Sunday, September 23, 2018

Grilled Cheddar Cheese with Apples and Hatch Chile Hot Sauce #AppleWeek #Sponsored

This post is written on behalf of #AppleWeek sponsor Swiss Diamond. 
I was provided with product for recipe creation and a giveaway for our readers. 
As always, all opinions are my own. This page may contain affiliate links.

Today the 2018 edition of #AppleWeek begins in earnest to celebrate the produce darling of the season! Carlee of Cooking with Carlee arranged this incredible event for you and wrangled a group of bloggers to celebrate all things apple. Apples, apples, and more apples.


Check out the prizes and enter the giveaway on my kick-off post from yesterday. As a participating blogger, I received a double burner griddle from event sponsor Swiss Diamond.* And I was immediately taken with the quality. First, it's heavy...all of my favorite cookware verges on being tough to carry with one hand. Seriously. I don't have time for wimpy pots and pans. Second, it's pretty! Really pretty. And, third, it's super easy to clean. All of those aspects made the griddle a winner in my book. Beyond this event, I have already used it about once a week for making steaks and burgers. It's cemented itself as a favorite. Hooray!


And, for today's recipe, I used the griddle twice. But, before I get to that, please look at the other recipes from the #AppleWeek bloggers...

Monday's Recipes


Grilled Cheddar Cheese with Apples 
and Hatch Chile Hot Sauce

So, this isn't a recipe you can whip up for a quick lunch because the hot sauce needs to ferment for at least ten days. But make the sauce as soon as you can...and by the beginning of October you can make this grilled cheese sandwich that will knock your socks off!

Ingredients

Hatch Chile Hot Sauce 
  • 2 pounds Hatch chiles
  • oil (I used canola)
  • 3 whole garlic cloves
  • 1 T salt
  • 1 1/2 C white vinegar

Grilled Cheese makes two sandwiches, double or triple as needed

  • 2 T butter
  • 4 slices bread (I used a local bakery's sourdough)
  • 2 C cheese, grated (I used a sharp cheddar)
  • Hatch chile hot sauce
  • 1 apple, thinly sliced 

Procedure

Hatch Chile Hot Sauce  
Wash and dry your peppers. I cut off the stems and any tips that were bruised. Place the peppers in a large mixing bowl and drizzle with oil. Toss to coat until they are all glossy and oily. 


Place your griddle on the stove and preheat the pan. Place the peppers on the pan.


Cook until the peppers are charred and shriveled. Mine took about 40 minutes.


 The skins will be splitting and the flesh completely softened.


Combine the peppers, garlic cloves, and salt in a blender. Blend for a few pulses. Once the ingredients are roughly combined, drizzle in the vinegar. Blend till smooth.

Transfer sauce to a jar and cover with a cheesecloth. Allow to sit in the pantry; the longer it sits, the deeper the flavor that develops. 


We left ours for about 11 days. Blend the sauce smooth again. Test the sauce and adjust the salt to taste. Transfer to bottles or jars and place in the refrigerator. This sauce will keep for 3-4 months.


Grilled Cheese
Spread thin layer of butter on 1 side of each slice of bread. Place bread slices butter-side-down on the griddle and cook until golden brown, approximately 3 minutes. Remove from pan and transfer to a cutting board.

Spread a thin layer of Hatch chile hot sauce on each untoasted side of the bread. Top each with grated cheese and apple slices and another layer of cheese.  Return bread to griddle, cheese-side up, and cook until cheese is melted, approximately 5 to 7 minutes.


Press the two pieces of bread together, melted cheese sides together. Cut the sandwiches in half - we like them cut diagonally - and serve with more Hatch chile sauce. Enjoy!

Find Swiss Diamond Cookware
on the web, on Twitter, on Facebook, on Pinterest, on Instagram
on Flickr, on YouTube, and on Google+
*Disclosure: I received products for recipe development and generating social media traction. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the manufacturers of this product or the organizers of #AppleWeek.

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Seared Steak with Envy-able Apples to Kick Off #AppleWeek #Sponsored

This post is written on behalf of #AppleWeek. Sponsors, Swiss Diamond, Envy Apples, Imperial Sugar, Nordic Ware, Rodelle Vanilla, Flahavan's Irish Oatmeal, Nairn's and The Spice House have provided participating bloggers with products for recipe creation and a giveaway for our readers. As always, all opinions are my own. This page may contain affiliate links.

Today we are kicking off the 2018 edition of #AppleWeek today to celebrate the produce darling of the season! Carlee of Cooking with Carlee arranged this incredible event for you and wrangled a group of bloggers to celebrate all things apple. Apples, apples, and more apples.


And Carlee, hostess with the mostess, also lined up some amazing prize packages from our sponsors. Keep reading to see what you can win and enter the rafflecopter below.

The Prizes and the Giveaway


Prize Pack #1 from Swiss Diamond 


Available in select stores only, Swiss Diamond's XD 10 Piece Set Ultimate Kitchen Kit features Swiss Diamond's newest, most advanced diamond-reinforced nonstick coating. The new coating formulation contains 20% more real diamond crystals than the HD coating and was developed in Switzerland. The result is a significantly tougher cooking surface, 40% more durable with 40% better food release properties as compared to the Classic HD nonstick cookware. The are ideal for healthy cooking without oil and feature quick, easy clean-up with hot soapy water. They are PFOA-free and produced in an eco-friendly manner. The tempered glass lids have adjustable steam vents and the ergonomic handles and knobs are oven safe up to 500 F.

Swiss Diamond is a high-end cookware and kitchenware brand established in 2001, with a manufacturing facility in Sierre, Switzerland. The brand name originates from the company's Swiss origin and it's classic cookware line which uses a revolutionary nonstick coating made with diamond crystals for durability, superior heat conduction, and a long-lasting nonstick surface. Swiss Diamond is committed to meeting consumer needs by using safe, high-quality materials, by emphasizing innovative design with traditional European craftsmanship and by adhering to an eco-friendly production process.

Prize Pack #2 from Envy Apples 

A $60 Pre-Paid Visa Gift Card and a shipment of Envy Apples! When you’re this good they call you Envy™ it’s hard to put into words what makes Envy™ so remarkable. Each satisfyingly sweet crunch redefines what to expect from an apple. Since it was introduced, Envy™ has emerged as the apple with everything: beautiful skin, sweet flavor and a bright, tender flesh that remains white even after being cut. It’s a pure and pristine apple that’s a genuine work of orchard-growing genius.
Envy™ was born in New Zealand using natural plant-breeding methods, crossing a Braeburn with a Royal Gala apple. From there, a handpicked team of talented growers, planted trees in regions perfect for growing Envy, such as New Zealand, Washington state and Chile where they benefit from long,
sundrenched days and crisp, cool evenings. Enjoy Envy™ just about anywhere—it’s nature’s passport to a magical moment of indulgent time. For more information visit their website.

Prize Pack #3 from The Spice House

The Spice House has been sourcing premium spices since 1957, bringing you the finest selections from all over the globe.  They provide the freshest and most flavorful ingredients possible via small, weekly batch grinding and blending. They will be sending one lucky winner The Baker's Gift Box.


Prize Pack #4 from Rodelle Vanilla

A Baker's Dream Come True! Package will include pure vanilla extract, gourmet dutch-processed baking cocoa, gourmet vanilla extract, gourmet vanilla beans, organic vanilla extract, organic chocolate extract, almond extract, vanilla paste, and some fun baking supplies to whip of your next batch of goodies with!

Rodelle believes ingredients makes all the difference, that's why they are passionate about offering a complete line of superior baking ingredients, vanilla products and gourmet spice blends. Quality vanilla extract may cost a little bit more, but the flavors are worth it! Rodelle works with a farmer-owned co-op in Madagascar, Sahanala, to craft a farm-to-table vanilla that benefits the vanilla farmers and their families. Learn more about Rodelle's vertical integration here. Or, Find out where to buy great Rodelle ingredients near you here.

Prize Pack #5 from Imperial Sugar 

A Sweet Tooth's Dream Come True! The Winner will receive 1 case of 2-lb granulated sugar (20 bags) + 1 case of 2-lb light brown sugar (24 bags), 2 silicone baking mats and 1 custom apron.

For 175 years, Imperial Sugar has been a trusted name in family kitchens across the South.  Sweet things happen when people come together in the kitchen, and that's why Imperial sugar has been at the heart of family traditions and celebrations for generations.  We're the secret ingredient in family-favorite recipes handed down from one generation to the next. Home cooks know that when you bake with love and Imperial sugar, that's when memories are made. Visit their website for over 100 years of time-tested recipes, kid's crafts, how-to videos, coupons, giveaways and more.

Prize Pack # 6 from Flahavan's Irish Oatmeal and Nairn's Oatcakes 

Flahavan's and Nairn's have teamed up to bring out an oatstanding prize pack filled with naturally cream, sustainable Flahavan's Irish Oatmeal and our go-to gluten free grahams by Nairn's. We have a good gut feeling that you're going to love it!

Flahavan's Irish Oatmeal is sustainably grown and milled in Co. Waterford, Ireland by the Flahavan's family since 1785. They have sourced the finest oats from the same Irish farming families for generations. Flahavan's oats are milled in small batches and minimally processed according to 230 year old milling tradition and double kilned. They are non-GMO and naturally gluten-free. Nairn's Gluten Free Grahams are rather good in more ways than one.  For a start they're made with only the finest wholegrain oats- naturally energizing and proven to reduce cholesterol.  And at only 45 calories a piece, they're a healthy alternative the the usual graham (also 40% less sugar!). But the real feel good factor comes from knowing every delicious gluten-fee bite is batch tested to Elisa standards so they're truly safe to eat.

Prize Pack #7 from Nordic Ware

Perfect for baking all of these AppleWeek treats, Nordic Ware will give one lucky winner an apple cakelet pan and prism baker's bundle with a quarter and half sheet pan!

Nordic Ware is a family owned and operated kitchenware company since 1946 and has steadily built its reputation as an internationally distributed kitchenware brand. As a leading manufacturer and innovator, Nordic Ware produces the vast majority of its products in America, at its Minneapolis headquarters, including bakeware, cookware, grillware, microwave, and kitchen gadgets and accessories.



#AppleWeek Day One Posts

Seared Steak with Envy-able Apples

As a participating #AppleWeek blogger, I received a lot of different products from sponsors to feature and use in recipe development for this event. But this box of voluptuous apples from Washington were a family favorite.


Envy Apples were born in New Zealand using natural plant-breeding methods by cross-pollinating Braeburn apples with Royal Gala apples. They have since planted trees in Washington state and Chile. They are sweet and deliciously crisp. I knew they would make a great addition to a savory recipe.


Ingredients serves 4
  • 4 steaks (I used New York strip steaks), brought to room temperature
  • 2 T olive oil, divided
  • 2 T butter
  • freshly ground salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1 red onion, peeled and sliced
  • 3 apples (I used Envy apples), peeled and sliced into wedges
  • 1 C wine or other liquid (stock, water, or even bourbon - or a mixture that you prefer)
  • 1 t pure vanilla extract
  • 2 T heavy cream

Procedure
Preheat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Liberally season both sides of the steak with salt and pepper. Melt butter in 1 T olive oil and sear steaks on all sides until a nice crust develops. Reduce heat to medium and cook steak for an additional 1-2 minutes on each side. Remove steak from pan, tent, and let rest.

In the meantime, add remaining olive oil to the pan and stir in the apples and onion. Cook until the onions are softened and the apples beginning to brown in some parts. 

Pour in the wine and vanilla. Simmer until the apples are tender and the wine has reduced to about 1/2 C, approximately 6 to 7 minutes. Stir in the heavy cream. Season to taste, as needed, with more salt and pepper.

To serve, place the steaks on a serving platter or individual serving plates. Top with apples and serve immediately.

Find Envy Apples
on the web, on Twitter, on Facebook, on Pinterest, on Instagram

*Disclosure: I received products for recipe development and generating social media traction. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the manufacturers of this product or the organizers of #AppleWeek.

Pretty Simple Greek Salad #PrettySimpleCooking


Back in February, I hosted a Pretty Simple Dinner Party to celebrate the release of  the cookbook A Couple Cooks - Pretty Simple Cooking: 100 Delicious Vegetarian Recipes to Make You Fall in Love with Real Food by Sonja and Alex Overhiser.* Then I participated in Take Two in August. Now, as we head into Fall, Sonja and Alex have launched their monthly Pretty Simple Cooking Club.

Well, jumping into that was a no-brainer. I already have the book and I have enjoyed all of the recipes I've tried so far. There don't seem to be any rules for this club. They send out the recipe picks; we cook, post, and share. Done!


This month, they selected: Greek Salad (pg. 81); Chipotle Black Bean Soup (pg. 175); Creamy Vegan Potato Chowder (pg. 180); and Cherry Almond Breakfast Cereal (pg. 22).


They suggested that we use the last of the summer tomatoes and cucumbers. It's almost as if they knew that I had just purchased twenty pounds of heirloom tomatoes from Farmer Jamie at Serendipity Farms and gotten cucumbers from my CSA box from High Ground Organics. So, my first post for our September Pretty Simple Cooking Club was an easy one.


I've always said that it's easy to create tasty dishes with fresh ingredients. My Enthusiastic Kitchen Elf went out to his garden and offered me fresh oregano. I love that he has a green thumb and an inclination to grow some of what we get to eat.


This recipe is very slight adapted from the Overhiser's. I skipped the onions and used fresh oregano instead. If I had read closely, I would have crumbled the feta - just for aesthetics since everything else had cut edges. Oh, well. Otherwise, it's pretty close.

Ingredients

  • 2 organic heirloom tomatoes, cubed
  • 1 organic cucumber, roughly peeled and cubed
  • 4 to 6 ounces Greek feta, drained and cubed
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 C pitted Kalamata olives
  • 1 T fresh oregano
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 T freshly squeezed lemon juice


Procedure
Place the tomatoes in a large serving bowl. Layer with cucumbers, olives, and feta. Top with fresh oregano. Sprinkle with salt and drizzle with olive and lemon juice. Give it a toss at the table and serve immediately.

*This blog currently has a partnership with Amazon.com in their affiliate program, which gives me a small percentage of sales if you buy a product through a link on my blog. It doesn't cost you anything more. If you are uncomfortable with this, feel free to go directly to Amazon.com and search for the item of your choice.


Thursday, September 20, 2018

Black Futsu Pumpkin Pizza #PumpkinWeek #Sponsored

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Cabot Cheese and Dixie Crystals
I received complimentary product for the purpose of review and recipe development for #PumpkinWeek,
but all opinions are honest and they are my own. This page may contain affiliate links.

Here we are at our final day of the 2018 #PumpkinWeek event. I hope these last few days' posts have inspired you to go out and cook some pumpkin!  If you're enjoying this week's recipes, I hope you'll check out the sponsor prizes and enter the giveaway. And I wanted to give one more shout-out of gratitude to the co-hosts of this event: Terri of Love and Confections and Christie of A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures. I know what it takes to make an event go smoothly - from stewarding the sponsors to keeping the bloggers on track. It's a lot. And we all appreciate your time and energy. So, thanks.

And a quick note of thanks to event sponsor Dixie Crystals. Though there isn't any sugar in this recipe, I have been loving the silicone mat you sent to the bloggers. It saves me from using so much parchment paper!

Friday's #PumpkinWeek recipes

Beverages
Savory
Baked Goods & Desserts

Black Futsu Pumpkin

While most of the time I buy those perfectly round, orange lovelies, the Sugar Pie pumpkin, for my pumpkin creations, every once in a while, I'll come across an unusual heirloom pumpkin that I just can't resist. Earlier this month, I stopped by a local organic farm near my office and one of the farmers pointed me towards a Jarrahdale pumpkin that was a delicate, silvery blue hue. I turned that into a Jarrahdale Pumpkin Posole on a lazy Sunday evening.


And she also made sure I saw the Black Futsu pumpkins. If Sugar Pie pumpkins transform into Cinderella's carriage, these would surely turn into coaches for goblins! I decided that I would slice and roast wedges of the Black Futsu and put it on top of a pizza.

When I plan ahead - way ahead - my favorite pizza crust is Mark Bittman's "No Work Mostly Whole Wheat Pizza Dough." This is the easiest pizza dough I have ever made! But it does require lots of lead time. The recipe suggests letting the dough ferment for six to twelve hours and that the longer you let it ferment, the more complex the flavor. This recipe makes one pizza. I double it and triple it with no problems.

Ingredients

Dough

  • 2 C white whole wheat flour
  • 1 C white flour
  • 1/2 t active dry yeast
  • 1 t salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1-1/2 C warm water

Pizza

  • Black Futsu pumpkin, deseeded and sliced into thin wedges
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • pizza sauce
  • shredded cheese (prefer Cabot, I used two kinds of cheddar)
Procedure

Dough
Mix everything together in a large bowl. The texture will be a wet, sticky dough. Cover and let ferment for as long as you can - between six and twelve hours. At the end of that, use the dough as you would use any pizza dough.

Pumpkin
Deseed and slice the pumpkin into thin slices. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place slices in a mixing bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Toss to coat and arrange them on a parchment or silicone mat-lined baking sheet. Place in the oven and roast for 18 to 20 minutes. The pumpkin should be softened and the edges beginning to brown. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Pizza
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

Press the dough out into a circle or rectangle. I try to maximize the space on my baking sheet or stone.


Add a dollop of pizza sauce to the top and spread sauce to the edges. Top with grated cheese. Arrange the cooked pumpkin slices on the pizza.


Bake for 15-17 minutes until the crust is crisped and golden. Let cool for 5 minutes before slicing.


#PumpkinWeek Sponsor products 
included in this recipe...

You may find Dixie Crystals on the web
on Twitter, on Pinterest, on Instagram, and on Facebook.


You may find Cabot Cheese on the web
on Twitter, on Pinterest, on Instagram, on Google+, on YouTube, and on Facebook.

Disclaimer: Thank you PumpkinWeek Sponsors: Dixie Crystals, Cabot Cheese, and Eggland’s Best for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for PumpkinWeek  recipes. All opinions are my own. The PumpkinWeek giveaway is open to U.S. residents, age 18 & up. All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Three (3) winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The PumpkinWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter or any other social channel mentioned in the PumpkinWeek posts or entry.

Suquet de Pescados (Catalan Seafood Stew) #FishFridayFoodies


It's time for Fish Friday Foodies' September event. We are a group of seafood-loving bloggers, rallied by Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm, to share fish and seafood recipes on the third Friday of the month. 

This is, easily, my favorite recipe sharing event of the month. I always come away with a list of recipes that I just have to try!

And this month, I am hosting. I urged my blogger friends: "Bring your favorite seafood stew to Fish Friday Foodies for our September event. Think Cioppino, Moqueca, or anything else that has CHUNKY seafood in a broth or sauce."

The Other Stews



Suquet de Pescados
So, I ended up scheduling this for dinner on a day when I left work early. Not for fun. I was sick. My nose was running and I had a raging headache. I hate that first cold of the year. Ugh. I just wanted to sit on my bean bag with a mug of tea and watch a movie. But I had the ingredients calling to me and you just don't waste two pounds of fresh halibut, right? So, I hoisted myself from the living room and made this for dinner. The boys loved it and kept slurping through spoon after spoon: "Sorry you can't taste this because it's really, really good." Nice.

Ingredients

Topping
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/4 to 1/3 C ground almonds
  • 1/4 C fresh parsley
  • olive oil

Stew
  • 1 tomato, cubed
  • 1 yellow onion, peeled and diced (approximately 1-1/2 C)
  • 1 C diced celery
  • 2 T butter
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 1 t saffron threads
  • 2 C fish stock
  • 4 C vegetable broth
  • 1 C Cava or sparkling wine
  • 2 pounds fish, cubed (I used a local, wild halibut)
  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined

Procedure
Topping
Pulse all the ingredients in a food processor until a thick paste forms. Set aside.

Stew
Melt butter in olive oil in a large skillet or pot (I used my Dutch oven). Stir in the onions, celery, bay leaves, and saffron. Cook until the onions are softened, approximately 5 to 6 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour in the stock, broth, and wine. Bring to a boil.
Reduce the heat at a simmer and stir in the fish chunks. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes. Nestle the shrimp in the pot and cover. Let steam for 7 or 8 minutes until all the seafood is opaque. 


Season to taste with salt and pepper, as needed. Ladle into individual serving bowls. Serve hot, letting diners add as much - or as little - of the paste topping as they want.

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