Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Broccoli Poppers

This is a recipe that is super fast and easy.  It’s great as a side dish or just to snack on!  Just pop these in the oven and put them in a bowl instead of chips?  You’re in for a treat!
Tools:
Knife
Baking sheet or dish
Ingredients:
1 head of broccoli
Olive Oil
Salt
Seasoning
Directions:
Preheat oven to 400
Take you head of broccoli and begin cutting.  Really, the cutting is the art in this dish.  Let me show you how I do it:
I cut lengthwise.  Find a tree branch and run the knife down from that:
Continue this until you have a bunch of trees that look like this:
Then, cut the ‘trunk’ of the tree right at the base:
Oh, and don’t mind me calling these trees, come on!  I work in preschool!  What else would you call them?
Now those ‘trunks’ are edible!  DON’T THROW THEM OUT!!!  Just dice them up and put them into baking dish:

Go back to those trees:
Let’s admire the forest for a bit, shall we?
  Those trees that are bit size already, just toss those right on top of the chopped up trunks.  This one’s good:
As is this one:
Oh, these are perfect!
This one?
Not so much.  However, we just need to cut it in half:
Okay, maybe quarters:
This will not do:
Chop that sucker up into many pieces!
Once all the trees have been chopped up (huh, kind of sounds a bit like deforestation, doesn’t it?  Hope I didn’t kill off any endangered animals…oops) there will be some leftover pieces:
Just sweep those right into the dish as well:
I really don’t like to waste any of my broccoli.  I LOVE broccoli!  Every   last   bit!
Now, sprinkle some olive oil right over the top:
Add some salt, to taste, I like salt as well:
Then seasoning.  This time I used Garlic Powder…who am I kidding.  I usually use garlic powder, but you could spice it up with chili powder or anything else:
 
Then, gently toss to coat all the pieces:
Try to restrain yourself from snacking on that…it will be so much better out of the oven: Put into your preheated oven:
And wait for about 10 minutes.  It will look like this:
Do you see the tops of those trees:



They’re a bit brown and crunchy.  THAT’S what makes this dish worth it all!  That crunchy, infused flavor!
MM!
My Comments:
This is a very quick recipe and so delicious.  I’m not sure exactly where I first got the idea, but I pretty much read something about baking broccoli and cauliflower (which this is perfect for as well), got an idea, tossed some ingredients together, and baked!  Turned out delicious and now I can’t get enough!
What’s your favorite way to cook broccoli?
Recipe:
1 head of broccoli
Olive Oil
Salt
Seasoning
Preheat oven to 400
Chops broccoli into bite sized pieces
Toss with olive oil, salt, and seasonings
Bake for 7-10 minutes until tops of broccoli are crispy brown
Enjoy!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Did you do it?

Have you switched your google reader (or other news feeder) to get my wordpress address rather than this one?  Just copy and paste this into the address:

http://theheadlesscook.wordpress.com

It’s that simple!  Come on over!  There’s a game up today and lots of recipes that you might have missed and more to come!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Did I tell you

That I’ve moved over here.  I like the look of wordpress a little better and my options over there, so I moved a few, not all, of my blogs over there.  Come join us!

http://theheadlesscook.wordpress.com

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Creamed Brussels Sprout

I am moving this site over here so change your reader addresses.  I’ll double post here and there for a few days until you can all make the changes, but let me know what you think.  I’ve found wordpress just a bit easier to work with and a bit more professional looking.  thoughts?

I grew up with my mom making us Brussels sprouts quite often…I hated them.

I don’t know if it was because of the way they were prepared (basically they were frozen and just microwave), if my taste was just not developed for them, or a number of other problems.  I HATED them!

The other day as  I was shopping, however, I saw some fresh Brussels sprouts and I something (I think it was alien forces) had me reaching out and putting them in my basket.  That same alien force actually scanned, paid for, and stored them until Friday night when I cooked them…

Let’s just say that I like Brussels sprouts now.  Then again, it’s hard not to love something covered in cream, right?

Serves 4

WW points: 1

Tools:

Medium Pot

Knife

Measuring cups

Measuring spoons

Wooden spoon

Ingredients:

2 cups BRUSSELS SPROUTS

1/2 cup chopped ONION

1 Tablespoon MARGARINE or BUTTER

1/2 cup MILK

1/4 cup SOUR CREAM or YOGURT

2 teaspoons all-purpose FLOUR

1/2 teaspoon DIJON MUSTARD

1/8 teaspoon SALT

Directions:

First wash your sprouts.  Remember, they do grow from the ground…there’s dirt in there!

  

Cut off the ends, but don’t cut so far up that your little sprout heads all come apart, just get the stem off:

Also, take off any wilted leaves: Then slice in half vertically.  This is so that they are a better bite size.  Ever notice that Brussels sprouts are a bit too big to be bite sized but just too big?  Make them bite sized:

Then boil in water for 10-12 minutes:

   You want them to be a bit crisp, a bit tender, and a nice bright green…see:

That is a beautiful bright green if I do say so myself…well, look at that, I did say so!

Drain those beauties and then get ready for the next steps…set those sprouts aside and get back to work!

Take your onions (that you chopped while your Brussels sprouts were boiling) and put them in the pot with the margarine and cook until they are tender.

Now, it says to combine the next ingredients and THEN but into the pot; but really?  You’re just going to be mixing it in together anyway and why dirty more dishes…I just mixed it in right into the pot…milk:

Flour:

Sour cream:

Dijon mustard:

Then mix it all up and keep stirring as it heats, you don’t want it to burn.  Get it hot and bubbly and let it thicken.  Then, once it’s thickened, add the Brussels sprouts back in:

  Toss those babies around in that yummy sauce!  I mean, can you even wait to plate it?

That right there is perfection!  I’m telling you, if you are not a Brussels sprouts fan, you will be after this!  Try them!  Let me know that I completely changed your mind about these poor outcast vegetables!

My Comments:

When I first served this my husbands said, “I haven’t had Brussels sprouts in a very long time, let’s see if I like them.”

His answer after he ate them?  “They’re okay, I’ll eat them, but 4 is just the right number for me” 

Just to clarify, that is 4 HALVES, not 4 whole pieces.  He did say he liked the sauce as well.  I really enjoyed them and will most definitely be exploring other ways (read: healthier ways) to enjoy them.  I don’t know if it’s the way they were prepared or the fact that I am older and have developed my palate a bit more, but I did enjoy them.

What about you?  Do you like Brussels sprouts?

Recipe:

1 pound BRUSSELS SPROUTS

1/2 cup chopped ONION

1 Tablespoon MARGARINE or BUTTER

1/2 cup MILK

1/4 cup SOUR CREAM or YOGURT

2 teaspoons all-purpose FLOUR

1/2 teaspoon DIJON MUSTARD

1/8 teaspoon SALT

Directions:

Trim stems and remove any wilted outer leaves, cut in half lengthwise

Cook in boiling water for 10-12 minutes, until crisp tender

Drain and set aside

In same pot, cook onion in margarine till tender.  Combine milk, sour cream, flour, mustard, and salt and stir into pot cooking until thickened and bubbly

Stir in Brussels sprouts, heat through and serve

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Homemade Hamburger/Hotdog buns

I got this recipe from over here at the Frugal Upstate.  They turned out beautifully and will become a staple in our pantry.  They take some time, but any yeasty bread does, and are worth the wait.

Servings:  12 for hot dog or 8 for hamburger

WW Points: 3 for hot dog bun or 5 for hamburger bun

Tools:

Bread machine

measuring cups

If you don’t have a measuring cup, you can use a bowl and mix and knead and just let it rise in the bowl

Ingredients:

 

1 1/4 C Milk

1/3 C Vegetable Oil

1/4 C Sugar

1 tsp salt

3 3/4 C Flour

2 1/4 tsp yeast (or one package)

Directions:

Real simple, measure the ingredients into your bread machine…milk:

Oil:

Sugar:

Salt:

Flour:

Yeast:

Then pop it right into the machine and put it on the dough cycle so it’s just going to knead it and let it rise:

Now, if you are not lucky enough like me to have a bread machine, that’s okay.  Just put all the ingredients into a bowl and knead it together until a soft dough is formed.  Let it rise in a warm place for an hour to and hour and a half.

Once done rising, turn it out onto the countertop:

If you are making hot dog buns, cut the dough into 12 pieces.  If you are making hamburger buns, cut the dough into 8 pieces.  Me?  I was making BOTH hamburger and hot dog, so I cut the dough in half, then cut one half into 4 pieces and the other half into 6 pieces:

I found that the best knife for me to slice dough is to use a serrated knife.  It seems to make the easiest, cleanest cut.  You can try other things, I just found that it works best for me.

Now comes the challenging part, forming the dough.  The hamburger buns I rolled into a ball then flattened and shaped pretty much the same way I form hamburger patties, tapping in the palm of my hand back and forth until I have a palm sized disc.  I made it a bit smaller knowing it would rise.

For the hot dog buns, I had NO CLUE what I was doing, so I figured rolling it like the kids roll play dough into snakes.  Place them into a pan:

What do you think?  Look good?  Okay, just put the oven onto WARM and put the baking sheet in the oven for another 45 minutes.  They will rise like this:

Next, turn the oven to 375 and bake for 15 minutes.  I wasn’t sure if I should preheat the oven to 375 or just keep them in and turn it up.  Well, I took them out and, before the oven was preheated, I noticed that the dough was beginning to fall, so I quickly put them BACK in the oven and continued to let it heat up.

My advise?  Let them stay in the oven while it heats up.  After 15 minutes it looked like this:

That’s when I took them out…careful, they are HOT!

Even though the look a little funky, I don’t think they look too bad:

Here’s a hamburger bun as well:

For the hot dog buns, take the serrated knife and begin to cut longwise from one side:

 

Be careful not to cut all the way through, you want it to hold your hot dog perfectly, so stop about 3/4 of the way in…like this: Do I need to tell you to cut the hamburger buns all the way through?

These turned out perfectly! I mean,check out that hot dog:

Oh, and I made a salmon burger for the hamburger bun:

Why yes, those ARE the home made chips we made the other day, thank you for asking!

My Comments:

These turned out pretty good.  I will definitely be using these as a staple in our pantry.  No need to buy hamburger and hot dog buns when you can make them for so cheap!  And so easy!

Yes, it does take some time, but it was most definitely worth it!  I could easily see adding things like onion or sesame seeds on these for flavoring.  Maybe even an egg wash over the top before baking might be interesting as well.  Yum!

There are also the flat buns that have become popular lately?  I think I might try to use this recipe to see if I can make my own flat burger buns as well.  I bet I can do it.  Simply roll out the dough and don’t let it rise as long, kind of like the pita bread, but a little different.

What do you think?

Recipe

1 1/4 C Milk

1/3 C Vegetable Oil

1/4 C Sugar

1 tsp salt

3 3/4 C Flour

2 1/4 tsp yeast

Place all the ingredients into the bread machine and put onto the dough cycle or, if doing by hand, into a bowl and knead

Remove the dough from machine and cut into equal pieces: 8 for hamburger, 12 for hot dogs

Turn oven to warm

Shape the dough and place on baking sheet

Turn the oven off and place buns inside to rise for 45 minutes

Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes until tops are golden brown