Homemade Ricotta

RECIPE:

Makes 2 cups ricotta

4 cups whole milk

2 cups heavy cream

1-1.5 teaspoons kosher salt

4 tablespoons white wine vinegar

Combine milk, cream and 1 teaspoon of the salt in a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Once boiling shut off heat and add vinegar. Wait 3 minutes and strain in a cheese cloth for 10-20 minutes. Taste and add more salt if necessary.

 

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Butter Free Garlic Bread

RECIPE:

3Tbs Low-Fat Mayo

1 container Oikos Plain Greek Yogurt

1/4tsp salt

8 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped

1/8-1/4tsp Cayenne Pepper

1tsp Fresh Thyme, finely chopped

¼ cup Parmesan Cheese, grated

1 loaf bread

Combine mayo, greek yogurt, salt, garlic, cayenne pepper and thyme together. Cut loaf of bread in half and spread yogurt mixture over the cut side of the bread. Top with the parmesan cheese and cook under your broiler until top is brown and bread is crisp. Serve warm and ENJOY!

 

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Popovers

RECIPE:

2 cups milk, warmed

4 eggs

2 cups flour

2 tsp salt

1 cups grated Gruyere cheese

Place a popover pan or muffin pan in the oven.  Heat the oven and pan to 350 degrees.  In the mean time gently warm the milk over low heat until warm to the touch and set aside.  Whisk the eggs until frothy and slowly whisk in the warmed milk.  Set the mixture aside.  Sift the flour with the salt.  Slowly add the flour and salt mixture to the milk and eggs until there are no lumps. Remove the pan from the oven and grease LIBERALLY

the top as well as inside the cups.  While the batter is still slightly warm or room temp (definitely not cool), fill each cup full.  Top each popover with approximately 2 Tbsp of the grated Gruyere.

Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes, rotating pan half a turn after 20 minutes of baking. Serve warm and ENJOY!

 

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Cilantro Pesto

RECIPE:

2 cups packed cilantro leaves

½ cup parmesan cheese

¼ cup pine nuts, toasted

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 jalapeno, roasted, seeds + ribs removed

Juice of 1 lime

3 cloves garlic

½ cup olive oil

Put all ingredients in a food processor except for the olive oil.  Process till finely chopped.  Stream in olive oil while the food processor is on and allow everything to mix till well combined.

Makes 1 and 1/4cup

 

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Red Pepper Pesto

RECIPE:

¼ cup Pinenuts

2 Roasted Red Peppers

1 tsp Thyme Leaves

3 Garlic Cloves

1 Shallot

½ cup Parmesan

2tsp Kosher Salt

¼ Olive Oil

Pulse everything in a food processor until well combined and pureed. Toss over pasta, rice or serve over fish or chicken. 

 

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Roasted Garlic

Roasted Garlic

"Obsession" is a word I don’t throw around too often. But there is one thing in my life that I will easily admit I am obsessed with...

...One thing that has found its way into my heart...

...And stomach:

GARLIC.

I. LOVE. GARLIC.

And I when I say I love garlic, I love it in all its forms. Most definitely its sweeter, softer cousin--roasted garlic.

But before you can enjoy this garlicky goodness you need to make it, and here’s how...

Roasted Garlic

servings: 1 bulb

Ingredients:

  • 1 garlic bulb
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Cut off the top third of the garlic bulb, exposing all the cloves on the remainder; discard the top and place the remainder cut-side-up on a square of aluminum foil. Drizzle the oil over the cut surface and then sprinkle the salt and pepper over the top. Wrap the foil around the garlic, making sure it doesn't touch the cut surface, and seal tightly. Roast the garlic until it is golden brown and soft--45 to 60 minutes.

Notes:

: @NikkiDinki

: @NikkiDinkiCooking

 

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Green Sauce

RECIPE:

1/4cup olive oil

4-5 Garlic Cloves

12oz bag frozen shelled Edamame, defrosted

¼ Cup or about 3 Scallions, greens and whites

16oz Frozen Spinach, thawed and slightly drained

½ Cup Parmesan

½ cup Fresh Parsley, un-chopped

1Tbs Hot Sauce

1 lime, juice

1tsp Garlic Powder

1.5tsp Salt

Combine everything in a food processor and puree until smooth.  Stream in water to thin out and get the consistency you want, about ½ cup.  Saute in a pan for 5-7 minutes, add more water if necessary. Leave thicker if using a spread for sandwiches and wraps or thin it out to put over pasta, toss with rice or serve over Chicken, Shrimp or Beef.  Enjoy!!

 Makes 3.5 - 4cups

NOTES:

  • Leave out oil to make this extra low calorie and add more water instead

 

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Roasted Garlic + Basil Hummus

Roasted Garlic Basil Hummus

I have a tendency to overdo things.

Bigger. Bolder. Spicier...These are words I like!

When I first started cooking, my spice cabinet became my favorite new toy and anything I made included at least ten of my little friends. Any given day, you could especially find me hanging out with my best buddies, Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, and Red Pepper Flakes.

We were having a great time. But...the romance couldn’t last.

As much as I loved the kick of flavor my friends added to my new creations, sometimes it was just too much. It took me a long time to accept that more isn’t always better.

Eventually the romance did fade and my favorite buddies and I saw each other less and less...

But the happy part is that every romance that ends--or every door that closes--allows for something new to be born...

Like this simple and perfect hummus: the new love of my life. 

Roasted Garlic + Basil Hummus

Ingredients:

  • One 15-to-19-ounce can garbanzo beans (a.k.a. chick peas)
  • 2 bulbs Roasted Garlic
  • 10 large fresh basil leaves
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • ¼ - ½ cup olive oil

Directions:

  1. Combine the garbanzo beans, Roasted Garlic, basil leaves, and salt in a food processor and pulse.
  2. Stream in the olive oil while your food processor is on until you get a smooth consistency.

Notes:

  • As with many dips, the longer this hummus sits in the fridge, the better it tastes.
  • Don’t be afraid of salt! This needs quite a bit!
  • Find more info on roasted garlic at CookNovel.com.
: @NikkiDinki

: @NikkiDinkiCooking

 

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Basil + Mint Pesto

 

 

Everybody loves herbs, basil is an Italian staple, Rosemary is meat’s best friend and parsley seems to find it’s way into everything...and mint...well mint...um mint...well mint...makes...a great cocktail?!

True enough, but let’s give poor mint a little more credit!!

 

 

 

 

Mint’s fresh and vibrant flavor simply screams summer. And quite frankly Mr. Mint is sick of being thought of as a dessert/cocktail-only herb. He is ready to please you palate and make his mark on your dinner plate.

So to celebrate him and his delightfully minty ways I bring you...this pesto!!

 

 

 

 

Read More

Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

3 tablespoons olive oil

3 large roasted red peppers (jarred or fresh)

1 roasted jalapeño, seeded

4 garlic cloves

2 scallions

1 tablespoon fresh mint

1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

1 teaspoon paprika

Juice of half a lemon

2 tablespoons sour cream

1 tablespoon butter

Put oil in pan and add garlic, cook for 1 minute till fragrant and add Red Peppers, Jalapeño and Scallions. Salt mixture and add Herbs and Paprika. Cook for 3 more minutes. Put mixture in food processor of blender, add sour cream and puree. Transfer back to pan, add butter and lemon juice, cook for 2 minutes. ENJOY!!

NOTES:

  • I have found a slightly easier way to make this since I did this video. Just put everything except the sour cream, butter and lemon in the food processor (raw) once everything is pureed put mixture into the hot pan with the oil and cook for5 minutes. Add the sour cream, butter and cook for 2 minutes more, finally add the lemon and serve.
  • You could use parsley or even basil instead of the mint and thyme but I do this those herbs add something special.
  • Great as a dip too! You could also add some cream cheese to thicken it up.

 

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Irish Soda Bread

QUESTIONNAIRE:

Have you ever chosen a particular restaurant just because they serve great bread?

Have you ever ordered mussels just to be able to dip large amounts of bread into the broth?

Do you have a loaf of bread on your counter right now that costs more than you would like to admit?

Have you ever chosen a sandwich at a deli based solely on what bread it came on?

If you answered yes to these questions you may be...a BREAD-A-HOLIC.

And you maaaaaaaay love bread as much as I do. Though loving bread as much as I do is a hard and possibly unobtainable goal.

I know, I know, you're disappointed, but only one of us can be the bread queen. And considering I’m pretty sure 80% of my body is made of bread, I have to say I win that title.

As much as I love bread, and as simple as some recipes will tell you it is to make, making your own bread can easily go terribly, terribly wrong (BELIEVE ME!).

This is exactly why when I have a hankering for some fresh bread, I love QUICK BREADS!

You see, they are...well...QUICK! No rising, no kneeding, just great bread...QUICK! And the quicker I am eating this bread, the better it is for not only me, but everyone around me. ;)

Irish Soda Bread with Buttermilk Wash

servings: Makes 1 loaf of bread

Buttermilk Wash:

  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • ¼ cup buttermilk

Irish Soda Bread:

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup margarine, softened
  • 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 large egg

Buttermilk Wash:

  1. In a small bowl, combine the butter and the buttermilk, then set aside.

Irish Soda Bread:

  1. Preheat oven to 375° F. Then lightly grease a large baking sheet.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, margarine, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir in the buttermilk and egg and mix until just combined.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead slightly. Then form the dough into a round and place it on the prepared baking sheet. Then brush the dough with the Buttermilk Wash.
  4. Use a sharp knife to cut an 'X' into the top of the loaf, then bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean--40 to 50 minutes. During the baking process, brush the loaf with the Buttermilk Wash at least once.

Notes:

  • The buttermilk wash will burn if it gets on your pan, so try to not let it drip too much over the sides of the bread.
  • You can brush with the buttermilk as often as you wish, but just be sure you give it at least 10 minutes with no extra brushing of the wash at the end of the baking time to allow the top to brown completely.
  • It is supposed to be a little chunky and not overly smooth, so don’t over knead it.
: @NikkiDinki

: @NikkiDinkiCooking

 

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