Tag Archives: spinach

Goat Cheese and Spinach Ravioli

17 Jul Spinach and Goat Cheese Ravioli prepped for closing

I was browsing the internet over the first weekend back in March when I stumbled across a recipe for homemade ravioli with goat cheese and spinach, two ingredients I happened to have in my fridge from my Oscar party the weekend before. There have been plenty of posts on this blog about pasta and how much I love it. What I haven’t told you is where that love came from. When I was a young kid my parents use to make pasta from scratch. Often. I have memories of crawling under drying pasta hanging from broomsticks across our kitchen back in Pennsylvania. Throughout my childhood pasta was probably on our table at least once a week. Why it took me this long to make it myself I’m not sure. I’ve always wanted to make pasta but I think a busy schedule just got in my way. And of all the pastas I could have made I chose one that is slightly more complicated since it is a filled pasta. But I still had fun and it was really yummy! I think everyone should make their own pasta at least once. Just make sure you have some extra time, especially if it’s your first time. And if you choose this recipe, give yourself at least two hours before you want to eat since you have to let the dough rise. I’m looking forward to making fettuccine since that just involves cutting up the dough and no filling and closing and cutting twin pieces to match. Ha! Enjoy!

Spinach and Goat Cheese Ravioli Ingredients L-R: Mushrooms, Flour, White Wine, Parmesan Cheese, Nutmeg, Half & Half, Egg, Garlic, Goat Cheese,  Spinach, Olive Oil, Salt & Pepper

Spinach and Goat Cheese Ravioli Ingredients L-R: Mushrooms, Flour, White Wine, Parmesan Cheese, Nutmeg, Half & Half, Egg, Garlic, Goat Cheese, Spinach, Olive Oil, Salt & Pepper

SPINACH AND GOAT CHEESE RAVIOLI (makes about 12-18 ravioli)

Ravioli Dough:

  • 1 1/4 Cup Flour
  • 1 Egg
  • 1/4 Cup Hot Water
  • 1/4 Tsp Salt

Ravioli Filling:

  • 1/3 Cup Cooked Spinach (or 1/2 bunch raw spinach – to be cooked)
  • 2 oz Goat Cheese
  • 1/3 Cup Parmesan, Grated
  • Pinch of Nutmeg
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Mushroom and Parmesan Cream Sauce:

  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 8 oz Mushrooms
  • 4 Garlic Cloves
  • Nutmeg (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp White Wine
  • 1 cup Half-and-Half
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups Parmesan Cheese

Make your dough first. In a medium bowl mix your flour and salt. In a small bowl or a liquid measuring cup, mix your egg and hot water well. Combine the egg/water mixture with your flour and knead the dough until it’s nice and smooth and firm. It shouldn’t be too wet or too sticky, ie, it shouldn’t stick to your hands just to itself. I mixed it with a wooden spoon, and then finished mixing with my hands to make sure I had the right texture. Once done, roll into a ball and wrap in Saran wrap and let sit on the counter for one hour. The recipe has you using a mold to make the ravioli and suggests making a second batch if you want more than a dozen or so. I think I made about 20 with mine and without a mold. I didn’t waste any of my dough.

Making pasta dough

Making the pasta dough for the ravioli!

While your dough is sitting in the Saran wrap work on your filling. I used fresh spinach so I had to cook it first. Be sure to cook it down until it’s all wilted and there’s no liquid left. Once it’s all cooked chop it up and set aside.

Cooking down the spinach and chopping it up for the filling.

Cooking down the spinach and chopping it up for the filling.

In a small-sized microwave safe bowl heat up your goat cheese to soften it, about 2-3 minutes. Add in the chopped up spinach and Parmesan cheese and mix well. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and a pinch of nutmeg and mix again. Set the mixture aside. It should be fairly firm. If it is a little runny (from water in the spinach leftover), place in the fridge to firm up a bit.

spinach, goat cheese and parmesan cheese ravioli filling

Mixing up the spinach and cheeses for the filling

Once you’re ready to assemble your ravioli, divide your dough into 2 equal parts. Be sure to flour both your rolling pin and your rolling surface, then roll out each section of your dough very thinly.

If you are using a ravioli mold, be sure to lightly flour it and then lay out the dough and push softly into each indentation. Place a small amount of the filling mixture into each mold section, just be sure not to overfill them. Take your second piece of dough and lay it on top. Take your rolling pin and roll along the top of the mold, which will seal the ravioli and take the air out of them. Use your fingers to separate the ravioli from each other. Then flip over the mold to release the ravioli. Set aside and re-roll the dough to make more ravioli.

making ravioli

Making the actual ravioli. Yum!

If you aren’t using a mold (like me!) then you will need to cut them individually. I used a small (sharp) paring knife and after rolling the dough out very thinly, cut a rectangle about 4 inches wide and about 10 inches long, then sliced that in half and made about 2 inch squares. I plopped about a teaspoon of filling into the middle of half of the squares, then took the empty squares and sealed each ravioli. I re-rolled the dough until it was basically all used up.

Spinach and Goat Cheese Ravioli prepped for closing

Spinach and Goat Cheese Ravioli prepped for closing

Fill a large pot with water and put on high heat and bring to a boil. Cook however many ravioli you want that evening and then freeze the rest. Depending on the pot size you shouldn’t put too many in at once. I boiled about 5 or 6 at a time in my 3 qt pot. Be sure to drain the ravioli before serving. Because I cooked a couple batches of ravioli I used a skimmer to remove each ravioli and drain over the pot then placed on plates.

Mushroom Cream Sauce

Making the mushroom cream sauce.

While you’re boiling your ravioli you can make your pasta sauce at the same time. This is a basic cream sauce, and one I’ve basically made before. You want to slice up your mushrooms thinly and dice up your garlic. In a large saucepan heat the olive oil over medium high heat and saute your mushrooms, garlic and a pinch of nutmeg for about 5 to 7 minutes, until the mushrooms are a golden brown. Add your half and half and cook until it starts to boil. Turn the heat down to low and add in your Parmesan cheese and mix until it’s nice and thick. I like to add in a little white wine to my pasta sauces too. Season with salt and pepper and serve over ravioli and garnish with fresh parsley or chives. Enjoy with a nice glass of white wine!

Spinach and Goat Cheese Ravioli with Mushroom Cream Sauce

Spinach and Goat Cheese Ravioli with Mushroom Cream Sauce

Smoked Salmon Breakfast Burrito

27 May Smoked Salmon Breakfast Burrito and Coffee. Great breakfast!

I love breakfast. I also love to sleep. So having time to make more than just a couple of eggs or oatmeal in the morning is rare. But one Saturday morning I wanted to change-up my breakfast so I looked in my fridge to see what I had. I had some tortillas left over from my Oscar party (that post is still being written, sorry) so I decided to make a breakfast burrito. There were a few other leftovers from the party that I could throw into the eggs. It was super easy and threw some variety into my daily egg eating habit. The nice thing about breakfast burritos is they’re like omelets, you can add just about anything you want in them. What do you like putting in your burritos?

Smoked Salmon Breakfast Burrito Ingredients L-R: Goat Cheese, Eggs, Tortilla, Fresh Rosemary, Fresh Spinach (not pictured: smoked salmon, salt & pepper)

Smoked Salmon Breakfast Burrito Ingredients L-R: Goat Cheese, Eggs, Tortilla, Fresh Rosemary, Fresh Spinach (not pictured: smoked salmon, salt & pepper)

SMOKED SALMON BREAKFAST BURRITO (serves 1)

  • 2 Eggs
  • About 1 Tbsp of Milk
  • Cooking Spray
  • 1 Tortilla
  • Goat Cheese
  • Fresh Spinach
  • Smoked Salmon
  • Fresh Rosemary
  • Salt & Pepper To Taste

In a small omelet pan, coat with cooking spray over medium heat. Crack your eggs directly into the pan and add your milk. Scramble with a whisk or spatula.

Scramble the eggs directly in the pan.

Scramble the eggs directly in the pan.

Sprinkle in your goat cheese, smoked salmon pieces and fresh rosemary. Continue to scramble so all is mixed together.

Scrambling the eggs with goat cheese, smoked salmon and rosemary

Scrambling the eggs with goat cheese, smoked salmon and rosemary

When eggs are almost done add in your fresh spinach and salt and pepper to taste. Continue to scramble until finished cooking. They should remain nice and fluffy.

scrambled eggs, spinach, smoked salmon, goat cheese, rosemary

Adding in the spinach. Cook just long enough to wilt.

Lay out a tortilla on a plate and lay your eggs in the middle of the tortilla. Wrap it up and place it back in your pan with the open edges down first. Let cook for about a minute, then flip over and cook for another minute, just until it browns.

Smoked Salmon Breakfast Burrito

Warming the burrito all wrapped up so it stays together.

When finished return to plate and enjoy with a nice cup of coffee! Have a lovely breakfast!

Smoked Salmon Breakfast Burrito and Coffee. Great breakfast!

Smoked Salmon Breakfast Burrito and Coffee. Great breakfast!

Cheesy Chicken and Roasted Potatoes

13 May Cheesy Chicken and Roasted Potatoes

One of the things my parents taught me was to always have certain things stocked in my freezer and pantry. If you open my freezer you will always find chicken breasts. If you’ve been following me for a while you’ve probably noticed all the chicken dinners I make using a chicken breast. They are very versatile when it comes to cooking and they’re fun to experiment with. And that’s what I did one night for dinner. I had baby potatoes that were starting to sprout eyes so I knew I wanted to roast them. Once those went in the oven I had to figure out what to make for a protein. There wasn’t much in my fridge so I knew I had to get creative for dinner. I wasn’t going to blog about this (which is why I don’t have any of the potatoes before they went in the oven), but then I realized that it’s these dinners that I create on the fly that are some of my favorites. I hope you enjoy my cheesy chicken too!

Spinach and Mozzarella Cheese, Chicken breast, salt, pepper, dried rosemary

Spinach and Mozzarella Cheese, Not pictured: Chicken breast, salt, pepper, dried rosemary

CHEESY CHICKEN WITH ROASTED POTATOES (serves 2)

  • 1 Chicken Breast
  • About 1/4 Cup Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
  • Olive Oil
  • Fresh or Dried Rosemary
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • About 1/4 Cup Fresh Spinach Leaves
  • About 1 Pound Baby Potatoes

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. While you’re waiting for it to warm up, cut your potatoes into halves or quarters, depending on the size of the potatoes. Spread out on a cookie sheet and drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and some of the rosemary. Roast in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until fork tender.

While your potatoes are baking make your cheesy chicken. If your chicken is frozen defrost in the microwave. Then slice up in about 2 inch long pieces.

Cut up your chicken breast into about 2 inch pieces

Cut up your chicken breast into about 2 inch pieces

In a small to medium size fry pan, heat about a tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat. Once hot, place your chicken pieces in the pan and season with salt, pepper and rosemary.

Saute your chicken breast and season with salt, pepper and rosemary.

Saute your chicken breast and season with salt, pepper and rosemary.

Let cook for about 5 to 7 minutes then turn them over and sprinkle with cheese. After about 5 minutes add fresh spinach and finish cooking for another minute or two. The cheese should melt nicely and the spinach will wilt and combine with the cheese. Remove from heat.

cheesy chicken, mozzarella cheese, fresh spinach, chicken breast

Turn the chicken, add cheese, let it melt then add spinach

Roasted rosemary baby potatoes.

Roasted rosemary baby potatoes.

Once potatoes are finished, remove from oven, serve with your chicken and enjoy!

Cheesy Chicken and Roasted Potatoes

Cheesy Chicken and Roasted Potatoes

Breakfast Hash For Dinner

25 Mar

Breakfast for dinner. So popular that many IHOPs are open 24 hours a day and a number of other restaurants serve breakfast all day. There’s something about pancakes and eggs for dinner that make you feel like you’re having a real treat. I love having breakfast for dinner so much that for my winter formal my junior year of high school, my friends and I chose to go to IHOP for dinner before the dance! We definitely got a few odd looks walking into the Visalia IHOP in our formals and suits. So one day I was poking around Joy The Baker’s website and I found her recipe for Breakfast Hash. I knew I wanted to make it eventually and while she made hers for breakfast, I ended up making mine for dinner. It was absolutely delicious and made enough that I had leftovers for a couple of nights. This is a great dish to share with a family or roommate too!

Breakfast Hash Ingredients L-R: Spinach, Ground Sausage, Egg, Onion, Baby Potatoes, Bell Peppers, Garlic, Mushrooms, Chives, Olive Oil, Salt & Pepper

Breakfast Hash Ingredients L-R: Spinach, Ground Sausage, Egg, Onion, Baby Potatoes, Bell Peppers, Garlic, Mushrooms, Chives, Olive Oil, Salt & Pepper

SPINACH AND POTATO BREAKFAST HASH (serves about 3 or 4 depending on serving size)

  • 1 1/2 Pounds Fingerling Potatoes (russet or new potatoes will also be great)
  • 1 Medium Yellow Onion
  • 3 Garlic Cloves
  • 4 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 6 Oz. Sausage (pork, chicken, turkey or vegetarian sausage all work)
  • 1 Tsp fennel seeds (I did not use)
  • Salt & Pepper To Taste
  • 2 Cups Baby Spinach Leaves
  • 1 Egg for each serving

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Begin by slicing up your potatoes into bite-size pieces and arranging them on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with olive oil, salt and pepper and bake for about 20 to 30 minutes, or until potatoes are cooked through. The smaller the chunks the less time they need for baking.

Colorful baby potatoes

Colorful baby potatoes

Roasting Baby Potatoes

Baby potatoes ready for roasting

Before you start cooking the rest of the hash you want to prep all your vegetables, ie. mise en place. The original recipe calls for 1 bell pepper, but since I already had half of a red one so I bought a green one and used half of that as well. Feel free to use whichever colors you want. Chop your bell peppers into small bite-size pieces. Do the same with your onion. Mince your garlic cloves as well.

Diced Vegetables

sliced cremini mushrooms

Mushrooms sliced and ready for the pan

Measure out your meat and in a small saute pan heat about a tablespoon of oil over medium high heat and break up your meat into small chunks and cook until browned. Remove to a small bowl and set aside.

Weighing out the sausage and then browning it in a small pan.

Weighing out the sausage and then browning it in a small pan.

In a large skillet heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat and add in your onions and bell peppers about 5 to 7 minutes until mostly cooked. Season with salt and pepper and then add in your minced garlic and cook for another minute or so. Remove to another small bowl.

Sauteing the onions, bell peppers and garlic.

Sauteing the onions, bell peppers and garlic.

By now your potatoes should be done cooking. Remove from the oven and place in your large skillet you just cooked your onions and peppers in. Turn the heat back on to medium and add in your meat of choice and pan fry together for about 5 minutes until the meat has finished cooking and the potatoes have turned a nice golden brown. This is the point when you would add in your fennel seeds. Add back in your onions and peppers and stir to combine.

Roasted Baby Potatoes

Roasted Baby Potatoes fresh from the oven

Cooking the meat, potatoes and mushrooms first, then add in the onions and bell peppers.

Cooking the meat, potatoes and mushrooms first, then add in the onions and bell peppers.

In your small saute pan fry your egg(s) to your desired doneness. I like mine somewhere between over easy and over medium so that the yolk can be mixed with the rest of the hash. Side note, I never liked my eggs this way until I studied abroad in France and that’s how they made the eggs at school. I fell in love and with something like this hash to mix it with I think you will too!

fried egg

I fried my egg to over easy.

When you turn your egg over, turn the heat off of your hash and add your spinach leaves (only enough for the number of servings you’re eating that night/morning), stirring to mix the spinach and wilt the leaves from the residual heat. Spoon mixture onto plates or pasta bowls and add your egg on top. Season with salt and pepper. Enjoy with a glass of red wine, milk, or a glass of OJ.

Adding spinach

After turning off the heat add spinach leaves that will wilt just slightly.

To reheat as leftovers, add fresh spinach each night or morning you heat it up. Put enough of the hash in a small saute pan and heat over medium heat rather than nuke it in the microwave. Be sure to make a fresh egg as well. And enjoy once again!

Breakfast Hash with Fried Egg

Breakfast Hash with Fried Egg ready to eat!

Eggs Florentine

9 Jan Eggs Florentine, poached egg

To conclude my weekend of cooking last November (I also made a yummy salad for lunch and Chicken Tarragon for dinner that weekend), I woke up Sunday morning and made a semi-fancy breakfast of Eggs Florentine. This is another recipe from my favorite kitchen goddess, Giada de Laurentiis and her book “Weeknights With Giada”. However, her recipe is under Breakfast for Dinner. While I do occasionally enjoy my french toast at 7pm, I mostly like it for breakfast or brunch.

I love Eggs Florentine (and various versions) when I go out for breakfasts because a) it’s delicious and b) it seems too fancy to make at home. Well I finally bit the bullet and made it myself. I wasn’t sure how it would turn out, especially since I had never poached an egg before. Giada topped hers with baked prosciutto, alas, I did not have any sitting around. I also used grated mozzarella instead of grated romano. And finally I had no onions hanging around my kitchen (you can hit me later dad), but I’m still including that part of the recipe. It turned out to be pretty delicious, although a lot of work for the morning, lol. I think this is a morning person’s dish.

*Side note: I tried doing it again, however my water wasn’t hot enough when I put the egg in and when I tried to remove it, it had stuck to the bottom and I ended up breaking the yolk. You can see a picture below the nice one at the end.*

Eggs Florentine Ingredients L-R: Olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper, egg, english muffin, grated mozzarella, nutmeg, spinach, lemon juice

Eggs Florentine Ingredients L-R: Olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper, egg, english muffin, grated mozzarella, nutmeg, spinach, lemon juice

EGGS FLORENTINE (serves 1)

  • Cooking Spray
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1/4 of Small Onion (can do without)
  • 1 Garlic Clove
  • 1 Cup Baby Spinach
  • Pinch of Nutmeg
  • 2 Tbsp Heavy Cream (I used milk)
  • 2 Tbsp Grated Mozzarella Cheese (or Romano)
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • 1 Tsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 English Muffin (or just a half if you wish)

First prep your onion and chop finely and set aside. Then mince your garlic clove and set aside. I highly recommend doing mise en place for the rest of your ingredients so they’re ready to throw in the pan as this is a fast-moving recipe.

Fill a small pot with about 3 inches of water. Add in 1 teaspoon of salt and the lemon juice. Over medium heat bring the water to a simmer. While waiting for the water to simmer, crack your egg into a small bowl, taking great care not to break the yolk. The best way to crack an egg is on a flat surface to get an even crack. Once the water is simmering (and you must be patient for it to simmer), carefully slide the egg into the water. As long as it doesn’t sink down to the bottom your water is hot enough. Using a wooden spoon, carefully stir the water around the egg, so as not to disturb the egg.

Poaching an egg

This is right after the egg was slid into the simmering water.

Poaching an egg

You can see the egg just below the surface. The white stuff floating is the cooked egg white that has broken off.

Cook for about 2 to 3 minutes in this manner, stirring only occasionally, until the white has set and the yolk is still soft. On a small plate place a paper towel doubled or tripled folded. Using a slotted spoon remove the egg and place on the paper towel to drain and cover to keep warm.

poached egg

The egg is ready to come out of the water.

In a medium skillet, heat your olive oil over medium-high heat. Once hot, add in your chopped onions and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir frequently, then add in the garlic and cook for about 30 seconds, until the garlic is fragrant. Add in your spinach and a pinch of nutmeg and cook until the spinach has wilted. Add the heavy cream and bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes, until it has thickened. Turn off the heat and stir in the cheese, salt and pepper. Then cover to keep warm.

Eggs Florentine, spinach and cream

Making the spinach mixture (sans the onions).

*Side Note: Giada has you make the spinach mixture first, however, I found that by the time my egg was done, my spinach mixture had become cool and not as liquidy. (Yes, I made up that last word.)

Eggs Florentine, poached egg

Topping the english muffin with the spinach mixture and then the poached egg.

Toast your English muffin and lightly butter each side and lay out on your plate. Spoon your spinach mixture onto one side of the muffin and set the poached egg on top. If you care, top the egg with crispy prosciutto or bacon. Enjoy with a lovely cup of coffee (I prefer Peet’s) or a glass of orange juice and savor the morning.

Eggs Florentine, poached egg

A beautiful poached egg ready for eating.

Broken poached egg

My second attempt at poaching an egg didn’t turn out quite as well.

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