic and seasoned salt.  Bring to a boil and stir occasionally.  Lower the heat to medium low and the pasta basically becomes rehydrated instead of boiled.  Because I’m dealing with only one burner, once the pasta was cooked, I placed it in a 13 x 9 lasagna dish sprayed with coconut oil.  Rather than draining off all the fabulous flavored pasta water, I spooned approximately 1/4 to 1/2 cup into the baking dish with the pasta.

Next, I cooked the onion and ham in butter and oil with all the seasonings over low heat for about 25 minutes.  I turned it up at the end, and added in the chopped charred broccoli.   Add in cream cheese and melt through.

Pour over noodles and mix in.  Top with shreds and bake at 350F for 30 minutes.

I’m not sure what made this better than usual.  Maybe the pasta was perfectly cooked and had just enough pasta water?  Maybe the charred flavor of the broccoli added a special touch.  Whatever it was, I’m going to try to recreate this to see if it can be done!

Oh, and this was the last meal I’m preparing on my old on its last legs stove.  Tomorrow my son is installing the stove I always wanted.  It’s a combination Birthday/Mother’s Day present.  I can’t wait!

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Any time I make baked beans, especially with franks or sausage, I feel my father’s presence.  He could eat B&M baked beans straight from the jar or heat them up with some sliced hot dogs and he was in comfort food heaven!

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My kids love corn dogs, but dipping and frying is too much work, too messy and greasy, and I decided a casserole could work – and it does!

2 boxes Jiffy cornbread mix

3 eggs

1 can corn kernels, drained

1 can creamed corn

2- 3 Tbsp agave or honey

3 Tbsp.  Sour cream, yogurt, or coffee creamer (I used sweet and creamy almond creamer to keep it lactose free)

 

 

Combine CORNBREAD ingredients.

Meanwhile soften some onions in oil with barbecue brown sugar seasoning.

 

 

 

Heat oven to 375F.  Add sliced franks to cornbread and pour into 13 x 9 baking dish sprayed with coconut oil.

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Add beans to onions and cook on low while corndog casserole bakes.

20191123_201826Bake about 35 minutes or until golden and toothpick comes out clean.

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I am so loving Goya empanada dough.  So crisp with great lamination.  You can make filling of almost anything.  We like ground meat, vegan crumbles, tofu crumbles, or sausage mixed with onion best.  Sometimes I make it with Korean BBQ, Pizza sauce, Tex Mex style, whatever.  They are always a winner.  We’ve been on a teriyaki ranch kick lately.  They are soooo good together.

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I sauteed onion and browned ground turkey with Chinese five spice and added teriyaki and ranch.  Here are the specifics.  First start with my favorite dough by Goya:

tapas-para-empandas

1 large sweet onion, chopped

2 tsp. seasoning of choice – I used Chinese five spice

2 lb. ground turkey

2 packages empanada dough

Oil to soften onion

3 Tbsp. teriyaki sauce (I used garlic teriyaki)

3 Tbsp. ranch dressing

1-2 tsp. corn starch to thicken

1 packet Daiya Pepper Jack Shredds

1 egg, beaten

The empanada dough has to sit out at room temperature for about an hour before you can use it.

Prepare a large baking sheet ahead by covering it in foil and spraying with cooking spray.

Cook onion, sprinkled with seasoning, in a little oil until softened.  Add in turkey, chopping it up in little pieces as it cooks.

Add in teriyaki, ranch and corn starch.  Simmer until thickened.  Let cool.

Once filling is cool, add in shredds.

Preheat oven to 350F.

Hold dough in the palm of your hand and spoon filling in middle.  Seal edges by pressing between your fingertips.

Lay out on prepared baking sheet.

Brush with beaten egg and bake about 20 minutes until golden brown.

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I’ve been craving egg salad and I’ve been meaning to try no knead peasant bread.  Today was the day.

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I boiled eggs and activated the yeast  simultaneously.

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As you can see, some were super easy to peel, others not so much!  They were all cooked using the same method and peeled using the same method, so I got to wondering why some were easy and others not.  Apparently, the fresher the egg, the harder to peel.  Who knew?  They say to use eggs you’ve had in the fridge for a week or more and to store them on their sides if you are going to hard boil them.  The most recommended method is:  Bring water to a boil.  Turn off heat and cover and let sit 11 minutes.  After boiling, pour off the hot water, shake pan back and forth to crack the shells. Cover eggs in cold water and let set for a couple of minutes. Leave water and eggs in pan and peel, using water to rinse away excess shells.

Peasant Bread was according to a recipe on a website called alexandracooks.com

https://alexandracooks.com/2012/11/07/my-mothers-peasant-bread-the-best-easiest-bread-you-will-ever-make/

Follow the link to a great video and printable recipe.  I wasn’t intimidated because her instructions are so specific.  I made one loaf in a larger bowl than she uses.  You could easily use gluten free flour blends for this!  Everyone loved it.   This is a picture of my dough after the first proof.

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This is how it looked when done.

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I like a simple egg salad, similar in flavor to deviled eggs.  You can certainly add celery or onion in yours, but I love it like this:

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I made a huge batch using 18 eggs.  I’ve scaled the recipe down for a smaller batch.

6 eggs, hardboiled

1 heaping Tbsp. mayonnaise or salad dressing

1 Tbsp. yellow mustard

1/8 tsp. lemon juice

2 Tbsp. pickle relish

Salt and pepper to taste.  I used seasoned salt and a pepper blend.

The brunch was such a success, I will do this again and soon.  So easy and inexpensive!

 

 

 

I had leftover risotto from the Waiting for Dorian meal.  The local market had some chicken tenders on sale. Inspiration kicked-in!

Risotto casserole:

4 C. Leftover risotto

1 C.  Leftover chard and cannellini beans chopped up in the food processor. Any leftover cooked vegetables will do.

1 egg

1 C. Vegan mozzarella shredded

1/2 C.  Crumbs from seasoned chips or crackers. I used some organic multigrain crackers.

3 Tbsp. butter

Combine leftover risotto, chard, egg, shredds and crumbs.  Place in 13 x 9 baking dish sprayed with coconut oil.  I refrigerated it overnight. This is not a necessary step. I just did it so dinner will be easy tonight. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.  Top with little pieces of butter turn heat up to 450 and cook for another 15 minutes to make golden brown across the top.

For the chicken skewers:

Weave chicken tenders on to skewers. Marinade overnight in marinade of choice. I combined 1/2 C. pineapple jalapeno jam and 1/4 C. balsamic glaze. It was amazing! Bake in the oven side by side with the risotto casserole. After 30 minutes at 350 take the chicken out and cover with foil tossing around first to make sure it all has plenty of the juices on it. Finish cooking the risotto casserole with the butter on it.

This was a huge hit!

 

I cooked this for the boys, but didn’t have any because of the nightshades.  They loved it.  Super easy weeknight meal.

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1 large onion chopped.

1 c. chopped bell peppers.

1 package Gardein crumbles

2 cans store bought sloppy Joe sauce

1 recipe gluten free biscuit or corn bread, loose and wet enough to spoon over Sloppy Joe.

Cook onion in a little oil till translucent.   I seasoned with some seasoned salt.  Optional.  Add in crumbles.

Meanwhile, make batter for topping.  I used gluten free Bisquick.

Add sauce into crumbles and heat through.

Pour into 13 x 9 baking dish sprayed with coconut oil.  Top with batter.  Bake 350F 40 – 45 minutes.

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