Breakfast, Brunch, Muffins and other sweets

Savory muffins

After we ‘overloaded’ on the Overloaded Muffins I was just craving for some savory ones for a change. Personally, I love both. These goodies are called Grab and Go Muffins. I had two for breakfast and two for lunch at work. I could have another two for dinner, no problem if I wouldn’t have to share them 🙂

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 chicken breast cooked and chopped
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 cup mushrooms, diced
  • 1 cup frozen spinach, (chopped)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 4 free run eggs
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tbsp Parmesan flakes ( save a few cheese flakes for the muffin’s top )
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup cashew milk ( you can use any milk of your choice )
  • 3 strings green onion ( I would say that green onion is highly recommended  in savory muffins. However,  I had no green onions handy so I substitute them with 1/4 red onion diced )
  • Himalayan  salt
  • pinch of sweet paprika

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 F. Lined a 12-cup muffin pan with muffin papers.

In a on stick skillet saute the onion, spinach and mushrooms for a few minutes. Season with salt and black pepper. Set aside to cool down.

In a small bowl mix together the flour, baking powder and salt. Not too much as you have already seasoned for salt the veggies.

In a large bowl mix together the eggs and the milk. Add the chicken, red pepper, Parmesan cheese  and  veggies mix. Stir until well combined.

Add the dry ingredients over the wet ones and stir gently until well combined.

Scoop the mixture in the prepared tray. Bake for about 20 – 25 minutes until golden brown on top. Let it cool in the tray for about 5 minutes and than place the muffins of a cooling rack and just enjoy them 😉

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Fluffy Rice Pilaf

When you cook a rice pilaf you should always get started by cooking onion in a small sauce pan. Onion is a must. To the onion you could add garlic, shallots and fennel.This will make the difference between steamed rice and pilaf. As I mentioned, add two tbsp of olive oil or unsalted butter to a sauce pan. Add the onion and  cook until translucent.

Now it is time for the spices. You can go for either coriander and cumin or cinnamon and all spices. I went a bit different this time and I added one teaspoon tandoori seasoning which includes: cumin, coriander, paprika, cinnamon, cardamon, turmeric  and black pepper.I read that you should keep it simple and don’t use to many spices at once but I just like the seasoning I am using as it nicely balances out all the flavors.

Once the onion and the spices are cooked ( about 30 seconds ) it’s time for the rice. Add  one cup of long grain white rice. Cook until rice is well covered in spices and the mixture is translucent.

I added know about 6 white mushrooms and half of red pepper and stirred to mix all the flavors together.

Another  important adding is the cooking liquid. Water should be replaced by broth. You can add either chicken broth, veggie broth or seafood broth. Also a bit of white wine one will be welcomed here 😉 Add about one cup of chicken broth and a splash of wine and bring to a broil for about 10-15 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed. 

Before serving you can add 2 – 3 tbsp of herbs: cilantro, parsley or mint depending of preferences. Next step? You enjoy it 😉

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Vegetarian

Spinach puree ( dip ) with mushrooms and potatoes

Saturday mornings, or sometimes Friday evenings, is the time for grocery shopping. Last week it happened on Saturday and I loved it because we’ve been to the store first thing in the morning when everything was fresh and plentiful. So when I saw the fresh spinach bunches, I could not resist, so I bought two of them. The mushrooms were also so white and fresh … I had already a meal in my mind. Of course my spinach puree with mushrooms and potatoes. All I needed was some potatoes. Found them too … I know this is not a traditional dish it’s just our way to eat the puree spinach. When I was little we used to eat the spinach puree with hard-boiled eggs or fried eggs aside some potatoes buns. I loved and asked for this dish as soon as spinach was on the market. Still I was never able to make the spinach or the potatoes buns in my mother’s way so I gave up and found our own personal way to eat the spinach puree .I love the memory of my mother’s way but we enjoy every time our new and personal recipe.

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • for the spinach:
  • 2 fresh spinach bunches
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 3-4 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 tbsp whole wheat flour ( of course you can use the white if you prefer)
  • 4 tbsp of plain yogurt or sour cream ( or you can substitute with milk )
  • half of cup of milk or water
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • for the potatoes
  • 4 large or 68 small potatoes
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • for the mushrooms
  • 2 casseroles ( 227 g each ) white mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small lemon ( juice )
  • salt and pepper
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs ( optional )

Let’s get started:

Wash the potatoes and the spinach very well with running water.

Put the potatoes with the skin on in a pot and cover with water. Add a bit of salt and bring to a boil for about 15 – 20 minutes. When a fork is going easily in the potatoes they are ready. Turn off the heat and cover with some cold water and let them sit just like that to cool down.

While the potatoes are cooking we can break the steam from the spinach. If you use baby spinach you can skip this step. Bring a large pot with water to a boil and when is bubble add the spinach. Do not cook more than five minutes. We don’t want to miss all the vitamins.

Strain the spinach and let it in the strainer to lose all the liquid. You can press it from time to time with a spoon.

Clean the mushroom with a brush or a cloth or peel the skin of you like it and leave them whole if not too large or cut them in half or quarters if they are too large. Place some olive oil in a skillet and add the mushrooms and cook stirring occasionally for about three-four minutes. Add the lemon juice, salt and pepper and cook for one-two more minutes. Keep them in w warm place.

Now it’s the right time to boil the eggs and to peel and mince the garlic.

Check on the spinach and if seems that it still have too much liquid press it more and then you can mice it very well on a cutting board. Place the minced spinach back in the strainer to lose more liquid if there is some left. In a deep skillet add 4 tbsp olive oil and the garlic and cook for one minute. You can discard the garlic but I like to feel it in my dish. Add the flour and stir. Add the yogurt and the milk and cook to a low heat until is a smooth sauce. Add more yogurt or milk if needed. It should have the consistency of a sour cream. When the yogurt sauce is ready add the minced spinach and cook for about 1 minute stirring continuously. Cover and keep it in a warm place.

Peal the potatoes.  They should be a little bit warm, which is good because they will absorb the olive oil.  Cut them in the desire from and pour some olive oil, salt and pepper and give them a light stir.

Now it’s time to plate the food and enjoy it.

Bon Appetite!!!

PS

It seems to be a lots of steps in this dish but I am doing it for so long that I do not need more than one hour to have it done. But as well you can skip the potatoes or the mushrooms and just use the spinach puree as a dip. You won’t regret 🙂

What is going to be tomorrow for lunch ?!? I am thinking to Broccoli Cheese Casserole !!!

Vegetarian

Mushrooms and vegetables cream soup

After cooking the vegetables and meat, it was time for a soup. I love soup.

This time I tried something new, something I haven’t done as often,  only once or twice. But never with a “wow,mom so delicious” reply.

For this soup I got inspired from two blogs : adihadean.ro with Cream Garlic Soup and ” Bucataresele vesele ” with Mushroom Cream Soup.

What I used from this two blogs ? I combined the garlic idea from Adi with the list of ingredients from Bucataresele Vesele.

Here it is what it came out :

Ingredients  ( servings about 8 -10 )

400 gr of white mushrooms

5 piece green onions

2 carrots

1 parsnip

1/2 of root celery

2 white potatoes

1 onion

5 garlic cloves

olive oil

salt and black pepper

 

( for the soup I used only 2 potatoes )

I peeled and washed all the vegetables and boiled them in water with 1 tbsp of vegeta ( food seasoning ) until they were very well done ( about 30 minutes )

Drained the vegetables and let them cool but save the vegetable soup for later.

Peal and lightly wash the mushroom and green onions. In a skillet heat 2 tbsp of olive oil and add the green onion, mushroom salt and pepper and saute them for about 3-5 minutes.

Peel and cut the garlic cloves in small pieces. In a large pot heat 3 tbsp of olive oil and add the garlic cloves. Take away from the heat and add 2 tbsp of all purpose flour stirring well and add about 1 ladle of vegetables soup and stir very well with a whisk until smooth and creamy.  Add more vegetables soup  and place it back on the heat and simmer for about 2-3 minutes until thickens a bit. Set aside.

 

Using a blander smooth the vegetables adding a cup of vegetable soup. When smooth and creamy add the vegetables smooth to the garlic mixture and bring back to heat on very low heat.

In the same blander place the green onions,  mushrooms and some of the vegetable soup and smooth them well. Add the mushroom mixture to the soup and give a good stir. Add more vegetable soup until the desire consistency.

 

Bon Appetite !!!

 

 

 

Vegetarian

Oven vegetables: asparagus, mushroom and zucchini

Even though I haven’t posted for a week it does not mean I have not cooked a lot : a week long of vegetables. Some of the recipes I made were the usual ones but  I also made some new ones which  I got inspired from all the blogs I visit every day.

I am going to start my last week posting with an old recipe : Oven vegetables: asparagus, mushroom and zucchini. So simple and delicious and it can be use as a side dish or just like a meal.

Ingredients ( 4 servings if it’s a meal or 6-8 servings for a side dish )

1 bunch asparagus

2 medium zucchini

400 grams white mushrooms

1 lemon

5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

salt and black pepper

dried basil ( optional )

Wash and cut asparagus in 1 inch pieces.

Wash and cut zucchini in 1 inch quarter pieces.

Peel,wash and cut in pieces the mushrooms.

Place the vegetable pieces in a large bowl and add: lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper and dried oregano and give them a good toss. Place them in a oven tray and bake them for about 20 minutes, until done but still a bit crispy.

This time we served them just like that :

 

Bon Appetite !!!

 

 

 

Pork

Pork chops with mashed potatoes and mushrooms

Today’s lunch is a bit different because it has its roots back home. Looks like a very usual Romanian Sunday lunch.

My family was asking for mashed potatoes so I was thinking to make something that reminds us our childhood, our mother’s or grandmother’s dishes.

I always cook Sunday more because I love to have some leftovers for Monday’s lunch, that’s why I have made 6 portions.

Ingredients ( 6 servings )

1 piece of boneless pork chop, cut in 12 slices

8 large white potatoes

20 large white mushrooms ( or 2 casseroles of  200 gr )

3 tbsp barbecue sauce

2 tbsp tomato sauce

100 ml white wine ( sauvignion blanc )

salt, black pepper, garlic powder

3 tbsp sour cream for the potatoes

extra virgin olive oil

canola oil

Oil a glass tray with canola oil and place the pork chops. Season them with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Add 100 ml of wine and 100 ml of water.

Let them cool for 15 minutes while preheating the oven to 350 F. Bake them for about 40 minutes. After 20-30 minutes add the barbecue sauce mixed with a bit of water and bake for 10 more minutes.

Peel the potatoes and cut them in thin round pieces. Add them to a skillet and cover them with water. Add a bit of salt.  Boil them until soft.

Meantime, peel the mushroom and place them in a small tray. Drizzle olive oil, salt and pepper and 2 tbsp tomato sauce. Toss lightly and bake them for 20 minutes.

When potatoes are soft, drain the water and mash them. Add the sour cream ( or butter if preferred ) a bit of salt if still needed and keep them coverd in the stove to keep them warm until the table is set up.

And if you have kids who hate mushrooms 🙂 you can enjoy the meal without them …


Bon Appetite !!!