Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Every Day Pasta

Can it be? Another cooking post so soon?

It is! I said I was going to try and be better about this whole thing and I am really attempting to be better. I always think that I should only post things that I made some sort of effort to make. However, who cares, right? Cooking ideas are cooking ideas, and since this blog is a record for me than I should put down easy ideas too.

The other night I made the pasta below. I am happy to note that it wasn't entirely jar sauce pasta. I did cheat and use a store bought pesto. I would feel slightly bad about it, but I know I can make pesto from scratch and the store bought was so much easier with baby around. This pasta took me about 15 minutes to make and it was yummy and nutritious (packed with veggies!). It will be a keeper and most likely added to our dinner routine.

Every Day Pesto Pasta

1/2 box of your favorite pasta (we love rigatoni in this house)
1/2 cup store bought pesto (or homemade if you have it)
1 zucchini, chopped into bite-size pieces
1 cup cherry tomatoes
1 1/2 cup fresh spinach
1 orange bell pepper, cut into bite-size pieces
3 oz mozzarella, cut into bite-size pieces

Cook noodles according to box directions. While noodles are cooking, saute zucchini, bell pepper, and cherry tomatoes with about a tbsp of olive oil until cooked through (but still a bit crisp and tomatoes are slightly blistered). Shut off heat, then add in pesto and spinach. Toss until coated. Once noodles are finished, add and toss in with veggie mix. If the pesto is too thick, you can always add a touch of pasta water to thin out the sauce. Add in moz pieces at the very end and serve.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Whoa baby!

So, I'm back (again). Yes, I know, I know...I've been a TERRIBLE blogger. There really hasn't been much food stuff to blog honestly. We've been eating boring stuff over and over again in this house. However, with our new little one, we're lucky to shovel down any food at all. Excuses aside, I'm going to try and start this cooking "business" all over again. No more tacos! No more frozen pizza! No more jar spaghetti sauce and noodles! HA! Just kidding! Those things will most likely stick around until this kid is in college, BUT I still want to be the mom who has some of the best food at her house. That means, I really need to get cooking again.

What did I make to welcome myself back to the world of cooking and food? Blueberry coffee cake! After looking at my last post, it seems that blueberries have been a thing for me. I actually happened to have a ton of blueberries in the fridge this past week and needed a good way to eat through them. Also, ever since the pregnancy, I've somehow gained a sweet tooth that never existed before. The coffee cake came out sooooo goooood! It was a perfect treat in the afternoon while Miss Ruby was taking her nap. The recipe is based from one in my wonderful Gourmet cookbook. I cut the white sugar used and added blueberries to the regular coffee cake recipe. I think other additions would be great too! Instead of blueberries, you can also add bananas, apples, pears, chocolate chips...all would be very tasty!

Also, the pics are from my iPhone. I do have a better camera now, but taking and uploading from the phone is just too easy to pass up now.

Blueberry Coffee Cake
adapted from The Gourmet Cookbook

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks butter (cold, unsalted), cut into cubes
1 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 pecans, toasted and chopped
1 cup sour cream
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together flour, 3/4 cup brown sugar, granulated sugar, and salt in a bowl. Blend in 1 1/2 sticks of butter with your fingers or with a pastry blender until the mixture looks like a course meal with small pieces of butter mixed through.

Transfer 3/4 of the mixture to another bowl and add cinnamon, remaining 1/2 stick of butter and remaining 1/4 cup brown sugar until crumbly. Add pecans and then refrigerate for 15 minutes. This is the topping.

In another bowl whisk together the wet ingredients- sour cream, egg, yolk, vanilla, baking soda. Add the remaining flour mixture until combined. Don't over stir! Batter will be sticky and stiff.

You can bake in a pan or in a muffin tin. Sprinkle the topping before baking. Bake until golden brown and center comes out clean. If doing muffins, bake about 20-30 minutes. If baking in a pan, it can take from 40-60 minutes depending on pan and your oven.

Cool for about 20 minutes before devouring!