Sunday, May 30, 2010

apricot bread

I'm on maternity now and so you'd think I'd have more time for things like cooking and blogging, right? I thought so too! Sorry about the neglect... :(

I still have a bunch of fruit from last year's bounty in the freezer. It's really a shame that we have so many gorgeous fruit trees in our yard but are not a frequent fruit-eating household. I know it's something we should change, and I'm working on it. But for now, I'm also working on clearing out the freezer because before you know it, our fruit trees are going to be abundant with fruit again and I'm going to need that freezer space!

One of the fruits that my freezer is overflowing with is apricots. I looked up recipes to use up my apricots, but everything I found was for dried apricots. So I looked up peaches instead. They're pretty similar, right? One that caught my eye was this peach bread recipe. I just substituted the peaches for apricots and it worked out nicely. It actually doesn't taste very apricot-y, but it's a tasty bread either way. It could be that my apricots weren't all that flavorful, who knows.

I also substituted half of the flour with white whole wheat flour to make it a bit healthier and have been eating it for breakfast this week.

If you have any other great apricot recipes, I'd love to hear them!

Adapted from A Life Less Sweet
- 2 cup all purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour

- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 2 cups very ripe, mashed apricots
- 1 egg
- 2 tbs melted butter

- Combine the flours, sugars, salt and baking soda in a bowl.
- In a second bowl, combine the peaches, egg and butter.
- Stir in flour mixture.
- Grease a 9x5 loaf pan and pour the mixture in.
- Let it stand for 20 minutes while preheating the oven to 350 degrees.
- Bake for 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Cool for 15 minutes in the pan, then remove it to a cooling rack to finish cooling. minutes. Bake at 350 for 45-55 min. Cool
bread in pan 15 min; remove from pan and finish cooling on wire rack.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Chicken & Sausage Scarpiello Arrabbiata

Here's another sauce that was sent to me by Bertolli - Arrabbiata sauce. I followed their recipe for chicken & sausage scarpiello arrabiata. Again, I was surprised to find that the sauce needed more salt. I also would have preferred pasta over potatoes, but the recipe called for potatoes, so that's what I used. Otherwise, it was tasty and made a great meal.

6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 lb. hot or sweet italian sausage links, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 large sweet onion, thinly sliced
1 small fennel bulb, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup red vinegar
1 jar (7 oz) roasted red peppers, drained and thinly sliced
1 jar Bertolli Arrabbiata Sauce
2 Tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
1 lb. all-purpose potatoes, peeled, cooked and cut into wedges

Heat oil and brown chicken and sausage in 12 inch deep nonstick skillet or 5 quart saucepot over medium high heat; remove. In same skillet, cook onion and fennel over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, 6 minutes or until tender and starting to brown. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds. Stir in vinegar and roasted red peppers and cook 1 minute. Stir in Bertolli Arrabbiata Sauce and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and add back chicken and sausage. Simmer covered 30 minutes. Stir in potatoes and parsley and cook 5 minutes.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Pink Shrimp with Bacons & Onions

Being a member of Foodbuzz means that I occasionally get sent goodies to test out. This time I got a jar of Four Cheese Rosa Sauce from Bertolli along with a few recipes on how to use it. I decided to go with Pink Shrimp with Bacons & Onions. All the ingredients sound fabulous, don't they?

It was a tasty dish overall, however I was a surprised to find that it could have used a bit of salt. Usually jarred sauces are way too salty. Otherwise, I definitely recommend this recipe.

I'm also submitting this to Presto Pasta Nights, a fun event created by Ruth at Once Upon a Feast. Check out her blog on Friday to see the other submissions.

4 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes

4 slices of bacon, chopped
1 large onion, sliced into thin wedges
1 lb. uncooked large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 jar Bertolli Four Cheese Rosa Sauce
8 ounces fettuccine, cooked and drained (reserve 1/2 cup pasta water)

Cook bacon in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon; reserve drippings. Cook onion in reserved drippings over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes or until onion is golden. Add shrimp and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, 4 minutes of until shrimp turn pink. Stir in Sauce and reserved pasta water; heat through. Toss with hot fettuccine and garnish , if desired, with shredded fontina cheese and parsley.