Category Archives: vegetables

Cauliflower Chicken Parmesan

Here it is with cheese baked on top --honestly delicious either waycheese on topI came across this recipe a while back and every time I make it and post a picture of it people request recipe again so here it is again. I pretty much followed Jennifer Fisher’s recipe on her site for this recipe. I made a few changes but basically that was it. It’s pretty easy and ingredients are easy to obtain which is so important.

Very delicious and pretty healthy and a good way to get vegetables into everyone.

Thanks to @jenniferfisher.com for this delicious recipe.

This is what I did and I think it’s the kind of recipe you may play around with yourself.

Ingredients:

1 bag Cauliflower Rice– 16 oz.

1 small onion -finely diced

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil for onions

1 cup Tomato Sauce — I actually made my own because I had so much free time but you can use Raos which is my preferred brand if using jarred sauce or any sauce you’d like

1 lb. Chicken Tenders — I happen to have them in my freezer but you can use any chicken you’d like here. I cooked up and cut up into small pieces. *see note below on the chicken if no chicken tenders just use thin chicken cutlets — I prefer to the thick chunky ones for this recipe

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese — divided

1 cup shredded Mozzarella Cheese –plus more if you would like to sprinkle more on top before baking — divided 1/2 into mixture and app. 1/2 on top and if you’re really trying to cut the fat content you can just eliminate the cheese inside the casserole and put on the top — I usually do both but honestly it will be delicious either way. Thats the good news with cooking you can add and subtract to your own specifications and it will still taste good.

This recipe satisfies the craving for chicken parmigiana without the frying and without the pasta. And you just may get your kids to eat some cauliflower.

Enjoy!

Kosher Salt

Directions:

Heat the olive oil – Add the onion and cook for a few minutes till onions start to look translucent. ( app. 5 minutes) Add cauliflower rice and some kosher salt ( app. 1 teaspoon ) and cook stirring often to get this going. I sauteed for approximately 10 minutes until rice was tender (al dente), add cooked cut up chicken and 1/2 cup sauce and continue allowing to cook down. Continue stirring and cooking for a few more minutes. Taste for salt and tenderness of the rice– as I said I like rice to have a little bite not mushy. Add remaining 1/2 cup sauce and cook down a few more minutes. Toss in 1/2 cup mozzarella and 1/4 cup parmesan and mix well to combine.

I sprayed a small rectangular baking dish with cooking spray ( this is important) you can use an 8×8 or I think mine was 11 x 7 actually.

I transferred mixture to baking dish and top it off with the rest of the mozzarella and the rest of the parmesan. ( 1/2 cup more of mozzarella you can add more if you feel you need to and 1/4 cup more of the parm)

Bake at 350 degrees until it starts to bubble around edges and mozzarella starts to gets brown and the edges get crunchy . I cooked for app. 20 minutes. All ovens vary and I like it just starting to brown and edges crunchy.

It was more than enough for the two of us and I actually think this was good for 3 people. Maybe 4 if you have a substantial salad .

*pics on top show it both ways with cheese on top and without– obviously if you’re looking for a lower calorie route go without –it’s delicious either way

We had a small simple green salad alongside and it was perfection.

*a little note on what I did with chicken tenders. I put in a bowl and added a little olive oil ( just to give a light glaze to chicken) and kosher salt and freshly ground pepper–mixed around and heated up on a grill pan. If no grill pan any pan will do. I cooked chicken till just done because it’s going back in pan and into oven for more cooking. (but it was fully cooked)

Aunt Pammy’s Chipotle Sweet Potatoes

 

Fully Baked Chipotle Sweet Potatoes

This recipe belongs to my sister, Pamela. She is a great cook, and this is her signature Thanksgiving Dish. We count on it every year as her contribution.  I highly suggest it if you like spicy because it is! It definitely packs some heat, be careful when you buy the chipotle peppers in adobe sauce , just make sure they don’t say Hot or you might be blowing the roof off of your Thanksgiving Dinner! Be prepared for a lot of flavor !  If your family likes spicy this is an awesome recipe, and you all know how much I like spicy by now.  This is certainly a new take on Sweet Potatoes because they aren’t sweet.  I also make a Sweet Potato dish with Marshmallows (* see recipe) and the two are always on my table, one sweet and one spicy.  Thanks Aunt Pammy.

Ingredients:

5 lbs.Yams or Sweet Potatoes

Kosher Salt –about 1/4 cup give or take a little . You’ll have to taste, start with less and add more as needed

Heavy Cream ( about 1 1/2 quarts)

Chipotle Peppers in Adobe Sauce (canned) *look in Mexican Food Aisle in most supermarkets

Directions:

Slice Potatoes thinly and add salt. Place in baking dish you are going to use and cover with kosher salt, start with 1/4 cup and go to the 1/2 cup. Use your clean hands and toss together.

Puree Chipotles in small food processor .* you can keep pureed chipotles in fridge for up to 2 months. So you can do this step ahead.

Put approximately 1 – 2 tsp. of chipotle pepper puree in heavy cream and mix together

Pour Cream Mixture over Potatoes in an ovenproof baking dish ( earthenware is nice for this)

Place in 375 degree preheated oven for 45 minutes to an hour depending on your oven.

Potatoes should be somewhat set and browned on top when ready.

Enjoy! and Happy Thanksgiving

Creamy Mashed Potatoes

photo 3 (7) photo 2 (9)This is my go to recipe for the creamiest mashed potatoes around. I make them a few times a year and mostly on the holidays. Occasionally I’ll whip them up for dinner . They are rich and delicious and just the way mashed potatoes ought to be. I’d like to tell you that I don’t use butter and cream but I do. These are pretty easy to make, all I would say is to buy a good potato masher they come in pretty handy for a lot of other uses as well ( great for egg salad) . You can also use a hand mixer which would work out perfectly.  I like to work with Yukon Gold Potatoes. This recipe is for 5 lbs. and feeds about 10 – 12 people , just perfect for a holiday dinner. These are my Thanksgiving Mashed Potatoes. If you’re doing a small Thanksgiving Dinner I would cut this in half .  Just cut all the ingredients in half.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

* see also Mashed Potato Casserole with Sour Cream and Chives for another way to go.

Ingredients:

5 pounds Yukon Gold Potatoes or Russet Potatoes

3/4 cup unsalted butter

1 8 oz. package of Cream Cheese, softened

1/2 to 3/4 cups half and half

1 /2 to 1 teaspoon Lawry’s Seasoned Salt ( more to taste) I used at least 1 teaspoon you’ll have to taste for yourself.

1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed black pepper. ( more or less to taste)

Directions:

Peel and cut the potatoes into pieces that are generally the same size.

In a large enough pot to cook all of the potatoes fill pot with cold water to cover the potatoes. I bring to a boil and cook for about 30 – 35 minutes. When potatoes are cooked through, a fork should easily slide into the potatoes without resistance, potatoes should be soft but not falling apart.

Drain the potatoes in a colander. When the potatoes have finished draining, place them back into the dry pot and put the pot back on the stove. Mash the potatoes with masher over very low heat, allowing the steam to escape, before adding the other ingredients.

Turn off the stove and add 1 1/2 sticks of butter, an 8 oz. package of cream cheese and about 1/2 cup of half and half. Mash, mash and mash away.

Add about 1/2 teaspoon of Lawry’s Seasoning Salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper.

Stir well and place in a medium-sized baking dish and taste for salt and pepper. I ended up using at least a teaspoon of salt, and a bit more pepper.  Place a few pats of butter over the top of the potatoes and place them in a 350 degree oven and heat until butter is melted and potatoes have warmed through.

* if making a day or two in advance–place potatoes in baking dish,  leave covered in fridge. Take it out of the fridge about 2 – 3 hours before heating up to bring to room temperature. Place your butter pats on top and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 1/2 hour or so till completely warmed through.

*

Thanksgiving Corn Bread Pudding

This has to be one of my all time favorite side dishes for Thanksgiving. It really would be great any time of year but for some reason it only gets made for Thanksgiving. It’s super easy and super delicious. My friend Audrey gave this recipe to me many years ago, and it has become a staple on our thanksgiving table ever since. It just wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without it. It is a favorite in our family. Can be doubled easily, just make sure your baking dish is large enough.

Enjoy!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup butter (unsalted) 1 stick

1 8 oz. sour cream (lite is OK  but not fat-free)

1 8 oz.  can sweet corn (drained)

1 8 oz. can creamed corn

1 8 oz. pkg. corn muffin mix

2 eggs, lightly beaten

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Melt butter, mix in beaten eggs, then add the rest of the ingredients.

Pour into glass baking dish (Pyrex is good and I spray it first with a good cooking spray like Pam or Bakers Aid ) 9 x 12 works fine, it’s not a very deep pudding.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes.

Creamy Butternut Squash Soup (no cream)

This is by far one of my most favorite recipes ever! Super Easy and Super Delicious ! If you’ve been following me since the early days you’ve probably made this recipe by now. It’s perfection in a bowl . I’ve simplified the recipe along the way so that now it is just the way Joel and I like it. it’s pretty easy as long as you buy the squash pre – cut (available in every supermarket, and corner produce store). I just made my first batch of the season, and the squash is sweet and delicious. I always add a little butter to it, but you can totally leave it out. It tastes so creamy you’ll swear there’s cream in it, but really, there is none.  I love a little freshly grated nutmeg in it too, but you can certainly just sprinkle in a very little bit of already grated nutmeg. I hope your family and friends enjoy this as much as my family does! It’s always on my table for Thanksgiving. A delightful way to start a dinner, or a delicious main dish served alongside  a beautiful salad and bread. This can easily be made vegetarian by substituting chicken broth for vegetable broth, which is how I make it on Thanksgiving for Kerri, who is vegetarian.

*This can be made without cream so easily–but if you want a touch of richness you can add a little heavy cream into soup and mix in before serving. Totally not necessary but just saying.

And clearly this recipe can be cut in 1/2 for a smaller group– I usually use 2 packages of squash for 6 servings.

*feel free to put croutons on top or sprinkle some pepitas on top . It’s delicious just the way it is!! and wonderful for lunch the next day and will freeze beautifully.

Follow me on Instagram @cookingwithcandi

Ingredients:

4 pkgs. (approx. 4 lbs.) butternut squash (it’s doesn’t have to be exact)

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 large spanish onion, chopped

8 – 10 cups chicken or vegetable broth

*1 -2 tablespoons unsalted butter (for this serving size, I use 2 but it’s totally optional)

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

*use whole nutmeg – you just grate a little in for flavor. I always tend to use whole, but grated will do. It’s just a touch of it–if I had to guess, I’d say 1/4 teaspoon to 1/2 teaspoon depending on your taste

*if you really want to top it off with a touch of cream you can . Just add a little heavy cream to the soup and blend it right in at the end. Honestly it’s not necessary but it def adds a a layer of richness!

Directions:

In a heavy Le Creuset (or any other ample size large pot), I heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil. When oil is heated, put in onion and about 1/2 tablespoon of kosher salt. Sweat out the onions until they are translucent (approx. 5 – 8 minutes). If you’re using the butter, add it now too. I then add all of the butternut squash and mix the onions, oil and butter as best I can all over the squash. Next, add enough broth to cover the squash (I used approx. 10 cups of chicken broth to cover). I keep the remaining half a box of broth in case I need it later. Return to a low boil, then bring to a simmer. I let it cook a very long time–at least an hour until soft–and then I turn off the heat and let it sit for a while. I like to make it early and let it sit for as long as possible, because the squash gets very soft. Then right before I am about to serve, I use an immersion blender and blend it into a beautiful smooth soup. If you need more broth, add it as you blend. This is also your salt, pepper and nutmeg moment. Season to taste and blend just until smooth. I leave it in the pot until I need it and then gently warm it up. This soup will keep in the fridge for a few days. It can be frozen as well. Upon defrosting you may need to add more broth. Sometimes I serve this soup with beautiful croutons if I can find them in specialty stores, but it is delicious and beautiful on its own, and very good for you! My family loves it , and I hope yours does too.

*should serve 10 – 12 as appetizer

Pasta e Fagioli ( Pasta and Bean Soup) Weekend Cooking

019I have been making this soup forever and it’s a most perfect soup to make during the weekend when you have a little time to cook and gather ingredients. I make a big pot and freeze some for later and keep some in the fridge for lunch the next day. This is really just a tomato base soup with beans and pasta. How bad can that be? unless you hate beans and pasta that is. I usually have ingredients in the pantry and it is a wonderful warm experience, with a nice salad this is a perfect meal. I used to only make this with dry beans but in the name of time and taste I used canned beans and have now always made this with canned.  I must admit this makes it a whole lot easier  and honestly no one knows the difference! It is a wonderful hearty soup halfway between a soup and a pasta no matter how you do the beans!

Enjoy this amazingly delicious comforting soup and did I mention super easy????

Ingredients:

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

2 – 3 tablespoons olive oil

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 28 oz. can chopped tomatoes ( San Marzano)

10 – 12 fresh basil leaves

red pepper flakes

handful of italian parsley, chopped

2 cans rinsed and drained Cannellini Beans

5 cups water or chicken broth or vegetable broth to keep it vegetarian — water works just fine but you’ll have to check your salt and pepper if using broth especially boxed broth which contains salt. Your call– super easy recipe.

app. 1 cup pasta, elbows, tubetti, ditalini, or broken spaghetti

Kosher Salt — to taste

Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Directions:

In a large , heavy stockpot ( Le Creuset) saute onion in olive oil. When onion is golden and transparent, add garlic. Cook for a few more minutes. Add tomatoes and herbs. Add some kosher salt about 1/2 Tablespoon and some grinds of the pepper mill now and you’ll be tasting all along for salt and pepper

Add the beans and the 5 cups of water  and cook over medium heat for 15 minutes – until the beans begin to break down and the soup begins to thicken. Lower heat to a slow simmer, as low as you can.  Stir frequently to prevent it from sticking and burning bottom of the pot. Taste for salt and pepper again.  I always like it to simmer for a long time, an hour would probably do it, but if I have the time I let it sit for as long as I can.  Sometimes after it’s been simmering for a while ,  I turn off the heat and right before serving just bring to a boil and add pasta. Just be careful not to let it burn, stir frequently . If you need more liquid add water a little at a time, I showed a picture of my pot filler which is the greatest thing to have in a kitchen, makes it super easy to fill a pot.

Right before you’re ready to serve bring to a low boil and add the pasta and cook until pasta is al dente, about 5 – 10 minutes depending on type of pasta you’re using. I used ditalini.

Serve immediately in large soup bowls.

Guests can drizzle some good olive oil and grate some Parmesan Cheese over.  Should serve 8 – 10 depending on appetites. I froze remainder for another time.

Cauliflower Fried Rice

I picked up a couple of bags of cauliflower rice last time I was in the supermarket and I made a cauliflower pizza one night and then I made this rice last night. The original recipe was posted back in October 2018. I have to admit that since you can now find  cauliflower already chopped up and ready to use there is no excuse not to make this. I used to have to chop the cauliflower in my processor which was time consuming and I would have to dry it on towels as it was always slightly watery. Now it’s available in pre-prepared cauliflower rice packages and this is a “game changer”.  Green Giant chopped cauliflower in a bag as well as at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods and almost every supermarket now has pre-chopped cauliflower rice.  The pre-chopped bags come in 16 ounce size bags which is what I used for this recipe.  You can buy extra bags and keep them frozen!  It’s wildly popular so grab it while you can and get a few extra bags while you’re at it. Of course you can always chop your own if you don’t have access to any of these products.

This was so delicious I have added chicken and shrimp but you can certainly leave it vegetarian and add more vegetables or tofu.  There are so very many variations on this theme, feel free to go wild with it. It’s a low carb alternative to regular rice and a delicious healthy way to do so. I served it up in a large bowl and it was really a filling delicious dinner. 

Leftovers for lunch are the best part of any good recipe and this is so good the next day with a quick heat-up.

Follow me @cookingwithcandi on Instagram and if you do make one of my recipes please post and tag me .

Ingredients:

1 bag chopped cauliflower rice ( I found Green Giant brand and used it) I used a 16 oz. bag  you can use up to 24 oz. Or 1 medium head of cauliflower.

3 Tablespoons reduced sodium soy sauce- you may want to add more at the end , you’ll wait and taste–add to your own liking and you can even leave it on the table and have everyone add to their own liking

1 1/2 Tablespoon Sesame Oil

2 Tablespoons vegetable oil, plus a little bit for eggs as well. You can cut the oil down on eggs if you’d like. I felt like I needed the 2 tbsp. of oil for onions , etc. You can start 1 tbsp. and add as you need.

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger– you can use fresh if you prefer

2 large eggs-beaten

1 – 1 1/2 cup frozen peas and carrots –I had it in the house and how easy was this? you can use broccoli or corn or all. Or just plain frozen peas which works well when that’s all you have.

1 onion diced

3 cloves garlic -minced

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper , about 6 grinds on the pepper mill will do

*pinch of crushed red pepper

*chicken, shrimp whatever protein you like . I used thin chicken cutlets that I  cooked in a pan ( sprinkle with salt and pepper first) and in a little vegetable oil just cook till ready. if I were making for more people I would probably add about 1/2 lb. of cutlets diced up.  I use 1 – 1 1/2 lbs. of thin chicken cutlets .

2 green onions (scallions) thinly sliced

*salt and pepper to taste — you may want to add a little but don’t add till the end and you’ve tasted it. I added a little sprinkling of salt and pepper.

Directions:

If you must make the cauliflower rice, take out the processor, pulse cauliflower in the large bowl of a food processor until it resembles rice, about 3 minutes, set aside. If you bought the bag–you’re ready.

In a small bowl, whisk together soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger and a little black pepper

Heat about 1/2 Tbsp. of vegetable oil in a medium skillet over low heat , add beaten eggs and scramble them and then I set them aside .

I put chicken cutlets in a bowl and give them a light glaze of olive oil and lightly salt and pepper. Heat up a grill pan or any pan and pan fry the chicken. A grill pan gives it nice marks but it really doesn’t matter. Cook chicken till just cooked remove and cover with aluminum foil. I start  cooking everything else and while onions are cooking and chicken has cooled down a bit I cut it up into small pieces and return to bowl.

Heat 1- 2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil in a large skillet or wok over medium high heat. Add garlic and onion to the skillet and cook, stirring often, until onions become translucent, at least 5 minutes. I like my onions translucent for this recipe. Lower the heat and stir in peas and carrots (and any other veggies you’d like) and cook until vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes. I ended up using the 2 Tablespoons of oil, do what works best for you.

Stir in the cauliflower, diced up eggs, green onions and soy sauce mixture. Cook, stirring constantly, until heated through and the cauliflower is tender, about 5 minutes . Taste for soy sauce and add if necessary. I didn’t add any salt because the soy sauce was salty enough. After the first five minutes of cooking I throw in the cooked protein that I am using and continue to heat it all up stirring as I go. If you ‘d like you can also add more soy sauce at this point. Just heat till hot and serve.

Taste for Salt and Pepper and Soy Sauce.

This is a very loose recipe so feel free to experiment. As you can see from photos I have made it with peas and carrots and just peas and if I have kale in the house I throw it in as well.

Cauliflower Chicken Parmesan

Here it is with cheese baked on top --honestly delicious either waycheese on topI came across this recipe a while back and every time I make it and post a picture of it people request recipe again so here it is again. I pretty much followed Jennifer Fisher’s recipe on her site for this recipe. I made a few changes but basically that was it. It’s pretty easy and ingredients are easy to obtain which is so important.

Very delicious and pretty healthy and a good way to get vegetables into everyone.

Thanks to @jenniferfisher.com for this delicious recipe.

This is what I did and I think it’s the kind of recipe you may play around with yourself.

Ingredients:

1 bag Cauliflower Rice– 16 oz.

1 small onion -finely diced

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil for onions

1 cup Tomato Sauce — I actually made my own because I had so much free time but you can use Raos which is my preferred brand if using jarred sauce or any sauce you’d like

1 lb. Chicken Tenders — I happen to have them in my freezer but you can use any chicken you’d like here. I cooked up and cut up into small pieces. *see note below on the chicken

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese — divided

1 cup shredded Mozzarella Cheese –plus more if you would like to sprinkle more on top before baking — divided 1/2 into mixture and app. 1/2 on top

Kosher Salt

Directions:

Heat the olive oil – Add the onion and cook for a few minutes till onions start to look translucent. ( app. 5 minutes) Add cauliflower rice and some kosher salt ( app. 1 teaspoon ) and cook stirring often to get this going. I sauteed for approximately 10 minutes until rice was tender (al dente), add cooked cut up chicken and 1/2 cup sauce and continue allowing to cook down. Continue stirring and cooking for a few more minutes. Taste for salt and tenderness of the rice– as I said I like rice to have a little bite not mushy. Add remaining 1/2 cup sauce and cook down a few more minutes. Toss in 1/2 cup mozzarella and 1/4 cup parmesan and mix well to combine.

I sprayed a small rectangular baking dish with cooking spray ( this is important) you can use an 8×8 or I think mine was 11 x 7 actually.

I transferred mixture to baking dish and top it off with the rest of the mozzarella and the rest of the parmesan. ( 1/2 cup more of mozzarella you can add more if you feel you need to and 1/4 cup more of the parm)

Bake at 350 degrees until it starts to bubble around edges and mozzarella starts to gets brown and the edges get crunchy . I cooked for app. 20 minutes. All ovens vary and I like it just starting to brown and edges crunchy.

It was more than enough for the two of us and I actually think this was good for 3 people. Maybe 4 if you have a substantial salad .

*pics on top show it both ways with cheese on top and without– obviously if you’re looking for a lower calorie route go without –it’s delicious either way

We had a small simple green salad alongside and it was perfection.

*a little note on what I did with chicken tenders. I put in a bowl and added a little olive oil ( just to give a light glaze to chicken) and kosher salt and freshly ground pepper–mixed around and heated up on a grill pan. If no grill pan any pan will do. I cooked chicken till just done because it’s going back in pan and into oven for more cooking. (but it was fully cooked)

Kasha Varnishkes–Jewish Comfort Food

This is truly traditional Jewish comfort food made with buckwheat grains and bowtie noodles. I love it and grew up eating it and  try to make it a few times a year. It is super easy and super tasty. If you’ve never made it why not start now. It’s a wonderful side dish to any meal and it can be vegetarian for all of those who need some extra vegetarian dishes on their tables just substitute vegetable broth for chicken broth.

Kasha comes in a box. There are different types of Kasha and almost all will work. I use medium or coarse granulation.  Wolff’s brand is really wonderful so look for it and for this recipe I follow the directions on the Wolff’s box of Kasha. I actually had to order it on Amazon last year since I couldn’t find it in Colorado.

If you’re looking for an easy side dish to put together now is the time to look at this great recipe. This is also our go to the night before Yom Kippur. It’s tradition and delicious and comforting all at the same time.

Ingredients:

1 package bowtie ( farfalle ) noodles (app. 3/4 lb.)

1 white/yellow onion thinly sliced or you can use chopped onions , entirely up to you.

app. 2 tablespoons vegetable oil  you may need a  little more and may want a bit more to drizzle at the end plus more — probably 1/4 cup in total

Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper–to taste

*1 small box button mushrooms sliced 8 ounce box — mushrooms are totally optional but sometimes I feel like they add a little something

1 cup kasha, medium or coarse granulation– I use Wolffs Kasha and follow instructions on the box which I have written below

1 egg for kasha as per instructions on the box

2 cups chicken or vegetable broth as per box instructions

Directions:

Cook the pasta according to directions on box for al dente.

Saute’ the onions in vegetable oil , salt and pepper until they just start to soften, about 5 minutes. I use a medium size frying pan large enough to add in the pasta, and make sure you have a tight fitting lid.

Add the mushrooms and sauté until they start to soften as well, a few more minutes , set aside. Place mushrooms and onions in a bowl and you’ll use same frying pan to cook kasha.

Coat the kasha in a slightly beaten egg. You’ll just place kasha in a bowl and put beaten egg on grains. This will help the grains not to stick to themselves while you are cooking them. Make sure the grains are completely coated with egg.  Put the kasha in the same frying pan, set over a fairly high heat. Flatten, stir, and break up the egg-coated kasha with a fork or wooden spoon for a few minutes till toasted and the egg has dried on the kasha and kernels are brown and mostly separate. Kasha instructions for cooking are usually on the box as well. Then I pour in the broth that I am using, a little margarine/butter is OK as well ( app. 2 Tbsp) bring to a boil, cover tightly, lower flame to simmer and cook for 10 minutes till kasha is fluffy–these are the directions on the box that I follow .

Add back in the mushrooms and onions and combine with chicken broth. Cook box of Bow Tie Pasta according to directions on box al dente.

Bring to a boil and cook over low heat covered tightly. Check on it after 10 minutes or so to make sure the kernels are tender and the liquid has absorbed. If not, cover and continue steaming for another few minutes till all liquid is absorbed.

Adjust seasoning with more salt and pepper if you’d like, mix in cooked pasta, and if you’d like drizzle a little more oil on it. I like to do it all in a large enough frying pan to hold pasta . You can always mix in pasta in a large bowl separately. I like it in frying pan on stove top till I serve it. You can always make ahead and heat up in oven at 350 degrees in a pyrex dish,  you’ll most likely need to add a little oil if you do so.

*Wolff’s Kasha has directions for cooking kasha on the box. It’s pretty much the same , I just add in the mushrooms and onions for more flavor.

*should serve 8 people

Farmers Market to Table Gazpacho

DSCN0375DSCN0378

Delicious fresh vegetables from the local farmers market went into this gazpacho. This time of year you must take advantage of the awesome selection of fruit and vegetables at your local farmers market. In Colorado there is so much local produce it would be a pity not to . I bought the tomatoes , cucumbers, peppers, garlic and red onion all from our local farmers market. Whole Foods also sells many local products which is so amazing.  It’s just quite wonderful to put food on your table from your own garden or at least from one within 100 miles of where you live. Farm to Table . Simply put it’s the best .

Ingredients:

1 cucumber or 2 – 3 Kirby size cukes, halved and seeded , but don’t peel . If not Kirby cukes you can use a hothouse cucumber. Go organic, because you are eating the peel.

2 yellow bell peppers, cored and seeded. Of course you can use red bell peppers, but not green.

4 tomatoes — Whole Foods and most grocery stores have beautiful produce this time of year so use the heirlooms if you can get them or any of the fresh tomatoes will do.

1 red onion

3 garlic cloves, minced or throw them into the food processor along with vegetables

3 cups Spicy V8 or use regular tomato juice

1/4 cup champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar

1/4 cup good olive oil

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

*1/2 to 1 whole jalapeno depending on how spicy you like it, remove seeds from jalapeno

* cilantro, chopped is a nice touch for garnish

*avocado cut up is also nice garnish

*shrimp is also a nice garnish

Directions:

I cut up cukes, tomatoes, bell peppers and red onions into app. 1 inch cubes. Put each vegetable separately into a food processor with steel blade and pulse until it is coarsely chopped. Do not make baby food, don’t over process.

After each vegetable is chopped up combine them in a large bowl and add the garlic ( if you haven’t already) , juice, vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Mix well and chill before serving. It’s a good idea to chill for a while, the longer it sits the more the taste develops.

The second night I added shrimp and avocado.

20130809-090155.jpg

20130809-090221.jpg