Eggplant Grilled Cheese

Servings: 4  –  Total time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 eggplant slices, cut 1/2 inch thick
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • 8 slices sourdough or country bread

Directions

  1. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add eggplant slices and sauté for 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and black pepper.
  2. To assemble sandwiches, place about 1/8 of the mozzarella and parmesan cheeses on the bottom slice of bread. Layer the cooked eggplant and tomato slices on top. Place another 1/8 of the cheeses and the second slice of bread.
  3. Brush olive oil onto grill or panini press. Place sandwich on grill or press and heat until cheese has melted.

Adapted from the New York Times’ Grilled Eggplant Panini recipe.

Caramel Corn Chex Mix

Ingredients

  • 3 cups Apple Cinnamon Chex cereal
  • 4 cups popcorn (air popped or popped on the stove)
  • 2 cups honey roasted peanuts
  • 8 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup Karo syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 250°F.
  2. Place popcorn in a roasting pan.
  3. In a small saucepan, melt butter and stir in the Karo syrup and brown sugar. Once melted, remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Pour over cereal mix and stir to coat.
  4. Bake for 45 minutes, stirring halfway though.
  5. Separate popcorn from pan while still warm.  Mix popcorn with Chex and peanuts in a bowl. Enjoy!

Adapted from A Few Short Cuts’ Caramel Corn Chex Mix recipe.

Pumpkin Cake with Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting

Servings: 16 bars  –  Total time: 2 hours

Ingredients

For the cake:

  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 can pumpkin puree

For the frosting:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease a 9-in x 13-in pan.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the oil, sugar, and eggs until smooth. Stir in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, and allspice until smooth. Stir in the pumpkin puree until smooth.
  3. Pour the cake batter into the greased pan. Bake for about 45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  4. While the cake bakes, make the frosting. Beat the butter and cream cheese until combined. Add the brown sugar and mix completely. Mix in powdered sugar.
  5. Wait for the cake to cool completely before frosting. Store frosted cake in the refrigerator.

Adapted from Kitchen Trial and Error’s Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting recipe.

Spinach and Artichoke Grilled Cheese

Servings: 4  –  Total time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 8 slices of country bread
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan
  • 4 cups fresh baby spinach, with stems removed
  • 1 can artichoke hearts, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Directions

  1. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Cook spinach until wilted, about 2 minutes. Remove spinach from skillet.
  2. To assemble sandwiches, place about 1/8 of the mozzarella and parmesan cheeses on the bottom slice of bread. Layer the spinach and artichoke hearts on top. Place another 1/8 of the cheeses and the second slice of bread.
  3. Turn heat down to medium. Grill each side of the sandwich on the skillet until golden brown. Repeat steps 2 and 3 for remaining sandwiches.

Adapted from pdxfoodlove’s Spinach and Artichoke Grilled Cheese recipe.

Black Bean Fajitas

Servings: 4  –  Total time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 onion, cut into strips
  • 1 bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/4 cup salsa
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 8 fajita-sized tortillas
  • shredded Mexican cheese blend
  • shredded lettuce
  • diced tomatoes

Directions

  1. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and bell pepper and cook until softened, about 8 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.
  2. Add black beans, salsa, and cumin to skillet. Cook until liquid evaporates, about 5 minutes.
  3. Evenly divide the black bean mixture among the tortillas. Add the cooked onion and bell pepper and serve with lettuce, tomato, and cheese.

Adapted from Katherine Martinelli’s Vegetarian Fajita Wraps recipe.

Eggplant Parmesan

Servings: 4  –  Total time: 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 large eggplant, thinly sliced
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups bread crumbs
  • 3 cups spaghetti sauce
  • 8 ounces mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon basil
  • 8 ounces uncooked penne pasta

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Whisk egg in a bowl. Dip eggplant slices in egg, then in bread crumbs. Place in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for 5 minutes on each side.
  3. In a 9-in x 13-in baking dish, spread spaghetti sauce in a thin layer on the bottom. Place a layer of eggplant slices in the sauce. Sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses. Repeat with remaining ingredients with cheese as the last layer on top.
  4. Bake for 35 minutes or until golden brown.
  5. While eggplant bakes, cook pasta according to package directions. Serve eggplant over pasta.

Adapted from Allrecipes.com’s Eggplant Parmesan II recipe.