Month: September 2010

Simple Pumpkin Pies

Simple Pumpkin Pies

Let’s face it, sometimes we just do not have all the time in the world to get something to the table. As much as I love making recipes by hand, I recently found that some store bought items go a very long way. I might…

Southern Greens Recipe

Southern Greens Recipe

When many of us hear the words ‘cooked greens’, we typically steer clear. Maybe it is a northern thing, but cooked greens are actually very good, especially when done right. Growing up, my worst nightmares at dinner could have possibly been green beans, canned cooked…

Peanut Butter Bananna Bread

Peanut Butter Bananna Bread

The big question last week for the kids in the house was “would you like banana bread, or a coconut and banana egg roll?”. There was a long pause, then the response came back unanimously as banana bread. I was a bit bummed to be quite honest with you. I had this cool idea of a different dessert, but I am certain I will make it in the very near future, however I was out numbered, and banana bread it was.

But it was banana bread, with a twist.

My daughter had recently graduated from a peanut allergy she had for the last several years, and so I thought I would introduce peanut butter into the bread. My oldest son refuses to eat bananas. So this was my way of providing a perfect little treat, of which he would forget about the word banana a few hours from the conversation.

This simple, throw together batter produces a great slice of bread,full of great flavor and energy.

Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/3 cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3/4 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • Glass of cold milk, per slice

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Begin by combining the flour, baking soda, baking power, and salt, and place in your sifter, and do just that, sift away, making a nice a light base for your batter. In your mixer, or bowl with hand beaters, cream the peanut butter, shortening, eggs and sugar. Continue beating and add in the flour mixture. Toss in the bananas, and do your final mix.

Take a bread pan, and rub the butter throughout the pan, making sure you get all sides. Spoon in batter, giving it a bit of a jiggle and make sure things are smooth, then toss in the oven, uncovered, for about 60 minutes, or until the center comes out nice and clean by doing the toothpick or knife test.

Once cooked, remove from the oven, let cool and slice. Serve with a cold glass of milk.

My son who refuses to eat bananas, loved it and had no clue, and my daughter and other boy loved it as well.  That is a score in my book. Enjoy.

Grilled Chicken Pesto Sandwich

Grilled Chicken Pesto Sandwich

As much as I am bummed out that summer is coming to an end, I am also very excited that fall is right around the corner. I live in Wisconsin, and yes, there are reasons for that. In particular, the seasons. Now sure, when you…

Steak and Potato Soup

Steak and Potato Soup

Upon a recent visit to one of our local Sendiks market, I came across a really great deal on lobster tails. I am not one to normally buy lobster due to the price, but these were some fairly large lobster tails for only ten dollars.…

Albondigas Soup – Mexican Meatball Soup

Albondigas Soup – Mexican Meatball Soup

Soup season has started once again in my household. It is early fall, and the falling of leaves from the trees typically indicates that it is time to hunker down with a nice bowl of comforting soup. It was this past weekend where I was going to make chili for my wife. She loves chili, especially on Sundays with a football game on.  As I was about to get things ready for making chili, then paused, and realized that my wife also loved chicken tortilla soup, and this is when I realized that I would make an attempt to marry the two flavors and make a Mexican meatball soup. I was so thrilled I took that initial pause, and trust me, so did my wife. This could be one her new favorites.

Mexican Meatball Soup - Albondigas Soup

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of red onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp Mexican oregano
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 4 tomatoes, cooked
  • 2 whole carrots, peeled and chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 zucchini, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 chipotle pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup of regular cabbage
  • 1 lb of ground beef
  • 1 lb of ground pork
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3 tbsp fresh mint, chopped
  • 3 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped, plus more for garnish
  • 6 cups of beef stock
  • 1 avocado, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2 cup of long grained rice
  • 1 cup of boiling water

Begin by scoring the tops of each tomato, then add them to a large pot of water. Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat. Add the 1/2 cup of rice to 1 cup of the boiling water, cover, and set aside for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, drain, and place the rice into a large bowl.  Remove the tomatoes from the pot, and let cool for about 10 minutes, then remove the skins, and place into a blender or food processor.

Next, heat a skillet on medium heat, add one tablespoon of the oil, then toss in the onion and garlic. Saute for about 5-7 minutes, or until the onions are nice and tender. Toss this mixture into the blender along with the chipotle pepper. Puree the mixture until everything is nice and smooth.

Get your dutch oven or soup pot out, and bring it to a medium-low heat. During this time, add the beaten egg, ground meats, and the cumin, oregano, mint, cilantro, and salt and pepper into the bowl.

Mexican Meatballs - Albondigas

Mix everything really well. Yes, you’re going to get a bit messy, but don’t worry, it’s all worth it! Make sure everything is incorporated. Wet your hands, and make them into meatballs, about the size of a golf ball.

Add the tomato mixture to the soup pot, then add in the beef stock. Toss in the carrots and cabbage.

Get a large skillet out and heat the additional tablespoon of oil. Add the meatballs to the pan, realizing you will cook these in batches, and cook until you get a nice crust around the entire meatball. This will take several minutes per batch. Remove and place on a plate until you are ready to cook them with the soup.

Place the meatballs into the boiling stock, cover, and reduce heat to low, cooking for another 25 minutes.

When you are ready, ladle a bunch of the broth and a couple of meatballs into your soup bowl. Top with the diced zucchini, fresh cilantro, and cut up avocado.

The texture and flavor of the meatballs were out of this world, and the broth, well, it was perfect. Subtle heat from the chipotle pepper, was quickly reduced by the creaminess of the avocado. If you are looking for a really comforting, and heart soup, turn to this Mexican meatball soup, you will not be disappointed.