Category: recipes

Antipasto salad

June 14th, 2010 — 4:52pm

antipasto salad

1 head cauliflower broken into small florets
1 small jar green olives, drained
1 can artichoke hearts, drained
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 bell pepper, chopped into 1 inch pieces
1 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced
1 package turkey pepperoni
1 tsp black pepper
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/3 cup olive oil

Combine all ingredients. Its better if it sets in the fridge for couple of hours.

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June 8th, 2010 — 9:13am

So, there’s a few reasons why I decided to start making my own yogurt. 1. Yogurt is cultured in the cup, which means it’s cooked in a plastic cup for at least 5 hours at 110ยบ. mmmm, that plastic infused yogurt has GOT to be good for you. 2. I can make it with local milk which helps the local economy, saves on transportation costs and is organic. 3. Less waste – we’re not going through 10-15 plastic cups a week that we can’t recycle.

So here’s the basic recipe I’ve been using.

8 cups milk (I used 2%)
1/2 cup plain yogurt, first time I used organic greek yogurt, second time I used brown cow cream top which isn’t organic

*The recipe says to use full fat yogurt and milk but I’ve had good luck with 2% and lowfat yogurt.

Place 8 cups of milk in crockpot for 2.5 hours on low. After the time has elapsed, turn off the heat, leaving the lid on and let set for 3 hours.
At this point, if any skin has formed on the top of the milk, carefully skim it off. Next take about a cup of the warm milk out of the crockpot and mix thoroughly with 1/2 cup of plain yogurt. Return the mixture to the crockpot and mix well. Wrap the entire crockpot up with a towel or two and let sit for about 8 hours. (My last batch was 6 hours and it wasn’t quite thick enough for me. The first batch, I let sit overnight.) Make sure your crockpot is in a warmish place, so it can maintain it’s temperature for the 8 hours.

Homemade yogurt will be a little thinner than store bought because most store bought will have a thickener in it. So after the yogurt has cultured, I like to drain out some of the whey and make greek yogurt which is a thicker, creamier version of yogurt. I line a colander with a clean linen napkin, pour the yogurt in the colander, set the whole thing inside a big bowl to catch the whey. Cover the entire thing with plastic wrap so the yogurt doesn’t take on the flavor of the fridge as it sets. 3 hours of draining in the fridge will make greek yogurt, 18-24hrs will make sour cream. I’m letting my batch go 48hrs to try to make a soft yogurt cheese. If you find your yogurt gets too thick, just mix back in some of the whey.

And voila! you have yogurt! I like to store mine in a mason jar and sweeten it with honey or fruit as we eat it (I actually prefer plain anyway.) I think it’s so easy to make! More than anything making yogurt is a waiting game, rather than time consuming.

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strawberry rhubarb jam

May 4th, 2010 — 6:36pm

strawberry rhubarb jam

Last week my friend Amy and I got together, with the help of her cousin Sarah, to make Strawberry Rhubarb jam. Amy and I are known to go a teeny bit overboard when it comes to canning (like the cherry jalapeno jam making of ’09) and this time wasn’t any different. It started with Amy growing copious amounts of rhubarb in her garden. Thinking that strawberry rhubarb jam was the way to go, I got a rain check for $1/lb strawberries at the grocery store the other day when they were on sale. So last Thursday, I loaded up a grocery cart with 20lbs of strawberries and headed over to Amys. I lost count of how many jars of jam we made, but I think we all will be set for awhile. Here’s the recipe:

strawberry rhubarb jam

Strawberry Rhubarb Jam
makes about six 1/2 pints

2 cups strawberries, mashed
2 cups rhubarb, chopped
5 cups sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 package pectin

Bring the fruit, lemon juice and pectin to a boil. Add the sugar and return to a hard boil and boil for 1 minute. Ladle into warm, sterilized jars leaving 1/4″ headspace. Cover with two part lids (boil the flats before using to sterilize and soften the seal) and turn upside down for 10 minutes. Turn the jars right side up and wait for them to seal. Process in a water bath for 10 minutes. (We now water bath everything.) Enjoy!

strawberry rhubarb jam

(The recipe says to give the jars a water bath for 10 minutes but we have great success with just turning the jars upside down to get them to seal.)

Thanks to Sarah for the pictures.

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potato soup

December 3rd, 2009 — 2:23pm

This is a recipe that I grew up eating and it’s something that I always turn to in cold winter months when the cupboards are looking bare.

In a large pot, sautee an onion and garlic in some oil. Add to that chopped and peeled potatoes. I do 1-2 lg potatoes per person. Add just enough water to cover potatoes and boil until potatoes are soft.

During the boiling process I add salt, pepper and a couple tsp of chicken bullion. Also green chiles to taste. Once the potatoes are soft, mash slightly with a potato masher and pour in some milk or cream until soup has a pleasing consistency.

At this point throw in some cooked bacon or hamburger or sausage or ham (turkey of course) and whatever veggie sounds good. I really like frozen corn. The last batch I made I mixed in some cooked sweet potatoes which was amazing.

Cook until heated through and enjoy!

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May 12th, 2009 — 8:20am

It’s that time again for iced coffee. Last year I was loving me some
cold-brewed coffee
which is supposed to be lower in acidity. I think it’s just dern yummy. mmmmm….

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candy recipes

December 11th, 2008 — 3:00pm

I’m making candy tonight with some of my friends. I’ve been scouring Martha’s website for recipes. Here are a few intriguing ones:

peppermint meringues with chocolate filling.

chocolate covered peppermint sticks
– I’ve made these before and they are SO fun!

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speaking to myself from the past

October 8th, 2007 — 10:43pm

I was looking through my recipes to make sure I had all the ingredients written on my grocery list for Enchilada casserole and I found a list of meal ideas I wrote when we first got married. I thought some of it might be useful/funny. (Add your suggestions too!)

Potato soup
jamaica jerk chicken
vegetable pitas
grilled portobello mushrooms
roasted chicken
black bean soup
chicken pot pie
tuna & white sauce (recipe to follow)
pot roast
tuna casserole
enchilada casserole
stir fry
french dip
steak with sauteed bell peppers and mushrooms
chicken salad
fried burritos
chicken devan
chicken noodle soup
frito pie
pasta salad
taco crockpot dish (need to find that recipe, it was yummy)
chicken spinach tetrazini (ooo, need to find that one too!)
chicken gumbo

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Tuna and white sauce

October 8th, 2007 — 10:00pm

Tuna and white sauce is something that my mom made when I was growing up. It’s the ultimate poor meal. It’s super fast, super tasty and if you keep a can of tuna and some frozen peas on hand, you’ll always have something for dinner.

Melt 4 1/2 Tbs of butter in a large skillet. Stir in 8 Tbs of flour and season with salt and pepper.

Gradually whisk in 4 cups of milk. Cook, stirring frequently until thickened. Stir in 1 large can of tuna (or 2 small) drained, and 2 cups of frozen peas. Cook until peas are heated through.

Serve over toast or bread.

Serves at least four.

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pirate cupcakes

October 3rd, 2007 — 8:15am

pirate cupcakes

For Honors cupcakes, I started with unfrosted cupcakes from the bakery of my local grocery store. (Isn’t that the coolest thing ever? I just had to bat my eyelashes at the bakery manager and she agreed to sell me them unfrosted. Because it’s usually the frosting that makes store bought cupcakes taste gross, you’d never know that I didn’t bake them. They were quite tasty!)

Next, I made my standard powdered sugar frosting, but I used organic powdered sugar – that’s why they aren’t white/white. So mix 1 lb powdered sugar, 1 stick of butter softened (organic too) and 1 tps vanilla until the butter is incorporated. Then add enough half and half a tsp at a time to make it a nice spreadable texture.

For the eyes I used hershey’s kisses and chocolate chips. The teeth are white Good and Plentys and the nose holes are mini chocolate chips. It was so easy!

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the girlfriend

June 4th, 2007 — 9:49am

So lately I’ve been making this drink. It’s a tasty, fruity drink that goes down just a little too easily and it’s really caught on with my friends. After a silly case of misunderstanding, the drink was named “the girlfriend.” And lately I’ve been doling out a lot of girlfriends.

Here’s how to make one:

Take a glass, fill it with ice. Pour in a healthy shot of your favorite vodka. Add as many marachino cherries as you like with a tiny bit of the juice, squeeze in 1/4 lime, toss the lime in the glass. Pour over 7-up (or diet 7-up) to your liking, stir and enjoy your girlfriend!

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