Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Those Little Scamps!

Shrimp Scampi with Spinach Salad

     For Shrimp Scampi                                      For Salad
       kosher salt to taste                                        6 cups baby spinach, washed and dried
       Grapeseed oil for pasta water                         1/4 cup dressing (see here for my favorite)
       12 oz whole wheat linguine                             1 cup cherry tomatoes sliced in half
       2 Tbs oliveoil
       3 cloves garlic, minced
       1 pound peel-and-eat shrimp
       2 Tbs unsalted organic butter
       2 cups chicken broth
       1/2 tsp black pepper
       1/4 grated Parmesan cheese
       1 Tbs fresh parsley, chopped

1. Boil salty water for pasta in large stockpot. Add a little oil.
2. Cook pasta according to package instructions.
3. While pasta is cooking, heat olive oil in a large saute pan over
     medium heat.
4. Add minced garlic, saute for 1 minute.
5. Add srhimp and butter.  Saute for 2 minutes.
6. Add chicken broth and let simmer for 2 minutes.  Remove from
7. Drain pasta but do not rinse.
8. Add inguine to pan, a small batch at a time.
9. Add black pepper. Gently fold in Parmesan.  Sprinkle with fresh
    parsley.  Divide into 4-5 bowls and serve.

For salad: Toss spinach with dressing and top with cherry tomatoes.

If it weren't for the "TEXTURE" of the shrimp *insert eye roll here* it would have been 4 forks ;)

Followed by *drum roll please* wait  *stop the drum roll a moment* AHEM. Now I better not hear ANYTHING about this not being healthy!!!  We all deserve a treat once in awhile! *restart drum roll please*


Ingredients: (Feel free to double. I do!)
   6 oz frozen orange juice (we use the concentrate cans)
   1 cup milk
   1 cup water
   1/2 cup sugar
   1 tsp vanilla
   6-9 ice cubes

Add all ingredients to blender and blend until ice is chopped.  Serve in your choice of glass!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Oh Yay! It's Cassoulet!

Cassoulet (kass-oo-lay) is a hearty stew originating from southwestern France.  It's name is derived from the pot it was actually cooked in, the cassole, a deep, round, earthenware pot with slanting sides. The cassoulet is typically meat heavy and contains white beans.  Traditionally a Cassoulet is made with pork as, that was the meat readily available to the French peasants. I made it with turkey sausage as that's what was readily available to this peasant!

Chicken Sausage Cassoulet

     1/2 cup olive oil
     1/2 medium onion, chopped
     4-5 Italian chicken sausages (I used turkey)
     4 cloves garlic, minced or pressed, divided into two portions
     8 oz cherry tomatoes, diced
     2 15oz cans cannellini beans
     1/2 tsp kosher salt
     1/2 tsp black pepper
     2 cups chicken broth
     3 fresh sage leaves, minced
     1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
     3 Tbs fresh parsley, finely chopped


1.  In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat, Add onions       and stir to coat with oil.
2. Add sausage. Cook 10 minutes until sausage is cooked through,     stirring onions and turning sausage frequently to avoid burning.
3. Remove sausage only and set aside.  Add one portion of garlic,       followed by tomatoes, beans, salt, and pepper to onions. Mix    

4. Add broth. Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.
5. Once sausages have cooled slightly, slice into 1/4 inch pieces.         Return sausage to pan.
6. In a small bowl, combine sage, remainder of garlic, and
    Parmesan. Combine half of Parm mix with stew.
7. Divide into 4-5 bowls.  Top with remaining Parmesan mix and
    garnish with fresh parsley. Serve hot.

FACEOMETER: 4 SPOONS UP! (8 if you are counting)

Thursday, February 16, 2012

It's a Girl Thing, You Wouldn't Understand

It's sad, no, it's down right pathetic when Mom gets sick everything goes to BLEEP.  WHY am I the only capable person in this house???

After suffering through some female related issues all last week (including a trip to the E.R.) I came to the very distinct revelation that I am the only thing keeping this family from being bums.  If I don't dress them, they wander around aimlessly wondering where those shapes of cloth are kept.  Likewise, if I don't feed them, they starve...or eat crap from a cardboard box in a greasy bag.  SIGH.

I suppose it's my fault.  I should have rolled off the couch, clawed my way to the kitchen, hoisted my doubled-over self in front of the oven and fried my tears so those poor souls would get a decent meal.  I even suggested my hubby follow a recipe, but he clucked and flapped his flightless wings in protest.

It has been a slow process getting back to MY normal, and once again, I'm behind on recipes and postings.  Monday I made a wonderful turkey chili (we had the leftovers yesterday).  I will post that tomorrow. Today, feeling much better, I made whole wheat french bread and whole wheat banana muffins.  We used one loaf for some yummy BLTs tonight!  I'm still working out the kinks to these recipes as I'm adapting them from my favorites to fit the "Real Food" mantra.  Once I perfect them, I will share so you may enjoy as well! 

On a side note, I did have fun making yummy valentines for all our "heroes" (teachers, bus drivers, co-workers, friends)!  I am a baker after all

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Don't Be a Loaf, Eat Meat!

I don't "do" meatloaf.  It's not my thing.  There is just something incredibly UNappetizing about ketchup slathered on a  bread-shaped piece of meat.  Until tonight.  The Fresh 20's Turkey Meatloaf and steamed potatoes REALLY hit the spot.  The spices were savory, the herbs (which I got creative with and used cilantro instead of parsley....oh come on, you know I have a love affair with cilantro) were perfect and the loaf of meat was basted with a tasty sweet tomato paste instead of that vile condiment called ketchup.  This meal was a win win for everyone!  AND, it didn't take my kids two hours to eat it!!!

Turkey Meatloaf with Steamed Potatoes

     For Meatloaf                                            For potatoes
          1/2 cup whole wheat bread crumbs             1 lb medium gold potatoes cut in quarters
          1 pound ground turkey or beef                    1/4 cup chicken or veggie broth (or water)
          1/4 cup fresh parsley (CILANTRO!!!!)        1/4 tsp salt
          1/2 cup medium red onion, minced               1/4 tsp black pepper
          1/2 Tbs ground cumin
          2 large eggs
          1 Tbs dijon mustard
          1 tsp balsamic vinegar
          1 tsp salt
          1 tsp black pepper
          2 Tbs tomato paste
          1 Tbs raw honey
          1 Tbs water

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, combine meat, crumbs, pars..cilantro, onion, cumin, eggs, Dijon, vinegar, salt and pepper until well mixed. Don't be afraid to use your hands!
3. Form mixture into a loaf pan.
4. In small bowl, blend tomato paste, honey and water until thick and smooth.
5. Baste the top of meatloaf with the tomato mix.
6. Bake about 60 minutes

1. Arrange potato quarters in a  1 quart microwave safe dish.  Add stock or water, and cover with heavy duty plastic wrap.
2. Microwave at HIGH 8 minutes or until tender.  Drain
3. Sprinkle with Salt and Pepper