Monday, July 27, 2020

Rosie Makes A Squash Casserole.

  I love summer squash
and a neighbor was kind enough to share some with me.
 I decided to make a squash casserole.
 You can use either yellow squash or zucchini.  

As for the size, 
I prefer small to medium squash.
You don't want a zucchini the size of a baseball bat
and the skin on the yellow squash gets tougher as it ages.

 Rosie's Squash Casserole
 2 small to medium yellow squash, peeled and diced
1 medium onion, peeled and diced
splash of oil and 1 TB unsalted butter 
kosher salt
freshly ground pepper
3 eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup chopped basil
1 cup + grated sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 sleeve Ritz crackers

Heat a medium sized skillet over medium high heat.
with a splash of oil and a tablespoon of butter.
Add in diced squash and cook, stirring, about 5 minutes.
Add in onion and cook an additional minute or two.
Season with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Pour squash and onions into a buttered 8 x 8-inch baking dish.
Beat eggs with sour cream
and add in a pinch of salt and pepper.
Pour over squash mixture.
Stir in cheese, saving a bit for topping.
Top with crushed Ritz crackers.
(At least 1/2 a sleeve.)
Sprinkle a little cheddar over top.
Bake in a 350° oven for 40 - 45 minutes
until cheese is set and topping is golden brown.
Let cool a bit before serving.


Monday, July 6, 2020

Rosie Makes A Cornbread Salad.

How about a nice, savory cornbread parfait?

You could make it in individual glasses.

Or a big trifle bowl.

Or you could make a plated salad.

Start out with cornbread,
add a bunch of salad bar items,
and top it off with a buttermilk and fresh herb dressing.

Start the salad off with your best cornbread.
I'm not giving you a recipe for cornbread.
It's sort of like cole slaw and potato salad.
Everybody's got their own recipe.
However, I will offer some suggestions.
I use a cast iron pan for my cornbread.
Pour the batter in and let it cook on the stove top
on medium heat for about 7 minutes to give it a nice crust.
Then put it in the oven to bake.
Also, for a bit of tang,
I like to use buttermilk instead of regular milk.
For more corn flavor,
 add in corn kernels, either from a can or off the cob.
And I like toppings.
Before baking, add on a few slices of tomato and onion, 
jalapeƱo, if you like,
sprinkle with some cumin,
then add grated cheddar cheese.

After baking the cornbread, let it rest a bit.
When you're ready to build your salad,
cut the bread into cubes and lightly toast.

For your salad layers, use your imagination.
Pick and choose.
Here are some suggestions:
diced tomatoes
chopped red onion or Vidalia onion
diced sweet bell peppers (assorted colors for the pretty)
corn kernels 
diced cucumber
kidney beans or black beans
crumbled bacon
grated cheddar cheese
chopped basil leaves

Rosie Note:  For the beans, I always use dried, not canned.
It is not necessary to soak dried beans overnight.
The reason for soaking overnight is simply to cut back on the cooking time.
Am I the only one who sees the irony in that?
When I want beans I want them now, not tomorrow.
So here's a tip: 
To hasten your cooking time for beans,
add a little baking soda to the cooking water -
maybe a  teaspoon per cup of beans.
The alkalinity breaks down the pectin,
causing the beans to soften and cook much quicker.
Simmer your beans until tender, then rinse.

Assemble your layered salad
and pour a fresh herb and buttermilk dressing over top.

Rosie's Herb and Buttermilk Dressing
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup sour cream
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 TB lemon juice
1 tsp cider vinegar
1 tsp Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 TB chopped fresh dill
1 TB chopped fresh parsley
1 TB chopped fresh chives
Mix well, cover, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.


Monday, June 29, 2020

Rosie Makes Banana Muffins.


Got a couple bananas going south on your counter?
Here's what to do:  make a small batch of banana muffins.
Two bananas is the perfect amount to make 8 muffins.
Add a streusel topping and you have a nice breakfast treat.
Serve warm as a muffin, or slice, butter, and toast.  Yummy!

 Rosie's Banana Muffins
2 overripe bananas
1/2 cup sugar
6 TB unsalted butter, melted and cooled a bit
1 egg
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp kosher salt

Heat oven to 350°.
Place 8 muffin liners in muffin tins.
Whip 1 banana with sugar until well mixed.
Beat in cooled melted butter, egg, and vanilla.
Mix in flour, baking soda, and salt until just incorporated.
Stir remaining banana into batter, mashing it up a bit.
Ladle evenly into 8 paper-lined muffin tins.

Top with streusel.

Bake at 350° for 23 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

1/2 cup crushed pecans
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
4 TB unsalted butter, softened
Mix all together.

For the step-by-steps:
Beat one banana with sugar.

Add in butter and ...
... egg and vanilla.

Stir in flour, baking soda, and salt until just combined.

Mash remaining banana into batter.

Combine streusel ingredients - pecans, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and butter.

Ladle batter into muffins, top with streusel, and bake.

Bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
350° about 23 minutes.


Saturday, June 20, 2020

Rosie Makes Medjool Date Balls.

My son found these date rolls at Fresh Market
and they're quite good.
Of course, I decided I could do a better job,
at considerably less cost.
So I did.

First off, get you some Medjool dates.
Not dried dates.
Fresh Medjools.
See here:  Medjools.

These are Medjool dates.
Look for them in the produce department.
To make the date rolls or balls,
you only need three ingredients -
Medjool dates,
sweetened coconut flakes,
and pecans.
And you need a processor.
You can either roll them into balls
or you can form into a log roll and slice them off.
Youngest Hawthorne prefers the rolls over the balls.
He says they "taste better."
Date Balls/Rolls
Makes 24 balls or so.
12 Medjool dates
1/2 - 3/4 cups sweetened coconut flakes
Combine dates and coconut in small processor
and pulse/process until combined.
Roll into individual balls
roll into a log.

Combine crushed pecans and more coconut flakes
(about 1/3 cup each)
and roll balls (about 3/4" diameter) or log in the mixture.
Slice log into small pieces.

If you're going to make a log,
use plastic wrap to form and roll tightly.
Then roll the log (or balls)
in a mixture of coarsely crushed pecans and more coconut.