Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Oatmeal Pumpkin Balls
3/4 cup oatmeal
1/2 tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp all spice
¼ ginger (optional)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 c. brown sugar
2 T almond butter
1/3 cup canned pumpkin
1-2 T. of water if needed
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
White chocolate for drizzle (optional)


Mix all dry ingredients in one bowl. Add wet ingredients to the dry and mix well. You will need to refrigerate about 5-10 minutes before forming in to mini balls. Once mixture is cold, take out and hand roll into balls. If using melt white chocolate and drizzle on balls. Place back in refrigerator until ready to serve. Makes about 12 balls.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Eating Whole Foods: Pot Roast Two Ways & A Give Away

With winter just around the least in most states...I thought pot roast would be a good thing to talk about.  A braised beef dish typically made from inexpensive cuts of meat; pot roast goes a long way when serving your family. Leftovers can be used to make sandwiches or turned into a hearty sauce for pasta. Traditional vegetables like carrots, onions and potatoes are usually slow cooked along with the meat. I switched it up a bit and added leeks, celery and turnips.

I bought all the ingredients for both meals below at Whole Foods Market. The butcher at my local Whole Foods was very knowledgeable and helped me pick the right cut of meat for this recipe. In hopes that you will check out your local Whole Foods I have partnered with them to give away a $25 gift card to one lucky blog reader.

**Contest Rules** All you have to do is leave a comment on this post; letting me know what your favorite thing about Whole Foods Market is.  For an additional entree like Whole Foods Market Scottsdale on Facebook and leave another comment here letting me know you did. Contest ends at midnight on 11/7.  Winner will be announced on the blog.

Pot Roast

3 large russet potatoes, peeled & quartered
3 turnips, peeled & quartered
5 sprigs of flat leaf parsley
5 sprigs thyme
1 dried bay leaf
1 tbsp flour
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp ground all spice
1 beef rump roast (3-4lbs)
4 leeks, white & green parts, washed well & sliced
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 cup dry red wine
6 cups beef stock
2 tbsp tomato paste
6 large carrots
2 stalks celery, chopped

Preheat oven to 400. Place potatoes and turnips in a large roasting pan and toss with 3 tablespoons oil. Sprinkle with 2 teaspoons salt and 1/4 tsp pepper.  Roast until golden brown and crisp. About 30-40 minutes.  Remove from oven and set aside. Reduce temperature to 350.

Combine flour, 1 tsp salt, paprika and allspice in a small bowl.  Place beef on a work surface and pat dry with paper towels. Sprinkle flour mixture over meat and pat to coat well.

Heat remaining 2 tbsp of oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Sear meat on all sides until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to plate and set aside.

Reduce heat to medium low.  Add leeks and garlic.  Cook stirring occasionally until leeks are just softened about 3 mins. Add wine and deglaze pan by scraping any brown bits with a wooden spoon.  Bring to a boil and cook until most of the wine has evaporated. Add stock, paste, herbs and roast. Cover and place in oven for 30 minutes. Turn and cook another 30 minutes.

Add carrots and celery cook for 1 1/2 hours; turning meat every 30 minutes.

Add potatoes and turnips. Return to oven, uncovered, and 30 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper.

Transfer meat to cutting board.  Let sit 5 minutes to rest. Slice meat on the bias and serve with vegetables and sauce.

Pot Roast Ragu

2 tbsp olive oil
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup dry red wine
2 cups finely chopped leftover pot roast and vegtables
1/2 cup beef broth
28 ounce can whole plum tomatoes 
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 lb pappardelle

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add shallot and garlic and cook until softened, about 3 mins.  Add wine and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated. Add copped meat and vegetables, stock, tomatoes and thyme.  Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook 30 minutes until flavors blend and sauce thickens. Stir in salt and pepper. Serve over cooked pasta.


Friday, October 26, 2012


I've recently partnered with Whole Foods Market to bring you "Eating Whole Foods" a new monthly post dedicated to cooking healthy and affordable with "Whole Food" ingredients.

Why Whole Foods Market? Because like myself they are committed to foods that are fresh, wholesome and safe to eat. They believe that eating healthy and eating well is important. And that the only way to get people to make positive changes in what they eat is to get them to cook.

My hope is that these posts will give you a starting point....draw you into the kitchen and help you on a life long journey of cooking and "Eating Whole Foods"

What's in it for you?  Well great recipes of course and a chance to win a Whole Foods Market gift card.  The first post will be next week and I'll show you how to get multiple meals from one cut of meat. So I hope you'll look for these posts towards the end of each month and follow along with me in cooking "Whole Foods"

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Overnight Oatmeal Breakfast Bars; Brown Bag Series #6

In my brown bag this week: Make Ahead Oatmeal Breakfast Bars.  I have way to much going on in the morning to worry about preparing breakfast or lunch.  So I try and get that all done the night before. This way when 6:30 rolls around and I'm rushing out the door I can just literally grab and go.

This breakfast bar is quick to put together and easily adaptable so you can feel like your eating something different every day.

Overnight Oatmeal Breakfast Bars
2/3 cup oats
2 tbsp nut butter(almond, peanut, cashew)
1/2 scoop protein powder (vanilla, chocolate)
1/4 cup of milk (skim, almond, coconut)
handful of chopped dried fruit (cherries, cranberries, raisins)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp all spice

Combine oats, nut butter and protein powder together.  Mixture will be crumbly. Add milk and mix until moistened. Stir in the dried fruit and spices of your choice.  Press evenly into the bottom of a small pan or a plate. Refrigerate over night or longer. Cut into bars.

Monday, October 22, 2012

The Party's Over...The Serious Sandwich Party That Is

The Serious Sandwich party is about to come to an end. This will be my last post as an Emeril Serious Sandwich blogger.  I'll admit...I'm a little sad. It's been such a deliciously fun event. I connected with a lot of new people and have a whole new outlook on sandwiches.   Thanks to Emeril and the wonderful people at the Secret Ingredient Blog  and Morrow Publishing for giving me this opportunity.

I know I will continue to cook from this book and of course I'll share it all with you....but I do urge you to buy your own copy; you won't be disappointed.   There are enough recipes in here to make the purchase well worth it.

Hopefully you've enjoyed this event as much as I have and hopefully you will continue to follow all of the Serious Sandwich Bloggers. I'd like to leave you with one last reason to buy Kicked Up Sandwiches:

The Artichoke, Salami and Fontina Panini. 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Almond Poppy Seed Pound Cake & A Reason To Celebrate

Today is the big day: Emeril's Kicked Up Sandwiches goes on sale! And what better way to celebrate than with cake.  Not any ordinary cake either but rather a kicked up sandwich kind of cake.

Although the title says sandwiches Emeril's new book includes so much more...even yummy desserts like the Almond Poppy Seed Pound Cake with lemon Neufchatel filling.  This moist dense cake is perfect on it's own...and taken to a new level with the lemon cream cheese filling. 

Unfortunately, this is one of the recipes we aren't allowed to share but if you are intrigued at all and I hope you are, you can order a copy of the book today.

Happy on Sale Day! 

I almost forgot....The Lucky Winner is: Moonsword  Congratulations!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Sweet Potato & Spinach Omelette; Brown Bag Series #5

In my brown bag this week is a sweet potato and spinach omelette. Sweet potatoes are not only one of the most nutritious vegetables around they also taste like dessert; a double plus in my book.

Mixed with spinach they add an extra dimension to your standard omelette. Eaten before a workout sweet potatoes are known to boost performance of your muscles. Due to their high vitamin C content they are also good for relieving post workout muscle soreness.

Sweet Potato & Spinach Omelette

1 sweet potato, peeled & shredded
handful baby spinach, chopped
1 red bell pepper, diced
4 eggs, beaten with skim milk
olive oil

In a skillet, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add sweet potatoes, stirring for 8-10 minutes or until they are tender. Add bell pepper, cook until tender. Add spinach.  Cook, stirring 1-2 minutes or until spinach is just wilted. Season with salt and pepper.

Add eggs and continue cooking until firm on one side. Flip eggs in pan and finish cooking other side.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Emeril's Serious Sandwich The Eggplant Muffuletta

Looking for a meatless alternative to the traditional Muffuletta?  Emeril has the perfect option in his new book Kicked Up Sandwiches which is due to be released Oct. 16, 2012. Tuesday is also the day I will be announcing the winner of the Emeril cookbook contest being held here on the blog. (see below for details)

The Eggplant Muffuletta is made with thinly sliced oven roasted eggplant instead of the traditional salami. It's topped with a a homemade New Orleans-style olive salad, and a fresh basil spread. Most definitely a winner if you ask me

Eggplant Muffuletta


  • 2 medium eggplants (about 1 1/2 pounds), trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 loaf seeded Italian bread
  • Basil Spread
  • 2 cups New Orleans-Style Olive Salad
  • 4 ounces sliced mozzarella cheese
  • 4 ounces sliced provolone cheese


1. Position an oven rack as close to the broiler unit as possible, and preheat the broiler.

2. Arrange the eggplant slices in a single layer on two lightly greased baking sheets. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush both sides of the slices with the olive oil. Season both sides with the salt and pepper. Broil the eggplant, in batches, until the slices are tender and lightly browned and have released most of their moisture, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and keep warm.

3. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F and move the oven rack to the center position.

4. When you are ready to assemble the sandwiches, slice the loaf of bread in half horizontally. Using a pastry brush, spread the bottom half with a generous amount of Basil Spread.

5. Spread the olive salad (with its olive oil—do not strain) over the top half of the loaf. Layer the sliced mozzarella and provolone on top of the olive salad, and then layer the slices of eggplant. Place the bottom half of the sandwich on top and lightly press. Quickly and carefully turn the loaf over so that the olive salad side is on top.

6. Place the muffuletta on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and bake until the cheese has melted, the muffuletta is heated through, and the bread is slightly crisp, about 12 minutes.

7. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and carefully transfer the loaf to a cutting board. Press lightly, and cut the loaf into 4 sections. Serve immediately.

Yield: 4 sandwiches

Basil Spread
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


In a food processor or blender, process the garlic and basil on high speed while adding the olive
oil in a slow, steady stream. Continue to process until well blended. Season with the salt.
Use immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 1 week.

Yield: About 1/2 cup

Olive Salad
  • 1 quart large pimento-stuffed green olives, drained and roughly chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups large Greek black olives, drained, pitted, and halved
  • 1 1/2 cups extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 cup pickled cauliflower, drained
  • 3 to 4 ribs celery, thinly sliced on the diagonal
  • 2 medium carrots
  • 1/2 cup pepperoncini, drained and halved
  • 1/3 cup cocktail onions
  • 1/4 nonpareil capers, drained
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons Emeril's Original Essence or Creole Seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano leaves


Combine all ingredients in a large nonreactive bowl and mix well. Place in a large
 nonreactive jar (preferably glass) and store, tightly covered, in the refrigerator.
The salad should be made at least 24 hours before using and only improves with age.
You can keep it for up to 2 months in the refrigerator.
 ****Contest Details****

Want to win a copy of Kicked Up Sandwiches?  Here's all you have to do.  Leave a comment on this post tell me what your favorite sandwich is.  I will randomly pick a winner on Oct. 16th.

For additional entries:

Follow me on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know
Follow Emeril on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know
Follow Morrow Cookbooks on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know.


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Emeri'l's Turkey Waldorf Sandwich & A Give Away

I've never eaten a Waldorf Salad but if it's anything like Emeril's Turkey Waldorf Sandwich in his new book Kicked Up Sandwiches I'd love to try it. Emeril uses fresh roasted turkey breast, crisp sliced apples and a creamy dressing mixture of mayo, yogurt and pecans to make this sandwich extra delicious.

Kicked-Up Sandwiches is not just all about sandwiches. There are several bread and condiment recipes.  For the Turkey Waldorf I made a loaf of the two day multigrain bread and the homemade mayonnaise. Although the multigrain recipes looks inhibiting it's really quite easy and turns out a nice dense loaf of good for you bread.    Unfortunately I can't share the bread recipe here.  So if you will need to get yourself a copy of Emeril's new book to see it.  Don't forget I am giving a copy away next week.  (see below for details)

I can however give you the Turkey Waldorf Sandwich Recipe. Oh and I almost forgot to mention...this makes great leftovers.

Turkey Waldorf Sandwich


  • One 2 1/2-pound split turkey breast, bone in and skin on(see Note)
  • 2 3/4 teaspoons sea salt or kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup toasted and chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons plain Greek-style yogurt
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons mayonnaise, homemade, or store-bought
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 1 Honeycrisp or Pink Lady apple
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 ribs celery, thinly sliced on the diagonal
  • 1/4 cup chopped dried cherries
  • 8 slices seed and nut bread or Two-Day Multigrain bread, toasted
  • 8 leaves romaine lettuce, torn
  • 1 cup alfalfa sprouts or your favorite sprout


1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2. Season the turkey breast on all sides with 2 teaspoons of the salt and 1/2 teaspoon of the pepper. Place the turkey in a small roasting pan or on a baking sheet, and roast for 30 minutes. Then brush the turkey with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and continue to roast for another 30 minutes, or until the thickest section registers an internal temperature of 165°F on an instant-read thermometer. Remove the pan from the oven and loosely tent it with aluminum foil. Let the turkey rest for at least 15 to 20 minutes. Once the turkey has rested, remove the breast bone and cut the turkey into thin slices.
Set aside on a platter.

3. To make the Waldorf dressing, in a medium bowl, combine the chopped pecans with the 1/2 cup yogurt, the 1/4 cup mayonnaise, the parsley, and the vinegar. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

4. Halve and core the apple; then cut it into thin slices on a mandolin. In a medium bowl, toss the apple slices with the lemon juice, celery, and cherries. Then add the dressing and toss.

5. In a small bowl, combine the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 tablespoons yogurt, 2 tablespoons mayonnaise, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Mix well.

6. To assemble: Place 4 slices of the toast on a clean work surface. Spread 1 tablespoon of the yogurt-mayonnaise mixture on each slice of toast. Top each one with lettuce leaves, several slices of turkey, 3/4 cup of the apple salad, and 1/4 cup of the sprouts. Top with the remaining slices of toast. Cut each sandwich in half, and serve immediately.

Yield: 4 sandwiches

****Contest Details****

Want to win a copy of Kicked Up Sandwiches?  Here's all you have to do.  Leave a comment on this post tell me what your favorite sandwich is.  I will randomly pick a winner on Oct. 16th.

For additional entries:

Follow me on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know
Follow Emeril on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know
Follow Morrow Cookbooks on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Roasted Cauliflower & White Bean Salad; Brown Bag Series #4

In my brown bag this week is a Roasted Cauliflower & White Bean Salad. Among the cruciferous vegetables, cauliflower is something you might want to add to your diet because of the many nutrients it contains. It's high in things like vitamin C, magnesium, and Omega-3 fatty acids. It's also high in fiber and boasts a cornucopia of B vitamins.

Sweet and nutty are probably not words most people would use to describe cauliflower. But roasting this vegetable brings out these two qualities making it quite delicious.  This is a light yet filling salad perfect for lunch.

Roasted Cauliflower & White Bean Salad

1 small head of cauliflower chopped into bite size florets
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 can white beans, drained and rinsed
1 lemon
olive oil
mixed lettuce

Preheat oven to 450.  Mix cauliflower florets with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place on a baking sheet and roast 20 mins until slightly brown and tender.

Mix florets with white beans and allow to cool.  Add feta cheese to cooled mixture. Dress with olive oil and fresh squeezed lemon juice. Place atop salad greens.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Kicked Up Egg Salad; Emeril Serious Sandwich Post 3

I'm not a traditional kind of girl in any sense of the word. Especially when it comes to food. The crazier the better for me.  So I was happy to see that even a basic egg salad sandwich was kicked up a notch in Emeril's upcoming book Kicked Up Sandwiches.

The book is due to hit the shelves on Oct. 16th and trust me you're going to want to get a copy. There are over 100 sandwiches, several bread recipes and some cool condiment ideas. Twenty-one bloggers (myself included) are working with Emeril to spread the word about this book.

Want to win a copy of Kicked Up Sandwiches?  Here's all you have to do.  Leave a comment on this post tell me what your favorite sandwich is.  I will randomly pick a winner on Oct. 16th.

For additional entries:

Follow me on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know
Follow Emeril on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know
Follow Morrow Cookbooks on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know.

Did I mention the Egg Salad?

Egg Salad Supreme 
Makes 6 sandwiches, about 3 cups filling

12 hard-boiled eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon hot Hungarian paprika
¼ cup minced shallot
¼ cup chopped green onion or fresh parsley leaves
¼ cup minced celery
1/2 cup mayonnaise, homemade (see page 309) or store-bought
12 slices White Sandwich Bread (page 303)

1. Roughly chop the eggs and place them in a mixing bowl. Add the salt, mustard, paprika, shallot, green onion, celery, and mayonnaise. Stir with a rubber spatula or a spoon until very well blended. Transfer to a container, cover, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 4 days.

2. Spread 1/4 to 1/2 cup of the egg salad between 2 slices of bread. Repeat with the remaining salad and bread.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Emeril's Grilled Flank Steak Sandwich for Football Night

It's time to get serious about sandwiches. For the next 3 weeks 20 food bloggers and myself will be eating, sleeping and breathing sandwiches. As you know I am participating in the Emeril Lagasse Serious Sandwich Cook Along sponsored by Morrow Publishers.

We will share our thoughts, photos and even some recipes from Emeril's new book: Kicked Up Sandwiches.  And one lucky reader (that's you) will have a shot at winning their very own copy of this unique book.

Now let's talk football.  I'm not a football fan at all but I love it for two reasons:  1. It frees up my Sundays for important "me" things; like shopping.  2. It means at least one night during the season is sandwich night...because when the Philadelphia Eagles play a night game the ritual in our house is sandwiches.

So this past Sunday was sandwich night.  Perfect timing since I had just received my copy of Kicked Up Sandwiches.  After a quick browse through the book I decided to make the: Grilled Flank Steak with Balsamic Glazed Peppers.

The flank steak is marinated and charred in a grill pan.  The bell peppers and onions are slow cooked and finished with balsamic vinegar.  Sandwiched between two slices of ciabatta spread with homemade mayonaise (recipe included in the book) and oozing with melted provolone cheese this was a great football night choice.

Like the Eagles this sandwich is a winner.  Unfortunately we are not allowed to share this recipe so if you want a taste you will need to purchase Emeril's new book. Or follow the instructions below to win a copy.
Contests ends Oct. 15th.  Of course you can also pre-order a copy.

  •  Leave a comment on this post...tell me what your favorite sandwich is
  • Tweet my giveaway and leave a link to that tweet here in a comment
  • Follow me on Twitter and leave a comment here letting me know
  • Follow me on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know
  • Follow Emeril on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know
  • Follow Morrow Cookbooks on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know

Monday, October 1, 2012

Fruit and Nut Energy Bars; Brown Bag Series #3

This week in my brown bag are Fruit and Nut Energy Bars.  These bars are super simple to make and packed with lots of nutrients.  The main ingredient is dates which are believed to be great for muscle development.

Combined with pecans and raisins which are both  high in antioxidants they make a great snack.

Fruit and Nut Energy Bars

3/4 cup packed pitted Medjool dates
3/4 cup golden raisins
1 cup pecan halves
1/4 tsp cinnamon

Pulse dates and raisins in a food processor until mixture resembles a thick paste.  Transfer to a medium bowl. In same food processor pulse the pecans until finely chopped.  Add the pecans and cinnamon to the fruit paste using your fingers to combine well.

Firmly press mixture onto a baking sheet lined with tin foil and sprayed with cooking spray.  Mixture should cover a 9X5 area. Refrigerate for 15 minutes, remove from pan and cut into 6 bars.