Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Asparagus with Balsamic Tomatoes

TEAR JERKER...OPRAH ended today & so did the 4 o'clock hour in my opinion.

ever since i can remember my days revolved around 4pm...i could be out of school by 3:10pm, snack in hand & in front of the tv by 4pm; in college, no classes were ever scheduled that would conflict with the 4pm hour; in my first years of working, & owning a tivo, 5pm meant time to go home to re-live 4pm & now that i've been home for a few months, 4pm has meant the playstation must cease to make way for oprah's hour.

it's crazy to think she's been on the air for 25 years & started her show when she was 34. at least there's hope god might come to me with a divine plan...'cause as justin would say, "shugart & spice isn't paying the bills just yet!"

oh well, at least i love to cook & he loves to eat!


{asparagus with balsamic tomatoes}

ingredients {in order of use}
*serves 4; or half recipe for 2
  • 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/3 box grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • salt & black pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese, shredded
1. in a large pot, bring water to a boil. cook asparagus for 2-3 minutes, or until crisp-tender. drain. arrange asparagus in a shallow dish or on a serving platter.

2. in a medium skillet, heat olive oil to medium-high heat. add garlic & cook for 3 minutes. add tomatoes & toss for 5 minutes. add in vinegar & cook for 5 minutes. season with salt & pepper.

3. top asparagus with tomato mixture & sprinkle with parmesan cheese. serve warm!

Fresh Herb Zucchini with Bow Ties


it's wednesday & this family was in need of some vegetables!! this pasta is the perfect pick for wanting something on the edge...it's got an alfredo-esque sauce & is tossed with fresh herbs & zucchini. a great summer go to!

{fresh herb zucchini with bow ties}

ingredients {in order of use}
*serves 4
  • 2 zucchini, sliced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups bow tie pasta, {dry}
  • 1/3 cup skim-milk ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup chives, chopped
  • 1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 3 basil leaves, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1. in a large skillet, heat olive oil to medium-high heat. add garlic & sauté for 3 minutes, or until fragrant but not browning. toss in sliced zucchini & saute for 10-12 minutes, or until soft & translucent.

2. while sautéing zucchini, bring a salted pot of water to a boil. add bow tie pasta & cook until soft.

3. while pasta is boiling, add ricotta cheese to a blender. when pasta is done cooking, reserve 1/2 cup of water & drain. add pasta water to blender & purée until mixed thoroughly.

4. combine hot pasta, ricotta mixture, zucchini & remaining ingredients in a bowl & serve warm!


Friday, May 20, 2011

BLT Dip

it's 5am & i'm about to depart to take justin to the airport; he's headed to biloxi, ms for this guys bachelor party...


the senior, slot-playing, marlboro-menthol smoking crowd really is in for a treat.

i on the other hand, am headed to destin, fl to celebrate his fiances bachelorette! can't wait for a fun, girls weekend in the SUN!!!


we, hope to crush the big kahuna crowd.

anyway, i'm up at 5am & am throwing together a few dips. right now, an easy, BLT dip that will be delish at sunset with a glass of savvy b! give it a try for your next summer soirée!

{BLT dip}

ingredients {in order of use}
  • 10 strips turkey bacon {or regular if you want!}
  • 1 {12 ounce} tub of Heluva Good French Onion Sour Cream Dip {it's the red tub, in the dairy section}
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 ripe, delicious tomato

1. cook bacon in microwave to a crisp consistency.

2. while cooking, mix sour cream dip & mayonnaise. stir evenly. when bacon is done cooking & cooling, crumble & add to mix.

3. finely chop tomato & add to the mix, leaving juices on chopping board.

4. serve with toasted pita points or ruffles!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Rosemary Parmesan Popcorn


my husband told me the other day, "we don't have any snacks in the house" while staring blankly at the STOCKED pantry. "what kind of snacks do you want honey?" i reply, thinking i'll add a few chips, cookies to the grocery list.

do you know what he replies?! "i'm thinking string cheese, maybe those little round cheeses they always show on tv, pringles..."

{the little round cheeses on tv would be mini babybel laughing cow cheese...i can see him peeling the little wax layer off at the office now...}

before he could finish i topped it off with, "and some lunchables? handi snacks? gushers? fruit by the foot?"

after a rolling on the floor laugh, i reassured him we will most likely not partake in that snack category until there are 3 year-olds in the house. not 30 year-olds.

so here's his little after-school snack from grown-ups!

{rosemary-parmesan popcorn}

ingredients
  • 1 {3 ounce} sleeve healthy popcorn
  • 4-6 sprays of butter
  • 2 sprigs rosemary, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup parmesan, finely grated
  • salt & pepper, to season

pop your corn & allow to cool. toss with all ingredients & serve in a big bowl or in individual bowls!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Garlic Shrimp with White Wine Linguine

make this....just make it. you'll thank yourself! happy tuesday.


{garlic shrimp with white wine linguine}

ingredients {in order of use}
*adapted from Emeril's 20-40-60 cookbook
*serves 2-4
  • 1 pound shrimp, peeled & deveined
  • 2 teaspoons emeril's essence seasoning
  • 1/2 box linguine
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 lemon {freshly squeezed}
  • salt & pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions {green parts only}
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • shredded parmesan for topping
1. in a medium mixing bowl, toss shrimp with emeril's essence seasoning & set aside.

2. bring a large pot of salted water to a boil & cook pasta until al dente {or still a little firm}.

3. while the pasta is cooking, in a large skillet add 2 tablespoons olive oil & butter & bring to medium heat. add shrimp & cook for approx. 5 minutes, or until pink throughout. add garlic & cook for 1 minute. add wine, lemon juice & cook for 2 minutes. season shrimp with salt & pepper.

4. when pasta is cooked to al dente, drain pasta & reserve 1/2 cup cooking water. add pasta, cooking water, crushed red pepper & green onion tops to shrimp. toss & cook for 2 minutes on low heat.

5. toss with chopped parsley, top with shredded parm & serve with warm garlic bread in a bowl!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Incredible Edible Eggplant

oprah ends may 25th & we're having meatless monday tonight at our house...two things that have nothing in common except my husband will perceive the latter as the world coming to an end. so to kick things off...eggplant will be a perfect substitute! it's got a hearty, rich texture & won't make him miss meat a bit.

and if he does...we're .7 miles from mcdonald's.

{incredible edible eggplant}

ingredients {in order of use}
*serves 2
  • 1 large eggplant
  • 4 egg whites
  • 4 tablespoons water
  • 3/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • garlic powder, to taste
  • 1 cup marinara sauce

1. pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. grease a baking sheet & set aside. slice eggplant into 1/4 inch medallions.

2. in a small bowl, whisk egg whites & water until foamy. place shredded parmesan cheese in another bowl & prepare to baste. dip eggplant medallions into the egg mix & then into parm-mix. for best results, press cheese into eggplant. place on baking sheet.

3. sprinkle with garlic powder {to you liking} & give the prepared sheet a spritz with your cooking spray to lightly dust eggplant medallions {this will crispy-fy things to give you that faux fried feeling!}

4. bake for 20 minutes, turn eggplant over & bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown & cooked thru. cover with 1 cup marinara sauce & bake for additional 20 minutes or until eggplant is hot, browning & bubbly!

5. top with leftover cheese & serve warm!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

No-Boil Noodle Lasagna


lasagna is like a 15-layer cake...

{just go with me}

they both require TLC to construct & little time to deconstruct! no-boil noodles make this lasagna seem fancy, but without all the fuss. and even better, you can make this dish ahead of time...if you can find that time!

simple title, simple recipe...simple is as simple does.

{no-boil noodle lasagna}

ingredients {in order of use}
*serves 4
  • 1 pound ground beef or turkey
  • 1 egg {or 3 tablespoons of liquid egg white}
  • 1/3 {15 ounce} container of skim ricotta cheese
  • 2 cups mozzarella, shredded {divided, 1 cup now, 1 cup later}
  • 1/2 cup parmesan, shredded
  • 1 {24 ounce} jar marinara sauce
  • 1 {9 ounce} box Barilla "NO BOILING REQUIRED" lasagna noodles
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced, optional
  • 2 large basil leaves, shredded, optional

1. preheat oven to 375...unless making ahead.

2. cook, crumble & drain meat.

*if you can't pass step 2, place a personal call to me & we can discuss getting you a little tikes play kitchen.

3. in a medium mixing bowl, whisk egg until foamy. add in ricotta, 1 cup mozzarella, parmesan & mix.

4. {optional step-depending on your time & taste!} in medium saucepan, warm marinara, 2 cloves garlic & shredded basil. this only serves to jazz up your jarred marinara if you please. if not, skip to step 5.

*now place close attention...we're about to get iron chef-ish here.

5. to create the lasagna, grease a dish that you have on hand that is smaller then a 9x13 & is about 3 inches deep.

{layer 1} cover bottom of dish with marinara sauce.

{layer 2} lay 3 lasagna noodles down. {you may have to break them to fit.} layer 1/3 ricotta mixture, 1/2 meat, 1/2 cup mozzarella & 1/4 sauce.

{layer 3} lay 3 lasagna noodles down, 1/3 ricotta mixture & 1/4 sauce.

{layer 5} lay 3 lasagna noodles down, remaining ricotta mix, meat, sauce & top with remaining mozzarella.

*now, chug your glass of wine & pray you got it right. if not, some sort of jenga construction will work.

6. cover with foil & bake for 50-60 minutes, or until bubbly. uncover & continue cooking for 12 minutes, or until cheese melts. let stand for about 15 minutes before cutting. enjoy!



Smoke Weed Everyday...


not really...but i got an um, AWESOME, herb garden for mothers day from bella {or world's #1 MIL in lieu of bella}. we're gonna smoke up some of the weeds in delicious dishes for the summer days to come!

i had actually been contemplating a trip to my local pike nursery, the only nursery we've contemplated at the clay's, for some fresh herbs for potting. since my yard gets about 2 hours of sunlight a day, my initial big-dream of eating solely from our garden was out. that & the fact my husband might OD on mcdonald's trying to stay afloat left me with...a potted herb garden!

i spent some time today researching how to care for each baby herb so closely knit in their little pot-o-dirt. oddly enough, i would get a school? swarm? heck, pot of kids that all have different needs & wants. for now, they are all going to get a little water & a minimum of 6 hours play time outside.

just like running a nursery right?


Monday, May 9, 2011

Creamy Chicken Casserole


PARTY in the U.S.A.

after just returning from a mexican getaway, i am ready for a break from mexican-food! this is an easy, whip-up-in-an-instant casserole you can make in the AM & serve in the PM. not to mention creamy & casserole in one title, well, those just tell me it's gonna be good!

{creamy chicken casserole}

ingredients
*serves 2-4
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 {10 3/4 ounce} can cream of chicken soup
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • splash of dry white wine
  • 1/3 cup italian bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 sprig green onion, diced
  • 2 teaspoons parsley, diced
  • 1 {12.5 ounce} can chopped chicken breast
  • 1/4 package thin spaghetti noodles, cooked

1. pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. round up ingredients!


2. in a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients.


3. pour into an 8x8 greased cooking dish. bake for 40 minutes or until hot & bubbly. top with shredded parm & serve warm!



enjoy with a ripe, caprese salad...best summer dish in my rotation!


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Out of eh, Office?

due to a trip that will lead me to this...

i will be away from {shugart & spice} in lieu of these...

and this...



and LOTS of these...
HAPPY VACATION & 1 YEAR ANNIVERSARY TO US!

~{bella is also away on her vaca in destin, fl}~


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