Sunday, September 27, 2020

Sage Brown Butter Skillet Dinner

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!

We all know life is busy. Our obligations haven’t stopped just because more people are staying home. And some people are busier than ever as parents juggle school at home and work under one roof. That’s why it’s good to have a couple one-skillet recipes in your repertoire for weeknight dinners.

As I was writing this recipe, I realized there’s a lot of flexibility in it. You can substitute pretty much every ingredient with what you have on hand—except for the sage brown butter. That’s the “it factor” in this recipe. And all you need for that is fresh sage (not dried) and good quality butter. I only use Challenge butter because it’s made from real cream from cows not treated with growth hormones.

But other than those two ingredients, feel free to substitute away!

Any cruciferous vegetable will work. You could use broccoli or cauliflower instead of Brussels sprouts. Personally, I love the caramelized sear Brussels sprouts get in the pan, but I understand they’re not everyone’s cup of tea. As for the gnocchi, I am the biggest fan of Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi, so that’s what I use. I always keep it stocked in my freezer. And it’s gluten free if that’s something you’re concerned about. But use any gnocchi you like, or don’t add it at all. But if I have the option to add gnocchi in a dish, you better believe I’m adding it. Last is the chicken sausage—it’s something I started buying on a regular basis a few years ago, and I actually prefer the taste to pork sausage. I buy it at Fresh Thyme or Trader Joe’s. It’s relatively inexpensive, and it’s quite a bit healthier than pork sausage. But if you prefer pork, please go that route. Or serve this recipe without meat for a “meatless Monday” option.

Sage Brown Butter Skillet Dinner
  • 12 ounces chicken sausage, sliced in 1/2-inch coins
  • 1/2 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 12 ounces gnocchi (can use cauliflower gnocchi)
  • 8 Tablespoons (1 stick) Challenge butter
  • 1/4 cup sage leaves, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • Salt, to taste
  • Black pepper, to taste
  • Shaved parmesan cheese for topping, if desired
  1. Add chicken sausage to large skillet and cook over medium-high heat undisturbed until one side is brown, or about 3 minutes. Stir and cook 2 more minutes and move to a large bowl.
  2. Add Brussels sprouts and shallot to skillet and cook undisturbed until one side of Brussels sprouts is browned, about 3 minutes. Stir and cook 2 more minutes and add to bowl with sausage.
  3. Add gnocchi to skillet and cook undisturbed for about 3 minutes. Stir and cook another 3 minutes. Move to bowl.
  4. Wipe skillet clean if necessary.
  5. Add the butter to the skillet. Once it has completely melted, add the sage leaves. Stir periodically for about 3 minutes, or until the butter turns a light brown color.
  6. Remove the skillet from the head and pour the sage brown butter over the bowl with the chicken sausage, Brussels sprouts, and gnocchi. Mix to coat everything in the sage brown butter and return to the skillet to reheat.
  7. Stir in the balsamic vinegar, season with salt and pepper, and sprinkle parmesan cheese on top before serving. 

Friday, September 25, 2020

Maple-orange glazed rainbow carrots

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 understand that rainbow-colored carrots are nearly identical in flavor and texture to a standard orange carrot, but there’s something about the beautiful hues of purple, red, and yellow that really elevate a meal.

I’ve always eaten a lot of carrots. I went through a stage when I ate an entire bag a day. And my preferred method of eating them was by roasting them. The heat brings out the natural sugars.

I created a recipe utilizing this beautiful produce, but I elevated the carrots’ sweetness even more by mixing them with orange juice and maple syrup before roasting them.

You may be wondering why there’s butter in the glaze. Here’s the deal: Cooking is all about building layers and layers of flavor. The butter gives the carrots extra flavor and provides a richness to the dish that simply cannot be acquired with oil. If you make this recipe with and without butter, I promise you’ll taste the difference.

I’ve never been concerned about adding butter to recipes because I always use Challenge butter.

I used Challenge butter in this recipe because I know they use hormone-free milk from local dairies, resulting in all-natural and high-quality products. Challenge only uses fresh, hormone-free milk, and they don’t add any unnatural additives.

Maple-orange glazed carrots
  • 2 Tablespoons orange juice, preferably freshly squeezed
  • 2 Tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon Challenge butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 pound rainbow (or regular) carrots, washed
  • Optional garnish: coarse salt, chopped parsely, orange zest
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, make the glaze by mixing together orange juice, maple syrup, butter, ginger, salt, and pepper
  3. Mix the carrots in the glaze and place them in baking pan; do not discard the glaze leftover in the bowl
  4. Cook the carrots for 15 minutes
  5. Remove the baking pan from the ocen and stir the carrots. Pour the leftover glaze over the carrots, and cook another 10 minutes
  6. Garnish with coarse salt, parsely, and orange zest, if desired

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Apple Sundaes with Pie Crust Bowls


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

This time is year is so nostalgic. My mind is flooded with memories of heading back to school, cheering at football games, and picking apples. The sight of leaves changing colors and the feeling of a cool autumn breeze transport me back to my childhood.

One of my favorite annual activities was attending the Johnny Appleseed Festival in Fort Wayne, which is where I grew up. I’m not sure if the rest of the country knows much about John Chapman, aka Johnny Appleseed, but he is a major cultural icon in Fort Wayne. We started learning about the man who planted apple trees throughout Indiana when I was in kindergarten, and every year we visited his gravesite, which is located at Johnny Appleseed Park, of course.

I’ve attended a lot of fall festivals, and none compare to the Johnny Appleseed Festival. There are games, crafts, and a wide variety of apple treats. My favorite food item was always the apple dumpling with a big scoop of ice cream on top. The dumpling is tasty on its own, but a scoop of cool, creamy ice cream makes it even better.

Unfortunately, as with most everything this year, the Johnny Appleseed Festival is canceled for 2020. I was pretty bummed when I heard the news, but I wanted to make the best of the situation. So even though I can’t get my apple fix at the festival this year, I created an apple recipe using my favorite Hudsonville Ice Cream to cheer me up.

The recipe consists of an edible bowl made entirely of pie crust, rich and creamy Hudsonville Ice Cream, and cinnamon apple topping. 

Normally, I pair apple desserts with Hudsonville’s French Vanilla ice cream, but there were two other flavors that caught my eye at my local Fresh Thyme: Seaside Caramel ice cream and Belgian Cookie Butter ice cream.

I knew the Seaside Caramel ice cream, which is a vanilla-based ice cream with a caramel swirl and caramel sea salt truffle pieces, would go well with this apple dessert. Apples and caramel are a match made in heaven!

The Belgian Cookie Butter ice cream also seemed like another great option. It’s blended with Speculoos cookie pieces, which have a deep caramel flavor and notes of ginger and cinnamon.

The first step in preparing the apple sundae is making the edible ice cream bowls. I used this 4-inch fluted circle cookie cutter to cut circles out of pie crust. I then used the backside of a cupcake pan and molded the pie circles around the inverted cupcake cavities to form the bowls. After baking in the oven, they’ll pop right off.

I recommend making your apple topping while the bowls are baking. I know a lot of people like to cook with Granny Smith apples, and that’s great, but I actually prefer the taste of Honeycrisp apples. I like to use minimal ingredients in my topping to allow the apple flavor to really shine. The topping actually comes together quickly—peeling, slicing, and dicing the apples is the most time-consuming part.

Assembling the sundaes is as easy as pie (bad joke)! Fill a pie crust bowl with two scoops of Hudsonville Ice Cream, and add a big spoonful of apple topping. Whipped cream is also always welcome.

The combination of the rich and creamy ice cream with the warm, cinnamon apple topping is the perfect marriage of cold and hot.

Even if your fall activities look a little different this year, you'll surely create sweet moments and memories serving up these apple sundaes with Hudsonville Ice Cream. Use this Scoop Locator tool to find which Hudsonville flavors are available at your local grocery stores, and click here for for a coupon to get $2 off any flavor. 

Apple Sundaes with Pie Crust Bowls

Yield: Makes 8 sundaes

For the pie crust bowls

  • Nonstick spray
  • 1 9-inch pie crust

For the apple topping


For the pie crust bowls

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Cut circles in pie crust with round cookie cutter
  3. Spray bottom of cupcake pan with nonstick spray
  4. Mold pie crust circles around inverted cupcake pan cavities
  5. Bake for about 12 to 15 minutes or until pie crust turns golden brown
  6. Remove cupcake pan from oven and allow bowls to cool for several minutes before gently removing from pan

For the apple topping

  1. Melt butter in large skillet on medium heat
  2. Add apples to skillet and sauté for 5 minutes
  3. Add brown sugar and cinnamon to skillet and stir until sugar dissolves
  4. Add corn starch to small bowl and slowly stir in 1 Tablespoon warm water until it’s combined with no lumps
  5. Pour corn starch slurry into skillet and stir for about 2 minutes until mixture thickens
  6. Pour heavy cream into skillet and simmer for about 5 minutes
  7. Remove skillet from heat
  8. Scoop Hudsonville Ice Cream into pie crust bowls and spoon apples onto ice cream
  9. Top with whipped cream, if desired

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