Archive for November, 2011

Sweet Potato Casserole

Posted on Nov. 26th 2011 No Comments »

I’ve been making this dish for years. The family requests it every Thanksgiving. There are never any leftovers. My version is based on this Better Homes and Gardens recipe.

  • 1 1/2 lbs sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 Cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 Cup milk
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 3 Tablespoons butter, cubed
  • 1 Teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ Teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 Cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 Cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 Cup pecan pieces

Scrub, wash and peel sweet potatoes. Cut off woody portions and ends. Cut into cubes. In a large saucepan, cook potatoes, covered, in enough boiling water to cover for 20 to 25 minutes or until tender; drain.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Transfer potatoes to a large mixing bowl. With a wooden spoon stir in granulated sugar, 3 tablespoons butter, milk, egg, vanilla and cinnamon. Transfer sweet potato mixture to a greased 2-quart casserole dish.

Combine brown sugar and flour; cut in the 2 tablespoons butter till mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in pecan pieces and sprinkle crumb mixture on top of potatoes.

Bake, uncovered, in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Posted by poppa-d | in Ingredients, Sweet Potato

Pasta with Red Chard and Pancetta

Posted on Nov. 18th 2011 No Comments »

A light tasty dish featuring Red Chard.  Inspired from a recipe in Greens, A Country Garden Cookbook.

  • 10 ounces dried pasta (I like whole wheat)
  • 2 bunches red chard
  • 1 cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 6 ounces pancetta (8 to 10 slices), cut into pieces (you can use Canadian bacon in a pinch)
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

Wash, dry and remove the stalks from the chard. Stack the leaves and cut crosswise into ribbons.

Boil a large pot of salted water for the pasta.

In a small pan over medium heat, toast the bread crumbs in the EVOO with the salt. Set aside.

In a large pan, sauté the pancetta over medium heat in 1 teaspoon of the olive oil and cook until golden and crispy. Drain the pancetta on paper towels, and wipe out the pan. In the same pan, add the rest of the olive oil and add the onions. As soon as the onions have softened, add the salt, garlic, and red pepper flakes and continue cooking for another 2 to 3 minutes.

Briefly blanch the chopped red chard in the salted boiling pasta water. Drain well and add to the onions. Remove from the heat and add the vinegar and salt to taste.

Cook the pasta until al dente (follow directions on package), stirring occasionally to separate the stands, and toss with the greens. Serve sprinkled with the toasted crumbs.

Serves 4

Posted by poppa-d | in Chard, Ingredients, Recipe

Kale and Lentil Soup

Posted on Nov. 11th 2011 No Comments »

The original version of the recipe calls for chicken, but instead I like to add the white beans. I just think the overall texture and flavor is better. Of course, some shredded parmesan cheese is great melted into this soup.

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 
cup chopped onion
  • 1 
cup coarsely chopped carrots
  • 2 
cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 
cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 
tablespoon snipped fresh basil or 1 teaspoon dried basil, crushed
  • 4 
cups coarsely chopped fresh kale (about 8 ounces)
  • 1/4
teaspoon salt
  • 1/8
teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 15 oz. can white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 
medium tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 1/2
cup dry red lentils*

Add the oil to a large nonstick saucepan. Preheat over medium-low heat. Add onion, carrots, and garlic to hot saucepan. Cover and cook for 5 to 7 minutes or until vegetables are nearly tender, stirring occasionally.

Add chicken broth and dried basil (if using) to vegetable mixture. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in kale, salt, and pepper. Return to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.

Stir in beans, tomato, red lentils, and fresh basil (if using). Cover and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes more or until kale and lentils are tender.

Note *If you wish to substitute brown or yellow lentils for the red lentils, you’ll need to increase the cooking time. Check the package directions for cooking times and add the lentils in Step 2.

Makes 6 servings

Posted by poppa-d | in Basil, Ingredients, Kale, Onion, Recipe, Tomato, carrot

Brown Rice and Kale

Posted on Nov. 5th 2011 No Comments »

There are lots of ingredient variation opportunities with this recipe, I’ve listed some. So feel free to mix and match according to what you have on hand. This version is based on a recipe from the 101 Cookbooks blog.

  • splash of extra-virgin olive oil
  • pinch of fine grain sea salt
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 3 cups cooked brown rice (or quinoa, or other grain)
  • 1 cup corn, fresh or frozen
  • 1 1/2 cups kale, spinach or other hearty green, finely chopped
  • 2 cups extra-firm nigari tofu, browned in a skillet a bit (cooked chicken works well also)
  • 1/3 cup pesto
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted (or pumpkin seeds)
  • 1/4 cup cherry tomatoes, halved (or chopped sun-dried tomatoes)

In a big skillet or heat the olive oil and salt over medium-high heat. Stir in the shallot and cook for a minute or two. Stir in the brown rice and corn and cook until hot and sizzling. Stir in the kale and then the tofu, cooking until tofu is heated through. Remove the skillet from heat and stir in the pesto and pine nuts. Mix well so the pesto is spread throughout. Fold in the cherry tomatoes.

Serves 4-6

Posted by poppa-d | in Corn, Ingredients, Kale, Recipe, Tomato


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