Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Artichoke Gratinata (crowd pleasing veggie dish!)

Globe artichokes being cooked with whole <span class=

Artichoke Gratinata (crowd pleasing veggie dish!)

Ok, throw me a bone here friends, this is another Giada Recipe I saw her whip up on Food Network.

I've been waiting for a chance to try this recipe - and Saturday night (same night of the goat cheese stuffed mushrooms) was the perfect night. I was sick of my usual Arugula Salad, or grilled veggies (to be honest I don't like many veggies so it gets hard to be creative) but this one is a true crowd pleaser. I made a few adjustments that I'll list below the regular recipe!!

What You'll Need:
*3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
* 1 garlic clove minced
* 1 lb frozen artichoke hearts, thawed & drained
* 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
* 3/4 teaspoons salt
* 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
* 1/2 cup chicken broth
* 1/4 cup Marsala wine
* 2 tablespoons butter
* 1/3 cup plan bread crumbs
* 1/3 cup grated Parmesan Cheese.

*(My modifications: I doubled the recipe to accommodate 6 as this recipe says it's for 4. Instead of sauteing everything in olive oil, I used my left over bacon grease that I had made for my stuffed mushrooms (naughty, I know.) I also used more like 3-4 minced garlic cloves and a little extra red pepper flake)

To Do:

* Preheat Oven to 450 degrees

* Warm olive oil (or bacon grease in my case) in a heavy bottom skillet (I used cast iron) over medium - high heat. Add the garlic & cook for 1 minute. Add the artichoke hearts, parsley, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes and cook until the artichoke hearts are starting to brown a the edges around 3 minutes. Add the chicken broth and wine and simmer 3 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a 2-4 quart baking dish.

* Melt the butter in the same skilled used to cook the artichoke mixture. In a small bowl mix the melted butter with bread crumbs. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and top the artichokes with the bread crumb mixture. Bake until top is golden around 10 minutes.

Serve With:
This is a great side for beef (I made bacon wrapped grilled filets); pork; meaty fish dishes or even chicken.

(apologies for not having a photo of the dish, I had too many balls in the air and next thing I knew it had been consumed! Everyone loved this dish - I feel it's a good crowd pleaser and even a kid friendly veggie dish! Give it a try and report back)


Monday, March 8, 2010

Scrumptious Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms with Bacon

stuffed mushrooms with herbs and goat cheeseImage by little blue hen via Flickr

Scrumptious Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms with Bacon

I originally came upon this recipe from a blog I read called BreezyMama. I made a couple of very minor modifications, such as adding more goat cheese and bacon than originally
recommended, as well as some garlic. I will list the original recipe as well as my modifications below!

I served this as an appetizer at a dinner party Saturday night and they were gobbled up within minutes! The prep and bake time is NOTHING so if you need an easy but scrumptious appetizer this is for you!

You'll Need:
* 16 oz Mushroom Caps (the bigger the easier to stuff)
* 5.5 oz goat cheese
* 7 slices bacon
* 2 green onions

(Modification: I used about 7.5 oz of Goat Cheese; 8 -9 slices of applewood smoked bacon to add sweetness; 3-4 green onions (the white part has the most flavor), two-three cloves of garlic minced and browned in the bacon fat you have left
* Cook bacon in large skillet (save the grease to brown some garlic if you follow my modification)
* (optional) brown the garlic for a minute or so in the hot bacon grease)
* Wash & Cap 'Shrooms
* Dice green onions and bacon
* Mix the green onions, bacon, goat cheese (& garlic) in a bowl
* Stuff Shroom caps
* Spray a large baking sheet with Pam
* arrange stuffed shrooms on baking sheet and broil for 5 minutes or so until brown on top!


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