Category Archives: Uncategorized

Moving On

Hey all maybe one of you that read this…we’re moving! Here’s the new web address:

https://jbarkin7.wixsite.com/mysite/about

Le Creuset’s Mini Cocettes – Worth It?

So Le Creuset makes these mini cocettes — they are basically mini dutch ovens. Talk about an ADORABLE way to serve a meal, huh!?

They come in both ceramic or wrought iron (the ceramic is MUCH cheaper) — I have the ceramic. One of the greatest things is that these are “bakeware to serveware” — they’re both oven-safe and can be used to serve your food (so plate safe, obviously when cooled). We have them in a lovely shade of purple, though when I looked on Le Creuset’s site our shade was no longer listed: cassis. Below are some of the really fun and vibrant shades they offer, all of which would look lovely on your dining table!

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Ours are this deep shade of purple, which you can still find on third-party sites. 

I often use these handy little guys when we want to feel fancy, or in the fall and winter to make delicious comfort food. Some favorite recipes I use with these are:

As you can see, pot pies in these babies is a big hit. I also like to do any kind of pasta bake — see previous blog post — in these little guys if a heightened presentation is desired for the meal.

The Downside: They are smaller and therefore the portions are smaller. While I’m all for a healthy serving size, if I know one of our bigger eater friends are coming for dinner, I’d opt for a full size dutch oven for whatever I’m making. These little guys are just that: little. They’re perfect if you plan to serve one of the above recipes with sides, but alone the serving might be a bit small.

Overall, I would highly, HIGHLY recommend these IF you have the cabinet space and are into presentation (sometimes) as we are at my house!

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On My Hiatus: Weddings Take Up A Lot of Time

Howdy all!

So you’ve probably noted a prolonged lack of posts. Well, I got married May 17th, so things were a bit chaotic for a while, and it was all too stressful to try and handle weekly blogging.

The great news is that now I have a bunch of recipes to post! Cucumber Lemonade, Sesame Noodles, Thai Peanut Chicken, Macaroni & 4-Cheese Gratin, Maple-Walnut Salmon, and more!

Expect lots of fun stuff very, VERY soon!

This sushi art is the coolest thing!

How cool?! Had to repost this! What a talented sushi chef!!!

SoraNews24 -Japan News-

sushi7

Edible art is kind of a thing these days, especially in Asia, where seemingly every dish is so artfully crafted and cute you couldn’t possibly eat it – especially when it takes the

form of a cat poking out of your latte

.

This admittedly somewhat wasteful art form may have reached its pinnacle with these mind-boggling works of makizushi magnificence.

View original post 192 more words

Tomato & Cheese Tartlets

These are a savory, delicious treat! They are so adorable and fun to make, and they just look great on a plate! These mini tarts filled with goat cheese, cream, and spices are topped with fresh cut slices of tomato and baked to perfection.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees

Serves 4

Ingredients:

1 package of Pilsbury Crescent rolls

6 oz Boursin Garlic & Herb cheese

2 tablespoons heavy cream, or 1/4 cup milk

1/2 vidalia onion, finely chopped

kosher salt and black pepper

3 large tomatoes, I use both yellow and red

3 tablespoons freshly chopped basil leaves

Parmesean cheese

Take the Pilsbury rolls, and using a non-stick tartlet pan, press out by hand the crescent roll into a crust for the tartlet. Then take the cream or milk, Boursin, and salt and pepper and place in a small mixing bowl. Then, using a hand mixer or food processor, whip all these together. Finally, using a spoon, stir in the onion pieces. Fill each tartlet pan will equal amounts of filling until none left or pans are full. Then, slice the large tomatoes into medallions, and place on top of each tartlet, covering the tops of each entirely.

Bake for 20-25 minutes, and then add basil and parmesean as garnish. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes and serve hot.

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(Sorry for the crummy picture, we were too excited…also, we were out of fresh basil, so I mixed the store bough flakes into the whipped cheese/cream)

Happy Eating!

Braised Beef Brisket: Savory Deliciousness

This recipe is a combination of recipes that my father formulated and I’ve taken my own spin on. As a result, and as usual, I will say: TASTE YOURS. Do yours to your liking, not my recipe.

Ingredients:

1 4lb beef brisket

kosher salt and ground black pepper

1/2 to 1 can crushed tomatoes

1/2 cup water or chicken or beef broth

2 carrots, sliced

2 celery sticks, sliced

1 onion, chopped

2 sprigs of fresh rosemary, finely chopped

3 bay leaves

3 garlic cloves

3 tablespoons paprika

1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce

1/2-1 cup red wine

First: take the meat and coat it in the salt and black pepper. Stick the raw brisket in the oven, at 375, allowing each side to sear slightly. While doing this, place all the other ingredients into your dutch oven, except the bay leaves. Make sure you have enough liquid to cover the meat, but not enough for it to be swimming in it. Then place the brisket in your dutch oven, which you’ll want on medium to medium high heat. Take the bay leaves, and using a spoon or spatula, pat them to the meat, ensuring they stay on the meat, not just floating around. Cover your dutch oven tightly, and allow it to cook, checking it frequently, for 3-4 hours. 

For this recipe, I use a wooden spatula to check the meat’s tenderness. You’ll know it’s ready because it will just fall apart to the touch. 

You can add many things to this. Some recipes I referenced called for sugar, leeks, potatoes, parsley, chili powder, Sriracha, olive oil, brandy, mustard, etc. Feel free to comment and let me know what you added! Tweaking recipes is half the fun!

 

 

Happy cooking!

 

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A Killer Lazy Lasagna

So there was a recipe I found on Pinterest, but after altering it quite a bit I’ve both complicated and simplified the recipe. This “Lazy Person Lasagna” as I call it, can be made with any pasta or pastas of your choosing. Why, just last night I made one with Linguini and Cavatappi!

Serves 4-6
Oven temp: 350
Prep time: 20-25 mins
Cook time: 20-25 mins

Ingredients:

1/2-3/4 box of linguini or other pasta

Sauce:
1/2-3/4 can crushed tomatoes
2 lbs ground turkey
Rosemary (1/2 tsp. chopped)
3 bay leaves
Salt & Pepper to taste
3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 yellow onion

Cheese/Bechamel:
1 bag shredded mozzarella cheese
8 oz cream cheese

First: begin cooking the pasta, it’ll need to be al dente when you put this whole sucker in the oven, so make sure you start the pasta first. Then, using a pot, put ground turkey, garlic and onion in another pot, cooking on medium heat till turkey is browned.

Then: Once turkey is browned, add the crushed tomatoes, rosemary, bay leaves, and salt and pepper. Feel free to add any spices you particularly like – I know we do!

Meanwhile: while this is all cooking, take the cream cheese and stir it in the container to loosen it up. Add milk if you want a more loose result (sidenote: we do not even do this step).

Once the pasta is cooked: Strain as you would normally, and then lay pasta in bottom of baking pan or lasagna pan, making sure pasta is still hot. Spoon cream cheese generously over the pasta, and then add the (now) ragu sauce.

Finally: Take the shredded mozzarella and coat the top of the filled pan. Then, place in oven @ 350, letting bake for 20-25 mins or until top layer edges are golden brown.

Serve: Hot with grated Parmesan (if desired).

Voila!

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A Little Hello to Start

So this blog is the beloved brainchild of myself, Jamie, and my human, Richard. Between myself, my fiancé, and our cat we combine our endlessly sophisticated palettes (*note the hint of sarcasm*) to create dishes to share with the world!

Okay, but real talk: I love cooking and do it all the time; in fact, we constantly have people over for dinners, and I’m always being asked what or how I made whatever I’ve made. So, I decided why not start a cooking blog?! Sure, no one may ever read this thing, but I could wind up amassing a following, so why not give it a shot?! I mean, what’s there to lose? Nothing, except maybe time (that I would’ve spent cooking anyway)!

So, this blog will have recipes and basic instructions for a variety of recipes, ranging from entrees to desserts, pork to pastries. I hope you enjoy, whoever you are, dear reader!

Omnomz
– J.