Archive for ‘ALL RECIPES’

September 3, 2013

Ultimate Heirloom Tomato Sauce

IMG_0200_1

Harvest time has arrived for our corner bungalow urban farm! Our larger than life Brandywine and Dester Heirloom Tomato plants are producing fruit like crazy! One of my favorite joys of having our garden in our front yard (because it has the best sun) is meeting and chatting garden with our neighbors and talking about tasty garden recipes we all have made.

Below is the ULTIMATE, I mean tastiest, well BEST tomato sauce recipe I have ever made! I finally found and modified it to exactly what we LOVE! Enjoy and put those tasty tomatoes to good use. Last year we made well over 50 freezer containers of this yummy stuff!  Come winter you are going to be thrilled you made this summertime fresh tomato sauce!

IMG_0196_1

IMG_0203_1

Ultimate Heirloom Tomato Sauce

16 Cups Heirloom Tomatoes (or any tomato you love) – chopped
4 Large Onions – chopped
1 Large Bell Pepper – chopped
1 Bulb Garlic – minced
1/2 Cup vegetable oil
1/4 Cup Sugar
2 TBS Salt
1 TBS Pepper
2 TBS Dried Basil
2 TBS Dried Oregano
3 TBS Dried Parsley Flakes
2 Bay Leaves
1 can of tomato paste

1. Add all ingredients to large stock pot
2. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer 3 hours with lid slightly cracked
3. Stir ever 30 minutes or so
4. Remove from heat and remove Bay Leaves
5. Use immersion blender and blend
6. Remove blender 3-5 times to discard tomato skins
7. Add tomato paste and blend until smooth
8. Add to freezer containers (I use these from Ziploc which can be found at a mass retailer)
9. Cool completely before placing in freezer (I store the containers in the fridge for 1 day before placing in freezer)
10. Freeze and enjoy during the cold months ahead!

Makes 18-24 cups

Advertisements
June 26, 2013

Healthy Rhubarb Muffins

The heat and rain of MN has been just the ingredient my garden needed to jump-start our cold dreary spring! Which means our first harvest of rhubarb is upon us. We have 2 large plants in our little urban garden and I always have such a hard time deciding what to make. Yes, I could make my mom’s delicious AMAZING rhubarb pie, but I am looking for something a little different. So I went on a quest for a tasty, HEALTHY, time conscious rhubarb recipe. Below is what I found with the help of Fine Cooking. I modified the recipe slightly by using half applesauce and butter for a healthier alternative and adding my favorite ingredient of course…baking spice!

This muffin recipe is easy, yummy, and my now go to Rhubarb recipe. In fact, I may just make them again tonight!

 IMG_3521

IMG_3519

IMG_3517

Muffin Ingredients:

  • 2 cups Flour
  • 3/4 cup Sugar
  • 2-1/2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Spice (found at Penzey’s Spice Shop)
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 cup Sour Cream
  • 4 TBS unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
  • 1/4 cup Applesauce (1 snack size container)
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 1-1/2 cups to 2 cups Rhubarb (1/4-inch-diced)

Topping Ingredients:

  • 3 TBS Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Cinnamon

Topping Directions:

  1. Combine in small bowl: sugar and cinnamon.
  2. Stir to combine and set aside

Muffin Directions:

  1. Combine in large bowl: Flour, Sugar, Baking Powder, Baking Soda, Cinnamon, Baking Spice, and Salt
  2. Combine in small bowl: Sour Cream, Melted Butter, Applesauce, Eggs, and Vanilla
  3. Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients until just combined (do not overmix)
  4. Add Rhubarb and stir to combine
  5. Divide batter into a 12 muffin tin
  6. Sprinkle Topping Mixture evenly on top of the 12 muffins
  7. Bake for 18-20 minutes until lightly golden and toothpick comes out clean

OVEN: 400 degrees

 ENJOY!

June 22, 2013

Breakfast Sandwich Freezer Meals

In my hopes to make our lives easier and less stressful; I am trying many new freezer meals and make ahead meals to enjoy what truly matters all while eating wholesome and homemade food.  I will post my favorites that I have made over the summer so make sure to check back! This recipe was adapted from  The Yummy Life‘s breakfast sandwiches. I have made them  a few times and just LOVE them. They are SO easy to make and pop out of the freezer in individual servings to keep you fueled through your day!

In order to make the eggs the same size of the English muffins, I used a whoopie pie tin as it is slightly wider than a muffin tin.

IMG_3543

IMG_3541

IMG_3536

IMG_3534

IMG_3539

IMG_3547

IMG_3548

Ingredients:

  • 12 Large Eggs
  • 12 Whole Wheat English Muffins
  • 1.5-2 lbs Bulk Breakfast Sausage
  • 12 Slices Cheese (Sharp Cheddar, Pepperjack…whatever you fancy)
  • Black Pepper to Taste
  • Parchment Paper
  • 2 Gallon Size Freezer Bags

  1. Crack 12 Eggs into a whoopie pie tin. Use a fork to break the yolks and sprinkle with Black Pepper
  2. Bake Eggs at 350 for 15-18 minutes until the yolks are cooked through
  3. Make 12 thin patties with the Breakfast Sausage and cook until done
  4. Toast 12 English Muffins
  5. Assemble sandwiches in the following order: English Muffin bottom, Sausage Patty, Egg, Cheese Slice, English Muffin Top
  6. Wrap sandwiches in Parchment Paper
  7. Add 6 sandwiches per Freezer Bag
  8. When ready to eat: thaw overnight in fridge and heat in microwave for 45 to 60 seconds

ENJOY!

OVEN: 350

January 24, 2013

Soft Peanut Butter Blossoms – Favorite Cookie of all Time

There is no reason not to take your favorite Christmas cookie recipe and update or remove the red and green sprinkles for later in the year. Well it has been almost a month after the holiday cookie extravaganza and I just had to use up that last can of Sweetened Condensed Milk sitting in my small bungalow kitchen cabinet. You will find my absolute FAVORITE cookie of ALL TIME below (with the red and green sprinkles removed of course).

What is your favorite holiday cookie and how do you update for year round enjoyment?

peanut butter blossom

Soft Peanut Butter Blossoms

Ingredients:

  • 2 Cups Bisquick
  • 3/4 Cup Peanut Butter
  • 1 Can Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 TSP Vanilla
  • Sugar and Colored Sugar
  • 1 Bag of Milk Chocolate Stars

  1. Combine all ingredients except Chocolate Stars and Sugars with electric mixture until combined
  2. Add Sugars in a small separate bowl (this will be used later)
  3. Roll dough into TSP or slightly larger size balls
  4. Roll dough balls in sugar until coated
  5. Place on cookie sheet – do not flatten!
  6. Remove from oven and immediately press milk chocolate stars in center
  7. Allow to cool slightly on cookie sheet and move to cooling rack to cool completely

OVEN: 350

TIME: 6-8 minutes until dough balls are slightly cracked

Cook’s Tip: Make ahead of time and freeze for future enjoyment. Place one layer of cookies is a freezer Tupperware container and freeze. Once chocolate is frozen place wax paper on top of first layer and add another layer of cookies until container is full. Thaw on counter to enjoy.

December 3, 2012

Cranberry Cilantro Lime Quinoa Salad

This cold salad quickly became one of my go to recipes over the summer with our urban garden. You will love it! Plus you can make a batch on Sunday and have lots of healthy lunches all week. The possibilities are endless with the quinoa salad. For a more substantial dinner try adding cold shredded chicken.

quinoa salad   

How I came to making this dish last night…After cleaning out my fridge this past weekend I found the bag of cilantro I bought well over a month ago in our crisper. Thinking it was going to be all slimy and brown I was about to add the greens to my compost…but NO it was  as fresh as the day I put it in the bag! A while back I heard if you rinsed your fresh herbs and placed them in a ziplock with a paper towel they would keep at least twice as long. Sure enough that is EXACTLY what I tried and one month later, my fresh cilantro is still kick’n. I would recommend this tip to all of you looking for a way to keep your  herbs fresh now that we are entering the fall/winter months. 

Back to yummy recipe. I found this tasty healthy cold salad on Allrecipes and modified ingredient quantity and type only. See below and enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 Cups Water
  • 1 Cup Uncooked Quinoa – Rinsed
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper – Chopped
  • 1 Green Bell Pepper – Chopped
  • 1 Small Onion – Chopped
  • 1 1/2 TSP Curry Powder
  • 1/3 Cup Fresh Cilantro – Chopped
  • 1/4 Cup Lime Juice (adjust to taste)
  • 1/4 Cup Toasted Sliced Almonds
  • 2 Large Carrots – Chopped
  • 1/2 Cup Dried Cranberries
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste

1. Add Water to pan, cover and bring to a boil

2. Add: Quinoa, recover and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook for 15-20 minutes until water is absorbed

3. Transfer: Cooked Quinoa to small bowl and chill in fridge until cold (if you are in a time pinch place in freezer and stir occasionally so it does not freeze solid!)

4. Add: All remaining ingredients to large mixing bowl and stir to combine

5. Add: Chilled Quinoa to large mixing bowl with all ingredients and stir to combine

6. Serve chilled

ENJOY!

November 17, 2012

Flax PB Chocolate Chip Cookies – Lactation Cookies

As the little hand of my nephew reached into the cookie jar, followed by my brother in-law, sister and me… I looked around to see the expressions on their faces after biting into these über healthy chocolate chip cookies for tonight’s dessert. Was it the nutty flax meal, the creamy natural peanut butter or the sweet chocolate morsels…that gave the ‘ummm’ response? I think it was a combination of all!

The addition of ‘Brewer’s Yeast’ is also an ingredient in these heathy little treats. This was the secret ingredient in the Lactation Cookies I made a few weeks ago.  I have an abundance of Brewer’s Yeast as I had to buy an entire canister of this good stuff when I only needed a few tablespoons! I am sure you have been in that same sitution…go to the store and realize a) your size you want is sold out or b) there is NO bulk options and you have to buy the larger canister of whatever you needed. SO, I will be coming up with creative ways to utilize this good stuff either though baking tasty treats or sprinkling some into my green smoothies. Either way, these cookies are delicious and I am glad I could bring these over to my sister’s family for all to enjoy and hopefully they will have the same effect for my sister being a new mama too!.

Recipe slightly altered from: Peaceful Parenting

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1 TSP Baking Soda
  • 1 TSP Salt
  • 1 TSP Cinnamon
  • 3/4 Cup Natural Peanut Butter
  • 1/2 Cup Organic Butter
  • 1/2 Cup Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 TSP Vanilla
  • 3 TBS Brewer’s Yeast
  • 1 Cup Flax Meal
  • 1/3 Cup Water
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 1 3/4 Cups 5 Grain Cereal
  • 1 Bag Milk Chocolate Chips

  1. In small bowl combine: Flour, Baking Soda, Cinnamon, and Salt
  2. In large bowl combine: Peanut Butter, Butter, Sugar, Brown Sugar, Vanilla, Brewer’s Yeast, Flax Meal, and Water – combine until creamy
  3. Add: Eggs
  4. Slowly Add: Flour mixture
  5. Add: 5 Grain Cereal and Chocolate Chips
  6. Place on parchment paper lined cookie sheet by the teaspoonful
  7. Bake for 10-12 minutes

OVEN: 350

Yield: 4 Dozen (I like to make 2 dozen at a time and freeze the other dozens by the dough balls for future use)

November 12, 2012

Turnip Soup

Another Sunday has passed and the weather went from 70 on Saturday to 34 today, Sunday. So you guessed it, here is another tasty soup recipe.  One of my weekend rituals is going to the farmer’s market to pick up fresh locally grown produce. The weather has brought the bustling 3 row packed market down to 1 row of local farmer’s. Once I laid eyes on the beautiful turnips below I knew my soup this week had to include them. Did I mention for all 4 turnips I paid only $2!

The below turnip soup was meant to be when I was reading the December issue of EatingWell. There was a huge section of turnip recipes. I have never cooked with the amazing root vegetable and only thought of them as a compliment to a roast. If you have not tried turnips I would highly recommend you give them a shot and try this recipe. Turnips also have amazing health benefits including a great source of Calcium, B Vitamins, and Potassium, plus they are a fraction of the calories of a normal potato.

Recipe slightly modified from EatingWell.

Ingredients:

  • 4 Medium-Large Turnips: Pealed and cut into small cubes
  • 2 TBS Olive Oil
  • 1 TBS Butter
  • 1 Medium Onion: Pealed and diced
  • 1/2 TSP Dried Rosemary
  • 1/2 TSP Salt
  • 1/2 TSP Pepper
  • 4 Cups Chicken Stock: Reduced Sodium

  1. In large stockpot: Heat Olive Oil and Butter
  2. Add: Onions and cook until clear and slightly brown
  3. Add: Turnips, Rosemary, Salt, and Pepper. Stir and combine
  4. Cover: Cook for 10-15 minutes stirring occasionally
  5. Add: Chicken Stock and increase heat to High and bring to a boil
  6. Reduce Heat and Simmer: Cook 10-15 minutes until turnips are tender
  7. Using immersion blender cream soup
  8. Serve with oyster crackers

Enjoy!

November 8, 2012

Cake Cookies

Thinking of something a little different from the standard birthday cake or cupcake? How about a Cake Cookie!  That is what this post is all about. At work we always like to do a little something special on a co-worker’s birthday. I LOVE to bring sweet treats into the office when given an opportunity and decided to whip up a batch of my good college friends ‘Cake Cookies.’ Well it is his mom’s recipe, but he introduced it to me. Super easy and yummy!

I apologize for the dark photos lately. This whole daylight savings is ensuring I can only do indoor activities after work unless I have a headlamp of which I am sure my husband would be more than willing to provide for me.

You can most certainly spice up the recipe with using any type of cake mix. Honestly I should have grabbed the Fun-Fetti mix, but the yellow mix will do this time.

 

Cake Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 2 Eggs
  • 1/3 Cup Water
  • 4 TBS Butter, softened
  • 1 Cup Creamy Natural Peanut Butter
  • 1 Box Yellow Cake Mix
  • 1 12 package of butterscotch or chocolate chips

1. Mix: Eggs, Water, and 1/2 of the cake mix

2. Add: Butter and Peanut Butter

3. Add: Remaining Cake Mix and Chips

4. Drop by the TSP onto parchment paper

5. Bake 8-10 minutes

OVEN: 365 degree’s

Enjoy!

November 5, 2012

Split Pea Soup

Are you doing anything different now that daylight saving has taken effect? With the days getting shorter and the nightfall earlier, I had to find something new to do in my bungalow. SOO… I have decided to make a tasty soup every Sunday. Well I will give it my best try at least! Nick mentioned the other day, ‘You know what I have been thinking about, your tasty split pea soup.’ What a thing to think about right? So I have chosen to kick off my Sunday Soup adventure with just that, my great grandma’s Split Pea Soup.

Trust me, you will LOVE this recipe. All fresh ingredients and the only spicing is salt and pepper. Plus you will have A LOT of extra soup to freeze and take as easy meals to work for lunch or when you don’t have time to make dinner.

What makes this soup über tasty is the slow simmer of the smoked ham hock (photo below). Even though I can guarantee the best ham hock comes from my dad’s slow roasted ham on the grill. You can find the ham hock or ham shank at your local market. You can expect to pay around $4-$6 for a smoked variety.

The photo below is all the ingredients including the peas before they exploded into a creamy fresh flavor soup. Plus it was the prettiest photo! This soup takes a combined 3.5 hours to make. Make sure you allow enough time for all the flavors to combine and your home will smell AMAZING and nothing less than cozy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 Ham Hock
  • 6 Cups Reduced Sodium Chicken Stock
  • 1 Bag Split Peas – Dried
  • 2 Large Carrots – Peeled and Sliced
  • 3 Stocks Celery – Chopped
  • 1 Medium Onion – Chopped
  • 2 Medium Potatoes – Peeled and Diced

1. In large pot: Combine Chicken Stock and Ham Hock. Simmer for 1.5 hours

2. Remove :Ham and place on cutting board. Cool enough to handle and remove meat and chop

3. Add: Peas, Carrots, Celery, Onions, Potatoes, and Ham to Chicken Stock. Season with a dash of salt and pepper

4. Cook for 2 hours until peas are cooked and creamy, stirring occasionally

Yields: ~ 8 cups

September 8, 2012

Lactation Cookies

I am beyond excited to have not one, but TWO new little babies join our family. My sister, bother in-law, and nephew welcomed two beautiful twin babies to our world last weekend, Harper Grace and Samuel Philip. By keeping the genders a surprise until they were born, the little babies wanted to be set apart even further by having different birth days and even months! Harper was born on August 31st in the late evening and Sam September 1st in the early hours of the morning. As they arrived early, Sam and Harper are both in the special care nursery at the hospital to get extra strong before they come home.  I will share photos and more of the ‘fresh humans’ as Nick likes to call them soon, once the family is all settled in.

My sister, being an amazingly strong women by bringing these guys into the world and a nurse herself asked if I could  bake up some ‘Lactation Cookies.’ I had no idea what these ‘cookies’ were all about. She said that as the babies arrived earlier than expected, mama’s milk was not quite ready for them. These cookies are made with special ingredients to help increase the supply. As my family knows I LOVE to bake, I jumped to  try a new recipe. I have lots to share over the next month as it is harvest time here in MN. If I could put a ‘smell button’ on this website I would. Currently my kitchen smells of: Heirloom Brandywine Tomato Sauce on the stove top, Homemade Applesauce in the crock-pot, and these Lacation Cookies!

For all the mama’s out there that may need a little extra help with milk, and just a nice tasty cookie; these are the ticket. Enjoy! I followed the recipe from Epicurious  without modifications.

LACTATION COOKIES

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Butter (Organic)
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 1 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 4 TBS Water
  • 2 TBS Flaxseed Meal
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 1 TSP Vanilla
  • 2 Cups Flour
  • 1 TSP Baking Soda
  • 1 TSP Salt
  • 2 TBS Brewers Yeast (SECRET INGREDIENT!)
  • 3 Cups Old Fashion Oats
  • 1 Bag Chocolate Chips

1. Mix Flaxseed Meal with Water, Set aside 3-5 minutes

2. Cream Butter and Sugar

3. Add Eggs

4. Add Flaxseed Meal mixture and Vanilla

5. Sift Flour, Baking Soda, Salt, Brewers Yeast in small bowl

6. Add sifted ingredients to main mixture

7. Mix in Oats by hand

8. Mix in Chocolate chips by hand

OVEN: 350 degrees

YIELD: I made 36 cookies and 22 cookie balls for the freezer.

COOK’S TIP: Store cookies in air tight container with piece of bread for freshness.

%d bloggers like this: