Category: Summer

Blueberry Cornmeal Muffins with Thyme Glaze

As I might have mentioned a time or two 😉 I really like to cook and bake and spend a lot of my time looking at/for recipes.  I also am a little fickle and go through phases on where I am sourcing recipes.  I have long been a fan of Cook’s Illustrated (particularly their desserts,) NY Times Cooking (Melissa Clark,) Epicurious, and Food 52.  A couple of years ago, I noticed a new magazine with gorgeous pictures and had to pick it up.  This became my newest baking crush, Bake From Scratch (The Bake Feed.)  My first issue had these muffins along with a few others that I made in rapid succession, because they were just all so yummy.  I like traditional flavors, so for strawberry season which is so short, I tend to stick with the tried and true, but with blueberries and peaches, the bounty lasts longer, so I will branch out.  These take a little time, but are very worth it in the end.  Changes I made: most definitely use muffin cup liners, because even in nonstick, they might get a little stuck and break also I made regular sized muffins (12ish) instead of the 8 jumbo, the recipe calls for.  You will just need to adjust the baking time.

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Noodle-less Zucchini Lasagna

Here in East Tennessee, we are a little behind the CSRA, weather-wise, so are just beginning to see a few summer squash. I am also in the midst of spring cleaning and projects, so am looking for recipes that let me enjoy the bounty of the season, but also produce leftovers.  This is just the kind of recipe I turn to and bonus, it is low in calories and gluten free.  I love that a little work and an hour or so of cooking gives me multiple meals.  If you do have a bounty, you could make two pans, one to cook and one to freeze.  Now, back to the cleaning…

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Lemony Green Bean Salad with Feta

Well folks, it does not happen often, but I have been waylaid by a summer cold. In between running for a kleenex and bouts of sneezing and coughing the last thing I want to do is cook an elaborate, time consuming dinner (and as you know, that is one of my favorite hobbies.) So, when the sick fairy visits, I turn to simple dishes that can be prepared in the few moments of respite. This green bean salad is one such dish. It is a perfect side for something from the grill (that hopefully the spouse, kids, neighbor, dog is going to prepare) and hey, it is just the beginning of green bean season, so the perfect time to enjoy them with minimal accompaniment. See you next week…

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Cucumber and Radish Salad with Burrata

Sorry to be a couple days tardy on my recipe post. Friday was a busy, busy day and Saturday, I was feeling a little under the weather, but better late than never. This week’s recipe has one of my favorite things in the world: Burrata. The marriage of mozzarella and creamy cheese curds. It is a wonderful treat alongside crisp spring and summer vegetables (well anything really) and makes a beautiful dish that everyone will rave over. If you cannot locate burrata, you can certainly substitute fresh mozzarella, homemade or good quality store bought ricotta.

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Beets with Lime and Pepitas

Beets are not a veggie that I grew up loving. Probably, because the only ones I had growing up were from a can. All of that changed about ten years ago when I enjoyed a steak salad with pickled beets. That salad made me rethink them, so I embarked on a journey of trying out various ways to prepare beets. I discovered that I absolutely LOVE them! Pretty much anyway they can be served, even beet kvass (which I drink every day.) The big downside is that they are not the easiest to prep and that color gets everywhere, so when I saw this set of recipes, I thought, “hey, new method, lets see if it is as messy and bonus new flavors I never thought of.” This recipe is on my list for weekend cooking and I think will make a great side dish for steak or roast/grilled chicken. I hope you guys do too. Ban the can, go fresh!

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Strawberry Ice Cream

Well, folks, we are coming to a close on one of the best times of the year; strawberry season. So, I have to post one more recipe before they are all gone until 2018. Let me tell you, this one is killer! I have used this ice cream recipe for the past 10 years and it is a no fail, show stopper that will have even the daintiest eater smacking their lips and scraping the bowl clean. Nothing gets wasted and the addition of a little bit of vodka to the fruit helps keep those pesky ice crystals at bay. I also put a piece of plastic wrap directly against the ice cream before freezing (and with any left overs) which also helps keep it crystal free. Reserve your strawberries today (you might want to get enough for two batches) for ice cream goodness this week.

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Creme Fraiche Panna Cotta with Fresh Blueberries and Herbs

Well folks, February is here and that means trying to come up with a plan to celebrate Valentine’s Day. We keep it fairly low key in my household and as you can guess, instead of going out to celebrate, I usually cook. Since it is on a Tuesday this year, I am looking for a fairly easy dessert; panna cotta is certainly that without giving up taste. It is so simple that while the main cook does dinner, the other Valentine could be putting this together. I like this version, because it uses a combo of berries and herbs (I will go with the frozen blueberry and lemon thyme option.) Herbs are not something that we always think of for dessert, but they provide a nice brightness and an interesting flavor profile. There are some hints in the notes of berry-herb combinations that go together quite well, but try some of your own to really add that personal touch.

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Nest Egg

The holidays are upon us and though they bring much joy, they also bring a good bit of stress. To ease (what is mostly self induced stress,) I look for meals that feel like a treat, but at the same time are fairly simple and quick. This recipe is simple; made up of ingredients we all have, quick; less than 10 minutes, can be doubled, tripled, whatever, and can be served for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or a midnight snack. You can have it as a light meal or with some salad greens for something a little more fortifying. With a little dressing up, it is even pretty enough for guests. The only downside, the name; egg in a hole…no worries, I found a better one. 😀

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Burrata With Romano Beans and Roasted Eggplant

Normally, since it is mid October, I would recommend a truly fall slanted recipe, but since we are nearing the end of green beans and eggplant, I thought I would share my favorite new recipe of the summer/early fall. I made this for the first time a couple of months ago and it was a huge hit! My husband is not a big cheese fan, he can mostly take it or leave it, but burrata, he will eat anyway and ask for more. Side note: If you have never heard of or had burrata, it is a most beautiful marriage of fresh mozzarella and ricotta cheeses and is a show stopper. Sadly ALG does not have a farmer that makes it (someone get on that,) but it can be picked up at Whole Foods and Fresh Market (it is a good deal less expensive at WF.) We absolutely loved this dish and it would be the perfect thing to serve a vegetarian when you want to impress. The recipe calls for a specific green bean, but no worries, any will do and the same goes for the eggplant. My advice would be, order your veggies today and then run out and secure your burrata, so on Tuesday night you can marvel at what a genius recipe whisperer I am. 🙂

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Dutch Baby takes a Mediterranean Holiday

I discovered Dutch Babies about twenty years ago. Unfortunately, the recipe I was using did not call it that and so after making it a couple of times, I misplaced the recipe and could never find it again…About 2-3 years ago, I saw a recipe on NY Times for one that used berries. I thought it seemed similar to the savory egg thing I had made years before, but was not sure until I saw this recipe. Truthfully, I have not made this yet. I signed up to test it, but then had to back out because the deadline did not work for me, so I am going to make it tonight. I am excited for it though and will report back on how it turned out. You guys should unofficially test too and leave some feedback for both the author and me on FB.

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Spaghetti Squash Gratin With Basil

Its still hot…and I had been avoiding turning on the oven, but had a couple of spaghetti squash that had been sitting on my counter for a while, so, I made an exception. I am very glad that I did! This is really a fabulous way to use spaghetti squash, plus I had some left over squash that I repurposed in a new and exciting way; as crust for a frittata. This recipe and the “pie” crust are things that will definitely go on the fall rotation. My tweaks for this recipe would be: Cut the squash open and scoop out the guts, then bake at 375, cut side down for 30 minutes, flip the halves to cut side up and bake until a paring knife easily passes through the outer skin. Happy cooking!

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Greek Eggplant Fries

This continued heat is difficult for most veggies, even tomatoes. Luckily, eggplant really thrives in the hot, humid, dog-days of late summer and we have much to choose from. So, why not choose to cook them in a bit of a different way; eggplant fries. These are so yummy, even the kids will be asking for more.

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