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Category Archives: Comfort Food

Decadent Apple Cake

Decadent Apple Cake


This cake is such a wonderful fall treat! We ate our first piece warm, that’s why it’s still in the center of the tube pan (we couldn’t wait) ๐Ÿ™‚ , however, it’s really good cold too. If you want to serve it out of the Tube or Bundy pan you need to let it completely cool before removing. Either way, pair it with a cup of hot coffee or tea and I promise, you will have a little slice of heaven!

Ingredients:

3 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 cup pecans, chopped
1 cup vegetable oil

2 cups sugar

3 eggs

2 taps. vanilla

3 cups raw apples, peeled and finely chopped

Instructions:

Mix oil, sugar, eggs and vanilla.

Sift together flour, salt, soda. Mix into first mixture. Fold in pecans and apples. Grease tube or bundt pan and bake at 350 for 1 hour.

Sauce:

1 cup packed brown sugar
ยผ cup milk
ยพ cup butter
Mix and cook ingredients to a gentle boil, stirring constantly. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Pour over hot cake while cake is still in pan. Let cake cool completely before removing.
Enjoy & Happy Fall!

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Posted by on November 6, 2016 in Baking, Cake, Comfort Food, food, Yummy

 

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Shrimp, Potato & Kale Tuscan Soup

This soup is kind of on the line of Olive Garden’s Zuppa Toscana Soup… except it doesn’t have sausage in it…but if you like sausage you could certainly add that.

Ingredients:

1 large onion, chopped

1 package (1 lb) peeled & devined shrimp (chopped into smaller pieces)

3-1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning, 1 tsp basil & 1 tsp oregano

1 TBLS olive oil

64 oz vegetable broth

2 cans (15 ounces each) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

6 Russet Potatoes (washed and cut in half lengthwise and then sliced 1/4 inch thick)

1 – 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed

6 cups chopped fresh kale (chopped)

12 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

2 Bay leaves

1 TBLS flour

1 cup heavy whipping cream

Heat oil in a large pot, add shrimp, or if your using Italian sausage here’s where you’d add 1 lb of it. However, if you are using sausage – completely eliminate the oil!! Cook shrimp (or sausage, or both) until it’s almost cooked, then add the onion & garlic. Cook until onion turns translucent.

Sprinkle flour over the mixture and stir to combine. Add vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Then add potatoes, cook for approx 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

Reduce heat to low and stir in the heavy cream and kale. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve with toasted French bread or hard rolls!


Enjoy!

 
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Posted by on October 29, 2016 in Comfort Food, food, potatoes, shrimp, soup, veggies, Yummy

 

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Baked Shrimp Egg Rolls

Baked Shrimp Egg Rolls

Here is a yummy recipe when you’re just wanting finger food on movie night. Or you can add your favorite main dish – like fried rice, Lo Mein or Kung Pao to it and make it a meal. This recipe makes about 8 a 12 egg rolls (depending on how full you fill them) – so double, or triple as needed ๐Ÿ™‚

Ingredients:

1/2 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp sesame oil

1 cup green cabbage, sliced thinly

1 carrot, shredded

5 green onions, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tsp fresh ginger, minced

1/2 lb shrimp (cut into small pieces)

12 egg roll wrappers

Salt and pepper (to taste)

Additional sesame oil for brushing once egg roll is wrapped

Heat oven to 400 F.

Line baking pan with parchment paper. You can either place the finished egg rolls directly on the parchment paper or use a rack (like you would cool a cake on) set inside the cookie sheet to bake your egg rolls. My filling mixture was a  little more juicey than I would have liked so next time I’ll use a rack – like below – when baking.


Heat the olive oil and the sesame oil in a pan, add cabbage, carrots, onions, and stir fry until slightly tender (about 1 minute). Move veggies to the outside rim of the pan and add the shrimp, garlic, ginger, salt & pepper in the center. Cook until no longer pink. Remove from heat. Allow mixture to cool.

Place one egg wrapper on a flat surface and add a good full tablespoon (or more  if you like) of the cooled filling to the center of the wrapper. (Cover unused wrappers with a damp towel to keep from drying out while you roll your egg rolls). Roll as the pictures show:






Brush each roll with sesame oil


Bake for 12 – 14 minutes or until golden brown. Serve hot with your favorite sweet and sour sauce or peanut sauce.


Enjoy!!

 
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Posted by on October 27, 2016 in Comfort Food, Egg rolls, fish, food, shrimp, veggies, Yummy

 

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Spaghetti Bake and Apple Crumble Barsย 


It’s finally fall and that’s when I really feel like cooking. The smells of fall are so good, the cinnamon, cumin, nutmeg…couldn’t be better. 

Today the house smells so good and because of that I’m in the mood to give you two recipes! 

First is a Spaghetti bake that I’ve adapted somewhat from the Taste of Home cooking site. 

Here’s the recipe:

1 package (16 ounces) spaghetti

1 pound ground beef

1 medium onion, chopped

1 jar (24 ounces) meatless spaghetti sauce

1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt

2 large eggs

1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

5 tablespoons butter, melted

2 cups (16 ounces) 4% cottage cheese

4 cups (16 ounces) part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese

Spices I added were: Italian Seasoning, Dried basil (from my garden), oregano and salt & pepper. I also sprinkled in some red pepper flakes…

Note:  I am pescatarian  (meaning a vegetarian who eats fish) so I substituted the ground beef for chopped mushrooms and 3 large gloves of chopped garlic. Also, I didn’t have any cottage cheese, so I substituted some leftover homemade Alfredo sauce that I had. 

Directions:

Cook spaghetti according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook beef (or mushrooms – or both) and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in spaghetti sauce and seasoned salt; set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, Parmesan cheese and butter. Drain spaghetti; add to egg mixture and toss to coat.

Place half of the spaghetti mixture in a greased 3-qt. baking dish. 


Top with half of the cottage cheese, meat sauce and mozzarella cheese.



 Repeat layers.



Cover and bake at 350ยฐ for 40 minutes. Uncover; bake 20-25 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Yield: 10 servings.

Then either for dessert – or earlier for breakfast that morning and dessert later, I made an Apple Crumble that is kinda like apple crumble bar cheese cake – so good!! I wish I could share with you how wonderful these dishes are making the house smell!! Oh my…welcome Fall!!


Sour Cream Apple Crumble Bars


INGREDIENTS

2 cups quick-cooking oats

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup walnuts, roughly chopped

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon allspice

Filling:

2 cups apples, peeled and shredded

1 cup sour cream

3/4 cup sugar

1 large egg

1 tablespoon honey

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Note: again, I didn’t have something (really need to go shopping) – I was out of walnuts…I never run out of walnuts…so I substituted finely chopped peanuts. 

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350ยบ F and line a 9×13-inch baking dish with parchment paper.

Cream together butter and sugars in a large bowl or mixer until fluffy and lightened in color.

Add in oats, flour and walnuts, then mix in baking soda, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg and allspice until combined.

Pour 1/2 crust mixture into lined baking dish and use your hands or a flat-bottomed surface to press crust into an even layer.

Bake for 10 minutes, or until lightly browned.

While crust is pre-baking, mix together sour cream, sugar, egg, honey and vanilla extract in a large bowl, then mix in shredded apples.

Pour mixture over baked bottom crust and spread into an even layer, then top with remaining crumble mixture by dropping pieces until it is completely covered with a thin layer.


Bake for 35 minutes, or until topping is golden brown. Cover with aluminum foil if topping is browning too quickly.



Remove from oven and let cool completely before serving.

Enjoy and enjoy the tastes and smells of Fall!!

 
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Posted by on September 17, 2016 in breakfast, Comfort Food, food, Pasta, vegetarian

 

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The Best Potato Soup

This recipe is a combination of two recipes that I found in some old cooking magazines – they both looked really good – but together the recipes are amazing!

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Ingredients:

6 medium – large potatoes

2 large baking potatoes (baked peeled and coarsely mashed)

48 oz organic vegetable broth

1 TBLS sea salt

1 medium – lrg onion – chopped

1 cup chopped celery

2 cloves garlic (pressed and finely chopped)

3 cups half and half + 1 cup 2% milk

1/2 cup sour cream

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup (or more) shredded cheddar cheese

1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions – green tops as well

crumbled bacon (optional)

Instructions:

Chop up potatoes – Place broth/salt/onions/celery/garlic and potatoes in broth and bring to a boil – (do not add baked potatoes yet)

Reduce heat and simmer 20-30 minunutes until potatoes are tender

In a saucepan whisk flour and milk/half & half combo until smooth – Bring to a boil – stirring constantly – cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened – stir in the baked potatoes /ย  cheese – salt and pepper (to taste – approx 1/2 tsp salt & 1/4 tsp pepper) – stir in 1/2 cup sour cream – cook over medium heat until cheese is melted

Add milk/cheese mixture to vegetable mixture and stir to combine (do not drain vegetable broth off)

Garnish with green onions – a little shredded cheese – and crumbled bacon (if desired)

Serve with warmed hard rolls – DELISH!!

 
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Posted by on December 31, 2013 in Bacon, Comfort Food, food, potatoes, soup, vegetarian, veggies, Yummy

 

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Mushroom and Cheesy Polenta

Mushroom and Cheesy Polenta

This dish was soo yummy, oh my. If you like grits and you like mushrooms in a savory garlic and shallots wine sauce, then you’re going to LOVE this dish!!

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I know what they say about Polenta – that it’s the same thing as grits… But I think there is a slight difference. Polenta is made with a very finely ground corn meal (usually yellow corn meal) and it’s got more of a porridge consistency to it…However, regardless if you think polenta and grits are the same thing or not though, this meal is very very tasty and I don’t think it would have been the same had I used grits!

Okay so here are your ingredients to feed 2-3 people. You’ll probably have some polenta left over but you can have that the next morning with your eggs ๐Ÿ™‚

ingredients:
– 2 pkgs portobello mushrooms, sliced or diced – whichever you prefer (approx 20 or so medium-sized mushrooms)
**you can also use a mixture of mushrooms (which is what I intend to do next time – shitake, oyster, portobello – whatever your favorites are).
– 3 garlic cloves (chopped)
– 3 small shallots (chopped)
– 2 TBLS olive oil
– oregano seasoning
– rosemary seasoning
– thyme
(Anytime you can use fresh spices do it! You’ll be grateful you did! But store-bought spices are good too)
– salt
– pepper
– 1/4 cup white wine
– 1/4 cup veggie broth
– 1 TBLS butter
– 1 cup finely ground yellow or white cornmeal (I used Arnett’s stone ground fine ground white)
– 1 – 1.5 cups cheese(s)- grated (the recipe called for Parmesan cheese, but I did a mixture of smoky cheddar, a Vermont white cheddar, and Parmesan- YUM)

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I started cooking my Polenta first so that it can be cooking while I’m preparing the mushrooms. To cook polenta you use 3 parts water to 1 part finely ground corn meal. However, I wanted mine to be not so firm, so I used 4 parts liquid to 1 part corn meal.

In fact, I used 3 cups of vegetable broth and 1 cup of water to 1 cup corn meal. You can also use chicken broth if you want that flavor.

Bring the liquid to a rolling boil, then add your corn meal S L O W L Y stirring with a whisk as you add. I also added some oregano, rosemary, sea salt and pepper to this mixture. Reduce to low heat, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until thick and creamy (approximately 15 minutes). Stir in the cheese. Remove the polenta from the heat.

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To make the mushroom mixture:

In a large pan (I used a large fry pan) heat 2 TBLS olive oil over high heat. Then add the diced garlic and shallots, slightly caramelizing these before adding the mushrooms. While the mushrooms were cooking, I added some thyme and oregano to taste (I didn’t have fresh, but that would have been even better!)

When the mushrooms have cooked down (they create their own water), add 1/4 cup white wine and 1/4 cup veggie broth. Allow this to cook until it begins to thicken, season with salt and pepper to taste. Then add 1 TBLS of butter.

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Serve a cup or two of the polenta topped with a cup or so of the mushrooms. Sprinkle with grated cheese of your choice (I used Vermont white cheddar) and enjoy!!

Mmmmm, I loved this dish so much that I want some more right now because writing about it is making me want some ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

 
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Posted by on September 1, 2013 in Comfort Food, food, vegetarian, veggies, Yummy

 

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Jenny’s Create a Pasta Dish…

Jenny’s Create a Pasta Dish…

This was a dish that Jenny created one night when we didn’t have much food in the house. She created it using what we had in the cabinet and leftover veggies in the frig. It is one of our favorite dishes.

The really cool thing about this dish is that you can use it as a main course by adding a meat, or you can use it as a side dish by eliminating the meat and cooking the meat on its own.

You can also adapt it to your own taste…and add whatever veggie you want to experiment with.

Well, here’s your ingredients…

or a pasta or your choice…

First Step….

– Boil your pasta to the the softness of your choice…drain.

Second Step…

– Cook your bacon…

Then just start dumping it all together…

While the pasta is still piping HOT (very important), stir in the raw spinach. The heat from the pasta will wilt the spinach perfectly. (However, if you prefer to saute your spinach first – go for it! :))

Heat the jar of rosa alfredo in the microwave before you dump it in

(that will help to wilt the spinach as well)…

Bacon, Bacon, Bacon Baby!! If you don’t like bacon (whoa, is there anyone that doesn’t like Bacon?) … ๐Ÿ˜‰ Then you can pick another meat (Chicken, ham, beef…probably even Tuna, shrimp or crab)…. we LOVE the bacon!!

or you can just skip the meat all together ๐Ÿ™‚

Parmesan cheese….yum…mix in..

Here’s the final product….

Oh Yum!!

Now Eat! Enjoy ๐Ÿ™‚

Thanks for coming up with this recipe meine kleine Liebchen Jenny), it’s one of our favorites!! I love you! โค

 
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Posted by on February 7, 2012 in Bacon, Comfort Food, Jenny's dish, Pasta, Yummy

 

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