Showing posts with label Shopping. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Shopping. Show all posts

Friday, March 16, 2012

Farfalle Pasta with Cream, Salmon, and Peas

I've been making this delicious pasta since the nineties but cannot remember the original source...I just know that it's absolutely divine! The only difference is, that I cut down on the butter and the heavy cream used in this dish to lighten it up a bit. There are other similar pasta dishes out there but with the smoked salmon, instead of the fresh and they don't use the petite frozen peas, or garnish it with dill. The fresh salmon gives it a lighter taste where you don't get that "smoky" aftertaste from the smoked salmon.
This beautiful dish represent Spring, it is also linked to #greenslove @ Mis Pensamientos and will be honoring St. Patrick's Day...although it's far from being an Irish dish, but at least it's green!

Farfalle Pasta with Cream, Salmon, and Peas
my own creation

12 ounces  (1 1/2 pound) Farfalle Pasta
1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 shallot chopped
1/4 cup dry white wine
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
juice of one fresh lemon
1/2 pound fresh salmon with skin on
2 Tbsp. sliced thin scallions (green part only)
2 Tbsp. fresh dill snipped with kitchen shears
sea salt, and freshly ground pepper

Boil pasta in a large pot, less than al-dente. Drain pasta, reserving 1/2 cup. In a large wok or skillet, saute shallots till soft and wilted. Add the wine and cook down until almost evaporated. Add cream, and bring to a boil.Add the peas, and just let it cook for a minute or two in the cream. In the meantime bake, or cook in a skillet the salmon piece adding the 1 Tbsp olive oil and sprinkle a little sea salt, and freshly ground pepper.Cook for about 8 minutes (will be cooking for an addition 2 minutes combined in the pasta)

Add pasta to cream mixture, along with the lemon juice, lemon zest. With a fork flake the salmon in small pieces off from the skin, and add to the pasta mixture. Add the scallions, 1 Tbsp. of the fresh dill, and add the reserved pasta water, if needed. Adjust the seasoning with sea salt and pepper.You can also drizzle a little bit of the extra virgin olive oil on top.
Serves 4


May you always have walls for the winds,
a roof for the rain, tea beside the fire,
laughter to cheer you, those you love near you,
and all your heart might desire.
`Irish Blessing
Happy St. Patrick's Day!
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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Hot-and Spicy Chickpea Cakes with Pico de Gallo...and Guest Post

Hot-and Spicy Chickpea Cakes with Pico de Gallo from Weight Watchers New Complete Cookbook



I am so honored to guest post for my dear friend Swathi, @Zesty South Indian Kitchen... who at this time, needs all the rest she can get. Glad to know she also has a few other blogger friends that will guest post for her, while she is recuperating. She needs a lot of "mommy and me" time at this very fragile first few months!

I am so thrilled to celebrate the birth of Swathi's little prince...Nikhil! A beautiful, and healthy baby boy! Such a perfect addition to the happy family, and a pride and joy to his big sister, Nidhi.
Swathi dear, I just want you to know, that I wish you and your precious baby all the best of health, and happiness. Congratulations to you, your hubby, and princess Nidhi!
May you, enjoy your new bundle of joy!


This dish is one of may favorite dishes to have for lunch, and for the Pico de Gallo, it's zero points so, healthy, spicy, colorful and delicious! I will be back to add more good news, but in the meantime...here's an easy way to cut the veggies perfect!

Linking to: Full Plate Thursday, @Miz Helen's Country Cottage




just click over to: Swathi's blog  to get the recipe!
 
Thank you Swathi, for giving me the opportunity to guest post for you, again!



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Saturday, December 24, 2011

Snowflake Muffins...and Neighborhood Christmas Lights

Since I noticed these ultra gorgeous muffins on my Hungarian food blogger friend's blog Citromhab...which literally means Lemonfoam!  I would like you to meet the talent behind these amazing cupcakes, and the snowflakes made with royal icing, has caught my attention that I haven't seen on any of the foodblogs, yet!

Erzsébet has a tremendous talent for baking cakes, and yeast breads and rolls, as do quite a few of the other Hungarian ladies, which you can see on my blogroll list.Their cakes are the traditional European cakes that differ from ours! Another favorite of mine, among others, is Gizi with her amazing cake and dessert creations...but oh, my!...can that lady cook. Her cooking is truly delicious and authentic Hungarian!

With Erzsebet's permission, I am proud to present her festive Snowflake Muffins and please, do visit her blog to check out her other fabulous cakes, and various other delightful desserts!

If anyone has the "little elves" working in her kitchen... well, in case you don't see them around since the last week or so, they are busily working away in her kitchen, baking all the beautiful things!

I know I can't fool you, and I'm not even trying to, because I don't decorate like this but I am a fairly good baker. What I meant to say,  I don't can't decorate like this...it is just not possible, yet!


 "Fear not, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all people; for unto you is born, this day, in the city of David, a Savior, which is Christ the Lord" 
(Luke 2:10 )

Wishing all my friends, a Blessed Christmas in Peace, love, and  joy...may your hearts be merry and your holidays be ...bright!

Boldog Karácsonyt,(Hungarian) Feliz Navidad,(Spanish) Buon Natale! (Italian)
with love!


do check out our local neighbors' Christmas lights!

Friday, November 11, 2011

3rd Annual Blogger Festival...part 1, cont. & part 2

Well, I'm back to take you along for some more amazing foods, and desserts...speaking of which, I guess I was too busy sampling all the Sabra Chocolates, and  I realized I only took 3 dessert photos...but oh, my! I wish you could have been there to try this gorgeous, and elegant dessert!
This is a Silky Pomegranate, with Candied Kumquat and fresh Pomegranate Seeds!
Are you ready for this scrumptious dessert?...Heirloom Pumpkin Tart. A gingersnap tart shell, candied pumpkin seed nougatine, and milk chocolate crunch center! Go ahead...help yourself to one, or more. I just wish I had the recipe for you. Guess will have to google this amazing dessert, to try to make it.
First row, from left is; Colorful Christmas Macaroon, in the middle is; Chocolate-Coffee Cream Star Cookie, and another Christmas Macaroon. In the back row, Heirloom Pumpkin Tart, Creamy Italian Nougat Ganache Bites, with Marcona Almond. The last one is Mascarpone Cheesecake, with Calvados Quince, and Gingersnap Crumble...and in the middle is the one I really loved is the Silky Pomegranate!
Foodbloggers intensely listening to the announcement of the Foodbuzz Award Winners!
Food Bloggers enjoying the festivities, getting to know each other, and mostly all the fabulous foods, drinks and yummy desserts!
Wow, an actual authentic Cable car in San Francisco...just like in the movies!
Saturday, Nov. 5th. I did not sign up in time for the Session Programming. so Joanna and I were on our own to venture out in the morning and walk a short distance from our hotel, to get a light and affordable quick breakfast.
A fair warning! One thing you have to keep in mind in a big city, is all the "crazy people" and the "bums"...not legitimately "homeless."...but just the way they happened to end up this way. Sad, but true!
To think that this poor man's entire "possessions" are in this tote bag. At least he was able to get a cup of coffee!
This poor Asian elderly "bag lady"...just roaming the streets, really makes you wonder...where is her family? her children?...when is virtually unheard of elderly Asians to be abandoned as such! Maybe she doesn't have any family!
 Same cable car...picking up more people, hanging on to the pole!
Joanna, walking to the bagel shop that we finally found!

Finally found the bagel place, called; Posh Bagels. Such fantastic fresh bagels, muffins, rolls, danishes!
I chose the salted bagel, with omelet and veggies, topped with a slice of cheddar cheese. Also, a large Cappucino!
You can actually see the freshness of the yummy bagel, and the perfect omelet! By this time, it's 9:30am...this should hold me over until 1:00pm for the Taste Pavilion...can't wait...so exciting!
That's me! All bundled up, under the "paper thin" wind breaker jacket...another jacket, and scarf. It actually kept me warm! (I wanted to take photo to prove I was in San Francisco...still can't believe it!)
Back at the Grand Hyatt, and getting ready to go to the Taste Pavillion. at the Metrion!
We finally arrived at the CITY VIEW, for the Taste Pavilion! Just look at the size of this Pavilion...still early, and in another 20 minutes it started to fill up with Foodbloggers...Food Vendors were already inside, welcoming us with their incredible products, samples, and valuable coupons!

Nothing like a refreshing cocktail; a Sicilian Sunset! I did try it, and it was very good with blend of Vodka with Blood Orange infusion, Campari, Lemon Juice, Rosemary Syrup, and Club Soda!

So I will say Good Nite again...hope you enjoyed the tour...will continue tomorrow, with the Taste Pavilion, and the GALA DINNER, and Chef Tyler Florence!





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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Mark Bittman's Perfect Pancakes

This is my Part 3 project of my blueberries!...pancakes! Who doesn't love pancakes? ...especially when they are homemade, and it's so easy to make. Why would you want to buy the boxed kind? Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything is my "Bible" of cooking. Everything is simplified, just like the book title says: "Simple Recipes for Great Food"...it is so, so, true. I have the huge paper book version of this fabulous book, and it was the best thrift find of my entire life...that's how strong I feel about it. Got the book at Goodwill store for a mere $.79 (79 cents...a steal)
I have mentioned this last year on my blog. There is no way "under the sun" you can ever find a brand new paper book at Goodwill for this price...at least, not at my local store. Now they are selling them on E-Bay, so that's the end of that!
Finally, I was able to copy and paste the recipe...sorry for any inconvenience!

From the book How to Cook Everything (Completely Revised 10th Anniversary Edition) by Mark Bittman

Basic Pancakes

Serves 4 to 6

Total Time 20 minutes



Introduction

Fast, easy, and fluffy, these pancakes should make you forswear boxed mix forever.



Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 Tbsp. baking powder

½ tsp. salt

1 Tbsp. sugar

1 or 2 eggs

1½ to 2 cups milk

2 Tbsp. melted and cooled butter (optional), plus unmelted butter for cooking, or use oil

1 tsp. vanilla (optional)



Steps

Preheat a griddle or large skillet over medium-low heat while you make the batter.

Mix together the dry ingredients. Beat the egg(s) into 1½ cups of milk, then stir in the 2 tablespoons melted cooled butter and vanilla (if you are using them). Gently stir this into the dry ingredients, mixing only enough to moisten the flour; don’t worry about a few lumps. If the batter seems thick, add a little more milk.

If your skillet or griddle is nonstick, you can cook the pancakes without any butter. Otherwise, use a teaspoon or two of butter or oil each time you add batter. When the butter foam subsides or the oil shimmers, ladle batter onto the griddle or skillet, making any size pancakes you like. Adjust the heat as necessary; usually, the first batch will require higher heat than subsequent batches. The idea is to brown the bottom in 2 to 4 minutes, without burning it. Flip when the pancakes are cooked on the bottom; they won’t hold together well until they’re ready.

Cook until the second side is lightly browned and serve, or hold on an ovenproof plate in a 200-degrees oven for up to 15 minutes.


This is The Basic Pancakes recipe by Mark Bittman, and I have followed this exactly...and adapting it a little by adding the blueberries...oh, so yummy. The secret of not bruising the delicate berries is: do not fold the berries into the batter...just follow my step-by-step method!..
Note: The important thing I wanted to explain, is I don't fold the blueberries into the batter, so it doesn't get smashed, or bruised, I add them separately piece by piece into the individual pancakes, and when I turn them over gently it stays nice and firm...does not get squished.
1Tbsp butter added to 1/4 cup Agave syrup, heated in microwave

or not!...yesterday, I spent at least 2 hrs. on my step-by-step photos post at my beach apartment...as you know, I'm house/dog watching for my daughter Lora (Cake Duchess) while they are vacationing in Italy, but I do not upload photos on their computer..I only use theirs to check e-mail, and comments on theirs.

 If you are familiar with Zemanta program, which highlights the words, and you can check the sources, also puts the words for your "labels" in for you...but beware of the actual symbol "Zemanta"...once you delete that while it's on your post, you will delete your own content, and photos, to have to upload them again...sigh!
That's exactly what happened to my step-by-step-recipe photos.
I copied and pasted Mark Bittman's recipe for you...didn't even know it was out there...sigh of relief...phew!...

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Savory Stuffed Baked Trout

Another Sunday, the first Sunday of March, and I should have been making something for Cookbook Sundays with Brenda, @Brenda's Canadian Kitchen, or make the yummy Brown Butter Brownies from Bon Appetit magazine, which I also have, and mentioned to Lizzy, @That skinny chick can bake!!!, who actually made these brownies, adapted it from Bon Appetit...but no! I have to be different...and "talk is cheap." The truth of the matter, I don't follow too many recipes, unless there is something special I want to make, then, I have to make a list of the ingredients that I don't have, and run to the store to get it, and by that time, I lose interest and just make do with what I have on hand. On the other hand, what better opportunity, when a dear friend invites me over to dinner, and lets me "run the show"...LOL. She knows that she can trust me with what I'm going to prepare, and in most cases it's seafood. She bought these beautiful trouts, from BJ's which is yet, another food club, just like Costco's, but I still prefer Costco's and know exactly what products they carry, even the seafood. The first thing that came to my mind, is that these little "guys" need to be stuffed, so my friend just brought out all the ingredients to choose from that she had in her fridge, and pantry, and dinner was done in 30 minutes...yeayyy!
Normally, I don't see trout at Costco's but then again, I have not looked for it because most of the time I buy shrimp, or salmon, so I don't look for any other type of fish, unless I stop at our local fish market where it's more expensive, but so well worth it. So without any further conversation, I will share my easy recipe with you.

Savory Stuffed Baked Trout
my own recipe

2 pieces about 1 lb. each of whole trout,
(cleaned, and gutted)
2 cups of herb croutons
3 cloves of garlic chopped
fresh herbs of your choice,
(I used fresh rosemary, and parsley)
sea salt, and freshly ground black pepper
liberal amount of extra virgin olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup vegetable broth
a good handful of fresh baby spinach

Liberally drizzle olive oil over, and inside the fish, sprinkle with the fresh lemon juice, salt and pepper, and let it marinade for just a few minutes, while you are sauteing the garlic, the croutons, in a large skillet. Add the broth, the herbs, and the spinach, and cook for about another 5 minutes. Pack the cavities of the 2 trouts and gently pat it in making sure that you don't get the croutons all mushed up. In a preheat 400 degree oven, place the trouts on a aluminum lined baking sheet, and bake for no longer than 25 minutes. Serve with a side of couscous, rice, potatoes, or any side dish of your choice, with a few pieces of fresh spinach. Drizzle extra olive oil on the top, and serve.
Caution: Do not flip the fish on the other side, or stuffing will fall out. Serves 2. The skin will come right off, when you peel it, and so will the meat off the bone, in one try. Oh, so flaky, and delicious! Really enjoyable!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Cross Country- Oatmeal Cookies and Blog Award

This morning was a cloudy, and gloomy morning that turned into a half way decent looking day, here in South Florida, but temperature only at about 68 degrees F. My daughter dropped off my little grandson at my place for a couple hours so she could go take care of errands, son-in-law had his only 1 day off, and he had to take care of things, as well. My little sweetheart came all set with his "Finding Nemo" CDVD, as he calls it, and I knew I didn't have his favorite little "Goldfish" crackers snack for him, so I thought, I better start making something real quick and yummy for him. Sure enough I had Ghirardelli Bittersweet Chocolates, but no chocolate chips. Found some quick cooking oats, and I knew I had the rest of the ingredients...so why not, some chocolate chunk cookies, instead of chocolate chip cookies?

Ready to jump into action, and in less than 30 minutes, warm cookies were waiting for my little guy, with a big smile on his face. For some reason, every time I'm looking for a recipe, that I have just about all the ingredients for, is the "Best Recipes" book, the latest copyright, 1982, that have a compiled great list from backs of boxes, cans, jars, but you really have to do some adaptation to make it up to date by switching, and adding ingredients, which I love to do, and adapt it my way. Interesting, about the Mazola corn oil, which the original recipe calls for 3/4 cups? and no butter?...well, I quickly narrowed the amount down to 1/3 cup of vegetable oil, instead, and I knew it would need at least a little butter, so I added 1/2 unsalted butter, and had to confidence of knowing it will turn out better, than with all oil, which would make it too wet, as well!...The result, was a light, perfect, chocolaty goodness with healthy oats!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Wings with Blue Cheese Dressing

Ever wonder why they call these hot wings Buffalo wings?...well, it sure doesn't have anything to do with buffalo meat!...oh, yuck...even the thought of it! I'm going to enlighten you with a little history of these wonderful messy, but so tasty, juicy, and tender wings oozing in a special hot sauce that you make your very own, and have it medium, or extra hot.

It has been repeated so often that these wings were invented at the Anchor Bar on Main Street in Buffalo, that pretty much everyone accepted it as the truth. There has been less consensus, however, about whether the wings were created when a mistaken delivery of wings arrived at the bar and Frank Bellisimo asked his wife, Teressa, to do something with them...or, when Dom, their son, asked his mother to concoct a late-night snack for regulars at the bar. Either way, it was Teressa, who in 1964 came up with the idea of combining spicy wings with crisp celery, and blue cheese dressing.

Buffalo wings did not become famous until 1980, and the city declared July 29..."Chicken Wings Day"...and simply left it at that!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Italian Sausage with Grilled Cheddar Polenta, and a Giveaway

After posting my vegetarian spaghetti carbonara, now I feel so guilty...Not!...but I should be, for posting sausage of all things, but not just any sausage, this is homemade, by my favorite Italian meat market, Mario's that's been around forever...about 30 years, with the same owners, now the owner's daughter in charge. This is the sausage, hot, and mild, that I bought for New Year's and still had another 2 lbs left over. I invited a friend over for dinner last night, and she was appalled and I could tell just the sound of her voice saying..."sausage?"...and then, silence!

Oh, my! I committed the "Cardinal Sin"...yes, I said "sausage, Italian sausage"...in her mind, since she doesn't eat sausage, thinking I was making these "dinky little breakfast sausages"...or, as she said...is it "Jimmy Dean sausage patties?"...no silly homemade Italian sausage. Enough said, just come on over, and "stop complaining, already!" I recently, or actually the other day, browsing through my followers blogs,

I found a blog, which had the most delicious Hungarian polenta, well in Hungarian, it's called "puliszka", which I thought looked so delicious, and more tempting was the amazing meat stuffed with sauer kraut, and topped with Hungarian bacon. Wow!...just looking at the photo made my cholesterol, go high, but I had to make a polenta dish which I have not made in a few years.
Lucky for me, I had everything on hand, and did not have to buy a thing.
Do check out Gesztenye
which in English mean Chestnuts she also has another blog too, all about truffles, or as she calls them bon-bons.
Another talented, and creative food blogger, from a different country, Hungary, my mother's birth country!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

A Very Merry Christmas to all!

You might find this decoration "weird, or silly" but I think it's really chic, and festive. Since I don't have any foods to post, after the last two days of spending time with my granddaughters, and helping out my daughter with last minute shopping, this is all I have to show for my Christmas decoration, which is my "smart" thrift find, that I'm posting...after all this blog is called "food and thrift finds"...so I'm showing off my silk plant, which I bought at Goodwill, like new, and so perfect, for $3.99, the whit lights were $1.99, the pretty dark blue liqueur glasses, with the wrought iron case, $2.99, and last, but not least, the pretty cobalt blue vase, that I filled with our local sea shells, $2.99...so, just think, under $15.00 for all. Actually $12.00. Can't beat that, and it's so enjoyable!
My amazing kitty Prince,...little old, and wise guy, almost 18 yrs. old. I took this photo, in pitch dark, and turned out so nice. He is a Maine coon, with the longest legs I have ever seen on any cat. So sweet, and protective, my little alarm clock, every morning at 7:00AM!
Today, we went to City Place, in West Palm Beach...a magical city, within a city. Very popular place where everyone goes, and meets. Full of shops, and restaurants, and they actually are surrounded by condos, that people own, or rent. Oh so beautiful! These poinsettias are found at just about every corner...so Christmasy!
This was an original church from the thirties that is still surviving, and renovated into a theatre. The entire City Place is built around this lovely former church. Every hour, the church bells chime, and the water falls comes on to a wonderful tune...in this case, it's to Christmas carols.
The Christmas tree at City Place is so beautiful at night, all lit up with  lights. Plenty of parking space in the 4 story garage, and on the streets, as well!
Only in Florida, you get to witness something like this...Flip flops, on one girl, and boots on the other. The weather, about in the low seventies!
OK...Last, but not least...Yeahhh1 I just received my awesome giveaway gift, from Veronica, 
The Enchanted Cook. who had a giveaway, and I was one of the winners. Thank you so very much Veronica, and Thank you O for sending this pair of Olive oil, and vinegar combo. So amazing, I can hardly wait to try this pair...so pretty, that I'm almost afraid to open it. Wow!... this is my best Christmas present, ever!
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Saturday, December 18, 2010

Farfalle with Basil Pesto

There's something about pesto sauce that I really love. Maybe its bright green color, and oh, the aroma of fresh basil infused with imported extra virgin olive oil, the pine nuts, the garlic, just a little whirl in the food processor, and you have a gourmet sauce, that is quick, and delicious. A few shavings of Parmigiana Reggiano, and you have an incredible meal. All you need, is a nice fresh Italian bread, or French baguette, a salad, and you have a gourmet dish, with very little fuss! I used the recipe from the Food Network, but otherwise, I use the same one myself, not know where the original came from.
    
          Pesto Sauce
  • 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino cheese (see Cook's Note)

Directions

Combine the basil, garlic, and pine nuts in a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped. Add 1/2 cup of the oil and process until fully incorporated and smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
If using immediately, add all the remaining oil and pulse until smooth. Transfer the pesto to a large serving bowl and mix in the cheese.
If freezing, transfer to an air-tight container and drizzle remaining oil over the top. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw and stir in cheese.
Adapted from Television Food Network

I decided to remove the second photo of the yummy pesto pasta, so I could include the photo of this year's Christmas tree, at my daughter's house. This year, as in every few years, they put up a live tree, but unfortunately my little 4yr old grandson is allergic to the fresh pine, so he has to take his allergy medicine, which is helping...otherwise they would have to take the tree down before Santa Claus arrives!




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