23 February 2011

Twice Baked Potatoes. Increasing tastiness by a factor of two!


In high school, I dared commence a vegetarian diet at the table of two native Texans – my parents.  This was quite a shock to a father who always required that his daughter, “Eat what’s on the table and like it, or don’t eat at all.”  Years later, this same cattle-ranching dad would gift me with one of my favorite vegetarian culinary tomes that I continue to earmark: The Horn of the Moon Cookbook.  Their twice-baked potatoes are so very, very, very simple and should be categorized in the upper echelons of all comfort-food.  There is so much extra filling upon creating this treat, that you can just spoon it out of your bento box for lunch the next day.   Although it makes enough for a group of 4-6, they are just as tasty in leftover form.  This is one of my go-to recipes, so I just had to share! 

Twice Baked *Stuffed* Potatoes

Source: Horn of the Moon Cookbook stocking1 105

4 medium to large baking potatoes

1c broccoli stems & florets, chopped

3T butter

1c mushrooms, sliced/slightly chopped

6 scallions, chopped

1c sour cream

1½c sharp cheddar cheese, grated

¼c fresh parsley, minced

1t salt

1/8t black pepper


Preheat oven to 425°. Bake potatoes on cookie sheet until tender when pierced with a fork (1-1¼ hours). In a 10” pan, sauté the broccoli in 1T butter over medium heat. When it just begins to get tender, add mushrooms and sauté until lightly done. Drain if needed.

Cut the top off of each potato so that the insides can easily be scooped out, cutting off just the skin layer. Hold the potato with a pot holder, carefully scoop out insides and put into a medium-sized bowl. Mash with remaining 2T butter. Lower oven temperature to 400°. Add scallions, sautéed vegetables, sour cream, cheese, parsle, salt, and pepper to mashed potatoes and mix well. Fill potato shells with this mixture. Sprinkle top of each potato with paprika. Yes, they will be overflowing with filling…and delicious! Bake 15 minutes more, and serve!

Yield = 4-6 (including extra filling that will remain)

22 February 2011

Baked Oatmeal…oh…my…goodness!

stocking1 337stocking1 334

Approximately ten  years ago, I traveled to Colorado Springs to take a position as the children’s zoo coordinator at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.  However, this entry is not intended to reminisce about my thrilling animal encounters (which I am always happy to share with my third graders…ex: the time I was quilled by a porcupine or bottle-fed baby mountain lions) but specifically related to recreating a tasty treat I first sampled at the bed and breakfast while visiting for the first time.  It is now the Summit House, but was under different ownership at the time.  The point is, this delightful, sweet, and hearty breakfast set me up for success as I endured the hike up the mountain for my tour and interview.  My recipe was loosely interpreted on one found at the Quaker Oats website, but I added apples, currants, walnuts, and a bit of cinnamon to the mixture.  If you’re looking for an alternative to pancakes or peanut-butter toast, this easy recipe should make its way to your table…pronto!

13 February 2011

Fro-Yo & LARP!

Lord v. serf, patrician v, plebeian, ice cream v. frozen yogurt, pirate girl with tail v. man with shield like a giant piece of toast…oppressor v. oppressed?  We meet up with our fabulous friends, the Harmon family, at Morley Field to feast on our frozen yogurt creations from Tutti Frutti (Hillcrest) while observing a LARP battle.  These are the very same folks Sam was required to best during his Amazing Race birthday scavenger huntI must say, it is a lot harder than it looks!

This entry is posted in celebration of the aforementioned yogurt-haven, Tutti Frutti.  Nestled on a corner of Park Blvd. in Hillcrest, the décor includes infamous 80s records, embarrassing personal photos of the 80s and 90s, including mall bangs and prom!  I’ve never seen a toppings selection like theirs.  You know, you can tell quite a bit about a person from her/his assembly of a fro-yo concoction…