Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Cream of Mushroom Soup

This is the first recipe I've made from Easy Appetizers, a gift from my food blogging friend Elizabeth. Mushrooms are one of my favorite flavors to cook with and my hubby is slightly obsessed with soups, so Cream of Mushroom soup always sounds good to both of us. I didn't follow the recipe exactly because it called for dried porcini mushrooms and dried mushrooms sorta skeeves me out, so I just went with a blend of fresh mushrooms I found at my local grocery store. 

We absolutely loved this soup. It's incredibly creamy and earthy. I left big chunks of mushrooms so every spoonful had a lot of bites of mushrooms. The chopped parsley brought in a nice fresh flavor. I definitely recommend topping the soup with sour cream or creme fraiche, it adds an extra layer of richness. 
Cream of Mushroom Soup
Adapted from Easy Appetizers
Printable Version

1 ounce cremini mushrooms
4 large portobello mushrooms
2 ounces white button mushrooms
1/4 cup olive oil
1 onion, cut in half and thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, crushed
a pinch of nutmeg
1 cup fresh parsley
5 cups of boiling chicken or vegetable broth
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup all purpose flour
Sea Salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Sour cream or creme fraiche for garnishing

Finely chop the parsley in a food processor. Scrape out of the processor bowl and set aside.
Bring broth to a boil in a pot. Heat the oil in a skillet and add in the fresh mushrooms. Saute until browned. Add the onion to the skillet and saute until softened, then add the garlic. 
Bring to a boil and transfer to a food processor. Add two ladles of the broth and pulse until creamy but still chunky. 
Heat the butter in a large pot, such as a dutch oven, until melted. Stir in the flour and cook gently, stirring constantly until the mixture is a dark brown. Be careful so it does not burn. Add in the remaining broth one ladle at a time, stirring well after each addition.  Add the mushroom mixture, bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes. 
Season to taste with sea salt and freshly grated black pepper. Serve with a dollop of creme fraiche or sour cream. 

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Homemade Bacon & Cheddar Dog Treats

I have no problem admitting that our pug Wendell is extremely spoiled. He goes to Doggie Day Care at least once a week, sleeps in our bed cuddled up in between hubby and I, and he gets LOTS of treats. Since pugs have a tendency to pack on the pounds, especially in the winter when they may not get as much exercise, I am picky about the treats Wendell gets. I buy treats with natural ingredients so when I saw this recipe for homemade treats with whole wheat flour on Delish, I thought they'd be perfect for my baby. I made these one weekend we dog sat for our neigbor's dog, Bella. Bella and Wendell both seemed to love these treats. One batch made a ton of treats, and after a week or so I noticed mold on some of treats and had to throw them out, so next time I will either halve this recipe or give half of it away to Wendell's doggie friends. 
On a side note, does anyone know where I can find dog bone cookie cutters? I have looked and looked and looked to no avail.
Bacon & Cheddar Dog Treats
From Delish
Printable Version

2 cups whole wheat flour
1/4 cup bacon fat, melted
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
3/4 cup milk
2 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. 
Flour work surface. Roll dough to 1/3 inch thickness. Dough will be greasy/oily but should roll easily. 
Cut into desired shape.
Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes until firm. Cool and then store in an airtight container. Share with your favorite doggies. 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Stuffed French Toast

When I saw this recipe posted on Elizabeth's blog I booked marked it until the hubs and I both had a day off to enjoy breakfast together. This was silly of me because my hubby doesn't like fruit or jelly and that is the whole idea of stuffed french toast. To oblige my fruit hating hubby I just omitted the cream cheese/jelly/fruit filling and made him big fat slices of french toast. He gobbled it up like nobody's business while I happily enjoyed the creamy, fruity goodness that is stuffed french toast. This breakfast is perfect for when you have company for breakfast as the ingredients are all things you probably already have in your house.
Stuffed French Toast
From Tasty Kitchen
Printable Version

1 loaf French Bread
3 tablespoons of fruit preserves, jelly, or fresh fruit - I used a combination of blueberry jelly and fresh raspberries
1/2 package of cream cheese (4 ounces), softened
2 eggs
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons butter

Heat skillet or griddle on medium high heat. If using an electric griddle heat to 325 - 350 degrees Cut french bread into 2-3 inch slices. Then cut halfway into each slice creating a pocket in middle. 
Combine cream cheese with fruit spread and fresh fruit.
In a separate bowl combine eggs, cinnamon, and milk. 
Take the fruit mixture and stuff it into the pockets of the bread. Then completely coat in the egg mixture, making sure all sides are covered.
Melt the butter into a hot skillet. Place bread in skillet and cook roughly 3-6 minutes on each side, until the bread reaches a nice golden brown. 
Serve immediately with butter and syrup. 

Monday, November 22, 2010

30 Things to Make Before I Turn 30: Eggplant Parmesan

This Eggplant Parmesan is most definitely one of the most delicious things I've made for my 30 Things to Make Before I Turn 30 List. I borrowed this recipe from Butter Yum, because she said it's her hands down, absolute, all time favorite thing to eat in the world. How could I pass this recipe up?
This is a time consuming dish. There are several steps involved with just the eggplant: peeling, bathing in egg and bread crumbs, frying in oil, and covering them with marinara and mozzarella. Then you have to wait for an agonizing hour while it bakes and another 10 minutes while it cools. Meanwhile your house smells heavenly and you are drooling all over yourself. Or maybe that was just me and my pug Wendell. All in all, you should start working on this about 2 hours before you want to eat but it is so worth the time and energy because this is one deliciouso dish. It's cheesy, hearty and comforting. Perfect for when you want something to warm you up. 
Eggplant Parmesan
From Butter Yum
Printable Version

2 medium sized eggplants
1 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
2 eggs, beaten
**Optional for coating: 3/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese 
1 jar of your favorite tomato sauce
1 package of shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Peel the eggplants and cut into 1/2 inch slices. 
Dunk into beaten eggs and then into bread crumbs (if you are using parmesan cheese combine it with the bread crumbs first). 
Fry the breaded eggplants in olive oil until dark brown on both sides.
Drain eggplants on paper towel, then place them in a 9x13 casserole dish. 
Add a thin layer of tomato sauce on top. Layer on shredded mozzarella. 
Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour or until heated through and bubbly. Remove the foil and broil for the last 3 - 4 minutes to achieve a golden brown color on the cheese. 
Allow to cool and serve. 

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

Just about every food blog I follow has posted pumpkin bars before me, but this was the first time I had ever made these fall favorites myself. It just doesn't feel like fall without scarfing up some of these babies. My favorite part is the creamy sweet frosting. This recipe makes a huge batch. I shared 1/2 of them with my neighbors and still had enough to last hubby and I for a few days.
Pumpkin Bars
From Better Homes and Gardens Cook Book
Printable Version

2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
4 beaten eggs
1 15 ounce can pumpkin
1 cup cooking oil
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and cloves. Stir in the eggs, pumpkin, and oil until combined. 
Spread in an ungreased 15x10x1-inch baking pan.
Bake at 350 for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 2 hours on a wire rack and spread with Cream Cheese Frosting. 
Cream Cheese Frosting
Note: this is for about 2 cups of frosting
4 ounces of cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 teaspoons vanilla
2 1/2 cups of powdered sugar
Beat cream cheese, butter, and vanilla with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Gradually add in the powdered sugar beating well until the frosting reaches a spreading consistency. Spread onto pumpkin bars and cut into squares. 

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Orange Crush

This drink is wildly popular at Waterman's, one of our favorite restaurants on the boardwalk in Virginia Beach. Waterman's makes it with fresh oranges instead of orange juice. I always order this luscious drink when we eat at Waterman's but hadn't thought of making it myself. That was until this weekend when we were hanging out on our friend's Keith's boat and Keith made one for me. On the way home I made my hubby stop so we could buy the ingredients, which means I may or may not have consumed more than one Orange Crush this weekend. Warning: these are so gooooood you won't want to stop drinking them and could wake up the next morning with a slight headache.
Orange Crush
Printable Version

Vodka (the more expensive the better)
Triple Sec
Orange juice
Fresh Oranges
For each drink pour 1 shot of vodka and 1 shot of triple sec into a glass. Squeeze the juice of 1/2 an orange into the drink (or go crazy and juice an entire orange). Top off the glass with Sprite and orange juice. Stir and enjoy!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Baked Acorn Squash

I'm just now getting my act together in terms of "fall" food posts. Since my hubby was working out of state for six weeks this fall, we didn't sign up for the CSA at our local Farmer's Market and I've really missed cooking with fresh, local ingredients.  I must apologize for slacking on posting seasonal "fall" produce recipes. Therefore I now give you Classic Baked Acorn Squash. This is my absolute favorite way to cook acorn squash. The maple syrup, brown sugar, and butter caramelize while the squash is baking. It's pretty darn perfect. 
Baked Acorn Squash
From Simply Recipes
Printable Version

1 Acorn Squash
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons maple syrup
dash of salt
dash of pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut the acorn squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and stringy stuff from the center. Score the insides of each half several times with a sharp knife. 
Place each half in a baking pan, cut side up. Add about 1/4 inch of water to the bottom of the pan so the skins won't burn. Coat the inside of each 1/2 with a 1/2 tablespoon of butter. Add a dash of salt and pepper. Add in a tablespoon of brown sugar to the cavity of each half. 
Drizzle in a teaspoon of maple syrup in each. Bake for 1 hour until the squash is very soft and the tops are browned. Allow to cool before serving.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Anywhere Scrambles

I was contacted by the Adventure Egg company after posting the Pudgie Pie recipes my hubby and I made while camping this summer. They sent me two packets of their Anywhere Scrambles to try. Anywhere Scrambles are 100% nature whole egg that are pasteurized and dried. All you have to do is add water and mix and it's ready to go. You can use just like scrambled eggs or in any recipe that calls for eggs. 
I seasoned and cooked them up just like scrambled eggs.  My hubby and I both enjoyed them. They tasted just like real eggs. They would be perfect to use in Pudgie Pies or wrapped in a tortilla as a breakfast burrito while camping or on outdoor adventures.
 We have one more packet that I promised my hubby we will save and use the next time we plan a camping trip. This made him very happy. 
Adventure Egg has graciously offered to give away two packets of their Anywhere Scrambles to a lucky reader! If you would like the chance to win please leave a comment on this post telling me how and where you would use the Anywhere Scrambles. Check out Adventure Egg's website for recipe ideas. I will pick a winner on Saturday, November 20th. 


Related Posts with Thumbnails