Eat & Cook Clean, Recipe

“The Veggetti” as seen on TV

Last month for my birthday my kids Ryan & his wife Lindsi got me “The Veggetti”. We all laughed at it and quoted lines like “hey family I made it with my Veggetti” & ” check out my Veggetti”. I believe it sounded so funny cause Veggetti kinda sounded like a nickname for a female part. Do you get it? Sorry if you don’t. Anyway after all that I love this thing. Don’t you love it when something does what it says. It’s easy to use,easy clean up and just stores away in the drawer.image

It came with a cute little recipe guide that was really informative.

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My first try was with Zucchini squash. I prepared it with my “Veggetti” sautéed it in a little olive oil with my house seasoned (consists of kosher salt,garlic and black pepper) threw in some halved grape tomatoes,grated some fresh Parmesan at the end. It was delish and healthy. I served it along side some grilled lamb pops.image

 

I give it 5 out of 5 stars, because it worked and we love the name. Now go get one!

 

Holidays, Recipe

Pumpkin Bread with Whipped Pumpkin Butter

Happy Pumpkin Month

Pumpkin Bread
Pumpkin Bread

Ingredients:

  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 cups white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup applesauce
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease three 7 1/2 x 3 1/2-inch loaf pans. I got 5 mini loaves and 6 muffins out of this recipe.
  • In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, soda, salt, baking powder, sugar, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice. Stir well. Add applesauce, eggs, pumpkin, and water. Mix batter until well combined. Stir in nuts. Pour batter into prepared pans.
  • Bake until tester inserted in the center of each loaf comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes.
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To go along with your Pumpkin Bread you HAVE to make this Whipped Pumpkin Butter.
Super easy and will also go great on your morning toast, waffles, sweet potatoes, your finger! Hope you enjoy.
WHIPPED PUMPKIN BUTTER
 INGREDIENTS
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon clove
  • salt to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Whip butter with an electric mixer on high for at least 5 minutes (or until light and fluffy) with a whisk attachment.
  2. Add in the remaining ingredients.
  3. Whip again to combine.                 

Holidays, Party Ideas, Recipe

Payday Caramel Corn

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This is my Halloween Treat for all my little pretties

I think everyone loves Caramel Corn and then add peanuts,candy corn and white chocolate, EXPLOSION of sugar awesomeness! Super easy,yummy and this corn screams Halloween.They say if you eat a peanut and a candy corn together it tastes like a Payday Bar. Brilliant I say! This is gonna be good.

I bought one of those HUGE bags of popcorn from Costco ( enough for 2 batches, followed these easy instructions and done.

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I got these cute little containers at the dollar store

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Wrapped up cute they will make great little gifts.  Who doesn’t love to get homemade goodies wrapped up with love?  Happy Halloween!

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Payday Caramel Corn

Ingredients

1 cup unsalted butter
2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 bags of popped corn (remove seeds), about 5qt popped ( I used prepopped corn from Costco the Naked kind)
16oz pkg vanilla bark
21oz bag candy corn
1 1/4 cup salted, roasted peanuts
Instructions

Pop popcorn according to package. Place popped corn into a large mixing bowl (make sure to not add any seeds). Set aside.
In small saucepan over medium heat, melt butter with sugar, corn syrup and salt. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Stir in baking soda and vanilla. Pour over popped corn. Mix well.
Divide caramel corn mixture evenly into two foil lined broiler pans (or large disposable lasagna pans would work too) Bake in a 250 degree oven for one hour. Stir every 15 minutes, and rotate in oven.
After one hour, remove from oven and pour into a large mixing bowl. Melt vanilla bark according to package directions and pour over caramel corn. Add in peanuts and candy corn. Pour onto parchment paper (I lay a big strip down on my counter top) and allow to set, about 30 minutes). Once chocolate is set, fill two large gallon sized ziploc bags and seal.

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This is where I discovered this great recipe. Thanks for sharing:

http://www.shugarysweets.com/2012/09/payday-caramel-corn#M8YyWu8ZDV8D4dCv.99

Holidays, Recipe

Pumpkin-Chocolate Chip Cookies

It’s Pumpkin everything time of the year. Made a batch of these little beauties this morning. Froze half of them because they will last for over two month’s in the freezer and we can enjoy them all month long. Hope you enjoy them as much as hubby did . I’m thinking about slapping a scoop of cinnamon ice cream between two of those cookies.Another day, another post. LOL imageIngredients:

♥ 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

♥ 1/2 cup whole wheat flour

♥ 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

♥ 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

♥ 1/2 teaspoon salt

♥ 1 cup softened butter

♥ 1 cup white sugar

♥ 1 cup brown sugar

♥ 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

♥ 2 eggs

♥ 1 cup canned pumpkin

♥ 1 bag milk chocolate chips or semi-sweet

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or your silicone mats, set aside. In a medium bowl combine all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, and salt; set aside.
In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add granulated sugar and brown sugar. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in pumpkin and vanilla until combined. Beat in as much of the flour mixture as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining flour mixture and the chocolate.
Drop dough in 2-tablespoon mounds 2 inches apart onto the prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until edges are light brown. Cool on cookie sheets for 2 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely before storing.

TO STORE:

Layer cookies between sheets of waxed paper in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

In Case It Matters:

Nutrition Facts (Pumpkin-Chocolate Chip Cookies)
Per serving: 111 kcal cal., 5 g fat (3 g sat. fat, 0 g polyunsaturated fat, 1 g monounsatured fat), 15 mg chol., 85 mg sodium, 15 g carb., 1 g fiber, 10 g sugar, 1 g pro. Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet

Holidays, Recipe

DIY Pumpkin Spice Latte

Pumpkin Spice Syrup
Pumpkin Spice Syrup

It’s that time of year. You see it everywhere already “PSL” Pumpkin Spice Latte. Starbucks brought it out even earlier this year due to its popularity. I love it and have bought me a few. There is a video going around thou that shows how many chemicals and crap that they really put in it.

http://video.foxnews.com/v/3762855144001/whats-really-in-starbucks-pumpkin-spice-latte/?#sp=show-clips

So I’m all into making my own.

♥ It’s cheaper

♥ You know what ingredients are going in it

♥ You can make it for gifts 🙂

I will give you the recipe for the Pumpkin Spice Syrup then the recipe for the Pumpkin Spice Latte

Pumpkin Spice Syrup Ingredients:

♦ 1 cup water

♦ 2/3 cup brown sugar (you can use white sugar, honey,maple syrup)

♦ 1/3 cup pumpkin puree (canned pie mix)

♦ 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice

♦ 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions: Whisk together water, brown sugar, pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice together in a small saucepan over medium high hear. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 3-4 minutes until slightly thickened. Stir in vanilla extract, and remove from heat. Use immediately, or cool and refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 1 week.

Now you have your syrup, onto your Latte

Pumpkin Spice Latte Ingredients:

♦ 1 shot (1.5 oz or 3 tablespoons) espresso or strongly-brewed coffee

♦ 1 shot (1.5 oz or 3 tablespoons) pumpkin spice syrup

♦ 6 oz( 3/4 cup) steamed milk,any kind

♦ optional toppings: whipped cream, caramel sauce,ground cinnamon,nutmeg

Directions: Add all ingredients together in a mug and stir to combine. Top with optional toppings if desired.

I have already had my first one for the year

  • Brown sugar is the choice of sweetener because it tastes most like the traditional coffee shop version. Experiment with other kinds if you prefer.
  • What a great hostess gift this will make for your PSL lover. Enjoy!
  • This recipe was adapted from gimmesomeoven.
Recipe

Roasted Veggie Flatbread


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Loving all the Flat-breads you can purchase in our local stores these days and they taste really good. “NAAN” bread you will also see it called in recipes and  at the stores. Stonefire is a brand that I have found at the grocery store and Costco sells a pack of mini-ones. WWW.stonefire.com Check out their website for recipes and tips.

I made this one the other night and it was yummy, healthy, and fell into our lean,clean cooking category that I have been working on around our house (my hubby has lost 20 lbs). YAY for him!!! I’m still working on that abundance of zucchini I have.

Ingredients: Makes 2 Naan Bread Pizza’s

1 package of Stonefire Baked Naan -(holds 2 Naan flat-breads)

1 package 8 oz. sliced crimini mushrooms

2 carrots thinly sliced

1 large zucchini ( cut into bite size pieces)

1 red bell pepper(chopped into bite size pieces)

1 TBSP. Italian Seasoning

1/4 cup olive oil

Boursin Cheese Spread (your favorite flavor) I used garlic & herb

Herb flavored Goat Cheese

Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

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Place all veggies into a large bowl and pour olive oil and the Italian seasoning on top and stir to coat well. Pour all veggies onto a foil or parchment lined cookie sheet. Place in oven set on Broil about 4-5″ from heating element, broil for about 6 minutes, pull out and stir and toss veggies. Place back into broiler for another 8 minutes approximately.Until they are cooked but still have life in them. They will be cooking some more when placed on Naan bread.

While veggies cool a bit, preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Place your Naan breads onto a cookie sheet, spread a layer of Boursin Cheese onto the flat-bread,then scatter your veggies onto the flat-bread, ( I had some veggies left over so will use those for lunch tomorrow ) I then pinched off pieces of the Goat Cheese (about 1 oz. per flat-bread) and scattered over the veggies followed by a layer of Mozzarella cheese. I drizzled some olive oil on top and baked for about 7-8 minutes. I drizzled a little more Olive oil when they came out of the oven.

I ate ALL of mine 🙂 As you can see you can top with ANYTHING, the sky’s the limit and if you go to their website they have some really great recipes. This is just what I did with mine today. Hope you enjoy as much as we did.

Recipe

Zucchini & Parmesan Bites

Its Zucchini season and there is abundance of it everywhere. Love it and this is what I did with mine this week. Easy, yummy and a healthy way to eat them.

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Ingredients:

3 medium sized Zucchini

Garlic powder, salt and pepper

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions for your bites:

1. Preheat your oven to 425 F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or foil and spray with your favorite cooking spray.

2. Wash and dry zucchini and cut into 1/4″ rounds ( next time I am going to cut them a little thicker and see what happens). Sprinkle zucchini with the garlic, salt and pepper. Spread a thin (or thick) layer of the Parmesan cheese on top of each zucchini. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the cheese turns golden and bubbly. Serve while hot. Enjoy

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Slice your Zucchini approximately 1/4″ thick rounds and line them on a parchment covered cookie sheet sprayed with your favorite cooking spray. Don’t be anal about how they are on the pan just put them there.

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Sprinkle them with garlic salt and pepper, or garlic powder, salt and pepper. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese on top of the rounds

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Bake them in the center of your oven at 425 for 15-20 minutes or until the cheese turns bubbly and brown.

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Herbs, Recipe

Ham & Egg Cups :)

These little guys make me happy . Easy to make,taste great,low calories,last for a few days,easy to take to work, shall I continue?

Baked Egg Cups

12 Eggs

12 thin slices of deli ham (round)

1/2 Cup of your favorite cheese (I used Parmesan)

1/2 Cup diced green onion

Salt & Pepper

Preheat the oven to 400.  Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray.  Lay a piece of ham in each hole creating a little ham cup.  Crack one egg into each hole and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Bake the eggs for about 12 minutes…until the white is firm and the yolk is still nice and runny.

Carefully remove each egg from the muffin tin and top with grated cheese and green onion.

Add ins I want to try, put in before adding egg: fresh spinach, avocado or cooked aspargus. Its good to get some greens going in with your breakfast for health benefits.

Sunshine Breakfast
Sunshine Breakfast

Only 100 calories per egg. Cant beat that, and I wrap them up in a Ziploc bag and take to work and share cause they are still good cold.

Hope you enjoy!

Recipe

Southern Gumbo Ya’ll

It was Mardi Gras a few weeks ago in New Orleans, so time to cook up some Gumbo. We flew there last week for a construction convention and our mouths have been watering all week thinking about the food we were gonna enjoy. Thought I outta make us up a batch and get us ready. This is a very easy recipe just a little time consuming. A little lighter recipe then some, the secret is to get a really dark chocolate colored roux, a process you learn over time. If you get your roux to dark to fast it will burn and ruin your whole batch. So go slow and watch it like a hawk!
First I prepare myself. Get your song station on the right tunes. This is what I use “Songza” and here is a link to the playlist I listened to. Good ol Southern music got me in the mood. Get yourself something cool to drink cause you cant leave once you get started.

http://songza.com/listen/southern-fishing-songza/

This is the basic recipe I use, but added my notes of what I did a little different.

Seafood, Sausage & Chicken Gumbo

Seasoning Mix
1 1/2 teaspoons each of salt,paprika,thyme leaves,garlic powder,ground black pepper,dry mustard and sugar
3/4 teaspoons each of ground cumin,white pepper and onion powder

GUMBO
2 Tablespoons veggie oil
4 chicken thighs(skin on and bone in)
8 cups water or chicken stock ( 2 large boxes of chicken broth does it)
8 ozs Andouille sausage
1/2 cup flour
2 cups chopped white onion
1 1/2 cups chopped red or green pepper( I used both)
1 cup chopped celery (I was out so added celery salt,next time will add fresh in)
1/2 cup chopped parsley (I didn’t have fresh,so I used some dried)
1 lb each of crab meat and shrimp (crab meat was too expensive today so I used 2 lbs of shrimp)
1. Combine ingredients for seasoning mix:

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2. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in Dutch oven. Add chicken . Sauté until browned on both sides. Remove chicken to a large saucepan, reserve drippings in the Dutch oven. add your 8 cups of broth or water ( I prefer broth) over chicken cover and let simmer for 1 hour. Drain,reserving stock, bone chicken and reserve meat.

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3. Add sausage to reserved drippings and sauté until browned. Remove sausage, reserve drippings in Dutch oven
Before you start the next step you gotta do a few things because when you start the roux you CANNOT do anything else for about the next 10 minutes. So use the restroom, tie up the children,let the dog out and turn off the phone. Ok carry on.

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4. This is the pan I browned the chicken and sausage in. Add enough oil to drippings to equal about 1/2 cup. Heat and add flour 1/4 cup at a time, stirring until smooth. Cook roux, stirring (whisking) constantly until browned and a deep caramel color 5-7 minutes on a medium flame( I think I could of cooked this roux a little longer and darken it up some but I started getting worried and stopped here and it was still very good. Add onions and peppers and celery,parsley and 2 Tablespoons of seasoning mix. This will be a thick clump of veggies but that’s good.(You will have enough seasoning mix for your next batch of Gumbo). Whisk your clump well and cook 10 minutes.

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5. Add reserved stock about 1 cup at a time and whisk well with each addition and cook 20 more minutes. Add chicken, sausage and seafood and cook another 10 minutes.

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Cook low and slow for another hour or so, make a batch of white rice to ladel the Gumbo over and your set. They say Gumbo is personal, so you can add your favorite ingredients from different sausages, okra,oysters, chicken breasts,thighs or legs or all! Spice it up or down what ever your heat level is. Im thinking next time to make up a batch of Hush Puppies to go along side.

If its your first time of making Gumbo read up on it on the Internet and get tips and ideas for your first batch. One thing I know is true, if you make up a pot of Gumbo you have friends.

Thanks to my Mother-In-Law Shirley Buxton for inspiring me and feeding me this dish. I fell  in love with it and what it represents.

“Laissez les bons temps rouler”

Recipe

Meatless Monday- Stuffed sweet potato

I have started a new thing in our house, it’s Meatless Monday. Not to say I don’t eat meat that DAY, but just not for dinner. I find also by picking something meatless it’s tends to run into something healthy. Last Monday I chose these stuffed sweet potatoes. They were easy very tasty and I can speak for both of us on saying we were full, satisfied and went to bed with lighter feeling belly, which is always a good thing!
I chose this theme for Monday cause everyone knows Tuesday Is ALWAYS for Tacos. Hope this inspires you to pick that one day to do something good and different.I swear after you do it once it tends to set in as a tradition .

This is the recipe I used but traded the Kale with Spinach

Stuffed Sweet Potatoes with Beans and Greens
Serves 4
4 sweet potatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 shallot, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 (4-inch) sprig fresh rosemary
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 1/2 cups (or 1 can) cooked and drained white beans
6 cups kale, trimmed and sliced into ribbons
Juice of 1/4 lemon
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Scrub the sweet potatoes and prick them in a few places with a fork. Place them on a baking sheet and bake until soft all the way through, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Start the beans and greens about 15 to 20 minutes before the sweet potatoes are done.

In a wide, deep saucepan with a cover, heat the olive oil over low-moderate heat. Add the shallots and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, rosemary sprig, and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring, for about a minute. Add the beans and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the kale, cover the pan, and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes or until the kale is soft. Remove the rosemary sprig, stir in the lemon juice, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve, slice each sweet potato lengthwise and push on the ends to open up the middle. Spoon the beans and greens into the center.

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Next week: Meatless Monday- Stuffed Poblano Peppers