Sunday, November 30, 2014

Turkey Brine

Borrowed this from the Pioneer Woman. The turkey came out great!

4 cups Apple Juice Or Apple Cider
2 gallons Cold Water
4 Tablespoons Fresh Rosemary Leaves
5 tbsp Garlic, crushed
1-1/2 cup Kosher Salt
2 cups Brown Sugar
3 Tablespoons Peppercorns
5 whole Bay Leaves
Peel Of Three Large Oranges

Preparation Instructions
Combine all ingredients in a large pot. Stir until salt and sugar dissolve. Bring to a boil, then turn off heat and cover.

Allow to cool completely, then pour into a large brining bag or pot. Place uncooked turkey in brine solution, then refrigerate for 16 to 24 hours.

When ready to roast turkey, remove turkey from brine. Submerge turkey in a pot or sink of fresh, cold water. Allow to sit in clean water for 15 minutes to remove excess salt from the outside.

Discard brine. Remove turkey from clean water, pat dry, and cook according to your normal roasting method.

Bacon Mac and Cheese

Instant FOMA. (Food coma)

1/2 pound elbow macaroni
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon powdered mustard
3 cups milk
1/2 cup yellow onion, finely diced
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 large egg
16 ounces sharp cheddar, shredded
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Fresh black pepper
3 tablespoons butter
1 cup panko bread crumbs
5 strips of bacon, cooked and crumbled
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta to al dente.

While the pasta is cooking, in a separate pot, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and mustard and keep it moving for about five minutes. Make sure it's free of lumps. Stir in the milk, onion, bay leaf, and paprika. Simmer for ten minutes and remove the bay leaf.

Temper in the egg. Stir in 3/4 of the cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Fold the macaroni into the mix and pour into a 2-quart casserole dish. Top with remaining cheese.

Melt the butter in a saute pan and toss the bread crumbs to coat. Add bacon to bread crumbs. Top the macaroni with the bread crumbs. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and rest for five minutes before serving.

Recipe was taken from Alton Brown but I added more cheese and bacon.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Caramelized Onion Stuffing with Apples and Sage

3 tbsp olive oil
1 loaf (small; about 1 pound) country bread, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 large onions, chopped
Kosher salt
3 stalks celery, sliced
2 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
2 tbsp garlic, finely chopped
1 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup chopped fresh sage
3 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
2 crisp red apples, cored and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
3 large eggs, beaten

Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Oil a 3-quart baking dish. Place the bread on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until dry and beginning to turn golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl.
Meanwhile, heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions, season with 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.
Add the celery and parsnips and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender and the onions are beginning to brown, 8 to 10 minutes more.
Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the parsley and sage and cook, stirring, for 1 minute more; remove from heat.
Pour the broth over the toasted bread and toss until nearly absorbed. Add the vegetable mixture and the apples and mix to combine. Fold in the egg, then transfer the mixture to the prepared baking dish. Cover loosely with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Uncover and bake until golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes more.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Kale & Apple Salad with Capicola and Candied Almonds

Meal prep Sunday. Made these salads for work for tomorrow.

1/4 c blanched slivered almonds
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp cayenne pepper
Kosher salt

1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
6 slices Capicola, finely diced
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp caper brine (from a jar of capers)
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 fuji apple, cut into matchsticks
Half of a bunch kale (about 4 oz)—stems discarded, leaves finely shredded

4 hard-boiled eggs, halved

Preheat a toaster oven to 200°. In a bowl, cover the almonds with water. Transfer to a sieve and shake out the water. In another bowl, combine the sugar, cayenne and a sprinkle of salt. Add the almonds and toss. Arrange the almonds on parchment paper–lined baking sheet and bake for 4 to 5 minutes, until the sugar is lightly caramelized and the almonds are golden.

In a skillet, heat the oil with the capicola and cook over moderate heat, stirring frequently, 2 -3 minutes. Stir in the vinegar, caper brine and maple syrup and season the dressing with salt and black pepper. Add the apples and kale and toss. Add eggs. Eat!

Jicama Corn Apple Salad

1 large jicama (about 1 1/2 pounds), peeled, julienned 
1/2 fuji apple, julienned
1 can corn, rinsed, drained
1/2 jalapeno, diced
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Juice from 2 limes
Juice from 1/2 an orange
2 tbsp cider vinegar
1/2 avocado chopped

Toss together the jicama, apple, corn, jalapeno, red onion, avocado, and cilantro in a large serving bowl. Pour lime and orange juice and over all. Season generously with salt.

Let sit a half an hour before serving.

Friday, August 22, 2014


Devoured in minutes. Super yummy. Such a decadent Friday night nom nom!

1 live lobster (1.5 to 2 pounds)
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup white wine 
1/2 cup chicken broth
4 tablespoons tomato puree
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 ounces uncooked angel hair pasta
1 cup fresh arugula or baby spinach, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
Shredded Romano or Parmesan cheese, optional

In a giant pot (big enough to fit Mr. Lobster), boil salted water. Wait till it's a rapid boil, then drop in your lobster. Cook about 12 minutes or until he's bright red. A 2 pound lobster should boil for 13 minutes and a 1 1/4 pound lobster should boil for 11 minutes.

Carefully remove lobster meat from shells; cut into 1-in. pieces and set aside.

In a large skillet, saute garlic in oil until for 1 minute. Add the wine, tomato puree, salt and pepper. 

Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat. Stir in lobster; simmer, uncovered, for 5-6 minutes or until lobster is firm and opaque.

Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions. Drain pasta; add to lobster mixture and toss to coat. Stir in the arugula, lemon juice and peel; cook for 1-2 minutes or until arugula is wilted. Garnish with cheese if desired.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Zesty Lime Shrimp and Avocado Salad

I saw this on a friends FB page and it was all over IG for a hot minute too so I decided to make it. It tasted really similar to a ceviche (and especially since I chopped my shrimp). Super yummy!

Zesty Lime Shrimp and Avocado Salad
Gina's Weight Watcher Recipes
Servings: 4 • Serving Size: 7/8 cup • Old Points: 4 pt • Points+: 5 pt
Calories: 210.4 • Fat: 9.2 g • Protein: 25.1 g • Carb: 7.8 g • Fiber: 3.6 g • Sugar: 0.6
Sodium without salt: 260.8 mg

1 lb jumbo cooked shrimp, peeled and deveined, chopped
1 medium tomato, diced
1 hass avocado, diced
1 jalapeno, seeds removed, diced fine
1/4 cup chopped red onion
2 limes, juice of
1 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp chopped cilantro
salt and fresh pepper to taste

In a small bowl combine red onion, lime juice, olive oil, pinch of salt and pepper. Let them marinate at least 5 minutes to mellow the flavor of the onion.

In a large bowl combine chopped shrimp, avocado, tomato, jalapeƱo. Combine all the ingredients together, add cilantro and gently toss. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.