Tuesday, November 11, 2014

A Ninja, A Sweet Potato and A Waffle Iron Walked In To A Kitchen ...

Welcome to Trash The Kitchen Tuesday! Actually, I trash the kitchen most days, if I'm cooking. I like to cook. Cleaning up, not so much. And may I say, having a microwave oven that also works as an Advantium speed oven lets me trash the kitchen so much quicker!

Yesterday, for my #30DaysOfThankful I posted a picture of my kitchen. After reading Carla's post, Meet My Friend Melvin, I realized that I let way too much food spoil. Not everyone can, after paying their rent, their bills, their child support, etc, afford to feed themselves. This morning, pondering what to have for breakfast, I decide to use up some things that I had in the pantry and the fridge: two partial onions (one red, one white), half a poblano pepper that was on its last legs, two sweet potatoes that were growing alien tentacles, err, sprouting, and one regular baking potato. The first thing that came to mind was trying to make waffle iron hash brown/latkes, but I didn't want to do a lot of shredding. So, I washed off all of the sweet potatoes and threw them in the Advantium to bake. In the meantime, I chopped up the onions and minced the poblano. When I got the potatoes out, they were only partially cooked, so I scooped out what was soft and put the rest back in to cook more. I took the cooked potato and put it in to my new Ninja. Ninjas rock, by the way. I added most of the onion and half of the poblano, along with a splash of milk. I blended that until it was fairly smooth, then I cracked in two eggs and blended again until it was smooth, like a batter. (Oh, yes, that is savory jerky from Rachel Ray, another awesome Fitbloggin sponsor, in the background. I picked it up yesterday at the grocery store. The dogs love it.)

By this time, the rest of the potatoes were cooked well enough, so I scooped them out and put them in to a bowl, along with the rest of the chopped onion and poblano pepper. Using a fork, I mashed the mixture until there were only small lumps.

 In went the Ninja batter, along with a pinch of salt, and I mixed everything together.

Next, I added a cup of Bob's Red Mill GF Flour Mixture (feel free to use regular flour), half a cup at a time, mixing to incorporate the flour and leave no lumps. I looked at it and thought, this would be really  nice with a side of bacon. I don't have bacon. :(  Oh, wait. YES, I HAVE BACON!! Thank you, Costco. I had a bag of bacon crumbles in the freezer. Forget having bacon on the side. I'm having bacon IN my sweet potato waffles.

I let the batter rest while the waffle iron heated up. My finger can attest that it heats up very quickly, thank you very much. I drizzle a little olive oil on the waffle iron and spoon in the batter, spreading it out fairly evenly. Pressing down, I anxiously await the light to go from red to green. Yay! It worked!

Breakfast dilemma solved, and I didn't let foods go to waste. Savory sweet potato waffles, topped with a little butter. To make it even more sweet/savory, after I took this picture, I spread a little bit of my maple butter from Raymond Sugarhouse in Hartland, VT.  If you love all things maple, and like to support small businesses, please consider ordering from them. Everything I have tried of theirs (maple syrup, maple candy, maple butter, maple cream, maple crunch peanut butter and maple crunch peanuts) are amazing.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Pizza For Breakfast

I know what you're thinking. Who hasn't eaten pizza for breakfast. Cold pizza is awesome. Yes, yes it is. That's not what I made though. I made breakfast pizza!  Last night on FB, TJ posted a picture of pizza she made for dinner. She mentioned that it was a Greek yogurt crust. ??? I had to find out about this. It's one cup of greek yogurt, one cup of self rising flour (plus more for kneading), baked at 450 for 15 minutes. Well, I don't have self rising flour, but that's easy enough to make, and since I was making it myself, I'd make it with a gluten free flour blend. Since I only had vanilla Greek yogurt, I figured I might as well make a breakfast pizza.

My hands got seriously messy making this.
 Here it is, patted out on my pizza stone. Note to self: USE PARCHMENT PAPER UNDERNEATH THE DOUGH NEXT TIME.
 I used more of my vanilla greek yogurt as the "cheese" for my pizza, and topped it with lots of  berries.
 15 minutes later, browned and crispy pizza!

Okay, so here's why I need to use parchment under the dough next time I make this. I totally had to scrape the pizza off of the stone. So, it was messy. It was still really tasty!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Quick and Easy Spicy Scotch Eggs

Hello October! Not all things fall revolve around pumpkin pie spiced everything. Shocking, I know, but true. Fall flavors to me, are savory flavors. Chili powder. Smoked paprika. Garlic. Yum.  These are a few of the flavors in one of my favorite things to eat. Scotch eggs. Recently, to celebrate the return of Doctor Who, The Aussie and I ate out at a local British pub. I was so happy to see Scotch eggs on the menu. Ever since, I've been thinking about them. What better time to make these than at the start of a paleo challenge?

Spicy Scotch Eggs (serves 4)

4 hard boiled eggs, peeled
1 pound pork sausage
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 T parsley flakes
freshly ground black pepper
pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 375. Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper or foil.

Mix the sausage and spices together until well combined.

Take a large spoonful of the mixture and start to wrap it around a peeled hard boiled egg, like so.

Completely cover the egg with the mixture, smoothing it down to make sure there are no gaps. Repeat with the remaining eggs.

Bake at 375 for 25 minutes until the sausage is lightly browned and cooked through.

The eggs can be eaten hot, cold, and anywhere in between. I got a little piggy here because I was so hungry (they smelled amazing while I was cooking) and took two. My dipping sauce was a simple paleo mayo-mustard. I was full after having 1 1/2. These are perfect for any meal. 


Friday, June 20, 2014

Axis Of Ineptitude - Celebrity Crush

In true inept fashion, I have barely posted this month. In good faith, however, I cannot, simply cannot let today's prompt pass without posting. CELEBRITY CRUSH. Oh, yes. I will try not to think about how much younger these fine gentlemen are than me. And yes, I am happily married. As a wise woman once told me, "just because you've already ordered, doesn't mean you can't look at the menu."


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

I don't care how old I am, I'm still going to

How appropriate that today's prompt falls on my birthday. One of my favorite birthday traditions from when I worked in NYC was to head to Central Park on my birthday and ride the carousel. This picture was taken the last time I was in New York. My mom, my sister and I all met up, did fun things, and while it wasn't on my birthday, it was close enough to it to count. I miss that carousel.
So, I don't care how old I am, I'm still going to ride on carousels.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Avocado Salad Fit For Fitbloggin!

I am so excited to be heading to Fitbloggin again this year. Fitbloggin is the class reunion/family reunion full of all of your favorite people. Some of whom you've actually met in person. One of the amazing sponsors this year is the California Avocado Commission. They are holding the California Avocado Cutting-Edge Culinary Recipe Contest for people attending Fitbloggin this year, and I couldn't be any more excited. If you've read my blog, you know that I love to cook with fresh ingredients, and you can't get much fresher than California avocados.

Since it's rapidly approaching meltdown stage in Texas, I wanted to make something fresh and cool, yet full of flavor. Summer on a plate.

Avocado and Mango Salad with Chicken and Grilled Pineapple (serves 2)

Main Ingredients:
1/2 pineapple
1 mango
1 California avocado
2 cooked chicken breasts

1/4 red onion, finely diced
2 T light olive oil
1 T white wine vinegar
1 t honey
1/4 t cayenne
1 T lime juice
2 T cilantro, finely chopped (you can use basil or Thai basil if you don't care for cilantro)

sliced salad topper almonds
red onion

To Do:

Peel and core your pineapple. Cut in to wedges approximately 1/2 thick. Heat up a grill pan over medium high heat and grill the wedges for 5 minutes on each side. Set aside to cool while you finish putting the salad together. (If you're like me and already have the bbq grill up and running, grilling the pineapple outside would be awesome!)

While the pineapple is cooling, peel and core your mango and cut in to bite sized pieces.  Next, take your cooked chicken breasts and cut in to half inch cubes.  Lastly, halve your avocado, remove the pit, and slice in to cubes. The easiest way to do this is to cut in half, lengthwise and split apart. Take the side that has the pit and tap the pit with the blade of your knife. Slowly twist and pull out the pit. Next, you take a small knife and cut the meat of the avocado in a grid pattern all the way to the skin, without cutting through. Then you simply use a spoon to remove the cubes. (Here's a hint: You can do something similar to the mango by slicing the mango "cheeks" off of the sides of the mango, and score in the same manner, using a knife to remove the mango cubes.)

For the dressing, finely chop both your red onion and the cilantro. Reserve a little of each to garnish the salad. Place the red onion and cilantro in a medium sized bowl, big enough to mix the salad. Add the olive oil, white wine vinegar, honey, cayenne and lime juice. Mix well with a fork to combine.

Now that your pineapple is cooled, cut the fruit into 1/2 inch chunks. Add the chicken, mango, and pineapple to the dressing in the bowl and gently mix to coat.

Spoon your salad in to a nice serving bowl or on to a bed of lettuce leaves. Garnish with sliced almonds, cilantro and red onion.


Update: Today I added diced cucumber to the leftovers. I loved the crunch it added.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Come Play In May - Inside My Purse

It's hard to believe that it's just about the end of the month. I've blogged just about every day of May. Pretty much a record, for me. So, today's prompt is what's in my purse. Apparently, I am a hoarder of eye drops.

The contents: one wallet, one checkbook, 31 Gifts wristlet with a lanyard from Home Depot so I can wear it around my neck, garage door opener, glasses case with cleaning cloth, keys, nail clippers, lip gloss, one tube of lip balm, one EOS lip sphere, loose change, pocket knife with black canvas cover (pink camo. My husband *gets* me), two lottery tickets, my shopper card to Quilt Country, a packet of Taco Bell fire sauce, receipts, Bear's new rabies tag still in envelope, one cortaid dabber, hand cream, a bottle of Zyrtec, two pens, a Larabar, mini flashlight from Walgreens that I got at the last 5k I did, a puffy mint and an empty puffy mint wrapper, and last but not least, FIVE bottles of eye drops.