Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Herbs from the Garden



There are no flavors as great as freshly picked herbs. We have a deer issue in our area, so I include herbs that flower. Although they tend to get huge and I rarely use them, I grow leeks in my garden as the deer do not seem to want to cross over the tall leeks. I am planting more and more herbs. My garden has lots of Lemon Thyme forming a carpet and newly planted sage has taken off. I love spearmint and basil too, but keep it in pots in the front of my yard to protect plants eaten by deer.

I have frozen herbs and I also dry some, but even in winter, I can find some fresh Thyme and kale.





Sunday, October 22, 2017

Fall Veggie Spaghetti


We love vegetables in our spaghetti instead of meat. I include tomatoes (canned these days as the deer eat anything that I plant but for herbs), a can of no salt kidney or other beans labeled no salt, sliced mushrooms, thin sliced zucchini, garlic, herbs such as fresh lemon thyme and basil, cinnamon, tumeric, and today I added a few tablespoons of a butternut squash that was not as naturally sweet as usual. I included half of a jar of a prepared sauce from the grocery store and the small bit of baked butternut squash gave the sauce some body and a very smooth texture.

I will always add some baked winter squash to future sauces as it thickened the sauce and added a hint of sweetness. Sometimes, I add a bit of honey to the spaghetti sauce.



Fall is Here!


Although the weather is still warm in Cleveland, Ohio, the leaves and pumpkins tell us it is Fall. It is an unusually "pink" Fall as the summer, especially the last few weeks have been very dry!



One grill is packed in the garage and the other is covered in a much too big grill ccvoer. Soon the green grill tarp will be covered with snow!



It is almost time to make pumpkin pie. I love canned pumpkin, but the very best pies are from a "pumpkin pie pumpkin." I never carve a "pumpkin pie pumpkin," but let it stay whole as a great table decoration until it is cut up and prepared as a substitute for canned pumpkin in a few pumpkin pies.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Roasted Asparagus

For roasted asparagus follow Ina Garten's easy recipe on foodnetwork.com at

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/roasted-asparagus-recipe

Basically, clean, trim off hard outer areas of stem, place on parchment paper (the best as I hate to scrub pans) add a tiny bit of oil (I put a small amount of canola or olive oil on my hands and rub each stalk which I dried after washing) and roast at 400 F in the oven for about 25-30 minutes. If I am lazy I break off the hard stem at the bottoms, if I have a lot of energy, I also peel off some of the outer skin.

This is how they look prepared for the oven the "lazy" way.


My husband prefers his veggies more cooked than most, so I often leave his portion in the oven while serving everyone else.

When I roast root veggies, like fresh beets, they need 45 minutes of roasting and I crank the heat up to 450 F.

Happy husband, happy life!

Scones



Scones

My husband loves scones, but per his restricted diet, I had to come up with a fool proof recipe that he would love and not feel restricted about eating more than one! This is a wonderful scone recipe. I use baking powder without aluminum or salt. Since my husband became allergic to dairy, he makes the recipe without using the buttermilk powder, but once the buttermilk is removed, the recipe no longer tastes like traditional scones. The scones need the buttermilk powder or the product is more cake-like.

Reduced-Fat Scones

4 cups flour 2 tablespoons baking powder (no aluminum, no salt) 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 2 tablespoons sugar plus additional sugar for the topping 2 tablespoons nonfat buttermilk powder 4 tablespoons canola oil 1 1/2 cups water and some extra milk or water for brushing the dough 1/2 teaspoon orange rind 1/2 cup dried fruit (raisins, dried cranberries, etc.)

Place the dried fruit in the 1 1/2 cups liquid to soak. Add the oil and orange rind creating a liquid mixture. Sift the first four (dry) ingredients, add the buttermilk powder, and the water mixture containing the dried fruit. Stir until just moistened, knead about 6 times, form into 9-13 balls (depending on the humidity the dough may be sticky, so wet hands to form the balls), and brush with milk (or water) and sprinkle on some sugar. Bake at 400 F. for about 15-18 minutes or until tops are lightly browned. I brush the tops with water or milk and roll each ball in sugar.

As luck would have it, in addition to being restricted on fats, my husband became dairy intolerant, thus, below is the current recipe he uses. The recipe substitutes applesauce for some of the fat, reducing the oil to one tablespoon. I have made the recipe without oil, omitting the one tablespoon of oil, but the product was not as good as with one tablespoon of oil.

The recipe below, for lowest-fat scones, results in a product something like scones, but so much has been modified that it might pass as a cake-like cookie!

Lowest-fat, Non-dairy, Scones

2 cups of unbleached flour 1 tablespoon baking powder (no aluminum, no salt) 1/4 teaspoon baking soda 2 teaspoons honey 2 tablespoons applesauce 1 tablespoon oil (canola) 3/4 cup liquid (water or juice of choice) 1/2 cup raisins 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Put the raisins in the liquid and add the honey, oil, applesauce and vanilla. Sift the dry ingredients together including flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Dump the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients, mix, and knead about 5 times. Drop by spoonfuls onto the prepared cookie sheet (spray a cookie sheet and place the parchment paper on top of the cooking spray). Bake at 400 F. for about 8-12 minutes until the scones are lightly browned.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Braiding a Challah Bread



When braiding a challah bread I have to remember to number the 4 strand positions as

1, 2, 3, 4

Then, put strand 4 (the farthest to the right) over strand 2.
Then put strand 1 (the farthest to the left) over strand 3.
Then move strand 2 over strand 3.
Repeat the above until all 4 strands are braided into the bread.

I will add photos the next time I make a bread!

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Chocolate chip, fruit cocktail, Noodle Kugel




We are trying to make something for a meal or side dish, that everyone will eat. The idea is to entice a preschooler who is a chocolate lover. As she said to me, "Auntie Rosie, I love any kind of chocolate."
I thought of lots of recipes and then came up with this one. This recipe makes 12 kugle cupcakes and one larger, flatter, 9" x 13", kugel. I will also include the ingredients for a dozen kugelettes and a larger rectangular 9" x 13" thicker kugel.

The recipe for 12 cupcake kugelettes and one 9" x 13" rectangular pan of thin kugel include:

butter and/or cooking spray (I suggest using both in the cupcake tins)
22 ounces of medium noodles
6 large eggs slightly beaten
10.3 ounces (two small containers) of vanilla, Greek Yogurt
1 cup of dried cranberries (craisins or raisins)
2 cans of fruit cocktail in juice (drain, but save the juice from both cans)(save a few cherries too)
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/4 cup or more of mini chocolate chips

Take the cold eggs and the yogurt out of the refrigerator for a few minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Spray and butter the insides of the cupcake and rectangular baking pans.

Boil the 22 ounces of noodles in a large pot per package directions, drain well, and set aside to cool. In another bowl, beat the 6 eggs slightly, add the yogurt, add the dried cranberries (or raisins), and add the drained two cans of fruit cocktail, saving the fruit juice. Add the cinnamon and stir the egg mixture gently. One should have about one cup of fruit juice for later use in the baking of the kugelettes and larger kugel.

Temper the egg mixture by adding a few of the luke warm noodles (tempering not needed if cooked noodles are at the same temperature as the egg mixture). Then gently add the entire egg mixture to the big pot of drained noodles. Fill the well-greased cupcake tins and 9" x 13" pan. Add mini chocolate chips to the tops of the kugels and add a cherry, dried cranberry or other fruit for extra decoration.

Bake at 350 F for about 20-30 minutes and spoon 1-2 tablespoons of the saved juice on each of the 12 kugels and spoon the rest of the canned juice on the large kugel. Bake for an additional 15 minutes or until the tops look brownish and crunchy.


Cool slightly and gently remove all of the kugels from the pans.

Kugels may be eaten at any temperature, warm, hot, or cold.


To make a thicker rectangular kugel, in addition to the 12 smaller round kugels use:

33 ounces of noodles
3-4 cups of vanilla, Greek yogurt (15-20 OUNCES)
9-12 eggs
3 cans of fruit cocktail
1-2 cups of craisins or raisins
2 teaspoons cinnamon (optional)
mini chocolate chips per taste (optional)