A Late Night Snack

With TaMara’s move it seems like forever since we’ve had a recipe post. So I’ve broken out the emergency tiara, frilly apron, and matching oven mitts and we’re under way!

We’re keeping it light tonight because of the summer heat. First up is a broccoli quiche.

Quiche

And here’s the recipe:

 

1 9 inch pie crust

5 eggs

1 ½ cups 1 % milk

2 cups of shredded cheese (officially the recipe calls for Swiss, but I like to use the six cheese Mexican blend)

¾ tsp salt

¼ tsp cayenne red pepper

¼ tsp sugar

Broccoli cut into tiny florets

1/3 cup minced scallions

(This is a vegetarian quiche, but if you want to add ham or bacon or crab or shrimp just toss it on in)

Heat oven to 425 degrees, Prepare a nine inch pie crust. Grease a deep pie pan/quiche pan, place the pie crust in it, and crimp the crust.

Sprinkle cheese and broccoli and onion in pastry lined pan. First cover the bottom of the crust with a layer of cheese. Then cover that with the minced scallions. Then cover those with another layer of the shredded cheese. Cover this with the broccoli florets and then a final layer of the shredded cheese. If adding a meat or seafood product, put 1/2 of it with the scallions and 1/2 with the broccoli.

In a separate bowl beat the remaining ingredients together and pour over the quiche filling in the pie pan.

Bake for 15 minutes at 425 degrees. Reduce oven temp to 300 degrees. Bake for 30 min longer or until knife inserted 1 inch from edge comes out clean. Let stand 10 min before cutting.

Next up a cool, refreshing, and simple mixed melon and pineapple salad.

Fruit-Salad

This really doesn’t require much of a recipe. I balled out 1/4 of a watermelon and 1 cantaloupe. I then chunked up one fresh pineapple and mixed it all together. Then into the fridge to chill before serving. I wasn’t going for anything fancy here, but use whatever fruit combinations you like the most.

And for the dessert, something light(er) and summery: Lemon layer cake with lemon buttercream frosting.

Curd_Crumb_Coat Cake_Side Cake_Top

The first picture is of the cake crumb coated with lemon curd. An important note: I did not candy the lemon wedges; they are purely for decoration unless you’re channeling Stonewall Jackson and like sucking on lemon wedges. In which case, knock yourself out, enjoy your forced march up the Shenandoah Valley, and DUCK!!!!

This isn’t my recipe, nor one that I’ve been using for years and don’t remember where I got it. So I’m just going to link to where I got it from rather than post it. It is very, very easy to make. I did not, however, make the cream cheese lemon frosting that is at the link. Instead I just made a basic buttercream and added the zest and juice of one lemon and 1 teaspoon of lemon extract to make a lemon buttercream.

Enjoy and open thread!



Friday Recipe Exchange: Cookout Favorites

Jicama Slaw Final

It sounds like many will have rain for the holiday weekend. Luckily all the recipes I pulled together work well for an indoor picnic or backyard cookout.

The first compilation I arranged was for a variety of not-your-typical Pasta Salads, click here for four very tasty recipes.

Mmm...bowties!

The second group of recipes (found here) I put together from the archives was for garden fresh salads. Recipes include the Jicama Slaw (pictured at top of post) that I am making for a cookout this weekend. The smallest jicama I could find was 2.5 lbs. Anyone have ideas what I can do with the 1.5 lbs I’ll have left over?

I’m also making Watermelon Granita, recipe here, but you can use the recipe to make any flavor you desire.

My new garden has quite a few ready to harvest rhubarb plants. I’ve had this recipe tucked away for just such an occasion. Click here for Rosemary-Lemon-Rhubarb Spritzers. 

Buttermilk Pie 1

Buttermilk Pie, above, is such a show stopper and foolproof to make. Click here for the recipe.

What’s on your Fourth of July menu? What food is an absolute must for your table on this holiday?

Tonight’s featured recipe takes potato salad in a different direction and I hope it inspires you to share your favorite  potato salad recipe in the comments.

Italian Potato Salad

  • 2 lbs of small red potatoes, scrubbed and sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 1 tbsp of salt
  • 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp crushed garlic
  • 1 tsp fresh snipped rosemary
  • 2 tbsp fresh snipped basil
  • 1/2  tsp crushed dried oregano (or  2 tsp fresh)
  • 2 tsp stone ground mustard*
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 24 to 28 oz fire roasted red peppers, drained and sliced
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 oz shaved Parmesan

Large saucepan, baking sheet, large serving bowl

In saucepan, cover potatoes with water, add salt and bring to a bowl.  Reduce heat to low boil and simmer until potatoes are just fork-tender.  You don’t want them to be soft, as for mashing, you want them to still hold their shape.

Mix together vinegar, garlic and spices.  Drain potatoes and spread over a baking sheet in one layer,  pour 1/2 of vinegar mixture over them and let cool completely.

Add mustard and oil to remaining vinegar mixture.  Add sliced peppers to potatoes, stir and then transfer to serving bowl.  Toss with remaining vinegar mixture, salt and pepper to taste and Parmesan.

*I have an aversion to Dijon mustard, but if it a favorite of yours, you can easily use it in this recipe.

That’s it for me. There will not be a recipe exchange next week. Have a safe and happy Fourth of July – TaMara

Declaration of Independence








Friday Recipe Exchange: Grilling Up a Storm

Bixby is 2 snap

This week has been the lull between storms, so I had time to do some actual cooking and recipe blogging. It’s hot as Hades here, so cooking outside seems like the only good option (the other being opting for ice cream 3 times a day). From the recipe blog:

Bixby turned two on Thursday and I felt that justified a Bixby Diaries post. So for the pet lovers, you’ll find lots of new and old photos, plus video of the Beast here. For the rest of you, it’s a grilling themed recipe exchange.

First up, Grilled Chicken and Papaya, recipe here. I noticed in the stores that mangoes were plentiful, and I can’t imagine why you couldn’t substitute – I would add a dash of lime to it all with mangoes.

Speaking of mangoes and papayas, how about Grilled Fish with Mango and Papaya Salsa, recipe here.

A couple of nice sides to round things out. But don’t think you need a recipe, fresh veggies from the garden, tossed in olive oil and grilled in a grilling basket can’t be beat.

Grilled Vegetable Salad, click here, can be a meal in itself or a hearty side.

Greek Grilled Potatoes, recipe here, are a nice, tangy change from regular potato packets.

What’s on the menu this weekend? Anything special planned for Father’s Day? What’s your favorite food to take out of the kitchen and make on the grill?

Flank Pinwheel Prep Final

Tonight, I combined two favorite recipes. I love the pinwheels because they are so showy (and tasty). I thought it would be a great recipe for Father’s Day weekend. Then I ran across my spicy sauce and thought, yum, that would work. If you don’t want spicy, here is the original Pinwheel Recipe. And if you don’t want pinwheels, here is the original Spicy Grilled Flank Steak recipe. I got you covered.

Grilled Spicy Flank Steak Pinwheels

Sauce:

ING-chili-garlic-sauce-2_sql

  • 1 tbsp chili garlic paste
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp crushed garlic
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • ½ cup orange juice

Pinwheels:

  • 1 lb flank steak
  • 8 oz sliced provolone cheese
  • 1 bunch washed and dried spinach leaves
  • 8 wooden skewers
  • olive oil

ziplock bag,

You can ask the butcher to butterfly your flank steak, which  is what I did. But it’s fairly easy to butterfly. You want the grain running up and down in front of you and then you’ll slice it in half, NOT slicing all the way through. When you’re done you’ll lay it open, flat, basically making a larger, thinner steak.

Image from Serious Eats

Once you have it laid out flat in front of you with the grain running left to right, you’ll want to tenderize it, pounding it thin.

Keeping it flat, place into a ziplock bag,  add marinade and coat completely on both sides. Marinate flat in refrigerator 1 hour. Remove from marinade and assemble.

Layer the spinach over the meat. You want it to be several leaves thick, because it will reduce as it cooks.

Next layer the provolone cheese slices, two to three slices thick, over the meat.

Now it’s time to roll.  Roll tightly in the direction of the grain. Add a skewer every 2 inches and then slice between the skewers, so you have 2-inch thick pinwheels.

Heat grill and oil grates well – alternately you can cook in a cast iron skillet (heat 1/2 to 1 tbsp of oil in it) on the grill. If using a gas grill – heat one side to high for searing, turn the other side to about medium to finish cooking. For coals – place coals toward center of the grill, leaving the edges cool for finishing cooking.

Add pinwheels to the grill, flat side down. After a minute, using the skewer (you may also need a metal spatula to get all the cheesy goodness) flip over, sear additional minute.  The usual method of waiting until the meat moves easily to flip will not work with this because the cheese is sticky. So just do one minute each side, it will be fine.

After the second side is done, move steaks off of high heat to the cooler grates  and let the steak finish for about 10 to 15 minutes for medium rare. These are thin and don’t need a lot of cooking time and you don’t want the cheese to burn.

Remove to a plate, cover with foil and let rest 10 minutes, so the cheese isn’t molten lava.

My steak made 4 large pinwheels.

That’s it for this week. I don’t know how many recipe exchanges I’ll have in me while I’m packing, but stay tuned. Have a great weekend! – TaMara










Friday Recipe Exchange: Memorial Weekend Grilling

Bourbon Chicken Appetizers

A little early tonight because it looked like we could use a new thread. Apologies for any errors. I’ve spent most of the afternoon with agents, mortgage brokers and inspectors. There were no brain cells left for proof-reading. It has been a whirlwind of activity since the moment the house went under contract. I had forgotten how fast it all moves. So from the recipe blog:

I was going to post the recipes I’d picked out for guests next week, but then realized it was Memorial Day weekend and decided to switch it up for that occasion. There won’t be a recipe exchange next week, we’ll catch up after that.

Starting things out, Stuffed Jalapeno-Cheddar Burgers and Sweet Potato Fries, complete menu, recipes and shopping list can be found here.

Grilled Potato Packets come in two flavors here.

Click here for Citrus Glazed Baby Back Ribs.

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Searching for rib photos this week, I came across several yummy recipes from JeffreyW (along with obligatory mouth-watering photo series).

Spare ribs (pictured above) are here.

Braised Baby Back Ribs are here.

Click here for Country Ribs

Each one has a different rub or sauce, something for everyone.

What’s on the menu for your holiday weekend? As with every year, my father and brother will be helping to put up the impressive display of flags around town (they are flags presented at a veteran’s funeral and donated by the families for display). What summer flavor are you looking forward to most? What are some of your favorite holiday weekend recipes?

Finally, tonight’s featured recipe:

Bourbon Chicken appetizers1

I have a bottle of very fine and expensive whisky in my house. I’ve been having fun experimenting with it in many recipes, finding it really brings out the flavors in beef and adds a complex appeal to chicken and desserts.

With this recipe, it’s all about the bourbon and bacon.

Grilled Bourbon Chicken Appetizers

12  servings

  • 1- 1/2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  •  1/4 cup chopped Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  •  1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • Bourbon whisky (how much you use and what you do with the leftover is between you and your bottle)
  • 8 oz pineapple chunks
  • 12 strips of sliced bacon (should be a pound)
  • 12 short wooden skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes before assembling and grilling*

Cut chicken breasts into 1-inch x 2-inch cubes, you should have 36 pieces (you can soak in bourbon if you like)

Mix together Chipotle peppers, brown sugar, cayenne pepper and add enough whisky and pineapple juice to make a thick sauce. Set aside about 2-4 tbsp for mopping during cooking. For the remainder, cover chicken cubes on all sides with the sauce and let marinate for at least 1 hour.

To assemble: Start with a pineapple chunk, add one end of full bacon strip, add chicken cube, then wrap bacon around the top of the cube and skewer, add another cube of chicken, wrap bacon around the bottom of that piece of chicken, then skewer, add a third and repeat with the bacon strip, you’re creating a ribbon with the bacon. Finish with a pineapple chunk.

Grill over medium high heat (if using coals, start over hot coals, then move away from direct heat for the remainder of cooking time), turning frequently. Add more sauce as desired. Cook until chicken is 160-165 degrees. Shouldn’t take more than 10-15 minutes, don’t overcook or you’ll have dry, rubbery appetizers. Serve hot.

*please don’t forget this step or all you’ll have for appetizers is flaming skewers.

That’s it for this week. I hope you have a safe and fun holiday weekend. But take a moment and remember those who have served – TaMara








Friday Recipe Exchange: Spicy, Sweet and Hot

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Just got back from an early evening walk with the pup. It’s been a long week and I am ever so grateful it is Friday night. If I could avoid drama for the next couple of days, that would be awesome. Until then, there’s comfort food.

From the recipe blog:

I was looking around for one of my recipes, which I’m using for tonight’s featured recipe, and in the process stumbled upon JeffreyW’s cache of wings – in all kinds of varieties (you can see most of them here). That inspired tonight’s theme – hot wings!

Before I get to that, a couple of things cooking in my kitchen this week.

Cold weather refused to go away, so I made a big batch of Beef and Barley Soup, recipe here.

This week’s dinner menu was Sweet Ginger Beef and Snow Peas, click here for menu and recipes.

Now for the wings:

JeffreyW makes mouths water with his Sesame Wings, picture above and recipe here.

His secret for crispy Oven Baked Hot Wings, pictured below, can be found here.

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And finally, Baked Honey Glazed Wings, if you’re not into a lot of heat. Click here.

What’s cookin’ in your kitchen (or on your patio) this weekend? I’m in need of an ultimate (and easy) waffle recipe for upcoming company. Anyone have one they want to share?

Buffalo Leg Quarters

Wings are great as snacks for a big crowd, but when you want a dinner entree, I find this recipe works great.

I love Buffalo Wings. I don’t make them much because it seems a lot of work. I can almost always find a special on leg quarters and look over there next to them…bottles of my favorite buffalo sauce. Together they make a yummy dinner.

Buffalo Chicken

  • 4 lbs of leg quarters (approximately 4 pieces)
  • flour
  • salt & pepper
  • cayenne pepper (opt)
  • oil
  • favorite Buffalo sauce (mine is from a local shop that sells bottles at my local grocery store)

skillet, baking sheet

Mix together flour and spices. I like mine spicy so I added cayenne to the flour mixture. Dredge chicken in flour mixture until well coated.

Over medium heat, heat a tbsp of oil for each quarter (I had to fry mine in two batches, so I added 2 tbsp for each batch). It doesn’t take much to crisp up the skin. Fry until golden brown, turn and brown on the other side. It can take from 5 to 7 minutes per side.

Remove to baking sheet and bake uncovered at 350 degree until the thigh temp is 175 degrees (about 30 to 40 minutes). Every 10 minutes, remove and baste with Buffalo sauce, about three times. Before removing the fully cooked chicken from the oven, give a generous coating of Buffalo sauce and let heat through. Remove and let rest for 5 minutes. Serve with bleu cheese or ranch dressing, and celery sticks.

That’s it for this weekend. Next week I’ll share the menu for my very special company. Have a great weekend – TaMara








Friday Recipe Exchange: Filled Shortbread Cookies

Filled shortbread cookies

Just got back from wandering around a small town, thinking that I may shake things up and not just move, but move to another town…maybe state. Anything to end this stalemate. Along the way, I picked up two huge chuck roasts that were on sale. I’ll use a bit to make a nice beef and barley soup tomorrow, and I have another piece in the pressure cooker with potatoes and carrots for a quick dinner. The rest will go in the freezer. With all that, I still had time for  tonight’s recipe exchange.

From the recipe blog:

That blemish on that strawberry is going to haunt me. But the cookies were delicious. A bit of cooking going on this week. I’m also putting together my menu for my June visitors, which will probably be the topic for the next several recipe exchanges.

Tonight’s feature recipe was going to be used during that visit, but I won’t lie to you, it’s labor intensive and I decided there would be too much going on to try and attempt them. This is why I test-drive recipes. I refuse to be a tied to the kitchen when I could be having fun with my guests.

Before we get to that recipe, here is what else was cookin’ in my kitchen this week:

Rotelle No-Boil Pasta Bake – quick, easy and I love the little wheels. Click here for the recipe.

Leftover raspberries went into a nice salad: Pear-Raspberry Salad, recipe here.

Spring Roll step 1

And this week’s dinner menu was Chicken Satay and Thai Spring Rolls. Menu, recipe and shopping list are here and photo instructions for the spring rolls are here.

No Bixby this week (although his resistance video got picked up by I Love Great Danes and he’s quite popular. Insists on wearing shades when we walk now – no autographs please). But here is a little kitteh to end your week. She rules the big guy.

What’s on your plate this weekend? Have any warm weather recipes to share? Grilling, fresh greens, fun sweet treats?

Tonight’s featured recipe:

Raspberry and Strawberry Filled Shortbread Cookies

I was going to make my own filling, but when I realized how labor intensive rolling out shortbread dough was going to be, I went will all-fruit style jams instead.

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • dash of salt
  • 2-1/2 cup unbleached flour
  • fruit filling – I went with strawberry (hearts) and raspberry (circles)
  • parchment paper (not optional)

cookie cutters (sharper the better), rolling pin, baking sheets

Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add salt and then flour, about a third at a time, mixing gently until all flour is incorporated.  Divide dough in half. Place one half on parchment sheet, cover with another sheet of parchment and roll to about 1/8 inch thick. Place on a baking sheet. Repeat with the second section of dough. Place baking sheet in the refrigerator and cool for an hour.

Remove one of the dough parchment packets (keep the other refrigerated until ready to use). Peel off the top piece of parchment and cut out the large shapes, then for half the shapes, use a smaller cookie cutter to cut out the center. Move the center pieces from the center to the parchment, so they don’t bake back together. I used the center pieces to make sandwich cookies. Place the parchment on a baking sheet and bake at 300 degrees (f) for about 15 to 20 minutes – remove them when they are light golden. Because they are thinner than regular shortbread, keep a good eye on them, they cook up quickly.

Repeat with the second parchment packet.

Remove cookies and let cool thoroughly before assembling. To assemble, place a spoonful of fruit filling in the center of the whole cookie and GENTLY press the cut out cookie on the top, allowing the fruit filling to spread to the edges and fill the center. (Resist the urge to lick the edges to smooth them out) Serve the centers plain or make fruit filled sandwich cookies as desired.

Makes about two dozen, depending on the size of the cookie cutters.

That’s it for this week. Have a great weekend – TaMara








Friday Recipe Exchange: Spicy to Sweet

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JefferyW’s Carnitas

I’m posting early tonight because I’m heading out later and the scheduling feature is hit or miss for me. So think of this as a food/anything goes open thread.

No rhyme or reason for tonight’s recipes. A hodgepodge of culinary treats. Nothing pithy to say, so lots of photos instead.  From the blog:

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