Culinary Musings

Easy Dutch Oven Recipes, Healthy Recipes, Vegetarian Recipes & More

November 27, 2015
by Barbara
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Classic Green Bean Casserole

Classic Green Bean Casserole
Chef: 
Recipe type: Vegetable
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10 servings
 
Traditional green bean casserole recipe that everyone loves. Makes a nice side dish anytime but especially during the holidays.
Ingredients
  • 3 cans French Style Green Beans, drained
  • 2 cans Cream of Mushroom soup
  • 1 can sliced water chestnuts
  • 1 can mushrooms
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 package of french fried onions
Instructions
  1. Mix together soup and Worcestershire sauce. Add green beans, water chestnuts, mushrooms, salt and pepper.
  2. Place mixture in baking dish. Add ⅓ of fried onions and mix. Cook for 20 minutes at 350 degrees. Add remaining fried onions and bake for additional 10 minutes.

 

November 27, 2015
by Barbara
0 comments

Carol’s Cranberry Pineapple Jello Salad

 

 

Carol's Cranberry Pineapple Jello Salad
Chef: 
Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Total time: 
 
This festive cranberry salad dish brightens up the table. The gelatin can be served over green leaves or put in a crystal bowl to add lovely color to your meal.
Ingredients
  • 1 6oz package Raspberry Jello
  • 1 16 oz can whole cranberries OR cooked fresh cranberries (see below for cooking cranberries)
  • 1⅓ cups boiling water
  • ⅓ cup orange juice
  • 1 8-oz. can crushed pineapple, drained
  • ⅔ cup diced celery
  • ⅔ cup chopped pecans
Instructions
  1. If using fresh cranberries, go ahead and cook the cranberries. Normal cranberry sauce recipe is one 16 oz bag fresh cranberries, 1 cup water, 1 cup sugar – then cook until berries split and are soft. Cool.
  2. While cooling cranberry sauce, dissolve Jello in 1⅓ cup boiling water and stir for two minutes. Then add ⅓ cup orange juice.
  3. Chill, until thick, but not set. Add drained crushed pineapple, whole berry cranberry sauce, ⅔ cup diced celery, and ⅔ cup chopped pecans.
  4. Chill until firm. This festive dish brightens up the table. The gelatin can be served over green leaves or put in a crystal bowl to add a lovely color to meal.
Notes
Can put it in the freezer to cool more quickly.

September 2, 2015
by Mike
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Herbed Dinner Rolls in Cast Iron Skillet

 

Herbed Dinner Rolls
Chef: 
Recipe type: Bread
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 16 Rolls
 
Fluffy, yeasty dinner rolls with an herbal accent. Two hours from start to tabletop.
Ingredients
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 pkg active dry yeast
  • 2 T honey
  • 5 cups AP flour (separated)
  • 2 t salt
  • 1 T Italian seasoning
  • 2 T olive oil spread, melted
  • Olive oil
Instructions
  1. Combine water, yeast, and honey in measuring cup.
  2. Let proof for 5 mins.
  3. Meanwhile combine 4 cups flour, salt, and herbs in large bowl. Mix well.
  4. Add water/yeast mixture to flour and stir with wooden spoon. Add additional flour 2 T at a time until too stiff to stir.
  5. Turn out on large floured cutting board or countertop. Knead for 5 mins, adding more flour as needed if too sticky to handle. A total of perhaps 1 cup of flour or more might be added, depending on humidity.
  6. Return dough to bowl and cover top with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place 45 mins or until doubled in size.
  7. Meanwhile, oil bottom and sides of 12" cast iron skillet with olive oil.
  8. Punch down dough and turn out onto floured work surface, knead briefly, and divide into 16 portions.
  9. Make a circle with thumb and index finger and push dough portion through and gather rough edges together at the bottom to make a smooth-topped ball. Place in skillet close together with other dough balls. Brush tops of rolls with melted butter/olive oil spread.
  10. Let rise again for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 while dough rises.
  11. Bake 20 minutes.
  12. Serve warm from the oven.

 

July 23, 2015
by Mike
0 comments

Chewy Peanut Butter Granola Bars

Chewy Peanut Butter Granola Bars
Chef: 
Recipe type: Snack
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24 bars
 
A delicious and more healthy variation on crispy rice squares. This version uses granola and raisin nut bran (trust me on this one) along with peanut butter and sliced almonds to up the protein and fiber. Yummy, and great for the lunch bag or backpacking.
Ingredients
  • 3 cups granola
  • 3 cups Raisin Nut Bran Cereal (or other flake and fruit cereal)
  • 1 cup sliced almonds
  • ⅓ cup peanut butter
  • 1 package marshmallows (10 oz)
  • Pam, butter, olive oil, or margarine for greasing pan
Instructions
  1. Grease a 9X13 pan with Pam, butter, olive oil or margarine
  2. Pre-mix first three ingredients in a bowl.
  3. In a large microwave-safe bowl, combine peanut butter and marshmallows.
  4. Microwave in 30 second increments until marshmallows are melted (60-90 seconds).
  5. Stir with rubber spatula to mix well.
  6. Working quickly, add cereal mix to marshmallow mixture stir until well combined.
  7. Grease hands with Pam or other oil. Pour mixture into pan and press down with fingertips.
  8. Keep pressing, removing gaps and smoothing top until even.
  9. Let cool. Cut into squares.

 

July 21, 2015
by Mike
0 comments

Garlic Olive Pasta Salad

Garlic Olive Pasta Salad
Chef: 
Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 servings
 
A tasty pasta satad perfect for a summer picnic or a light meal
Ingredients
  • 1 pound penne pasta
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (Garlic Gold is wonderful)
  • 2 tablespoons brine from the olives
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ t ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp Herbs de Provence
  • ½ cup olives, pitted and sliced ( I use a selection of different olives from the grocery olive bar)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced, or 1 T chopped garlic
  • ¼ cup red bell pepper, diced fine
  • ¼ cup red onion, diced fine
  • 2 zucchini, cut into small pieces
  • ¼ cup Italian parsley, chopped
Instructions
  1. Cook the pasta al dente and drain well. Do not rinse.
  2. Prepare vegetables while pasta cooks.
  3. Pour the olive oil into a large bowl.
  4. Whisk in the olive brine and balsamic vinegar along with a pinch of salt, pepper, and Herbs de Provence.
  5. Add the pasta and toss to coat.
  6. Stir in the remaining ingredients.
  7. This salad is best served at room temperature.
  8. If the salad is a little dry the next day, just stir in a bit more olive oil.

 

July 7, 2015
by Mike
0 comments

Easy Cuban Black Beans

Easy Cuban Black Beans
Chef: 
Recipe type: Main Course
Cuisine: Cuban, Vegan, Vegetarian
 
Starting with canned black beans makes this an easy work-night meal. Comes together and cooks in the time it takes to make the rice to serve it over. Also excellent with a crusty bread as a side dish,
Ingredients
Basic Version
  • 3 cans Black Beans
  • 1 can Fire Roasted tomatoes with basil and garlic
  • ½ T dried oregano
  • 2 T chopped garlic
  • 1 t ground black pepper
  • Salt to taste
Fancy Version adds
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 T red wine vinegar or the juice of ½ a lime
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan and cook over low heat for 20-30 minutes (while rice cooks), stirring occasionally.
  2. Serve over steamed rice.
Fancier Version
  1. Saute pepper and onion together in oil in a pan for a few minutes until softened.
  2. Add garlic and saute one more minute.
  3. Add to remaining ingredients in saucepan and cook as above.
  4. Add vinegar or lime just before serving.

 

May 25, 2015
by Barbara
0 comments

Quinoa Salad with Black Beans, Mango and Avocado

If you’re looking for a healthy meal for a hot day, this delicious quinoa salad is a keeper. Its high in protein, vitamins and taste. We made this the other night and the whole family loved it. What is especially lovely is that the meal is very colorful and attractive as well as tasty.

INGREDIENTS:
• 3 cups cooked quinoa
• 1 medium cucumber, peeled and diced
• 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
• 1 bunch of spring onions
• ½ to 1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
• 1 mango, cut into bite size pieces
• 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
• 1 tablespoon pickled jalapeno slices, finely chopped
• 1/2 cup 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• 4 tablespoons fresh lime juice
• 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
• Freshly Ground pepper to taste
• 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin (optional)
• 2 medium ripe avocados, peeled, seeded, and chopped
DIRECTIONS:
1. Cook quinoa according to package directions and set aside to cool.
2. In large bowl, mix quinoa, cucumber, tomatoes, onion, mango, black beans, cilantro, and jalapeno.
3. In separate small bowl mix oil, garlic, lime juice, salt, pepper, and cumin in large bowl. Pour over quinoa mixture and stir.
4. Gently stir in avocados and serve. Can put mixture in a tortilla wrap or on a bed of greens.

 

Quinoa Salad with Black Beans, Mango and Avocado
Chef: 
Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: Vegan
Serves: 6 one cup servings
 
If you're looking for a healthy meal for a hot day, this delicious quinoa salad is a keeper. Its high in protein, vitamins and taste. We made this the other night and the whole family loved it. What is especially lovely is that the meal is very colorful and attractive as well as tasty.
Ingredients
  • • 3 cups cooked quinoa
  • • 1 medium cucumber, peeled and diced
  • • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • • 1 bunch of spring onions
  • • ½ to 1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • • 1 mango, cut into bite size pieces
  • • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • • 1 tablespoon pickled jalapeno slices, finely chopped
  • • ½ cup 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • • 4 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • • Freshly Ground pepper to taste
  • • ½ teaspoons ground cumin (optional)
  • • 2 medium ripe avocados, peeled, seeded, and chopped
Instructions
  1. Cook quinoa according to package directions and set aside to cool.
  2. In large bowl, mix quinoa, cucumber, tomatoes, onion, mango, black beans, cilantro, and jalapeno.
  3. In separate small bowl mix oil, garlic, lime juice, salt, pepper, and cumin in large bowl. Pour over quinoa mixture and stir.
  4. Gently stir in avocados and serve. Can put mixture in a tortilla wrap or on a bed of greens.
Notes
Can substitute pineapple chunks or grapes for the mango if you want.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 cup

August 26, 2014
by Mike
0 comments

Thai Coconut Curried Noodles

Thai Coconut Curried Noodles
Chef: 
Recipe type: Main Course
Cuisine: Asian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Thai rice noodles and fresh vegetables simmered in coconut milk, curry, and sweet chili sauce makes a delicious vegetarian meal.
Ingredients
  • 1 lb firm tofu, cut into ½" slabs
  • 2 tbsp sweet soy sauce, low sodium
  • 2 cups broccoli cut into florets
  • 2 cups carrots cut into matchsticks
  • 1 lb rice noodles
  • 1 large red bell pepper, sliced thin
  • ½ cup scallions, bias cut
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, peeled & chopped
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 1½ cups fresh sliced mushrooms
  • 1 can “lite”coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp Thai curry paste (red or green)
  • ⅔ cup sweet chile sauce
  • Garnish
  • toasted sesame seeds
  • shredded coconut
Instructions
  1. Bring large pot of water to a boil. Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.
  2. While water is heating, brown slabs of tofu on both sides. Remove from heat and cube. Toss cubes with 2 Tbsp of soy sauce.
  3. Blanch broccoli and carrots for 1 minute. Strain and reserve hot water. Cool vegetables in ice water.
  4. Return hot water to a boil. When boiling, turn off heat. Add rice noodles and stir to separate strands. Let noodles cook 5 minutes off the heat, stirring occasionally.
  5. While noodles cook, place large sauté pan over high heat. Add canola oil and sautéed mushrooms until lightly golden.
  6. Add the following ingredients to sauté pan in order, allowing 1 minute between additions:
  7. - coconut milk, Thai curry paste, and tofu
  8. - carrots and broccoli
  9. - Red bell peppers
  10. - scallion and ginger
  11. - sweet chile sauce and noodles
  12. Toss once or twice to coat all ingredients well with sauce. Place on serving platter. Provide sesame seeds and shredded coconut for garnish.
Notes
You can use a variety of vegetables - pick whatever is in season. Cut the pieces fairly small so that they cook quickly and can take advantage of the delicious sauce.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 6

 

April 10, 2014
by Mike
0 comments

Jamacian-style Sweet Potato and Black Bean Stew

Jamacian-style Sweet Potato and Black Bean Stew
Chef: 
Recipe type: Main Course
Cuisine: Vegan
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
 
This is a rich, spicy vegan stew with a Jamaican flair. Excellent served over rice as a stew or pureed and served as a thick soup. Serves 4-6. Cooked in a 12" or larger dutch oven.
Ingredients
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 pounds of sweet potatoes (three medium or two large), peeled and diced into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 onion, 1 inch dice
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped (1/2" dice)
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced fine
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp Ancho Chile Powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 Tbs chili powder
  • 2 cups vegetable broth (or water in a pinch)
  • 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes, with liquid
  • 1 15 oz can vegetarian black beans, with liquid
  • Optional:
  • 2 cups jasmine rice
  • 4 cups water
Instructions
  1. In a 12" Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat.
  2. When the oil is shimmering, add the onion and bell pepper. Saute for a couple of minutes, then add the sweet potatoes, jalapeno, and garlic.
  3. Stir to coat and saute for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently, or until the onion is soft and translucent.
  4. Add the spices (chili powder, cumin, and ancho) then cover the pot and cook for 7-8 more minutes, or until the sweet potatoes are fork tender.
  5. De-glaze the pot with the broth, then add the tomatoes and black beans.
  6. (Note: if serving over rice, start the rice water now....)
  7. Bring the pot to a boil, then lower heat and cook over medium-low heat for another 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened.
  8. Serve over rice as a stew, or...
  9. Using a blender, puree the stew in batches, a couple of cups at a time, until smooth. Serve hot or cold.
  10. Variations:
  11. Substitute pinto beans for the black beans
  12. For an Asian feel, Add 1 Tbs fresh-grated ginger with the other spices and sprinkle a few tsp of shredded coconut on top when serving.

 

January 6, 2014
by Mike
0 comments

Cast Iron Skillet Dutch Baby

Cast Iron Skillet Dutch Baby
Chef: 
Recipe type: Breakfast
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1-6
 
A Dutch Baby is a hybrid of a popover and a pancake. They are delicious for breakfast, or can be served as a desert anytime.
Ingredients
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup flour
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • ¼ tsp vanilla
  • ½ T butter (melted in pan)
Instructions
  1. The above ingredients are for one serving. For a 12" CI skillet I mix up 4 or 5 servings, but one can adjust the pan size to fit the crowd size.
  2. Preheat oven to 450. Put skillet in the oven while it preheats so the pan is very hot. Once oven and pan are up to temperature, add butter to pan to melt.
  3. Mix ingredients in blender. Remove pan from oven, pour melted butter into batter, give a quick blend, then pour batter back into pan and place back in the oven. Cooking time is about 20-25 minutes or until top is "golden brown and delicious" as Alton Brown says.
Notes
Tips: - Mix up the batter only right before baking. - Use room temp (or slightly warmer) ingredients. - Hot oven, hot pan before starting. - Pouring in melted butter and incorporating into batter eliminates any oily sheen from the top of the dutch baby.

Dutch Baby cooked in a 12