Monday, August 30, 2010

Tortelloni Frittata

Leftovers on Huevos Experiment III

I love pasta salad.  One of my favorite pasta salads came from a local pizzaria that recently shut down leaving an empty, gapping whole in my heart.  So when we recently purchased some fresh pesto tortelloni, I was quick to turn it into the best pasta salad I could using only the ingredients I had on hand. What ended up in the pasta salad was....

Diced Red Peppers
Chopped Banana Pepper
Olive Tapenade (making sure to add a lot of the oil)
Shredded Parmesan Cheese
Diced onions
Halved Sungold Tomatoes (the best little 'maters you'll ever put in your mouth)
Garlic Pepper and Salt to taste

Sorry I don't have a recipe, but I wasn't measuring or intending to post it.  However, pasta salad is hard to screw up   Just chop, eyeball, add, mix, taste and repeat until it's to your liking.  If you over do one thing or another, just physically weed it out.  If you really screw it up, then just rinse the pasta off and start anew (and maybe sober up a bit).

Flash forward to Sunday morning, a day that is sacred because it is the only day that I can sleep in and (most of the time) am obligated to do nothing.  A day where I can enjoy a cold coffee with maple syrup on the front porch and build up an appetite as I mentally plan a day that will bring me enjoyment.  The first thing to accomplish is to concoct a heady breakfast.  Eggs are usually involved -- you may have noticed from previous posts.  

Now, a frittata is quite a simple and grande thing baked up into one little pot.  Having already chopped several vegetables for the pasta salad, the most work I had to do for this dish was whisk together the egg mixture and cut the tortelloni's in half (they were huge!)   I used a small cast iron skillet and it made 2 servings.  I recommend expanding the recipe to feed a large mass...just use a bigger skillet.  

1/2 - 3/4 cup leftover pasta salad (any will do, but the stuffed pasta put it over the top)
2 eggs
1/4 cup milk
1 tbsp butter


Heat butter in a small oven proof pan on medium-high heat.  Mix together eggs and milk in a bowl.  After butter has fully melted, pour egg mixture into pan.  Evenly spoon pasta salad into the egg mixture.  
Let cook until the edges of the frittata are cooked.

Preheat oven to broil (light broil if it's an option). Place pan in oven ~5 minutes to finish cooking the top of the frittata. Watch closely!  Seriously, don't stray far.  Keep the oven light on and park a chair in front if you have to.  

When eggs look fully cooked and there is no runny liquid when you tilt the pan, it's done!
Slice into quadrants and slide out with a spatula onto your plate.  

This ended up being a completely excellent creation. 

Would go well with some toast or biscuits on the side.  Yes, indeed.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Squash Casserole w/ Goat Cheese and Lobster Ravioli Crust

This summer we've been squash casserolin' it about once a week due to the obscene amount of squash and other veggies coming from our friend's farm.  I usually top with bread crumbs, and serve with a side of potatoes, mashed or roasted.  Since we were sans potatoes this week, and extra hungry, we decided to use the near expired (and cheap as hell) lobster ravioli from Trader Joe's we'd been saving.  The resulting casserole was a thing of beauty...

4-5 Squash, sliced and quartered
2-3 medium red peppers
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup frozen spinach or 1 bag (~8 oz) fresh spinach
1/2  cup whole wheat flour
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
6 oz goat cheese
1 package Trader Joe's Lobster Ravioli
Salt and Pepper
Shredded Parmesan to garnish
1 tbsp olive oil

Fill a pot with water and add Lobster Ravioli.  Place ravioli on stove and bring to a boil.  Once water starts boiling, take pot off the heat and drain in a colander.  In another pot, sauté onions in olive oil for 5 minutes then then add garlic, peppers and squash.  Cook until squash are soften but still firm (about 15 minutes).

While vegetables are cooking, mix milk, egg and flour in the bottom of a casserole dish.  Add spinach, goat cheese and sauteed veggies into the casserole dish.  Mix thoroughly.

Strategically and artistically place raviolis on top of the mixed ingredients and sprinkle with some parmesan.  Cover with aluminum foil and place in oven for 30 minutes.  After 30 minutes, remove foil and let cook for another 20-30 minutes, until top begins to brown.  If top has not browned by that time, broil for 1-3 minutes...but watch carefully, it can turn from brown to burn very quickly on broil!

adj. Slang-mi·er-mi·est.
  1. Very pleasing to the taste or smell; delicious. See synonyms at delicious.
  2. Delightful; delicious.
[From yum, the sound of smacking the lips.]
yumminess yum'mi·ness n.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Alcoholic Puddin'

Is more then just a sweet southern nickname.

This is so easy!  I recently picked up a 99¢ box of instant chocolate pudding from Trader Joe's because  I thought it would be a cheap, easily stored, quick-fix for the sugar munchies sometime in my future.  When the time came, I was also eyeballing the bottle of irish cream in the fridge as an even quicker fix.  Then, like an eclipse - or a Venn diagram of thought- the 2 were combined...


1 box chocolate instant pudding
1 1/2 cups milk (I used Vanilla Almond Milk)
1/2 cup Irish Cream


Follow directions on box.  This particular box called for 2 cups milk to be mixed in with the pudding powder.  I decided to replace 1/4 of this with the Irish Cream, but you should experiment with replacing 1/2 or all of the milk and let me know the results!

The whole prep time took about 10-15 minutes - longer if you wish to chill, which I recommend.  The shallower the container you store it in, the quicker it will cool.

Replacing 1/4 of the milk with Irish Cream imparted a noticeable alcohol "bite" to the pudding and the Irish Cream flavor mixed beautifully with the chocolate.  

And it would be simply mad if you decided to pour it on some Ben & Jerry's Crème Brûlée ice cream...