Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Peach and Tomato Pasta

I found this amazing recipe that is perfect for peach season. It's especially great for people like my mom who have a peach tree and grow tomatoes in their garden. I just got the Better Homes and Gardens magazine (thanks to my hubby for mother's day) and it has tons of peaches recipes (which we will be trying about 5 of them in the next couple of weeks) and we loved this one last night. I did change a couple of things and may make a couple changes next time, so I'll note those and you can decide how you want to make it.
Btw, this is a fast recipe and you don't want the peaches too mushy, so it's good to have everything chopped and ready to add when it calls for it.

12 oz. spaghetti or linguine (I used spaghetti but may try a single pasta next time)
3 cloves garlic (I used garlic powder equivalent, check the container)
1 Tbsp canola oil (I used olive oil)
1 pint grape tomatoes (I used several romas, diced)
2 lb. peaches (about 6), pitted & sliced and/or coarsely chopped (leave the skins on)
1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives, halved (don't like these at all so didn't use them)
1/3 cup chopped basil leaves (used dried equivalent)
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper
1/4 to 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper
toasted slivered almonds (opt.)

1. Prepare spaghetti according to package directions. Reserve 1/4 c. of the spaghetti cooking liquid. Drain spaghetti and return to pot; keep warm.

2. Meanwhile, in a 12-inch skillet cook garlic in hot oil over medium heat for 1 minute. Add tomatoes. Cook, uncovered, for 2 minutes. Add peaches. Cook 4 to 5 minutes more or until peaches are just soft, stirring occasionally. Stir in olives, basil, salt, and peppers; heat through.

3. Add peach mixture to cooked spaghetti along w/ reserved spaghetti cooking liquid. Toss to combine. Season to taste w/ additional salt and pepper. Serve warm or at room temp. Sprinkle w/ almonds just before serving.
Makes 6 servings.
Enjoy! So unique yet yummy.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Philly Cheesesteak Sandwiches

I've never even been to Philadelphia, so I'm certainly no expert. But I think I've come up with a pretty delicious version of a steak sandwich. It's a great summer recipe as you don't have to heat the oven except the broiler for a short time, and it's very fast.

Cut tender steak (probably about 1 lb) into very thin strips. Sprinkle with Montreal Steak Seasoning and garlic salt. Mix well with hands and let "marinate" while you prepare the other ingredients.
1 green pepper and 1 red pepper cut into thin strips
1 box mushrooms, sliced
1 large onion, sliced very thin
Salt and pepper
Buns ( hard roll buns like Hotel Utah rolls)
Soft cream cheese
Mozarella cheese, grated
Put evoo in a large skillet. Add veggies, garlic, and salt and pepper and cook until tender. Add meat and stir and cook all together.
Split buns and spread with cream cheese. Broil until slightly browned. Spoon meat mixture over buns and top with grated cheese. Put back under broiler until cheese is melted and bubbly.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Tomatillo dressing-tastes like Cafe Rio

3 fresh tomatillos (peel off paper skin & quarter)
1 package buttermilk ranch
1 cup mayo (I used sour cream)
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 cup cilantro, chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed (I use 1/4 tsp garlic powder.)
1/4 tsp crushed cayenne pepper

Blend all ingredients in blender and chill for at least one hour before serving.

~I also got this recipe from Jennica, and it is delicious!

Shredded Pork-(tastes like Cafe Rio)

The night before...
3 1/2 to 4 lb pork roast
2 T brown sugar
1 to 1 1/2 tsp red pepper (cayenne)
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp salt

Mix together and rub on pork roast. Put in crock-pot on low all night. (If you have a pretty hot cooker, you can do it on high in the morning, until it cooks the meat through.)

The next morning add...
1 can root beer (the recipe I have says coke, but I like my RB)
1 cup chicken broth
2 cloves garlic, minced (I have an allergy, so I use 1/4 tsp. garlic powder)
1 small onion, chopped

Keep on low until ready to serve for lunch or dinner.

About one hour before serving, shred roast and add 1 cup brown sugar. Use in tacos or on salad w/ tomatillo dressing.

~I got this recipe from Blake's cousin, Jennica. So yummy!

Cilantro-Lime Rice

4 T butter
2 1/2 cups rice (I like to use brown rice)
4 1/2 cups chicken broth (If I'm using cubed bullion to make this, I use 3 cubes instead of 4 1/2 cubes, because it gets too salty.)
1 1/2 tsp salt
4 T lime juice
4 T chopped cilantro (I added more than this at the reunion, Lu.)
1/2 tsp cumin

Put all ingredients in rice cooker and push the cook button.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Carrot Pineapple Cake

The name may sound healthy, but trust me, this one's a gooey, moist, delectable winner. My hubby requests this cake every time he get's to put in his "two cents." Thanks to Cynthia Prince (my mother in law), an amazing chef and baker, to whom I owe this recipe. I think she originally got it from the Better Homes and Garden's Cook-book (the older version).

1 ½ cup flour

1 cup sugar

1 t baking powder

1 t soda

1 t ground cinnamon

½ t salt

Stir or sift all dry ingredients together


2/3 cup salad oil

2 eggs

1 cup finely shredded carrots

½ cup crushed pineapple with syrup (1 cup in a can)

1 t vanilla

Mix till moistened. 2 minutes on medium speed. Pour into greased pan and bake 350 for 35 minutes.

This makes enough for one 9x9 pan. If you are feeding a larger crowd (or just want more left-overs :), I would suggest doubling the recipe to fit into a bundt or 9x13 pan.

This may be common sense, but I would highly suggest cream cheese frosting above any other kind with this cake!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Whole Wheat Muffins

I got this recipe from a friend that I used to work with. She is a great cook and DOESN'T like to share her recipes, so I feel lucky to have this one. It has become a favorite for our whole family and is my favorite thing to have around when I have a newborn, am nursing and am always starving. It is a quick, relatively healthy and satisfying snack.

1 c. oil (you can replace all or half of this with applesauce for a healthier result. It still tastes great.)
2 eggs
1 t. salt
2 c. brown sugar
2 c. milk
4 c. wheat flour
2 t. vanilla
2 t. baking soda

Mix all ingredients. Pour into muffin cups (after putting the paper liners in, of course). Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Makes 2 1/2 - 3 dozen.

Cheesy Mashed Cauliflower

This is a delicious substitute for mashed potatoes. It is a Rachel Ray recipe. Garlic and Herb flavored Boursin is found in the deli section and is a little pricey. I'm sure you could substitute a less expensive soft flavored cheese ( I wonder if cream cheese with garlic salt and chives or green onion would work? Just a thought- I think I might try it next time.)
1 cup chicken broth
1 large head cauliflower
1/3 cup, abut 3 ounces, Boursin or other garlic and herb soft cheese
1 handful of grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1/8 tsp. grated nutmeg
3 T. chives, snipped

Put chicken stock and about 1 T.evoo in a deep pot. Trim away greens and stems from the base of cauliflower. Cut away the core with a sharp paring knife. Set cored head into the pot with broth. Cover pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and cook cauliflower, covered, until tender, 8-10 minutes. Uncover the pot and mash the cauliflower. Let some liquid cook off as you smash the cheeses into the cauliflower. As the mixture thickens, turn off the heat and season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Stir in or top with chives.

Curried Chicken Salad

This is another Ina Gartner recipe. My husband served his mission in Japan and developed a taste for curry. I'm not as crazy about it, but I love this salad. It is really tasty and good. Both times I made it, I left out the raisins, but I think I might try them next time . .. or craisins. I substituted chicken stock for the wine. It makes a little too much dressing, so you could use less mayo and chicken stock and still have plenty.
What is Major Grey's chutney? I had no idea, but asked at the grocery store and was taken not to the jam section, but to the pickle/ barbecue sauce section. Major Grey is a flavor and man, is it good. You use about 1/2 bottle in the recipe. Okay, here's the recipe:


  • 3 whole (6 split) chicken breasts, bone-in, skin-on
  • Olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups good mayonnaise (recommended: Hellman's)
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine
  • 1/4 cup chutney (recommended: Major Grey's)
  • 3 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1 cup medium-diced celery (2 large stalks)
  • 1/4 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts (2 scallions)
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1 cup whole roasted, salted cashews


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Place the chicken breasts on a sheet pan and rub the skin with olive oil. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until the chicken is just cooked. Set aside until cool enough to handle. Remove the meat from the bones, discard the skin, and dice the chicken into large bite-size pieces.
For the dressing, combine the mayonnaise, wine, chutney, curry powder, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Process until smooth.
Combine the chicken with enough dressing to moisten well. Add the celery, scallions, and raisins, and mix well. Refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to blend. Add the cashews and serve at room temperature.