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Tuesday Tip: Food Storage
By: Brie Atherton On: 01:11PM / Tuesday January 25, 2011
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Tip of the week:

Do NOT store your potatoes and onions near each other. When one goes bad, they all go bad.

I store my potatoes in a veggie basket on the counter, and I store my onions in the produce drawer of myrefrigerator. This is also true with banana's. Have you ever  noticed that as soon as one starts to turn, they all follow? Remove the one that's going bad and you should be ok for a little longer. Also, make sure to hang your banana's for longer freshness.

 

*Photo taken from: breakfastblogger.com



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Crunchy Cod
By: Brie Atherton On: 01:30PM / Monday January 24, 2011
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 Does anyone else make 2 or more meals at dinner time? I feel like I shouldn't deprive or limit what my husband eats just because I don't eat meat and am allergic to fish...so I find myself making him some type of meat/fish dinner, and making myself something different. I know that this 'aiming to please' attitude will kill me when I have children! 

 
So, I am allergic to fish, and my husband decides that he wants to try out some cod because it was on sale at the fish counter. I decide that we can totally cook this dish along with some nice roasted potatoes and that it would be a meal that my husband would love! The only catch is, I cannot even touch fish! I decided that this would be a good time to instruct my husband on how to make something delicious, and to see how well I can teach someone how to cook. 
 
According to him, this meal was just wonderful, so I hope that everyone else enjoys it too. It seems to be a healthy meal, because Cod is a healthy protein and although its breaded, its baked and not fried. 

Ingredients:

Cod fillet, cut into about 1 inch pieces
1/2 cup flour
1 cup breadcrumbs
1 egg
2 tsp milk


TIP: The best way to get breaded items crunchy in the oven is to put a cooling rack on top of a baking sheet, this will allow the heat to get all the way around the items that you are cooking. 

Pre-heat oven to 425. Set up 3 stations. 1 with the flour, 1 with the bread crumbs, and 1 with the egg and milk. (Beat the egg and milk together). Take the pieces of fish and dredge it in the flour, then the egg, and then the bread crumbs. Make sure to coat each piece thoroughly! Place breaded fish onto the cooling rack. Once all the fish is breaded, place in the oven for 15-20 minutes. You can serve this with any type of dipping sauce that you like, like tarter sauce, etc.

 



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WonTon Ravioli
By: Brie Atherton On: 12:51PM / Monday January 24, 2011
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 I have a dirty secret to share...although I am very proud of my Italian Heritage, I am very intimidated by making my own ravioli. So, with that said....I have cheated! I have seen a lot of recipes using WonTon wrappers, and recently saw them at my local grocery store. I decided that this would be as good of a time as any to make ravioli using wonton wrappers. I will have to admit that I was a little nervous about cooking them, because it is very important to seal the edges so that they don't explode when you boil them, but I was also worried about what they would taste like. 

Things started off a little rough, because I wanted to make a spinach and mushroom filling with Ricotta cheese, but found that my spinach and mushrooms had sadly gone bad before I could use them. This started a refrigerator binge, and I decided to clean out the whole thing. But in doing this, I found some squash and zucchini that needed to be used before it went bad, as well as a shallot. Woohoooo! So I peeled, and chopped the squash, zucchini and shallot, and then also minced 2 gloves of garlic just for good measure...you can't have ravioli without garlic, right? After chopping everything, I threw all of  the veggies into a skillet with a little bit of Olive oil, salt and pepper, and then just let them get soft. While they were working in the pan I took out 2 bowls and 2 eggs. In one bowl I cracked the egg and beat it with about a teaspoon of water. This was going to be the egg wash that I would need to seal my ravioli together. I then cracked an egg into the other bowl and about a cup of ricotta cheese, salt and pepper, and then just stirred to combine everything together. After the veggies were beautifully cooked, I let them cool for a bit before adding them to my Ricotta mixture. Once they were combined into the cheese it was time to assemble the ravioli. I laid about 8 wonton wrappers out on a cutting board and by dipping my finger into the egg wash, I was then able to rub all around the outside of each of the wrappers. If you have a pastry brush, you could use that instead of your fingers, but my kitchen is pretty minimal with gadgets, so I just used what I had. :) The next step is to take about a teaspoon of your cheese and veggie mixture and place it in the center of the wrappers. This is where you can now decide what shape you would like your ravioli to be. I did some where I took another wonton wrapper (which had also been egg washed) and placed it on top of the filling, and I did some where I just folded the wrapper so that it made a triangle. 

Once you have done enough ravioli's you can start to drop them into boiling salty water. You want to take a spoon a and stir the pot before you put the ravioli in so that you make a whirlpool, as you are stirring you can then drop in your ravioli. Whatever leftovers you may have can be placed on a baking sheet that is lined with parchment, and then covered in plastic wrap and put in the refrigerator before they are cooked. Let the ravioli cook until it has floated up to the top of the pot (about 2-3 minutes) This can then be served with a brown butter sauce, vodka sauce, or any sauce that you may like.

Ingredients List:

2 eggs

1 cup Ricotta Cheese

1 zucchini 

1 squash

1 shallot

WonTon wrappers

Garlic

Salt and Pepper

Sauce



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Weekend Review: Tofurkey Sandwich 'Meat'
By: Brie Atherton On: 12:12PM / Saturday January 22, 2011
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 I recently decided that although I do not eat much meat, I had started to eat a lot of shaved chicken on my sandwiches. I really wanted to focus back in on my vegetarian-ness, so I decided to try out Tofurkey Sandwich 'Meat'. This comes in all sorts of flavors like hickory smoked, roasted, etc. I decided to just go with Roasted Flavor.

First Thoughts: This looks like old bologna, and smells like dogfood....maybe this was a bad decision....

Upon tasting I realized that if you could get over the look and smell, you were good to go, because this was delicious. I would say that it is even better than the chicken sandwich meat! I use this just as I would normal sandwich meat, but I feel much better about sticking to not eating poor animals. (and I am sure the tofu was treated more fairly and in better conditions)

Star rating: I would give this 4.5 stars - the only reason it didn't get 5 was because of the smell :)



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Popovers
By: Brie Atherton On: 12:40PM / Friday January 21, 2011
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There is this local TV channel that I watch a lot...mostly because it's one of the few channels that we get, but it does have a ton of really great cooking shows. The channel is called Create, and they have everything from travel shows to cooking shows to DIY shows. 

 
There is one show in particular that is called Cooks Country. This is a show that is set in a test kitchen. They go over all sorts of recipes and figure out how to perfect them. My husband and I were watching one day as they were making popovers. Here is where I am about to be VERY embarrassed. Not only have I never heard or eaten a popover, but I also had no idea that they were one of my husbands favorite foods! 
 
Of course, now that I have been thoroughly embarrassed, I had to make them. I do not own a popover pan, so I tried to make them in my muffin pan...this would have worked wonderfully but I decided to be a lazy chef and skip the part where you take the vegetable shortening and rub it on the pan along with a dusting of flour... I decided instead to use muffin liners. This was not a good idea, and I do not recommend it. We couldn't even peel the popovers out of the cups, no matter how hard or long we tried. 

Cooks Country does an amazing job of saying how to make these, and I found their directions to be wonderful, so here is the ingredients list, and please take a look at their site for the complete how to. I promise that it's not as difficult as it sounds, they are just very thorough in their directions. 
 
Ingredients:
 
Vegetable Shortening
3 Large Eggs
2 Cups low fat milk, warmed
3 tbsp unsalted butter
2 cups bread flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
 



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