Kate's Cuisine

Feb 05 2016

Grilled Cheese with Tomato Jam and Carmalized Onions

Grilled Cheese with Tomato Jam and Carmalized Onions

Earlier this week I gave you a recipe for tomato jam, as well as a few suggestions on how and where to use it. I have used my batch of tomato jam on a few different things, but this grilled cheese sandwich is by far my favourite. It may take a few extra steps than a standard grilled cheese, but it’s so worth it, and it stills comes together in no time.

  • 2 slices white bread $0.28
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided $0.24
  • 2 tablespoons tomato jam $0.26
  • 1 onion, sliced $0.47
  • 2 slices crispy cooked bacon $0.60
  • 1 slice Swiss cheese $0.50

Total cost $2.35

1.) Place 2 tablespoons of butter in a medium-sized saucepan set over medium-low heat. When melted, add onions and stir to thoroughly coat. Allow onions to cook slowly for 10 – 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are very soft and have carmalized, turning brown throughout.

2.) Using the remaining butter, butter one side of each slice of bread. Place the bread in a frying pan set over medium heat, butter-side down.

3.) Spread the tomato jam evenly over each slice of bread. On one slice, place the Swiss cheese, carmalized onions, and the 2 slices of bacon. Top with the other slice of bread.

4.) Grill the sandwich for a few minutes until one side is brown and crispy. Flip and grill the other side for another few minutes, until that side is also golden, the cheese is melted, and the sandwich is hot throughout.

5.) Remove the grilled cheese sandwich from the heat and allow to rest for a few minutes before slicing in half.

6.) Serve and enjoy!

Feb 01 2016

Tomato Jam

Tomato Jam

I would’ve never thought to put tomatoes and jam together until tomato jam showed up on one of our feature menus at work. And to be honest, even then I was a little hesitant to try it. Once I did though, I could not believe how good it was – or why I hadn’t thought of it before. The natural sweetness of the tomatoes works beautifully in the jam, but a slow simmer and the addition of other ingredients makes it very “jammy” and not at all like tomato paste (which I have to admit, is what I first envisioned.)

When I asked the girl that made it for the recipe she said, “Grab a potful of tomatoes, lots of brown sugar, and simmer on very low heat for two days while stirring occasionally.” I had some questions. I mean, two days? Does that include overnight? (Apparently it does.) I just didn’t see it working. What if you had to leave your house? Everyone knows you can’t leave the stove on and just walk out the door.  So instead of taking the chance, I’ve played around with tomatoes and sugar a little bit and have come up with a tomato jam that is delicious, and perfectly safe to make!

  • 2 pounds tomatoes (Romas are best, but any tomato will work) $2.80
  • 1 cup sugar $0.19
  • Juice from 2 limes $1.00
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced $0.15
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves $0.07
  • 1 teaspoon salt $0.01
  • 1 tablespoon red pepper flakes $0.21

Total cost $4.43

1.) Combine all ingredients in a heavy medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring often.

2.) Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally until mixture has consistency of thick jam, about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning. Cool completely before refrigerating. Chilled jam will keep for at least two weeks.

3.) Serve on sandwiches, scone, or wherever you want delicious jam, and enjoy!

Jan 22 2016

Hamburger Soup

Hamburger Soup

Hamburger soup is one of my favourite kinds of soup. That’s mostly because it’s tomato-based (yum!) but also because it’s so chock-full of other good stuff that it makes a hearty meal all on its own.

  • 1 pound ground beef $5.69
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes, with juices $2.58
  • 2 cups beef stock $1.00
  • 1 carrot, peeled and sliced thinly or diced $0.17
  • 1 onion, diced $0.47
  • 1 stalk celery, diced $0.13
  • 1 green bell pepper $0.71
  • 1 red bell pepper $1.00
  • 1/2 package penne pasta $0.49
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme $0.50
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce $0.08
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce $0.18
  • Salt $0.01
  • Pepper $0.01

Total cost $13.02
Cost per serving $2.17

1.) Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. When boiling, add pasta and cook for about 7 minutes, just until the pasta is al dente. Rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process and set aside.

2.) Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat. Add the ground beef, carrots, celery, and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the beef is browned, about 8 minutes. If there is a lot of fat in the pot, drain and return meat and vegetables to the pot.

3.) Add the green and red pepper and cook for about 2 minutes, just until they have softened and started to sweat.

4.) Add the diced tomatoes, beef stock, fresh thyme, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil then set to simmer over medium-low heat for about 30 minutes to allow all the flavours to combine. When finished simmering, taste and season with salt and pepper.

5.) Add as much penne pasta as you’d like at this point. If you’re going to be serving the entire pot of soup immediately, add all of it. If you’re going to be keeping some for leftovers, I like to leave some pasta out of the soup. This will prevent the noodles from absorbing the stock and becoming bloated and soggy. Sometimes, I like to even just place a bit of pasta into soup bowls first, then ladle the hot soup over. This will heat the pasta, and also save any noodles from being left in the pot if and when it’s placed in the fridge.

6.) Serve and enjoy!

Jan 20 2016

Anne’s Meatballs

Annes Meatballs

If you don’t know anything about her, you might think the most notable thing about Anne Burrell is her smart mouth and her blonde punk hairstyle. You’d never guess that she graduated from the Culinary Institute of America and then from the Italian Culinary Institute for Foreigners before she went on to cook in some of the fanciest restaurants in New York. You’d never guess this about Burrell because she’s so relatable, so down-to-earth. And so is her food, as she demonstrates with these meatballs.

  • Extra-virgin olive oil $0.02
  • 1 large onion, cut into 1/4″ dice $0.47
  • Salt $0.01
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped $0.02
  • Pinch crushed red pepper $0.05
  • 1/2 pound ground beef $2.85
  • 1/2 pound ground veal $3.85
  • 1/2 pound ground pork $1.42
  • 2 large eggs $0.40
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan $2.99
  • 1/4 cup Italian parsley, finely chopped $0.12
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs $0.42
  • 1/2 cup water Free!

Total cost $12.62
Cost per serving $3.15

1.) Coat a large saute pan with olive oil. Add the onions and bring to a medium-high heat. Season the onions generously with salt and cook 5 to 7 minutes. The onions should be very soft and aromatic, but have no colour. Add the garlic and the crushed red pepper and saute for another 1 to 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow to cool.

2.) In a large bowl combine the meats, eggs, Parmesan, parsley, and the bread crumbs. Squish the mixture with your hands to thoroughly combine. Add the onion mixture and season generously with salt before squishing and mixing some more. Add the water and do one final good mix.

3.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Shape the meat into meatballs the size of your choice.

4.) Coat a large saute pan with olive oil and bring to a medium-high heat. Brown the meatballs on all sides. Place them on a cookie sheet and bake them in a preheated oven for about 15 minutes or until the meatballs are cooked all the way through.

5.) Serve, with marinara sauce or on their own, and enjoy!

Jan 15 2016

Perfectly Pan-Roasted Chicken

Perfectly Pan Roasted Chicken Whether you’re using them as a main course, or you just need juicy chicken for tacos or a salad, there’s more than one way to cook a good bird. Pan-roasting is a quicker way to cook chicken, and I find that because you have so much more control over it, it doesn’t dry out as easily. Any cut works for pan-roasted chicken, and taking or leaving the skin is also up to you. When everything is working right in my world I keep a couple of pan-roasted chicken breasts in my fridge for quick suppers and sandwiches.

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts $11.99
  • 2 tablespoons butter $0.12
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil $0.06
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme $0.45
  • Salt $0.01
  • Pepper $0.01

Total cost $12.64
Cost per serving $3.16

1.) Pat chicken as dry as you can with paper towel and generously sprinkle with salt and pepper.

2.) Melt the butter and the oil together in a cast-iron skillet set over medium heat. When hot, add the chicken, skin-side down. Yes, I realize this is a skinless chicken recipe, but the side where the skin is found should be placed down in the pan first. Cook chicken on this side for about 10 minutes.

3.) Flip the chicken breasts over. The skin should be crispy and golden. Continue cooking skin-side up until the chicken is cooked through, about 15 – 20 minutes. Some like to place a lid over the chicken at this point to help the chicken cook more quickly, but this can wreck all your hard work and can make the skin soggy and rubbery.

4.) Once the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit and juices no longer run pink, remove chicken from pan and let rest for 5 minutes.

5.) Serve and enjoy!

Jan 14 2016

Best Ever Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon Rolls

For the past few years, cinnamon rolls have been our traditional Christmas breakfast. Well, except for last year when they completely flopped, sending my mom out in a frantic panic on Christmas Eve to find something suitable for the next morning. That’s why this year, I needed a new recipe. This one has cinnamon baked right into the dough, and they’re so soft when they come out of the oven (and for hours after), that they practically melt in your mouth. We prefer pecans over raisins, but fill yours with whatever filling you like best and they’ll be delicious. These really are the best cinnamon rolls. Ever.

But the taste might not even be the greatest thing about these cinnamon rolls. The fact that you can prepare them the day before and then let  them rise in your fridge overnight makes them a quick breakfast any day of the year.

For the cinnamon rolls:

  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling $0.49
  • 1 package rapid-rise yeast $0.33
  • 1/3 cup sugar $0.06
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature, beaten $0.40
  • 1 cup milk $0.28
  • 4 tablespoons butter, plus more for greasing pan $0.30
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon $0.30
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt $0.01

For the filling:

  • 1 1/4 cup packed brown sugar $0.25
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon $0.90
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg $0.08
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt $0.01
  • 6 tablespoons butter, room temperature $0.36
  • 1 cup pecans, chopped and lightly toasted $4.99

For the glaze:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar $0.33
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons milk $0.02
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract $0.05
  • Pinch salt $0.01

Total cost $9.17
Cost per cinnamon roll $0.57

1.) Start by making the dough. Place flour, yeast and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until well combined. Add eggs and mix on low to combine.

2.) In a small saucepan, heat milk, butter, and cinnamon over medium-low heat until butter is melted and mixture is warm, but not hot. (I stick my very clean finger into the mixture and when I can only hold it there for a couple of seconds, I know it’s ready.)

3.) Add warm milk mixture and salt to stand mixer. Beat on low speed for 2 to 3 minutes, occasionally scraping down the sides of the bowl. Beat on medium speed for 2 to 3 minutes, until the dough comes together. It will be very sticky.

4.) Place dough onto lightly floured surface and just bring it together. Do not knead at this point, you just want to bring it into a ball.

5.) Place a teaspoon of olive oil into the bottom of a large bowl. Place the dough in and turn to coat in oil. Cover with a tea towel and let rise in a warm place for about 2 hours.

6.) While dough is rising, butter two 9-inch cake pans, then fit with parchment, and butter the parchment. In a bowl, combine the cinnamon, brown sugar, nutmeg and salt for the filling and set aside.

7.) After the dough has risen, punch it down lightly and transfer it to a lightly floured surface. Roll out into a rectangle, approximately 16″ x 12″. Spread the butter over the dough, leaving a 1/2 border on the longer sides. Sprinkle the filling mixture even over the butter, then sprinkle pecans over top.

8.) Starting at the long edge closest to you, roll dough up to the other longer edge, pinching it gently underneath as you do. Once you’ve rolled the cinnamon rolls into a log or loaf, cut the dough crosswise into 6 even pieces. I do this by first cutting it in half so that I have two pieces. I then cut those two pieces into half so that I have four pieces, and so on until I have 16 pieces. This will help you create even pieces.

9.) Divide the rolls between the cake pans, arranging them cut-side up. It’s okay if the rolls are touching, but don’t cram too many into one, as they will still rise in the fridge.

10.) Cover rolls with plastic wrap or a clean tea towel and place them into the fridge for an overnight rise.

11.) In the morning, remove rolls from the fridge and allow them to stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes.

12.) Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Once oven is hot, bake rolls until the tops are golden, about 25 minutes.

13.) While rolls are baking, prepare the glaze. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, milk, vanilla and salt.

14.) When rolls come out of oven, allow them to cool for 10 minutes. Then drizzle glaze over top while cinnamon rolls are still warm.

15.) Serve and enjoy!

Jan 04 2016

Hamburger Buns

Hamburger Buns

Just like any time you bake fresh bread, homemade hamburger buns are so much better than the store-bought kind. Mine came out a bit more like slider buns than they did hamburger buns, but luckily we were having beef on a bun, so size really didn’t matter. And while the sesame seeds aren’t completely necessary, I do think they give the buns an added touch.

  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar $0.02
  • 1 cup warm water Free!
  • 1 package dry active yeast $0.33
  • 1 cup milk $0.28
  • 2 tablespoons butter $0.12
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt $0.02
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour $0.70
  • 1 egg yolk $0.20
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds $0.96

Total cost $2.63
Cost per bun $0.16

1.) In large bowl, dissolve 1 teaspoon of the sugar in warm water. Sprinkle yeast over top; let stand until frothy, about 10 minutes.

2.) Meanwhile, in saucepan, heat milk, remaining sugar, butter and salt over low heat just until butter is melted. Transfer mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment. Let cool until the mixture is lukewarm, then add yeast mixture to it.

3.) Add 4 cups of the flour, 1 cup at a time, to the bowl of the stand mixer while running it at medium speed. Remove the bowl from the mixer and, using a wooden spoon, mix in the remaining flour until a stiff dough has formed.

4.) Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead, adding more flour if necessary, until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning to grease all over. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm area until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours.

5.) Punch the dough down and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll into a log and divide into 16 pieces. Shape each into a ball by stretching the dough on top down towards the bottom, and then pinching and sealing. When finished rolling hamburger buns, place them 2 inches apart on a baking sheet and flatten slightly. Cover and let rise again until it’s doubled in size, about 1 hour.

6.) Whisk egg yolk with 1 tablespoon of water and brush gently over the tops before sprinkling with sesame seeds.

7.) Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and then bake the hamburger buns for 20 to 25 minutes, until the buns are golden on top and sound hollow when tapped. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool.

8.) Serve and enjoy!

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