Thursday, January 19, 2012

Bacon, Avocado,Tomato Pasta

What's for lunch?
Sometimes I just look in the refrigerator to see 
what I can pull together for lunch.
 Today I found 1/2 of a tomato, 1/2 of an avocado, 
a few pieces of bacon, and a little leftover grated cheese. 
 All I needed to do was cook a little pasta, and
 Chop those few ingredients.
The rest of the ingredients I usually have on hand
 are: fresh basil from my garden, garlic, lemon juice, 
olive oil and s&p. Toss it all together.

Lunch is being served on the patio!

You don't need to follow the recipe exactly. 
It's just a guide. Use what you have. 
Just add your ingredients and toss.

B-A-T Pasta
2 C uncooked pasta, bow ties
4 slices bacon, cooked crisp
1/2 avocado, cubed
1/2 tomato, cubed
1/2 C shredded Italian cheese,
(Parmesan, Romano, Asiago or a combo)
1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4-1/2 C fresh basil leaves, chopped
2 T lemon juice
Generous amount of salt and pepper to taste
Cook and drain the pasta. Rinse under cold water.
Put into a medium bowl, add other ingredients.
Toss to combine. Two large servings.

"Ask not what you can do for your country. 
Ask what's for lunch." ... Orson Welles

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Walkabout Soup

This is a creamy onion soup that's like the
Walkabout soup served at the Outback.
Perfect soup for a winter day.
It's very easy to prepare. You'll need:
beef bouillon cubes, onions, flour, salt, pepper, 
cream, and shredded cheese. 
It's been in my recipe basket for over 15 years.
 If you can boil water
and slice an onion, you can make this soup.
Bring 8 cups of water and 8 bouillon cubes to a boil.
 Add the onions salt and pepper.
Simmer covered for 1 hour.
 Then gradually whisk in the flour.
The lumps will dissolve with an additional
 30 minutes of cooking.
Whisk until smooth.
Add the cream.
 Whisk to blend
 Stir in the cheese.
Let simmer another 5-10 minutes.
My grandchildren loved this soup.
 Just remember to call it
Walkabout Soup and don't mention the onions.

Walkabout Soup
8 C water
8 beef bouillon cubes
3 onions, cut in half and thinly sliced
1 t salt
1 t pepper
3/4 C flour
1 C heavy cream
1 C shredded cheddar cheese
Bring the water and bouillon cubes to a boil.
Stir until dissolved. Add onions, salt and pepper. 
Cover and simmer for 1 hour. 
While stirring, slowly whisk in the flour.
Simmer covered for another 30 minutes,
whisking occasionally. Lumps will dissolve after
 additional  cooking Stir in the cream  then add
the cheese. Simmer another 5-10 minutes. 
Serve with a little cheese sprinkled on top, if desired.
8 servings/200calories

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Cranberry Baked Oatmeal

This is a warm crumbly oatmeal that's good 
 on a cold morning.  In South Florida that's 
anything below 60F!
 Flavored with brown sugar, cinnamon and
 fresh cranberries.
 Combine the dry ingredients.
 Melt the butter in the baking dish to grease the pan,
then pour into the wet ingredients.
 Whisk in the vanilla.
 Combine with the dry ingredients and stir
in the cranberries.
(This is half the recipe and used an 8" square pan.)
 Bake for 30 minutes. Small pan for 20.
Cut unto squares and serve.
 Top with warm cream if desired.
 Leftovers, can be reheated in the
microwave during the week.

Baked Cranberry Oatmeal
9X13 pan has 6-8 servings
3 C oatmeal
1 C brown sugar
2 t cinnamon
2 t baking powder
pinch salt
combine in a large bowl
in another bowl combine:
2 eggs
1 C milk
1 stick butter, melted
2 t vanilla
whisk together and combine with the
dry ingredients. Stir in
1 C fresh cranberries
Pour into the buttered 9X13 pan
and bake @350 for 30-40 minutes
Cut into large squares and serve with
warm cream if desired.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Homemade Biscotti

Biscotti are a twice-baked Italian dipping cookie. 
They are wonderful with a latte or cappuccino. 
Perfect for dipping into your favorite coffee.
 The recipe is similar to mandelbrot or Mandlel Bread 
which dates back to early European cultures and 
is a popular Jewish treat. Mandel means almonds in
 German, so they traditionally have
 almonds and almond extract.
 Beat sugar and oil in an electric mixer 
until sugar dissolves, about 3 minutes.
 Add the eggs one at a time, beating until well incorporated.
 Gradually add the flour. 
Stir in the vanilla and almond extracts.
 Add the toasted almonds. Toasting brings out
 the flavor. I used the toaster oven and bake 
 for 5 minutes at 350 until fragrant and golden. 
You can easily add your own touches.  
 I used 1/2C almonds and 1/2C
mini chocolate chips. 
Spray a large (12X18) sheet pan.
 Pour the batter evenly on the pan.
 Bake in a 350 oven.
 Until golden, about 20 minutes.
 Remove from oven and let cool for 7 minutes.
 Turn out onto a cutting board.
 Slice lengthwise down the middle, 
then cut across into 1/2-to 3/4-inch strips
 You can also cut lengthwise into thirds 
to make smaller pieces.
 At this point I store some in the freezer before
 the second baking. When I want to serve them I 
remove from the freezer and let sit at room 
temperature for about 5 minutes then bake on a 
cookie sheet at 350 until toasted, about 8 minutes.
 Return the cookies to the sheet pan and return to 
the 350 oven and bake for 6 minutes then flip. 
and bake the other side for another 6 minutes. 
 Serve for coffee.

Store extra cookies in a large jar.

Almond or Chocolate Chip
1 C sugar
1 C  vegetable oil 
4 eggs
1-1/2 C flour
2 t vanilla extract
1 t almond extract
1 C toasted almonds
(or 1 C mini chocolate chips or
half of each)
Beat sugar and oil with a mixer until dissolved.
Add eggs one at a time, beating until well mixed.
Gradually add the flour. Stir in the extracts.
Stir in the almonds or mini chips.
Spread onto a sprayed baking sheet (12X18)
Bake at 350 for 20 minutes, until lightly golden. 
Remove from oven and let cool in pan for 7 minutes. 
Turn onto a cutting board and cut in half lengthwise, 
then cut across into 1/2" to 3/4" strips.
 Return cookies to the sheet pan and return to
oven to bake another 6 minutes, flip and bake 
the other side for another 6 minutes, until golden.