Thursday, September 12, 2013

Veggie Frittata


This is an easy dish to prepare for any meal, and a really good way to use up produce that is in your refrigerator!  On this occasion I used asparagus, mushrooms, onion and green pepper, but you can use any vegetable according to your taste!

I start by adding olive or grape seed oil to the cast iron skillet and then add the veggies along with garlic salt and pepper (to taste), and saute over medium high heat until they are crisp tender.

While the vegetables are cooking, I mix the eggs, cream cheese, parmesan cheese and milk in the food processor.

Pour the egg mixture into the skillet over the veggies, and then add the additional cheese.  

Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

Veggie Frittata
Recipe Author:  Carolina Food and Fitness

6 large eggs
2 oz. cream cheese
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
olive or grape seed oil
1/2 lb. asparagus
1/4 large onion
1/2 green bell pepper
1/2 lb. mushrooms
1/2 cup asiago cheese
1/2 cup sharp provolone cheese
garlic salt

Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Sloppy Joe

I have a confession to make, while growing up in the northeast I thought that sloppy joe, was synonymous with barbecue, however, after moving to North Carolina I soon discovered that barbecue is actually pulled pork!  Okay, and then that begins a whole other discussion/debate about the difference between eastern and western N.C. barbecue...well, that is for another post!

This is a sloppy joe recipe that is fast, easy and somewhat mild, but if you prefer more heat, just add more seasoning!  Start by browning 1 pound of meat loaf mix in olive or grape seed oil.

Add chopped onion and green pepper.  Cook until the meat is no longer pink, then drain off the excess fat and return the mixture to the skillet.  

Add the remaining ingredients.  Be sure to taste after adding the seasoning, and if it is too mild for your family, adjust the amount of heat.

I served this with my parmesan pan rolls.

Sloppy Joes
Recipe Author:  Carolina Food and Fitness

1 lb. meat loaf mix
1/2 large onion
1/2 green bell pepper
1 - 12 oz. can tomato paste
1/2 - 1 cup water
1/4 c balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons yellow mustard

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Puff Pancake With Fruit

This is a fast and delicious recipe that you can make for any meal!  Start by melting 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter in a cast iron skillet over medium heat.

Mix together eggs, whole milk, sour cream, honey, flour, old fashioned oats and salt with a hand mixer or food processor.

Pour the batter into the hot cast iron skillet.

Add to the batter 1-2 cups of your choice of fruit.  (In the picture below, I used raspberries and blackberries, the pancake pictured at the top of this post, was made with blueberries and sliced strawberries.)  I also added 2 slices of crispy bacon that was crumbled over the top of the pancake.

Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.

Puff Pancake With Fruit

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 large eggs
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1/4 teaspoon salt
1-2 cups of fruit
2 slices crispy bacon, crumbled

Serve with maple syrup

Recipe adapted from the Recipe Girl

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Skillet Pizza


I just love pizza!  Baking it in a cast iron skillet is an effective and easy way to get the crust to turn out just the way I like it!

Start by making the dough for the crust.  Add yeast, flour, garlic salt, olive or grape seed oil, and water to the bread pan.

Use the "manual" setting on your bread machine, and after the cycle is complete, remove the dough.  Tonight I divided it (because I am only cooking for two) and put half in a zip lock bag and placed it in the refrigerator.

While the dough was mixing I lightly sauteed sliced mushrooms and onion in olive oil, to use for the topping.

Now, start building the pizza.  Coat the 12 inch cast iron skillet with olive oil, add the dough, marinara sauce and asiago cheese.

Next add the pepperoni.  I had it sliced at the BJ's deli counter.

 Finally, add the mushrooms and onions, and top with sharp provolone cheese.

Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.


Pizza Crust
Recipe Author:  Carolina Food and Fitness

2 1/4 teaspoons bread machine yeast
3 cups flour
2 teaspoons garlic salt
2 tablespoons olive or grape seed oil
1 cup warm water

Recipe Author:  Carolina Food and Fitness

1/4 cup marinara sauce
1/4 cup asiago cheese
8 slices pepperoni
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1/4 large onion
1/4 cup sharp provolone cheese

Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Veggie Quiche

I have started saving the scraps from my homemade pie dough.  Just roll them into a ball, place in a zip-lock bag, and refrigerate until you are ready to use, in this case for a quiche for dinner tonight.  The purpose of posting this recipe (and not giving exact measurements with the vegetables) is to encourage you be creative with your own taste in making a dish like this!

I lightly saute a selection of vegetables in olive or grape seed oil.  Tonight it was mushrooms, onion, a carrot, and asparagus.  The best thing about a quiche, is that the possibilities are endless!  

Mix the eggs, cream cheese, and romano cheese in a food processor.

Add the veggies, and then the egg mixture to the pie, then top with your choice of cheese.

Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes.

Veggie Quiche
Recipe Author:  Carolina Food and Fitness

1 pie crust
5 eggs
4 oz. cream cheese
1/4 cup romano cheese
1/2 cup provolone cheese
1/2 cup asiago cheese
1/4 large onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
sliced mushrooms
garlic salt and pepper to taste

Lightly saute veggies in olive or grape seed oil.  In a food processor, mix eggs, cream cheese and romano cheese.  Pour the vegetables in the crust, then add the egg mixture.  Top with cheese.

Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Mild Chili

Please don't tell anyone, but I absolutely detest kidney beans, as a result I never liked chili!  It is something I had never even considered making until about 2 1/2 years ago when my Mom requested that I cook it for her.  She was battling cancer and certain dishes that she had always loved (such as lasagna) no longer appealed to her. So, I went looking for a recipe and discovered that competition chili never has beans!  (What a revelation!)  I eventually came up with the following recipe, it needed to be mild enough that both she and my Dad would be able to eat it without setting their mouths and hair on fire!  Mom absolutely loved this chili, and it was one of the only meals that she actually ate and enjoyed.

I start by chopping onion and green bell pepper. Something I hate almost as much as kidney beans, is chopping onion.  (The Chop Wizard is great!) 

The onion and green pepper are lightly cooked in olive or grape seed oil.

Meat loaf mix is added next.  It is a blend of beef, veal, and pork.  Not all grocery stores have it, I found this at BJ's.  I also added 3 cloves of minced garlic.  

After the meat is no longer pink, drain off the excess fat, and return it to the dutch oven.  The rest of the ingredients are added, and it can simmer as long as you want.  I made this today, and let it cook on low all afternoon.

Recipe Author:  Carolina Food and Fitness

2 tablespoons olive or grape seed oil
1 onion
1 green bell pepper
3 – 4 cloves of garlic minced
2.5 lbs. meatloaf mix
1 ½ cups beef broth
1 ½ quarts tomato sauce
12 oz. tomato paste
¼ cup brewed coffee
1 tablespoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons chili powder
1½ teaspoon cumin
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon paprika
2 teaspoons hot sauce

Lightly saute the diced onion and green pepper in olive or grape seed oil.  Add the meatloaf mix, and minced garlic, and cook until no longer pink.  Drain off the excess fat, and return to the dutch oven.  Add the remaining ingredients, bring to a simmer, reduce heat and cook for at least an hour.  

French Bread

I have tried many different french bread recipes, but this is the one that (IMHO) is the best!  It is from a recipe booklet that came with the DAK bread machine, the only change I have made is to substitute honey for the sugar. (If you add 2 tablespoons of honey, you may need to add some additional flour during the mixing process.)

Start by stiffly beating 2 egg whites.

Add the ingredients to the pan in the order specified by the manufacturer. With this machine, the dry ingredients are added first, and the egg whites are added after the mixing has begun.  

I have used another bread machine for this recipe, and the ingredients are added in the reverse order, it worked just fine.  This recipe was written to be baked in the bread machine, but in recent years I have just used the machine for the mixing process, which takes about 40 minutes.  

I then remove the dough, shape it into a loaf, put it into a greased bread pan, and place it in a warm draft free spot for about 30 minutes. (I always use the microwave.)  If you let it proof longer than 30 minutes it tends to "mushroom", which is one reason I don't usually bake this bread in the machine.

Bake in a 400 degree preheated oven for 25 minutes.

French Bread

2 1/4 Teaspoons Yeast
3 Cups Bread Flour
1-2 Tablespoons Honey
1 Teaspoon Salt
2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
1 Cup, Minus 1 Tablespoon Warm Water
2 Stiffly Beaten Egg Whites
Bake @ 400 degrees for 25 minutes

Adapted from the DAK recipe booklet