Monday, October 24, 2011

White Bean Stew with Spicy Pork Sausage

Popping in with a quick and hearty recipe in anticipation of fall weather!  I adapted this recipe from Simply Recipes - omitting the bacon, adding more sausage, using canned cannellini beans instead of dried lentils to trim the cooking time, and seasoning with red pepper.

I think it's gonna be a homework night over here. xoxoxoxo
Can't wait for Albuquerque Lindy Exchange this weekend!!

White Bean Stew with Spicy Pork Sausage
Adapted from Simply Recipes

1 large yellow onion, chopped 
2-3 large carrots, diced
2-3 large ribs celery, diced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 can cannellini beans, drained
1.5 cups chicken stock
1/2 teaspoon dry thyme
1 bay leaf
3 spicy pork sausage sliced
1 teaspoon sherry vinegar (can sub cider vinegar)
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, with a little extra for garnish
crushed red pepper (optional)

Heat a large, thick-bottomed pot (6 to 8 quart) on medium  high heat. Add the carrots, onions, celery, and cumin. Stirring frequently, scraping up the browned bits at the bottom of the pan, cook until softened, about 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook a minute more, until fragrant.

While vegetables are softening, cook Italian sausage in a skillet.

Add the beans, stock, water, thyme, bay leaf. At this point add a teaspoon of salt and some pepper. You will season more to taste later. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook partially covered for about 15-20 minutes, adding in the Italian sausage at about the 10-minute mark.
Add sherry vinegar and parsley to stew. Add salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste (I also added crushed red pepper to the top of mine and really liked that).

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Erica's Baby Shower Menu

Congratulations, Erica!  I think all the ladies had a lovely time at the shower today, and Erica and Adam have some seriously awesome baby stuff!

Special thanks to the lovely Kate and Kadie for helping pull everything together at the last minute, And of course, my amazing husband Todd, who has been a major trooper, even waking up with me at 5:15 a.m. this morning after running 520 Swing yesterday night. 

Here are the details of what I made for the shower.  Enjoy!

Mary Quite Contrary Garden Salad
Pink of Perfection
10 ounces mixed greens
3 ounces blue cheese (my heart flips for for the cow’s milk Bleu d’Auvergne)
1 sweet and tart apple (like honeycrisp), chopped
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

Whisk together extra-virgin olive oil, cider vinegar, pure maple syrup, and mustard. Season dressing with coarse salt and ground pepper. In a large bowl, combine greens with apple. Drizzle dressing over and toss gently until leaves are thoroughly coated. Sprinkle with blue cheese and serve.

Miss Muffet's Lemon Curd
Honey and Jam
Makes 1 cup (240 g)
1/2 cup (125 ml) freshly-squeezed lemon juice

1/3 cup (65 g) sugar (or 1/2 cup, 100 g, if using regular lemons)

2 large egg yolks

2 large eggs
pinch of salt

6 tablespoons (85 g) unsalted butter, cubed

1. Place a mesh strainer over a bowl, and set aside.
2. In a medium saucepan, whisk together the lemon juice, sugar, egg yolks, eggs, and salt.
3. Add the butter cubes and set the pan over low heat, whisking constantly until the butter is melted.
4. Increase the heat and cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens and just begins to become jelly-like. It’s done when you lift the whisk and the mixture holds its shape when it falls back into the saucepan from the whisk.
5. Immediately press the curd through the strainer. Once strained, store the lemon curd in the refrigerator. It will keep for up to one week.

Cream Scones
Honey and Jam
2 cups (10 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour, preferably a low-protein brand such as Gold Medal or Pillsbury

1 tablespoon baking powder

3 tablespoons sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

5 tablespoons chilled, unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch cubes

1 cup heavy cream

1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 425°F.
2. Place flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in large bowl or work bowl of food processor fitted with steel blade. Whisk together or pulse six times.
3. If making by hand, use two knives, a pastry blender or your fingertips and quickly cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse meal, with a few slightly larger butter lumps. If using food processor, remove cover and distribute butter evenly over dry ingredients. Cover and pulse 12 times, each pulse lasting 1 second. (it definietly took me more than 12 pulses to get the rid sized butter bits!) Transfer dough to large bowl.
4. Stir in heavy cream with a rubber spatula or fork until dough begins to form, about 30 seconds.
5. Transfer dough and all dry, floury bits to countertop and knead dough by hand just until it comes together into a rough, sticky ball, 5 to 10 seconds. Form scones by pressing the dough into an 8-inch cake pan, then turning the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface, cutting the dough into 8 wedges with either a knife or bench scraper.
6. Place rounds or wedges on ungreased baking sheet and bake until scone tops are light brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool on wire rack for at least 10 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Butternut Squash and Caramelized Onion Galette
Smitten Kitchen
Click Here for Recipe!
Note: you can also use a bag of frozen butternut squash for this recipe, which will save you loads of time!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Baby Shower Baking

Some of the prep work for the baby shower tomorrow ... 

More food photos to come after the shower!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Baked Sweet Potatoes with Chili Beans

Hi bloggies!  Hope you had a great Wednesday!  Mine's been busy.  I'd like to think if I can just get through all the stuff due this week, things will be better, but I can't really see a breather at the moment :/

I have a new recipe for you!  Todd and I thought this recipe was good, but we're going to tweak it for next time.  For instance, the original recipe doesn't call for red pepper, but I thought it'd taste good with it as we were eating, so I added it then.  Of course, next time I'll just season the whole pot ;)  Also, make sure to add some red onions and avocado - we didn't do that, and we thought it tasted like it was missing something.


Slightly adapted from Sprouted Kitchen

4 Small Yams/Sweet Potatoes
1 drained can of pinto beans

1 drained can of black beans
1 Yellow Onion
2 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. Chili Powder
1 tsp. Cumin
1/2 tsp. Paprika
1 tsp. Salt
28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
Bunches and bunches of shakes of crushed red pepper (optional)
Chopped Red Onion
Sour Cream or Whole Milk Greek Yogurt

1. Preheat the oven to 400. Pierce holes in the sweet potatoes/yams, lightly wrap them in foil, and bake on the middle rack for about 45-55 minutes (or just cook potatoes in microwave.  We put out potatoes in the oven for 45 min, but since they still weren't done, we nuked them in the microwave to finish).
2. Thinly slice the onion. Over medium heat in a heavy bottomed pot, cook the onions and garlic until softened. Add the spices and the jar of tomatoes. Bring to a simmer and reduce for about 20 minutes while the beans finish cooking.
When the beans are cooked, drain and add them to the tomato mix, cook another 10 minutes for all the flavors to marry. Taste for salt and spices, add more if desired.
3. Split open the baked sweet potato/yams and create a little cavern down the middle. Fill the cavern with the chili beans and add toppings as desired.