Monday, September 29, 2008

Deviled Eggs

  Well hello, hello! Long time no see! Sorry, but there hasn't been too much cooking going on in our home this weekend because my in-laws came to visit! We did succeed in trying what felt like every flavor of Jelly Belly's as we visited Cedar Breaks, Bryce Canyon, and Zion National Park, which felt like something of an accomplishment and left us all on a sugar binge!
   Visiting the parks this weekend was brilliant! All of the leaves are changing colors and the weather changed from valley to valley. We went from perfect weather at 5,800 feet to rain, sleet and hail at 10,100 feet! (It was freezing!) If you have every been to Bryce Canyon you go from look out to look out . . . we would jump out of the car, get wet and start to freeze from the wind and move on to the next look out and get wet and freeze again! It was absolutely gorgeous! Everything! I just can't say enough about the landscape of Southern Utah!!! It is well worth a trip!!!
   Okay onto my one true cooking endeavor in the kitchen this weekend . . . deviled eggs. My husband LOVES eggs, where as I am content without them . . . . they are just not my favorite food, or food to smell. They are a must at our Super Bowl party each year and are easy to make plus I love my hub . . . hence their kitchen debut this weekend . . .
Deviled Eggs
Recipe by:Emily

12 large hard-boiled eggs
1/3-1/2 cup Miracle Whip or Mayo
1 tsp Mustard, brown or regular
1/4-1/2 tsp Vinegar
1/2-1 tsp prepared Horseradish
1/2 tsp Paprika

Cut the eggs in half length wise and remove the egg yolks. Mix the egg yolks, mustard, horseradish, vinegar, salt, pepper, and paprika together until smooth. Pipe the yolk mixture into the egg yolk hollows in the hard boiled eggs (whites). Garnish with chives or a sprinkling of paprika. Refrigerate until serving.

I always utilize whatever I have handy when making deviled eggs and garnish them with whatever I have handy too . . . they are great with chopped tomato, crisped bacon, green onions, chopped ham etc. The filling is also made to taste. The vinegar adds something extra and makes a big difference I think!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Sausage and Cannellini Soup (aka: Heaven on Earth!)

   There is just no way around it and no reason to deny it . . there is simply nothing more delicious than this soup . . . so says I (for the moment)!It was just a delight to dine on with the weather beginning to change and the sights and smells of autumn sneaking in. I love the fall! I can't wait to pull out my scarves and and sweaters and bundle up against the cold . . . that is before the sky turns a permanent dreary, milky gray for winter! Living in Austria and Germany taught me that there are a million and one ways to wear a scarf and knot it. So I am now obsessed!
   I would love to bake something with pumpkin in it this week if I find the time! It just sounds soooo good! Oh or homemade gingerbread, the actual bread, not the cookies. GH Bread Co has the BEST gingerbread! I swear that I could down a whole loaf myself (hopefully that will not happen) but I would really like to make some myself. I think that I found a good recipe . . . mal sehen.
   Oh, I have to add this lil' bit in . . . last night I had a a message on my phone . . . from my former boss from when I first started college(hello Stacy) I was totally surprised that he had called to comment on my blog! I thought "how in the world did he find it?" . . . thanks mom . . . I think she is going to start making t-shirts and aprons with my URL address on them (unless they are already made?) Anywho if you are visiting my blog because of my mom or another family member thanks and I hope that you enjoy! If you stumbled upon it welcome, and if you have checked it out before welcome back! Okay onto the soup . . .

Sausage and Cannellini Soup
Recipe by: Emily

1 lb Sausage (Italian Preferably)
32 oz Chicken Stock
1 cup sliced Squash, (zuc's or crookneck)
1 15 oz can Italian diced tomatoes
1/2 cup Orzo Pasta
1 can Cannellini Beans, rinsed
1/2 medium Onion, chopped
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 tsp Sugar
1 Garlic Clove, minced
Red Pepper Flakes
1. Brown the sausage in a large sauce pan or soup pot. Once the meat is no longer pink add the onion, olive oil, and garlic. Once the onion is translucent add the sugar cook for 2 minutes then add the squash. Cook until the meat begins to brown and onions start to caramelize and squash begins to soften.
2. Pour in the chicken stock, and tomatoes. Bring stock to a gentle boil and add the orzo pasta. Gently boil for about 8 minutes then add the beans, salt, pepper and pepper flakes to taste. Simmer for a few more minutes then serve hot!
(I served this soup with our favorite pesto toasts! Shear delight!)

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Summer Tortellini

Okay bear with me for just a second while I gush about my sweet hubby . . . to say that school has been more than a little stressful this semester would be the understatement of the century for me right now, but my guy has been a trooper everyday . . . in fact I came home from a work meeting tonight (knowing that hours worth of homework was waiting for me) and my handsome man had cleaned the kitchen like a champ! It was just super welcome so I have to say thanks hottie(!!!) for your skills and for eating your veggies!
Okay onto the d-lish Summer Tortellini! Thank you Aunt Carol for sharing the wealth of your garden with us! I just LOVE fresh veggies! Especially when you grow them yourself and look forward to all of the things that you will make with them! (hint Mom: you should grow Jalapenos to make jelly with next year!)
This little jewel of a concoction was a "Pan Toss": where you toss what you have on hand into a pan and it makes something incredible! It really was a delight to make and eat! I just love adding colorful veggies to pasta! It is the best! Especially when they are not "canned soup" mushy, but have a little crunch to them! (oh baby, oh baby!) This dish is like eating sunshine! Enough said!

Summer Tortellini
Recipe by: Emily

1 lb Sausage, (Use your fave, I like the lower fat Jimmy Dean myself, I am not a big italian sausage fan but it too would be good! My hubby would say its meat, whats not to like?)
2-3 Crookneck Squash, cut into bite size chunks
1 (14.5) can Italian Stewed Tomatoes
1/2 Red Onion, coarsely chopped
8 oz package 4 cheese Tortellini, (or whatever pasta you have handy)
1/2 cup Alfredo Sauce
1/4 cup Roasted Red Peppers, chopped
1 clove minced Garlic

Brown the sausage in a large sauce pan. Cook the pasta according to package directions. While pasta is cooking and sausage is browning prep the veggies. Once the sausage is no longer pink and beginning to brown add the onion and garlic, cook for 3-4 minutes then add the squash. Cook meat and veggie mixture until the squash begins to soften slightly. Add the canned tomatoes, alfredo sauce, and roasted red peppers. Add the cooked tortellini and cook for about 2 minutes. Season with Salt and pepper, serve with a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese and freshly chopped grape tomatoes to garnish! Enjoy the fruits of your labor!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Schnitzel, Hot German Potato Salad, and Apple Strudel

Gruesstig! It was German night in our home this evening, for supper anyway . . . the only thing missing was our lederhosen! My little sister called needing my German Potato Salad recipe . . so I decided to make it for dinner and post it for her. I love to reminisce and dive into the food that I grew to love so much while living in Deutschland! Now if only we had the gummy shops and chocolate available that they have . . . I did find red cabbage (rotkohl) though and thoroughly enjoyed it! My comp's and I ate jar after jar of this yummy concoction! I made it homemade once . . . it was quite the process! (I just buy it now, since I am the only one in my home that will eat it) I love it when I'm motivated to make something Deutsches! Heads up this is a long entry . . . 3 recipes here. My high school German teacher was the most amazing woman in the world! She is Austrian and started my love for the Germanic countries, language, culture and FOOD! I tried many different versions of potato salad while their but this one is my favorite!
Hot German Potato Salad

6-7 medium sized potatoes, peeled and sliced
3 strips thick cut Bacon, chopped
1/2 medium Onion, chopped
2-3 tsp Sugar
2-3 Tbsp Vinegar

Boil the potatoes in salted water until tender. Drain the potatoes reserving 1/2 cup of the boiling water.(Be careful or you will end up with mashed potatoes!) Cook the bacon in a frying pan until crisp. Remove the bacon and set aside, add the onion to the frying pan and cook in the bacon drippings until soft. Once the onions has cooked for about 6-8 minutes add the sugar, vinegar, salt, pepper and reserved water. Simmer for a few minutes, taste and add more sugar, vinegar, salt or pepper to taste. Add the bacon to the potatoes and pour the vinegar and onion mixture over the potatoes and bacon. Stir and sprinkle with parsley. Enjoy!
In Germany and Austria schnitzel is eaten with fresh squeezed lemon wedges or mushroom gravy. Leftovers (if you have any) are also great for sandwiches. They often take up the entire plate and are traditionally served with pommes (fries) or kartoffel (potato) salad. Schnitzel is easy to make and simply delicious!

Wiener Schnitzel 
Recipe by:Emily

4 boneless pork or veal chops
1/2 cup oil
3/4 cup fine ground bread crumbs
2 eggs

Pound the chops thin between two pieces of waxed paper or plastic wrap. Beat the two eggs with a little salt, and pepper in a bowl large enough to dunk the meat into. Spread the bread crumbs on a plate and sprinkle with a little more salt, and pepper. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Take each cutlet and dip each side into the egg mixture and then into the bread crumbs to coat evenly. Lay the coated cutlets onto a plate once coated. (They cook in only a few minutes so it is best to have them all ready). Fry each piece in the hot oil until browned and cooked through. (2-3 minutes per side) Place browned schnitzel on a plate with paper towels to absorb any excess grease. Serve the schnitzel with lemon wedges or gravy. Enjoy!

You can use regular sugar instead, but I love the way that the brown sugar creates an incredible creamy filling!
Apple StrudelRecipe by:Emily
6 Sheets Phi lo Dough
1/2 cup butter
5-6 Apples peeled, cored and sliced thin (Granny Smith, Jonagold, whatever you have, I like to mix mine up!)
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
3 Tbsp Bread Crumbs
1/4 cup Chopped Walnuts (Optional)
1/2 cup Golden Raisins (Optional)
1 1/2 Tbsp Flour

Melt 1 Tbsp butter in a pan and add apples. Once the apples start releasing their juices add the brown sugar. Cook for about 2 -3 minutes and add the cinnamon and flour. Remove from heat and set aside. Layer the 6 sheets of philo dough; brush each sheet with melted butter and then lay another sheet on top. Pour the apple filling down the center of the dough. Spirinkle the filling with the bread crumbs and fold the dough over the filling, fold each end over and roll strudel onto a baking sheet with the seam side down. Bake in a preheated 350degree oven for 18-25 minutes, or until the top is golden brown. Allow to sit for a few minutes before slicing. Serve plain or with whip cream or ice cream. Enjoy

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Holy Guacamole Che-Che-Cheezy Nachos!

I was talking to my older sister this morning between classes, she said that she was talking to my mom the other day about how dedicated I must be to school since I haven't been blogging as much . . . keep thinking that ladies! Its true . . . I am the eternal scholar . . . but you know I love to blog . . . so heres a college entree for ya . . . Nachos!
Lets be honest, nachos are easy to make . . . but they are a fun indulgence at our house. Since I have been married I think I have only made them twice, both times totally different but equally d-lish!
My measurements are just "guesstimates" so add more or less of whatever, also I use leftovers for tacos salad, burritos, etc . . . so two meals come from one time cooking! (Time saver!)

Holy Guacamole Che-Che-Cheezy Nachos!

Corns Chips
3/4 cup Queso Cheese
1 can Black Beans, drained and rinsed
1 lb ground beef
2 Tbsp Taco Seasoning
2 Green Onions, Sliced
1/2 cup Tomatoes, chopped
Jalapeno slices
3/4 cup Guacamole
1/2-3/4 cup Salsa (I love extra Chunky!)
1/3 cup Sour Cream (I use fat free)

Brown the ground beef in a frying pan, add the taco seasoning and black beans and mix. Pile corn chips on a plate and top with desired amount of beef and bean mixture, heat the queso cheese dip and pour over the chips, dollop guacamole and salsa over all the chips, sprinkle the tomatoes, green onions and jalapenos over the chips. Dollop the sour cream in the middle. Chow down! Serves 3-5 people.

You can honestly add or subtract anything to nachos, I also like to use chicken, corn, re fried beans, grated cheese, etc. We like nachos for movie nights!