Saturday, January 31, 2009

Crockpot Walnut Stuffed Apples

To me, there is no better dessert on a cold night than baked apples! This recipe is easy, versatile, and delicious!

For more Saturday Stirrings recipes, don't forget to visit Carol!


large sweet apples

1/8 cup raisins per apple

1/8 cup chopped walnuts per apple

1/8 tsp. cinnamon per apple

1/4 tsp. sugar per apple

1/2 tsp. canola oil per apple

Core apple(s). Arrange in crockpot. Mix filling (the remaining ingredients). Stuff apples, packing tightly. Pile extra filling on top. Add a small amount of water to the pot & cook on high for 3 hours or on low for 6 hours. Can also be baked in the oven at 350 for 45 minutes. Serve hot.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Spaghetti Carbonara

When we were out of town in early January, we had dinner at a friend's house. She made spaghetti carbonara, which I had heard of but had never tried. It was wonderful, and Hubby asked me to make it for him at home.

I asked another friend of mine, who is Italian, if she had a good recipe/method for making carbonara, but she had never made it. So I searched the interwebz. I read a lot of recipes, and combined what I read to make spaghetti carbonara this week.

It was absolutely wonderful and will be making many repeat appearances at our dinner table! The eggs, olive oil, and parmesan cheese combine to make a wonderful sauce. Using turkey bacon makes it a healthier option. Serve with a salad or side of veggies.

And don't forget to visit Carol, our host for Saturday Stirrings.

Spaghetti Carbonara

1 lb spaghetti
olive oil
8 slices of bacon, diced (I used turkey bacon)
1 medium onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 eggs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste

1. Cook spaghetti according to package directions.
2. Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large skillet over medium high heat. If you use turkey bacon, you might need to add olive oil. When bacon is halfway done, add onions and saute until translucent. For last minute of cooking, add minced garlic.
3. While spaghetti and bacon are cooking, beat 2 eggs in a small bowl. Before draining spaghetti, add about 1 cup of spaghetti water to eggs to temper. (This will heat up the eggs without causing them to scramble.)
4. When spaghetti has reached desired tenderness (I prefer mine al dente), drain spaghetti and return to pot. Toss with olive oil. Do not return to heat! Immediately, pour beaten eggs over hot spaghetti. Toss quickly to coat spaghetti and allow the heat of the noodles to slightly cook the eggs.
5. Add bacon mixture (you can drain off most of the grease, but I didn't since I used the turkey bacon and there wasn't much grease to begin with) to the spaghetti. Toss to combine.
6. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper, and toss one more time.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Pineapple Banana Muffins

I love to have homemade goodies around for snacks. Other than being the primary care giver for our daughter, my favorite thing about staying home is being in the kitchen. So in my quest for healthier eating habits, I am adapting and experimenting with some of our favorite recipes. And I'm having fun!

There are a lot of substitutions you can make to "healthify" your favorite baked goods. In this recipe, I decreased the sugar, subbed whole wheat flour for half of the all-purpose flour, and subbed unsweetened applesauce for part of the oil. Hubby says this is the best muffin recipe yet!

This recipe made about 80 mini muffins for me. And my wonderful Hubby calculated the calories to be approximately 50 calories per mini muffin. And he says he doesn't like math!

And don't forget to visit Carol for more Saturday Stirrings recipes!

Pineapple Banana Muffins

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/3 cups sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 8 oz can crushed pineapple, drained
2 cups mashed ripe bananas

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray muffin pans with non-stick cooking spray. (I don't like to use muffin liners; I feel that it wastes good muffiny-ness!)
2. Combine all dry ingredients in a large bowl.
3. Mix eggs, oil, applesauce, and vanilla extract thoroughly. Stir in pineapple and bananas.
4. Fill each muffin about 3/4 full with batter.
5. Bake for 15-18 minutes, depending on your oven.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Zippy Pineapple-Carrot Smoothie

I will be trying to post more health-conscious recipes this year. I started this blog to record a lot of our family favorites. Since a lot of those recipes are my grandma's and her twin's, they don't usually fall into the "healthy" category. I will still post those from time to time.

But I will be trying new recipes and will post them here to share. I'll try to keep them simple, since that's the type of cook I am! I can't deal with complicated recipes or recipes that call for hard-to-find ingredients. I haven't tried this yet, as we just got back from an out-of-town trip, and I don't have any ginger right now. But this sounds really yummy!

Don't forget to check out more great recipes at Saturday Stirrings today! I found this recipe on the Eat Right 4 Your Type website.

Zippy Pineapple-Carrot Smoothie

  • 1/2 cup pineapple chunks
  • 1 cup milk (the recipe calls for soy milk, but I haven't made that switch yet)
  • 1 carrot, peeled and sliced
  • 1/3 cup pineapple juice
  • 1 1-inch piece ginger root, peeled and minced
  • honey, to taste

How to make it:
  1. Place all ingredients in blender container and blend until everything is smooth.
  2. Add ice if you like it frosty.
  3. The ginger adds some 'zip' to it.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Heather's Meatloaf

I made this for our dinner tonight. It was scrump-dilly-icious! My mom always made the best meatloaf when I was growing up. It was an oft-recurring dinner - meatloaf, baked potatoes, and green beans. Yum!

I like using ground turkey instead of ground beef because there won't be much fat to collect around the loaf.

For more recipes, don't forget to visit Saturday Stirrings, hosted by Carol at I Throw Like a Girl.

Heather's Meatloaf

1 lb ground turkey
1 lb sweet Italian ground sausage
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1 large carrot, finely chopped
1 egg
1/4-1/2 cup milk (start with 1/4 cup, add more if you need more moisture)
3/4 cup oatmeal
1/8 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp paprika
handful of leftover crackers, crushed

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Use your hands. Make sure everything is well combined. Form into two loaves, either using 9x5 loaf pans, or free form on a lipped cookie sheet.

Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes, depending on the size of your loaves. Remove from oven, allow to rest 5 minutes before slicing. Top with Heinz 57, or, if you must, ketchup (yuck). This is a moist, flavorful meatloaf and does not need much additional flavoring. Just my opinion. Keep it pure, people!