Kale Chips with Parmesan Cheese

Kale chips are one of those awesome snacks, that amazingly enough, that all of my kids eat. I’ve always been surprised that my kids love them, probably because it has the word chip in it, and trust me, my kids love chips. As I normally bake the standard curly kale, especially when it is on sale, I decided to try something different this time around. When I went to my farmer’s market last weekend and visit with my favorite farmer’s, they had a bunch of lacinto kale, commonly known as dinosaur kale, and it looked really good. When I asked them about the kale, they really came out with excitement and stated it was their favorite and that it was less bitter. I was sold, and that night I decided to make these baked kale chips with parmesan cheese as an appetizer for the family.

Kale Chips with Parmesan Cheese
Kale Chips with Parmesan Cheese

These were so good, and if you are not a kale fan I dare you to try them, that they were instantly gone. I kind of wished I would have bought two heads of the lacianto kale, but maybe I’ll do that this weekend instead.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of lacianto kale, rib removed from each leaf
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

Simple stuff, and that’s what I love about these. The farmer’s had it right, these kale chips were slightly less bitter than the standard kale, and now I’m a total fan. I always thought that because the lacianto kale was a bit thicker that it would not make for a great kale chip, but now I know I was wrong the whole time, and that’s a darn shame.

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.

During this time, prepare your kale, and make sure you remove the leaves from the ribs. Place these into a bowl, and drizzle with olive oil and season with the salt. Use kitchen latex gloves for easier cleanup if you have them, and lightly toss the kale, ensuring that all of the leaves are lightly coated.

How to make kale and parmesan chips
How to make kale and parmesan chips

If you have parchment paper, go ahead and use it and line a baking sheet with it. If not, don’t worry. Line your kale leaves onto the sheet, being careful not to overlap them. You can bake these in batches.

Place them into the oven and bake for about 15 minutes, or so, until they are nice and lightly crisp. Once they are lightly crisp, take a bit of the parmesan cheese and sprinkle onto the kale chips.

Bake another few minutes, then remove from the oven and serve. Repeat with all remaining kale.

The kale itself was awesome. No kidding. I know everyone is tired of hearing about kale, but not only am I a fan, but I’m totally sold on this lacianto kale. These are a must make, especially with the grated, and lightly melted parmesan cheese. Hope you enjoy!

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Zucchini Bread French Toast

I’m a big fan of the weekend. I’m most certainly everyone is as well. I mean what is not to love love about the weekend, whether it be a lazy Sunday morning, or the fact that you simply do not have to rush to get to work, only to repeat that routine Monday through Friday. Weekends are important to me just for the simple fact that we can unwind, figure things out on a slower pace, and cook great food.

This past weekend was no exception. As my kids slept in (that seems to be the thing with them now; literally sleeping in to around ten in the morning), I decided that I would make a great use of some leftover zucchini bread I had made. Granted, I pretty much know my kid’s breakfast routine, whether that is a few chocolate chip pancakes, or a spread of nutella on toast, to the classic box 1 or box 2 of random cereal, but when I’m home, I like to make them something warm, and on the stove. As my kids love French toast, I decided I would take a spin on the classic, and see how making zucchini bread French toast would turn out. It turned out awesome!

Zucchini Bread French Toast Recipe
Zucchini Bread French Toast Recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 whole eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/2 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 2 thick slices of cooked zucchini bread
  • unsalted butter
  • Syrup

To a bowl, add the eggs, milk, cinnamon powder, and light brown sugar. Beat, and beat well.

On medium heat, add a large skillet, and add about one tablespoon of unsalted butter, and let it melt. Swirl it around.

Take a slice of zucchini bread, and be careful as the bread should be on the moist side, and dunk it into to the egg mixture, making sure to coat all sides.

Zucchini Bread French Toast
Zucchini Bread French Toast

Cook for a few minutes, on each side, or until the egg mixture is cooked through. Remove, and repeat.

Serve immediately with syrup or powdered sugar.

My daughter, who loved the zucchini bread in the first place, loved this French toast. It was moist, had that great note of cinnamon, and was balanced with her powdered sugar and syrup. Yes, she uses both. My son on the other hand, and the one who was skeptical of the zucchini bread in the first place as he could see some grated ‘vegetable’, got into this thing and took it down!

If you are looking for something to do with your leftover zucchini bread, give this one a shot. It’s a great, moist, and delicious take on a breakfast classic. Hope you enjoy!

Zucchini Bread French Toast
Author: 
Recipe type: Breakfast
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
 
Ingredients
  • 2 whole eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • ½ tbsp light brown sugar
  • 2 thick slices of cooked zucchini bread
  • unsalted butter
  • Syrup
Instructions
  1. To a bowl, add the eggs, milk, cinnamon powder, and light brown sugar. Beat, and beat well.
  2. On medium heat, add a large skillet, and add about one tablespoon of unsalted butter, and let it melt. Swirl it around.
  3. Take a slice of zucchini bread, and be careful as the bread should be on the moist side, and dunk it into to the egg mixture, making sure to coat all sides.
  4. Cook for a few minutes, on each side, or until the egg mixture is cooked through. Remove, and repeat.
  5. Serve immediately with syrup or powdered sugar.

 

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Zucchini Bread

I told you that currently my garden is just getting out of control. That’s a good thing, and as uneventful as my life has been, it is a real joy to head back and tend to it, and to pick a handful of vegetables on a daily basis. Besides the tomatoes and cucumbers, zucchini has been in abundance. I’ve given some away to family and neighbors, and I’ve made an interesting zucchini baba ghanoush, but there is more on my counter. My daughter is always itching to make something, and that’s when it came to me to have her make some zucchini bread, not only to keep her busy, but zucchini bread is delicious!

Zucchini Bread Recipe
Zucchini Bread Recipe

To me, zucchini bread is a strong competitor to banana bread, and in all honesty, I may like it better.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 whole, medium sized zucchini, grated
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup canola oil
  • Cheesecloth, or kitchen towel

You have options here if you want to add anything else into your batter. You can add nuts, dried fruits, or chocolate. I go plain so make sure I can please everyone at the table.

Start by grating your zucchini. You could throw them into a food processor if you want as well, but the grating works pretty good and keeps my kids busy.

Take the grated zucchini, and place all of it into a cheesecloth, or kitchen towel. Have you ever seen how much water gets extracted from zucchini? It’s crazy.

So once you have the zucchini wrapped up, give it a spin, and begin squeezing as hard as you can. Keep squeezing. Take a break, catch your breath, and squeeze some more. You want all of the liquid extracted.  Discard the juice, and set the zucchini to the side.

How to make Zucchini Bread
How to make Zucchini Bread

Next, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Lightly butter, or use cooking spray, and lube up your bread pan, and set it to the side.

Next, get two bowls out. One for dry ingredients, and one for wet ingredients. To one bowl, add the flour, baking soda, baking powder, nutmeg, salt, and cinnamon. To the other bowl, beat the eggs, then add in canola oil, vanilla extract, and plain and brown sugar. Mix to combine both, then pour in the dry into the wet, add the zucchini, and gently stir to make a batter.

Place the bread pan into the oven, and bake for about 45 minutes, or until when you insert a knife into the middle and it comes out clean. Once clean, remove from the oven, and let it cool to room temperature.

If you are wanting a bit of glaze, like I did, take a bit of powder sugar with a bit of brandy (hey, I’m from Wisconsin), and drizzle that over a slice.

Delicious? Yes, very delicious. Was my daughter happy? Heck yes. If you have an abundance of zucchini, give this one a try. It’s a real winner, and a great snack. Hope you enjoy!

Zucchini Bread
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert, Snack
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10
 
Ingredients
  • 2 whole, medium sized zucchini, grated
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 2½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup canola oil
  • Cheesecloth, or kitchen towel
Instructions
  1. You have options here if you want to add anything else into your batter. You can add nuts, dried fruits, or chocolate. I go plain so make sure I can please everyone at the table.
  2. Start by grating your zucchini. You could throw them into a food processor if you want as well, but the grating works pretty good and keeps my kids busy.
  3. Take the grated zucchini, and place all of it into a cheesecloth, or kitchen towel. Have you ever seen how much water gets extracted from zucchini? It’s crazy.
  4. So once you have the zucchini wrapped up, give it a spin, and begin squeezing as hard as you can. Keep squeezing. Take a break, catch your breath, and squeeze some more. You want all of the liquid extracted. Discard the juice, and set the zucchini to the side.
  5. Next, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Lightly butter, or use cooking spray, and lube up your bread pan, and set it to the side.
  6. Next, get two bowls out. One for dry ingredients, and one for wet ingredients. To one bowl, add the flour, baking soda, baking powder, nutmeg, salt, and cinnamon. To the other bowl, beat the eggs, then add in canola oil, vanilla extract, and plain and brown sugar. Mix to combine both, then pour in the dry into the wet, add the zucchini, and gently stir to make a batter.
  7. Place the bread pan into the oven, and bake for about 45 minutes, or until when you insert a knife into the middle and it comes out clean. Once clean, remove from the oven, and let it cool to room temperature.
  8. If you are wanting a bit of glaze, like I did, take a bit of powder sugar with a bit of brandy (hey, I’m from Wisconsin), and drizzle that over a slice.

 

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Creamed Chipped Beef on Toast

Creamed chipped beef on toast is never going to look pretty, either on the plate in front of you, or in a photo. Well, I think my photo looks pretty darn good. But let’s face it, creamed chipped beef on toast is so, so good. It actually reminds me a lot of the classic biscuits and gravy, and what’s not to love about that one?

Recently I was honored to have Nueske’s deliver some of their delicious products. Everything from sausages, to bacon, and their smoked beef slices. I was floored because I have never seen the Nueske’s smoked beef slices at any grocery store, so I was super excited to give it a try. Grocery stores take note. Order and stock this stuff because it is awesome!

I immediately opened the sliced beef and fell in love with it, as did my kids, and coworkers. It was that great Nueske’s smoke, and just has you wanting more. As I continued to eat another slice, my coworker came up with the idea to make creamed chipped beef on toast. What better could this be but to add some of this great smoked beef flavor to a classic dish.

Creamed Chip Beef on Toast Recipe
Creamed Chip Beef on Toast Recipe

Let’s get started.

  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup Nueske’s beef slices, chopped
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 slices of Texas Toast, toasted
  • cracked black pepper, to taste

That’s it. Pretty darn simple.

Start by melting the butter in a skillet on medium heat. Once it begins to melt, toss in the chopped beef slices. Stir, and get the beef a bit crispy along the edges. Once you have that complete then toss in the flour, and continue to stir to incorporate all of the flour and cook it at the same time, about a minute or so.

Ingredients for making Creamed Chipped Beef on Toast
Ingredients for making Creamed Chipped Beef on Toast

Next, pour in the milk, and continue to stir for a few minutes. The sauce will now thicken. Add some cracked pepper. Continue to cook for a few minutes, then you are ready to pour over the toast.

Stack the toast, and pour everything over the toast.

Creamy Chipped Beef on Toast
Creamy Chipped Beef on Toast

This is a stick to your ribs kind of breakfast for sure. The creamy gravy softens the toast, and when cutting into it and swiping up the gravy, well you kind of close your eyes and fall in love. The smokiness of the sliced beef, just lightly caramelized, adds the perfect balance to this recipe. Thanks Nueske’s for inspiring me to make this great recipe! Hope you enjoy!

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