Apples!! Going APPLE Picking???…Recipes to help you use them up!!!

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Apples

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Apple Bourbon Glaze over Grilled Pork Chops (can use over other meats as well)

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Apple, Goat Cheese & Arugula Pizza

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Apple Crisp

WE LOVE APPLES…if you have children chances are you have or will be going Apple Picking soon…

GRILLED PORK CHOPS WITH APPLE BOURBON GLAZE (this recipe can be used on other meats as well) serves 4

  • 2 Tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground blk pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 4 12 oz pork chops (can use bone in or out)
  • Olive oil

In a bowl mix together the above ingredients. Brush pork chops with olive oil and press in this mixture to coat.  Place in a baking dish, cover and refrigerate 12-24 hours if possible so flavors sink in. (you do not need to wait this long if short on time- at least wait an hour)

Bring Chops to room temperature before cooking

Glaze…

  • 1 12oz can thawed Apple juice concentrate
  • 1 cup Bourbon
  • 3 Tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1.2 teaspoon kosher salt

Make the glaze: In a medium saucepan add the above & bring to a boil then reduce heat. Simmer to reduce and thicken, about 15 minutes on a medium heat.  If you like it spicy add 1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper once it is off the heat.

Preheat the grill to 400 degrees. (if cooking inside heat on High)  Spray with cooking oil so chops don’t stick.  Place chops on the grill and grill for about 5 minutes on each side with cover on.  Then brush both sides with glaze and grill another 4 minutes on each side until glaze thickens and chops are cooked.

We like to half and seed apples and grill them to serve with the pork chops

APPLE, GOAT CHEESE, ARUGULA AND PECAN PIZZA…makes 1 pizza (serves 2 as main or 4 with something else)

  • Pizza Dough (you can make it or use store bought)
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Thinly sliced Granny Smith Apple (other Apple types would work)
  • 1/2 Cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 1/2 cup fig preserves
  • 6 oz crumbled goat cheese
  • 1 cup arugula
  • 1 cup toasted pecans (optional)

Pre heat the oven to 450 degrees. If using home made pizza crust bake the crust half way, about 5 minutes.

In a sauté pan heat olive oil and sauté the Apple and red onion until tender.

Spread fig preserves on the crust.  Top with Apple/onion mixture & goat cheese and bake.

  • if using homemade crust Bake another 5-8 minutes until crust is golden brown and cheese is slightly melted.
  • if using store bought crust follow instructions…usually 15 minutes

When Pizza is done top with 1 cup arugula and 1/2 chopped toasted pecans (optional)

APPLE CRISP

  • 4 Apples (peel, core and thinly slice should make about 4 cups)
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup old fashion oats
  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • Vanilla ice cream or whipped cream (optional but very yummy!)

Pre heat the oven to 375 degrees.  Grease an 8 inch square pan.

Place apples in the pan.

In a separate bowl combine brown sugar, flour, old fashion oats, softened butter, cinnamon & nutmeg. Sprinkle over apples.

Bake about 30 minutes until top is golden brown and apples are fork tender. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

Enjoy!

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Simple & Delicious Ways to Enjoy Butternut Squash…

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Butternut Squash Soup

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Roasted Butternut Squash with Cranberries & Walnuts

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Roasted Butternut Squash with Brown Sugar

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Butternut Squash is healthy and delicious!

Our favorite is roasted or puréed into a soup.  Here are a few recipes for you to try this fall.

Enjoy and keep it chic and carefree!

ROASTED BUTTERNUT SQUASH WITH CRANBERRIES AND WALNUTS (serves 4-6)

  • Pre heat the oven to 375
  • Butternut Squash (about 2 pounds)
  • Walnuts (1/2 cup chopped)
  • Dried Cranberries (1/2 cup)
  • 2 Tbsp Maple Syrup
  • 1 Tbsp Butter
  • Olive Oil, Salt & Pepper

Peel, seed and cube the butternut squash. Place on baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.  Toss to coat all the pieces and roast for about 30 minutes until the squash is fork tender.  Bigger pieces may take longer.

In a sauté pan melt 1 Tbsp butter and add 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts and cook for two minutes.  Remove from heat and toss in 1/2 cup dried cranberries and 2 Tbsp maple syrup.

Toss all all ingredients in a large bowl together…enjoy

ROASTED BUTTERNUT SQUASH WITH THYME AND BROWN SUGAR (serves 4-6)

  • Preheat Oven to 375.
  • Butternut Squash (one large one cut into strips…you could also used cubed squash if easier to work with)
  • 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
  • 8 Thyme Sprigs
  • Olive Oil, Salt & Pepper

Slice butternut squash down the center and seed.  Place in a baking dish. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper to taste. Take the thyme sprigs and remove the leaves onto the squash, leave some whole sprigs because it looks so pretty.  Sprinkle brown sugar over the squash and roast for about 45 minutes or until squash is fork tender.

ROASTED BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP (serves 4-6)

  • 4 cups Butternut Squash cubed
  • 1 cup diced Onion
  • 3/4 Cups diced carrots
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 4 cups chicken stock (can use vegetarian stock if you are vegetarian…some flavor will be lost)
  • Parsley for garnish
  • optional marscarpone cheese

In a large soup pot heat 1 Tbsp olive oil.  Add diced butternut squash, carrots, celery & onion.  Toss to coat in the oil and cook until onions start to turn clear.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add 4 cups chicken stock and on a medium low heat, cook down until all the vegetables are tender enough to purée about 45 minutes.  With an emulsion blender puree the soup.  If you like a thicker soup use less stock.  Serve with a garnish of parsley and/or serve with a dollop of marscapone cheese if you want something creamy.

Enjoy!!

Refreshing Ice Pop’s that might give you a buzz…(for adult’s only)

Watermelon-Mint-Tequila-Popsicles 1

Watermelon & Tequila Ice pop

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Strawberry, Peach & Vodka Pop’s

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Simple Ingredients…Fruit, Juice & Booze

booze

You can change the recipe by using alcohol & fruit that you like

Peaches

Fresh Fruit tastes great but fruit juice can be used to save time

berries

Making a boozy ice pop requires the right balance of booze to juice. (2 cups juice to 2 oz of alcohol seems to work)…if you use too much booze and don’t freeze them long enough (at least 12 hours) you will end up with a slushy (which will also be good just not what you intended).

You can sub in fruit and booze of your choice just keep the ratios in check…these will not get you drunk but perhaps a little buzzed.

Watermelon & Tequila Ice Pops (Vodka or Rum would also work)…

  • 4 cups watermelon (chopped in cubes)-should equal around 2 cups
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 1/3 cup tequila (or alcohol of choice) this is equal to about 2.5 ounces
  • Simple syrup (to make use 1/4 cup water , 1/4 cup sugar bring to a boil and boil for 1 minute)
  • Directions:
  • Blend watermelon and lime juice in a food processor until smooth (strain through a sieve to remove seeds)
  • Mix watermelon, tequila and simple syrup together and pour into Popsicle molds- do not add sticks
  • Freeze molds for 30-60 minutes then add sticks and freeze for 12-24 hours until frozen. (Keep in mind alcohol does not freeze through) so these will be solid and hold their shape but not rock hard
  • recipe from hungrygirlporvida.com

Strawberry, Peach and Vodka pops

  • 2 peaches sliced
  • 8 medium strawberries, (hulled and sliced-take the green part off)
  • 2 cups orange Juice
  • 1 oz vodka (you can add up to 2 oz if you want more punch)
  • 1 oz Cointreau (if you add more vodka add more Cointreau)
  • Directions:
  • Blend OJ, peaches, 4 strawberries, Vodka & Cointreau until smooth (there will be some pulp from fruit)
  • If there is froth on top skim with spoon and discard
  • Fill ice pop molds 3/4 to the top then add in the rest of the chopped strawberries (do not add sticks)
  • Freeze for 1 hour, then add sticks, then freeze for at least 12 hours
  • recipe from a great site (shutterbean.com)

(A short cut would be to use fruit juice instead of fresh fruit)

enjoy!

GRANITA…. a simple, refreshing & delicous dessert!!

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Strawberry Granita!

lemon granita

Lemon Granita-made with fresh Lemons and Limoncello

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Raspberry Granita

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Strawberries, Lemon, Water and Sugar….all you need for a Granita!

booze

You can add any of these to the Granita for a “grown up” version.

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Granita’s can be made with many different fruits

Granita’s are originally from Sicily, they are refreshing, delicious and easy to make. I recently served the strawberry granita to a bunch of friends and everyone loved it. I served mine with cookies on the side… enjoy!

Strawberry Granita ….Granita’s can be made with any fruit (sub in fruit of choice) (makes 6 servings)

  • 3 cups strawberries (cut the green part off)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1/2 cup sugar (most recipes add more sugar but it does not need it) this works

Directions:

  • Mix hot water, lemon juice and sugar in a bowl until the sugar dissolves
  • Blend strawberries in a food processor until smooth
  • Mix everything together and pour into a metal pan (13x9x2) you want a thin layer in the pan
  • Freeze until icy around edges (about 20-25 minutes) then stir icy portion on edges into middle of pan
  • Freeze until frozen (about 1.5 hours) using a fork scrape granita into flaky texture
  • Place in bowls, garnish with fruit and enjoy!!
  • For an adult version add some booze- vodka, rum, tequila are all good choices.

Lemon Granita made with Limoncello & fresh Lemon Juice…

  • 6 lemons
  • 4 cups water
  • Sugar to taste (start with 1/2 cup and go up from there if you like it very sweet)
  • 2 tablespoons Limoncello
  • 3 sprigs of thyme for flavor and garnish

Directions:

  • Squeeze the lemons to make 1 1/2 cups of fresh lemon juice
  • Add the water to the lemon juice & stir in sugar to desired sweetness
  • Add the thyme and Limoncello and let sit for 15 minutes
  • Strain the liquid into metal baking dish (the thyme and lemon seeds should not end up in the dish if you use a strainer) it should be a thin layer
  • Freeze until icy around edges (about 20-25 minutes) then stir icy portion on edges into middle of pan
  • Freeze until frozen (about 1.5 hours) using a fork scrape granita into flaky texture
  • Place in bowls, garnish with thyme and enjoy!!

What to do with ALL that Basil….Simple Basil Recipes!!!

Basil Hummus

Basil Hummus

Basil Pesto

Basil Pesto…Delicious on almost everything!

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Strawberry & Basil Margarita

Tomato-Basil-Chicken

Tomato & Basil Chicken

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Basil

Basil & Tomato Chicken…serves 4-6, prep time 15 minutes, cook time 15 minutes

  • 1 1/2 lbs skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 6 fillets
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 lb cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tbsp dried oregano…Salt and pepper to taste
  • Grease a medium sized non-stick skillet with cooking spray or olive oil and set over medium high heat
  • Season both sides of chicken with salt, pepper & oregano and cook about 3-4 minutes on each side, or until chicken is almost entirely cooked through
  • Turn the heat down to medium & add the tomatoes and garlic. Cook for about 4-5 minutes
  • Add basil & butter, and stir until combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste
  • Turn heat to low and let sit for about 5 more minutes

Basil Hummus Prep time: 15 minutes ,Cook time: 5 minutes, Makes about 3 cups

  • 2 cups sweet basil leaves, packed
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed then minced
  • 2 15-ounce cans chickpeas rinsed and drained
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Up to 1/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts optional
  • Place the basil and the garlic in a food processor. Pulse until finely chopped.
  • Add the garbanzo beans, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, tomato paste, and pulse until the hummus is smooth
  • If using pine nuts heat in a pan with olive oil until brown & mix into hummus save a few for the topping
  • Add more salt or lemon juice to taste. Add water to the point of desired consistency.
  • To serve, place in a bowl and drizzle a little olive oil over it.
  • Serve with pita wedges, crackers, or rustic bread.

Strawberry Basil Margaritamakes 1 pitcher/8 servings recipe from thekitchn.com

  • 10 strawberries
  • 8 basil leaves
  • 1 can (12 ounces) frozen limeade concentrate
  • 2 to 2 1/2 cups tequila (gold or silver)
  • Empty the limeade concentrate into a pitcher. Add 2 1/2 cups of water & 2 1/2 cups of tequila mix together
  • Slice the strawberries lengthwise, and add to the pitcher.
  • Cut the basil into small pcs and add to the pitcher
  • Place the pitcher, covered, in the fridge overnight, or for at least four hours
Easy Basil Pesto (1 cup)

Pesto is delicious as a topping for bruschetta, pasta, shrimp, chicken, steak, vegetables & in sandwiches

  • 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
  • 2 cloves garlic 
  • 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino cheese
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts (optional) walnuts can also be used
  • Combine the basil, garlic, and pine nuts in a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped.
  • Add the oil and mix until smooth
  • Mix in the cheese
  • Season with salt & pepper

Delicious & Easy Peach Recipes & Cocktails…One of Summer’s Sweetest Fruits!

Bellini

Bellini

Grilled Peaches with Honey

Grilled Peaches with Honey

Grilled Peaches with Ricotta and Balsamic Glaze

Grilled Peaches with Ricotta and Balsamic Glaze

Peach Cobbler

Peach Cobbler

Peach Sangria

Peach Sangria

Farm Stand Peaches

Peaches are one of summer’s most tastiest fruits they also make delicious cocktails!

White Peach Sangria
Servings: 6 Servings
Ingredients:

  • 1 (750 milliliter) bottle white wine, medium sweetness (don’t use $$ wine-lower priced wines work great)
  • 3/4 cup peach flavored vodka (optional-the drink is good with just the wine)
  • 3/4 cup peach schnapps
  • 6 tablespoons frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
  • 3-4 medium sized peaches pitted and sliced
  • 1 1/2 cups of colorful fruit (any fruit works, berries work great)
  • In a large pitcher, combine dry white wine, peach vodka, schnapps, lemonade concentrate. Stir until frozen lemonade is melted. Add sliced peaches and other fruits.
  • Refrigerate sangria until well chilled, at least 2 hours, or overnight to blend flavors. Serve over ice, and use a slotted spoon to include fruit with each serving.

Bellini…Move over Mimosa and try this delicious and very easy drink instead.

  • Champagne or Prosecco
  • Top off with Peach juice

Peach Cobbler- One of the easiest recipes we tried

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 cups sugar, divided
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 cups fresh peach slices
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Ground cinnamon or nutmeg (optional)
Directions:
  • Melt butter in a 13- x 9-inch baking dish.
  • Combine flour, 1 cup sugar, baking powder, salt and milk. Stir until moistened then pour into baking dish (do not stir)
  • Bring remaining 1 cup sugar, peaches, lemon juice to a boil over high heat. Stir constantly. Pour into baking dish (do not stir) can sprinkle with cinnamon if desired.
  • Bake at 375 for 40-45 minutes until golden brown.
  • We suggest serving this warm with ice cream however it tastes great at room temperature

Grilled Peaches…you can eat them straight off the grill or top them off with something yummy

  • Cut Peaches in half & remove pits
  • Brush cut side of peach halves with olive oil and place on grill, cut side down.
  • Grill until golden brown and caramelized, 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Turn peach halves over and grill until slightly soft and just warmed through, about 2 minutes longer.
    Remove from grill and eat as is or top it off with something delicious… below are some great suggestions…
  • Drizzle peaches with honey or agave and top off with fresh berries, ice cream, vanilla yogurt or whipped cream
  • Drizzle with balsamic glaze (available at Trader Joe’s) and Ricotta Cheese, garnish with mint
  • These are also great chopped up and tossed into a salad

Enjoy!!

Simple & Delicious Meal Paired with White Wine

The Perfect Cheese Plate with our favorite Chardonnay (Grgich Hills Estate)

Lobster always delicious with Chardonnay

zucchini

Zucchini wrapped with Prosciutto & Parmesan Cheese

potato asparagus

Baked Potato Bites

On a recent trip to Cape Cod we prepared a meal around a delicious bottle of Chardonnay…Pick your favorite bottle & enjoy! we love Grgich Hills Estate Chardonnay (from Napa Valley).

Cheese that Pairs well with White Wine….

  • A “Fresh Cheese” such as Goat Cheese
  • A “Funky or Smelly Cheese” such a Blue Cheese
  • A “Creamy Cheese” such as Brie, St. Andre or Tallegio
  • Meat…add at least one …Prosciutto, Sausage or Salami
  • Fruit, fresh fruit or dried fruit (both work) lets face it no one seems to eat it but it looks pretty
  • Nuts, we love Marcona Almonds from Spain

Lobster…you can buy them already steamed but if you want to do it yourself read below

Lobster is great with potatoes (baked or boiled) & vegetables (corn is usually served but asparagus, zucchini or a nice salad is also delicious).

  • Choose a pot that is large enough for them (you don’t want to crowd them)
  • Bring 2 inches of salted water to a rapid boil in a pot with a steaming basket
  • Place Lobsters into pot & cover
  • Shake or Stir the Lobsters occasionally
  • a 2 pound Lobster should be ready in roughly 15-18 minutes, a 3/4-1 pound lobster in 10 minutes (the shell should be bright red)
  • Remove Lobsters and set aside for a few minutes to cool before cracking them
  • Serve with melted butter (don’t skimp on the butter it’s my favorite part)

Baked Potato Bites (from Cookthestory.com) serves 6-8

  • Preheat oven to 450
  • 9-10 small yellow Potatoes, cut in half
  • 2 tsp olive oil, salt and pepper
  • 1 slice of Bacon
  • 6 spears of Asparagus (trimmed)
  • 4 1/2 tsp sour cream
  • mix Potatoes with 1tsp olive oil & place in baking dish cut side up ( cooks in 15-20 minutes)
  • place 1 slice of bacon in pan to cook at same time (a thin slice of bacon should cook faster then potatoes- take out when crisp, roughly 10 minutes)
  • Asparagus, mix with remaining Olive oil salt & pepper & place in pan should cook in 4-7 minutes
  • You can cook everything in the same dish and take out items as ready
  • let everything cool (these can be served at room temperature)
  • place Sour Cream on Potato, then chopped Bacon, then Asparagus & enjoy
  • If you prefer to serve these straight out of the oven substitute sour cream for cheese (your choice but cheddar is always good and comes shredded)

Zucchini wrapped with Prosciutto & Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese (serves 6-8)

  • 4 Zucchini-sliced length wise
  • 1/2 pound Prosciutto (We use San Danielle but any type can be used)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • Olive oil, salt & pepper
  • Preheat oven to 400
  • In fry pan saute zucchini with olive oil until tender (about 6 minutes) remove & let it cool enough so you can touch it
  • Wrap Prosciutto around Zucchini & place in baking dish
  • Sprinkle Zucchini with Cheese, salt & pepper
  • bake for 10-15 minutes, serve warm

Enjoy!