SWASHBUCKLED! (S2E6): Italian-ish

This week, we go deep into Marie’s Italian roots to make something, kind-of, Italian-ish? None of the ingredients that were provided were very Italian-y, but they all were delicious to eat on their own, and in the dish!

Watch this week’s episode here:


Ingredients Featured in This Week’s Episode:


 

This week, we dive deep into Marie’s “non-white girl” roots, and make some vegetarian stuffed peppers and take a fun twist on a traditional caprese salad.

The stuffed peppers are full of fiber from the veggies, whole wheat cous cous and black beans, while being packed with flavor from the jalapeño artichoke dip and fragrant cheeses. We both loved the stuffed peppers and preferred the green ones over the yellow (which was a surprise to us both!)

The caprese salad was a slam dunk…if you removed the chocolate. Cherries with Mozzarella and Basil was a delicious flavor combination. The dark chocolate pretzels made things a little weird, so when you make this at home (which you should!) we recommend just saving the pretzels on the side to eat on their own (a perfect dessert!)

 

Black Bean Cous Cous and Veggie Stuffed Peppers.png

Black Bean, Cous Cous and Veggie Stuffed Peppers

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Recipe by Amanda Hibshman, RDN

Ingredients

  • 3 Bell Peppers
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil
  • Pinch of Salt & Pepper
  • Cous Cous, cooked according to package directions (1 cup water + 1 Cup Cous Cous + 1 Tbsp butter + Salt)
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1/2 cup onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup celery, diced
  • 1/2 cup carrots, diced
  • 1 zucchini quartered and sliced
  • 1 package of mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • oregano
  • 1 Tbsp Butter
  • 1/2 Can tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup Artichoke and Jalapeño Dip
  • 12 Tbsp Quatro Fromaggio (divided so each bell pepper gets 2 tbsp)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400˚F. Rinse bell peppers and slice in half. Remove seeds. Rub all sides with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place bell peppers skin side up on a lined baking sheet (parchment paper or foil). Bake for about 15-20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Once hot, add diced onion, celery and carrots. Let cook for about 5 minutes. Add zucchini and cook for a few more minutes. Then add mushrooms, butter, salt, pepper and oregano.
  3. Add 1 1/2 cup of the cooked cous-cous mixture (can save the rest to use as a salad topper), can of black beans, and tomato sauce. Let cook down for about 5 minutes, until mushrooms are cooked through. Mix in artichoke & jalapeño dip thoroughly.
  4. Remove roasted bell peppers from the oven. Turn over. Place 1 tbsp of Quattro Fromaggio cheese at the bottom, fill with 1/6 of the filling mixture, then finish with another tbsp of cheese.
  5. Bake at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes.


Cherry Caprese Salad

Cherry Caprese Salad

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Recipe by Amanda Hibshman, RDN

Ingredients

  • 18 Reinier Cherries, pitted and halved
  • 1/2 package mozzarella balls (about 12), halved
  • Large handful of basil (about 20 leaves), Chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • Fresh Ground Salt and Pepper (about 1/4 tsp each)
  • Balsamic Glaze
  • Optional (and not recommended): Chocolate covered Pretzels

Directions

  1. Rinse cherries, pit and halve them, Combine in a bowl with mozzarella balls and basil. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. Garnish with balsamic glaze on top.
  2. We added the chocolate covered pretzels as the challenge for this dish, but it definitely didn’t do this beautiful and delicious salad any flavors. We made it again without the pretzels and it was so great. But the pretzels were fantastic on their own!


 

 

Head over to our PATREON PAGE to become a patron of Fearless Flying Kitchen and check out outtakes from this week as well as Mr. Critic’s reaction.

Patreon Perk Update

Hey Hey! If you have watched any recent episodes of Swashbuckled, then you might have heard us rambling on about a patreon page (or, as Marie so eloquently says, “give us your money”). We have recently updated our goals and patron perks, so we are here to share that with you and explain what patreon is and how your contributions help us!


WHAT IS PATREON?

Patreon is a way for a community to fund the projects they love. Many podcasts, web series, websites and artists use patreon as a way to get funds from their viewers (or, consumers?) and in return, they offer certain perks for monthly contributions. It is a lot like kick starter, but instead of one large lump sum in an all-or-nothing environment, you can determine how much you want to contribute on a monthly basis.


WHAT DO I GET?

We are currently focused on building our community, and looking to expand the number of patrons. That means that for only $1 a month, you will help us meet our goals! But to be honest, the fun stuff starts happening at $5 per month.

Every episode of Swashbuckled contains hours of filming that gets cut down to a 12-17 minute episode. We also end up cutting a ton of hilarious and inappropriate material that just isn’t right for the episode. We are now going to compile that into one big outtake video per episode and release it on our patreon feed at the $5 level. This also include our “Jeff Reacts” videos (where Jeff tries the food we whip up after a long hard day of work and lets us know how unimpressed he is. It’s great)

At the $10 (and up) level we are going to have additional content on our patreon-exclusive feed that includes new product reviews, “live” events, additional exclusive recipes, and more (we might even sing for you)!

Above that pay range, we have rewards like picking ingredients, an exclusive Swashbuckled shirt and swag bag, monthly customized meal plans…pretty cool stuff!


WHERE CAN I SIGN UP?

You can visit our patreon page and feed at:

www.Patreon.com/FearlessFlyingKitchen


WHAT DOES THIS MONEY GO TOWARDS?

We are mostly looking to cover the cost of ingredients for our weekly shows, and beyond that, we will put the funds raised towards things like marketing, technology, hiring technicians, etc. We would need to exceed all our current goals before we actually make money off this thing, but would gladly accept blowing all our goals out of the water!


THANK YOU SO MUCH!! Hope to see you on our patreon page soon!

XOXO,

Marie and AmandaIMG_3574

SWASHBUCKLED! (S1E5): Brupper for Bros (AKA. The Father’s Day Special)

Our biggest critic (Amanda’s husband) recently asked, “why can’t you just make something simple, like meat and potatoes?” Here in the Fearless Flying Kitchen, we like to take our fans (and critics) opinions seriously…which is why we have “meat and potatoes week” for all the Bro’s out there.


Ingredients featured in this week’s episode:

 

This week, we throw Amanda’s husband a solid, by making a meal out of meat, potatoes, “not meat” and “not potatoes.”

We went with a savory brunch for dinner, which we have officially coined as “Brupper” (add that to your urban dictionary!)

The meal’s base is a blend of mashed red and yellow potatoes with frozen mashed cauliflower. The two are blended together with some Parmesan cheese and herbs and spices and formed into a patty (a savory pancake)

The bag of potatoes also came with purple potatoes. We didn’t include these in the mash, because they would have turned it a funky color. Instead, we rinsed and quartered then, added a splash of olive oil, salt and pepper, and put them in the oven to roast at 400 degrees for about a half an hour.

Next up is the soy-chorizo creamed spinach. Full of so much flavor! At this point, if you are a vegetarian (or just don’t like or have steak) you could top with a poached egg for a fun take on an eggs Benedict.

The steak we used in the episode is a little bit tough, and is perfect for braising (cooked with a liquid). We tried to soften it up a bit by pounding and soaking in buttermilk (the acid can help soften the tough meat), but in the end, it still wasn’t the ideal texture. If we had more time in the kitchen, we definitely would have let the meat marinate for a lot longer (or try a different, wet cooking method, like braising).

To finish off the dish, we ended with a sprinkling of parmesan cheese. Lots of flavor!

Lastly,  before you get to these awesome recipes…We did have a bit of a challenge with our new technology (the challenge was that Amanda accidentally deleted all the footage before uploading it), so apologies for the lack of actual cooking footage on the episode. We’ll work it out and make it work for future episodes. Thanks dad for the technology boost!

Parmesan Potato Pancakes with Soyrizo Creamed Spinach adn Steak Medallions

Parmesan Potato Pancakes

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: easy
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Recipe by Amanda Hibshman, RDN

Ingredients

  • 7 Small Red or Yellow Potatoes
  • 1/2 Bag Frozen Mashed Cauliflower
  • 1 Egg
  • 1/4 Cup Grated Parmesan Romano Cheese Blend
  • 1/4 tsp Dried Parsley
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 tbsp Everything but the Bagel Seasoning
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • Spray canola or olive oil

Directions

  1. Pierce potatoes and place in a microwave safe dish with a tablespoon of water. Cover with plastic wrap and microwave on high for 6 minutes. Add half the bag of mashed cauliflower, re-cover, and microwave for another 4-6 minutes, until potatoes are soft and cauliflower is no longer frozen. Mash the potatoes and cauliflower together, add egg, parmesan cheese, garlic powder, parsley, salt and pepper and mix well. Let cool a little bit and turn on griddle (electric to about 350 or a stovetop griddle to medium-high).
  2. Spray griddle with oil. Take a dollop of potato/cauliflower mixture and flatten into a patty (It will be really sticky, but that’s ok, you can get it mostly there, then continue to flatten with spatula once it is on the griddle ) and place on the hot griddle. Cook on each side for about 4-5 minutes, until it has a nice little brown mark on it.



Soyrizo Creamed Spinach

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Recipe by Amanda Hibshman, RDN

Ingredients

  • 1/2 package of Soy Chorizo
  • 1 tsp Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbsp Onion, minced
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 3 Cups Fresh Spinach (whole bag)
  • 2 Heaping Tbsp Grated Parmesan Romano Cheese Blend
  • 2 Tbsp Half and Half
  • 1/4 Cup Lowfat Milk

Directions

  1. Heat olive oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, add minced onion and garlic then sauté for about 3-4 minutes. Add soy chorizo and continue to cook for about 5 minutes. Add spinach and let cook down for another 2-3 minutes. Add milk, half and half, and parmesan cheese. Continue to cook over medium-high heat for another couple minutes. Turn off heat and cover until ready to serve.



Buttermilk Steak Medallions

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Recipe by Amanda Hibshman, RDN

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Sirloin Medallions
  • 1/2 Cup Buttermilk
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 Vegetable Oil

Directions

  1. Pound sirloin steak tips with a mallet to tenderize and flatten. Place in a ziplock bag with buttermilk, garlic powder, 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper. Squeeze air out of ziplock, seal, and place in refrigerator for at least a half an hour (longer preferred).
  2. When ready to cook, take steak out of ziplock, season each side with additional salt and pepper, and drudge through flour. Place oil in a large skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Once hot (will sizzle when something is placed in skillet), then add flour coated steak medallions. Cook for a few minutes on each side (you want it to be brown and crispy on the outside.


 

Meal Prep Monday: Lentil, Beet and Blue Cheese Salad

A couple weeks ago, I shared some ideas for meal prep that was so easy, you could do it Monday morning instead of slaving away on Sundays.

This week we have a nutrient packed salad that is loaded with robust flavors, and a ton of fiber and protein.

Meal Plan Monday Square

We start with a bed of Arugula, which is a peppery type of green (an also one of my favorites to use in salads). Then we put a layer of shaved Brussels sprouts, pre-cooked lentils, roasted beets, and blue cheese.

If you’re a vegetarian, you can stop there, or if you are looking for a bit more protein, you can top with just chicken. For extra color and a pop of a bold flavor, you can add chopped fresh basil to the top.

Meal Plan Monday Fearless Flying Kitchen ingredients

All these ingredients were divided evenly in five containers, one for each day of the week. I only used a fraction of the blue cheese for the five salads, probably 1-2 Tbsp per salad. The thing I like about bold cheeses, like blue, feta, parmesan and goat, are that a little goes a long way!

The chicken only went into three of the salads (due to the expiration date coding), so I also picked up some fresh chicken to bake up on Wednesday and use part of it for lunches on Thursday/Friday, and eat part of it for dinner Wednesday night.

Meal Plan Monday Fearless Flying Kitchen with chicken

This week, I paired the salad with our old stand-by, the Tuscan Italian dressing. If we were having this at home, I would just toss it with a little bit of olive oil, balsamic, salt and pepper.

Trader Joe's Tuscan Italian Dressing

Super simple, fresh ingredients, lots of flavor, and really easy to assemble. It will take a max of 10 minutes. What else can go in your lunch? A handful of your favorite nuts for a snack. Fresh fruit (there are so many to choose from these days). Baby carrots or sliced celery or cucumbers.

Lentil, Beet and Blue Cheese Salad

  • Servings: 5
  • Difficulty: SO EASY!
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Recipe by Amanda Hibshman, RDN

Ingredients

  • 1 bag Arugula
  • 1 bag Shaved Brussels Sprouts
  • 1 container Pre-Cooked Lentils
  • 1 package Steamed and Peeled Baby Beets
  • 1/2 cup Blue Cheese Crumbles
  • 1-2 packages “Just Chicken” (Pre-Cooked chicken breasts)
  • 1/2 cup packed Fresh Basil Leaves,

Directions

Divide all ingredients evenly into five containers in the order listed. Cover and store for up to a week. Note that the “Just Chicken” has a limited “sell by” date. You can divide one package between three of the salads and then purchase another package mid-week, or just have the other two salads be meat-free.


SWASHBUCKLED! S2E4: Rawdog Your Shrimp

Are we cooking or getting a lesson about words in UrbanDictionary.com? Maybe a little bit of both! This week we welcome guest chef, Jason, Amanda’s Cousin-in-Law and Actual Trader Joe’s Employee. He also claims to be an expert home cook. Will he be able to impress us, or at least put up with our snark? Watch below to find out!


Ingredients Featured in This Week’s Episode:

 

This week, we welcome Jason, all the way from Northern California! He is a seasoned home chef and grill master. He literally just got off a plane and Marie showed up with a bag of four ingredients pilfered from our pantries and freezers.

To say the least, he made this challenge look way too easy. Or maybe we just went really easy on him? Either way, the food was delicious, we wouldn’t change a thing!

For more details on Corn Tortilla/Tostada making, check out this quick video:


 

Strawberry ceviche with rahini & Greek Yogurt Elote

Strawberry Ceviche

  • Servings: 5
  • Difficulty: easy
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Recipe by Jason!

Ingredients

1 lb Raw Shrimp
6 Limes
Handful of Frozen Strawberries (about half the bag)
Half a red onion
Bunch of cilantro
One large avocado
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions


Thaw and dice raw shrimp and place in bowl. Squeeze 6 limes on top of shrimp.
To that, add diced thawed strawberries, diced red onion, diced cilantro, cubed avocado and salt and pepper. Stir and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. The ceviche is ready when the shrimp turns pink throughout and becomes firm.

Tahini and Greek Yogurt Elote

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Recipe by Jason!

Ingredients


Can of Corn
1/2 Tbsp Tahini
1 Tbsp Greek Yogurt
1 Tbsp Butter
Salt to taste
Parmesan Cheese
Chile Lime Seasoning

Directions


Open can of corn and place contents into a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 2 minutes, until warm. Add tahini, Greek yogurt, salt, parmesan cheese and butter. Stir to combine, until butter is melted. Top with Chile Lime Seasoning.

Copy of Copy of Never Enough Thyme Burgers

We also whipped up a batch of Strawberry Rosé Slushies, aka. Grown Up Smoothies. To make these, combine 3/4-1 bag of frozen strawberries (still frozen) with one 375ml can of Simpler Rose and a couple squirts of Agave (we are guessing 1-2 Tbsp, depending on taste). Blend on high until smooth. Serves 2-3. We like to top with a lime wedge to squirt in there. It’s super refreshing!


 

 

 

SWASHBUCKLED! S2E3: Sushi-Bagel-Pasta

Since Amanda and Marie are running in the Rock N Roll Marathon and Half (respectively) this weekend, we decided to go all in on the carbs and excessively long and rambling recipe titles. Watch as we try to fuse together one too many cuisines. Will we add SO MANY flavors where it finally works? You’ll have to watch to find out!

 

 


Ingredients featured in this week’s episode:

This might have been the weirdest combination of items we have made in the Fearless Flying Kitchen. But it totally works! Comfort food at its best. Risotto is normally made with a short grain rice, but our risotto is made from a short grain pasta, Orzo! Between the carby-goodness of the Orzo and the flavors of the Miso-Ginger Broth, the base  reminded us of the comfort food of our youth, “Oriental Flavored Top Ramen.”

The completed dish also reminded us of one of our favorite fresh (ie. Heat and Serve) items, Greek Style Chicken with Orzo, Spinach and Feta Cheese. However our version would be called the “Asian Style Salmon with Orzo, Mushrooms, Edamame and Goat Cheese…Oh and A Chutney Of Cucumbers and Lychee”

And speaking of that chutney, it was a great stand alone item and makes a great side dish or topping. We’ll definitely be revisiting that again.

Couple other things about this dish: smoked salmon really was wanting to be a breakfast item, and Marie brought it because it tasted so good with bagels and cream cheese. It had a distinct flavor in the risotto dish (which I want to make again but with a plain baked salmon) that mellowed out a bit once we added the goat cheese.

 

 

Miso Salmon Risotto with Cucumber Lychee Chutney

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: moderately easy
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Recipe by Amanda Hibshman, RDN

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Orzo
  • 2 Cups Miso Ginger Broth
  • 1 Cup Water
  •  2 Tbsp Butter, divided
  • 1/2 Shallot, minced
  • 1 Garlic Cloves, minced
  • 1 Cup Fresh Edamame
  • 1 package Shiitake Mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 Package Smoked Salmon
  • Cucumber-Lychee Chutney
    • 1 Cucumber, peeled and diced
    • 8 Fresh Lychee, peeled and diced, with juices
    • 1 Tbsp Red Onion, Minced
    • 1 tsp Fresh Ginger, grated
    • Zest and Juice from Half a Lime
    • 1/4 tsp Fresh Ground Sea Salt
    • 2 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
  • Toppings: Green Onion, Everything but the Bagel Seasoning, Goat Cheese Crumbles

Directions

  1. Make Cucumber-Lychee Chutney: Combined all ingredients in a bowl and mix together. Refrigerate for a half an hour.
  2. Make Risotto: In a pot, warm up broth and water on medium-low. In another pan, over medium heat, melt 1 tbsp butter in a pan. Sautée shallot and garlic cloves for a few minutes. Add in orzo and cook for another couple minutes to brown a little. Now, you can begin to add a half a cup of warm stock/water until absorbed, then add another half cup, and continue this until all the liquid is absorbed. Make sure the heat is set to medium and you are stirring constantly.
  3. Once all the stock is gone, you can use the same pot to melt 1 more tablespoon of butter and sauté the sliced shiitake mushrooms and fresh edamame over medium-high heat. This won’t take long to cook, you just want the mushrooms to soften and the edamame to warm throughout.
  4. To assemble, place a a quarter of each in a bowl in the following order: orzo risotto, mushroom edamame mixture, smoked salmon (flaked, although see note at the bottom), cucumber-lychee chutney, and then the toppings (green onion, goat cheese and everything but the bagel seasoning).

NOTE (WHAT AMANDA WOULD DO DIFFERENTLY)- Instead of using the smoked salmon, you can bake fresh salmon. To do this, pre-heat oven to 400 degrees, place salmon on baking sheet and rub with olive oil and top with fresh sea salt and pepper. Bake for about 16-18 minutes. This will decrease the smokiness of the salmon, and would be a great flavor to add to the top of the orzo risotto. You probably wouldn’t need to add the goat cheese and bagel seasoning.

 

Copy of Every Summer Has Its Own Story

We made the Blueberry-Lavender Coffee Popsicles by combining 1 cup of Blueberry-Lavender Flavored Almond Beverage with 1 cup Cold Brew (Black) Coffee and 1-2 Tbsp Coffee Syrup (start with one Tbsp and then add a little more if you like it sweeter). This will make about 10 popsicles, with each one containing 12 calories, 3.7g carbs, 3.2g sugar,  and 11mg sodium…not too bad if you are looking for a sweet, summer treat that won’t  break the scale. I mean, it’s basically the same as breathing air…plus a little sugar…

However, these popsicles are a little on the “icy” side. Great flavor though! You can experiment with adding a couple tablespoons of half and half into the mixture, which would no longer make it vegan, but might improve the mouthfeel a tad.

Regional Bag & Favorite Swag Giveaway!

Trader Joe's Mystery Packs

Mystery Pack of Regional Bags

 

Every Christmas, my mom and I would always buy each other the mystery packs of regional bags that Trader Joe’s sells. You can usually only get the regional bags from that specific area of the country, but the mystery bag packs have three random regional bags. It is always so much fun to get different bags and see what represents other cities.

Little did I know, that all along, my mom was just gaming for the New York City bag, ands always so disappointed when she never got one in the bags. Our friend, and Mate all the way from New York City, brought us some regional bags, making us able to use our last mystery pack for a giveaway!

We will be GIVING AWAY this mystery pack of regional bags as well as some of our favorite non-perishable swag from Trader Joe’s.

To enter the giveaway you need to do the following three steps:

  1. Make sure you are SUBSCRIBED to our channel on YouTube
  2. COMMENT on any BLOG POST on The Fearless Flying Kitchen blog (must be dated 5/21/18 or later).
  3. Subscribe to our NEWSLETTER (CLICK HERE to do that)

For extra bonus points:

  1. Find the mystery pack giveaway post on FACEBOOK – like that, share it with your friends, tag your friends, and comment. You get a point for each interaction!
  2. Find the mystery pack giveaway post on INSTAGRAM – like that, comment on it, and tag your friends. You get a point for each interaction!
  3. Like and comment on any of the Swashbuckled videos on YouTube and get an extra point for each interaction!

Giveaway will end on Wednesday, June 6, 2018 at midnight PST. Winner will be announced on the episode of Swashbuckled on Monday, June 11.

SWASHBUCKLED! S2E2: New York! New York! (+ Giveaway!)

We have our first special guest of the season, a Mate from New York City! Plus, he is a vegetarian and expects the food to be #slammin‘. Will Amanda and Marie be able to come together and make some delicious food?

Watch the episode here:


Ingredients featured this week include:

 

First, let’s start off with our GIVEAWAY!

Trader Joe's Mystery Packs

Mystery Pack of Regional Bags

Every Christmas, my mom and I would always buy each other the mystery packs of regional bags that Trader Joe’s sells. You can usually only get the regional bags from that specific area of the country, but the mystery bag packs have three random regional bags. It is always so much fun to get different bags and see what represents other cities.

Little did I know, that all along, my mom was just gaming for the New York City bag, ands always so disappointed when she never got one in the bags. Our friend, and Mate all the way from New York City, brought us some regional bags, making us able to use our last mystery pack for a giveaway!

We will be GIVING AWAY this mystery pack of regional bags as well as some of our favorite non-perishable swag from Trader Joe’s.

To enter the giveaway you need to do the following three steps:

  1. Make sure you are SUBSCRIBED to our channel on YouTube
  2. COMMENT on any BLOG POST on The Fearless Flying Kitchen blog (must be dated 5/21/18 or later).
  3. Subscribe to our NEWSLETTER (CLIKC HERE to do that)

For extra bonus entries:

  1. Find the mystery pack giveaway post on FACEBOOK – like that, share it with your friends, tag your friends, and comment. You get a point for each interaction!  (you must be following Fearless Flying Kitchen on Facebook to count)
  2. Find the mystery pack giveaway post on INSTAGRAM – like that, comment on it, and tag your friends. You get a point for each interaction! (you must be following Fearless Flying Kitchen on instagram to count)
  3. Like and comment on any of the Swashbuckled videos on YouTube and get an extra point for each interaction!

Giveaway will end on Wednesday, June 6, 2018 at midnight PST. Winner will be announced on the episode of Swashbuckled on Monday, June 11.


OK, now back to the food!

We had a #slammin’ time in the kitchen with Kris from New York. The only stipulation was that the food had to be vegetarian, and that Marie would be helping. Since the fridge was stocked for only lasagna, that’s what happened. Amanda made a delicious stovetop, easy lasagna. The combination of crème fraîche and ricotta was a little piece of heaven, and should be done with all lasagna from here on out. We also saved a little extra and topped our endives with it…also great. The sauce of Piquillo Pepper and Quinoa Spread with Whole Crushed Tomatoes was also a huge win. Great flavor and texture. You could just use your favorite jar of sauce if you truly want to make it a one pot meal…but this combo is definitely worth washing that second dish.

The only thing that was off was the mochi rice nugget topping. We all decided that just makes a great snack.  But all in all, this was a great, quick, meal that you can get super creative with. It is perfect for busy weeknights when you need a little hands off time (but still need a meal on the table in less than an hour).

Lazy Lasagna

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
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Recipe by Amanda Hibshman, RDN

Ingredients

  • 1 White Button Mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 Zucchini, zoodled
  • 1 Bell pepper, diced
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Jar Piquillo pepper and Quinoa Spread
  • 1 Large Can (28oz) Whole Peeled Tomatoes
  • 1/2 package Ricotta Cheese
  • 1/2 package Crème Fraîche
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese
  • 5 lasagna noodles
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Mozzarella Cheese
  • Mochi Rice Nuggets (Optional)

Directions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 375˚F. Prepare all vegetables (zoodle, slice and dice). Note, if you don’t have a zoodler, you can always just dice zucchini.
  2. In a large skillet (that can go in the oven), heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add red bell peppers and cook about 3 minutes, then add zucchini. Cook both for about 5 more minutes, then add mushrooms and cook until they have softened.
  3. Meanwhile, combine Piquillo Pepper and Quinoa Spread with one large can of whole peeled tomatoes. Crush whole peeled tomatoes in your hand as you are adding it to the pot. Heat over medium heat to a simmer. Add salt as needed (try it first, and add if it needs it according to your taste buds).
  4. Spread the cooked vegetables evenly around the large skillet. Top with broken up pieces of lasagna noodles. Cover noodles completely with sauce. Cover with lid and reduce heat to medium-low. Let cook, covered, for about 20 minutes.
  5. While the noodles and sauce cook, combine Ricotta Cheese, Crème Fraîche, parsley and parmesan cheese in a bowl and set aside.
  6. After 20 minutes, remove cover and stir noodles. If they have softened, then top with Ricotta/Crème Fraîche mixture (little blobs all over). Top with even more mozzarella cheese, and place in the oven to help melt and brown cheese. Can put in the broiler on low for a little while too. Once brown, remove from oven and enjoy! If you can’t put your skillet in the oven, you could just cover with the lid again and let the cheese melt that way. It will get melty but not necessarily start to brown.

Note – In this episode we decimated half a bag of Mochi Rice Nuggets in the vitamix (or food processor, if you have one), and added it to the top of the lasagna along with the mozzarella and broiled it on low. We don’t recommend this step, but instead, just eat the mochi rice nuggets as a separate snack. However, if you did want to recreate what we did, this is it. 


We, yet again, followed a recipe on the back of a product, and the result was #slammin’! There are always great ideas and suggestions on the back of the package. Marie begrudgingly proved that she can be somewhat useful in the kitchen!

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Baked Belgian Endive with Walnuts, Parmesan & Romano Cheese

  • Servings: 3
  • Difficulty: easy
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Recipe by Trader Joe’s…Literaly on the back of the endive package

Ingredients

  • 6 Belgian Endives, trimmed & halved lengthwise
  • 1/8 cup Clarified Butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup Walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1/3 cup Grated Parmesan Romano Cheese Blend
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375˚F. Toss endives with butter, salt and pepper to taste. Arrange in a single layer in an 8X8 shallow baking dish.
  2. Cover with foil and bake on the center rack of the oven for 30 minutes or until tender. Mix walnuts and cheese together and set aside.
  3. Remove endive from oven and sprinkle evenly with cheese mixture. Return to oven and bake, uncovered, for 10 more minutes, or until cheese is golden.

Hanging out with Kris from New York

Hanging out in the Fearless Flying Kitchen with Kris from New York!

SWASHBUCKLED! S2E1: Jessie Spano Special

Welcome Back!

We’re SO EXCITED! We’re SO EXCITED! And unlike Jessie Spano in Saved by the Bell, we are NOT scared to bring you SEASON TWO of SWASHBUCKLED!


“Never Enough Thyme” Burgers

Ingredients featured in this week’s episode include:

The reasons behind the choices? Marie chose ground beef because she just loves a good cheeseburger. The chèvre cheese, because, why not? In our Simpler Wines Facebook Live Event, our friend, Ryan, suggested we use “Palm of Heart” in one of our recipes. And last, she brought thyme as a way to pay homage to one of our favorite 90’s TV shows, Saved By The Bell.

20180511_075542_1526051659649Really wanting to impress Marie for the season premier, Amanda decided to go for the cheeseburger, even though there wasn’t any buns in the house. We made this awesome 40-minute Hamburger Bun Recipe from Taste of Home. It was quick and easy, and had a biscuit-like quality to it. We replaced 1 cup of the flour with White Wheat Flour for an earthier flavor and improved nutrition profile. Make sure you watch the episode for extra tips on making yeast bread from scratch.

However, if you don’t want to make your own bread and have an opportunity to go to the store, these Parm-Iago Rosemary Rolls (pictured to right) make excellent slider buns and would work well in this recipe.

We started out by “blooming” our thyme, which releases more flavor than just sprinkling into whatever you are preparing. Since some flavor compounds in some herbs and spices are fat soluble, you can extract more flavor when they are cooked (over low heat) with a fat source. We chose a mixture of oil and butter for this recipe, but you could easily just choose one or the other. Remove the herb before adding other ingredients.

(SPOILER ALER) We loved this meal and would definitely do it again. Highly recommended!

'Never Enough Thyme' Burgers

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Recipe by Amanda Hibshman, RDN

Ingredients

  • 85% lean Ground Beef
  • 1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 tsp Worchestershire Sauce
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 10 sprigs of Fresh Thyme
  • 1 Red Onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 Bag Hearts of Palm (or Palm of Hearts), sliced
  • 3 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 bag fresh spinach
  • 2 tsp Dijon Mustard
  • Sea Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper to taste
  • Chèvre with Honey
  • Glaze (Balsamic Glaze)
  • Your favorite bun (we love THIS RECIPE)

Directions

  1. Infuse thyme into oil and butter: over medium-low heat, melt butter and add olive oil and 8 sprigs of thyme. cook on low for about 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Remove thyme and discard. Turn heat up to medium or medium-high, and add sliced onion and sautée for a couple minutes, then add heart of palm. Cook for 5 minutes then add spinach, garlic, mustard and 2 additional thyme stems (chopped). Cook until spinach has cooked down. Salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Make burger patties: Preheat grill to medium-high. Combine ground beef, balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, salt and pepper with hands. Mix well. Form into 6 balls and squash them into thin patties. Set aside (and don’t forget to wash your hands with warm soapy water!) Cook for about 4 minutes per side, until internal temperature of 165˚F is reached.
  4. To assemble, slice bread in half, butter each half and cook on griddle for a couple minutes, until golden brown. Place a tablespoon of goat cheese on top bun, burger patty on the bottom, topped with 1/4 cup mixture of onions, spinach and heart of palm. Top with “GLAZE” (balsamic reduction or balsamic glaze).

Goat Cheese and

“Never Enough Thyme” Burgers, featuring Balsamic Glaze, Chèvre with Honey, Hearts of Palm, and Spinach.

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Classic Black Beans

For a long time, Trader Joe’s was really lacking in the dried legume department. But lucky for me…about a year ago, they introduced dried black beans, and life has never been the same.

If you find cooking beans from scratch intimidating, you are not alone! Before I started making them from scratch, I imagined an all day process that was very labor intensive. But if you have gone through the process before, then you’ll know just how easy it can be. Beans are a very forgiving food to cook, they just need a little bit of (mostly) hands-off time. Having this classic recipe in your back pocket, I guarantee you’ll start stocking up on this staple.

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The process really starts the night before. First, empty your 1lb bag of black beans into a large pot and sort through it for any rocks or random beans that might have made their way into the bag (totally common to find stuff like this in raw beans. If you find one, just discard it). Then cover with water, about 2 inches above the bean line, and let sit out overnight. You can cover if you like.

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Next, you’ll dump out the water (in a strainer? using your hands to strain it? You pick) and refill the pot with fresh water, about two inches above the bean line. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. You’ll add the rest of the ingredients (diced onion, garlic, bay leaves and salt), and continue to boil and add additional water until fully cooked, about 1-1 1/2 hours.

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You will want to occasionally try the beans, and add additional salt as needed, just keep in mind that the flavor intensifies as the water evaporates, so over-salting can be a thing. If that happens, you can always add additional water. Make sure to cook until it is soft.

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I love to top my side of beans with the new TEENY TINY AVOCADOS. Great flavor combination! This recipe makes about 6 cups of cooked beans (breaking down to 12, half cup servings).

 

Classic Black Beans

  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Recipe by Amanda Hibshman, RDN

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Bag Black Beans
  • Lots of water
  • 1/2 Onion, diced
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 1 tsp Salt (+ more to taste)

Directions

  1. Empty black beans into a large pot, look through beans to make sure there isn’t anything funky in there (sometimes rocks or other beans make their way into your bag) and cover with water (about 2 inches above the bean line). Let sit overnight. 
  2. When ready to cook beans, drain soaking water and refill with fresh water, about 2 inches above bean line. Turn heat to high and add onion, garlic, bay leaves and salt. 
  3. Let boil until beans are soft and cooked through (usually close to an hour), stirring occasionally and adding additional water as it evaporates. 

Do you have any secrets to the perfect pot of beans? Concerns? Let us know in the comments!