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Yowzers thats a lot of Eggplant!

Tonight's mission: Figure out what to do with all of the eggplant in my fridge before its too late.

Recipe #1: Grilled Eggplant slices (for atop salads or sandwiches) (courtesy of Giada, love you girl!) 

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 7 Japanese eggplant, ends trimmed, cut into 1-inch wide slices
  • 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 3 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1/3 cup basil, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped mint
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Place a grill pan over medium-high heat or preheat a gas or charcoal grill. Drizzle the olive oil over the slices of eggplant and toss to coat. Grill the eggplants until tender and grill marks appear, about 3 to 4 minutes per side.

Place the eggplants side-by-side on a serving platter. Sprinkle with the pine nuts, goat cheese, basil, and mint. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper.

 

Recipe #2: Baba ganoush (without tahini, no time for a trip to the supermarket!)

(courtesy of http://vegetarian.about.com/od/saucesdipsspreads/r/fatfreeganoush.htm)

This baba ganoush (eggplant dip) recipe has no oil and no tahini, making it a fat-free vegetarian and vegan appetizer or dip that you can enjoy any time! I like to spread a little baba ganoush on a flour tortilla with some lettuce and veggies for a quick and healthy low-fat vegetarian sandwich wrap.
  • 2 eggplants
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 5 cloves minced garlic, preferably roasted
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp parsley

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.

Slice eggplants in half and pierce with a fork in several places. Roast for about 45 minutes, or until soft. Allow to cool slightly, then scoop out inside of eggplant, leaving skin behind.

In a blender or food processor, process eggplant with remaining ingredients until smooth.

Chocolate White Chocolate Chip cookies...

Ina Garten, I heart you!  The other day something sweet needed to happen in our house so I googled this little number....and ohhh myyyy gosshhhh!!  These chocolate white chocolate chip cookies are AMAZING!

Recipe

(courtesy of foodnetwork.com)

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 extra-large eggs at room temperature
  • 2/3 cup good unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 pounds good white chocolate, coarsely chopped
Directions: 
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Cream the butter and both sugars until light and fluffy in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the vanilla, then the eggs, 1 at a time, and mix well. Add the cocoa and mix again. Sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt and add to the chocolate with the mixer on low speed until just combined. Fold in the chopped white chocolate.
  3. Drop the dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, using a 1 3/4-inch ice cream scoop or a rounded tablespoon. Dampen your hands and flatten the dough slightly. Bake for exactly 15 minutes (the cookies will seem underdone). Remove from the oven and let cool slightly on the pan, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Sunday Night Dinner - "BFD"

Wintertime in our house equals BFD more often than not.  What is BFD, you might ask?  BREAKFAST FOR DINNER! So, instead of eating waffles with Mrs. Buttersworth every night (believe me, it could easily happen in our house), we opted tonight for the healthier version of BFD - Crustless Quiche.

Crustless Quiche Recipe:

1 cup of Sauteed Kale and Baby Spinach

1/2 Yellow Bell Pepper Julienned

2 Fresh Roma tomatoes

6 eggs

Splash of Skim Milk

Sprinkle (approx 1/4 cup) of Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese (thank you, Costco)

Mix all ingredients together, arrange in an impressive way (it always helps to make the veggies disappear faster!) and bake in a shallow dish for 25 minutes at 400 degrees.

Sunday Dinner = Great success!

Feliz dia de los Reyes!

Today is like Christmas in Spain!

The Feast of the Epiphany (January 6th) is when the Three Kings arrived in Bethlehem.

For Spanish children this is the most important day of the year when they wake up to find that Los Reyes Magos (the Three Kings) have left gifts for them in their house. Santa may leave them a token gift on 25th but the Three Kings are their favorites, especially Baltasar who rides a donkey (my favorite animal!!) and is the one believed to leave the gifts.

In The U.S., people of Spanish and Hispanic descent make a bread called "Rosca".  In the U.S., especially in Louisiana, this is called "Kings Cake" and is made for Mardi Gras.  The trick is to hide a little baby (Jesus) statue inside the cake and whoever gets that in their slice has a year of good luck!

The Food network has a great recipe for LA ROSCA:   (Courtesy of http://labloga.blogspot.com/)

Ingredients

  • 1 (1/4-ounce) packet active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1/4 cup dried figs, cut into strips, plus more for garnish
  • 1/4 cup candied orange peel, cut into strips, plus more for garnish
  • 1/4 cup candied lemon peel, cut into strips, plus more for garnish
  • 1/4 cup chopped candied cherries, plus more whole for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons light rum
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 large eggs, divided
  • Water

In a small bowl, combine the yeast and warm water; stir to blend. Let stand until the yeast comes alive and starts to foam, about 5 to 10 minutes.

Put all of the candied fruit in small bowl and drizzle the rum on top. Let stand for 15 minutes to 1 hour to infuse the flavor.

In a small pot, warm the milk over medium heat. Add the sugar, butter, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt.

In a large bowl, mix 3 1/2 cups flour, 2 eggs, yeast mixture, milk mixture, and the rum soaked candied fruits, mixing very well until the dough gathers into a ball. If the dough is too wet, Add additional flour, a little at a time, if needed to form a soft dough. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until it's smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Put the ball of dough back into the bowl and cover with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and set aside in a warm spot to rise for 1 hour.

Remove the dough from the bowl and knead on a lightly floured surface. Using your palms, roll the dough into a long rope. Shape the coil into a ring, sealing the ends together. Insert a little doll or coin into the bread from the bottom, if desired. Line a baking pan with aluminum foil and coat with nonstick cooking spray. Carefully transfer the dough ring to the prepared baking pan.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Beat the remaining egg in a small bowl with 1 tablespoon of water to make an egg wash, and brush the top of the bread. Decoratively garnish the top of the bread with more candied fruit and bake for 35 to 40 minutes until the cake is golden.

Cool on a wire rack before slicing.

Greek Yogurt-Quiche

I tried to make a quiche the other day and once I had steamed the spinach and cracked the eggs, found out that I had no milk to use.  Plan B, make a quiche with greek yogurt (plain, yoplait brand).  It was delicious and fluffier than quiches made with milk. Here is what is left of it!

The "Recipe":

Crack 5 eggs and mix together with 1 small plain greek yogurt

Add 1/2 cup water

Add steamed spinach (1/2 large bag)

Add 2 cups of shredded cheddar (mixed kinds work fine as well)

Mix all ingredients and place into pre-made pie shell from the grocery store

Bake for 20 minutes approx. depending on how quickly the center solidifies

Easiest breakfast, brunch or "breakfast for dinner" around and super healthy too!