Sunday, November 27, 2011

Thanksgiving Leftovers Part 2

Another "Round Two" recipe that the Belleville house enjoys is Bubble & Squeak. This recipe combines a little of each thanksgiving dish rolled into one fabulous little cake. A little history on the dish itself thanks to Wikipedia:

Bubble and squeak is a traditional English dish made with the shallow-fried leftover vegetables from a roast dinner. The main ingredients are potato and cabbage, but carrots, peas, brussels sprouts, and other vegetables can be added. The cold chopped vegetables (and cold chopped meat if used) are fried in a pan together with mashed potatoes or crushed roast potatoes until the mixture is well-cooked and brown on the sides. It is often served with cold meat from the Sunday roast, and pickles.

The meat was traditionally added to the bubble and squeak itself, although nowadays it is more commonly made without meat. The earliest known recipe was by Maria Rundell in 1806.

The name comes from the bubble and squeak sounds made as it cooks. The name bubble and squeak is used throughout the United Kingdom, Australia and other Commonwealth countries. It may also be understood in parts of the United States.

Bubble and squeak was a popular dish during World War II, as it was an easy way of using leftovers during a period when most foods were subject to rationing. In more recent times, pre-prepared frozen and tinned versions have become available.

That being said I modify this recipe into a Thanksgiving masterpiece.

What you'll need:
1 large mixing bowl
1 cup of flour
2 cups left over stuffing
2 cups left over mashed potatoes
2 cups cubed turkey
1 skillet with sides
1/2 cup oil
Salt and Pepper to taste

On the stove bring the oil in the skillet to temperature (medium heat)
In the mixing bowl add the stuffing, potatoes, and turkey. Mix with your hands until well incorporated. Place the flour into a shallow dish. Scoop little balls of the thanksgiving mixture into your hands. Flatten out gently into a cake like patty. Then roll in the flour. Place the Thanksgiving cakes into the oil and fry evenly on all sides (approximately 2-3 min per side) then place on paper towel to drain the excess oil. Serve 2-3 cakes (depending on size) to each guest with a vegetable of your choosing and some gravy over the top. You may also top your Bubble and Squeak cakes with cranberry sauce. This is my favorite Round Two recipe for thanksgiving leftovers. Enjoy!

Thanksgiving Leftovers Part 1

Frequently on various cooking shows you hear about "Round Two" recipes. This evening we are cooking Turkey Broccoli Bake. Its fairly simple and makes great use of the turkey leg, thigh, and wing meat left over from the holiday feast.

What you will need:
2 cups cubed turkey meat
1 cup thawed broccoli Florettes
1 can cream of "....." soup--I use chicken, broccoli, celery, cheddar (which ever you like)
1 6oz package of chicken stuffing mix
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup shredded cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Grease an 11x7 or 9x13 baking dish
Bring to boil water in a medium saucepan on the stove, then stir in stuffing and remove from heat. Cover and let sit for 5 minutes.
Layer the turkey and broccoli in the bottom of the dish. Cover with soup and mix together.
Fluff the stuffing and spread over the top of the meat/veggie mixture. Then top with your cheese.
Bake for 30-35 minutes and enjoy! This is also a great recipe with leftover cooked chicken.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

My First Pie

Every Thanksgiving my Father enjoys a Mince Meat Pie. This year Thanksgiving was at my house and I decided to make the pie. I have never made a pie here we go!

What is a Mince Meat Pie?
A mince pie, also known as minced pie, is a small British sweet pie traditionally served during the Christmas season. Its ingredients are traceable to the 13th century, when returning European crusaders brought with them Middle Eastern recipes containing meats, fruits and spices.

The early mince pie was known by several names, including mutton pie, shrid pie and Christmas pie. Typically its ingredients were a mixture of minced meat, suet, a range of fruits, and spices such as cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg. Served around Christmas, the savoury Christmas pie (as it became known) was associated with supposed Catholic "idolatry" and during the English Civil War was banned by the Puritan authorities. Nevertheless, the tradition of eating Christmas pies in December continued through to the Victorian era, although by then its recipe had become sweeter and its size reduced markedly from the large oblong shape once observed. Today the mince pie remains a popular seasonal treat enjoyed by many across the United Kingdom.

Pie Crust (pre-made but its my first time so go easy on me!)

Filling (again pre-made)

Now the process :)

Not bad for a first try! I'll have to tell you how it tastes after the meal

Friday, October 28, 2011

The Husband can Cook!

Robert can the past its been Macaroni & Cheese, Frozen Pizza, occasionally his Tortellini Soup, and always his delicious tacos. With his recent job loss I have resigned my duties in the kitchen to him on nights he doesn't have class, and I am impressed! I don't think I gave him enough credit in the past for his cooking skills.

This week he has prepared: Hamburgers and Fries, Homemade Shake N Bake (his own blend of spices and breadcrumbs) Pork chops complete with mashed potatoes and green beans, as well as some awesome spaghetti with garlic bread.

I am truly a blessed woman to have a man like my husband who does it all right now, cooking and cleaning.

Love you Hun!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

I recently visited the local Farmer's Market where I purchased a huge zucchini. I Not knowing what to do with it I looked up recipes on the Food Network website...Loving this recipe from Paula Dean. I have made it twice now with slight variations and its been a big hit. Try it out!

1 hr 5 min
15 min
50 min

2 loaves



3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 eggs
2 cups white sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups grated zucchini
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 tablespoon orange zest
Whipped cream, for serving
Zucchini ribbons, for serving


Preheat oven at 350 degrees F. Grease (2) 9 by 5-inch loaf pans.

Sift together flour, baking powder, salt, spices and baking soda.

In a large bowl, beat eggs until light and fluffy. Add sugar, and continue beating until well blended. Stir in oil, vanilla, zucchini, pecans, chocolate chips, and orange zest. Stir in sifted ingredients. Pour into prepared loaf pans.

Bake for 50 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove loaves from pans and cool. Chill before slicing. Serve with whipped cream and ribbons of zucchini.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Bread Machine

Thanks to my lovely Mama I now have a bread machine. Having never used one before I looked up the userguide online and found it to be fairly straight forward. I decided that I would use a box mix for my first attempt and went with Cinnamon Raisin. I followed the instructions on the box and let it ride. I will let the photos do the explaining.

I think it turned out great! I sliced a piece and spread some butter on it and shared with Gwen. Nothing like hot fresh bread!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Tortilla Soup

So last week we had a birthday potluck for two of my coworkers and one of the girls brought a crock of tortilla soup. It was amazing! I asked her for the recipe and am trying it out tonight.

The Recipe:


8 Cups of water
A few chicken breasts
1 chopped onion
1 can of red enchilada sauce (smaller can)
1 can of tomato sauce
1 can of diced tomatoes
1 can of diced ortega chilies
1 can of corn
4 tbsp of chicken boulion
1 tsp of cumin
½ tsp of ground pepper
1 bay leaf

Tortilla Chips
Sour Cream

Mix all ingredients together in pot until chicken is cooked. When the chicken is cooked, take it out and shred it. Place it back in pot and it is ready to be served!

I have added a can of red kidney beans. Just sounded good to me. I also omitted the cilantro as I had neither fresh nor dried... :(

And now we wait....follow up pictures and results late this evening :) I am planning to serve it alongside some Jiffy Cornbread

The soup turned out great! To "build" it you place tortilla chips in the bottom of a bowl and then add the soup. From there top as you choose to enhance the flavor. Robert topped his with cheese and sour cream. I topped mine with avocado and cheese.

Robert's soup

My soup

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Banana Bread? Eh, what the Hell were you thinking?!… Banana bread--I apologize, I apologize again. As a token of forgiveness, please take this baby.

Marge: I know you have your hands full with the babies, so I made you some banana bread.
Apu: Hallelujah! All of our problems are solved! We have banana bread!

Some of you who watched the Simpsons will catch the above reference. Today I am baking banana bread and using my stockpile of Frozen Bananas I have only been in this house for 3 months and I already have a large stash of bananas. Perhaps my next entry to share will be about my Banana Tempura :)

A little History on the Banana Bread Loaf:

Banana bread first became a standard feature of American cookbooks with the popularization of baking soda and baking powder in the 1930s, and appears in Pillsbury's 1933 Balanced Recipes cookbook.[1] The origin of the first banana bread recipe is unknown, though some speculate it was originated in the 18th century by housewives experimenting with pearlash. The home baking revival of the 1960s and the simplicity of its recipe led to an explosion in banana bread's popularity.

I am only baking one loaf today and this is the first time I am baking with Cake Flour. I am hoping it turns out even better than loaves of the past.


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Brussels Sprouts

This delightful veggie is not loved by fact in my home I am the only one who enjoys them. I like them steamed, roasted, and fried with panchetta and onion. Tonight I am preparing them according to a recipe by the Barefoot Contessa (Ina Garten) below:

Total Time:
50 min
10 min
40 min

6 servings



1 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts
3 tablespoons good olive oil
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Cut off the ends of the Brussels sprouts and pull off any yellow outer leaves. Mix them in a bowl with the olive oil, salt, and pepper. Transfer them to a sheet pan and roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until crisp outside and tender inside. Shake the pan from time to time to brown the Brussels sprouts evenly. Sprinkle with more kosher salt (I like these salty like French fries) and serve hot.

Here is the link to the recipe

I will let you know how they turn out. Happy Cooking!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Spinach Artichoke Squares

Saw these and thought they would make for some great Game Day Appetizers! Going to try them out for Super Bowl and let you know how they turn out. My thought is instead of a spinach artichoke dip why not have a handheld version?

What you will Need:
2 cans (8 oz each) crescent dinner rolls
1 box (9 oz) frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed to drain
1 (14oz) Can Artichokes
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2/3 cup mayonnaise
2/3 cup sour cream
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder


* Heat oven to 375°F.
* If using crescent rolls: Unroll both cans of dough; separate into 4 long rectangles. Place crosswise in ungreased 15x10x1-inch pan; press over bottom and 1 inch up sides to form crust. Press perforations to seal. If using dough sheets: Unroll both cans of dough; cut into 4 long rectangles. Place crosswise in ungreased 15x10x1-inch pan; press over bottom and 1 inch up sides to form crust.
* Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until light golden brown.
* Meanwhile, in medium bowl, stir remaining ingredients until well blended. Spread mixture evenly over partially baked crust.
* Bake 8 to 10 minutes longer or until topping is hot. Cut into 1 1/2-inch squares. Serve warm.