Caprese Steak

As previously promised, here’s another steak recipe on Sew You Think You Can Cook. This one features a beautiful cut of steak, seared, topped with tomato and fresh mozzarella and baked to perfection. Top it with fresh basil and balsamic vinegar reduction and you have a restaurant quality dinner right in your own home.

I found this idea while perusing Foodgawker and thought it looked simple enough for my handy kitchen helpers to do. Funnily enough, neither of them actually read the recipe, or apparently listened to me when I told them how to prepare the meat. Mom declared that this one was Stuart’s to make because it involved grilling. It does not. And Stuart kept trying to go outside to the grill!

I guess when they think steak, they think grilling. Most probably do. But this recipe sears it off in a skillet to get a beautiful crust and then finishes in the oven. This cooking method creates perfectly juicy steaks.

Caprese Steak

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 C balsamic vinegar
  • 3 steaks
  • 1 beefsteak tomato
  • fresh mozzarella cheese
  • fresh basil

Steps:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. In a small skillet reduce balsamic vinegar until reduced by half.
  3. Season steak with S+P.
  4. In a cast iron skillet over high heat cook both sides of the steak, 2-3 minutes until an even sear is achieved.
  5. Top steak with slice of tomato and mozzarella cheese. Bake until the reach a desired internal temperature.
  6. Garnish with fresh basil and top with balsamic.

*This recipe is adapted from K at http://www.onthewoodside.com/2013/11/seared-filet-with-tomato-and-fresh.html*

Caprese Steak

 

SRC: Candied Tomato Pizza

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Today is another Secret Recipe Club Reveal Day! In the secret recipe club, each participating blogger is assigned a blog from another participating blogger and secretly searches their site for something to recreate. The accompanying blog post then goes live on reveal day! So while I was immersed in my assigned blog, someone else was picking through mine! I’m so excited to be part of this group, to see what on my blog peaks other’s interests and to stumble upon new blogs and new recipes.

This month I was assigned Jaime’s blog Mom’s Test Kitchen. I know it sounds silly, but my favorite thing about her blog is her tagline “What the Fork’s for Dinner.” Her About Me section is very well written and makes me laugh in all the right places. Particularly the part about the unexpected arrival of Princess P. Being pregnant, it’s fun to feel connected to Jaime as she shares her loving frustrations with pregnancy. (But sorry, Jaime, I actually LOVE being pregnant! But it probably helps that I still have yet to be touched by complete strangers – 9 weeks to go!) After becoming a stay-at-home-mom, Jaime started her blog as a way to keep organized and reawaken her adult self. Since then her “corner of the blog world” has boomed into the very impressive blog that she currently runs; Jaime participates in multiple Link Parties and features guest posts!

Pregnancy cravings have had me wanting to run to the nearest Dunkin (thankfully that’s 20 miles away and the efficiency-lover in me prevails) so I am very impressed that I didn’t recreate her Cinnamon Sugar Donut Muffins for this blog post (there’s still a good possibility I’ll end up making them). Due to Lent no-meat Fridays I was drawn to this Easy Vegetable Pot Pie, but it turned out that I don’t think I ever ended up cooking on Fridays – strange. But then a recent post on April 3rd sealed the deal: Candied Tomato Margherita Pizza.

I made this pizza after church on Easter Sunday (so her Empty Tomb Buns were a big contender too; but I’ll save them for when my future child is old enough to understand). Because I made this on Easter Sunday, a day when grocery stores were closed, my shopping fail in forgetting to buy fresh basil couldn’t be remedied. So naturally, I substituted bacon.

I used my pizza dough recipe and made 3 personal pizzas for Stuart and me to share. (The fourth ball of dough is now living in my freezer for another day.) The first I topped with the candied tomatoes and some crispy bacon. But it really was needed that something. That something was the basil I didn’t have. At least one of us had a head on our shoulders and Stuart suggested using the dried basil out of the spice cabinet. Perfect! Being the meat eater that he his, Stuart enjoyed the bonus bacon but I don’t feel it really added anything to the pizza so one of our 3 pizzas didn’t have any on it.

If you’ve never candied tomatoes – I hadn’t before this – I urge you to make some now. Put them on this pizza, put them in a sandwich, or eat them plain, I don’t care. But I do insist that you add tomatoes and brown sugar to your grocery list.

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Candied Tomato Pizza

Ingredients:

  • 4 firm roma tomatoes, thickly sliced
  • 1/2 – 1 C brown sugar
  • 3 strips bacon, chopped (optional)
  • 1 pizza crust, store bought or homemade
  • 3-4 tbsp olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 – 2 C shredded mozzarella cheese
  • basil, dried or fresh
  • cornmeal

Steps:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Starting with 1/2 C of brown sugar, coat both sides of the tomatoes with sugar. Use more sugar if needed. Place tomatoes in a single layer on the baking sheet.
  3. Bake for 30 minutes. Flip the tomatoes and bake another 15 minutes.
  4. Place pizza stone in the oven and preheat to 450 degrees F (or follow instructions for your particular dough).
  5. Roll pizza dough out and place on pizza peal (or rimless cookie sheet) that has been sprinkled with cornmeal. Brush entire crust with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, top with cheese, basil, candied tomatoes, and bacon.
  6. Bake for 9 minutes (or follow instructions for your particular dough).

*This recipe is adapted from Jaime at http://momstestkitchen.com/2014/04/candied-margherita-pizza.html*

Candied Tomato Pizza

To see the other bloggers who participated in the Secret Recipe Club this month click here:

CIC: Coconut & Tomato

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I interrupt my recount of Hawaiian food to bring you this month’s Crazy Ingredient Challenge! This month the task was to combine Coconut and Tomato. Upon seeing the ingredient list I thought I was going to sit this one out as I am allergic to coconut. But then I got an idea and decided, why not! Just because I can’t eat it doesn’t mean my friends can’t be my taste buds.

My original idea was to do a play on the Bloody Mary – either make a virgin version substituting vodka for coconut water, or simply adding coconut water to the cocktail, or even making a “creamy” version with coconut milk, garnished of course with toasted coconut.

This idea was altered slightly when I searched Food Network’s website for Bloody Mary recipes. I’d never had one before! I found Rachael Ray’s recipe for Bloody Mary Shrimp Cocktail and thought, that’s a better idea! And I can serve it with coconut shrimp instead of typical shrimp cocktail. This way also prevents my husband from trying multiple Bloody Marys before I came up with the right recipe. I also bought cocktail shrimp so I could dip in too!

I served this appetizer during last weekend’s football game. We had some friends over and I was given the “this is addicting” nod of approval. I hope this boozy dip makes it to your next tailgate!

Coconut Shrimp with Bloody Mary Dip

Ingredients for Shrimp:

  • Canola oil, for frying
  • 1 lb peeled, deveined shrimp
  • 1 C flour
  • 1/2 tbsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tbsp garlic powder
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 C panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 C shredded sweetened coconut

Ingredients for Dip:

  • 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp horseradish
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire
  • 2 tsp hot sauce
  • 2-3 shots of vodka, to taste

Steps:

  1. Bring oil to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl combine flour, garlic powder, and onion powder. In another bowl beat eggs and season with S+P. In a third bowl combine coconut and panko. Season shrimp with S+P and dredge in flour, egg, and panko. Fry shrimp 2 minutes on each side. It’s best to do this in batches so as not to decrease the oil temperature too much.
  3. Combine dip ingredients. Serve with celery sticks!

*The shrimp is adapted from The Neelys and the dip is modified from Rachael Ray*

Coconut Shrimp and Bloody Mary Dip 2Coconut Shrimp and Bloody Mary Dip 1

Click the link below to see other blogs that participated in this month’s Crazy Ingredient Challenge!

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BLT Salad

How do you make Salad Night exciting? Bacon! Bacon makes everything better, right?

The game of sandwich to salad and salad to sandwich is a fun one to play – caprese salads make great panini so why not turn the BLT into a salad? BLT Salad 1

This BLT Salad is better than the American classic BLT Sandwich because this salad has a balsamic-mayo dressing!

BLT Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 romaine hearts, chopped
  • 2 on-the-vine tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 6 slices of bacon
  • 2 handfuls croutons
  • 3 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • zest of 1/4 lemon
  • S+P

Steps

  1. Cook bacon until extra crispy (in your preferred method – in the oven, on the stove top, or in the microwave). Transfer to a paper towel to absorb extra grease. When cool enough to handle, break up the bacon.
  2. Whisk together mayo, balsamic, lemon zest. Season with S+P to taste.
  3. Assemble salad and top with dressing.

*This recipe is adapted from Lyndsy at http://www.dinnervine.com/2012/09/blt-salad/*

BLT Salad 2