• erin

    Dumplings with my family
    A recent graduate of The Culinary Institute of America, I found myself with no money, no kitchen equipment, and an exceptionally huge appetite. Ideas, improvisations, and yummy meal solutions were discovered in the kitchen of my very first apartment.
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    I've been getting a lot of requests and suggestions for the apartment kitchen. I LOVE these suggestions, keep them coming!

    If you have anything you'd like me to consider (recipes to develop, shortcuts for recipes, great ingredients, or even blog formatting), shoot me an email and let me know!

    em570039@mycia.net

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Spiced Corn Soup with Sauteed Mushrooms

At the risk of sounding like a typical New Year’s Resolution maker, I am trying to eat healthier in 2010. Those of you who know me know I try to eat healthy at least most of the time (which makes it much easier and better when I go on a butter eating rampage). At any rate, as I often talk about, it’s easiest to make healthy food that’s delicious by working with it, rather than against it. It’s hard to make something healthy that inherently has a lot of cream or cheese or anything else in it – you’ll miss all that stuff too much if you eliminate it completely.

Corn is full of delicious starches, and in this pureed soup, it turns into a creamy, incredibly tasty soup. Combined with spicy peppers and savory sauteed mushrooms, it is unbelievably good (and also unbelievably healthy).

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Brown Sugar Apple Upside Down Cake with Apple Cider Caramel and Spiced Walnuts

The other weekly challenge over at Food52 was for Apple Cake. Living in the Hudson Valley means some of the best selection and variety of apples I have ever seen. I love the orchards this time of year, and the farm stands, and the smell of cinnamon, spices, and sweet appley goodness coming out in all it’s best forms, including cider (cider doughnuts – a love of mine that will have to be addressed another day). Anyway, I feel like cider is a great way to amp up the flavor of an apple cake, so I smothered my apple upside down cake with apple cider caramel and served it warm. Yum yum.

Baked Spiced Shrimp

I’m often struck by how often I cook the same way. Not the same thing – I am always trying new recipes, but I have my favorite ways of cooking various things. I like to stir-fry peppers and onions, I love grilling meat, and I usually saute shrimp. But last weekend, I decided to try something different. A baked shrimp dish, infused with spices and juicy tomatoes. Topped with a sprinkling of feta cheese and bread crumbs, this tasty dish was a big hit – not to mention ridiculously easy.

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Indian Spiced Pork

Ok. So I admit it. I’m an Indian food junkie. It is what it is. And while there is a huge array of Indian recipes out there: my favorites tend to be those covered in thick, creamy sauces. Incredibly delicious, of course, but not incredible for the waistline. So I got the idea the other day to make a dish with all the flavors of one of my favorite Indian dishes – Rogan Josh – with a healthier edge. Rogan Josh is usually made with lamb, but I switched my recipe to pork (primarily due to a current lack of lamb in my store) and lightened up the sauce with tomato and Greek yogurt – so you still get a little bit of that creaminess going on.

The result was amazing – all Indian food is packed with flavor due to all the incredible spices, but in this dish they came through even more because they were’nt smothered behind an overly thick, fatty sauce. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll never abandon my now-perfected Chicken Tikka Masala recipe, but this does provide an answer for all you Indian food junkies out there who are occasionally looking for a healthier option (you know who you are).

 

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