Written By: kittencal on April 29, 2012 Leave a Comment

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This is a classic Greek combination of baked eggplant only enhanced by the addition of feta cheese. Serve this vegetarian dish as an appetizer, side dish, or meatless or main dish.


2 pounds of eggplants (long slender type)

olive oil for frying

4 to 5 tablespoons of fresh chopped basil

5 cloves of garlic, minced

1 pound red ripe tomatoes, diced

1/2 pound Greek feta cheese, crumbled

salt and freshly ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Wash the eggplants, then remove stems; slice lengthwise into about 3/4- inch slices.

 Fry lightly in olive oil until soft and only slightly browned.

Layer the eggplant slices in the bottom of a greased baking sheet..

In a bowl combine the chopped tomatoes, basil, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste;  spoon the mixture over the eggplant slices.

Top with feta cheese, and bake for about 40-45 minutes.

Serve hot, warm, or at room temperature.

Posted on recipezazz.com

Written By: kittencal on April 29, 2012 Leave a Comment

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Three ingredients, quick easy prep and you have one delicious appetizer! bottled or homemade pesto works fine, see my pesto recipe posted here on my food blog

Servings 6-8


1/2 cup prepared pesto

1/4 pound mozzarella cheese,  preferably fresh (for packaged cut ito abut 1/2-inch cubes — if using fresh mozzarella cheese, slice it)

1/3 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Set rack to bottom position.

Grease a 9-inch pie plate.

Place the cheese squares or fresh slices in pie plate; bake for 4-6 minutes or until cheese begins to melt.

Remove from oven and drop the pesto by teaspoonfuls over hot cheese.

Top with Parmesan cheese.

Return to oven for 1 minute.

Written By: kittencal on September 18, 2011 Leave a Comment

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This may be completely prepared and refrigerated up to 48 hours until ready to bake, use only russet potatoes and do not slice the potatoes leave them whole while cooking

Do not use the bottled dressing for this only dry mix and prepared with sour cream and mayonnaise, and for best flavor I recommend Hidden Valley dry mix, if desired omit the paprika and sprinkle 1 to 1-1/2 cups cheddar cheese on top after baking then return to oven for 5-8 minutes to melt the cheese



12 medium russet potatoes, peeled, leave potatoes whole do not slice (medium potatoes measuring about 4-inches in length and 2 inches wide, does not have to be exact)

1/3 cup butter, cubed

1 cup prepared Hidden Valley dry Ranch salad dressing mix (mix must be prepared with half mayonnaise and sour cream, then measured to 1 cup, save any remaining dressing for to use another time)

2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1/4 pound sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled (can use more bacon)

salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste



Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease a 13  x 9-inch baking dish (an 11 x 7-inch pan will work also but it will be very full)

Place whole potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water; bring to a boil, reduce heat cover and simmer until fork-tender tender (because the potatoes are cooked whole cooking time may take about 25 minutes).

Transfer potatoes to a large bowl, add in butter then mash.

Stir in prepared ranch salad dressing, cheddar cheese and bacon (the mixture will be slightly orange in color).

Season with salt and pepper to taste

Spread into baking dish.

Sprinkle lightly with paprika.

*** At this point you may cover and refrigerate until ready to bake (up to 24 hours).

Bake uncovered for 20 minutes or until heated through.

Written By: kittencal on September 18, 2011 Leave a Comment

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Step-by-step instructions to create the perfect gnocchi, use only russet potatoes or you will have a “gluey glob”!

Gnocchi may be frozen, place gnocchi on a baking sheet, freeze until firm then toss into a freezer bag, drop gnocchi into boiling water from frozen state 

Servings 6


4 medium russet potatoes, peeled and quartered

1 large egg, lightly beaten

3 teaspoons salt, divided

1-3/4 to 2 cups all-purpose flour

about 3 quarts water

pasta sauce or alfredo sauce


Place potatoes in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and cook for 15-20 minutes or until just fork-tender.

Transfer to a bowl then mash until very smooth.

Measure out 2 cups mashed potatoes then place into a large bowl (save any remaining  mashed potatoes for another use) cool the mashed potatoes slightly.

Stir in egg and 1 teaspoon salt.

Using a wooden spoon gradually beat in 1-1/2 cups flour until blended (dough should be firm and elastic, keep adding in more flour a small amount at a time if needed until you achieve that texture).

Turn onto a lightly floured surface; knead 15 times.

 Roll into about 1/2-inch -wide ropes.

Cut ropes into 1-inch  pieces.

Press down with a lightly floured fork.

In a large saucepan bring about 3 quarts of  water and remaining 2 teaspoons  salt to a boil.

Add gnocchi in small batches; cook for 8-10 minutes or until gnocchi floats to the top and are cooked through.

Remove with a slotted spoon.

Serve immediately with pasta sauce or alfredo sauce and Parmesan cheese (if not using right away toss the gnocchi generously with oil and refrigerate until ready to use, just heat in the microwave before serving).

You will also find this recipe and more of my favorites on Recipezazz.com

Written By: kittencal on September 1, 2011 Leave a Comment

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I have been making this for years and still enjoy it, it’s a pretty simple recipe and you can adjust all amounts to your taste

You could use olive oil but the flavor may be overpowering, I recommend to use a mixture of cooking oil and butter, I most usually make the spaghetti a day ahead and refrigerate

Servings 4


1 (8 ounce) package uncooked thin spaghetti

6 large garlic cloves, minced

1 teaspoon crushed chili flakes, or adjust to taste

3 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil

3 tablespoon butter

1/3 cup minced fresh parsley, or to taste

salt and pepper, to taste

fresh grated Parmesan cheese

Cook spaghetti to just a little over halfway cooked (do not cook until soft!) drain and rinse under very cold water then drain well again (at this point you may place in a bowl, cover and refrigerate until ready to use).
In a large skillet heat oil with butter over medium heat.
Add in garlic and chili flakes; cook for about 3 minutes.
Add the cooked spaghetti to the skillet; using tongs lift and mix while heating.
Season with salt and pepper, then mix in parsley.
Toss with Parmesan cheese.
You will also find this recipe on Recipezazz.com
Written By: kittencal on September 1, 2011 Leave a Comment

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I use my Kitchen Aid stand mixer for mixing, use only russet potatoes for this and do not slice the potatoes they will absorb too much water

Servings 4-6


8 medium russet potatoes, peeled (leave whole, do not slice)

12 garlic cloves, peeled

1/2 cup butter, softened

1/2 cup heavy (33-35%) whipping cream

1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese, softened

2 teaspoons salt, or to taste

Place the whole potatoes and garlic in a large saucepan; cover with cold water, then bring to a boil, reduce heat,  cover and cook for about 25 minutes or until potatoes are just fork tender.
Using a large slotted spoon remove the potatoes and the garlic to a large mixing bowl.
Add the butter, cream and cream cheese and 2 teaspoons salt.
Beat on low speed for 1 minute, then increase to medium speed, beating until potatoes are smooth.
Season with more salt if needed.
You will also find this recipe on Recipezazz.com
Written By: kittencal on August 31, 2011 Leave a Comment

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For garlic mushrooms saute 2-3 cloves minced garlic in the butter before adding in the flour

Servings 6-8


3 pounds sliced fresh mushrooms

1/2 cup butter, cubed

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

2-1/2 cups milk

1 cup evaporated milk

1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

fresh ground black pepper, to taste


Place mushrooms in a large saucepan; cover with water, then bring to a  boil stirring.

Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 3 minutes or until  tender; drain very well

In a Dutch oven, melt butter.

Stir in flour until smooth, then gradually add milk and evaporated milk; bring to a boil stirring or whisking constantly until thickened (about 2 minutes).

Stir in salt and mushrooms; cook and stir over medium heat for 3-4 minutes or until heated through.

Season with black pepper and more salt if needed.

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