Friday, May 20, 2011

Pljeskavica or Cevapcici

Pljeskavica (pl-yes-ka-vee-tsa) and cevapcici (che-vahp-chee-chee) are traditional and (understandably) well-loved foods in the Balkans, including Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia, and others.  In essence, they are their version of hamburgers (or hamburger-sticks.)  They are nearly as easy to make, but much tastier than their American counterparts.  They are best if started early in the day, or even the day before, they are planned to be cooked; this allows time for the flavors to blend together.  They can be cooked in almost any manner, including pan-frying, broiling (in the oven), or grilling.  My personal preference is far and away for grilling.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Lemon-Pesto Chicken

This recipe was inspired by my AeroGarden, as a way to use the profusion of fresh lemon basil I had on hand.  I used all three kinds of basil in the Gourmet Herbs seed kit; approximately 5 parts lemon basil, 2 parts globe basil, and one part sweet basil.


  • 1 c. Fresh basil, finely cut
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 lb. chicken (tenders or boneless breasts)
  • 1 lb. fresh spinach
  • 2 16 oz. can of mushrooms (pieces and stems)
  • 3 tbs. butter
  • 3 tbs. flour
  • 3 c. milk
  • 1-2 Tbsp. oil
  • 1/2 tsp. dry or 1 tsp finely cut fresh thyme
  • 1/4 tsp. dry or 1/2 tsp finely cutfresh oregano
  • 1/4 c. fresh finely cut parsley
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic, finely chopped
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 lb. package wide egg noodles

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Cauliflower with White Sauce and Cheese

This is a rather simple but very delicious recipe for cauliflower.  Many people dislike cauliflower for its mushy texture and bland taste, but the combination with the white sauce and cheese give it a delicate combination of flavors that go well with almost any main dish.


  • 1 whole cauliflower
  • 1 Tbs. butter
  • 1 Tbs. flour
  • 1 cup milk (approximate)
  • 1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • salt & pepper to taste

Friday, April 8, 2011

Caramelized Onions

Caramelized onions and browned onions are often used as interchangeable terms, and although they are related, they are not precisely the same thing.  Caramelized onions are cooked significantly longer, until the natural sugars in the onions are, well, caramelized.  Caramel is in essence simply browned sugar, and despite the bite onions have, they are very sweet as well, which means they are full of natural sugars.

Many recipes, especially those which will feature the onions directly, such as fajitas, call for caramelized onions; cooking onions this way breaks down the compounds which give onions their bite, and leaves them rich and sweet tasting.  Properly caramelized onions are sufficient as a side dish all by themselves, or feature well with other sauteed vegetables, like mushrooms, peppers, squashes, tomatoes, and more.