Baked Cheesy Grits

This is a variation on a classic dish.  Some may call it polenta, others may call it grits.  There are subtle variations, but they have the same basic ingredients.   This recipe came up from a perusal of both grits and polenta recipes, and is a combination, with some personal touches.  It can be served as a side dish, appetizer (or breakfast, but of course you are not limited to that).

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Homecoming Stew

homecoming_stew_mmmThis dish was named this way because it was created on homecoming weekend for many of the local colleges.  It definitely falls under the category of “comfort food.”   We call it a stew because it has a lot of solid ingredients, but it could also be considered a soup, as it is very liquid.  Either way, it is very satisfying and tasty, and will be made again.

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Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut Squash SoupIf you are anything like us, when autumn comes along, we start thinking of soups.   This soup is one of our all-time favorite comfort foods for this time of year.  We have made it many times, and after several variations, we think we have perfected this classic recipe.  It is very easy to make and can be done within about an hour, plus it scales easily and reheats well.

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Sesame Tempeh with Mushrooms

tempehThis post is the result of an exciting new experiment.  Having tasted tempeh at a restaurant, we decided that we had to attempt something with it.   For those who do not know what it is, tempeh is a soy product which originated in Indonesia.   Unlike its cousin tofu, it is not highly processed, but is grainier, consisting of soy beans held together by a fermentation process.  It is extremely tasty, has a crunchy nutty characteristic, and is also quite healthy, and is a vegetarian dish that would satisfy many meat-eaters.    It can be found in the vegetable section of many supermarkets, near the tofu.   Despite never having cooked it before, we decided to create a brand new recipe, which while using some techniques we found in other recipes, is wholly our own.    It came out extremely good.  We can’t wait to cook with tempeh again.

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Rosemary & Dill Salmon

dill_rosemary_salmonHot summer day, time to grill outside again.  There’s something about a backyard party with friends that inspires creation.  We love salmon, and decided to try something new, with a few tried and true elements, with the addition of fresh dill.   The results were a resounding success;  salmon grills exceptionally well.      Continue reading

Mango Lime Daiquiri

With summer upon us, sometimes it is nice to just sit back and enjoy a pleasant cocktail.  While walking through the supermarket on the Spanish foods aisle, there was a section with a nice selection of various types of nectar.   Loudly, the mango nectar called out, and said, “use me! use me!”    So, of course, we couldn’t resist such a friendly fruity invitation.   At first it was a bit too sweet, but after a little experimentation and adding grapefruit juice, we came up with this delicious drink. Continue reading

Stuffed zucchini

stuffed zucchiniThis is a fairly easy and fast dish, that should please just about anyone.   It is vegetarian, but many who prefer meat may not even notice the difference.   We made this last weekend as a side dish, but it can very easily work as an entrée as well.  While some of the basics were found online on various sites, there were some creative touches added which worked pretty well.   The entire thing can be made in about half an hour. Continue reading

Grilled Sesame Salmon and Vegetables

salmon_veggiesIt was another warm spring day, and it is grilling time again.  We don’t make fish enough, but I love salmon.  It looked particularly appealing in the supermarket, so this was thrown together based on what else looked good in the produce section.   The sesame oil is a piece of experimentation, which turned out successfully, especially on the vegetables.   The pasta side is simply some rice noodles with a Thai peanut sauce (found on the international foods aisle). Continue reading

Tuscan Bean Soup

tuscan bean soupWho says soup has to be reserved for cold weather?   It has been warmer than usual,, but this soup went down just fine.   We have made it twice now, and I feel that it’s ready to post.  It is based on yet another Mollie Katzen recipe, but as usual, there are variations made, both for taste and speed of preparation.   Instead of fresh basil, we use dried, which has an altogether different flavor.   This is a light soup, less thick than some of the other entries here, and goes well with fresh vegetables.

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Shrimp Pasta Primavera Extravaganza

pastaprimavera2This time of year, this type of dish comes to mind;  fresh vegetables always remind us of spring.    We like to toss together a combination of vegetables and mix it together with some pasta and wine and have a light meal.   Shrimp is a nice touch as well.   However, this time we went a little berserk in the vegetable aisle of the supermarket and decided to add pretty much everything that came to mind.  At one point during the cooking we felt some concern that there were too many  vegetables as they seemed to be piling over the edge of the pot and the pasta had yet to be added (thus the “extravaganza” in the name, and it was no longer what one would call “light”), but this proved to be not an issue at all.   The dish turned out to be a resounding success and all of the flavors worked really well together.  We couldn’t stop piling extra helpings onto our plates and still have plenty of leftovers, which will make the next few days that much better.   Here’s how we did it:

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