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Sunday, November 27, 2011

Cheddar Rosemary Beer Bread

This is my first post in a loooong time! I made this amazingly easy bread last night to eat with dinner. This would be great with chili

Cheddar Rosemary Beer Bread

3 C all purpose flour
1/4 C sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
1T baking powder
2 T dried rosemary
1 C shredded cheddar (plus a little more for the top)
red pepper flakes to taste (optional)
12 oz beer

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
mix everything in a bowl, put it in a loaf pan (the dough is pretty sticky), and sprinkle a little more cheddar and rosemary on the top, drizzle with a little olive oil. Bake at 375 for about 45 min. Eat it warm. Thank me later. PS you can easily vary this...cheddar jalepeno, parmesan sun dried tomato...etc

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Turkey Meatloaf Two Ways

So my mom had a great idea, make meatloaf like I make my favorite meatballs. I pretty much followed the turkey meatball recipe that I make. Two ways was an experiment to see which I like better. One has a layer of marinara sauce on top and the other has bacon layered on top. I did use center cut bacon which is a little lower in fat. The second way is in tribute to my polish grandmother who really made the best meatloaf ever and she wrapped it lovingly in bacon. I do not like burnt outside of meatloaf and the bacon adds flavor and moistness. Not sure which one I like better...maybe the bacon one.

Turkey Meatloaf Two Ways

1/2 C milk
1/2 C whole wheat seasoned bread crumbs
3/4 C oatmeal
3 cloves garlic
3/4 C fresh parmesan
1 large egg, beaten
a few dashes worchestershire sauce
24 oz ground turkey
generous handful fresh parsley, chopped fine
marinara sauce
4 slices of center cut bacon

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Mix all ingredients together and separate into 2 loaf pans. Pour marinara sauce over one and cover the other one with bacon (overlap if necessary). Put in oven and cook one hour. Let sit for 5 minutes and slice...mmmmmmmmmmmm wow!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Creamy Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

ok, to some of you this sounds gross. THe cauliflower puree has the consistency of a thick alfredo sauce. The original recipe was by Mark Bittman at runners world. Here is the link to that recipe:,7124,s6-242-303-504-13847-0,00.html?cm_mmc=Facebook-_-RunnersWorld-_-Content-Recipes-_-BittmansCauliflowerMac
I made some changes because I thought his proportions were off and there were just some things I wanted to change. This was really great and creamy and did NOT taste healthy at all. This would be a great recipe for those of you with kids. You really didnt notice the cauliflower (if you do it right), sneaky way to get your veggies in. Its a great way to satisfy a craving for mac and cheese if you are trying to be good ( :

Creamy Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

1 C chicken stock
2 bay leaves
16 oz bag of frozen cauliflower florets
8 oz whole wheat pasta (I used fusilli)
1 C low fat cheddar or colby jack, shredded
1 Tbsp olive oil
dash of fresh grated nutmeg
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 heaping Tbsp of low fat sour cream
salt and pepper to taste
hot pepper flakes (optional)
1/4 C low fat cheddar or colby jack, shredded

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cook pasta according to directions. While pasta is cooking, warm chicken stock and bay leaves until heated. Cook cauliflower in boiling water about 25 minutes, until very very soft. Once pasta is done, drain and return to pot (drizzle with a tiny bit of olive oil to prevent sticking) Drain and blot with paper towels to get additional moisture out of cauliflower. Return cauliflower to pot (if using immersion blender) (or food processor). Discard bay leaves from stock. Add stock, oil, mustard, nutmeg, salt and pepper to cauliflower and either process or blend with immersion blender (the better choice). Mix in 1 C cheese until melted. Pour over pasta and stir. Pour into baking dish. Sprinkle additional 1/4 cheese over top, cover and bake 20 minutes or until hot and bubbly ( :

Chicken and Lettuce wraps

These are similar to the Chicken and Lettuce wraps from PF Changs. I love them! Really pretty healthy recipe. This recipe makes a lot of chicken, so I served it over brown rice the next day for dinner and the following for lunch. It looks like a lot of ingredients, but if you prep, you just throw everything together and stir ( : I served this meal with steamed edamame tossed in a little lime juice and sea salt. There are lots of veggies in this meal and it's fun to eat with your hands.

1 Tbsp sesame oil
1 shallot, chopped fine
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
5 oz pkg shitake mushrooms, chopped fine
7 leaves savoy cabbage, shredded, or chopped into thin strips
2 T hoisin sauce
2 T lite soy sauce
juice of a lime
1/4 C white wine
1/4 C fresh cilantro, chopped fine
1 C shredded carrots
1 (8oz) can water chestnuts, drained and chopped
1/8 tsp cardamom
few dashes cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
breast meat of cooked rotisserie chicken, shredded (approx 4 C)
1/2 C lightly salted roasted peanuts, chopped
2-3 Tbsp bottled peanut sate sauce (found in thai aisle)
ice berg lettuce leaves for serving

Heat sesame oil over medium heat. Saute shallots 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and saute 1 minute. Add mushrooms, carrots, cabbage,and wine and saute until tender and cabbage is wilted down. Stir in hoisin, soy sauce, spices, peanut sauce and saute 2-3 minutes. Add chopped cilantro, and water chestnuts, saute 1 minute. Add chicken, saute 1-2 minutes. Squeeze lime juice over and stir. Mix in peanuts. Peel lettuce leaves off head of iceberg lettuce. Spoon chicken mixture into lettuce wraps, wrap and eat! Serve with edamame.

Buffalo Style Turkey Meatballs with Blue Cheese

OK, I am on a little bit of a meatball kick. I made these for superbowl sunday and they were a hit, not one left. I made my own low fat blue cheese dip to dip them in. These are actually pretty healthy, made with turkey and I use oatmeal and whole wheat breadcrumbs as binders (you wont even notice the oats). These meatballs are very moist (especially for turkey meatballs).

***I have since made this several other times and this is an edited version of the recipe***

Buffalo Style Meatballs

1/4 c low fat milk (sometimes I used closer to a 1/3 C)
1/2 C. whole wheat seasoned breadcrumbs
1/2 C. oatmeal (not instant), processed in food processor until reduced to crumbs
1 large egg, beaten lightly
16 oz ground turkey
2 cloves garlic, minced (more if you like it very garlicky)
1/2 C fresh parsley, choppped
1/2 C crumbled blue cheese
1 T. unsalted butter
bottle of your favorite wing sauce, minus 2 Tbsp that go in the meatball mixture
1/4 C crumbled blue cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Pour milk in a large, deep bowl. Add oats and breadcrumbs and let sit a few minutes until milk is absorbed. Add egg and stir well. Add ground turkey, garlic, salt, pepper, parsley, and 2 Tbsp wing sauce, and 1/2 C blue cheese and mix well until combined. Shape into small cocktail sized meatballs, place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper or non stick foil.  Bake 10-12 minutes, until cooked inside. At this step you can let them cool and refrigerate or freeze them.  They freeze very well.

If you are using them right away, melt butter over med and add remaining wing sauce until heated through. Toss meatballs with wing sauce/butter mixture. sprinkle 1/4 c crumbled blue cheese over top. Serve with toothpicks and low fat blue cheese dip (recipe follows).  I also often serve these over brown rice or quinoa for dinner.  If you are reheating them, melt the butter and mix with wing sauce, toss with meatballs and 1/4 C crumbled blue cheese in covered casserole dish and bake at 350 until sauce is bubbling and meatballs are hot....prob about 15-20 minutes.

Low Fat Blue Cheese Dip

16 oz low fat sour cream
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp. dijon mustard
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste (I like lots of pepper)
2tsp-1 T apple cider vinegar (depending on the consistency you want)
8 oz crumbled blue cheese

mix all ingredients together. Serve with meatballs.

Roasted Chicken Caprese

This recipe won the 46th National Chicken Cooking Contest (I believe $100,000 prize) on the food network...this recipe is NOT mine, but I wish it was :) just a couple of minor changes were made. It is usually eaten so fast that I never have time to snap time I will.

Roasted Chicken Caprese

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Lemon Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
6 medium Roma tomatoes
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 C olive oil
8oz fresh mozzerella cheese, cut into 1/4 inch cubes
1/4 C fresh basil, cut into chiffonade
1/2 tsp pepper

Lemon Vinaigrette
2T fresh squeezed lemon juice
zest of 1 lemon
2 cloves of garlic, minced
3/4 tsp kosher or sea salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 C olive oil

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place chicken in a 1 gallon zip lock bag. Add lemon vinaigrette, seal mix around and marinate for 20 minutes in the refrigerator.

Cut each tomato into quarters lengthwise. Place in a medium bowl and toss gently with sugar, salt, and olive oil. Spoon tomato mixture into a 9x13 baking pan lined with nonstick foil. Roast for 30 minutes. Spoon tomatoes and all juices into small bowl. Add cheese, basil and pepper and toss gently. Let sit at room temp while chicken cooks.

Increase temperature to 400 degrees. Remove chicken from zip lock and discard marinade. Place chicken in same pan used to roast tomatoes and bake for 25 minutes, or until no longer pink inside.

To serve place one chicken breast half on each plate, spoon 1/4 of tomato mixture over top. I usually serve this over pasta or brown rice.

Herb Butter and Goat Cheese Linguini with Fresh Tomatoes

This is a Rachel Ray recipe, which of course I made a few changes to. It was really delicious, especiallyin the summer when tomatoes and basil are at their best in NJ!

Herb Butter and Goat Cheese Linguini with Fresh Tomatoes

1 lb linguine (I used whole wheat)

8 oz goat cheese, crumbled

3 T unsalted butter and 2 T garlic herb butter from wegmans ..or...(5 T butter and 2 cloves crushed garlic)

1 clove garlic, crushed

1/2 C dry vermouth or dry white wine

1/2 C flat leaf parsley, chopped fine

3/4 C fresh basil, cut into chiffonade, save some for garnish

1 and 1/2 pints chopped heirloom tomatoes or cherry tomatoes

red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper to taste

Cook pasta as directed, drain, reserve a ladle of cooking water. While pasta is cooking, put goat cheese in a bowl. In medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add garlic and saute 1-2 minutes. Stir in dry vermouth or white wine and stir until slightly reduced (about 2 minutes). Add herbs, stir in reserved cooking water. Add pasta to goat cheese, and pour herb sauce on top. Season with salt and pepper, and red pepper flakes (if wanted), and toss until combined and goat cheese is melted. Add tomatoes and toss another minute. Garnish with fresh basil.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

cilantro cashew pesto

I made this to go over the mexican meatballs. I thinned it with a little fat free half and half before mixing it with the pasta.

Cilantro Cashew Pesto

3 heaping cups of fresh cilantro
2 garlic cloves
3/4 C cashews
1/4 c fresh parmesan
1 jalepeno
juice of half a lime
1/4-1/2 c extra virgin olive oil (I just drizzle it in until it is the consistency I want)

Put cilantro, garlic, cashews, cheese, jalepeno in food processor and blend until it looks like crumbs. Add lime juice. With machine on, slowly drizzle olive oil in until it is the consistency you like. I like thicker pesto.

Mexican Turkey Meatballs

Ok, Im a little obsessed with meatballs here is a kind of different version...I was bored in a staff meeting so that is when I came up with the recipe. They are so tasty. I served them with Cilantro Cashew Pesto, but they would be great served as an appetizer with creamy salsa or sour cream.

Mexican Turkey Meatballs

1 lb. ground turkey 93% lean
1/3 C milk
1/2 C bread crumbs
1/2 C oatmeal
1 egg, beaten
salt and pepper
1 jalepeno, chopped fine
few dashes worchestershire sauce
1/2 C colby jack cheese, shredded
handful fresh cilantro, chopped fine

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

put milk in large bowl, add breadcrumbs and oatmeal and mix well. Add all ingredients besides turkey and cilantro and mix well with your hands. Add turkey and cilantro and mix thoroughly. Shape into cocktail sized meatballs. Line baking trays with parchment paper. Place meatballs on baking trays. Bake 17-20 minutes until no longer pink inside. mmmmmm

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Turkey Meatballs in the Crockpot

I have to say honestly these meatballs are the best I have had. Ive really been on the search for great meatballs...the taste and texture of these are so great. Also, if you do not have the time to cook them in the crockpot, you can bake them and put them in sauce and simmer.*****I just edited this recipe to alter the amount of oatmeal/breadcrumbs...the mixture was a little wet the first time, so I added more breadcrumbs, the next time I added more oatmeal....the oatmeal was an experiment and I liked it so much that I changed the recipe. This is a sneaky way to get fiber, and you can omit the breadcrumbs all together and use all oatmeal to make this gluten free ( :

Turkey Meatballs in the Crockpot

1/2 c milk (I used 1%)
1/2 C Italian bread crumbs
1/2 C oatmeal
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 C fresh grated parmesan
1 egg
1/2 C fresh parsley, chopped fine
few dashes worchestershire sauce
20 oz ground turkey (I used Jennie O 93% lean)
salt and pepper

26 oz jar of your favorite marinara sauce
1 (28oz) can crushed tomatoes
1/2 C white wine (I used Chardonnay....dont use red...white makes it very bright in flavor)
2 tsp sugar
2 cloves of garlic, minced

line crockpot with slow cooker liner.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. soak bread crumbs and oats in milk in a large bowl. Add all other ingredients and mix well. Wet hands and form into balls ( I did it about swedish meatball size). Place on nonstick foil on baking sheets and bake at 350 degrees for 15 min. (I ended up raising it to 375 for the last 5 minutes).

While meatballs are cooking, add marinara sauce, crushed tomatoes, white wine, sugar and garlic to crockpot and stir. Once meatballs are done, add to sauce mixture, give a slight stir and cook 3 hours on high. mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Rum Balls

I made these around Christmas...soo easy and tasty... they are pretty strong. After a week they mellow in flavor a bit. Store these in the fridge. They will keep for weeks....if they last that long!

Rum Balls

3 1/4 C crushed Nilla wafers
3/4 C confectioners sugar (additional for dusting)
1/4 C unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 C chopped walnuts
3 Tbsp light corn syrup
1/2 C rum (I used black seal rum...I think spiced rum would be good too)

stir together nilla wafers, confectioners sugar, cocoa, and nuts. Blend in corn syrup and rum. Shape into 1 inch balls and roll in additional confectioners sugar.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Orange Vinaigrette

so the original recipe was from Giada De aunt made it at Christmas....such a great light and tasty...AND easy! I made a few adjustments. I served this over baby arugula with crumbled blue cheese and honey roasted almonds.

Orange Vinaigrette

zest and juice of two oranges
2 Tbsp. white balsamic vinegar (can sub regular Balsamic Vinegar)
1 squirt balsamic glaze
2 Tbsp honey
1 small shallot, chopped
3/4 tsp sea salt
3/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
3/4 C extra virgin olive oil

add all ingredients to a blender (I used the magic bullet) and emulsify...easy as that!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Baked Clam Dip

So I made this for Christmas, and it was such a hit! I used a recipe given to me by someone and improvised a little bit. I forgot to get a picture, so I stole one from the internet. This is pretty much what it looks like. Enjoy! Oh and its pretty garlicky, so don't kiss anyone the day after ;)

Baked Clam Dip

2 (6.5oz) cans minced or chopped clams, with juice
1 and 1/2 C breadcrumbs
1 stick of butter (you read that right)
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 sweet onion, minced
juice and zest of one lemon
2 tsp italian seasoning (or you can use Italian Bread Crumbs)
tsp of sea salt

Melt butter and saute onion til soft, add garlic the last two minutes of cooking. Mix all other indredients together into saute mixture. Put into pyrex pie plate and bake at 350 for 30 min. You can broil for a minute or so at the end to really brown the top. Serve with crackers or toasted bread