Friday, December 21, 2012

Fettuccine with Sausage Puttanesca Sauce

This sauce has been on my "to make" list for quite some time, but I was waiting for the right moment. You see, my children never particularly cared for Kalamata olives or capers (or as they lovingly refer to them as "deer poop"...yes I know, I have two comedians on my hands here), but I've been adding them into some of the foods I've been making little by little and they have eaten and liked them each time, just not on their own. 

So when I met Joi, from the Joi of Pickles, at a recent craft fair and book signing event, I just had to try her Kalamata olives. These olives were so fresh and the best part, they were already pitted! I figured I'd make a puttanesca sauce with them and also decided to add in some sausage since I had already taken it out of the freezer. This sauce was INCREDIBLY flavorful with the pungent flavors of garlic and olives and the briny, lemon flavor from the capers. 


Fettuccine with Sausage Puttanesca Sauce
1 lb. Fettuccine
Prepared Sausage Puttanesca Sauce

Sausage Puttanesca Sauce
5 Links Italian Sweet Sausage, casings removed
2 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/4 c. Red Onion, chopped
2 Garlic Cloves, chopped
3 Plum (Roma) Tomatoes, chopped
1 c. Kalamata Olives, pitted and chopped
2 tbsp. Capers
1/2 c. Red Wine (I used a dry Tuscan)
1/2 c. Low-Sodium Chicken Broth
1/4 c. Tomato Paste
Fresh Ground Red Pepper, to taste

Directions: 
1. In a large saute pan, heat 1 tbsp. oil and add the sausage; then break apart using a wooden spoon. Saute until the meat is cooked through and no longer pink. 
2. In a separate pan, heat the remaining 1 tbsp. oil and add in the onion, garlic, tomatoes, olives and capers. Saute until the onions start to turn translucent; then add in the wine, chicken broth, tomato paste and red pepper. Stir well, then add in the cooked sausage. Simmer on low for 10-15 minutes;
3. Boil a large pot of water and cook pasta according to package directions; drain water. 
4.  Pour the thick sauce over the cooked fettuccine and toss; coating all of the pasta. Serves 6. 

Enjoy! 




It will speed up the preparation process if you assemble all of  your ingredients prior to making the sauce by getting all of your chopping done at once and putting them all in a bowl. 

If you're looking for a Vegetarian option, omit the sausage and use vegetable broth in place of the chicken broth. 





Well, this is it. My last post for 2012. I can't believe this year is coming to a close. It's been a pretty exciting year filled with both good and bad memories, but I'm looking forward to what 2013 has in store.  CEK will be taking some time off to spend quality time with family and friends; and enjoy the spirit of the holiday season. I'll be back January 2, 2013 to ring in the new year with more experiments and I hope you'll follow along on my adventures. 

Thank you for visiting Carrie's Experimental Kitchen 
and from our family to yours, we wish you a joyous 
holiday season and Happy New Year!   ~ Carrie


Shared on Weekend Potluck 1/4/13

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Walnut Crescents

Here it is, Recipe #12 for the Holiday Baking theme. I have many favorites around the holidays and this one has been a favorite of mine since I first ripped it out of the pages of Parents Magazine back in 1998. I mean, this is so old after many internet searches, I still can't find the exact recipe online which was created by Penny O'Connor from Waterloo, Iowa. 

They are SO easy to make and like she says, they truly melt in your mouth and disappear quickly from my cookie platters as well.  I hope you enjoyed my baking theme the last few weeks. Tomorrow I'll be back to savory recipes; which are more my forte. :)


Walnut Crescents
2 Sticks Butter (I used salted, but she calls for unsalted), room temperature
1 1/4 c. Confectioners Sugar (aka 10x sugar or powdered sugar)
2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
1 1/2 tsp. Water
2 c. All-Purpose Flour
1/4 tsp. Salt (I omitted since I used salted butter)
1 c. Walnuts, finely chopped (you can also use pecans)

Directions:
1. Heat oven to 375 degrees. 
2. Add the butter and 1/4 cup of sugar to a bowl and beat with an electric mixer until creamy; then add in vanilla and water. 
3. With the mixer on low, gradually add in the flour (and salt if using unsalted butter); beating until well blended. 
4. Stir in the nuts with a wooden spoon. 
5. With lightly floured hands, roll dough into 1 1/4" balls, then shape the balls into crescents (or moon shapes). 
6. Arrange 2" apart on ungreased baking sheet and bake 15 minutes or until lightly browned (my oven tends to be set higher so I cooked mine on 350 for about 12 minutes). 
7. Remove from oven and while cookies have cooled slightly, toss the cookies into the remaining 1 cup of sugar to coat; then cool on wire racks completely. Makes 33 cookies

Enjoy! 

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Hazelnut Biscotti

I know. You're probably tired of my variations of biscotti, but this is the last one...well for 2012 anyway! I just love adding different nuts to biscotti and this hazelnut version brings us to Holiday Baking recipe #11. Besides, I had to find more uses for that Frangelico my brother in law gave me recently. ;)

Hazelnut Biscotti
2 c. All-Purpose Flour
1 c. Granulated Sugar
1/2 tsp. Baking Powder
1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

2 tbsp. Frangelico (hazelnut liquor)
3 Large Eggs
1/2 c. Hazelnuts, chopped
Cooking Spray



Directions:
1. In a bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and baking soda until well blended. 
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, Frangelico and vanilla. 
3. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and mix well until all of the ingredients have been incorporated.  
4. Next, fold in the hazelnuts. 
5. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until the dough is no longer sticky, then form two, 12” long log shapes and flatten down so that it is no higher than 1”. 
6. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray, add the dough and bake at 325° F for 30 minutes.  
7. Remove from oven and let cool, then slice diagonally into 1/2" thick slices and put them back on the baking sheet. 
8. Bake an additional 8-10 minutes per side, then remove from the oven. Let cool and allow to harden before serving. Makes 2 1/2 dz.


Enjoy! 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Baklava

I normally don't like overly sweet desserts, but I'll always make an exception for Baklava, which is our Holiday Baking recipe #10.  I couldn't go another year without trying to make it myself, especially since visiting Greece and Turkey last summer, where this is a common sweet treat and found at EVERY local  bakery. 

Baklava is a sweet pastry layered with phyllo dough, chopped nuts, then topped with syrup or honey. Though the origin of Baklava is uncertain, many believe that it was first created in Turkey and there are many different variations to this recipe. The recipe I chose to follow was one I found several years ago in the Food Network Magazine   and was created by Michael Symon. It was a Greek version which has 33 layers of dough; one for each year of Christ's life. This baklava was DELICIOUS, but here are some changes I'd make next time. 

1. His recipe calls for either zwieback crackers or breadcrumbs, I used Panko breadcrumbs.
2. I would prepare the syrup the same; however, I wouldn't pour it all on top of the cooked baklava. It was a little too sweet and wet for my taste.
3. He also states to let it soak for 6 hours after pouring the syrup over the warm baklava; I couldn't wait and according to several of my Facebook readers, they don't wait the full time and it's fine. I would have to agree...3 hours was enough for me to wait to dig into these beauties! 

Enjoy! 

Monday, December 17, 2012

Cappuccino Chocolate Biscotti

I had such a good time on Around the Kitchen Sink radio show with Heather Tallman (aka Basilmomma) last week. If you missed the podcast, you can listen to it here

Today is recipe #9 on the Holiday Baking list for these Cappuccino Chocolate Biscotti. They're so crunchy and go perfectly with your favorite hot beverage. 




Cappuccino Chocolate Biscotti
2 c. All-Purpose Flour
1 c. Granulated Sugar
1/2 tsp. Baking Powder
1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
3 Eggs
3 tbsp. Brewed Espresso (or you can use coffee)
1/2 c. White Chocolate Chips
Cooking Spray



Directions:
1. In a bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and baking soda until well blended. 
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, espresso and vanilla. 
3. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and mix well until all of the ingredients have been incorporated.  
4. Next, fold in the chocolate. 
5. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until the dough is no longer sticky, then form two, 12” long log shapes and flatten down so that it is no higher than 1”. 
6. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray, add the dough and bake at 325° F for 30 minutes.  
7. Remove from oven and let cool, then slice diagonally into 1/2" thick slices and put them back on the baking sheet. 
8. Bake an additional 8-10 minutes per side, then remove from the oven. Let cool and allow to harden before serving. Makes 2 1/2 dz.


Enjoy! 

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Top 5 Recipe Recap (12.16.12) and Support for Sandy Hook Elementary

Before I share the Top 5 Most Viewed Recipes from last week, I wanted send my condolences to all of those affected by the senseless shooting in Newtown, CT this week.  26 people lost their lives; 20 of them elementary school children (including several children of my husband's coworkers). Like most of the nation, we are still in shock at how devastating this is and can't even imagine what would possess someone to do this gruesome act of hate. It is truly a parents worse nightmare and I personally cringe every time I get a call from our own school system just waiting to hear the worst. This is definitely not the same world I grew up in as a child and it's so frightening. Please keep the family and friends of all those lost in your thoughts and prayers in the coming weeks. 

Charlotte Bacon, 6
Daniel Barden, 7
Rachel Davino, 29
Olivia Engel, 6
Josephine Gay, 7
Ana Marquez-Greene, 6
Dylan Hockley, 6
Dawn Hocksprung, 47
Madeline Hsu, 6
Catherine Hubbard, 6
Chase Kowalski, 7
Jesse Lewis, 6
James Mattioli, 6
Grace McDonnell, 7
Anne Marie Murphy, 52
Emilie Parker, 6
Jack Pinto, 6
Noah Pozner, 6
Caroline Previdi, 6
Jessica Rekos, 6
Avielle Richman, 6
Lauren Rousseau, 30
Mary Sherlach, 56
Victoria Soto, 27
Benjamin Wheeler, 6
Allison Wyatt, 6

If you would like to send a condolence message to the families and victims, you can do so at We Are Better Than This, a national conversation on how we can prevent gun deaths and injuries. 

Thank you also to The Huffington Post for the following information:
Find out how the area’s nonprofits are getting involved in the relief effort and how you can help:
Newtown Youth and Family Services 
Newtown Youth & Family Services, Inc., a nonprofit mental health clinic, will be open Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for emergency counseling for families, community members or staff involved in the Sandy Hook Elementary school tragedy. All donations made to the organization will benefit those affected. Find out how you can help here.
Newtown Parent Connection
The Newtown Parent Connection, a nonprofit that addresses issues of substance abuse, also offers bereavement group counseling on the first Wednesday of every month. The organization told The Huffington Post that it’s going to try to bring in additional counselors to accommodate the needs of those affected by the Sandy Hook shooting. Find out how you can help here.
The American Red Cross
The American Red Cross of Connecticut immediately responded to the shooting scene and provided more than 50 units of blood platelets and plasma to the Danbury Hospital, where some of the victims were transported, spokesperson Melanie Pipkin told the Huffington Post. The aid organization has also distributed food and water to first responders and is setting up a family reception center that will provide initial grief counseling. The aid organization is not seeking blood donations at this time and doesn't anticipate any additional need. Learn about how you can help here.

Each week, I see what the top viewed recipes are here on the blog. And surprisingly, they are not necessarily what I happened to post that week. To view the recipe, click on the recipe name to be taken to the original post.  Also, if you are looking for a specific recipe or food type, type the name into the search bar on the right hand side of the page. 

Friday, December 14, 2012

Roasted Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

For those of you who might have missed my FB update, I tore my calf muscle the other day doing nothing more than walking my dog and twisted funny. Lucky for me, I don't need surgery; but I do need to be off of my feet for the next few days (on crutches) and then go to physical therapy for the next month. I have a few more new posts for next week, but will not be able to fulfill the promise of 12 Days of Holiday Baking being that I can't stand without support so I think cooking/baking is out of the question for a while. I'll try to post when I can! xo 

And now for today's savory recipe...

I made this recipe for Roasted Garlic Mashed Cauliflower last week and posted it on my Facebook page and the CEK fans went wild and couldn't wait for me to post this recipe. I love that it's so simple to prepare and if you're in a time crunch, I'm sure you could use frozen cauliflower instead of fresh. 

Roasting garlic is SO easy, but it does take some time. If you are in a rush, consider roasting it the night before, then just heat it up so the pulp extracts easier. You can use roasted garlic in so many dishes, but my hubby's favorite is to just smear it on top of a nice, juicy steak. We really liked this recipe and my youngest, who REFUSES to eat cauliflower in any form, ate THIS and LOVED it! Tricky mom that I am told her it was garlic potatoes and she fell for it. ;)


Roasted Garlic Mashed Cauliflower
1 Head Fresh Cauliflower, steamed until soft
2 tbsp. Butter
3-4 tbsp. Milk
1 Head Roasted Garlic
Kosher Salt, to taste
Fresh Ground Black Pepper, to taste

Directions:
1. Add your cooked cauliflower to a bowl and add the butter, milk and garlic pulp. (Depending on the size of the cauliflower, you may need to adjust how much milk you add)
2. Using your electric mixer, mash the cauliflower until it is a creamy consistency. Serves 4. 


Roasted Garlic
1 Head Garlic
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Sea Salt


Directions:
1. Remove the excess papery skin from the garlic. 
2. Cut off the top of the head of garlic exposing the garlic bulbs. 
3. Drizzle on a little oil and sprinkle with salt. 
4. Wrap the garlic head in aluminum foil and bake at 425 degrees for 30 minutes. 
5. Remove from the oven and squeeze out the garlic bulbs, it will be spreadable like butter. 


Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 
1 serving (170.1 g)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 
80
Calories from Fat 
31
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 
3.4g
5%
Saturated Fat 
2.0g
10%
Cholesterol 
9mg
3%
Sodium 
72mg
3%
Total Carbohydrates 
10.9g
4%
Dietary Fiber 
3.8g
15%
Sugars 
4.2g
Protein 
3.9g
Vitamin A 2%Vitamin C 115%
Calcium 6%Iron 4%
* Based on a 2000 calorie diet






Speaking of my youngest daughter, today is her 11th Birthday, man does time fly. Happy Birthday Baby Girl...I love you! She loves to help me in the kitchen and if you're new to CEK, she also wrote her own blog post a few months back, and is still one of my more popular posts today! So in honor of her birthday, I'll share her recipe again for Homemade Gnocchi with Sausage Bolognese with you in case you missed it. She was VERY proud of it (as was I) and talks about her 5 minutes of blogging fame often. Love this little apple that didn't fall far from the tree! <3 
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

ShareThis