Friday, June 1, 2012

Well, hello June!

I have been terrible at updating! I apologize! My June resolution is to post more, so here we go!

I just bought my herbs. I am very excited to get those planted and use them all summer.

What I bought and what I plan on making:

  • Basil - My favorite herb! I will pretty much make anything, from pesto to caprese to basil butter. YUM!
  • Italian Parsley - I can smell already over freshly grilled veggies
  • Mint - Mojitos are calling my name
  • Italian Oregano - Pasta sauce
  • Rosemary - roasted potatoes with garlic
  • Thyme - Freshens almost any dish
My mouth is literally salivating thinking about it all. I also bought 2 tomatoes. We'll give those a try again this year!


Monday, January 30, 2012

Balsamic Glazed Meatloaf

Why meatloaf? Well, MK is on a high protein diet so the more meat and veggies the better. I found this recipe from Bobby Flay and modified it for what was on sale and what we already had.

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 zucchini, finely diced
1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 yellow bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 yellow onion, finely diced
5 cloves garlic, smashed to a paste with coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 1/2 pounds ground chicken
1 cup panko
1/2 cup freshly grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
3/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. 
  2. Heat the oil in a large saute pan over high heat. Add the zucchini, bell peppers, onion, garlic paste and 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper and cook until the vegetables are almost soft, about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  3. Whisk the egg and fresh herbs in a large bowl. Add the turkey, panko, grated cheese, 1/2 cup ketchup, 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar and the cooled vegetables; mix until just combined.
  4. Gently press the mixture into a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan. Whisk the remaining 1/4 cup ketchup, 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar and 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes in a small bowl; brush the mixture over the entire loaf. Bake for 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
Tips for meatloaf
  • Place loaf pan on a baking sheet covered in foil. Easy clean up if (or when) your glaze boils over!
  • Use a meat thermometer! Ensure the internal temperature is 160 degrees before serving (I also accept 155 and then resting it). You do not anyone getting sick!
  • Invest is a good glazing brush. I love mine!
  • The original recipe used ground turkey, so that is a delicious option. Or there is always a good meatloaf mix: ground beef and ground pork.

Yum, meatloaf!
Adding the glaze.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Soup is in Season

Passatelli in Broth or worm soup as our 5 year old selves called it at Nonna's. With the bitter cold temperatures that settled into the Mitten this week, I just had to make soup. This soup is hearty but has a pinch of freshness with the lemon zest. I can tell you, I was warm for like 3 hours after eating this.

If you are making this, please note you need a potato ricer and someone strong to push the dough through. The smaller batches you make, the easier it is to press.

Passatelli in Broth

64 oz. Broth (any kind!)
1 1/2 cups grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cups plain bread crumbs
4 eggs
2 tbsp. flour
1 tbsp. grated lemon zest
1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1. Put the broth in a large pot to boil.
2. Combine the remaining ingredients. The dough will likely be crumby and this is ok!
3. Once the broth is boiling, squeeze the dough those a passatelli maker (a potato rices as non-Italians may call it). Cut once the noodles, once they are an inch or so long, into the boiling broth.
4. Cook at a gentle boil for approximately 5 minutes. Serve warm.

Click here for how it should look. I could not press it hard enough for the longer strands. A quick google search shows many ways to add veggies!

Stay warm out there!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year New Blog posts!

Hello all!

Thanks for hanging in there! I know I have completely let this go for the last half of 2011 but now it's 2012 and I need to get started again!

2012 is going to be a great year. I'll be posting some healthy living tips, recipes and links to Pinterest.

Let's make 2012 a healthy one! More from me soon!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Pineapple Stuffed Pork

This post has been a few weeks in the making. Summer makes me not want to be near my computer, pretty obvious, right? I had some extra pineapple from a fruit salad and Sam's had a great deal on pork tenderloin. This recipe is a little reminiscent of my first post with spinach stuffed pork tenderloin. Asparagus and grilled pineapple were my side dishes.

I totally made this recipe up so my measurements might be a little off. Just remember, add whatever you feel like at that moment. I'm sure it will be delicious. If not, you can always order a pizza! Speaking of pizza, I might have to make that soon.

Pineapple Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

2 Pork tenderloins
Seasoning for marinade
1 1/2 cups pineapple, diced
1 tbsp parsley
Salt & Pepper

1. Butterfly the pork by making a 1 inch deep cut down the center of each tenderloin. Open the tenderloin on this cut and cover with plastic wrap. Using a meat mallet, pound the tenderloin from the middle out. Season and let marinate for 1-2 hours. I marinated in Caribbean seasoning with Orange Juice.
2. Mix pineapple and parsley. Add salt and pepper to taste. Soak toothpicks in water.
3. On a clean surface, lay each tenderloin out. Spread mixture down center. Roll tenderloin and secure with toothpicks.

4. Grill or bake (@350) until pork has reached 145 degrees. Remove from grill or oven and let rest for 3-5 minutes before cutting.

My wine selection for the evening was a Chardonnay with hints of citrus. Enjoy!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Basic Pasta Sauce

All good pasta starts with an amazing basic sauce. Here's my meat recipe. I'm always changing it up based on what I have on hand and what I'm in the mood for.

Basic Tomato Sauce
1 - 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
1 - 6 oz. can of tomato paste
1 lb. ground beef
1 onion
2 tbsp. olive oil

1. Brown onion in a large pot with olive oil (you can also add 1-2 cloves of minced garlic). Add beef and cook until no longer pink.
2. Add crushed tomatoes and tomato paste. Fill each can once with water and add that to the pot.
3. Salt and pepper to taste. (You can also add oregano, basil, parsley, whatever you like!)
4. Simmer 2-3 hours, stirring every 15 minutes. Don't forget taste your sauce occasionally to make sure all your spices are balanced.

Serve with pasta or lasagna. This recipe is easily frozen. I usually make a double batch and freeze enough sauce for 1-2 months. A 12-16 ounce container is usually perfect for one family meal. I think I'll pull one of the freezer for dinner tomorrow!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Asparagus Season!

Oohh! End of May and early June means one of my favorite vegetables is in season: Asparagus!

I found this recipe many years ago in Cooking Light (October 2007 to be exact!). It's easy and can be altered to fit your needs. They call it a skillet supper (just one pan) but I actually prefer to bake my chicken a little longer. Also, they suggest serving with mashed potatoes but Kroger has had a great sale on corn as of late (one of the bf's favorite things).

Chicken and Asparagus in White Wine Sauce

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper
2 tbsp butter
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup dry white wine (stock up when Kroger has the mini wine bottles on special)
1/2 cup less sodium chicken broth
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb. asparagus, trimmed
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

1. Place each chicken breast between 2 sheets of heavy duty plastic wrap and pound to 1/4 inch thickness using a meat mallet. Sprinkle chicken breasts evenly with salt and pepper.
2. Melt butter in large nonstick pan over medium high heat. Please flour in shallow dish. Dredge chicken in flour. Add chicken to pan and cook 3 minutes on each side or until done. Remove from pan and keep warm (I did 3 minutes on each side and then placed in baking dish and baked at 350 for an additional 10 minutes) Add wine, broth and garlic to pan, scraping pan to loosen browned bits, cook 2 minutes. Add asparagus, cover and cook for 3 minutes or until crisp-tender. Remove from heat. Stir in parsley and juice. Serve asparagus and sauce with chicken.

To cook the corn, remove kernels. Place in sauce pan with some water. Cook for about 5-10 minutes until bright yellow. Drain. Salt and pepper (and maybe butter).