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Appetizers, Dinner, Entrees, Gluten Free, Pasta

Traditional Meatballs

January 6, 2017

I am a little behind on posting my recipes as always.  I made my traditional meatballs over the holidays for a party.  They are great as an appetizer, or you can throw it over some spaghetti.

GourmetGirlDoesRE

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound of ground grass fed beef
  • 1 pound of ground veal
  • 1 pound of ground pork (you can get the spicy one if you want)
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1/3 cup of fresh thyme
  • 1/3 cup fresh oregano
  • 1 tablespoon white pepper
  • 4 to 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup day old bread crumbs finely crumbled, or you can buy seasoned bread crumbs (if you eat gluten free, they do sell gluten free bread crumbs at Nugget and Whole Foods)

Directions:

  1. Mix the meats together using your bare hands and then mix all the other ingredients with it.  I usually mix the eggs first then add the breadcrumbs and everything else afterwards.
  2. Roll meatballs into the size of a golf ball.
  3. Put meatballs in a large skillet over the stove with a bit of olive oil on the bottom and cook on all sides until all sides are browned.
  4. Place in a large pan and put in the oven at 250 for about 1 to 2 hours along with your favorite marinara sauce.  See below for my fast and simple marinara sauce.

Fast and Simple Marinara Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 2 large cans of tomato puree (there are gluten free options at the store)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons dried Italian seasoning
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons garlic powder or 2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons chili flakes (optional)
  • 1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped

Cook on medium to low heat for about 20 minutes and then you can put the sauce over the meatballs when you put them in the oven.

Dinner, Entrees

Flat Iron Steak Gyro

October 19, 2016

I am continuing my mission this month to create new recipes using yams, sweet potatoes, pumpkin or butternut squash.  I created this flat iron steak gyro with a unique spin using yams, onions and green peppers. I used a Creole seasoning on the flat iron steak and cayenne pepper on the yams mixture.  Both go well with the yogurt dill sauce!

Flat Iron Steak Gyro

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of flat iron steak
  • 1 package frozen yams from Trader Joe’s
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper cut into large slices
  • 1 to 2 cups plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons dried dill
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • Creole seasoning for meat rub
  • Cayenne pepper to taste
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 package thick flour tortillas

Directions:

  1. Coat the flat iron steak with a small amount of olive oil and season the Creole seasoning.
  2. Place flat iron steak in a baking dish and cook at 350 for 25-30 minutes.
  3. Slice the meat into long slices and set aside.
  4. In a large skillet drizzle a small amount of olive oil or grape seed oil in the pan and add the onions, green peppers and yams slices.  Then add the cayenne pepper, garlic powder and salt and pepper.  Cook at medium heat for approximately 8 to 15 minutes or until completely cooked.
  5. In a small bowl mix the plain Greek yogurt, milk, dill and salt and pepper.
  6. Heat the thick tortillas either over the gas stove or in the microwave using a tortilla warmer.
  7. Place pieces of the flat iron steak onto the tortilla, and then add the yams mixture and the yogurt dill sauce over the top and serve!

Flat Iron Steak yams_onions_green peppers

Comfort Food, Dinner, Entrees, Holiday Recipes, Soup

Pumpkin Tomato Tortellini Soup

October 17, 2016

I love winter and trying out new soup recipes!  Since the holidays are approaching, I am trying out new recipes with pumpkin, sweet potatoes, butternut squash and yams.  I came up with this interesting pumpkin tomato tortellini soup that tasted pretty darn good, so I decided to post this one.  I hope you enjoy as much as my husband and I did.

GourmetGirlDoesRE

Ingredients:

  • 2 cartons low sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cans of pumpkin puree (or if you are really ambitious you can roast the pumpkin and puree yourself)
  • 2 packages of cheese tortellini
  • 1 cup cream
  • 2 small cans or 1 large can of diced tomatoes
  • 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 package bacon
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons dried sage or if you want to use fresh sage, use the entire package
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons nutmeg
  • 3 to 4 teaspoons white pepper
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • 2 to 4 teaspoons of chipotle spice or to taste

Directions:

  1. Cook the bacon and crumble into small pieces and set aside for later.
  2. Drizzle a bit of olive oil or grape seed oil into a large pot and add onions and garlic.  Cook at medium heat until onions are translucent.
  3. Add the chicken broth, cream and pumpkin puree and mix well.  Then add the other spices and cook at low heat for 15 -20 minutes.
  4. Add the tortellini and cook at low for another 15 minutes and serve.
  5. Garnish with bacon.

 

Dinner, Entrees, Pasta

Cajun Shrimp Pasta

October 15, 2016

Here is a really easy Cajun shrimp pasta with my own little twist!   You can use chicken in this recipe instead of shrimp if you want.

Cajun Shrimp Pasta

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of spaghetti pasta (gluten free or regular)
  • 1 pound of jumbo shrimp shelled
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 package prosciutto chopped in small pieces
  • 1 small container of cherub tomatoes sliced in half
  • 2 shallots finely chopped
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon smoked or regular paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • salt and black pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. In a skillet drizzle a small amount of olive oil in pan and add the chopped prosciutto on medium heat.  Cook until crispy.
  2. In another skillet add butter, onions, garlic, shrimp, spices and prosciutto on low to medium heat for about 6 or 7 minutes.  At the last minute add cherub tomatoes so that they don’t get overcooked and mushy.
  3. Cook pasta according to package instructions and place into a large serving dish.
  4. Pour shrimp mixture over pasta.
  5. Garnish with fresh parsley if desired.
  6. Parmesan cheese is great with this dish.

 

 

Appetizers, Dinner, Party Food, Side Dishes

Muffin Tin Potatoes Gratin

October 10, 2016

I decided to make muffin tin potatoes gratin using sweet potatoes.  There are so many cool things you can cook in a muffin tin, and it makes for a better presentation if you have guests.

GourmetGirlDoesRE

Ingredients:

  • 4 to 6 sweet potatoes
  • 1 block Gruyere cheese (about 6 cups)
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • nutmeg to taste
  • cayenne pepper to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Peel the potatoes and then use a mandolin to cut the potatoes into thin slices.  If you do not have a mandolin, use a knife to get the potatoes as thin as possible.  Mandolins are so worth the money, so I would recommend getting one if you don’t already have one.
  2. Place potatoes in a bowl and fill with water and salt.  This will ensure that they don’t brown before you are ready to put everything together.
  3. Shred the Gruyere cheese and set aside.
  4. Cook the milk and heavy whipping cream on medium heat, and add all the spices.  I usually do equal amounts of nutmeg and cayenne pepper.
  5. Add 1/2 of the shredded cheese and stir until the cheese is melted, and then set aside.
  6. Grease muffin tin.
  7. Drain the potatoes and pat down before putting them into the muffin pan.
  8. Layer the potatoes into each muffin tin slot.
  9. Pour the milk, cream and cheese mixture into each tin.  Be careful about pouring all the way to the top because it will overflow.  Leave a bit of room at the top.
  10. Add remaining Gruyere cheese to the top.
  11. Heat oven to 350.
  12. Place the muffin pan onto a cooking sheet to ensure it doesn’t spill into your oven.
  13. Cook approximately 40-45 minutes.
  14. Cool for at least 10-15 minutes before serving.  I put two servings onto each plate right on top of each other.
  15. Potatoes gratin pretty much goes with any type of meat (chicken, pork, beef or fish)!

Enjoy!!!

 

Comfort Food, Dinner, Holiday Cooking, Holiday Recipes, Side Dishes

Savory Yams with Kale

October 4, 2016

In preparation for the holiday season I am playing around with yams, pumpkin and butternut squash, so I came up with this savory yams with kale side dish that came out pretty good.

GourmetGirlDoesRE

Ingredients:

  • 3 to 4 yams, chopped into chunky bites (leave skin on) – you can use sweet potatoes as well
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil or grape seed oil
  • 1 to 2 cups chopped fresh kale (you can buy frozen as well)
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • cayenne pepper to taste
  • Irish Garlic Salt or sea salt, pepper, garlic and parsley to taste

Note:  I buy the Irish Garlic Salt from a gal who makes it locally and it’s amazing!  It has sea salt, lots of garlic, parsley and other spices.  I use it on potatoes, beef, chicken and so much more!

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 400.
  2. Add the chopped yams, olive oil/grape seed oil, chopped onions, cranberries and spices and stir.
  3. Cook for approximately 45 minutes.  Take out half way to stir and see if you need more oil.
  4. Goes great with beef, chicken or pork!
Dinner, Entrees, Holiday Cooking, Holiday Recipes

Beef Wellington

October 4, 2016

Beef Wellington is one of most favorite meat dishes.  How can you go wrong with a filet mignon roast and puff pastry?  I usually make this around the holidays, and it’s always a great crowd pleaser.

GourmetGirlDoesRE

Ingredients:

  • 2.5-4 pound beef filet mignon tenderloin roast (trimmed)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 5 to 6 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons Himalayan salt
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
  • 5 to 6 cups finely chopped white or crimini mushrooms (no stems)
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard or other spicy mustard (optional)
  • 1/4 cup sherry or marsala
  • 1 to 2 packages puff pastry, thawed
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 4 ounces of peppercorn mousse or chicken liver pate

I personally like the peppercorn mousse better because I am not a huge liver person.  You can make it pretty easily, or you can find it at Whole Foods and other more high-end grocery stores.

Directions:

  1. Tie the filet roast with kitchen twine and make sure the twine is spaced about an inch apart.
  2. Season filet roast with salt and pepper and place in a large skillet with a bit of olive oil or grapeseed oil on medium-high heat for about a minute on each side to help seal in the juices.
  3. Transfer the filet roast to a cutting board and let it rest until cool.  Make sure the juices of the meat are drained because it will be hard for the pate to stick to the meat otherwise.  Chill until ready to assemble the pate and puff pastry over top.
  4. In another skillet or the same one you used for browning the roast, include butter and onions and cook for a few minutes and then add the chopped mushrooms.  Also add salt and pepper.  Cook until tender and the liquid has been cooked out and has evaporated.  Add sherry or marsala and cook until mixture is on the dry side (about 4 minutes) on medium heat.  Cool to room temperature, or you can refrigerate the day before if you want to make ahead.  Note:  I usually add a bit of spicy mustard as well.  This is my secret ingredient that adds a bit of extra flavor.
  5. On a flowered surface, roll out the thawed puff pastry sheets one at a time in a rectangular shape.  Do one first and see how much more you will need.  It depends on the size of the filet roast.  You want to make sure the beef is completely covered with the puff pastry.  If you are using more than one piece, you want to make sure the pieces overlap so that the roast is completely covered.
  6. Coat what you consider to be the top of the filet roast with the peppercorn mousse and then a layer of the mushroom mixture.   Carefully place the top coated part of the roast in the middle of the puff pastry and continue coating the roast with the peppercorn mousse and then the mushroom mixture.
  7. Enclose the puff pastry and the seem will be the bottom which you will place on a baking sheet.
  8. Coat puff pastry with egg wash to seal.  If you want a design on the top, do that and place on top of the egg mixture to keep together and put more egg wash on top of that.  I like to do holly leaves and berries or stars as a design, but you can pretty much do whatever you want.  Chill at least 2 hours.
  9. Heat over to 425 and place a roasting pan in the over for 15 minutes to heat up the pan.  Take then pan out and transfer the file roast from the baking sheet to the roasting pan.  Make a few small slits in the puff pastry to vent the meat.  Add more egg wash if necessary.  Sprinkle with sea salt if desired.
  10. Bake filet roast until the top of the puff pastry is golden brown and beef registers at 120-130 (rare), or 130-135 (medium rare).  If the puff pastry gets too brown, cover with foil if the meat is not at desired temperature.  The specific time in the oven will depend on how big of roast (generally it’s 15 to 17 minutes per pound).
  11. Let cool for a least 10 minutes before you cut into the roast.
  12. Put on a platter and decorate!  This type of entrée can make a big statement at your dinner table.
Dinner, Entrees, Low-Carb

Lamb with Pesto

September 30, 2016

I made a lamb with pesto last night and it turned out great.   I was doing a play on a chimichurri sauce Italian style!  If you buy the leg of lamb chops, they are easy to cook either in the oven or BBQ.  I decided to throw them in the oven and put brussel sprouts with them with a little balsamic reduction and bacon bits.  The flavors blended well with the pesto.

GourmetGirlDoesRE

When I have time I like to make my own pesto which is just olive oil, basil and pine nuts.  However, if I don’t have time I buy it.  There are so many great ones out there that you don’t need to make it homemade.

I coated the lamb first with a little bit of olive oil, salt and pepper.  Then I coated both sides of the lamb with pesto.  I also drizzled a bit of olive oil on the brussel sprouts along with a bit of balsamic reduction I made that I keep in the refrigerator.  You can just use a bit of regular balsamic too.   I added bacon bits that you buy in a jar.  I keep that on hand when I am in a hurry.  Of course, making the bacon bits yourself is always better!

I cooked for 25 minutes in the over at 350.

Dinner, Lunch, Side Dishes

Brussel Sprouts with Bacon and Maple Syrup

May 11, 2016

My brother-in-law makes the best bacon with sugar and garlic, and it inspired me to try brussel sprouts with bacon and maple syrup.  It turned out pretty darn good if I don’t say so myself.  My husband loved it as well.  This is a very easy recipe and can go with just about anything.

GourmetGirlDoesRE

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound of brussel sprouts cut in half
  • 1 package of bacon
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts (optional)

Direction:

  1. Cook the bacon either in the oven or stove top and make on the crispy side.
  2. Place cooked bacon on a paper towel to soak up the grease and let it cool down.
  3. Crumble bacon and set aside.
  4. Saute the brussel sprouts in the olive oil over medium heat for approximately 10-15 minutes.
  5. Add the bacon, pine nuts and maple syrup and simmer at a lower heat for about 5 to 10 minutes and serve!
Comfort Food, Dinner, Entrees, Soup

French Onion Soup with Homemade Croutons

April 4, 2016

Easter weekend I went with my family to Angels Camp and we stayed at the Wyndam condos.  I was responsible for making dinner one night.  I brought my crockpot and was able to do my prep work in the morning and let it cook all day while we were out having fun at Big Trees.  My soup was a big hit!  I also made mini sliders with Hawaiian rolls along with a strawberry and blueberry mixed green salad.  I have posted the salad recipe separately.

GourmetGirlDoesRE

This recipe makes up to 10-12 ramekins!

Ingredients:

  • 3 large yellow onions, chopped into thin strips
  • 3 to 4 (32 oz.) cartons of beef broth
  • fresh thyme for soup and croutons (1 container)
  • 1/4 cup of Cognac (you can use dry sherry as well)
  • 1/2 cup of your favorite stout beer
  • 6 to 8 tablespoons of butter
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 to 3 large slices of gruyere cheese per ramekin (2 packages)
  • 2 to 3 bay leaves
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup of flour

Directions:

  1. Place butter in large skillet with the onion strips and cook on medium heat.  Add fresh thyme and the stout beer.  Cook until translucent.  The onions should have a bit of sauce to it from the beer and butter.  You will need it because once you add the flour it will thicken.  Slowly add the flour while stirring.  Take off heat and set aside.
  2. In a crockpot add the beef broth, Cognac, more fresh thyme, Worcestershire sauce, bay leaves and salt/pepper.  Then add the onions and stir everything together before putting the lid on.
  3. Cook 8 to 10 hours.
  4. Pour soup into large ramekins and place on a cooking sheet.
  5. Add homemade croutons as well as 2 to 3 slices of gruyere cheese to each ramekin (see crouton recipe below).
  6. Place in oven and broil on high for approximately 5 to 10 minutes.
  7. Serve with fresh parsley as a garnish.

Homemade Croutons Recipe

  1. Get 1 to 2 large loafs of sourdough bread and cut into large pieces.
  2. Place cut pieces into a large bowl.
  3. Melt 1 to 2 sticks of butter and mix with the cut pieces of bread with a wooden spoon.
  4. Drizzle your favorite olive oil over to help coat the bread as well.  I like to use both butter and olive oil because it gives a better flavor.
  5. Add fresh or dried thyme and mix.  Parmesan cheese would be good as well.
  6. Place on a cooking sheet at 400 and monitor until it looks crispy.  It takes approximately 15 minutes.

GourmetGirlDoesRE