Friday, February 21, 2014

Baked Ziti

Baked Ziti, basically, the best pasta dinner dish ever!  Today, I made baked ziti for my team.  We have been trying to have a bunch of pasta dinners this year, because the ultimate team has gotten so large.  We are almost 40 girls.  Getting to know everyone socially, would be a little difficult, except for pasta dinners. 

Anyways, a few weeks ago, I made lasagna, but this time, I wanted to try something different, spice it up a but.  I decided to use the food network's recipe for baked ziti, with some of my extra spice, aka meat for the meat-lovers and peppers for the vegetarians.  

I think everyone really like the baked ziti, and it was very simple to make.

1 pound of whole wheat ziti or penne pasta
1 jar of marinara sauce
16 oz of shredded mozzarella 
1 pound of ground beef or 3 bell peppers cut to 1 inch pieces
1 cup of parmesan cheese

Preheat over to 400 degrees.  Cook pasta according to package.  In a frying pan, cook meat/peppers until tender.  Once cooked, mix pasta, sauce, meat/peppers and cheese together in a 12 inch baking pan. Sprinkle parmesan cheese on top.  Cook for about 30 minutes and serve.  

Everyone at the pasta dinner loved it!  

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Potato Soup

Lately, I've been really into making soup.  Maybe its been the snow or cold, but also, soup is a great way to bring friends together.  I know that sounds cheesy, but I really like to make a big pot of soup and then invite all my friends over, for a Soup Party!  

As a snow day treat, I made a big pot of potato soup from this cool, new blog, The Pioneer Woman.  My friend discovered her blog, and she makes great, simple recipes good for large groups of people!

Anyways, I decided to try her potato soup recipe.  It turned out really well.  All of my friends loved it!

1 small onion, diced
10 rustic potatoes, diced
8 carrots, diced
6 stalks of celery, diced
8 cups of chicken stock or broth
3 tablespoons of flour
1 cup of milk
3 tablespoons of flour
1/2 cup of heavy whipping creme
1 teaspoon of paprika
Salt and pepper to taste


Add onion, carrots, and celery to the pot.  Cook for about 3 minutes, until slightly browned.  Next, add potatoes.  Cook for another 5 minutes.

Add stock or broth and spices.  Simmer for 30 minutes, until potatoes are softened.  Whisk milk and flour together.  This is very important.  Otherwise the flour will all stick together and look more like dumplings.  Make sure all of the chunks are out of the milk.  Add to pot.  Stir.  Allow to simmer for about 5 more minutes.  Add in heavy whipping creme. Taste and add more spices if necessary.  Serve. 

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Mushroom Burgers

One of my favorite, go-to recipes is portobello mushroom burgers.  They are easy, healthy, and delicious!  My original recipe came from Martha Stewart, but now I like to experiment for myself. However, I almost always use her balsamic glaze, because it is wonderful. 

This week, when I got portobello caps in my CSA Share, I simply couldn't resist making them. 

Portobello caps
Goat cheese
Burger buns
Micro Greens

Heavily sprinkle portobello caps in balsamic vinegar.  Let sit for as long as possible (at least twenty minutes).  The longer they sit for, the better they taste because the balsamic has time to congeal with the mushroom.  I usually do this step in the afternoon, allowing my burgers to rest for 3-5 hours. Then, sauté them smooth side down As they are cooking, pour the extra balsamic vinegar from the plate onto the burgers. This solidifies the balsamic taste. 

While the burgers are cooking, toast your bun.  

After, plate your burgers, adding the goat cheese and micro greens.

Feel free to add anything else you see fit.  Sometimes I add brie instead of goat cheese or some pickled radishes if I have them on hand.  Enjoy!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Asian Salad

While I was studying abroad in Dublin, my mom came to visit me.  One of the things we have in common is our love to cook, so naturally, we decided to take a cooking class.  There, we learned to make this delicious Asian salad with radishes.  Therefore, when I received radishes in my farm share this week, I decided to make the salad. 

This salad uses a technique of cutting called "julienne," which means cutting up the vegetables into matchstick sized pieces.  You can watch a video to learn how here.  

4-5 Large Carrots, julienned
6 Small Radishes, julienned
1 Apple, julienned
1/4 Cup of Mint Leaves
3 Tb of Rice Wine Vinegar
1 Tb of Brown Sugar
Optional - Hot Sauce to Taste

Add carrots, radishes, and apples together in a bowl. Stir in vinegar, brown sugar, hots sauce to taste.  Toss with mint.  Serve.