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Sunday, March 19, 2017

Chicken Saltimbocco

A few weeks ago a landmark old-school style Italian restaurant closed its doors after serving the community since 1928...We of course had dinner before they shuttered for good. "Saltimbocco" means "jump in mouth" and this was their version of Chicken Saltimbocco, and it was tooooo diiiiie forrrrr!  So naturally it needed to be recreated at home!

Creamy cheesy marsala wine sauce, meltingly sweet sun-dried tomatoes and succulent chicken, really, how can you go wrong! Do not be put off by what appears to be long instructions, they are there to ensure a delicious end result.

It looks fancy but is deceptively simple; dust chicken breasts with flour, slip a few slices of prosciutto and mozzarella into a pocket in the chicken breast, brown, and make the sauce as the chicken is browning, and Eccola! Saltimbocco!

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Gado Gado Salad

Gado Gado sounds like baby talk but this is not for babies, no sireee! This is a classic Indonesian salad that is a great way to use up all of those scraps of veggies you've got in the crisper bin. Little bits of cabbage, celery, few potatoes and a couple of green beans just hanging around taunting you? Whip up some peanut sauce or the like and you've got some Gado Gado!

Actually, it was the appearance of some free peanut sauce that inspired this meal (another freebie expired item from the co-op, courtesy of my hubbie).  But whipping up some peanut sauce (or other nut butter) is easy to do, especially as the water is boiling for making the eggs, potatoes and green beans.

This is an especially great meal when you realize that veggies have been AWOL from your meal plans in a while. Giving the cabbage a quick blanch makes this meal slightly warmed and less of a plate full of salad. Add whatever protein you choose, tofu is traditional and here I seared some and place it in the middle. Use what you have on hand.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Egg Foo Yung

Eggs and I have not always been the best of dining companions. A very fussy eater as a child when it came to anything besides salad, pickles and bread and butter, my mother once infamously made me eat to fried eggs, which were promptly regurgitated. Not a pretty scene.

Fast forward multiple decades and such food abhorrence's feel antiquated, so dutifully I try to overcome them. Egg foo yung was just one of those that sounded like it would make my tummy queasy again. How wrong can a person be!

This turned out to be a fun bunch meal, complete with the fun Asian BBQ dipping sauce I added, completely untraditional but delicious!

Fast, quick and with some veggies secreted inside, try this the next time you are at a loss for an easy and fun brunch meal.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Cauliflower Parmesan

So that Red Coated, Chocolate Dipped Faux Holiday is a few days away, and you want to make something special for your love, but you don't have tons of time to look up a fancy recipe...So make comfort food! Right! Happy, warm, yummy in your tummy food!

No, not pasta, but close, Parmesan! Cauliflower Parmesan!

(Wait for it...)

CAULIFLOWER PARMESAN?

Yes, you heard right, and why didn't I think of this sooner? Breaded cauliflower doused with tomato sauce, bechamel sauce and loads of parmesan baked to crispy perfection. I will bet the house that everyone will love this!

How can such a boast be made? Just seeing the look on my hubby's face when he spied the cauliflower florets awaiting their breading (it was of total horror) and then cut to him forking said florets transformed into magical goodness into his mouth. "I was skeptical, but this is amazing!" From the mouths of babes!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Morning Glory Muffins with Spelt Flour

What do you do with 3-4 cups of leftover raw shredded carrot and apple salad? Make morning glory muffins, of course!

One of my many fun food jobs is being a free-lance lunch lady at North Coast Preparatory Academy and usually the kids are fairly food adventurous. But too much carrot apple salad was just that, too much. So I found this muffin recipe and used up my leftovers. Voila! Repurposed salad in a hand-held breakfast.

Since wheat flour is out of my diet, I used spelt flour. And despite the original author's admonishments about the "correct" way to measure flour (which I didn't follow), and my need to just keep adding until the mixture looked right (spelt needs less liquid than wheat), these muffins turned out wonderfully! My husband's co-workers thanked me profusely for sending them in with him for the staff lounge.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Baked Ziti with Veggie Italian Sausage Crumbles

Awww, baked ziti, a phrase that invokes comfort, cheesy, Italian homemade goodness.

No? You must not be from the Northeast!

Baked ziti, AKA pasta al forno is truly second best only to pizza. If you are an omnivore, adding in some Italian sausage is always a good thing. Fortunately my freezer had some of my homemade veggie Italian sausage (gluten free!), so it was added to the mix. Delizioso!

This can be a quick pantry meal if you already have a few things on hand, such as prepared tomato sauce and veggie sausage crumbles. Preparation is simple: heat tomato sauce, cook pasta, sautee crumbles (all of which can basically happen simultaneously), combine and grate cheese over the top and bake.

If you have to use gluten free pasta as I do, then this is a great dish for hiding the less than exciting texture of such pastas. It also can handle a variety of cheeses, great for using up odd bits and pieces out of your cheese drawer. (What? You don't have a cheese drawer? So sorry to hear that! Get started on that right away!)