Filed under: Where do they find the time?

Apparently, I don’t love my readers enough to: 1)carry a camera with me everywhere I go, and 2)to do food tutorials. I am not too lazy, however, to show you what others have done. Here’s a sampling of what I saw today:

1. Bacon Mat @ Serious Eats.

2. How to Chop an Onion at Gluten Free Girl (Is anyone else distracted by the chef’s dirty fingernails? Eww.)

3. The Best Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe EVER at Shelteriffic.

4. DIY Pumpkin Tea Lights at Pink of Perfection. (See? Not everything is food centered – although, technically, pumpkin is a food, I suppose.)

5. And my personal favorite – Bacon Salt. Blogged here and here and photographed here. Has anyone ever used this? Seriously?

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Cooking up Hot Stuff

Since I have declared that September is the month I am bringing hot back, I figured what better way to start than to cook something really good for my husband. Truer words have never been spoken than, “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.” I have never met a man that could resist some good cooking. So, I was surfing and came across something that is going to revolutionize the way I cook lasagna. BakersEdge has a super duper lasagna pan that keeps everything from slipping and sliding around when it’s cut (which may not be a big deal to you, but I personally hate the way all the cheese and good stuff oozes out when I cut into it!) It’s not available yet, but I’ll keep checking back, you can be sure.

Check this out:

They also have a pans for baking brownies. The part I like best about their pans is that you get “edges” on every piece…who doesn’t love the edge? (and no, they aren’t paying me to say any of this). Check them out here.

And because I feel like sharing – here is a great recipe I got from Emeril and the Food Network for lasagna, tried and approved by me. It is rather a pain to make, but if you have the time and the money, it is well worth it. I have not made it in a long time, but my memory is good – this is the best lasagna I have ever had. One thing to note: use the best cheeses (I substitute beef for veal) and go LIGHT on the salt, because by the time you cook it, it’s plenty salty, believe me, especially if you use the veal.)

Emeril’s Lasagna
2 cups fresh ricotta
8 ounces grated Provolone
8 ounces grated Mozzarella
8 ounces grated Romano
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
1 tablespoon chiffonade of fresh basil
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
Freshly ground black pepper
1 recipe of Emeril’s Meat Sauce, recipe follows
1/2 pound grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1 package of dried lasagna noodles

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a mixing bowl, combine the ricotta, Provolone, Mozzarella, Romano, egg, milk, basil and garlic. Mix well. Season with salt and pepper. To assemble, spread 2 1/2 cups of the meat sauce on the bottom of a deep dish lasagna pan. Sprinkle 1/4 of the grated cheese over the sauce. Cover the cheese with 1/4 of the dried noodles. Spread a 1/4 of the cheese filling evenly over the noodles. Repeat the above process with the remaining ingredients, topping the lasagna with the remaining sauce. Place in the oven and bake until bubbly and golden, about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes before serving. Slice and serve.

Emeril’s Meat Sauce:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 pound ground beef
1/3 pound ground veal
1/3 pound ground pork
Freshly ground black pepper
2 cups finely chopped onions
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
1/2 cup finely chopped carrot
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
2 (28-ounce) can of peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes
1 small can tomato paste
4 cups beef stock or water
2 sprigs of fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons dried basil
Pinch of crushed red pepper
2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano

In a large nonreactive saucepan, over medium heat, add the oil. In a mixing bowl, combine the meat. Season with salt and pepper and mix well. When the oil is hot, add the meat and brown for 4 to 6 minutes. Add the onions, celery, and carrots. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until the vegetables are soft. Add the garlic and tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Continue to cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Whisk the tomato paste with the stock and add to the tomatoes. Add the thyme, bay leaves, oregano, basil and red pepper. Mix well. Bring the liquid to a boil, reduce the heat to medium and simmer for about 2 hours. Stir occasionally and add more liquid if needed. During the last 30 minutes or cooking, reseason with salt and pepper and stir in the cheese. Remove from the heat and let sit for 15 minutes before serving.

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Recipe Round Up – Taco Soup

Fall is one of my favorite seasons – and this is one of my family’s favorite fall dishes. It’s great for those cool and crisp evenings when you just don’t feel like putting a whole lot of effort into cooking, but you want something that tastes good!

Taco Soup
1 lb ground hamburger
1 onion, chopped
1 can rotel
1 can black beans
1 can ranch style beans
1 can corn
1 pkg taco seasoning
1 pkg ranch dressing seasoning

Cook hamburger and onion together until done and drain. Add everything else on the list and heat until warm. This is delicious when served with chips, cheese, and sour cream. Enjoy!

For more recipes, head on over to Leslie’s at Lux Venit for the monthly round-up!

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Mama’s Peach Cobbler

Peach Cobbler

1 can peaches 1/2 cup milk
1 cup sugar 1 cup sugar
1 stick butter, melted 1 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup flour

In saucepan, boil fruit and 1 cup sugar. Mix flour, sugar, and baking powder together. Add milk to melted butter and then stir in dry ingredients. Pour batter into a greased baking dish, then pour fruit and juice into center of batter. Bake at 325 degrees for 45-55 minutes, or until crust is golden brown.

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August Recipe Round Up – Grilling

Growing up in Alaska, I ate a lot of seafood. I fished for King Salmon practically out my back door. Although I loved to fish, cooking and eating salmon was another story. This is the best recipe I have found for grilling salmon of any kind – whether it’s kings, reds or what have you. Sorry I don’t have a picture, but I haven’t had any salmon lately, since I now live in Texas! Just trust me, this is the best grilled salmon recipe in the world!

Grilled Salmon a la Karen


8 salmon fillets, at least 1 inch thick

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon sesame oil

5 tablespoons soy sauce

4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

3 tablespoons honey

3 teaspoons brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, more or less to taste (I use more, but I like it hot)

1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)

2 green onions, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

Place salmon fillets in a large resealable plastic bag. In a separate medium bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients. Whisk together well, and pour over the fish in the plastic bag. Remove the air from the bag and seal tightly. Marinate the fish in the refrigerator for 8 hours or overnight.

Wrap the salmon fillets tightly in aluminum foil. Spray the inside of the aluminum foil with non-stick cooking spray before adding the salmon. Lightly oil the grill grates. Grill the salmon for 15 minutes per inch of thickness on a medium hot grill, or until salmon just flakes with a fork. Turn salmon over halfway through grilling.

NOTE: This recipe can also be baked if you do not own a grill!Baking instructions- After marinating the salmon overnight, place salmon fillets in a glass baking dish that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Pour the leftover marinade over the salmon. Bake in a preheated oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake for about 20 minutes or until salmon flakes easily with a fork.

For more August Grilling, head over to The Happy Wonderer, who is hosting this month’s recipe round-up.

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Recipe Round Up – Texas Ranch Potato Salad

We are not big mayo eaters in our house, but this is one of our favorite potato salads, because it tastes more like a baked potato than potato salad.

Texas Ranch Potato Salad

1 (1oz) pkg Ranch dressing mix
2 cups mayo
3/4 cup chopped green onion
1 lb bacon slices, cooked to a crisp and crumbled
5 lbs unpeeled red potatoes

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add whole potatoes and cook until tender, 15-20 minutes. Drain, run under cold water to cool, and chop into 1 inch cubes. Transfer to a large serving bowl and refrigerate until completely chilled, about 2 hours.

In a small bowl, stir together the ranch dressing mix, mayo and green onion. Cover and refrigerate for about 2 hours to blend flavors.

Stir mayo mixture into the bowl of potatoes. Crumble bacon into the bowl and stir to distribute. (Optional – you can also add shredded cheese – it’s tasty!) Enjoy!

For more Salad recipes, head on over to Promptings…or you can contribute your own on her Mr. Linky!

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