Monday, November 22, 2010

{Recipe} Cheesy Smashed Cauliflower

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This may be weird, but I grew up with a Grandmother who hated potatoes.  She would not eat them in any form: fried, mashed, baked, cheesy or plain.  This made for some creativity on our family’s part when it came to Thanksgiving dinner.  Because as Bobby Flay recently found out, you cannot have Thanksgiving without mashed potatoes!!  {Sorry but I’m a huge fan of Throwdown on the Food Network, and an even bigger Ree Drummond fan—a.k.a. Pioneer Woman.  She just schooled Bobby on the finer points of Thanksgiving and won the Throwdown last week.  Way to go Ree!!}  Anyway…this recipe from Erin may fit the bill for your non-potato loving guests this year.  It’s adapted from a Rachel Ray recipe.

Cheesy Smashed Cauliflower

  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 large head cauliflower
  • 1 tablespoon of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/3 cup Boursin cheese or 1/3 cup other garlic & herb      spreadable cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese or 1/4 cup romano cheese
  • 1/8 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 3 tablespoons chives, chopped

    Add chicken stock and 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil (one turn of the pan) to a deep pot.

    Trim away greens and stems from the base of cauliflower. Cut away the core with a sharp paring knife. Set cored head into pot with broth.

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    Cover pot and bring liquid to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and cook cauliflower, covered, until tender, 8 to 10 minutes.

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    Uncover the pot and let some liquid cook off as you smash the cheeses into the cauliflower.

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    As the mixture thickens, turn off heat and season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Stir in chives and transfer cauliflower to a serving dish. Enjoy!!

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  • Monday, November 8, 2010

    Creamy White Chili

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    The first time I had this tasty chili was right after the birth of my little guy and my good friend Neelie brought over a steamy pot.  I was in heaven!!  It was one of those taste memories that will always stick in my mind because it was so comforting.  Thanks, Neelie, for the comfort then, and for letting me share now!

    Creamy White Chili

    • 1 pound shredded chicken
    • 1 medium onion
    • 1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
    • 3 cans great northern beans, drained and rinsed
    • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
    • 8 oz green chilies
    • 1 t salt
    • 1 t ground cumin
    • 1 t dried oregano
    • 1/2 tsp pepper
    • 1 cup sour cream
    • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

    In a large saucepan sauté chicken, onion, and garlic powder in oil until chicken is no longer pink. Add beans, broth, chilies, and seasonings.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.  Remove from heat; stir in sour cream and heavy cream. Serve.

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    Fall Chili & Cornbread

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    Chili and cornbread go together like bosom buddies. One is always asking for the other, inviting it over for sleepovers, and giggling together under trees dressed in their autumn colors. So why try and separate what should be together? I know, I know, you’ve been burned before. Chili so hot you’ve had to pop Tums all night just to keep from breathing fire, or cornbread as thick and dry as a hay bale. If you’ve ever suffered from such moments of culinary disaster, let me give you some free dinner therapy. It starts with a quick and easy chili so warm and delicious, you’ll ask for another bowl. It’s low on heat, but if you’re into that kind of thing feel free to add more. Then you’ll top it off with wedges of cornbread that will make you talk with your mouth full. When it’s warm, a slip of butter melts in like a memory, and my kids come away with yellow freckled crumbstaches. Mmm hmm! It’s that good. So grab your beans and corn and let’s get started!

    In-a-Hurry Turkey Chili

    Ingredients:

    • ½ small onion chopped
    • 1 lb ground turkey
    • 1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
    • 1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
    • 1 28oz can stewed tomatoes, chopped
    • ½ c. ready made salsa
    • 1 T chili powder

    Alright, now get out your knife and Master-Chef your onion into a nice dice. Put it into a pan with your ground turkey and brown it. Meanwhile, drain and rinse your beans, and then chop your tomatoes. This is where you might decide to do things differently. I’m not big on huge chunks of tomato swimming around in my chili, so I plop the entire can into the blender and do a coarse chop before dumping it into the pan with the rest of the ingredients.

    Add the salsa and chili powder, stir and let it come to a bubble. Serve with your favorite toppings.

    Now on to the cornbread. I often make an 8x8 pan instead of 9x13 so there will be less for me to indulge on as the night goes on. I’ve included the half measurements in parentheses for your convenience:

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    Adapted from Myra’s Corn Bread

    • 2 c. (1 c.) flour
    • 1 c. (½ c.) cornmeal
    • 2 ½ t. (1 ¼ t.) baking powder
    • 1 t. (½ t.) salt
    • ¾ c. (6 T.) butter
    • 3 (2) eggs
    • 1 c. (½ c.) milk
    • 1½ (¾ c.) sugar
    • 1 t. (½ t.) vanilla

    See that vanilla? It gives you the hint of the deliciousness you’re about to embark into. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Sift together your flour, cornmeal, powder, and salt, and set aside. Beat butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy (about five minutes).

    Once your batter is fluffy, begin mixing in the dry ingredients and milk by fourths, alternating dry and wet (beginning and ending with flour) until smooth. Pour into a well greased 9x13 pan. Bake for 30-35 minutes.

    If possible, cool in pan ten minutes before cutting into fat squares and serving with butter, or better yet – honey butter.

    Now dust off your upper lip and tell me that didn’t make you smile.

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