Cauliflower-Bacon Gratin (FFWD)

Ok so I skipped last week’s dish of Creme Brulee. My excuses are as follows, it was Christmas, I don’t have all the cute little dishes and my dog at my homework. It’s on the list of things to make up for this cooking group. Believe me I’ve wanted to make this before I started cooking with this group a year ago.

This week the group is cooking up Cauliflower-Bacon Gratin.

I choose to do the “Bonne Idee” on the side of the page and did this with leftover Christmas ham. Hey it’s a new way to use leftovers in my mind. I think bacon would have been fabulous and I am sure the guys in my home would have loved me to have even cooked this with both bacon and ham but well a plate of hot food on a cold rainy windy night, I didn’t hear much complaining. Actually saw them going back for seconds.

Happy to report this recipe’s ingredient list didn’t feel like I was on Chopped.

Cauliflower, ham, cream, eggs, milk, salt, cheese, and nutmeg. How could you go wrong?

Did I mention this had gruyere cheese? One of my all time favorites? I might try in the future to make this dairy free since I do have a sensitivity to dairy but a nice treat like this once in a while is comfort food to my soul.

This dish really took no time at all. Boil some cauliflower, mix up the sauce and pop in the oven.

In the oven it goes

Then a quick trip under the broiler to get it all crispy and golden.

This would make a great side like Dorie suggests. My first thought would be with a steak if your using the bacon. I served this as a main with a salad and sliced quinoa and flaxseed bread. Guys said it would make a good breakfast dish too.

Only thing I might do differently is next time I think I will try taking the sauce ingredients and cooking them into a Bechamel sauce instead of just mixing and pouring over cold. I just have a feeling it will make for a creamy and gooey dish. But this was really good.

Come check out what others are cooking and maybe join in the fun over at French Fridays with Dorie.

Till next time,


FFWD- Potato Chip Tortilla

Hello again my favorite cookbook

It has been so long since I have cooked along with the French Friday’s with Dorie group. I have missed it. I have been checking in and looking at what the group is cooking and check out some of the tasty blogs but just have not made time in my life to do this. I decided of course, during the holiday season, to get back to it. Yeah that fits who I am. No actually I was good, I scheduled the time in. When a couple of things came up that really didn’t need me, I said no and enjoyed my time in the kitchen.

Ok so on to the dish. Potato Chip Tortilla. Um, ok Dorie what would get you to dream this one up? I admit I was skeptical. I don’t eat many potato chips and just remember them being super salty but figured why not. I even had fun and posted the snap shot of the ingredients on Facebook for my friends to guess what I was cooking. On suggested I make a call for take out.

What can you make with this?

I changed the recipe up a bit. I used a little more chips and they were also salt and pepper kettle chips. Not sure why Whole Foods didn’t have plain potato chips. Odd. I used 7 eggs instead of 4 because I was making this to feed hungry men for a light dinner and my 19 yr old daughter. I used a hot Spanish paprika because I could reach it and it sounded like a good idea since only a pinch was going into it. We did top it with salmon and some sliced green onion and served it with a nice big salad.

So below are the pictures and I will then follow them up with my family’s thoughts.

Smashing the chips up, yes Dorie I licked my fingers. You were right.

Chopping herbs is easier with kitchen sheers

egg mixture

egg mixture and chips all together

Little cook time on the stove top till set

Under the broiler it goes...

Out of the oven to cool a bit

Plated with smoked salmon and a side salad.

I make Spanish tortilla often. I learned to cook it from a woman from Madrid and I have fun playing around with ingredients. You really can’t mess it up. If it goes with eggs you got yourself lunch, brunch or a light dinner. It’s easy on the budget too. Flipping a tortilla can be difficult and I have done it but usually have help. I have since taken to cooking it on the stove top till set and finishing it under the broiler much like this recipe had you do.

So what did my family think? Well they decided to play like they were on “Chopped” and had given me the odd ingredients. They all agreed they couldn’t tell there was potato chips in it. “There wasn’t enough crunch for me, I felt you didn’t play up the chips potential.” The suggestion was to sprinkle a little on top at the end. Dorie says that your not suppose to know potato chips were used so I would say I made it right and they just wanted more chipiness (is that a word?) They did like it and so maybe it will show up at our table again. It made for a fun dinner with a lot of laughter and maybe that was the whole point behind this dish. Thanks Dorie!

Till next time,
Bon Appetit!

FFWD-Spinach and Bacon Quiche

So I am going to start out by saying that I cheated with this week’s French Friday with Dorie. Ok the recipe was a spinach and bacon quiche. I know easy. Why would I cheat? How did I cheat? If you’ve been following along you know I am not so good at pastry making. Well believe it or not I make a great pie crust. It’s one of the few pastry things I can do. But that said I had a busy week, wanted to try this recipe and well I had a gluten free pie crust in the freezer I wanted to use and so there you have it , my confession. I didn’t make the pie crust from scratch. You could visit the French Fridays with Dorie site to see others who actually did make their crust. I pre-baked the crust according to the package and enjoyed a little talk with my daughter while doing other things in the kitchen.

Now for those like me who are short on time there was another silly cheat I used. I know gasp I am confessing to more than one. I didn’t use fresh spinach. Or even spinach for that matter. Yes I used frozen that I heated up and squeezed the liquid out of like the recipe asked. Oh and in case your wondering, I used Whole Foods “Green Leafy Mix” which is a mix of collard, dandelion and kale. I also used more than asked for as I am just a big fan of greens.

That being said you could go the route Dori suggested in her book and I am sure you would have a lovely quiche for brunch or a small plate dinner like we had it. But if your short on time remember you can cut a few corners and have similar results. It was delicious. I didn’t have guilt and my oldest daughter was even here to eat and she didn’t seem to care mom didn’t make a pie crust. Nobody said a thing and if they did I would have eaten their helping.

So don’t be afraid to change a recipe to fit your time frame or even your budget. Cooking should be fun and non stressful.

Till next time!