When I was working full time, we'd spend $5 a week at Costco for the Rosemary Olive Oil Bread. I'd have all kinds of sandwiches with it. Well, I don't have the slightest idea why I didn't figure it out before, but last week when Paul trimmed up the rosemary bush, I decided to try my hand at a rosemary bread recipe.
OK, first off, I don't have a grill. But you can get near it by cooking the veggies in a skillet over medium-hot flame. Secondly, I repeated this recipe a few days later as marinated vegetables. We didn't like it as well. Thirdly, I encourage you to really review my cost analysis. I knew it was a good week at the stores, but $3.00 to feed 5 people dinner is incredible! It proves you don't have to break the bank to eat healthy. It also highlights how much you can save by bringing your own lunch to work.
Recipe for Mediterranean Vegetable Pitas
5 Pita pockets, cut in half
3/4 cup Eggplant, diced
1/4 cup Onion, sliced thinly
5 Sweet peppers, sliced thinly
2 small Zuchini, sliced
1 Tablespoon Olive oil
1 teaspoon dried Herb of choice (sage, rosemary, or Italian blend, for example)
1 Small tomato, cut into wedges
5 (heaping) Tablespoons Hummus
Heat oil in large skillet on medium-high heat. Add onions, stirring until slightly softened. Add eggplant, zucchini, and peppers. When vegetables are starting to brown, season with herbs. Toast pita pockets if desired. Spread with hummus. Fill with vegetables. Garnish with tomatoes. (Although there's nothing that says you can't cook the tomatoes, too. As they cook down, they'll make a yummy sauce for the veggies.) Another idea, my father asked for his sandwich to be served with balsamic vinegar.
Although I had planned to serve roasted cauliflower over the ravioli, the oven was in use on another baking project. And the tomatoes looked like they wanted to be eaten. And when all was said and done, my husband was just thrilled with the sauce and so was I. The creamy cheese filling of the ravioli offset the chunkier sauce and eliminated the need for a cheese topping. I was quite pleased how a little bit of ravioli goes a long way.
Cauliflower Tomato Sauce
1 cup chopped cauliflower
1/2 cup sliced onion
1 large tomato, diced
3 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 teaspoon each onion powder, garlic powder, salt
Sautee onion in 1 tablespoon oil on medium heat until half cooked, about 5 minutes. Add cauliflower and stir. Cook another 5 minutes. Add tomato and cook until done. Halfway through the cooking process, I like to add the extra oil and seasonings. Some people like the tomato cooked longer and therefore add it earlier. The choice is yours.
When you have stale bread, this is just one of its many uses. When I made these, the oven was already on, which made this an even more frugal and tasty treat. Also, I love that you can season with any dried and powdered herbs and seasonings of your choice. Plus, unlike store bought croutons, you can limit the added salt.
It's also a good idea that you can have as large or as small sized croutons you like and the amount is easily adjustable.
Recipe for Homemade Croutons
1 loaf bread, diced into bite-sized squares (I had a leftover Italian loaf.)
Spread out bread on a jelly roll pan and sprinkle with a small stream of olive oil. Stir to coat.
Sprinkle seasoning choices over olive oil. Stir again.
Bake on 350 degrees on middle rack for about 20 minutes, depending on thickness; stirring once or twice.
Unless salad recipe specifies otherwise, cool before topping salad.
Seasoning Options: onion powder, garlic powder, dried basil, dried dill, seasoned salt, plain, salt and pepper, dried rosemary, and many more!
Can this possibly look as good on camera as it did in person? Moreover, can you possibly imagine how good it tasted from the photo?
Recipe for Pizza Patate
1 pizza dough recipe
1 medium baking potato
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 long sprig rosemary, leaves peeled off
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp. salt
With a mandolin or other shredding device, thinly slice the potato. I like to leave the skin on for color. My four-sided shredder has a long slit that slices the potato perfectly. Immediately put the slices in a bowl of water so they do not brown. When pizza is ready to assemble, brush dough with olive oil and sprinkle with 1/2 tsp. salt. Dry the slices of potato and layer them on dough. Next, spread onions out on pizza. Sprinkle with remaining olive oil and salt. Finish by spreading rosemary leaves around. Finish baking.
Some of these jars of dehydrated rosemary are actually part of Christmas gifts. So, I'd better share a few ideas for using them. At first, I wondered how anyone could ever use up so much, but now I realize I had too limited of an imagination. However, first, I'd better tell you how I dried them.
I finally decided I could handle going back to my favorite old lunch standby of Suzie's flatbread crackers, carrot sticks, and hummus. Likely, I will need more food than that, but I'm learning to eat more smaller meals. So, I shopped Target's selection of hummus today and found three brands, but only Sonny and Joe had a plain traditional hummus available.
Select equal portions of fresh sweet potatoes, brussel sprouts, and beets.
Cut the brussel sprouts in half, peel the potatoes and cut into bite-sized pieces, cut beets as well.
Place top rack in oven just above center and the second rack a notch or two below for space to get a second pan in and preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Grease jelly roll pans with a light coat of spray. (Marsha had only two pans, and cooked the brussel sprouts first. Again, this is the beauty of a vegetable for a large group that doesn't have to be served hot.)
Spread each vegetable individually and evenly over pan.
Sprinkle olive oil semi-generously (although excess will not hurt) over the vegetable.
Sprinkle fresh ground black pepper and salt evenly over vegetables.
Top with three cloves each pan of chopped fresh garlic.
Chop fresh rosemary (about 3 long sprigs per pan) and sprinkle around pan.
Place pans in oven until bottom of vegetables are golden brown. The time varies depending on the veggie.
I figured this deal out late last night. If you're a big user of olive oil, especially for cooking, this is a good deal. Publix has 16 oz. bottles of Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil on sale buy one, get one free this week.
Believe it or not, this recipe is the result of a slight misunderstanding between my mother and I. We both like roasted sweet potatoes. She heard on a cooking show one day that if you brush them slightly with olive oil and cook them at 500' for 20 minutes, they get really crispy. I agreed to give it a shot. However, I didn't realize that she had put the potatoes in the middle of the oven with it set on "Bake". I put mine on the top rack set on "Broil" and turned them at 10 minutes when they started to brown too much.
Paul declared this creation great. He especially liked the crust. I really enjoy the flatbread as well. I just happened upon some Naan hand-stretched flatbread at Costco. I love making sandwiches out of it or serving it instead of French bread alongside pasta. I think it looks and tastes fabulous.
This post's guest photographer is Garrett Nudd, an excellent and talented photographer, but an even better friend.
I came across some mini-kabob sticks while in Sarasota for our anniversary. Ever since, I was very excited to make some and did a good bit of research before I finally put the meal together. I served the kabob with steamed brown rice and the Pad Thai sauce from "Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home."
This meal was much easier than I expected, and except for the delay of threading the sticks with my designer-husband, a fast creation as well. I did find a note somewhere in my research to soak the sticks in water before use to prevent splitting. This was my first step of the meal.