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You'll find over 335 of my favorite recipes here, including ideas for Quick meals, Cooking for 2, Feasting on Leftovers, and cooking with 5 Ingredients or Less. I'm adding new posts regularly; you can subscribe by email or RSS feed if you'd like to receive the latest recipes. Bon appétit!

Today is the 5th Anniversary of my blog!

December 31, 2014

By Kath Dedon

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Today is the 5th Anniversary of my blog! WordPress.com even sent me anniversary greetings! I made public note of my 1st anniversary in 2010 because I was actually kind of amazed that I had kept at it for a full year. And now, here I am on the 5th anniversary. It’s been a fun ride! Looking at my stats, the most popular recipe today is Smoked Sausage and Black-Eyed Peas. I guess everyone needs their good luck black-eyed peas. I know I’m making this great recipe for New Year’s Day tomorrow. As good as it is, it didn’t make the top five of the year. a

Happy New Year with Emeril Lagasse’s Smoked Sausage and Black-Eyed Peas Smoked Sausage and Black-Eyed Peas 3

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Here are the top five recipes for 2014:

#5 Quick and Easy Chicken Noodle Soup has been a favorite in our family for over 15 years. Quick and Easy Chicken Noodle Soup a

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#4 Boiled Lobster Tails is ridiculously easy for a special occasion. Boiled lobster tail a

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#3 Slow Roasted St. Louis Style Ribs – Yes, you can enjoy great ribs in the dead of winter! Slow Roasted Pork Ribs 2 a

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#2 Melt-in-your-mouth Homemade Cheese Crackers Until this year, this cheese cracker recipe was the most popular post on my blog. crackers a

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#1 Perfect Rib Eye Roast This recipe was the most popular this year and it also became the #1 recipe of all time, pushing the cheese crackers into second place. It’s also the recipe that has received the most comments, mostly favorable. ;) Slices of Perfect Rib Eye Roast a

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I still have a few recipes from 2014 that I will be posting soon – a fabulous Italian Pork Ragu that’s perfect for entertaining, a slow cooker recipe for Polenta that is so easy, and a tasty blueberry muffin that is wheat-(and gluten-)free. And, I’m excited to explore some new cookbooks that I received. (Bob declared that this Christmas was the year of the cookbook. Not that he is complaining.) I’ve already started sticky-noting the recipes I want to try.

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Cookbooks 2014

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And Byron chose a wonderful cookbook for me, Sharon Kramis’ & Julie Kramis Hearne’s The Dutch Oven Cookbook. However, it’s one that I like so much that it’s a book that I already own. I’m thinking of exchanging it for Cooking Light’s Global Kitchen. I checked this one out from the library and I’m pretty sure I need to add it to my collection.

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See all those blue sticky notes marking interesting recipes in this library book?

Global Kitchen

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So I’ll be busy in the kitchen in 2015. Because I do like to eat well! And I’ll continue to share the good stuff on this blog. So stay tuned. Happy New Year! Thank you so much for taking the time to visit In the kitchen with Kath. I appreciate each and every one of you. I hope you’ll be sharing many happy meals with family and friends in 2015!

Almond Flour Pie Crust

December 30, 2014

By Kath Dedon

I have made Elana Amsterdam’s Paleo Pie Crust two or three times since Thanksgiving. It makes a great grain-free option for pies. Everyone seemed to enjoy it and it’s very easy to make. I thought it was about time I shared it.

I used this Almond Flour Pie Crust to make pecan pie, but it could be used with whatever filling you like. Elana uses only 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, but I found that 3 tablespoons worked better for me. It was a little crumbly with the smaller amount.

Honeyville Blanched Almond Flour is the flour I used. I can find it at my local Costco. It is a much finer grind than other almond flours or meals. You could probably use other brands, but I haven’t tried any of them.

If you, or someone you love, eats wheat-free, gluten-free, grain-free, or paleo, give this Almond Flour Pie Crust a try. You’ll be their super hero!

 

Pecan pie in an Almond Pie Crust

Pecan pie in an almond crusta

 

Almond Flour Pie Crust

(Adapted from Elana Amsterdam’s recipe on elanaspantry.com)

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Be sure to use the baking sheet in the oven. I found that each time I made the crust, there was oil on the outside of the pie plate after I baked it. I’m not quite sure how to avoid that; I was glad to have used the baking sheet.

 

(print the recipe)

 

2 cups blanched almond flour

¼ teaspoon sea salt

3 tablespoons coconut oil

1 egg

Blanched almond flour

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  1. Place a large rimmed baking sheet on a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350˚.
  1. Put the flour and salt in a food processor and pulse.
  1. Add the coconut oil and egg and pulse until it comes together.

almond crust in the cuisinart

  1. Press into a 9-inch pie plate.

almond crust ready to fill

  1. Fill with your preferred pie filling and bake on the preheated baking sheet for 40 – 50 minutes. (Exact time will depend on your filling. 40 minutes was plenty for my pecan pie.)
  1. Or, for a pre-baked crust, bake it without filling on the baking sheet for 8 – 12 minutes.

Pecan pie in an almond crust 2

Curry Dip with Crudités

November 17, 2014

By Kath Dedon

 

This Curry Dip with Crudités is a flash from the past for me. Because my dad worked for Northwest Airlines, we luckily had the opportunity to fly often and we were often upgraded to first class. This was back in the day when first class food was pretty delicious.

Northwest served this Curry Dip with vegetables to first class passengers in the late ‘60s and/or early ‘70s. It was quite popular. In fact, I think my mom got the recipe from either the Minneapolis Star or the Minneapolis Tribune, the local newspapers at the time. It had been published at the request of a reader.

The Curry Dip became one of mom’s “go-to” recipes when entertaining. The whole “crudités with dip” thing was quite popular at the time, and this dip was better than average.

Flash forward to the early ‘80s when Bob and I were hosting a dinner party. I wanted an easy appetizer to serve so I called mom to get the recipe. I still have the list of ingredients that I wrote down on Bob’s sailing paper.

It had been years since I last made it, but it turns out that Curry Dip with Crudités is just as good as I remember it. It’s great for the upcoming holiday season because it can be made ahead of time and covered and refrigerated until needed. In fact, it probably is best to make it ahead of time so the flavors “marry”.

I kept it simple with carrot sticks, celery sticks, and sugar snap peas, but you could use any raw vegetables that you like. It’s a great way to get your family and friends to eat a serving of vegetables before they even sit down at the table!

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Curry Dip

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Curry Dip with Crudités

(From a recipe that Northwest Airlines served in first class)

 

I was tempted to use more curry powder, but I stuck with the recipe. I did use a “hot” curry powder, however. The curry flavor is subtle and works well with the other ingredients.

 

(print the recipe)

 

Makes enough dip to easily serve 6 – 8

 

1 cup mayonnaise

2 teaspoons Heinz chili sauce

½ teaspoon curry powder

1/8 teaspoon dried thyme

½ teaspoon salt

Dash pepper

2 tablespoons tarragon vinegar

 

1. Whisk all of the ingredients together. (How easy is that?) Cover and refrigerate until serving time.

2. Serve with vegetables of your choice.

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The list of ingredients I wrote down when I called my mom

Recipe for Curry Dip

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Curry Dip 2

Maple (or honey) Sweetened Pumpkin Bread

October 31, 2014

By Kath Dedon

 

One of the most popular pins on my Pinterest boards is the one for my Pumpkin Bread, and for good reason. It’s delicious and it is so easy to make.

I have wondered if I could successfully make it using honey or pure maple syrup instead of the 1½ cups of sugar in the original recipe. Yesterday I gave it a try.

I used ¾ cup of grade B maple syrup instead of the sugar. I also eliminated the 1/3 cup of water since I was using a liquid sweetener.

I was quite pleased with the way this Maple Sweetened Pumpkin Bread turned out! It did not rise as high as the original one did, but the texture and the flavor are excellent.

There are two things I’ll do differently the next time I make this Pumpkin Bread. I’ll try honey instead of maple syrup. I liked the subtle sweetness of this bread, but Bob thought it wasn’t quite sweet enough. I think using honey, which is sweeter than maple syrup, will make it perfect. I might try baking it in a smaller 8” x 4” pan so it won’t seem so flat.

I’ll definitely try it again! My favorite way to enjoy pumpkin bread is to toast it and spread butter on it (preferably Kerrygold salted butter!). It’s easy to toast it in a toaster oven. If you have a regular toaster, be sure to cut a thick enough slice so it won’t fall apart.

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Maple Pumpkin Breada

Pumpkin Bread Sweetened with Maple Syrupa

 

Maple (or honey) Sweetened Pumpkin Bread

(Adapted from a classroom recipe; original source unknown)

 

(print the recipe)

 

Makes one loaf (I used a 9” x 5” pan, but I recommend using an 8” x 4” pan for this recipe.)

 

1 1/3 cups (160 g) flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

¾ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon cinnamon

½ teaspoon nutmeg

½ cup oil

2 eggs

1 cup canned pumpkin

¾ cup pure maple syrup (or honey)

 

1. Preheat the oven to 350˚.

2. Grease an 8 x 4-inch bread pan.

3. Mix flour, soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg in a bowl.

4. Make a well in this mixture. Pour in the oil, eggs, pumpkin, and the maple syrup or honey. Mix well with a sturdy spoon.

5. Pour into the greased baking pan. Bake for 1 hour or until done.

Maple Sweetened Pumpkin Bread

6. Cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, and then remove the bread from the pan and continue to cool on a wire rack.

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T Pumpkin Bread Sweetened with Maple Syrup

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Braised Beef Brisket

October 28, 2014

By Kath Dedon

 

Braised Beef Brisket is perfect for a rainy Sunday afternoon. Once you get the brisket in the oven, you can settle down with a good book while it braises for three hours. You do have to get up about every half hour to turn the brisket, but how hard is that?

The recipe in Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything calls for a whole 5-pound brisket, but I chose a smaller one which was about 2¼ pounds. I didn’t reduce the quantity of the other ingredients because I wanted plenty of sauce. That was a great decision!

Mark says browning the brisket is optional, but I chose to do it because it’s almost always a good first step and it only adds about 10 minutes to the prep time.

I loved the simplicity of his recipe and it all came together beautifully. The onions pretty much melted into the flavorful sauce. I could just eat the sauce by the spoonful!

Braised Beef Brisket is a great dish for fall. We thoroughly enjoyed it with our Yukon gold potatoes and Swiss chard fresh from the garden!

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Beef brisket 2

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Braised Beef Brisket

(Adapted from Mark Bittman’s recipe in How to Cook Everything)

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(print the recipe)

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Serves 4 – 6

(I used a half brisket. You can follow the recipe exactly as it is written using a whole 5-pound brisket to serve 10 or more people.)

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1 tablespoon oil

Beef brisket (about 2¼ – 2½ pounds)

Salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons butter

2 cups chopped onion

3 tablespoons tomato paste

1 teaspoon minced garlic

3 cups chicken broth or water (I used homemade chicken broth)

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1. Heat the oven to 325˚.

2. Heat a large oven-proof Dutch oven with a lid over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add the oil and swirl it around the bottom.

3. Sear the brisket for about 5 minutes; turn it over and sear the other side for 5 minutes.

Sear

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4. Remove the brisket from the pan. Salt and pepper both sides.

5. Using a paper towel, wipe the oil out of the pan.

towel

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6. Reduce the heat on the stove to medium and add the butter to the pan.

butter

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7. When the butter is foaming, add the onions to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 – 15 minutes, or until softened.

onions

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8. Sprinkle in some salt and pepper and add the tomato paste and garlic to the pan.

tomato paste and garlic

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9. Stir in the chicken broth.

broth added

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10. Add the brisket to the pan. Cover and put the pan in the preheated oven.

roast

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11. Cook the brisket for 3 hours, turning it every 30 minutes or so. It should be very tender after 3 hours.

12. Remove the brisket from the pan and put it on a cutting board or platter. Cover with foil and let it rest about 10 minutes.

13. While the brisket is resting, boil the sauce without a lid for a few minutes to boil it down and thicken it a bit.

14. Slice the brisket against the grain and serve it with the sauce.

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Beef brisket t

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Rack of Lamb for Two

October 2, 2014

By Kath Dedon

 

If you and your sweetheart like lamb, this Rack of Lamb for Two is perfect for a special evening at home.

Is it just me, or has rack of lamb become wildly expensive in the past few years? It’s always been expensive, but I don’t recall that it seemed prohibitive 30 years ago. It was something that was part of our regular rotation when we were newlyweds.

On a trip to Costco this week I spotted rack of lamb from Australia for $11.99 a pound. That’s still expensive, but it’s much less expensive than what I see in the grocery store. Having had good luck with other meats from Costco, I decided to give it a try.

I used my favorite recipe from my old Sunset Cooking for Two…or Just for You cookbook. It’s foolproof, and that’s what you want with an expensive cut of meat.

The lamb was fantastic and a real treat! I am glad to know that I can get a top-quality rack of lamb at a more reasonable price at Costco.

I like to make the lamb the star of the meal, so I usually serve it with a simple vegetable and a salad. Serve with a glass of red wine and  it feels like a “date night” at home!

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Rack of Lamb for Two_edited-1

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Rack of Lamb for Two

(Adapted from a recipe in Sunset Cooking for Two)

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(print the recipe)

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Serves 2

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1½ tablespoons butter, at room temperature

1 tablespoon minced parsley

1 small clove garlic, minced or pressed

Dash of salt and pepper

An 8-rib rack of lamb

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Costco rack of lamb

Costco rack of lamb

  1. Preheat the oven to 400˚.

 

  1. Mix the butter, parsley, garlic, salt and pepper together.

Ingredients

  1. Put the rack of lamb, meat-side up, on a rimmed baking sheet. (I covered mine with foil for easy clean-up.) Spread the butter mixture over the meat.

Butter spread on lamb

  1. Roast for 30 minutes.

 

  1. Remove lamb from the oven. Cover with foil and let it rest for 10 minutes.

 

  1. Cut the roast into individual chops and serve.

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Rack of Lamb for 2

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Brussels Sprouts with Sausage

September 30, 2014

By Kath Dedon

 

Today I present a new recipe, Brussels Sprouts with Sausage, from Mark Bittman’s brand-new cookbook, How to Cook Everything Fast: A Better Way to Cook Great Food. I can’t wait to get my hands on it; I pre-ordered it and it will be delivered 1 week from today.

One could argue that I already have too many cookbooks, including several by Mr. Bittman. So why do I need this new tome of 2,000 recipes? If you’re at all familiar with my blog, you know that I am a Mark Bittman “groupie”. I love his simple instructions and relaxed attitude. Don’t have a certain ingredient? Use something else. In fact, he usually offers suggestions for substitutions. The message in all of his books: Don’t make cooking harder than it needs to be. Cooking delicious meals with real food does not need to be difficult.

I always learn new and useful information from his books. Even his most basic cookbook, aptly titled How to Cook Everything the Basics, taught me a thing or two. My current favorite roast chicken recipe is from that book.

Anyway, I am eagerly awaiting my new Mark Bittman cookbook.

The Seattle Times recently published an article about Bittman and included two recipes from the new book: Fastest Chicken (or Eggplant) Parm and Brussels Sprouts with Chorizo. Since I had Brussels sprouts in the refrigerator I decided to try that one.

I wanted to use Isernio’s Chorizo, but the store I chose was out of it. They did have Isernio’s Hot Chicken Sausage so I bought that. Bittman had suggested that chorizo, sausage or bacon could be used for the recipe. The sausage was really good, but I think chorizo would make it even better!

I really liked this recipe for Brussels Sprouts with Sausage. It takes just a small amount of sausage to deliver a lot of flavor, especially if you pick a hot variety. It’s a great side dish to serve with grilled or roasted meat or fish. It could also be paired with a substantial meatless dish to make an almost vegetarian meal. (The article did mention that several Times readers said they liked to use Soyrizo, a vegan meat substitute. So that’s an option as well.)

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P.S. If you’re in the Seattle area you can hear Mark talk about his new book and fast cooking at 7:30pm on October 14 at Town Hall. :) http://goo.gl/ffWM6o

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Brussels Sprouts with Sausage

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Brussels Sprouts with Sausage

(Adapted from a recipe in Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything Fast)

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I used ghee since I had just made a fresh batch, but you can also use olive oil as the original recipe suggests.

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(print the recipe)

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Serves 4

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2 tablespoons ghee (or olive oil)

3.3 ounces fresh hot Italian sausage (each Isernio link is about 3.3 ounces)

1½ pounds Brussels sprouts

½ cup water

Salt and pepper to taste

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Ingredients: Sausage (I used only one link), ghee, and Brussels sprouts

Ingredients for Brussels Sprouts with Sausage

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  1. Trim the Brussels sprouts and cut them in half.
  1. Heat the ghee in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 3 – 5 minutes.

Sausage in the pan

 

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  1. Add the Brussels sprouts to the skillet. Add the ½ cup of water. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover and cook for about 10 minutes, or until just tender. (Smaller sprouts may take less time.) Check on them a time or two and add a bit more water, if necessary.

 Sprouts after cooking for about 10 minutes

Brussels Sprouts with Sausage in the pan

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  1. When the sprouts are just about done, remove the cover and raise the heat to medium high. Cook, stirring just once or twice, for a couple of more minutes. The liquid should evaporate and the sprouts should be starting to get brown.
  1. Taste and add more salt and pepper if necessary. Serve hot or warm.

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3 Brussels Sprouts with Sausage