Friday, March 6, 2015

I'm Back!!!

So I've taken a bit of a hiatus for almost a wasn't on purpose, it started because I was letting myself get bogged down in the minutiae of life and some really bad time management.  When I began to get my feet under me, things happened like an emergency appendectomy, the biggest girl starting Kindergarten, and moving to a new house (and into a smaller, poorly designed kitchen).  Meanwhile, we dove headfirst into the paleo lifestyle.  If you don't know what that is, in it's simplest terms, it is eating like a caveman--lean meats and vegetables mostly. After my appendectomy, we ate strict paleo for about a month in an attempt to heal my gut.  As a result, hubby and I both dropped some weight and felt enormously better (turns out carbs make me verrrry sleepy!)  We aren't so strict all the time now, but "paleo" dictates alot of our food decisions.  I'm not going to take this blog in a paleo direction intentionally, we are not strict enough for that.  I'm still going to stick to what works for us and what works for our kids, and what I am doing in my tiny kitchen.

Let's get to it...we've had two snow days in a row this week.  Snow days are meant to be spent in the kitchen.  Baby Girl wanted crepes for breakfast. No problem, but usually I stuff them with a sherry spiked cream cheese or nutella.  (BTW, we've tried paleo crepe recipes and none have worked so far...this is an instance where we are not strict paleo.  I'm not eating pancakes or french toast but an egg-heavy, flour-light crepe is okay by me)  So I started thinking about other things besides sugar laden yummy stuff to eat with my crepes, and what did I already have in the fridge, since it is a snow day.

Side-bar: If you like my "soft-focus" pictures and want to recreate them on your own, give your cell phone to your grubby pawed children for a bit, they'll smudge up the camera lens so that every picture looks like a close-up of Cybill Shepherd on Moonlighting.

Creamy mushrooms with thyme was up first, then when the kids started eating grapes, roasted grapes with thyme was born (and yes, I ate some of that too for second breakfast).  The grape recipe comes from here:

and I've made it about a half dozen times--love it on bread but try the grapes on pork, on a sweet potato with goat cheese or just drink the elixir from the bowl, it's delicious!  Not wanting bread, I thought that rolling the ricotta in the crepe and serving the grapes on top might be pretty good...I was right!

Crepes Two Ways
Crepes (makes about 8 8-inch crepes)
3 eggs
1 cup milk
3/4 cup flour
pinch salt
pinch sugar (optional)
2 Tbs melted butter

Mix all ingredients in a blender.  Let batter stand for about 15 minutes.  Cook in a very thin layer in a nonstick skillet or fancy crepe pan if you happen to have a mom who gives the best Christmas gifts ever!

Creamy Mushrooms with Thyme
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbs butter
8 oz mushrooms, sliced (white or crimini)
3-4 stalks of thyme (no need to strip leaves)
salt and pepper
2 Tbs white wine
2 Tbs heavy cream

Heat the oil and butter in a skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the mushrooms and thyme and saute for 5-7 minutes.  Season mushrooms with salt and pepper.  Add wine to the pan (on a snow day when you have white grape juice in the house and you don't feel right about opening a bottle of wine at 8:15 in the morning, you can sub the juice for the works although I'm sure it's much better with the wine).  Reduce almost completely.  Remove the thyme from the pan and add the cream and stir. Pour over folded crepes and serve immediately.

Roasted Grapes with Thyme
About 1 lb of red grapes, removed from stem, washed and dried (of the water, not made into raisins)
5-6 stalks of thyme (no need to strip the leaves)
2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbs honey, divided
sprinkle of kosher salt
1 cup ricotta cheese

Preheat oven to 425.  Toss grapes, thyme, oil and 1 Tbs honey on a sheet pan and roast in oven, stirring occasionally, until the grapes burst and give off juice, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, mix ricotta with remaining honey and spread on crepes and roll up.  When the grapes are done, spoon over rolled crepes and serve immediately.

I added some whipped cream on the grapes for the picture...what do you do with the leftover whipped cream? Give it to the littlest...