Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Buffalo cauliflower salad

This is a sponsored post by Challenge Butter, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible!

The creation of this buffalo cauliflower salad was by accident, but it is certainly a delicious accident.

I’ve been trying to follow a low(er) carb diet for the most part. As a result, I eat a LOT of cauliflower, and I’m always trying to come up with new ways to use it.

I love baking with cauliflower because of its versatility. It pretty much takes on whatever flavor you give it. If it can be transformed into breadsticks or pizza, then it can become anything!

Recently, while I was trying to create a salad that incorporated cauliflower, I ended up creating a side dish best described as potato salad. But buffalo flavored. And cauliflower instead of potatoes.

The cream cheese / sour cream combination makes it creamy, but the sauce isn’t overwhelming, so it becomes too much like a dip. I used Challenge cream cheese. It's my favorite because they use hormone-free milk in their products. Challenge was also the first brand to make dairy products without growth hormones.

The bacon is definitely not necessary, but after I made this for the first time, I thought, “You know what would be good in this—bacon!” So I added bacon to it, and as you can imagine, it was THAT much better.

Anyway, I wanted to share this recipe with you all as we approach the holiday weekend because I think it would make a great dish to prepare for your family cookout.

Buffalo cauliflower salad

  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1/2 cup buffalo sauce, divided into two 1/4 cups
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 cup Challenge cream cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper 
  • 4 slices cooked bacon, chopped
  • 1/4 cup blue cheese
  • 4 green onions, chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons parsley, chopped
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Combine cauliflower florets, 1/4 cup buffalo sauce, and olive oil in bowl and mix until cauliflower is coated
  3. Spread cauliflower in single layer on baking sheet and roast for 10 minutes
  4. In large bowl, mix together cream cheese, 1/4 cup buffalo sauce, sour cream, garlic powder, chili powder, paprika, salt, and pepper
  5. Add cauliflower to bowl and mix until cauliflower is coated in sauce
  6. Add bacon, blue cheese, green onions, and parsley, and stir until just combined

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Puff pastry and lox

This is a sponsored post by Challenge Butter, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible!

I love eating bagels and lox for breakfast on special occasions, and recently on a trip to Trader Joe's, I noticed they had Everything But the Bagel Seasoned Smoked Salmon. The product was practically shouting at me to use it for a bagels and lox brunch.

Sometimes I think bagels are too heavy, and they overpower the thinly sliced salmon and light, whipped cream cheese. As I thought about it, I realized serving it on puff pastry would be a good solution.

Before baking the puff pastry, I brushed egg wash on top, poked it with a fork a few times to prevent it from puffing up too much, and sprinkled Everything But the Bagel Seasoning from, you guessed it, Trader Joe's on top. If you don't live near a Trader Joe's, you can purchase the seasoning on Amazon., or the Food Netwok has a recipe for it here.

Since puff pastry is pretty delicate and flaky after it's baked, I wanted to make sure the cream cheese spread onto it smoothly. Using a mixer, I beat together my favorite Challenge cream cheese with a little bit of sour cream so it was less dense. I also added a little chopped dill and garlic powder to the mixture to jazz it up.

Once I spread the cream cheese mixture onto the puff pastry, I topped it with Everything But the Bagel Seasoned Smoked Salmon, red onion, thinly sliced lemon, capers, dill, and chives. You can customize this dish with whatever toppings you desire. Avocado, cucumber, arugula, and other pickled vegetables might be good additions, too!

I used Challenge cream cheese for this recipe because I appreciate that the company uses hormone-free milk from local dairies, resulting in all-natural and high-quality products. 

Side note: I recently found out that smoke salmon and lox are actually not the same. Essentially, smoked salmon is smoked after it is cured, whereas lox is cured but not smoked. Technically, this recipe should be named "Puff pastry and smoked salmon," but I wanted the title to be a play on "bagels and lox."

Puff pastry and lox

For the dill cream cheese spread

  • 8 ounces Challenge cream cheese, room temperature
  • 4 ounces sour cream
  • 4 Tablespoons dill, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

For the pastry

  • 1 sheet puff pastry (Wewalka is my favorite because it's refrigerated, not frozen)
  • Egg wash (1 egg, 1 Tablespoon water, mixed together)
  • 2 Tablespoons Everything But the Bagel Seasoning
  • 4 ounces smoked salmon, or lox
  • 1/4 cup red onion, sliced
  • 3 Tablespoons capers
  • 1/4 lemon, very thinly sliced
  • 2 Tablespoons chives, chopped

For the dill cream cheese spread

  1. Beat the cream cheese at high speed for about 3 minutes or until it's light and whipped.
  2. Add sour cream and beat until smooth
  3. Add dill and garlic powder and beat until combined.
  4. Let sit in refrigerator while you prepare the rest of the dish.

For the pastry

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Unroll puff pastry and brush with egg wash. 
  3. Use a fork to poke it a few times to prevent it from puffing too much.
  4. Sprinkle Everything But the Bagel Seasoning on top.
  5. Bake in oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until it starts to puff up and turns golden brown.
  6. Remove from oven—you may need to poke it in the center if it puffed up too much.
  7. Allow it to cool for about 10 minutes before spreading the cream cheese mixture on top.
  8. Slice the smoked salmon into small pieces and evenly spread them out on top of the cream cheese mixture.
  9. Add the rest of your toppings and cut into rectangular pieces. Serve immediately.

Thursday, June 25, 2020

Easy recipes using food pantry staples in honor of FOX59's Pack the Pantries

Central Indiana food pantries have seen a dramatic increase in demand over the last few months due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Even before the COVID-19 surge, the need in Indiana was great. More than 1 million Hoosiers go hungry every year, and one in six Hoosiers goes to bed hungry every night. 

Each year, FOX59 teams up with Gleaners and Midwest Food Bank to help fight hunger by raising money. Find more information on how to donate here.

In honor of the Pack the Pantries fundraising event, I’m sharing two easy recipes using food pantry staples. 

I spoke with representatives from Midwest Food Bank Indiana and Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana to determine what ingredients are readily available.

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, John Whitaker with Midwest Food Bank Indiana says they have maintained a very good supply of nutritional food at their pantries, especially thanks to USDA food boxes. They are packed with a variety of fresh fruits, dairy products, and meat.

He said one ingredient they have a LOT of but clients aren’t sure what to do with is veggie burgers. That served as the inspiration for my vegetarian burger macaroni and cheese.

I wanted to show veggie burgers aren’t just for sandwiches. They’re packed with protein and very easy to prepare. The recipe is comparable to Hamburger Helper, but instead of using ground beef, I used crumbled up veggie burger patties.

I also added diced tomatoes and tomato sauce to the dish—two ingredients that Gleaners Nutrition Manager Sarah Wilson, RDN, says clients frequently seek recipes for.

Wilson said cabbage is another ingredient clients receive but need inspiration for. So for my second recipe, I decided to make a spicy cabbage slaw to go on top of tacos.

You can obviously make any kind of tacos you want (you could use crumbled veggie burger patties here, too!), but I decided to try something more unique and make potato tacos.

You may be thinking, "Why potatoes?" Well, first, I think it's important to remember that meat on the dinner table isn't an expectation for many Hoosiers who experience food insecurity—it's a treat. Maybe meat isn't in the budget this week, or maybe, like what we just experienced during the pandemic, it's unavailable at the grocery store.

So then what? Since both potatoes and cabbage have long shelf lives, you can keep the ingredients on hand to use when you’re out of other options.

It’s also a good thing that we're using raw cabbage in this recipe because heat breaks down the chemicals that give cabbage many of its nutritional superpowers.

Vegetarian burger macaroni and cheese
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 12 to 16 ounces vegetable burger patties
  • 1 Tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups elbow macaroni, uncooked
  • 2 (8 ounce) cans petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • Optional: Parsley
  1. Heat a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. 
  2. Sauté the onion for several minutes until it starts to soften. 
  3. Add the vegetable burger patties and break them up with spatula so they resemble ground beef crumbles.
  4. Add mustard, garlic powder, paprika, cayenne powder, salt and pepper and stir to incorporate.
  5. Stir in the milk, macaroni, diced tomatoes, and tomato sauce.
  6. Bring pot to boil then cover and reduce to simmer. Cook for about 10 minutes or until pasta is tender. Stir occasionally.
  7. After it’s done cooking, remove from heat and stir in cheddar cheese until it’s melted.
  8. You can sprinkle with parsley before serving.

Potato tacos with spicy cabbage slaw
For the spicy cabbage slaw
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon Sriracha
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 pound red or green cabbage, shredded
For the potato tacos
  • 3 pounds potatoes, cleaned and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
For the spicy cabbage slaw
  1. Combine the mayonnaise with apple cider vinegar, Sriracha, salt, and pepper.
  2. Mix with shredded cabbage and refrigerate until ready to serve.
For the potato tacos
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Rinse the potatoes under cold water until the water runs clear to remove excess starch. Dry the potatoes as best as you can.
  3. In a large bowl, mix the potatoes with the olive oil and seasoning.
  4. Pour onto a baking sheet and spread in a single layer
  5. Roast potatoes until fork tender, about 20 minutes
  6. Remove from oven
  7. Prepare tacos by putting potatoes in tortilla and topping with spicy cabbage slaw. Add cheese and cilantro if desired.

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