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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Spicy Hummus


Hummus.  It seems to be a craze right now.  And why not, it is a healthier snack option than many others and can be very versatile.  My only beef with commercial hummus is the garlic.  Don’t get me wrong, I love garlic.  But for some reason, the garlic just comes through too strong for my tastes.

So I decided to make my own.  Problem: I absolutely cannot find tahini (sesame seed paste, which seems to be a hummus staple).  I take that back, I did find a jar at the one natural foods store in my area and it was $15!  Holy smokes!  I really couldn’t justify that expense.

So I made a mildly garlicy, tahini-less hummus with just a hint of heat, and it was great!  I ate mine with some blue corn tortilla chips, but it would also be great on pita chips or as a vegetable dip!


Spicy Hummus
An Amy Original

1 (15 oz) can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained and rinsed
2-4 tbsp water
1/8 tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp sea salt
1 ½ tsp Frank’s Red Hot Wing Sauce
¾ tsp paprika
½ tsp dried basil

Pour garbanzo beans into a food processor.  Pulse until very smooth, adding water to thin the mixture as necessary.

Add in the garlic powder, sea salt, hot sauce, paprika, and basil.  Pulse until well blended. 

Serve with vegetables, or corn chips.

Enjoy!
Amy

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Stovetop Mac & Cheese with Broccoli & Bacon Bits


With the change of seasons, my husband is traveling more for work.  That means it is just me and my boys, so I am trying to make some kid friendly foods that are a bit healthier for my son and more enjoyable for me.

I started of with the classic kid-favorite, Mac & Cheese.  As I make more and more of my family’s meals, I find myself relying less and less on processed foods.  The really surprising part of this recipe is that is takes no longer than its boxed, sodium laden counterpart.  The pasta cooks up just as quickly as boxed mac & cheese (with the broccoli mixed right in).  And then it is simply a matter of stirring in the remaining ingredients and warming through.  Easy peasy!


Stovetop Mac & Cheese with Broccoli & Bacon Bits
An Amy Original

3 cups dry whole wheat pasta
2 ½ cups broccoli
½ cup lowfat milk
2 cups sharp cheddar, shredded
¼ cup real bacon bits, plus more to garnish
Salt & Pepper to taste

Cook the pasta to al dente in salted water according to package instructions, about 7 minutes.  Add the broccoli in at the same time.

Drain the pasta and broccoli and return to the stove at low heat.  Mix in the milk, carrot puree, cheddar, and bacon bits.  Stir until well combined.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 4

Enjoy!
Amy

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Potato Soup




Tomorrow is Good Friday.  The last Friday of Lent – where did the time go?  Since Good Friday is a fasting day, I am sharing a simple potato soup today.  This potato soup is nothing like my last one with all of those baked potato toppings.  This soup is based off of my mom’s potato soup, which was always a Lenten staple in out house.

I started off with some red potatoes (I can get full size red potatoes in my area, so use your favorite potato) and didn’t peel them.  I just love the added flavor and nutrients the skins add.

The potatoes were boiled with celery and onion in vegetable broth for a little extra flavor.  Then finished off with some milk to add creaminess.  The vegetable broth made the soup salty enough for my tastes, but if you buy a lower sodium broth, you may need to add salt to taste.  Served with a slice of homemade bread, this is a wonderful meal.

Potato Soup
An Amy Original

1 ½ lbs red skin potatoes, cubed
2 stalks of celery, chopped
2 tbsp onion, chopped
4 cups vegetable broth
1 cup skim milk
Salt to taste


Place the potatoes, celery, onion, and broth in a soup pot.  Bring to a boil.  Cover and reduce heat.  Simmer for 30 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

Stir in milk and salt (if desired).  Heat through and serve.

Makes 5-6 bowls of soup

Enjoy!
Amy

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Easter Cookies and Royal Icing


Edited April 27, 2013 - for an updated version of this Royal Icing Recipe, please visit my other blog, Amy's Confectionery Adventures!


When I shared my photos from my St. Patrick’s Day Cookies, I promised a photo tutorial, as I had been decorating at midnight when the lighting was less than ideal.  So when I set out to make Easter cookies (because you can’t have a holiday in this house with out cookies!) I had planned on making a lovely tutorial again.  Well, it wasn’t midnight when I made these cookies, it was 2am!  Oops!  It is so much easier for me to decorate when the kids are down and I am a little pokey!  So instead, I am sharing the royal icing recipe I used and a couple websites I have found with some much nicer photo tutorials than I was able to make in the wee hours of the morning.
                                  
I used a simple sugar cookie as a base, but royal icing will complement pretty much any kind of rolled cookie.  Be warned it takes a few tries to get the hang of royal icing, but that just means that there are more “quality control” cookies…wink, wink!  Enjoy!


Royal Icing
Recipe from Wilton

3 tbsp meringue powder (found at craft stores)
4 cups confectioner’s sugar
4-6 tbsp water


Combine the meringue power, powdered sugar, & 4 tablespoons water in the bowl of an electric mixer.  Beat for 7-10 minutes on low or until the icing forms peaks.  Note: If using a hand mixer, set it to high and beat for 10-12 minutes.


Decorating the cookies

Transfer a small amount of royal icing to a piping bag fitted with a small round tip (I used a 3).  Place the remaining icing into sealed containers so it does not dry out.

Carefully pipe the outline of each cookie.

Using gel coloring, tint the remaining royal icing to the desired colors.  Then begin adding water to the icing, 1 teaspoon at a time to thin.  The icing will be properly thinned when the icing runs off the back of the spoon and is reabsorbed in 10 seconds.

Let the thinned icing rest, covered, for 10 minutes to let any bubbles come to the surface. 

Very gently, stir the icing to remove the bubble and transfer the icing to squeeze bottles.  You can find these at craft stores.  Or I bought the yellow & red condiment holders at Wal-mart for $1.50!

Squeeze out enough icing to flood each cookie (inside the outlines), use an angled spatula to get into any curves or corners.  Decorate as desired.

For a photo tutorial on flooding cookies here

For a photo tutorial on some of the cookie designs I used go here

Enjoy!
Amy

Monday, April 18, 2011

Popeye’s Green Pancakes


Last week it was spring here.  The sun was shining!  It was 60 degrees!  The children were playing outside! The last stubborn snow bank finally melted!

Then it snowed.

And it kept snowing.  And we are all white and full of snow again.  Nooooo!!!!!!

So to combat the anti-spring, I decided to make some nice green pancakes (it makes sense to me).  I had originally planned to make these on St. Patrick’s Day, but my husband was less than thrilled about them, so I decided to make them when he was gone.

So, beautiful green pancakes.  They have spinach in them, did you guess?

Now here’s the surprising part: you can’t taste the spinach.  Really!  Between the spices and the chocolate chips, and spinach flavor is completely disguised!

And yes, my little guy did eat these!


Popeye’s Green Pancakes
An Amy Original

1/3 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup whole wheat flour
1/3 cup ground flax seed
½ tbsp baking powder
1/8 tsp ground allspice
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
2 tbsp chocolate chips
Dash of salt
¾ cup skim milk
2 tbsp honey
½ cup pureed spinach*
1 egg
½ tsp vanilla extract


Heat an electric skillet to 325 degrees F.

In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flours, flax, baking powder, allspice, nutmeg, chocolate chips, and salt.

In another bowl, whisk together the milk, honey, spinach puree, egg, and vanilla.

Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients, stirring until just combined. 

Spoon 2-3 tablespoons of pancake mixture onto the hot skillet.  Cook for 2-3 minutes or until the tops begin to bubble and the bottoms are lightly browned.  Flip and cook an additional 2 minutes until the other side is lightly brown.

Serve with butter and a drizzle of syrup.

Makes about 12 pancakes

*To Puree Spinach
I find it works best to use a 10 oz box of frozen spinach (this way the spinach is very well cooked). 

Simply cook the spinach in the microwave for the maximum time according to package instructions.  Then place the cooked spinach and any liquid into a food processor and puree until very smooth, adding additional water if necessary.  This yields about 1 cup of puree.

Enjoy!
Amy

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Cinnamon Swirl French Toast with Bacon


I made something delicious the other day. It was also pretty ridiculous.  First I made some cinnamon swirl bread (but you could totally buy some cinnamon bread).  Then I dipped it in French toast batter.  But that wasn’t enough, no, it wasn’t enough.

So I went to the refrigerator and got my bacon bits (I know, I’m pretty much obsessed with bacon bits – you could fry up a couple slices of bacon as well) and sprinkled them onto the toast as it was cooking.  It was divine.  My husband missed out (we was at work).  I was happy that I got to hoard all the bacon-y goodness to myself.  He was depressed that he missed out.  This will definitely be made again soon!


Cinnamon Swirl French Toast with Bacon
An Amy Original

1 Loaf of Cinnamon Swirl Bread
3 eggs
¼ cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp ground cinnamon
¼ cup Real Bacon Bits


Preheat an electric skillet to 325 degrees F.  Spray lightly with cooking spray.

In a shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon.

Dredge each piece of bread through the egg mixture and place into the skillet.  Sprinkle 1 tbsp bacon bits on top of each piece of toast. 

Cook until the bottoms are golden brown, 2-3 minutes.  Carefully flip the toasts (you don’t want to lose the bacon bits) and cook until golden brown, another 2 minutes.

Serve hot, with syrup if desired.

Enjoy!
Amy

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms


For this week’s meatless meal, I decided to revisit mushrooms.  I always love to look of those big Portobello mushroom caps in the grocery store.  So when I found a recipe for stuffed mushrooms, I just knew we would love them!

These Stuffed Mushrooms make a wonderful light meal.  I just loved all of the fresh vegetables that were stuffed into the mushrooms!  Note: you could also stuff this mix into smaller mushrooms for a wonderful light vegetarian appetizer!


Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
Adapted slightly from Two Peas and Their Pod

2 Portobello mushrooms
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
¼ tsp salt
2 cups fresh spinach
¼ cup bread crumbs
¼ cup mozzarella cheese
Italian seasoning


Preheat oven to 375 degree F.

Using a spoon, scoop out the gills and stem of the mushroom, discard.  Brush the mushrooms with balsamic vinegar and place on a baking sheet.

Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan.  Add the onions, garlic, red pepper and salt.  Cook until tender.

Add in the tomatoes and spinach.  Cook until the spinach is wilted.

Divide the filling evenly and fill the two mushrooms

Sprinkle each mushroom with bread crumbs, mozzarella, and Italian seasoning.

Bake the mushrooms for 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and beginning to brown.

Makes 2 stuffed mushrooms

Enjoy!
Amy

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Turkey & Avocado Panini on Onion Bread


Did you know that April is Grilled Cheese Month?  Yeah, me neither.  I’m not sure who decided this, or why they chose April (personally, I would have chosen something springy for April, like lemons or something).  But I digress.

From what I can tell, as long as it’s grilled and there’s cheese involved, you have yourself a grilled cheese sandwich.  So I decided to make a Panini…ahem, I mean…grilled cheese, out of some of my favorite sandwich ingredients (with an extra slice of celebratory cheese, of course).


Turkey & Avocado Panini on Onion Bread
An Amy Original

2 slices onion bread (or another whole wheat bread)
2 slices Swiss cheese
6 slices turkey pepperoni
6 slices smoked turkey breast
¼ of an avocado, sliced
1 handful spinach
Butter


Preheat a Foreman Grill or Panini maker to high heat.

Generously butter one side of each slice of bread.  On the unbuttered side of one slice, place one slice of Swiss cheese, followed by the pepperoni slices, turkey, spinach, avocado, and the remaining slice of Swiss.  Top with the second slice of bread, buttered side up.

Place the sandwich on the grill and bring the lid down to press.  Cook for 3-5 minutes or until the bread is browned.

Makes 1 sandwich

Enjoy!
Amy

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Baby’s Green Beans with Rice and Mint


I just noticed that (other than sweets) it’s been awhile since I posted anything terribly kid friendly.  You see, my 3 year old would live on hotdogs and Nutella sandwiches if I let him and everything else is pretty hit or miss.  So, I have a tendency to make things my husband and I will enjoy with an ingredient or two that he might maybe possibly eat if the planets align correctly (like Stir Fry since he will usually eat the rice and maybe some meat if I’m lucky).

While I have been cooking and coaxing my 3 year old to eat, I have still been making baby food for my little guy (he is 8 months old now…how crazy is that?)  For the most part, these foods have been pretty boring.  I’ve pureed sweet potatoes, squash, peas, carrots & sweet potatoes, and green beans.  And I’ve mashed avocados, bananas, peaches, pears, and mangoes.  Always steadfastly adhering to the golden rule of baby feeding: wait 3-4 days between new foods—it’s rather exhausting, but necessary. 

This week I was ready for a change, so instead of introducing a new food, I decided to introduce a new herb (yep, the golden rule applies to herbs & spices, too).

As the parent of a baby, it is so easy to get caught up in plain, bland foods (especially since plain and bland is what is available commercially) but there is no reason for it.  Since my little guy has been pretty unsure about green beans, I decided to add a little mint and mix it with his rice cereal to tone down the green bean flavor a bit and add a little interest.  The verdict?  He still needed a banana chaser to get the beans down, but I felt good knowing that he got to try a new flavor!


Baby’s Green Beans with Rice and Mint

2 tbsp pureed green beans*
1-2 tbsp water (depends how thick you want the mixture)
1 tbsp rice cereal
1/8 tsp dried mint


*I cook ½ lb fresh or frozen green beans and puree them in a mini food processor.  I then freeze the leftovers in ice cube trays.  Once fully frozen, I transfer the cubes to labeled freezer bags and keep for 3 months.


If the beans are frozen, place a bean cube (or two if small) in a microwave safe dish and microwave for 35-40 seconds. 

Add in the water, rice cereal, and mint.  Stir well to mix.  Be sure to test the temperature of the mixture before serving it to baby!

Enjoy!
Amy

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Oreo Crunch Brownies


After I returned home from my vacation last week, there was a noticeable lack of dessert in the house.  I had planned on making a simple pan of brownies (my husband’s favorite).  Then, as I was perusing some food blogs, I came across this little gem and knew it was destiny.

These brownies have everything: brownie, chocolate chips, crunchy Oreo bits, and peanut butter.  By baking the brownies in a smaller pan, you get a nice tall, super fudgy brownie with wonderful chocolate bits nestled throughout.  Then there is a wonderfully smooth chocolate peanut butter frosting topping the whole thing off.  The flavors come together so beautifully, it just melts in your mouth!  These are a chocolate lover’s dream!


Oreo Crunch Brownies

1 box of brownie mix (family size)
            Eggs, oil, and water as directed on packaging
12 Oreo Cookies
2 cups chocolate chips, divided
½ cup peanut butter


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray an 8x8 pan with cooking spray.

Place the Oreos into a food processor and crush coarsely (alternately, place in a resealable bag and crush with a rolling pin).  Set aside.

Combine brownie mix, eggs, oil, and water and beat until smooth.  Stir in ½ cup of the crushed cookies, and ½ cup chocolate chips. 

Spread the mixture into the prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Immediately after removing from the oven, sprinkle ½ cup chocolate chips and the remaining crushed cookies over the brownies.  Return to the oven for 2-3 minutes.

Meanwhile, place the remaining 1 cup chocolate chips and ½ cup of peanut butter into a microwave safe bowl.  Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring each time, until the chocolate chips are fully melted and the peanut butter is mixed in.

Spread the peanut butter mixture over the brownies.  Let the brownies set overnight before cutting.  Alternately, refrigerate for 2 hours before cutting.

Serves 25

Enjoy!
Amy

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Pork, Snow Pea, & Mushroom Stir Fry


I’m sure I’ve mentioned it before, but I am compelled to say it again: I love stir fry.  It is so simple and easy to make and there are absolutely endless combinations of meat, vegetables, and sauces.

This was my first time making a pork stir fry and we all really enjoyed it.  My 3 year old choose to be picky the day I made this, but he did eat some rice with a little of the sauce.  I should mention that I always cook my rice with chicken broth, just to make it a bit more flavorful, I feel it really adds to a stir fry.

Ok, tangent over.  I often make my stir fries spicy, but I decided to hold back this time and was pleasantly surprised.  The flavors were very light (even with all the garlic and ginger) and allow the wonderful tastes of the vegetables and pork to really shine through.  All in all, this blend is perfect if you have some picky eaters in your house.


Pork, Snow Pea, & Mushroom Stir Fry
Adapted from Kraft Recipes

1 tbsp oil (canola or olive)
1 lb pork tenderloin, thinly sliced
2 cups fresh button mushrooms, sliced
1 cup fresh snow peas
1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
2 tbsp French dressing
2 tbsp soy sauce
¼ cup cashews
2 green onions, sliced
3 cups cooked brown rice

Heat the oil in a large wok or skillet on high heat.  Add the pork and cook 2-3 minutes, until mostly cooked.

Reduce heat to medium-high.  Add the mushrooms, snow peas, bell pepper, garlic, and ginger.  Cook for 5 minutes.

Add the French dressing and soy sauce and cook another 2 minutes or until meat is fully cooked and vegetables are crisp tender

Top the stir fry with cashews and green onions.  Serve over rice.

Makes 3-4 servings

Enjoy!
Amy

Friday, April 8, 2011

Cheesy Pepperoni Pizza Quick Bread


Pepperoni Pizza Quick Bread = all the goodness of pizza without the hassle of making a yeast crust.

Let me tell you, this bread is pretty fantastic.  It is very simple process with super scrumptious results.  Basically, you just toss everything into your electric mixer, toss it into a bread pan (layered with a little pizza sauce), bake, and you’re done!


Do note that this is rather difficult to cut when warm, while you can eat it shortly after it is done baking (I did), I recommend planning ahead and letting it cool completely before cutting, and then warming it for 30 seconds in the microwave.  Serve with a nice salad and some fresh fruit and you have yourself a meal.  And I have to say, it also makes a great midnight snack!


Cheesy Pepperoni Pizza Quick Bread
Adapted from Picky Palate

½ cup all purpose flour
¼ cup whole wheat flour
¼ cup ground flax seed (or more whole wheat flour)
1 ½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
½ tsp kosher salt
½ tsp black pepper
2 large eggs
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
¾ cup buttermilk (or 3 tbsp powdered butter milk and ¾ cup water)
½ cup shredded parmesan cheese, divided
1 ½ cup mozzarella cheese
1 cup turkey pepperoni slices, quartered (about 32 slices)
1 tsp pizza seasoning
¼ tsp garlic powder


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray a small (9x5 in) loaf pan with cooking spray.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine flours, flax, baking powder, baking soda, salt and pepper.

Slowly add in the eggs, oil, buttermilk, ¼ cup parmesan, mozzarella, and pepperoni until just combined.

Pour half the batter into the prepared loaf pan.  Top evenly with the pizza sauce.  Carefully pour the remaining batter over the sauce.

Sprinkle with the remaining ¼ cup parmesan cheese, pizza seasoning, and garlic powder.  Bake for 45-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean.

Let cool for at least 30 minutes before removing from pan.  Slice and serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 1 loaf

Enjoy!
Amy

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Hearty Tomato Soup


Holy Smokes, where does the time go?  I’ve been out of town and now that I am back (with piles and pile of laundry), it seems like the days are just flying by!

It is already Thursday again, and time for another meatless meal.  I actually had another post all ready for today when my dear, sweet husband reminded me that I needed to post something else.  What a great guy, always looking out for me!


Also--don't forget to check out my Facebook page!

So, I have for you today a simple, robust tomato soup.  Growing up, I was never a huge fan of canned tomato soup (or tomatoes in general).  It only recently, that I am expanding my tastes to include tomatoes – in fact, tomatoes have even become a pantry staple as of late!

This Hearty Tomato Soup packs an extra punch with some herbs and spices.  Also in this soup are some pureed carrots and white beans.  These two additions do two things.  First off all, the beans make this a wonderfully filling meal.  Second, the beans and carrots cut the acidity of the tomatoes a bit.

My favorite part about this soup however, is that it relies on beans, not cream, for its thick creaminess (my other favorite part is that I finally got to use my new immersion blender—yay new toys!)  This is a great soup to pair with a simple grilled cheese sandwich.  I used my onion bread with a little Swiss cheese.  Fantastic!


Hearty Tomato Soup
Adapted from Pennies on a Platter, originally from Giada’s Kitchen

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped (about ½ cup)
2 large carrots, peeled and chopped (about 1 cup)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 (15 oz) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes
1 boy leaf
1 tsp fresh rosemary, minced
½ tsp red pepper flakes
¾ tsp sea salt (more or less to taste)
½ tsp freshly ground pepper


Heat the oil in a soup pot over medium high heat.  Sauté the onion, carrots, and garlic until tender, about 4 minutes.  Stir in the beans, tomatoes, broth, bay leaf, rosemary, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. 

Increase the temperature to high heat and bring the mixture to a boil.  Once boiling, cover and reduce heat to low.  Simmer for 30 minutes.

Remove and discard the bay leaf.  Using an immersion blender, carefully puree the soup, taking care to keep the blades fully immersed to avoid splattering.  Alternately, let the soup cool off the heat for 30 minutes, then carefully puree the soup in a food processor or blender and reheat. 

Serve hot with toasted cheese sandwiches.

Makes: 4-6 servings

Enjoy!
Amy

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

An Open Letter to Oatmeal and I Have a Facebook Page!


Dear Oatmeal,

I don’t like you.  I know you are a wonderful balanced breakfast, but when you come out of little envelopes, I think you taste like cardboard…ish.

However, things are beginning to change.  I recently saw a recipe that piqued my interest (not easy to do with my intense dislike of you).  This recipe used old fashioned oats instead of instant and had actual fresh bananas in it!  It was more time consuming to make than the packets of instant cardboard, but it tasted infinitely better…I almost ate the whole bowl.  I even think I will make this again, and that is really saying something.

So, in closing, Oatmeal, maybe you aren’t as bad as I once thought you were.  If I like this new recipe, I am sure those who enjoy the packets of oatmeal will love you forever after trying this recipe!

Sincerely,
Amy

PS

I have a Facebook Page now--come join me!


Skinny Wheat Germ Oatmeal
Adapted from The Novice Chef, Originally from Cooking Light

½ cup water
½ cup skim milk
¼ cup pomegranate applesauce
1/3 cup old fashioned oats
2 tbsp wheat germ
1 tbsp ground flax seed
Dash of salt
½ tsp cinnamon
3 tsp brown sugar, divided
½ banana, sliced
2 tbsp chopped walnuts or almonds


In a small saucepan, combine the water, milk, applesauce, oats, wheat germ, flax, and salt.  Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally.

Reduce heat to medium low and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Remove from heat, stir in cinnamon and 2 tsp brown sugar.

Place the oatmeal in a bowl, top with the sliced banana, walnuts or almonds, and 1 tsp brown sugar.

Makes 1 serving

Enjoy!
Amy

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Beef Tenderloins with an Herb Crust


Do you ever have one of those days when everyone in your house is grumpy and it is just a blah day all around?

We had one of those in our house recently.  Usually when we have a day like that, we order a pizza and have a lazy day, but sometimes a fancy meal is what it takes to make a grumpy day better.


So, I pulled out the china, opened a bottle of wine, and made a fancy meal.  It put everyone into a better mood.

The beef tenderloins are so tender and delicious and the herb crust is phenomenal.  These are the perfect extravagance on a birthday, holiday, or just because.


Beef Tenderloins with an Herb Crust
Adapted from Fine Cooking

½ cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
2 tbsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
1 ½ tbsp fresh thyme, finely chopped
1 ½ tsp coarse salt
1 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
4 beef tenderloins, cut ¾ inch thick (about 1 pound)
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil


In a shallow baking dish (I used a pie pan), thoroughly mix together the parsley, rosemary, thyme, salt, and pepper.

Using the palms of your hands, gently flatten the beef tenderloins to about ½ inch thick.

Coat the beef tenderloins by gently pressing them into the herb mixture on one side, and then the other.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over high heat.  When the first wisp of smoke appears, use tongs to set the coated beef tenderloins into the pan in a single layer.  Cook until darkly browned, about 3-5 minutes.  Flip and cook on the other side, until deeply browned, another 2-3 minutes (or to desired doneness). 

Transfer cooked tenderloins to a warmed platter and rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Serves 2

Enjoy!
Amy

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