Monday, June 30, 2008
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Friday, June 27, 2008
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Well, the salad wasn't even touched, the enchiladas not even half gone, the rice eaten but primarily by Katrina. Why you say did such a perfect meal go uneaten...... We all ate guacamole, salsa and chips! Sure everyone was polite and ate the other stuff as well, but no one could keep their hands off the cantaloupe salsa! What a great dish for a summer evening. It was so refreshing, sweet, yet spicy and completely thrown together as an afterthought. I still have the tomatoes I went to the store to buy just to make salsa.... I guess the moral of the story, before you run to the store to buy ingredients, be sure you don't have the perfect substitute already in your house!
The only changes I made were adding 1 tsp vanilla and some espresso flavored dark chocolate which gave them a fun edge. Just writing about them is making me want another - ahhh!
Monday, June 23, 2008
So we, or really I should say I, were on a serious Mojito kick this weekend, I say I because I think I drank like 6 to J man's 1. Anyway fresh mint is in the garden and it is Mojito time! I made regular ones on Friday but then did Pineapple Mojitos on Saturday. I thought they were really good and just a nice twist on the classic Mojito and thought I'd share the recipe. Honestly though I didn't follow it exactly kind of just used it as a base to start from. I also found in a mag a recipe for Peach Mojitos that I'm anxious to try once Peaches are in season here but I'll share that one as well.
Pineapple Mojitos (serves 8) (or 1 who wants to have alot of fun! JK (that means just kidding)
1 bunch fresh mint, stems discarded
2 limes cut into 8 wedges
1/2 cup sugar (we've used powdered sugar as well)
1 cup pineapple juice
1 cup canned crushed pineapple
1 cup light run
4 cups ice cubes
1 cup club soda
In each of the 8 highball glasses (nice if you have them...we do not...coffee cups anyone?) crush together one-eighth of the mint leaves, 2 lime wedges and 1 tablespoon of sugar . Stir in 2 tablespoons pineapple juice 2 tablespoons of crushed pineapple and 2 tablespoons of rum until sugar is dissolved. Add 1.2 cup of club soda to each glass. Serve immediately.
3 cups coarsely chopped peeled rip peaches (about a pound)
1 teaspoon grated lime rind
1 cup fresh lime juice (about 4 large limes)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed mint leaves
2 cups white rum
4 cups club soda chilled
Mint sprigs (optional)
Place peaches in a blender or food processor; process until smooth. Press peach puree through a fine sieve into a bowl; discard solids. Combine rind, lime juice, sugar and mint in a large pitcher; crush juice mixture with back of a long spoon. Add peach puree and rum to pitcher, stirring until sugar dissolves. Stir in club soda. Serve over crushed ice. Garnish with mint sprigs if desired (says 10 servings of 2/3 cup each, I think it sounds too good to spread out that far!)
I'm drooling as I write this!
Sunday, June 22, 2008
Saturday, June 21, 2008
So, that being said... Here is my recipe. I chose one that I have never made before because I really thought this sounded good.
1 3/4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth (14 fl oz)
2 tablespoons finely chopped shallot
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
10 oz mushrooms, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh sage
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 skinless boneless chicken breast halves (2 lb total)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons dry Marsala wine
2/3 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 200°F.
Bring broth to a boil in a 2-quart saucepan over high heat, then boil, uncovered, until reduced to about 3/4 cup, about 20 minutes.
Cook shallot in 3 tablespoons butter in an 8- to 10-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat, stirring, until shallot begins to turn golden, about 1 minute. Add mushrooms, 1 teaspoon sage, salt, and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid mushrooms give off is evaporated and mushrooms begin to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from heat.
Put flour in a wide shallow bowl. Gently pound chicken to 1/4 inch thick between 2 sheets of plastic wrap using the flat side of a meat pounder or a rolling pin.
Pat chicken dry and season with salt and pepper, then dredge in flour, 1 piece at a time, shaking off excess. Transfer to sheets of wax paper, arranging chicken in 1 layer.
Heat 1 tablespoon each of oil and butter in a 10-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until foam subsides, then sauté half of chicken, turning over once, until golden and just cooked through, about 4 minutes total. Transfer cooked chicken to a large heatproof platter, arranging in 1 layer, then put platter in oven to keep warm. Wipe out skillet with paper towels and cook remaining chicken in same manner, then transfer to oven, arranging in 1 layer.
Add 1/2 cup wine to skillet and boil over high heat, stirring and scraping up brown bits, about 30 seconds. Add reduced broth, cream, and mushrooms, then simmer, stirring occasionally, until sauce is slightly thickened, 6 to 8 minutes. Add lemon juice and remaining 2 tablespoons wine and 1/2 teaspoon sage. Serve chicken with sauce over pasta of your choice, I think I will use linguine.
I hope I have chosen well, Happy Cooking!!
Friday, June 20, 2008
A few things.. I have to apologize it has been crazy around here and haven't done much cooking the past few weeks so this weekend i'm going to make the curry and the crock pot reciepe. I'm really excited as they both look very yummy. Then its my turn on July 6th to share my reciepe...I came up with it this morning as I was getting ready, I'm really excited about that too. I shared it with David and he thought it sounded like a good one, so i'm good to go. Carrie I also plan on getting a pic to you this weekend too.
Now girls I have a question for all of you... I was wondering if ya'll minded if I invited a special friend of mine. A few of you know of him.. His name is David and he is a Certified Executive Chef who is serving in the Army as an Enlisted Aid to a Three Star General. Basically in civilian terms he is a personal chef and assistant to this General. He has been cooking since he was 14 years old and has a vast amount of culinary knowlege and is very very skilled at what he does. He has gotten to cook for so many different kinds of people from all walks of life from your average joe to high up officials. I was telling him about our blog and he thought it sounded pretty cool and would love to be a part of it. So I thought I would write and ask you girls what you think??
Have a great day... Happy Cooking!
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
I found this cooking blog via a suggestion from something or someone....I honestly can't remember but I've really enjoyed it. Its called Pioneer Woman and is not only recipes but also the life of a family on a working cattle/horse ranch. It's funny and the food has always been yummy (the crash potatoes from June were soooo good with our Father's Day steaks). Anyway just wanted to share in case anyone has time to waste oh I mean has a culinary interest in another blog. Her's is very very popular with tons of readers and comments. Here is the site
Monday, June 16, 2008
So I was really excited to try this as I have never used tofu expect in smoothies. Once I'd checked out the ingredient list the only thing I needed was the curry paste. My Mom had just bought some so she put it in a little tupperware container for me. As seen in my pic :)
I assembled all my ingredients and excitedly started cooking. Well little did I know I grabbed the wrong little container out of the fridge and I have no idea what I added to my sauce but it wasn't curry, honestly I'm wondering if it was ketchup! I know that seems ridiculous but I just grabbed the little container from where I thought I'd put it and dumped it in without really looking at it, my Mom had pre-measured it and the girls were hollering at my feet and well who knows what it was but we found the curry paste as we sat down to our meal so I know it wasn't what I put in! Unfortunatley my second problem was I took a tofu cooking tip from online and cooked it much longer then Stacy said thinking I'd like it crispier and the result was a little like rubbery scrambled eggs. All that said once we threw in some of the curry paste onto our plates it still tasted good!! I'm determined to try it again and to actually do the whole thing right and exactly like instructed!!!! Cheers to kitchen blunders!
I was just wondering if we want our group to grow or not. I have 3 sisters that have all hinted at the idea of doing something like this and may be interested in joining us if that is ok. I haven't invited anyone yet but if no one minds I could. Let me know! No big deal either way.
Cola Barbecued Ribs
3 1/2 lb pork spareribs or loin back ribs
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon hickory smoked salt (or I use 1/2 teaspoon salt and a couple cloves of minced garlic)
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup cola
1 1/4 cups barbecue sauce
In small bowl mix brown sugar, hickory smoked salt and pepper; rub mixture onto ribs. Cut ribs into 2- or 3-rib portions (I buy the ones already cut) Place ribs into cooker and pour cola over ribs. Cook on low heat setting for 8 to 9 hours. Remove ribs from cooker and place in shallow baking pan. Drain liquid from cooker and discard. Brush both sides of ribs with barbecue sauce. Return ribs to cooker. Pour any remaining barbecue sauce over ribs. Cover and cook on low setting about 1 hour longer or until ribs are glazed.
Caramelized Onion Pot Roast
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 boneless beef chuck roast (4lbs)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
6 medium onions, sliced
1 1/2 cups beef broth
3/4 cup beer
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
In skillet heat oil over medium-high heat. Add beef; cook about 10 minutes, turning occasionally, until brown on all sides. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place onions in cooker, place beef on onions. In medium bowl mix remaining ingredients and pour over beef and onions. Cover and cook over low heat 8 to 10 hours.
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Fish sauce is one of the oldest ingredients in the world. Soy sauce was invented as a way to create a cheaper alternative to fish sauce thousands of years ago in China. Fish sauce is essential to Thai food. Make sure you buy a Thai brand as other (mostly Vietnamese) brands taste very different.
Interesting, huh? For those of you who are scared of fishy-ness, I find that fish sauce, despite its name, does not add a fishy taste, but an interesting salty taste. I used only 1 Tsbp of fish sauce in place of the 2 Tbsp soy sauce because I find it much saltier.
One other thing. Although the recipe is clear, somehow I got it into my brain that the tofu would be cubed. It was only after I had cubed it that I realized that it was wrong. I guess that wouldn't make much of a difference, though, right? Duh! Also, my sauce didn't reduce into a glaze. I love it how it turned out, so I wasn't disappointed, but I wanted to mention it in case anyone wanted to offer feedback.
I am so happy that my husband is out of town so I don't have to share! ahahaha! It's going to be great as a leftover and I plan on eating again for every meal until it's gone. Once again, thanks Stacy!
Friday, June 13, 2008
Thursday, June 12, 2008
Hi girls! I am Rachel and Eva’s sister. I really enjoy cooking (most of the time), and I’m looking forward to trying out the recipes. I think I’ll be a little late trying out the tofu curry. But I am going to try it. Maybe tonight . . .
I am trying to think of the “regulars” that we have at my house . . . Two problems: (1) My husband travels so I cook differently when he is home. (2) I always like to make new things so I don’t make a lot of things over again (or I go on kicks of some type of food and then after a few weeks it’s never to been seen again).
I live near
This is some fresh tuna we bought at the fish market recently (just to make my post a little nicer to look at). The fish market is set up right in the bay where are all the little fishing boats moor. We bought it from a woman who's husband had just brought them in . . . less than an hour before. Yum. It was so good!
I think this is a great idea, and I’m so glad to be a part of it. Thanks!
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Monday, June 9, 2008
So about the tofu....i have never had tofu before ever! So i'm really excited to make this!I don't think i will tell Nathan about it since he is more a meat and potatoe boy, but I will keep a chicken breast in the fridge ready to go just in case!
Sunday, June 8, 2008
Anyway... my week day meals depend a lot on the season and I also like to try new recipes often, but here is a sample:
Chicken and sauteed vegetables (with different seasonings each time)
Grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup
Beef or chicken enchiladas
A crock pot recipe ( I love the crock pot)
Nachos (tortilla chips, cheese, refried beans,chicken or beef, lots of fresh vegetables and salsa)
Soup in the winter
The "house salad" in my kitchen is organic baby greens, shredded carrot and sunflower seeds with your choice of dressing and sometimes crumbled feta cheese. It's simple but really yummy.
Stacy- I am really looking forward to making the curry! Have a great week everybody!!
Friday, June 6, 2008
Thursday, June 5, 2008
A few notes first: The Thai Red Curry Paste is easy to find. I even bought it in South Dakota (not a gourmet mecca). I buy the Thai Kitchen red curry paste found in most Asian sections and in all Asian grocery stores. Also, if you (or those you're feeding) really don't want tofu, I bet this would be delicious with chicken or shrimp. I serve this with edamame as a starter and a big green salad or veggies on the side. Edamame is found in the frozen veggie section . I boil it in the pods for about 3-5 minutes, drain, rinse with cold water and toss with some course kosher salt. Yum. Don't eat the pods. I only say this, because I had a friend who did and obviously hated edamame! :)
1/2 C unsweetened coconut milk
1/2 C veg. broth
2 Tbs soy sauce
2 Tbs fresh lime
1-2 tsp Thai Red Curry Paste (start with 1 tsp and add more as needed. We like it spicy, so sometimes I end up adding a lot more!)
2 tsp sugar
2 Tbs roasted peanut oil (I use whatever I have)
1 lb. extra-firm or firm tofu, cut crosswise into eight ½ inch thick slabs and blotted dry between several layers of paper towels or a cloth kitchen towel (I put a weight such as a pan on top)
1/4 C chopped salted peanuts (my kids like more)
cup fresh cilantro leaves (we use more)
Combine the coconut milk, broth, soy sauce, lime juice, curry paste, and sugar in a small bowl and set aside.
Heat the oil in a lrge nonstick skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add tofu and cook until golden brown, 6-7 minutes. Turn the tofu and cook until golden brown on the second side, about 5 minutes.
Add coconut milk mixture to the pan and simmer, turning the tofu once, until the liquid reduces to a thick syrup and the tofu is glazed, about 2 minutes.
Garnish with cilantro and peanuts.
We love this on rice or as a side dish for sauteed veggies. Sometimes I double the sauce, so there's more for the rice and I have been known to add red pepper and green onion. Let me know if you have questions!
chicken or ground turkey burritos
baked salmon or halibut w/roasted asparagus and potatoes
ravioli tossed in pesto with side salad
entree salad such as ceasar salad with smoked salmon and cold rotini pasta (my fave)
bbq chicken sandwiches with sweet potato fries
shishkebabs (during summer)
We often have the typical Italian/Mexican food dishes, but I try to variate them from week to week so it's not overly repetitive. Of course, sometimes, you just need to eat!
I first have to apologize that I did not make the pork T. Although it looked very good. I don't eat a lot of pork so I don't cook it much, but more than that this time I just didn't have anyone to cook it for and found myself occupied with other things and not home much the past couple of weeks. I know.. still not a good enough excuse. :) To answer your question Stacy... lets try out a tofu reciepe that sounds great. I remember the baked tofu u and i made.. mmm yummy. I think we made pitas with it didn't we? hope u all are having a great week.
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
coffee, and scones
raw veggies, crackers and hummus
coffee and muffins
pasta of some kind- plain with parmesan or spaghetti go over best with Katrina
coffee and cake
some kind of soup
I got in a rut of nibbling, not eating or waiting until Kat was asleep to eat and being so tired that nothing was being cooked much.
Although in the days of yore when I actually cooked for a family I did alot of
roast chicken and rice
soups and homemade bread
meat and potatoes
katsu chicken and fried rice
grilled fish/ shrimp
casseroles of all kinds (what can I say you can take the girl out of Minnesota but...)
I tend to try new recipes often especially when I have someone/ anyone to cook for....
So, let's see I actually did use the port wine in the tenderloin and surprisingly didn't mess with the recipe at all. I tend to doctor every recipe and never measure when I cook. But, to be good I measured everything and followed it to the letter! It turned out great! My sister and I loved it! Katrina really liked the sauce and thought the orzo was fun to smear on her face so that is a good sign right? For the orzo I did change that recipe. I did all the cooking the same as Rachel said but, at the end I substituted some halved cherry tomatoes, and basil for the lemon juice and dill. I used spinach and zucchini and it was fabulous! I think the dill and lemon would be great but I chose to buy the port rather than dill and a lemon so there it is!
We decided this is a definite do over and my sisters roommate also loved the leftovers!
As for ideas on the left over port one thing I have done often is....
using chicken, turkey or pork cutlets I dredge them in flour with salt and pepper, and saute them in a bit of olive oil. When they are done I remove them and make a pan sauce. For the sauce you pour appx. 1/2 c. port wine into the pan and deglaze it. I usually let it cook down just for a minute or two and then add 2 T dried cherries, 2 tsp seedless rasp. jam and let them cook for a couple minutes. Right before I serve it I add about 1 T of butter. Pour sauce over meat and serve!
Hope that give you all an idea on how to use some more of the wine. Little by little our bottles will be gone! By the way, I have substituted everything in that recipe so have fun with it!
Here are some of ours
Stir fry (in various forms)
Spaghetti (also in various forms)
Chicken with a side of rice or couscous and a veggie
Soup and Sandwiches
Home made pizza
A Roast of sorts
Usually several of these in some form are in our menu for the week.....and I'm getting burnt out a little and wanting new ideas!
So chic chefs lay some ideas on me!
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Monday, June 2, 2008
So I'll start out with what I did different.......
I totally forgot to buy the port wine so in the middle of getting things cooking I realized I didn't have it and instead used a Merlot. I'm not a huge fan of a lot of onions so I think I halved the amount of onions, so instead of Blueberry Onion sauce it was more like Blueberry Tomato sauce (Yum!). The orzo I used was some that we got from the farmer's market and was lemon flavored so I didn't use chicken broth knowing the lemon would have enough flavor on its own, I added zucchini and peppers to it. It all looked so pretty when we plated it and we were excited to dig in.
The pork and sauce were a hit with Jonathan and I, the girls not so much but they are really picky about meat. Sadly the orzo didn't work well with the main dish the way I made it, the competing flavors (the lemon vs the blueberries) were too strong and though it sounds like they would go well the didn't. But we will definitely make the tenderloin again and will try the orzo this time exactly how Rachel instructed. :)
Recipe = Thumbs up!
Ok! The pork tenderloin with blueberries and onions recipe was a hit! I have never really made pork tenderloin very much before and always passed it by in the meat section. NOT ANYMORE! It was a pretty easy recipe and very yummy! I stuck to the original recipe, except I used butter instead of margerine (not going to make much of a difference I guess) I got the port at Safeway for pretty inexpensive, it was $5.49 so that was good except I think we are going to have to try some more recipes that call for port because now I have a huge bottle! Too bad all the Chic Chefs couldn't share one bottle for this recipe! By the way if you go to allrecipes.com you can put in an ingredient and it will give you recipes that call for that ingredient, kinda helpful. We also liked the orzo dish and I thought that it was great because you could really go crazy with this and make it into a lot of different things including a main dish by adding chicken, beef, shrimp etc. I just added peas and zucchini but here is my suggestion: sautee the vegi's and set them aside, when orzo is done cooking add them. Mine got kind of mushy eeewww! I guess it depends on what vegi's you use.
I am having fun with this! I can't wait for the next recipe!