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smashed potatoes

Ben & I recently discovered smashed potatoes. Yum! Crispy, flavorful and delicious. The perfect side dish for your holiday turkey.

12 baby potatoes (yellow or red) – approximately 2 per person
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt & Pepper to taste
Rosemary, chopped, to taste (or any other seasonings you like)

I use the microwave to shortcut this recipe – throw your potatoes in a big bowl, add 1/2 c. water to the bottom of the bowl, cover the entire dish with a damp paper towel. Microwave using your “potato” button (3 baby potatoes equals approximately 1 large potato). If you don’t have a “potato” button, try approx 3-4 minutes per potato (1 large = 4-6 min, 2 large = 6-8 min, 3 large = 9-11 min). Microwaves vary, so test your using less time, then add more as needed until potatoes are cooked through and begin to soften. You can also boil the potatoes to pre-cook them, if you prefer.

Prep a large casserole dish by drizzling olive oil on the bottom. Once the potatoes are cooked, put them in the oiled dish. Use a potato masher or the bottom of a glass to “smash” your potatoes. You want to break the skin and flatten the potatoes like a cookie. More surface area means more crispy, crunchy, deliciousness. Drizzle more olive oil over the smashed potatoes, then add salt, pepper and rosemary (or other herbs) as desired.

Heat the oven to 450°F. Roast the potatoes for 30-40 minutes, until they’re crispy and brown around the edges. Serve hot.


divine stuffing

November 13th, 2007 by nebhead (reposted)

I ran across Pat’s Stuffing recipe today, as if by divine intervention, just in time to start getting prepped for our Thanksgiving feast. This stuffing recipe is really outstanding and could be a meal all by itself. A delicious, artery clogging meal. And because I’m in the giving spirit, I’m going to share this recipe with the world. (Sorry Pat, hope this one wasn’t a secret family recipe)


14 Slices of Bread (Preferably Wheat) cut into cubes
2 Big Yellow Onions Chopped (I like to make these big coarse pieces – not too big)
4 Chopped Apples (also cut into cubes)
1 lb Bulk Sage Flavored Ground Pork Sausage
1 Stick of Margarine or Butter
Rubbed Sage (may be difficult to find, but sometimes can be found in the bulk section of your local warehouse grocery store)

Step 1: Brown / Crumble the sausage in a frying pan. While doing this, the recipe also calls for melting an entire stick of butter into the mix. Really. No joke. Absolutely no fat is wasted in this stuffing. This dish is going to help us bulk up for the winter and possibly give us a nice cardiac episode for the holidays.

Step 2: In a 13″x9″ baking pan, mix the bread cubes, apples cubes, and chopped onion. Then add the sausage and melted butter to the mix. Mix it all up so the bread absorbs the melted butter and pork fat.

Step 3: Add the rubbed sage and mix in. There is no real set amount of sage that you should add, instead just add this until you feel that it’s fragrant enough to be tasty in your mouth, but not overpowering.

Step 4: Put the entire baking pan in the fridge and let marinate for two (2) hours. Not sure why this is necessary, but hey, I won’t argue with perfection.

Step 5: Bake in the oven at 350F degrees for 1.5 hours or until crusty and brown on top.

Step 6: Shovel into mouth. Nap. Shovel into mouth. Submit to butter induced coma. Repeat.

I dare you not to enjoy this…

Veggie and cheese soup

2 16oz bags frozen broccoli, cauliflower, carrot mix
1 10 oz can Rotel Brand tomatoes & green chillies
10 oz velveta light, cubed
3 cans 98% fat free chicken broth

Boil veggies in broth for 20 min (mash veggies if a thicker soup is desired).

Remove from heat, stir in cubed cheese until melted. Makes 10 cups. (weight watchers – 1 point per cup)

Stan’s Famous Chili (Vegetarian version)

Stan’s Famous Chili (Veggie version)
Serves 2-3
Prep time: 50 minutes

1 small onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
2 cloves minced garlic
1 Tbsp olive oil
4 oz can chopped green chiles, drained
1 green or red bell pepper, chopped
1 tsp powdered cumin
½ teaspoon dried oregano
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
½ tsp salt
1 14.5 oz can vegetable broth
1 15 oz can cooked black beans, rinsed and drained
1 15 oz can refried beans (veggie)
4 cups diced zucchini (3-4 zucchinis, depending on size)
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
½ cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Sauté onion & garlic in olive oil in a soup pot until tender. Add chiles, cumin, oregano, cayenne pepper and salt, and sauté another minute. Stir in vegetable broth, beans and zucchini. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 25 minutes.

Serve with cilantro and cheese as garnish.

Saltine Toffee Candy

A party favorite! This was a contribution from Suzy & Ben at Thanksgiving 2010 and was a hit. It almost didn’t make it to the dinner… it was too yummy!

Saltine Toffee Candy

  • 1 sleeve saltine crackers
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar (light or dark works fine – I used light in the last batch)
  • 2 cups milk chocolate chips (semisweet work too, but milk is best)
  • 3/4 cups chopped almonds (any nuts will work here – whatever you prefer)


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (205 degrees C).
  2. Line cookie sheet with saltine crackers in single layer. (line cookie sheet with tin foil first for easy clean up)
  3. In a saucepan combine the sugar and the butter. Bring to a boil and boil for 3 minutes. Immediately pour over saltines and spread to cover crackers completely.
  4. Bake at 400 degrees F (205 degrees C) for 5 to 6 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle chocolate chips over the top. Let sit for 5 minutes to melt the chocolate. Spread melted chocolate and top with chopped nuts.
  5. Cool completely and cut/break into pieces. Store in airtight container until they’re gone (they’re best within the first few days… if they last that long!).

Tabbuleh (bulgur wheat and herbs salad)

Submitted by Carmel Parmeter, 1/10/2010
Sampled & enjoyed by the Parmeter clan Christmas 2009!

1 cup bulgur wheat
2.5 cups boiling water
2 large bunches parsley (or 1 bunch parsley and 1 bunch cilantro)
1 bunch mint
4 scallions
1 tomato (if you want)
1/2 cup good olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
salt and pepper

Place the bulgur in a bowl, pour boiling water on it and let it sit for 15-20 minutes. the grain will absorb the water and plump up. You don’t want it to get too mushy, it should have some bite. If it looks like you need more water, add some, if it tastes ready (plump, with a little bite) and some water is still left, drain.
when grain is still hot, pour 1/4 cup olive oil on it and season with salt and pepper. This will make the bulgur smell great and absorb the flavors.

Wash all herbs/veggies. In a food processor, chop all herbs. You will need to do this in batches. Slice the onions and seed and chop the tomato if using. Mix the herbs and veggies with the bulgur and season with lemon juice, remaining oil and salt and pepper. Taste and correct seasoning if needed. You might feel that it needs more dressing. Keep adding whatever is missing until you the salad had lots of flavor. Keep in mind that the bulgur absorbs a lot of seasoning and that you might need to re-season the leftovers tomorrow.

Variations- this is very good and even more nutritious with quinoa.
I like to chop everything bigger by hand and add cucumbers and more tomatoes and some good feta cheese sometimes as well.

Suzy’s Italian Turkey Pasta

Sometimes I add more tomatoes when I need to stretch the recipe or use other varieties of canned tomatoes (or just plain). In other words, feel free to adapt and improve – let me know if you find any alterations that rock 🙂

Italian Turkey Pasta

1 lb Ground Turkey
3 TBSP Sage (rubbed)
2 TBSP Butter
2 TBSP Olive Oil
2 cloves minced garlic
1 large can diced tomatoes (garlic & basil variety turns out yummy)
1/4 cup Fresh Basil, chopped (to taste)

1. Heat butter and olive oil in a large pan.
2. Add garlic and saute for about 1 minute.
3. Add sage and toss in butter & oil.
4. Add ground turkey; cook for 5-10 minutes, turning frequently, until most of the pink is gone.
5. Add diced tomatoes (including liquid) and simmer for 5-10 minutes, until heated thoroughly.
6. Mix fresh basil in to the pan. It will wilt but will not cook thoroughly.

Serve over pasta. Toss with small mozzarella balls or add shaved parmesan as desired.

Note: I use sage and basil very liberally in this dish – not really sure how much, I just add until it feels right. Feel free to modify based on your tastes.