Sunday, September 28, 2008

Nutso Pesto

1 cup fresh basil
1/4 cup fresh parsley
1/2 cup walnuts
1/4 cup black olives, pitted
3 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic
4 cups spinach fettuccine
Parmesan cheese

1) Cook fettuccine according to package directions.
2) Combine all ingredients (except fettuccine) in a food processor. Mix to the consistency of a chunky paste.
3) Toss hot fettuccine with the pesto and serve immediately, topped with Parmesan to taste.

Review: Parmesan was not part of the original instructions. I found it to be kind of bland (though I love all things pesto) and added Parmesan cheese. Mmmmm, much better and super yummy.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Navy Beans & Rotini In Herbed Tomato Sauce

1 lb uncooked rotini
2 Tbs olive oil
3 cloves garlic, slivered
1 large tomato, chopped
2 cups tomato sauce
1/4 cup water
3 springs fresh parsley, chopped
2 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp dried basil
2 cups broccoli florets
2 cups cooked navy beans
1/4 cup sliced black olives
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1) Prepare the rotini according to the package directions; drain.
2) In a large pot, heat the oil and cook the garlic, stirring, until lightly browned. Stir in the tomatoes. Add the tomato sauce, water, parsley, oregano and basil. Cook, uncovered, over medium heat, mashing the tomatoes with a spoon. When the sauce thickens (about 8 minutes), add the broccoli. Simmer, covered, until the broccoli is tender but still crunchy, about 5 mintues.
3) Stir in the beans and olives. Simmer, uncovered, until heated through. Add the rotini, salt and pepper.

Review: A few snafus here, but a yummy dish. Mike couldn't find navy beans, so I used cannellini beans. I would have loved to use navy beans. And, I didn't add any salt and pepper, because I forgot, but it totally didn't need the extra seasoning. The best part of this dish? I have a ton of leftovers!!!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Artichoke & Kidney Bean Paella

1 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs dried minced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 14.5oz can vegetable broth
1 cup uncooked regular long grain rice
1 cup frozen green peas
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
2 or 3 drops of red pepper sauce
1 can 15-16oz dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 6oz jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained

1) Heat oil in 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Cook onion and garlic in oil 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
2) Stir in broth and rice. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer 15 minutes.
3) Stir in remaining ingredients. Cook uncovered 5 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until rice and peas are tender.

Review: I used jasmine rice, which I'm a big fan of (thanks to Tiffany!). This was such a yummy dish, but it didn't yield any leftovers!! I will totally make this again, but next time double the quantity!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Linguine With Artichokes

1 pkg uncooked dried linguine
3 Tbs butter
1 tsp minced garlic
1 16oz can artichoke hearts packed in water, drained, cut in half
1 6oz can pitted ripe olives, drained, cut in half
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1) Cook linguine according to package directions. Drain. Keep warm.
2) Meanwhile, melt butter in 10-inch skillet until sizzling; stir in garlic. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in artichokes and olives. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until heated through, 3 to 5 minutes.
3) Spoon cooked linguine into serving bowl; toss with artichoke mixture, Parmesan cheese and parsley.

Review: Mmmmm, yummy. I love artichokes, I love olives, how could this go wrong? Mike even loved it and he HATES olives.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Mushroom-Asparagus Risotto

2 Tbs olive oil
2 cups sliced mushrooms
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
4 1/2 cups vegetable stock
1 lb asparagus, trimmed and cut diagonally into 1-inch pieces
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1) Heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add mushrooms and garlic; cook 5 minutes more, or until mushrooms are browned and their juice has evaporated. Stir in rice, salt and pepper, and cook 1 minute.
2) Add 1 cup stock to saucepan, and cook, stirring constantly, about 3 minutes, or until it's mostly absorbed. Stir in another cup stock, and cook, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until liquid is absorbed. Repeat until you have 1/2 cup stock left. Add asparagus and last 1/2 cup stock; cook 4 minutes more, or until stock is absorbed and asparagus is tender. Fold in cheese. Serve immediately.

Review: Ug, I hate making risotto. It's a yummy, creamy dish, but I hate stirring for a half hour. I'm not sure what I was thinking when I decided to make this. It's yummy, but a pain.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Deluxe Artichoke Dip

1 cup bread crumbs
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley
1 cup mayo
8oz sour cream
1 can (14oz) artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1 jar (12oz) marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
2 Tbs olive oil

1) Preheat oven to 350F.
2) In small bowl, combine bread crumbs, 1/4 cup of cheese and parsley, set aside.
3) In medium bowl, combine mayo, sour cream, remaining 3/4 cup cheese, artichoke mixture, top with bread crumb mixture, then drizzle with olive oil.
4) Bake uncovered 35 minutes or until heated through. Serve with your favorite dippers.

Review: I totally made this dip for a party tonight. Everyone LOVED it!!! It was such a hit. And I didn't use fresh parsley, I used dried, probably about 1/8 cup. It was rich, moist and YUMMY. We served it with flour tortilla chips (Tostitos), which are a fave of mine to serve with dip. I highly recommend this and it's going into my "party cookbook" of recipes to take to social outings. I have 3 cookbooks, 1 for meals, 1 for desserts and 1 for social events. Because often, it's a chore to flip through recipes trying to find something good to take to a party.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Pine Nut Couscous With Feta

1 (5.6 oz) box uncooked couscous (toasted pine nut flavor or original)
2 cups frozen chopped broccoli, thawed
1 cup boiling water
1 (15 oz) can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
1 (4 oz) package crumbled feta cheese
Cherry tomatoes, cut in half

1) Cook couscous according to package directions. Keep warm.
2) Meanwhile, combine broccoli, water and garbanzo beans in 2-quart saucepan. Cover; cook over medium heat until heated through (4 to 5 minutes). Drain.
3) Combine cooked couscous, broccoli mixture and cheese in large bowl; toss gently. Garnish with cherry tomatoes.

Review: I used the toasted pine nut flavor couscous and omitted the cherry tomatoes (I seem to have developed an allergy). It didn't have enough flavor for me. I'd suggest adding some garlic or something, but I'm not sure what. Adding tomatoes would have given it more flavor, I'm sure.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Linguine Al Pesto

2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup lightly toasted pine nuts
1/2 grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp salt, or more to taste
6 to 8 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
2 to 3 medium potatoes, preferably Yukon Gold
1 lb green beans, trimmed
1 lb linguine

1) Bring a large covered pot of salted water to a boil.
2) Meanwhile, in a food processor or blender, combine the pesto ingredients and puree until you have a rough paste, scraping down the sides as necessary. You will have about 1 cup.
3) Peel the potatoes. Cut them lengthwise into quarters and then crosswise into 1/4-inch slices to make about 2 cups. Cut the green beans into 2-inch lengths to make about 4 cups.
4) When the water is boiling vigorously, add the potatoes and then the pasta. Stir well and cover. After 2 minutes, add the green beans, stir and cover. When the pasta is al dente, about 5 minutes, drain. Test the pasta frequently to avoid overcooking.
5) In a large serving bowl, toss together the pasta and vegetables and the pesto sauce. Serve immediately.

Review: I love pesto anything. Enough said. :)

I made this again on 3/30/2011.  However, I used packaged pesto from Costco (pretty decent pesto, better than other brands we've tried) and haricot verts.  Yum!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Vegetable Hot Pot

2 large potatoes, thinly sliced
2 Tbs vegetable oil
1 leek, sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 carrot, cut into chunks
1 cup broccoli florets
1 cup cauliflower florets
2 small turnips, diced
1 Tbs flour
3 cups vegetable stock
1 Tbs ground sage
pinch of cayenne pepper
1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese
salt and pepper

1) Cook the potato slices in a saucepan of boiling water for 10 minutes. Drain thoroughly and reserve.
2) Heat the oil in a saute pan. Add the leek and garlic, and saute, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes. Add the remaining vegetables and cook, stirring constantly, for a further 3-4 minutes.
3) Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Gradually add the stock, and bring to a boil. Add the sage, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper and season well. Remove from the heat and transfer the vegetables to a 9x13 casserole dish.
4) Arrange the potato slices on top of the vegetable mixture to cover.
5) Sprinkle the cheese on top of the potato slices and cook in a preheated oven at 375F, for 30-35 minutes or until the potato is golden brown and beginning to crispen around the edges. Serve immediately.

Review: This is a tweaked recipe. The original called for one apple and 2/3 cup of dry cider. After hunting through a couple of grocery stores, a liquor store and a convenience store, still without finding dry cider, I decided to omit the apple flavors. They seemed kind of weird in it, anyway. So, this came out to be a great dish, although it seemed like a potato topped stew, even after I omitted 2/3 cup of dry cider! I'd probably omit a cup of broth, in order to make it more like a casserole. This was a great dish, though. It had a nice fall, harvest flavor, which was perfect for our cold, rainy evening tonight!!