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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Farro Breakfast Bowl

Farro Breakfast Bowl (3)

Farro is an ancient grain from Rome. Its delicious nutty flavor and slightly chewy texture remind me a lot of barley. Farro has been a long time coming. You just couldn’t get your hands on it anywhere! Now, it’s readily available in your local grocery store.

I’m showing two pictures of my Farro Breakfast Bowls, one that’s topped with an egg, and one below without. That’s where Steve and I have a strong difference of opinion. I’m not even sure if “opinion” is even the right word. I’m no fan of the fried egg.  To be fair though, eggs are a big part of any breakfast and Steve loves them, that’s the reason for two pictures.

Anyway, this Farro Breakfast Bowl is easy to make while combining great flavor, color, and texture. Here’s how this dish comes together.

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Let’s talk about Farro

 

I took a screenshot of this brand because it’s the one I’ve used for this dish. You know I love to take help from the grocery store, this cooks up in about 25 minutes and includes some Porcini mushrooms. I’m SOLD!

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Yields: 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Equipment: 12-inch sautèpan, saucepan with tight-fitting lid.

Ingredients:
1 package of cooked Alessi Farro with Porcini mushrooms, 7-ounce package
1 pound, cooked bulk Italian chicken sausage (casings removed) (substitute pork or turkey Italian sausage)
1 small can white shoepeg corn (rinsed and drained)
1 cup of 1-inch diced red bell pepper (1 medium-size pepper)
1 cup of 1-inch diced yellow bell pepper (1 medium-size pepper)
1 cup yellow onion,  1-inch diced
1/2 cup carrots, 1-inch dice
1 tablespoon garlic, minced (3 cloves)
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper
1/4 cup Pistachios (optional)
7-ounces Feta cheese, cubed
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese,  shredded or grated
2 tablespoons of fresh basil, chopped
2 tablespoons of fresh chives, minced
2 tablespoons of fresh mint, chopped
1 fried egg (optional, cooked to the temperature of your choosing)

Directions For Farro:
Cooking Time: 25 minutes
Follow the instructions on the back of the package. Feel free to use either water or unsalted chicken stock for cooking the Farro. In place of the butter on the package, I substitute olive oil.

Tip: Cook the sausage while the Farro is cooking.

Directions:
Start by cooking the Farro. Next, in a large sautèpan on medium heat, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Using a wooden spoon start by breaking up the sausage. Turn and toss the sausage allowing it to brown on all sides or until the sausage is complete brown with no pink spots, around 10 minutes.

Add the onion, garlic, diced peppers and carrots to the pan. Season with Kosher salt and black pepper. Stir and continue cooking until vegetables become tender another 7-10 minutes.

Don’t worry about the sausage bits sticking to the bottom of the pan because once the vegetables are added, they’ll release their water allowing those bits to be released.

Using the back of a wooden spoon, scrape as much of those brown bits off the bottom of the pan, that’s all flavor!

Transfer the cooked Farro and shoepeg corn to a large mixing bowl. Using a slotted spoon, add the cooked sausage and vegetable mixture to the bowl. Next, add the pistachios (optional), Parmesan cheese, cubed feta, and fresh herbs, then toss together.

Ladle the Farro mixture into a serving bowl and top with a fried egg (optional). Serve hot!

 

 

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Lumpy Mashed Potatoes

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When I was a growing up I despised mash potatoes, the texture, the taste, everything about them. As I got older, that all changed as I became a parent and cooked almost every night. I learned how to make some improvements to foods I didn’t like as a child. Honestly, I wanted my daughter to like and eat everything I made, especially all variety of vegetables. A mother can dream, can’t she?

I can remember, the texture of mash potatoes was just awful, NOW, I love their creamy texture. Funny thing, Steve doesn’t care for smooth mash potatoes, he likes them to have some texture like mashed potatoes with the skins left on, those he really likes. I came up with a compromise, I’m calling them my Lumpy Mashed Potatoes.

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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Yields: 4 servings
Equipment: 6-quart stockpot, large mixing bowl

Ingredients:
5-large Yukon Gold, cooked, peeled, and diced
1 garlic bulb, 4 roasted cloves
1/2 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, chopped
4-ounces cream cheese, room temperature
4-ounces Mascarpone cheese, room temperature
1 1/2 cups of half-and-half
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 tablespoon of fresh chives, minced

Directions:
Preheat oven to 400-degrees F.
Peel and discard the papery out layer of the garlic bulb, leaving intact the skins of the individual cloves. Using a sharp knife, cut 1/4 to 1/2-inch from the top of the cloves, exposing the individual cloves of garlic. Set the garlic on top of a piece of foil. Drizzle a couple of teaspoons of olive oil over each exposed head, using your fingers to rub the olive oil over all the cut, exposed garlic cloves. Sprinkle each head with a pinch of Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper.  Wrap the garlic bulbs up in the foil. Place the foil packet on a rimmed baking sheet pan. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the cloves are lightly browned and feel soft when pressed. Remove from the oven, carefully open the foil packet and set aside to cool.
Start with a large stockpot, add 5 large Yukon Gold potatoes. Cover the potatoes with cold water. Bring the potatoes up to a boil. Add 2 heaping tablespoons of Kosher salt. Continue boiling for around 10 to 15 minutes until just fork tender. Turn the heat off. Strain the water, return the potatoes back into the hot pot. Place a towel over the top so they will continue steaming for another 5 minutes or so. They will be perfectly cooked and the skins can be easily removed. Remove the skins and dice into approx. 1 1/2-inch size chunks. Place the diced potatoes into a large mixing bowl and set aside.

In the same large stockpot on low heat, melt the unsalted butter. To the melted butter add the fresh chopped thyme, cream cheese, Mascarpone cheese, half-and-half, Kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper, stirring occasionally. Continue to stir and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until everything becomes nice and smooth. Take the mixture off the heat, add the 4 roasted garlic cloves and diced potatoes right into the cream mixture.

With a potato masher start mashing. The warm potatoes start to absorb the liquid as I start the mashing. This potato recipe is kind of unique because it still has the creaminess of what you know mash potatoes to have, but yet because they are not whipped or put through a food mill they still have little bits of potatoes throughout. Finally, I add 4 tablespoons of fresh chopped chives. There you have it, my Lumpy Mashed Potatoes.

 

 

Homemade Meatloaf

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Turkey Sausage Breakfast Burritos

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What could be better than all your favorite breakfast foods wrapped up in a tortilla? I’d have to say I can’t think of anything I love more than my Turkey Sausage Breakfast Burritos.

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Jennie-O Turkey Sausage

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The one great thing about turkey sausage is that it’s a blank canvas for any spices you like. So you can take this and make it your own by adding whatever spices you like.

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Scambled Eggs

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Yields: 8 Burritos
Equipment: 2-12-inch sautépans, non-stick cooking spray, Cast iron grill press/ heavyweight
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes.
Inactive Cook Time: 15 minutes (wrapping the burritos)
Pressing Tortillas: 12-16 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 16 minutes

Ingredients:
1-pound (16-ounce Chub) ground turkey sausage
1  small onion, diced
1 red bell pepper diced
4 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 package of store-bought Simply Potatoes, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons of freshly chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley
1 15-ounce can unsalted black beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups thawed frozen corn
1 tablespoon sweet paprika
2 tablespoons of fajita seasoning blend (substitute store-bought)
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup unsalted chicken broth
1 dozen eggs, scrambled (link below for my Perfect Scrambled Eggs)
1/2 cup shredded (grated) Colby Jack cheese (or favorite cheese)
2 tablespoon fresh chives, minced
1 package of Mission large flour tortillas (8 ct.)

2 pints of grape tomatoes, 1 red, 1 yellow,  halved
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1 lime, juiced
2 tablespoons of freshly chopped cilantro

Ingredients For Fajita Spice Blend:
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

Directions For Fajita Spice Blend:
In a mixing bowl combine all the ingredients together. Store in an air-tight container for future use.

Directions:
Start by draining and rinsing the black beans. Mix the beans together with the thawed corn, place into a bowl and set aside. Next, dice the onion, red bell pepper, and mince the garlic.

In a large sautépan on medium-high heat add 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the diced onion and diced red bell pepper. After the peppers and onions soften, about 10 minutes, add the minced garlic and stir through. At this point, add the butter and remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Once the butter melts add the diced potatoes.

Stir to coat the potatoes, peppers, and onions with butter. Let cook only turning every 5 minutes. Allow the potatoes to get a nice crispy exterior before turning. Resist from constant stirring, cook for 12-15 minutes or until potatoes are golden brown. Remove the pan from the heat, add the fresh chopped Italian parsley and stir. Transfer the potatoes to a bowl, cover and set aside.

In another large sautépan, on medium-high heat, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil and turkey sausage. Start breaking up the sausage with the back of a wooden spoon.

Add the minced garlic, paprika, Kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper, and fajita seasoning blend, stir to combine. Continue to stir the sausage. Once the meat is completely browned and nicely caramelized, about 15-20 minutes (or until internal temperature is 165-degrees F.), then add 1/4 cup of unsalted chicken broth to deglaze the pan. Use the back of the wooden spoon to scrape up the bits from the bottom of the pan and allow the liquid to completely evaporate another 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the turkey sausage to a bowl, cover and set aside.

While browning the turkey sausage is cooking in a separate bowl add halved grape tomatoes, Kosher salt, black pepper, and chopped cilantro, mix to combine and set aside.

Next is to make the scrambled eggs. To get my recipe for Perfect Scrambled Eggs just click on the link below. Once the eggs are scrambled, 10 minutes, remove from the heat before adding the shredded Coby Jack cheese and chives, stir to combine. Transfer the scrambled eggs to a bowl, cover and set aside.

Before you can wrap a burrito the best way to do that is to start with a warm tortilla. Place 2 to 3 tortilla on a plate at a time. Cover with a damp paper towel and microwave for 30 seconds to 1 minute.

To assemble the burritos, lay a warm tortilla out on a flat surface. Fill the bottom third of the tortilla with 2 tablespoons of each ingredient. Pull the bottom half of the burrito over to meet the top half then pull the tortilla back. Next, fold one side in then the other side. With both ends tightly folded, tightly roll the tortilla until you have a perfect burrito.

Once all the burritos have been filled and wrapped it’s time to press them. Start with a large sautépan preheated on medium heat. Coat the pan with non-stick cooking spray. Place the burrito into the hot pan. Place a grill press on top, 3 to 4 minutes per side or until golden brown. Press the burritos in batches of two.

Serve hot. I like to garnish the plate with ingredients in the burrito.

 

 

Perfect Scrambled Eggs

 

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Homestyle Mashed Potatoes

Homestyle Mash Potatoes

I guess my favorite tool has to be the food mill, for two reasons. First, because it was passed down to me from my Nana, second, you just can’t beat it for making the best Homestyle Mashed Potatoes ever!

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Chives

Chives (2)

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Prep Time: 15 minutes (time includes peeling and dicing the potatoes)
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Yields: 4 to 6 servings
Equipment: 6-quart stockpot, large mixing bowl, food mill, hand-held electric mixer

Ingredients:
3 pounds of potatoes, Yukon Gold
Kosher salt (to salt boiling water)
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
1 8-ounce package of cream cheese, room temperature
3/4 stick unsalted butter (6 tablespoons)
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons of fresh chopped chives, optional

Directions:
In a large stockpot add the whole unpeeled potatoes, cover with cold tap water. Turn the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil. Liberally salt the water. Boil for 10 minutes, turn the heat off and let them sit in the hot water for another 10 to 15minutes or until fork tender. Remove the potatoes and let them cool until they can be handled. Remove the skins and dice into 1-inch cubes.

In a small saucepot, heat the half-and-half and butter until the butter is melted.

On top of a large mixing bowl set up the food mill, start processing the potatoes through the mill. After all the potatoes have passed through the food mill, using a hand-held electric mixer, on low speed, and the hot half-and-half/butter mixture. Next, add the softened cream cheese,  Kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper, and freshly chopped chives from my garden, whisk to combine. Serve hot.

 

Homemade Salisbury Steak

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