Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Prepared Family Dinners

Several months ago I heard about Foster's Market "Family Dinners".  They have different sized shares, but for my husband and I (a couples share) it is $100 for 5 made-from-scratch meals where all we need to do is reheat them. It also comes along with a large salad, some type of bread, and dessert (rotates weekly to go along with the menu). Plus, they have a daily vegetarian offering, kids items, and a couple other entrĂ©es available to add on. I placed my order last Friday for the following and picked it up Monday evening. (I meant to take a photo of it all packaged up so neatly, but came home and on auto-pilot immediately started putting it all away - next time).

  • Beef Lasagna
  • Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Risotto
  • Rosemary Port Roasted Pork Loin
  • Bulgur Wheat and Grilled Vegetable Casserole with Chevre
  • Penne Pasta with Roasted Eggplant, Spinach, Onions and Capers with a Balsamic Red Wine Sauce
  • Garden Salad with Buttermilk Ranch
  • Baguette
  • Assorted Fresh Baked Cookies

Since I do cook 2-3 times a week, I plan to freeze the beef lasagna and rosemary port pork loin for sometime next week, use the bulgur wheat with grilled veggies as a lunch item, and have the chicken & mushroom risotto and penne pasta with garden salad as dinner items this week. I am also already thinking ahead and planning to order in advance several items for us to take along for our upcoming beach trip.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Sweet & Spicy Sesame Nuts

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  • 1 pound nuts, of your choice (about 4 cups)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2/3 cup sesame seeds (4 ounces)
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  1. Preheat the oven to 350° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large, wide saucepan, combine the walnuts, sugar and water and bring to a boil. Add the sesame seeds, cayenne and salt and cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly, until the water is nearly evaporated, about 4 minutes. Lower the heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the walnuts are golden brown and sandy, about 4 minutes longer.
  2. Immediately pour the walnuts onto the prepared baking sheet and spread in a single layer. Bake for about 20 minutes, until the nuts are deeply golden and covered with a sandy coating. Let the walnuts cool completely. Break any large clusters apart; transfer to a bowl to serve.

Recipe Source

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Roasted Tomato and Black Bean Soup

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  • 7 medium tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 large onion, cut into large pieces (about 1½ inches)
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 5 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 (15.5 oz.) cans black beans (preferably low-sodium), drained and rinsed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoons hot pepper sauce (like Tabasco)
  • 1/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Toss tomatoes, onion, and garlic with oil, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper in large bowl, then transfer to baking sheet. Roast until garlic cloves have softened, edges of onions are browned, and tomatoes have collapsed, 35 to 40 minutes, stirring once after first 20 minutes.

2. Transfer roasted vegetable mixture to 4-qt. saucepan. Add broth, beans, cumin, chili powder, and remaining 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Bring to boil, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes.

3. Remove from heat and blend until smooth with immersion blender or in batches in regular blender. Stir in hot sauce. Divide among 4 bowls and garnish with dollop of sour cream.

Original Recipe

Friday, October 1, 2010

Pumpkin Spice Latte

If you still need a pumpkin fix try this too!!

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  • 1 c. strongly brewed coffee
  • 3/4 c. milk
  • 1 T. vanilla creamer
  • 2 T. canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 t. cinnamon
  • 1/4 t. ginger
  • 1/4 t. ground nutmeg
  • sugar to taste

Brew your coffee using 1 T. of ground coffee for each 6 oz. of water.

Combine remaining ingredients in a microwave-safe measuring cup. Heat milk/pumpkin/spice mixture until it is very hot, about a minute and a half in the microwave or a few minutes on the stove top.

Pour mixture into a high speed blender. Blend on high until mixture is fully incorporated and frothy.

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Pour frothy pumpkin milk into a large coffee cup. Pour freshly brewed coffee into pumpkin milk and gently stir.

Original Recipe

Pumpkin, White Chocolate Chip, and Walnut Cookies

Very yummy!!

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  • 1 cup of all-purpose white flour
  • 1 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 cup of butter, softened (I used 1/2 c butter, 1/2 cup canola oil)
  • ½ cup of granulated sugar
  • ½ cup of packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup of pumpkin puree
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons of vanilla
  • 2 cups (12 oz package) of white chocolate morsels
  • 2/3 cup of coarsely chopped walnuts or macadamia nuts, toasted

Combine the flour, spices, and baking soda in a small bowl. Set aside. Beat the butter and sugars in a large mixer until creamy. Beat in the pumpkin, eggs, and vanilla until well mixed. Gradually beat in the flour mixture. Stir in the morsels and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto a greased baking sheet. Flatten slightly with the back of a spoon.

Bake in a preheated oven at 350° for 11-14 minutes. Let the cookies stand for 2 minutes. Remove them from the baking sheets and let cool completely on wire racks. Makes 2 dozen.

Recipe given to me by Liz Mockbee