Friday, August 31, 2012

HTML What?

               If you were on my site sometime late Sunday into Monday, you would have said "what happened?  It looks messed up."  That's because it got messed up, by me.  Keep reading. 

               If you read my blog post on how to create a drop down menu, which you can find here, you will have learned that is where I started learning about HTML.

               HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language.  It is the code that programmers use to create pages or to send emails on the internet.  Everything on a site, the text, graphics are all tagged with codes that tells the browser how to display those elements.

               In order to create the drop down menu, I needed to place the code for it in my blogger template, and I needed to add this code to my layout so I could have the tabs that say "Home", "Recipes", etc.

              Every time I would add a new post to the site, I would have to add more HTML code to the layout HTML so it would show up in the drop down menu.  I was quickly realizing that I was running out of room for these drop downs.  They were getting into the posts, and pretty soon they would become unclickable.

               I decided that I needed to find a new way to have people navigate my site that would be "neater".  I realized since the recipes were getting out of hand that I should consolidate them into appetizers, main dishes, etc.

Thursday, August 30, 2012


            I did not set out to make pierogies today.  I had, after all never made them before.  Why would it even pop in my mind to make pierogies?

           Today was a school day.  It was actually my 5 year olds first day!  I started her on, of which I will be posting a review soon.

           So after a full first day of school, feeding the kids, cleaning up, why would I want to make pierogies?  My 21 month olds favorite food is gnocchi.  I have lots of potatoes waiting to be cooked.  Gnocchi are made for potatoes so gnocchi was on the afternoon's agenda.  They didn't look hard to make.  Nope, never made them before either, but I was not afraid.  I'd conquered other recipes after all.

           I knew I needed potatoes that were cooked, so I put 2 potatoes in the oven to bake.  Then I went to get all the other ingredients.  I realized that I didn't have the right flour for gnocchi.  You need a very low protein flour.  King Arthur Flour sells it as Italian Style Flour.  You can use pastry flour, but I didn't have that either.  I had potatoes cooking in the oven.  I had to do something with them now.  Hmmm, potatoes and dough.  Got it, pierogies!

         So at 3:30 in the afternoon, I proceeded to find a recipe and gather ingredients.  I ended up modifying a recipe from King Arthur Flour.

         I knew that pierogies were a bit of work, and my time would be wasted unless I made enough that could be frozen for the future.  Yes, another food you can freeze for the future!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Parmesan Crusted Chicken with Mock Alfredo Sauce

          A few years ago I remember reading that the worst thing you could order in a restaurant was any dish with an Alfredo Sauce.  It was like a heart attack on a plate.  Such a shame, because it is so good.  It is definitely a dish I have stayed clear of because of all the fat.

          I wanted to share my version of a mock Alfredo Sauce.  It got 2 thumbs up from the family, and they are harsh critics.

         There is no cheese in it and no cream in it.  The only fat comes from 1 Tbl of butter.  Somehow it still tastes like a tangy Alfredo.

         I do serve it with Parmesan Crusted Chicken Breasts, so there is some fat in that.  You can always use the sauce tossed with some pasta vegetables as well.

       For the chicken, here are the ingredients.

  1. 2 lbs chicken breast with rib meat
  2. 4 Tbl flour
  3. 1/4 skim milk
  4. 1 egg
  5. 1/2 tsp salt
  6. 1/4 tsp pepper
  7. 1/2 tsp oregano
  8. 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  9. 1 Cup bread crumbs
  10. 1/2 Cup parmesan cheese
  11. olive oil for frying
Pre- heat your oven to 350F.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Creating a Drop Down Menu for Labels

            For those of you who regularly read my new blog, you will notice another change.  I managed to create a drop down menu for my labels.  It is located on the right side of the blog.  You simply need to just click on the drop down box and all of the labels will show up.

           I have no computer experience but for using programs other people have created.  The process of creating this drop down menu took all of 5 minutes after I let myself breath and go for it.  It is daunting to mess with your blog, especially when it is all new to you.

          I am taking one day at a time, and when I have a free few minutes to dabble, which doesn't happen too often with 4 kids, I try my hardest.  It's usually when daddy is home, or at night, and honestly I am ready for bed by 9.

        Well as I was saying this change to my blog was so easy, I thought I would make a post for it.

        The web address for the directions is
 Your labels will go from looking like this

Regular Labels List for Blogger
to looking like this


The step by step directions are simple.

The link for the directions is here.

Good luck!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Fixing Bugs

           To all my readers, first thank you for reading this blog.  Second, I have been tinkering with things to make the blog more navigable and less cluttered.  I noticed that while I loved my drop down menu, my new tabs in recipe were taking too much room.  I needed to consolidate my tabs and organize them better.

          I will be posting about my experience with trying to figure out how to do this.  It was a long night, and I had to be bright and bushy-tailed to teach school to the kids.

         Suffice it to say that my fix worked eventually for Firefox, but there is still a glitch in Internet Explorer.  So right now the site is best viewed in Firefox, which is my browser of choice.  I will be working to fix Internet Explorer.  Until I get it fixed, if you are looking for recipes, you can always look at labels and click on cooking, or scroll through the archives on the lower right of the page.

          Thanks for baring with me.  I am learning as I am going.


          Yes, I fixed the glitch!  Such an easy fix once I went to read my blog post on how I created the drop down menu.   So if your browser is Internet Explorer you shouldn't have a problem.  I least I hope not.

Monkey Muffins

          I call these Monkey Muffins, not because they have anything to do with Monkey Bread.  I call them that because I use banana vanilla yogurt.  It's the Banilla from Stony Field Farm actually.  I love banana ice cream with chocolate chips, so this is a take on that in a muffin.

          These are super moist muffins because of the yogurt inside.  You can definitely freeze these so they can make a quick breakfast meal any time during the week when you're in a rush.

         I use whole wheat flour and flax seed meal in these muffins, so there is some nutrition in them.

Here are the ingredients.

  1. 1 Cup all purpose flour
  2. 1 1/2 Cup white whole wheat flour
  3. 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  4. 1 tsp baking soda
  5. 1/4 Cup golden flax seed meal
  6. 1/2 tsp salt
  7. 2 eggs
  8. 1 1/2 Cup banilla yogurt
  9. 1/4 Cup sugar
  10. 4 Tbl melted butter
  11. 1 Cup chocolate chips
Makes 32 mini muffins.

Please note that you can adapt this recipe for what you have on hand.  You can use only all purpose flour, omit the flax, and use a different flavor yogurt.

Preheat your oven to 375F.

First combine all of your dry ingredients(items 1-6) in a bowl and mix.

Then mix your eggs, melted butter, sugar, and yogurt in another bowl.

Afterwards combine the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until combined.  Then add your chocolate chips if desired.

I made mini muffins.  I placed mini muffin/mini cupcake holders in a mini muffin pan.  I then filled each one about 3/4 of the way up.  It was about a tablespoon full.

Then place the muffins in the middle rack of your oven for 12 minutes.  Check with a cake tester to make sure they are done.  If you are making full size muffins, cooking time may be 18 minutes or longer.

Once out of the oven, take the muffins out of the muffin pan and place them on a cooling rack.  If they stay too long in the pan they will get hard and dry.

Once they are cooled, you can freeze them by placing them in a Zip Lock bag or a plastic storage container.  To defrost, take them out of the freezer the night before, or a few hours before you plan to eat them, and place them on your counter in a plastic bag or a storage container.  Breakfast done!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Pizza Rolls

         Who doesn't like pizza?  How about a pizza that's all in its own little bundle.  I am talking about pizza rolls.  Not those teeny, tiny, rubbery pieces of dough with some sort of weak filling that a frozen food company passes off as a pizza snack.  I am talking about a substantial dough with actual filling you can see and discern what is inside.  A pizza roll that you can prepare ahead of time and freeze for a future date.  A pizza roll you actually feel good about feeding to your family.

          You can use whatever filling you like in your pizza.  Just do not make it very wet, or runny.  The dough will become rubbery then after re-heating.  I do not use tomato sauce for example.  I use a tomato paste mixed with Italian spices.  You can also put no tomato paste, and just serve the rolls with sauce on the side.

           The pizza rolls I made today were just cheese and tomato paste for my picky son.

           The dough is the same as for the Stromboli, and it is the same technique up until the filling part.

Here are the ingredients again for the dough.

  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 7/8 to 1 1/8 cups warm water
  • 2 tablespoons garlic oil (or olive oil)
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon Pizza Dough Flavor (optional but good)
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
Put all the ingredients in your bread maker or knead by hand or with a stand mixer with the dough attachment.

If you are kneading by hand, let the dough rise for at least an hour.  It did take an hour and a half for my dough to rise to the point where I wanted it in my bread maker. 

Take your dough and roll it on a floured parchment paper on your baking sheet.  (I do it this way to save on clean up.)  Make sure to flour your dough, it is sticky!  Roll it into a rectangle and then use a pizza cutter to cut 2-3 inch strips, depending on how wide you want your rolls.  Here is how mine looked.
As you can see, I topped them with tomato paste mixed with Italian seasoning and mozzarella cheese.  You can of course use what topping you desire, just remember to not make it wet.  Now just fold the dough over to cover the filling.  For the wedges on the edges, I just rolled them up like mini stromboli.  Pinch your edges so the filling doesn't come out.  Brush the top with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and garlic powder.  Then allow to rise again for 30 minutes.

You can now preheat your oven to 400F

After the 30 minutes bake them for 15 minutes or so, when the crust turns light golden.  If the rolls are stuck to each other, carefully separate them.

Here are mine.  Look, you can see the filling!  Yummy, yummy!
A tip for defrosting after freezing.  This works for me.  Place the rolls in your oven set at 350F.  After 10 minutes take them out and slice them in half.  Then put them in the microwave for 20 seconds.  That works on getting all the cheese remelted well without anything drying out.


Saturday, August 25, 2012


       A while back I decided that it was very important to me to get my family away from processed foods.  To cook things from scratch like our grandparents did is also great for the kids.  They realize that "hey, dinner doesn't come from Stouffer's", or whatever other large prepackaging food conglomerate is out there.

     You can share the joy of cooking with them.  They will learn that cooking is fun and shouldn't be a chore.  You can also use it as an opportunity to teach them recipes that you grew up with.  It's a way to pass down your heritage, and for them to know they can be proud of it because they see that you are.
      Here is an easy recipe for stromboli.  What I like about it is the dough is home made.  It's not store bought crescent dough.  It's dough that you can make and control the ingredients.    It's also one of those foods you can cook ahead of time and freeze.  So on a busy day when you are rushed you can just pop it out of the freezer and put it in your toaster oven or oven.  It can also include multiple food group, your carbohydrates, vegetables, dairy, and meat.  How's that for a complete meal?
      I used the stromboli dough recipe from King Arthur Flour.

     Again, the bread maker is handy here.  I don't know how I lived without it.

     Remember that instant yeast is just the yeast dissolved in a solution of warm water and sugar.  In this case it is 2 tsp of yeast dissolved in 1/4 cup of warm water and 1/4 tsp of sugar.

      Here are the ingredients for the Stromboli dough.

  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 7/8 to 1 1/8 cups warm water
  • 2 tablespoons garlic oil (or olive oil)
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon Pizza Dough Flavor (optional but good)
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
Put all the ingredients in your bread maker or knead by hand or with a stand mixer with the dough attachment.

If you are kneading by hand, let the dough rise for at least an hour.  Here is what mine looked like after the first rise.  It took more than an hour to rise this much.  So after the dough cycle ended, I just kept letting it rise until the dough rose to the point I wanted.

After the dough has risen, roll it out into a rectangle shape. ( The dough is  sticky.  I rolled it right on my baking sheet that was covered with parchment paper. I placed flour on it and the rolling pin. You definitely need the flour to prevent sticking.  Don't be shy with it. )

Fill the dough with your toppings, leaving at least a one inch border of dough.  For the toppings I used broccoli sauteed in olive oil with garlic.  I also sauteed spinach in olive oil and onions and garlic.

I chopped the broccoli finely after sauteing.

 I placed these fillings on the rolled out dough and then proceeded to top them with cheese.  I used mozzarella and parmesan on the broccoli half and feta, mozzarella, and parmesan on the spinach half.  

I then proceeded to roll it up.  I pinched the ends.

Then cover the stromboli and allow it to rise again for about 30 minutes.
Brush the stromboli with olive oil and top with salt and garlic powder, or Italian seasoning if you desire.

Then pop it in a pre-heated 400F oven.  Allow it to cook until the dough turns a light golden color.  It took 25 minutes in my oven.

Take it out, slice, and serve as is or with tomato sauce.
 Whatever doesn't get eaten, wrap up and freeze for another day.  

         This may have sounded like a lot of work, but it really isn't.  The actual hands on time was probably 30 minutes.  The largest amount of time is waiting for the dough to rise.  In between rising you can get your filling together, or get some chores done.

         The end product is so worth it.  Give it a try!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Summer Squash Casserole

       Our yellow summer squash plants have slowly stopped producing.  Back in the beginning of the summer, I had to give lots of squash away because I couldn't keep up with its production.  Now that I am not getting as much squash I am kind of longing for those days of when it was taking up half of my fridge space.
       Most kids don't like vegetables.  I know I didn't go out of my way to eat them.  My mom made a squash recipe from her childhood for me that I loved.  I didn't even mind that I was eating vegetables.  It was just that good.   I have used the same "make vegetables tasty" approach in my family.  Here is my oldest child's favorite recipe that I make with yellow summer squash.  It is a take-off of my mom's because you bake it as a casserole, where hers was a stuffed squash. 
       You can adjust the ingredients for the amount of squash you have.  Alas, I just had two. (Sigh)

  1. 8 oz. of quartered yellow squash
  2. 1 small onion chopped
  3. 6 oz of feta cheese
  4. 1/2 cup of milk
  5. 2 eggs
  6. 1 Tbl of chopped dill
  7. 1 tsp of salt
  8. 1/4 tsp of pepper
  9. 1 cup of breadcrumbs (panko or home made
  10. 1/4 cup plus 1 Tbl of olive oil
  11. 1/4 cup of shredded parmesan cheese
Pre-heat your oven to 375F
Cut your squash in quarters and place in a microwave safe bowl.  Add enough water to fill the bottom and microwave for 8-10 minutes depending on how much squash you used.  Mine were fine after 9 minutes.  You want the squash soft.

Saute your onions in a pan with 1 Tbl of oil and cook them until they are translucent.
Then when the squash is done place the onion in the bowl with the squash. (Don't forget to drain the water from the bowl first.) Add your feta, milk, dill, salt, and pepper.
Now with your stick blender or with a food processor, puree those ingredients to your liking.  You can leave some chunks.  In my family, smooth is preferred.  (It's the hide the vegetable thing.) You can now taste for seasoning adjustments if you so desire.

After add your eggs and mix them in.
Then add half of your bread crumbs.
Place the squash in a greased 8x8 baking dish.
Top the casserole with the parmesan cheese.

Then take your  remaining bread crumbs and mix it with the 1/4 cup of olive oil.  Top the casserole with the bread crumbs.

Cover the dish with foil and bake in the oven for 45 minutes.  You will see it bubble. Take off the foil for the last 5 minutes of cooking so the topping gets crispy.

I have served this as a main dish, and it is definitely a great side dish.  You can also substitute cheddar cheese for feta if you don't have feta on hand.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Falafel "Burgers"

        I love falafel.  I grew up in New York where there were pizza shops that would make traditional Middle Eastern falafel sandwiches.  They were definitely one of my favorite things to eat.

       Now I haven't lived in New York for a really long time, so every time I would come across a place that served falafel, I would always take the leap and order it, only to be disappointed.  They would be all green on the inside and mushy.  They tasted like I don't know what, but they definitely were not the falafel that I knew.  The falafel that I knew tasted so good, that you ignored you were eating a dish made out of chick peas(garbanzo beans).  Super crunchy on the outside and definitely not a mushy goop in your mouth.

     I came across a recipe for falafel at Home Cooking in Montana.  I decided that it was time after all these years, and its been many, to try and create the falafel of my childhood.

    Normally, falafel are round balls.  I have decided to make them burger shaped.  This shape saves on oil amounts.  You do need to fry them.  There is no way you can make a good falafel unless you fry them.  If you're going to make something, make it right.  Since I normally do not fry that much, a fried food once in a while is perfectly fine.  I have no guilt.  Besides, chick peas are healthy.  They contain iron, fiber, and loads of potassium.
     Here is my recipe for falafel.
     My recipe calls for 1 lb of chick peas(garbanzo beans).  If you have a smaller food processor you may want to halve the recipe, or make it in 2 batches.

  1. 1 package 16oz of dried chick peas.  
  2. 2 onions chopped
  3. 3 garlic cloves
  4. 1/2 cup of fresh parsley
  5.  1 tsp cumin
  6. 1 1/2 tsp coriander
  7. 2 1/2 tsp salt
  8. 1 Tbl fresh squeezed lemon juice
  9. 2 tsp baking powder
  10. 5 - 6 Tbl flour 
This makes about 18 patties.

First, since you are using dry chick peas they need to soak overnight.  You will not get the right texture if you use canned.  It sounds like an extra hassle but it's not.  Just get a pot or large bowl, place your package of chick peas in it and cover with 8 cups of cold water.  Then go to bed.  When you wake up those chick peas will have expanded so that the they are almost past the level of the water.

Next morning or at least 8 hours later, get your processor out.  Place your onions, parsley, and garlic and pulse the mixture is minced really well.

Then add your spices, lemon juice, and chick peas to the processor.  Process this until the mixture is smooth.

Then add your baking powder and flour.  Start with 4 Tbl of flour.  Process again.
 Check on the consistency of the mixture.  You want the mixture to be able to hold up to being rolled.  If it can't be rolled in a ball easily and not stick to your hand, add another tablespoon of flour.  5 Tbl worked for me.

Take your falafel mixture, cover it and place in the fridge for 2 hours.

When you are ready to cook them, place your oil(I use canola), in your frying pan on medium heat.  You can check the temperature of the oil by taking a small amount of the mixture and place it in the oil.  If it sizzles, the oil is ready.  Now make small patties with them, about the size of your palm and place in the oil.  When the bottom turns golden brown, carefully flip them over.

I served them up my placing them on a roll.  You can always use pita bread, but since I was going for "burgers",  I used a bun.  I topped them with tahina sauce, which you can find in the kosher section of your supermarket.  It's made from sesame seeds and is a traditional topping for falafel.  Also top with pickles, and tomatoes.

       Now all I can say about this dish is that I can't say enough.  These were the falafel of my childhood,  just a different shape.  They were sooooo good.  Finally, after all these years. 

       What's also great about these are that you can freeze the left- overs and just reheat them in your oven or toaster oven.  So any time you want, you can have a quick sandwich.  Most people have rolls of some sort handy in the house, not so much pita bread.  So having them burger shaped makes them convenient to put together as a sandwich.

      This is a great vegetarian dish that I hope you will try.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Pita Bread

     I was not going to post about pita bread. This was just a spur of the moment idea I had on a Sunday.  Let's make pita bread!  It was just so easy to do, and came out so great that I had to share the recipe.    Seriously easy.  My now 9 year old boy, (they grow up so quickly), could even make it.

    The recipe was from King Arthur Flour.

The ingredient list:

  • 3 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • *2 teaspoons King Arthur Easy-Roll Dough Improver
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • Now I did not have the instant yeast or the Easy-Roll Dough improver. For the instant yeast just dissolve 2 tsp of active dry yeast in 1/4 cup of water that is about 110F and 1/4 tsp sugar.  After 5 minutes the mixture should be all bubbly.  (Those were the proofing directions on my package of active dry yeast, and they worked.)

    For the Easy- Roll Dough improver you can just add a tsp of baking powder.  This is supposed to be for the puffing of the pita's.  Now, I will admit that I forgot to add the baking powder.  No big deal though, because as you'll see from the pictures my pita's puffed up. They were like balloons!

    I used my bread maker for this, but you don't need to.  Just mix all of the ingredients and knead by hand or with a mixer with the dough attachment.  Remember that if you had active dry yeast and needed to proof it then you will only need 3/4 cup of water.  If you have instant then add the whole cup of water.  Let the dough rise for an hour.

    In the bread machine I added the yeast mixture, 3/4 of water, and the rest of the ingredients.  I then put it on the dough cycle and let it go.  It is a 1 hour and 45 minute cycle from warming up, to kneading, and then rising.  What's great about the bread maker is that I was able to go to the store after I turned it on.  The dough must also be really forgiving because by the time I got home it had been done for 15 minutes, and the end product was still great.

    I then prepared two baking sheets by covering them with parchment paper. I also turned my oven on to 500F.  One rack was on the lowest setting, and the other was in the middle.

    Then I rolled the dough out of the bread maker and divided it into 8 round pieces.  I rolled them into about 6 inch circles with my rolling pin.  They did not stick to the rolling pin.  I got 4 of them on each baking sheet.

    I covered them with plastic wrap and let them rise for 15 minutes.

    I then put them in the oven on the lowest rack for 5 minutes.  They were puffed up by the end of the minutes, and that's without the baking powder.

    Then I put them on the upper rack for 2 minutes.  Please leave your oven light on and keep watch on them, because they could go from golden brown to burnt quite easily.

    After the 2 minutes, take them out and wrap them in a clean dishcloth.  That's it!

    Because I used the bread machine, the only real active time I had was rolling out the dough.  This was really easy and successful as you can tell from the photo's.

    They taste much better than store bought for sure!

    Tuesday, August 21, 2012

    Farro Salad

        Farro is something new to me actually.  It is not a new grain though.  Apparently it is quite an ancient grain and was mainly grown in Italy.  You can read about it here.  I recently tried it in a restaurant.  They had it as a main ingredient in a salad and I loved it.  I knew I had to try and make it some day.
       While at the supermarket the other day in the "organic/ natural" section looking for dried chick peas, I came across a package of Farro.  I then remembered I wanted to try and cook it at home, so I took it.  Hmm, there was just one other package left, so either it's popular, or the supermarket doesn't order that much of it.  Granted I live in more of a rural setting, so who knows?

        Farro has a chewy texture and seems to take the flavor of what you dress it with.  It apparently is super healthy as it is a whole grain.  Have I not convinced you to try it?  Please do, it's really, really good.
    It is really easy to cook, no different than cooking pasta actually.

    I made a salad like the one I enjoyed in the restaurant.  I was not sure of the ingredients that the restaurant had used, but I was really pleased with the recipe I came up with.

    1. 1 cup of farro
    2. 3 cups of water
    3. 1 cup of halved grape tomatoes
    4. a handful of parsley
    5. 1/4 cup of feta cheese
    6. 1 clove of minced garlic
    7. 3 Tbl balsamic vinegar
    8. 1/4 cup canola oil
    9. 1/2 tsp of salt
    10. dash of pepper
    The directions on the farro said to rinse them first, so I rinsed the cup of them.  Add the farro to 3 cups of water in a small pot.  (You do not add the farro after the water has boiled.)  Once the water has boiled set your timer for 15 minutes.

    In the meantime cut up your tomatoes and chop up the parsley.  Add them to a bowl.  Add your feta cheese.   Feta is optional.  I figured this is a Mediterranean dish so Feta seemed a natural add in, and I like it.

    In a small mixing bowl, combine your garlic, oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper.

    Once the farro is done cooking after 15 minutes, drain it and let it cool a bit.  Once it is cooled add it to the tomato and parsley mixture.  Then top it off with the dressing.
    You can serve it right away or place in the refrigerator and serve it up cold.

    It is a great, light summer dish.  And maybe farro is a new food you can enjoy as well?

    Monday, August 20, 2012

    Eggplant Dip

               When I was a kid, I remember my mom used to grill a lot of vegetables outdoors on our barbecue.  One of the things she made was again a Romanian dish. (Bet you can't guess why?) It was a roasted eggplant dip.  I call it a dip but we mostly used it as a spread.  It was something we usually ate in the summer because that was when eggplant was in season.  So when summer comes around it is always something I am itching to eat.
    1. 2 eggplants
    2. 3 Tbl of sour cream
    3. 1 Tbl of lemon juice
    4. 1 tsp of salt
    5. 1/4 tsp of pepper
    6.  3 Tbl oil plus some to rub on eggplant while roasting (I use canola)
    I am going to give instructions on how to cook the eggplant in the oven first, since that is what I did today.

    Preheat your oven to 450F.
    First, rub the eggplants with some oil and cover them with foil in a baking dish.

    It will take about an hour for them to roast.  I usually turn them over halfway into the cooking.  Be careful of splattering oil.  When you turn them, you will notice that the side that was down looks flattened.  That's because the eggplant "meat" inside has softened.  Let them go back in the oven after turning.  They are done when the eggplant looks collapsed.

    Take them out of the oven and keep them covered while they are cooling.  This will allow for easier peeling off of the skin.
    Place your eggplant, sour cream, lemon juice (the lemon juice keeps the eggplant from turning brown), salt, and pepper.

    Then turn your food processor on and let it go until the eggplant looks creamy.
     You can now taste if extra salt may be needed for your taste.  One tsp of salt worked good for me.  Now turn the processor on again and drizzle in the oil.  Let it go for about 20 seconds and you should be all set.  The end product should be completely smooth with no chunks.

    Normally I spread it on a piece of bread and top it with tomatoes.  You can also add onions as a topping.
    If you use it as a dip, toasted pita bread works great.
    Hope you'll try it!

    Note: If you grill the eggplant, you will need to turn it when the underside starts to bubble and turn crisp.  Remember if the inside is not soft the skin will not peel easily, and the eggplant won't be the right consistency for processing.  Please let the eggplant cool before you attempt to peel it.