Crispy Pizza Rolls

I love appetizers for dinner. I make pizza all the time but I was thinking of something different and decided on putting the best favors into eggroll wrappers. They’re kind of pizza kind of lasagna, kind of just Italian flavored. I don’t know what box to put them in!
The Three Bite Rule - Pizza Rolls

Ingredients:

1/2 pound Italian sausage, removed from the casing
1 cup ricotta
1 cup tomato sauce
1 cup mozzarella
eggroll wrappers

Directions:

Pan fry the sausage, crumbling it and cooking it all the way through and sprinkling with dried oregano. Then drain on paper towel.
Lay the eggroll wrappers out and on a diagonal, to opposite corners, top with mozzarella, ricotta, sausage, and sauce.

The Three Bite Rule - Pizza Rolls
Fold the opposite corners in and fold the bottom across the filling. Then roll toward the top corner. Be sure none of the filling escapes out the edges.
Pan fry in shallow oil or spray with nonstick spray and bake. (I baked at 375-degrees flipping on all sides).
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Let cool 5 minutes. Serve with more sauce for dipping.
The Three Bite Rule - Pizza Rolls
These freeze well too, then pop in the oven when you need lunch, dinner, or a hefty appetizer. I should have more of these things prepped & hanging out in the freezer. I really loved having some as a what-to-have-for-lunch on a weekend day. I’m currently working on going through the freezer so I can clear room for ready made stuff, though this babe is just past halfway so I have a little time for January freezer prep.

suggested adaptations:
pizza rolls – sausage + chopped pepperoni = pepperoni pizza rolls
pizza rolls + green peppers + onions + mushrooms = loaded pizza rolls
pizza rolls – sausage + veggies = vegetarian pizza rolls

Spice Up Your Life

The Spice Girls may have formed 20 years ago, not to make you feel old, but today I’m talking about spices. I got some spice mixes from Healthy Solutions to try and I loved them. You can love them too by entering my giveaway below! I tried the Encrusted Haddock and the Ultimate Burger. Both were so good.

I tried the Encrusted Haddock mix too. I used this on a tilapia filet I had and it was wonderful.
The Three Bite Rule - Spice Mixes
I put the fish in a little packet with a little panko and Mr. J grilled it on a his/hers night.
The Three Bite Rule - Spice Mixes
The Encrusted Haddock mix had some garlic and onion flavors with a sweet touch. I served it over a couscous, tomato, and chopped arugula with a touch of mustard.

The Three Bite Rule - Spice Mixes

For the Ultimate Burger I mixed some into my chicken burger and into Mr. J’s beef burger. It absolutely amped up an everyday burger into something really special.
The Three Bite Rule - Spice Mixes
I loved the onion, garlic, and pepper flavors. Every burger needs a kicker to come alive. Grill it up and you won’t want your ground meat to be naked again.
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Now, enter to win your choice of 3 mixes shipped right to you! Enter before Wednesday!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Full 3 Bite Rule Disclosure: Healthy Solutions Spice Blends were completely complimentary but my thoughts, opinions, and words are entirely my own.

Cheesy Polenta with Shrimp and Tomatoes

I was inspired to try my hand at polenta. It seemed like a good way to make a his (beef)/hers (fish) for dinner some night…also without needing the oven. Polenta cooks so quickly that it can really be a pantry shelf staple that becomes an afterthought.

The Three Bite Rule - Polenta & Shrimp

Ingredients:

1 cup polenta
1 cup water
1 cup milk
salt & pepper
1 cup grated white cheddar
5 large shrimp
olive oil
2 tbs butter.
1-2 cups arugula
1 cup red wine

Directions:

Over a low boil, reduce the red wine by half…about 10 minutes.
In a large pot, bring the water and milk to a boil. Add in the polenta and whisk to combine. Then cover and cook over medium for about 15 minutes.
The Three Bite Rule - Polenta & Shrimp
Peal and devein the shrimp.
In a flat skillet, cover the bottom of the pan with olive oil and melt 1 tbs of butter.
Add the other 1 tbs butter to the reduced wine.
Pan fry the shrimp, arugula, and tomatoes for about 3-5 minutes.
Check on the polenta. If it is too dry, add more milk or water and stir in the cheese.
Spoon the polenta into a bowl and top with the shrimp, then with the wine.
The Three Bite Rule - Polenta & Shrimp

Ella’s Wood Burning Oven

The fam went to Cape Cod again this year. Mr. J and I had a few days when the kennel had availability for the pups. The fam went last year too. I ate ice cream nightly and had perfect weather. It was awesome and we did not want to leave.

The first night there we went to Ella’s Wood Burning Oven just a few minutes away. It was so good and we looooved everything we got.

We started with squash blossoms. They were very filled with ricotta and basil, lightly fried and served with zucchini pesto. Soo good. They weren’t oily at all. The ratio of crispy blossom with ricotta was perfect. There was a gnocchi entree sort of version of this. I definitely would have had it if the table hadn’t shared this app.
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We had an order of calimari that was cooked perfectly. Sometimes these get over cooked and chewy. I didn’t loooove the putanesca sauced served with it, but others did.
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It was so hard to pick an entree and then there were a few specials.

I got a special pork chop. It came with homemade spaetzle, roasted red peppers, and zucchini pesto.  They cooked it perfectly…am I sensing a trend? It was juicy and tender. The spaetzle had more of the pesto which I loved.
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Mr. J got a meat lasagna special with béchamel sauce. It had a bit less bechamel than he expected. He thought it was good, but maybe not his favorite ever. Maybe my lasagna edges theirs out!
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Momma got the rainbow trout. It came with a fennel & potato confit and had lemon oregano vinaigrette over it and in it. It sounded really good and she chose it since she doesn’t cook rainbow trout at home.
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Dad got the paparadelle with bolognese. They make the pasta in house and the sauce smelled amazing. He had his eye on this and we encouraged him since I was sure the sauce would be good!
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Their desserts sounded really good, but I was hoping to digest enough to have some room for an ice cream walk. We loved this spot. I’m so glad we tried it. The pizzas sounded great (and looked delicious) but the next night was whole family pizza night at our fav neighborhood spot.

August 2014 Recap

August was a month full of fun dining experiences and outings an less about actual cooking. I find readership being very lopsided in the dead of summer. I think September will bring a good variety…I already have seafood, a twist on pizza, more grilled foods, and I even have a giveaway planned!

I had the best breakfast sandwich…of. my. life. On our trip to NH. They crossed a bagel with a croissant. It doesn’t get much better than that.

In other adventures, I tried Barcelona Wine Bar and loved everything we ordered. I met up with other bloggers for a fun afternoon of walking, salads, and cupcakes. I wasn’t into the salad I got but loved the cupcakes.

The best thing I cooked all month were these Steakhouse Flatbread Pizzas. Mine had buttery mushrooms and Mr. J’s had grilled steak. They were really good and so quick to prep by using naan bread. I loved these and would eat it again in a second.
Steakhouse Flatbread Pizza - The Three Bite Rule
I did a roasted beet, sweet potato, and potato side dish that was really good, but more time consuming than I usually spend on sides.
Roasted Beets & Potatoes - The Three Bite Rule
I decided a Greek Pita Pizza deserved a re-do and it was a good excuse to unload some zucchini onto.
The Three Bite Rule - Greek Pita Pizza
Bump Update:
In the last month the baby has grown to the size of a turnip, a sweet potato, a mango, and a banana. My hunger has evened out a bit. I was introduced to donut peaches from the CSA delivered to work and they’re so amazing. Whenever I’ve gotten a whiff of my nectarines or somebody’s peaches at work I’m all about it. It is getting a bit harder to get up after being on all fours talking to the pups and harder to go from laying to sitting. I’m feeling it a bit more and I’ve officially popped. Getting dressed requires a bit more creativity with the few maternity items and whatever I find that I fit into.

Enjoy labor day & a long weekend and see ya in September!

Caprese Mac & Cheese

This will be a light week here on The Three Bite Rule until after labor day. I feel like everyone really has the mentality that there’s only a short time to make the most of the end of summer. Summer food isn’t over but September is fast approaching!

I have been looooving the 70-degree days we’ve been having here in New England. I like being able to turn the oven on occasionally. I made some Caprese Mac & Cheese with the plethora of cherry tomatoes from the garden.

The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Mac & Cheese

Ingredients:

1/2 pound penne rigate
4 tbs butter, and another 2 tbs for topping
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup low-fat milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup gruyere cheese
1 1/2 cup cheddar cheese
1 1/2 – 2 cups cherry tomatoes
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp dijon mustard (optional)
salt & pepper
1 cup seasoned bread crumbs
1/2 tsp dried basil
2 tbs parmesan cheese (optional)

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350-degrees.
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil and cook the pasta to al dente.
In a medium sauce pan melt 4 tbs butter over medium heat, then add the flour and whisk together cooking for about 5 minutes.
Add in the milk and cream and stir well over medium low heat until combined.
Drop the tomatoes onto a sheet pan and drizzle with olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt. Up the oven temp to a broil and cook them for 5 minutes being careful not to let them burn.
The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Mac & Cheese
Slowly add in 3/4 of the cheese and stir.
The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Mac & Cheese
Add salt, pepper, garlic powder, and mustard.
Mix in the pasta to the cheese sauce.
The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Mac & Cheese
Spray a baking dish with nonstick spray and spoon in 1/2 the mac & cheese.
Sprinkle 1/2 the basil and 1/2 the tomatoes and 1/2 the remaining cheese.
The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Mac & Cheese
Repeat another layer on top of pasta, basil, tomatoes, and cheese.
The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Mac & Cheese
Melt the remaining 2 tbs of butter and mix with breadcrumbs, parmesan, and dried basil.
Sprinkle on top and bake for 40 minutes.
The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Mac & Cheese
I liked the light flavored cheeses allowing the tomatoes and basil to pop. It felt summery even if mac & cheese isn’t truly a summer dish. I also was proud that the tomatoes and basil were home-grown.
The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Mac & Cheese

What I Ate: NH Getaway

What I Ate’ is a series of posts for so-easy-this-doesn’t-need-a-recipe but I’m sharing with you for the idea or inspiration.

Mr. J’s bday present was a little getaway to New Hampshire. I’m so thankful not to travel for work anymore and I’m loving being home all summer. It is amazing. Being home has actually involved a few trips to Maine, a few days to Cape Cod, and possibly one more jaunt. I wasn’t sure NH was going to fit in. I bought it for Mr. J’s bday in June then didn’t schedule it for-ev-er. We explored nature and ate lots of good stuff.

We stayed in Jackson, NH which is a little town near North Conway, but without the insane traffic. The inn was cute and had a phenomenal porch.
Inn at Thorn Hill
On our way up to New Hampsire we figured we stop somewhere for lunch and it just so happened we’d pass one of the many locations of Portland Pie Company. My favorite pizza! Though, their service is pretty terrible, all the time the pizza was really good. We got one of their seasonal pies: chicken caesar salad pizza!
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After checking in and poking around the inn, we explored the town and the area.
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We got dinner at the Red Fox Pub. We were really tired by then and were very hungry. I got lobster mac & cheese. There was an impressive amount of lobster and I couldn’t come close to finishing it! Mr. J had wood grilled meatloaf so he was as happy as can be. That was only Friday!
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Saturday we enjoyed breakfast on the porch of the inn and then checked out a tented art show, then we did a mini hike to some falls. It was breathtaking…also getting back up to the parking left me winded, so literally breathtaking. Mr. J adventured to some insane spots all in the name of photography. Luckily he didn’t end up in the drink!
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We also popped into the LL Bean Outlet there where we found upright adirondack chairs. On sale. With an extra 30% off. Also using several LL Bean credits from our credit card. Scoooooore! We got two for less than the price of 1 normally. It was so meant to be! We didn’t have the pups so we got our new chairs into the car all assembled and never looked back. Just wait till I show you our beautiful yard projects with these snazzy new chairs by the firepit.

Dinner was part of our package to each have 3 courses at the inn. I started with clam chowder since it was 60-something degrees that day! For my entree, I chose duck over mushroom risotto with a chambord glaze. The duck and sauce were so good. The glaze was pretty sweet to it paired nicely with the salty risotto.
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I didn’t exactly have room for dessert, but when on vacay! I had a chocolate hazelnut tart that was just amazing.
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Sunday morning we decided to venture out for bagels. We had passed a little bagel joint the day before with a sign boasting home of the boissant croissant/bagel hybrid. Hands down, best breakfast sandwich I’ve ever had. I wish I brought boissants home. I was thinking it would be more like a bagel or more like a croissant, but I love both so I figured I’d bet set. It was such a wonderful mix of the two.
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It was a nice little getaway. We wished it was warm enough to swim since the pool at the inn was cute but I’m still thankful for cool days. They were nice for walking around a lot. I hadn’t known if there’d be a lot for us to see/do but we had a great time wandering and not being at full pace.

Strawberry Rhubarb Smoothie

I grabbed a few stocks of rhubarb at the farmer’s market and I was thinking of a smoothie since I never use cooked fruit in a smoothie. I think the rhubarb cost me all of $1 buck. It was good for some true summer flavors.

Ingredients:

4 stocks of rhubarb
3 tbs sugar
1/4 cup water
1 cup strawberries, chopped and frozen
1 cup strawberry yogurt
splash of water/milk/juice

Directions:

Chop rhubarb into small pieces and cook over medium heat with sugar and water.
Strawberry Rhubarb Smoothie - The Three Bite Rule
Cook 3-5 minutes until rhubarb is soft and cooked down.
Remove from the heat and let cool.
Strawberry Rhubarb Smoothie - The Three Bite Rule
Blend together rhubarb, strawberries, yogurt, and a splash of water.
Strawberry Rhubarb Smoothie - The Three Bite Rule
Add more water/milk/juice if it is too thick.
Strawberry Rhubarb Smoothie - The Three Bite Rule

I liked this one. It was more work than my usual smoothie, but it was so good. It reminded me of dessert! I cooked the rhubarb the night before so it really wasn’t a ton of work the morning-of.

Greek Pita Pizza Redo

This Greek Pita pizza is one of the easiest dinners ever. I figured this uber old post circa 2011 deserved a re-do. I love the tapanade, spinach, and feta flavors. Making the pizza on pita bread means less than 15-minutes of cooking time. I added zucchini to it as well in case your farmer’s market finds or garden zuccs are out of control. This is a very veggie-centric meal  if you, like me, ate your weight in fun vacation-foods like pizza, and duck over mushroom risotto, and lobster mac & cheese, and blueberry ice cream…more on that later, now it is time for some veggies.

The Three Bite Rule - Greek Pita Pizza

Ingredients:

4 wheat pita breads
1 cup prepared tapanade
2 cups zucchini, sliced or chopped
2 cups fresh spinach
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1 cup feta

Directions:

In a large skillet, cook the zucchini over medium-low heat with a drizzle of olive oil, for about 3-4 minutes.
Add chopped spinach and cook for another 2 minutes until the spinach begins to wilt, but doesn’t get over cooked.
The Three Bite Rule - Greek Pita Pizza
Preheat the oven to 400-degrees.
Spread the tapanade over the crusts.
The Three Bite Rule - Greek Pita Pizza
Then add mozzarella, and the spinach & zucchini mixture to the top. Sprinkle with dried oregano.
The Three Bite Rule - Greek Pita Pizza
Add feta on top and bake for 10-15 minutes. Cook for ~15 if eating it right away. If reheating another time for a different lunch or dinner, cook 10 minutes.
The Three Bite Rule - Greek Pita Pizza
I love this one. The flavors are all really good and there aren’t many ingredients. One of the keys is the tapanade. I used a red pepper & artichoke tapanade, but any you find would work. I don’t like olives so I use this one or sundried tomato pesto for this pizza.
The Three Bite Rule - Greek Pita Pizza
I don’t always add the zucchini so that can be optional. Fresh spinach is good or frozen spinach with all the water squeezed out. This one can be whipped up with mostly freezer/pantry ingredients!

Top Your Own Pasta Bar

For Dad’s bday we did a top-your-own pasta bar. It was really fun and I loooove customizing dinner with a group. Mom made everything and the rest of us just reaped the benefits.

We started with an antipasto which is actually Dad’s signature dish.
Antipasto - The Three Bite Rule
The pasta bar started with cheese tortellini in a light cream sauce. Then the toppings were all separate and allowed perfect customization.
The Three Bite Rule - Pasta Bar
We had grilled chicken tenders.
The Three Bite Rule - Pasta Bar
We had carrots, zucchini, and some tomatoes, onions, with a little pesto.
The Three Bite Rule - Pasta Bar
We also had peapods, artichokes, and capers.
The Three Bite Rule - Pasta Bar
It was really good. I had mine with zucchini, chicken, and onions with tomatoes. Topped with Parmesan.
The Three Bite Rule - Pasta Bar
The man of honor, had chicken, artichokes, capers, and some lemon.
The Three Bite Rule - Pasta Bar
We wrapped up with blueberry pie which was gone before I remembered to snap a pic.

Happy Birthday DAD!!