Thursday, September 28, 2006

R,S,C #17 Recipes

Yummy! Here are the submissions from this week's game of Ready, Set, Cook! Stop by and give these fine bloggers a read, you won't be disappointed.

From Ian at
The Gallumphing Gourmand:

High-Class Spuds

4 large baking potatoes
2 C chanterelle mushrooms, cleaned & trimmed, and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1¼ C whipping cream
¾ C cognac
2 tbsp + 2 tbsp butter
150g boiled ham, julienned
2 cloves garlic, minced
fresh ground pepper
1 C grated cheddar cheese
2 green onions, chopped fine
Worchestershire sauce

Preheat oven to 400F.
Bake the potatoes for 45-50 minutes until mearly done.
While the potatoes are baking, dry sauté the chanterelle mushrooms in a
medium skillet over medium-high heat for a couple of minutes, then add 2
tbsp of the butter and sauté for another few minutes. Add cognac, bring to
a boil, and reduce liquid by half, about 3-4 minutes. Lower heat to medium,
add cream, and simmer 5 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and set aside.
When the potatoes are done, let them cool a little, then cut a 'cap' off the
top of each one, and scoop out the insides leaving about 1/3 inch of potato
all the way around.
Mash the potato with the garlic, 2 tbsp of the butter, a splash Worcestershirehire Sauce and some fresh ground pepper.
Arrange some of the julienned ham into the bottom of each potato skin.
Spoon the mashed potato evenly into each potato skin and pour some of the
mushroom-cognac reduction over each.
Sprinkle the remaining ham, some green onion and grated cheese on the top of
each one.
Bake at 425F for 15 minutes.

From Krista at
In the Kitchen with Krista:

Fettuccine Alfredo (with a twist!)

8 oz spinach fettuccini
2 tbs unsalted butter
2 tbs flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp white pepper
1 1/4 cup heavy cream
1 cup FRESHLY shredded Parmesan
1 cup FRESHLY shredded peccorino romano
2 boneless, skinless Chicken Breasts
8 oz cremini mushrooms, cleaned and quartered
4 oz boiled ham (julienned, cut to 1" strips)
1/2 cup raw walnuts, coarsely chopped

In small cup mix flour, salt and pepper.

Salt & pepper the chicken breasts, grill and set aside to rest.

Have cremini's, ham and walnuts prepared and set aside.

While preparing the sauce below, cook pasta according to the package
directions. When necessary, drain and set aside, leaving lid over to
keep it warm.

In a sauce pan, place the butter and melt over medium heat. Once
fully melted add the flour mixture. Whisk into the butter until very
smooth and cook 1 minute beyond smooth. Add heavy cream. Allow to
come to just about a boil and continue to cook until very thick.
Remove from heat and add the cheeses. Stir until very smooth, thick
and creamy.

In a large saute pan, add 2 tbs olive oil and put over medium high
heat. Once heated add the mushroom and cook for about 5 minutes (to
tender crisp). Add ham. Cook one minute. Add fettuccine and chicken.
Pour sauce over and saute until all ingredients are warmed thru.
During final stirring, add the chopped walnuts.

Pour all of it into a big pasta serving dish. And DIVE IN! :D

This SHOULD serve 4 comfortably....unless you're me and can eat the
whole bowlful yourself!!!

From K at
KFarmer & the Dell:

Ham & Mushroom Quiche


5 eggs
1 cup Swiss cheese
Portobello mushrooms
Roasted red pepper
Diced ham
9 inch deep dish pie crust

Chop and saute mushrooms in butter, add roasted red peppers; let cool.

Boil water for grits, add salt, grits and cook till done; add cream. Turn on very low heat; do not let cool completely.

Beat eggs and cream till light and fluffy. Add Swiss cheese, ham, mushrooms and red pepper and black pepper to egg mixture.

Place grits in bottom of pie crust.

Add egg mixture to pie and sprinkle more black pepper on top. Place in preheated oven at 375 for 30 to 40 minutes or until knife comes out clean.

Lastly, here is the recipe that the ingredients originally came from:

Fettuccine with Peas and Ham

5 T unsalted butter
1 c Parmesan cheese
6 ea green onions
1 lb fettuccine cooked
8 oz mushrooms sliced
1 1/4 c whipping cream
4 oz boiled ham chopped
1 x salt and pepper
1 ea 10 oz pk frozen tiny peas

Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium head. Add shallots and
saute until soft. Add mushrooms, increase heat to high and cook until
mushrooms are very lightly browned. Add cream and boil two minutes.
Stir in peas and cook about 30 seconds. Reduce heat to low; blend in
ham cheese and fettuccine and toss until heated, well combined and sauce
clings to pasta. Season to taste. Serve immediately.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Ready, Set, Cook! #17

OK, you know the drill and if you don't, go HERE for instructions and rules of play!

Today's ingredients are a tiny bit different. They come directly from a recipe I have in my files and when we are all done on Thursday I will post the recipe that the ingredients came from.

8 oz mushrooms (pick a type-the recipe doesn't specify)
1 1/4 c whipping cream (aka-heavy cream)
4 oz boiled ham

On your mark, get set, COOK!

Monday, September 25, 2006

Scottish Cuisine...?

This weekend brought the annual Celtic Classic to Bethlehem. The kids and I went for one of the opening ceremonies, the Piping of the Haggis and Haggis Eating Contest. I try to get there each year to watch these men and women eat that thing without losing it. I don't know why it's such a novelty but we love watching.

This year's winner was the same as last, Darren Lucey of Brooklyn, N.Y., beating the 22 other competitors out in one minute and twenty seconds. (I'm not sure I could get one down in 24 hours though I am of Scottish descent.) The contest was emceed by Neville Gardner, the owner of
Donegal Square here in Bethlehem, purveyor of all things Celtic. Prior to the actual downing of the Grand Grey Lump, Art Charlton of Easton recited the Robert Burns poem, ''Ode to A Haggis'':

Ode to a Haggis
Robert Burns

All hail your honest rounded face,
Great chieftain of the pudding race;
Above them all you take your place,
Beef, tripe, or lamb:
You're worthy of a grace
As long as my arm.

The groaning trencher there you fill,
Your sides are like a distant hill
Your pin would help to mend a mill,
In time of need,
While through your pores the dews distil,
Like amber bead.

His knife the rustic goodman wipes,
To cut you through with all his might,
Revealing your gushing entrails bright,
Like any ditch;
And then, what a glorious sight,
Warm, welcome, rich.

Then plate for plate they stretch and strive,
Devil take the hindmost, on they drive,
Till all the bloated stomachs by and by,
Are tight as drums.
The rustic goodman with a sigh,
His thanks he hums.

Let them that o'er his French ragout,
Or hotchpotch fit only for a sow,
Or fricassee that'll make you spew,
And with no wonder;
Look down with sneering scornful view,
On such a dinner.

Poor devil, see him eat his trash,
As feckless as a withered rush,
His spindly legs and good whip-lash,
His little feet
Through floods or over fields to dash,
O how unfit.

But, mark the rustic, haggis-fed;
The trembling earth resounds his tread,
Grasp in his ample hands a flail
He'll make it whistle,
Stout legs and arms that never fail,
Proud as the thistle.

You powers that make mankind your care,
And dish them out their bill of fare.
Old Scotland wants no stinking ware,
That slops in dishes;
But if you grant her grateful prayer,
Give her a haggis.

So, just what IS haggis? Roughly, heart, liver, lungs of a sheep, oats and spices all stuffed into a sheep's stomach and simmered for hours. Mmmmm...

This is Jeff Smith's recipe from his book "The Frugal Gourmet on our Immigrant Ancestors":

"Traditionally, a Haggis is made from the lung, liver, and heart of the sheep. These are mixed with oatmeal and a few spices and stuffed into the sheep's stomach. After being boiled, the Haggis is brought to the table with a great deal of ceremony. A piper ushers in the Haggis and all raise a glass of Scotch whiskey and "brrreath a prrayerr for the soul of Rrrobbie Burrrns!" It is then served with "neeps and nips," mashed turnips and nips of whiskey. I think you have to drink a lot of Scotch before you can truly enjoy this dish, but a party of Scots without a Haggis is simply not heard of.
I prepared this recipe for the Medinah Highlander Pipe and Drum Band of Chicago. They piped the Haggis into the dining room, the boiled sheep's stomach being carried on a silver tray by Craig, my assistant. The Pipe and Drum Major cut the Haggis in the sign of the Cross and the party began. These pipers ate everything in sight ... so I am willing to offer you *MY* version of Haggis.

1 pound beef heart, cut into 2-inch-wide strips.
1 pound beef liver.
1/2 pound lamb stew meat, cut in 1-inch cubes.
1 1/2 cups peeled and finely chopped yellow onion.
4 tablespoons Scots whisky.
2 cups oatmeal, toasted on a cookie sheet in a 375F oven for 10 minutes).
2 teaspoons salt.
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper.
1 teaspoon dried thyme, whole.
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary.
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg.
3 beef CAPS (Talk to a sausage shop about these).
1 cup distilled white vinegar.
1/2 tablespoon salt for soaking.
Place the beef heart in a 4-quart covered pot and just cover with cold water. Simmer, covered, for 1 hour and 10 minutes.
Add the beef liver and lamb stew meat, and cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove the contents of the pot and cool. Reserve 1 cup of the liquid. Grind everything coarsely.

In a large bowl mix all of the ingredients, except for the beef caps, vinegar, and salt for soaking. Mix well and set aside.

Rinse the beef caps in cold water. Turn them inside out and soak them in 2 quarts of cold water with the salt and vinegar for 1/2 hour. Drain them and rinse very well, inside and out.

Divide the meat mixture into three parts. Fill the beef caps with the meat mixture and tie the ends off with string. Two will have to be tied on just one end, but the third piece will be tied on both ends. Prick the Haggis all over with corn holders or a sharp fork. Place in a steamer and steam for 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Serve the Haggis, sliced, with beef or lamb gravy."

Thursday, September 21, 2006

R,S,C #16 Recipes

Here they are! Recipes from Tuesday's game of Ready, Set, Cook! This must have been a "family" week since all 3 of we are related! (sister-in-law and brother)
Check out these recipes and visit their blogs.

From Krista at
In the Kitchen with Krista:

Red Pepper Zucchini Penne with Italian Grilled Pork Chops

1 Red Pepper, sliced in strips, then cut in half
2 zucchini, sliced into "coins"
8 oz Penne pasta, cooked according to package directions (al dente)
3 Tbs olive oil, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp italian seasoning
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly shredded
Salt & pepper to taste

In heavy skillet, place 2 tbs olive oil, heat up. Add minced garlic
and saute for about1 minute - do not let the garlic burn! Add red
peppers and zucchini, saute until "crunchy tender". Sprinkle italian
seasoning and continue to saute for 2 minutes. Add pasta to pan and
mix well. Sprinkle with parma cheese and last tbs of olive oil
(season w/ salt & pepper now too) and combine again. Divide pasta
between 4 large bowls.

For the pork chops...

marinate in fridge for 1 hour in italian salad dressing. Grill 4 to 6
minutes a side until cooked thru. (we use an indoor electric grill
that grills both sides at one time, so it goes faster, but can be done
ahead of time).

Slice chops on the bias and put one chop ontop of each pasta portion.

From Bobby at
Ear to the Heavens:

Apple and Bacon Stuffed Pork Chops

6 pork chops, at least 1-inch thick
2 to 4 slices diced bacon,
1/4 cup finely chopped celery
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
3 apples- peeled, cored, diced
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 tsp. finely chopped parsley


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Crisp the bacon in a pan.
Add celery and onion and cook until tender.
Add apples and mix in the sugar.
Cover and cook slowly until tender and glazed.

Add bread crumbs, salt, pepper, and parsley.
Mix well.

Slice a pocket into each chop and stuff with stuffing mix.
Season chops with salt and pepper.
Heat oven-safe skillet to medium-high heat.
Sear the chops on both sides.
Remove from the heat and place in the oven for 30 minutes.

Zucchini and Penne Pasta

1lb penne pasta
8 cups water
2 medium zucchini
2 crushed cloves of garlic
2 tbsp. of Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper to taste.
1 tbsp finely chopped basil
1/2 cup finely ground parmesan cheese.

Boil 8 cups of salted water.
Add 1lb of penne pasta to the water.
When the pasta is cooked, remove from the heat and drain.
Return pasta to the pot and cover.

Cube 2 medium zucchinis.
Over medium-high heat, add the olive oil to a large skillet.
Toss in the garlic, salt, and pepper.
Once the garlic begins to soften, add the basil and stir well.
Once the basil is stirred in, add the zucchini to the pan.
Cook until tender.

Add the contents of the skillet to the pasta.
Stir in the parmesan cheese.

Serve on the side with the pork chops.

My submission:

Creamy Pork and Penne Primavera

6 boneless pork chops~1" thick~sliced 1/2" thick on the bias
olive oil
3/4 c. dry white wine or chicken stock
1 T. minced shallot
1 1/2 c. heavy cream
3 T. Dijon-style mustard
Freshly ground white pepper to taste
8 oz. penne cooked al dente and kept warm
1 c baby carrots~cut in 1" julienne
2 medium zucchini~cut in 1" julienne halved
1 broccoli crown, cut into small florets

Steam or microwave the vegetables until just tender and brightly colored, taking care not to overcook. Keep warm.
In a small heavy saucepan boil the wine or stock with the shallot until it is reduced to about 2 tablespoons. Add the cream. Bring the mixture just to a boil and simmer it for 2 minutes, or until it is thickened slightly. Strain the sauce through a fine sieve into a bowl and whisk in the mustard, the white pepper, and salt to taste.
Saute the pork sliced in olive oil until no longer pink.
Add the veggies, penne and cream sauce and heat through.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Ready, Set, Cook! #16

For today's game of Ready, Set, Cook! I've added ingredient amounts. I don't do this often but it sometimes helps depending on the ingredient.
Please click
HERE first before playing so you can get the full rules of play.

Here are today's ingredients:

4-6 boneless pork chops
8 oz -1 lb penne pasta
2 medium zucchini

Aprons on and get creating! "See" you Thursday!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

R,S,C #15 Recipes

While I'm off in two different directions to have dinner with these two (I mean, be SERVED dinner!) you go off in two directions and visit their blogs, ok?

From KFarmer at
KFarmer & the Dell:

Baked Chicken w/Roasted Red Peppers, Garlic Mashed Taters & Broccoli

Baked Chicken

Boneless chicken
Roasted red peppers
Olive Oil
Gouda cheese

Melt butter, olive oil and butter in a pan. Add basil and roasted red peppers. Simmer. Add chicken that has been lightly seasoned with salt and pepper. Cook till half done.

Take chicken out of pan, put juice into baking dish. Slice chicken in the fattest part of the meat and stuff with red pepper.

Take a piece of bacon and wrap around the chicken. Place in slow oven, 350, till chicken is done (about 20 minutes).

Turn oven up to 450 and bake till bacon has browned.

Slice some Gouda cheese. Put Gouda on top of chicken and pop back in the oven for a few minutes until cheese has softened.

Garlic Mashed Taters

4 or 5 white potatoes
Garlic powder
Sour cream

Cut up taters, cook in slightly boiling salted water till soft. Drain.

Melt butter, parsley and garlic powder. Add taters, milk and sour cream. Whip, mix, stir, whatever you like best.



Cut up broccoli and put in boiling salted water for as long as you like or as little as you like. Drain and add salt, pepper and yes, more butter.

Dinner for Ready Set Cook is served!

From Ian at
The Gallumphing Gourmand:

Chicken Pepper Pie

4 white potatoes, washed and peeled
2 lbs. chicken breasts, cut into strips
3 large red bell peppers, seeded, roasted and peeled
2 C plain low-fat yoghurt
3/4 C grated parmesan cheese
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp coriander
2 tsp cumin
2 tbsp butter, melted

Preheat oven to 375F.
Grease the inside of a 12x9x2 baking dish.
Thinly slice the potatoes, and arrange them in layers in the bottom of the
baking dish, the sides as well. Brush with the melted butter, and grate
some pepper on top.
Arrange the pieces of chicken on top of the potatoes.
Place the peppers, garlic powder, cumin, coriander and yoghurt into a food
processor, and blend until smooth and the mixture is a uniform colour.
Pour the yoghurt mixture over the chicken, and sprinkle the grated cheese
over the top.
Bake at 375F for 45 minutes.
Remove from oven, and let stand for 5-10 minutes to allow the pie to firm up
so it's easier to slice.

My own submission:

Chicken and Red Pepper Tourtiere

2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 4 breast halves)
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
3 large potatoes, peeled and sliced thickly
1 small jar roasted red peppers-sliced into 1" wide strips
pastry for double-crust pie

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
In a large pot, mix the chicken, onion, and enough water to barely cover the chicken.
Season with salt, pepper, allspice, cloves, and cinnamon.
Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer 30 minutes.
Shred the chicken and set aside until cooled to room temperature.
Place one crust into a deep pie pan and add chicken mixture in
alternating layers with potatoes and peppers.
Place top crust on top of pie and pinch edges to seal.
Cut slits in top crust so steam can escape.
Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, about 50 minutes.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Ready, Set, Cook! #15

If you are new to this game and have not played before, please read our rules HERE.

Here are today's 3 ingredients:

chicken breasts
roasted red peppers
white potatoes

Have fun cooking~I will post recipes on Thursday!

Monday, September 11, 2006


I sat at this computer trying to think of what I could possibly write to honor someone I have never met and couldn't do it. I found myself completely absorbed in wanting to know every aspect of Lisa Egan's life and knew I couldn't do that. I searched the internet for information and was able to find memorial pages with messages from those who really knew her.

There are several links below that contain memorial pages for this beautiful woman. I don't know anything about her except the facts that have been given and I won't cheapen her memory by pretending I do. Instead, please visit these sites and see what others who did know her had to say in her memory. They put it into words far better than I ever would be able to.

9-11 Memorial-Lisa Egan September 11 Memorial- Lisa Egan

September 11, 2001 Victims Memorial- Lisa Egan

Remember: September 11, 2001- Lisa and Samantha Egan

Wall of Americans-Lisa Egan

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Breakfast for Dinner?

OK, 'fess up! How many of you do this? I am proud to say, we have breakfast for dinner often; probably 3 times a month.

Now, I'm not saying I plop a bowl of Cheerios in front of everyone and say "Bon Appetit!". No, I mean real honest-to-God breakfast; the kind that nobody seems to have time to make anymore. Which is, of course, the reason it's for dinner!

The other day we had 2 kinds of muffins, bacon and hard boiled eggs--for DINNER. The kids were thrilled and so was I. I'm not much of an eater when I'm pregnant. There isn't a lot that appeals to me and when I can't eat it's so hard to cook for someone else. Blogging is an effort too since this is a food blog and I really don't feel like food right now!

So, back to the topic, my kids love to have pancakes and sausage or eggs and hashbrowns or English muffin breakfast sandwiches or French toast and bacon for dinner. My husband could eat cereal 24/7 and sometimes when he is not in the mood for a full dinner (which is often with his back pain) he will simply eat a bowl of cereal. I admit I have yet to feed the kids cereal for dinner. I just can't do it. I'm sure it's as healthy as anything but it goes against my moral food fiber.

So, when you have breakfast for dinner (you know you do!) what do you have?

Thursday, September 07, 2006

R,S,C #14 Recipes

Recipes from the first game of the season are IN! They all look fabulous and do yourself a favor by visiting the equally fabulous blogs written by our players.


From KFarmer at
KFarmer & The Dell:

Stacked Egg Plant

Cut up eggplant and brush with olive oil, sprinkle w/salt & pepper. Grill on high heat until mostly done. Set aside and let cool.

Chop up three or four sun dried tomatoes. To make rice use 1 cup chicken stock and 2 cups water to 1 1/2 cups rice. Add tomatoes and a pinch of saffron to liquid. Cook 20 minutes.

Chop up 2 celery sticks, three or four okra and 1/2 an onion. Cook in olive oil till tender. Add ground turkey and cook till done. Add salt, grated Parmesan cheese, lots of black pepper, parsley, rosemary, thyme, basil and ground red pepper.
Melt butter and add bread crumbs and fresh grated Parmesan cheese. Set aside.

Place roasted eggplant on foil covered cookie sheet; add scoop of rice, then turkey mixture, bread crumbs and a piece of roasted red pepper on top. Cook at 350 for 20 minutes or till bread crumbs are brown.

From Adopted Son (aka my oldest brother!) at
Ear to the Heavens:

Dijon Chicken ala Robert

One cup rice
One lb. Fresh Ground Turkey
One cup sun-dried tomatoes
2 minced cloves garlic
One cup diced spanish onion
1/4 cup Dijon Mustard
1 cup cream or half-and-half
teaspoon fresh-ground Black Pepper
teaspoon Sea Salt
Dash of rosemary
2 TBSP Olive Oil

In a 2-Qt. Saucepan, prepare the rice.
(Boil 2 cups of water, then add the rice and lower to a simmer. Cover
and let cook for approx. 20 minutes. Stir and remove from heat. Leave
covered until ready to serve.

While the rice is cooking...

In a large fry pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat.
Once the oil is heated, add the salt, pepper, and garlic.
Stir with a wooden spoon until the garlic begins to soften. Be careful
to not burn the garlic.
Add the onions to the pan.
When the onions soften and get slightly transparent, add the ground
turkey. Stir frequently.
Once the turkey is thoroughly cooked, add the rosemary and the
sun-dried tomatoes and cook for 2-3 minutes until the tomatoes soften
Stir in the Dijon mustard.
Once the mustard is stirred throughout, slowly stir in the cream or
half-and -half.
Reduce the heat and stir until the cream thickens.

Serve over the rice.

From Compulsive Writer at
From the mixed-up files of a middle-aged mind:

Rice Bean Soup With a Tomato Twist

Steam the rice.

Brown the ground turkey in a pan light coated with olive oil.

Add chopped onion and minced garlic and cook through. Season with salt
and pepper.

Stir in one to two cups of tender green beans and 1 large can of cream
of mushroom soup.

Serve over the white rice.

Sprinkle liberally with the sun-dried tomatoes.

From Ian at
The Gallumphing Gourmand:

Gobble Burgers
Makes 12 big burgers

2 lbs. Ground Turkey
1/2 C Rolled Oats
1 Egg
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp Dark Soy Sauce
1 dash Tabasco (or to taste)
baguettes for buns

1 C Minute Rice
1 C water
1/4 C Ground-up sun-dried tomatoes
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp basil
1/2 tsp ground chipotle pepper
1 egg
salt & pepper

Rice Directions:
Boil water with a pinch of salt in a small saucepan.
When water is boiling, add rice, sundried tomatoes, oregano, basil,
chipotle, egg and pepper to taste.
Mix everything around a bit until the egg and the spices are incorporated,
cover and remove from heat.
Let stand for about 10 minutes. (Yes, I know the box says 5 minutes, but
with all the other stuff in there it takes longer to set properly)

Burger Directions:
Place ground turkey into a large mixing bowl.
Add all other ingredients except baguettes. (Just making sure)
Mix together gently with the fingertips until just mixed evenly.
Form the meat into twenty-four (24) thin patties, and group patties into
Add a spoonful or two of the rice mixture onto one patty, then cover with
another patty.
Form into burgers, making sure that the edges are completely sealed.
Grill burgers, making sure that they're cooked all the way through. They're
BIG burgers, so they'll probably take longer than you would expect.

Cut baguettes into burger-sized sections, then cut in half.
Toast each half on the grill until slightly toasted.

Serve with lettuce and sliced red onion, then GOBBLE!

My own:

Turkey Meatballs in Sun-dried Tomato Cream Sauce
Serves 4-6

Make enough white rice for 6 servings and keep warm. (Rice cookers are great for this!)


1 lb. ground raw turkey
1 egg, beaten
1/2 c. bread crumbs
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 clove galic, minced
1 tsp fresh basil. finely chopped

Mix ingredients together and make into meatballs about 1" in diameter-not too large.
Saute in a small amount of oil until lightly browned. Drain oil off and keep warm.


1/4 c. sun-dried tomatoes, chopped fine
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped fine
1 clove minced garlic
2 T olive oil
2 T flour
1/2 c chicken stock or white wine
1 cup heavy or whipping cream
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
freshly ground pepper to taste

Heat the olive oil over medium heat, add garlic and sauté for 1 minute.
Add sun-dried tomatoes and basil, sauté until tomatoes are softened.
Add flour and stir well until there are no lumps.
Slowly add stock or wine until thickened.
Add cream in a thin stream until well combined.
Add Parmesan and stir well.

Stir meatballs into sauce and serve over rice. Balance this out with a very green salad and crusty rolls.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Ready, Set, Cook! #14

Today is the day...the first game of Ready, Set, Cook! for this season. If you have not played with us before, please read the basic rules HERE. Even if you have played before, there are some slight modifications so check out the rules page anyway.

Here are our 3 ingredients for the day:

ground turkey
sundried tomatoes
white rice

Hey, I know white rice is not good for you and if you like to cook along and want to do the healthier thing, feel free to change that one ingredient to brown rice.

Aprons on, spoons up, GO!

Friday, September 01, 2006

Been to the Fair this year?

I haven't. We are hoping to get to at least one before it gets too cold to be enjoyable. I plan on being dragged away from summer kicking and screaming this year! It definitely went far too quickly for me this time.

So, in honor of all that is summer, including Fair food, I made funnel cakes last night for dessert. Yes, you can make them yourself! It seems that one of my 14 year old daughter's friends is fascinated by the fact that I know how to make funnel cake. Honestly, until I was married I didn't know you could make your own either. My mother-in-law made them occasionally and they were just like the ones we would get at the carnival.

Just after my first child was born we took a drive out to Farmer Brown's, a mostly Mennonite run farmer's market, and I purchased my first and only Amish cookbook there. The recipe for funnel cake is included and I set to making my own and have never stopped.

It really isn't difficult at all but I have a few tips. A cast iron skillet works best for these. You can use a deep fryer but I find it isn't necessary since the depth of the oil only needs to be about an inch and a half or so; enough for the cake to float just a bit and not stick to the pan. Also, home use deep fryers aren't really roomy enough.

You don't need a funnel cake pitcher at all, pouring the batter in a thin stream has worked well for me all these years. You can purchase one though and they look like this:

A larger spider or metal spatula is helpful in removing them from the oil although if your batter is right tongs should work.

This is the recipe as it is in the book, Amish Cooking by Sallie Y. Lapp.

Funnel Cake

Combine 1 pt. milk
2 beaten eggs
pinch of salt
1/2 t baking powder
enough flour to make a loose batter

Place lard in an iron skillet, enough to cover about 1 inch of dough, heat the lard and then begin poring the batter through a funnel, beginning in the center of the pan and gradually pouring the dough from the center outward in a circular manner. (Do not allow the dough to tangle the previously poured batter). When the funnel cakes are light brown, remove them from the skillet and serve with maple syrup, a tart jelly or simply sprinkle them with powdered sugar.

The only thing I take issue with here is that she says not to tangle the dough. I always start in the center and run concentric circles out to the edge of the pan and then zip across the whole thing again so that it all stays together. If you don't, it's hard to get it out of the pan all at once.

Sometimes I add a tablespoon or so of sugar to the batter and a teaspoon of vanilla for flavor. We also like cinnamon sugar on these. I've seen them with strawberries and whipped cream and with ice cream sundaes made right on top. I'm still a purist when it comes to these and I like them as is with powdered sugar.