Sunday, August 28, 2011

Lemon and Crab Linguini with Feta

As I type this the sun is peeking out from behind the clouds and we have survived the hurricane/tropical storm here on the East coast. Hopefully everyone else has as well and doesn't have too much drying out to do!

This recipe caught my eye because I had some extra feta in the fridge. This uses imiation crab meat, which I enjoy, but if you really have a problem with it, the pasta would be delicious with some fresh crab as well. I really recommend using fresh herbs to garnish at the end because the dried ones I used didn't really do the trick. Fresh lemon is also a must; and the end result is a light, delicious pasta!

Here's the recipe from Simply Satisfying:

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Cookies and Cream Double Chocolate Cake Bars

I chose this recipe to make to bring to a barbecue because A. it looked super easy and B. it looked super delicious. And I was right on both counts! I mean, how can you go wrong with Oreos, chocolate cake, and chocolate chips?

The only note I have on this recipe from Picky Palate is that once I reached the prescribed baking time, my bars were still rather jiggly in the oven. ;) I needed about 15-20 minutes more, to make sure the middle was set, but then the bars were on the dry side. I am notorious for underbaking so I was nervous about them but next time I won't overbake quite as long. So basically what I am telling you is just to watch the oven!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Penne with Grilled Summer Squash, Sweeet Corn, and Shrimp

I think it's pretty obvious that we love pasta in our house. This recipe from a recent issue of Everyday with Rachael Ray used delicious summer vegetables and one of my favorites - ricotta cheese. I made it into a main meal by adding some shrimp to the mix. Chuck and I both agreed that this dish needed more flavor. The original recipe did not call for cooking the tomatoes, but my version below suggests sauteeing them a little with the garlic to add a little more depth.

Penne with Grilled Summer Squah, Sweet Corn, and Shrimp
adapted from Everyday with Rachael Ray
makes about 3 servings

1/2 pound penne pasta
1/2 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 yellow summer squash (just under a pound), halved crosswise and then cut into 3 thick slabs
3 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper
1 tomato, chopped
3/4 cup corn kernels (1 ear or use frozen)
1/2 of a 15-ounce contained ricotta cheese
1 clove garlic, grated
1 teaspoon chopped thyme

Preheat a grill to medium-high or a grill pan on the stove over medium-high heat.

Cook pasta in a large pot of salted, boiling water according to package directions. During last 3 minutes of cooking, add shrimp. Drain pasta and shrimp, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water.

Brush the squash pieces with 2 tablespoons olive oil and season with salt. Grill, turning once, until charred, about 10 minutes. Cool slightly, then coarsely chop and put in large bowl.

In small skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic, cook until fragrant, then add chopped tomatoes and cook until slightly softened, 3-4 minutes. Add to squash, along with ricotta cheese and thyme. Add the pasta and stir in some cooking water if needed.

Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately with Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Emeril's Turkey and Pinto Bean Chili

We've had a rainy few days here in the Northeast and yesterday I was inspired to make some chili. I had just found this recipe in the newest issue of Everyday Food and went to the supermarket in the pouring rain for all of the ingredients. :)

My favorite chili is still 6-Hour Chili but this is a good one to make if you don't have a lot of time. And the addition of the pinto beans adds more protein with not too much fat. I will say that the simmering time on this is very underestimated. I simmered the chili for about 45 minutes (the recipe suggests 20 minutes) and I still had to serve the chili with a slotted spoon to drain all of the excess liquid. But it was a delicious rainy Sunday night meal after a busy weekend!

Emeril's Turkey and Pinto Bean Chili
from Everyday Food
makes 6-8 servings

4 slices thick-cut bacon, diced small
2 medium onions (or 1 large), diced small
1 large red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and diced small
1.25-1.5 pounds ground turkey
3 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
2 teaspoons dried oregano
coarse salt and ground pepper
1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
2 cans (15.5 ounces each) pinto beans, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
shredded cheddar cheese and sour cream (optional)

In a large Dutch oven or other heavy pot, cook bacon over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until bacon is crisp, about 8 minutes. Add onions and bell pepper and cook until vegetable soften, stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes. Add ground turkey, chili powder, cumin, garlic, oregano, and cook about 6-8 minutes, until lightly browned and cooked through. Continually break meat up with wooden spoon. Season with salt and pepper.

Add tomatoes with juice, beans, and 2 cups water. Bring to a boil then reduce to a rapid simmer. Partially cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens. (This could take anywhere from 20-45 minutes, or more.)

Serve topped with cilantro and shredded cheese and/or sour cream, if desired.