Thursday, March 31, 2011

Cheddar & Chive Muffins

There is only one thing that could have made these muffins taste better.  Bacon.  Thing is, I didn't realize that until after they were baked and I was burning my mouth trying to taste one warm, right out of the oven.  Jason and I both agreed that these could (and should) be made again.  Possibly one weekend that Bear & Bridget come to visit...however we also agreed that we would need to double the recipe since Bear would devour at least a dozen just standing in the kitchen.

Cheddar & Chive Muffins adapted from Sugar Crafter
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 T sugar
  • 1 T baking powder
  • 1/2 t kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 3-4 T fresh chives, chopped
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • 2 T unsalted butter, melted
Preheat the oven to 375.  Lightly grease a mini-muffin pan.  In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.  Stir in the grated cheese & chives.  See, this is where you could add cooked, crumbled bacon!  In another bowl, combine the milk, egg & butter.  Add to the dry ingredients and stir just until everything is moist.  Spoon into the mini-muffin pan and bake about 15-20 minutes, or until golden on top.

I got 36 of the mini-muffins from one batch.  If you don't have two pans, or you don't want to wait on the first batch to bake, and then bake again you can always add a little more batter to each and get an even two dozen.


WW PointsPlus: 1 pt per muffin for a batch of 36

Friday, March 25, 2011

Recipe Exchange: Bubble & Squeak

This week I participated in a recipe exchange on a cooking board I frequent.  The topic happened to be "Quick Weeknight Meals" asking for recipes that can be cooked in under an hour.


When you combine our work schedules and drive time, if dinner can't be on the table in about 45 minutes, we will probably end up ordering pizza.  Jason and I both get home around 6:30, Cooper is starving and it's a mad dash to get things ready.  It's very important to me that we eat as a family.  Some days it doesn't happen.  Cooper will end up throwing all of his food on the floor, or we opt to eat after he goes to bed because we know the meal will take a while.  But most of the time we eat together.  That said, I'm always looking for something that can be thrown together in a matter of minutes. 

When this recipe came across my email my first thought was "What the heck is that?"  Then I read the recipe.  Read it again.  And realized that it was something I knew we'd like!  I'm a meat and potatoes kind of person and we're fond of sauteed cabbage - this meal has it all.

Oh, and apparently Bubble & Squeak is a traditional English dish.  Although I didn't Google it so I can't confirm that.  Either way, I can see us making it again.  I did sub white wine vinegar for the cider vinegar the recipe called for, only because that's what I had at home.

Bubble & Squeak from Some Dreams Come True
  • 1 link smoked pork sausage, sliced
  • olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 2-3 large potatoes, diced fairly small
  • 1 head of cabbage, shredded
  • salt & pepper
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
In a large Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add in the sliced sausage and cook until browned.  Toss in the potatoes & onions, season with salt & pepper.  Cover with the lid, stirring occasionally.  Once the potatoes are almost done, add in the cabbage and cook covered until the cabbage wilts down.  Remove from the heat, pour in the vinegar, stir and serve.

We served this with cornbread pancakes.  I'm usually follow the recipe on the back of the bag and then cook them on the stove top just like pancakes.  And because I'm especially strange, I like the spread a little Miracle Whip on these.  Only the pancakes, not regular cornbread.  That gets butter.  But the pancakes...yum.  And Cooper takes after his mom because he ate all of the Miracle Whip before he ate the cornbread.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Pasta Primavera

I'm a visual person.  If a recipe doesn't have a photo, I'm less likely to cook it.  Maybe that's why I'm such a big fan of Food Network...

Anyway, a few weeks ago we were in the car for a road trip and I packed my stack a magazines along to occupy my time.  I currently have a (cheap) subscription for the Racheal Ray Magazine.  To me, this magazine is hit and miss.  One issue will end up in the garbage, unused.  A total flop.  The next issue will be dog-eared, torn to pieces and covered in food splatters.  The issue that contained this recipe happens to be one of those!

It ended up being a bit of an adaptation because I don't have a wok (although I don't think it mattered as much) and Jason and I miscommunicated on the ingredients.  I asked him to chop half of a red onion for Red Beans & Rice and he chopped the entire one.  I couldn't complain, though, since he was chopping the onions while I went to bunko.

I usually complain that RR recipes take forever and a day to make, but this one ended up being pretty quick and tasty!
Pasta Primavera adapted from Rachael Ray
  • 3 cups broccoli florets
  • 12 ounces whole wheat spaghetti
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup carrots, sliced 1/4" thick
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 bunch kale leaves, trimmed and chopped
  • salt & pepper
  • 3/4 cup light cream
  • 3/4 cup grated parmesan
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
Heat salted water to boiling in a large pot and add the broccoli.  Cook for about 30 seconds, until bright green and remove from the water.  Add the pasta and cook to al dente.  Drain the pasta, keeping 1/4 cup of the pasta water aside.

Heat the oil in a large saute pan (or a wok if you have one).  Sautee the garlic until fragrant, add in the broccoli, carrots & kale stirring until the carrots and kale start to wilt.  Stir in the tomatoes and salt & pepper.  Pour in the cream, stir and bring to a boil.  Remove the pan from the heat and add the parmesan cheese & basil. 

Add the pasta and remaining pasta water, tossing to coat.

WW PointsPlus: 5 servings, 8 pp per serving