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Thursday, September 15, 2011

Apple Parmesan Salad

I adore apples.  Especially this time of year when they are at their peak. Fresh, crisp, delicious!!

This salad is a fabulous way to use some of those incredible apples!  The dressing perfectly compliments the crisp apples and the parmesan adds a bit of "bite" so it's not too sweet.  And the pine nuts add great texture!  It is one of my favorite salad recipes.

I think it would be wonderful served with some seasoned grilled chicken on top for lunch or dinner!


1/2 cup olive oil
2 T. balsamic vinegar
1 T. lemon juice
2 tsp. dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. sugar

Romaine or Baby Salad Greens, chopped
2 medium apples (sweet not tart)
(Gala, Fuji, Ginger Gold, or Golden Delicious)
1/2 cups pine nuts, toasted
4 oz. Parmesan cheese, grated

Whisk together first eight ingredients.  Put chopped lettuce in bowl.  Core, halve, and slice apples and add to the lettuce.  Whisk dressing again and add sparingly to the lettuce and toss.  Sprinkle with pine nuts and Parmesan cheese. Serve remaining dressing on the side.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Sour Cream Noodle Bake

I realize it has been FOREVER since I updated my blog last! I had a baby, and lets just say I haven't had a whole lot of motivation! I am sure many of you can relate :)

I have still been cooking and baking, although not as much as I used to!  I think I have gone thru what I would call a period  of "un-inspiration"! Even though I have been feeling somewhat un-inspired in the kitchen, I have whipped up some great recipes! Most of them have been really easy!  I can't wait to share them with you!

I found this recipe on The Pioneer Woman's blog.  Anything with pasta tends to attract me!  So I gave it a whirl.  I did make a few changes from her recipe.  Basically I added onion to the ground beef and some more spices.

It was really, really tasty! Very Comforting.  

I could imagine it being superb on a cold winter day.  Perhaps you trudged home from school (four miles one way) in four feet of snow, and you enter the front door to the wonderful smell of this in the oven. (That was just an imagined sceneario.  It never happened.  I have never lived in an area that has ever received that much snow!)

Creamy noodles, a lovely "tomatoey-beefy" taste, and a nice sharp cheese. Yum!...This recipe definitely satisfies!! I served it with toasted garlic bread. And green beans.  It was divine.

 These pictures do not do justice.



  • 1-1/4 pound Ground Beef
  • 1 can 15-ounces Tomato Sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • 8 ounces, weight Egg Noodles (5 cups)
  • 1/2 cup Sour Cream
  • 1-1/4 cup Small Curd Cottage Cheese
  • 1/2 cup Sliced Green Onions (less To Taste)
  • 1 cup Grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Brown ground beef in a large skillet. Drain fat, then add tomato sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Stir, then simmer while you prepare the other ingredients.
Cook egg noodles until al dente. Drain and set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine sour cream and cottage cheese. Add plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Add to noodles and stir. Add green onions and stir.
To assemble, add half of the noodles to a baking dish. Top with half the meat mixture, then sprinkle on half the grated cheddar. Repeat with noodles, meat, then a final layer of cheese. Bake for 20 minutes, or until all cheese is melted.
Serve with crusty French bread.

Recipe Notes:  I used NO YOLKS brand egg noodles.  They were great!  While browning the beef, I added about 1/2 cup diced onion.  After beef was cooked through, I sprinkled on Italian Seasoning, Basil, Crushed Red Pepper (just a little), Parsley, and Lawry's All Season.  I also used more than one cup of cheese...maybe more like 2 cups. The cheesier the better :)

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