Search Results: FALL

Classic Beer Battered Fried Fish

Classic Beer Battered Fried Fish

Classic Beer Battered Fried Fish is easy, simple, and satisfies all the craving for fish and chips.   You could defiantly make thicker French fries or steak fries, which reminds me the most of the British chips. My kids are mad about these air-fryer potatoes.…

Baked Sweet Potatoes

Baked Sweet Potatoes

Baked Sweet Potatoes are one of my favorite Autumn treats. It warms your heart and soul, and the pleasant aroma is just enchanting. I did not grow up with sweet potatoes. The first time I tried sweet potatoes I was 18 or 19 years old.…

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge is one of those perfect comforting foods during cooler weather.

Ah, don’t you just love the smell of cooler weather approaching, beautiful Autumn scenery and comfort food?

Alright, perhaps we look forward to comforting holiday food more than anything else, but fall weather and scenery is up there, too?!

I just love going to mountains this time of year and breathing fresh air, enjoying gorgeous nature and looking at trees that look like man-made color placements.

To be honest, there is nothing more relaxing than enjoying a quiet time in nature. I worked so hard this year that I need one more short weekend getaway, preferably with my hubby only. Just two of us!

Well, to be honest, I’d miss my kids and kitties way too much. Needless to say, the weekend getaway does sound like a dream right now.

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

Let’s talk more about this tasty and sweet pumpkin porridge. It is a simply delightful comfort with every spoon you take.

I understand that it is not everyone’s cup of tea, nevertheless, it is so delicious and above all fulfilling as well as healthy.

Tap here for more tasty Fall Recipes

Since it is Pumpkin season I wanted to share pumpkin recipes and some of its health benefits.

  • Pumpkins/squashes are not only delicious but like I said healthy; they relieve stress, they’re good for weight loss, good for eyes and skin, it boosts the immune system and helps the digestive system and yes, they could reduce risk of cancer. I believe it is in the category of super-foods! 

When I was growing up, rice porridge was usually offered to the kids. Which is not as flavorful.

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

However, it was mostly eaten when we felt sick and needed something light just to keep us going, and through the days of illness.

Any porridge is good for the digestive system because it’s light and texture is easy to digest.

Check out more Breakfast Ideas

I made a twist, a huge one on Korean traditional pumpkin porridge called Hobaak Jook (juk). I am not saying that Korean pumpkin porridge is not delicious, on the contrary, it is very comforting, especially if you like pumpkin.

First, instead of boiling, I roasted pumpkin. The best one for porridge or even soups is winter squash such as Butternut, Lakota, Kabocha, Buttercup squashes/pumpkins. My favorite is Kabocha, which I found in Trader Joe’s.

Fall Recipes

Pumpkin is naturally sweet, but the winter squash that I wrote above is just a little sweeter. I like to mix different pumpkins as it gives better and different levels of flavor.

Also instead of sugar, I used organic honey, and spices such as ground ginger, cinnamon and pumpkin spice which made a huge difference. With all the changes and twists you are increasing the flavor as well as health benefits. 

Comparing rice that you granulate yourself vs. sweet rice flour in pumpkin porridge, I like granulated rice because even though that coarse rice is cooked it still gives you little nuttiness.

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If you make my Sweet Pumpkin Porridge, please tag me on Instagram. @sandraseasycooking with hashtags #sandraseasycooking. I would love to share your creations with everyone. Thank you so much in advance!

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Yield: Serves 4

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes

Sweet Pumpkin Porridge is one of those perfect comforting foods during cooler weather

Ingredients

  • 3 lb pumpkin or winter squash (Salt, ground ginger, cinnamon, brown sugar - Few pinches on each slice)
  • 1 cup Sweet Mochi Rice/Glutinous Rice (or Flour)/Water, enough to cover over the rice for soaking
  • 1-1.5 cup water, for cooking
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 2 tsp. Pumpkin Spice
  • Organic Honey, to taste /or other sweeteners
  • Pumpkin seeds for garnish, or any nuts

Instructions

  1. Wash the rice 3-4 times and soak in a big bowl for about an hour.
  2. When the rice is soaked at least 1 hour (although, it's the best if you soak it for a couple of hours) place rice into a food processor with a bit of water and puree until it gets completely granulated. READ NOTES
  3. Preheat oven on 400 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  4. Pumpkin Prep: Slice the pumpkin into thicker slices (be careful), take out the seeds and reserve for later; Season pumpkin with few pinches of salt, ground ginger, cinnamon, and brown sugar to taste. Rub all over and place in baking pan. Roast until the pumpkin slices are tender, about 30-40 minutes. Once done, separate skin from the pumpkin flesh (be careful it could be still hot) and Puree in a food processor, and add a little bit of water so it's easier to puree. I ended up with little more than 2 cups of pumpkin puree. 
  5. In a large pot add 1 cup of water and pumpkin puree. Stir until it bubbles, then start adding the rice puree, keep stirring and add pumpkin spice, salt, and honey. 
  6. Stirring is very important because it can stick to the bottom of the pot very fast. Lower the heat on simmer, and slowly just stir for 5 minutes. Add more water when porridge becomes too thick, and cook for 20 more minutes on simmer. It's done when rice becomes smoother and cooked. Taste the porridge and add more sweetener to your taste preference. 
  7. Garnish with roasted and peeled pumpkin seeds OR chopped nuts. Serve on room temperature. 

Notes

  • You can skip the part of soaking the rice and instead use sweet Glutinous rice flour ..just make sure to mix it into a smooth texture (with water). You can find videos regarding this type of porridge. When you are using flour, it will be more smooth. I like the texture of granulated rice in porridge. You can also make it thick or thinner just by adjusting it with water. When you taste that rice is cooked take it off the stove and cover. It's all in the taste senses, so use them! 
  • For pumpkin seeds, I wash them, dry with kitchen paper towels and then toss on the newspaper then outside to air dry completely. Preheat oven on 400F then put sea salt, I used actually sriracha salt and it was fantastic. Bake until they are toasted. However, if you going to garnish porridge with pumpkin seeds, of curse peel them. 
  • For baby food, I would definitely either make rice cooked with adding more water or use flour because it gives you a smooth texture. If the baby is not at least year and a half please do not use honey, and add some other natural sweetener. Of course, you got to keep it a notch down because babies can't handle sweet like adults.


Oven Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Oven Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

In my opinion, Oven Roasted Pumpkin Seeds are one of the most addictive, but tasty snacks that we could ever munch on. They are a labor of love, truly. We do need several steps to prep them, a drop of patience and love but they…

Fluffy Cream Cheese Blueberry Pancakes

Fluffy Cream Cheese Blueberry Pancakes

School is in a full session for over two months now, so these delicious and Fluffy Cream Cheese Blueberry Pancakes make an appearance on our table quite often. We are almost at the Fall break, but temperatures are not getting any better. We are still…

Tasty Pressed Cuban Sandwich

Tasty Pressed Cuban Sandwich

Tasty Pressed Cuban Sandwich

I am a sandwich person, and I could eat a sandwich probably every single day. However, when it comes to ham, slow-cooked pork, swiss cheese, pickles, mustard pressed in the Cuban bread there is nothing better in this world. I love this Tasty Pressed Cuban Sandwich.

You guys asked me so many time to post my version of this amazing sandwich and I always hesitated. To be honest, I was testing how I like it the best without offering anyone regarding how I make it.

CLICK HERE FOR MORE OF MY AMAZING SANDWICH RECIPES

Tasty Pressed Cuban Sandwich

I ate so many different version even though they all contain the same ingredients just slightly different made or prepared. In the end, what is truly authentic?

It’s food, a recipe and everyone add their own print, right? You are allowed to experiment and put your own little twist on dishes that you make for you and tour family.

That being said, my family went crazy for this one. Also, I made for my husband’s staff and they all loved it so I am confident that you guys going to love this recipe.

Click here for more wonderful lunch ideas from my blog.

Tasty Pressed Cuban Sandwich

I made 3 trays full of these Cubanos and I couldn’t resist. I didn’t have a piece of bread or anything with gluten for about 3 months at all, and this was rebirth experience.

So, if you are on low carb diet then you know what I mean. Anyhow, you can totally use low carb tortilla if you are on keto. It’s not the same as having a nice Cuban bread but, hey, better than nothing! Haha

Pork Recipes

It is truly amazing and so delicious and I really hope you give this sandwich a try.

When you make my Tasty Pressed Cuban Sandwich, or any other recipe from my blog please tag me on Instagram. @sandraseasycooking #sandraseasycooking. Thank you so much in advance!

Tasty Pressed Cuban Sandwich
Yield: 8

Tasty Pressed Cuban Sandwich

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time for cooking pork: 6 hours
Total Time: 6 hours 25 minutes

Ingredients

MARINADE

  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup lime juice
  • 1 cup cilantro, finely chopped
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 tablespoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 tablspoon ground black pepper

PORK

  • 5-6 pounds boneless pork shoulder butt.

SANDWICH INGREDIENTS

  • Four 10 inches (approximately) Cuban sandwich loaves, sliced into 4 equal sizes
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened and divided
  • 1/2 cup yellow mustard
  • 1 pound sliced smoked ham
  • Dill pickles sliced lengthwise
  • Roast pork
  • 8-10 ounces Swiss cheese slices

FOR PRESSING SANDWICH

Instructions

PORK PREP:

  1. Place pork into a largest ziplock bag then pours the marinade. Make sure that marinade is very well combined before pouring it over the pork. massage the pork for a bit to coat then close the ziplock bag and place in the fridge for at least 8 hours, preferably 12 hours. Halfway through turn the ziplock on the other side and massage it again just to make sure the pork is well coated with the marinade.

Oven roast pork in Dutch Oven for 3 to 3 ½ hours on lower heat at 350°F. Take it out of the oven, and allow it to cool down for 20-30 minutes before shredding or carving against the grain.

You can use your slow cooker: Set on high and slow cook for 4-6 hours depending on the size. You may slice it in big chunks so the pork fit well in the slow cooker. Shred pork using two forks as soon as the pork is falling apart.

Grilling pork brings an amazing flavor and it's my favorite ways to prep meat.

When I am cooking it on my Traeger Grill:

  1. I prep my smoker for 15 minutes at 250° Fahrenheit with the lid closed. Then I place pork directly on the grill and cook for 2 hours.
  2. Take it off the grill and put the pork in the center on the heavy-duty foil, then bring up the sides of the foil a little bit before pouring the apple cider on top of the pork butt.
  3. Wrap the foil tightly around the pork, make sure the cider does not escape.
  4. Place the foil-wrapped pork butt back on the grill and cook until the temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit, in the thickest part of the meat, about 2-3 more hours longer depending on the size of the pork butt.
  5. Allow it to cool DOWN completely for about 30 minutes in foil before shredding or carving against the grain.

Sandwich Assembly:

  1. Slice Cuban bread loaf in half then spread unsalted butter on one size and mustard on the other.
  2. Add sliced or shredded pork, ham, cheese slices, and pickles. Close and spread or brush soften garlic and herbs butter on top then slice into equal portions.
  3. Preheat your grill pan and cook these but pressing onto the cast iron grill. pan and pressing it with cast iron grill press. You can turn it around if you wish and do the same on the other side. You may use a panini press or just bake in the oven if you do not wish to press it at all. I like keeping them in the warm oven wrapped before serving, or microwave to make the hot.

Notes

  • If you get pork shoulder butt with a bone, no worries you can still do this and it will taste great.
  • If you wish to use Pork Loin or Tenderloin, it's great! I tried it and it tastes fantastic. You do not need to panic.
  • If you like any other pickle or ham go ahead and adapt to your liking. Maybe you like dijon mustard use that one. We prefer yellow mustard and smoked ham over honey glazed ham.
  • If you cant get garlic and herbs butter then spread butter on the bread and sprinkle with herbs and garlic powder.

Sage and Brown Butter Gnocchi

Sage and Brown Butter Gnocchi

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of the Minerva Dairy. All opinions are entirely my own. What a better way to start September than with warm and appetizing sage and brown butter gnocchi. This delightful dish screams comfort food to me. Fall food…

Air Fryer Zesty Rosemary Lime Chicken Wings

Air Fryer Zesty Rosemary Lime Chicken Wings

I dare to say that Zesty Rosemary Lime Chicken Wings are absolutely mouthwatering especially made in the Air Fryer. I mean, you do not have to be a chef or even a good cook to make these. So simple, yet packed with flavor. We just…

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Sarma

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Sarma

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Sarma

One more old recipe repost because it is winter season, this is comfort food that we love during winter, and you guys kept asking for this recipe. So here is my stuffed cabbage rolls or as we like to call them, Sarma!

As much as this recipe seems complicated, I have to say it is not so much. Maybe because I grew up eating it, and also I believe the first time when I made it was like 20 years ago, so it is very simple for me.

Traditionally, Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Sarma has to be made with a pickled or fermented whole head of cabbage, which tastes like shredded sauerkraut.

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Sarma

So, it is a pickling process that many people in parts of the Balkan or Southeastern Europe prepare a few months in advance to have it ready for the holiday season.

What I am showing you today is a much faster version of pickling, and slightly similar to the original and got to say extremely tasty.

If you have already fermented cabbage then you can skip the part where you boil and soak the cabbage in vinegary water with salt.

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Sarma

I did not pickle cabbage last fall. So in cases like this when I really crave these rolls I just boil the whole cabbage head in salty- vinegar water, and under the lid. Let it kind of marinade in that boiled hot water for an hour or so.

It becomes a bit tender and slightly sour, but to cut the story short read the recipe with the easy to follow pictures.

When I feel nostalgic this is the version that I am making most of the time because don’t have fermented cabbage all the time or all year round.

This is so delicious and one of my ultimate favorite comfort foods. I know many share the same feeling regarding it because it is loved all over the world.

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Sarma

STEP BY STEP WITH PICTURES:

Wash the cabbage and take the middle root by carving it out. Boil the whole cabbage head by putting it in a large pot. Pour over hot boiled water mixed with vinegar and salt. Let it boil again for the next 20 minutes or until the cabbage is softer to the touch

Once the cabbage is softer to the touch, cover it with the lid. Turn off the heat and let it sit in a sour and salty hot water for next 20 minutes or until you are ready for the next step. WASH the cabbage after with a cold water to remove some of the brine.

Combine the meat mixture by adding ground beef, Vegeta/seasoning, shredded onion, minced garlic/or garlic powder, ground black pepper, and rice. I always taste to see if I need more seasoning, but meat is always fresh.

SONY DSC

eparate the cabbage leaves and cut the thick root in the back of each leaf because of the easier folding.

Put cabbage leaves in your palm and add about 2 Tbs. Meat mixture (smaller meatball). Look at the picture for the complete instruction. These instructions are important. If you don’t roll and wrap cabbage rolls correctly, they will open, and meat will get out. Once the wrapping is over, go to the next step.

Boil 2 cups of Beef stock + 3 cups of water with 1 Tbs. Vegeta; set aside.

You may like Sauteed Sauerkraut with Smoked Sausage

In a large pot, add a bit of minced onion, olive oil (or any on your hand), place each roll on the bottom of the pot. If you have meat leftovers crumble on the top, shredded sauerkraut, a few garlic cloves.

Then the rest of the cabbage leaves lay on top and over the cabbage rolls. Put a few slices of bacon or any smoked products, sweet paprika, a bit more chopped garlic and parsley, and about 1/2 tbs. Ground black pepper.

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Now that you layer everything correctly; put it on the stove and with previously boiled broth, water, and Vegeta slowly pour over. Also liquid needs to go over the cabbage rolls at least an inch-

Turn the heat on high until it boils again, once it’s boiled cover and turn the heat on a medium-low. 10. Let it cook for the next 40 minutes.

NOTE: If you do not want to make them as a sour, just skip adding vinegar and sauerkraut. I added cause it is reminding me of the way people from my country make it.

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If you make my Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Sarma, please tag me on Instagram. @sandraseasycooking. Thank you so much in advance!

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Sarma
Yield: Serves 8

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls Sarma

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Traditionally made Cabbage Meat Rolls. These rolls are made with fermented cabbage which gives you more of a sour taste, but very delicious. Since we don’t have fermented cabbage all the time, I made my own just by quick pickling cabbage.

Ingredients

  • 1 head of fresh Cabbage You may use Savoy Cabbage as well
  • 1 cup Vinegar
  • 1/2 cup Salt
  • NOTE: I use vinegar to boil my cabbage because I didn't have any homemade sour cabbage. This is only if you do not have a whole head of pickled cabbage (Sauerkraut).

Meat filling:

  • 1 lb. Ground Beef
  • 2 Tbsp. Vegeta -European spice OR 2 tbsp. Bouillon Seasoning/Beef seasoning etc. To taste**
  • 1/2 Onion minced or shredded (keep some for later use)
  • 2 Garlic Cloves minced or crushed
  • 1/2 Tbs. Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 cup Rice soak it in the cold water for 5 min or so before adding it to the mixture

Additional Toppings

  • 1 Tbs. Oil
  • 2 1/2 Tbs. Vegeta or to taste bouillon seasoning or salt
  • 2 cups Shredded Sauerkraut If you have homemade, that's the best
  • 3 garlic cloves peeled and crushed
  • 4-6 sliced Hickory-smoked Bacon or any meat/ sausage that is smoked/or ribs
  • 1/2 Tbs. Sweet Red Paprika
  • 1/3 of cup minced parsley
  • 1/2 Tbs. Ground Black Pepper
  • 2 Cups of stock/broth + water to fill to about 2 inches above it.

Roux

  • 4 Tbsp. Tomato Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. All-purpose flour

Instructions

  1. Wash the cabbage and take the middle root by carving it out. Boil the whole cabbage head by putting it in a large pot, pour over hot boiled water mixed with vinegar and salt. Let it boil again for the next 20 minutes or until the cabbage is softer to the touch
  2. Once the cabbage is softer to the touch, cover it with the lid, turn off the heat and let it sit in a sour and salty hot water for the next 20 minutes or until you are ready for the next step. WASH the cabbage after with cold water to remove some of the brine.
  3. Combine the meat mixture by adding ground beef, Vegeta/seasoning, shredded onion, minced garlic/or garlic powder, ground black pepper, and rice. I always taste to see if I need more seasoning, but meat is always fresh.
  4. Now separate the cabbage leaves and cut the thick root in the back of each leaf because of the easier folding.
  5. Put cabbage leaves in your palm and add one medium-sized meatball. Don’t pack meatball, make it more lose. Look at the picture for the complete instruction. These instructions are important because if you don’t roll and wrap cabbage rolls correctly, they will open, and meat will get out. Once the wrapping is over, go to the next step.
  6. Boil 2 cups of Beef stock + 3 cups of water with 1 Tbs. Vegeta; set aside. 
  7. You may. Bouillon Seasoning instead of Vegeta*
  8. In a large pot, add a bit of minced onion, olive oil (or any on your hand), place each roll on the bottom of the pot, if you have meat leftovers crumble on the top, shredded sauerkraut, a few garlic cloves, then rest of the cabbage leaves lay on top and over the cabbage rolls, put few slices of bacon or any smoked products, sweet paprika, a bit more chopped garlic and parsley, and about 1/2 tbs. Ground black pepper.
  9. Now that you layer everything correctly, put it on the stove and with previously boiled broth, water, and Vegeta slowly pour over- also liquid needs to go over the cabbage rolls at least an inch-
  10. Turn the heat on high until it boils again, once it’s boiled cover and turn the heat on a medium-low. 10. Let it cook for the next 40-45 minutes.
  11. After 40-45 minutes (if you need more water it is a good time to add more and boil before you add Roux) Mix 2 Tbs. Of all-purpose flour with 2 Tbs. Of Tomato sauce in a bowl. Combine it well and add about 3 Tbs. Of water. Stir until lumps are gone and you are left with a smooth and thin texture. Pour the Roux little bit at the time, but do not stir, kind of do the moving the pot in a shaky motion just to combine the thin Roux with the liquid to make like a thick sauce. If you can see the lumps in the pot use the wooden spoon to mash it. Add 2 more Tbs. Of tomato sauce for the color and taste.
Carrot Cake Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

Carrot Cake Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

Are you a fan of Carrot Cake? I enjoy carrot cake, but I am not the biggest fan mainly because most of the carrot cakes contain a thick layer of frosting, and I don’t like frosting so I started making my own. To be honest nobody…