Wednesday, July 9, 2014

creamy tortellini with spinach... 20 minutes


the goods:

16 ounces fresh cheese tortellini
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup chopped fresh spinach
4-5 basil leaves, chopped
1 can (14.5 ounces petite diced tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon onion flakes
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 and 1/2 cups half-and-half
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


Begin by boiling your tortellini noodles according to package instructions. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes (and juices) to skillet with the spinach, basil, salt, pepper, and onion flakes. Cook, stirring occasionally until the mixture begins to bubble. In a glass measuring cup, combine the half-and-half and flour. Whisk until smooth. Add the creamy mixture to the skillet along with Parmesan cheese. Heat through and reduce heat to medium-low and continue to cook until it thickens, about 5 minutes. Add the drained tortellini and toss to combine.

Monday, July 7, 2014

pork and mango pizza... 1 hour and 45 minutes (including dough rising)

You'll have to forgive the terrible picture, we had this on a rainy overcast night with no good lighting to be found!

the goods:

pizza dough:
1 scant teaspoon active dry yeast
3/4 cup warm water
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3 tablespoons olive oil

toppings:
1 cup marinara sauce
12 ounces fresh mozzarella, shredded
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced and sauteed until golden
1 cup leftover carnitas meat
1 mango, peeled, pitted, and cut into small chunks
1 jalapeno, ribs and seeds removed and diced small

Make pizza dough: Combine the yeast and warm water in a small bowl or glass measuring cup and allow to sit for 10 minutes. Add the flour to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Sprinkle in the salt. Turn the mixer on low, then slowly pour in the olive oil. Finally, pour in the yeast/water mixture. Stop mixing when everything comes together. Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rise 1 hour.

Increase the oven to 500 degrees. Roll out the pizza dough into a rectangle. Drizzle a rimmed baking sheet with olive oil and transfer dough to sheet. Spread marinara sauce over dough and top with mozzarella, caramelized onion, and shredded meat. Bake the pizza for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the crust is golden and the cheese is bubbly. Remove from oven and immediately top with jalapenos and mango.

Friday, July 4, 2014

baked beans... 2 hours and 30 minutes

My husband cannot get enough of these!

the goods:

6 slices of bacon, cut into small pieces
1 large onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 yellow bell pepper, diced
1 orange bell pepper, diced
4 cans (28 ounces each) traditional baked beans
1/2 cup barbecue sauce
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons yellow mustard


Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large pot over medium-high heat, cook the bacon pieces with the onion for 4 to 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent. Add the bell peppers, stir to combine, and cook for about 2 minutes. Add the beans and stir to combine. Add the barbecue sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, red pepper flakes, and the mustard. Stir and cook the mixture until it is hot and bubbly. Pour into a large baking dish, then bake the beans for 2 hours, until they are bubbly and thick.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

dr. pepper pulled pork... 6 hours and 15 minutes



the goods:

2 onions, peeled and quartered
1 whole pork butt (pork shoulder roast)
1 can (11 ounces) chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
2 cans (12 ounces each) Dr. Pepper
4 tablespoons packed brown sugar


Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Place onion quarters in the bottom of a large pot. Put the pork butt on top of the onions and add salt and pepper to taste. Pour chipotle chiles in adobo over the top. Pour both cans of Dr. Pepper over the top. Add the brown sugar to the liquid. Cover pot and cook for 6 hours. Remove roast from pot and shred using two forks. Spoon the fat off the top of the liquid in pot and discard. Add as little or as much of remaining liquid to meat to moisten.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

french onion chicken sandwiches...40 minutes


the goods:

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 large white onion, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, halved crosswise and pounded to 1-inch thickness
4 slices Havarti cheese
4 hamburger buns
2 cups baby spinach


In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and sugar; cook 25 minutes or until onions are deeply caramelized, stirring frequently. Heat grill to medium-high. Clean and lightly oil hot grates. Cook chicken until cooked throughout, about 10 minutes, turning once. Place cheese slices on chicken pieces, cover and cook 1 to 2 minutes or until cheese is melted. Build sandwiches, by layering spinach, then chicken, then onions on buns.

Monday, June 16, 2014

carnitas pizza... 5 hours


the goods:

pizza dough:
1 scant teaspoon active dry yeast
3/4 cup warm water
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3 tablespoons olive oil

toppings:

2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
one chuck roast (3 or 4 pounds)
2 teaspoons canola oil
two cans (12 ounces each) pineapple, papaya, or mango juice (or nectar)
1 cup tomatillo salsa
12 ounces fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced and sauteed until golden
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced and sauteed until golden
3 scallions, sliced



Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. In a small bowl combine the chili powder, cumin, oregano, and salt. Rub the spice mixture on both sides of the roast. Heat the canola oil in a large pot over high heat, then sear both sides of the roast until nice and brown, about 2 minutes per side. Pour the juice into the pot with the meat. Cover and roast for about 4 hours, or until the meat is falling apart. Use 2 forks to shred the meat.

Make pizza dough: Combine the yeast and warm water in a small bowl or glass measuring cup and allow to sit for 10 minutes. Add the flour to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Sprinkle in the salt. Turn the mixer on low, then slowly pour in the olive oil. Finally, pour in the yeast/water mixture. Stop mixing when everything comes together. Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rise 1 hour.

Increase the oven to 500 degrees. Roll out the pizza dough into a rectangle. Drizzle a rimmed baking sheet with olive oil and transfer dough to sheet. Pour on the tomatillo salsa, then spread it thinly all over the surface of the dough. Lay the mozzarella slices all over the top, then add the onion and bell pepper. Bake the pizza for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the crust is golden and the cheese is bubbly. Lay the warm shredded meat over the top. Sprinkle with sliced scallions. Slice and serve!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

spinach and sausage lasagna... 1 hour and 20 minutes


the goods:

1 pound sweet Italian sausage (casings removed)
32 ounces ricotta cheese (4 cups)
2 large eggs
2 packages (10 ounces each) frozen chopped spinach, thawed
6 cups marinara sauce
12 no-boil lasagna noodles (8 ounces)
4 cups shredded fontina cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a medium skillet cook sausage over medium heat, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, about 10 minutes. Set aside. Whisk together ricotta, eggs, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Squeeze spinach to remove as much liquid as possible, and add to ricotta mixture; stir well to combine.
Spread a thin layer of tomato sauce on the bottom of a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish. Arrange a layer of noodles on top. Spread one-third of the ricotta mixture over noodles, followed by one-third of the marinara sauce, then one-third of the sausage; sprinkle with one-third of the fontina cheese. Repeat to make two more layers, ending with cheese. Cover with aluminum foil; bake 30 minutes. Remove foil; continue baking until golden brown on top and sauce is bubbling, about 15 minutes more. Let cool slightly before slicing into squares and serving.