Monthly Archives: February 2013

Bacon Pasta with an Egg and Savory Waffles

Put an egg on it!

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That’s the message for the day.

Over easy eggs tend to make everything better. I like them on salads, burgers, breakfast of course, grilled cheese sandwiches and today we are putting those eggs on pasta and we are loving it. We are, trust me.

This fast meal seems a little like breakfast but tastes like dinner for sure.  Breakfast for dinner isn’t my favorite way to do the last meal of the day unless someone in my house is sick. Then it’s a must.

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Oh and the waffles? Have you ever had savory waffles? If not, you must-they are bee’s knees.

How do you like your eggs?

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Bacon drippings and garlic

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Eggs

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Near

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Far

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Savory waffles

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Whisk to combine

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Golden brown

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Time to chow down

Bacon Pasta with an Egg

ingredients:

3/4 pound angel hair pasta, cooked

6 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (reserve 1 tablespoon drippings)

2 garlic cloves, minced

sea salt and freshly ground pepper

1/4 cup parsley, chopped

instructions and directions: 

In a skillet heat the 1 tablespoon of reserved bacon drippings over medium low heat. Add minced garlic and cook 1 minute. Add cooked pasta to warm throughout. Season with salt, pepper and fresh parsley. Divide into bowls.

Meanwhile, spray another nonstick skillet with cooking spray. Crack eggs (i have to do this one at a time), keeping yolks in tact, into pan. Sprinkle with salt and a few grinds of pepper. When the whites become white but yolk is still not cooked add tablespoon of water to the pan and cover with a lid. After 30 seconds remove the lid. Yolk should still be runny. Lay one egg over each bowl of pasta. Poke a hole in the egg to release yolk and create sauce.

Top with parmesan cheese and crumbled bacon. Serve with waffles.

For the waffles: 

(makes 6-8)

ingredients:

2 eggs

1 2/3 cups milk (I particularly like canned evaporated milk for some of it)

1/3 cup vegetable oil

2 cups all-purpose flour (you can substitute wheat germ for 1/4 cup of white flour)

1 tablespoon baking powder

2 tablespoons sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup chopped parsley

1/2 cup cheddar cheese

1 shallot, finely diced

freshly ground pepper

cooking spray

instructions and directions: 

In a small bowl combine egg, milk and oil. In a large separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, sugar, a few twists of pepper and salt. Pour liquid ingredients into dry ingredients until just blended. Do not over mix.

Fold in parsley, cheese and shallot.

With a 1/3 cup measure, cook in waffle maker.

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Flatbread with Arugula, Tomato and Prosciutto

I have a favorite pizza restaurant in Nashville.

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Their crust is so airy and never soggy. They have the beer I like and the atmosphere seems really authentic.

Seems like a great set of problems to have, right? Wrong.

Usually if I have a favorite dish at a restaurant I love, I have a “no trying to make this at home” rule.

I made the mistake of trying to copy our favorite pie and I succeeded. Now we never go there anymore because we can just have it at home-with more beer.

To make matters worse, it couldn’t be easier and it looks fancy schmancy.

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To make grating fresh mozzarella a cinch, pop the whole ball into the freezer for 10 minutes before grating.

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After par-baking the crust, bake with cheese.

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Add red pepper.

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Place prosciutto.

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Top with arugula and tomato.

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Simple flavors, delicious outcome!

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Fold your piece of pie in half for best results!

Flatbread with Arugula, Tomato and Prosciutto

ingredients: 

1 pizza dough

1 (8 ounce) fresh mozzarella, grated

1 (3 ounce) package of sliced prosciutto

2 small tomatoes, seeds removed and finely diced

2 hand fulls baby arugula

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

olive oil

sea salt and freshly ground pepper

instructions and directions: 

Heat oven to 375 degrees

Shape pizza dough and bake on parchment line cooking sheet for 7 minutes.

Spread mozzarella cheese onto par-baked dough and bake 15 more minutes or until cheese is browning and bubbling.

Toss arugula with a few drizzles of olive oil, a pinch of salt and a few grinds of pepper.

Sprinkle red pepper over cheese. Tearing each piece of prosciutto once, place pieces evenly over pizza. Then spread arugula and sprinkle diced tomatoes.

Chicken Chilaquiles

Ole!

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Sometimes I get inspired to make things I have never tried before. A lot of the time, that doesn’t work out. Sometimes it is because I made it poorly and sometimes I think I just don’t like the new thing I am trying. This doesn’t get me down though, I keep on keeping on, trying new things.

It’s a good thing too because I have never had Chicken Chilaquiles and I LOVE THEM!

I love saying Chicken Chilaquiles (chee-lah-KEE-lays) too. 3 times fast!

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This recipe involves chipotle peppers in adobo. If you haven’t tried these, they are a little spicy and have a perfect smokiness. They also include some of my other favorite ingredients: garlic, avocado and cilantro.

You know what else I love? Queso Fresco. It had been hard to find (for me at least) but now it is everywhere. You should love it too! Then we could all love it together.

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Saute onion in a large skillet. To that, add whole tomatoes.

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Gently, so that you don’t have tomato seeds and juice all over the kitchen, break up the tomatoes. I used a potato masher. Then add two chopped chipotle peppers in adobo.

After this you will mix in chicken and cilantro.

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Arrange some large good quality tortilla chips on a plate. You want them to be large because the sauce will sort of soften part of the chip (in a good way) and you will want to fold them while you’re eating. Trust me.

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Top the chips with the chicken/tomato mixture and crumble with cheese. At this point I pop the plate into the oven for a few minutes to get the cheese melty.

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Then you sprinkle with cilantro.

I really liked the spiciness with this dish. You could adjust it with more or less chipotle peppers.

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Serve with sour cream and avocado.

What isn’t fun, about everyone at the table with their own plate of nachos!?!

CHICKEN CHILAQUILES

Ingredients: 

1 tablespoon olive oil

4 cloves garlic, minced

1  (28 ounces) can whole peeled tomatoes, with the juice

3 canned chipotle chilies in adobo, finely chopped , plus 1 tablespoon adobo sauce (from the same can)

Sea salt

freshly cracked pepper

1 small cooked rotisserie chicken, skin removed and shredded (about 4 cups)

1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

4 cups good quality tortilla chips

1/4 cup  sour cream

1 cup crumbled queso fresco

Instructions and directions: 

Combine oil and garlic in a large (3-to-4-quart) saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until fragrant and sizzling, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add tomatoes with their puree (breaking tomatoes up), chipotles and adobo, and 1 cup water. Bring to a boil; season with salt. Reduce heat and simmer rapidly until lightly thickened, 6 to 8 minutes.

Add chicken and cook, stirring, until hot, about 1 minute. Remove from heat; stir in chopped cilantro.

Divide chips among four shallow bowls or plates that come up on the sides; top with chicken mixture and sauce. Sprinkle queso fresco on top and pop back in the oven to let cheese soften/melt.

Garnish with cilantro sprigs and sour cream. Serve.

Adapted from Martha Stewart

Feel Good White Bean Soup and Caramelized Onion Grilled Cheese

Cold dark weather this time of year, usually has me craving a meal that will make me feel warm and cozy.

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This soup and sandwich combination hit the spot.

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They are sort of plain in their presentation but both are really savory and I enjoyed every last bite.

It is technically meatless, so the carnivorous people you live with could be staring blankly at the plate, but with the white beans and slow cooked onions, I thought it was perfectly satisfying.

I have been dreaming about this simple but velvety grilled cheese ever since.

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Fresh veggies cut small (for fast cooking) gave this the home cooked flavor I was after.

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Greens and white beans made the soup really substantial.

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Sampling.

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While that is getting happy we can assemble our sandwich.

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Cooking onions for a long time on low heat helps give them the perfect caramel color.

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Beef broth and thyme added a depth of flavor.

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Hearty bread.

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Fontina cheese made these gooey and delicious.

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FEEL GOOD WHITE BEAN SOUP AND CARAMELIZED ONION GRILLED CHEESE

For the Soup

Ingredients:

2 large carrots, diced

1 large onion, diced small

5 cups (or overstuffed hand fulls) mustard greens, chopped small (i used glory bagged)

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 parmesan cheese rind (optional, i used)

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon dried parsley

25 grinds fresh pepper

3 tablespoons olive oil

5 cups chicken or vegetable broth

1 (14.5 ounce) can white beans, drained

1 cup farro

1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Instructions and directions:

Heat oil over medium heat. Add carrot and onion and saute until softened, about 10 minutes. Add garlic, dried thyme, dried oregano, dried parsley and greens and cook until greens are wilted, 3-5 minutes.

Add broth, beans and parmesan rind and simmer for 30-45 minutes over medium low heat.

Add farro and simmer 25 minutes or until farro is cooked. Stir in fresh parsley and serve.

For the Grilled Cheese

Ingredients:

8 slices good country type bread

8 thin deli slices fontina cheese, halved (so you have 16 pieces)

2 large onions

4 tablespoons butter, divided

Cooking spray

salt and pepper

 Instructions and directions:

Spread 1-2 teaspoons of butter on one side of each piece of bread.

In a large skillet over medium heat, place 4 pieces of the bread, buttered side down. Top each piece of bread with 2 halves of fontina. Place the other 4 pieces of bread on the cheese, butter side up. Leave for 3-4 minutes, flip and grill other side 3-4 minutes or until butter/cheese is golden.