Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Tomato Focaccia - Erin

This is my adaptation of the basic Focaccia recipe that’s in the family cookbook. I’ve made it this way for a long time, and it’s always a hit, especially with boys. Our dad didn’t believe that I’d made it the first time he had it, and my ex boyfriend requested that I make sure this bread was available to him at all times. It also makes really good sandwiches, but more on that later…

what you will need

2 cups lukewarm water 
1 pkg. dry yeast (2 ½ teaspoons, if bulk) 
1 Tbsp. sugar 
2 tsp. salt 
4 cups bread flour (but all-purpose will do) 
2 Handfuls of cherry (or other small) tomatoes, halved 
1 clove garlic, sliced very thinly 
Herbs – whatever you like, Italian Mix, Rosemary, etc. 
Kosher or Sea Salt for sprinkling

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Orzo with Parmesan and Basil - Brendan

I had never tried orzo until about 2 years ago. Actually, I had never even heard of it. But then one day I was begging Caity to feed me something and she mentioned orzo. I've never been one to turn down food and although I had never eaten orzo, I'll always try something at least once. 

So she made it for me, and the great thing about it is it only takes about twenty minutes from start to finish. Also, after watching her cook it only once I was able to make it on my own. It's quick, easy to make, and serves as a great side dish with any kind of meat. Our favorite way to eat it is with pork chops. This recipe comes from the "Best of the Best" Canadian cookbook. 

After that first taste I was literally obsessed with this orzo. Actually, obsessed doesn't really explain it. The word "addicted" paints a more realistic picture. I ate it almost every day for 2 or 3 months. I took a break after that but I still enjoy it once or twice monthly. 

In case you don't know what orzo is, it's a rice-shaped pasta. You can find it in the pasta section of just about any grocery store. Caity and I like the Barilla brand. So go to the store, buy some, and see how great it is!   

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Caprese Salad - Cathy

If there is one thing that Utah does really, really well, it is TOMATOES! This summer, for the first time in quite a few years Farmer Kevin has managed to defend our large organic garden from our beautiful but not always welcome visitors, the deer.  

It has been such a pleasure to once again have bowls and counter-tops brimming over with riotously colored and shaped, perfectly ripe tomatoes (not to mention zucchini, cucumbers, cantaloupe, peppers, lettuce and spinach!). 

One of the very best parts of summer is to go out to the garden in the not-too-hot part of the day, pick a few of those red, gold, and green-striped tomatoes, sprinkle them with perhaps a bit of kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, then eat them while leaning over the kitchen sink to catch all of those juicy drips.

But you can only eat so many that way (I guess).  Here is one of the most beautiful, luscious and decadent ways I know of to enjoy gorgeous summer heirloom tomatoes, yet still simple enough to highlight this wonderful but fleeting harvest. When you make this salad, you feel like you are creating a work of art, and then you have the fun of devouring it!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Coffee Cake Muffins - Erin

I have had this recipe written on a piece of paper since I babysat Leska Mackie over a weekend when her parents were out of town, which was probably about 8 years ago.  I can't even remember where we found the recipe, but I did remember that they were really good.  The paper has been floating around my disastrous room, and I finally remembered to save it last time I found it.  There's vanilla pudding mix in the muffins, so they're really moist and delicious!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Snickerdoodles - Erin

I'm not even sure if these really are a specifically American cookie, but all of my friends in London have decided that it is, and they make them to celebrate the 4th of July!  Wherever they're from, they're delicious.  I don't even know where I got the recipe, but I like it because they're nice and chewy, and very good too!

what you will need
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening or margarine
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 3/4 cup all-purpose flower
2 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

2 Tbsp white sugar (for rolling)
2 tsp ground cinnamon (for rolling)

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Hearty Lasagna - Caity

When I call it hearty lasagna, I mean it. You eat 1-2 slices and you are stuffed. The recipe calls for 1 lb of ground beef and 1 lb of spicy italian sausage. That's 2 lbs of meat and it is sooooooo goooooooooood! If the idea of 2 lbs of meat freaked you out, don't worry. There is also a ton of tomato, basil, italian parsley and cheese. If you are the mood for a seriously delicious meal that will really stick to your ribs, make this lasagna. 

This recipe is adapted from the Pioneer Woman's cookbook "Pioneer Woman Cooks". It makes 1 pan which you can freeze before cooking and cook later or, as I like to do, cook it, refrigerate it (so it firms up to make cutting slices easier), wrap them individually and freeze them. I can't tell you how excited I get when a couple of weeks (or days) later, I open the freezer and find lasagna. You'd think I found money in the freezer but no, just an individually wrapped portion of happiness! Enjoy!