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Monday, July 29, 2013

Recipe Review from 7/22/13

So much going on this weekend it was nearly a dizzying experience.

On Thursday, the tall ships came back to Duluth for the third time:  Tall Ship Festival.  This year nine of the beauties came to visit, and while I didn't go down to the canal or lakewalk to watch them come in this time, I snapped some pictures from the office window. 

Thursday evening the Husband picked up a new accessory for his Man-Barn: a Lund 1600 Alaskan fishing boat.  In red and white.  We took it out for a spin on Sunday afternoon and christened the propeller on the bottom of the lake.  First ding - done!

On Friday the Husband and I headed down to Minneapolis for the Skyline Music Festival at Target Field (Twin's Stadium) to see the Gear Daddies, Matthew Sweet, Soul Asylum and Big Head Todd and the Monsters.  It was dubbed the "LP Tour" because the bands were playing their best album in order the of the tracts.  It wasn't the warmest night out and it sprinkled once, but the sold out crowd of 7000, 45-50 year olds, partied like they were in their 20's.  Not kidding about the average age of this group...   Overall a great concert over looking the skyline of Minneapolis.

We stayed overnight and ran a few errands on Saturday morning, starting with breakfast at the Highland Grill in St. Paul.  Outstanding! Is all I have to say about this small, cafe style restaurant.  Then we walked across the street to the Tea Source to pick up a few more teas for this coming fall.  I was too full from breakfast to indulge in a cuppa hot chai!  Afterwards we made our way over to Grand Ave and Penzeys where I realized I had forgotten my list!  Arrgh!  Had to go by memory and picked up a couple of extra items "just in case".  I didn't do too bad - only forgot the coriander seed.  One more stop to go and that was on our way out of town at the Stillwater Olive Oil Company in White Bear Lake.  Picked up a bottle of Arbosana EVOO, a bottle of Cilantro and Roasted Onion Oil, and a bottle of White Balsamic Vinegar with Lemon.

It was 54* (12*C) and raining when we left the Cities, and it was 54* inside the house when we got home.  We turned the heat on.  Frickin' JULY and we had to turn the heat on.  NOT a happy camper.

And what with the usual work and yoga week, I still did pretty good recipe-wise.  I deem all of these winners and great for warmer weather meals outside on the patio or deck. 

Bulgur with Peaches (August 2013 Ckng Lght)    vegetarian; gluten free option
Peaches are in season right now and are fantastic!  I thought using them for a sweeter lunch dish would be a nice change from breakfast or plain.  I did add 1 can of chickpeas to the dish to up the protein and bulk out the salad a bit.  I omitted the mint (not paying $$ for mint). 

I didn't add the peaches until I dished this up for lunches.  I also added some torn Swiss Chard.  I didn't have hazelnuts and was going to substitute walnuts, but I forgot to add them.  Not surprised - I'm not entirely awake at 530am. 
  • 2 cups water
    photo from
  • 1 cup uncooked bulgur (or quinoa)
  • 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup diced peaches 
  • 2 1/2 ounces chopped hazelnuts, toasted
  • 1/4 cup small fresh mint leaves
  1. Bring 2 cups water and bulgur to a boil in a small saucepan. Cover, reduce heat, and cook 12 minutes. Drain; rinse with cold water. Drain.
  2. Combine vinegar and next 4 ingredients (through pepper) in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk until sugar dissolves. Add bulgur, peaches, nuts, and mint; toss.

Tomato Ravioli  (August 2013 Ckng Lght) vegetarian
This is quick, but yet still took about 45 minutes to completely pull together.  Most of that time is waiting for the tomatoes and shallots to cook.  Not wanting to warm up the kitchen, I cooked the veggies on the grill.  You do need to watch the temp so your tomatoes don't become one with the aluminum foil.   I loved the flavors of this dish - sweet shallots, tangy tomatoes, and the backdrop of balsamic vinegar.   I topped it off with a bit of grated parmesan.

photo from
  • 1 pound cherry tomatoes
  • 2 shallots, cut into wedges
  • Cooking spray
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided 
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 12 ounces cheese ravioli
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  1. Preheat oven [or grill] to 425°.
  2. Halve half of tomatoes. Arrange cut tomatoes, whole tomatoes, and shallots on a jelly-roll pan coated with cooking spray. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil; toss. Bake at 425° for 35 minutes.
  3. Add 2 tablespoons oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper to pan. Bake 10 minutes.
  4. Cook ravioli according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain ravioli, reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid. Add ravioli to tomatoes; toss. Add cooking liquid, if needed. Garnish with chopped basil.

Egg Salad Sandwiches with Bacon and Siracha  (Ckng Lght Aug 2011)
Easy peasy!  With a couple of noted adjustments -  this was really good.  I boiled my eggs in the morning so they would be ready for peeling after work.  I cooked my bacon on a jelly roll pan on the grill (didn't want to heat up the kitchen).  And I significantly reduced the siracha sauce.  A little bit of that goes a long way.  It's easier to add more than to be wishing I had used less.
This was a really nice supper with some fresh watermelon along side. 

photo from
  • 2 center-cut bacon slices
  • 1/3 cup thinly sliced green onions  (I used 1/4 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons canola mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon plain fat-free yogurt
  • 1 1/2 (I used 1/2) teaspoons Sriracha (hot chile sauce, such as Huy Fong)
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 hard-cooked large eggs, chopped
  • 2 cups arugula  (I used Swiss chard)
  • 8 whole-grain bread slices
  1. Cook bacon in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat 3 minutes or until crisp. Remove bacon from pan; crumble. Place bacon in a large bowl. Stir in onions and next 5 ingredients (through salt). Gently stir in eggs.
  2. Arrange 1/2 cup arugula on each of 4 bread slices. Top each serving with 1/3 cup egg mixture and 1 bread slice.


Dee said...

Wow! When I got in my car today the thermometer read 104F.

I can't imagine 56F right now. It would feel wonderful for a little while.

Karl A. said...

Remember, the first ding is the toughest, after that they are all just battle scars.

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