Monday, May 31, 2010

Salmon Panzanella Recipe


Mark said this is his favorite salad of all time!!

1 (approx 1 lb) pkg salmon, cut into 1-inch chunks
5 cups cubed baguette or ciabatta bread (day-old is fine)
2 Tbsp olive oil
Half a red onion, thinly sliced
2 cups chopped tomatoes or halved cherry tomatoes
2 cups sliced cucumbers (preferably Persian or hothouse)
1 bell pepper, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 Tbsp capers, drained
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
For vinaigrette (or use 1/3 cup bottled dressing):
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp crushed garlic, or 1/2 cube frozen Crushed Garlic
2 Tbsp Orange Muscat vinegar or white wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 tsp salt
Pinch of black pepper

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
2. Season salmon with salt and pepper. Toss with 1 Tbsp olive oil until pieces are evenly coated.
3. Toss bread cubes with 1 Tbsp olive oil until evenly coated. Place salmon, bread, and onion on a baking sheet in a single layer (or if you prefer the bite of raw onion, reserve uncooked). Bake for 6-7 minutes or until salmon is just cooked through, stirring halfway to roast evenly.
4. In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, cucumbers, bell pepper, capers, and basil. Add salmon, bread, and onions.
5. Whisk together vinaigrette ingredients(or use bottled dressing), add to bowl, and toss until evenly coated. For optimum flavor, allow salad to sit for 30 minutes for flavors to meld.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

TJ's week

Does anyone love Trader Joes as much as I do?? Up here in Seattle, it is definitely the cheapest grocery store to shop at. I recently stumbled upon this blog that has recipes with only ingredients you can find at Trader Joes (the authors also made a cookbook with the same idea). This week, I'll be doing 5 recipes from this blog. Pure Trader Joes goodness!

BBQ Jalapeños on Burgers

This is another pioneer woman recipe that I thought would be awesome. However, I left too many seeds and ribs in the jalapeños, so it was TOO HOT! I know that the heat of the pepper is in the seeds and ribs so I scraped most of them out, but I left a little to give it a kick. Well, it was too much of a kick. In fact, I just started sweating a little bit thinking about it. But, I still wanted to post the recipe because A) I think it would be awesome if it had not been like an inferno in my mouth and B) I wanted to prove that not everything turns out perfectly in the Heaviland kitchen :)

18 fresh jalapeños
One 8-ounce package cream cheese
½ cup grated cheddar cheese
1 green onion, sliced
18 slices thin bacon, cut into halves
Bottled barbecue sauce
Toothpicks
Rubber gloves (or plastic bags) for working with jalapeños
Cooking Directions
Preheat the oven to 275ºF.

Begin by cutting jalapeños in half lengthwise (see warning in headnote). Try to keep the stems intact. They look prettier that way.

With a spoon, scrape out the seeds and light-colored membranes. Remember: The heat comes from the seeds and membranes, so if you can handle the sizzle, leave some of them intact.

Now, in a bowl, combine the cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and chopped green onion. Mix the ingredients together gently. And don't feel you have to use an electric mixer. I do because I'm lazy and don't like to exert myself. Ever. (Too much scrubbing clothes on the washboard, I suppose.)

Next, stuff each hollowed jalapeño half with the cheese mixture.

Wrap bacon slices around each half, covering as much of the surface as you can. Be careful not to stretch the bacon too tightly around the jalapeño, as the bacon will contract as it cooks.

Brush the surface of the bacon with your favorite barbecue sauce. Chutney or apricot jelly works well, too!

Secure the jalapeños with toothpicks and pop them in the oven for 1 hour, or until the bacon is sizzling. Serve hot or at room temperature, and watch them disappear within seconds.

Chocolate Chip Oreo Cookies


Yes, this combination is as good as it sounds.

1 stick softened butter
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp sugar
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp brown sugar
1 egg
½ tsp vanilla
1 ¼ cups flour
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
8 oreo cookies, broken into pieces
1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a silpat sheet or parchment paper.

In a large bowl, beat together butter, white sugar, brown sugar, egg and vanilla until creamy.

In a separate bowl combine flour, baking soda and salt in large bowl and mix thoroughly. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet and mix. Add chocolate chips and crushed oreos, stir until just combined.

Drop by the spoonful onto the cookie sheet. Bake for 7–9 minutes, or until golden brown, but still soft. Let cool on baking sheet 3 minutes before transferring to cookie rack. Enjoy.

Italian Wedding Soup



My chicken broth was pretty salty, so adding salt to the soup made this a tad too salty. Next time I will not add salt until I taste it at the end! Otherwise, we really liked it.

Meatballs:
1 lb lean ground beef
2 tsp sweet yellow onion, diced finely
2 tbsp Asiago cheese, shredded
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
1 egg
1/4 cup garlic and herb bread crumbs
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried basil
Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine all the ingredients gently with your fingers until well mixed. Roll into very small meatballs.

Place the meatballs on a baking sheet coated with parchment paper or tin foil coated with cooking spray. Bake for 10 minutes or until done. Don't overcook! Remove from oven and set aside.

Soup:
1-2 tsp olive oil
1/2 cup sweet yellow onion, diced
3 carrots, diced
2 stalks of celery, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
1/2 - 1 tsp chicken bouillon granules or chicken base (not pictured)
9-10 cups of chicken stock
1 cup of stars pasta
10 oz baby spinach
Asiago cheese, grated for topping
Fresh parsley, chopped for garnish

Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots and celery and cook for 3-4 minutes; add the minced garlic and cook for an additional 60 seconds, stirring constantly. Add the basil, oregano, sea salt, freshly cracked pepper, chicken bouillon granules or chicken base and chicken stock. Simmer for 45 minutes over low heat. Turn the heat up to medium high then add the stars and meatballs; cook for an additional 10 minutes. Taste and re-season if needed. Add the spinach, mix thoroughly and serve. Enjoy.

Rhubarb Mousse

My sweet friend Sandy made this for me a couple summers ago and it was my first encounter which actually enjoying rhubarb. When some rhubarb came in my produce box from Eden Organic's, I dug this recipe up! Sandy's piping skills are way above mine and her's looked absolutely gorgeous but at least mine tasted just as good!

6 cups of thinly sliced rhubarb (1/8" to 1/4")
1 cup (more or less) sugar
1/4 cup of cold water
1 envelope of gelatin
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon of vanilla

Cook rhubarb and sugar over medium heat, stirring occasionally until it looks like applesauce. About 10 minutes. Do not add water! Add more sugar if needed. Cool.

Place cold water in small pan and sprinkle the gelatin over surface. Place pan over very low heat and stir until gelatin is dissolved. Do not boil.

Add gelatin to rhubarb. Cool to room temp.

Whip the cream with the vanilla until soft peaks form. Fold cream into cold rhubarb mixture.

Pipe into glasses and layer with strawberries.

Chill at least 2 hours. You can make this the day before.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Almond Butterhorns

Happy Mother's Day to me!!! Mark made these for my special day and oh. my. goodness. they are AMAZING!! Read the instructions completely before planning because it requires some work the night before you want to make them. But, do make them because they are to die for.

Makes 12
Dough:
½ c warm water
4 tsp (2 pcks) quick-rise yeast
2 eggs plus 1 egg yolk
½ c brown sugar, firmly packed
1 ½ c milk
¾ c (1.5 cubes) butter, melted
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
1 ½ tsp salt
5 c unbleached flour
1 c whole wheat flour

Filling:
1 c brown sugar, firmly packed
1 c almonds
¼ c butter melted

Glaze
1 cup confectioner's sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/8 brown sugar almond mix

Blend the water and yeast in a mixer bowl fitted with a dough hook (I use a food processer). Add the eggs and egg yolk, brown sugar, milk, butter, vanilla and salt. Mix until combined, then add the flours. Mix until the flour disappears – just a few turns of the hook- and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Sprinkle a handful of flour over the dough and mix until the dough starts to form a ball. The dough will be very soft. Scrape into an oiled bowl about 3x size of ball of dough. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
The next morning, line 3 cookie sheets with baking parchment or grease lightly. In a food processor fitted with a steel knife blade, chop the brown sugar and almonds together until almond pieces are the size of peas. Reserve 3/8 cup filling for the glaze and set the rest aside.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and turn onto a lightly floured surface. Sprinkle the top with a little flour and shape into a rectangle with your hands. Now roll out the dough into a rectangle approximately 12x24 inches and ¼-1/2” thick. Check the underside of the dough frequently to prevent sticking.
Position the dough with the short sides at the top and bottom and brush the entire surface with the ¼ cup melted butter. Distribute the almond filling over the lower 2/3 of the buttered dough, covering all the way to the edges and pressing gently into the dough to hold in place. Fold the top (uncovered) portion of the dough to cover ½ the almond filling. Fold over once more to cover all the filling.
Now roll out the dough to about ¾” thickness, keeping the rectangular shape but with the long sides at the top and bottom. Use a pizza cutter or sharp knife to cut the dough into 12 even strips along the short dimension.
Take up a strip of dough, one end in each hand, and twist 3-4 times in opposite directions. Now gather both ends in one hand, maintaining the twist, and loop the middle of the dangling strip up over the ends. Place the butterhorns on one of the prepared cookie sheets. Repeat. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until puffy and 50% larger. This may take 5 minutes or longer. Plan to put the first pan in the oven early so the others don’t over-rise.
Before the pastries finish rising, preheat oven to 350 degrees with the rack in the center position. One pan at a time, bake the butterhorns for 10 minutes, rotate the pan, and bake for another 5 minutes or until tops are barely brown and bottoms golden. Don’t over-bake – they’re much better moist.
While the butterhorns bake, combine the glaze ingredients in a small saucepan. Heat on medium-low until just warm, stirring constantly. Dribble the glaze onto the butterhorns as they come out of the oven. Let cool before serving.

Dirty Rice

We thought this rice dish needed a few dashes of Frank's hot sauce, but after that it was awesome!

1 pound ground beef
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 teaspoons beef bouillon granules
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups water
1 cup uncooked white rice
Hot sauce (optional)

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and stir in the ground beef, onion, green and red peppers, beef bullion, salt, seasoned salt, and pepper. Cook and stir until the beef is crumbly, evenly browned, and no longer pink. Drain and discard any excess grease. Stir in the water and rice. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the rice is tender, and the liquid has been absorbed, 20 to 25 minutes.

Jaime's Mandarin Salad


Jaime makes this amazing salad that I absolutely love. Really, I love the mandarin oranges, sugared almonds and dressing but I'm required to eat lettuce along with them as well :)

Mandarin Salad
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1T & 1tsp. sugar
lettuce
2 med. stalks of celery chopped
2 green onions
1 can drained mandarin oranges
Cook almonds in sugar over low heat. I always add chicken to the salad too.
Dressing
1/4 cup veg. oil
2T sugar
2T white vinegar
1/2tsp salt
poppyseeds
Blend ingredients and pour over salad.

Broccoli and Sausage Pasta


This simple recipe was one of the very first recipes Mark and I made together as a married couple. I love making it because it brings me quickly back to those wonderful newlywed days.

1 pound spicy Italian sausage
1/2 cup olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 (16 ounce) package cavatelli pasta
1 (16 ounce) package frozen broccoli
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a skillet, fry sausage over medium heat until no longer pink; drain, and reserve.
In the same skillet, cook garlic in olive oil until golden.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook pasta in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes or until done; drain. Three minutes before the end of the cooking time, add broccoli; drain with pasta.
In a large serving bowl, toss together the sausage, olive oil and garlic, cavatelli and broccoli, and Parmesan. Season with red pepper flakes.

Italian Goulash

This dish was not crazy exciting but very flavorful!

1 tsp olive oil
1 lb of lean ground beef
1 small sweet yellow onion, diced
3-4 baby bell peppers, diced (I used one green bell pepper)
8 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
3 cups of your favorite marinara sauce
12 oz elbow macaroni, cooked per instructions
Fresh basil, chiffonade
Asiago, grated

Heat the olive oil in a small Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onions and mushrooms then cook for 3-4 minutes. Add the ground beef, bell pepper, chopped garlic then season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper; cook for 4-5 minutes making sure to crumble the ground beef as it cooks. Drain any excess grease from the pan then add the marinara sauce, stir until mixed thoroughly. Simmer the sauce for 1-2 hours so flavors combine.

Cook the elbow macaroni per instructions (make sure to season the water with salt) then drain completely. Combine the macaroni with the sauce, add the fresh basil and mix well. Simmer for 15 minutes so the sauce has time to flavor the noodles. Top with Asiago cheese if desired and serve. Enjoy.

Black Bean Burgers

I think James ate his black bean burger faster than Mark and I did! It was a fun alternative to normal burgers and they were actually filling enough for Mark.

1 (16 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 green bell pepper, cut into 2 inch pieces
1/2 onion, cut into wedges
3 cloves garlic, peeled
1 egg
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon cumin
1 teaspoon Thai chili sauce or hot sauce
1/2 cup bread crumbs

If grilling, preheat an outdoor grill for high heat, and lightly oil a sheet of aluminum foil. If baking, preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C), and lightly oil a baking sheet.
In a medium bowl, mash black beans with a fork until thick and pasty.
In a food processor, finely chop bell pepper, onion, and garlic. Then stir into mashed beans.
In a small bowl, stir together egg, chili powder, cumin, and chili sauce.
Stir the egg mixture into the mashed beans. Mix in bread crumbs until the mixture is sticky and holds together. Divide mixture into four patties.
If grilling, place patties on foil, and grill about 8 minutes on each side. If baking, place patties on baking sheet, and bake about 10 minutes on each side.

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