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Keep Your Raspberries Under Control

Technically this isn’t the time for pruning raspberries (major pruning is best done late winter/early spring).
But if you find your self in an over grown patch of berries I’d like to give you some tips.

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Rhubarb Muffin Failure and some Rhubarb Tips

I’ve got tons of rhubarb around my house.
I dug up and divided 4 plants and the 3 remaining ones are still providing enough for a small country.

I love cooking with rhubarb. It’s very tart and has a unique flavor. It’s very rare to eat something with rhubarb that isn’t full of sugar or other fruits. It actually bakes with a texture similar to apples.

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Cabbage Strudel

I’m a big fan of cabbage. I love it cooked simply with onions, or boiled with corned beef.


Sometimes when I’m in to mood for something more involved I make a cabbage strudel.
It’s almost like a really big baked egg roll. 
Bonus points it reheats really well in a toaster oven.
This is an adaptation from 

 

This is where the Caramelized Balsamic Onions came from (I love this book!)

Ingredients: 

    • Olive oil
    • 1 lb bulk sweet sausage*
    • 1 small/medium green cabbage – shredded
    • 1 onion – sliced up small
    • 2 carrots – shredded
    • 1 t salt
    • 6 oz feta cheese
    • 1 t caraway seeds (I usually add 1T but I’m having an emotional affair with caraway flavor)
    • Black pepper
    • 3/4 C bread crumbs
    • Phyllo dough
    • 4T butter – melted
    • 3 T bread crumbs

Directions:

    1. Preheat oven to 375
    2. Cook the sausage in a large and drain off any grease (mine didn’t have much). Place in a large heat safe bowl.
    3. Pour some olive oil in a large skillet over med-high heat. Add cabbage, carrot and onions. Saute briefly, not looking for melting deliciousness, just taking the raw edge off. The cabbage should be brighter green than when raw. Add this to the sausage.
    4. Add the feta, caraway, salt, pepper and bread crumbs. Mix up really well. 

You can eat it at this point, in fact I recommend trying it so see if you need more pepper/salt/carraway

The next part is where it gets involved. It’s pretty similar to making Baklava. 

    1. Spread out a layer of Phyllo dough (keep a damp paper towel on it, this stuff dries up quickly!)
    2. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with bread crumbs. 
    3. Repeat. I usually do about 5-6 layers
    4. Spoon a ‘log’ of your cabbage/sausage mixture into the center.

Gently fold in the sides and ‘glue’ together using some melted butter.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden and crispy.
Allow to sit for at least 1/2 hour after removing it from the oven.

Keeping it real.
The amount of filling you get varies with the amount of cabbage and such.
You’ll get anywhere from 2-4 rolls.
This filling would also be yummy for stuffing squash or just eat it out of the bowl

I also made one in layers like a pan of baklava, it was good but for some reason it just wasn’t as good. Sad because it’s a lot faster!

*The original recipe is vegetarian. I added the sausage because I mixed up 2 recipes and I thawed the sausage and blah blah blah. We really liked it with the sausage so that’s how we make it now.


Lazy Day Dinner – Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Chicken

She might not be a looker, but damn. Talk about yummy.
I could eat this every day.
This is my adaptation of a Real Simple recipe
Main difference: they measure, I just throw stuff in a bowl

Ingredients:
Potatoes
Sweet Potatoes
Onion(s)
Chicken
Olive Oil
Maple Syrup (in the mason jar, homemade!)
Salt & Pepper

Heat oven to 400 degrees F
Pour olive oil, syrup and S&P into a large bowl and whisk together

 
Peel the taters and cut into chunks. Cut the onion into wedges.
Add to the sauce and toss it all around until evenly covered

Place the chicken in a large casserole dish. Top with the above bowl of yum.

Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes

The potatoes and onions should be tender and the chicken will be cooked, sweet and tender.

Side note:
It’s spring here in NY (oddly enough) and my time has been spent digging up insane amounts of rhubarb and planning for the vegetable garden and the new orchard. Also waiting for the turkeys to start laying and deciding if we want to try and hatch brahmas, blue-laced red wyandottes or silver laced wyandottes (or do we want to buy some Marans for the dark brown eggs?). AND do we keep the ‘crooked’ ducks? Or cull and start over will only Herman and Lilly?

Decisions, decisions.

Anyways, crafting and decorating have taken a back seat for the time being, but I’ve got some stuff in the works so don’t give up!

Cabbage & Onions

Hey all, sorry for the break in projects. I’ve been under the weather and spending my time reading other blogs instead of working on my own! Incase you missed it here’s a recipe that I guest posted over at Renewed Upon a Dream last week:

This is one of my favorite [non]recipes. I make this at least once a week during the winter. It’s easy, cheap and healthy. I’m pretty sure this is actually culinary magic. You take four really basic ingredients and turn them in to an amazing side dish [or if you're like me, a main course!]

Some day I’ll give it a fun name, but for now it’s just:

Ingredients:
2 med onions [or 1 large]
Olive oil
Salt
1 small green cabbage

The real key to this recipe isn’t the ingredients, it’s the tools. I’d like to introduce you to my best friend:

Okay, my other best friend:

I love my Mandolin! Mine is from Oneida, it was about 30$ at Bed, Bath and Beyond. If you do a lot of cooking with fresh veggies this thing is necessary. I can slice an onion in seconds. Seriously? I’d still be looking for a sharp knife! AND the slices are all uniform. The black thing with the onion stuck to it is the safety guard, that blade is sharp! I cut myself on this once, and it bled a lot. Not a toy for the kids that’s for sure!

 One of my favorite things about this slicer is the adjustable blade.  The black knob [in the blue box] can be turned to make the slices really thin or pretty thick. I usually keep it set to about a 1/4 inch.

Back to the good part!

Slice up both of the onions.
Heat some olive oil in a large pan with high [at least 3 inches] sides, over medium/low heat.
Add the onions, separating the rings. Stir well to coat all the onions, you don’t want to fry the onions!
Cook them until they start to go translucent.
While they are cooking slice your cabbage.

Don’t be nervous! This looks like a crazy amount of cabbage but it cooks down a lot!
Start adding the cabbage to the onions a little at few handfuls at a time, you need to be able to stir without over flowing.

Keep adding more cabbage as it cooks down. Add some salt as you go, it seasons and helps to draw out the water.

If you’re patient you’ll go from nice, happy green to delicious, buttery brown. Depending on the amount of cabbage this can take up to an hour. But you mostly ignore it, so it’s not labor intensive.

Your helper may abandon you

Did I mention you can’t ruin this dish unless you light it on fire? I love it really cooked, until the sugars caramelize and it’s soft and buttery tasting. BUT you can also eat it at any stage.

Just be careful eating out of the pan while it’s cooking, you can burn your tongue (not that I would know…)