Saturday, February 5, 2011

The Great Cooking Magazine Challenge February 2011 Edition

Last Sunday I invited everyone to join me in the Great Cooking Magazine Challenge once again. I hope everyone had time to try something new out of some of your cooking magazines - if you are like me you have piles of them waiting to be read. If you didn't have time this week..feel free to add your link later! I had a lot of recipes marked to try for this challenge, but settled on two. Both were fairly quick and both I'd make again, so it was time well spent.

First up is an unusual (at least to me) sounding recipe from the February issue of Bon Appetit (my newest subscription) that caught my eye as something that would be different, flavorful and light - all a bonus when you're watching your weight! I have to say that the highlight of this recipe, to me were the crispy crumbs. Not a one of those went to waste. They kind of remind me of those mustard flavored pretzels. A tip with the recipe noted that the addition of these crumbs eliminated the need for toast and I do agree it was enough to satisfy my carb addicted taste buds.

Sunny Side-Up Eggs on Mustard Creamed Spinach with Crispy Crumbs

Bon Appetit February 2011

  • 1/2 cup coarse fresh breadcrumbs made from crustless country-style bread (I used a great roasted garlic stuffed bread)
  • 5 teaspoons Dijon mustard, divided
  • 2 teaspoons plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 9-ounce package fresh spinach leaves (I used kale because its what I had on hand - any green would do)
  • 3 tablespoons half and half
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 large eggs
  • Fresh thyme sprigs (for garnish)

Preheat oven to 400°F. Toss crumbs with 2 teaspoons mustard, 2 teaspoons oil, and mustard seeds in medium bowl to coat. Scatter on rimmed baking sheet. Bake until golden and crisp, 6 to 8 minutes. Meanwhile, add enough water to deep large nonstick skillet to cover bottom. Add spinach; toss over high heat to wilt, about 2 minutes. Scrape into sieve set over bowl; press out liquid. Wipe out skillet; reserve. Transfer spinach to medium saucepan. Add 3 teaspoons mustard, half and half, and chopped thyme. Stir over medium heat until thick, about 3 minutes. Season with freshly ground black pepper. Remove from heat. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in reserved skillet over medium-high heat. Crack eggs into skillet, spacing apart. Fry until whites are cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes. Divide spinach between 2 plates, spreading out as base for eggs. Top with eggs, crumbs, and thyme sprigs.

The second recipe I tried comes from the February/March edition of Taste of Home. I've been getting this magazine for years and it really doesn't let me down often, especially in the dessert department. This one sounded to yummy and warm and comforting and it was every bit of that! The cake is a bit gingerbready and the topping peary, appley, nutty and caramely - so many good things wrapped up into one!

Spiced Pear Upside Down Cake

Taste of Home - February/March 2011

  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 large pears, peeled and sliced (I used 1 pear and 1 apple)
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • Ice cream, optional
Pour melted butter into a 9-in. square baking pan; sprinkle with nuts and brown sugar. Arrange pears over nuts. In a large bowl, cream softened butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and molasses. Combine the flour, ginger, cinnamon, salt, baking powder and baking soda; add to creamed mixture alternately with water, beating well after each addition. Spread batter over pears. Bake at 350° for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before inverting onto a serving plate. Serve warm with ice cream if desired.

So lets see what you did for the challenge! Add your link below. I'm trying Linky Tools this time instead of Mr. Linky, so hopefully it works well. Let me know if you have trouble.


Carol said...

Suzy, I saw those eggs in Bon Appetit, and definitely have to make them. Yours looks fantastic! I shouldn't have looked before breakfast! Cake looks delicious!

Thanks for the challenge! I enjoyed it!

Carol said...

I missed this challenge. Too bad for me.
Both dishes look wonderful! Cake is a weakness of mine....I want some now.

Marsha said...

Suzy, everything looks delicious especially dessert. Bon Appetit is one I let expire too many mags I wasn't getting time to read but I will have to check them out online.

hanks for hosting!

Cathy said...

Both recipes look fantastic, Suzy. Those eggs are calling to me. I'm going to browse through my mountain of magazines right now and find a recipe that sounds good. Heaven knows I have hundreds of them marked with post-it notes.

SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

Suzy, those eggs sounds wonderful! I'd love to try them for a special weekend breakfast. Hubby loves pears and I know he would love that tart too.

Thanks for the challenge!

Kathleen said...

They look delicious! What did you think of the two recipes you tried?
Thanks for hosting.
The only trouble I had was that I had to go back and resize my pic.

Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

They look great Suzy, lovin' the cake! Thanks for the challenge:@)

Debbie said...

I really enjoy Bon Appetit magazine, and renewed it for four years. I wanted to join you for the challenge, but I didn't have peanut butter :-) Next week!

Both dishes look wonderful!

Foley said...

What a great dish..I like eggs for any meal. The pear upside down cake is gorgeous!! I happen to have some pears on hand for once!!

Thanks so much Suzy for doing this..sorry I was a little late. You know how i like to make an entrance..LMAO

Pam said...

The egg dish is amazing - I love everything about it. The pear upside down cake looks wonderful!

Debbie said...

Sorry I so late for your challenge! Thanks for hosting Suzy.

Carol said...

Everyone's challenges look good. Said February, and it's still February, so I did another one! And now my March issues are starting to roll in, LOL!
Thanks, Suzy, I always liked the challenge!

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