The Amateur Kitchen http://theamateurkitchen.com From our kitchen, to yours.. Tue, 19 Jan 2016 02:47:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.6.1 Butternut Squash Soup http://theamateurkitchen.com/butternut-squash-soup/ http://theamateurkitchen.com/butternut-squash-soup/#respond Wed, 25 Nov 2015 21:37:18 +0000 http://theamateurkitchen.com/?p=853 One of the best things about the colder months is that you can once again make soup anytime and all the time. This Here’s what you’ll need for this yumminess: 1 Butternut Squash, peeled and cubed 1 Carrot, chopped – We Read More ...

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One of the best things about the colder months is that you can once again make soup anytime and all the time. This

Here’s what you’ll need for this yumminess:

  • 1 Butternut Squash, peeled and cubed
  • 1 Carrot, chopped – We used a Purple Rainbow Carrot but any will do
  • 3-4 Garlic cloves, crushed and quartered
  • 3-4 cups of Water
  • Handful each of fresh Parsley and Dill, chopped
  • To season: 2 teaspoons of Cumin, 1/2 teaspoon of Turmeric and 1.5 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • Sea Salt to taste (about 1.5 teaspoons)
  • Optional: Gluten Free Croutons and Pumpkin Seeds.

Useful Tools

And to make it, here is what you’ll need to do

  • Place the Squash, Garlic and Carrot with 3-4 cups of Water in your Pressure Cooker. The Water only needs to come up to the top of the vegetables as pictured, it doesn’t need to cover them.

  • Cover and cook for 12 minutes once the pressure gauge starts rocking if you’re using the Stove Top Cooker or according to the directions of your Electric Cooker – it should be around the same time.
  • When time is up, allow your cooker to cool – do not release the pressure manually.
  • Once the lid and pressure are released, open the pot and season with the Cumin, Turmeric, Garlic Powder and Salt to taste and blend well. Add water if it seems too thick, 1/2 a cup at a time.
  • Adjust seasoning, stir in the Parley and Dill and bring to a boil then simmer for about 10 minutes.
  • Optional: Top with Croutons and Pumpkin Seeds and serve.

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Mashed Cauliflower http://theamateurkitchen.com/mashed-cauliflower/ http://theamateurkitchen.com/mashed-cauliflower/#respond Wed, 25 Nov 2015 17:54:04 +0000 http://theamateurkitchen.com/?p=844 Here is a super easy alternative to your basic Mashed Potato Side that will sure please those watching their weight, have food sensitivities or allergies as well your picky eaters and those looking for something different. This is what you will need Read More ...

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Here is a super easy alternative to your basic Mashed Potato Side that will sure please those watching their weight, have food sensitivities or allergies as well your picky eaters and those looking for something different.

This is what you will need for 2-4 servings:

  • 1 head of Cauliflower, cut into chunks small enough to fit into your steamer, but not too small. Discard the stem and leaves. Do not substitute for frozen Cauliflower
  • 1-3 tablespoons of butter. We used a healthier soy and dairy free variety, but any other will do.
  • 1-2 cloves of Garlic, chopped – The Garlic can become overpowering very quickly with this recipe – yes, even if you love Garlic. Make sure to add it gradually and taste before adding more.
  • Handful of fresh Parsley, chopped.
  • Sea Salt to taste, we prefer Pink Himalayan but regular Sea Salt will be just fine.
  • Optional seasoning: Fresh Ground Black Pepper to taste

Useful Tools

  • Food Steamer – Steams your food and retains more of its nutritional value, much better than boiling!
  • Cheese Cloth – To get rid of as much of the liquid in the Cauliflower as possible
  • Emulsion Blender -It is a hand held blender stick that simplifies the blending of soups, purees, etc..

 

And to make it, here is what you’ll need to do

  • Cut the Cauliflower in small enough chunks to fit into your Steamer, but not too small that its a pain to handle or falls through the Steamer holes. Steam for 11 minutes or per your appliance’s directions.
  • Place your prepared Cheese Cloth over a deep bowl or Strainer and once ready, remove the Cauliflower and place on on top of the Cheese Cloth. We prefer to do this in small batches to ensure we get rid of as much of the liquid as possible.
Steamed Cauliflower
Strained Cauliflower in Cheese Cloth

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Once done, place the strained/pressed Cauliflower in a large bowl along with the Butter, Garlic, Parsley and Seasoning. Make sure to add the Garlic gradually as it can get very strong quickly.
  • Blend with the Emulsion Blender until it reaches the desired consistency and serve.
  • If its too thick for your taste, add a little more butter and blend again, it will become smoother.
Before blending

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Cranberry Pecan Brown Rice http://theamateurkitchen.com/cranberry-pecan-brown-rice/ http://theamateurkitchen.com/cranberry-pecan-brown-rice/#respond Wed, 25 Nov 2015 14:08:09 +0000 http://theamateurkitchen.com/?p=860 This is a great side for the Holidays. Since we have a Traditional Turkey Dinner for Christmas, this is a must have side – and of course it works just as well on Thanksgiving Dinner table. Here is what you will need Read More ...

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This is a great side for the Holidays. Since we have a Traditional Turkey Dinner for Christmas, this is a must have side – and of course it works just as well on Thanksgiving Dinner table.

Here is what you will need for this side:

  • 1 cup of Basmati Brown Rice, washed – You can use any other type of rice but make sure to adjust the water accordingly.
  • 3 Celery Stalks, chopped.
  • 1 medium Onion, chopped
  • 1 medium Shallot, chopped
  • Handful of fresh Parsley, chopped.
  • 1 cup of Dried Cranberries, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Pecans, chopped
  • 2-3 tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • 2 cups of Water
  • Sea Salt to taste, we prefer Pink Himalayan but regular Sea Salt will be just fine.
  • 1/4 teaspoon of Ground Thyme
  • Optional:  1/2 teaspoon of Garlic Powder

Useful Tools

 

And to make it, here is what you’ll need to do

  • In your Stove Top Cooker, Electric Cooker Sauteing and Browning setting or a standard pot, saute the Onions, Shallot and Celery in Olive Oil for about 3-5 minutes till its softened and almost translucent.

  • Add the Rice, Cranberry and Parsley to your Pressure Cooker, along with the sauteed vegetables if you used a standard pot. Cover and cook for 25 minutes once the pressure gauge starts rocking if you’re using the Stove Top Cooker or according to the directions of your Electric Cooker – it should be around the same time.
  • When time is up, allow your cooker to cool – do not release the pressure manually.
  • Once the lid and pressure are released, open the pot, add the Pecans, season to taste and serve.

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Wilted Spinach with Shallot, Garlic & Onion http://theamateurkitchen.com/spinach-shallots-garlic-onions/ http://theamateurkitchen.com/spinach-shallots-garlic-onions/#respond Wed, 25 Nov 2015 02:28:35 +0000 http://theamateurkitchen.com/?p=782 This is a delicious, and of course very nutritious, go to side dish that can also be served as a meatless main over rice. It is easy and quick to prepare too since it doesn’t require extensive cooking. This is what you will Read More ...

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This is a delicious, and of course very nutritious, go to side dish that can also be served as a meatless main over rice. It is easy and quick to prepare too since it doesn’t require extensive cooking.

This is what you will need for 2-4 servings:

  • A bunch of fresh Spinach, wash very well to get rid of all sand, soil, etc. – Alternately you can use 4 cups of loosely packed packaged spinach, but try to avoid baby spinach as much as possible.
  • 1 large Onion
  • 1-2 medium Shallots
  • 6-8 cloves of Garlic, minced – Alternately, using 2-3 tablespoons of the pre-minced store bought variety will work very well too.
  • 1-2 tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • Sea Salt to taste, we prefer Pink Himalayan but regular Sea Salt will be just fine.
  • Optional seasoning: Pinch of Lemon Salt (Citric Acid) or Juice of 1/2 a Lemon

 

Useful Tools

 

And to make it, here is what you’ll need to do

  • Cut the onion in half and slice thinly, the thinner the better in this case. See our useful tools listed above
  • Repeat with the Shallots.
  • In a large saucepan heat the Olive Oil on medium high. And add the Onion and Shallots after a minute or two.
  • Stir frequently to ensure the mixture becomes translucent. Do not brown.
  • Add the Garlic, seasoning and salt. Continue stirring for about 3-5 minutes.
  • If it becomes too dry, add a 1/4 cup of water.
  • Turn the heat off. Add the Spinach and stir, coating it very well with the Onion, Shallot and Garlic mixture until it wilts completely.
  • Adjust the seasoning and serve. You can also serve it over rice a a main dish.

 

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Fall Harvest Stuffing http://theamateurkitchen.com/fall-harvest-stuffing/ http://theamateurkitchen.com/fall-harvest-stuffing/#respond Tue, 24 Nov 2015 19:20:23 +0000 http://theamateurkitchen.com/?p=788 The Stuffing is another of Thanksgiving, and Turkey Dinners’ must haves, so of course we’re including our favorite recipe – so far. This is what you will need for your Stuffing, note that there are a lot of optional ingredients that Read More ...

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The Stuffing is another of Thanksgiving, and Turkey Dinners’ must haves, so of course we’re including our favorite recipe – so far.

This is what you will need for your Stuffing, note that there are a lot of optional ingredients that you do not need to have, but as we like to say ‘the more the merrier’ when it comes to a dish representative of the goodness Fall brings:

  • 3 Large Leek Stalks, cut lengthways and chopped
  • 15 Baby Carrots, chopped thin
  • 1 large Onion, cut in half and chopped
  • 1-2 medium Shallots, cut in half and chopped
  • 3-4 Scallions, cut in half lengthways and chopped
  • 4 Celery Stalks, cut in half lengthways and chopped thin
  • 1 Giant handful of Sun-dried Tomatoes, sliced if not pre-sliced
  • 6-8 cloves of Garlic, minced – Alternately, using 3-4 tablespoons of the pre-minced store bought variety will work very well too.
  • 12 Turkey Andouille Sausages, or any other type but we love the Andouille flavors here. Frozen will do. Chop into 1/4-1/2 inch slices.
  • 16 medium Mushrooms chopped into medium chunks PLUS 2 cups frozen Mushrooms. We used fresh Crimini and frozen Shiitake, you can mix in any other types you prefer – or even use more!!
  • 1/4 cup of Olive Oil
  • 2-3 Handfuls of fresh Parsley, chopped
  • 1 can of Corn Kernels
  • 3 cups of Vegetable Broth, or any other you prefer.
  • Optional ingredients: 3 Peppers, we prefer the small sweet kind (Yellow, Red and Orange), diced. 1-2 Carnival Squash, but you can use Acorn or Delicata instead, cubed. An additional can of Corn Kernel.
  • Sea Salt to taste, we prefer Pink Himalayan but regular Sea Salt will be just fine.
  • Optional seasoning: 2 tablespoons fresh Chives
  • 3-4 cups of your favorite Stuffing Bread Mix, we use a packaged Gluten Free Seasoned Variety. You can make your own by toasting any (Gluten Free) bread and allowing it to cool, try mixing different types. Note when using homemade Gluten Free bread that our experiments to date have come up clumpy after mixing, baking and serving (hence the packaged variety) – but we’re not quitting, yet.

 

Useful Tools

And to make it, here is what you’ll need to do

  • Optional: If you will be adding Squash, season with Salt and Pepper and bake at 450f (230c) for 30-45 minutes rotating halfway through until its soft and only slightly browned.
  • Saute prepared Leek, Carrots, Onion, Shallots and Celery in Olive Oil. After about 10 minutes when softened, add the Tomatoes and Garlic, saute stirring often. Optional: Peppers can be added now as well.
  • Once softened, about another 5-10 minutes add all Mushrooms, Scallions and Sausage. Continue to saute and stir often for about 10-15 minutes to allow the flavors to blend.
  • Add the Parsley, Corn and the Broth and allow to simmer for about 30 minutes.
  • Season and allow to cool.

 

  • Before serving stir in 2-3 cups of the stuffing bread mix and scoop the entire mixture into a baking dish. Top with an additional 1 cup of the stuffing bread mix, bake at 400f (205c) for 5-10 minutes until the top browns a bit – be attentive so it doesn’t burn!

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Baked Stuffed Squash http://theamateurkitchen.com/baked-stuffed-squash/ http://theamateurkitchen.com/baked-stuffed-squash/#respond Mon, 23 Nov 2015 04:29:13 +0000 http://theamateurkitchen.com/?p=784 There is no better time of year to experiment with all the Gourd-y Squash-y goodness than Fall, and at our Kitchen, we’re all about experimenting. Here’s what you’ll need for this deliciousness: 1 medium-large Delicata Squash, cut into 1 inch Read More ...

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There is no better time of year to experiment with all the Gourd-y Squash-y goodness than Fall, and at our Kitchen, we’re all about experimenting.

Here’s what you’ll need for this deliciousness:

  • 1 medium-large Delicata Squash, cut into 1 inch thick discs (see pictures)
  • 1 medium-large Leek, cut lengthways and chop
  • 1 large Carrot, cut lengthways and chop – we prefer Purple for the color, but any other will do.
  • 1-2 medium Shallots, chop
  • 1-2 small hot red Pepper such as Chili, Cayenne, Thai, Cherry or any other to your taste and desired spice level, diced as small as you can – It shouldn’t be overwhelmingly spicy, just a subtle hint to complement the other ingredient not overshadow them.
  • 4oz package of Shiitake Mushrooms, chopped – Not frozen, any other type will work
  • 1 cup of cooked White or Navy Beans
  • 1/2 cup of cooked Quinoa
  • Handful each of fresh Parsley and Dill
  • 2-3 tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • Sea Salt to taste, we prefer Pink Himalayan but regular Sea Salt will be just fine.
  • To season the Squash: Garlic Powder and Black Pepper
  • Cooking Spray
  • Optional: Dried Cranberries and Pumpkin Seeds.

Useful Tools

 

And to make it, here is what you’ll need to do

  • Preheat oven to 400f (205c). Cover an oven proof sheet pan with foil and lightly coat with Cooking Spray.
  • Place the Squash discs on the foiled sheet pan, season the top with Salt, Garlic Powder and Black Pepper, bake for 20 minutes. Spray the discs, flip them, season again and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes until lightly browned.

  • Meanwhile, saute the prepared Leek, Shallots and Carrot in Olive Oil over medium high for a few minutes until softened stirring frequently. Add the Mushrooms and Peppers and continue to stir for a about 10 minutes.
  • Turn the heat to medium and stir in the Beans, Parsley and Dill and season to taste.
  • Stir in the Quinoa and make sure its well blended. Adjust seasoning if needed.

  • Once the Squash is ready, pack each with enough of the Quinoa Mixture. You can also spoon some underneath on your serving plate.
  • Optional: Top with Dried Cranberries and Pumpkin Seeds and serve.

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Steamed Brussels Sprouts Saute http://theamateurkitchen.com/steamed-brussels-sprouts-saute/ http://theamateurkitchen.com/steamed-brussels-sprouts-saute/#respond Sat, 21 Nov 2015 18:45:49 +0000 http://theamateurkitchen.com/?p=786 So Brussels Sprouts may have a bad reputation, but not in our Kitchen – we have a picky eater and 4yr old testers to prove we’re onto something here. Here’s what you’ll need to turn these little guys into awesomeness: Read More ...

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So Brussels Sprouts may have a bad reputation, but not in our Kitchen – we have a picky eater and 4yr old testers to prove we’re onto something here.

Here’s what you’ll need to turn these little guys into awesomeness:

  • 16oz package of fresh Brussels Sprouts – do not use frozen sprouts. Wash them, trim any dark or wilted outer leaves and split each Sprout in half lengthways.
  • 2 large Carrots, slice into thin discs – we prefer Purple or Rainbow Carrots for their colors, but any will do.
  • 1 large Onion, cut in half and sliced thin
  • 1  medium-large Shallot, cut in half and sliced thin
  • 1 medium-large Tomato, diced small
  • 1 small hot red Pepper such as Chili, Cayenne, Thai, Cherry or any other to your taste and desired spice level, diced as small as you can – It shouldn’t be overwhelmingly spicy, just a subtle hint to complement the other ingredient not overshadow them.
  • 2-4 tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon of Garlic Powder
  • Sea Salt to taste
  • Optional: Handful of chopped Chives and Pecans, or more if desired

Useful Tools

 

And to make it, here is what you’ll need to do

  • Steam the Sprouts for 11 minutes or according to your appliance directions.
  • Cut the onion in half and slice thinly, the thinner the better. See our useful tools listed above
  • Repeat with the Shallots.
  • Dice the Tomato and Pepper as small as possible.
  • In a large saucepan heat the Olive Oil on medium high. And add the Onion and Shallots after a minute or two.
  • Stir frequently to ensure the mixture becomes translucent. Do not brown.

  • Add the Tomato, Pepper, garlic powder and salt to taste. Continue stirring for about 3-5 minutes.
  • If it becomes too dry, add a 1/4 cup of water.
  • Turn the heat off. Add the Sprouts and stir for a few minutes, coating it well with the sauteed mixture. Adjust the seasoning.
  • Optional: Sprinkle with the chopped Chives and Pecans before serving

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Green Beans with Shallot, Garlic and Onion http://theamateurkitchen.com/beans-shallots-garlic-onions/ http://theamateurkitchen.com/beans-shallots-garlic-onions/#respond Sat, 21 Nov 2015 04:13:12 +0000 http://theamateurkitchen.com/?p=783 This is another delicious and easy go to side dish that doesn’t require extensive cooking. It call also be served over rice as a Meatless Main This is what you will need for 4-6 servings as a side dish: 24oz bag of Read More ...

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This is another delicious and easy go to side dish that doesn’t require extensive cooking. It call also be served over rice as a Meatless Main

This is what you will need for 4-6 servings as a side dish:

  • 24oz bag of Fresh Green Beans, Haricot Vert or any other long variety of Beans – Do not use frozen beans
  • 2 large Onions
  • 2-3 medium Shallots
  • 8-10 cloves of Garlic, minced – Alternately, using 3-4 tablespoons of the pre-minced store bought variety will work very well just the same.
  • 3-4 tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • Sea Salt to taste, we prefer Pink Himalayan but regular Sea Salt will be just fine.
  • Optional seasoning: Pinch of Lemon Salt (Citric Acid) or Juice of 1/2 a Lemon

Useful Tools

 

And to make it, here is what you’ll need to do

  • Steam the Beans for 11 minutes or according to your appliance directions.
  • Cut the onion in half and slice thinly, the thinner the better of course. See our useful tools listed above
  • Repeat with the Shallots.
  • In a large saucepan heat the Olive Oil on medium high and add the Onion and Shallots after about a minute or two.
  • Stir frequently to ensure the mixture becomes translucent, but be careful not to let it brown.
  • Add the Garlic, seasoning and salt. Continue stirring for about 3-5 minutes.
  • If it becomes too dry, add a 1/4 cup of water.

  • Turn the heat off. Add the Beans and stir for a few minutes, coating it well with the Onion, Shallot and Garlic mixture.
  • Adjust the seasoning and serve.

 

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The Sides (Oh, how we love thee..) http://theamateurkitchen.com/the-sides-2/ http://theamateurkitchen.com/the-sides-2/#respond Thu, 19 Nov 2015 21:01:37 +0000 http://theamateurkitchen.com/?p=862 And no Thanksgiving Feast is complete without the mighty Sides. Here are some of our favorites this year Fall Harvest Stuffing (also known as Dressing when not cooked inside the Turkey) Mashed Cauliflower or Potatoes Green Beans with Shallots, Garlic and Read More ...

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And no Thanksgiving Feast is complete without the mighty Sides. Here are some of our favorites this year

And don’t forget the Gravy, Cranberry Sauce and Rolls!!

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(Garlic) Mashed Potatoes http://theamateurkitchen.com/mashed-potatoes/ http://theamateurkitchen.com/mashed-potatoes/#respond Thu, 19 Nov 2015 14:05:06 +0000 http://theamateurkitchen.com/?p=856 Forget the boxed flaky stuff that claims its ‘Mashed Potatoes’. This is the real deal, and here is a super easy recipe for a (Garlic) Mashed Potatoes side that is just as simple as it is delicious. This is what you will need Read More ...

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Forget the boxed flaky stuff that claims its ‘Mashed Potatoes’. This is the real deal, and here is a super easy recipe for a (Garlic) Mashed Potatoes side that is just as simple as it is delicious.

This is what you will need for 6-8 servings:

  • 8 medium Potatoes, mixed ad quartered
  • 1-3 tablespoons of butter. We used a healthier soy and dairy free variety, but any other will do.
  • 1-2 cloves of Garlic, chopped (Optional, but really!) – The Garlic can become overpowering quickly so make sure to add it gradually and taste each time before adding any more.
  • Handful of fresh Parsley, chopped.
  • Sea Salt to taste, we prefer Pink Himalayan but regular Sea Salt will be just fine.
  • Optional: Handful of chopped fresh Parsley and freshly ground Black Pepper to taste

 

Useful Tools

  • Food Steamer – Steams your food and retains more of its nutritional value, much better than boiling!
  • Emulsion Blender -It is a hand held blender stick that simplifies the blending of soups, purees, etc..

And to make it, here is what you’ll need to do

  • Place the quartered Potatoes into your Steamer, and steam for 30 minutes or per your appliance’s directions.
  • Once the Potatoes are done, place them in a large bowl along with the Butter, Garlic, (Optional: Parsley) and Seasoning. Make sure to add the Garlic gradually as noted earlier since it can get strong quickly, and taste each time before adding more.
  • Blend with the Emulsion Blender until it reaches the desired consistency and serve. Do not over blend it as it could get a little too starchy.
  • If its too thick for your taste, add a little more butter and blend again, it will become smoother.

Note: You can adjust this recipe and try adding cheese, different seasoning and herbs and enjoy a huge variety of flavors!

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