Tag Archives: side dish

Cheddar Quinoa Cakes

2 Sep

Last night, I ventured into the dark space that has become my kitchen.  With our schedule being so hectic lately, it hasn’t seen much use.  But last night, the reclamation began.

I started by dusting off this bag of quinoa in my pantry:

Quinoa

And ended with these amazing little cakes:

CheddarQuinoaCakes

Cheddar Quinoa Cakes with Pesto (Pin-spired by SpoonForkBacon)

  • 2 c. cooked quinoa
  • 2/3 c. shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3 T. corn flour
  • 1 T. pesto
  • 1/2 T. EVOO
  • salt & pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a medium mixing bowl.  Heat up oil of your choice (I used canola oil because it’s what I had on hand) in a pan for about 5 minutes.  Then, form the mixture into patties and cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes each side.  I flipped mine when they turned a nice golden brown color, but the timing will change depending on the oil you are using.  Since I had to cook these in 2 batches, I placed the finished ones on a cooking sheet lined with paper towels in a 200F oven.  They stayed warm and I was able to absorb the excess oil.  Super easy!

I garnished with a mix of pesto, olive oil, and a dab of mayo.

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Broccoli & Potato Casserole

21 Feb

Disclaimer:  The following recipe is not one of those “I ate clean last night & felt so awesomely skinny this morning!” recipes.  This is one of those “My stomach and taste buds felt like angels were dancing the Nutcracker Suite all around and then lifted me up to heaven with their dainty little wings” recipes.  You decide what kind of dinner you’re having.

Ingredients:

3-5 potatoes

3 cups broccoli, chopped

1 cup cheddar cheese

3/4 can condensed broccoli cheese soup

Salt & Pepper

This dinner was inspired by the fact that a week ago I purchased a large bag of broccoli at CostCo.  Since then, it has been sitting in my crisper drawer silently mocking me.  Since I’m not a huge fan of wasting food, I knew it was time to teach that broccoli a lesson.

First, I preheated the oven to 350°F.  Then, I brought a big pot of water to a boil and then cooked the broccoli just until it became fork tender (there’s nothing I hate more than overcooked vegetables).

Broccoli

While the water was coming to a boil, I skinned and diced some potatoes.  I happened to use these PA-grown potatoes by Blue Denim:

BlueDenim

Ignore the exposed drywall in the background.  We are in the middle of the sanding & mudding process.

Then, I just added the potatoes to the same water the broccoli had been cooking in.  Again, I only let them get to the point of being fork tender and then I scooped them out of the water and into my 10-inch skillet.  I fried them lightly in just a little bit of olive oil, so that they would be a little bit brown and crispy:

Potatoes

Since I had to fight the urge to constantly fuss over the potatoes and just leave them the heck alone so that they could crisp, I fussed over the broccoli.

I added a handful of shredded cheddar cheese (save some for the topping), and about 3/4 of a can of broccoli cheese soup, salt, pepper, and granulated garlic powder:

Step2

Then, I mixed everything together and made the pieces of broccoli smaller because big chunks of broccoli annoy me.  When the potatoes were done, I added those in (and because they weren’t overcooked AND they had been crisped, they didn’t just turn into mush).  Then, I put everything into a greased casserole dish.

InDish2

Since everything is all ready cooked, I basically only had this casserole in for 20 minutes while I cooked our steaks.  Long enough for everything to heat through, the inside cheese to melt, and the topping to crisp up.  Oh, yeah – the topping!  Before I put mine in, I added the rest of my cheese.  Since I was feeling extra naughty and happened to have less than 1/4 c. of Stovetop stuffing in my pantry, I added a little dusting of stuffing.  I was so friggin’ excited to eat this, I forgot to snap a picture before we dug in!  What’s pictured here is actually what we had left over, since I made this as a side dish.  The next day, I added some grilled chicken to it and we ate it for lunch & dinner.

Finished

Cue the dancing angels.

Laundromat Lunch

18 Dec

This week, my business achieved a huge milestone!  (Damn you, Facebook, for making that sound so cheesy.)  We moved into our new location.  It took many many weeks of constant toil, but we did it.  We now have room to run our business and plenty of room to grow.  I feel like the luckiest girl in the world right now!

Saturday marked our official grand opening, which we celebrated with a party at the new facility.

ChanginTime

That means Monday was our first official day of “normal” work.  It was both exhilarating and anticlimactic.  It’s so hectic right now between the puppies and launching this expansion that I have barely cooked a substantial meal in weeks.  Call me crazy, but the thing I’m most excited about right now is having a schedule.  Knowing when and where I need to be helps me get back into the habit of cooking all three meals instead of depending on “grabbing a quick bite.”

Today, for lunch I made broccoli bites from Stacy’s Snacks

BroccoliBitesTitle

What You Will Need:

16 oz. broccoli florets (fresh or frozen will work), with the liquid squeezed out
1 c. bread crumbs (I use Panko)
3 eggs
1 1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:

BroccoliBites1

BB2

BB3

BB4

BB5

BB6

Lucky for me, I live just around the block from where I work.  Since we are currently whelping puppies, we have to check in every hour.  Unless it is unbearably cold or wet outside, I try to walk home on these breaks.

I’m learning to love my little walk, even when it looks like this outside:

EighthAve

So, this is the first of what I’m sure will be a long series of laundromat lunches.

LaundromatLunch1

I had plenty left over and we reheated them for dinner.

Giving ♥ Thanks

25 Nov

I hope your Thanksgiving was amazing!  Mine pretty much was.  We had a lot of running around to do, but it’s so worth it when you get to see ALL the people you care about.

I try to bring at least a dish to every holiday dinner we attend, so I’m sharing the recipe of my go-to holiday dish.  In fact, last year I made this Food Network Magazine dish for Easter.  This year, I made this mac & cheese to my parents house, where my brother turned sous chef assisted me!  He was my master cheese grater – which was what I was most thankful for during this meal.  I have a pinched nerve in my shoulder and I don’t think I would have been able to grate 3 bricks of cheese.

While your brother gives himself carpel tunnel grating cheese, this is a great opportunity to dive into the antipasto tray your mom has prepared.

YUM.

What You Need:
  • 1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 can evaporated milk
  • 1 egg
  • nutmeg, cayenne pepper, salt, & pepper
  • 1 3/4 c. muenster cheese, grated
  • 1/2 c. cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1/2 c. Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 4 c. medium shells

    Directions:

    In a large stockpot full of salted water, cook cauliflower florets until tender.  Remove from water to cool.

    1 lg. head of cauliflower

    Add medium shells to the water in the stockpot, and cook until al dente.  Drain, but reserve 1/4 c. water.

    Whisk together evaporated milk & egg, along with a pinch of nutmeg, a pinch of cayenne pepper, & a pinch of both salt & pepper.

    In a saucepan, combine milk mixture and cheeses over medium heat.  Stir frequently, until cheese melts and sauce becomes thick.

    Add cauliflower to cheese mixture and combine.

    Transfer the cauliflower & cheese mix to food processor, using 1/4 c. reserved cauliflower water.  Puree until smooth.

    Mix the puree into the shells.

    Move to a baking dish, top with remaining cheese and broil until crispy & brown.

 

Cauliflower, Potato & Cheese Bake

7 Nov

A few weeks ago, I made a Cauliflower, Potato & Cheese Bake that was a hit.  I just love when that happens.

Since then, I’ve been getting a lot of requests for the recipe.  This is the ultimate fall comfort food, easily sourced as SOLE food by even an inexperienced locavore.  I’ve tried a few variations since the original, but the original is surprisingly better.  I think I got a little too creative, trying to find the best cheese pairing.  Here is my best variation:

Cauliflower, Potato & Gouda Bake

Prep:  Preheat the oven to 450ºF.

1 1/2 lb. (6 med.) Yukon Golds, peeled & sliced into 1/2″ pieces
1 small head cauliflower, 1/2″ slices
1 1/2 c. (6-8oz) shredded Gouda – I bought mine from the Cheesemonger at the Market Square Farmer’s Market
1/3 c. chicken broth
1+T. butter
salt & pepper

Place the potato slices in a 10″ skillet, covering the potatoes with 2 inches of salted water.  Bring the potatoes to a boil, and add the cauliflower.  Rapidly simmer the vegetables, UNCOVERED, until the potatoes are just finished and the cauliflower is crisp-tender.  This takes around 10 minutes.

While the potatoes and cauli are cooking, butter a 1 1/2 qt. – 2 qt. baking dish.

Then, drain the potatoes and cauliflower in a colander and let cool for at least 5 minutes.  This helps the veg keep their shape and continue cooking just a little bit longer.

In the prepared baking dish, place half of the potato mixture and top with pepper and cheese.  Place another layer of potatoes, pepper, and cheese on top of that.  Pour 1/3 c. chicken broth over the top of the casserole, then place 4 pats of butter on top.  Trust me, don’t skip this step.

Then, bake uncovered for 15-20 minutes, until the cheese is browned and bubbly enough for you.

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