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Monthly Archives: July 2013

Fusilli with Spinach

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And Anchovies.

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Did you hear me, y’all?  I said anchovies.  I don’t think I’ve ever eaten them before, except in Caesar dressing, of course.  I don’t think that counts, though.  I must say, I was a little disappointed.  Wait, let me explain.  They smelled amazing when they were thrown into the pan while the spinach was wilting.  But, otherwise, they weren’t really noticeable.  Maybe I should have used more than six.  Or maybe I chopped them too small and they disintegrated.  Who knows?  The point is that if you’re afraid to try them out then this is the perfect training-wheels recipe from The French Women Don’t Get Fat Cookbook.

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One more thing that you NEED to know:  The pine nuts are cooked in hot olive oil for two minutes and they are perfectly browned and crunchy.

Eat Well and Savor.

Hamburger Healthier

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I think that’s a play on words referring to Hamburger Helper.  It’s not me, it’s Ellie Krieger and her Comfort Food Fix.

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Let me start off by saying that this is one of those meals that I can (and did) eat for lunch and dinner.  That’s just one of the accolades I can throw at this recipe.  Here’s a few more:  one dish, 30 minutes, and huge serving.  Seriously, 2.5 cups is hearty, in my book.  The only problem is that it doesn’t hit the 400-calorie mark.  Still, 520 is pretty close.

Eat Well and Savor.

Lime Angel Food Cake

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I’m sorry to say that this cake didn’t blow my skirt up.  You know what I mean?

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It’s a shame, because I really want to love everything from Baked Elements.

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It started off okay:  you put the lime in the coconut — I mean, you put the lime in the egg whites.  Then there’s a lot of whipping going on.  I kind of wish the recipe would have seen fit to give a time estimate.  Getting to the stiff-peaks stage took a lot longer than I would have thought.  It has been about ten years since I made an angel food cake, so my memory was a little clouded.

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Speaking of guidance, here’s a direct quote:  Immediately invert the pan onto a work surface if the pan has feet, or place the center of the tube pan onto the neck of a bottle or metal funnel, and cool the cake completely.

I’m not sure what a pan with feet looks like, but I’m almost positive mine doesn’t have them.  I’m also not sure why you can’t just cool it on a wire rack like every other cake in the world.

End result:  if you choose Option B, be careful.  Don’t touch it while it’s hot or it could break all over your counter.  Maybe the trick is not to use an empty bottle.

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I really did want to love it.  There’s tequila in the glaze for crying out loud.

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Eat Well and Savor.

 

Big Bopper Burger Stopper

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It’s a good thing this recipe has a snappy title, because this is the saddest-looking little sandwich.

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But if you’re craving a burger this is a nice substitute.  100-calorie bun and a veggie burger.  Hungry Girl says you can even add a slice of fat-free American cheese if you want.

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It’s really the pickles that make it worthwhile.   The important thing is it’s under 300 calories; that is, if you only use 1 teaspoon of mayo and ketchup.  You can do it.

Eat Well and Savor.

 

Potato-Peanut Cakes

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I’m going to try to really focus and tell you about these little patties, but the truth is the memory of the prep is a little fuzzy, thanks to the sangria and the presence of my Lovely Assistant, Lily.  Not to mention I’m very distracted by the coverage of The Royal Baby.

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This recipe is from Cooking Light’s Annual Recipes 2003.  I always find it amazing that I can keep a piece of paper around for ten years.  Even though I do have this book, I actually pulled the recipe out of the July 2012 issue of the magazine.

You should know that there’s a very important word missing from the title.

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It’s also missing from this picture:  bacon.  First you crisp up a slice of bacon and then you sauté all of the above in the grease.

Here’s the best part — and I never thought it would work, but you cook the whole potato for 15 minutes, and then you shred it with a cheese grater.  I really was surprised that the whole potato cooked so well.  Seriously, it shredded like butter.  It really makes me wonder why I spent all of my teenage years cutting up the potatoes for my mom to make mashed.

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Toss in the peanuts and some scallions, and an egg to keep it all together.  Next time I make these I will actually form them into nice little patties.  I used the ice cream scoop and the second batch kind of fell apart a little.

You should also know that these are only 110 calories each.   That’s a Happy Ending.

Eat Well and Savor.

Steak Florentine

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Where has this steak been all of my life?

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I didn’t take any other pictures; mostly because I didn’t need to.   Truth be told, the sangria had already kicked in.

Even though Giada put this in her book — and I’m grateful that she did — I can’t quite bring myself to call this a recipe.  But I’m going to tell you how to make it anyway.

Rub your T-bone with some garlic.  (Sorry if that sounds dirty.)  Sprinkle it with salt and pepper and grill until cooked to the desired doneness.  While the steak rests sprinkle with lemon juice and olive oil.    Have your knife and fork ready.

Eat Well and Savor.

 

 

Sunday Summary

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Monday:  I love a Monday with no job.  Unfortunately I could not get motivated to leave the house.  I guess we could consider that a good thing since I had time to make Challah bread.

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This was my first time making Challah.  I got the recipe from Williams-Sonoma’s Bread.  The shape didn’t turn out quite right, but the taste is spot on.

Tuesday:  The bumpies reared their ugly head on my Phoebe’s noggin this morning.  Soon we’ll be taking a trip to the doggie dermatologist.

My job went until 1:00 today and it was torture.  The witness pretty much had a clown car full of things he claims were stolen.  I guess it’s a good thing I’m not the claims adjuster.

I made this yummy Ham Salad with Artichoke Hearts.  I saw the recipe in the Whole Foods flyer, which I now realize is called The Whole Deal.  How cute is that?

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I needed something to go on my Challah bread.  And there are pickles in there too.

Wednesday:  I love an afternoon job.  There’s nothing like being able to sleep in without the alarm on a weekday.  Then I had plenty of time to make Coconut Patty Cake Pops.

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I guess technically they’re cake balls since I didn’t use a stick.  I’m sure Hungry Girl wouldn’t object.

Thursday:  Well, I had to get up early, but we were done by noon, so I guess I can’t complain . . . this time.

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I made Cast-Iron Burgers for dinner.  Who needs a grill?  Especially when you have Cooking Light’s Crave!  Caramelized onions and bacon?  Yes, please.

Friday:  Get this, guys, I was forced to go to the mall today.  Can you believe the bad luck?   Jake took the MARTA up from the airport and I met him there, since I was already going to be in Buckhead for my hair appointment.

I managed to score this pie plate from Anthropologie.  I guess I am obligated to make some pie in the near future.  Stay tuned.

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I also snagged some gladioli from Whole Foods.  They were 2 for $6 and there were a lot of stems in each bunch.

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These are definitely up there in my top five favorite flowers.  When I was a kid my brother worked at a florist and they had gladioli fields; so he used to bring them home a lot.

My friend Lily came over for an impromptu happy hour.  I should say several happy hours; she stayed until 11:00 p.m.  I made the Drink of the Week:  Summer Fruit Sangria.

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Just soak two cut-up peaches and one cup of sliced strawberries with 1/2 cup of brandy and 1/4 cup of sugar in the fridge for an hour.   Then add a bottle of Merlot and chill for two more hours.  I found the recipe in The Fresh Market’s Cooking in Season.  I know that sangria is traditionally served in a wine glass, but I found these little glasses on sale at Williams-Sonoma, so I had to use them.   btw – if your colorist who seems to know everything tries to tell you that you need to chill it overnight don’t listen to him.

Saturday:  Jake and I went to dinner with Marnie and her husband.   We met at the Union restaurant in Alpharetta.   If you’re near there you should check it out.  The Web site doesn’t do it justice because the place is adorable.  I had the tomato bisque (highly recommended) and the scallops (I brought home leftovers) and unfortunately there is no photographic evidence because I didn’t stop talking/feeding my face long enough to take any.  Sorry about that.

Sunday:  I made Peach French Toast Sandwiches for brunch today.

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Lucky for me I had some Challah bread left.  This recipe is from Kelly Alexander’s Peaches.  It’s simply two peaches simmered with butter, brown sugar, and a touch of sour cream.  I actually used Greek yogurt because I had it on hand.  The filling was great, but next time I will just use it as a topping.  I would rather have both sides of my French Toast crispy.  Call me crazy.

Eat Well and Savor.