Handmade Cavatelli Pasta

I am in love with this recipe for cavatelli.  It is a denser noodle than I normally enjoy, but it is relatively small shapes that are much neater for children to eat than the long strands of spaghetti.   It goes extremely well with a hearty marinara sauce with meat.  It is also fun to make.  I made this the first time with our 3 1/2 year old granddaughter and she loved helping with it!  She also loved how they tasted!

The cavatelli can be made up ahead of time and frozen, before boiling, in a single layer on a cookie sheet.  No need to thaw before cooking.

Handmade Cavatelli Pasta
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
6 servings 45 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
5 minutes 30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 servings 45 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
5 minutes 30 minutes
Handmade Cavatelli Pasta
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
6 servings 45 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
5 minutes 30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 servings 45 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
5 minutes 30 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: servings
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a mixer bowl. (I used a Kitchen Aid stand mixer, but probably any heavy duty mixer will do.) Mix until ingredients come together to form a ball. It may be necessary to add a little more water, but start with this and check it after it starts to come together. You don't want it too sticky, but you don't want it too dry either. Wrap in plastic wrap and leave on counter for about 30-60 minutes for the gluten to relax.
  2. Divide dough into 4 portions and keep all unworked portions covered with plastic except what you are working with.
  3. Flour your work surface and roll the first portion of dough into a long rope. Keep working on it until it is about 1/2" thick. Use a pastry scraper or knife, cut into somewhat equal lengths of about 1/3-1/2".
  4. Flour your work surface. You can use a sushi rolling mat, a gnocchi board or just onto a cutting board or other work surface. I prefer the sushi rolling mat. I got mine on Amazon for $5. I can place a few pieces on the mat at a time.
  5. Then using a pastry scraper or the back of a knife or even your thumb, press down on the pieces of dough and pull back. The dough will make a roll back on itself to make a cute tube shape.
  6. Continue working the rest of the dough until all of it has been shaped into cavatelli.
  7. You can go either direction on the sushi mat or the gnocchi board to get the pattern you desire. I like going the long way on the sushi mat.
  8. Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to boil and add sea salt liberally. I also added some olive oil to prevent the pasta from sticking together.
  9. Boil the cavatelli for a few minutes, then remove from water.
  10. This is excellent served with a hearty marinara sauce with meat and cheese.
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Easy Homemade Pasta

I was looking through various pasta recipes today, and they were all basically the same:  flour, eggs, salt, some with or without oil or water…  But a comment on one of the recipes really struck me.  It was saying that they prefer this recipe over the one that they were reviewing because it was so much easier to handle.  I decided I needed to give it a try, so I made a batch of noodles as a side dish.  I think these were the best noodles I have ever tasted in my life!  And the dough was indeed very easy to work with.  I am definitely going to make this recipe again!!!

Easy Homemade Pasta
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 1 hour
Cook Time Passive Time
5 minutes 30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 1 hour
Cook Time Passive Time
5 minutes 30 minutes
Easy Homemade Pasta
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 1 hour
Cook Time Passive Time
5 minutes 30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 1 hour
Cook Time Passive Time
5 minutes 30 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: servings
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in bowl of stand mixer until a ball of dough is formed. Wrap in plastic wrap and set aside for 30-60 minutes. Process with Kitchen Aid pasta attachments. Cook in boiling salted water for 2 minutes.
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Chicken & Homemade Noodles

Start with boneless chicken pieces and make a rich, scrumptious, thickened broth to go with it.  Then make some homemade noodles (or buy some fresh or frozen noodles) and cook them right in the broth.  Fantastic!!

For making your own homemade noodles for this recipe, use 3 eggs, 1 T. water, 2 3/4 cups light spelt flour (or all-purpose if no wheat allergy)

Egg Noodles


Chicken & Homemade Noodles
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
40 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
40 minutes
Chicken & Homemade Noodles
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
40 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
40 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: servings
Instructions
  1. Heat large (13") cast iron skillet over high heat. Add oil and chicken. Season chicken with pepper. Cook quickly, stirring often, until done. Remove from pan and place in crock pot.
  2. Melt butter in same skillet over medium heat. Add carrots, celery, onion and garlic, and saute until tender, about 10-15 minutes.
  3. Add flour and blend evenly.
  4. Quickly whisk in cream, water, and chicken base until smooth. Add to crock pot and turn onto low until ready to continue.
  5. Before adding noodles, turn crock pot to high heat. We positioned the Kitchen Aid in such a position so the noodles go directly into the crock pot.
  6. Add noodles and stir to separate. Cook until noodles are tender, about 20 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
Recipe Notes

I reduced the amount of flour for thickening because I was using homemade noodles.  For making your own homemade noodles for this recipe, use 3 eggs, 1 T. water, and 2 3/4 cups flour.  If you are not using fresh homemade noodles, you may need more thickener.

Although spelt is an ancient form of wheat, most people with wheat allergies can eat it with no problem.  However, it still contains gluten, so avoid spelt if you have a reason to avoid gluten.

Better than Bouillon organic beef and chicken bases are my favorite to use in broths because they are gluten free and soy free.

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Italian Meatballs

These are called Italian Meatballs, but they can be made into just about any kind of meatball you want by changing or leaving out the Parmesan cheese.  You can make Swedish Meatballs  http://www.cherylsrecipes.net/recipe/swedish-meatballs/, BBQ Meatballs, Sweet & Sour Meatballs, etc.  You can even cut small cubes of mozzarella cheese (or any other kind of cheese) and wrap the meatball mixture around it before baking.  You will want to make a larger meatball for making them this way, though.  Meatballs always make a good dish for a potluck or a party!

Italian Meatballs
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Italian Meatballs
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: servings
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine all ingredients for meatballs with mixer and shape into balls. (I like to make smaller meatballs using a small cookie scoop.) Bake for 15 minutes.
Recipe Notes

Although spelt is actually a type of wheat flour, most people with wheat allergies can digest spelt flour with no problem.  Obviously, you should not eat spelt if it is a problem for you.

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Swedish Meatballs

This is made using my Italian meatballs http://www.cherylsrecipes.net/recipe/italian-meatballs/ and my Cream of Mushroom Soup http://www.cherylsrecipes.net/recipe/cream-of-mushroom-soup/ .  They are always a big hit at parties!

Swedish Meatballs
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 30 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 30 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Swedish Meatballs
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 30 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 30 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Ingredients
Meatballs
Cream of Mushroom Soup
Servings: servings
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine all ingredients for meatballs with mixer and shape into balls. (I like to make smaller meatballs using a small cookie scoop.) Bake 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, make the soup. In a Dutch oven, melt butter over medium heat. Add onions and cook, covered, just until tender. Add mushrooms and lemon juice. Cook just until mushrooms are tender.
  3. Stir in flour until blended.
  4. Add water, soup base, and pepper. Cook, stirring, frequently, until thickened. Stir in cream.
  5. Add meatballs and warm thoroughly.
  6. Serve with rice or pasta.
Recipe Notes

Although spelt is actually a type of wheat flour, most people with wheat allergies can digest spelt flour with no problem.  Obviously, you should not eat spelt if it is a problem for you.

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Sirloin Tips with Red Skinned Potatoes, Onions, Mushrooms

This is coarsely mashed, seasoned red skinned potatoes topped with sirloin tips, onions, mushrooms, and served with BBQ sauce.  We first had this from a food vendor at the Big Ticket Festival in Gaylord, MI.  We absolutely loved them!  My husband and I had them every day of the 3 day festival.  When we got home, I tried to recreate it.  This is what I came up with.

Sirloin Tips with Red Skinned Potatoes, Onions, Mushrooms
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 30 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 30 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Sirloin Tips with Red Skinned Potatoes, Onions, Mushrooms
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 30 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 30 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Put prepared potatoes in a pot of water along with the garlic. Bring to a boil and cook until tender.
  2. In a large heavy skillet, heat some oil. Add the onions and cook, stirring frequently, until tender.
  3. Meanwhile, in a separate skillet, heat some oil. Add steak strips and cook, stirring frequently, until done.
  4. When onions are nearly done, add the mushrooms and cook with onions. Add cooked steak to this pan too, and continue cooking until everything is done as desired. Season to taste with salt and pepper or your choice of seasonings.
  5. Drain potatoes, season with salt and pepper, and add butter. Lightly mash. Clean the meat skillet and add some oil to that skillet again. Put the potatoes into the skillet and cook until lightly browned. (I only have one large cast iron skillet, so I have to cook the potatoes in 2 batches in my medium sized skillet.)
  6. To serve, place a layer of the potatoes in a bowl.
  7. Top with steak, onion, and mushroom mixture.
  8. I like Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ sauce on mine.
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Fried Rice

This is a recipe that serves one, so I can make it for myself for lunch with leftover ingredients.    Of course, if you want more than one serving, you can easily double or triple the ingredients.

As always, you can change the vegetables and /or meats that go into this dish.  Add bean sprouts, ham, chicken, celery… you get the idea.

This is the recipe I use for a soy sauce substitute:  http://www.cherylsrecipes.net/recipe/soy-sauce-substitute/

Fried Rice
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
1 10
Cook Time
10
Servings Prep Time
1 10
Cook Time
10
Fried Rice
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
1 10
Cook Time
10
Servings Prep Time
1 10
Cook Time
10
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Heat sesame oil in a medium sized skillet on medium-high heat. Add onions and carrots and saute for a few minutes.
  2. Add peppers, peas, garlic and mushroom. Saute, stirring often, for a couple of minutes.
  3. Add eggs and stir. They will cook very fast.
  4. Stir in lobster, rice, soy sauce or soy sauce substitute, and lobster or shrimp. Stir and heat until warmed through.
  5. I like mine with toasted black sesame seeds added to the top.
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Basic Crepes

Crepes are so versatile!  They can be used for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert or a snack!  This is a very good basic recipe that is based on the recipe from www.chef-in-training.com.  I liked it better than the other recipes I tried, so I am sharing it here.

We had a Create Your Own Crepe bar for Mother’s Day.  My favorite was this crepe with a cheesecake filling, some sliced strawberries and some mini chocolate chips.  There are so many possibilities!  Other options we offered were puddings (chocolate, French vanilla, banana), Whipped topping, Chocolate Sauce (it hardened and we couldn’t get it out of the bottle easily!), Blackberry Jam, cinnamon mixed with powdered sugar, and powdered sugar by itself.  It turned out great!  We also made some chocolate crepes, but I preferred these to the chocolate ones!

The batter can be made up a day or two ahead of time, and/or the crepes can be made up ahead of time and put back on the griddle for just a few seconds per side to reheat.

Basic Crepes
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
24 crepes 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 crepes 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 30 minutes
Basic Crepes
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
24 crepes 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
24 crepes 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 30 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: crepes
Instructions
  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk flour and eggs. Slowly add milk and water stirring until smooth. Add salt and butter (and sugar if making dessert crepes) and continue whisking until smooth. (You can also just dump everything in a blender and blend until smooth.) Refrigerate in a covered container for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Heat oiled pan to medium high temperature. Pour about 3-4 T. of batter into pan and tilt the pan to swirl in a circular motion so that the batter coats the surface evenly.
  3. Cook crepe for about 1-2 minutes until the bottom is light brown. Loosen with a spatula, and turn. Serve hot and fill or top however you desire.
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Country Fried Steak with White Gravy

Well seasoned and crispy breading on a tenderized round steak (or cubed steak) served with a seasoned white gravy.

Country Fried Steak with White Gravy
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 30 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 30 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Country Fried Steak with White Gravy
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 30 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 servings 30 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: servings
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Cut the steak into 8 equal portions and trim fat from the meat. Pound with a good meat tenderizer. I highly recommend OXO Softworks Meat Tenderizer. Mine came from Amazon. (Pounding is not necessary if you are using cubed steak.)
  2. Crack the eggs into in a shallow bowl. Beat well.
  3. Combine the flour, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, cayenne pepper, 2 tsp. sea salt and 1/2 tsp. black pepper in a pie dish.
  4. Place large skillet on medium-high heat. Add oil to cover bottom of pan. Meanwhile, dredge the meat pieces in the flour mixture. Transfer to the beaten eggs. Then back to the flour mixture. Cook in skillet with oil until nicely browned on both sides. Remove the cooked meat to cookie sheet and place in warm oven, as you continue cooking the rest of the meat. This will keep it warm while you finish cooking the meat and make the gravy. Continue cooking the meat until all pieces have been browned. Reserve flour mixture.
  5. Leave drippings in skillet and add 4 T. butter to skillet. Melt over medium-high heat. Stir in 4 T. flour mixture left from dredging meat (or use fresh flour). Combine well with butter and cook until it begins to thicken. Slowly whisk in milk and continue to cook, whisking frequently, until thickened. Stir in the heavy cream, thyme, and season with more salt and pepper.
Recipe Notes

Although spelt is actually a type of wheat flour, most people with wheat allergies can digest spelt flour with no problem.  Obviously, you should not eat spelt if it is a problem for you.

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Baked Chicken Tenders

I make up a bunch of this seasoning mix and store it in an airtight container, so it is really easy to make on a busy day!

Baked Chicken Tenders
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
5 servings 10 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
5 servings 10 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Baked Chicken Tenders
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
5 servings 10 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
5 servings 10 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: servings
Instructions
  1. Place chicken in a Ziploc bag with some milk. Let set for at least 20 minutes. Preheat oven to Speedbake 400 degrees. If you do not have a Speedbake, you might want to bump it up to 425.
  2. Place 1/2 stick of butter in a cookie sheet with sides. Melt butter in oven as it is preheating. Make sure there are no dry spots on the pan.
  3. Shake excess milk off of chicken and completely coat each piece with the seasoning mix. You can either shake the chicken in a bag, until coated, or dip each piece in a bowl until coated.
  4. Cook 15 minutes. Turn each piece of chicken and continue cooking for 10 minutes, or until cooked through.
  5. I served mine with broccoli and seasoned brown basmati rice.
Recipe Notes

Although spelt is actually a type of wheat flour, most people with wheat allergies can digest spelt flour with no problem.  Obviously, you should not eat spelt if it is a problem for you.

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