Saturday, November 27, 2010

Pumpkin Ravioli

It’s always sad when a holiday comes to an end. I got back to Harrisonburg this afternoon and was greeted with frigid temperatures. It was SO nice being in VA Beach, I was definitely not ready for windy, cold weather. There are always so many leftovers to use up after a holiday, so I figured I'd show y'all one way to use them up! After making the Pumpkin Pie Brownie Cupcakes I had about 1.5 cups of pumpkin leftover. I wasn’t in the mood for pumpkin oatmeal so I thought I’d try to make ravioli!

Dough
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup unbleached all purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp salt
  • water
Pumpkin Filling
  • 1.5 cups pumpkin
  • 2/3 cup Parmesan (freshly grated)
  • salt and pepper
Sauce (*These ingredients are estimates, I didn’t measure)
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup parsley
  • 3 cups kale

Instructions
Mix flour and salt in a bowl. Create a hole in the middle and add melted butter and 1/2 cup warm water. Mix together with a fork. Add more water if it’s not wet enough or add more flour if it’s too sticky. Let it sit for 30 min.

Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough so that it’s pretty thin. Just imagine the thickness of a lasagna noodle and that’s what you want. Make sure you put flour down on the surface you’re using and keep flour on the rolling pin. There’s nothing worse than dough sticking to your rolling pin! After this is done, use a pizza cutter to slice strips of dough. Then cut across to make squares. These are about 2in by 2in squares. I didn’t measure but I think that’s right. Use only 1/2 of the pumpkin mixture, save the other half for the sauce. Add 1 hefty tbsp of pumpkin mixture to each square of dough. Wet your fingers on the edges of the ravioli square with the pumpkin then put the other dough square on top and press down the edges. If this doesn’t make sense, Google a picture of look at the pictures I post.

Bring a huge pot of water to boil. Add around 6 ravioli at a time and remove once they float to the top. The time the ravioli take to boil depends on how thick they are.

While the ravioli are boiling, make the sauce. I added the butter and let it melt. Next I added the cream. Then I added the pumpkin mixture. After this melted I added the tomato sauce. At the end I added the kale and parsley (I added the parsley before I thought to use kale, so you don’t really have to add it if you don’t want to).

I decided to bake the ravioli like a lasagna instead of putting the sauce over top. If you do this, just alternate a layer of ravioli and a layer of sauce until you reach the top of the glass baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes!

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YUM!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving

This was the first Thanksgiving meal that I helped prepare! I think it was probably weird for my Mom not to have to give me directions while cooking. I guess she’s still used to the younger version of me that couldn’t make hot chocolate…whoops! Anyway, we had a successful day in the kitchen with no thanksgiving meltdowns. Everything on the list was in the pantry/fridge, everything was timed perfectly, and for the most part…the men stayed out of the kitchen. ;)

Thanksgiving Menu:
  • Turkey
  • Cornbread Dressing
  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Sweet Potato SoufflĂ©
  • Green bean corn casserole
  • Rolls
  • Cranberry, Pear, & Pecan Salad
  • Cranberry Sauce
  • Apple Chutney
  • Gravy
  • Pumpkin Pie
  • Pear Tart
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Pear Tart
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Cranberry Sauce & my Lovebird named Rainbow (she didn’t like me taking her pic)
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Pretty table setting
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Rolls & Apple Chutney
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Pies and Turkey
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Salad and FOOD!
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Tea & Candles

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Pumpkin Pie Brownie Cupcakes

I am so excited to hit the road to go home to VA Beach tomorrow to spend Thanksgiving with my Mom and brother! :) I have been telling my Mom that I've been making a lot of vegetarian and sometimes vegan recipes. She keeps reminding me that the next time I see her that she wants me to make something for her. What better time than Thanksgiving to do that! I saw this awesome recipe for pumpkin pie brownie cupcakes on Oh She Glows' blog and thought it'd be the perfect dessert to have during the Thanksgiving holiday. I made the following alterations: substituted canola oil for the coconut oil and added mini chocolate chips between the brownie and pumpkin layers. Also, I cooked mine on 350 for 40 min. The recipe on her blog is vegan; however, these aren't because I added the chocolate chips.




These babies were awesome! I would use 1.5 tbsp pumpkin pie spice if you aren't a fan of the spicy taste of a pumpkin pie. Reducing the amount would help take the spice down a notch. Also, I'd add regular sized chocolate chips to the brownie batter. However, if you aren't a chocoholic like I am, the recipe is fine as is :)

On another note, the weather was really weird this afternoon. It couldn't decide if it was going to rain or not. Check out this pic:


Procrastination

You know you're procrastinating when...

1. You Oprah-fy yourself:

Do it...you know you want to...

2. You spend an abnormally long time reading blogs, refreshing facebook, and pressing the Stumble Upon button on your toolbar.

3. You decide to go through all of your iTunes music to see what songs you haven't heard in a long time.

What do I have to do today? Not much. BUT, lots of little things. I'll be back later with a recipe! Hint: it includes chocolate and pumpkin!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries and Apples

Brussels Sprouts I used equal parts brussels sprouts and fruit. I used cranberries (whole) and an apple for my fruit. After cutting off the stem of each brussels sprout and cutting them in half, I added them + fruit into a baking dish and poured a mixture of melted butter and brown sugar over top. I didn't use a lot, maybe 3 TB butter and 1 TB brown sugar. If you want a sweeter glaze, right before they are done baking pour another portion of this mixture over top and let them bake a little longer.




 Before
 After

I really liked this recipe because it balanced out the cabbage taste of the brussels sprouts. This would be a great Thanksgiving/Christmas recipe!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

First day off since August

Was today a great day or what?? My boy and I have been planning to take an entire day off together for a long time. Between our schedules this semester, it's been really hard to get together except on the weekends...that is when we are both in town. I slept in until 9:45am this morning! This.never.happens. It was nice, but today has really flown by because I woke up so late. We ate bagels and drank coffee from Panera then headed off to one of our favorite wineries for the afternoon: Barren Ridge!
 
We picked up some brie, smoked gruyere, crackers, and a pear to bring with us!

I think we will finish our day off with the Eagles game!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Heavenly Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Yesterday was absolutely disgusting outside! It literally rained for 24 hrs straight. I don't mind the rain when I can stay inside all day, in my bed, in my pjs, with a good book. But, when I had to get to campus by 7:45am in work clothes...I'm wasn't a happy camper. My cognitive science professor was AWESOME though and brought biscotti for the class. Talk about a quick turn around. As I sat there in my wet shoes eating my biscotti I thought, you know what I should make?! COOKIES! After many hot beverages at work (at least 6), I figured warm cookies would be the best way to turn the day around.

Please excuse the iPhone photos...



Heavenly Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies
*I used the recipe on the bottom of the oatmeal lid as a guide

Ingredients
-1.5 cups flour
-2 cups oats (instant)
-chocolate chips!
-3/4 cup brown sugar
-1/2 cup sugar
-1 tsp baking soda
-1/2 tsp cinnamon
-2 eggs
-1 stick + 6TB butter (the real thang, not tub butter)
-1 tsp salt
-2 tsp vanilla extract

Directions
  • Mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in 1 bowl.
  • Mix butter (at room temp.) and sugar in another bowl. Add vanilla extract and eggs.
  • Add dry ingredients to the wet ones.
  • Stir in chocolate chips and oats!

I baked these on 350 between 15-17 minutes. It really depends on how big your want the cookies. Regarding cookies, my motto is always "Go Big or Go Home." So, I had some pretty big cookies.




 Cookies + unsweetened vanilla almond milk = :)

Look at all of that chocolate!