Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Home Cookin' On A Rainy July Day

So, it's been raining here in Seattle the past couple of days, which sucks, because HELLO, IT'S SUPPOSED TO BE SUMMER! But, oh well, like Peabody at Culinary Concoctions by Peabody said, it's nice to have a fall preview around here. Especially after how dry and hot it was last week (though, I didn't really mind coming home from Mexico to nice, warm weather).

I decided a hearty, home-cooked meal was just what I needed to make me feel better about the crazy rain we've been having. (On a side note, the rain makes this odd sound when it hits the windows at my work. It sounds like rice being thrown against glass. Very strange.) Anyways, I wasn't quite sure what I wanted to make, so I settled on pork chops with sauteed green beans and tomatos, and came up with a potato side dish I like to call "Twice Baked Potato Casserole". The pork chops didn't photograph too well, and since it's too late to take more photos as the pork chops are now in my belly, you only get photos of the potatos and the green beans.

"Twice Baked Potato Casserole" Recipe:

-2 to 3 red potatos (depending on the size casserole you want)
-2 to 3 Yukon Gold potatos
-3 to 4 tbsp butter
-1/2 cup milk
-1/2 cup sour cream
-3 cloves of minced garlic
-1/2 cup chopped green onions
-1/2 cup shredded cheese (for the mixture)- I used a four-cheese mixture I had in my fridge
-1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese (for the topping)
-salt and pepper to taste

Instructions: Cube the potatos and boil until fork-tender. Drain. Mash together with butter and salt and pepper. Add milk, sour cream, garlic and onions. Using a hand blender, blend until creamy. Stir in 1/2 cup shredded cheese. Pour mixture into casserole dish and top with 1/3 cup shredded cheddar. Bake at 350F for 10-15 minutes. (I set my oven on broil for the last five minutes to get a nice crust on top).

"Sauteed Green Beans With Tomatos and Garlic"
-1/2 lb fresh green beans with the ends chopped off
-2 cloves of minced garlic
-3 tbsp olive oil (you may need to add a bit more)
-1 large tomato, cut into triangles
-salt and pepper to taste

Instructions: In a medium skillet, heat olive oil over low to medium heat. Add garlic and cook for about 3 minutes to release the aroma. Add the green beans, cover and cook for 10 to 15 minutes until tender. Add tomatos and salt and pepper. Replace cover and allow to cook for an additional 10 to 15 minutes.

The casserole turned out delicious! It was inspired by something a mom of a friend of mine made when I was in the sixth grade, except used russets and she baked her potatos instead of boiling them. I boiled mine to save time. I also would have added bacon bits, to make it taste even more like a baked potato.

The green beans I make all the time, I only added the tomatos to give more volume, because I didn't think I'd have enough green beans for the three of us to have a decent-sized portions. I like them because they taste really fresh, and the tomatos had a really robust flavor. I couldn't get enough of them.

On to other news: Glenna at A Fridge Full of Food inspired me to get a bento box of my own. She posts such great stuff about her lunches, and they all make my mouth water! She recommended a seller on eBay to me, so I went through him. I got mine for around $20, and that's including shipping. He also had all these great accessories for my bento box, but I had to limit myself if I wanted to also get a copy of Nigella Lawson's "How To Be A Domestic Goddess". I can't wait till both items arrive!! It's like Christmas in July!! (Oh, that has inspired me to bake some wintery treats. Standby for that post!)

Thanks for stopping by!



Garrett said...

COuld you pass all this bento box seller information to me!? I love the one pictured and would love to get one for myself!

Anonymous said...

Ditto on the bento box info! It's too cute.

The potatoes looks awesome. =]


Mehgan said...

I got mine from eBay seller tokyo_gift. They have tons to choose from ranging from character boxes for kids, to masculine boxes for men, and girlier boxes for women. Welcome to the fun!