Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Split Pea Soup and Grilled Cheese

The Split Pea Soup recipe was from Food and Wine. I cut the recipe in half and still have enough for tomorrow night... or a few lunches. The Grilled Cheese was made with that amazing bread I baked on Sunday. This was a perfect meal for a chilly March night!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Hunter Style Chicken, Pollo All Cacciatora

I love when I find recipes that I have all the ingredients already in the house. Don't get me wrong I love grocery shopping! I have made this quite often. It is perfect to reheat when you get home from work.

The recipe in the La Cucina, The Regional Cooking of Italy cookbook.
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup sliced onions
1 lb. carrots, sliced
1 celery stalk, sliced

3 1/2 lbs chicken, cut in pieces

1/2 cup dry white wine

1/2 lb, ripe plum tomatoes, peeled and chopped
(I used a can of diced tomatoes)
chicken broth, if necessary
salt and pepper
Heat half of the olive oil in a large pan and add the onions, carrots and celery. When they have taken on color remove them and set them aside. Put pieces of chicken in pan with remaining olive oil and when pieces have colored add the white wine. When the wine has evaporated add the tomatoes and reserved vegetables. Continue cooking over low heat for about 40 minutes, adding a little broth if necessary. Adjust for salt and pepper.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Meatball Pizza and Multigrain No Knead Bread

Remember a couple of posts ago I mentioned the make ahead meatballs? Well tonight I used up the rest of the batch. The pizza dough was from the Jim Lahey book, My Bread: The Revolutionary No Knead Bread Method.

It was a fun day in the kitchen here. Yesterday I received the new issue of Bon Appetit. There was an article about eggs and there was a recipe from Thomas Keller for the Perfect Poached Egg. On Sundays we have eggs for breakfast and read the Sunday papers. Egg sandwiches, scrambled, or poached. So I had to try this method. Okay it was the perfect poached egg.

Oh and the bread! I found this on the Culinate eblast. Multi-grain No Knead Bread. It is similar to the No Knead bread from Jim Lahey. The results were quite amazing! With a recipe like this I can see no reason why someone would not bake their own bread. It is a perfect submission for Bake Your Own Bread -

BYOB Badge

And Lucy was quite the kitchen cat today....

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Chicken and Zucchini With Homemade Pasta

I have decided that if I had to pick a last meal it would be homemade pasta.
There is nothing like silky ribbons of pasta. Tonight's pasta was in the freezer. I had made it back in February. The recipe was from Tide and Thyme. If you are looking for a pasta recipe please try this one!
Anyway with the pasta already made most the work was done.
I recently added at the bottom of the blog links for what we had for dinner a year ago and 2 years ago (pretty soon I will be adding the 3 years ago line). I saw this post from 2010, Chicken and Thyme, and thought I would use the recipe tonight and added pasta to the mix!
I sliced the chicken breast into thin slices and cut up the zucchini. I heated up olive oil and a knob of butter in a saute pan. I seasoned the chicken with salt and pepper then sauteed it. After it was cooked I added the zucchini, more salt and pepper and thyme (my favorite herb!). A little white wine and lemon juice were added to the pan along with another little bit of butter! After the pasta was just about done (it took maybe 2 minutes for the pasta to cook) I added it to the saute pan to finish cooking.
I was so pleased with the outcome. All it needed was crushed red pepper (doesn't everything need that) and Parmesan cheese.

Today I went to visit a co-worker who recently had a baby boy. He was so cute! The mom really likes  peanut butter so I made the cookies I had pinned recently. You are all on Pinterest right? I have been to few sites were you can store recipes you find online but Pinterest is my favorite.
Anyway the cookies... from The View From Great Island blog we have Peanut Butter Chip Shortbread Cookies. Oh my they are good. I have a weakness for shortbread but add peanut butter and then chocolate. Smiles.

And the ducks are back! 

What did we have for dinner a year ago...
No post!

What did we have for dinner 2 years ago...
Sausage and Polenta Casserole

Friday, March 23, 2012

Calzone Barese Olive and Ricotta

Another meatless Friday. I was looking through my previous posts and found this one - Calzone Barese Olive and Ricotta. It was from the cookbook, La Cucina: Regional Cooking of Italy.
 Another submission for Cookbook Sundays!

I had forgotten what a great crust this was. And I liked the idea of one big calzone. The filling is so flavorful. The olives and onions make a great sauce.

For the dough:
2 cups all purpose flour plus more if needed
2 1/2 tsp active dry yeas dissolved in 2 tbsp. warm water
Extra-virgin olive oil

For the filling:
1 medium onion, sliced
3/4 lb. ripe plum tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1/3 cup pitted and chopped black olives
4 oz. ricotta salata, passed through a sieve
Salt and pepper

Pour the flour onto a flat surface and work it together with the yeast mixture, a dash of salt and 1/4 cup of olive oil. Knead the dough, turning and folding it onto itself, until it becomes soft and elastic, adding water by the tablespoon as necessary - you my need to add as much as 3/4 cup. Then cover it with a clean kitchen towel and let it rise for about an hour.
Preheat the oven to 450˚F. Grease a baking dish.
In a sauce pan, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil and saute the onion until is almost transparent, then add the tomatoes. Cook the sauce down for a few minutes then add salt, pepper, and olives. Remove the pan from the heat and add the ricotta salata and mix well.
Roll the dough on a floured board into two sheets, one larger than the other. With the larger one line the greased pan. Pour in the sauce, spread it out, and cover with the other sheet, folding the edges over each other. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until the top is golden.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Chinese Chicken and Vegetable Stir Fry Over Quinoa

I found this recipe on Cookstr. Chinese Chicken and Vegetable Stir Fry Over Quinoa. This recipe was simple to prepare. I prepped and marinated the chicken, steamed the veggies and made the quinoa before I left for work. The only thing we were not crazy about was the eggplant... Now I love eggplant but here not so much.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Meatball Subs

This past weekend I came upon a recipe for make ahead meatballs on the Food Renegade site.  Heck I make just about everything ahead! The recipe looked good so I gave it a try. It was not much different than what I usually do for meatballs except instead of using bread the recipe called for breadcrumbs or brown rice. I opted for the breadcrumbs. The result was a decent meatball. Next time I would definitely try it with the brown rice.
Tonight we had subs. On mine I added Broccoli Rabe and Provolone cheese!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Farro with Butternut Squash and Chestnuts

I have been trying to use up things. Cleaning out the freezer has been going nicely. Why? Because I am getting tired of the amount of money I have been spending at the grocery store. My last trip for a "couple of things" was close to $50. I think it is crazy what I spend a week for just 2 of us. Well okay the cats have to eat too but really....
I have a kitchen closet that has a lot of stuff in it. Stuff I bought for one recipe and other stuff because of curiosity, hence the chestnuts. I love chestnuts but to roast chestnuts for one recipe, not likely. Anyway the other day I was cruising around Cookstr and found this recipe. I had opened the package of chestnuts from a previous dinner.
Yes this is a meatless meal. But I am sure you could add meat... perhaps a meatball?

Monday, March 19, 2012

Baked Pastina Casserole

This recipe is a favorite of ours. It is from Giada De Laurentiis Everyday Pasta.
Chris and I love this recipe and my dad likes it too.  As I was getting ready to type the recipe I thought... perhaps it's online. And it was! At the FoodNetwork site. Here is the link. And there is a video for the recipe on the FoodNetwork site! And I can submit this for Cookbook Sunday.

Happy Feast of St Joseph! Did you have a Zeppole today?

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Sausage and Chard with Polenta

What a beautiful day! And what a delicious meal. Tonight's recipe comes from RealSimple.com. Sausage and Chard with Polenta. The changes I made in the recipe were that I added onion, crushed red pepper and Parmesan cheese was added to the polenta.

So do you use paper or plastic when you leave you re-useable bags in the car?
Well I ask for paper because....

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Pork "Saltimbocca" with Roasted Onions and Potatoes

I found this recipe at Bon Appetit. Love it. Talk about a one dish meal. My dish looked quite similar to the photo on the Bon Appetit site, except I could not make the prosciutto rosettes. We love roasted potatoes and onions so the pork and prosciutto was like icing on the cake. 
As for a veggie I had a small piece of fennel that my dad gave me so I sauteed it up with some zucchini. Seasoned it with salt and pepper. Oh my that was good!

And yes it is Saint Patrick's Day. I did have a beer today... at an Italian Bar and Grill. But I did make Irish Soda Bread... sort of. I found a recipe for Chocolate Chip Soda Bread on the Whole Foods site. Well I had these Cinnamon Chips that I was dying to use so I used half Dark Chocolate Chips (that makes it good for you!) and half Cinnamon Chips. I love Irish Soda Bread but sorry this blows that away!

What did we have for dinner a year ago...
Corn Beef Sandwiches

What did we have for dinner 2 years ago...
Chicken Pot Pie

Friday, March 16, 2012

What did we eat this week?

This has been a long week. I use to post every day... not so much anymore. Not sure why and really don't want to try to figure it out. So we have the weekend wrap up!
Cue the fanfare...

Tuesday March 13 -
 Autumn Vegetable Soup. Right from the freezer!

Wednesday March 14 -
Oh this was good! I came across this recipe on the Better Homes and Garden site. Chicken and Pasta Frittatta. I had chicken from the Rotisserie chicken we had on Saturday night. Simple to prepare. I brought it over to my Dad's for dinner. He really enjoyed this.

Thursday March 15 (Ides of March)
Eggs in Purgatory. This is such an easy dish. I had some sauce in the freezer and some green beans in the fridge. I poached the eggs in the sauce in the morning so it just needed a reheat tonight. Oh and of course we had to have Italian bread with this.

Let's take a short break and look at this cute little cat -

Friday March 16 -
Fridays during Lent... and I found a really good quick recipe for Fish and Chips. Well sort of Fish and Chips. Are you using Cookstr? You will find lot of amazing recipes there. Today I typed in Cod and found this recipe - Crispy Oven Fried Cod. The recipe is from The Gourmet Cookbook. That is the cool thing about the Cookstr site, you can try recipes from all types of cookbooks. Its like going to the library.
So back to dinner. The recipe said to put the fish and the pan in the oven. Well I put the fish on paper towels to drain the oil. After that I put it in the oven in a baking dish. It came out so light. And the chips part of the meal... Roasted Potatoes!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Beef Stroganoff

Lets start with the small portion of Roast Beef I had in the freezer, are you following a pattern lately - cleaning out the freezer. Next I found this recipe. I especially like the bit of history that is given at the start of the recipe. The end result was pure comfort. But any meal that involves egg noddles is comforting to me! And as you can see by the photo I substituted zucchini for the mushrooms.

What did we have for dinner a year ago...
Chicken Saltimbocca & Grilled Pork Loin

What did we have for dinner 2 years ago...
Pasta with Peppers and Sand

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Chicken Fried Rice

I found this recipe on Smells Like Home blog. I had chicken leftover from last night and I made the brown rice earlier today. Not a bad dish. I would definitely make this again. And I love the way it looks on my rice pattern dish!

What did we have for dinner a year ago...
Ricotta Cavatelli with Vodka Sauce

Saturday, March 10, 2012

World's Best Stuffing

The last dish of the stuffing Chris made that was in the freezer! Picked up a rotisserie chicken to make this a super easy Saturday night dinner.

What did we have for dinner a year ago...
Escarole and Bean Soup

What did we have for dinner 2 years ago...
Chicken Cutlets

Friday, March 9, 2012

Roasted Butternut Squash Ravioli

This ravioli was store bought. There was a recipe on the package for Brown Butter Sage Sauce. Oh my this was good. Now this is a Lenten meal we can really enjoy.

What did we have for dinner a year ago...
Ravioli with Sauteed Zucchini

What did we have for dinner 2 years ago...
The Best Calzone Recipe Revisited

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Keilbasa, Peppers and Onions

Thankfully Chris made dinner tonight. Delicious!

What did we have for dinner a year ago...
Stuffed Focaccia Bread with Sausage and Onions

What did we have for dinner 2 years ago...
Barley Soup

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Ham and Rice Casserole

What no photo! Well dinner was so good and I was so hungry when I got home...

Tonight's recipe was from Every Night Italian. And I want to thank Cookbook Sundays for reconnecting me with my cookbooks. I have made this recipe so many times but tonight it seemed to taste especially good. Not sure why but it just did.

And on a completely different note... I finished a baby blanket for my soon to be born great nephew! I have been crocheting like a nut attempting to get this finished for the baby shower.

What did we have for dinner a year ago...
Chicken Breast Fillet Rolled with Pancetta, Rosemary & Sage

What did we have for dinner 2 years ago...
Escarole and Bean Pizza and Steak and Onion Pizza

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Italian Lentil & Chestnut Stew and Grilled Cheese & Meatloaf Sandwiches

I love this recipe for Lentil Soup. The chestnuts are an excellent addition. Chris took the photo and it tasted as good as the photo looks!

Now on to the Grilled Cheese and Meatloaf portion of the meal. We had had some leftover meatloaf (yum!) so we made Grilled Meatloaf and Cheese Sandwiches on the rye bread I made on Sunday. Double Yum!

Monday, March 5, 2012


The title of this should be Amazing Meatloaf. I have no idea of amounts of the ingredients. I literally but a little ketchup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, panko bread crumbs, sauteed onion and carrots, salt, pepper, Parmesan cheese and cheddar cheese. It was amazing!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

A little bit of baking...

In all fairness I must state that I started these breads on Friday and Saturday. But this is what I had to work with at this morning -

 And this is what I ended up with -

 Let me introduce you to the line up -
The Rye Bread is from the Jim Lahey book, My Bread: The Revolutionary No Knead Bread Method.

The Pain a l"Ancienne is from Food 52.

The Hot Cross Bun is a recipe I got from my sister who got it from.... my Mom! This dough is wonderful to work with it and just smells so good. And the finished product... well my sister and I make them every year so that has to say something.

And this is my entry for BYOB Bake Your Own Bread!
BYOB Badge 
 Okay where's the butter?

Oh yes and I almost forgot about dinner. Last night I made extra Aborio rice to go with our dinner. I am making a casserole that you will see later this week. After preparing the casserole this morning (I do most my by cooking on Sundays for the upcoming week) I still had a bit of rice. So I made Rice Balls. I remember Julie, I work with her, saying she baked her rice balls instead of frying them. I gave it a try. I had some of the amazing sauce from the Osso Bucco that I did not want to waste so I combined it with the Rice Balls and dinner was served, along with a big salad.