Posts Tagged ‘bacon!’

Gnocchi Alla Carbonara

Thursday, May 29th, 2014

Gnocchi alla carbonara is delicious and I am super sad that I didn’t invent it. I totally thought I did. I was looking in the cupboard at the gnocchi (I am team store-bought gnocchi all the way) and didn’t really want marinara and realized I had carbonara fixings and tada! I pulled it all together. Alas, my recipe invention status was not to be had. I had to check for the spellings of the recipe (so many things to get wrong: gnocci/gnocchi and alla/ala) and there was gnocchi alla carbonara, auto-populating my google results. Whatever.

gnocchi with bacon

Behold! Gnocchi alla carbonara – a dish more delicious than attractive, but so, so delicious.
Serves 2 to 4 depending on hunger levels/other dishes

1 package pre-made gnocchi (I love the trader joe’s one)
3 strips bacon
1 egg
freshly ground black pepper lots/to taste
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese


  1. Put water on for gnocchi (follow package directions)
  2. In a pan on medium/medium-high heat, get bacon cooking
  3. When bacon is done cooking, remove from pan. Put on plate with paper towels to blot some grease and then chop and set aside. Do not discard bacon grease from bacon pan.
  4. Gnocchi should be going in the boiling water right about now.
  5. Measure out parmesan and set aside.
  6. Crack and lightly beat egg into a measuring cup or small bowl. Grind some pepper in to the egg and keep that grinder handy.
  7. Make sure your prep work is done by the time the gnocchi is cooked.
  8. Ready? Let’s go! Do the following in order as quickly as possible and be ready to serve. (I normally make a salad before I start making the carbonara and call it good for dinner).
  • Drain gnocchi in colander in the sink, return to pan.
  • Pour bacon grease from bacon pan over gnocchi to coat, not all of it. Just make them shiny.
  • Add egg. Toss to coat.
  • Add chopped bacon, gently mix
  • Add more pepper, gently mix
  • Add parmesan, gently mix
  • Put in dishes, add more black pepper and parmesan to top. Serve with more parmesan/pepper on the side if the people eating have different levels of cheesy, peppery goodness levels.


BCB Soup {Broccoli, Cheddar, Bacon}

Monday, May 21st, 2012

Sometimes, I want a a broccoli soup that is a little less kapow broccoli flavor than my usual version. This is my solution for those times and although it isn’t the healthiest of soups, it sure is delicious.

Broccoli, Cheddar and Bacon Soup



  • 3 russet potatoes
  • 8 ounces of brocolli
  • 3 slices bacon
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • water
  • 1 cup milk {I use whole}
  • 3/4 c – 1 c mild cheddar cheese, grated
  • 2 shallots or a half of a small onion
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • salt
  • pepper

The How To

  1. Place bacon in a skillet and cook over medium heat until bacon is browned and cooked through.
  2. While the bacon is cooking, rinse and scrub potatoes. I leave the skins on for extra nutrients, but peel if you must. Roughly chop and throw in a soup pan with water to cover and a dash of salt. Bring to a boil over medium high heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork.
  3. When potatoes are cooked, add broccoli to pot and cover. It will cook in just a few minutes and turn bright green when finished cooking.
  4. When bacon is finished cooking, remove from pan, chop and set aside. Put shallots in bacon grease and cook until translucent. Add garlic.
  5. Continue cooking until garlic is browned, reduce heat and sprinkle flour over shallot mixture and cook for a few minutes until flour is cooked through.
  6. Start adding some of the potato broccoli water to the flour mixture, about a half cup at a time. The mixture will make a paste and then thin out to a liquid.
  7. Reduce heat and whisk in the milk.
  8. Carefully pour the milk-shallot mixture in to the potato-broccoli mixture.
  9. Add the chopped bacon, leaving aside a few pieces for garnish if desired.
  10. If using an immersion blender, lower heat and puree mixture in the pot and then slowly puree in the cheese.
  11. If using a food processor or blender, remove pan from heat and puree in batches. Return to pot and whisk in the cheese a small handful at a time, waiting until each handful is melted before adding more.
  12. Taste and add more salt if needed and a smidge of black pepper (or a ton if black pepper makes you happy).
  13. Simmer a few more minutes and serve and enjoy. Garnish with bacon if desired.
Serves 4



Carbonara Inspired Deviled Eggs

Monday, November 14th, 2011

One of the reasons I started Soup or Salad Blog was a conversation about pasta salad. In fact, I wanted to start a pasta salad blog until I realized that was a little too focused. I wanted to turn dishes in to pasta salads, then regular salads, as an alternative to a hot dish: BLT salad, for example. One of the things I could never get to work was carbonara pasta salad. I thought about trying to make carbonara egg salad instead, but never got around to it. Last week, I needed to make deviled eggs to take to a potluck and I remembered the carbonara/egg salad idea and adapted it to stuffing it in an egg.

I hesitate to publish a recipe for deviled eggs because they can be a little temperamental. You may need more or less mayo or milk. You might prefer more or less pepper. This recipe would be easily halved or doubled (super egg party!) just taste as you do. The parmesan does make these a little dry out more quickly than my usual deviled eggs, so keep them covered and don’t make them more than an hour or two in advance.

Carbonara Deviled Eggs
Makes 24 halves
12 eggs
3 Tablespoons mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons milk
2 heaping tablespoons parmesan cheese, grated, plus some for garnish
1/2 pound bacon (cooked/crumbled) about 1/2 cup or so
1 teaspoon yellow mustard (this is mostly to yellow up the filling, feel free to omit)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
salt (maybe. If your cheese is pretty salty, you won’t need it, but taste and see)

  1. Cook the eggs (I bring to a boil, starting in cold water. Then, turn off the heat and let sit for 11 minutes. Drain. Then put in a strainer with some ice and let sit at least 30 minutes)
  2. Cook the bacon and chop the bacon (while cooking the eggs or before. You will want the bacon at room temperature or cooler when mixing with the eggs.) I just make some extra when I’m cooking bacon and eggs or something.
  3. Peel the (cooled completely) eggs and slice lengthwise.
  4. Pop the yolk out into a mixing bowl and put the whites onto a plate or tray.
  5. Mash egg yolks with a fork and add remaining ingredients (excluding cheese for garnish) one at a time and mix well between each addition.
  6. Taste and adjust seasonings. Add more mayo a little at a time if it’s dry. The mayonnaise can over-power the parmesan cheese flavor, so use judiciously.
  7. I usually use a piping bag for filling deviled eggs, but the bacon pieces got stuck. I had to use the heaping spoon method: Holding an egg white in one hand and a heaping spoonful of yolk filling in the other, press the filling down into the indented space in the egg white. Twist the spoon slightly to keep the yolk in the indentation and then use the back of the spoon to smooth the mound of filling. Repeat for all eggs.
  8. Using a vegetable peeler, shave pieces off of the side of a wedge of parmesan and place on top of the eggs for garnish. Or, top with a mound of finely grated cheese, a sprinkle of extra pepper or a light dusting of a colored salt (pink sea salt or a grey smoked salt). I know paprika is a traditional garnish for deviled eggs, but the flavor would really overwhelm the parmesan in these eggs.
  9. Take to a party and impress your friends! Or just eat them at home. Either way, delicious.





Cowboy Beans

Friday, September 30th, 2011

I love this recipe for cowboy beans.  It’s so rustic and fun, but a completely different flavor profile than any of my usual chili recipes. It is based on a cowboy bean recipe from a spice catalog, but that one used a proprietary seasoning that I didn’t use and I tweaked the ingredients enough that I feel comfortable posting my own recipe. Plus, cowboy beans are a thing, so if they tried to claim it, it would be like Dinty Moore claiming Beef Stew.

The funny thing about this recipe is I did my final tasting and still felt like something was missing. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it and than I had a flash inspiration: my mom always added ketchup to baked beans, I add just a little to the pot and the beans were just perfect. Love it. Thanks mom! I served this with baked onion rings, but would be great with cornbread or as a side for steak or burgers. I think it is going to be my next potluck dish for sure.

cowboy beans

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Cowboy Beans
Serves 4 as a main, 6 to 8 as a side
4 strips bacon
1 pound ground beef
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 teaspoon dried minced onion (or throw a half a fresh chopped onion in with the beef)
2 15-oz cans of baked beans (I used TJs, for )
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning (or 1/4 teaspoon each dried basil and oregano)
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1 tablespoon ketchup
1 cup corn kernels (cooked off the cob, frozen or canned (drained))
salt and pepper to taste (this will vary depending on the beans used)
1/4 cup grated jack, cheddar or colby cheese

  1. In a skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until cooked through. Remove from pan and drain grease.
  2. Cook the ground beef in the bacon pan, seasoning with garlic, cayenne, onion and a dash of salt. Cook the hamburger thoroughly and transfer to your soup pot with a slotted spoon. (Or drain it. I’m lazy)
  3. Add the baked beans (undrained) and bacon to the hamburger in the pot. Depending on the consistency of the beans, you may want to add a little water. I added just shy of half a can, but the beans I used were thick.
  4. Add Italian seasoning, chili powder, ketchup and a bit of salt and pepper, bring to a simmer and cook uncovered for about 30 minutes.
  5. Stir in the corn and cook for an additional 5 minutes to bring the corn to temperature.
  6. Adjust seasonings to taste if desired.
  7. Garnish with a little grated cheese (if desired).
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