Roasted brussel sprouts seem to be very trendy at the moment. I love roasted veggies and brussel sprouts in particular are quite nutritious; rich in protein, dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants so I thought I’d suggest this easy recipe. The prep work is very easy and if you use tinfoil you needn’t even dirty a single pan – total prep and cooking time is 40 minutes.
Start by preheating your oven to 400 degrees then soak the sprouts in salted water for a few moments to help remove any dirt. After, chop the stem and remove any discolored outer leaves. Aside from mincing a garlic clove, this is all the food prep required.
Once the brussel sprouts have been prepped you will need 1/4 cup of good extra virgin olive oil (enough to thoroughly coat the sprouts), a minced clove of garlic, a few pinches of salt and a ziploc bag that you can use to incorporate the ingredients.
Once you’ve added everything in the ziploc bag – give it a thorough shaking. You want the salt, garlic and olive oil to cover / coat the sprouts to add flavor and prevent them from drying out or burning when you roast them in the oven.
Pour out the brussel sprouts, garlic and salt into a cookie sheet lined with tinfoil (to make the clean up easier) and insert the tray into the oven at 400 F for 30 minutes. Shake / stir the sprouts every 10 minutes to help the vegetables cook more evenly. They are delicious when you take them out of the oven, but beware – they are extremely hot.
I’m mindful of the fact that I’ve not posted much pertaining to cooking lately. Part of that is because I tend to repeat a lot of meals that I really like, such as my Wicked Awesome Chicken and Peppers.
Last week I made this (a personal favorite) with extra dashes of crushed red pepper for additional heat since Sergio was away. This is such an easy, affordable meal that it is one of my ‘go-to’ plates. The secret ingredient for this meal is the pepperini. I didn’t mention them when I first shared the recipe, because I don’t like the jarred variety sold in grocery chains, preferring the deli variety I have at my local grocer.
The plate I made last week with homemade spinach linguine was so good I actually had to talk to myself in the mirror to explain why I didn’t need a third plate.
Do you have a go to plate that you absolutely love? What is it?
This past February I wrote about cooking cauliflower in this post. This past weekend I picked up cauliflower and decided I’d experiment with trying to make a version of mashed potatoes but in lieu of using the spud, I’d swap it out with cauliflower. The ingredients I used included: one head of cauliflower, one clove of garlic, 7 oz of plain Greek yogurt, skim milk (sorry – I didn’t measure), 1 tablespoon of butter, salt and pepper to taste.
The first step included chopping the cauliflower and roasting it alongside a head of garlic in the oven for 30 minutes at 400 F. I let the cauliflower and garlic rest for about 10-15 minutes to cool then I added them along with the remainder of the ingredients in a blender.
In hindsight I should have used my little Cuisinart because the blender was too deep but after a bit of cursing I was able to get everything to work and puree the ingredients. It was at this point that I added the skim milk to try and help with the blending process.
While I’m relatively happy with this cooking experiment there are a few things I might do differently. My mother suggested that I steam the cauliflower because it will add moisture. I’m inclined to agree and will try that next time. Do you have a recipe for something similar? Tell me about it by emailing me or leaving instructions in the comments section.
This easy to make dinner provides a lot of flavor and can be prepped and cooked in approximately 30 minutes. Ingredients include: 1 lb of chicken, 2 bell peppers, 6-8 small spicy peppers, 2-3 garlic cloves, crushed red pepper, oregano and flour.
Step 1: Dredge the chicken in flour and add to an already hot pan with olive oil and two crushed garlic cloves over medium heat. Cover the chicken once added and flip the pieces as they start to brown. Add the dried herbs – crushed red pepper and oregano.
Step 2: Cut the bell peppers and smaller spicy pepperoncini and add to the pan then cover. Continue to vigorously shake the pan to keep the chicken from sticking. The peppers will create a lot of steam that the chicken will absorb so be sure to cover the pan once they are added.
Step 3: Add 1/2 cup to 1 cup of white wine and cover. Continue to vigorously shake the pan rather than taking the lid off to stir so the ingredients all mix. Cook for approximately 10-15 minutes depending on the size of the meat.
The smell of this as it cooks (esp. once you’ve added the peppers and wine) is heady, keep it covered so the chicken will absorb those flavors. This dish is best served over a bed of pasta – my preference is linguine. If possible add 1/4 of a cup (half a ladle) of the boiling water that cooked the pasta this will add more liquid and flavor. Toss the cooked pasta in the pan or use tongs to coat it with all the flavors from the chicken, peppers and wine.
Shrimp scampi is an easy and quick meal that anyone can make if you have two pans and the right ingredients – which fortunately are easy to buy and not expensive. I served this dinner following an arugula salad with tomatoes, walnuts and cranberries that I paired with a delicious sauvignon blanc (Petit Bourgeois that Brix sells for $12.99).
Click on photograph to enlarge
Ingredients for the shrimp scampi include: 1/2 lb of linguine, 12 shrimp, 1/2 cup of white wine (I used a sauvignon blanc), 2 tablespoons of butter, 1 teaspoon of lemon zest, 2 tablespoons of chopped parsley, 4 garlic cloves sliced thinly, a dash of salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and red pepper flakes (for some heat – optional). Not shown is the olive oil I coated the pan with to start the cooking.
Start by boiling water for your pasta in one pan and adding oil in a frying pan and turning the heat to medium high. After a minute, add the sliced garlic and butter and stir to prevent the ingredients from burning.
Once you smell the garlic cooking and it slightly browns add seasonings: salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and red pepper flakes and the shrimp then cover the pan. Give the pan a good shake and flip the shrimp after a minute or two. Once the shrimp is pink on both sides, add the parsley, turn off stove and remove from heat but keep covered.
When the pasta is done add it to the pan; coat the pasta with the wine and butter sauce so all the flavors are absorbed and will flavor the pasta.Then plate and serve. The longest part of this dinner is waiting for the water to boil for the pasta and assembling the ingredients. My total cooking time was about 20 minutes and the cost of this dinner (which by the way serves two) was approximately $7.00.
This is a good vegetarian option for the winter because it is so hearty. It takes one hour to make because there are a few steps but it is worth the effort. Ingredients include: 4-5 zucchini, 1 cup of grated Parmesan cheese, 1 cup of shredded Mozzarella, 1 cup of panko w/ spinach (use bread crumbs if you prefer) 8-10 oz of spinach, 14-16 oz of red sauce, 4-6 roasted garlic cloves, one roasted red bell pepper, 2 egg yolks, 1/2 of a sweet onion.
First, make a red sauce. I used a trusty jarred variety but I pureed and added 1/2 an onion, roasted red bell pepper and 4 roasted garlic cloves in a pan before adding the sauce for flavoring. The peppers will make the sauce sweet which is important. Let the sauce simmer for ~15 mins then prep the zucchini for breading.The first plate includes two egg yolks and some water whisked lightly followed by a container with 1 cup of spinach flavored panko crumbs and half a cup of grated Parmesan cheese. After breading each zucchini strip place it on a foiled pan and put it in a preheated oven (at 350 degrees Farenheit) for 15 minutes.
While the breaded zucchini is in the oven, add the spinach with 2 crushed garlic cloves and a splash of white wine in a pan over medium heat and cover to wilt it. This will be layered onto the zucchini when you prep BosGuy’s Wicked Awesome Zucchini.
Add a ladle of red sauce to the bottom of a rectangular oven safe container. This will prevent the zucchini from sticking when you layer them (see below). After you place the first layer of zucchini, add the wilted spinach (remove the crushed garlic cloves) and ladle more sauce, sprinkle some Mozzarella. Add a final layer of zucchini and add enough sauce and cheese to cover the vegetables entirely. Then cover with foil and place it in the oven at 350 degrees Farenheit for 20 minutes. When you take out the zucchini give it 10 minutes to cool then enjoy.
Cauliflower is affordable to buy and very healthy, but people seem to rarely purchase it. I have a quick, easy recipe that is great as a side dish or snack that takes 20 minutes to make.
Ingredients: head of Cauliflower, 1/4 cup of bread crumbs, handful of grated Parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning and salt.
Cut the cauliflower florets and put them in a pan with only a little olive oil over medium low heat. Sprinkle Italian seasoning and pepper then cover.
Let the vegetable cook for a few minutes to soften then put the cauliflower into a glass oven-safe container and sprinkle 1/4 cup of bread crumbs and roughly half that amount of grated Parmesan cheese. Cover the cauliflower with foil so the moisture won’t escape and bake at 350 degrees Farenheit for 15 minutes. Then remove foil and let it cook for another 5 minutes.
I like to take out of the oven when they are slightly golden. Let them cool slightly and eat them like on would popcorn (you’ll need napkins) or serve them as a side dish for dinner.
Did you know? Cauliflower is exceptionally rich in Vitamin C and also has a significant amount of Vitamin B-6 and Potassium.