Tag Archives: comfort food

Easy, Fluffy Cornbread

24 Nov

The BusyFoodie is back! It’s been a while since I posted anything, but you know….life gets in the way. My husband and I bought our first home, and we took a trip to Hawaii – a post on where to eat in Hawaii is coming soon! (hopefully). I finally found a bit of time to post a recipe. For Thanksgiving, we made a pan of delicious, fluffy cornbread. It’s great as a side dish, or you can bake some in mini muffin tins for a basket of bite-sized appetizers.

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Ingredients

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups milk (I use skim or 1%)
  • 2/3 cup canola oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 7 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp salt

Directions

  1. Soak cornmeal in milk for 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 400F.
  3. Mix all dry ingredients (except cornmeal) in a large bowl.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine oil and eggs.
  5. Grease a 9 x 13 inch pan.
  6. Mix together all ingredients, and then pour into the greased pan.
  7. Bake in oven until the top is golden brown, and a knife inserted in the center of the cornbread comes out clean, about 22 minutes.

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Chicken Noodle Soup from Scratch

19 Feb

Here’s the chicken noodle soup where I used my chicken stock made from scratch. Yeah, that’s a lot of work. But you can skip making stock from scratch if you want, and just use some high-quality store-bought stuff.  We both thought the soup tasted delicious! Can’t wait to make it again!

chicken noodle soup

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups chicken
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 carrots, cut ½ inch thick
  • 2 ribs celery, cut ½ inch thick
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 4 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • 8 oz. extra wide egg noodles
  • salt, pepper, fresh parsley to taste

 

Directions

  1. Cook chicken, put in separate bowl
  2. Brown onion, carrots, celery, garlic, thyme, bay leaf, about 6 minutesdsc05967
  3. Add chicken stock and bring to a boil
  4. Add noodles, simmer until tender, about 5 minutes
  5. Add chicken back into soup
  6. Add salt and pepper to taste
  7. Serve, sprinkle with parsley if desired

 

Warm Up With French Onion Soup

21 Feb

It’s still cold in New England…which means it’s time for soup! I’ve always wanted to make French onion soup, but held back because I don’t own broiler-proof soup crocks. As it turns out, a toaster oven’s broiler will do the trick (another reason why toaster ovens rule!)

DSC01876Because a large part of French onion soup is beef broth, it’s important to use high quality broth, preferably low-sodium (otherwise a bowl of soup might leave you feeling parched). I scoured the grocery stores and found these two lower sodium options:

  • Swanson 50% Less Sodium Beef broth, available in large grocery chains (400 mg sodium per cup broth)
  • More Than Gourmet Beef Culinary Stock, available at Russo’s in Watertown, MA, and online (270 mg per cup broth)

If you can find something like More Than Gourmet, I definitely recommend it – the “Gourmet” really makes a difference. Its ingredients include carrot and celery stocks rather than juices, for example, in addition to veal stock, beef stock, and red wine.

This recipe makes 8-10 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 quarts low sodium beef broth
  • 6 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp white sugar
  • ½ cup cooking sherry
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 baguette
  • 1/2 pound Gruyere or Appenzeller cheese, shredded

Appenzeller cheese is a a fondue cheese like Gruyere and Emmental. It’s a raw cow’s milk cheese from the region of Switzerland. I bought black label (“Extra”) Appenzeller cheese, meaning it’s been aged 6 months or more. It has a strong smell, but its flavour goes really well with onion soup. And it’s easy to cut into with a spoon (no one wants to pull all the cheese off the bread when trying to get a spoonful of French onion soup.)

Directions

  1. Cook onions on medium-high heat in butter until translucent, about 10 minutesDSC01879
  2. Sprinkle in sugar
  3. Reduce heat to medium and cook until onions are caramelized, about 30 minutes
  4. Add garlic and cook 1 additional minute
  5. Stir sherry into the onion mixtureDSC01882
  6. Transfer onion mixture into a slow cooker and pour in beef broth. Stir in thyme and bay leaf. Cover cooker, and cook 4 to 5 hours on HIGH.
    ** Alternatively you can bring the soup to a boil on your stovetop, then reduce to a simmer for 2 hours.
  7. About 10 minutes before serving, preheat the toaster oven’s broiler. Arrange bread slices on a baking sheet.
  8. Broil bread slices until toasted, 1 to 2 minutes per side.
  9. Top each bread slice with cheese and broil until cheese is bubbling, about 3 minutes.
  10. Fill bowls 3/4 full with onion soup and top with bread slices.
  11. Enjoy!

French onion soup

Hipster brunch: Skillet, Columbus

23 Apr

Skillet is a hipster spot  in Columbus’ German Village  that serves “rustic. urban. food.” Yes, with the punctuation. The place is a square room with small black booths, metal chairs like a classy diner, and wooden tables branded with the restaurant’s name. The menu changes daily but you’re sure to find something mouthwatering. We went on a Saturday for brunch, and found comfort foods like poutine, pain perdu, and a grilled cheese sandwich.

Skillet - Huevos rancherosHuevos Rancheros – a fried egg, black beans, cheese, and pulled pork  on two corn tortillas

Veggie pan roastThe Veggie Pan Roast – A  veritable garden of vegetables, including slices of patty pan squash, chanterelle and lobster mushrooms, tomato “gravy,” and topped with a poached egg.

apple galetteHoneycrisp apple galette with hard cider syrup and whipped snowville cream. This was my only disappointment –  it was more like a danish than a galette, and it wasn’t warm. I definitely expected more bang for my buck here.

 

IMAG1504The Final Word: Creative food with fresh ingredients in a simply decorated restaurant.  If you’re a visitor to the Columbus area, the German Village is a great neighborhood to visit, and Skillet should be your go-to brunch spot.

Info: Skillet, 410 East Whittier Street, Columbus, OH, 43206 USA
Skillet, Rustic. Urban. Food. on Urbanspoon

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