Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Beet, Orange, and Apple Salad

Tim's newfound love of beets and

  • 1 1/2 pounds beets
  • 2 cups shredded beet greens
  • 1 large orange
  • 2 Granny Smith apples - peeled, cored
  • and sliced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon raspberry vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted sunflower seeds, toasted

  1. Wash and dry beet roots and greens. Shred greens to measure 2 cups and set aside.
  2. Place beets in a sauce pan with enough water to cover. Bring to boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until tender. Drain and allow to cool.
  3. Trim and peel off skins; cut into 8 wedges.
  4. Peel and section orange. In a bowl, combine orange sections, beets and apples.
  5. Whisk together olive oil, vinegar, sugar, salt and garlic. Pour over beet mixture and toss well.
  6. Arrange 1/2 cup beet greens on 4 salad plates. Top with beet mixture, sprinkle with sunflower seeds and serve.

Notes: Loved this recipe. It's not for beginners--kind of time consuming--but it's delicious. Next time I'll double the dressing recipe and keep the salad ingredients the same. I may also add in an extra orange.

Tim's Rating: 9/10
Liz's Rating: 9/10

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Spaghetti alla Carbonara

I love, love, love Carbonara. It's one of my comfort foods. Tim isn't a huge fan, so I eat it when he's working late or has other plans. It's so easy to make and perfect for a cold night in.
This recipe is from Tyler Florence.

  • 1 pound dry spaghetti
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 ounces pancetta or slab bacon, cubed or sliced into small strips
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus more for serving
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 handful fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped

  1. Prepare the sauce while the pasta is cooking to ensure that the spaghetti will be hot and ready when the sauce is finished; it is very important that the pasta is hot when adding the egg mixture, so that the heat of the pasta cooks the raw eggs in the sauce.

  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add the pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until tender yet firm (as they say in Italian "al dente.") Drain the pasta well, reserving 1/2 cup of the starchy cooking water to use in the sauce if you wish.

  3. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a deep skillet over medium flame. Add the pancetta and saute for about 3 minutes, until the bacon is crisp and the fat is rendered. Toss the garlic into the fat and saute for less than 1 minute to soften.

  4. Add the hot, drained spaghetti to the pan and toss for 2 minutes to coat the strands in the bacon fat. Beat the eggs and Parmesan together in a mixing bowl, stirring well to prevent lumps. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the egg/cheese mixture into the pasta, whisking quickly until the eggs thicken, but do not scramble (this is done off the heat to ensure this does not happen.) Thin out the sauce with a bit of the reserved pasta water, until it reaches desired consistency. Season the carbonara with several turns of freshly ground black pepper and taste for salt. Mound the spaghetti carbonara into warm serving bowls and garnish with chopped parsley. Pass more cheese around the table.

Liz's Rating: 9/10

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Best Breakfast Casserole

My sister Ellen made this over Thanksgiving, and we made it again for Christmas morning. It's hands down the best baked breakfast we've ever had. You must try it!
Recipe from Johnsonville.

  • 1 package (12 oz.) Johnsonville® breakfast sausage links
  • 6 English muffins, cut into 1-in. cubes
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup (4 oz.) shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup (4 oz.) shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion (omitted)
  • 1/2 cup chopped red pepper (omitted)
  • 12 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1/4 cup bacon bits (omitted)

  1. Cook sausage according to package directions. Cool slightly; cut into ¼-in. slices.
  2. In a greased 13in. x 9 in. baking dish, layer half the English muffin cubes and half the cooked sausage. Repeat layers.
  3. Drizzle with butter and top with the cheese, onion and red pepper.
    In a large bowl, combine the eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Pour over casserole. Sprinkle with bacon. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  4. Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking.
  5. Uncover and bake at 350˚F for 45-50 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.
  6. Let stand 5 minutes.

Liz's Rating: 10/10
Tim's Rating: 10/10