Fresh blueberry pie

Fresh blueberry pie

This pie is brought to you by my parents, who drove to Minnesota for our wedding with a 5 quart pail of freshly-picked blueberries and the gift of a Kitchenaid stand mixer (thanks, mom and dad!).

I don’t have a lot to say about this pie, except that it’s delicious and fairly simple to make. I mixed the pie crust in the Kitchenaid, and then put the filling together while the dough was chilling in the fridge. This pie does need to cool for about 2 hours after baking, so it pays to plan ahead with this recipe.

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Carrot, sausage, and rib stew

Carrot, sausage, and rib stew

Michael made this simple and delicious stew for lunch today when we finally cleaned out our fridge after returning home from our honeymoon. We found an abundance of celery about to go bad, and 4 already-opened bags of baby carrots — and so immediately thought stew.

This delicious stew takes a couple hours to simmer on the stove, and so it would also be a perfect recipe to cook in a crockpot on a busy day. Michael and I enjoyed the hearty combination of flavors from the bratwurst, pork ribs, and shiitake mushrooms. We served this simple lunch with rye toast and baby dill pickles, and recommend that you give it a try too!

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Provencal stuffed peppers

Provencal stuffed peppers

A couple months ago, Michael and I stopped by a Barnes and Nobles bookstore on our way home from the mall. In the entrance-way, we found several cookbooks with enticing recipes pictured on their covers. I selected the vegetarian cookbook, which boasted over 300 recipes, and proudly brought it home.

Today I finally made the first recipe out of it — which was, in fact, the recipe pictured on the cover. These stuffed peppers are filled with delicious vegetables, and make a simple, light summer meal. If you have a garden, this would be a perfect way to use some of its bounty. Michael and I served the peppers with a grilled bratwurst, rice, and homemade applesauce.

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Beef stroganoff

Beef stroganoff

When Michael returned from a conference in Spain this past weekend, he mentioned that he had eaten stroganoff while he was there. While stroganoff is by no means a Spanish dish (it’s actually Russian), it did remind him of how much he liked it. My knowledge of stroganoff, on the other hand, was limited to the Hamburger Helper variety. So Michael decided that we had better make the real thing.

Just as he promised, the beef stroganoff we made was delicious. Not only that, but it’s a simple recipe made with common ingredients. The hardest part is patiently waiting for it to simmer on the stove while you’re smelling its delicious aroma. Next time, we think that julienned red and green peppers would make a tasty addition.

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Plantain-stuffed chicken and ham roulades with plantain fries

Plantain-stuffed chicken and ham roulades with plantain fries

After being out of town visiting family and soon-to-be family for a couple weeks, I was ready to get back in the kitchen and cook up something delicious. So I told Michael that I’d make him anything he wanted for dinner last night, and when we met after work to go grocery shopping at Whole Foods, he had the recipe for these tropically-flavored roulades from My Gourmet Connection in hand.

The recipe itself is simple but delicious–it looks far more complicated than it is to make. I did halve it, as I was just cooking for the two of us, but I other than that I followed the recipe. While frying up the chicken, I breaded and fried the leftover plantain, along with a sliced tomato, in the remaining egg and bread crumbs to create a quick vegetable side dish.

The verdict? These simple roulades are delicious — Michael told me it was the best homemade meal he’d had in a long time. The crispy plantain fries provide a wonderful contrast to the tender plantain filling in the chicken roulades. Served with a leafy side salad, it’s a perfect weekend meal that I will surely be making again.

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Oven-roasted garlic and rosemary sweet potatoes

Oven-roasted garlic and rosemary sweet potatoes
Oven-roasted garlic and rosemary sweet potatoes

This simple and delicious sweet potato recipe is a recent discovery of mine — and it’s so good that I’ve made it at least once a week since.

I found a recipe for roasted potatoes in Michael’s Betty Crocker cookbook a couple weeks ago, and fully intended to follow the recipe. But then I opened the cupboard door and saw some sweet potatoes. A few modifications and thirty minutes later, this savory side dish flavored with rosemary, thyme, and roasted garlic came out of the oven.

I served this simple side dish with ham and cheese grits, fried andouille and red peppers, and a salad. It was a hit with both myself and Michael! Try this delicious dish for yourself by following the simple recipe below:

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Steamy ham and cheese grits

Steamy ham and cheese grits

What can we say about grits other than, “they’re pretty ‘grit’ “? Many moons ago, before this long and cold winter came and overstayed its welcome (it’s still here!), Jane and I were reading recipes online and somehow got on the topic of grits. “What are these crazy ‘grit’ things, and how do they taste?”, we wondered. Being the “good northerners” that we were, we proceeded to mock them and spread nasty rumors about how we’ve heard that they’re something like oatmeal. Boy, were we ever wrong.

Grits, my friends, are an amazing and versatile dish made from crushed, dried corn kernels that can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They can also be mixed with cheese, meat, and vegetables to contend as a main dish in their own right, guaranteed to stick to your ribs and provide you with that good ole “southern comfort” feeling. After making and eating grits, we repented of our ignorant northerner ways, and invited grits into our home as a family recipe. Since that time, we have begun to experiment by using grits as a base for amazing main dishes, such as this recipe here.

To make our delicious steamy ham and cheese grits, you will need the list of ingredients below, an 8″x4″ meatloaf pan (nonstick works best), and an oven preheated to 350 degrees. You may find that an 8″x4″ pan does not make nearly enough of these delicious grits (we never have leftovers with this size). In that case, you can double the recipe for an 8″x8″ pan (this also fits well in a 9″x9″), or triple the recipe for a 9″x13″ pan of these steamy grits.

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Delicious BBQ turkey chickpea chili

Delicious BBQ turkey chickpea chili

This BBQ turkey chili recipe is one of my most famous discoveries, and it is an honor to be able to share it on this blog. Jane and I really love this delicious turkey chili dish on rice, and are thrilled to “gobble” down the leftovers each time we make it.

This legendary recipe was discovered in the dead of a Minnesota winter when it was too cold to brave the outdoors and risk our lives to buy fresh groceries at the store. We scoured the freezer and pantry in our famished state for any sort of items we could use to make a hearty dish of satisfying sustenance. Ever since that fateful moment, this dish has been a legend, and has been enjoyed by us many a time in both times of few and times of plenty.

In order to make this mouth-watering, savory, and delicious BBQ turkey chickpea chili on rice, you will need the following list of ingredients, a large frying pan, and a crockpot (optional).

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Savory turkey burgers on flatbread topped with onions, mushrooms, and Dubliner cheese

Savory turkey burgers on flatbread

After reading this turkey burger recipe on Crepes of Wrath several months ago, I bookmarked it and then promptly forgot about it — until last Friday, when I was searching for some dinner inspiration online.

These turkey burgers were absolutely delicious. I modified several of the ingredients to the what I had on hand, and since we didn’t have buns or bread, I used our pizza dough recipe to make flatbread instead.

The pita-like breads were the perfect complement to the juicy, savory turkey burgers, which we topped with Dubliner cheese and caramelized onions and mushrooms. Served alongside a simple spinach salad of carrots, cheese, pistachios, and raisins, it’s a meal that we will definitely be repeating in the future.

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Sausage and rice stuffed red peppers

Sausage and rice stuffed red peppers

I’ve always been intrigued by recipes for stuffed peppers, though I’ve never made them. So, last weekend I decided enough was enough — and planned to make stuffed green peppers.

Last Sunday, Michael and I ended up spending a leisurely afternoon with friends at an antique show at the HarMar Mall in Roseville. While there, Michael went to Cub Foods for me to buy a couple green peppers to stuff. He came back with 3 red peppers instead — they were on sale for $1 each! So naturally, we then returned to the store together and bought even more of them, and my plans were changed to stuffed red peppers.

Well, it turns out that my first attempt at stuffed peppers was quite the successful attempt, despite my approach of using as many leftovers as I could find in the fridge. By using leftover rice in the recipe, total prep + cooking time is an easy 45 minutes. The filling in this recipe makes enough to fill 3 peppers, halved lengthwise, though I only stuffed 2 peppers and saved the rest of the filling to use later.

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