I was born and raised in Kansas and learned to cook alongside my mother. Now, along with my wonderful husband, I have taken the plunge into the city life in New York. These are my food adventures: in my own tiny kitchen, and in the many restaurants of the city.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

"Julie and Julia"

"I didn't learn to cook until I was 32. Until then, I just ate."
Julia Child

Monday night I got the opportunity to see a pre-screening of "Julie and Julia" (thanks so much to Cathy over at Not Eating Out in New York). To anyone who knows me (or who has read this blog for a while) it's no surprise that I love the books "Julie and Julia", "My Life in France", and that I love Julia Child. I also love Meryl Streep (but who doesn't?) and Amy Adams. Needless to say, I was pretty stoked for the film.

Since the movie hasn't hit wide release as of yet, I'm not going to do a big review. I will just say that I loved it. And that Meryl Streep knocked it out of the ballpark kitchen. And that I left the theater filled with hope and inspiration. Especially as an inching-towards-30, married actress waitress, living in the big city feeling a little like I'm drowning while trying to find myself. I may not know what my future holds, but I do know that it is not too late to find my calling and lead my version of a successful life. Plus, like Julie and Julia, I have a remarkable husband standing beside me giving me his faith and eternal support. Pretty damn lucky, I am.

And, until I find my path, I can just keep eating.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Couscous Stuffed Peppers and Lemon Cucumber and Sugar Plum Salad

Sometimes there are ingredients that evoke the image of only one recipe and seem to stifle my creativity. Green peppers are one of those ingredients. I know there are so ways to use them but I always think about them in Asian or Mexican inspired dishes--sauteed for a stir fry or to use on tacos. Every once in a while I'll think of stuffing them, but again it's always in a Mexican style. This time around I really wanted to do something different with these peppers. I stuffed them with couscous, corn, and ground turkey and a little bit of parmesan cheese. Simple flavors, easy preparation, and a little different take on the classic. Paired up with the basic cucumber salad it makes a great weeknight dinner.

Couscous Stuffed Peppers
5 green peppers
1 box couscous
1 lb ground turkey
2 ears corn
3/4 c. shredded parmesan cheese, divided
1/4 c. bread crumbs

To begin, cook the couscous as per the box's instructions. Saute the ground turkey with a little salt and pepper and drain.
Preheat the oven to 350. Cut off the top of each of the green peppers and clean out the seeds and white parts inside. Cut off the kernels from the ears of corn.
In a large bowl mix together the cooked couscous and turkey, the corn, and 1/2 c. parmesan cheese. Stuff the mixture into the green peppers and place them into a baking dish.
In a small bowl mix together 1/4 c. parmesan cheese and the bread crumbs. Spread the mixture on top of each of the peppers. Bake for 40 minutes or until the peppers are tender and the topping is lightly browned.

Lemon Cucumber and Sugar Plum Salad
8 lemon cucumbers, peeled and sliced
6 sugar plums, chopped
3/4 c. white wine vinegar
1/4 c. olive oil
2 TB sugar
1 t. salt
1/2 t. pepper

Mix together the vinegar, oil, sugar, salt and pepper in a bowl. Add in the cucumbers and sugar plums and toss together. Chill in the refrigerator for an hour before serving.