October 27, 2014

Bolognese Alla Diavolo Pappardelle


Ingredients:

For sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
1 pound hot Italian sausage
1 pound 90% lean ground beef
1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ cup whole milk
½ cup dry red wine
3½ cups canned crushed tomatoes
1 (15 ounce can) diced tomatoes
freshly ground black pepper to taste
sea salt to taste


For pasta
2 pounds flour
10 eggs
3 tablespoons Frank’s® RedHot® Original Cayenne Pepper Sauce

To make the sauce:

Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven or tall-sided skillet over medium heat. Cook the onion and carrots until the onions are translucent and soft, stirring occasionally, about 5–8 minutes. Add the sausage and ground beef and cook, stirring occasionally and breaking up any large chunks, until the meat is browned, about 8–10 minutes.

Add the spices and milk. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the milk has cooked down and the meat looks dry, about 20 minutes. Add the wine and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the wine has cooked down and the meat looks dry, about 20 minutes. Add the tomatoes and simmer for at least 1½ hours and up to 3½ hours, adding small amounts of water occasionally if the mixture looks dry. When the sauce is done, add salt and pepper to taste.

To make the pasta:

Place the ingredients in a large bowl. Start mixing either by hand or with a mixer with a dough hook until a dough forms. Remove the dough to a lightly floured cutting board and knead, sprinkling on small amounts of flour as necessary, until the dough is smooth and no longer sticky.

Divide the dough into 12 pieces and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for your pasta machine to create sheets of pasta. Gently fold the sheets in half and slice them into 1-inch-wide strips.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta until al dente, 2–3 minutes.

Drain the pasta and then serve immediately topped with the sauce. Store the pasta and sauce leftovers separately.



My thoughts:
This one of my favorite recipes from my new book, Cooking with Frank's RedHot Cayenne Pepper Sauce: Delicious Recipes That Bring the Heat, I love it not only because the pasta rolls out like a dream or that it is honestly delicious, it shows how versatile hot sauce can be! Who knew pasta infused with hot sauce would be so good? It tastes spicy, not "hot" and if you didn't know, I don't think you'd guess the secret ingredient was hot sauce!

from the book:

"A classic Italian sauce paired with hot sauce–spiked pasta? Sounds crazy, but trust me, it is amazing. Somehow the addition of the hot sauce makes the pasta silky smooth and incredibly easy to work with. It is the perfect light, tasty, fresh foil for a rich, meaty sauce"

Cooking with Frank's RedHot Cayenne Pepper Sauce: Delicious Recipes That Bring the Heat is available now! Click on the title to see it on Amazon.com where is available in hardback or for you Kindle.



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October 20, 2014

Meyer Lemon Ginger Beer Rock Shandy



Ingredients:
1 cup Meyer lemon juice (from about 7 lemons)
4 cups very cold water
3 tablespoons liquid turbinado sugar, simple syrup or agave nectar
3 cups ginger beer
1/2 teaspoon bitters

Directions:

In a medium pitcher, stir together the lemon juice, water, syrup until fully incorporated. Carefully stir in the ginger beer. Sprinkle with bitters. Serve immediately. 


My thoughts:
A rock shandy is a non-alcoholic version of a shandy (which is beer mixed with lemonade or soda) frequently made with citrus fruit. I've been on a big ginger beer kick lately so I thought I'd try it with sweet-tart Meyer lemons. It was great, really refreshing but not terribly summery.


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October 13, 2014

Tuna Dandelion Green Pasta Salad


Ingredients:
10 oz rotini
2 cups finely chopped dandelion greens
10 oz canned solid white albacore in water, drained
1 small onion, diced
1 stalks celery, diced
2 tablespoons capote capers
2 green onions, diced


dressing:
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 1/2 teaspoon Dijon
1/2 teaspoon juice from the caper jar
1/2 teaspoon ground peri peri
freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook the pasta until al dente. In the last minute of cooking, toss in the dandelion greens. Drain and cool completely.


In a large bowl, toss together the tuna, pasta mixture, capers, onion, green onion, celery and zest. Break up any large chunks of tuna. Set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayo, caper juice, mustard, spices. Drizzle over the salad and stir to evenly distribute all ingredients.




My thoughts:
I was excited to see dandelion greens in the supermarket last week. I had never seen them before and I was surprised at how long they were! They looked like a bunch Swiss chard or something. Anyway, I wasn't sure what I was going to do with but I had a craving for tuna salad so I thought I'd try it in that. Luckily for me, the somewhat bitter greens were the perfect foil for the milder tuna and pasta. I had it for lunch for several days and never got tired of it. High praise for a pasta salad!


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October 10, 2014

Butternut Squash Pork Tacos


Ingredients:
2 1/2 lb boneless pork roast
1 1/2 lb (peeled, seeded) butternut squash, cut into 2 inch half moons*
2 jalapenos, sliced
1 onion, sliced
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon granulated garlic

to serve:
taco sized tortillas
shredded Mexican cheeses
sour cream
hot sauce
lettuce

Directions:
Place the butternut squash in the bottom of a 4 qt slow cooker. Place the pork on top the squash and then scatter the remaining ingredients on top. Cook on low 8-10 hours. Remove the pork and shred. Use a slotted spoon or spider to scoop out the solid ingredients from the slow cooker insert. Place in a medium sized bowl and use a potato masher to mash until fairly smooth. Add the pork and toss to coat. Serve immediately on warm tortillas and top with your favorite toppings.


*I had a monster-sized squash so I only had to use half.




My thoughts:
I know butternut squash pork tacos sounds kind of nutty but trust me, it works! The squash cooks while the pork does, becoming incredibly tender. Once mashed and tossed with the shredded pork, it gives the pork an earthy flavor that is quite a change from my normally fiery tacos but quite good. It also helps thicken the meat mixture which I appreciate, slow cooker pork has a tendency to fall out of tacos. Not a problem with this recipe. You can top it with whatever you'd like, but I stuck with cheese, sour cream and lettuce. I think some thinly sliced radishes would be good too for a bit of crunch. I'm adding these to my regular autumn location.


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October 08, 2014

Chorizo Autumn Vegetable Soup




Ingredients:

group #1
1 acorn squash, cubed
2 carrots, cut into coins
2 very large parsnips, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 Walla Walla onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground peri peri
8 cups Swanson chicken broth*
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper


group #2
1 bunch lacinato kale
12 oz Portuguese-style chorizo, cut into coins and lightly browned


Directions:
Add the ingredients from group #1 to a 6 quart slow cooker. Cook on low 8-10 hrs. Stir in group #2. Cover and cook on low 20 additional minutes.




*Depending on the size of your vegetables, you might need slightly more stock. It should just cover the vegetables.


My thoughts:
October is official soup weather, I think. It is suddenly quite chilly here and I have to say, I don't like it one bit! We had lovely weather 2 weekends ago and actually spent an afternoon at a beach searching for sea glass. Now I am trying to think of fun, indoor activities. Maybe I will take up a craft.

I digress, the lovely people at Swanson contacted me and asked if I'd be interested in creating a new soup recipe using their chicken broth. They have new ones out that are flavored, Tuscan Chicken and Louisiana Cajun, and a starter for creamy soups which are all very tasty but for this recipe, I stuck with the classic. I had a bunch of vegetables from my delivery service and some Portuguese chorizo, I decided to go make a vaguely Portuguese inspired soup (we are still obsessed with Portugal after our trip in May) with loads of autumn vegetables and peri peri. I even included kale, which normally I hate but I realized the lacinato variety is actually not bad. Much less fibrous and the stems and ribs were much smaller and more tender than the kale I normally have had. This is a hearty, filling soup that anyone would love. It even freezes well!


Swanson is offering one reader a prize pack including:



· One elegant, white soup tureen

· 4 white soup bowls

· 4 chevron cloth napkins

· One carton of each of the following Swanson products:

o Swanson Chicken Broth, Swanson Chicken Stock

o Swanson Cream Starter Traditional

o Swanson Cream Starter 25% Reduced Fat

o Swanson Flavor Infused Louisiana Cajun Broth

o Swanson Flavor Infused Tuscan Chicken Broth


a Rafflecopter giveaway




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October 06, 2014

Cheddar Broccoli Mashed Potatoes


Ingredients:
2 lbs Yukon Gold Potatoes, cubed
1 large broccoli crown, cut into florets (about 1 1/2 cups florets)
2 cloves garlic
1/3 cup extra sharp cheddar
1/4 cup milk
1 tablespoon butter


Directions:

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the broccoli, garlic and potatoes. Boil until the potatoes are fork-tender. Drain, mash in remaining ingredients. Serve immediately.


My thoughts:
It is mashed potato season again! I love them any time of the year but in the summer it is just too hot to boil water sometimes! This is one of my favorite ways to make mashed potatoes; there is no need for a second vegetable side dish. I don't know about you but making multiple sides and a main is something I try to avoid unless it is a special occasion. For two people it seems like a lot of work (and dishes for a dishwasher-less house) and often yields too many leftovers. These are not only delish but truly one pot. Boiling the garlic sounds a bit weird at first but it really infuses the dish and gets really soft and mashable. The cheddar is just gilding the lily but so good!

If you are at home and have leftovers, try browning them in a little butter to reheat--so good!


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September 29, 2014

Dark Chocolate Coconut Kiss Drops



Ingredients:
24 dark chocolate kisses, unwrapped
1/4 cup butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla paste
1 1/2 tablespoons buttermilk
1 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsweetened, shredded coconut (sometimes sold as "desiccated" coconut)


Directions:

Preheat oven to 350. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.

In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. Beat in the egg, buttermilk and vanilla paste. In a medium bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (except coconut). Slowly stream into the bowl as the beater is running. Scrape the bowl down using a spatula. Scoop tablespoons of dough and place on sheet, about 3/4 inches apart. Sprinkle with coconut. Bake 8-10 minutes or until  cookie is just set. Remove from oven. Cool 2 minutes. Press a candy piece into center of each cookie. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely.


Yield: 1 1/2 dozen cookies (recipe can be doubled)



My thoughts:
I was asked by OXO to create a recipe using OXO products (I used my spatula set to scrape down the bowl) as part of their Cookies for Kids' Cancer campaign. By making this batch of cookies, OXO will will donate $100 to Cookies for Kids' Cancer on my behalf. Since the cookies were for a children's charity, I wanted to make something kid-friendly. What is more kid-friendly than a cookie topped with candy? The recipe is super easy and kids will have fun sprinkling the coconut and carefully pressing a candy into each one. I loved (still love!) dark chocolate and coconut as a child so that was my inspiration for the flavor choices. Slightly cakey-chewy they remind me of a coconut macaroon crossed with a sugar cookie, topped with chocolate.



For every stickered item sold, OXO will donate 25 cents in support of pediatric cancer research as part of its $100,000* pledge to Cookies for Kids' Cancer. Look for specially marked OXO products at participating retailers in September.

* In 2014, OXO will donate up to $100,000 to Cookies for Kids' Cancer through specially marked baking tools, bake sale matches and other fundraising efforts. Cookies for Kids' Cancer is a recognized 501c(3) public charity duly incorporated under the laws of the state of New Jersey. Your donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowable by law. 100% of proceeds raised by Cookies for Kids' Cancer fund pediatric cancer research.

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