Asparagus Tart

Asparagus Tart

canola oil spray

1 sheet puff pastry, thawed

1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

1/3 cup mozzarella cheese, grated

16-20 medium-sized asparagus

1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 egg

1 lemon

  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Remove the rough ends of the asparagus.
  3. Place the olive oil and asparagus into a bowl. Add the oil and salt to the asparagus and toss well to coat.
  4. Spray the inside of a 10×10 baking pan with canola oil. Place the sheet a puff pastry in the inside of the baking pan.
  5. Top the puff pastry with a layer of all the parmesan cheese and then a layer of all the mozzarella cheese.
  6. Place the asparagus evenly across the puff pastry.
  7. In a small bowl place the egg and scramble it to make an egg wash.
  8. Lightly coat the edges of the puff pastry with the egg wash.
  9. Place the baking pan into the oven and cook for 40 minutes at 400° or until the edges are golden brown. Remove the tart from the oven.
  10. Zest the lemon evenly over the tart. Serve immediately or at room temperature.

Cherry Lollipops

Some of my very first memories revolve around lollipops.

One event that would occur often was a trip to the bank drive thru. It was like clockwork: mom drives through the bank, and a lollipop magically appears every.single.time. Needless to say, I loved those trips to the bank.Then there’s the Valentine cherry lollipops. Those sweeties seemed to be better than any other lollipop given (and eaten) throughout the year. I still recall digging through the valentines searching not for love notes, but cherry lollipops.

I had forgotten about this childhood obsession until, well, I had my own children and they started bringing home lollipops.It was a flash to the past that I welcomed with open arms. There are times I’ve even apprehended their sweet treats because they didn’t “need the sugar” but the truth was I wanted the sugar. Me! I may not be a Cookie Monster, but I’m definitely a Candy Monster (and candy thief too if we are going to get technical about it).However, as it is in my world, I’ve developed a habit with foods I find myself buying often. If I enjoy eating it, I might as well learn to make it.

Lately that has been the case with candy. And truth be told, I was surprised by how little effort it takes.
There are three bits of information that are critical to candy making:1– a good kitchen thermometer is a must. It is going to tell you when the corn syrup has reached 300 degrees; the temperature for hard candy to develop. You need to be able to accurately know the temperature of the corn syrup, and that requires a good thermometer.

2– corn syrup is your best friend. It is the basis of candy. Once heated to the correct temperature it hardens once cooled. If you’re like me and become quickly obsessed with candy making you’ll want to grab a large container of it at Market Street to make all your candy dreams come true.

3– a watchful eye is mandatory. Bringing corn syrup to 300 degrees happens in about 7 minutes on high heat. Even allowing the corn syrup to get 5 to 10 degrees hotter can affect the outcome of the candy (trust me— I’ve NOT had a watchful eye several times). From this point flavorings can be added at the end of the heating process.Want to have lemon lollipops? Grab some lemon extract and lemon zest. What about peppermints? Stir in peppermint extract and maybe some green food coloring into the mixture. Be creative how you flavor your candy!

Now to the piece de resistance— cherry lollipops. I went with cherry flavored gelatin from Market Street to be the basis of the flavor (but also grabbed some Jello’s Simply Good Raspberry Lemonade gelatin mix for a rainy day). I was extremely happy with the end result.I’ve been working on homemade lollipops since Halloween and I’ve decided it’s time to let the kids join me (plus spring break is coming up and we allll need a couple of projects planned, right?).

My idea? Sprinkles.Having kid assistance is tricky with lollipops because of the extremely hot syrup. However, they can help with picking out sprinkles from Market Street and adding them into the candy molds before and after the lollipop mixtures has been spooned out.

They’ll be chanting best.mom.ever. and who knows, you might even be central to their lollipop memories because it’s Spring Break and you’re making homemade lollipops together.

Cherry Lollipops

Author note: If the treat sticks are too long, trim the ends before using. These lollipops can be made by simply placing the mixture on a silicone baking mat in your desired size, or by using candy molds. Both methods are described.

1/3 cup sugar

1/3 cup corn syrup

1/2 cup water

3 ounces cherry flavored gelatin (or favorite flavor)

canola spray

treat sticks

sprinkles, optional

  1. Line two rimmed baking sheets with silicone baking mats. If using candy molds, spray the molds with canola oil and then place the treat sticks inside the indentations.
  2. Place the sugar, corn syrup and water into a small saucepan. Bring to a quick boil over high heat. Once the temperature reaches 300 degrees. Remove from the heat and quickly stir in the jello.
  3. Working quickly, spoon the warm mixture into the molds. Top with sprinkles. If using the baking mats, quickly spoon the mixture onto the mat two inches apart. Place the sticks into each lollipop. Top with sprinkles.
  4. Let the lollipops cool, about 30 minutes. Wrap in cellophane and store in a cool dry place.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Market Street. All opinions are my own.

Spicy Roasted Brussles

Spicy Roasted Brussels

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon cayenne

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 1/2 pounds brussels sprouts, ends removed and brussels sprouts halved

juice of 1/2 a lemon

greek yogurt

lemon zest

  1. Heat the oven to 450 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the oil, salt, garlic powder, cayenne and chili powder. Whisk well to combine.
  3. Place the brussels sprouts into the olive oil mixture and coat the brussels well.
  4. On a rimmed baking sheet, spread the brussels sprouts in a single layer. Cover the baking sheet tightly with foil.
  5. Cook the brussels sprouts for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, remove the foil and lower the heat to 425 degrees. Continue to roast, uncovered, for 15 to 20 minutes (until browned to your liking), stirring every 5-8 minutes.
  6. Top the brussels with a squeeze of lemon juice and serve warm with a side of Greek yogurt topped with lemon zest.

Grilled Prosciutto, Spinach and Burrata Pizza

Grilled Prosciutto, Spinach and Burrata Pizza

Author note: I find that using a pizza peel makes the process of cooking pizza a lot easier.

pizza dough

cornmeal

tomato sauce (see recipe below)

prosciutto

spinach

mozzarella, shredded

burrata

  1. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface according to the instructions. Place a thin layer of tomato sauce and mozzarella onto the top of the pizza.
  2. Place the pizza stones onto the grill (or oven). Heat the grill (or oven) to 500 degrees. Place the pizza onto the stones and close the lid.  Grill for about 4 minutes, or until the crust begins to brown (be sure to monitor the bottom of the pizza, it can burn quickly).
  3. Top the pizza with small bite-sized portions of prosciutto. Return the pizza to the grill and cook for 30 seconds. Remove from the heat once again and add a handful of spinach. Place back onto the grill and let cook for 30 seconds.
  4. Remove the pizza from the grill and add the burrata onto the pizza. Serve immediately.

for the tomato sauce

1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes

1/2 onion

1 teaspoon kosher salt

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

  1. Place all ingredients into a small sauce pan. Bring to a simmer and cook, uncovered, for 40 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent burning. Use immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge for 1 week or the freezer for 3 months.

Bacon Wrapped Herbed Pork Tenderloin

Valentine’s Day is about to be here and if you’re like me and look to opt out of the restaurant frenzy, then look no further. I have a recipe for you that tastes like a fancy restaurant meal and requires little prep.

Bacon Wrapped Herbed Pork TenderloinThis has become one of my most favorite recipes that I’ve developed lately. A few reasons why:

  1. The pork takes about 12 minutes to prep.
  2. The pork can be prepped up to 24 hours before roasting.
  3. Cooking time is about 25 minutes (and if you line the baking sheet with foil, clean-up is a cinch).
  4. The two tenderloins can easily feed a family of four with enough leftovers for the next evening’s dinner.
  5. The leftovers make a killer sandwich when paired with dijon, manchego and a bit of arugula.

I could go on, but I feel like 5 points make my case.

So while this meal is highly appropriate for any weeknight, it can also be made special for a Valentine’s Day family date-night-in too. How so?Grab a bundle of gorgeous flowers and some tiny little decorations from the floral department at Market Street when picking up the groceries for this special meal. Then do what I’ve been doing lately to make diner feel a bit more unique…

…put a table cloth on the table, add a flower arrangement and light a few candles.It does feel a bit Downton-ish, but I will say that it sets the dinner apart from the everyday meals served at the table. And BONUS, the kids show-off their manners because they insist that that’s what one does when eating a “fancy” meal.

OR if you want to pamper yourself just a bit (since it is Valentine’s Day) or if Valentine’s Day has really snuck up on you (and juggling the grocery store is the last thing that you can do)— no problem! Order online with STREETside (click here to start shopping!) and your lovely friends at Market Street will even deliver it to your house. Talk about luxury!I hope this make-ahead bacon wrapped herbed pork tenderloin has urged you to stay at home this Valentine’s Day with a “fancy” meal for the perfect family date-night-in celebration.

P.S. Oh, and if you’re needing a few other make-ahead sides and dessert check out Browned Butter Asparagus and Strawberry S’mores Tart. You won’t be disappointed.

Bacon Wrapped Herbed Pork Tenderloin

Author note: If you use a pork tenderloin that is larger than 1 1/4 lbs increase the cook time.

2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, chopped

2 teaspoons fresh sage, chopped

2 teaspoons fresh tarragon, chopped

2 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped

5 garlic cloves, chopped

2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 boneless pound pork tenderloins (about 1 1/4 lb each)

12 pieces of bacon (about 1 package)

  1. Heat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. In a small bowl combine the salt, herbs, garlic and olive oil. Stir well to combine.
  3. With a paper towel, pat the two pork tenderloins dry.
  4. Evenly coat the tenderloins with the olive oil mixture. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet.
  5. Wrap each tenderloin with 5-6 pieces of bacon, or until covered.
  6. Place in the oven and cook for 25-30 minutes, or until the pork has reached 145 degrees.
  7. Remove from the oven and cover with foil. Let the tenderloin rest for 10 minutes. Slice and serve.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Market Street. All opinions are my own.

Strawberry Milk

Strawberry Milk

Author note: To make 6 cups of strawberry milk, double the recipe.

3 cups whole milk

3 teaspoons cream

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons strawberry syrup (see recipe below)

  1. Combine all ingredients into a pitcher. Stir or shake well. Serve chilled with or without ice.

for the strawberry syrup

Author note: The strawberries can be saved to be used as jam.

1 1/2 pounds frozen strawberries, thawed

1 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

  1. Place strawberries and all their juices into a medium-sized glass (or stainless steel) bowl. Stir in the sugar. Place plastic wrap over the top of the bowl and seal well.
  2. Fill a small sauce pan 1/2 inch full of water. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Place the bowl on top of the sauce pan to create a double boiler (make sure the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl). Stew the strawberries for 1 hour. Stir once.
  3. Carefully remove the bowl from the pan. Place the bowl into an ice bath and stir the vanilla extract into the strawberries. Let the strawberries cool for 10 minutes.
  4. Strain the syrup into a container. Continue to let the syrup come to room temperature and then place in the fridge. The syrup lasts for up to two weeks.

Strawberry S’mores Tart

Strawberry S'mores Tart

graham cracker pie crust

chocolate ganache filling (recipe below)

strawberry jam

marshmallow crème “fluff” (recipe below)

  1. Fill a graham cracker pie crust with the warm chocolate ganache. Place in the fridge and chill until the filling is hardened, about 2 to 3 hours.
  2. Remove the tart from the fridge. Spread a generous amount of strawberry jam on top of the chocolate ganache almost covering the entire top of the tart. Leave a little bit of space between the jam and the top edge of the crust.
  3. Spread a generous amount of marshmallow fluff on top of the jam. Serve chilled.

for the chocolate ganache filling

12 ounce unsweetened chocolate, broken into pieces

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1/8ths

pinch of salt

1 1/4 cup heavy cream

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract.

  1. Place the chocolate, butter and salt into a large mixing bowl. Set aside.
  2. Place the cream into a saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Immediately remove the cream from the heat and strain into the mixing bowl over the chocolate.
  3. Stir until the chocolate and butter until it is melted and smooth. Stir in the vanilla extract. Use as directed in recipe. (For the s’mores tart pour the chocolate ganache into a graham cracker pie crust. Place into the fridge and chill until hardened, about 2-3 hours).

for the marshmallow crème “fluff”

Author note: This recipe requires a candy thermometer.

1 cup sugar

1 cup corn syrup

1/3 cup and 1 tablespoon water

4 egg whites

3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  1. Combine the water, sugar and corn syrup into a sauce pan. Stir to combine. Cook over high until it reaches 240 degrees (about 15 minutes). Do not stir while the corn syrup mixture is cooking.
  2. Meanwhile, with an electric mixer on high whip the egg whites and cream of tartar in a large stainless steel bowl until stiff peak forms, about 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add the vanilla extract to the egg whites.
  4. Once the corn syrup mixture has reached 240 degrees, remove it from the heat. Lower the mixer speed to low and slowly pour the corn syrup mixture into the egg white peaks. Once the syrup has been poured into the egg whites, increase the speed to medium high and continue to whip until the marshmallow crème is fluffy, about 7 to 8 minutes.
  5. Let the marshmallow crème “fluff” cool. Place in airtight containers and store in the fridge up to two weeks.

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