bourbon & citrus infused apple pie

Wanted a pie with apples, bourbon and citrus. Made one - in a cast iron skillet, and mostly with ingredients I had on hand.

Now, before the pastry purists come for me, let me explain that I wanted to make this recipe easy peasy, so I cut a few corners and used ready-made, refrigerated pie crusts. Sometimes you have to work smarter, not harder. Enjoy!

Ingredients

5 Granny Smith apples and 4 Fuji apples, peeled, cored and sliced

3/4 cup bourbon

1 1/2 lemons squeezed and zested

1/2 cup white sugar

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1 tbs flour

1/4 cup butter

1/2 tsp fresh ground nutmeg

3/4 tsp cinnamon  

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1 package refrigerated pie crusts

Cast iron skillet  

Directions

Preheat oven to 375

In a large mixing bowl, combine apples, lemon juice, lemon zest, sugar, flour, nutmeg, cinnamon, and vanilla extract.

In a nonstick skillet, melt butter, add the apple mixture and stir until sugar begins to dissolve. Add bourbon and stir. Let simmer until apples begin to soften. 

While the filling is getting all caramely, place one of the pie crusts in the bottom of the cast iron skillet. I like to put a little butter in the skillet and let it warm in the oven before adding the crust. Place the cast iron skillet (with crust) in preheated oven to let bottom crust begin to color. Remove from oven when the crust has a touch of color. Add apple mixture. Place second pie crust on top. Make sure to pat down around the edges. With a sharp knife, cut 3-4 steam vents. Brush with a bit of melted butter. Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until brown and bubbly. Let cool, but serve warm.

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chicken salad wrap

Hey curvy curlies, I hope you're well and enjoying the summer. I am in Southern California and it is lovely! Beautiful summer days and nights!

I don't know about you, but when it's warm out, I love the idea of simple, light fare for lunch and dinner. I recently put a spin on chicken salad by adding fresh dill, carrots and turmeric. Yumm! I hope you enjoy it.

Ingredients

2 chicken breast halves, roasted and shredded

1/2 cup carrots, celery, onions diced *Trader Joes sells a prepackaged container of mirepoix - perfect for eliminating the dicing step. Also, ready to use shredded carrots work great for this.

1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill

3 to 4 tablespoons of lite mayo with olive oil (nonfat plain Greek yogurt is a good substitute)

1 teaspoon tumeric

Salt and pepper to taste

1 medium peeled and sliced cucumber

1 medium tomato sliced (or sliced cherry tomatoes)

1 package lavish bread

Directions:

In a bowl, with a big mixing spoon, combine the shredded chicken, carrots, celery, and onions. Add in mayo or Greek yogurt, dill and turmeric and salt and pepper to taste. Spread chicken salad on a slice of lavish bread. Top with sliced cucumbers and tomatoes. Roll from one end to the other in a tight wrap. Slice in half on the diagonal or as desired.

Enjoy!

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Lila's vegetable curry

Lately when I'm shopping for groceries, meat is less and less appealing to me. I have decided to eliminate it from my diet for a while and in doing so, I'm working on meatless recipes that are rich in flavor and nutrients. The latest is this vegetable curry. Enjoy! 

Ingrdients: 

I large or 2 small sweet potato, cubed

1 medium yellow potato, cubed

2 c frozen green beans

1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (I use fire roasted)

1 small onion, diced

2 cloves garic, minced

1 tbs ginger, micrograted

1/4 c celery, chopped (optional)

1 small bell pepper, chopped

3/4 c coconut milk

2 c vegetable broth

1 tsp tumeric

2 tsp curry powder

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)

Sea salt and black pepper (to taste)

2 tbs olive oil

1 small lime

1/4 c cilantro

Directions: 

Sautee onion, garlic, pepper and ginger

Add broth

Stir in coconut milk  

Sdd tomatoes, turmeric and curry

Add potatoes and celery, stir and cover. Season with sea salt, cayenne and black pepper. Let simmer until potatoes start to soften (about 20 mins)

Add green beans, stir, cover, and let simmer another 5-10 minutes. Finish with a squeeze of lime juice and cilantro.

Serve over jasmine or brown rice

xx

Lila

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flu fighter

Last week I was knocked down by a terrible flu. By day 4, enough was enough,  so I dragged myself to the store and grabbed all the ingredients I needed for a pot of feel better. After one bowl, I could feel my help coming! I made enough for several bowls and plenty to freeze. Happy Healing!

Ingredients: 

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (optional)

1/2 pound whole wheat fusilli pasta

2 (32 oz) boxes vegetable broth low sodium

I can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes 

I bag petite baby carrots (for ease - no peeling)

3 stalks of celery, diced

1 small bell pepper, chopped

I small onion, diced

2 garlic cloves, micro grated

1-2 inch piece of ginger, micro grated

1/4 c chopped cilantro 

1 tsp tumeric

Sea salt, few pinches

Black pepper

1/2 small lime

Directions: 

Place the chicken and vegetables (sans carrots) in a large stockpot over medium heat. Pour in one box of vegetable broth. Add salt and pepper and allow it to slowly come to a boil. Lower the heat to medium-low and gently simmer for 45 minutes or until the chicken is done. 

Remove the chicken breasts to a cutting board. When it is cool enough to handle, hand-shred the meat or use kitchen scissors to cut and place into a bowl.  Set aside.

Stir in tumeric and add carrots to boiling broth. Replace shredded chicken to pot and stir in pasta. Add more broth if needed. Let cook 10 minutes or until carrots are just about tender. Finish with a squeeze of lime and cilantro.

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veggie pasta bake

Hey curvy curlies! Mama is going meatless! My goal is to transition to a vegetarian lifestyle, but-er-ah ...baby steps. 

I'm starting this trek with a yummy squash and whole wheat pasta bake!

The recipe I created is pretty unstructured, but it is easy enough for ANYONE to prepare and/or to make their own. 

Ingredients:

1 lb whole wheat pasta (I used fusili) 

2 large zucchini squash - cubed

2 large summer squash - cubed

2 tbs olive oil

1 medium onion, diced

1 small bell pepper, diced (I used yellow for color) 

2 cloves garlic, minced

28 oz can crushed tomatoes with basil

3/4 c lite mozzarella cheese

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain. Rinse in cold water to stop cooking. Set aside.

In large skillet, sautee onion, garlic, bell pepper and squash in olive oil.

Add crushed tomatoes to vegetables and mix thoroughly.

Add pasta to vegetable mixture until it is coated. 

Season with sea salt, black pepper and red chili flakes.

Pour mixture into baking dish.

Top with shredded mozzeralla and bake for 20 - 30 minutes or until cheese is bubbly, melted and starting to brown.

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Bon appetit! Next up, curry vegetables and cilantro brown rice!

Lila