Sour Cream and Chive Mashed Potatoes

Looking to spice up the traditional mashed potatoes? Why not make my recipe for Sour Cream and Chive Mashed Potatoes? They are perfect for any day of the week, a special occasion, or even a holiday. The other day, I need to make a new slow cooker ham recipe and while that ham was slow cooking away in the slow cooker I started to think about the side dishes I wanted to serve with it. That’s when the idea of Sour Cream and Chive Mashed Potatoes came to mind. I had a 5lb bag that was close to being on its way out, so I decided to make the entire bag. I know what your thinking… you made 5 pounds of potatoes for just two people?

Well, yes, but I have a great reason. I froze the leftovers! Yes, you can freeze mashed potatoes. Who knew?

I’m kind of on a food freezing kick since the baby will be here any day now (15 days and counting–gah)! I don’t think I can fit a single item in my freezer at this point, so I guess this baby better come soon, so we can start eating every thing I’ve been making/freezing.

Sour Cream and Chive Mashed Potatoes

I was also a nice friend/neighbor and invited our neighbor over for dinner to help with the 5lbs of mashed potatoes. We hadn’t had dinner together in a while and I knew I had plenty of food. Plus who doesn’t love a ham dinner on a Tuesday night? That’s the beauty of the slow cooker, my friends. You can have a swanky holiday like meal during the week day. And mashed potatoes don’t take long at all to make. I had contemplated baking these mashed potatoes after I was done mashing them, but didn’t feel the need to add more time to the cooking process. I was hungry and wanted to photograph them and then do a face plant right into the bowl. If you love a good sour cream and chive baked potato you’ll love these mashed potatoes. They complemented our sweet ham perfectly. Stay tuned next month for the ham recipe.

Sour Cream and Chive Mashed Potatoes

Katie Original Recipe

Sour Cream and Chive Mashed Potatoes

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 8

Sour Cream and Chive Mashed Potatoes

Ingredients

  • 5lbs Golden Russet Potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 stick salted butter
  • 8 oz. sour cream
  • 2 tbsp chives, minced
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic in water,
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper
  • salt to taste

Directions

  1. In a large stock pot, add salt to water and boil peeled cubed potatoes for 20-25 minutes until they are fork tender. Drain the potatoes.
  2. While potatoes are draining melt the butter in the stock pot. Once the butter is half way melted, add the potatoes back to the stock pot followed by sour cream, chives, minced garlic, and black pepper. Using a hand mixer, mix potatoes until smooth and creamy. Taste and decide if you want to add any additional salt and/or pepper. Top with additional chives and butter if desired and serve immediately.

Notes

Have leftovers? Freeze the mashed potatoes in a freezer zip lock. They will store for up to 3 months in the freezer. Perfect for a quick weeknight meal side dish!

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Healthy and quick Mediterranean Couscous Salad

The other week I had a hankering for couscous. But since my husband doesn’t like the traditional variety I went with the pearled couscous (larger than the normal). I’m still digging all things Greek and wanted to make a Mediterranean Couscous Salad that we could pack with our lunches during the week to eat with a sandwich or just as a snack. I mainly consumed it as option 2 since I find myself grazing the refrigerator every hour on the hour. And I also find that when I have a craving for something I need it right away. Not tomorrow or a week from now, no, I need it asap. Thankfully this urge came on a weekend when I had a little time to spend in the kitchen.

Mediterranean Couscous Salad

This Mediterranean Couscous Salad is packed full of veggies and full of flavor and even better it doesn’t take that long to make! It refrigerates well and the flavors only intensify as the days progress. Whether you want to eat the Mediterranean Couscous Salad as a snack, an easy lunch, or packed as a side for lunch or dinner–this is the recipe for you.

Katie Original Recipe

Mediterranean Couscous Salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 17 minutes

Total Time: 27 minutes

Yield: 6

Mediterranean Couscous Salad

Ingredients

  • 6oz. box of Pearled Couscous
  • 1 cup cucumber, diced
  • 1 roma tomato, diced
  • 3 tbsp kalamata olives, chopped
  • 3 tbsp feta
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp greek seasoning
  • 1 tbsp fresh dill, minced

Directions

  1. Cook pearled couscous according to instructions. Drain couscous and place in large bowl.
  2. Add diced cucumber, tomato, kalamata olives, feta, lemon juice, olive oil, greek seasoning, and fresh dill to the bowl. Mix well. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.
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{Guest Post from Katie's Cucina} Smoked Paprika and Shallot Brussels Sprouts #recipe #vegetarian #sidedish

Last year, I shared this recipe over on Rachel Cooks. I figured why not share it this year with my readers in case you missed this awesome recipe last year.  People either love or hate Brussels sprouts. I am a lover, but I’ll be the first to admit it wasn’t until my late teens / early twenties when I first began to fall in love with Brussels sprouts. I am always looking for new ways to cook them up. I also love to keep my vegetable side dishes relatively healthy and not drown them in butter and fattening sauces. That is why I turned to my good friend, I mean spice, smoked paprika. This spice packs a punch and can bring tons of new layers of flavors to any dish. I just so happened to have a shallot in my pantry so I decided to make them fancy and add an extra-large shallot to the pan.

Smoked Paprika and Shallot Brussel Sprouts Guest Post from KatiesCucina.com #recipe #vegetarian

The night I made the Smoked Paprika and Shallot Brussels Sprouts I served them with the most delicious (and once again easy-to-make) Crunchy-Baked Chicken Strips and Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes and Cauliflower. This is a perfect healthy meal to cook on a busy weeknight when time is limited. Instead of reaching for your phone to call take-out give my complete meal a try!

Katie Original Recipe

Smoked Paprika and Shallot Brussels Sprouts

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 18 minutes

Total Time: 28 minutes

Yield: 4

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. Brussels sprouts, trimmed and stems removed
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 sprigs of fresh thyme + more for garnishing

Directions

  1. Trim and remove stems from brussels sprouts. Place in a large pot and boil for 10 minutes until tender.
  2. In a skillet, add two tablespoons olive oil and one shallot (thinly sliced). Cook for 3 minutes on medium heat then add the salt, pepper, and smoked paprika to the pan. Stir well and then add brussels sprouts: stirring so that the shallots and seasoning cover the sprouts. Cook for 5 additional minutes. Once the Brussels sprouts are done sprinkle with fresh thyme and serve!
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Make these Twice Baked Candied Sweet Potatoes in just 15 minutes!

My recent obsession has been sweet potatoes. Candied sweet potatoes to be exact. Dessert and a side dish all in one. I’ve made this recipe for Twice Baked Candied Sweet Potatoes over a handful of times in the past 2 weeks. It all stemmed from wanting candied sweet potato casserole. That’s when I got the genius idea to make a twice baked candied sweet potato. When I’m hungry–I’m starving and I want food ASAP. So I’ve been doing everything in my power to get food on the table and in my belly as quickly as possibly. I can whip up two of these twice baked candied sweet potatoes in just 15 minutes. They aren’t the prettiest of food to look at, but they are darn tasty. And that is all that really matters, right?

Twice Baked Candied Sweet PotatoGranted, I cheat a little. I use the microwave for a little help. You don’t have to do that if you don’t want too. You can bake them in the oven the traditional way.  Or you can get these bad boys on the table as quick as possibly like I’m teaching you today. My mom thinks I’m crazy for making a candied version, and keeps reminding me I have a glucose test to take in the next few weeks. Mom, it’s ok. It’s not like I’m eating 10 of these in one sitting (just maybe 2). 

I was tempted to make these for Thanksgiving but went the traditional route with a casserole instead (I’ll share that recipe later this month). These make for a great snack (in my case) or a quick and easy side dish for twice baked candied sweet potatoes. Oh and if you’re wondering if I ate both of these after the photo shoot… no. I ate one and wrapped the other one up and ate it a day later! Not as good a day later, but when you’re instantly hungry, what else is a girl supposed to do?

Katie Original Recipe

Twice Baked Candied Sweet Potato

Prep Time: 6 minutes

Cook Time: 9 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 2

Twice Baked Candied Sweet Potato

Ingredients

  • 2 Sweet Potatoes
  • 1 tbsp brown Sugar
  • 1/8 tsp Cinnamon
  • Dash of Nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp melted butter
  • Mini Marshmallows

Directions

  1. Wash sweet potatoes really well. Poke with a fork, wrap in a damp paper towel and microwave for 5-7 minutes until cooked through and soft (time may vary depending on the microwave).
  2. While sweet potatoes are cooking, in a small bowl mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon, and dash of nutmeg. Set to the side.
  3. Preheat broiler in the oven.
  4. Once the sweet potatoes are done cooking, melt 1 tablespoon of butter in the microwave.
  5. Carefully open up the sweet potatoes (I like to use a fork and poke holes and gently open the potato). Divide the cinnamon sugar mixture between the two potatoes and mix well inside the sweet potato. Add a handful of mini marshmallows to each potato and then drizzle with melted butter.
  6. Broil for 1-2 minutes until the marshmallows are toasted.
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Looking to spice up traditional mashed potatoes? Combine butternut squash and mashed potatoes with brown sugar and ginger to give your family and friends a tasty side dish.
Ginger Butternut Squash Mashed Potatoes from KatiesCucina.com

I’m back from my babymoon–energized and relaxed and ready to share a few tasty fall-like recipes. Last month, I shared my apple butter pork chops. Pictured in some of those photos was this recipe for Ginger Butternut Squash Mashed Potatoes. I wasn’t sure if my husband would go for these doctored up mashed potatoes. He is not a big fan of ginger, so I decided to reduce the amount of ginger that was initially called in the recipe. I also added more brown sugar, because just like butter–everything is better with a little more brown sugar!

Ginger Butternut Squash Mashed Potatoes from KatiesCucina.com

I did not give Jon a full serving of the Ginger Butternut Squash Mashed Potatoes only in fear that he would take one bite and then eat around the sweet and savory untraditional potato! I was pleasantly surprised–he ate them quicker than I was able to cut up my pork chop! And then asked for more. He loved them! Shocker to me since I knew the ingredients in the potatoes. In fact, he has asked for me to make these a few times now.

Ginger Butternut Squash Mashed Potatoes from KatiesCucina.comSo whether you want to spice up this holiday and go the non-traditional mashed potato route, or you want to spice up your leftover mashed potatoes (which is what I plan to do on the Friday after Thanksgiving), these Ginger Butternut Squash Mashed Potatoes are sure to be a hit in your house just as much as they were in mine!

Adapted from Publix Aprons

Ginger Butternut Squash Mashed Potatoes

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 4

Ginger Butternut Squash Mashed Potatoes

Ingredients

  • 1 (12-oz) box frozen cooked butternut squash
  • 8 oz cup leftover or prepared mashed potatoes
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tsp ginger spice paste
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 cup green onions, chopped

Directions

  1. Microwave squash following package instructions. Transfer squash to medium bowl. Reheat leftover microwave mashed potatoes.
  2. Stir the mashed potatoes into the butternut squash along with the brown sugar, butter, ginger paste, salt, and pepper.
  3. Slice the onions. Fold mashed potatoes and all but 1 tablespoon of green onions into squash mixture. Serve and garnish with additional green onions.
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This is a sponsored post brought to you by Pacific Foods. 
Mexican Vegetarian Rice Bake from KatiesCucina.com

Last month, Pacific Foods contacted me to create a recipe using their Pacific’s Organic Spicy Black Bean and Kale Soup. The first thing that came to mind was a rice bake and then of course something Mexican flavored since that’s my going theme around here lately! They are easy to make and I almost always have leftover rice (whether in the fridge or freezer)! This soup is awesome on its own, but use it as base to transform a recipe and give a whole new layer of flavors. This Vegetarian Mexican Rice Bake is one to not miss.

Mexican Vegetarian Rice Bake from KatiesCucina.com

What I love about Pacific Foods is that all of their products come in a box form which means no preservatives or BPA (aka your soup won’t have hints of aluminum in it). They are also certified organic and Non GMO which is very important to me. Their philosophy “We have one simple goal- to make tasty, healthy foods with integrity.” They are trying to make good on this planet, one package at a time, and I love that about them. Whether your looking for soups or a hearty side–Pacific is the company to turn too!

Mexican Vegetarian Rice Bake from KatiesCucina.com

Oh and if your looking for a quick and easy vegetarian meal to serve to your family (or maybe a side dish to pair with roasted chicken breast head on over to the Pacific Foods Blog to get my recipe for Mexican Vegetarian Rice Bake

Disclaimer: I was compensated to create the recipe. I love Pacific Foods and as always all opinions are my own.


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This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of P.F. Chang’s for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

Raise your hand if you love Chinese food? I DO! Since I can remember (the ripe age of 4) I remember bellying up to plates full of Chinese food! I was obsessed with the cuisine and most mornings when my mom would ask me what I wanted for breakfast my response was Chinese food! Which is not like your typical 4 year old. Not much has changed since I was first introduced–you can definitely still find me eating Chinese food for breakfast! When my husband, Jon, asks where to eat out you’ll frequently hear me reply P.F. Changs! They have a new Fall Seasonal Menu that will rock your Chinese food eating socks out! 

First, let’s start with a Apple Cinnamon Martini. 

 photo f2244462-56cc-4fe8-94bd-0b414e996d28_zps5ce628af.jpg

Since I can’t drink right now I’m hoping a reader will go and try it for me. I’m a lover of martini’s and this sounds dynamite! It has “Absolut Orient Apple Vodka and Tuaca Liqueur shaken with apple juice, fresh lemon juice and a hint of cinnamon.” Mmm… 


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Creamy Parmesan Risotto with Beet Greens from KatiesCucina.com #Go4Gourmet

Who loves a good creamy comforting pot of risotto? I do! When McCormick Gourmet reached out to me to take part in their Go 4 Gourmet challenge. It’s kind of like the tv show chopped. I was given 4 challenge ingredients to make the recipe. I could use as much or as little of any other ingredients that I wanted too, as long as I incorporated the 4 challenge ingredients into my recipe. The challenge ingredients: Arborio Rice, Beets, McCormick Gourmet Crushed Rosemary, and Balsamic Vinegar. This is how the recipe for Creamy Parmesan Risotto with Beet Greens was created!
Creamy Parmesan Risotto with Beet Greens from KatiesCucina.com #Go4Gourmet

As much as I love beets, I love the beet greens even more so. And since one of the challenge ingredients was beets I figured why not go the non-traditional route and cook with the greens.  The greens compliment the balsamic vinegar and the creaminess of the risotto brings it all together. Not to mention the aromatic, distinctive piney flavor the rosemary gives off.  So whether you are looking for a simple main dish for one or a side dish for two–this is the recipe for you to try!

Katie Original Recipe

Creamy Parmesan Risotto with Beet Greens

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 1 main dish or 2 side dish

Creamy Parmesan Risotto with Beet Greens

Ingredients

Directions

  1. In a large pot, on medium-high heat add olive oil, diced onion, and garlic. Mix well and cook for 3 minutes. Then add beet greens, mix well, and sauté for 5 minutes until wilted. Remove from the skillet and place in a bowl (set to the side).
  2. Add butter to the same pot and let it melt. Then add the arborio rice to the pot. Let it toast for 1 minute, mixing well. Add 1/4 cup of the chicken broth, mix well until all the broth has evaporated, then add another 1/4 cup. Repeat until all the broth is used, evaporated, and rice is almost cooked.
  3. Add the crushed rosemary, black pepper, and heavy cream. Mix well until cream is almost evaporated then mix in grated parmesan. Plate the risotto and nestle the beet greens on top. Drizzle a half tablespoon of balsamic vinegar over the greens. Enjoy.
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Caramelized Onion & Bacon Spaetzle from KatiesCucina.com #recipe #german #bacon

Last Saturday, my in-laws invited us over for an Oktoberfest dinner. I brought the apple strudel, cucumber salad, and this caramelized onion bacon spaetzle. Once I was there I realized that I was the only person with German heritage at the table! No one had tried spaetzle before (except my husband who has had it on a few occasions). I totally cheated and did not make my spaetzle from scratch. I just don’t have that kind of energy right now. But I did doctor up a bag of spaetzle to make it taste homemade.

Caramelized Onion & Bacon Spaetzle from KatiesCucina.com #recipe #german #bacon

Our family loved it and was shocked by how closely the spaetzle resembled gnocchi. One day I’l conquer making spaetzle (and gnocchi) from scratch. But until then I will keep doctoring up a package until I get the time, energy, and courage to conquer it.

So if your looking for a new side dish to introduce to your family or attending an Oktoberfest dinner this caramelized onion and bacon spaetzle is the dish to serve up!

Katie Original Recipe

Caramelized Onion & Bacon Spaetzle

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 10

Caramelized Onion & Bacon Spaetzle

Ingredients

  • 5 strips bacon
  • 1 vidalia onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup water, divided
  • 1/2 tsp dry parsley
  • 17 oz dry package spaetzle
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. In a large skillet, begin to fry the five pieces of bacon on medium heat for 5 minutes until crispy (flip half way through).
  2. Remove the bacon from the skillet (keep all the bacon fat in the skillet) and place the thinly sliced vidalia onions in the pan, mix well and cook on low for 15 minutes. Half way through mix, and add 1/4 cup water. Place lid back on and cook longer. Continue to check every few minutes. Make sure the skillet stays moist and add the additional 1/4 cup of water.
  3. While the onions are caramelizing begin to cook the spaetzle according to the package. Remove once cooked and set to the side.
  4. Chop the bacon into bite size pieces and place back in skillet with the onions, mix well then add the cooked spaetzle to the skillet. season with salt, pepper, dry parsley, and butter. Mix well and serve immediately.
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Lime Couscous with Veggies from KatiesCucina.com #recipe #couscous

Woo–last week was quite the week. We got back from vacation and then I had major server issues for both my blogs on Friday. You might notice that I’m missing a few of my blog post from last week. I will slowly get them added back to the blog over the next week. Great lesson learned–pay the extra money for a backup system. You can only imagine what I’ll be doing this week (besides re-writing multiple blog post)!

Last Monday, (the day after being home from our 8-day cruise) I finally made dinner after 8 glorious days of being cooking free. Believe it or not–food bloggers like to take a break from cooking too! We get burnt out just like everyone else or at least I can speak for myself and say that I definitely get in ruts in the kitchen. It’s always nice to come back from vacation because I always feel ten-times more inspired to create delicious recipes. While lounging on the lido deck during one of our days at sea I flipped through my most recent issue of Better Homes and Garden. This recipe for Lime Couscous with Veggies jumped out at me. Not only do I love veggies–I adore couscous. My husband, though… not so much.


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