Recipes

Recipe: Your Complete Thanksgiving Guide

Thanksgiving dinner menus will help you plan a fabulous meal. Build your menu around your traditional favourites or try a new Thanksgiving recipe, having a plan will make your meal prepping run smoothly. 

Question: Where do I begin?

Create Your Menu

Hosting Thanksgiving means you need a plan, and that means a menu. I want you to start planning now, go through your recipes, do a quick head count of how many people are going to attend. Next, start building a list of dishes you plan to make and then eliminate 1/2 of the list. You don’t need hassle back potatoes and mashed potatoes - pick one.

As the host you will always think you don’t have enough food. I’ve always said I would rather have more than not enough, I don’t want my guests to leave hungry. 

I guarantee your guests will only take a bit of each dish so no need for 2 pounds of peas and mushrooms. 

ONE WEEK Prior To The Event

Gather all your serving dishes; or make a list of all the dishes you need for that day and where to find them in your home. If you are missing something it gives you enough time to borrow or pick it up. You don’t want to be scrambling the day of when you have guests over.

Create your checklist; of tasks to be accomplished prior to your event and input them as events in your calendar.

Grocery Shopping; Create 2 grocery lists: 5 days before the meal buy Turkey (if buying frozen) and non-non-perishables, and 3 days before the meal for perishable items and any last minute things you need.

Question: How long does it take to defrost a Turkey? 

For every 5 pounds the turkey will take 24 hours to defrost in the refrigerator.

Example: A 20 pound frozen turkey will need 4 days of thawing in the refrigerator

Question: When should I buy a fresh Turkey?

If buying fresh, purchase your Turkey the day prior to the event.


TWO DAYS Prior To The Event Date

Prepare as much as you can before the big day.

Make your cranberry sauce and cut veggies. wash trim and halve Brussels sprouts, peel and slice carrots, snap green beans, celery, etc. Make salad dressings and wash and dry lettuce/greens for salad.

ONE DAY Prior To The Event

Peel, wash and cut potatoes into cubes. Soak in cold water, cover and place in the refrigerator over night. This eliminates some of the starch in the potatoes and crisp up nicely in the oven or place them in a slow cooker the day of and make mashed potatoes.

Prep your Turkey (step by step instructions below)

Set your table, take out your serving dishes, prepare your stuffing. You can also make your mashed potatoes and reheat them in the slow cooker/crock pot the day of. If you are roasting veggies you can cook them the night before and heat through just before you are serving the meal.

Question: Can I make dessert in advance?

Bake your pies the night before and refrigerate overnight. On the day of, remove the pie from the refrigerator, place on the counter to bring the pie to room temperature. Place the room temperature pie in the oven on low and heat through while you are enjoying your meal.

  • Frozen - ready in an hour, bake while you are having lunch or dinner. hot fresh out of the oven. top with ice cream

  • If you prefer homemade. Make the pie dough and roll out into pie plates 1 week before and freeze them.

  • A few cheats: Williams Sonoma has pre-made stuffing, add your liquid and it’s done. They also have pecan pie filling in a jar. Buy the ready made small tartlet crust from the grocery store and scoop the filing into each one and bake.

 

How long does it take to cook a Turkey?

Cooking times can vary

Calculate 13 minutes cooking time per pound would be a good estimate. Let me break it down a bit more, It should take a 14 lb. turkey 2 1/2 to 3 hours to cook.

Question: How do I cook a Turkey?

 Prep your turkey the night before

There is always an ongoing debate “do you wash raw meat” and when preparing your Turkey i’ll leave that up to you. I don’t and this is why; washing the turkey can contaminate your kitchen, the water can spray on your back splash, all over your sink. Cooking the Turkey to the right temperature will kill any bacteria that may be lingering in your turkey - you can’t wash that away.

To brine or not to brine? There are people who stand strongly on both sides of this question. So if you brine your turkey go ahead, but for me I don’t bother with the extra step. I get great tasting and moist turkey without.

Stuffing or no Stuffing? I can take it or leave it, I’m not big on stuffing but I do make it in a separate dish. I find the Turkey cooks faster without the stuffing but the stuffing is not as moist as it would be if it were in the turkey. So for this I say do as you want.


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Recipe: Step By Step Guide to Roasting a Turkey

There are many ways to cook a Turkey and admittedly, I’ve had a few fails until I found this method - yup, life changing! The results? The most tender, mouth watering, golden Roast Turkey you dream of making. I’m sure you have a tried and true recipe, the holy grail of Roast Turkey, and if that’s the case, Bravo! Do you and stick to what works for you. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix - am I right? This post is for the cook who wants to change things up, try something new, or hosting Thanksgiving for the first time.

Alright, enough chatter from me let’s get cooking!

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

Happy Thanksgiving! xoxox Mary

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: Fully roasted turkey with roasted potato and citrus garnish on a square white plate, placed on a checkered tea towel on top of a shiplap shite table.

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: Fully roasted turkey with roasted potato and citrus garnish on a square white plate, placed on a checkered tea towel on top of a shiplap shite table.

Time To ROAST THE TURKEY!

INGREDIENTS

  • 14-16 pound turkey, fresh or thawed

  • 1 teaspoon salt (omit if turkey has been brined)

  • 1 teaspoon pepper

  • 1 lemon, quartered

  • 1 medium onion, peeled and quartered

  • 1-2 sprigs fresh parsley

  • 1-2 sprigs fresh thyme

  • 1-2 sprigs fresh rosemary

  • 1-2 sprigs fresh sage

  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil or melted butter

PREP THE TURKEY

  1. Take your Turkey out of the refrigerator 30-60 minutes before it goes into the oven to bring it to room temperature

  2. Remove the giblet bag from the cavity on the neck end.

  3. Dry the turkey with paper towel, into the cavity of the turkey add salt, pepper, and using your hand rub it into the cavity. Add the lemon, onion (reserving a quarter), fresh rosemary, thyme, sage, and parsley into the cavity.

  4. Overlap skin at cavity opening to cover as much of gap as possible; use toothpicks or small skewers, to hold skin in place. Tie legs together with twine.

  5. Insert remaining onion quarter under skin covering neck cavity. Tuck wing tips under turkey body, using them to hold skin over neck cavity in place.

  6. Brush the turkey all over with olive oil or melted butter, and a sprinkle of salt

  7. Tuck the wing tips under the turkey to prevent from burning, make sure both ends of the turkey are closed. Tie the legs with twine. Tip for the neck cavity, insert a quarter of an onion to keep the moisture in the cavity.

  8. Flip turkey over, breast side down, onto the rack in the roasting pan. Brush with olive oil so entire turkey is coated.

ROAST THE TURKEY

  1. Place the turkey into a 400 degree F oven (breast side down) for 1 hour, then reduce the temperature to 350 degree F and cook for an additional hour for turkeys 14 pounds or larger (45 minutes for smaller turkeys).

  2. After 1 hour remove from the oven and using silicone oven save gloves flip the turkey (breast side up) . If using a digital probe thermometer insert into the thickest part of the thigh. Return turkey to oven and set thermometer to sound at 165 degrees.

  3. To avoid over browning you can tent the turkey the last 45 to 30 minutes with aluminum foil. TIP: When using hearing in place of a visual indicator of doneness use the back of a wooden spoon and tap the skin if you hear a crunch you want to tent your turkey if it still has give no need to tent.

  4. If you do not have a digital probe thermometer. 30 minutes left on your timer insert an instant read thermometer into the thigh of the turkey and determine the raining cook time by how close the temperature is to 165 - 170 degrees F. Also check thickest part of breast--it should be 160 degrees. If not, return to the oven.

  5. Cooking times can vary. 13 minutes cooking time per pound is a good estimate. It should take a 14-16 pound turkey a total of 2-1/2 to 3-1/2 hours to cook. An 18 pound turkey takes closer to 4 hours. These times are ballpark and can vary; that's why using a thermometer is important for determining exactly when the turkey is done.

  6. When fully cooked, remove turkey from oven, cover with aluminum foil, and allow to rest undisturbed up to 30 minutes.

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Recipe: Creamy Broccoli Cheese Soup

Soup season has arrived and I’m here for all of the delicious bowls of heart warming meals. Every time I hear someone say Broccoli I think of Dana Carvey’s SNL Choppin' Broccoli song. If you haven’t heard it or have no idea what I’m talking about Google it. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

So, naturally I was singing it while making this Cheese and Broccoli Soup! Hey Dana, can you add Soup to the song? It could go something like this “she’s Choppin' Broccoli - AND MAKING SOUP”

Well I’m sure that won’t happen but I can tell you this did happen. Probably one of the creamiest Cheese and Broccoli Soups I’ve ever made and I’m sharing it with you today. Enjoy my friends!

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: A rich yellow soup with shredded cheddar cheese as a garnish on a white plate with a silver spoon laying beside the plate over a white and tan linen place mat.

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: A rich yellow soup with shredded cheddar cheese as a garnish on a white plate with a silver spoon laying beside the plate over a white and tan linen place mat.

Creamy Broccoli Cheese Soup

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
Total time: 55 minutes
AUTHOR: Mary Mammoliti / Kitchen Confession

INGREDIENTS

1 tablespoon + 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
1 medium sweet yellow onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken stock
2 cups fat-free half-and-half (regular half-and-half may be substituted; whole milk or 2% milk will work but soup won’t be as creamy)
3 cups broccoli florets, diced into bite-size pieces + 1 cups stems
2 large carrots, peeled, and sliced into very thin rounds
3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard powder
pinch cayenne pepper, optional
8 ounces grated sharp cheddar cheese, with a small amount reserved for garnishing bowls

NOTE: Do not use pre-grated cheese in ziptop bags because that cheese is resistant to melting and won’t incorporate well. ⁣

DIRECTIONS

  1. In a small saucepan, add 1 tablespoon butter, the diced onion, and sauté over medium heat until the onion is soft and translucent, about 3 minutes.

  2. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Remove from heat and set the pan aside.

  3. In a large stock pot over medium heat add 4 tablespoons butter, flour, and whisk continuously for 3 minutes, or until the mixture has thickened. This is your roux.

  4. Slowly whisk the vegetable stock into the roux (flour mixture), add the cream to your pot and whisk to combine.

  5. Allow mixture to simmer over low heat for 15 minutes, or until it has reduced and thickened. TIP: Whisk intermittently to keep a creamy constancy.

  6. While the mixture is simmering, chop the broccoli and carrots and add the to the soup at the end of your simmering time of 15 minutes and add the onion and garlic you previously set aside to the pot.

  7. Add the salt, pepper, paprika, dry mustard powder, and cayenne and stir to combine, and continue to simmer over low heat for 20 to 25 minutes. Stirring occasionally to avoid burning the soup.

  8. While your soup simmers, grate the cheese and add most of the cheese at the very end of your cooking time, reserving a small amount for garnishing bowls. Stir the cheese into the soup until melted and incorporated.

  9. Transfer soup to bowls, garnish with reserved cheese, and enjoy.

    NOTE: Soup will keep refrigerated in an airtight container for 5 to 7 days.

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Recipe: Neiman Marcus Cookie Recipe

I haven’t herd of Neiman Marcus Cookies until I stumbled across a recipe online and boy am I happy I did! Let me start by saying this recipes is not a KC original recipe and I haven’t the slightest idea as to where it originated, but this recipe developer was a genius! 

This cookie is decadent with a crunch factor yet soft and chewy with loads of texture, and the semi sweet chocolate takes the whole experience to the next level of cookie perfection! 

This buttery sweet cookie extravaganza is the perfect Friday Treat. Heck add it to Saturday’s breakfast table, take it to go while running errands. No judgment here. Eat it all day every day. Don’t worry about running out of cookies because this recipe makes 4 dozen cookies! 

Whoot! Whoot! (Cue Marching Band) 

I don’t think I’ve been this excited since I discovered you could sip your coffee through a Tim Tam

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Neiman Marcus Cookie Recipe

PREP TIME: 15 minutes

COOK TIME: 10 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 25 minutes

SERVINGS: 4 dozen 

INGREDIENTS

2 cups unsalted butter

2 cups granulated sugar

4 large eggs, beaten

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

4 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

5 cups old-fashioned rolled oats

24 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips (such as Ghirardelli 60% cacao)

8 ounces Hershey's chocolate bars, broken into chunks

3 cups very roughly chopped walnuts, pecans, or a combination

DIRECTIONS

  1. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until lightened in color and texture, about 3 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until combined.

  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir together with a wooden spoon. Add the oats and stir to combine. Then stir in the chocolate chips, Hershey's bars, and nuts.

  3. To bake, preheat the oven to 375°F. Using your hands or a couple of spoons, form the batter into loose, golf-ball-sized mounds. Place two inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for six to nine minutes, until tops are just golden and cookies are still soft. On the off chance there are any cookies left once they're cool enough to handle, cool them completely on racks before storing in an airtight container for up to a couple of days.

TIP: To freeze dough balls, place in the freezer on parchment-lined baking sheets until solid, then bag by the dozen, save for up to a month. Add one to two minutes to the cooking time when baking from frozen.

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Recipe: Lemony Fresh Orzo Salad

To quote my nieces and nephew “FOMO is real” and I couldn’t agree more. It’s been so grey and rainy here in Toronto that I’m missing the sunshine. Where is it?  I bet it’s at a party! Did I miss the invite? Why hasn’t it been around? GHAAAA! I can’t take this! Let me check @instagram. I’m missing out on something great! Maybe. Umm, probably not. Who knows where it is and what it’s doing I just miss it and decided to stop obsessing. I’m taking matters into my own hands.  Did you know that adding lemon to just about any dish will give you instant sunshine? 

Give this beauty a try and let me know if it brightens up your day.

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Lemony Fresh Orzo Salad

TOTAL TIME: 30 MINS
PREP TIME: 15 MINS
COOK TIME: 15 MINS
AUTHOR: Mary Mammoliti / Kitchen Confession

INGREDIENTS:

  • 12 ounces uncooked orzo

  • 2 large handfuls fresh arugula, chopped

  • 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained

  • 1 English cucumber, diced

  • 1 cup frozen corn, thawed

  • 1 cup roughly-chopped fresh basil leaves

  • 1/2 head radicchio, roughly-chopped fresh

Lemony Dressing:

  • 2 lemons, juiced

  • 1 tablespoon rice wine or white vinegar

  • 1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard

  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced

  • 1/2 cup olive oil

  • 1 teaspoon sea salt and freshly-cracked black pepper, to taste

  • optional: 1/2 cup crumbled feta or goat cheese

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Cook the pasta in a large stockpot of generously-salted water until al dente, according to package instructions.  Drain pasta then rinse thoroughly in a strainer with cold water until the pasta is chilled.  Transfer to a large mixing bowl.

  2. Add all the lemony dressing ingredients to a medium sized bowl and whisk for 1-2 minutes, or until the dressing begins to look creamy. Set aside.

  3. Add the remaining ingredients to the mixing bowl. , pour dressing over and toss to combine.  Taste, and season with extra salt and pepper, if needed.

  4. Serve immediately.  Or cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days.

NOTE:

If you do not use all the dressing store in a sealed jar in your fridge for up to one week.

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Recipe: Sausage & Veggie Sheet Pan Dinner

When you look up the word “Easy” you’ll see a picture of me. WAIT! I didn’t think that through. What I’m trying to say is I’m all about easy and simple meals. No one has time or patience to spend hours after work making dinner. This is when you pull out this recipe for my Sausage & Veggie Sheet Pan Dinner. You’ll have dinner on the table in less than 40 minutes!

All you need for this savoury flavour packed meal are 3 ingredients, one sheet pan and a helper to pour a glass of wine, dinner is served. If you use the time to tidy up while your meal is roasting up in the oven you can probably even have your pj’s on before 7pm and that are what dreams are made of.

Buon Appetito and if you give this recipe a try let me know how it goes. I love hearing for you all. xo’s Mary

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Roasted Italian Sausage & Veggie Sheet Pan Dinner

PREP TIME: 10 minutes 
COOK TIME: 30 minutes 
TOTAL TIME: 40 minutes 
SERVINGS: 4
AUTOR: Mary Mammoliti / Kitchen Confession

Quick and easy one-dish dinner perfect for busy weeknights!


INGREDIENTS 

4 links chicken sausages, cut into 2" pieces (you can substitute for Italian sausage)
1 pound Brussels sprouts, halved
1 pound sweet potato, cut into 3/4" chunks
1/4 cup extra virgin oil
zest of 1 lemon (optional
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dry parsley
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

INSTRUCTIONS 

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil. Toss the sausage, sprouts, and sweet potato on the baking sheet and set aside.

  2. Whisk together the olive oil, lemon zest, garlic, parsley, salt, and pepper. Drizzle over the sausage/sprouts/sweet potato mixture. Toss to combine.

  3. Place the sheet pan in the oven and bake for 15 minutes, then use a spoon to gently mix the sausage mixture and bake for another 10-15 minutes.



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Recipe: Pasta é Fagioli

Today’s plans include serving up a bowl of this Pasta é Fagioli. I haven’t made this in years and to be honest I’m disappointed that I waited so long. I almost forgot how much this dish reminded me of my Dad - or did I? My Dad passed 9 years ago and up until this past year I haven’t been able to think of him without my eyes welling up. Maybe that’s why I haven’t made this dish, hmmm, was I avoiding feeling all the feels that come with losing him? Have I truly accepted the loss? Ugh! Maybe I’m over analyzing this. Whatever the reasons are I’m glad I finally made this dish. It was like a giant hug from my dad, warm and comforting.

The pot simmered as the aromas filled my kitchen and memories folding my thoughts. He was a man of very few words with a sense of humour that would make even the darkest of days brighter. It’s funny how a simple meal can trigger a rush of emotions and even help put unresolved feelings to rest. I guess it’s okay to feel the feels, mourn the loss of a loved one, friend, pet, illness whatever your struggling with at your own pace and don’t avoid feeling it because you may just miss out on the simplest joys of what life has to offer.

I know it’s a pretty deep post for Pasta é Fagioli but it’s amazing how healing food can really be. I hope you read this and find solace in knowing you are not alone and find strength in any struggle you my be facing today. It’s okay to feel all the feels, and take it easy on yourself. Life has a sweet way of surprising you. SMILE and Tag, call or text someone today and let them know you care. I’M TAGGING ALL OF YOU! ❤️

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 Pasta é Fagioli

PREP TIME: 20 min
COOK TIME: 30 min
TOTAL TIME: 50 min
SERVES: 6 - 8
AUTHOR: Mary Mammoliti / Kitchen Confession

INGREDIENTS

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/3 to 1/2 cup pancetta, diced
1 medium onion, diced (approximately 1 cup)
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
3 large potatoes, diced
4 cups tomato purée, preferably San Marzano tomatoes if you can get them)
1 cup Ditalini or elbow pasta
1/2 teaspoon dry thyme
1 teaspoon dry rosemary
1 teaspoon celery seeds
1 bay leaf
Salt and pepper to taste
5 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 (14.5-ounce) cans 1 can red kidney beans and 1 can white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
3/4 cup elbow macaroni
Freshly ground black pepper
Pinch red pepper flakes, optional
Freshly grated parmigiano reggiano to sprinkle on top just before serving

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil and butter in a large heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, pancetta, and garlic and saute until the onion is tender, about 3 minutes. Add diced carrots, potatoes and continue cooking for an additional 2-3 minutes.

  2. Add the broth, tomato purée, beans, dried herbs, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil over high heat, then decrease the heat to medium and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes.

  3. Scoop out 1 cup of the bean mixture from the pot and 1/2 cup of the liquid and pour into a blender until smooth and set aside.

  4. Add the pasta to the pot and boil with the already cooked veggie mixture for 8 minutes until tender. Return the puree to the pot of soup and stir well. Season the soup with red pepper flakes for an added kick of heat.

  5. Serve warm with a sprinkle of freshly grated parmigiano reggiano

 

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Recipe: Roasted Italian Sausage & Veggie Sheet Pan Dinner

Have you heard of sheet pan dinners? If you haven’t, make this Roasted Italian Sausage & Veggie Sheet Pan Dinner be your introduction. Tossing everything onto one pan is literally the easiest way to make dinner. Not only are they easy to make, it makes clean up a breeze. Spoiler Alert! I’ve added a special ingredient for a hint of sunshine in this cozy dish. Can you guess what it could be?

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 Roasted Italian Sausage & Veggie Sheet Pan Dinner

This is one of my favourite meals and a great addition to meal prep days. It’s quick, easy and it fits all in one sheet pan making it perfect for busy weeknights!

 PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: 30 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 45 minutes
SERVINGS: 4

INGREDIENTS 

  • 4 links Italian sausages, cut into 2" pieces (you can substitute for chicken sausage)

  • 1 pound brussels sprouts, halved

  • 1 pound mini potatoes, cut into quarters

  • 2 medium size carrots, peeled and cut into 2” pieces

  • 1 large parsnip, peeled and cut into 2” pieces

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin oil

  • zest of 1 lemon

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons onion powder

  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

  • 1 teaspoon sea salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

INSTRUCTIONS 

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil. Toss the sausage, sprouts, carrots, and parsnips on the baking sheet and set aside.

  2. Whisk together the olive oil, lemon zest, garlic powder, onion powder, parsley, oregano, thyme, salt, and pepper. Drizzle over the sausage and veggie mixture. Toss to combine.

  3. Place the sheet pan in the oven and bake for 15 minutes, then use a spoon to gently mix the sausage mixture and bake for another 15 minutes or until veggies are tender.

 

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Recipe: Crunchy Honey Almond Granola

Good morning from the KC kitchen!

I hope you are all having a great start to your day. 

My morning began with this bowl of Greek Yogurt and a handful (or 2, who’s really counting) of this CRUNCHY HONEY ALMOND GRANOLA followed by an interesting chat with the inspiring founder of The Grange of Prince Edward Winery Caroline Granger - get ready KC Podcasters for a new episode coming your way. It’s going to be

In the mean time scoop out a few spoonfuls of vanilla creamy greek yogurt and a handful of this Honey Almond Granola. Sit back and enjoy every scoop :)

Photo Description: a bowl filled with vanilla greek yogurt topped with crunchy honey almond granola, a gold spoon, and a glass storage container filled with the freshly made granola

Photo Description: a bowl filled with vanilla greek yogurt topped with crunchy honey almond granola, a gold spoon, and a glass storage container filled with the freshly made granola

Did I mention if you subscribe to the Kitchen Confession Podcast on any podcast platform the episode will automatically download and ready for you to listen to at any time. It’s that easy! SUBSCRIBE and help us keep doing what we love to do and bring you more of what’s going on in the world of FOOD & BEVERAGE ~ sending you all xoxoxo ❤️


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CRUNCHY HONEY ALMOND GRANOLA

Only 6 ingredients and easy to make. It’s gluten free, healthy and crazy delicious! Pinch me, I think I’m dreaming - NOPE THIS IS THE REAL DEAL! 

Photo Description: a bowl filled with vanilla greek yogurt topped with crunchy honey almond granola, a gold spoon, and a glass storage container filled with the freshly made granola

Photo Description: a bowl filled with vanilla greek yogurt topped with crunchy honey almond granola, a gold spoon, and a glass storage container filled with the freshly made granola

PREP TIME: 10 minutes
COOK TIME: 22 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 32 minutes
SERVINGS: As many bowls as you see fit :)
AUTHOR: Mary Mammoliti | Kitchen Confession

Ingredients

3 1/2 cups rolled oats (use gluten free if you have a gluten sensitivity)
1 cup whole almonds, roughly chopped
1/2 cup pure honey
1/4 cup grapeseed oil (any neutral oil will work like canola)
3 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  2. Roughly chop the whole almonds.

  3. In a large mixing bowl add the rolled oats and almonds and stir to combine.

  4. In a smaller microwave-safe bowl add the honey, oil, vanilla and salt and microwave for about 30 seconds until just warm and the honey and oil mix easily.

  5. Pour the warm honey mixture over the oats and stir until the mixture is coated.

  6. Transfer the oat mixture to the prepared baking sheet and spread into an even layer. Bake for 20-22 minutes or until golden brown being sure to stir the granola after 15 minutes and again at 20 minutes. If you need the extra 2 minutes stir again before placing the tray back in the oven.

  7. Allow granola to cool completely on the baking sheet before storing in an airtight container. This granola keeps for about a week - if it lasts that long :)

  8. Do NOT refrigerate


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Recipe: The Only Mac and Cheese Recipe You Need

This one pot recipe is so quick and easy you won’t know what to do with yourself with all the extra time you saved on dinner! On this weeks Kelly and Company I talked about Fall comfort food and shared my top picks along with a few surprising ingredients to take your dish downtown to flavour town! Topping that list is Mac and Cheese.

It’s cheese, pasta, milk, and butter which in my language means Love BUT just when you thought it couldn’t get any better try adding powered mustard. Add in a teaspoon to the cheesy sauce while it’s hot stir and add macaroni. Be prepared for a party in your mouth!

NOTE: Don’t expect to get an overwhelming mustard taste. The acidity cuts some of the creaminess of the mac and cheese and rounds out the flavour. It also adds a slight tang that I think adds a little character to the dish.

Photo Description: whitebowl filled with creamy, cheesy, Mac and Cheese

Photo Description: whitebowl filled with creamy, cheesy, Mac and Cheese

 Stovetop Mac and Cheese

PREP TIME: 5 MINS
COOK TIME:
15 MINS
TOTAL TIME:
20 MINS
Serves:
6-8
Author:
Mary Mammoliti | Kitchen Confession


INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
3 cups water
4 cups milk
1 pound uncooked pasta (cavatappi)
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
4-5 cups freshly-grated sharp white cheddar cheese
1/2 cup freshly grated parmigiano reggiano cheese (optional)


INSTRUCTIONS

  • Melt butter in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add flour, and stir until combined. Cook for 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Then pour in 1 cup of the water, and whisk until the mixture is completely smooth and begins to thicken. Gradually pour in the remaining water and milk, stirring until evenly combined.

  • Stir in the pasta, salt, garlic powder, and mustard until combined. Then continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the mixture begins to simmer.

  • Grating your cheese while the pasta cooks to save time and set aside.

  • Reduce heat to medium-low and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, for about 9-10 minutes, or until the pasta is al dente.

  • Remove from heat, and stir in the cheese until melted. Taste, and season with additional salt and black pepper, if needed.

  • Serve immediately, and enjoy hot

TIPS: Always use block cheese for this recipe, and then grate them at home.  Try not to use pre shredded bags of cheese. They have less flavour and don’t melt as nicely as grating your own.

CHEESE SWAPS: Half-cheddar, half-fontina, or gouda, or havarti if you would like a creamier mac and cheese.

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Recipe: The Best Cranberry Sauce

This is probably the best and easiest Cranberry Sauce you will ever make. It’s Thanksgiving and as always my family and I give thanks and reminisce about Thanksgiving pasts - but today a bomb shell of truth was dropped directly on me.

Let’s begin by transporting you back to when I was 10-ish, and seated at a table covered in plates of food served family style. My dad at the head of the table, my brothers, sister and I settled on either side while my mom carried over this glorious golden bird. Could this be?

“We’re having turkey.” I mumbled under my breath.

“Maria, did you say something?”

“Is this turkey?” I asked, and a unanimous YES was the response around the table. .

YES! Thanksgiving Turkey - or that’s what I was lead to believe. TODAY I find out it was chicken! (Insert gasp here) CHICKEN! That means I didn’t have turkey until my early 20’s, I know, mind blown! .

This question goes out to all the PARENTS OUT THERE. What untruths have you told your children just so they would eat? Let’s see a show of hands in the comments.

Using only three ingredients, this jewel-toned side will give your main a run for the star of the meal.

Happy Thanksgiving to all! 

 

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The Best Cranberry Sauce

Prep Time:  5 minutes 

Cook Time: 7 - 10 minutes 

Total Time: 15 minutes 

Serves:  8

Author: Mary Mammoliti | Kitchen Confession  

I N G R E D I E N T S

1 orange

1 (12-oz.) bag cranberries

¾ cup sugar

D I R E C T I O N S

Using a vegetable peeler, remove the zest from the orange. Thinly slice the zest and add it to a medium pot along with the sugar, ½ the bag of cranberries and ¼ cup water. Cook this over medium heat, stirring with a spoon until the cranberries have burst and it looks all jammy and wonderful, about 5 minutes. Add the other half of the cranberries and the chopped orange and keep cooking until the cranberries you just added start to burst, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and transfer this mixture to a serving bowl (or, an airtight container if you're making it in advance and refrigerate  

MAKE AHEAD

You can make this cranberry sauce five days in advance. The longer it sits the richer the flavour. Place in an airtight container and refrigerate. Give it a quick stir before serving.

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Recipe: Creamy Cauliflower Garlic Mash

Comment below if you love mashed potatoes!

What if I told you this wasn’t mashed potatoes. What if I said this warm plate of creamy garlic mash was actually made of cauliflower. Would you try it? Before you rethink your decision, give this recipe a try. Have a heaping spoon with some braised short ribs, or add it as a side with your Thanksgiving feast and lighten things up.

WARNING: Following the consumption of this Cauliflower Garlic Mash there may be sudden outbursts of joy, excessive smiling, and out of control requests for more.

Photo Description: Creamy Cauliflower Garlic Mash in a square serving dish on top of a white fringe cloth and 2 sunflowers in the bottom left corner.

Photo Description: Creamy Cauliflower Garlic Mash in a square serving dish on top of a white fringe cloth and 2 sunflowers in the bottom left corner.

Creamy Cauliflower Garlic Mash

 PREP TIME: 15 minutes
Cook TIME:
15 minutes
TOTAL TIME:
30 minutes
SERVES: 4
AUTHOR:
Mary Mammoliti / Kitchen Confession

INGREDIENTS

1 large head of cauliflower, cut into florets
4 cups chicken broth
4 cups water (more if needed to cover florets)
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 large garlic cloves, minced
¼ cup 2% milk
salt and black pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS

  1. Place the cauliflower florets in to a large stock pot and cover with the chicken broth and water. Cook for 8-12 minutes or until fork tender. Drain and keep the in the colander and move onto next steps. You want to get as much water as possible out of the cauliflower.

  2. Pour the olive oil into the stock pot and sauté the garlic until fragrant. Remove from heat and return the cooked cauliflower back into the stock pot, add milk and butter. Using an emersion blender purée until smooth and creamy. Taste for salt and pepper.

  3. Garnish with chopped parsley, drizzle extra virgin olive oil over top and serve warm.

NOTES

Refrain from adding additional butter and/or milk to the mash, it will thin out too much.

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Recipe: 2 Pasta Salads You Should Make Now

It’s scorching hot in Toronto and I’m not complaining BUT the thought of spending time in front of a hot stove is making me sweat. SOOOOO, bring on the cool, bright, pasta salad! I’ve got 2 recipes for ya. Can’t decide which one to make? Try both, and leave them in the refrigerator for the week. Going to a summer potluck? Bring the Greek Pasta Salad with feta and fresh tomatoes or an Asian inspired bow tie pasta salad may be your dish of choice.

 

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Greek Pasta Salad

This recipe makes a huge batch of Greek Pasta Salad. Share this recipe with friends and bring it to your next potluck This would be great for a potluck.  I usually half the recipe when I make it. We ate this for several days with lunch and dinner. This will keep for 5 days in the refrigerator. The simple mediterranean flavours of the dressing with the creaminess of the crumbled feta and fresh cherry tomatoes is exactly what is missing on your dinner table! Have is as a side or enjoy it as the main dish. 

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: -
Total Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 10 - 12
Author: Mary Mammoliti / Kitchen Confession

INGREDIENTS

1 (16-oz) box penne pasta
2/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup mayonnaise
3 Tbsp greek seasoning
3/4 cup grape tomatoes, cut into halves
1-1/2 cups crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and cool.

  2. Whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, mayonnaise and greek seasoning in a large bowl. Add cooked pasta, tomatoes, feta cheese and basil. Toss to coat.

  3. Cover and refrigerate 8 hours before serving.

Asian Pasta Salad

This simple and light pasta salad has quickly found it's place on my summer salad list. This dish will quickly become a family favourite, and a great one to share at any potluck. It can be served as a side dish or eat on it’s own as a light lunch. This Asian Pasta Salad is completely addictive and the sesame-soy dressing will have everyone coming back for seconds!

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: -
Total Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 8
Author: Mary Mammoliti / Kitchen Confession

INGREDIENTS

SESAME-SOY DRESSING:

1/4 cup grape seed oil
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons coconut palm sugar or brown sugar
1 tablespoon sesame oil
2 teaspoons low sodium soy sauce, or tamari sauce
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds

PASTA SALAD:

12 ounces bow tie pasta (about 4 cups)
2 cups chopped rotisserie chicken
1 cup shredded carrot
3/4 cup roughly chopped parsley
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onion
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup slivered almonds or peanuts

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Mix together dressing ingredients in a jar or bowl with tight fitting lid. Shake well and set aside.

  2. Boil bow tie pasta for 10 minutes or about one minute shy of the package directions. Pour cooked pasta into a colander and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process and cool down the pasta. Drain well and transfer to a large bowl.

  3. Mix in remaining salad ingredients. Give dressing a good shake and pour over the salad. Mix well.

RECIPE NOTES
If you'd like to get some of the prep out of the way you can boil the pasta the day before. Rinse it well with cold water, drain it, and then toss it with a teaspoon or two of grape seed oil to prevent it from sticking. Transfer the cooked pasta storage container, cover and refrigerate overnight. Assemble the salad no more than an hour or two before serving for the best result and reserve nuts to add just before serving.

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Recipe: Breakfast Hash in 30 Minutes!

I thought I would bring you a little BREAKFAST HASH on this gorgeous sunny morning. Not only does it taste fantastic, this nutrient packed meal clocks in at 30 minutes total cook time! Oh YAAAASSSSSSS! AND don’t forget to include this simple and easy meal to your weekly meal prep recipe box. This recipe should take centre stage on every brunch table, and serve it directly from the baking sheet - family style. Honestly, this quick and simple meal will tantalize your tastebuds, warm your belly, and have you dancing all the way to the kitchen sink when you're done. It's THAT GOOD! 

This dish surpassed all EGG-spectations!  I'm curious, do you hate or love eggs? Sunny side up or scrambled? Comment below and let me know what makes you egg-static about eggs. You all know how much I love a good pun :) 

Photo Description: 1 Pan dinner-large rimmed baking sheet filled with diced sweet potatoes, red bell pepper, broccoli florets, sweet corn, black beans and 6 single sunny side up eggs baked on top of the veggies

Photo Description: 1 Pan dinner-large rimmed baking sheet filled with diced sweet potatoes, red bell pepper, broccoli florets, sweet corn, black beans and 6 single sunny side up eggs baked on top of the veggies

Breakfast Hash

PREP TIME: 5 minutes
COOK TIME: 25 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 30 minutes
SERVES: 3 large or 6 small
AUTHOR: Mary Mammoliti / Kitchen Confession

INGREDIENTS

2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and diced (Read Tips below for size)
1 head of broccoli, florets
1 medium red bell pepper, diced
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup frozen corn kernels
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
Salt and pepper to taste
Olive Oil, to coat the sheet pan
6 large eggs

DIRECTIONS

  • Adjust your oven rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 425°F. With a little olive oil lightly coat a rimmed baking sheet.

  • Place the sweet potatoes, broccoli florets, bell pepper, black beans, and corn in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Add the 3 tablespoons olive oil, garlic, chili powder, cumin, and paprika. Season with salt and pepper and gently toss to combine.

  • Bake for 15 to 18 minutes stirring halfway through, until the sweet potatoes are tender. Remove the pan from the oven and create 6 wells in the vegetables. Gently crack an egg into each well, keeping the yolk intact; season the eggs with salt and pepper.

  • Return the pan to the oven and bake 7 to 9 minutes, or until the egg whites have set.

  • Enjoy!

TIPS: 

You can enjoy this dish immediately or portion it out into your to-go containers and pack it up and you have breakfast for the week. 

When chopping your veggies, try and cut them to bite size pieces and keep them roughly the same size to ensure even cooking throughout your dish. 

To make this dish even easier, buy pre-cut vegetables from you local grocery store and cut back even more on your prep time.

The olive oil can be substituted out for avocado oil or grape seed oil if you prefer. 

Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container and refrigerated for up to 5 days.

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Recipe: 5 Ingredient Protein Pancakes

Who said you can’t Meal Prep pancakes? This post is proof that you can. These simple 5 Ingredient Protein Pancakes will quickly become a staple in your meal prep rotation. These pancakes are loaded with protein, high in fiber and healthy fats to keep you energized all morning long! This recipe makes 7 servings of 4 pancakes per serving. Too many servings? Freeze them. Now get your griddle ready and get your flap jack on!

Photo Description: 4 round pancakes in a rectangle container with sliced strawberries, small round container of syrup with a knife and fork to the right of the container

Photo Description: 4 round pancakes in a rectangle container with sliced strawberries, small round container of syrup with a knife and fork to the right of the container

5 Ingredient Protein Pancakes

PREP TIME: 10 minutes
COOK TIME:  10 - 15 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 25 minutes
SERVES: 7 (4 Pancakes per serving)
AUTHOR: Mary Mammoliti | Kitchen Confession

INGREDIENTS

1 cup coconut flour
2 scoops vanilla protein powder
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
8 large eggs
1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk (or milk of your choice) 

Toppings: 

Fresh berries
Pure maple syrup

DIRECTIONS

  1. In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients until a smooth creamy mixture forms

  2. Using a 2 tbs size measuring spoon, scoop batter batter onto a non stick or lightly oiled skillet over medium/low heat

  3. Repeat until all batter is finished

  4. Evenly divide between containers with 1/2 cup sliced strawberries

  5. Top with maple syrup just before eating and enjoy!

NOTES

  • Each serving (4 Pancakes) without toppings is packed with 17.4g of Protein, 11.4g Carbs and 5.9g Fiber

  • The absorbency of coconut flour may vary by brand resulting in a dry mixture with a thick consistency. To remedy this issue add a little extra coconut oil and/or milk of choice.

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