Thursday, April 10, 2014

Fried Polenta with Italian Vegetables (Meatless Meals for Lenten Fridays)

Polenta is kind of a weird food. It's basically cornmeal that's cooked into a sort of paste, and depending on the consistency, can be served either as a soft, almost pudding like base for Mexican and Italian dishes alike, or shaped into a sort of sausage that can later be sliced and fried.

This dish, based on the Fried Polenta with Vegetable Marinara from The Pampered Chef 29 Minutes to Dinner cookbook, requires the use of the second type of polenta. I've made it a couple times before, and this time I played quite a bit with the veggies to make it more my own.

You can make your own polenta, but it's also readily available in most grocery stores.

Continue reading to find out how I made this, my way.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Caprese Chicken

Back in November, I was looking for a new and tasty but easy to prepare dish that I could serve when we invited our priest to dinner. In my search, I discovered a creative recipe for Caprese chicken from The Novice Chef, and it turned out delicious.

Last night, in my efforts to finish up a few odds and ends around the kitchen, I realized I had the ingredients to make Caprese chicken again. But this time, I added a few slight twists to make it my own.

The beauty of this recipe is that you can easily multiply the ingredients to increase the servings - or just make it for one! Here's how I made it.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Spicy Sicilian Style Sauce (Meat Free for Lenten Fridays)

Since I'm finally getting back the energy and drive to cook again, it felt good to be in the kitchen, putzing with one of my favorite recipes. This was something I experimented with a couple summers ago when we had a boom year for tomatoes, and it was so tasty, this spicy Sicilian style sauce has become something of a standard in our house.

I'm not 100% sure if it's accurate to call this "Sicilian style", but based on what I saw and ate when I was actually in Sicily a few years ago, I think it's close enough.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Stuffed French Toast

My holiday hiatus lasted way longer than I intended, and for good reasons. But now I'm back, and I have a delicious recipe to share with you today.

So what can you make with all of this?

Stuffed French Toast

Stuffed French Toast!

I've been sitting on this recipe for a while, partly because I forgot about it. But since I have a snow day and just made myself some "regular" French toast, it seemed a nice treat to post about.

Stuffed French Toast

There are many versions of this treat out there. I've even indulged in the version served at Cinderella's Royal Table in Disney World, which honestly was the best stuffed French toast I've ever had, despite not actually involving toast as far as I could tell. This particular version comes from What to Expect: Eating Well When You're Expecting.

(And since some of you out there may now be asking the obvious question, the answer is yes.)

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Coming in 2014 - The 50 Sweets of America

I can hardly believe tomorrow is the first day of December, which means Christmas is only 25 days away. Yikes!

It's been a while since I've done anything theme-related on this blog, though the Cupcake of the Month has continued here and there (and I do have one more cupcake I plan to whip up this coming month). Recently, I was putzing around the internet and stumbled across a couple sites that listed semi-official, if not official, sweet treats and desserts from different parts of the United States. So I decided, "Hey, that'd be a fun theme to play with on the blog!"

But I need help, readers! I'm looking for input on official (or semi-official) state treats from across the country, and I'd like to have a list compiled by the end of December. And yes, I do plan to bake said sweets in alphabetical order according to state.

As such, you have from now until December 31st to either leave a comment on this post or email me with your suggestions for state sweet treats from across America!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Spinach & Broccoli Quiche with Pepper Jack Cheese

Normally I'm not a huge fan of quiche. I'm not a huge fan of eggs to begin with, and most quiches taste like eggs. So I was pleasantly surprised upon trying my friend Andrea's recipe, which is a bit of a "whatever veggies you happen to have in the fridge" sort, how much I liked her version of this breakfast dish.

My attempt didn't taste quite the same as hers, and I think it may have been due to the cheese (hers was a lot spicier than what I procured).

Anyway, it's really easy, and here's how you do it. Remember, you can really put any veggies in that you like - red peppers would be another great addition, you could use kale instead of spinach, maybe kick the whole thing up with a few dashes of Tabasco.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Apple Cinnamon Empanadas

The sixth-grade team, of which I am now a part, has developed a little bit of a "let's order/make awesome lunches once a week" custom going on now. This week, the two gentlemen on our grade level team decided to make lunch for the ladies, and they settled on Mexican as the theme.

To go along with the chips and salsa and quesadillas, I decided to whip up a Mexican dessert to share. As it's also apple season, I decided on these delicious apple cinnamon empanadas from Diana's Desserts.

Okay, so empanadas aren't much more than single-serving hand pies or turnovers. Main course empanadas (meaning those filled with meat and/or cheese) are often fried, but can be baked as well, just like these dessert empanadas.

Here's how I made them!