Monday, November 30, 2009

Turkey Curry

I am pretty sure this will be the only leftover turkey recipe, as I am certain the rest of you are way ahead of me on this. Even though we had a really great meal at my niece's place on Thanksgiving, we decided, at nearly the last minute, that we wanted leftover turkey, too, so we went 'turkey hunting' saturday morning and came home with a prime 11 lb. specimen. Saturday we had turkey with some of the traditional trimmings. And this is what I made for dinner tonight.

Turkey Curry

2 tsp Canola Oil
1 Medium Onion, diced
2 Clove Garlic, minced or pressed
1 tsp Minced Ginger
3 tsp Curry Powder
1 tsp Ground Coriander
1 tsp Garam Marsala
1 tsp Chili Powder
1/2 tsp Turmeric
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper
1/2 lb Diced Potato
1 Cup Coconut Milk
3/4 Cup Chicken Broth
2 Cups chopped pre-cooked turkey meat
1 Can Diced Tomatoes, including liquid
1/2 cup frozen peas
3 Tbsp Plain Yogurt
2 Tbsp Chopped Fresh Cilantro

Heat oil in a dutch oven over medium heat. Add onions and cook until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, and spices. Stir and cook for about a minute. Add diced potato and stir to coat with spices.

Stir in broth and coconut milk. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 1o minutes. Add the turkey and canned tomatoes and cook for another 15 minutes. Add frozen peas and cook for another 10 minutes. Garnish with plain yogurt and chopped fresh cilantro.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Chocolate Cream Pie

I have had this pie at every Thanksgiving in my life, I am pretty sure. One of the best things about hosting Thanksgiving in my family is that you get to have this pie for breakfast the next morning! This one is pretty much straight out of the box when I make it. As much as I love cooking, and have even gotten into baking over the past little while, I still hate to make pie crust, so I use the refrigerated kind. My mother always made her own, as I am pretty sure the rest of my family does. Maybe I will try pie crust again in 2010, but for now, my DS declared that "people in heaven must eat this every day. Right before going to the arcade."

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I'll be back with more recipes next week.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Sweet Potato Fries with Curry Yogurt Dipping Sauce

This one is definitely NOT a Thanksgiving recipe. Unless, of course, you are doing an Indian-themed Thanksgiving. Then it totally could be. But it is orange, and it is yummy. This would be a nice appetizer for an Indian meal, or a great addition to an appetizer party. Or, if you're like me, you could just eat it for lunch because you didn't plan ahead and this is all there is. Not as if that is a hardship or anything.

I roasted up one sweet potato, and have lots of sauce left over. Currently I am thinking it would make a great dressing for a roasted potato and cauliflower salad. You could certainly also just use it as a dip for crudite. Or make some more sweet potatoes.

Sweet Potato Fries with Curry Yogurt Dipping Sauce

For the Potatoes

Preheat Oven to 400

Sweet Potato(es) Cut into Wedges (Mine was 11 ounces)
Cayenne Pepper to taste (I used 1/8 tsp)
Salt and Pepper
1 tsp (or more) Canola Oil

Toss all ingredients in a bowl or bag to coat. Spread the potato wedges on a greased baking sheet and bake until soft and browning, about 25 minutes. Turn 2 or 3 times during cooking. Remove from the oven and set aside.

For the Dipping Sauce

1/2 Cup Plain Yogurt
3/4 tsp Curry Powder
1/4 tsp Chili Powder
1/8 tsp Ground Coriander
1/8 tsp Cinnamon
1 Small Garlic Clove, minced or pressed
1/8 tsp Minced Fresh Ginger

Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. I intentionally did not spice up the dip, as the sweet potatoes themselves are plenty spice with the cayenne.

Put the potatoes on a platter and the dip in a bowl and enjoy!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Bulgur Stuffed Acorn Squash Recipe

Yes, another squash recipe. I love bulgur, and I really enjoyed this dish, although I probably wouldn't consider this a Thanksgiving recipe, I'm sure it could be. I think of it more as a main course. Some sauteed greens on the side, and you've got yourself dinner! I will list approximate quantities for one small acorn squash (2 servings).

Bulgur Stuffed Acorn Squash

1 Small-ish Acorn Squash
1 large or 2 Small Cloves Garlic
2 tsp Olive Oil (divided)
1/4 cup Diced Onions
Another Clove of Garlic
1/2 Cup Bulgur
1 Cup Broth (chicken or veggie)
1 Link Pre-Cooked Sausage (I really like chicken and sundried tomato, but there are tons out there, use your favorite)
2 Tbsp Shredded Part Skim Mozzarella Cheese
1-2 Tbsp Pine nuts
1/2 tsp Dried Basil
2 Small Balls Marinated Fresh Mozzarella (or other cheese to melt over top- I chose fresh mozzarella because I had some leftover from last weekend. I think about any cheese would do the job')

Preheat oven to 375

Cut the squash in half and remove the seeds. Rub the cut sides with 1 tsp olive oil. Place cut side down in a baking dish, with one or two garlic cloves (depending on size) tucked into the cavity. Bake until soft, about 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and turn cut side up.

Meanwhile, saute the onions in 1 tsp olive oil until beginning to brown. Add a garlic clove (crushed or minced) and continue cooking for about a minute. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Stir in the bulgur, reduce heat, cover and cook until the liquid is absorbed, about 15-18 minutes. Remove from heat.

Slice the sausage in half lengthwise, then slice each half in half again (you want 4 strips), then cut into small pieces. Saute the sausage in a non-stick pan until browned, about 6 minutes.

Combine the bulgur, sausage, shredded cheese, pine nuts and basil. Stuff into the squash halves, and return the squash to the oven. Cook until heated through, about 10 minutes. Thinly slice the fresh mozzarella and arrange over top of squashes. Place under the broiler until the cheese is melted and slightly browned, about 4 minutes.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Sage and Garlic Scented Butternut with Apples

How's that for a recipe title? I am still on the Thanksgiving kick, and I still have a lot of apples and now a counter full of butternut and acorn squashes, so I got to experimenting this afternoon. This is kind of like scalloped butternut with an apple topping, but the topping is not crunchy. This turned out really great! I was quite pleased with both the flavor and the texture of the final product.

And, again, I am not going to list actual amounts. This is the kind of dish that you can easily make as much as you need depending on how many eaters you have. My sweetie is out of town for a few days, and that means I am on my own come dinner time, so I just made a little bit.

Sage and Garlic Scented Butternut Squash with Apples

Butternut squash
Fresh Sage Leaves
Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
Broth or Water

Preheat the oven to 375

Peel and seed the squash. Halve it, then slice it very thinly. Toss the squash with minced garlic, chopped sage leaves, and a little bit of olive oil. Layer the slices in a greased baking dish. No need to be perfect here, just arrange them in layers until the dish is nearly full. Then core your apple and slice. I like to cut the apple in quarters, then cut the core out on a diagonal. Cover the squash slices with apples. Pour a bit of broth or water over the top (This is just to help the squash cook up nicely, maybe 1/4 cup of liquid for an 8 inch square pan), cover with foil and bake for about 45 minutes until the squash is tender. Remove the foil and check for doneness. At this point my squash was very tender, but there was way too much liquid in the pan, so I put it back into the oven for about another 7 minutes.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Cloverleaf Rolls Recipe

This is a festive, delicious recipe adapted from The Joy of Cooking. These rolls turn out nice and fluffy, and are pretty enough for the holidays. The dough for these rolls is so soft it is really nice to work with, and it's fun to make it into little cloverleafs! (leaves?)

Cloverleaf Rolls

1 package (2 1/4 tsp) Active Dry Yeast
3 Tbsp warm water (105-115 degrees)
1 Cup Milk Warmed to between 105 and 115 degrees
5 Tbsp Melted Butter
3 Tbsp Sugar
1 Egg
1 tsp Salt
2 Cups Bread Flour
1 1/2 to 2 Cups All Purpose Flour
Melted Butter or Milk for Brushing on the Rolls

Combine the yeast and water in the bowl of the stand mixer (or a large mixing bowl if mixing by hand). Let stand until the yeast is dissolved, 5 minutes, or until you are done heating the milk and butter. Add the warm milk, melted butter, sugar, egg, and salt. Mix on low speed or by hand for a minute or so.

Gradually add the bread flour. Once the bread flour is all incorporated, gradually add in all purpose flour until the dough is moist but not sticky. Knead for about 10 minutes in your mixer or by hand until smooth and elastic.

Put the dough into an oiled bowl, cover with a damp tea towel, and let rise until doubled, 60-90 minutes.

Punch the dough down, and divide into 12 equal portions (not 11 like I did. Counting is hard!) , cover with your tea towel, and let rest for about 10 minutes. Grease a 12 muffin pan. Divide each ball into 3 pieces, and roll each piece into a little ball. Place 3 balls in each of the muffin cups. Cover with the tea towel and let rise until doubled in volume, about 60 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 425. Brush the tops of the rolls with melted butter or milk. Bake until golden brown and delicious, about 15 minutes.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Yams, Two Ways

No, this is not Iron Chef. Nor is this anything fancy or complicated. But yams are an important dish on many Thanksgiving tables, and here are a few ways I like to prepare them. I know a lot of people like to add maple or brown sugar to yams, but I prefer them mostly plain. I find them plenty sweet on their own, but if you like, you could totally use maple syrup or brown sugar in either of these cooking methods. I also always call these 'sweet potatoes', which drives my son crazy. Hrmm... maybe that's why I continue to do it....

Easy Roasted Yams

And I mean easy. You don't even have to peel them for this cooking method. Grab however many yams you want to cook and slice them about 1/2 inch thick. Toss them with some salt, pepper and olive oil. (If you are the sort that goes for sweeter, you could add brown sugar or maple syrup at this point, I Imagine.) Spread them out on a baking sheet (or two) in a single layer, and bake in a 350 degree oven until soft and browned, maybe 15-20 minutes. You should flip them over once during cooking to get both sides browned. That's it. Easy peasy, but oh so yummy. Look, it was so easy I didn't even try to write a recipe!

Smashed Yams

Milk, Half and Half, or Cream
Salt and Pepper
Maple Syrup or Brown Sugar, if desired

I am not listing quantities because you can easily make a lot or a little depending on how many eaters you have. I used about 1 tbps of butter and maybe 1/4 cup milk for one big yam. (Plus the big pat of butter melting over the top in this photo.)

For this one you will need to peel your yams. Peel them, then cut them into roughly 1/2 inch hunks. Put them into a pan of water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and boil until they are very tender, 15 minutes or so. Once they are tender, drain them and return them to the hot pan. Begin to mash them with a potato masher, when they are about 1/2 mashed, add in the butter, milk (and syrup) and continue mashing until you get the consistency you like. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Broccoli and Cauliflower Casserole Recipe

My friend Roseanne used to make a version of this recipe many years ago. Since then she has moved out of, then across, the country. Luckily, we are still in touch! I have been making this recipe every year for Thanksgiving since she first introduced me to it. It has evolved over the years, this is the current rendition.

If you have any type of aversion to dairy, you will want to avoid this dish altogether. And, sadly, despite the copious amount of vegetables, there really is nothing healthy about it. But it is Thanksgiving, after all, and it only comes around once a year.

I normally make as much as will fit in my largest casserole, and I also never measure anything. This time I have tried my best to keep track of what I've done, and made a more modest amount to serve maybe 8 as a side dish?

Broccoli and Cauliflower Casserole

3 Cups Broccoli Florets
3 Cups Cauliflower Florets
2 Tbsp Butter
12 Ounces Mushrooms, halved then sliced into thick slices (about 4 cups)
Salt and Pepper
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced or Pressed
Pinch Nutmeg
2 Tbsp Flour
1 Cup Broth
1 Cup Half and Half
3/4 Cup Sour Cream
1 Cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese (I like Medium)
French's Onions

Steam the broccoli and cauliflower and set aside.

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a pan over medium heat. Add the mushrooms, a generous pinch of salt, and some pepper. Cook until the mushrooms begin to give off their liquid, about 4 or 5 minutes. Add the garlic and nutmeg (I always put nutmeg in any white sauce I make: it reminds me of Swedish Meatballs) and cook for 1 or 2 minutes. Sprinkle the flour over the mushrooms and cook and stir for about one minute. Stir in the broth and cook for one or two minutes, then add the half and half. Cook, stirring frequently, until thickened, about 8 or 10 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine the broccoli, cauliflower, and the mushroom mixture. Stir in the sour cream and shredded cheese. Scrape into a baking dish. At this point you can bake it in a 400 degree oven for about 15 minutes, then sprinkle the top with French's onions and return to the oven until the top is browned. Or, if you are eating later, cover the casserole and refrigerate until ready to bake. The cold casserole will take longer to bake. It should be nice and bubbly and golden brown the top. If you have to bake it at a lower temperature because there are other things in the oven, no worries. (It seems like most Thanksgiving recipes have to bake at 350.) Just bake it a little longer.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Sauteed Brussels Sprouts Recipe

Brussels Sprouts. The vegetable we all love to hate. I definitely remember the horrible smell whenever my mom cooked these when I was a kid. But now that I know a few different ways to prepare them, I really love them. Here is one of those ways. I will list the amounts I used for two servings, but this can be made in larger quantities for a crowd quite readily. (Say for Thanksgiving, for example.)

Sauteed Brussels Sprouts

8 oz. Brussels Sprouts
1/4 Onion
1 tsp Olive Oil
1/2 tsp Sugar
1 Tbsp Chopped Walnuts
A Splash of Liquid (Water, White Wine, or Broth)

Cut the bottoms off the sprouts and slice them. If you have a lot, use your food processor. Since I only had a handful, I used my trusty chef's knife. Thinly slice the onion. Heat the olive oil in a non stick skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until very soft and beginning to caramelize, about 12 minutes. Add the brussels sprouts and cook for about 10 minutes more. Sprinkle the sugar over the top and add a splash of your liquid of choice. Continue to cook until softened and beginning to caramelize, about 7 minutes. Remove from heat and sprinkle walnuts over top.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Cranberry Sauce Recipe

Thanksgiving is next week! I know I said I would be posting Thanksgiving recipes, but last week I got sidetracked by apples. So this week, I will be posting some of my favorite Thanksgiving side dish recipes. I know for many people Thanksgiving is all about the turkey, but I love me my veggie sides. Of course, you can't have Thanksgiving without cranberry sauce, so here is mine.

Cranberry Sauce

12 Ounces Fresh Cranberries
1 Cup Cranberry Juice
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
3 Tbsp Cointreau

(I know there is an orange in the picture. Sometimes I put orange zest in as well, but this turned out orangy enough with just the Cointreau, so I left it out)

Bring the cranberries and juice to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue cooking until it's pretty thick and most of the juice has cooked off, about 10 minutes. Stir in the brown sugar and Cointreau. Taste and add more sugar, Cointreau (or orange zest) as needed. Transfer to a serving bowl and refrigerate until serving time.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Beef Barley Soup Recipe

I wasn't initially planning to post this recipe, but this soup turned out to be too good to keep to ourselves. It even inspired my DH to write the following introduction:

Beef Barley Soup is one of those soups that you eat in college. You get a can, you dump it out, you heat it up and it's instant fuel. It's not flashy. It's not gourmet. But it is what your college-age son is dumping into a tiny aluminum pot and eating while watching football. I must have had a hundred cans of it when I was in school.

Then, there is this soup. Like the stuff out of the can, it's not gourmet. It's simple food, but it's so good. The meat chunks have texture and are chewy. You can taste the fresh leeks and the thyme shines through. The barley actually lends something to the soup and isn't the bland filler that permeates a can.

This soup is one of the reasons why cooking at home and making even the simple things can be so rewarding.

Excuse, me, I have to watch some basketball.

Allrighty, then. On to the recipe. (And I make him eat salad!)

Beef Barley Soup

1 1/2 lbs Beef Stew Meat (I like Chuck, or you can get the pre-cut stew meat from the store) cut into 1 inch pieces
4 tsp Canola Oil, Divided
3 Cups Sliced Leeks
1 1/2 Cups Chopped Carrots
3 Cups (8 ounces) sliced mushrooms
2 Garlic Cloves, pressed or minced
4 Cups Water
1 1/2 tsp Dried Thyme
3 Bay Leaves
3 1/2 Cups Beef Broth
3/4 Cups Pearl Barley
Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper to Taste

Heat 2 tsp canola oil in a large pot or dutch oven. Add the beef and brown on all sides, about 8 minutes. Remove beef from pan. Add more oil, if needed, and the leeks and carrots and cook until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook about 5 minutes more, then add in the garlic.

Add the water, thyme, bay leaves and broth. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for one hour. Add barley, and cook until the barley and the meat are tender, about one hour more. Discard the bay leaves. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Thai Coconut Curry Vegetable Noodle Soup Recipe

I really like this soup. Red thai curry paste, coconut milk, plenty of veggies and noodles. What's not to like? It comes together pretty easy too, which is always a plus. I have listed the veggies I used this time, but really just about anything goes. Spinach, mustard greens, cauliflower, sweet potato, summer squash...

Thai Coconut Curry Vegetable Soup Recipe

2 tsp Canola Oil
1 Onion
2 Cloves Garlic
2 tsp Minced Ginger
1-4 tsp Thai Red Chili Paste depending on how spicy you like things. If you tend toward mild, start with one teaspoon, you can always add heat later.
1 1/4 Cups Chopped Bell Pepper, any color
1 1/4 Cups Chopped Carrots
1 3/4 Cups Chicken or Veggie Broth
1 3/4 Cups (one can) Coconut Milk
1 1/4 Cups Broccoli Florets
3/4 Cup Sliced Green Beans
3 or 4 Small Tomatoes, Seeded and Chopped
6 Ounces Spaghetti, broken in half
Chopped Fresh Cilantro or Basil for a garnish

Saute the onion, peppers, and carrots in canola oil over medium heat until pretty soft, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, and curry paste. Stir for about one minute, then add the broth and coconut milk. Bring to a boil and add the broccoli and green beans. Redude the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes, until the vegetables begin to soften but are not cooked all the way. Add the tomatoes and the spaghetti, and continue simmering until the pasta is cooked, about 10 minutes longer. Ladle into soup bowls and garnish with fresh herb.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Fresh Apple Bread Recipe

I know, apples apples apples. I think this will be the last apple post, at least for this week! This apple bread is very very tasty, but I cannot claim it is health food by any stretch of the imagination.

Fresh Apple Bread

1 Cup All Purpose Flour
1 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Cinnomon
1/4 Cup Shortening
1/4 Cup Butter
1 Cup Sugar
2 Eggs
1 Cup Finely Chopped Apple
1 1/2 Tbsp Milk
1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract

1 Tbsp Sugar
1 1/2 tsp Cinnomon

Preheat oven to 350

Cream shortening, butter and sugar. Add eggs and mix well. Stir in apples, milk and vanilla extract. Mix dry ingredients together in a bowl, then add stir into the apple mixture. Pour into a greased loaf pan and sprinkle the topping over the batter. Bake for 50-60 minutes. This bread gets very dark in the oven, but boy is it good.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Apple Strippers Recipe

I am not exactly sure why these are called strippers. Maybe it's because they are made from strips of dough. Anyway, I have been making these cookies for the holidays with raspberry and apricot jam since I saw the recipe in Cooking Light Magazine in about 2002. I was inspired to do a fall version perhaps because I am still surrounded by apples. This recipe uses the apple butter we made yesterday.

Apple Strippers Recipe

Adapted from Cooking Light Magazine

1/3 Cup Sugar
5 Tbsp Butter, softened
1 1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 Large Egg White
1 Cup All Purpose Flour
2 Tbsp Cornstarch
1/4 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Salt
Cooking Spray or Parchment Paper
1/3 Cup Apple Butter (or other jam-like product of your choice)
1/3 Cup Powdered Sugar
2 tsp Fresh Lemon Juice
1/2 tsp Almond Extract

Preheat Oven to 375

Beat sugar and butter with a mixer at medium speed until well blended, about 5 minutes. Add the vanilla and egg white, beat well. Combine the flour, cornstarch, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture ans stir until well blended.

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and divide it in two. Roll each half into a log about 12 inches long. Place the logs about 3 inches apart on a cookie sheet or baking pan coated with cooking spray (I used parchment paper instead). Using the handle of a wooden spoon, make a 1/2 inch indentation down the length of each log. Spoon the apple butter into the center. Bake for 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove to a cutting board.

Combine the powdered sugar, lemon juice, and almond extract. Stir well with a fork and drizzle over the logs. Cut each log diagonally into 12 slices, but don't pull the slices apart yet. Let rest on the cutting board for 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Apple Butter Recipe

I made this for the first time a month or so ago, and it was gone right quick. I like this recipe because it uses up a lot of apples, and my husband declared it "good enough to buy apples just to make this". It's not hard by any stretch, but it is time-consuming, so keep that in mind before you start. We have spread this on biscuits and bagels and toast. We have baked it into crescent rolls and pocket pies. I could also see it on pancakes or waffles. Hrm....

Apple Butter Recipe

3 Cups Apple Juice or Cider
3 lbs Apples (I use a combo of whatever I have on hand, usually fuji, golden delicious, red delicious and/or gala.)
2 Tbsp to 1/3 Cup Brown Sugar, depending on the sweetness of your apples
1/2 Tsp (more to taste) Cinnamon

Bring the apple juice or cider to a boil in a large pot or dutch oven. Reduce to simmer and simmer for about 15 minutes. In the mean time, peel, core and chop the apples. (This is the only recipe that I actually peel the apples for.) Add the apples to the juice, cover and cook for about one hour, stirring occasionally, until very soft. Remove the pot from the heat and grab your handy dandy potato masher. Get in there and mash the apples as much as possible. Stir in the cinnamon and brown sugar and return the pot to low heat. Continue cooking over low heat until very thick and all the liquid has cooked off, as much as one hour longer. If need be, you can continue mashing any lumps out as the mixture thickens.

I haven't (yet) canned anything, so I just put this in a container in the fridge. I can't say how long it will actually keep, the first batch I made was gone inside of two weeks!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Vegetable Fried Rice Recipe

Today I made pancakes for my family for breakfast. But, as you can plainly see, this is not a post for a pancake recipe. You see, I don't care for sweet breakfasts, so after they were finished eating I went rummaging in the fridge to see what I could find for myself to eat. Leftover rice and a smattering of veggies. Sounds like fried rice to me!

I will give approximate amounts here to serve one as a main course, or probably two as a side. Also, you can use any vegetables you like. Really, just about anything goes, but you definitely want to use onions (or green onions), garlic and ginger. You can also add herbs as well. I have used both basil and cilantro in the past, but today I didn't use any.

Vegetable Fried Rice Recipe

1 Tsp Canola or Peanut Oil
2 Tbsp Diced Onion
1 Sliced Scallion
1 Garlic Clove, Crushed or Minced
1 Tsp Minced Ginger (I use the minced ginger in a jar)
3/4 Cup Cold Cooked Rice
1 Medium Carrot, Sliced Lengthwise and Cut into Half Moon Shapes
1 Cup Broccoli Florets, Broken up Pretty Small
1 Cup or So Shredded Cabbage
1 Egg
1 Tbsp Soy Sauce

Heat the oil in a nonstick frying pan or a wok. If you use a frying pan like I did today, it will take a little longer to cook because it can't get as hot as the wok would. Add the onions and cook until starting to soften, about 3 minutes. Add in the garlic and ginger and stir for about 30 seconds. Next add in the rice, breaking up with your hands if necessary. Stir to coat the rice with the oil and aromatics.

Next add in the carrots and broccoli and stir often nearly cooked, about 4 minutes in the frying pan, less in a wok. Then add in the cabbage and cook until wilted, about another 3 or 4 minutes. When the vegetable are cooked, crack in the egg and scramble it and coat the rice and vegetables and stir until cooked. This only takes a few minutes. Pour on the soy sauce and stir to combine.

An oddly satisfying, if unconventional breakfast. But you should feel free to serve this for lunch or dinner as you see fit. ; )

Friday, November 6, 2009

Arugula Risotto Stuffed Kabocha Squash Recipe

I went snooping around the internet looking at stuffed squash recipes and noticed that most of them involve rice. I have never made nor eaten a squash stuffed with rice, so this was news to me! Shows how much I know. Anyhow, this is what I came up with when I decided to try a rice stuffed winter squash.

Arugula Risotto Stuffed Kabocha Squash

2 Small Kabocha Squash
Olive Oil
1/2 Onion
2 Cloves Garlic
1 Cup Arborio Rice
Chicken or Veggie Broth, up to 5 cups (I used about 4 this time)
1/2 Cup White Wine
One Bunch Arugula (About 2 Cups Coarsely Chopped)
1/2 Cup (Or more) Grated Parmesan Cheese
1/4 Cup Grated Mozzarella Cheese

Preheat oven to 375

Cut the squash in half and remove the seeds. Rub the cut sides with olive oil and place cut side down in a baking dish. Bake until it can be easily pierced with a fork or wooden skewer.

Dice and saute the onions in olive oil until very soft. Add the crushed or minced garlic, then the rice. Cook until the rice is beginning to brown, about 4 minutes. Add the wine and stir, once the wine has evaporated, add about 1/2 cup of broth. Let simmer until the broth has nearly evaporated, and keep adding broth in this fashion until the rice is tender. This can take anywhere from 25-35 minutes. When the rice is cooked, stir in the arugula, then the parmesan cheese.

Remove the squash from the oven and turn cut side up. Stuff the squash halves with the rice, you might not need all of the rice. Sprinkle the mozzarella cheese over the top and return to the oven until heated through and browned on top. I ended up putting them under the broiler for a few minutes to get the tops browned.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Beet, Apple and Carrot Salad Recipe

This one is so simple, I don't really think it's fair calling it a 'recipe'. However, it is a side dish I turn to often when time is short and I need something quick. It also keeps well in the fridge and as such makes great snacks or lunches later in the week.

Beet, Apple and Carrot Salad

Roughly equal parts beets, carrots and apples. Scrub the beets and carrots. Core and seed the apples (I do this by cutting them in quarters, then slicing on the diagonal to remove the core and seeds.) If you are picky about such things, you can peel, but I never do. Shred everything with the food processor or a box grater.

For one beet, 2 carrots and one apple I use about 1 Tbsp Champagne Vinegar (or you could use Sherry Vinegar, Red Wine Vinegar, Cider Vinegar, probably even Balsamic Vinegar. Try a few and see what you like.) and 1 Tbsp Olive Oil. Whisk the vinegar and oil, then add in the veg/fruit. Stir to combine and season to taste with salt and pepper. That's it!

Super simple and so refreshing.

We had this with the Cornbread Stuffing and a wonderful roast chicken my DH made.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Cornbread Stuffing Recipe

Now that November is here, Thanksgiving is officially right around the corner. It doesn't look like I will be cooking the whole dinner this year, so instead I will be posting a few of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes each week for the next few weeks. Today's offering is corn bread stuffing, which I made for the first time last year and seemed to be a big hit.

Corn Bread Stuffing

Adapted from The Joy of Cooking

One recipe Skillet Corn Bread
1-2 Tbsp Butter
One Cup Diced Onion
1/2 Cup Diced Celery
1 Clove of Garlic
2 Tbsp Minced Fresh Parsley
1 1/2-2 tsp Minced Fresh Thyme
1 1/2-2 tsp Minced Fresh Sage
Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper to Taste
1/4 Cup or so Chicken or Vegetable Broth

Slice the cornbread into about 1 inch cubes and put in a bowl. Melt the butter over medium heat, then add the onions and celery and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the herbs, salt and pepper. Add the onion mixture to the bread cubes and stir to coat. Pour in broth until the stuffing is moist, but not saturated. You don't want it to stick together, but you don't want it too dry, either.

Turn the stuffing out into a buttered baking dish (8 inch) and bake until brown on top, about 25-35 minutes.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Skillet Corn Bread Recipe

This is super quick to put together and would go well with Chili Rojo as well as with many other soups, stews, barbecue...and in Corn Bread Stuffing (recipe coming tomorrow). I make this corn bread in a 5 inch cast iron skillet, but an 8 inch baking dish would probably work as well, or even a muffin pan. If I were making muffins, I would not bother melting butter in the cups, just grease them with softened butter.

Skillet Corn Bread

1/2 Cup All Purpose Flour
1/2 Cup Stone-ground Corn Meal
2 tsp Baking Powder
1/8 tsp Salt
1/8 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Cup plus 2 Tbsp Milk or Buttermilk (I use regular milk when I don't have buttermilk on hand, which is more often than not.)
1 Tbsp Sugar
1 Egg
2 Tbsp Canola Oil
1 Tbsp Butter

Preheat the oven to 375

Mix in a medium bowl the flour, corn meal, baking powder and salt. In another bowl stir the baking soda into the milk or buttermilk, whisk in the sugar, egg, and 2 Tbsp canola oil.

Put the 1 Tbsp butter in your skillet and put the skillet in the oven until the butter melts and begins to sizzle, about 4 minutes. Meanwhile, add the wet ingredients to the dry and combine. Carefully remove the skillet from the oven and turn the pan to coat all side with the butter. Put the batter in the skillet and bake until the top is golden brown, about 20 minutes. Let cool about 5 minutes, then cut into wedges and serve.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Sweet Potato Soup with Sausage and Collard Greens Recipe

I made this soup a few weeks ago with chicken and sun dried tomato sausage and really loved it. I remade it on Halloween night with Linguica, and didn't love it as much, but it was still pretty good.

Sweet Potato Soup with Sausage and Collard Greens

2 lb. Sweet Potatoes, quartered lengthwise and sliced
1 lb Potatoes, 1/2 inch dice
12 oz. Precooked Sausage (Your choice)
2 tsp Olive Oil
1 Onion
2 Cloves Garlic
6 Cups Chicken or Veggie Broth
1 Bunch Collard Greens
Red Pepper Flakes to Taste (Depending on heat of the sausage you choose)

Slice sausage into 1/2 inch rounds. Brown in olive oil over medium heat until browned on both sides, about 10 minutes. Remove from pot and drain on paper towels. Add diced onions to pot and cook for about 10 minutes. Add garlic, diced sweet potatoes and potatoes, stir to coat. Add broth and bring to a boil. Let boil about 20 minutes, then add in roughly chopped collard greens and let simmer for about 10 minutes. Add sausage back into the pot and let cook for about 15 minutes, or longer.