Sunday, September 29, 2013

Pumpkin Ravioli


  • 2 c flour
  • 3 eggs (or 2 eggs and 2 yolks, if rollling by hand)
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 T olive oil


  • 1 c pumpkin puree
  • 1 c grated Parmesan (grated on a Microplane)
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • ¼–½ c bread crumbs
  • salt to taste


  • 4 T butter
  • 1 small shallot, finely minced
  • 2 tsp. fresh sage
Place flour on countertop, create a large well in the middle. Add the other ingredients to the well and beat with a fork, slowly incorporating flour. Knead until smooth and well-combined, and shape into a log. Wrap in plastic wrap and let rest on counter, 15 minutes if rolling by machine, and 1–4 hours if rolling by hand.

For filling, combine pumpkin, cheese, egg, and nutmeg. Add bread crumbs a couple tablespoons at a time, until mixture is thick enough to stand in coherent spoonfuls.

To shape pasta, divide into six pieces and roll out, on an unfloured surface, one at a time to approximately 6"x18", and see-through, about 1/32" thick. (If rolling by hand, alternate rolling and stretching for best results.) Place four or five scant tablespoons along one side of the sheet, a couple of inches apart, and trace around each with a fingertip dipped in water. Fold the sheet in half, cut in between the scoops of filling, and press edges around each to seal.

To make sauce, melt butter over medium heat in a shallow pan or skillet, until it just begins to brown (it's easiest to see this in a light colored pan. Add shallot and cook until softened (butter will continue to brown). Remove from heat, add sage and set aside while pasta cooks.

Cook pasta four or six at a time in boiling salted water for about 5 minutes. Toss with sauce and serve immediately with plenty of extra Parmesan. 

Notes: I ended up with 24 ravioli, with about 1/3 of the filling left over. I think if I were using a pasta machine, I would have been able to get the pasta rolled thinner, and probably used all the filling on 36 ravioli. 

To freeze, place uncooked ravioli on a baking rack for half an hour or so, until surface is slightly dry. Freeze with parchment or wax paper between layers.

Everyone loved these, including Linus. It was a great Friday dinner.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Steak Fajitas

  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 lb of flank steak, skirt steak
  • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and sliced 
  • 2-3 bell peppers of various colors, stemmed, seeded, de-ribbed, sliced lengthwise into strips
  • Salt

  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 2 Tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
Mix all marinade ingredients. Coat the steak with the marinade and let it sit at room temperature for an hour, or longer in the fridge. Before you cook the meat, wipe off most of the marinade and sprinkle the steak with salt.

Set a large cast iron pan over high heat and let this heat up for 1-2 minutes. Add the tablespoon of oil to the pan and let this heat up for 1 minute. Add the steak, frying on each side for 3 minutes, or to desired doneness. 3 minutes per side will yield approximately medium rare doneness for an average cut of flank steak. Skirt steak will need less time. If the pan starts to smoke too much, reduce the heat to medium-high. You want the steak browned, not burned. Remove from pan and let sit, tented with foil, for 5 minutes.

Cook the vegetables while the meat is resting. Add a little more oil to the pan if necessary, then add the onions and bell peppers. Let these sear for 1 minute before stirring, then stir every 90 seconds or so as the veggies sear. Cook for 5-6 minutes total.

  • Source
  • It also called for 1/2 a fresh jalapeno, which I didn't have, so I gave the meat a few shakes of tabasco sauce.
  • Instead of marinading the meat, I pre-sliced it and just cooked it in the marinade ingredients.  I wouldn't hesitate to do it that way again, although I'm sure the recommended way is good too.
  • I served them in this tremendous product.  Very nice, indeed!
Apologies for the lack of a photo, but basically they just looked like fajitas.  :)

Friday, September 13, 2013

Monkey Bread

We made this.  It was good.  Possibly only good warm though. 

But really good when warm.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Lemon Pepper Pasta

Holy cow, is this delicious!  I made it last night with the cucumber chicken recipe from the church cookbook, but it would be fantastic just buttered and on it's own, or I'm dreaming of some kind of light, lemony cream sauce.  (And the recipe on the package suggests serving it with shrimp!)  Next time I go to Trader Joe's, I'm going to pick up several packages.

Slow Cooker Pepper Steak

I followed this link from Jen's 7 Quick Takes last week and we all found it to be as delicious as they did.

2 pounds beef sirloin, cut into 2 inch strips
 garlic powder to taste
 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
 1 cube beef bouillon
 1/4 cup hot water
 1 tablespoon cornstarch
 1/2 cup chopped onion
 2 large green bell peppers, roughly chopped
 1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed tomatoes, with liquid
 2 tablespoons soy sauce
 1 teaspoon white sugar

  • Sprinkle strips of sirloin with garlic powder to taste. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the vegetable oil and brown the seasoned beef strips. Transfer to a slow cooker.
  • Mix bouillon cube with hot water until dissolved, then mix in cornstarch until dissolved. Pour into the slow cooker with meat. Stir in onion, green peppers, stewed tomatoes, soy sauce, sugar, and salt.
  • Cover, and cook on high for 3 to 4 hours, or on low for 6 to 8 hours.


  • The original recipe called for a beef bouillon cube, 3 tablespoons of soy sauce and a teaspoon of salt.  That's a ridiculous amount of sodium so I cut out the salt and only used 2 tablespoons of soy sauce.  We thought it was good (and it would be easy to add more soy sauce at the end of the process if you didn't agree).
  • I used venison instead of beef and that worked well too.  This would be a good place to use a cheaper cut of meat, just be sure to cut it across the grain.
  • It was pretty fantastic to have dinner done when I got home today. :)  (Why don't I do more crock pot meals?)