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Pumpkin-Goat Cheese-Ham Pizza...

...and general Fall deliciousness.

This year, I've been having boxes of organic produce delivered to me every week through ParadiseO, and it's been really great. Not only is the produce organic, but it's also locally grown when possible. Among the benefits: I don't have to go to the store that often, and I only go for things like flour, yogurt, eggs... you know, staples. Also, I eat waaay more fruits and vegetables.

The box arrives on Monday, so on Sunday nights I try to eat everything that I have left; this week, it was spinach and cherry tomatoes, which I sauteed in butter with some baby Bella mushrooms. If you've never had a cooked cherry tomato, then I think now is the time to take that step forward! They are juicy little surprises.

In the spirit of using up things that were languishing in my fridge, I decided to make a pizza using some of the pumpkin puree I had left (after making some of these) and some mozzarella. I mixed the pumpkin with some white wine, salt, pepper, cumin, and olive oil, and used that in the place of tomato sauce, then sprinkled the mozzarella, goat cheese, and ham (I guess it was technically Canadian bacon) on top. In the end, you couldn't really taste the pumpkin, but the spice was nice. So, a good start.

Possible improvements that I can think of: using nutmeg or cloves in the pumpkin; using sweet potato or yam puree instead of pumpkin (might be more flavorful?); putting sauteed garlic in the sauce; topping it with sauteed mushrooms and onions.

Greek Meatballs

Greek Meatballs Recipe

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients
1 lb lean beef or lamb
3/4 cup feta cheese
4 tomatoes (medium)
2 tbsp garlic
1 herbs
Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350.

2. Combine beef, feta, diced tomatoes, garlic & herbs.

3. Mold into 1 inch balls and place on cookie sheet. (makes 32 meatballs, 8 per serving)

4. Bake for 30 minutes.

5. Suggested herbs/seasoning (parsley, oregano, basil, pepper)

Greek Meatballs



I think next time I will make them with lamb. They were delish. I made a whole grain spanish rice thing. It had onions and tomatoes in it, so that makes it spanish :)

Calorie Count

xposted to incorporealgirl

Waffling



For more waffling, check out Not Quite Vegan

Desparate Desserts Part II

Last night I made peaches and dumplings, based on smitten kitchen's post about strawberries and dumplings. I used two peaches instead of the quart of strawberries, disregarded the lemon, used brown sugar instead of regular granulated sugar, and used 1% milk instead of whole. I imagine this could be made without butter, as well. I also halved the recipe, and it made enough dumplings for about two people.

This recipe is even better than that chocolate cookie recipe I shared a bit ago, because it takes even less ingredients. What do you do if you need to whip up a dessert (like I did last night), but only have a bit of fruit, and no eggs and very little butter left? You can't make cookies, but you can make fruit n' dumplings.

And now, allow me to share with you one of the truly strange videos that YouTube has to offer: Seth Meyers and Martha Stewart making a rasberry-rhubarb grunt.

Strawberries: Not just for shortcake

Farmer's market strawberries and rhubarb go gluten-free without much fuss in this early summer classic



More at Not Quite Vegan
I don't know if you've noticed by now, but I have developed a very strong compulsion to bake. Perhaps I have trust issues and won't eat other people's baked goods, perhaps I'm using baking to fill the void that losing the ability to play the piano (for now) has left in my soul - read into this what you will, at least I'm eating some really good cookies.

Tonight, while I waited for my laundry to dry, I baked these bad boys: smitten kitchen's recipe for "brownie roll-out cookies". I knew something special was going down when I started mixing, because let me tell you, these cookies have the best-smelling dough ever. Then, when you bake them, that smell blooms into a beautiful perfume of rich deliciousness that fills your apartment.

A big advantage of this recipe is that it consists of common pantry and fridge items, thereby erasing the need for a run to the grocery store where you must hunt down some outlandish ingredient. It is the perfect recipe to make late at night, when you need your chocolate-y fix.

Another advantage, at least for me, is that it only requires cocoa powder and not solid chocolate; I'm allergic to soy, which makes finding suitable solid chocolate kinda difficult (as far as I know, there's the normal chocolate from Enjoy Life Foods, and the uber-expensive and ultra-delicious Michel Cluizel chocolate from France).

Smitten kitchen also recommends using these to make ice cream sandwiches, something which I fully intend to try.

Delicious Cookies!

freegina and I made these really awesome cookies the other day.  They came out soft & delicious!
The best thing, in my opinion, is they don't call for straight up rot-your-teeth sugar.  Just some brown sugar & honey.

SOFT PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES 


P.S.  We also added chocolate chips.

3 Steps to Tastier Chocolate Chip Cookies

So, chocolate chip cookies are inherently tasty. Chocolate chips, sugar, butter... yum. However, I recently tried the recipe for leite's consumate chocolate chip cookie on smitten kitchen, and discovered a few tips that kicked the cookies up a level of tastiness:

1. Let the cookie sit for 24 to 36 hours; some sort of alchemy occurs during that time, and the cookies turn out a little crispier, a little more toffee-like, and a lot more delicious.
2. Sprinkle a little coarse salt on top of the cookies directly before you bake 'em; this makes a nice combination of sweet and savory.
3. I found this tip somewhere else, but when I baked these cookies, I put an empty Pyrex dish on the bottom rack to block some of the heat. Things tend to burn on the bottom in my oven here in LA, and this solved the problem.

A note about the recipe itself: I used all-purpose flour instead of a combination of bread and cake flour, and it worked just fine.

Speaking of deliciousness, I made these cinnamon swirl buns while I was at home, and there's not much to say except that they were amazing.

How To Have A Special Breakfast

1. Set iPod to Stevie Wonder > All Songs > Shuffle.
2. Make eggs in tomato sauce and a cup of Trader Joe's Pomegranate White Tea.
3. Enjoy life.

Although smitten kitchen has a recipe for eggs in tomato sauce, it's basically just... eggs poached in pasta sauce. You can get fancy and make your sauce from scratch, or you can be like me and add onions and garlic to your premade sauce because you're Italian-American and like your food to scream of onions and garlic, but it's still basically just... eggs poached in pasta sauce. Over toast. And it is delicious.

Pizza Pizza

Today, in an effort to use up the hunk of mozzerella and open can of tomato sauce in the fridge, I made more pizza. This time I used smitten kitchen's recipe for really simple homemade pizza, but doubled the recipe to make 2 pizzas, and only used 3/4 of the salt. This time, Kacey threw the dough around to make it more awesome. Thanks, Kacey!

The toppings were as follows:

Pizza One: chicken apple sausage with canned pineapple (Molly's suggestion)
Pizza Two: tomato and caramelized onion

Sadly, I was a doofus and dropped Pizza Two, so we didn't get to eat that one, but Pizza One was totally delicious. I feel pretty comfortable making basic pizza now, and I look forward to making some more unusual kinds. Gina suggested trying to make a BBQ chicken pizza or a cobbler-like thing with baked fruit, Kacey had ambitions to make a carne asada pizza, I want to try making something with whole wheat dough... what do you think, Livejournal friends?