Sunday, November 27, 2011

November Highlight Reel

I'm going to post at least once here in November. Currently it is 70 degrees outside, but the warm weather isn't keeping me from watching Christmas movies! "A Grandpa for Christmas" is playing right now, a Hallmark original, haha. Here's a little about what has happened over the past month...

Husband turned 27...we celebrated at PF Chang's

Back home, we had another birthday dinner for Kenneth with his mom. We had filets, stuffed potatoes, and snap beans wrapped in bacon. Those snap beans are awesome. The recipe is below.

I made THIS recipe for Smoky Red Pepper Soup from Southern Living. It was ok...I probably won't make it again without some tweaking.

There was a mouse in my stove drawer. Gross. My little neighbor got it out for me. 

Made this really good dish called Orecchiette with sausage and cherry tomatoes from Food and Wine. Recipe below.

Made a trip to Rockbridge (Young Life camp). It was a great Fall Weekend trip for our area.

Sunset at the river while there over Thanksgiving break.
me and husband at the him.

On our last day in NC, we went to the NC State vs. Maryland game. State made an amazing comeback and we won!

So, that's November in a nutshell. Below are the two recipes I referenced above. We'll see what cooking December brings! I'm hoping for more opportunities to spend time in the kitchen and to at least make two or three new recipes!

Snap Beans wrapped in Bacon
You'll need (for 14): 1 can french style green beans, drained, 7 pieces of bacon, each slice cut in half, minced onion, 1/2 cup brown sugar
To make: Preheat the oven to 350. Take one piece of bacon and lay flat. Next, take a pinch of green beans and lay them in the center of the bacon. After that, sprinkle a bit of brown sugar on the beans. Then, put two-three shakes of minced onion on the beans. Once you've done that, wrap the bacon around the beans. Place in a baking dish. Repeat with the remaining slices of bacon. Place the snap beans into the oven and bake for 30 minutes.

Orecchiette with Sausage and Cherry Tomatoes (November Food & Wine)
You'll need:
1/2 pound orecchiette
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 ounces aged provolone or parmesan, shredded
1. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the pasta until al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving 3/4 cup of the cooking water.
2. Meanwhile, in a large, deep skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil until shimmering. Add the sausage in 1-inch clumps and cook over moderately high heat, turning once, until browned and cooked through, about 8 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the sausage to a plate.
3. Add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil to the skillet along with the tomatoes and crushed red pepper; cook over moderately high heat, pressing the tomatoes until slightly softened, about 4 minutes. Add the reserved pasta cooking water, season with salt and cook over moderate heat, scraping up any browned bits and crushing the tomatoes, until the liquid is reduced by half and the tomatoes are nearly broken down, about 5 minutes. **I also added some dried parsley and basil, and garlic powder to add some extra flavor.
4. Add the pasta to the skillet along with the sausage and the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and cook, stirring, until the pasta is evenly coated, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the provolone. Transfer to bowls and serve right away.