Italian Club Sandwich

Delicious cold pressed Italian sandwich recipe - The EGGI have been dying to do a post about this Italian Club Sandwich I stumbled upon on Crepes of Wrath about, oh I don’t know, 2 years ago… Talk about procrastination. Really I was just waiting for the perfect opportunity to try this recipe out, and I finally found it. Last weekend I threw a Bridal Shower for one of my very best friends and in true non reality living Elizabeth form I decided I wanted to make all the food myself. Normally not a ridiculous order, unless you are planning a 32 person sit down meal kind of shower… My grandmother thought I was crazy, but entertained my lofty plans with little push back. The food portion actually worked out well and I would definitely recommend using this tasty little number for your next event. It tastes delicious, looks pretty, and you can make it the night before. However, next time I may cater or at least hire somebody to serve so I can enjoy the party a little more… Who am I kidding I am way too controlling to ever be able to sit down and enjoy anything.

Ingredients

  • Large Loaf of Ciabatta Bread (sliced lengthwise)
  • Fresh Pesto
  • Sliced Sopressata Salami
  • Sliced Prosciutto
  • Sliced Provolone Cheese
  • Sliced Mozzarella Cheese
  • Basil Leaves
  • Plastic Wrap

 Directions

Delicious cold pressed Italian sandwich recipe - The EGGSlice the ciabatta bread lengthwise. Spread fresh pesto over the bottom piece of bread. Ciabatta is pretty hearty so no need to skimp, but be sure not to use so much that the bread becomes soggy.

Delicious cold pressed Italian sandwich recipe - The EGG

Delicious cold pressed Italian sandwich recipe - The EGGTop the pesto with a layer of salami, layer of prosciutto, then a layer of provolone and a layer of mozzarella cheese. Top the cheeses with another layer of salami followed by a healthy amount of fresh basil leaves.

Delicious cold pressed Italian sandwich recipe - The EGGAdd a layer of pesto on the top half of the bread. Why? Because I love pesto, so more = better. Plus the additional pesto helps the sandwich all stick together in the pressing process.

Delicious cold pressed Italian sandwich recipe - The EGGPlace the top of the bread on the sandwich and press down on the sandwiches with your hands, then very tightly wrap them in plastic wrap.

Delicious cold pressed Italian sandwich recipe - The EGGPut the wrapped sandwich in the fridge and top with lots of heavy books, or whatever other heavy objects you can find. I used 1 very heavy book, then put a couple 2 liter bottles of soda on top of that. Don’t be afraid to over do it on the weight factor. If I had more room I would have done more. Let them sit in the fridge overnight. This gives the sandwich plenty of time to press into perfect little packages and all the flavors have a chance to marry together. If you are pressed for time and don’t have time to press (haha get it?) then add more weight and you sandwich should be good to go in about 4 hours.

Delicious cold pressed Italian sandwich recipe - The EGGWhen you are ready to eat, unwrap the sandwiches and use a very sharp knife to cut the sandwich into about 2-inch wide pieces. These will keep well after being sliced in an airtight container for up to 2 days – we ate them as leftovers after our party and they were still absolutely delicious.

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Happy New Year

New Years Photo Booth Backdrop - The EGGWell it has been a hot second or two and a lot has happened since the last time we spoke… For one it is now 2014, so Happy New Year! For two, we sold our house and moved into a swanky downtown loft. Fancy schmancy I know. It is so not me, but then again so me all at the same time. There has been lots of decorating, cooking, entertaining, traveling and creating in the mean time, and I have definitely deserted you all in the process. Some may not have noticed at all, others may not have even cared, but that’s ok either way I am back… For the time being.

I got the urge to write again, because I was inspired to cook something new. I was watching the Food Network yesterday and one of my faves came on, Barefoot Contessa. When she is cooking Italian, as she often does, it’s pretty much guaranteed I am going to like it. I have a couple of staples on the Food Network that rarely steer me in the wrong direction. Between Ina Garten, Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman), and Giada De Laurentiis my husband will never go hungry. Now if I could just convince one of them to move in and do all the cooking. Anyway, Ina was making Spaghetti and Meatballs and it looked delicious. I know it sounds very basic, and it is, but it inspired me to want to cook so it is worthy of a blog post in my opinion. Check out the recipe below and I will let you know how it goes. I think this might be a Pasta Sunday dish. I also posted below some pics of what I have been up to for the past 5 months or so.

The EGG Projects
3DENT Logo Wall Decal // Thanksgiving Invitation // Painted Mirror
Pumpkin Whoopie Pies // Engagement Party Favor Stickers // CranCherry Cocktail
Jute Wrapped Bottles // Holiday Card // Glitter Champagne Bottles

Ingredients

FOR THE MEATBALLS:
  • 1/2 pound ground veal
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 cup fresh white bread crumbs (4 slices, crusts removed)
  • 1/4 cup seasoned dry bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 extra-large egg, beaten
  • Vegetable oil
  • Olive oil
FOR THE SAUCE:
  • 1 tablespoon good olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion (1 onion)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup good red wine, such as Chianti
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, or plum tomatoes in puree, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • For serving:
  • 1 1/2 pounds spaghetti, cooked according to package directions
  • Freshly grated Parmesan

Directions

  1. Place the ground meats, both bread crumbs, parsley, Parmesan, salt, pepper, nutmeg, egg, and 3/4 cup warm water in a bowl. Combine very lightly with a fork. Using your hands, lightly form the mixture into 2-inch meatballs. You will have 14 to 16 meatballs.
  2. Pour equal amounts of vegetable oil and olive oil into a large (12-inch) skillet to a depth of 1/4-inch. Heat the oil. Very carefully, in batches, place the meatballs in the oil and brown them well on all sides over medium-low heat, turning carefully with a spatula or a fork. This should take about 10 minutes for each batch. Don’t crowd the meatballs. Remove the meatballs to a plate covered with paper towels. Discard the oil but don’t clean the pan.
  3. For the sauce, heat the olive oil in the same pan. Add the onion and saute over medium heat until translucent, 5 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the wine and cook on high heat, scraping up all the brown bits in the pan, until almost all the liquid evaporates, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, parsley, salt, and pepper.
  4. Return the meatballs to the sauce, cover, and simmer on the lowest heat for 25 to 30 minutes, until the meatballs are cooked through. Serve hot on cooked spaghetti.

Tortilla + Pizza = Tortizza

Basil Collage 2Last night the Hubby and I decided to eat at home, but did not want to go to the store to get anything, so I figured I would use what we had on hand and would just make it work. I did not want boring chicken and broccoli ( I saved that for tonight’s dinner) so I decided to use the left over tortillas to make some pizzas, or what I like to call tortizzas!

I love when I can use stuff I already have in the pantry/fridge/freezer to put a meal together. It makes me feel resourceful. What I like even more is that not all these ingredients came from the kitchen, one of the them came from the garden. Ok, ok, ok I know it was just basil, but this was the first time I grew something and then ate it. I think it was quite and accomplishment. Plus the added ingredient made it possible to make 2 different types of tortizzas. I already had everything I needed to make the garden garlic chicken, but now I could make a margherita with fresh basil, which is way better than the dried I had in the pantry. It was very tasty!

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Homemade Pizza {in Singapore}

Homemade Pizza ~ via The EGGEureka! I found fresh basil in Singapore! I had heard rumors that you could find it at stores such as Cold Storage, but I am a Fair Price shopper. It’s locations are more convenient and for the most part it tends to be less expensive. The only problem is only certain Fair Price’s carry the different ingredients I love. The Jurong Point Fair Price has amazing french baguettes. They are better than the stuff I find at some grocery stores in the states, no joke. The Clementi Mall Fair Price has a good fruit selection and now the Jurong East Fair Price has fresh basil. Slowly but surely, Singapore is becoming more and more livable. Unfortunately, as we discover the tricks that make living in another country easier, we simultaneously start to miss home, family and friends more as well. However this pizza I made for lunch today makes it all a little more bearable… I call it food therapy, which can me dangerous, so be careful now. Emotional eating is never good, but if you are going to do it, why not soothe your woes with something fresh, healthy and most of all delowcious. I know what you are thinking, “Elizabeth, pizza is not a healthy food.” Yeah, yeah yeah, I know. Not usually, but this time it is different. I made my pizza on a whole wheat tortilla, used a minimal amount of cheese (just a sprinkle to lightly cover the sauce), garnished it with fresh veggies (tomatoes and fresh basil) and seasoned it with garlic powder and crushed red pepper. The thin crispy tortilla lowers the normal high carb count of pizza and makes it more like an italian tostada. The garlic powder and crushed red pepper add tons of flavor without tons of sodium. And I don’t have to tell you what the veggies do. Unless I am missing something, nothing about that screams bad for you. In fact, it all seems pretty healthy.  Here is how I made my margarita tostada…

Ingredients

  • 1 whole wheat tortilla
  • 1 tablespoons of preferred pizza sauce (spaghetti sauce will work)
  • 2 teaspoons of garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper
  • 4 red grape tomatoes (cut is 4ths)
  • 4 yellow grape tomatoes (cut in 4ths)
  • 8 fresh basil leaves (chiffonade)
  • 1 handful of grated Italian cheese mix
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil

Directions

Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

  1. Spread sauce over tortilla.
  2. Sprinkle with garlic powder to taste.
  3. Cover with cheese.
  4. Add crushed red pepper. (I like to add the red pepper before I cook my pizza. It really brings out the flavor.)
  5. Scatter  sliced tomatoes on the tortilla.
  6. Sprinkle with fresh basil.
  7. Drizzle olive oil over top.

Place pizza directly on the middle oven rack and cook for about 15-20 minutes, or until tortilla has reached your desired crispiness.

Cut in 4’s and serve immediately.

Enjoy!

Bruschetta is Betta for One

I tend to not cook meals for myself. I just don’t see the point in it. It takes time and effort and makes a big ol’ mess just for little ol’ me. Totally not worth it in my opinion. I just assume make some Top Ramen or have a bowl of cereal instead. However, now that I am married I am trying to become a domestic goddess who can just whip something up at the drop of a hat no problem, even if it is just for me. I am pretty sure a domestic goddess would not be caught dead eating Top Ramen. So, today I thought I would be a big girl and cook myself a little lunch. I made myself a personal sized amount of delowcious bruschetta. I have to say, it was pretty tasty and pretty worth it too. Don’t worry I had more than 2 pieces. I used these 2 for the picture. I have another plate outside the frame with like 8 more pieces on it. Come on, I said personal size, not anorexic size. This was my domestic goddess process inspired by The Pioneer Woman, but downsized for a personal sized serving…

Ingredients

  • 1 container of Nature Sweet Cherubs Tomatoes (about a pint), halved lengthwise
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
  • 16 basil leaves, chiffonade
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ a baguette
  • 4 tablespoons of butter

Directions

In a small skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic and stir, lightly frying for about a minute, removing before the garlic gets too brown (it can be golden.) Pour into a mixing bowl and allow to cool slightly.

Add tomatoes, balsamic, basil, and salt and pepper to the bowl. Toss to combine, then taste and add more basil if needed, and more salt if needed. (Be sure not to over salt.) Cover and refrigerate for an hour to allow flavors to marry. Don’t have the time? No worries. The flavors are delowcious just the way they are.

Cut the baguette into diagonal slices to allow for the most surface area possible. Melt half the butter in a large skillet and grill half the bread on both sides, making sure they’re nice and buttery. Cook till golden brown on both sides. Repeat with the other half of the butter and the other half of the bread.

To serve, give the tomato mixture a final stir, the spoon generously over the slices of bread. Serve on a big platter as a first course, appetizer or a nice little meal for yourself 😉

Notes: Want to make your bruschetta even betta? Add Nature’s Best Sunburts to the mix for a fun pop of yellow. Basically just use a mixture of the red, orange and yellow tomatoes. It will look gorgeous!!!

Chicken Piccata

Ingredients

  • 2 skinless and boneless chicken breasts, butterflied and then cut in half
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • All-purpose flour, for dredging
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ½ cup chicken stock
  • ¼ cup brined capers, rinsed
  • ⅓ cup fresh parsley, chopped

Directions

Season chicken with salt and pepper. Dredge chicken in flour and shake off excess.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter with 3 tablespoons olive oil. When butter and oil start to sizzle, add 2 pieces of chicken and cook for 3 minutes. When chicken is browned, flip and cook other side for 3 minutes. Remove and transfer to plate. Melt 2 more tablespoons butter and add another 2 tablespoons olive oil. When butter and oil start to sizzle, add the other 2 pieces of chicken and brown both sides in same manner. Remove pan from heat and add chicken to the plate.

Into the pan add the lemon juice, stock and capers. Return to stove and bring to boil, scraping up brown bits from the pan for extra flavor. Check for seasoning. Return all the chicken to the pan and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove chicken to platter. Add remaining 2 tablespoons butter to sauce and whisk vigorously. Pour sauce over chicken and garnish with parsley.

  • Source: Giada De Laurentiis
  • Prep Time: 15min
  • Cook Time: 25min
  • Total Time: 40min
  • Recipe Yields: 4 servings

How-To Make Pizza Dough

Pizza DoughWhy would you ever order pizza in when it can be so fun to make it at home? Why would you ever buy pizza dough from the store when it is so easy to make from scratch? Not only is it easy and fun, but it can also be very therapeutic. I think I am smelling a fun pizza making party in my future. Who wants to come? Enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups warm water, 100 to 110 degrees F, plus extra as needed
  • 1 (¼-ounce) packet active dry yeast
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra as needed
  • 1 ½ teaspoons fine sea salt
  • Olive oil, for drizzling

Directions

Put the water in a small bowl. Add the yeast and stir until dissolved.

In a large bowl, whisk the flour and salt together. Add the yeast mixture and stir until a soft dough forms. If the dough is too dry, add a little extra water, 1 tablespoon at a time. If the dough is too sticky, add extra flour, 1 tablespoon at a time. Transfer the dough to a floured work surface. With floured hands, knead the dough until it becomes smooth and elastic, about 10 to 12 minutes. Drizzle the inside of a clean bowl with olive oil. Put the dough in the bowl and cover loosely with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel. Set the bowl in a warm, draft-free place, until the dough has doubled in size, about 2 hours.

Using a fist, deflate the dough in the center and cut it into 3 equal-sized pieces. Form the dough pieces into 3 balls and put into 3 oiled bowls. Cover each bowl loosely with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel and let rest for 1 hour. Remove the dough and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate for up to 1 day.

  • Source: Giada De Laurentiis
  • Prep Time: 15min
  • Inactive Time: 3hr
  • Total Time: 3hr 15min
  • Recipe Yields: 3 (13oz) balls of dough

Italian Breakfast Skewers

Ingredients

  • 8 bamboo skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes
  • ½ pound sweet Italian sausage, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 red pepper, cored and cut into 1-inch squares
  • ¼ pound pancetta, cubed
  • ½ cup pineapple cubes, fresh or canned

Directions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Thread the skewers starting with the sausage, then the red pepper, then the pancetta, then the pineapple. Each skewer should have 2 of these sets. Continue with the rest of the skewers.

Arrange on a baking sheet and bake until golden brown on the edges and the pancetta is cooked through, about 25 minutes. Serve warm.

  • Source: Giada De Laurentiis
  • Prep Time: 20min
  • Inactive Time: 30min
  • Cook Time: 25min
  • Total Time: 1hr 15min
  • Recipe Yields: 4 to 6 servings

Italian Fish and Veggie Pockets

Ingredients

  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt, plus more for seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning
  • 1 ½ pounds sugar snap peas, stemmed
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 orange bell pepper, sliced
  • ½ cup white wine
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 4 (4-ounce) trout fillets, skinned (or other fish about ½-inch thick)
  • 8 thin slices lemon
  • ¼ cup fresh chopped mint leaves

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

In a small bowl mix together the lemon zest, salt, and pepper. Set aside.

Lay out the 4 sheets of aluminum foil. Place ¼ of the sugar snap peas, ¼ of the yellow bell peppers, and ¼ of the orange bell peppers on each sheet of foil. Over each pile of vegetables drizzle 2 tablespoons of white wine, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, and 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Sprinkle with the lemon zest, salt and pepper mixture and gently toss.

Top each pile of seasoned vegetables with a piece of fish. Sprinkle the fish with some of the reserved lemon zest mixture. Top each fish with 2 slices of lemon.

Fold up the foil into an air-tight packet. Place the foil packets in the oven and bake for 15 to 18 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish. Sprinkle the fish with mint just before serving.

Notes: I made this for dinner tonight and made a couple of alterations. First I used salmon, and second I marinaded the veggies in the white wine, lemon juice, olive oil and seasoning mixture. I will update soon about my personal experience.

  • Source: Giada De Laurentiis
  • Prep Time: 20min
  • Cook Time: 18min
  • Total Time: 38min
  • Recipe Yields: 4 servings

Strawberry Strata

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature (about ½ cup)
  • 4 ounces ricotta cheese, room temperature (about ½ cup)
  • 8 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup frozen strawberries, thawed and drained (about 10 ounces)
  • ½ cup honey, warmed
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 (12 to 16-inch) ciabatta loaf, crust removed and cut into 1-inch cubes

Directions

Place the cheeses in a large bowl and stir together with a wooden spoon. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, mixing until completely incorporated before adding the next. Stir in the milk, strawberries, honey, cinnamon, and bread. Pour into an 8 by 10 by 2-inch casserole dish. If freezing, cover with plastic wrap and place in the freezer for 1 day and up to 1 month.

To bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Bake covered with foil for 45 minutes. Increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees F. Remove the foil and continue baking for 30 to 35 minutes.

Notes: This recipe makes life easier on you, because it is great for freezing! Feel free to add more fruit and different kinds. Peaches would taste awesome!

  • Source: Giada De Laurentiis
  • Prep Time: 20min
  • Cook Time: 1hr 20min
  • Total Time: 1hr 40min
  • Recipe Yields: 6 to 8 servings