Saturday, November 20, 2010

Sweet Potato Butter

Well Oprah likes it so why not give it a whirl! Here's one recipe for it I found:

6 cups of diced sliced sweet potato, 2 cups of diced granny smith apples, 4 cups of water, 2/3 cups of orange juice concentrate, 1/2 cup of packed brown sugar (or Splenda brown sugar), 1 1/2 tsp. of ground cinnamon, 1 tsp. of ground nutmeg, 1/4 tsp. of cloves.

Put all of the ingredients into a pot and bring to a boil, then turn heat way down and let the mixture simmer for 2 2 1/4 hours or until mixture is nice and thick with maybe just one cup of water remaining and keep stirring. Turn the heat off and let the potato mixture cool somewhat because your are going to blend it in batches. Then put into jars and into the fridge and chill for two hours before serving. Yum.


Monday, November 08, 2010

The Tale of Two Quiches - Julia and Emeril

Wow, have I lucked out. I've thoroughly enjoyed two completely different quiches this week. One made a la Julia Child by my friend Joanne, and the other was made a la Emeril by my friend and sister Keeli. Seriously delicious and both so different. I hadn't had quiche for so long, but it truly is an all encompassing delicious meal, especially when served with a salad a la Chef Ramsay! I'm going to post both here.

Julia Child's Blue Cheese or Roquefort Quiche: Partly cook a pastry shell at 400 degrees for 8 to 9 minutes and take out of the oven and cool. You will then need 3 oz. of Roquefort or blue cheese, 6 oz. of cream cheese or cottage cheese (I used cottage and blue cheese), 2 tbsp. of butter softened, 3 tbp. of whip cream, 2 eggs, salt, white pepper, cayenne pepper, 1/2 tbsp. of cut fresh chives, or green onion (for garnish). Cream the cheese and butter together then add the other ingredients. If you need to smooth it out put it through a sieve. Now pour into a partly baked pastry shell, top with chives or green onion, turn the oven down to 375 degrees and put the quiche into the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes or until puffed and golden. Serve with a salad.

Emeril's Quiche Lorraine *This is a really delicious and creamy Quiche: 6 oz. of thick bacon cut into strips, 2 large eggs, then 2 large egg yolks (I think that this is the secret adding extra yolk), 1 1/2 cups of half and half cream (ok then, this is the other secret), 1/4 tsp. of salt, 1/4 tsp. of white pepper, pinch of nutmeg, and 1 cup of grated Gruyere cheese, and one baked pie shell.

Cook bacon and drain.**I really liked the whole bacon effect - rather than the crumbled up version - in the quiche because it looked swirly and beautiful. Next, mix up the cream, eggs, cheese, and spices and pour into a prepared pie crust. and bake until "custard" is golden, puffed, and slightly wiggly in the centre (approximately 30-35 minutes). Then take out of the oven and cool for 15 minutes before serving. Serve with a salad.

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Sunday, November 07, 2010

On The Menu

I've gotten into a nice routine of planning my meals for the week. And prior to getting a menu plan together I love pouring over my favourite cookbooks to get ideas so we don't get into a culinary rut. This week I'm keeping it simple but savory. I read a recipe recently for Indian Tacos. Doesn't that sound fun!? I love the idea of taking something traditional and adding an exotic or cultural twist to it. I'm actually going international this week: From Russia I'll be making a traditional Beef Strogonoff. Nothing could be easier, more delicious, or more simple. From Turkey I'm making Marinated Chicken Shish Kebabs with Pita veggies and rice. Then finally from Latin America I'll be making something our family never eats....TACOS! I do think I'm going to add an nice Indian flare to mine. I will update. Have fun.

Friday, November 05, 2010

Easy Sundried and Diced Tomato Pasta Sauce

Now this dinner was just too delicious. I served this sauce over tortellini for my family, while I enjoyed it over oven and olive oil roasted eggplant. Simply put about 1/8th cup of olive oil in a medium hot frying pan and add about 1/2 cup of oil packed (drained) sun dried tomatoes and 1 tbsp. of minced garlic. Fry in the pan until the garlic smells toasty, but be careful not to burn. Then add a bigger sized can of diced tomatoes (it works out to be about 2 1/2 or 3 cups of diced tomatoes) and about six torn basil leaves and whatever seasonings you like. I added extra garlic powder, Parmesan and herbs spice (or just Parmesan cheese), sun dried tomato and herb mix, salt and pepper. Simmer until it's reduced and a nice pulpy concoction.

If I wasn't making this sauce to include my kids and if I wasn't such a hog with my red wine, I could have added 1/4 of red to this sauce and it probably would've made me cry tears of joy. Next time. P.S. I enjoyed this pulpy sauce with a bit of strong cheddar in a wrap for breakfast this morning and it was magnificent! ****P.S.S. Really experiment with this sauce to make it your own. How about oregano, wine, onion...carmelized onion, feta cheese,'s the perfect base sauce.

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Thursday, November 04, 2010

Plump and Juicy Tomato Crostini

Alrighty, this one is so simple, but addictive and divine. I got it from my gorgeous friend Joanne. Make it over the holiday season.

12 Roma Tomatoes, cut into quarters. Put into a roasting pan or casserole dish and pour 1/3 a cup of olive oil over tomatoes and 1/6 cup of good balsamic and toss until they are all nicely coated. Then you're going to put them in a 200 degree oven for about 3 hours or so or at least until they are thoroughly cooked and still gorgeously red. When they are done, cool them down. Now cut up a crostini and toast if you like and spread with Boursin cheese. Then top with one tomato strip and serve. I put left over tomatoes in a Tupperware and we ate these crostini all flippin weekend.

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