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Posts Tagged ‘recipe’

  1. Raspberry Turnovers

    July 9, 2013 by betsy

    raspberry turnover

    I went fruit picking in Michigan the other day and came back with a huge load of sour cherries, sweet cherries, and black raspberries.  I happen to have some red raspberries at home already, and I need to use them up pretty fast.  I also happened to have a package of Dufour chocolate puff pastry in my freezer that I had been itching to try out.  Voila!  Easy turnovers.  Without the labor of making your own puff pastry, these can be thrown together in no time.

    The chocolate puff pastry was good.  You can tell it is a quality product, and not just because of the high price!  It’s hard to find all butter puff pastry sold retail though.  So if you have a special occasion, or want a good substitute for homemade, I’d definitely recommend the Dufour brand.

    Fresh raspberries have a very short shelf life.  If you aren’t going to use them right away, make sure you wash and freeze them on a sheet pan.  Then transfer to a plastic bag or freezer container.  Freezing them this way will allow you to take out only what you need when it’s time to bake, make smoothies or snack on your berries!

    Raspberry Turnovers

    • 1 package puff pastry
    • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
    • 2/3 cup sugar
    • 3 cups raspberries, fresh or frozen
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1 large egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water, to seal pastries (optional)

    Dissolve cornstarch in water.  Add the sugar mixture to the raspberries, tossing to combine. Stir in the vanilla, cinnamon and the cornstarch/water mixture.


    Heat the mixture in a saucepan over very low heat, stirring, till the berries soften and fall apart. The mixture will be thick and jam-like, even though it doesn’t really warm up much; this will take under 5 minutes. If you use cornstarch, cook and stir till the mixture bubbles and thickens. You can prepare the filling up to several days before; cover and refrigerate till you’re ready to use it.

    When you’re ready to assemble the turnovers, preheat the oven to 400°F. Roll the chilled dough into a 16″ square. Cut sixteen 4″ squares, for small, triangular turnovers. For round turnovers, use a turnover press to cut nine 4 1/2″ rounds. Re-roll the dough scraps, and cut 4 or 5 additional rounds, as many as you can get out of the scraps.

    Place about 2 teaspoons filling slightly off-center in each square. Or about 4 teaspoons slightly off-center of each round; a level tablespoon cookie scoop works well here.

    Fold the turnovers in half. If you’ve cut the dough in squares, fold in half diagonally, to create triangular turnovers. Press the edges with a fork to seal.

    Place the turnovers on a baking sheet, preferably one lined with parchment to catch any spills. Bake in the preheated 400°F oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until they’re a deep, golden brown; you may see some of the filling beginning to ooze out.

    Remove the turnovers from the oven, and cool on a rack. Serve warm, or at room temperature.

    Makes 16 small triangles.  Adapted from King Arthur Flour.

    raspberry turnovers

  2. Arugula Salad with Chicken, Apricots and Honeyed Goat Cheese

    June 13, 2013 by betsy

    arugula salad with apricots

    In search of a quick, healthy weeknight meal?  Look no further.  This salad can be thrown together and on the table in 20 minutes.  The key is using fresh, seasonal ingredients.  When cooking with ingredients that are in season, everything is more flavorful because they’re at their peak ripeness.  You can keep your recipes simple, and won’t lose out on flavor.  And since we’re all about showcasing in-season produce here at SP, this is a perfect recipe!

    After 5 days in Mexico I am in serious need of some healthy eating.  We had a great time, but now it’s time to detox.  I will be missing my fruity tropical drink and afternoon nap by the pool today, but my body will thank me for putting something a bit healthier on the dinner table tonight!

    Make sure you check out our apricot link party and add your recipes too!

    Arugula Salad with Chicken, Apricots and Honeyed Goat Cheese, makes 2 servings

    2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

    2 T olive oil

    3 cups arugula

    2 apricots

    2oz honeyed goat cheese (you can use regular goat cheese, but the honeyed is delicious!)

    3 oz Balsamic Vinaigrette (store-bought or homemade)

    salt and pepper

    Heat the grill to medium high.  Coat chicken with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Place chicken on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 4 minutes on each side or until done. Transfer to a plate; cool to room temperature.

    Divide arugula and apricots between two bowls. Cut chicken breast halves crosswise into thin slices; top each serving evenly with chicken. Top with crumbled goat cheese and drizzle with vinaigrette.  Serve immediately.


  3. Mango Banana Coconut Muffins

    May 21, 2013 by betsy

    mango banana coconut muffin


    Often muffins you buy at a coffee shop or bakery are full of sugar and preservatives, and taste more like dessert rather than breakfast.  This recipe uses a few easy substitutes like whole wheat flour, mashed banana and coconut oil instead of butter, fresh mango instead of sugary dried fruit, and skim milk rather than full fat.  The addition of oats makes these muffins a bit more dense, and more filling.  The coconut oil gives them a nice tropical sent while baking in the oven – kind of reminded me of vacation!  A perfect breakfast treat to enjoy with your cup of coffee on the porch one morning.  We’ve had some pretty warm days here in the Midwest this past week, so it already feels like summer.  But if you haven’t had that warm weather come your way yet, these muffins will at least put you in a summer state of mind!

    For more mango recipes, or to link up your own, make sure you visit our MANGO page!

    Mango Banana Coconut Muffins, makes 12 muffins

    • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
    • 3/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
    • 1 cup diced fresh mango


    Combine flours, oats, sugar,coconut, baking powder, soda, and salt.

    In a large bowl, beat the egg lightly. Stir in the milk, oil, and vanilla. Add the mashed banana, and combine thoroughly. Stir the flour mixture into the banana mixture until just combined. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper bake cups, and divide the batter among them.
    Bake at 400 degrees F (205 degrees C) for about 18 minutes.

  4. Arugula Salad with Roasted Beets, Goat Cheese and Balsamic Reduction

    April 9, 2013 by betsy

    arugula salad with roasted beets

    I was very excited to be featuring arugula this month, as it’s one of my favorite greens.  It’s a salad green we have at our house most of the time, and I usually grow it in the garden every year too.  It’s peppery taste lends well to both savory and sweet pairings.  It’s great on sandwiches, with salads that have some sweet accents and tossed with pasta or sprinkled on pizza.  You’ll find recipes using it in all of these ways on our arugula page!  Below is an easy salad that only takes a few steps.  The sweetness of the beets and goat cheese pair really well with the bite of the arugula.

    In keeping with the seasonal theme, I also bought some local arugula from right here in Chicago!  It’s actually grown indoors, so it’s available all year round.  You can find out more about it here.

    farmed here local baby arugula

    Farmed Here local baby arugula. Grown in Chicago!

    I found that this arugula kept A LOT longer than other brands I have purchased (which makes sense, because it didn’t travel as far to get to my plate!).  It tasted great too.  I will definitely be buying this product again!

    farmed here arugula


    Arugula Salad with Roasted Beets, Goat Cheese and Balsamic  Reduction, serves 2

    • 1 small bunch beets
    • 3 cups arugula
    • 2 oz goat cheese, crumbled
    • 3 Tbsp olive oil
    • Kosher salt
    • Pepper
    • balsamic reduction*

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Line a sheet pan with foil.  Wash and trim beets, then toss with 2 T of olive oil.  Put on sheet pan, cover with foil and cook in the oven for 25-50 minutes.  The cooking time will vary, depending on the size of your beets.  Beets are done with easily pierced with a fork.  Let cool.

    When beets are cool enough to handle, peel off skin and cut into pieces.  Toss with the remaining 1 T of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

    Divide arugula between two plates.  Top with beets, crumbled goat cheese and drizzle with balsamic reduction*.

    *Note:  you can use a store-bought balsamic reduction or make your own by bringing one cup of balsamic vinegar to a boil, then reduce heat so vinegar is simmering.  Let simmer until the vinegar is reduced by at least half and thickened (like the consistency of syrup).  It is great drizzled on everything from salads to meats, even fresh strawberries!

  5. Roasted Broccoli with Lemon and Pine Nuts

    March 18, 2013 by betsy


    While perusing the recipes on my own site, I was shocked that I didn’t really have any that featured broccoli as the main ingredient!  So I’ve found several that I am going to make and link up here before the month’s end.  I’m getting a late start though, as we’re already more than halfway through March – where did this month go?!

    This is an easy, delicious way to eat your broccoli.  The oven roasting gives it a light crunch, and the lemon adds a little touch of spring flavor to this dish.  It’s a subtle lemon flavor, but if you wanted to kick it up a notch, I think it would taste great with some diced up preserved lemon rinds.  It pairs well with any main course, and can be made in under a half an hour.  Gotta love those recipes for weeknight cooking!

    Roasted Broccoli with Lemon and Pine Nuts,  adapted from Food & Wine

    1 large head of broccoli (1 1/2 pounds), cut into 1 1/2-inch florets, stems peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick

    1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

    Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

    1 1/2 tablespoons pine nuts

    2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

    Preheat the oven to 400°. On a large baking sheet, toss the broccoli florets and stems with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast the broccoli in the oven for about 20 minutes, tossing halfway through, until browned and tender.

    Meanwhile, in a small skillet, toast the pine nuts over moderate heat until light golden all over, about 4 minutes.

    In a small bowl, whisk the lemon juice with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil; season the dressing with salt and pepper. Scrape the broccoli into a serving bowl. Add the dressing and toasted pine nuts, toss well and serve.


  6. Grapefruit Meringue Pies

    February 5, 2013 by betsy


    This recipe is a twist on the classic lemon meringue pie.  It’s not as tart as a lemon meringue, but the grapefruit flavor does come through.  You could really use and citrus with this recipe: lemon, lime, orange, blood orange, tangerine, etc.  I love making pies in small mason jars.  It’s the perfect way to control your portions, and it’s great if you’re only cooking for two!  You can always save those extras for later.  :)

    Grapefruit Meringue Pies, makes 6 mini pies

    Crust, adapted from Chocolate Covered Katie

    • 3/4 cups crumbs of graham cracker crumbs, or 5 graham cracker sheets
    • 2 tbsp milk or margarine/butter

    In a food processor, process crackers into fine crumbles. Add milk and process again to combine. Pour now-sticky crumbs into mini pie pans or 1/2 pint Mason jars, and smush down very firmly with your hands or a sheet of wax paper. (Be sure to smush down VERY hard, as the lack of fat will make this crust crumbly if you don’t.)

    Grapefruit Curd, adapted from Baking Bites

    1 cup sugar
    3 1/2 tbsp cornstarch
    3 tbsp ap flour
    1/4 tsp salt
    1 1/3 cups water
    1/2 cup fresh grapefruit juice
    1 tbsp grapefruit zest
    3 large egg yolks (reserve whites for meringue)
    2 tbsp butter, room temperature

    In a medium saucepan, whisk together sugar, cornstarch, flour, salt and water. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring with a whisk, for 3 minutes, until quite thick. In a small bowl, combine egg yolks with grapefruit juice and zest.
    Gradually temper eggs with about 1/2 cup of sugar mixture, drizzling in the hot mixture very slowly. Return saucepan to the heat and, whisking continuously, stream in lemon mixture. Add in butter and cook over medium-high heat for another 3 minutes.
    Allow to cool to room temperature.  Divide evenly between Mason jars or mini pie pans.

    1/2 cup sugar
    2 tbsp water
    4 large egg whites, room temperature
    1/2 tsp cream of tartar

    One filling is cooled, preheat oven to 350F. (Note: browning the meringue can be done with a kitchen torch, instead of putting the pies in the oven)
    In a small saucepan, combine sugar and water. Bring to a boil and turn heat to low.
    In a large bowl, beat egg whites until frothy. Beat in cream of tartar and beat at high speed until egg whites reach soft peaks. Carefully and very slowly, with the mixer turned to medium, stream in sugar syrup and beat egg whites to stiff peaks.
    Spoon meringue onto pie filling and make sure to completely seal the edges or the meringue with the crust, leaving no filling exposed.
    Bake for 8-10 minutes, until meringue is lightly browned.


  7. February is Grapefruit Month!

    February 3, 2013 by betsy


    Winter is for citrus!  Last February we featured oranges and this year is grapefruit.  This is a great time of year to get your hands on some red grapefruit from Texas, known for it’s bright red color and sweetness.  It’s also a great time of year to pump up your vitamin C intake (which grapefruit is full of) with the flu season still in full force!

    I grew up eating grapefruits cut in half and scooping the segments out with one of those little serrated spoons.  I always ate them plain (because I like tart things), but some people enjoy it with a little sugar sprinkled on top.  I loved eating grapefruit when I was a kid, but I find I don’t eat it very much now.  What a perfect time to reintroduce this fruit into my diet.  That is what Seasonal Potluck is all about!

    Please join us in sharing your grapefruit recipes this month!  We also have a ton of great orange recipes on our link party from last February, but we’d love if you shared some more this year!

  8. Scallops with Brussels Sprouts and Mustard Sauce

    January 15, 2013 by betsy

    photo (13)resize

    According to a recent Public Policy Poll, Brussels sprouts beat out Congress in popularity 69 to 23.  Well, I may not have enjoyed them as a kid, but they certainly are tasty now!  Although my husband might actually rank Brussels sprouts lower than Congress, he did like this dish! This is a quick, easy dinner that is fast enough for a weeknight, but nice enough for the weekend too.

    When cooking the scallops, make sure you don’t crowd the pan.  If the scallops are touching, they won’t caramelize nicely.  The mustard sauce had a great flavor. It really complimented the bitterness of the sprouts.  This is a keeper!

    Sea Scallops with Brussels Sprouts and Mustard Sauce, adapted from Fine Cooking

    • 1 lb sea scallops
    • 10 oz brussels sprouts
    • 3 T olive oil
    • all-purpose flour (for dusting)
    • Kosher salt
    • Black pepper

    for mustard sauce:

    • 2 T unsalted butter
    • 1 T lemon juice
    • 2 T water
    • 1 tsp coarse grain Dijon mustard

    Remove scallops from packaging and pat dry.

    In a food processor fitted with the slicing blade attachment, shred the trimmed brussels sprouts.  (I found a package of pre-sliced brussels sprouts at Trader Joe’s – it’s a great time saver for this already quick meal!)

    Heat 2 T olive oil in a 12 inch skillet over medium high heat.  Add the brussels sprouts, season with the kosher salt and black pepper to taste.  Toss and coat with olive oil.  Cover and cook until starting to soften, about 1 1/2 minutes.  Transfer to a platter and keep warm.

    Season the scallops with salt and pepper.  Dust both flat sides with all-purpose flour.  Heat 1 T olive oil in the skillet over medium high heat.  Add the scallops and cook, flipping once until browned and just cooked through, about 5 minutes.

    Put the scallops on top of the Brussels sprouts and return the skillet to medium-low heat.

    Add 2 T unsalted cold butter, cut into pieces, 1 T lemon juice, 2 T water, and 1 Tsp coarse-grained Dijon mustard and cook.  Stir and scrape up any browned bits, until the butter is incorporated and the sauce has thickened, about 1 minute.  Season to taste with salt and pepper, spoon over the scallops and serve.

  9. Featured Recipe: Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese

    November 14, 2012 by betsy


    Not only is this dish good, but it’s also healthy!  It’s also a great way to sneak in a serving of vegetables to your husband or children (or Betsy).  I’ve made this dish a couple of times now, and used slightly different cheeses the second time.  Still turned out delish!  I think if you use a variety of cheeses that are suitable for melting, this will turn out great.  So get creative!

    The squash adds a creaminess to the dish without being too heavy like a traditional mac & cheese.  You could also play around with this recipe by adding some grilled chicken or turkey sausage, crumbled bacon, or a variety of fresh herbs.

    I hope you’ll try out this recipe this month, and add some of your own to our November link page.  Don’t forget we have lots of great sweet potato recipes there too!

    Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese, adapted from Cooking Light

    • 3 cups cubed peeled butternut squash (about 1-pound squash)
    • 1 1/4 cups fat-free, lower-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
    • 1 1/2 cups fat-free milk
    • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
    • 2 tablespoons plain fat-free Greek yogurt
    • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 1 1/4 cups (5 ounces) shredded Gruyère cheese
    • 1 cup (4 ounces) grated pecorino Romano cheese
    • 1/4 cup (1 ounce) finely grated fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, divided
    • 1 pound uncooked cavatappi (or pasta that will hold sauce like rigatoni or fusilli)
    • Cooking spray
    • 1 teaspoon olive oil
    • 1/2 cup panko
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
    1. Preheat oven to 375°.
    2. Combine squash, broth, milk, and garlic in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium, and simmer until squash is tender when pierced with a fork, about 25 minutes. Remove from heat.
    3. Place the hot squash mixture in a blender. Add salt, pepper, and Greek yogurt. Remove the center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Blend until smooth. Place blended squash mixture in a bowl; stir in Gruyère, pecorino Romano, and 2 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano. Stir until combined.
    4. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain well. Add pasta to squash mixture, and stir until combined. Spread mixture evenly into a 13 x 9-inch glass or ceramic baking dish coated with cooking spray.
    5. Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add panko, and cook for 2 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from heat; stir in remaining 2 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Sprinkle evenly over the hot pasta mixture. Lightly coat topping with cooking spray.
    6. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until bubbly. Sprinkle with parsley, and serve immediately.


  10. Featured Recipe: Grape Harvest Cake

    October 23, 2012 by betsy


    I have to admit, I was a little apprehensive about making this cake.  It sounded intriguing, but I wasn’t sure if I would like it.  Well, my fears were unfounded, because this cake is delicious!  It is just a tad sweet, so you could enjoy it like a coffee cake for breakfast. If you’d prefer it as dessert, it would be great with a touch of whipped cream or creme fraiche.  The fact that this cake isn’t too sweet would make it the perfect ending to a rich meal.  It’s a nice base recipe too, with lots of moisture due to a touch of olive oil in the batter.  I think you could easily switch out other types of fruit too.  Try it – you’ll like it!

    Grape Harvest Cake

    makes one 9 inch cake, adapted from Whole Foods

    • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for buttering the pan
    • 2/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon cane sugar
    • 2 large eggs and 1 large egg yolk
    • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for flouring the pan
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
    • 3/4 cup lowfat buttermilk
    • 2 1/4 cups (3/4 pound) red seedless grapes

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-inch metal cake pan and line the bottom with a round of parchment paper. Butter the paper and then coat the pan with flour.

    In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together butter and 2/3 cup sugar until light and fluffy, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl frequently. Beat in eggs one at a time. Beat in yolk, followed by olive oil. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt in separate bowl. On low speed, beat in the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with additions of buttermilk and scraping down the sides of the bowl frequently. Stir in half the grapes and pour the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the top with remaining grapes and remaining 1 tablespoon sugar. Bake until the cake is browned on top and springs back when pressed lightly with your finger, 50 to 60 minutes. Cool the cake in the pan 15 minutes.

    Run a knife around the edges of the pan, then invert, peel off the paper and cool the cake upright on a rack. Serve warm or room temperature.\