October 22nd, 2012
Subj: request for your child’s favorite cars characters
yup. that’s right. you’ll soon get confirmation that i’m throwing a disney themed birthday party. i’m the first. i’m going there. i stand proud.
in honor of this great event of parental resignation and humility, i ask that you please send me your child’s favorite character from the Disney/Pixar movie Cars by the end of the week.
if you have a child (ahem, a daughter) who does not have a favorite character from Cars, please know in advance that I will do the Disney thing and provide her with a Sally-themed goody bag in honor of the token spunky female character.
buckle up, bitches. you’re on my ride now.
October 19th, 2012
If I understand correctly, Pop Tarts are toaster pastries that get their name from the fact that they P-O-P in and out of the toaster. Sound right? Then these—and most other homemade—’Pop Tarts’ making the internet a tastier place are not really Pop Tarts at all. Made with a simple pie dough (as opposed to a flaky pastry dough), they are more like hand pies.
I have a feeling that you don’t care much about the veracity of my pop tart claim. (If you do, drop me a line and I’ll happily divert some of the time that I spend on Pinterest to a conversation about the accurate naming of home baked goods.) I have a feeling that you’d much rather know that these:
* freeze beautifully
* can be filled with nearly anything you like
* can be taken out of the freezer the night before you want to, uh, POP them into kiddo’s lunchbox or serve them as an after school snack
* are fun to make with kiddo (you can tell from my photo that the hungry boy led the charge on our last batch)
So, yea, pop tarts… hand pies… who cares?!
October 17th, 2012
Do you tire of me carrying on about meatballs? (I hope that’s the first time you’ve been asked that question!) A quick scan of my Indian Spiced Meatballs post reveals that I’m a serious fan. And who wouldn’t be? Meatballs are a wonderful early finger food, a great way to introduce animal protein, and also a grown up favorite, whether at dinner or a cocktail party. Meatballs are pretty much a perfect all-around family food.
This recipe is a quick adaptation of the Greek-Style meatballs that my grandmother made for me when I was little. When she—and, really, all Greeks—make meatballs with rice, they are usually cooked in an avgolemono (egg-lemon) sauce. It’s delicious, but requires a bit of extra cooking time. When Greeks whip up quick sautéed meatballs like these they typically skip the rice and serve the meatballs plain or in a quick-cook tomato sauce.
I combined both approaches to make this super easy, quick cook meatball that has the added grain which makes these a more complete meal for little ones. My approach cuts cooking in half, to just shy of 30 minutes, especially when you see my trick for dealing with the onion and garlic.
October 10th, 2012
I love apple butter, and I love my slow cooker, too. Lucky for me, they work well together.
You throw apples and some spices into a crock pot in the morning (or before bed), your house smells amazing for 10 hours, and you scoop out a sweet and spicy, dark amber spread that makes anything it touches more delicious.
October 8th, 2012
You’ve been following as I document daily school lunches for the hungry boy. Now, you can watch my conversation with Johanna Cook of MommaCuisine.com on how to make packing healthy and fun lunches easy breezy.
For the segment, which was part of the premier episode of the Momma Cuisine #MCShowLIVE, I’ve put together a One Hungry Mama school lunch resource guide.
Take a look and watch the video for some of my favorite school lunch packing tips (watch the whole show; I start at around 26:20).
October 5th, 2012
Ever since I made this Zucchini, Tomato and Pesto Tart, I’ve become obsessed with puff pastry. Weird considering that I used to have an aversion to the stuff.
If it hadn’t been for Alice Currah’s Savory Sweet Life cookbook, I’m not sure that I would have ever tried working with frozen puff pastry again. It never did anything for me and now, thanks to Alice’s savory tart, I know why. I’d always used puff pastry for sweet recipes. I’d end up feeling like I’d rather have cake or at least something like cake, which puff pastry is not. Topping puff pastry with savory ingredients, though, opened a whole new world. A world that I’m happy to visit. Often.
I’ve made the Zucchini, Tomato and Pesto Tart a few times and have even churned out a couple of Corn and Mushroom Tarts. Both delicious each and every time. Now I’m bringing easy puff pastry tarts into fall with this Beet and Feta Tart.
October 3rd, 2012
This is the hungry boy’s new favorite lunch. Big surprise, huh? Who wouldn’t want to eat cream cheese and jelly french toast bites for lunch? I know that I would. Well, actually, I’d prefer them for breakfast which is exactly what I get when I pack these for school lunch.
It’s true that these school lunch french toast bites require some cooking, but only 6 minutes. And here’s the best part: they double as a on-the-go breakfast for you (and a great finger food for little brother or sister!), which makes the fact that you have to do a little cooking totally worthwhile.
Breakfast for you, a school lunch they’ll eat—I’d say that’s worth 6 minutes. If you agree, here’s how you whip these up:
October 2nd, 2012
The show follows 16 chefs, 8 Americans and 8 Brits, as they race across American in hopes of winning $100,000. With no money and minimal resources, the chefs must rely on their cooking skills, as well as on their resourcefulness and ingenuity to make it through their 3,000 mile adventure. I don’t know, but Phoebe has serious cooking skills and is pretty damn smart. We might have a winner in our corner!
In honor of tonight’s Chef Race premier, Phoebe is hosting a virtual viewing party potluck that is starting NOW! Join in the fun by checking out the all-American recipes that Phoebe’s cheering squad has put together in her honor. Then be sure to visit the “girl next door” herself to enter to win a red, white and blue goodie bag from Le Creuset, Edgeware, and Dreamfarm.
So, what’s my all-American recipe for Phoebe? Dulce de Leche Apple Pie, of course!
October 1st, 2012
There’s this thing, a process, that happens every fall. It starts with denial that summer is over. I just pretend it isn’t. Then, right around this time, I enthusiastically jump into fall. With two feet and sweaters, squash, light scarves and apples. (Lots and lots of apples.) My enthusiasm for a new season lasts a surprisingly long time—I think that the many birthdays and holidays carry me through—and then, somewhere around January 6th I get sad. So, so sad that summer is over.
Or maybe those are just the mid-winter blues? The point is that once I accept fall (even if a little late), I love fall. And fall food, too.
I may be wearing a bright pink sun dress in my latest video for The Bump, but the warm and cozy Parmesan Mashed Cauliflower is all about fall. This is a stick-to-your-ribs side dish that’s actually quite light thanks to protein-rich Greek yogurt. It gives the mash a creamy texture with only two tablespoons of butter and three of grated Parmesan. That’s for a whole head of cauliflower, too! Genius.
September 27th, 2012
Do I sound bossy when I tell you what to do in the title? When I can’t wait until you dig into the post to start ordering you around? Or do you kind of like it? Either way, I’m being bossy because I care. Because I know what’s good for you. And for your family.
These roasted plums are bites torn from the autumn heavens. Fresh Italian plums sprinkled with sea salt, olive oil and, if you like, honey…
…then roasted until they are soft, but still shapely, and oozing a velvety syrup.
September 25th, 2012
It’s canning and pickling season but, sadly, this year I’m spread to thin too join the fun. Or at least I didn’t get it together in time. I might whip up a small batch of plum jam with some fall plums, still gloriously abundant. I’m also considering canning the peaches I got at this weekend’s farmer’s market. But then I’d have to skip eating the last peaches of the season in all their delicious, raw glory. I’m torn.
Even if I manage to slip in these canning projects under the wire, it’s pretty much dunzo. But instead of lamenting a sad lack of pickles and jams, preserved fruits and tomatoes, I’m getting creative. Take that canning.
I’ve always wanted to pickle my own giardiniera, an Italian (Italian-American?) combination of pickled vegetables often served as an antipasto. There are variations, but it’s usually a tart and spicy combo of onions, celery, carrots, cauliflower and hot pepper. Since pickling my own giardiniera is unlikely to happen, I made a roasted veggie variation. And it totally hit the spot.
September 21st, 2012
“Mama, guess what my favorite food is.”
“Hm. Are we talking a sweet food or dinner-y food?”
“Dinner-y foods are better.”
My heart flutters with pride. “Hm. Not soba…”
I remember that the hungry boy sometimes confuses entire cuisines with specific dishes. I try another tack.
“Your favorite food is… Japanese food!”
“YES! I love it.”
September 20th, 2012
A big congrats to Elizabeth, the winner of Catherine McCord’s new Weelicious cookbook. Luckily for her and her Mexican-food loving family, there are a couple of mouthwatering, Mexican inspired recipes in the book. Enjoy! And thanks to everyone else for joining in the fun!
Every once and a while, a cookbook comes along that has great recipes, but doesn’t take itself too seriously. One that’s fun, but not silly. One that’s warm, but not precious. One that’s healthy, but not extreme. One that makes you—and the kids!—smile. Every once and a while, a cookbook like the new Weelicious cookbook by Catherine McCord comes out.