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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Zucchini Patties

I'm back! It's been awhile since I've posted. We've were on vacation, and then I have (and still am) canning, freezing, and dehydrating food like crazy. I am up to my ears in peaches, pears, apples, and tomatoes! So if I don't post again for a week, you'll know that I am worn out and stocked with goodness! I hesitated doing all this canning, freezing, and dehydrating. But, I keep telling myself how grateful I will be for it all. It's delicious, cheap (free tomatoes and apples), and makes me feel like I've accomplished something significant. When I'm done maybe I'll post a picture of all my preserves....if you are interested in seeing!

This is a recipe I should have posted towards the beginning of summer so you could be enjoying it (sorry, friends). If your zucchini or your friends zucchini are still growing like crazy here is yet another recipe you must try! Zucchini Patties! Zucchini Patties?!?!? What are those?

Let me tell you just what this recipe is all about. This is a soft n' tender in the middle, lightly crispy on the outside, cheesy, grilled to a golden perfection-y goodness kind of zucchini recipe. The main party of the mixture is grated zucchini, that is accompianed by two of the yummiest cheese on earth (I love mostly all cheese): Mozzarella and Parmesan (this can be the powdered stuff, but I much prefer the real kind....the wedge of all flavor!). I'm not sure I've mentioned my love for Parmesan cheese, you can buy a wedge of it for fairly cheap, and I have on in my fridge at all times. Okay, now I'm getting a little off track.

I probably could eat this as the main dish and eat the whole batch myself! But, these little beauties make an excellent side dish, which is how we like to have them. We like to serve them along side some grilled steak or chicken. (And in case you'd like to hubby has become a grill master, we've been enjoying some rather tender and juicy grilled goodness around these parts!)

Zucchini Patties
Printable Version

Serves about 3 (2 patties per person)

2 cups zucchini, freshly grated
2 eggs, lightly beaten
¼ cup yellow or sweet onion, finely chopped
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated
½ cup Mozzarella cheese, grated
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1 tablespoon butter (to cook them in)

Combine above ingredients, except butter, in a medium size mixing bowl, mix until well blended. Heat a large non-stick skillet or griddle over medium to medium-high heat (depending on how hot your stove gets - you don’t want them to burn). Place 1 tablespoon of butter in skillet/griddle and let it melt. Place ⅓ cup scoops of zucchini mixture on skillet/griddle and cook about 2-3 minutes per side or until golden. When they are done cooking sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

This is a great side dish for grilled chicken or steak!

Recipe Source: slightly adapted from Maureen G.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Chicken & Sausage Jambalaya

If you haven't noticed already from previous posts, I love Mel's Kitchen Cafe. I have been impressed with most every recipe I've made from her site. This dish is no exception. In fact, it's really one of the most unique and tasty meals I've ever had. My husband was raving over the flavor, the meat (chicken & sausage), and the terrific leftovers it made for lunch the next day.
It's a rather easy dish to whip up. Make sure you start bycooking your rice, if you don't have any leftovers to use. As the meat and veggies cook the rice will be done just in time to toss it all together. The recipe calls for Creole or Cajun seasoning. I used Cajun seasoning. I had never used Cajun seasoning before, and bought some special for this dish. I've found a few other recipes that I'll share soon that use it too. I've also used it in ham fried rice. Cajun seasoning is a great combination of flavors: salt, black pepper, thyme, red pepper, paprika, garlic, onion, and celery seed. Ummmmmmm. If you are looking for a dish to please the family, look no further than here! Enjoy.

Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya
Printable Version
Serves about 6

1 pound smoked sausage or kielbasa (chicken or turkey) sausage, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 pound chicken, cut into bite-size pieces
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons butter
1 large yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
3 ribs celery, chopped
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped (can use green but I prefer the flavor and color of a red bell pepper)
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon Creole or Cajun seasoning
1 (10-ounces) can Rotel tomatoes (Mild or Original)
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
2 cups hot, steamed rice

Note: Start cooking the rice while you prepare the rest of the jambalaya so it is ready to add in during the last step.

In a 4-6 quart pot, cook sausage and poultry over medium heat, if you use lean sausage add 1 tablespoon olive oil. Drain the grease (you may only need to do this if you aren't using a lean sausage), scrape the meat onto a plate and set aside. Melt the butter in the same pot. Stir in the flour and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, for one minute. Add the vegetables, basil and Creole (or Cajun) seasoning, and the Rotel tomatoes and sugar. Stir well. Simmer the mixture over low or medium-low heat for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are mostly tender (they'll continue to cook a few minutes longer in the next step). Add the sausage and chicken back to the pot, and cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the chicken broth and simmer 5 minutes longer. Stir in the hot, steamed rice until you achieve your desired consistency.

Recipe Source: Mel’s Kitchen Cafe