Scrumptious sides

So I post a bunch of recipes for yummy main dishes on my blog and I post my share of delish desserts but today I am taking y’all in a different direction. Scrumptious sides. That’s right. Think about it…ribs, steak, roast, chicken…they are all yummy. Main dishes are nice but let’s not forget the beauty in the sides. The necessity of the sides. They are not decoration. They stretch our meals and add dimension. Usually we choose sides to enhance whatever main dish we are making. Some people look forward to the sides. I think it is high time I make a post about side dishes because it has been a while. The three, yes, three, I am posting about, are divine. Listen word of advice…if I go cookoo for a veggie dish…please know that is beyond wonderful. These dishes are show stoppers. They will make the main dish do a double take and maybe feel a little insecure. They are good. Fabulous. Wonderful. I could make a meal of just these sides dishes. And bonus…they are all vegetables!!! Think of the beautiful color they will add to your plate and the presentation of your meal. The first one is maple glazed carrots. The other is bacon wrapped asparagus with this savory sweet balsamic glaze. And finally my all time favorite…squash zucchini gratin. Oh my these 3 cover all your bases. Enjoy!!!~AMB

Maple Glazed Carrots (original post can be found here http://www.thecountrycook.net/2011/10/maple-glazed-carrots.html?m=1)

20140430-085335.jpg

Stuff you need~

1 pound bag of carrots, peeled and cut into chunks on the diagonal
3 tablespoons butter, melted
3 tablespoons brown sugar (light or dark), packed
2 tablespoons maple syrup

what to do with the stuff~
In a skillet, melt butter over medium heat along with the syrup and brown sugar. Stir in carrot chunks and give them a stir so they can get coated in all that syrupy sweetness. Now, cover and let this cook over low heat until the carrots are fork tender, stirring a few times to ensure more even cooking. About 20 minutes. Serve along side roast chicken, meatloaf, baked fish (big daddy’s fave). Enjoy!

Now, this bacon wrapped asparagus. Oh my. Wow. Yum. Yummo. Sweet Baby Jesus, that is some good stuff y’all. We went to Bayou LaGrue for Easter and my mother in law had bought some asparagus and I had just gotten Trisha Yearwood’s most recent cookbook and lo and behold…there was a recipe in there for this treat disguised as a vegetable. You heard me. Utter deliciousness. Make it. You can thank Trisha Yearwood.

20140430-111334.jpg
awesome cookbook y’all!!!
Bacon Wrapped Asparagus aka asparagus bundles

2 pounds fresh asparagus, ends trimmed
12 slices bacon
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup or 1 stick butter
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

What to do with the stuff~
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
Now, divide your trimmed asparagus spears into 12 bundles. Wrap 1 piece of bacon around each bundle. Start about 1/2 inch from the bottom and wrap upward. Secure the bundles with a toothpick. Place each bundle in a 9 x 13 inch casserole dish.

Next, in a medium saucepan, whisk together brown sugar, soy sauce, butter, garlic salt, and pepper. Bring this to a boil. Pour this hot concoction over the bundles. Try not to stick your
finger in this to taste it…you will burn your finger. Ask me how I know…put dish in oven and roast (cook) for 25 minutes or until the spears are starting to wilt and the bacon looks fully cooked. Remove toothpicks and watch them disappear. So good!!!

20140430-115426.jpg
make them once and you will crave them. I want some now.

Squash and yellow zucchini gratin (original post can be seen herehttp://www.marthastewart.com/337701/zucchini-and-yellow-squash-gratin)

Ok y’all are in for a real treat here. The other two recipes were kind of sweet and yummy. This one is creamy and savory and kind of simply wonderful. My homegirl Joni made this for us one day last summer and I fell in love. It sealed the deal that we would be friends forever. Joni likes to say she cannot cook, but as far as I am concerned if she introduced me to this fab recipe, she is golden. Not to mention, she is one of the most loyal, precious friends a girl could have. She is a teeny little thing with dark hair and dark eyes and has sass and spunk to spare. I just love her. More than I love
this recipe actually and that is a lot! So, give it a try. It is easy and a great way to use up all that squash and zucchini that grows so well in our gardens during the summer. Better get BD to get on top of that garden.

20140430-121206.jpg
my beautiful friend Joni with my oldest….she is his best friend’s mom and he thinks she is pretty cool (I do too)

Stuff you need~
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped (or 1 teaspoon of the jarred stuff)
2 medium zucchini, sliced
2 medium yellow squash, sliced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons REAL butter
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

What to do with the stuff~
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat then add zucchini, yellow squash and minced garlic. Season with kosher salt and black pepper to taste. Cook over medium heat until squash and zucchini are crisp tender, about 5 or 6 minutes. Stir in heavy cream and cook over medium heat until cream is thickened. Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 cup of Panko and 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan.
Transfer this mixture to a shallow 2 quart baking dish. Sprinkle remaining panko and Parmesan. Bake until warm throughout and breadcrumbs are golden brown, about 8-10 minutes. Holy yumminess this stuff is good!!!

20140430-122422.jpg
this pic does not do this dish justice…probably my favorite vegetable dish

I hope y’all enjoy these recipes! Getting delicious veggies in your diet is so important. And easy.

20140430-130150.jpg
Ben and his friend, Aidan. Or my mini me and Joni’s mini me in male form. Gotta love that!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s