Monday, October 12, 2015

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Happy cooking!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Pasta with Slow Roasted Tomatoes (2 ways)

I keep buying large amounts of cherry tomatoes and then forgetting about them until it's almost too late. To use up a bunch at once before they go bad, I've been slow roasting them by lining a baking tray with tin foil, halving the tomatoes, giving them a quick mix with olive oil and baking them at 250 for about 3 hours. I've been trying not to use the oven since it's been so hot, but I LOVE tomatoes after they've been slow roasted and it's way better than letting any tomatoes go to waste. Remember to keep the oil - it's good.

I can definitely go for some plain slow roasted tomatoes, but I wanted to share a couple pasta recipe ideas that make good use of them.

Gnocchi au Gorgonzola 
(aka one of my all-time favorite things to make since high school... not healthy)

1 package gnocchi, cooked
1/2 cup Gorgonzola (or blue cheese), cut up or crumbled
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup heavy cream or half & half
a lot of slow roasted tomatoes (in their olive oil if possible)
1 tbsp chives, chopped

In a small saucepan over medium low heat, combine the cheese and butter and heat until the butter melts, stirring to help melt the cheese. Add the cream and stir to combine. Don't let it bubble too much. Mix with the gnocchi, tomatoes and top with chives.

Nice & Simple Pasta - Garlic, Basil & Tomatoes

2 servings angel hair pasta, cooked 
(pictured is fresh angel hair pasta from Ohio City Pasta, bought at the Squirrel Hill Farmer's Market)
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
6-7+ leaves fresh garlic, chopped
1 tsp red pepper flakes
lots of slow roasted tomatoes

In a large pan, heat up the oil over medium low heat. Add the garlic, basil and hot pepper flakes and cook until the garlic is toasted a little. Add in the pasta and mix. Serve with slow roasted tomatoes. 

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Fresh Summer Salsa

We visited relatives that have a pool AND their own Wheaten terrier, so we had a pretty nice summer afternoon hanging out in the pool and watching the crazy dog cousins run a million laps around the water. Twilly is totally wiped out now and will probably nap for the rest of the day.

I decided to make my favorite summer recipe (or maybe #2 fav behind tomato pie?) for a post-pool snack. I usually make this all the time when I have a successful tomato growing summer, but my tomatoes were only in pots this year and got all dried out before producing many tomatoes. Good thing there are plenty of farmer's markets around with beautiful heirloom tomatoes.

1-2 nice tomatoes, chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 lime, juiced
2 mild or hot peppers, finely chopped (I used 1 banana pepper and 1 jalapeno from the farmer's market)
kernels from 1 or 2 ears of corn (uncooked)
1 handful cilantro, chopped
salt & pepper

Once everything is chopped up, combine it all in a bowl and mix well. Add salt and pepper to taste and add more lime as needed. Sometimes I add garlic if I feel like it needs something else. And you can always add chopped fruit (peach, mango, watermelon, blueberries, grapes...) or avocado. It will keep for a few days in the fridge.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Peanut Butter Cookies

A couple years ago I posted some flourless peanut butter and chocolate/M&M cookies, and they've been at the top of my cookie baking rotation since then. I love how few ingredients the batter has, and they come out well every time. A couple months ago I started making another very similar peanut butter cookie from the same site, which has a ton of great peanut butter cookie recipes. I don't know if one is necessarily better than the other but it's definitely another good one! I don't normally make these ones with chocolate chips, but they're always an option.

Peanut Butter Cookies
From Averie Cooks

Note: Remember to allow for 2+ hours of chill time before baking.

1 large egg
1 cup creamy classic-style peanut butter or honey-roasted peanut butter 
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Optional: chocolate chunks

In a large bowl, mix all the ingredients until smooth. Refrigerate the dough for at least 2 hours or up to a couple days.  When you're ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350. Use a tablespoon measuring spoon to make balls and arrange them on a baking sheet covered with a silicon baking mat, parchment paper or foil. If you want, place some chocolate chips or chunks on top. Bake for 8 minutes. They'll still be soft and should sit for at least 10 minutes.


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