Sunday, August 28, 2016

Creamy Corn Pasta with Bacon and Zucchini

Summer time produce is here! I can't stop buying corn and I have accumulated several pounds of zucchini.  Hooray for fresh produce!

Creamy Corn Pasta with Bacon and Zucchini
Adapted from NY Times

1 lb dried pasta
4 slices bacon
2 cups zucchini, diced
1 tbsp olive oil
1 bunch scallions, sliced
2 ears of corn, shucked (2 cups kernels)
1/2 tsp pepper
3 tbsp butter
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup basil, torn
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

1. Bring a large pot of water to boil, cook pasta according to package directions, reserve 1/2 cup pasta water.
2. In a large skillet cook bacon until crisp, remove and drain on paper towels.  Cook zucchini in bacon fat until softened, remove from pan.  Add some oil, if needed, to cook scallion whites.  Add all but 1/4 cup of corn and 1/4 cup of water.  Simmer 3-5 minutes.  Add salt and pepper and transfer to a blender. Puree until smooth adding water to achieve desired consistency.
3. Add butter and reserved corn to the skillet. Cook 1-2 minutes.  Add corn puree and stir until combined and heated through.  
4. Add pasta to the skillet along with half of the reserved pasta water (adding more if it seems too thick). Stir in bacon, zucchini, green scallions, parmesan, basil, and red pepper flakes.

I know it sounds like a lot of steps, but this really is a simple meal.  Feel free to eliminate the bacon to make it vegetarian, it is definitely not an essential ingredient.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Sweet Potato Falafel Bowls with Jalapeno Ranch Dressing

OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO baby this meal was so damn good.  I am on vacation now so I am having a blast in the kitchen. This recipe is a bit of a project, but it's nothing you can't handle.  I promise.

The dressing is fantastic.  Don't skip it.

I used a 90 second packaged brown rice to make the falafels come together a little quicker.

Sweet Potato Falafel Bowls with Jalapeno Ranch Dressing

1 sweet potato, peels and cut into chunks
1 cup cooked brown rice or quinoa
1/2 cup almonds, or other nut
1 egg
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup flour
oil for frying

1 container of plain Greek yogurt, the 5.3 oz kind
1/2 cup milk
2 tsp white vinegar
2 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper
*If you have dill and chives, toss some in.  I didn't have any, but Lindsey used them in her dressing.

cooked rice, I made my cilantro lime rice
tomatoes, I oven roasted some grape tomatoes
crumbled goat cheese

1. For the falafel, pulse sweet potato in a food processor until finely minced.  Add in rice, egg, almonds, and salt. Pulse until combined.  Pour mixture into a bowl and stir in flour.
2. Heat oil in a skillet. Form falafel into balls or patties.  Fry each falafel a few minutes on each side until browned and crispy.
3. The next set of ingredients is for the dressing.  I used an immersion blender to combine them.
4. The last set of ingredients is for your bowl assembling.  A scoop of rice on the bottom, falafel, veggies, top it all with cheese and jalapeno ranch dressing.

Oh. My. God. I want to eat this so many more times.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Vegetable Samosas

I recently attended a kick-ass party where we played Risk and feasted on food from around the world.  For my contribution I made these tasty vegetable samosas.

Vegetable Samosas
Adapted from Food Network

1 lb potatoes + whatever you like to use to make your own mashed potatoes
1 cup mixed vegetables, I used a frozen medley, defrosted
1 tsp curry powder
1 tbsp cilantro
1 tbsp ginger
cayenne pepper to your desired spicy-ness
2 packages crescent rolls

1. Prepare a batch of mashed potatoes. Mix in vegetables and seasonings.
2. Preheat oven to 375. Unroll crescent rolls and separate into triangles. Place a tablespoon of potato mixture in the middle of the crescent roll and fold seams together sealing it all up and mushing it into a triangle.  This is not an exact science.
3. Place on an ungreased tray and bake for about 15 minutes, until the dough is golden brown.

I served these with mango chutney, but feel free to use any dipping sauce you desire.

Above is our grand international feast.  It was a really spectacular night.

These were a great substitution to take out.  Plus they are baked, not fried so that can make you feel a little better about eating a carb wrapped in a carb. 

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Ravioli Sandwich

I have a whole bunch of drafts for recipes with lovely fresh summer produce, but I just couldn't keep this to myself for any longer...

Once upon a time I went to the Undercover Eggplant in Oneonta.  They have a whole menu of super awesome sandwiches and I ordered one off the regular menu.  While I was waiting for my sandwich I noticed one of their specials: a ravioli sandwich!  I had instant ordering regret and have been thinking about the sandwich that never was for weeks now.

So here it is! A ravioli sandwich!

Ravioli Sandwich

fried ravioli
tomato sauce
Italian bread
meatballs (I used 1 meatball for 2 of us)

1. Put it all together and heat it up in a frying pan with a weight on the sandwich or in a fancy panini press if you have it.

This was everything I had been dreaming of! OMFG. Seriously so so good.

I promise you these were tiny sandwiches and we had a nice salad along side it. Balance is key my friends.  Don't pine after this sandwich for weeks like it did, just make it! Now!

Monday, August 15, 2016

Zucchini Bread

I know, you think I'm nuts because I am giving you a recipe for baked goods when it's been over 100 degrees for days on end.  Here's the thing though, I made it in a loaf pan so it fit in the toaster so, no heating the whole damn house! Victory!

Zucchini Bread
From Emeril

1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch nutmeg
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
1 cup shredded zucchini

1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease a loaf pan.
2. With a mixer combine butter, oil, and sugar. Cream until smooth. Add egg, mix until combined.
3. Add dry ingredients and mix until incorporated.  Then fold in zucchini. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 50-60 minutes until skewer comes out clean. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.

Zucchini bread is one of those recipes that reminds me of home.  Emeril did not disappoint me with the recipe.  Absolute perfection.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Grilled Peach and Kale Salad with Prosciutto and Feta

This salad is summer dinner perfection. No oven, just a few minutes by the grill, and minimal clean up so you can go relax with an ice coffee.

Grilled Peach and Kale Salad with Prosciutto and Feta
From Food52

1 bunch of kale (4-6 cups, I bought a bag of cleaned and chopped kale because shortcuts are nice)
3-4 peaches, pitted and halved
4 oz sliced prosciutto
1/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup olive oil
1-2 tbsp lemon juice
pinch of salt
vegetable oil, for brushing peaches
crusty bread for serving

1. Put your kale in a large salad bowl.  Season with a pinch of salt and 1 tbsp of to oil, massage to coat and soften.
2. Heat the grill. Brush peaches with vegetable oil and place cut side down on the grill. Grill until fruit is caramelized, about 5 minutes.
3. Top kale with prosciutto and feta, toss with olive oil and lemon juice.  Place grilled peaches on top of salad.  Serve with some crusty bread (maybe grill it with a lil olive oil and garlic? yea, do that)

Yum! This is so easy and so delicious.  I was psyched about the salty sweet combination of the prosciutto and the peaches. Go make it, summer is slowly disappearing!

Monday, August 1, 2016

Chicken Kale Grain Bowl with Sun Dried Tomato Sauce

Grain bowls have been taking over my feeds lately so I decided to dip my toe into the world of quinoa and kale.  I don't know how much of a "recipe" this needs to be, but I'll type one up for you and you decide how much of it you want to follow.

Chicken Kale Grain Bowls
From Pinch of Yum

For marinade
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tbp lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt

For the bowls
2 cups baby kale, if you use regular kale just chop it and marinate it a little longer
2 cups cooked grain of your choice (I found this fun rice/quinoa blend)
1 avocado
sesame seeds or red pepper flakes
sliced almonds
maybe some feta cheese if the mood should strike you

For the sauce
16 oz jar of sun dried tomatoes, drained
1-2 cloves garlic
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup olive oil

1. Mix up that marinade in a measuring cup. Give half of it to the kale and half to the chicken. The chicken should marinate for 30 minutes to 2 hours. The baby kale can go for the same time, if you have regular kale feel free to marinate it all night.
2. Cook your chicken however you desire.  I sauteed it on the stove.
3. Blend that sauce or food process it, all the ingredients just dump 'em in.
4. Cook your grain according to package directions.  Take 1/2 cup of the sauce and stir it in.
5. Assemble the bowls! Top the grains with all that good stuff you just whipped up.

This was totally delicious and it really was fun to assemble it all in the end.