IN THE KITCHEN ◽ TIPS
I saw a friend post the most amazing photo of something she’d made and I asked her to share the recipe with me. Then I asked if I could share it with you! That made me realize I’d love to share several of my friend’s amazing tastes, so I asked for more submissions.
August is a great month to try out something new from the kitchen of a friend…or two.
One friend (well, my daughter) is a mom with three littles, and she lets them help out in the kitchen while she creates and tastes!
The second friend has a little boy who's the cutest! She's a great cook and offered to share, as well.
The third recipe is from a friend I've never met in person, but we are best buds on Facebook and in our hearts! Her tomato tart was what inspired this month's heading!
The fourth recipe is from a wonderful friend that serves her large family well, even with all of its challenges. I quite admire her!
Authentic Street Tacos - Lindsey Fultz
This is a super quick meal, as it can be prepared in 30 minutes. You’ll just need a large skillet or wok for the meat, and a small skillet where you can warm the tortillas. Enjoy!
Mission street tacos Mini corn tortillas
HEB Mi Tienda Seasoned Diced Beef
Half white onion, diced
HEB That Green Sauce - salsa
Place about half of the seasoned beef in a wok or large skillet, heat on high, and sear the meat. (You don’t want to do all of it at once, because it won’t sear with the whole package.) Set aside first half, and sear the second half.
Once all sides are browned, return the first half to finish cooking for a few more minutes. It shouldn’t take long, since the meat is diced. Test cut one piece to check to your desired doneness.
Warm the corn tortillas in another skillet to cook them thoroughly, flipping on each side on high heat until brown marks appear lightly, and tortilla is more flexible.
Assemble your tacos with the seasoned beef. Squeeze juice from 1 lime wedge over it, top with onion, and then cilantro. Top with green salsa, to your own taste.
PULLED PORK PASTRY PUFF - Kamrin Wolfe
1 (17.3-oz) package puff pastry, defrosted
3/4 pound pulled pork
3/4 cup BBQ sauce
1-1/4 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 egg, beaten
1 Tbsp water
Preheat oven to 400ºF. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside. Unfold pastry sheets. Cut each sheet into 9 squares. Toss pulled pork with BBQ sauce. Arrange pulled pork and cheese down center of the pastry squares. Fold two opposite corners of each square over the filling and press edges to seal. Place on prepared baking sheet. Combine egg and water. Brush each pastry with egg wash.
Bake 15-18 minutes, until golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature.
- make sure you don't cut the squares too big; mine tasted great, but ended up being rather large
- I also used the pastry wash to help seal the edges together
- buy pre-cooked packaged meat that you can easily heat up; this will cut the time in half
- add peppers or other seasonings of choice to pulled pork for added flavor
- be sure you roll these up tight or they will flatten out and sink slightly after you pull them out of the oven
IN THE KITCHEN ◽ TIPS
by Marcy Lytle
Rather than share recipes this month, I decided to share my faves in the kitchen. There are always new products that are advertised around the holidays and then we buy them, and they end up in that junk drawer – at the bottom – never to be used. Mostly, it’s because they aren’t that great, they are too difficult to maneuver, or time-consuming, or just odd! However, there are some things in my drawers and on my shelves that I use over and over again, because I love them! So, why not share?
A tiny colander – I love having a few of these for holding fruit – either in the fridge or out on the counter. And since my kitchen is orange/gray I love this tiny one for holding cuties!
Spreaders – I have seasonal spreaders, but I absolutely love this new set I found at World Market. The colors are fantastic, and they are heavy duty. They’re great for spreading jam, or butter, or whatever! Just google and search for some you love…
A ladybug timer – My oven timer is never loud enough, and sometimes I just need a timer for other things. Sure, I use my phone quite often, but this ladybug – she’s SO cute!
Tiny mitts – A friend made these for me, but then I looked on line at christmas and found more on Etsy! They’re great because they have a magnet inside, they’re tiny for grabbing items from the toaster oven, and they come in such cute fabric choices!
A salt/pepper box – One of my longstanding faves! Kosher salt in one side, ground pepper in the other – for cooking and pinching – and looking pretty on the counter…
-Mix 25ml (1/4 cup) of oil, lemon juice, salt, coconut sugar and chopped chili in the small bowl. (I put them in the covered jam jar and shake). This is your salad dressing.
-Cook the sweet potatoes chunks in the microwave for 4 minutes.
-Put the rest of the oil into the frying pan. Then add the cooked sweet potatoes, bouillon powder, a pinch of salt and pepper. Keep stirring until the sweet potatoes are caramelized and crispy on the outside.
-Put the crispy sweet potatoes, salad dressing, red onion, avocado and coriander into the big mixing bowl. Fold the ingredients together.
-Serve Vegan Thai Salad immediately if you like a warm salad. Otherwise, it is just as lovely if you serve it cold.
-Do not overcook the sweet potatoes in the microwave as it might be too soft to fry.
-Keep an eye on the pan whilst frying the sweet potatoes chunks as they are easily burnt.
-Vegan Thai Salad can be served as a side salad or main course.
IN THE KITCHEN ◽ TIPS
by Marcy Lytle
It’s October and I suppose most of the country is starting to cool down a bit, and in our area – it’s a welcome change for sure! It’s the time of year when we start using the oven and stove again, and the aromas of soups and stews and comfort food become desirable, instead of salads and sandwiches (although I like those all year, as well!)
We’ve tried a few new recipes that I think you might like to add to your fall list…as the holidays approach. A couple of desserts…and a couple scrumptious dinners.
And of course, we added one spooky fun dessert for us all!
Dark Chocolate Bark
This recipe makes a big batch, so keep in fridge and grab a piece once a day for taste and a satisfying snack. It’s so delish!
2 12oz bags dark chocolate chips, melted
½ c salted pretzels roughly chopped
¼ c dried cherries
¼ c unsweetened coconut flakes
¼ c unsalted pistachios roughly chopped
Flaky sea salt
Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Pour a third of melted chocolate onto sheet and use an offset spatula to spread into 1/8 in thick layer (don’t leave it thicker than this, or it will be hard to break, later).
Evenly sprinkle with half the pretzels, cherries, coconut and pistachios. Pour over remaining chocolate to cover ingredients and evenly sprinkle the same as above, again.
Garnish with flaky sea salt. Let cool one hour (I put in fridge). Break into pieces.
Apple Brown Betty
At first, this recipe’s call for firm texture bread threw me off, but I ended up using country scratch bread from the deli, and it the dish turned out great. This is easy, and oh so good with ice cream on top! We took it for a family gathering, and we ate it all!
6 slices firm textured bread
2 large granny smith apples, 2 large golden delicious apples, cored, peeled and thinly sliced
½ cup plus 1 T firmly packed light brown sugar
½ t finely grated lemon zest
1 T fresh lemon juice
½ cup unsalted butter, melted
Preheat oven to 350, butter a 2-qt dish, set aside. Tear bread into food processor and pulse til crumbs are like oatmeal (not pulverized).
Place apples in large bowl and add ½ c brown sugar, the zest and juice and toss to combine. Place one-third of mix in dish and top with one-third of crumbs. Drizzle with 2 T melted butter. Repeat layers, then top with remaining apples and bread crumbs. Drizzle with remaining 4 T butter. Sprinkle 1 T brown sugar on top.
Cover with buttered foil and bake 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 30-40 minutes til browned.
Beans and Hush Puppies
We bought War Eagle Mill’s bagged beans and hush puppy mix, and are including them here, in case you want to order for Christmas gifts! The beans have the directions on the bag (you’ll need to possibly keep adding a bit of water so the pot doesn’t run dry.) I used bacon instead of ham. These beans were superb, because of that flavoring packet in the bag! We topped with grated cheese and served in fun soup bowls from Lakeside Collections (another great gift idea!)
The hush puppies were SO EASY and quick to make. We added in the garlic powder and chopped green onion, then fried them (if oil is hot, they fry up quickly!). SO GOOD with the beans!
Many Veggies Veggie Soup! (from loveandlemons.com)
This has a lot of ingredients, but it’s honestly one of the best veggie soups I’ve made. And it feels so healthy to eat and enjoy! A great October staple for your recipe file!
2 T EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
1 med yellow onion diced
Sea salt and black pepper
1 medium carrot diced
1 small sweet potato diced
¼ cup dry white wine (I used chicken broth)
1 14.5 oz can diced fire roasted tomatoes
4 garlic cloves chopped
2 t dried oregano
4 c veggie broth
2 bay leaves
1 c halved cherry tomatoes
1 c chopped green beans
Turtle Apple Pops
We made these for a snack with popcorn, for movie night, and we loved them!
caramels (I used the cubed wrapped ones)
dark chocolate chips
toasted chopped pecans
green apples, 1/2 inch slices
flaked sea salt
Unwrap caramels and melt in a saucepan with a bit of water, stirring until melted.
Melt chocolate (microwave 20 sec intervals and stir) til just melted (can add a bit of olive oil for consistency)
Place sticks in apple slices. Dip in chocolate, sprinkle with pecans, and place on parchment paper lined sheet. Chill 10 minutes.
Drizzle caramel over top and sprinkle with sea salt, chill another 5.