Udon Noodles with Roasted Asparagus Pesto & Tomatoes

Udon Noodles with Roasted Asparagus Pesto & Tomatoes via applestoziti.com

I have yet to meet a noodle that pesto didn’t get along with.

Come to think of it… I have yet to meet a noodle that didn’t get along with.

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Roasted Shrimp Skewers

Roasted Shrimp Skewers via applestoziti.com

If you love shrimp and you love simple… you’ll love this simple shrimp recipe!

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Ricotta & Sausage Calzones

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This is the second time I’ve posted a calzone recipe here on A to Z.

My family voted unanimously that they were better this time around. You’re gonna love ’em!

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Italian Quinoa

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I have to admit that sometimes I’m a bit jealous of other languages. They just sound more refined than the English language.

Or maybe more romantic.

Or both.

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Pork & Nectarine Salad with Creamy Feta Dressing

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Summer is in full swing here in Phoenix. You know this when the temperature breaks 115°F… funny enough, a 101°F day is mild and yes, you can tell the difference. In the midst of these weeks of extreme heat we stay inside more often than not, meaning that I can indulge in my official state of “nesting”.

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Mozzarella in Corrozza

If you appreciate using ingredients you have on hand to make delicious food, you will like the history of Mozzarella in Corrozza. It was a sandwich that was made to use up day old bread along with ingredients that would be abundant on a typical Italian farm: cheese, eggs, milk, and olive oil.

Simply stated, it’s a battered, fried cheese sandwich.

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It is Mozzarella in a Carriage (“in Corrozza”)… the bread being the “carriage” that holds the mozzarella!

If you’re in the mood for more Italian classics… check out my bruschetta recipe!

This being my first attempt at the sandwich I learned a lot and have some tips to pass on to you.

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The Splurge

GRILLED TUSCAN STEAK WITH FRIED EGG & GOAT CHEESE

I try to keep the recipes I select to under $3.00 per person if possible, but sometimes I feel the need to indulge so this is, by my definition at least, a bit extravagant. Doing E is for Eggs required that I did some sort of steak and egg recipe for my husband’s sake especially… and my own. I’ve been craving steak… good steak… for weeks now. This was just the satisfaction my craving needed! I think I surprised my husband by polishing off the whole steak as fast as he did… I got a good work out cooking the meal after all 🙂

The cost is about $6.50 per person (not ridiculous actually). Once you see it, I think you’ll understand why I splurged…

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C is for Coffee Braised Short Ribs

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Short ribs + slow cooker meal… yes please!

 

This requires a bit of work up front but once it’s in the slow cooker you’re free!

Short ribs are definitely a special occasion meal for us, but they are so full of flavor that it’s worth splurging for from time to time (figure about $5/ pound of meat… 3 pounds feeds 4-6 people). We used 9 pounds for the crowd we were feeding and it worked out just about right for 12 adults and 4 little kiddos. It really depends who’s eating. Hungry eaters = 3/4 pound per person. Lighter eaters = 1/2 pound per person. 🙂

The first question my guest asked me was: What is a SHORT rib anyway? (They thought it sounded kind of rude) 🙂

Short ribs are usually taken from the chuck cut of beef (you’ve probably heard of a “chuck roast”). Chuck is taken from between the neck and shoulder blade of the cow. Usually chuck is an inexpensive cut for a roast or steaks. When the chuck cut is used for short ribs it is cut into small rectangles or squares, each of which contain a piece of the rib bone (hence the “rib” portion of “short ribs”). They MUST be cooked slowly as they are a very tough cut of meat. They end up being fall-apart tender if you do it right and they are SUPER flavorful as they have a good layer of fat in them. You can see an uncooked picture of them below!

Doing some prep really helps out here. Take your short ribs out of the fridge and put them on a large sheet of foil for easy clean up. They need to sit for about 20-25 minutes to take the chill off before you sear them. Sear just means browning meat quickly over high heat. Searing keeps all the juices inside of the meat. Usually the meat is finished off at a lower temperature after the searing is done.

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