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Pizza With Cauliflower Crust

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In my quest to eat less carbs and still hoping to have some of the same flavors that I love I discovered that you can make pizza with a cauliflower crust. I knew about cauliflower mash (instead of potatoes), and cous cous and rice. This did not start out to be pizza crust, at first I planned on a cauliflower and cheese bake, then thought I would do a roasted cauliflower soup (still too hot out) it then morphed into this pizza crust. Since it was not originally meant to be used for pizza I didn’t follow the directions for making it. They have you grate raw cauliflower and depending what recipe you use steam or dry roast in a skillet. My method may not be entirely orthodox and because of this I had to add a little bit of flour, I used only 1/4 cup of spelt flour along with egg and cheese to bind. The cauliflower was steam roasted first in the oven then covered in grated parm/asiago/romano, drizzled with a little olive oil and roasted again uncovered this time until lightly browned and the cauliflower is soft. Now Cauliflower has a high water content and depending which method you use they have you squeeze out the water with a towel. Because I dry roasted the water pretty much evaporated except for a few drops. I then blitzed it in the food processor mixed in the flour, egg and some taleggio cheese (grated) laid it on a cast iron pizza pan on some parchment (sprayed with cooking spray) and baked at 425 degree’s for about 25 minutes. Before baking I grated a little taleggio on top. When making a cauliflower crust you have to pre bake otherwise you will have a soupy mess.

The pizza turned out great and I love that I have the flavor of pizza without feeling bad about eating it.

Preparing the Cauliflower

1 head cauliflower cut into florets (my cauliflower was medium size)

grated cheese

olive oil

salt and pepper

Heat oven to 375 degree’s.  Place the cauliflower on a parchment lined baking sheet and cover with foil, or you can steam it if you like. Bake for approximately 30 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender. Remove the foil and drizzle with some olive oil, sprinkle with a little salt and pepper and grated cheese of your choice. I make a blend of parmigiana, romano and asiago. Place back in the oven and roast until it is very tender and lightly browned.  Let it cool and place in a sieve or colander over a bowl or plate, cover with plastic wrap and let sit overnight. Cauliflower has quite a bit of water and you want to make sure it is pretty dry when you make the pizza dough.

pulsed in processor

pulsed in processor

Making the dough

makes one 12 inch pizza

2 1/2 cups of cauliflower crumbs (there will probably be leftover cauliflower, I put in a ziplock and froze)

1 egg lightly beaten

1/4 cup spelt flour

1/4 cup grated cheese

1/2 cup grated melting cheese like mozzarella or I used taleggio (Highly recommend taleggio)

Note: If you use all of the cauliflower (more than 2 1/2 cups) you should add an additional egg and a little more spelt flour and when grating either taleggio or fresh mozzarella it should be cold, the cheese is soft and even softer at room tempurature.

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Place the cauliflower crumbs in a mixing bowl add the egg, flour and cheeses and form into a cohesive ball. Heat the oven to 425 degree’s and line a baking sheet or pizza pan with parchment, spray lightly with cooking spray. Press the dough onto the parchment into whatever shape you like, square, rectangular or round. Grate some more taleggio or mozzarella on top and bake for approximately 25 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool, after 10 minutes transfer the parchment sheet to a cooling rack. Let cool completely before putting the pizza together.

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Top your pizza with whatever you like I topped with roasted tomatoes and zucchini, mozzarella, dollops of pesto and grated cheese. It’s really so good and I didn’t miss the regular pizza crust at all.

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Nonna’s Piadina And A Breakfast Pizza

Piadina

Piadina

This recipe is from the wonderful and talented Liz Larkin (aka mrslarkin, aka the scone lady of Pound Ridge NY) on Food52. It is her Nonna’s recipe for Piadina and was entered in the latest contest on Food52 for your best Family Recipes part 2. It was nominated for a Community Pick and is a contender to be a finalist. I signed up to test the recipe. It’s a wonderful recipe, the dough is easy to make and handles beautifully. It tastes similar to a biscuit but has the appearance of flat bread. You get the flavor of a biscuit without another biscuit making failure which works for me since I am biscuit challenged. Win win!!! You can use this delicious bread in many different ways, I made a breakfast pizza, use whatever you like as a topping it’s delicious.

Soft and delicious

Soft and delicious

Serves 6 (recipe can be multiplied)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
3 heaping tablespoons shortening or leaf lard
3/4 cups warm water
1/4 cup warm milk
Fillings of your choice like Prosciutto, ham, mozzarella, fritatta, salad, Nutella, pretty much anything you want
Place flour in a mound on pastry board or counter. Sprinkle on salt and baking powder, and mix together with your fingers.
Make a well in the center. Drop in the shortening and rub it together with the flour using your fingertips. Lumps are okay! And it will still be pretty floury.
Make a well again and pour in water and milk. Mix with fingers until dough comes together. Add a little more warm water or flour, if needed. You want a soft dough – not at all sticky. Knead for a couple minutes, and roll into a log shape.
Alternatively, all the mixing can be done in a large bowl. I like to use a fork to mix everything together.
Divide the dough into 6 equal pieces, using a scale if you have one. With one hand, gently roll each piece on the board/counter into a ball. Mom says to use your thumb and nudge the dough ball under with each turn. Set each ball to the side on a sprinkling of flour and let rest for 5 minutes.
Heat griddle to medium. Slightly flatten a ball and roll out dough to about 9 inches in diameter. Gently lift and place on hot griddle, scoring the piadina all over with the tines of a fork. If bubbles appear, quickly pierce those suckers with the fork. Cook each side for a few minutes or until each side develops some lightly browned spots. Remove to a clean dish cloth. Repeat with each ball, and stack each cooked piadina over one another. Loosely cover with a dish towel. When done, cut piadine into quarters and enjoy with your favorite sandwich fixings.
Piadina freezes well. Reheat on a griddle over low heat, or wrapped in damp paper towels in the microwave.

Breakfast Pizza

Breakfast Pizza

For The Pizza:

serves 2

1 pint cherry tomatoes cut in half

1 shallot chopped

salt and pepper to taste

4 eggs

cheese of your choice grated – I used Toma Piemontese a mild Italian cheese that melts beautifully(but is semi soft and a bit hard to grate) and is from the Piedmont region of Italy.

Parmigiana grated

Olive oil

Heat oven to 375 degree’s, place tomatoes and shallot on sheet pan and coat with olive oil, sprinkle salt and pepper and roast in the oven until the tomatoes are soft and caramelized and shallot is softened approximately 30 minutes. Remove from oven and reduce oven temp to warm or 170-200 degree’s. Place tomatoes in heat proof bowl, cover with foil and place in the warm oven, wrap the piadina in a towel and place in oven also to stay warm. Heat some olive oil in a skillet and fry the eggs sunny side up over easy your choice I recommend a soft yolk. Remove piadina and tomatoes from the oven,brush the bread with some olive oil and  spread tomato on the bread, add the grated cheese and a sprinkling of parmigiana. Turn the oven to broil and place in the oven just so the cheese melts, top with the eggs. Enjoy! You can top with arugula tossed with olive oil or some flat leaf parsley for a bit of green if you like.

Piadina Pizza

Piadina Pizza

Pizza In A Snap!!

Pizza

Pizza

I felt like pizza today, was really busy and didn’t have time to run to the store for ingredients so decided to use what I had on hand. I made my go to quick pizza dough early this morning, let it rise in the refrigerator, I had some beautiful fresh spinach, a little ricotta that needed to be used, parmigiano and pecorino romano cheese and thats all I needed. The pizza dough is so simple to make, it literally takes 5 minutes, its no knead dough. I sauteed the spinach in garlic, olive oil and red pepper flakes, sprinkled on a little sea salt and black pepper, topped the dough with the spinach, some ricotta and grated parm and romano cheese. To gild the lilly I poached an egg and put it on top. Voila, dinner in a snap!!

Quick Pizza Dough

2 1/2 cups flour

2 1/4 tsp instant yeast

1 tsp salt

1 cup warm water (about 110 degrees)

2 tbs olive oil

Mix all ingredients, place in oiled zip lock bag and place in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or longer. If you don’t want to use the refrigerator method just place in oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and a tea towel and let rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

Before making your pizza remove dough from the refrigerator and let come to room temperature. Pre heat your oven to 500 degrees, oil your pizza pan or heat your stone. Take the dough out of the bag or bowl, dust with a little flour and work the dough for a minute or two until its smooth. Stretch onto your  pizza pan or peel. Brush with olive oil, add your toppings, in my case it was sauteed spinach, ricotta and the grated cheese. Bake until browned and bubbly.

Pizza Margherita

I felt like I had to include probably the most beloved of all Italian foods in this week long foray into my Italian roots, pizza. I can probably count on one hand the number of times my Mother made pizza growing up, that few really. I learned to love and appreciate pizza when I lived in Italy and this is very close to what I had there.  I used The Solitary Cooks recipe for pizza dough, slathered on some of my tomato balsamic jam, some fresh mozzarella and grated pecorino romano and here you have it. Pizza Margherita. The pizza dough rested all night in the refrigerator and was ready for me this morning. You must try this recipe for pizza dough, not only is it simple and quick to make it’s so tender and well, sheer perfection. Here is the link to the recipe, http://thesolitarycook.wordpress.com/2012/01/27/weekend-pizza/

It’s so easy to go to the pizzeria or restaurant and get a pizza to go, but if you have the urge for pizza try this. It really is foolproof and quick. Go to the links above for the recipe’s for the pizza dough and tomato balsamic jam. You can make a more traditional pizza sauce or buy a good one in the market whatever works for you. Add whatever toppings you like, let your imagination go wild, pizza is one of those foods that can become whatever you want it to be.

A thing of beauty

Roasted Garlic and Broccoli Rabe Pizza

Pizza

I entered this recipe in a Whole Foods contest for roasted garlic. It makes a great pizza but just as easily converts to a low carb vegetable dish by eliminating the pizza dough entirely. I used a whole garlic bulb, that may sound like a lot but when you roast garlic it loses the pungent, sharp flavor that raw garlic has and you can use considerably more to get that garlic taste.

First I roasted the whole garlic bulb, I love the smell of garlic and my kitchen was filled with the aroma.

1 whole bulb garlic

Olive Oil

Pre heat oven to 375 degrees. Cut 1/2 inch from the top of the bulb of garlic. Add about an inch of olive oil to a bowl and place garlic cut side down in the olive oil. Let sit for 15 minutes. Lay a sheet of foil on baking sheet. Place garlic on the foil and pour the rest of the olive oil directly onto the bulb. Fold into a packet and put in the oven. Bake for 40 minutes then turn the oven off and leave the garlic in the oven until it cools, approximately 30 minutes.

Remove from oven and squeeze half of the soft garlic into a mixing bowl, mash with a fork.

The roasted garlic

To make the pizza you can use your favorite recipe for pizza dough or a prepared dough that you can get from your local pizzaria or supermarket.

Ingredients:

1 lb broccoli rabe

Mashed half bulb of roasted garlic

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 tsp lemon zest

pinch of crushed red pepper flakes

salt and pepper to taste

pecorino romano or your favorite type of cheese (grated and shaved)

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add 2 tbs salt, clean the broccoli rabe and remove tough stems. When water is boiling put the broccoli in and boil for 10 minutes. Prepare an ice bath, take the broccoli out and place directly in ice bath. Lay some paper towels on the counter and when the broccoli has cooled lay out in one layer on the paper towel so it can dry.

To the bowl with mashed garlic add the 1/4 cup olive oil, lemon zest, crushed red pepper and some ground black pepper (add salt if you like but be careful not to add to much as the cheese is salty. Stir and set aside.

Heat oven to 500 degrees

Press pizza dough onto your pizza pan, brush with some olive oil and sprinkle grated pecorino romano on the dough. Arrange the broccoli rabe and shave some cheese on top. Bake for 20-25 minutes the pizza crust will be golden brown. Remove from oven, grate little more cheese on top and drizzle with olive oil.

Finding Inspiration

Hello everyone, today is a holiday, remembering the life and legacy of  Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. we should honor and remember this great man in our thoughts, actions and life everyday. He was a man of purpose and peace, his philosophy and life is celebrated and remembered by all on this day every January 15th. He changed the world not with violence but with words of peace delivered with absolute conviction and great faith. The world will forever be a better place because of him.

It has been almost a month since I last posted anything, thats terrible, but I simply have not been inspired to cook, create and blog. Has that happened to any of you before? My apologies for not keeping up with your blogs. I won’t go into details but a lot has been happening and it has taken it’s toll on me emotionally. I try, I really do but unless I actually want to cook or bake they just don’t come out well and frankly are not blog worthy. Hoping to do a Valentines post or posts and get baking again. I’ve ordered a couple of new cookbooks, searching for inspiration and ideas and they will be arriving soon. I feel like I have a blockage and just can’t seem to break out, maybe soon.  The weather has been extreme, cold, snow and ice which doesn’t help. I love to go to the farmers market for inspiration, in the winter months it’s not exactly inspirational but I can usually find something there that gets my creative juices flowing, it’s been too darn cold to even venture outside and walk to the market.

I have made a few things that turned out well no real recipes mostly using up leftovers, simple fare.  Will post a few photo’s of some things I have made recently, the first was homemade pasta using this really cool pasta maker I got from the Food52 shop. Sometimes I just don’t feel like getting my pasta machine out and this is the answer to that making quick and easy perfect noodles. Love it!!

Calling all bloggers!! Would anyone like to do a guest post while I am in this funk? Would be so happy and honored to post some of your delicious recipes on the blog. Let me know, email me or comment below.

no bigger than a small rolling pin

Homemade pasta with shaved Brussels sprouts, mascarpone,parmigiana and lemon

I mentioned before I much I detest wasting food, in an effort to use some vegetables in my refrigerator and half of a recipe for pie dough (don’t like leaving in freezer too long) I made vegetable pot pie using cauliflower, asparagus, carrots, peas. Roasted the vegetables drizzled with olive oil and seasoned with salt, pepper and turmeric (except the peas) in the oven on 400 degrees until tender. Made a simple béchamel and added some gruyere. Tossed in the veggies and spooned into bowls, covered with the pie dough and grated a little more gruyere. They were delicious and simple and perfect comfort food on a very cold day.

vegetable pot pie

More food that must be used is some fresh mozzarella, some baby tomatoes and fresh basil. Pizza is on the menu today and my simple no knead pizza dough makes a perfect Grandma’s pizza.

 

Block Party, Judging At Community Garden, A Bowl Of Vegetables And A One Bowl Chocolate Cake

It has been an exhausting few weeks. It was crunch time as our annual block party was coming up quicker than I would have liked it to. Organizing is not my strong suite but as the block association president much of the planning and prep work falls on me and I have to step outside my comfort zone and try to be the party planner. There is always so much to do, not enough time to do it and invariably something goes wrong. I have had torrential rain and had to cancel because of it, this year it was sunny and hot (way too hot for me) almost 90 degree’s. Something I have planned on for a year was cancelled, the rock climbing wall that our brave policeman bring to events, the kids love it and it’s so much fun for all. Last year my reservation for the wall got lost when the Officer retired and we only got it for an hour, I reserved it this year, almost a year ahead and 2 days before the event the police contacted me with bad news, the rock wall had broken and needs to be repaired. The children were all disappointed but the block party went off almost without a hitch and everyone had a good time.

Vegetables from the community garden

I live across the street from a Community Garden and they asked me if I would be a judge for a food event at their annual Harvest Festival, I was more than happy to do so. We tasted fresh vegetables grown in the garden which were judged on beauty and taste. Other things we tried were homemade pickles and desserts made with apples from the tree in the garden. It was a lot of fun, everything was delicious and some of the other judges were a food stylist, food photographer and cookbook publisher.

The block party is something everyone looks forward to all year, our block along with people from the neighborhood come together to eat, drink, talk, we all love watching the children have fun in the bouncy castle and ride their bicycles and skateboards in the street without fear of traffic. I usually have a bake sale but have been so incredibly busy I only made cookies which sold out very quickly. We grilled hamburgers, hot dogs, veggie burgers, had pizza, drinks, music from a fantastic DJ and an amazing Ukelele group.

The day after I was completely exhausted and wanted a light simple meal. A bowl of roasted vegetables with cheesy cauliflower mash was exactly what I needed. I used an assortment of vegetables and mashed cauliflower with gruyere. Simple, healthful and delicious.  Had some green beans, zucchini, tomato and shallot drizzled with olive oil and roasted in the oven at 400 degree’s. Cauliflower mash is so easy, simply boil the cauliflower, let it dry in the oven on 200 for about 20 minutes then put in the food processor with some butter, sour cream and season with salt and pepper.  I added some grated gruyere and popped into the oven at 200 for a few minutes to heat and melt the cheese.

This super easy one bowl no measure chocolate cake is awesome. It’s a recipe on Food52. The fact that it’s quick and no measure immediately prompted me to give this recipe a try. The cake uses full fat plain Greek yogurt, I used Fage and you use the yogurt container as the means of measuring. Pretty cool right?

The cake will have cracks thats ok

Simple One Bowl Chocolate Cake

Recipe on food52

1  container (7 oz) plain Greek yogurt

1 container neutral flavored oil (I used canola)

2 large eggs

2 containers self rising flour

1 container unsweetened cocoa powder

1 container sugar

1 container warm water or coffee

Heat Oven to 350 degree’s. Prepare a 10 inch spring form pan by greasing or spraying the bottom, add a parchment round and then grease and flour the pan.

Place all of the ingredients in a bowl and mix on low until the flour is incorporated, then increase to medium high and beat for approximately 2 minutes. Scrape batter into prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes. Cake Tester should come out clean. Let cool in the pan, release the pan and remove the cake. Sprinkle with some powdered sugar and serve with whipped cream or ice cream.

 

Peach And Blueberry Tart

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This was a really busy week, I have neglected the blog, between work, the community work I do and this oppressive heat I haven’t had time or the inclination to use my stove/oven. On Thursday I got to meet one of the bloggers that I have been following for a long time, Shashi whose wonderful blog Runnin Srilankin is always chock full of delicious healthful recipes. We met at the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory and had pizza at Grimaldi’s. It was great finally meeting her in person.

Last weekend I went to a barbeque, and decided to be daring and try a new recipe. This is a tried and true recipe that is very popular on Food52, it’s by Amanda Hesser and she got it from her Mom.  I used frozen peaches which is not the best idea as they produced a lot of juice and some plucots. The party was great but I had to leave before dessert was served and I didn’t get a chance to try it. The feedback though was that it was amazing. The simplicity of this recipe is what drew me, a press in crust that uses oil not butter, fresh fruit and you make a sugar, flour and butter crumble topping and sprinkle it on before baking.

Today I went to the farmers market and got some great produce, tomatoes, zucchini, peppers, nectarines and blueberries. Since I didn’t get to taste the tart I decided to make it today using the nectarines. Best laid plans don’t always work, the nectarines were very ripe and I put them at the bottom of my cart without thinking and 3 of them got squished, I will blame it on the heat,  for once I only bought enough for the tart, since I had some blueberries I decided to use them as well.

This tart is a winner, and I hope you give it a try. The ease of preparation, use of delicious seasonal fruit and beautiful presentation make this tart one that I will make over and over again. Next time with only peaches or nectarines, it’s not as pretty with the blueberries after it’s baked but still delicious.

This tart is coming with me to Fiesta Friday #130, Angie is away but has left the party in very good hands the co hosts this week are Judi @ cookingwithauntjuju and Petra @ Food Eat Love

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Peach Tart

Made 1 9 inch tart (the recipe said 11 inch but I didn’t have enough fruit)

Pie Dough

1 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp sugar

3/4 tsp kosher salt

1/4 cup neutral oil (I used grapeseed)

1/4 cup olive oil

2 tbs milk (I used half and half)

6-8 peaches, nectarines sliced thickly (I added a pint of blueberries also)

Place the flour, sugar and salt in a mixing bowl and whisk or stir with a fork. Add the oil and milk and mix with a fork until cohesive.

Press into tart pan with your fingers pressing on the bottom and up the sides. Make sure there are no cracks in the dough. Trim and set aside. Pre heat the oven to 425 and line a sheet pan with parchment.

Arrange the fruit however you like in the tart pan.

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Crumble topping

3/4 cup sugar

2-3 tbs flour

2 tbs cold butter

pinch of salt

Mix with your hands until it resembles fine crumbs. Distribute the crumbs on top of the tart and bake until golden brown and bubbly, approximately 45 minutes. It will seem like a lot of the topping, it’s ok use all of it.

Just out of the oven

Just out of the oven

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Fall Harvest Salad And Meeting A Friend

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I honestly didn’t know what to call this salad. The name is sort of an accurate description. I saw this amazing Fall Panzanella salad on Susan Pridmore’s blog The Wimpy Vegetarian. I immediately knew I had to make it it just sounded so good, kale, butternut squash, bread, apples, onions. I fell in love, then I had lunch at Speedy Romeo’s, a fantastic restaurant in my neighborhood that makes the most amazing brick oven pizza in incrediblely creative ways.  They also have some awesome salads,  I ordered a kale, apple, pomegranate, goat cheese salad that rocked my world. I have to add that I went there with Patty Nguyen, she is an very talented photographer and has a beautiful blog of the same name that I have been following for several years now. This is not the first time we met, whenever Patty comes to NYC we get together. I had the pleasure of meeting her family this time and we had a wonderful time.

Pizza with Patty and family at Speedy Romeo's Brooklyn

Pizza with Patty and family at Speedy Romeo’s Brooklyn photo by Patty Nguyen

Back to the salad as I explained Susan’s Fall Panzanella grabbed me and then the salad at the restaurant was incredible, they have similar flavor profiles. I need to eat more salad, but for me it has to be super flavorful and very interesting. Lettuce and tomato are great (on a BLT) but not that interesting. I decided to take both salads and take a little from each, add my own touch and see how it comes out. It had to have kale that was a must, I wanted it to be seasonal so I added butternut squash that was roasted in the oven, apples,  some toasted pumpkin seeds and pine nuts and grated aged Asiago cheese.  I used Susan salad dressing which is made with apple cider vinegar, maple syrup and apple.  I massaged the kale for a long time, a good 15 minutes I wanted it to be really relaxed, 10 minutes with a little olive oil and another 5 minutes with dressing, added chopped apple, butternut squash,nuts, seeds and grated cheese, another splash of dressing, season and voila, a delicious, nutritious fresh salad, bursting with flavor.

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Fall Harvest Salad

1 head green curly kale cleaned, leaves torn from stems and chopped chiffonade

2 apples cleaned, cut into bite size pieces

2 cups cubed butternut squash

1/2 cup pumpkin seeds toasted

1/2 cup pine nuts toasted

approximately 1/2 cup grated Asiago cheese

Pre heat oven to 375 degree’s. Place butternut squash pieces on sheet pan lined with parchment, drizzle with olive oil and toss to make sure every piece is covered in oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast in the oven for approximately 30 minutes or unti squash is tender and lightly browned.

Remove the squash and set aside, place the pumpkin seeds and pine nuts on the same piece of parchment and toast in the oven for about 15 minutes watching carefully so they do not burn. Remove nuts and set aside.

Grate cheese and set aside.

Place chiffonade kale in large salad bowl, drizzle on a little olive oil and massage the kale really well, I worked on it for about 10 minutes. Add some of the dressing and massage another 5 minutes. Cut the apple into bite size pieces and toss into the kale, add the squash, nuts and seeds, toss to combine, add the grated cheese, season with salt and pepper, add more dressing if you like (I did). You can serve immediately but this salad keeps really well in the refrigerator for hours so it can be made ahead of time.

Dressing- Apple Vinaigrette

Recipe by Susan Pridmore- The Wimpy Vegetarian

1/2 apple peeled, seeded and diced

3 tbs apple cider vinegar

1 tbs maple syrup

3-4 tbs olive oil

1/4 tsp kosher salt

Mash the apple in a small food processor, if you don’t have a small processor heat in the microwave for about a minute and mash using a mortar and pestle. Whisk mashed apple into the vinegar, salt, maple syrup and olive oil.

Second Anniversary Or Is It Blogoversary!

A pug in the kitchen via pinterest

A pug in the kitchen via pinterest

I can’t believe I’ve been blogging for two years now. I started the blog on January 12th and it took me two days to get the courage to write my first post and click publish.  My very first post was on January 14, 2012. Seems like yesterday and eon’s ago at the same time. I have really enjoyed the ride. It was like jumping into cold water or venturing into the unknown, I wondered if anyone would read my blog.  I was a little scared, fearing that if anyone did visit they would think it silly or uninteresting. Despite my fears I jumped in and was so relieved to find the most wonderful community of fellow bloggers, people I have so much in common with and consider my friends even though we have never met in person. I am thankful for the welcoming and kind comments. This blog has helped me in many ways, I feel like I am a better cook, writer and photographer and it has given my cooking a dual purpose, more than just nourishing myself and my family, I am cooking for a much larger crowd, the wonderful people who follow my blog and for that reason I am more careful and deliberate in the kitchen. So thank you everyone for being there for and with me on this journey. It has been fun and I hope to continue doing this as long as I can. During this two years I have received and given awards, participated in contests, participated in bake/cooking groups, had multiple potlucks at my house, been a part of charity food events, whew, this really has been a lot of fun and I want to thank you again because without your encouragement I would not still be doing this.

Here are some of my favorite photo’s and recipes a pictorial history of a pug in the kitchen:

.Mixed Citrus Curd

Mixed Citrus Curd

Mixed Citrus Curd my first post

Tender Yellow Cake

The Best Yellow Cake Ever!

Tender Yellow Cake Photo by Food52

Angel Food Cupcakes With Chocolate Orange Buttercream

Angel Food Cupcake With Chocolate Orange buttercream

Angel Food Cupcake With Chocolate Orange buttercream

Beef Kebob on Flat Bread

Beef Kabobs on Flat Bread

Beef Kabobs on Flat Bread

Triple Chocolate Cake

Triple Chocolate cake

Triple Chocolate cake

Shrimp Scampi

Shrimp Scampi

Shrimp Scampi

Pizza Margherita

A thing of beauty

A thing of beauty

Moms Meatballs

Meatballs

Meatballs

White Cake with blackberry whipped cream frosting

White Cake With Blackberry Whipped Cream frosting

White Cake With Blackberry Whipped Cream frosting

Mango cream tart

Mango Cream Tart

Mango Cream Tart

Chocolate Shortcake With Cognac Infused Apricots

Chocolate Shortcake With Apricots

Chocolate Shortcake With Apricots

Fig and goat cheese tart

Mosto Cotto Fig And Goat Cheese Tart

Mosto Cotto Fig And Goat Cheese Tart

Brooklyn Blackout Semifreddo Cake

Brooklyn Blackout Semifreddo Cake

Brooklyn Blackout Semifreddo Cake

Flank Steak on Texas toast with chimichurri

Photo by James Ransom for Food52

Photo by James Ransom for Food52

Blackberry and nectarine galette

Galette

Galette

Vanilla ice cream

Vanilla Ice Cream

Vanilla Ice Cream

Farmers Market Finds

Kale Anyone?

Kale Anyone? Ft. Greene Farmers Market

Figs

Lovely figs before roasting

Lovely figs before roasting

Roasted Tomato and goat cheese tarts

Rectangular tart roasted tomato and goat cheese

Rectangular tart roasted tomato and goat cheese

Empanadas guest post

Spicy and flaky empanadas

Spicy and flaky empanadas

Whipped Chocolate Caramel Ganache

Photo by James Ransom for Food52

Photo by James Ransom for Food52

Eggnog

Eggnog

Eggnog

Izzy And Nando

Izzy And Nando