Monday, April 16, 2012

Ham and Gouda Croquettes

I have stumbled upon another great use for leftover mashed potatoes- and ham.
I put about 3 good sized slices of really good glazed ham in the food processor and blitzed it into little pieces. Then I dumped it in a bowl with about a cup of leftover mashed potatoes and some smoked Gouda I cut into little cubes. I formed the mixture into patties and put them in the ice box while I put together the breading and heated the oil.
For the breading I mixed panko bread crumbs with some black pepper, dried oregano, garlic and onion powder and some powdered Vermont cheddar. I dipped the patties in a beaten egg, then coated them in the bread crumb mixture. They pan fried in olive oil until they were golden brown and crispy.
They turned out really well. You could do this with any protein and cheese combination.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter Dinner

So here's a pic of my Easter dinner. Nothing fancy- glazed ham, mashed potatoes, sautéed green beans with grape tomatoes and mushrooms, and biscuits.

Poached Eggs

There are things in the culinary world that terrify me.  Rice used to be one of them, until I figured out how to do it well on an electric stove.  The gift of a rice steamer made that one a slam dunk.

Poached eggs, on the other hand, still terrify me.  I love them dearly.  Almost every time Dev and I go out for breakfast, I order them, mostly because I'm scared to do them at home.

I found a video on my Food 52 newsletter this morning (I highly recommend their newsletters- I get great recipes and wonderful tips like this one once a week).  It shows a fairly fool-proof method of poaching an egg using 2 spoons.  I probably won't try this during the school week, but you can bet your bottom dollar my breakfast next Saturday morning will include a beautifully poached egg!



Saturday, April 7, 2012

Raspberry Cheesecake French Toast

Necessity is the mother of invention.  Everyone knows this.  I think the best meals I make are the ones that don't follow recipes- I just use up what I have left on hand.

This breakfast was one of those things.  I had about a quarter of a loaf of wheat french bread left after dinner Thursday night, and I needed to use it up.  French toast immediately came to mind as I was lying in my bed this morning.

There really isn't a recipe.  I cut 2 really thick sliced of bread, then used the bread knife to cut a slit in each piece.

In a small bowl I mixed the last quarter cup or so of whipped cream cheese out of the tub and mixed it with a few tablespoons of raspberry jam and about 3 tablespoons of powdered sugar.  I put as much of the cream cheese mixture in the pocket of the toasts as I could, then dunked the bread in a combination of 2 eggs, a splash of heavy cream, a pinch of nutmeg, a pinch of cinnamon and a dash of kosher salt.  I preheated a cast iron skillet, put a tablespoon of butter in, then when the butter melted, cooked both sides of the pieces of french toast.

While the toast was cooking, I took the little bit of jam left in the bottom of the jar and microwaved it.  When the toast was done, I drizzled the raspberry jam/sauce over the top.

This did not suck.

Rosemary Beer Bread with Gouda

When I first started collecting recipes on the interwebz- you know, back before Pinterest, I had a bad habit of copying and pasting recipes and forgetting to attach the website address to the document.  Because of this lazy habit, I have quite a few recipes that I can't credit to the right people.

This bread recipe is one of those.  It's in the oven right now and is making my house smell beyond wonderful.  If anyone recognizes this recipe and knows whose it is, please leave a comment so I can give credit where it is so rightly due.

I added about 2 cups of hickory smoked gouda cheese to the dry ingredients.  Dev loves smoked gouda, and I had a huge piece in the ice box.  I also reduced the sugar to 1/8 cup, because I wanted this to be more of a savory bread to use for leftover ham later this week.  I also upped the rosemary to 2 teaspoons (I was using dry) because I have a big bag of dried rosemary that I need to use up. I ground the rosemary a little in my spice grinder so it would be easier to incorporate into the dough.  I can hear my husband saying, "Why do you bother to look at recipes when you always haul off and do your own thing anyway?"  I guess it's a good thing I don't listen very often, huh?

Here's the recipe for Rosemary Beer Bread-


3 cups all purpose flour, sifted
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp coarse salt
1/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped, or 1 tsp dry
1 12oz. can of beer 
1/3 cup melted butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix all dry ingredients together in large bowl.  Add beer and stir well to incorporate.  Batter is quite thick. Pour/press into greased LARGE loaf pan, or an 8x8 inch baking dish.  Pour melted butter over batter.  Run a knife around edges so the butter runs down sides. Place in the middle of your oven and bake for about 50 minutes if using loaf pan, and about 30 minutes if using 8 inch square.  If butter runs over, place aluminum foil on a cookie sheet and place this on the rack beneath your bread.  Let bread cool for about 15 minutes, then run knife around edges and remove from pan.  Serve warm. 

Update:  I took this out of the oven, and I swear half the loaf was gone within 20 minutes.  Only Dev and I are here.... oops.
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