Tag Archives: Cooking with a Wallflower

Food on Friday ~ Mid Autumn

autumn is a second spring where every leaf is a flower

It’s the middle of fall, Thanksgiving is in a couple of weeks, we’d like to make a start on Christmas shopping, and most of us are trapped in one sort of a lockdown or other.  But there is nothing to stop you going grocery shopping, and then honing your chef skills.

These recipes have a kind of mid-autumn, pre Thanksgiving flavour.  In one case I would strongly recommend serving a decent sherry or Madeira to go along with the cake.  In fact, why not treat yourself to a decent glass of something any way.  You deserve it, and you probably won’t be driving to work today.

(BTW for new readers, and if you just don’t know, if you click on the highlighted recipe name you will go right to that dish on the chef’s own website.)

First up this week, from Half Baked harvest we have this delicious looking 4 Cheese Sage Pesto Florentine Lasagna.  How great would this be to make ahead for your Thanksgiving parties?  (NB.  Women should be very careful of too much sage.)

4 Cheese Sage Pesto Florentine Lasagna

Another pasta dish from Diane at In Dianes Kitchen; a very warming Cheesy Chicken Noodle Casserole.  (Noodles are pasta too.)  This is a very easy dish, even most of my fellow single men could make, (and most single men cannot cook).

Cheesy Chicken Noodle Casserole

Now a really pretty midweek dinner from Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower; Honey Garlic Shrimp Farro Bowl with Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette.  And how fabulous to serve this if you have friends over for a pre or post Thanksgiving lunch.

Honey Garlic Shrimp Farro Bowl with Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette

Tiffany from Creme de la Crumb has a very seasonal dish in this Candied Pecan Sweet Potato Casserole, (with marshmallows).  Being English I’m not quite certain if this is an entree or a dessert.  No doubt someone will enlighten me.

Candied Pecan Sweet Potato Casserole

Joy Wilson at Joy the Baker has come up with what has to be the longest recipe name ever, (and that’s saying something here), Dad’s Perfect Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free Sweet Potato Pie.  You have got to make this just so you can tell your guests what it’s called.

Dad’s Perfect Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free Sweet Potato Pie

And finally for this week.  As you would expect from Heather Christo we have an extremely pretty dish, this time a Pumpkin Pecan Coffee Cake, which is both vegan and gluten free.  How brilliant for afternoon tea around thanksgiving, although I’d serve this with sherry and not tea.

Pumpkin Pecan Coffee Cake

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

if you have never tried a good Maderia wine, then you have no idea the heaven you’re missing out on

Food on Friday ~ Corn

sex is good, but not as good as fresh sweet corn ~ Garrison Keillor

Corn is a quintessentially American staple.  Just like the potato and the tomato, corn or maize, was brought back to Europe from Central America by the Conquistadores.  In actuality corn is a Mexican grain, and can be found in many indigenous recipes. While here in England we really only roast, grill, or barbeque the whole cob and serve it with butter.  Canned corn is a second choice to canned peas for us.

Maize / Corn is the most grown cereal grain in the world, and the most sprayed with glyphosate, so always buy organic corn if it’s available.  Most corn isn’t eaten by humans anyway ~ it’s fed to animals, makes bio-diesel, and that wonderful stuff high-fructose corn syrup.

If you’re growing your own corn, plant it in a block not in rows, and grow it alongside kale, peas, or beans.

Our first corn recipe this week is from Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower.  Her Small Batch Shrimp Boil is tossed with half-cobs and served in a buttery garlic sauce.

Small Batch Shrimp Boil

From Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest we have these great looking Bacon Wrapped Cheddar Corn Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers, looks tasty.

Bacon Wrapped Cheddar Corn Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers

Cookie + kate bring us these Sweet Corn Salad Wraps; simple, healthy, vegetarian, and tasty.  What a great lunch on a warm summer day.

Sweet Corn Salad Wraps

I was looking for a Mexican street recipe and I found Mexican Street Corn Bowls at Damn Delicious.  Chungah is good at street food.

Mexican Street Corn Bowls

Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats can always be relied upon to produce something interestingly pretty.  This Coffee Crusted Strip Steak with Herbed Corn Salasa ticks all the boxes.

Coffee Crusted Strip Steak with Herbed Corn Salsa

Our collection this week is from epicurious; 79 Corn Recipes to Enjoy All Summer Long.  Featured is this utterly simple, no fuss, always welcome, Grilled Corn on the Cob with Salt-and-Pepper Butter.  Nothing easier or better.  Who says they can’t cook?  Anyone can make this.

Grilled Corn on the Cob with Salt-and-Pepper Butter

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

growing corn is highly mechanised

including scary crop-dusters

 

Food on Friday ~ Arugula

arugula is an American made-up modern word

Crooked Bear Creek Organic Herbs is an absolute mine of information when it comes to the annual weed we call by a variety of names, including roquette, rocket and arugula.  Mind you, anyone with an ambition to be an herbalist could do no better than to begin by following the brilliant website.  This cruciferous Mediterranean salad green has a stack of health benefits, and for most men is a much preferred alternative to kale.  (My straw poll tells me that Kale does seem to be much more liked by the distaff side of the table.)

Parmesan Chicken Arugula

Our first new recipe this week is from Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats and it’s especially for those who may have just stopped ‘working from home’ and gone back into the office.  So, for breakfast or lunch how about a Gruyere, Fig Jam and Arugula Sandwich?

Gruyere, Fig Jam, and Arugula Sandwich

This looks tasty from Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower, Sun-Dried Tomato Pistou Pasta with Arugula.  This seems to be really easy, using only a few ingredients you may already have in your larder.

Sun-Dried Tomato Pistou Pasta with Arugula

You can’t get anything much easier and tastier than this Arugula Salad with Shaved Parmesan from Heidi at Foodie Crush.  (Actually you get 3 recipes for the price of one here.)

Arugula Salad with Shaved Parmesan

Our first collection this week is from delish; 15 Ways to Add Arugula to Everything.  I found this super looking recipe for Pork Chops with Arugula Pesto and Roasted Cauliflower.  (OK some don’t like pork chops, but some love them.  And there are another 14 recipes in this collection).

Pork Chops with Arugula Pesto and Roasted Cauliflower

The second collection this week is from Cookie + kate who offer us 29 Epic Salad Recipes. which includes an Arugula, Dried Cherry and Wild Rice Salad with a Zippy Lemon Dressing.  How pretty!

Arugula, Dried Cherry, and Wild Rice with a Zippy Lemon Dressing

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

for a change, some kale

blackened shrimp kale caesar salad

 

Food on Friday ~ Summer Salads

create healthy habits, not restrictions and rules

It’s hot, it’s sunny, it’s time for a cool drink and a fabulous salad.   After all this self-isolation, comfort eating, and processed food it’s time to eat more fresh fruit and vegetables.  And we all know that salads are brilliant at this time of year.  Preferably eaten in the sunshine and fresh air.

This quick, healthy arugula salad with lemon balsamic dressing is from Erin Clarke, at Well Plated by Erin.  It’s listed as a side dish, but I think many of us would be happy to have this for an al-fresco lunch, maybe with some salmon or chicken added.

Arugula Salad

This is fabulous from The Bojon Gourmet; vegan caprese salad with peaches and arugula.  Here a vegan mozzarella is used, but if you don’t want to be so strict you could choose an alternative.  BTW, I love heirloom tomatoes.

Vegan Caprese Salad with Peaches & Arugula

And now for something completely different from Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats; panzanella with marinated chickpeas and chimchurri.  Bread in a salad, now that is different!

Panzanella with Marinated Chickpeas and Chimchurri

Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower has a recipe for heirloom tomato soba noodle salad, and as I already said I like heirloom tomatoes.

Heirloom Tomato Soba Noodle Salad

Trust Amanda at Chez le Reve Francais to come up with something decadent; an asparagus, broccoli, and endamame salad.  Looks deliciously different.

Asparagus Broccoli and Endamame Salad

Finally this week is from Chunghah at Damn Delicious, how about this grilled Greek chicken salad, served with tzatziki dressing?

Grilled Greek Chicken Salad

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

a Mediterranean Salad

from Heather Christo

Food on Friday ~ Lazy Summer

roll out those lazy hazy crazy days of summer

So, what is it?  Spend the days isolated in lockdown?  Or do we get out into the yard, have family over, have friends round, or just enjoy ourselves in the warm summer sunshine?

I guess you all know which end of the spectrum I’d prefer.  But then, at my age I’m not so risk-averse.

Should you wish to try some alfresco dining then I heartily commend these recipes to you.

Since we can’t go travelling the world, there’s a cosmopolitan flavour to the dishes this week.

First up, from Amanda at Chez le Rêve Français, we have this Tuscan roast pork with apples.  I don’t know if you’ve ever been to Tuscany; Florence, Sienna, Pisa…..  but the food there is fabulous.  Amanda captures the atmosphere perfectly with this dish that would be great on any alfresco dining table.

T

Tuscan Roast Pork with Apples

Since you probably don’t want to go trogging off to stand in line at IKEA, I offer you this Swedish meatball pasta, from Chungah at Damn Delicious.

Swedish Meatball Pasta

From semi-professional taco eater Tiffany at Creme de la Crumb here’s a dish of Cajun shrimp and rice, cooked in a skillet, so easy and so delicious.  Great with a salad.  I’ve had a very similar dish in the West Indies, on a beach of silver sand.

Cajun Shrimp and Rice

To go along with any of the dishes this week, or as a fabulous, healthy meal in its own right we have this beautiful Mediterranean Salad from Heather Christo.  She does make good looking dishes.

Mediterranean Salad

Our collection this week comes from Good Housekeeping Magazine their 75 quick summer dinner ideas for easier weeknights ~ weeknights? Hell!  These dishes are great at any time.  From this collection I’ve chosen to feature this grilled Moroccan steak and carrots.  It’s worth getting the spices and doing this properly, you’ll love it!

Grilled Moroccan Steak and Carrots

And for desert, or as an alfresco brunch, we have this blueberry Dutch baby panckake from Andrea at Cooking with a Walflower.  Fantastic with vanilla ice cream.

Blueberry Dutch Baby Pancake

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

blackened shrimp kale Caesar salad

an odd fact,

women like kale much better than guys do

Food on Friday ~ Scallops

you can keep your oysters, but give me Scottish Scallops

Just around the corner from the garret is a fantastic old-fashioned fishmonger ~ well this is an old-fashioned fishing harbour, although because of the European Union we don’t do that much fishing from here at present.  But, this fishmonger is the real deal, they have fresh fish and shellfish you just wouldn’t get at the fish counter in your local supermarket.  They may be slightly pricier, but you get what you pay for, and do these guys know their fish…..

So, this weekend I have a fancy for scallops, and I know the fishmongers usually has great Scottish King Scallops, (a.k.a. great scallop, clam, Couquille St. Jaques).

Now all I need is a great recipe.

Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower has a really nice recipe for pan seared scallops pasta carbonara.  I know this recipe is very fast and very easy, as well as being something you could serve at a posh dinner party.  I love this.

Pan Seared Scallops Pasta Carbonara

Now, from Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest I can offer you these honey butter blackened scallops with herby polenta.  I love that these scallops are just seared in a hot pan with spices, honey, and butter.  Perfect if you just happen to have a skillet in you pan drawer.  Simple, easy, perfect.

Honey Butter Blackened Scallops with Herby Polenta

Next up is Chungah from Damn Delicious with her garlic butter scallop bowls ~ I love the cilantro lime rice and pico de gallo too.  Now that summer is with us, (even here in England), this is a perfect dish for an alfresco luncheon.

Garlic Butter Scallop Bowls

Another dish from Chungah at Damn Delicious; bacon scallops with garlic butter sauce.  I just had to include this recipe because of it’s 3 great components; scallops, bacon, and garlic butter.  What’s not to like?

Bacon Scallops with Garlic Butter Sauce

From Petra at Food Eat Love we have this delicate dish of scallops with mango and spring onion salsa.  Perfect to serve with drinks, and so very, very easy.

Scallops with Mango and Spring Onion Salsa

Last for this week is a collection of 18 scallop recipes from Delicious Magazine.  I’ve chosen to feature this warm salad of pear, scallop, and chorizo.  I think the disparate flavours in this dish will go well together, and you should be able to have it ready in under half-an-hour.

Warm Salad of Pear, Scallop, and Chorizo

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

I don’t think they’re after scallops

Food on Friday ~ Muffins

I’ve been told some people are obsessed with bran muffins

Now I’m not certain what’s going on, but several of the cooks whose blogs I follow have posts about muffins this week.  I looked it up, thinking it was National Muffin Week or something, but no, it’s seems it’s just one of those spooky coincidences that keeps happening for me right now.

National Muffin Day in the USA is actually February 20th.

Two interesting things; #1 here in England we do not eat a lot of English muffins.  #2 I didn’t know there was a second meaning for the word muffin, or stud muffin at any rate.

However, be all that as it may, here are some cool muffin recipes, which I may have to reprise on February 20th, or not.

First up this week we have Heather Christo’s delicious looking almond poppyseed muffins, and being from Heather they are allergen free, vegan, and gluten free.  All I know is they look very yummy.

Almond Poppyseed Muffins

Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower has a recipe for ube mochi muffins.  I have to admit the only bit of that I understand is muffins, but these little cakes look fantastic and I would be interested to try them.

Ube Mochi Muffins

And I thought I should include a recipe for ‘space muffins’ for those of you who would like to ingest their marijuana.  Personally, I cannot see the attraction, but then I have enough of a problem with booze.

Cannabis Muffins

Now for something else completely different we have these pizza muffins from In Dianes Kitchen.  Now that is a good idea for a pre-prepared snack or for something to take to work for lunch.

Pizza Muffins

Erin Clarke, at Well Plated by Erin has a cool collection of healthy muffin recipes.  I very much like the look of her unique muffin recipes, especially the gingerbread apple muffins.  How interesting.

Gingerbread Apple Muffins

Our last collection this week is from delish magazine; 52 muffins to make your morning a little more enjoyable.  From this great collection I’ve chosen to feature the chocolate lover’s chocolate chocolate-chip muffins by our friend Averie Sunshine.

Chocolate Lover’s Chocolate Chocolate-Chip Muffins

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

Food on Friday ~ Cilantro

Cilantro ~ the Devil Herb.

In England ‘Cilantro’ is called ‘Coriander’, which is the word Americans use for just the dried seeds of the plant.  Funny, in England we say ‘Coriander Seeds’.  The difference arises because ‘Cilantro’ is a Spanish word, and there a big Hispanic influence in the USA.  Here, just about the only Spanish influences are that we beat the Spanish Armada in May 1588, and some of us go there on vacation.

Coriander is also known as Chinese parsley, and can be used both in salads and as a herb in cooking.

Some really great dishes use this adaptable plant, which goes really well with lime.

First today we have this cilantro lime chicken dish from Chungah at Damn Delicious.  The other fabulous seasonings used in this recipe are brown sugar, oregano, and basil.

Cilantro Lime Chicken

A similar dish from Tiffany at Creme de la Crumb.  Except now we have a recipe for one pan creamy cilantro lime chicken and rice.  I really like one pan dishes, but it’s coriander here, not cilantro.  Nice by any name.

One Pan Creamy Cilantro Lime Chicken and Rice

Tiffany at Creme de la Crumb has this super recipe for one pan Spanish chicken and rice, a bold and zesty dish you can make in a half-an-hour.  Strangely, Tiffany calls one of her ingredients coriander, which we now know better as cilantro.

One Pan Spanish Chicken and Rice

Also from Tiffany at Creme de la Crumb, this is interesting; garlic lime shrimp marinade.  And this is a fast marinade that will be ready for the grill in just 15 minutes.  Lots of cilantro.  Tiffany seems to like Cilantro.

Garlic Lime Shrimp Marinade

From San Diego’s Averie Sunshine archive I have chosen this foil pack lime cilantro salmon.   This is so easy to make, and it will be ready to eat in 10 minutes ~ you heard me right, just 10 minutes to produce this wonderful tasty, and very healthy dish.

Foil Pack Lime Cilantro Salmon

Heather Christo has a different kind of cilantro recipe for a warm summer afternoon, this tomato peach and avocado salad with cilantro vinaigrette.  Heather says that this is a beautifully simple 30 minute salad that will totally blow your socks off.  I tend to agree. Nice to take to work for lunch too.

Tomato Peach and Avocado Salad with Cilantro Vinaigrette

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

cilantro lime rice

Food on Friday ~ Healthy Salads

success is the sum of small efforts ~ repeated every single day

To be fit and healthy in body, mind, and spirit, you must set good habits to live by day after day.  Don’t fall for the weird diets nor the food fads, just make an effort to eat well and stay active ~ every single day for the rest of your life.

It might be tempting to believe the falsehoods that tell you that if you but buy this product you can lose 5 lbs in a week, or if you follow that diet you can drop two sizes in a month, but those goals are usually doomed to fail.

To be who you truly want to be includes eating a healthy, balanced diet. I hope that these recipes may help you to do just that.

This is interesting from Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest, Greek watermelon feta salad with basil vinaigrette.

Greek Watermelon Feta Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

From Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower we have another cool salad dish, this is a garlic shrimp avocado saladAvocado is another of those great superfoods.

Garlic Shrimp Avocado Salad

Amanda at Chez le Rêve Français has an interesting carrot and celeriac remoulade, which in my ignorance I would have called a salad.  The remoulade part is actually an easy sauce.  You can make this dish in just about 15 minutes, and it would make a great lunch, maybe with some chicken or tuna.

Carrot and Celeriac Remoulade

This best easy Italian green salad comes from Tiffany at Creme de la Crumb.  One could also add some chicken, or mozzarella, or chickpeas to this dish to make it more of an entree.

Best Easy Italian Green Salad

This Tartiflette is an utterly fabulous French dish from Petra at Food Eat Love.  I believe that the picture speaks for itself.

Tartiflette

Our recipe collection this week is from Cookie + kate who have 45 vegetarian recipes that pack well for lunch.  Or you should really check out their total library of pack for lunch recipes.  I think that is awesome!  I have chosen to feature their roasted cauliflower and farro salad with feta and avocado.

Roasted Cauliflower and Farro Salad with Feta and Avocado

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

garlic butter shrimp zucchini noodles

Food on Friday ~ Memorial Day Weekend

Happy Friday, let the long weekend begin.

This Monday is Memorial Day in the USA, and late Spring Bank Holiday in the UK, which means we all get a long weekend.  The weather should be good, so it’s a perfect time for some al-fresco dining.

Enjoy these cool recipes.

From Tiffany at Creme de la Crumb we have a recipe for one pan creamy cilantro lime chicken and rice.  I really like one pan dishes, but it’s coriander here, not cilantro.  Nice by any name.

One pan Creamy Cilantro Lime Chicken and Rice

This is interesting from The Flourishing Foodie, pasta with a tomato vodka cream sauce.  I’ve heard of vodka pasta sauces before, but I’ve never tried one ~ maybe it’s time that I did.

Pasta with a Tomato Vodka Cream Sauce

If you like salmon, then try this recipe for honey mustard grilled salmon with avocado basil sauce posted by Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest.  Perfect for Memorial Day.  Here in England we have a public hiliday on May 27th too, but it’s called Spring Bank Holiday ~ how boring.

Honey Mustard Grilled Salmon with Avocado Basil Sauce

Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower has this wonderful dish; pan seared scallops pasta carbonara.  This would be great to serve to a few friends on any holiday.

Pan Seared Scallops Pasta Carbonara

I like recipe collections, and I’m pretty certain that you do too.  Ergo from Delish we have 40 recipes for the perfect Memorial Day BBQ ~ including this fabulous recipe for grilled ranch potatoes.

Grilled Ranch Potatoes

And finally for this week 65 Memorial Day recipes for your holiday weekend barbecue, from Country Living.  I especially like this sweet-and-smoky cedar-planked salmon ~ and if you shop now you can probably get a suitable plank for Monday.

Sweet and Smoky Cedar Planked Salmon

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

you can buy grilling planks from Amazon

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