Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Ricotta Day 2: Ricotta-Tomato Toasts


These kind of remind me of high class pizzas - tomato and ricotta on crunchy french or italian bread.

  • - 4 slices crusty bread (or more depending on the size; we used little ones)
  • - 1/2 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
  • - 1/4 cup tomato slices
  • - olive oil
  • - Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


1. Lightly toast bread.

2. Spread each toast slice with 2 tablespoons ricotta.

3. Put tomato over the ricotta. Drizzle the toasts with a small amount olive oil and sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

4. Broil 1 to 2 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly.

What we thought:

From someone who doesn't care for tomatoes, these were yummy. And they were so cute! Not super filling though - better suited for appetizers or finger food.

I snapped a picture because I thought they were so cute!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Ricotta Day 1: Spinach and ricotta rigatoni


Here's what the recipe I found said : "A quick take on spinach and ricotta cannelloni, this baked pasta is fast because there's nothing to stuff. The filling is simply tossed with cooked rigatoni that's then topped with fontina and baked to a golden brown. "


  • 1 pound(s) rigatoni
  • 3 tablespoon(s) olive oil
  • 1 package(s) (10-ounce) frozen spinach, thawed
  • 2 cup(s) (about 1 pound) ricotta
  • 5 tablespoon(s) grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 teaspoon(s) grated nutmeg
  • 3/4 teaspoon(s) salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon(s) fresh-ground black pepper

  1. Heat the oven to 450°F. Oil a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.
  2. In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the rigatoni until almost done, about 12 minutes. Drain. Put the pasta in the prepared baking dish and toss with 1 tablespoon of the oil.
  3. Meanwhile, squeeze as much of the water as possible from the spinach. Put the spinach in a food processor and puree with the ricotta, 3 tablespoons of the Parmesan, the nutmeg, salt, and pepper.
  4. Stir the spinach mixture into the pasta. Top with the remaining Parmesan. Drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons oil over the top. Bake the pasta until the top is golden brown, 15 to 20 minute
What we thought:

Super yummy, super quick, and once again sneaking spinach in where you can't really taste it. Originally the recipe called for Fontina cheese as well, but I wouldn't really use it for anything else so I skipped it. Maybe it would've been better with it; even though it was very good some could potentially find it a little on the bland side. 4 stars!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Week 2: Ricotta

Unfortunately, the last couple feta recipes were not so great. In fact, one was so horrible we threw it out without even eating it! This coming week though we'll be eating Ricotta. I love ricotta cheese more than just about anything, so I'm very excited!

Here's my grocery list:

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- rigatoni

- spinach

- ricotta (the big container!)

- spaghetti sauce

- asparagus

- crusty bread

- tomatoes

Monday, February 8, 2010

Feta Day 2: Penne, Broccoli, Feta, and Beans

This is a super healthy and very filling dish.



- 1 lb Whole wheat Penne
- 1 broccoli crown
- 1 can beans
- finely crumbled feta for top (however much you think tastes right!)
- parmesan, salt and pepper, all to taste
- olive oil


1. Steam broccoli and cook pasta.
2. Toss together broccoli, beans (drained and rinsed), penne, and feta
3. Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a pan or wok, then add above mixture into pan. Cook for a few minutes, until all ingredients are hot and feta is melted
4. Add salt, pepper and parmesan


Strong points for being super healthy, quick to prepare, and filling. We had our dinner about 10 minutes from breaking the ingredients out of the fridge, and wound up having leftovers for another dinner or lunch. 3 stars, because I found it a little bland at first (although the taste quickly grew on me!).

Pros: Very quick, super healthy, leftovers!

Cons: not the most tasteful dish, but definitely wasn't bad!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Feta Day 1: Spanakopita


If you've never had spanakopita before, you're missing out. If you have, it's probably been way different everytime. There are a lot of variations on it, and this one is amazing and very easy!

Basically, this recipe will make about 10 servings. Each one will look similar to an eggroll, with a flaky, layered crust and a spinach filling. If you don't like spinach, don't be dissuaded - I hate spinach and found these wonderful!


- about 1/4 a package of phyllo dough
- melted butter (about 1/8 cup)

- 3/4 cup packed fresh spinach (you can use about 1/3 cup frozen spinach instead. Make sure the spinach is defrosted and drained!)
- 1/8 lbs feta
- 1/4 onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 egg
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- salt

1. Remove phyllo dough from freezer to defrost (it says to do this about 2 hours before so it isn't too brittle to use, but I neglected to do this and took it out right before using it).

2. Preheat the oven to 400F.

3. In a food processor, add together spinach, chopped onion, and garlic. Process this until all the ingredients are chopped into small pieces.

4. Add the rest of the ingredients (aside from the phyllo dough and the butter) and process until smooth and pretty well incorporated.

4. Carefully unroll the phyllo dough, which tears really easily. However, it doesn't really matter that much if it tears; you'll be layering it anyway. Make sure you have the melted butter on hand, and a pastry brush if you have one. Lay out one sheet of phyllo and lightly brush butter on it - you don't want it soaking. Repeat this until you have a layer of three sheets on top of each other

5. Put a dab of the spinach filling in the middle. Roll the phyllo until you have a tube of the dough with the spinach inside, then fold ends to seal. This probably sounds more complicated than it is; think of egg rolls while you do this and it shouldn't be too difficult to figure out.

6. As you do this, you'll want to put the finished rolls on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper (or sprayed very well with a cooking spray). Once you have them all on, brush the remaining butter of the tops of the rolls.

7. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until they are golden brown (once again, think of eggrolls).8. Brush the tops again with a bit of melted butter. Place in the oven for 20 min or until golden brown. Let cool for about 5 min. Serve warm. Enjoy!


We loved these! They were buttery crisp, and crunchy on the outside and the filling was flavorful and rich. I found them to be surprisingly filling, too. 4 stars out of 5, simply because it is hard to make them all look uniform and pretty!

Delicious, primary ingredient is spinach!

Slightly tricky to assemble, no leftovers :(

Saturday, February 6, 2010

What we're eating- Week 1: Feta Cheese

I made up my first list (a couple weeks ago; there will be a posting delay in these!) centered around feta cheese. I have many recipes that I've wanted to try using feta, but I can't justify spending $5 on a tub of it when I'll only use it for one thing before it goes bad. Not this week - We'll be eating feta every day! See below for my grocery list. This has almost everything in the recipes I used except for the basic stuff I already had.
Keep checking for recipes and reviews - there will be a new one each day.

Grocery List:
- Feta
- Whole Wheat Penne
- Broccoli
- Can of Beans (butter, pinto, white...whatever's cheapest)
- Frozen Spinach
- 1 package Phyllo pastry sheets (sometimes called Filo, look in the refrigerated section)


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