Sunday, August 29, 2010

summer market pasta

aah, summer veggies. one of the best ways to use up all of my csa veggies (besides stir frying) is a giant batch of pasta. you can throw in almost anything, cook it down, serve with cheese, and it's sure to be a hit. also an easy way to feed a crowd. also much more fun if you take a walk around the market to select your veggies. be sure to supplement your walk with a market snack.

summer market pasta
serves 4 (we eat a lot)
  • 1 lb brown rice pasta
  • 3 shallots, chopped
  • 2 squash (green and yellow), sliced
  • 2 cobs worth of kernels of corn
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 3 chicken sausage, sliced into pieces
  • white wine
  • parmesean cheese
  • pesto
  • salt and pepper
  • arugula
  • make the pasta
  • while the pasta is cooking, start making the "sauce:" add olive oil, 1/2 the garlic and 1/2 the shallots to a large pan. sautee squash until it's almost cooked through and slightly golden. add corn and tomatoes. cook until tomatoes have softened. simmer for a few minutes. remove and place into bowl.
  • add more olive oil, remaining garlic and shallots to pan, once the shallots and garlic have softened, add the sausage and cook until cooked through and golden brown. remove and add to veggies.
  • deglaze pan with white wine: pour a small amount of white wine into the pan and use a wooden spoon to scrape all of the bits from the bottom. continue to stir and keep heating until it reduces and slightly thickens. add to bowl.
  • stir in a few handfuls of arugula and stir to wilt. when the pasta is ready, add it to the bowl along with some pesto and parmesean cheese. if neccessary, sautee additional shallots and deglaze with more wine.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

chocolate pancake cake!

a triple roomie bday called for a special treat. especially one appropriate to eat after a late night of drunken debauchery. i bring you the chocolate pancake cake! this, my friends, is a yummy labor of love. and perfect for a bday brunch.

chocolate pancake cake
  • 2 cups of pancake mix (i used gluten-free)
  • other pancake mix ingredients (whatever is required by your preferred kind)
  • cocoa powder
  • cream cheese frosting (recipe below)
  • strawberries, chopped
  • prepare the pancake mix according to the directions, with the following adaptations: add a couple of tablespoons of cocoa powder to the dry ingredients and add extra milk so that you get a runny batter, closer to that of crepes.
  • pick a large pan to make your pancakes in. add a few tablespoons of batter, and swirl batter around to thinly coat pan. make sure to let the batter spread the width of the pan, so that your pancakes will turn out uniform in size.
  • very flat, smooth pancakes (more like crepes). you may have to give a test run.
  • once you have a giant pile of cooked pancakes, assembly starts.
  • put one pancake on a plate, spread on some frosting, add berries. repeat. again and again and again and again.
truthfully, there was already a bunch of cream cheese frosting in my fridge (yes, that's really what living in my apartment is like), so i just used that, and thinned it down with some soy milk so that it would spread easier and drip down the sides of the pancakes. but for those whose apartments aren't stocked with all sorts of baking supplies, martha stewart's cream cheese frosting recipe is below.

cream cheese frosting
courtesy of
  • 4 tablespoons room-temperature unsalted butter
  • 4 ounces room-temperature bar cream cheese
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 tspn vanilla extract
  • milk (or soy milk)
  • beat butter and cream cheese until smooth.
  • add confectioners' sugar and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy.
  • add milk to thin down frosting to desired texture (runny enough to spread down the side of the pancakes).

Monday, August 2, 2010

banana coffee cake with chocolate chip streusel

here is your reason to keep overripe bananas in the freezer at all times. (seriously, when your bananas cross through the yellow phase, throw them in the freezer. they can be defrosted to bake or smoothie-fy at any time). another birthday, an internet search and the realization that i had bananas and walnuts at home lent to this SCRUMPTIOUS baked good. well, that and the need to find something that would be relative easy to lug to jerz. and since technically it's a coffee cake, i'm going to label it brunch.

Banana Coffee Cake with Chocolate Chip Streusel

(adapted from bon appetit)
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup golden brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups flour (i used spelt)
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 4 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/3 cups mashed bananas, about 3 bananas (i only had 2 so i threw in an extra egg and some extra applesauce)
  • 3 tablespoons buttermilk (i made my own with soy milk and a dash of lemon juice-let it sit for a few minutes before you use it)
  • preheat oven to 350 degrees F, butter and flour an 8x8x2 inch baking pan.
  • stir chocolate chips, brown sugar, walnuts and cinnamon together; set streusel aside.
  • sift flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl.
  • in a separate bowl (that's right, this is your third separate bowl now) beat sugar, butter and egg in a large bowl until fluffy. beat in mashed bananas and buttermilk.
  • add dry ingredients and mix well.
  • spread half of batter (about 2 cups) in prepared baking pan. sprinkle with half of streusel. repeat with remaining batter and streusel. bake until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 45 minutes.