Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Strange Seasons

We don't mark our Seasons here in New Orleans using temperature changes.  The truth is that it will be hot (really really hot) for probably three more months in my hometown.  We don't have a true Fall and our Winter is always very mild.   We note season changes using other factors.  Summer into Fall is usually the end of SnoBall Season and the beginning of College Football, we work with what we have ;-)  So even though we won't have to retire our grill anytime soon, I feel like my days for recipes like these are getting numbered.  Especially since this has been the frequent scene around my house:

Grilled Watermelon with Prosciutto and Feta

Adapted from Southern Living August 2012



  • 3 (1/2-inch-thick) watermelon rounds, quartered
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Sea salt
  • 4 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto
  • 4 ounces feta, crumbled
  • Fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar



1. Preheat grill to 350° to 400° (medium-high) heat. Brush both sides of each watermelon quarter with olive oil, and season with desired amount of salt. Cut prosciutto into thin strips.
2. Grill watermelon quarters, without grill lid, 2 minutes on each side or until grill marks appear.

3. Transfer watermelon to a serving plate; top with feta, prosciutto strips, and fresh basil. Drizzle watermelon with balsamic. Serve immediately.

Click Here for My Adapted Printable Recipe

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Quite the Quiche !

I just finished telling you in my last post about how I have to have some type of protein in my meals to feel satisfied and here I am following up with another meatless dish.  I love quiche, and so does my husband (don't tell anyone, I think that does something to your manly status).  I have made tons of quiches in the past.  Most of them were packed with meat and Forrest admitted to being partial to those, but he said the caramelized onions in this dish were the star.  I served this for dinner, one big slice along side a piece of grilled andouille.  The presence of the zucchini made this seem like more of a lunch/dinner meal rather than breakfast, but I don't see why it couldn't be served at any time of day.  There are two tips for making this recipe much easier than it seems: caramelize your onions the day before you plan to make the quiche, and use a mandoline to get perfectly uniform and extra thin zucchini slices (I just use a cheap handheld one, nothing fancy).

Zucchini and Caramelized Onion Quiche

Adapted from Cooking Light August 2012



  • 1/2 (14.1-ounce) package refrigerated pie dough (such as Pillsbury)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 cups (1/8-inch-thick) slices zucchini
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped Basic Caramelized Onions
  • 1 cup 1% low-fat milk
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper/cayenne 
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated (about 1/2 cup)



1. Caramelize Onions.  Vertically Slice 3 large onions and saute in a pan with 1Tbs of olive oil, 1/2 Tbs of butter and 1/4 teaspoon of salt.

Cook for 1 hour on low heat until the onions are dark brown and caramelized; stirring frequently.

I did this the night before to cut down on the preparation time for the quiche.  3 large onions will cook down to amount to about 1/2 cup of caramelized onions.

2. Preheat oven to 425°.

3. Roll dough into a 12-inch circle. Fit dough into a 10-inch deep-dish pie plate. Fold edges under; flute (as you can tell from my pictures, I am not a good "fluter" - in fact, I am a terrible "fluter"!).

Line dough with foil; arrange pie weights or dried beans on foil.

Bake at 425° for 12 minutes or until edges are golden. Remove weights and foil; bake an additional 2 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

4. Reduce oven temperature to 375°.

5. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl. Add zucchini and garlic; sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Sauté 5 minutes or until crisp-tender. Cool slightly.

6. Arrange Basic Caramelized Onions over bottom of crust;

top with zucchini mixture.

Combine remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, milk, flour, pepper (black and red), eggs, and cheese in a medium bowl, stirring well with a whisk.

Pour milk mixture over zucchini mixture.

 Bake at 375° for 35 minutes or until set. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Click Here for My Adapted Printable Recipe

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Presto Pasta


I find it hard to feel satisfied with meatless meals.  I think it is more mental than anything else.  There are certainly a number of ingredients you can add to a meatless dish in order to fill up your belly, but I always feel deprived if there isn't a single "meat" ingredient.  I was expecting to have the same reaction to this dish, but decided to give it a try anyway since it was a super fast weeknight option.  To my surprise, I was very satisfied with all of the ingredients here.  I didn't miss a thing while enjoying this hearty meatless pasta.  I think the use of fresh pasta was a good choice as it sped up the cooking time and added a special touch to this perfect "few ingredient" dish!

Fettuccine with Tomato-Cream Sauce
Adapted from Cooking Light August 2012


  • 8 ounces uncooked fresh fettuccine
  • 4 quarts boiling water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped garlic
  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled San Marzano tomatoes, drained and crushed
  • 3 ounces 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup black olives, pitted and sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 cup small fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 ounce Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, shaved



1. Cook pasta in 4 quarts boiling water with 1/4 teaspoon salt for 4 minutes or until noodles are almost al dente. Drain pasta through a sieve over a bowl; reserve 1 1/3 cups pasta cooking water.
2. Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add garlic; cook 2 minutes or until very fragrant and tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and tomatoes; cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Stir in reserved 1 1/3 cups pasta water; bring to a boil. Add cream cheese; stir until smooth.

Add pasta, olives, and red pepper;

cook 3 minutes or until pasta is al dente, tossing to coat. Divide pasta mixture among 4 shallow bowls; top each serving with 1 tablespoon basil. Divide Parmigiano-Reggiano evenly among servings.

Click Here for My Adapted Printable Recipe