Thursday, October 12, 2017

Pasta, Pork and Pumpkin

These are a few of my favorite things...

This is super fast and easy! The whole thing comes together in the time it takes to cook the pasta. I love how the sausage makes its own sauce for the pasta and how the orecchiette holds the little bits of meat and vegetables like tiny bowls.

Serves 6
1 lb. orecchiette pasta or medium shell pasta
8 oz. ground mild or sweet Italian sausage
1 red bell pepper, diced
12 oz. package steam in bag corn kernels
Sour cream and cilantro for serving
Cook pasta according to package instructions. Meanwhile, brown sausage in large skillet over medium heat, breaking up meat with a potato masher or wooden spoon about 5 minutes or until cooked through. Add red pepper and cook about 3 minutes until softened. Microwave corn according to package instructions and stir into skillet. Add drained pasta and stir to combine. Serve with sour cream and cilantro.

This recipe is a bit labor intensive, but you can make it ahead by freezing any uncooked pot stickers on a baking sheet and then cooking them from frozen. Be careful not to overfill the won tons or they will fall apart! And make sure to use a non-stick skillet - these are called "pot stickers" for a reason! Also, don't skip the dipping sauce! It totally makes this recipe!

Pot Stickers:
   1 lb. ground pork
   4 T. chives, chopped
   2 T. low sodium soy sauce
   2 T. sherry
   1 t. ground ginger
   2 t. corn starch
   2 t. sesame oil
   12 oz. package won ton wrappers
   Canola oil for frying
Dipping Sauce:
   1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
   3 T. rice vinegar
   2 t. sugar
   3/4 t. ground ginger
   1/4 t. sesame oil
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Combine pork, chives, soy sauce, sherry, ginger, corn starch and sesame oil in a boil. Spoon 1 heaping teaspoon of pork mixture in the center of a won ton wrapper. Lightly wet 2 edges of the wrapper and fold it over, pressing to seal. Repeat with remaining pork and won ton wrappers. Boil filled won tons, 6 at a time, for 4 minutes. Transfer to a plate using a slotted spoon. Repeat with remaining filled wontons, adding more water to the pot as needed. Heat 1 T.
canola oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat. Cook won tons, 6 at a time, for about 90 seconds per side until browned.  Remove with a spatula and drain on paper towels. Repeat with remaining won tons, adding more oil as needed. In a small bowl, combine dipping sauce ingredients and serve with pot stickers.

I always end up with leftover won ton wrappers, but I'm never sad about it because I can make these....

Serves 4
Cooking spray
10 won ton wrappers
2 t. canola oil
Powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray. Make a neat stack of won ton wrappers and cut on the diagonal to make 20 triangles. In a bowl, toss triangles with canola oil until evenly coated. Arrange triangles in a single layer on prepared baking sheet. Bake 5 minutes or until golden and crisp. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

I made these muffins for the first time a week ago and I have made 4 more batches since then! I literally can't keep them in the house! I now have the recipe memorized and the cooking equipment has taken up permanent residence in my drying rack until I run out of canned pumpkin! :)

Makes 11 (Yeah, I know. Go ahead and make 12 if it bothers you that much! 😋)
Cooking spray
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 large eggs
3/4 cup canned pumpkin
1/4 cup water
3/4 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. cloves
1/4 t. nutmeg
1/4 t. salt
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Coat a muffin tin with cooking spray. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, applesauce, and eggs. Whisk in pumpkin and water. Add all remaining ingredients except for chocolate chips and gently whisk together until just combined. Use a rubber spatula to stir in chocolate chips. Use a large cookie scoop to portion batter into prepared muffin tin. Bake 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.