Monday, August 27, 2012

Awesome Egg Salad (with avocado!!)

Do you ever just really crave eggs?  More specifically, hard boiled eggs??  Even more specifically, egg salad???  Well, I do…and tonight I did.  I just couldn’t wait to get my hands on a big ol’ egg salad sandwich.  I thought about this sandwich for hours.  I decided to see what I could find on allrecipes to make my egg salad a bit snazzier.  I found several recipes that had some good add-ins to your standard egg salad, and picked the ingredients that sounded best to me.  This sandwich was fantastic, I highly recommend it on toasted wheat bread with some fresh baby spinach.  This recipe should make 3 or 4 sandwiches (maybe more, depending on how thick you put that egg salad on and how big your bread is).

I think a lot of foods are not very photogenic
(and also, I'm not a very good food photographer)
I have to be honest with you about this recipe, besides the 4 eggs and 1 avocado, I did not measure a single other ingredient.  So I really have no clue how much of what went into this.  I tried to do some guesstimating here based on other recipes and what I think I did.  Also, I didn’t mash in my avocado, I just stirred in the cubes (but mashing seems like a good idea).
Oh, and just in case you have a hard time getting your hard-boiled eggs just right, try our friend Erin’s instructions at Chopstitch.  This is how I make my eggs and they always turn out just right!

4 hard-boiled eggs
1 large avocado – peeled, pitted & cubed
¼ cup mayonnaise
1 tbsp mustard
1 tbsp finely diced onion
½ tsp paprika
1 ½ tsp horseradish (or more…or less…as hot as you like it)
salt & pepper to taste
baby spinach (optional)

Everything is better with baby dills.
1)  Mash eggs in a mixing bowl with a fork.  Stir in all the rest of the ingredients with fork, and gently mash until blended.  Slap your egg salad on two slices of bread with spinach.

 ~ j

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Sweet & Sour Chicken and Broccoli

This recipe is adapted from a Pinterest find.  I’m totally addicted to Pinterest, but hadn’t actually done much of anything with any of my pins…until the last few weeks.  I have projects going all over the house now, which means it’s a disaster ‘round these parts.  I really need to start making more of the recipes I’ve pinned, though.  So here’s the first one I’m sharing.  Like I said, I adapted it some…broccoli wasn’t part of the original recipe, but seemed like a good addition to me!  I also adjust some of the measurements from the original and added Sriracha (just because I love it).  As you can tell from the photo, I didn’t have much broccoli in the house, or I would have put in a lot more (which is also why I didn’t put any measurement/amount on the broccoli, you decide).

Anyways, like I said, I haven’t actually made many of the recipes I’ve pinned.  I have a feeling a lot of them are not really winners, they just sound good in theory.  But this one is definitely a winner, and a great alternative to Chinese take-out!

Sweet & Sour Chicken and Broccoli
2/3 cup white sugar
4 tbsp ketchup
½ cup white vinegar
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp garlic powder
dash (or more) Sriracha hot pepper sauce (optional)
~1.5 lbs boneless chicken breasts
salt & pepper
1 cup cornstarch
2 eggs, lightly beaten
¼ cup canola oil
broccoli, cut up into bite-size pieces

1) Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
2) Mix together sugar, ketchup, vinegar, soy sauce, garlic powder and Sriracha.  Set aside.
2) Cut up chicken into bite-size pieces, season with salt and pepper to taste.  Dip chicken into eggs to coat, then dip in cornstarch until well coated.
3) Heat oil in a large skillet and drop chicken in, cook just until slightly brown, but not cooked through.
4) Place the chicken and broccoli in a lightly greased 9”x13” baking dish, and pour the sauce over all it.  Cook for 45-60 minutes, turning chicken about every 15 minutes.

 ~ j

Friday, July 13, 2012

Ravioli and Butternut Squash Sauce

Holy tastebuderific dinner I made tonight!  Yeah, I don't know, I was trying to come up with a fun, made-up word for super delicious taste times.  ANYWAYS...

I bought this big ol’ butternut squash the other day totally on a whim.  I love squash, but had nothing in particular in mind that I was going to do with it.  Today I decided I wanted to do something with that squash and some pasta, and then I remembered I had some cheese ravioli…it sounded like a fantastic idea (and it was a really fantastic, that’s why I’m sharing).  I really wish I could tell you that I made the ravioli, and then give you an awesome recipe for it, but I've never made pasta in my life.  So anyhow, I did a quick interwebs search and found this recipe, which was perfect because I also have a shit-ton of 2 different types of basil growing in my garden.  I only very slightly strayed from the recipe I found, and here’s what I did.  This was so delicious, you should go get a squash right now and start cooking.

Yep, that's Beeb, eating squash out
of the food processor.

Your favorite cheese ravioli (in whatever amount you want)
1 medium to large butternut squash, roasted
   (I’ll give roasting instructions, in case you’re not sure about that)
1-2 cups half &half
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
3 tbsp fresh basil, torn
cayenne pepper (optional - use as much as you'd like, I like my food spicy!)
salt & pepper to taste

1) Cook ravioli according to package instructions. 
2) While your ravioli is cooking, place squash, approximately 1 cup half & half, cheese, basil and cayenne pepper in food processor.  Blend, and add half & half until the sauce reaches a consistency you like (I like it thicker, so I only used about a cup).  Add salt & pepper to taste, if desired (I didn’t add any, I thought it was perfect as is).
3) Drain ravioli and spoon desired amount of sauce over the top.

**My squash was still hot when I put it in the food processor, so I didn’t heat it at all after I blended it…you may want to heat your squash sauce after blending it.

Roasting the squash:  Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Cut the squash in half lengthwise, scoop out seeds, place in a 9”x12” baking dish (cut side up), put approximately 1 tbsp butter in each side and sprinkle with a little salt and pepper (I also sprayed a little bit of olive oil all over the squash, but it’s not necessary).  Place the squash in the oven for 30-45 minutes (until the squash is all soft and can be easily scooped out).

 ~ j