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Monday, August 7, 2017

Recipe review from 7/29/2017

Kepler update!  
He's getting to be a big boy!  About half the size of Andy-dog now, or about 30lbs.  His chewing has gotten better, he gets mouthy when he's hungry or wants attention so that's an improvement over All. The. Time.  He LOVES his swimmy-pool, digging in the garden with Mom, eating woodchips/bugs/frogs/rocks/raspberries/blueberries/chicken poo and anything else that might taste good.  Early indications are he loves riding in the car.  He's a sweetie, even when he's playing "keep away". 

Almost 5 months old now!

And lots of tasty recipes this week! 

The Meal Plan from week of July 29:
Sun (L)  Corn cakes   (S) Tortellini and squash
Mon (yoga)  leftovers
Tues:  Grouper/tilapia sandwiches
Wed: Leftovers
Thurs (yoga)  brats
Fri: Leftovers

Lunches - cheese sandwiches because I didn't have the time to make the hummus.

Corn Cakes with Bacon and Tumeric Dressing  (Ckng Lght, June 2017) gluten free; vegetarian option

I made these as written (I KNOW right?) and these were really good.  Don't skip the "dressing" - it totally pulled the dish together.    I served these along side a salad for a light lunch. 

I will admit, I did have some apprehension when I dolluped a ladle of "batter" into the pan.  I seriously thought, "No way is this gonna work.  This is going to be a disaster...".  Much to my very great surprise,  it worked!  I had little corn cakes!

My one complaint is this was touted in the magazine as a 30 minute recipe - plan on an easy 45 minutes.  I added up the times noted below: 8 minutes for the bacon, 2 minutes for corn, 10 minutes rest, 5 minutes rest = that right there is 15 minutes and it doesn't include prep or that I could only cook about 4 at a time (at 2 minutes per side).   How could you not include prep in with the time factor??
Anyway, most excellent - recommended. 

2 center-cut bacon slices, chopped**   (Could be optional)
2 3/4 cups fresh corn kernels (about 4 ears)
photo from
1 1/4 cups finely chopped yellow squash
1/4 cup chopped green onions (white parts only)
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup plain yellow cornmeal
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/8 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/4 cup plain low-fat yogurt (not Greek-style)  (I used Greek-style)
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

1. Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium. Add bacon; cook, stirring often, until crisp, about 8 minutes. Drain on paper towels; reserve drippings in skillet.
2. Increase heat to medium-high. Add corn and squash to drippings; cook until lightly charred and al dente, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl; cool 10 minutes. Add onions, eggs, cornmeal, pepper, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and cooked bacon to corn mixture; stir to combine. Let mixture stand 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Stir together yogurt, maple syrup, turmeric, and remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt in a small bowl. Set aside. 
4. Heat skillet over medium. Drop batter by 1/4-cupfuls into skillet, flatten slightly with a spatula, and cook until firm and browned on each side, about 2 minutes per side. Serve with turmeric-yogurt mixture.

Tortellini Salad with Zucchini and Peas  (Ckng Lght, June 2017)  vegetarian
I have mixed thoughts on this dish:  it's easy to assemble, the flavors are definitely "summer",  and you can use produce from the garden.  Butttt...I wasn't wild about the way the zucchini was prepped for this (or in my case, the summer squash).  It was incredibly awkward trying to eat the tortellini and peas with these long limp planks of squash.  They just don't mesh well on the fork.  Medallions would have been SO much better and easier to cook. 
Other than that complaint, I liked the flavors of this dish and it's ease in prep.  Perfect for a mid-week meal with a side salad.  

1 (9-oz.) pkg. refrigerated whole-wheat 3-cheese tortellini (such as Buitoni)
2/3 cup frozen peas
photo from
2 medium zucchini (I used 1 medium summer squash)
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind plus 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Small fresh basil leaves (optional)

1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; add peas for the last 6 minutes. Drain, and cool 10 minutes; place pasta and peas in a medium bowl.

2. Using a vegetable peeler, shave zucchini into ribbons.

3. Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a medium skillet over medium. Add garlic; cook, stirring constantly, 30 seconds. Remove from heat. Add zucchini; stir constantly until zucchini is slightly softened, about 1 minute. Add zucchini mixture to tortellini mixture in bowl.

4. Combine rind, juice, salt, pepper, and remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil. Drizzle over tortellini mixture; toss gently to coat. Sprinkle with basil, if desired.

Southwest Roasted Potato Salad  (Aberdeen's Kitchen Blog)  vegetarian, gluten free
A friend passed this recipe along and I knew this was a "must try".  This was very tasty and a nice alternative to a more "traditional" mayo/mustard based potato salad.  I made this as a side for brats.

And, as usual, I did a modification:  I grilled this.  I assembled as directed below, tossing everything but the corn together.  I split into two foil packets, fired up the grill to 400*, and tossed'm on.  I rotated the packets every 10 minutes to ensure even cooking and no burning.  I think I cooked for about 40 minutes?   Corn was also cooked for 40 minutes.   Pulled everything off and assembled.

The dish was well received - though the Husband and I agreed that the spices were too subtle for the amount of food.  I would definitely increase both the cumin and the ancho pepper. 
Photo from Aberdeen's Kitchen Blog


2 lbs baby red potatoes, halved  (I did a medium dice)
1 corn on the cob, husk on  (I cooked separately) 
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 orange bell pepper, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
½ teaspoon cumin  (1 tsp)
¼ teaspoon ancho chili pepper powder (1/2 tsp)
1 tablespoon coarse salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon fresh dill, minced + extra roughly chopped to garnish
Green onion, thinly sliced to garnish
3 tablespoons olive oil

Preheat oven to 400˚F.

Toss potatoes, bell peppers, cumin, ancho chili pepper, salt, pepper, minced dill, and olive oil until coated on a roasting pan. Spread the vegetables out into a single layer, leaving an empty space for the corn on the cob. Place the corn on the cob, husk still on, in the empty space.

Put the pan on a middle rack in the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the corn on the cob and set aside. Put the pan back in the oven and cook for another 30 minutes, or until potatoes are tender.
While vegetables continue to cook, remove the husk from the corn and slice off the kernels.

When the potatoes are tender enough to be pierced with a fork, remove the pan from the oven. Stir in the corn kernels and add the remaining fresh dill and green onion to garnish.


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