I always get excited when we get fennel in our baskets! But then again I LOVE black licorice, and raw fennel has a definite licorice flavor and aroma. Sadly my husband is not a licorice fan, so raw fennel is not an option for him. However, cooked fennel has a different flavor, it’s not as pungent and aromatic when its roasted or baked in a casserole. A friend shared a recipe with au gratin potatoes and bacon which sounded good, but i didn’t have a pound of bacon handy. After digging in my deep freeze (come on we all do it, looking for that one item you know you stuck in there and just like your purse, everything immediately goes to the abyss in the bottom) I found a pound of Italian sausage. What is in Italian sausage for spice…Fennel seed. Hmm, I am thinking this could be a winning choice.
Archive for the ‘Cooking Techniques’ Category
Naturally my stew pack was screaming at me to make a bowl of comforting soup. We got a couple of fallish days (okay… maybe it was just the morning) in Central Texas recently so I promptly pulled out my boots, scarves and made this fabulous soup.
This soup really hit the spot with some bread (I had crescents on hand but a crusty bread would be great) and a glass of wine. My family is weird and aren’t really “soup people” but they loved this and my husband said the leftovers were fabulous for lunch the next day. This is the kind of soup that warms your body and your soul. (more…)
I found myself trading avocados a couple baskets ago for some extra carrots. Not realizing at the time I had 2 one pound bags already. Now what can I do with them???? I know carrot chips. There is nothing like homemade chips of any kind and carrots are one of my favorites. You can do sweet or spicy, hot or just plain salted. Really anything goes with carrot chips so let your imagination fly. And no one needs to know they are healthy. (more…)
One of my favorite sayings is “Waste not, Want not”. Getting the most bang for the buck out of my basket is one way I do that. I also find it kind of fun to find new ways to use every part of my basket.
The making of raisins is a wonderful journey. For me there is no better way to show my love for family and friends then by cooking for them. These raisins are just another way for me to do that. I first started by doing a vinegar water wash of the grapes with a good rinse and dry. Then let the grapes sit on the trays for a hour so they don’t add moisture to the dehydrator. The hardest part was making sure the little stems were removed on all of the grapes. What I did find is that after drying if you missed any they stood out and you could remove them at that time. Each dehydrator is different so times will be to. Mine took 48 hours on at 145 degrees and 14 hours at 125 degrees. Every few hours I rotated the trays and stirred around the grapes on each tray.
This soup has been haunting me for just over 25 years. I first had it when I was working night shifts at a large hospital in the Midwest. How often can you say you look forward to hospital food? It has taken me a few years but I have finally duplicated it! Its nutty, sweet, tangy and just a bit of heat at the finish. I hope that you enjoy it as much as I do!
When I saw the California blend of veggies (carrots, cauliflower and broccoli) sitting In the refrigerator, I knew it had to become a beautiful soup. I kept remembering a soup from my childhood called Normandy blend soup. I remember it having big chunks of the California blend of veggies, and a velvety cheesy base. I searched for a recipe but never found one, so I decided to give it a try without one.
Brussel sprouts! I have been waiting for them so I could make pizza! I know it’s sounds odd, but really good. My husband who doesn’t like them much actually likes the pizza! I also had a head of broccoflower, which we like roasted and then covered in buffalo sauce and blue cheese crumbles. As long as I was making one pizza I decided to make a second one using the buffalo broccoflower.
I always make my dough from scratch, I love the feel and smell of fresh dough. We didn’t want to heat up the house, so we fired up the gas grill instead. The temperature needs to be about 375-400 degrees F. Roll out your crust to a size you are comfortable handling on the grill. (we often do individual sized crusts) Brush the crust with a little olive oil and place it oiled side down, close lid and wait 2-3 minutes, open lid, with long tongs carefully flip the crust over and cook another 2 minutes. Pull them off the grill and onto a baking sheet.
Add sauce and toppings, then back on to the grill, close lid and cook 2-3 minutes or til cheese melts. The crust will be dark and crisp. Carefully remove them with tongs and grill safe spatula (we found a giant grill spatula; see photo) to a baking sheet or cutting board, cut and enjoy!
My husband made the grand declaration, “This is looking a little healthy for pizza!” and then he ate three slices of each! Yay! Score for me, he ate two green veggies in one meal and liked it!
Have you ever tried pesto? I saw it for the first time about a year ago….Standing there in the noodle aisle, doing what I always do; trying to get some inspiration from the food in front of me. I saw this little jar that struck my fancy. Skip forward, the pesto is still here. The stores version. Not so much.
So anytime I try something new, I immediately start thinking of ways I can make it different; make it my own. I love cooking. I love making food taste gooooooood! I LOVE seeing the smiles on peoples faces when they are trying a new food and the moment it hits their system, when the flavors come together and it all reaches their brain…THAT moment, is the moment that I cook for.
Pesto, it has many purposes, each one good in their own right. It can be an appetizer dip, spread on a bread or used with noodles; the possibilities are endless! And lucky for us, it’s easy to make. (more…)
One of my favorite add-ons is the Asian Pack! It always gives me the excuse to make up a big batch of stir fry. Today I wanted to do something different. Why not egg rolls! Simple enough, as all I needed were the wrappers. These egg rolls receive their heat from the dried Chiles de árbol in the pack. The coconut kiss, is a result of the rolls being fried in Bountiful Baskets scented organic Coconut Oil. Trust me, my house smelled amazing all day! (more…)