Good Friday! To those who celebrate Easter and to those like me, who have an extra day off. It's quite early for me to be awake on a "day off." But alas, my blog calls and my fingers oblige.
It has been an emotional month for me. Our family has made a significant change and I'm seeking the emotional and spiritual support from our blogging community. The R word that isn't being used in Washington.......shhhh, "recession" has finally knocked at my front door. The miserable economy has hit home and people are not buying life, health, and disability insurance and annuities. My husband's business has been affected and a firm BUDGET has been created. I know that during March we all look for that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. I just know that my lucky leprechaun is waiting to make a grand entrance!
I've followed the lead of our fellow bloggers and have been doing weekly menu planning. It's sort of exciting to sit down on Sunday, browse through recipes and blogs, and create a weekly menu, chock full of great recipes. I've gotten more creative with my cooking and am enjoying the challenge. The Grilled Chicken Caesar salad was delicious. I also cut up a few slices of bread from Pamela's Bread Mix and tossed the cubes in a blend of oil and spices, for some incredible croutons. I baked them on 350 for 15 -20 mins. and turned on the broiler to get the crunchiness. Mmmm!! Who says we can't enjoy good food? Look for all of the recipes at the bottom of this post....Greek Lamb and Artichoke Stew came from the notion that I had a frozen bag of lamb cubes and with our budget, waste not, want not! The unique combination of artichokes, lemon, dill and wine made it yummy. Serve over rice and bingo! Last week I made GNOCCHI and my family raved about the mean! The taco salad was accompanied by a homemade taco sauce...what a treat!
I've repeatedly used the Tom Sawyer Flour Blend that I blogged about last month. I've coated tofu cubes with it and stir-fried for a crunchy coating. I also made scones with the flour....too good to be true. I absolutely recommend it. It's only $28.99 for a 10 lb. bag and that includes shipping. I keep mine in the freezer.
I wish all of you a wonderful weekend. Let me know if you try any of these recipes...share yours too....as we cook on a shoestring budget!
I don't remember where I found this recipe...apologies to the author.
GNOCCHI WITH BUTTER THYME SAUCE
Recipe adapted from Giada De Laurentis...Everyday Italian
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 T fresh thyme leaves
1 (1-pound) russet potato
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. freshly ground black pepper
1 large egg, beaten to blend
1/4 t. xanthan gum
1/4 c. gluten-free flour blend
1/4 c. shaved romano cheese
Cook the butter in a heavy medium skillet over medium heat until it begins to brown, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat. Add the thyme leaves. Set aside.
Pierce the potato all over with a fork. Microwave the potato until tender, turning once, about 12 minutes.
Cut the potato in half and scoop the flesh into a large bowl; discard the skin. Using a fork, mash the potato well. Mash in the salt and pepper. Mix in the egg and xanthan gum.
Sift the flour over the potato mixture and knead just until blended. Divide the dough into 4 equal pieces.
Roll each piece between your palms and the work surface into a 1/2 inch diameter rope.
Cut the dough into 1 inch pieces. Roll each piece of dough over a wooden paddle with ridges or over the tines of a fork to form grooves in the dough.
Cook the gnocchi in a large pot of boiling salted water until the gnocchi rise to the surface, about 1 minute. Continue cooking until the gnocchi are tender, about 4 minutes longer.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the gnocchi to the hot thyme-butter in the skillet. Toss to coat.
Top with the romano cheese and serve.
LAMB AND ARTICHOKE STEW - A GREEK RECIPE (I used a Pressure cooker, see directions)
The Frugal Gourmet
4 T. butter
2 lbs. boneless lamb, cubed
3 yellow onions, peeled and chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 c parsley, chopped
s and p to taste
1 - 6 oz. can tomato paste
1 c. dry white wine
2 - 14 oz. cans artichokes in brine, drained
1/2 t. dried dill weed
3 T. lemon juice
I used a Pressure Cooker...I followed this recipe but after I sauteed the onion, garlic, and parsley, I just added all of the other ingredients into the pressure cooker, brought it up to high pressure, lowered it for 15 minutes and kept an eye on it. I let it stand for another 15-20 minutes to release pressure naturally. Great flavor!
In a very large frying pan, melt the butter. Add the lamb and saute until lightly browned. Remove the meat. Saute the yellow onions along with the garlic and parsley Place the meat, onions, garlic, and parsley in a heavy kettle, add salt and pepper, the tomato paste, and white wine. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours or until the lamb is tender. Add artichokes, dill weed, and lemon juice. Simmer until all is tender about 1 1/2 hours.
Serve over rice pilaf.
Taco Salad sauce
1/2 c sour cream
1/2 c mayo
2 T lemon juice
1/4 t dry mustard (Gluten Free Mommy suggests Colemans Dry Mustard) Check the brand first.
1/4 t. garlic salt
1 t. ground cumin
1/4 c bottled Chili Sauce (heinz is gf)
Mix all ingredients and enjoy!
Caesar Salad Dressing
Food Network (Michael Chiarello)
2 eggs (yolks only)
2 T dijon mustard
6-8 anchovy fillets, minced
2 T chopped garlic
4 T balsamic vinegar
3 t. fresh lemon juice
Dash of Worestershire sauce (Lea and Perrins is gf)
2 C olive oil (I used Canola b/c I didn't have enough olive)
2 T warm water, if needed
1 C freshly grated parmesan
Place the egg yolk, mustard, anchovies, garlic, venegar, lemon juice, and a dash of Worcestershire sauce into a bowl. Whisk and then, add the oil in a slow, steady stream until it is fully incorportated. If the dressing gets too thick, add the warm water and then continue until all the oil is added. Add the parmesan cheese and continue to blend. (Here's a trick I use....Instead of taking out the whole food processor, I take the white, tall food cup from the feeder part of my food processor and using my stick blender, I pour the oil into this over the bowl. The hole in the bottom of the white cup allows the oil to give that steady stream you need so the dressing emulifies.)
Yield: about 1 1/2 cups