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Copyright Š2009 Amanda McGlothlin All rights reserved.

Little Kitchen

a photo cookbook by Amanda McGlothlin

Dedicated to my Mom,

who loves to cook for everyone and passed that on to me. Before family comes to town, more and more cookbooks appear on the kitchen counter filled with yellow sticky notes. Newspaper clippings are added to the pile next to magazines with dog-earred corners. In some ways I think my mom loves recipes, and the possibility of something delicious, almost more than the finished product. She started me on a path of loving food, so I am happy to add one more cookbook to her collection.

What is Little Kitchen? When I think about cooking, I usually start with an ingredient I want to eat, rather than with a recipe I want to try. In fact, although I give the recipes for these dishes, Little Kitchen is more about substituting and adapting what you have than it is about teaspoons and cups. I have been known to cook “from a recipe” and not use any of the ingredients listed. For that reason, my love of baking has come more slowly. It took me a long time to realize that good bakers are people with patience and precision. But feel free to experiment, use what you have, and taste everything. Little Kitchen is about using what’s on hand and having the confidence to make things up as you go along.

Why make a cookbook anyway? Last year, I participated in SoFoBoMo (solo photo book month), a project that encourages photographers to make a PDF book of 35 photos in 31 days. SoFoBoMo gave me a reason to get organized and finish something, even if it was just for me. This year, when it was time to start again, I knew it would help me focus on a project I had been thinking about. This entire cookbook was shot, cooked, and written between May 7 and June 7, 2009.

Where’s the beef? I am a vegetarian, and since this cookbook is based on my favorite things to eat, it is meat-free. I think that any of these recipes could be adapted to make even the most carnivorous person happy. But really, doesn’t tofu taste like pork anyway? ;-)

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Table of Contents Breakfast Coconut French Toast�������������������� 13 Berry Pancakes�������������������������� 14 Carolyn’s Mint Fritatta�������������������� 17 Banana Roll-ups������������������������� 18 Migas���������������������������������� 21

Soups Tortilla Soup ���������������������������� 25 Lentil Soup����������������������������� 26 Potato and Leek Soup�������������������� 29

Appetizers / Sides Fruit Dip�������������������������������� 33 Spring Rolls����������������������������� 34 Quesadillas����������������������������� 37 Brussels Sprouts with Parmesan������������ 38 Microwave Rice�������������������������� 41 Sweet Potato Fries����������������������� 42 Hummus�������������������������������� 45 Pita Bread ������������������������������ 46 Brie, Tomatoes and Basil������������������ 49 Tomatilla Salsa �������������������������� 50 Mango Salsa���������������������������� 51

Cornbread������������������������������ 53 PB, Honey and Banana and Strawberries���� 54 Brie and Pesto��������������������������� 57

Main Courses Stir-Fry ��������������������������������� 60 Chili������������������������������������ 63 Caper Pasta����������������������������� 64 Grilled Portabella Caps������������������� 67 Dinner Tart������������������������������ 68 Pizza����������������������������������� 70 Enchiladas������������������������������ 72

Desserts Oatmeal Cookies������������������������ 77 Peach Cobbler �������������������������� 78 German Chocolate Tres Leches������������ 81 Strawberry Pie��������������������������� 82 Oatmeal Cookies������������������������ 83 Chocolate Crinkle Cookies���������������� 85

Drinks Matt’s Margaritas ������������������������ 89 Hope’s Dirty Martinis��������������������� 90


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Coconut French Toast French toast always seemed like something hard to make, but this recipe is really easy, and one of the best kinds of French toast I have ever had.

2 eggs 1 can of coconut milk 1 loaf of fresh challah bread Shredded coconut

Cut the challah into 1 inch slices, so that they are nice and thick. Whisk the coconut milk and the eggs in a shallow dish that is big enough to hold a slice of bread. Heat up a pan over medium-heat and lightly oil it, if it isn’t non-stick. Put a piece of bread in the milk mixture and let it sit for about 10 seconds before flipping it, so that it is well coated but not soggy. Dredge the piece of bread in shredded coconut, and then place in the hot pan. You want the pieces to get nice and brown and a little crispy, but not burned. Serve right away and top with fresh fruit and whipped cream. Serves 3 – 4, depending on the size of the bread

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Berry Pancakes When I was a kid, my Dad and I made pancakes every single Saturday morning. My favorite ones have always been the ones that are uncooked in the middle.

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon baking powder 1 1/4 teaspoons white sugar 1 egg 1 cup milk 1/2 tablespoon butter, melted 1/2 cup any type of fresh or frozen berries

Mix together flour, salt, baking powder and sugar. In another bowl, beat together egg and milk and stir into flour. Mix in butter and berries. Set aside for 1 hour (or less if you are in a hurry and don’t mind if they are a little less fluffy). Heat a greased pan over medium high heat. Laddle out a small circle of batter, so that 3 pancakes fit at one time. Let the pancakes cook until the top starts to bubble through, and then flip and cook the other side for about 15 - 20 seconds. Serve immediately. Serves 3 - 4

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Carolyn’s Mint Fritatta This is a great dish to serve at a brunch. Carolyn always makes it for me when I come into visit.

8 eggs 1/2 cup feta cheese 3 tbsp mint, chopped 2 medium zucchini, grated, squeezed dry Salt and pepper Olive oil

Preheat oven to 400°. Whisk together eggs, cheese, mint, and salt and pepper. Mix the grated zucchini into egg mixture. Pour the mixture into an ovenproof skillet and heat on the stove over medium-high heat for 10 – 15 minutes, or until the eggs start to set up. Move the pan to the oven and cook for another 15 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Serves 4 - 6

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Banana Roll-ups My mom used to make these for breakfast when I was a little. She has always been a believer that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

2 tablespoon butter, melted 4 slices of bread 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1 banana Honey, to taste

Preheat oven to 350째. Cut the crusts off of the bread and then smoosh the bread to make it flat. Cut the banana in half twice, long-ways and cross-ways, into four pieces. Lay a piece of banana on the bread and squeeze a couple of stripes of honey on it. Roll up the bread, place into a baking disk and sprinkle with butter and cinammon. Bake until brown and a little crispy, 20 minutes or more. The banana gets super hot in the oven, so make sure to let it cool down before you eat it. Serves 2 - 3

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Migas Migas might as well be another word for breakfast in Austin. They are served at every tex-mex restaurant, and you can get them at any time of the day. They are a easy to cook for a crowd or yourself. 1 pat of butter 1 tablespoon cumin seeds 1 onion 1 or 2 hot or mild peppers, like a jalepeño, poblano or bell 2 - 3 waxy potatoes (or frozen potato chunks) 4 eggs Tortillas Salsa Mild cheese Salt and pepper

Melt butter in skillet, adding cumin seeds and a little bit of salt and pepper. Sauté the onions until they turn clear and are just starting to brown. Add the potatoes and peppers, both cut into half-inch chunks. Once you add the potatoes, don’t stir much. You want them to get browned and crispy, so you don’t want to rip off the crusty part. Cut the tortillas into half-inch strips and add them to the pan once the potatoes are getting brown. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs with a fork. Add them to the pan with the potatoes, and once again, try not to stir the mixture much. Serve with more tortillas, salsa and cheese once the eggs set. Serves 2 - 3

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Tortilla Soup This is a crowd favorite in my group of friends. We jokingly call it cumin soup. Also to note, this soup cooks surprisingly well over a campfire.

2 tablespoons oil 1 onion 2 cloves chopped garlic 1 jalapeno 1 bell pepper 2 tablespoons cumin 1 tablespoon chili powder 1 teaspoon red pepper ½ teaspoon oregano Salt and pepper 1 can tomatoes 1 small can tomato puree 6 cups veggie broth 1 lime ½ cup chopped cilantro 1 -2 cups Monterrey jack cheese Large bag of tortilla chips

Dice the onion and peppers and sauté them in a stock pot. After 5 to 10 minutes when the onion is browned, add the garlic and cook for a couple of minutes more – be sure not to burn the garlic. Add the spices and stir for about 15 seconds. Add the tomatoes and puree to the mix, along with the vegetable broth. Let this simmer for about 30 minutes, adding more spices as you see fit. Serve with cheese, tortilla chips lime slices and cilantro. Serves 4 – 5

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Lentil Soup

A d a p t e d f r o m H o w t o C o o k E v e ry t h i n g

I really like this soup as a quick way to use up vegetables. You can add more lentils if you want to make it thicker.

3 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 onion 2 cloves garlic 1 inch grated ginger Salt and pepper 2 teaspoons turmeric 3 tablespoons curry powder 1 can diced tomatoes ¼ cup shredded coconut 1 cup frozen/fresh spinach 1 cup other veggies (peas, carrots, okra) ½ cup of red lentils 1 quart of vegetable stock 1 can coconut milk

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Chop and sauté the onion and garlic in the oil, letting the onions become transparent but not brown. Add ginger and spices and cook for about a minute. Add the rest of the ingredients. Let this simmer for 30 minutes until the lentils are falling apart. Check the salt before you serve, but I usually just let people salt their own, since I like it a little salty. Serves 4 – 5

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Potato and Leek Soup

A d a p t e d f r o m H o w t o C o o k E v e ry t h i n g

Sometimes this soup is a broccoli-potato concoction, but one thing is for sure, it tastes better with cheese on top.

2 tablespoons of butter and/or oil 5 yellow potatoes cut into cubes 3 leeks, white parts only or crown of broccoli Salt and pepper 1 teaspoon dried dill 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional) 1 quart vegetable stock 1 cup milk (optional) Shredded Parmesan

Let the butter melt in a pot on medium-high heat before adding the potatoes and leeks. Let this cook for about five minutes, so that the potatoes get a little bit of a crust. Add the spices and veggie broth and let come to a boil. Turn down the heat and let this simmer for 30 minutes. If you think the soup looks too thick, you can thin it down with milk. If it is too thin, turn up the heat a little and let it cook down. Serve with cheese. Serves 4 – 5

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Appetizers / Sides

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Fruit Dip I had this dish originally as a grape salad with my mom and Aunt Betty in Temple. I thought that the sauce was so delicious that it could be adapted as a dip for all kinds of fruit.

2 pounds of fruit (grapes are my favorite here, but anything will work) 8 ounces sour cream 8 ounces cream cheese, softened 1/4 cup granulated sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, to taste

Mix the sour cream, cream cheese, sugar and vanilla by hand until they are fully incorporated. Chill until you are ready to serve it. You can also add pecans or walnuts on top, if you like. Serves 5 – 10

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Spring Rolls Spring rolls are fun for a party because you can get all the ingredients ready, and then have everyone help put them together.

1 package large spring roll wrappers Ingredient Ideas: Firm tofu Rice noodles Cilantro Cabbage Mint Carrots Bean sprouts Sesame seeds Green onions Sauce – make as much as you want 1 tablespoon honey 4 tablespoons soy sauce 2 teaspoons sesame oil 3 teaspoons sesame seeds 1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar 1 teaspoon chili oil

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Sauté the tofu on medium heat and add a little bit of sauce so that the tofu browns and caramelizes but doesn’t burn. Keep adding sauce to make sure that the tofu stays slightly wet but isn’t floating. While the tofu if cooking, boil water for the noodles and wrappers and chop all of the vegetables into thin strips. Soak the rice noodles in the hot water until they are soft. When you are ready to prepare the rolls, get a shallow dish of hot water and soak one wrapper at a time till it is pliable but not falling apart. Add a small amount of vegetables to the center of the wrapper, fold the sides over and roll up like a burrito. Place on a tray to dry out (which will also make the edges stick together) before you eat it. Makes a lot of spring rolls

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Quesadillas Quesadillas are so easy to make it seems silly to have a recipe. Here you go, in case you aren’t from Texas.

1 onion 1 tablespoon of oil 1 clove of garlic 1 bell pepper 1 jalapeño 2 cups fresh spinach 1 teaspoon cumin Salt and pepper 8 eight-inch tortillas 2 tablespoons butter ¼ cup cilantro 2 cups cheese

Sauté onion, garlic, and peppers in the oil until slightly brown. Add the spinach and cumin. When the spinach is wilted and some of the water has evaporated, put this mixture onto a plate. Add a little bit of butter to the same pan (no need to wash it), and heat up a tortilla. Once it is heated, switch it out for a cold tortilla. Place about ¼ cup of filling on the warming tortilla, cover with ½ cup of cheese and a little cilantro and cover with the warm tortilla. Cook on medium heat until the bottom tortilla is brown and the cheese starts to melt. Flip over the quesadilla and let the other side brown. Serve immediately. Makes 4

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Brussels Sprouts with Parmesan I think this is a good starter recipe for people who aren’t sure about Brussels sprouts. It is tame and very tasty.

1 pound of fresh Brussels sprouts 1 tablespoon oil + 1 tablespoon oil Salt and pepper 3 cloves of garlic 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper ½ cup of Parmesan

Cut the ends off the Brussels sprouts and then cut them in half, long-ways. Place them cut side down in a pan with the oil, salt and pepper on medium heat. Sauté for 5 to 10 minutes until the Brussels sprouts start turning brown on the edges. You aren’t trying to cook them completely in the pan. Move the mixture to a baking sheet and add additional oil, spices and cheese. Bake in a 400° oven for about 20 minutes or until the Brussels sprouts are totally cooked, but not burned or soggy. Serves 4

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Microwave Rice I always messed up rice until I learned this recipe. Memorize it now.

1 cup rice (I use regular white basmati) 1½ water Pinch of salt

Mix the ingredients in a microwave safe dish with a lid. Microwave on high for 12:30. Remember all the times you burned the rice and laugh. Makes 2 – 3 servings

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Sweet Potato Fries This is also a easy recipe, and a good one to prepare ahead if you are having a barbecue. Just do everything but bake up to a day before.

3 large sweet potatoes 3 tablespoons olive oil 1 package taco seasoning

Cut the sweet potatoes into thin strips, the skinnier the better. I try to get them less than a ½ inch thick, so that they get crispy in the oven. Put the potatoes in a plastic bag and add the olive oil and taco seasoning. Shake until well coated. When you are ready, bake in a 400° oven for about 45 minutes to an hour on a cookie sheet. Make sure that the fries are only one layer deep so they don’t get soggy. Makes 2 – 3 servings

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Hummus I am always surprised how easy hummus is to make and how much better it tastes when you can choose your own ingredients, rather than buying it at the store.

2 cans chickpeas, drained with the juice reserved 1 teaspoon salt 3 garlic cloves, peeled 3/4 cup sesame seed paste 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice 1 teaspoon Cayenne 2 tablespoons chopped parsley 2 teaspoons olive oil

Mix all of the ingredients in a blender and adjust the flavors to your liking. If the mix is too thick, add some of the reserved chickpea liquid. Sometimes I prefer to leave some of the chickpeas out of the blender and then stir them in before serving so that it is chunkier. You could also add any other herbs, fresh jalape単os or olives to the mix. Makes 4 - 5 servings

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Pita Bread

A d a p t e d f r o m S m i t t e n K i t ch e n a n d i n t u r n , Th e B r e a d B i b l e

Fresh pitas taste pretty differnent from their store bought cousins, and I make these often now.

3 cups all-purpose flour 2 teaspoons salt 2 teaspoons instant yeast 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 1/4 cups water

A couple hour or the night before you are cooking, combine all the ingredients in a large bowl with your hand until the mixture comes together and isn’t all crumbly. Knead the dough for five minutes on a lightly floured surface. Cover it with an inverted bowl and allow it to rest for 5 to 20 minutes. Then, knead the dough for another 5 to 10 minutes. It should be barely sticky when you are done, so add more water or flour if it doesn’t seem right. Put the dough into an oiled bowl and oil the top of the dough. Mark the bowl so you can see when it has doubled in height. If you aren’t using it right away, refrigerate the dough overnight, checking every hour for the first 4 hours and pressing it down if it starts to rise. When you are ready to cook, preheat the oven to 475°F one hour before baking. At this time, put a baking stone in the oven – I just leave mine in the oven all the time. Cut the dough into 10 even pieces, shape into balls and then flatten into disks. Let the dough rise again on the counter, this time under oiled plastic wrap. Finally, roll each disk into a 1/4 inch thick circle and allow them to rest again. Spritz the pitas with a little bit of water right before cooking. Bake one pita to see if it is fully cooked after 3 minutes. If not, or if it isn’t puffy, add a little bit more water and adjust the cooking time. After that, I cook 3 at a time. Makes 10 pitas

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Brie, Tomatoes and Basil This is a delicious way to use up fresh summer tomatoes, in case you don’t like to eat your tomatoes like apples.

Fresh tomatoes Chunk of Brie Fresh basil Salt Freshly cracked pepper 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Cut the tomatoes into thick slices. Cut the Brie into little pieces. Stack the tomatoes, Brie and basil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Drizzle with balsalmic vinegar and serve.

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Tomatilla Salsa This salsa is good on pretty much everything, but I especially like it with rice and beans.

5 – 6 tomatillas, chopped into 1-inch squares ½ onion 2 cloves of garlic 2 teaspoons salt 1 teaspoon cumin 1 jalapeño ½ cup cilantro

Mix all the ingredients in a chopper or immersion blender until they are well chopped, but not totally soupy. Makes 2 – 3 cups

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Mango Salsa This is a great summer salsa when you have fresh mangos.

1 mango ½ cup cilantro ½ red onion 1 red bell pepper 1 jalapeño 1 lime Salt

Chop all vegetables and mix in a bowl. Squeeze lime on top and salt to taste. Chill for a couple hours before serving. Makes 2 cups

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Adapted from Aunt Jemima

I always make cornbread in my lucky cast iron boot. My mom gave it to me - she has one shaped like Texas, and we used to argue of who got to eat Dallas. 1 cup corn meal 1 cup flour 2 tablespoons sugar 4 teaspoons baking powder ½ teaspoon salt 1 cup milk 1 egg ¼ cup vegetable oil ½ cup frozen corn ½ cup cheese 1 jalapeño, diced

Preheat the oven to 425°. Combine the corn meal, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add the milk, egg, and oil. Mix thoroughly and then add the additional ingredients. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes until fully done. Makes 6 – 8 servings

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PB, Honey and Banana and Strawberries This sandwich is an easy sandwich that tastes great.

½ cup chunky peanut butter 2 tablespoons honey ½ banana 4 strawberries, sliced 2 slices wheat bread

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I’m not going to write out assembly instructions for this one. Ask anyone over the age of 2 if you are curious. Makes 1 sandwich

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Brie and Pesto A little fancier sandwich, but still very easy to make.

Fresh Pesto: 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 cup basil and/or other fresh herbs ½ cup pine nuts 2 cloves garlic 1 – 2 teaspoons salt ¼ cup Parmesan cheese

Make the pesto by blending all the ingredients in a food processor. Toast a slice of bread with Brie on top, so that the Brie starts to melt, but the bread doesn’t get soggy. Top with sliced tomatoes and the other slice of bread. Makes 1 sandwich

2 slices rye bread 2 ounces Brie 1 Roma tomato

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Main Courses

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Stir-Fry This is one of my easy, go-to meals that is adapted every time that I make it. Feel free to sub any of the ingredients listed.

1 package firm tofu 2 cloves chopped garlic 2 inches of ginger, grated 3 green onions, chopped into rings Ÿ cup dried mushrooms, sliced Soy sauce Honey Sesame seeds Sesame oil ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper 1 -2 pounds chopped vegetables (green beans, Napa cabbage, carrots, mushrooms, broccoli, snap peas, frozen stir-fry mix)

Cut tofu into small cubes, the smaller the better. Put the garlic and ginger into a hot wok with 2 teaspoons sesame oil. Let the mixture barely start to fry and then add a tablespoon of honey and a couple of glugs of soy sauce along with the tofu. You want the mixture to stay bubbly, but start to caramelize, so keep adding soy sauce, some honey and occasionally a little sesame oil while it cooks. Add the green onion and sesame seeds once the tofu is brown and a little crispy. Remove the tofu and set aside. Add the vegetables into the wok (no need to clean it), and add a little more soy sauce and a little bit of water to loosen up the bits at the bottom. Make sure to add the slow cooking vegetables first, and then cover the wok so that they can steam. When the vegetables are cooked, add the tofu back in and serve over rice or rice noodles. Serves 2 -4

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Chili My favorite veggie chili recipe based off a box of Texas 2-Alarm chili.

1 tablespoon olive oil 1 onion 1 can diced tomatoes 3 cans beans (kidney, black beans) 1 can tomato paste 1 can water ½ c chili powder ½ tablespoon salt 1 tablespoon cumin ½ tablespoon oregano 1½ tablespoon onion/garlic flakes ½ tablespoon red pepper ¼ tablespoon cayenne ½ tablespoon paprika

Sauté onion until slightly browned in the oil. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer on low for 20 minutes. Serve with cheese. Serves 4

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Caper Pasta Once I started eating capers, I got in the habit of putting them on everything. This is one of the easier quick-dinner combinations.

1 pound pasta 1 tablespoon olive oil ½ onion 2 cloves garlic 1 – 3 tablespoons of capers ¼ cup of olives ½ frozen spinach 1 can diced tomatoes 1 tablespoon dill weed Salt Pepper Parmesan Mushrooms

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Start cooking the pasta according to the directions. Sauté the onion and garlic in oil until the onion is clear and starting to brown. Add the capers and olives and sauté for a minute or two, or until they barely start to get a few brown spots. Add the tomatoes and spinach and simmer until the pasta is cooked. Drain the pasta, leaving it slightly wet. Add the salt, pepper and dill to the sauce. Serve with Parmesan and chopped mushrooms. Serves 2 – 4

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Grilled Portabella Caps My marinade for these mushrooms is constantly changing, so this recipe is just an approximation.

3 large portabella mushrooms Marinade: Soy sauce (1/2 cup) Honey (2 tablespoons) Salt (1 – 2 teaspoons) Pepper (1 – 2 teaspoons) Minced ginger (½ tablespoon) Minced garlic (½ tablespoon) Olive Oil (1/4 cup) Cayenne Pepper (1 teaspoon) Orange Juice (3 tablespoons) Chopped mushroom stems

Pull off the stems of the mushroom and wash the mushrooms. Put the mushrooms in a pan where they can all sit side-by-side and poke some shallow holes in the bottom of the mushroom so that the marinade can soak in. Drizzle liberally with soy sauce. Add the other items in whatever proportions you think seems most delicious. Let this sit for 30 minutes or so while your grill heats up. Place the mushrooms upside down on the grill, so that the cap is like a cup for a little bit of the marinade. Let this cook, and flip over and add more sauce for about 7 to 10 minutes. Since the marinade is vegetarian, you can drizzle more on top when you serve it. These mushrooms are good cold, so make extra. Serves 3

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Dinner Tart This is an easy tart to keep the ingredients on hand for unexpected company. Feel free to sub the fresh pesto for canned if you are in a hurry, although I think it is worth it.

1 sheet of ready-bake puff pastry dough 1 cup cooked and sliced vegetables (potatoes, broccoli, eggplant, onion, cherry tomatoes) 1/2 cup cheese (brie, mozzarella) 4 tablespoons pesto (see brie and pesto sandwich, p. 54)

Preheat oven to 400° while getting the veggies ready. Make sure to cut things into bite-sized pieces and get them sautÊed if they need to be fully cooked. The oven will heat them up and brown them slightly, but it won’t completely cook things. Unroll the defrosted pastry on a cookie sheet. Make a square in the middle of the puff pastry with the pesto, making sure to leave an inch or two on all sides so it can rise. Cover with veggies and sprinkle with cheese. Bake the tart for about 20 minutes or until the pastry has risen and turned brown. Serves 6 - 8

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Adapted from and the Bread Baker’s Apprentice

Making good pizza at home takes a little bit of forethought, but I really don’t think it is too hard. Just be patient with dough and make sure to pay attention if it seems too wet or dry.

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Crust 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1 3/4 teaspoons salt 1 teaspoon instant yeast 1/4 cup olive oil 1 3/4 cups water, ice cold Semolina flour OR cornmeal for dusting Red Sauce 1/4 cup olive oil 1 1/2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes 1/2 teaspoon salt 3 medium cloves of garlic 1 28-ounce can crushed red tomatoes Zest of one lemon Toppings Mozzarella cheese Parmesan cheese Sliced mushrooms Olives Sliced Roma tomatoes Fresh basil Fresh oregano

Stir the dry ingredients together in a bowl, and then quickly mix the olive oil and water into the dough. At this point you are supposed to stir the dough like a dough hook (which I don’t have), so I just made my arm into a big arch and tried to whip the dough around as it came together. Keep your hand cold, by putting it in ice water occasionally. Do this for 5-10 minutes. The dough should only stick to the bottom of the bowl when it is ready. Next put the dough on a floured counter and cut into 6 even pieces. Roll each part into a ball and place the balls into a greased pan, greasing the tops of the balls. Cover and refrigerate at least overnight (up to 3 days). You could freeze the balls at this point in individual freezer bags for another time. I just invited more people over. On the day of, take the dough out, dust the counter with flour, and then slightly oil the counter. Flatten the balls into ½ inch thick disks. Slightly flour and oil the disks and cover with plastic. Check the disks for the next two hours, making sure they rise and aren’t drying out. 45 minutes before pizza time, turn your oven (with the pizza stone already inside) as hot as it will go. At this point, make the sauce by simmering the oil, pepper flakes, salt and garlic in a pan on medium heat until the garlic is fragrant but not burning. Mix in the tomatoes and zest and let cool. When you are ready to go, grab a dough disk and start to lightly stretch it out on the back of your hands. It should be able to stretch to 9 to 12 inches. I love thin crust, but making it too thin will cause it to rip and the sauce will drip through. This makes it tough to get it off the “peal” (upside down cookie sheet). Put a good sprinkle of cornmeal on the peal and start toping your pizza with a conservative amount of sauce and toppings. Slide the pizza onto the stone and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, or until the cheese is browning and gooey. Let it sit for a couple minutes before serving. Makes 6 small/medium pizzas Little Kitchen - 71

Enchiladas Adam taught me that the best enchiladas are New Mexican. That means they are served with green chili sauce – not tomatilla sauce. These enchiladas are also good with regular enchilada sauce.

1 onion 1 tablespoon oil 1 jalapeño 1 can black beans, washed and drained ½ cup spinach, cooked and drained 1 ½ cups shredded cheese 8 8-inch flour tortillas 2 cans enchilada sauce

Preheat oven to 375° oven and sauté onion and jalapeño in the oil until brown. Mix the onions with the black beans and spinach and half of the cheese. Warm up the tortillas on a plate in the microwave for about 30 seconds, so that they are pliable. Spoon some of the black bean mixture into each tortilla and roll up. Place the roll-ups seam side down in a greased baking pan. Once all the tortillas are in the pan, cover completely with sauce and the rest of the cheese. Bake the dish for about 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Makes 8 enchiladas

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Oatmeal Cookies My Aunt Tracy used to make me oatmeal cookies. I have since adapted the recipe, but I still think it is similar in style to hers.

1 cup whole wheat flour 1/4 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon salt 3/8 cup brown sugar 3/4 cup Old-fashioned rolled oats 1/2 egg – this was sort of weird, but I just mixed a whole egg and threw out part 1/4 cup olive oil 2 tablespoons water 1/2 tablespoon molasses ¼ cup pecan pieces

Preheat oven to 375°. Mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, brown sugar, and oats. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add egg, olive oil, water, and molasses, and mix until combined. Roll 1 inch balls and place 2 inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Push a couple of pecan pieces into each cookie. Bake 8-10 minutes or until done. Remove cookies from oven immediately and cool on wire rack. The cookies should be soft and slightly chewy. Makes 24 cookies

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Peach Cobbler This is a summer recipe. Use any combination of berries and peaches and you will be pleased. The best part of this cobbler is that you add the crust dough on the bottom, but it rises to the top when it cooks.

1 cup sugar 1 cup flour 1 cup milk 3 teaspoons baking powder 2 quarts (4 -5 cups) of fresh fruit, or slightly less if using frozen fruit ½ stick of butter Sprinkling of cinnamon

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Preheat the oven to 350° and stir the first four ingredients to make a liquidy dough. Pour the dough into a 13x9 inch pan. Add the fruit on top and top with hunks of butter and give the whole pan a good sprinkle of cinnamon. Bake for about an hour, or until the crust has risen and begun to turn brown. Serves 5-6

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German Chocolate Tres Leches This is Adam’s favorite cake recipe and one that he has cooked for me a few times. It is rich and very delicious. I usually make this in two 9-inch pans and layer it.

1 box German chocolate cake mix (+ it’s ingredients) 1 tsp cinnamon 1 can evaporated milk 1 can sweetened condensed milk 8 ounces heavy cream 1 – 2 cans of coconut frosting

Bake the chocolate cake according to the recipe on the box, adding the cinnamon to the batter. While the cake is cooling, mix the three types of milk in a small bowl. Put the cake layers on a cooling rack that is inside of a baking dish. Using a fork, poke holes all over the cake and pour the milk mixture slowly on top - waiting for the cake to absorb the mixture. You can pour the milk that collects in the bottom of the pan back on top. The cake will not be able the absorb all of the milk, but you can save it for yummy coffee. Carefully, place one cake layer on your serving dish (you won’t be able to move this again) and quickly cover in a thin layer of icing. Top with the other cake layer and finish icing the cake. Don’t go too crazy with the icing or your cake will collapse. I know this from experience. If you don’t like coconut frosting, you could also serve this with cinnamon whipped cream. Serves 6-8

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Strawberry Pie I believe whole-heartedly that you can substitute, guess and play with recipes. That is how I ended up with the worst strawberry pie ever. Needless to say, this is the original recipe, not the tampered with one. Note to self, fruit pectin is not the same as veggie jello. Here is the recipe, straight from my mom. 1 baked pie shell (8 or 9�) 1 qt. strawberries 3 tbsp. (heaping) strawberry jello 3 tbsp. cornstarch 1/2 c. sugar 1 c. water 1 small container Cool Whip

Bake pie shell and let cool. Remove stems from strawberries and stand the berries in the shell. You may have to cut a few to make them fit. Combine the jello, cornstarch, sugar, and water in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until bubbly and thick. Pour over the berries in the pie shell. Chill. Before serving, garnish with Cool Whip or whipped cream. Serves 6 - 8

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Oatmeal Cookies

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Chocolate Crinkle Cookies This recipe is adapted from one that my Aunt Betty makes. I like how pretty they are when you bake them.

½ cup butter 4 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate 3 teaspoons vanilla 2 cups granulated sugar 4 large eggs 2 cups all purpose flour 2 teaspoons baking powder ½ teaspoon salt Confectioners’ sugar

Melt the butter and chocolate together in a pan (or if you prefer, separately in the microwave). Just make sure that with either method you don’t let the mixture burn. Mix together the vanilla, sugar and eggs with the chocolate mixture, adding the eggs one at a time - being careful not to cook the eggs with the melted chocolate. Mix the flour, baking powder and salt together, and then add to the chocolate mixture. Let this chill for a few hours (or, if you are like me, freeze while you are eating dinner). Preheat the oven to 350° and then roll them out into 1 inch balls. Before adding them to the cookie sheet, dunk them in powdered sugar so that they are completely covered. Place them a couple inches apart on a cookie sheet – they will spread a little - and bake for about 9 minutes. They are much better underdone than overdone. Makes 36 cookies

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Matt’s Margaritas Whenever my friends and I get together, Matt always makes the margaritas. Here is his famous recipe.

3 oz tequila 4 oz triple sec 7 oz margarita mix 3 cups ice Salt and limes

Put margarita glasses in the freezer. Add all the ingredients in a pitcher and blend to a smoothie consistency with an immersion blender. Roll rims of glasses in bowl of salt, making sure to get a think coating. Garnish the glasses with a slice of lime. Serves 2

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Hope’s Dirty Martinis Not a complicated recipe, but tasty if you like olives. And really, who doesn’t like olives?

1 part olive juice 1 part vodka 1 garlic-stuffed olive

Put this into a shaker with ice and serve cold. Nothing tastes weirder than hot olive juice. Serves 1

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To my helpers... I spent a lot of time with family and friends while I was creating this book, and I have to thank them for all of their help. I could not have done it myself. I needed many hungry mouths to keep the leftovers from becoming unmanageable (37 recipes in less than a month is a lot of eating). I also had a range of aspiring food stylists, chefs and prop organizers to give me lots of advice. Thank you all, especially my little helpers.

Camera Details All of these pictures were shot with a Nikon D70 with a 50mm 1.4 lens. It is my favorite lens for this type of close-up work, and it works well in low light. When there was no window light, I used a Nikon SB-900 and SB-600 flash, using various techniques to keep the shine down. I shot 1711 images for this project.

About the Photographer I am a graphic designer in Austin, Texas with a constant hankering for good food and fun things to photograph. Check out my personal website at and my day-to-day pictures at

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Little Kitchen