Thursday, February 24, 2011
This Spicy Buffalo Chicken Balls appetizer is from a Martha Stewart recipe. I absolutely LOVED this recipe, and I'll be making these again in the future. They were spicy but the spice wasn't overwhelming.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter
3/4 cup hot sauce
2 lb ground chicken (I had trouble finding this. Not all grocery stores carry ground chicken.)
1 cup chopped celery
1 2/3 cup breadcrumbs
2 teaspoons coarse salt
Blue cheese (as a dipping sauce)
Preheat the oven to 450, and grease a pan.
On low heat, add the hot sauce and butter to a saucepan. Heat and whisk this mixture until well blended.
Then, cool this mixture until room temperature. Now add the ground chicken, celery, breadcrumbs and eggs. Toss in a couple teaspoons of salt.
Now start forming the balls- just like you make beef meatballs. Place the balls on an oiled baking sheet. You want the balls to be touching on all sides. Cook for 15 minutes at 450. I pulled out my thermometer after the 15 minutes to make sure that the chicken was at a safe temperature. I get nervous about chicken. Let the balls cool for 5 minutes and then toss and coat the chicken balls with hot sauce. Blue cheese dressing can be used for dipping.I forgot to bring blue cheese dressing to my Super Bowl party, and they were just fine without the dressing. I served the chicken balls in a crock pot on warm. They are much better when served warm.
I also made Bacon and Cheese Wrapped Tater Tots with Hot Sauce. I found the recipe here. I substituted the Tobasco for some Frank's RedHot. They were super easy to make.
They were a hit. Obviously anything with bacon is awesome. I also served these in a crock pot.
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
I found a recipe in a Betty Crocker soup magazine, and a slightly modified version is below.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large white onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 cups of cubed chicken breast
1 can great northern beans (15 oz)
1 can cannellini beans (15 oz)
2 cups (16 oz) chicken broth
2 cans of chopped green chiles (4.5 oz cans)
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
This recipe gave me another opportunity to use my beautiful Dutch oven. First add oil to a dutch oven at medium heat. Toss in the chopped onions and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes, and when the onions are soft, add the salt, cayenne, cumin, and cubed chicken. Stir, and brown the chicken. The chicken doesn't have to be cooked through at this point. After about 7 minutes add in the beans, broth and green chiles.
Cover and let simmer on medium-low heat for 25 minutes. At that point, check to make sure that the chicken is cooked through. Add the cheese and cilantro, and serve!
Monday, February 14, 2011
I've ripped this recipe out of a magazine at the gym probably four weeks ago. I'm not sure why I haven't made it yet, I've had all the ingredients. I finally got around to making this last night and it was extremely tasty. And easy - I think 20 minutes top to put it all together.
Walnut-Sage Pesto Pasta
- 1/3 cup walnuts
- 6 ounces dried pasta of your choosing
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1 packed Tbsp fresh whole sage leaves
- 1 large garlic clove
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
- 2 Tbsp EVOO
- 4 Tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Heat up your oven to 350. Pour out your walnuts onto a baking sheet and bake for roughly 8 minutes. Toast until light golden brown and fragrant. Set aside to cool.
|Sage... so fresh, so fragrant!|
In a bowl, add pesto and a 1/3 cup of the reserved pasta water.
Add in your pasta and mix well.
Now, you might realize that yours looks more green than mine does. That is because I completely forgot to add in the parsley! Ugh! Such a crucial, crucial ingredient! Don't get me wrong, my dish, sans parsley, was really good, but I think the lighter, fresher taste of the parsley would have changed the dish considerably. Mine was very rich, and very heavy. I ate it as my entrée, but it was probably better suited as a side dish. I must really remember to slow down and read a recipe in it's entirety!
Continue to add in pasta water in small batches, to create a creamier sauce. You won't need much, but it's helpful to loosen up the noodles and builds a bit of light sauce to coat the noodles.
Serve in bowls and top with remaining Parmesan cheese. Crack some fresh pepper over the top... and Bon Appetit!!!
|My new Nikon took these pictures! I love it!|
Thursday, February 10, 2011
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- 1 teaspoon ground red pepper
- 2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
- 1 1/2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
- 1 (8-ounce) can crushed pineapple in juice, drained
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 (1-pound) flank steak, trimmed
|Those are homemade sweet potato fries in the back. Amazing. Recipe to come later.|
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
In another, deeper, skillet type pan (or dutch oven, if you're so lucky!), add your butter and the rest of your herbs and saute quickly for a minute. Then add your celery, shallots, and saute for approximately 5 minutes. Your goal is to soften the celery and released the amazing herbs.
Add in the chicken broth a bring mixture to a boil.
Take a minute to enjoy the glass of white you've probably by now poured yourself. You earned it.
Once boiling, reduce heat to medium low and add in chicken. Simmer until the chicken is cooked through, maybe four or five minutes. This really depends on how much you seared them. I started to shred my chunks up during this process to bring them down. Just take a fork, stab pieces and run your knife through the fork slats. Easy.
Now here's where things got interesting. I didn't read the recipe in its entirety before starting. The next steps says that the chicken should be removed from the liquid mixture. What? Crap. I removed with a slotted spoon and set aside. Once the chicken is out, increase the heat to medium and allow to reduce to about 1 1/2 or 2 cups.
This step took about 15 minutes. Which is good, because now is a great time to roll out your pie crusts and get them ready. Place one of the crusts in the bottom of the pie pan.
Add the mixture to your pie pan.
Roll the second crust out and cover your pie pan. Make indents along the side with a fork to seal the two edges together. Create slits in the top for the pie to breathe.
In the oven it goes!!! For 35 minutes. By this time, it was about 9 pm. The recipe calls this an easy pot pie, but jeez, it was actually pretty time consuming for a weeknight.
And once the crust is brown, it's time to come out. Allow to cool for about 20 minutes. This will let the liquid set a bit.
|Semi scary looking, but really amazing.|
Monday, February 7, 2011
Do you follow the dessert trends. I recently read that the current dessert hype is pies. Some past trends include cupcakes, whoopie pies, and yes, bacon.
I found this bacon cookie recipe on NPR last year, and I have baked these cookies at least five times. I'm in love with these cookies. I just ate one, and now crumbs are all over my keyboard. I don't even care because my taste buds are so satisfied.
This most recent time that I made these cookies, I was able to use my FANCY new red KitchenAid Anniversary Edition Mixer. It was a Christmas present from my parents. I absolutely love it. The mixer lives on my counter because it is too heavy to move around. The red looks so great. I'm going to decorate it like a Christmas tree next year.
5 strips of bacon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup flour
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat your oven to 350.
Start by frying up the bacon goodness. Don't burn the bacon. You don't want burnt bacon in your cookies, but the bacon should be quite crisp. Then, use paper towels to get rid of some of the grease. Chop up the bacon into really small pieces.
Whisk the baking soda, salt, and flour in a medium bowl.
Then, with the butter at room temp., cream the butter, sugar, and brown sugar in a large bowl. Then, toss in the vanilla extract and egg. Beat this mixture. I used my beautiful KitchenAid Mixer. Toss in the dry ingredients from the other bowl. Beat all of these ingredients, and then finally gently stir in the chopped pecans, bacon, and chocolate chips.
The NPR instructions call for parchment paper on your baking sheets, but I never use parchment paper, and my cookies are fine. Make tablespoon sized balls of the cookie dough, and put them on the baking sheet.
Since there is bacon in these cookies, they need to be refrigerated. The recipe says that the cookies can be at room temp. for 1-2 days, but I prefer to just keep the cookies in the fridge all of the time.Let me know what you think about these cookies! I didn't have time to make appetizers for a mini party a few weeks ago. Here I just ended up serving these cookies and popcorn.
Wednesday, February 2, 2011
I don't reserve my best cooking for the weekends, I love to find easy to prepare, healthy dishes on the weekdays too. There's something so satisfying about coming home and cheffing something from scratch, rather than having to rely on leftovers. I came across this Caribbean Pork with Mango Salsa in Real Simple's January 2011 issue. Amidst a ton of other pork recipes, this one called my name for it's simplicity and it's inclusion of Mango Salsa.
I know, I know. Mango salsa isn't entirely in season right now. But amidst all the winter kale and squashes and over kill of pumpkin and peppermint from the holidays, it feels so good to go against the grain. So fresh. So summer-y. Wouldn't you like a taste of summer right now?
Caribbean Pork with Mango Salsa (as adapted from Real Simple)
- 1 mango, chopped
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
- salt for tasting
- 1 pound of pork tenderloin, or chops
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 tsp ground corriander
- salt to taste
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
This recipe gave me the opportunity to to cook with dried beans. My friend Amanda & some friends on Twitter have given me a lot of advice on dried beans. There advice mostly consisted of "let them soak for a lonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnggg time." This recipe also gave me the opportunity to use two new toys! My sister gave me an immersion blender for Christmas. It was a GREAT gift.
The other toy is a new Dutch oven. I splurged and bought it at an outlet mall. Isn't it pretty?
Remember how I said that I was told to soak the beans for a long time? Well, the recipe only called for 1 hour after boiling and 2 hour with some of the other ingredients. I was very skeptical of this. I let the beans soak overnight in the fridge, and I'm very glad that I did. On the flip side, oversoaking beans can lead to fermenting.
2 2/3 cups dried black beans
2 T vegetable oil
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 onion, chopped
3 cups of beef broth
3 cups of water
1/4 cup dark rum
1 t liquid smoke
1 1/2 t ground cumin
1 1/2 t dried oregano
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 tomato, chopped
Rinse the beans. After soaking the beans for at least overnight, put the beans in a 4 or 5 quart Dutch oven. Cover the beans with water and boil, uncovered. Then, remove from heat, cover, and let stand for one hour. This is where I'm really glad that I purchased my Dutch oven. I used to try to do these things with a stock pot, and it just never worked out.
Drain the liquid and remove the beans. In the Dutch oven, now add oil on medium heat. Toss in the garlic and onions. Heat until tender.
Add the rest of the ingredients and the beans. Boil for two minutes. Cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for two hours. Then, make sure that the beans are tender. Dried beans take patience.
Now I used my fancy new immersion blender to smooth the mixture. You could use a blender or food processor. Once the soup is smooth, serve!
Serenity in your kitchen means that you're okay when the magazine photo looks like this:...And your soup looks like this, but it still tastes delicious: