Cinnamon Sugar Bananas with Brandy

I first saw a cinnamon sugar banana recipe similar to this being passed around on Pinterest.  My initial thought was that the combination sounded delicious.

When I took a closer look, it had bananas, cinnamon, sugar, and olive oil spray?! Huh? Sorry, but they lost me there.  However the rest of it sounded good, so I decided to put my own spin on it.

First thing I did was to ditch the olive oil spray and replace it with butter.  I didn’t use a lot, only one teaspoon.  Next I thought a bit of brandy would add flavor and punch, and since I had a tiny bit left I added that too.

I usually buy a bottle of inexpensive brandy for this sort of thing, no sense using something expensive if it’s not necessary. On the other hand, if all you have is top shelf liquor, you won’t need much, so you don’t have to feel guilty about it.  And, it will likely taste even better.

So, a little butter, some cinnamon, a pinch of nutmeg, the banana, brandy, and just a touch of sugar and I had a delicious, easy dessert for one.

It was so good, I wanted to eat it again!

 




Cinnamon Sugar Bananas Variations

  • top your bananas with a scoop of vanilla ice cream
  • use dark rum instead of brandy
  • drizzle the bananas with a bit of chocolate syrup

More Banana Recipes

chocolate banana breadMini Chocolate Banana Bread

Ordinary banana bread is good. But why not add chocolate and make it even better.  Scaled perfectly for one person.

 

strawberry banana yogurt popsicles plateStrawberry Banana Yogurt Popsicles

When the summer heat hits, popsicles are the perfect sweet treat. Sweet, icy cold, and refreshing!

 

banana smoothie for oneBanana Smoothie Recipe for One

A banana, some nutmeg, and cinnamon, swirl it around and you’ve got a refreshing snack. Great with a salad for a light meal.

 




Quick Dinner Recipes for One Person

You get home from work, you’re tired, you’re hungry, and you’re thinking, “How can I make a quick dinner that won’t take forever to cook?” You open the refrigerator, and stare inside, hoping for inspiration. You’re tempted to go for fast food, or reach for the menu from the pizza place.   Skip the takeout and make one of these quick dinner recipes for one person instead.

They’re all a single serving, but you can make enough for two, save the rest, and reheat it a day or two later (then you get dinner in 2 minutes!).

Most of these recipes take about 20 or 25 minutes to cook. Cut up some fruit, heat some rice (I always make extra), make a quick salad, or grab some crusty bread, and you’ve got dinner!

Quick Dinner Recipes for One

Single Serving Creole Cabbage with Sausage

creole cabbage and sausage

Skillet Chicken Thighs with Mushroom Sauce

chicken mushroom skillet recipe




Easy Italian Wedding Soup Recipe

easy italian wedding soup

Apple Glazed Ham Steak

apple glazed ham steak

Easy Chicken Curry Recipe for One

one person chicken curry

Eggplant Parmesaneggplant parmesan for one

Pasta Pesto with Pistachios and Broccolipistachio pasta pesto

Salmon with Greek Yogurt Dill Sauce for Onesalmon greek yogurt dill sauce

Singapore Noodles Dinner Recipe for One

easy singapore noodles with chicken

Greek Fish with Lemon and Tomatoes

greek fish with lemon and tomatoes

This has become one of my favorites during the summer. It’s tasty (and quick) when it’s hot and I don’t feel like cooking. Use greenmarket tomatoes (if you can get them).

Cold Leftover Steak Salad with Red Wine Vinaigrette

cold leftover steak salad




More Quick Dinner Recipe Ideas

15 minute meals for oneFifteen Minute Meals

In a really big hurry? Try my fifteen minute meals.  Real food (like tuna with beans, cherry tomato frittata, and eggs with spinach and chili peppers) in less time than it takes to order takeout.  Just the thing when you’re “hangry” and need food fast!

Jacques Pepin’s Fast Food My Way

Start with a French chef and you know the food will be good. His version of fast food has no Big Macs in sight. Instead, you’ll get sweet potato chowder, oven baked salmon with sun-dried tomato and salsa mayonnaise, and egg and cheese gratin.


The Bon Appetit Cookbook: Fast Easy Fresh

The name pretty much says it all. It’s got over 1,000 recipes made with ingredients that are easy to find. This book uses everyday ingredients, tells you what’s in season, and organizes the recipes by both types of foods and meals. Great if you’ve got some fish and don’t know what to do with it.

French Cooking in Ten Minutes: Adapting to the Rhythm of Modern Life (1930)

Before Rachel Ray, there was Eduard de Pomaine. This cookbook shows you how to make veal, beef, fish, desserts, and even soups in only a few minutes. And, it’s funny and well-written.

Yes, it was written long ago, but the translators have kindly included instructions on updating it for the modern kitchen (if it took 10 minutes chopping by hand, imagine what you can do with a mini-chopper!)




Eggplant Parmesan Recipe for One

I have loved eggplant parmigiana (or eggplant parmesan, if you prefer) since I was a child. Back then, it was a special treat when we went to the dentist. Yes, the dentist!

There was a restaurant near my dentist’s office called Pippo’s (which is now, sadly, gone), that made the best eggplant parmigiana I have ever tasted. Mom tried her best to get the recipe, but without much luck. Drat!

Still, it was an incentive to have good checkups, so we could go out to lunch afterward! I’m sure we were the only kids in the neighborhood who looked forward to going to the dentist!

The restaurant, naturally, made it in huge batches, but this eggplant parmesan recipe is perfectly sized for one person. It’s quick, easy, and delicious. You can put the whole thing together in about thirty minutes.

I did “cheat” and use sauce in a jar, rather than making my own, but so what.  I do often make my own, but I didn’t have any handy, and I don’t feel the least bit guilty either.

When picking out your eggplant at the store, choose a light one (in weight, not color). The heavier ones have more seeds and are more likely to be bitter.

I know there is controversy about whether or not to salt the eggplant first. Some say it’s a must, to draw out the bitterness, and to cut down on the oil (eggplant does love to soak up oil). Others say don’t bother. I didn’t bother. One reason being that it takes time (and I was hungry), another being that I prefer less salt anyway.

Either way, just slice the eggplant very thin, dip it in egg, then flour (I used rice flour, but you can use the regular kind), and fry the slices in olive oil.

Top those with your favorite spaghetti sauce (I used a Robert Rothschild sauce, which was so thick I had to dilute it with some tomato sauce; Silver Palette sauces are good too), some fresh mozzarella, and pop it in the toaster oven to bake until the cheese melts. I had some tiny fresh mozzarella “pearls” so I used those. Fresh mozzarella slices are fine too.

Since it’s an eggplant parmesan for one recipe, you don’t have to heat up the whole oven (and the whole kitchen).

I served it with some fresh basil on top and a simple green leaf salad tossed with balsamic vinaigrette.




More Eggplant Recipes

sichuan chinese chicken and eggplant with garlic sauceSichuan Chinese Chicken and Eggplant with Garlic Sauce

Why bother schlepping for takeout when you can make this spicy, garlicky favorite right at home? It’s a lot easier than you think (tastes better too).

 

pasta alla norma with eggplantPasta alla Norma with Eggplant

Pasta tossed with fresh eggplant, a slightly spicy tomato sauce, and topped with manchego cheese. Great when you’re in a hurry, as it takes under 30 minutes to make.

 

leftover roast lamb eggplant spinach saladLeftover Roast Lamb Eggplant and Spinach Salad

Luscious lamb, crisp cucumbers, creamy eggplant, and earthy spinach, all topped with an easy garlicky aioli.

 

moussaka without bechamelMoussaka Without Bechamel Sauce Recipe

Standard moussaka is a lot of work and steps. This one is just as tasty, but a lot easier to make. Flavored with spicy/warm cinnamon and nutmeg, tender eggplant, ground beef, and tomatoes.

 




Lamb and Lentil Soup Recipe

Lamb and lentil soup is rich, hearty, and filling.  It’s a great dish for a cold winter’s day. This recipe is for one serving of soup (more on that later).

I had some lamb broth leftover from the lamb breast provencale recipe I posted a few days ago.  Since I wasn’t in a particular hurry, and it was chilly, I decided to use it up and make a single serving of lamb and lentil soup.   I’d just bought a bag of lentils, and lentils and lamb are a good combination.  Since it was an experiment, it was also a good way to test the recipe on a single serving of soup before I made a huge pot of it.

This recipe uses that lamb broth, plus lentils, diced tomatoes and thyme for lots of flavor.

It does take a while to cook, but once you get the ingredients together it’s mostly set it and forget it, so you can start it early and then go do something else while your soup simmers on the stove (and delicious smells start wafting through your home).

Serve with a chunk of crusty bread (to sop up every last drop of soup from the bottom of the the bowl).  Since this is “the single serving chef” you can be messy if you want.  Nobody will know.

I made this for one because I had one serving’s worth of broth. You can scale up the recipe, make a larger batch, and then freeze it in single serving containers (or save some for a fast lunch another day).

The other nice thing, is that while it does take a while to cook, the prep time is minimal.




Lamb and Lentil Soup Substitutions and Variations

  • If you don’t have the lamb broth, use beef broth (it won’t be lamb soup any longer, but it will still taste good)
  • Add 1/4 ground lamb to the soup (brown this as the first step in the recipe)
  • Replace the brandy with a robust red wine

More Lamb Recipes

greek lamb breastGreek Lamb Breast Recipe

Marinated in olive oil, garlic, and lemon, then slow-roasted for a deep, rich flavor.

 

moroccan lamb stewMoroccan Lamb Stew with Almonds and Raisins

Flavored with cinnamon, a touch of ginger, raisins, almonds, and lamb.  The lamb is cooked slowly, so it practically melts in your mouth. Perfect for a sweet new year.

 

lamb breast provencale with rosemaryOne Person Slow Roasted Lamb Breast Provencal Recipe

Slow roasted with lots of garlic and rosemary, then topped with golden crunchy bread crumbs.  Ideal for a winter’s day.

 

leftover roast lamb eggplant spinach saladLeftover Roast Lamb Eggplant and Spinach Salad

Creamy eggplant, luscious lamb, and earthy spinach all tossed together with a garlicky easy cheat aioli.

 




Pan-Fried Tilapia with Lemon Butter Sauce

This single serving of pan-fried tilapia with lemon butter sauce is quick, easy, and delicious. I was never a big fish fan growing up, but I’ve grown to like it as I have gotten older.  If you’re a bit wary of fish, tilapia is a good “starter fish.” It has a mild flavor and doesn’t overwhelm your taste buds (or your kitchen).

I got the idea from someone who said she made tilapia with butter, lemon, and rosemary.  I thought that sounded good, but that it would be even better with some olive oil and mustard powder (it was).

You can put the whole thing together and have dinner on the table in less than fifteen minutes. Make the fish, steam (or zap) some veggies and you’re good to go.

I made this recently (just as spring is finally showing signs of arriving, after a truly nasty winter), but it would be great in the summer when you want something fast.  There’s no need to heat the stove or the oven for an hour.

By the way, the fish came from Trader Joe’s.  They have great frozen fish. The tilapia was in a package with individually-wrapped fillets. Normally, I don’t like extra packaging, but in this case it was perfect, since I only had to defrost one fillet, instead of the entire bag.




 

Pan-Fried Tilapia with Lemon Butter Sauce Substitutions and Variations

  • If you don’t have tilapia, use another mild, white fish such as cod, flounder, or Dover sole
  • Swap the rosemary for some capers
  • Skip the mustard and the rosemary and use dill instead

 

More Easy Fish Recipes

fish fillet with yogurt sauceIndian Fish Fillet in Yogurt Sauce

Fish in a rich, tangy sauce that seems more decadent than it actually is.  There’s a bit of warm spiciness from cumin and garam masala, but it’s not “hot” spicy.

 

greek fish with lemon and tomatoesGreek Fish with Lemon and Tomatoes

Make a quick marinade, let it sit, and pan-fry the fish. Dinner is done.

 

fish in peppery tomato sauceSephardic Fish in Peppery Tomato Sauce

In America, we tend to think of “Jewish” food as brisket, potato pancakes, and bagels. But there’s a whole world of spicier and more varied foods from India, Lebanon, and the Mediterranean. This is one of them.

easy mediterranean fish stewEasy Mediterranean Fish Stew

A variation on the classic cioppino, popular in San Francisco, this stew is easy and accessible.  You can even start it in advance (up to the point where you add the fish).

 




Small Kitchen Storage Ideas: How to Store Everything You Need to Cook in a Tiny Kitchen

Working and cooking in a small kitchen can be a real challenge.  My kitchen is soo small (how small is it)? It’s so small, that only one person can stand in it at a time.  With a space this tiny, clever small kitchen storage ideas are a necessity.

My counter is the size of a sheet of paper. No drawers. There are two standard size cabinets, and two half-size cabinets. And that’s it.

Here are some of the small kitchen storage ideas and organization hacks I use everyday so I can find what I need, and still get food on the table. Yes, I do cook in there!

Repurpose Other Products for Kitchen Storage

Look at organizing with a fresh eye; use a sock organizer for small jars and container lids.


Sock Box – Clear Drawer Organizer – Set of 2

This is supposed to be for socks, but I use several in my microwave cart in the kitchen. They’re great for keeping smaller items in one place. One has plastic container lids, another has small cans of tomato sauce and tomato paste. A third has small bottles (like sesame oil and rice vinegar), and a fourth one has boxes of tea. No socks in sight.

SE – Storage Container Set – Plastic, Round, Screw Top, 6 Pc

I stole this idea from my mom. I think she got them in a marine store (they were supposed to be for fishing lures). However, they’re also great for storing spices. They can be stacked, labeled, and stuck in a drawer or a cabinet, without taking up a lot of space.

Ten Easy Small Kitchen Storage Ideas

If your kitchen storage space is limited, then you need to think a bit creatively.

  1. Not a lot of floor space? Look up! Hang things from the walls. I’ve got my spice rack, wire shelving, teaspoons, and paper towels on the wall.
  2. Use wire racks to double your shelf space. I put wire shelves in my microwave cart, giving me two levels instead of just one.
  3. Get pots that stack! If you’re really stuck for cabinet space, try a marine or camping store. They’ve got sets of pots that stack into each other, so they take up less space.
  4. Measure appliances and space before you buy. Not every toaster oven or blender will fit. Take a tape measure when you go shopping, or measure (and write down) your counter size before you buy online.
  5. Look for double (or triple) duty appliances and furnishings. My microwave cart is also a cabinet, a towel holder, a knife block, storage for silverware, and counter space.
  6. Move cookbooks to another room. Since my living room/dining area/kitchen is all really one big space, the cookbooks are on a shelf over the TV. I only have to walk a few feet to get the one I need.
  7. Store plastic bags in an old tissue box. Thumbtack or nail it to the inside of a kitchen cabinet door. Or, for a more elegant solution, try a fabric plastic bag holder.
  8. Use wire baskets to separate your cleaning supplies, or keep all your pots together.
  9. Hang small appliances (like microwaves or toaster/ovens) under your cabinets.
  10. Get slide-out drawers for more storage.

More Small Kitchen Storage Hacks

Use Your Kitchen Door

An over-the-door spice rack saves counter and wall space.


Organize It All 3-Tier Wall-Mounted Spice Rack – Chrome

Keep all your spices organized and easy to reach. This spice rack is very sturdy, and big enough to clear out an entire cabinet of spices.


Shelf on Rails Pantry Pull Out Shelf

Wire storage shelves are essential in small kitchens. You can use them to create an extra shelf (and get twice as much space in your cabinets), or just to keep your food, ingredients, or cleaning supplies all in one place.



ClosetMaid  Two-Tier Cabinet Organizer

These stacking shelves give you split level cabinets. I used them to create extra space in my microwave cart. There are more in my kitchen cabinet, which let me stack sandwich size plates on top of larger dinner plates.

Stack Everything

Get bowls, containers, and even pots that stack. They use less space.

Stansport Stainless Steel 7 Piece Cookset

The pots nest inside each other, so they use up a lot less space than standard pots. If you’re really, really stuck for space, this set includes 4 quart , 3 quart, 2 quart and 1 quart pots, 10 inch fry pan, a universal lid and a detachable handle. The whole set fits in a small box (so you could even use it for actual camping if you wanted to).

Add a Rail

Kitchen Utensil Rail

Here’s an easy kitchen storage solution: hang your utensils, potholders, mugs, and pans on the wall.  This solution uses a lot less space, and you can see everything you have easily, without pawing through cupboards or utensil holders.

Multipurpose Small Kitchen Storage/Furniture

If you’ve got a tiny kitchen, a microwave cart (like the one below) is counter space, pantry, and towel rack.


Winsome Wood Single Drawer Storage Cart, Natural

This compact cart is made of real wood (not particle board). It’s got a counter top for extra workspace or small appliances, plus a towel rack, and a drawer for silverware. The cabinet underneath has a built-in shelf. Add more storage with wire baskets and shelving. Since it’s small (19×25, 34) you can push it out of the way when you’re not using it.


Whitmor Supreme Cart

This holds my recycling (on the bottom shelf, with bags tucked into a repurposed Amazon box), cat supplies in the middle, and coffee and tea supplies on the top.

It’s pretty easy to assemble, and you can adjust the shelves up and down to whatever height you like. And, it has wheels, so you can roll it out to get easier access.

It’s only 13″ wide, so it takes up very little space. If that’s too wide, there’s a smaller one that’s only 9″ wide.

The World’s Best Cheesecake Recipe

The Best Cheesecake Recipe

My mom got this recipe for New York cheesecake from a family friend in the cream cheese business. It’s a home kitchen version of the original Lindy’s cheesecake – which has been a New York institution since 1921.

In fact, Lindy’s (along with Junior’s) made New York cheesecake famous. It’s got sour cream, cream cheese, and heavy cream, so it’s very rich and very creamy. Everyone who has tried it (friends, family, co-workers) says it’s the best cheesecake they ever had! When my brother got married, this recipe was the first one his wife asked for.

A few years ago, when I was visiting my friend Betsy, she served me cheesecake for breakfast. It was the best breakfast ever!

I had originally posted this recipe on Squidoo, but now that Squidoo is gone and I have my own blog, I have republished it here.




Use a Kitchenaid Mixer!

This cheesecake is thick and rich. You’ll need a Kitchenaid mixer or other powerful mixer to make it. A low-powered or hand-held mixer won’t work.

KitchenAid Five Quart Stand Mixer 

The reason this mixer works so well is because it has dual spinning action (planetary motion), which means it spins both on the beater’s axis, and around the bowl.  That means it mixes faster and you get more mixing power than ordinary mixers.  You also don’t have to keep scraping down the sides of the bowl. You spend less time mixing and more time enjoying your cheesecake.

Some poor fellow tried to make this recipe by hand. It took him two days to mix it! I bet his arm was awfully sore.

If you don’t already have one, you’ll need a springform pan. This one, by Calphalon,  is perfect for cheesecake. It’s extra thick to distribute heat evenly, so your cheesecake will cook properly. The fluted base means it won’t leak. Makes cooking cheesecake easy (and a lot less messy).

Best Cheesecake Recipe Toppings

You can eat your cheesecake plain, garnish it with fresh berries, or go all out and make a topping.

Blueberry Cheesecake Topping

1/2 C sugar
3 T cornstarch
1 pint fresh blueberries (or use frozen)
2 T lemon juice
1 T butter.
Combine everything except the butter in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat until it gets thick. Add the butter and let cool.

Raspberry Topping

2 C raspberries
1 C sugar
1 T cornstarch
Combine berries, sugar, and some water. Bring to a boil. Simmer for 3 minutes. In a separate, small bowl, mix the cornstarch and a little water. Add to the berry mixture. Cook, stirring, for five minutes, or until the sauce thickens.

Temperature control is critical when baking cheesecake. Too high, and your cake will be hard and dry, more likely to weep (pull out all the moisture) or crack; too low and it will fall apart. Get this thermometer to check your oven and make sure your cheesecake comes out perfect!

Chocolate Ganache Cheesecake Topping

1 C heavy cream
8 oz. semi-sweet chocolate
Melt chocolate and cream over very low heat (or use a double boiler). Stir constantly until smooth and thick. Pour it over a chilled cheesecake. Spread quickly before it hardens. Once the cake is covered with chocolate, return to the fridge to set. Keep any leftover ganache in the refrigerator, covered. If you want to reuse it, reheat it gently.

Strawberry Topping

1 pint strawberries
1/3 C sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Chop the strawberries. Set aside about 1/3. Add the remaining berries to a saucepan with the sugar and vanilla. Cook over medium high heat. Stir occasionally, until it thickens. Puree the mixture with an immersion blender (or use a regular blender). Then add the uncooked berries, and serve over your cake.




(Topping recipes adapted from Baking 911)

Cheesecake Baking Tips

Keep the oven door closed and it shouldn’t crack.
Cheesecake keeps well in the fridge and freezer.
Make it ahead and defrost when you need it.

 A Note on Measurements

For anyone confused about the measurements (why 1/2 pint instead of 1 cup), it’s because pints and cups are different depending on whether it’s a liquid or solid volume of measure (yeah, it’s confusing), so a half pint of sour cream is not the same quantity as a 1/2 pint of heavy cream.

It’s also easier to measure that way, since the heavy cream comes in half pints and the sour cream comes in pints (just pour the entire container of cream, or half the container of sour cream, into the mixture).

If you don’t have sour cream where you live, you can use crema salvadorena instead.

Cheesecake Cookbooks


Junior’s Cheesecake Cookbook: 50 To-Die-For Recipes of New York-Style Cheesecake

After Lindy’s, there’s Junior’s, born in Brooklyn, and now famous worldwide. This cookbook has recipes for all of Junior’s best-selling varieties, from Strawberry Swirl to Cappuccino to Peanut Butter and Jelly!


125 Best Cheesecake Recipes

Become the king or queen of cheesecake with the recipes from this book. One reader on Amazon said her cakes used to come out burned or grainy, but now, they’re perfect every time.


A Passion for Baking: Bake to celebrate, Bake to nourish, Bake for fun

Marcy Goldman’s book on everything from cheesecake to muffins and cookies. Who could resist a recipe with a name like Chocolate Eruption Cheesecake?

The Cook’s Illustrated Baking Book

This guide to all things baking tells you not only what to do, but why. For example, it explains how the temperature of your ingredients can affect the final result (particularly important in baking), and when to use different fats (oil, butter, shortening). Each step is easy to understand and follow, whether you’re a beginner or an expert.

More Ways to Use Your Kitchenaid

Kitchenaid Pasta Recipes

How to Use Your Kitchenaid Mixer and Attachments

Kitchenaid Bread Recipes

Kitchenaid Ice Cream Recipes




Easy Singapore Noodles with Chicken for One Person

Nobody knows exactly where Singapore noodles came from.  They’re not really native to Singapore, and the curry is more South Asian than North Asian.  I suspect they are no more “Singaporean” than fortune cookies are Cantonese.  In any case, easy Singapore noodles with chicken is a quick, weeknight dinner that’s a great way to “clean out your fridge.”

They don’t work too well as leftovers (especially if you use rice noodles, which tend to clump when they sit), so a recipe for a single serving is essential.  Since it makes just enough for one person, you won’t have leftovers to fill up the fridge again!

I used regular pasta here, because that’s what I had and rice noodles may not be readily available everywhere.  If you do use the rice noodles, get the vermicelli kind.  Soak them in hot water for thirty seconds to soften them and then add them to the vegetables and chicken once they’re cooked.

The recipe is flexible, so you can use chicken, beef, pork, or shrimp if you have that handy, or if you prefer it.

The vegetables are just suggestions too.  I used broccoli, onions, mushrooms, and two kinds of bell peppers (red and green). More suggestions (and variations) at the bottom of the post.




Easy Singapore Noodles with Chicken Substitutions and Variations

  • Use leftover roast pork or raw shrimp (or both) instead of chicken
  • Use a mixture of frozen Chinese veggies, such as Trader Joe’s stir fry, or harvest hodgepodge. Seapoint Farms Oriental Blend is also good; this will also speed up the cooking time
  • Mix and match the vegetables in the dish. Add snow peas, water chestnuts, or sprouts. Use different kinds of peppers.
  • Throw in a hot pepper or two (depending on your tolerance for heat)
  • Add an egg and scramble it

More Asian Noodle Recipes

spicy beef noodle soupSpicy Beef Noodle Soup for One

A quick, and healthy soup, packed with noodles, cabbage, and chili garlic sauce. All right from your fridge and pantry.

 

spicy sesame noodlesSpicy Sesame Noodles Recipe for One Person

Slightly sweet, a little spicy, and refreshing too. This takeout standard is easy to make at home. Add cucumbers for crunchy cool.

 

szechuan chili noodlesSzechuan Chili Noodles Recipe

A streamlined home version of Dan Dan noodles. Add meat (or not).  All you need is noodles, make your own chili oil for heat, sesame seeds for crunch, and bok choy (or cabbage) for color and a little crunch.

chinese chicken noodle cabbage soupChinese Chicken Noodle Cabbage Soup for One Person

The aroma alone is enough to make you hungry. Breathe in the garlic, spicy chili, and honey, and then slurp it all down.

 




Roasted Paprika Potatoes

Roasted paprika potatoes are one of my favorite comfort foods.  My grandma used to make them (on semi-special occasions).  There’s an ongoing big family “argument” about whether she used olive oil or something else. However, I say olive oil, and it’s my blog so olive oil wins!

The potatoes end up slightly crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. The name says roasted paprika potatoes, but it’s really like making extra-flavorful French fries. Plus, you only have to use a little bit of oil, instead of filling a whole fryer with it. It’s a lot less messy, less wasteful (unless you don’t mind reusing the oil), and considerably easier to clean up.

These potatoes make a great side dish with a simple roast chicken or a lamb chop.

They’re not hard to make, but they do take a bit of time. If you don’t have an hour to  bake them, try cooking them at a slightly higher  temperature (425) for 35 minutes.

The important thing (which I noted in the recipe) is not to put anything else in the oven.  They don’t like to share space. Grandma said. And grandma was always right. Always.




More Potato Recipes

skin on garlic mashed potatoesSkin On Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Sure, mashed potatoes are good. But they’re even better when you add garlic to them.  This recipe is super easy. You don’t even have to bother to peel the potatoes.

 

belgian potato salade liegoiseBelgian Potato Salade Liegoise

A warm potato salad that’s a full meal. Add sausage or bacon and some greens and it’s lunch or a light dinner.

 

dill caper potato saladDill Caper Potato Salad

Briny capers, tangy cider vinegar, and fresh dill add an extra depth of flavor to this potato salad. Low on the mayo too.

 

crispy garlic basil potato bites

Crispy Garlic Basil Potato Bites

Tiny, fluffy on the inside, crispy outside bits of delight.  The garlic adds punch, while basil makes it sweet and summery.

 




Quick Soak Beans in an Hour

Waiting for dried beans to soak overnight can be a real pain (especially if you’re hungry).  You can, of course, buy them in cans, but the canned beans often have extra salt and/or preservatives in them.  Luckily, there is a way to speed up the process and quick soak the beans in an hour, rather than waiting overnight. Much better!

Here’s all you have to do.  Just measure out the amount of beans you need.  Put them in a large saucepan and cover them with water (about an inch or two over the top of the beans).  Cover the pot and bring the water to a boil. Let the beans boil for two minutes.

Turn off the heat, and allow them to rest for an hour.

They’re now ready to cook. These are cranberry (or Roman) beans, by the way. Sadly, they lose most of their color when you cook them. They are rather pretty though. And, I find they are firmer and tastier than kidney beans.

Recipes with Quick-Soak Beans

pasta e fagioli soupPasta e Fagioli Soup (Small Batch)

A classic Italian pasta and bean soup in a rich tomato broth. Downsized so it’s perfect for one person.

 

black beans and rice recipe one personBlack Beans and Rice Recipe for One Person

Pantry-friendly, and made with an ingredient you might not expect. Plus, it’s two recipes in one (cook it more you have beans, less and it’s soup).

 

moroccan bean and chicken soupMoroccan Chicken and Bean Soup

Simmered slowly and enriched with saffron, ginger, beans, and pasta. It’s a meal in a bowl. Perfect for chilly days.

 

spicy stovetop chili recipeSmall Batch Spicy Stovetop Chili Recipe

Ground beef, chili powder, garlic, and sriracha! Plus a bit of cinnamon to add warm spice and balance out the heat.