Saturday, October 13, 2012

Snake Bite

For some reason this year I'm really into Halloween Food. I became a bit obsessed with some Jello last week that I hope to make and then someone posted a drink recipe that sounds fun, and then I came across Snake Bite Calzone. A recipe I made once before for a Halloween party at work, I remembered it being very good.

And boy was it easy!  30 minutes and on the table--plus no real dishes!

1 tube refrigerated pizza dough (we used Artisan whole wheat)
1 package pepperoni (about 30 pieces needed)
3/4 C mozzarella cheese (we used the new kraft one that has cream cheese in it, melty)
1/2 C ricotta cheese
Yellow & Blue food coloring
1 egg white
cooking spray
pizza or marinara sauce for serving

1. Unroll the pizza dough and roll it out a little bit more so it is big
2. Lay pepperoni in rows along the dough leaving a 1 inch border
3. Mix together cheese and place dollops over the pepperoni
4. Roll lengthwise into a snake, pinch the ends
5. Spray a baking sheet and place the snake so it looks like he's slithering across the tray
6. Cut a piece of pepperoni for the forked tongue and eyes
7. Put one drop of yellow food coloring in the egg white, paint the snake. Add 1 drop of blue coloring and stir. Paint the snake green. Be sure to attach the eyes and tongue if you haven't already.
8. Bake for about 30 minutes until golden brown
9. Warm pizza sauce and serve with the snake

This is enough for 4 with a salad or some other vegetable/fruit side

Variations: We liked this with no changes but it would be good with a little garlic inside or maybe some spices if you want to add some variety.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Sausage and Bean Soup

A few weeks ago I went on a bit of a sausage kick, I bought a few kinds of sausages on sale. I bought one kind for a recipe and the other cause I'd always wanted to try it and there was that sale. Then I went home and made the recipe and later we had the other sausages and we found we didn't love them. I was now stuck with a variety of extra sausages.  Being "Autumn" I decided to make a nice soup with the sausages and some beans. I searched recipes, I found one, I went to the store and got the rest of the ingredients.

And then it was 106 degrees.  For the whole week...

But finally this weekend the weather was a little more reasonable, so I made some soup.  I loosely followed this recipe. It was actually a really hearty soup and pretty delicious. And guess what? Joey ate Kale!

My adaptation:

2 15oz cans white beans, drained and rinsed
4 C chicken broth (low sodium)
1 onion
3 large carrots
2 cloves garlic
4 sausages, (I used 2 pork-wine from Guy Ferrari and 2 Italian Chicken)
1/2 bunch kale
1/2 t salt
10 grinds pepper
1/2 t Italian spices
1/4 t oregano
1/4 t thyme
2 bay leaves
1 T olive oil

1. Dice the onions and slice the carrots into half moons. Mince the garlic
2. Heat a heavy pot over medium high and add oil once hot
3. Saute the onions and carrots until onions are soft and brown, about 4 minutes
4. Slice the sausages into half moons, prepare the spices
5. Add the garlic to the pot and cook about 30 seconds, then add the sausages
6. Cook for 8 minutes and then add the beans, spices and chicken broth--keep track of those bay leaves.
7. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes.
8. Remove 2 cups of the soup and blend with an immersion blender, add it back to the soup and cook another few minutes.
9. Remove kale leaves from stems and cut into pieces, rinse
10. Remove soup from heat and add kale to let it wilt, serve

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

A play on Monkey Bread

Tonight I made some buttermilk biscuits but I used the smaller biscuit cutter and made way too many. In order to make a slightly less amount of too many biscuits for two, I decided to mix some sauteed cinnamon apples with the scraps and bake it in the oven.

This is not unlike Monkey Bread. This is a lot like a certain recipe I remember seeing on Tastespotting early last week.  But I didn't follow any recipe, I just put it together.  It took 8 minute to bake and maybe it could've gone a bit longer.  I think this is a fantastic "Welcome Fall" dessert.  If you are living anywhere besides Southern CA you might actual have met Autumn on September 22nd. But if you live here in Los Angeles, you are planning to put some shorts on tomorrow and zip from the car to the ice cold office to avoid 102 degrees on OCTOBER first...

This is a quick dessert if you already have the apples and biscuit dough made. This is a slightly less quick dessert if you don't.  This made enough for two.

Apple Biscuit "Cobbler"


1/2 C sauteed cinnamon apples (recipe below)
1/2 C leftover biscuit pieces or 3 canned biscuits
baking spice
3 T sugar
1 T butter


1. In a small bowl mix sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking spice. If you sliced the apples, cut them into smaller bits
2. Layer biscuits and apples in a small ramekin, ending with more biscuit than apples
3. Melt butter and pour over the ramekin
4. Bake at 450 degrees for 9 minutes
5. Let cool at least 10 minutes before digging in!

Sauteed Cinnamon Apples

4 medium apples, two red, two green, peeled and thinly sliced or cubed
1/4 C brown sugar
1 T butter

1. In a small frying pan, melt butter over medium heat
2. Toss apples with cinnamon and sugar (I actually used a ton more sugar but I highly dissuade you from doing this because it was too much sugar)
3. Saute apples for about 8 minutes until tender and a little syrup forms, serve as a side or a dessert

Monday, October 1, 2012

Buttermilk Marinated Pork Chops

Do you ever need buttermilk for a recipe and then wonder what to do with the rest of it? Why do they sell whipping cream in 1 C cartons but buttermilk only in the quart size? Do they expect me to have a glass with dinner? The worst thing is that you probably bought the buttermilk to make some kind of dessert/bread and do you really want to make another dessert/bread? So today I decided to use the buttermilk to marinate some pork chops we had.

This is a quick recipe and pretty tasty I think. Joey thought they were a little plain. You could definitely make some kind of sauce to go with this, or maybe put it in a salad.  It is very moist. Feel free to mix up the spices anyway.

I got the idea from this blog and basically followed the marinade instructions but not the cooking instructions since I used the really thin pork chops.

1 1/2 C buttermilk
4 thin boneless pork chops
2 cloves garlic, crushed
salt & pepper
1 t dried thyme

1 t olive oil

1. Place all ingredients in a ziplock bag and marinade in the refrigerator for a couple of hours, I did 6 hrs.
2. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium high
3. Shake off excess buttermilk and cook chops about 3-5 minutes per side or until cooked through