Potato, Green Bean, and Mushroom Salad (Easter Salad)

This recipe is excellent and worth the effort. We often make it during Springtime especially for an Easter Dinner celebration. You just need a ham or lamb chops and you have a meal. The salad has potatoes, mushrooms, green beans, and baby greens. Just add bread and you have a wonderful dinner.

Dressing:

4 oz. pancetta or bacon, coarsely chopped
2/3 cup chopped shallots
1 ½ teaspoons dried thyme
¼ cup plus 2 Tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/8 teaspoon powdered saffron
1 cup olive oil
¼ cup chopped fresh tarragon

Salad:

8 small red-skinned potatoes, each cut into 6 wedges
7 oz. fresh shitake mushrooms, stems trimmed (or other mushroom like cremini)
8 oz. fresh oyster mushrooms

12 oz. haricots verts or other green beans, trimmed
16 cups assorted baby greens
2 large heads Belgian endive, sliced

Dressing: Cook chopped bacon or pancetta in a heavy large skillet over medium-low heat until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels and drain. Add chopped shallots and dried thyme to drippings in skillet and sauté ~ 2 minutes. Add white wine vinegar and powdered saffron. Remove skillet from heat. Whisk in olive oil and chopped tarragon. Season the dressing with salt and pepper.

Salad: Place potato wedges in a medium bowl. Add mushrooms in another bowl. Pour ¼ of dressing over each and toss to coat. Season potatoes and mushrooms with salt and pepper. Place potatoes in a single layer on a baking sheet. Place mushrooms in a single layer on another baking sheet. Let the potatoes and mushrooms stand for 30 minutes at room temperature.

Cooks beans in a large pot of boiling salted water until crisply tender, about 4 – 5 minutes. Drain and refresh the beans under cold water. Drain well.

Preheat oven to 400 degree Fahrenheit. Roast potatoes wedges until brown and crisp, (about 40 minutes) turning once. Roast the mushrooms until brown and crisp, (about 15 minutes) turning once.

Combine the warm potatoes, mushrooms, green beans, assorted baby greens, and sliced Belgian endive in a large bowl. Toss salad with enough remaining dressing to coat completely. Sprinkle the salad with cooked bacon (or pancetta).

Serves 8

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Beef Leftovers “Reinvented”

Flank steak on the grill (recipe in blog) is easy and tasty. We often have leftovers and this is one way I repurpose the leftovers. Also, if you have extra steak this recipe will work well.

1 medium leek, white part only chopped in ½ pieces
2 Tablespoons oil
~ 1 – 1 ½ cup leftover beef, cut into thin strips about 2 inch long
~ ½ + cup sour cream
½ teaspoon thyme or herb of choice
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a heavy large skillet over medium high heat. Add the chopped leek pieces to the pan and sauté approximately 3-4 minutes until soft. Add meat strips to the skillet and cook until just warmed through. Add the sour cream and stir until well blended. Add thyme and season to taste with salt and pepper. Use more sour cream if needed.

Serve with noodles on the side and a green salad.

~ 2 servings

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Corn, Onion, and Cheddar “Pie”

This is one of our most requested recipes. We make this recipe to go with flank steak, BBQ chicken, and lamb chops. We make it throughout the year and more frequently in the warmer months. I am reposting it with some updates to the instructions. Do not be put off by the cream corn because you cannot tell that it is in the recipe.

1 large onion, chopped in medium dice
¼ cup butter
1 (8 1/2 oz.) package Corn Muffin Mix (I use Jif)
1 egg
1 (8 1/4 oz.) can cream-style corn (difficult to find this size so use half of the larger can)
1/4 cup milk, regular
2 drops Tabasco
1 cup sour cream
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 to 1/2 tsp. dill weed
1 ½ cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter a deep pie plate or quiche dish.

Sautee the chopped onion in butter until softened; set aside to cool.

Combine muffin mix, egg, cream corn, Tabasco and milk. Pour mixture into greased pie plate and smooth the mixture on the bottom of the plate to form a “crust”.

To the sautéed, cooled chopped onion in the pan, add sour cream, salt, dill weed, and half of cheddar cheese. Spoon the onion and sour cream mixture over the corn crust. Spread the sour cream mixture gently (with a knife or spoon) over the “crust” and along the edge of the crust to overlap it. Sprinkle remaining cheddar cheese on top.

Bake at 350 degrees for ~35 – 40 minutes until the top is lightly browned. The center of the pie will not be totally set when removed from oven. Cool ~5 minutes before cutting. This dish can easily be reheated in the microwave oven.

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Old-Fashioned Broccoli Casserole

This recipe is the older version of the broccoli casserole with the can of soup etc. It is not quite as nutritious as the previous one with yogurt and sour cream but easy and delicious.

2 packages frozen broccoli, chopped
2 eggs beaten
1 small onion, chopped finely
1 can cream of mushroom soup
½ cup mayonnaise
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
¼ cup melted butter
1 package (7 oz.) herbed stuffing mix (Pepperidge Farm is a good choice)

Cook the broccoli. Combine eggs, onion, soup, and mayo to make a “sauce”. Place layer of broccoli in a 2 quart casserole dish. Add layer of cheese. Pour small amount of the sauce on top. Repeat. Top with stuffing mix and sprinkle with melted butter.

Bake for ~30 minutes at 350 degree Fahrenheit.

Serves ~ 6

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Riced Broccoli Casserole

Riced Broccoli is available at Trader Joes in a 15 oz. package in the refrigerated produce section. Broccoli is high in calcium and with the addition of cheddar cheese and yogurt even more calcium is added.

1 package of Trader Joes 15 oz. Riced Broccoli (or use 2 frozen packages (8 oz.) of broccoli, chopped finely)
2 eggs beaten
1 small onion, chopped finely
½ cup mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream*
½ cup low fat yogurt (or use sour cream)
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
¼ cup melted butter
1 package (7 oz.) herbed stuffing mix (Pepperidge Farm is a good choice)

*If you want a creamier casserole, use another ½+ cup of sour cream or yogurt.

Cook broccoli per package directions. Combine eggs, onion, mayo, sour cream, and yogurt to make a “sauce”. Place layer of broccoli in a 2 quart casserole dish. Add layer of cheese. Pour small amount of the sauce on top. Repeat. Top with stuffing mix and sprinkle with melted butter.

Bake for 30 to 40 minutes at 350 degree Fahrenheit.

Serves ~ 6

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Easy Bundt Cakes

As a follow up to my hints for making Bundt Cakes and have them stay intact, here are suggestions for easy Bundt cakes to bake.

There are 3 Bundt cakes in my blog all found under the category Cakes.

What’s Up Cake
Easy Wine Cake
Mother-in-Law’s 7-up Cake.

These cakes are delicious and relatively easy to make.

Other good Bundt cakes can be found at Martha Stewart’s website or the Nordicware.com website.

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Bundt Cakes (hints)

Bundt Cakes can be challenging to bake and I stopped baking them for a number of years. Then, I learned a few hints that helped immensely.

Hints for bundt cakes:

Use the correct bundt pan. The best one is the Nordic Anniversary edition bundt cake pan that is nonstick. I have not had a cake stick to this bundt pan. You can purchase these at Williams-Sonoma or online.

Use either melted butter or a nonstick cooking spray that contains flour to coat the bundt pan. Be sure to thoroughly cover the pan with a thin coating of butter or spray.

Place a baked cake on a cooling rack and allow it to rest for 10 – 15 minutes. Many directions say to cool for 5 minutes only and this is too short a time. The cake will break apart or the top will stay in the pan!

When the cake is just warm, carefully slide a narrow knife around the edges and center of the tube. Unmold it onto a plate and let it cool. If the cake does not release immediately, allow 5 more minutes of cooling before unmolding.

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