Broccoli and Cheese Quiche

I made this for a friend who is vegetarian and part of a birthday dinner. I saw this recipe years ago but I cannot remember where. This is a great recipe because low-fat ingredients were used and there is no pie crust. Works great for those who are really counting their carbs and is very diabetic friendly. This quiche is absolutely delicious and for those of you watching the waistline – Weight Watcher points is only a big whopping 3 points! For a nice change, you can substitute 5 cups of fresh spinach for the broccoli.

Broccoli and Cheese Quiche
Created on 11/30/13
Quiche

2 Tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic minced
5 cups broccoli florets (I used 1-1/2 bags of frozen broccoli)
1-1/4 cups of 2% milk
1 cup shredded reduced-fat Swiss cheese
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
4 large egg whites, lightly beaten
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1 Tablespoon grated fresh Parmesan cheese

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  I used my deep dish stoneware (you can use a glass pie plate lightly wiped down with olive oil).

Heat oil in large saute pan over medium high heat, add onion garlic and cook for 1-1/2 minutes stirring often. Add broccoli, and saute until broccoli is heated through. Spread evenly in pie plate.

Quiche_Ingredients_1

Combine milk, cheese, mustard, egg whites, eggs, salt, pepper and nutmeg in large bowl. Pour over broccoli mixture in pie pan; and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Quiche_Ingredients_2

Bake for 40 minutes or until top is golden and knife inserted in center comes out clean. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

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Cornbread Sausage Stuffing

Cornbread I love. I like it with my vegetarian chili, sweet potato black bean hash, and in my cornbread sausage stuffing. Sometimes, I like a different flavor to the carb-loaded table at Thanksgiving time and this stuffing just hits the flavors all the way around and compliments all the other dishes such as the turkey, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, and the gravy. I have made many different recipes using spicy sausage, Italian sausage, sausage in the butcher’s market but I think the Bob Evans Natural Sausage is perfect with this. What is nice is that there are no preservatives or MSG in this sausage which is what I prefer in all meats. The stuffing is full of flavor with minimal ingredients. I hope you enjoy this as much as I did on Thanksgiving Day.

Pam’s Cornbread Sausage Stuffing
Created on 11/24/11

Click on image to see larger picture

Prep:

Make the cornbread the day before. Preheat the oven 400 degrees. Butter a 9 x 13 casserole dish and set aside. I got this recipe from All Recipes on the internet, and tweaked it to my version. I have made it both ways and for the stuffing, this recipe is perfect. I also made this recipe with coconut milk and the bread came out really good.

1 cup flour

1 cup yellow or white cornmeal

¼ cup sugar

¼ cup honey

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 cup whole milk

2 eggs, slightly beaten

Mix all the dry ingredients in a small bowl. Then mix all the wet ingredients in another bowl. Combine the dry to the wet ingredients and mix until just all coated. Pour into the greased dish and cook for about 15 to 20 minutes until a butter knife comes out clean. When the cornbread is cool, cut into 1” squares and put in a glass bowl. Cover and let set until ready to make the stuffing.

Day of to make the Sausage Stuffing:

Toasted Corn Bread Cubes

To do this: I put the 1” cubes on a cookie tray or stoneware and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes until the cubes are toasted. This helps to prevent the stuffing from becoming soggy and I think it gives more flavor to the stuffing with that toasted-roasted kind of flavor. Remove from the oven and put in a large bowl.

While the cornbread is toasting in the oven, prepare the sausage filling

1 lb of Bob Evans Naturally Sausage (crumbled up) You can also substitute your favorite turkey sausage

4 celery stalks, chopped

1 medium onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil

About 1 teaspoon of Kosher Salt

½ teaspoon of fresh cracked pepper

2 to 3 cups of chicken broth (depends on the consistency of the dressing)

Cook tip: Always start out small and slowly add the liquid, you can always add but cannot take out the liquid if it is too much for the stuffing

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium high heat and add the celery, onion, garlic mixture. Cook for about 5 to 7 minutes until the celery and onion is soft and caramelized. Add the crumbled sausage. Crumble the sausage with your fingers or just put the whole thing in there and break up the meat with your spoon. Cook until the sausage is fully cooked. Season the filling with salt and pepper.

In the large bowl where the toasted corn bread cubes are, add the filling and kind of mix and break apart the bread and filling. Add the chicken broth ½ cup at a time until you reach the moistness desired. Remember you don’t want the stuffing to be soggy but at the same time when you squeeze the stuffing together with your fingers it should somewhat hold a shape and crumble at the same time lightly.

Bake uncovered in 350 degree oven for 40 minutes until the top is crunchy and browned. Serve with turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce.

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Peasant Soup

The weather has changed to cool fall weather. I have been doing a lot of research on different kinds of soups. I am slowly changing my diet to reflect more of a vegetarian way of eating because I am noticing that I am not as tired and do not have heartburn or digestive problems when I eat vegetarian. I still do love meat and cheese I hope that as I change more to a much healthier diet I will not crave meat, eggs and cheese so much. I think this will be a work in progress. I did some research on Peasant Soup and found meat, vegetarian, and vegan ways appealing so I combined many resources and created my own. I think with the research I did, I discovered that everyone has their own version of vegetables, meats and spices. I would like to say I have adapted a really good vegan recipe. Next time I will add carrots to the soup. The smells in the apartment were heavenly and the soup came out really hearty, loaded with flavor, and very filling. Enjoy!

Pam’s Peasant Soup
Created on November 2, 2011

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1 small bag 12 oz of Lentils rinsed and picked over well check for stones, twigs, etc.

2 tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil (can omit for those that do not use oil)

(2) 15 oz cans Muir Glenn diced tomatoes

1 tablespoon Caraway seed (I like the flavor – you can omit, decrease or increase)

1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped

1 teaspoon dried basil (I imagine fresh would be more potent and flavorful)

2 bay leaves

8 cups of water

3 teaspoons of “Better than Bouillon” Vegetable based, or if you have homemade vegetable stock use that

1 medium onion, chopped

1-1/2 cup of chopped celery (about 4 stalks)

4 garlic cloves, chopped fine

(10) Oz package of organic baby spinach

5 small Yukon gold potatoes peeled and chopped

2 cups of finely sliced cabbage

Kosher Salt and Fresh Cracked Pepper to taste

 In a stockpot, heat up the olive oil on medium high heat and add the chopped onions and celery. Cook for about 5 minutes till onions become soft and somewhat brown. Add the garlic and stir for about a minute or so. Do not let the garlic burn as it will make the recipe taste funny. Add the caraway seed, thyme, and basil to the onion/celery/garlic mixture.

Click on image for larger picture

Cook for about another minute stirring often. Add the water, bouillon, bay leaves, tomatoes, lentils, and potatoes to the stockpot. Stir and let come to a boil. Then turn down to heat to simmer and cook for about an hour or until the potatoes are soft.  Add the cabbage the last 10 minutes of cooking. Remove from heat and add the baby spinach. Cover and the steam will wilt the spinach after about a couple of minutes. Stir again and season with salt and pepper. 

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Serve with whole grain or rye crusty bread.

 Note: For the meat lovers, need to remove the Caraway Seed (optional) and add a type of sausage or cubed chicken breasts to the soup. Just remember if using linked sausage of any kind, remove the casing. I am sure the flavors will change when adding a protein to the soup. The results will probably be the same – delicious, filling and hearty.

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Tomato Sweet Onion Macaroni Salad

I was hired to cater a workshop event recently and wanted to make macaroni salad that would not spoil sitting out in a warm room. After a lot of researching, I decided to come up with something of my own using different ideas from recipes. I found this tomato relish on Recipezaar and just made minor adjustments to it. I added the tomato relish to the cooked elbow macaroni. It came out fantastic, I was surprised. I have become encouraged to come up with my own recipes because it shows I have really improved as an experimental/healthy/simple home cook in the last year or two. I hope you enjoy this as much as I did. Enjoy!

Tomato Sweet Onion Macaroni Salad
Serves 14 to 16 people ½ cup servings
Created on October 5, 2011

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1 Box of Whole Grain Elbow Macaroni
3 Stalks of Celery, chopped
1 quart of mini Heirloom Tomatoes, chopped (I used ¼ yellow, ¼ orange and ½ red tomatoes)
½ of a red onion finely minced
3 green onions, minced fine
½ cup of Fage Greek yogurt or Hellman’s mayonnaise (both ways is delicious)
2 tablespoons of Balsamic Vinegar
2 tablespoons of Olive Oil
½ cup of freshly minced parsley
Salt/Pepper to taste

Prepare the tomato relish in the morning if you can. This way the tomatoes have time to marinate with all the other seasonings. Trust me it is worth the wait.

Cut the mini Heirloom tomatoes into quarters and put in a glass bowl. Finely mince the red onion. You can use green onions or shallots if you want a milder taste. Add the Balsamic Vinegar, Olive Oil and season with salt and pepper. Mix well. Cover and marinate for about 3 to 4 hours. The juices from the tomatoes will develop and this will really flavor the macaroni salad.

Cook the elbow macaroni per the package directions. Rinse well and put in a bowl and set aside. Chop 3 stalks of celery and mince the green onions and parsley. Add to the cooked elbow macaroni. Add the tomato relish. Combine all the ingredients before adding the Greek yogurt or mayonnaise. Stir well. Serve with sandwiches or a fresh green salad.

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Mock Fried Zucchini Mushrooms Potatoes Concept

I am always trying out new flavors with some of my favorite foods that I grew up on. One thing I absolutely love is fried potatoes and the one thing I can remember about this dish was my aunt making fried potatoes on the farm with hamburgers for dinner. Talk about fried comfort food, this was mine. I know it is not healthy for me now because I have diabetes. I thought I could try and make my love of fried potatoes a little bit healthier for me such as sautéing the vegetables in olive oil instead of frying with vegetable oil and margarine and adding other vegetables like zucchini, onions, and mushrooms, so the serving is not all potatoes. I seasoned the sautéed vegetables with fresh herbs that I had left over from this week’s meals which left an enormous flavor to the dish. I think that dill, thyme and zucchini go so well together I actually enjoyed this vegetarian breakfast today. I will make this more often and will test other vegetables with the “mock fried potato concept”.

Mock Fried Zucchini, Mushroom Potatoes Concept
Created on 08/12/11

Click on picture to enlarge photo

2 lbs of baby Yukon gold potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1” bite size pieces leave skins on

Note: Try and cut the potatoes all the same size so they cook evenly

1 medium onion chopped

1medium zucchini cut in half lengthwise and then half-mooned sliced

6 large button mushrooms, cleaned and sliced “click here to see mushroom tip on how to clean mushrooms”

6 large baby Bella mushrooms, cleaned and sliced

1 large garlic clove chopped

2 tablespoons of fresh dill

2 tablespoons of fresh parsley

1 tablespoon of fresh thyme

3 tablespoons of olive oil

Salt/Pepper to taste

 In a large pan, heat up 2 tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat. Try and keep the heat on the high side so the potatoes form a brown crust. Add the chopped onions and potatoes and cook for about 10 minutes until the potatoes are cooked through. Season the potatoes and onions with salt and pepper to taste. Stir often so the onions and potatoes do not burn while cooking. Remove the pan from heat. In another sauté pan heat up 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat and add the mushrooms. Cook for about 5 minutes until mushrooms are semi-soft. Add the zucchini and garlic to the mushrooms and sauté for about another 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the mushrooms and zucchini mixture to the potatoes and onions. Stir well. Add the herbs and mix well. Serve hot with sliced tomatoes and/or poached eggs. This recipe is good by itself too! Enjoy!

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Edamame Cherry Chicken Sausage Dish

I think I am just nuts about farmer markets. I love the one near my apartment. The market has several organic meat vendors that offer a diversity of meat such as different flavor sausages and cuts of meat. You can purchase, sample, and question the vendors to your hearts content about how they process their sausages and their meats. I just love the tart cherry chicken sausage that I purchase from one of the vendors just absolutely amazing. I threw some things together and came up with this fast and easy dish that is just loaded with some simple summer flavors.

Edamame Cherry Sausage Dish, created 06/13/11

Edamame Cherry Chicken Sausage Dish

1 lb. of Tart Cherry Sausage (or any flavor sausage that you like), meat taken out of the casing
1-1/2 cups of shelled Edamame (or any bean you like – i.e. Lima Bean, Green Bean)
3 medium tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1 medium onion, half mooned sliced
½ small green cabbage rough chopped
1 can of organic black beans, rinsed and drained (or pink, cranberry bean)
Salt/Pepper to taste
2 tablespoons of olive oil
Cooked Quinoa or another type of healthy grain

In a 10” sauté pan, heat up the olive oil over medium high heat and add the sliced onions and green cabbage. Season with salt and pepper and continuing to cook until the onions and cabbage is soft. Add the crumbled sausage to the mixture and cook until sausage is done about 7 to 10 minutes. Add the Edamame, black beans and tomatoes until heated thoroughly. Serve over cooked quinoa. Enjoy!

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Cooking Tips: How to Cut Half Moon Onion Slices

This is a short cooking tip on slicing “half-moon” onion

Grilled Guacamole Dip

There were avocados on sale when I went grocery shopping over the Fourth of July weekend and I thought I would try something different with the avocados. I am a huge fan of guacamole and saw something quick on the food channel about grilling avocados. I decided to experiment and try grilling all my vegetables and created this amazing dip. I am thinking that next time, I will grill a couple of Jalapeno peppers and add it to the dip to give it some pop instead of using Tabasco sauce. This recipe is so delicious!

Grilled Guacamole Dip, created 07/06/2010

(2) Roma Tomatoes, sliced thick
(3) Avocados, cut in half and pitted
(1) Lemon, sliced thick
(1) Onion, sliced thick
(2-3) Tablespoons Olive Oil (approximately)
(2) Corn on the Cob (fresh or already cooked)
Tabasco Sauce
Salt and Pepper to Taste

Prep and Grilling the Vegetables:
Cut tomatoes, onion, and lemon into thick slices. Cut the avocados in half and remove the seed. Preheat a grill pan or if you are barbequing that day, you can barbeque these items on the grill. Brush all the vegetables lightly with olive oil except for the lemon and the hard green part of the avocado shell. Place the avocado halved side down on the grill along with the sliced onions. Lightly season the sliced onion with salt and pepper. Grill the avocado and onion until you have good grill marks – will be about 4 to 5 minutes for the avocados and maybe 6 to 7 minutes for the onion. Remove from the grill and place the sliced tomato and lemon on the grill. The tomatoes will take no more than a minute and half and the lemon slices about 3 to 4 minutes. Grill the corn on the cob until the corn is light brown all the way around the cob, brush lightly with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. This may take a good ten to fifteen minutes depends on your oven or grill.

To Make the Guacamole:
With a large spoon, gently run the spoon around the avocado shell and remove the inside of the avocado and put in a bowl. Chop into small pieces the grilled onion and place in the bowl. Chop up the grilled tomatoes and put aside. Run a sharp knife down each side of the cob to remove the corn.

Mash the avocados to the desired consistency you prefer and add the tomatoes and the corn. Squeeze the lemon slices to extract the juices and mix all the ingredients well. Add about 15 to 20 drops of Tabasco sauce and lightly season with salt and pepper. Mix lightly one more time and serve with vegetables, crackers, or chips. Enjoy!

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Edamame, Black Bean Corn Salad

Hello fans! It has been awhile since I have done any serious cooking. Looking back at my food diaries and notes, I think my last post was January 17th. For that I apologize and I have missed cooking, creating new recipes to add to my lifelong commitment of eating and making healthy food choices. I created this dish to eat for lunch or dinner to go with a nice green/herb salad with simple vinaigrette dressing. The flavors in this bean salad go very well together and it is a perfect dish to bring to a picnic barbeque or to simply grab a bite to eat when on the run. Enjoy!

Edamame, Black Bean, Corn Salad created 06/10/11

Edamame Black Bean Corn Salad

Click on picture to enlarge

1 can organic black beans rinsed and drained

¾ cup fresh corn cut from the cob or frozen organic corn thawed

1-1/2 to 2 cups shelled edamame thawed

½ cup red onion finely diced (optional)

1 pint or 2 cups of your favorite salsa (I used my own salsa that I canned from my garden last summer)

2 tomatoes diced, with seeds

3 tablespoons good quality olive oil

2 teaspoons ground cumin

½ cup chopped fresh cilantro

¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

Combine all the ingredients together in a large bowl and refrigerate for a few hours to give the flavors a chance to marry.  Eat alone or with a salad – serves 4-5 people.

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Mushroom, Red Potato Onion Frittata

I have been thinking of different ways to make different kinds of frittatas. I am obsessed with them because they are filling and can be made with different things such as vegetables and often instead of eggs I use an Egg Substitute to cut down on the fat and cholesterol. I was at a friends house for a couple of days and she had some potatoes, onions and mushrooms left from the previous nights dinner so I thought let’s try a new thing. Talk about a wow factor. This was excellent. Hope you enjoy this as much as I did.

Mushroom Red Potato Onion Frittata, created on 12/22/10

Mushroom Red Potato Onion Frittata

1 medium red potato (the size of your fist) not peeled, thinly sliced
¼ red onion thinly sliced half moon shaped
1 lb Baby Bella Mushrooms, thinly sliced
10 eggs beaten well or you can use Egg Beaters (2 containers)
½ cup fresh Parmesan Cheese
2 tsp fresh thyme chopped
Salt/Pepper
2 tablespoons of Olive Oil

Heat up olive oil in 10” sauté pan over medium high heat until hot. When In a 10” sauté pan, layer the potatoes evenly around the pan, and then layer the thinly sliced red onion on top of potatoes along with the mushrooms. Cook over medium high heat for 5 minutes on one side and flip everything over so that the mushrooms are on the bottom with onions and potatoes are on top. Cook for another 5 minutes until the mushrooms, onions and potatoes are a deep brown and caramelized on both sides.

Beat 10 eggs together, reserve 3 tablespoons of parmesan cheese, set aside. Add the rest of the parmesan cheese and fresh thyme in eggs beat well. Add the egg mixture to the to the potato/onion mixture. Cover for about 5 -7 minutes until the middle of the frittata is set.

Sprinkle remaining Parmesan cheese over top of frittata and put under a boiler for 3 to 5 minutes until golden brown on top. Serve with sliced tomatoes or meat of choice.

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