Sunday, 31 August 2008

Jambalaya with Chicken, Shrimp, & Spicy Sausage

1 tablespoon olive oil
12 to 16 oz. smoked sausage,
   thinly sliced
1 lb boneless skinless chicken
   thighs, cut into small bite
   sized cubes
1 medium onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, seeded and
1 green bell pepper, seeded
   and diced
2 to 3 ribs of celery, diced
   (about 1/2 cup)
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups of corn kernels
2 cups long grain rice
2 tablespoons parsley,
   finely chopped
1 tablespoon thyme, minced
2 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1/4 to 1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper or hot sauce (to your taste)
1 (15 oz) can, crushed tomatoes
3 cups chicken stock
1 lb. shrimp, cleaned peeled and deveined

  • Preheat 1 tablespoon of oil or grease in a heavy stockpot or dutch oven over medium-high heat. Brown sausage for about 5 minutes, remove from oven, leaving grease, and set aside.
  • Add chicken thighs, season with salt and pepper, and cook about 5 minutes. They don’t need to be cooked through, just have a bit of color on them. Remove and set aside with sausage
  • Add onions, bell peppers, and celery and sauté for 4 to 5 minutes or until onions barely begin to look translucent.  Season with salt and pepper. Stir in garlic and corn and continue to sauté for 2 minutes more.
  • Add rice, herbs and spices and sauté for 4 to 5 minutes. Season well with salt and pepper.
  • Stir in crushed tomatoes, stock, chicken thighs, and sausage. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to simmer and cover. 
  • Cook for about 15 to 20 minutes or until cooked about 2/3 of the way, then add shrimp by gently pressing shrimp slightly into the mixture. DO NOT STIR while rice is cooking.
  • Cover again and continue to simmer for 7 to 10 minutes or until rice is cooked through and the liquid has evaporated.
  • Gently toss jambalaya together to incorporate shrimp and fluff the rice. 

Vegetable Sushi Bowl

1-2 cups romaine lettuce
1 cup cooked rice
1 red bell pepper, julienned
1 cup mushrooms, marinated in
   soy sauce
1 red onion, julienned
1 avocado, sliced
1 large carrot, julienned
1 cup cucumber, julienned
1 cup pea shoots or sprouts of
2-4 nori sheets, torn or cut into

1 tablespoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
½ teaspoon ginger paste
1 tablespoon peanut butter
2 tablespoons soy sauce
dash of hot sauce

  • Cook the rice the day before and keep overnight in the fridge.  Fluff before using.
  • The next day, prep all the vegetables and set aside.
  • Build your bowl by starting with placing the greens on the bottom, followed by the rice, then arranging all the toppings ending with the nori sheets.
  • Combine all the dressing ingredients in a small bowl and whisk.
  • Adjust seasonings to suit your taste.
  • Pour the dressing on top just before serving.

Monday, 25 August 2008

Spicy Baked Chicken Nuggets

1 - 2 pounds boneless chicken
   tenderloins or breasts, cut
   into nugget-sized pieces
3/4 cup buttermilk or cream
1 1/2 cups Panko (or crushed
   corn flakes)
2 tablespoon whole wheat flour
   or cornmeal

1/3 cup hoisin sauce
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon fresh ginger,
   grated or a tablespoon of
   garlic paste
1 teaspoon chili paste or hot
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 Tablespoons sesame seeds

  • Preheat the oven to 475 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray or brush it with the olive oil.
  • Add the chicken to a large bowl and pour the buttermilk/cream overtop. Mix well and set aside.
  • In a shallow pie dish or large bowl add the Panko, flour and a pinch of salt and pepper. Mix well.
  • Remove each piece of chicken from the buttermilk/cream, and dredge through the crumbs, pressing gently to adhere. Place on the prepared baking sheet. 
  • Bake for 20 minutes, then gently flip. 
  • While the chicken is baking make the sauce. Combine the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, honey, ginger. chili paste/hot sauce, sesame oil, cinnamon, cloves, garlic powder and pepper in a bowl. Whisk until smooth. Stir in 1 tablespoon sesame seeds.
  • Pour sauce over chicken making sure all pieces are coated.
  • Bake for 20 minutes more, then remove from oven. 
  • Serve with extra sesame seeds and any extra sauce you may want for dipping.

Spicy Cauliflower

2 tsp olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
½ tsp dried oregano
½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 (28 oz.) can cherry tomatoes
   cut in half
¼ cup pitted & halved olives
2 tbsp capers
1 ¾ lb. cauliflower, cut into
   florets (about 4 cups)
¼ cup minced parsley
Salt and pepper, to taste

  • Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet set over medium heat. Add the garlic, oregano and red pepper flakes, and cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Avoid burning the garlic.
  • Stir in the diced tomatoes, olives and capers. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about 5 minutes.
  • Add the cauliflower, stirring to coat and cover. Cook until the cauliflower is tender, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes.
  • Stir in the parsley, season with salt and pepper if necessary and serve.

Sunday, 24 August 2008

Sun-Dried Tomato and Broccoli Pasta Salad

½ pound dried whole wheat
   bow-tie or spiral-shaped
5+ tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic
   (around 5 garlic cloves)
¼ teaspoon crushed red
   pepper flakes
1½ pound broccoli (about 4
   medium, tightly packed
   florets), chopped into
   small, bite-sized pieces
Sea salt
1 jar oil-packed sun-dried
   tomatoes, drained and
2 to 3 ounces goat cheese,
   crumbled while still cold
   (around ½ cup)
⅓ cup coarsely grated
   Parmesan cheese
½ small lemon, juiced
couple of handfuls of
   baby greens

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. 
  • Place a colander in the sink with a glass liquid measuring cup or heat-safe bowl next to it. 
  • Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook until al dente.
  • Remove the pot from heat and ladle/pour about 1 cup of the pasta water in the heat-safe bowl.
  • Drain the pasta in the colander and let it rest.
  • In a large cast-iron or non-stick skillet, heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-low heat. 
  • When the oil is hot, add the red pepper flakes and garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until the garlic begins to simmer. Cook for about 30 seconds more to infuse the oil with spicy, garlicky flavor, but do not let the garlic brown. 
  • Pour and scrape the seasoned oil into the heatproof bowl and set aside. 
  • Return the pan to the stove. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil and heat over medium-low until shimmering. 
  • Add the broccoli and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the broccoli has shrunk to a single layer in the pan and turned bright green, and most have some browning on them (about ten minutes). Don't quit cooking prematurely here; you want the broccoli to be nice and toasty.
  • Add the sun-dried tomatoes to the pan. 
  • Measure out ⅓ cup pasta water (keep the rest for later) and pour it into the pan. 
  • Cover the pan with a lid and continue cooking until the water has simmered down to almost nothing, about 15 to 30 seconds. Uncover and remove the pan from heat.
  • Add the drained pasta to the pan and drizzle in all of the infused oil. Give it a stir, then add the goat cheese and most of the Parmesan. 
  • Stir until everything is well distributed. 
  • Add another 1 to 2 tablespoons pasta water and lemon juice, and stir until the goat cheese loosens up and gets creamier. 
  • Season to taste with salt and add a tablespoon more pasta water or additional goat cheese if you'd like it to be more creamy. 
  • If it seems dry at all, add a little splash of olive oil and mix well. 
  • Mix in the baby greens.
  • Serve.

Friday, 22 August 2008

Chocolate Coconut Cream Cheese Cookies

6 tablespoons butter, room
3 ounces cream cheese, room
3/4 cup Brown Sugar
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup shredded sweetened
1 cup chocolate chips

  • In a medium sized bowl combine the butter, cream cheese and sugar together and mix on medium speed for 2 minutes.
  • Add in yolk, vanilla, salt and baking soda and continue mixing until combined.
  • Turn mixer to low and add in flour, mixing until just incorporated. Add in the coconut and chocolate.
  • Batter will be somewhat dry.
  • Form into a tube shape and wrap with plastic wrap.
  • Chill the dough for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  • To bake cookies, preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Spray pan with Pam.
  • Cut dough and then form into golf ball size shapes. 
  • Bake cookies for 12 - 20  (i.e. keep an eye on them) minutes until the edges are golden and the centers are set.

Monday, 18 August 2008

Coconut Chicken Strips with Pina Colada dipping sauce

1 cup pineapple juice divided
1 cup cream of coconut divided
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sweetish vinegar (rice-wine/strawberry/apple)
1 lbs boneless chicken breasts cut into strips
1 cup flour
1 salt and pepper to taste
1 egg beaten
1 - 2 cups shredded coconut
1 cup peanut or coconut or sesame oil (up to 1 cup)
1 cup heavy whipping cream

1. In a large bowl mix 1/4 C of pineapple juice, 1/4 C of cream of coconut, soy sauce, brown sugar and wine vinegar.

2. Add chicken strips and allow to marinate, covered in refrigerator a minimum of 4 hours or overnight.

3. In a pie plate, combine flour, salt and pepper.

4. In a bowl beat eggs and mix with 1/4 C cream of coconut.

5. In another bowl pour half of shredded coconut.

6. Coat chicken strips first in flour, next in egg mixture and finally in shredded coconut.  (When shredded coconut gets clumpy, add more.)

7. In a deep skillet, heat oil (enough to just cover the bottom of skillet) over medium heat.

8. Once oil is hot, cook chicken for 5 minutes on each side, taking care not to over cook coconut.

9. Remove chicken and drain any leftover oil.

10. Place 1/2 C pineapple juice and 1/2 C cream of coconut and heavy whipping cream in pan.

11. Cook until thick, scraping drippings from bottom of the skillet.

12. Pour sauce over chicken strips or use it for a dipping sauce. 

Red Coconut Curry

    2 tablespoons red curry paste
    2 tablespoons cold pressed coconut oil
    2 cloves garlic, minced
    1 onion, chopped
    1 can of coconut milk and 1 small box or can of coconut drink
    2 chicken breasts, thinly sliced
    1 tablespoon citrus juice (lemon or lime)
    Basil for garnish

In large pan, sauté curry paste in coconut oil for 4 minutes over med high heat. Add garlic and onion, sauté for 5 more minutes. Add coconut milk/drink, chicken, & citrus juice.

Cover and reduce heat; stir occasionally simmering for 20 - 30 minutes. Serve over rice.

Hot Chicken Appetizers

    3 cups shredded cooked chicken (I use our food processor
              shredding device to do this ~ it works pretty good!)
    1/4 to 1/2 cup hot sauce (to taste ~ really!)
    3 1/2 ounces cream cheese, softened
    1 3/4 cups sharp shredded cheddar cheese
    1/4 cup chopped green onions
    1 cup all-purpose flour
    4 eggs, lightly beaten
    3 – 4 cups Corn Flakes cereal, crushed

  • Preheat oven to 350˚F. 
  • Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a large bowl, combine chicken, cream cheese and hot sauce, cheddar cheese and green onions.
  • Roll a heaping tablespoon of mixture into a 1½-inch ball and place onto a plate or separate baking sheet. 
  • Repeat with the remaining mixture.
  • Place flour in a shallow dish.
  • In a second shallow dish, place eggs.
  • In a third shallow dish, place corn flakes.
  • Dip each chicken ball first into the flour, then the egg and ending with the Corn Flakes. 
  • Place on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 20 to 25 minutes. 
  • Serve warm with ranch or blue cheese dressing.
  • They freeze well and then you can thaw them out and re-heat in microwave.

Saturday, 16 August 2008

Cherry Rum/Brandy Biscotti

1 1/2 cups dried tart cherries
1/2 cup rum or brandy
1 teaspoon almond extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons butter, softened
1 cup raw cane sugar
3 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup chopped unsalted almonds
1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • In a small sauce pan over low heat, combine the cherries, rum or brandy, and almond extract. Simmer the cherries until softened, about 10 minutes.
  • Drain the liquid into a bowl, making sure you have at least two tablespoons worth. If less than that is left, add more rum/brandy until you have two tablespoons.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Mix together and set aside.
  • In a large bowl, use a hand mixer to cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add three eggs and mix on medium speed until combined. Add in the two tablespoons of reserved cherry liquid and the vanilla extract, and stir to combine.
  • Add the flour mixture a little at a time, blending with the hand mixer on low speed. Add in the cherries, almonds and chocolate chips, and use a spoon or your hands to thoroughly combine.
  • On a lightly floured surface, divide the dough in half. Roll out the dough into two 12-inch by 2-inch rolls. Flatten each roll to about 3/4-inch thick.
  • Place the flattened rolls onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. 
  • Place in the oven on the center rack and bake for 30 minutes, rotating the sheet at 15 minutes.
  • Transfer the biscotti loaves to a wire rack to cool for about 25 minutes. Reduce the oven heat to 300 degrees.
  • Slice the biscotti loaves into 1/2-inch to 1-inch thick slices. Not too thin or they'll crumble apart while you try to slice, not too thick or they won't crisp up properly.
  • Lay the slices on their sides on the rack and place the rack on the baking sheet. Place the baking sheet in the oven on the center rack and bake the slices for 7-8 minutes. Flip the slices and bake another 7-8 minutes. Remove the slices from the oven and cool them on the wire racks.

Friday, 15 August 2008

Guacamole Greens Salad

 2 tablespoons freshly
   squeezed lime juice
1 small strip of jalapeno
   pepper (seeds and ribs
   removed), finely chopped
1/4 cup neutral oil
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

4 ounces boneless cooked
   chicken, cubed
3 ounces grape tomatoes,
chopped chives to taste
small bag of corn tortilla chips,
   crushed lightly with hands
1-2 small avocados, pitted, and cut into medium chunks
mixed spring greens
wedge of lime

  • Combine all the dressing ingredients until mixture just begins to come together.  Set aside.
  • Shake or stir before using.
  • In a large bowl, place the cooked chicken, halved tomatoes, chopped chives, crushed tortilla chips, avocado, and mixed spring greens. 
  • Squeeze the wedge of lime over the salad, then toss the salad lightly with the dressing.
  • Serve immediately.

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Coconut Shrimp Appetizer

1 can coconut milk
1 tablespoon pineapple, lime or lemon juice (or combination)
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp ginger powder
24 large shrimp butterflied fresh or frozen works (shell removed and deveined)

1 large egg
3/4 c flour
1/2 c beer or use left over liquid from marinade above
1 tsp. baking powder
1-1/2 c flaked coconut
2 - 3 c oil for frying (prefer cold pressed coconut oil)

1 c apricot jam
Dashes of hot sauce to taste
Dash of salt
Splash lime juice (or any combination of the 3 juices)
Splash orange juice
Splash Pineapple juice

Shredded filo (or take regular filo and cut into shreds) 
  • Mix together coconut milk, juice, ginger and garlic and place shrimp in marinade over night or at least 4 hours.
  • Next in medium bowl, combine egg, 1/2 cup flour, beer or liquid and baking powder.  
  • In another 2 separate bowls place 1/4 cup flour and some of the coconut.
  • Dredge shrimp in flour, shaking off excess flour. 
  • Dip in egg/beer batter; allow excess to drip off. 
  • Roll shrimp in coconut, and place on a baking sheet lined with wax or parchment paper. 
  • When coconut gets diminished or clumpy, add more to bowl.  
  • After coconut dredge, wrap shredded filo around each shrimp.  
  • Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes - can be layered in container.  
  • Next heat oil to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) in a deep-fryer or deep skillet 
  • Fry shrimp in batches: cook, turning once, for 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden brown. 
  • Using tongs, remove shrimp to paper towels to drain. 
  • Serve warm with apricot dipping sauce (below).
Note:  These microwave well to heat up if you want to make they a bit ahead of time. 

For the sauce:
Combine the apricot jam, hot sauce, salt, lime, pineapple juice, and orange juice in a bowl and mix until all ingredients are blended and serve with shrimp.

Layered Chocolate Freezer Dessert

36 Oreo cookies
6 tablespoons melted butter
8 oz. package cream cheese
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cold milk
3 cups of whipping cream (whipped)
2 boxes of instant chocolate pudding
3 cups cold milk
Mini chocolate chips or grated chocolate
  • Stick all of the Oreos in the food processor and blend until they turn into small crumbs.
  • Melt butter and stir into Oreo crumbs until well combined.
  • Pore Oreos into the bottom of a 9 x 13 pan and push down until they coat the bottom of the pan.
  • Place in fridge. 
  • Now mix the cream cheese until fluffy
  • Add 2 tablespoons milk and 1/4 cup sugar and mix well.
  • Then stir in 1-1/4 cup whipped cream
  • Add this over top of the Oreo crumb layer and spread until it is all covered
  • Put in fridge
  • Mix instant pudding and 3 cups of milk and whisk for 2 minutes until it thickens. 
  • Spread this over the previous layer. 
  • Put in fridge or freezer for at least 10 minutes to let pudding set a little.
  • Put the remaining whipped cream on top for your final layer. 
  • Cover with mini chocolate chips or grated chocolate.
  • Place in fridge or freezer until set.

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Strawberry-Caesar, Chicken & Veggie Salad

Marinade & Dressing:
1 1/2 cups Caesar Dressing
1 1/2 cups chopped fresh
2 tablespoons strawberry jam

2 boneless, skinless chicken
   breasts cut into bite size
3 cups dry rotini pasta, cooked
1 medium zucchini, trimmed
   and sliced horizontally
2 yellow bell peppers, trimmed
   and cut into large pieces
1 can of niblets corn
dash of olive oil
scissored chives to taste
1/3 cup shredded Parmesan
1 cup chopped fresh
4 cups chopped romaine lettuce

The day before:
  • Combine the caesar dressing and strawberries in a blender or food processor. Process until smooth. 
  • Place 3/4 cup of the strawberry caesar marinade into a large zip bag with the chicken. Refrigerate overnight. 
  • Add the jam to the remaining mixture and process again. This will be the strawberry caesar dressing that you'll use for the salad. Pour it into another container, then cover and refrigerate until the salad is ready to assemble.
  • Place zucchini, bell peppers, & drained niblets corn onto a baking pan with a dash of olive oil and bake for 45 minutes at 350. Place into a container and refrigerate overnight.

Next day:
  • Fry or grill the chicken.
  • Cook pasta.
  • Assemble the salad: Place the cooked cooled pasta in a large bowl. Add just enough of the strawberry caesar dressing to coat the pasta. Mix in the chicken, veggies, and chives. Toss and add more dressing, as desired. Place in a container in the refrigerate until ready to serve.
  • For serving: Stir the Parmesan and strawberries into the pasta salad. Sprinkle the bottom and sides of a large serving bowl with the lettuce. Scrape the pasta salad on top of the lettuce lined bowl, and serve.

Sunday, 10 August 2008

No Bake Peanut Butter Pretzel Bars

12 tablespoons butter - melted
1 1/4 cups crushed graham
1 1/2 cups creamy peanut
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
12 ounces semi-sweet
   chocolate chips
1 cup roughly crushed pretzels
caramel sauce - optional

  • Line a 8 x 8 baking dish with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
  • Into a large bowl add: butter, graham crackers, peanut butter and sugar. Mix until creamy and smooth.
  • Pour mixture into baking dish and using a spatula smooth top. 
  • Transfer to freezer for approximately 15 minutes.
  • Melt chocolate chips.
  • Pour melted chocolate over peanut butter and sprinkle with roughly crushed pretzels. 
  • Return to freezer for additional 15 minutes OR until firm.
  • Cut into 9 large squares or 18 smaller squares. Drizzle with optional caramel sauce.
  • Store in an airtight container in refrigerator.

Asian Stir Fry on a Bed of Lettuce

1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp garlic paste
1 tsp red pepper flake (adjust to taste)
1/8 c soy sauce (adjust to taste)
1/8 c ketchup
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp dry mustard
black pepper to taste
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 medium yellow or orange bell
   pepper, diced
1 medium red bell pepper, diced
1 bunch fresh green beans, chopped
1/2 pt sliced mushrooms
1 lb pre-cooked boneless/skinless chicken
   breasts, diced
iceberg lettuce sliced into bite size pieces

  • Dice up all your vegetables.
  • Put all the spices, sauces & oil into hot skillet and combine - then add all the diced vegetables, except the lettuce.
  • Stir fry until veggies are a little soft and all the flavors are combined and then add the cooked chicken and stir fry until everything is cooked and heated to your liking.
  • Spoon the chicken & veggie mixture onto a plate full of chopped lettuce.

Friday, 8 August 2008

Berry Cottage Cheese Cake

700 g of cottage cheese
3 eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 3/4 cup berries
5 oz butter
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder

  • Make in large tart pan or cheese cake pan sprayed with Pam.
  • Mix cottage cheese, eggs, sugar and 1 teaspoon of baking powder together until smooth.
  • In a separate small small bowl, mix flour, butter and 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder.  Chop with a knife into a fine crumb.
  • Sprinkle half of the above crumb evenly over pan.
  • Spread an even layer of half the berries over the sprinkled crumb.  If you are using sour berries, you can sprinkle them with sugar. 
  • Next, pour in the cottage cheese mixture and spread evenly.
  • Dot remaining berries (and a little sugar?) over the cottage cheese mixture.
  • Sprinkle with the remaining crumbs and place in oven, preheated to 140 degrees, for about an hour -- until you get a golden crust.

Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Oven Baked Scotch Eggs

4 boiled eggs, large
6 good quality pork sausages
1/2 apple
2 eggs
1/2 cup flour
salt and pepper
1-1/2 cups fresh breadcrumbs

Preheat the oven to 180c 350f

Boil the eggs in a pan of water, 3 minutes once boiling.  Drain away the water leaving them in the pan.  Run cold over them to cool. Remove the shells.

Prepare the sausage meat by removing the skins.  A cut down the length of each makes them easier to remove.  Put all the meat into a bowl together with a finely chopped half an apple. Mix the meat and apple together and divide it into 4 equal portions.

Lay a square of clingfilm on the worktop and flatten out one piece of meat.  Place the egg in the middle and using the clingfilm to help lift it wrap the sausage meat around until it is sealed inside and shaped into a round.  Wrap it up with the clingfilm and move onto the next.

Line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper.

Beat two eggs with a fork in one container, place the flour in another and season with salt and pepper and add the breadcrumbs to a large dish.  One wrapped egg at a time roll it first in the flour to coat it, then in the egg wash and then straight into the breadcrumbs. Then go back into the egg wash again followed by another dip in the breadcrumbs.  The double coating of bread crumbs stops the eggs from going a little bald in the oven when they’re baked.  Place the coated egg onto the baking tray and then coat the others.

Bake them in the oven for 25-30 minutes until they’re golden.

Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Blue Cheese Chicken Salad

2 tablespoons orange juice
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
scissored chives to taste
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil

2 (5-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken
   breast halves
Cooking spray
1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese
1/2 cup dried sweet cherries
10-ounces fresh baby spinach

  • Whisk vinaigrette ingredients together, and set aside.
  • Place each chicken breast half between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap; with a meat mallet, pound to 1/4-inch thickness.
  • Heat a large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat; coat with cooking spray. Add chicken to skillet, and cook 4 minutes on each side or until the chicken is brown and cooked through. Remove from the skillet, and chop into bite-size pieces.
  • Mix vinaigrette and all salad ingredients except spinach.  
  • Refrigerate until read to eat. 
  • Place spinach torn into bite size pieces on plate.
  • Top with chicken/vinaigrette mixture.

Monday, 4 August 2008

Slow Cooker Garlic Honey Teriyaki Chicken Wings

2 lbs chicken wings

Teriyaki Sauce:
½ cup water
2 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp honey
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
½ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp ground ginger
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp cold water

  • Combine the water, soy sauce, honey, garlic, garlic powder and ginger in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
  • Meanwhile, whisk together the cornstarch with the water and whisk until dissolved. Add the cornstarch mixture to the saucepan.
  • Heat the sauce until it thickens. Add more water if sauce becomes too thick. 
  • In a slow cooker, add the wings and then the sauce. 
  • Set on high for 3 – 4 hours, depending on size of wings.
  • Set aside, add more glaze over wings and serve. 
  • If you want crisper wings, place under broiler for a few minutes.

Taco Pie

1 pound lean ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
   (1/2 cup)
1 1/2 tablespoons taco
   seasoning (see below)
1 can (4.5 ounces) chopped
   green chiles, drained
1 cup milk
2 large eggs
1/2 cup bisquick
   mix (see below)
3/4 cup shredded Monterey
   Jack or Cheddar cheese
   (3 ounces)
shredded lettuce
sour cream
chopped tomatoes

  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray a 9-inch pie plate with nonstick cooking spray.
  • In a 10-inch skillet over medium heat, cook ground beef and onion until ground beef is brown and cooked through. Remove from heat and drain. Add in taco seasoning and stir to combine. Stir in green chilies and spoon seasoned beef into prepared pie plate.
  • In a medium bowl, combine milk, eggs and bisquick mix, whisking until well combined. Pour into pie plate directly over beef.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. 
  • Sprinkle with cheese. Bake 8 to 10 minutes longer. 
  • Cool 5 minutes. 
  • Serve with shredded lettuce, sour cream, tomatoes and salsa.

Homemade bisquick Mix

1 cup (125 g) flour
1 1/2 teaspoons (8 g) baking powder
1/4 teaspoon (pinch) salt
1 tablespoon (15 g) shortening, oil, or melted butter

  • Stir together and keep in jar.

Homemade Taco and Chili Seasoning

4 tablespoons of chili powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 teaspoons paprika
2 tablespoons ground cumin
3 teaspoons sea salt
4 teaspoons black pepper

  • In a medium bowl, combine chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, crushed red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, oregano, paprika, ground cumin, sea salt, and black pepper. 
  • Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Friday, 1 August 2008

Strawberry Cannoli Tiramisu

1 package ladyfingers, split
1/4 cup strongly brewed
   coffee + 1 tbsp sugar mixed
   in, then cooled
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 oz mascarpone cheese or*
   4 oz cream cheese & spoonful
   of sour cream
8 oz ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cups whipped topping,
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
1 cup fresh strawberries, hulled
   and sliced
2 tsp cocoa powder

  • In a large mixing bowl, beat together the 2 tbsp sugar, vanilla extract, mascarpone* cheese, and ricotta cheese until smooth and creamy. 
  • Fold in the whipped topping and chocolate chips. Set aside.
  • Arrange half of the ladyfingers in the bottom of a 9x9 inch baking pan. 
  • Brush the ladyfingers with about half of the coffee/sugar mixture.
  • Spread half of the ricotta/mascarpone cheese mixture over the ladyfingers in the dish. 
  • Top with half of the sliced strawberries. 
  • Cover with the remaining ladyfingers; then brush the second layer of ladyfingers with the remaining coffee mixture. 
  • Top with the remaining ricotta/mascarpone cheese mixture. 
  • Sift the cocoa powder over top, and then arrange the remaining strawberry slices on top. 
  • Sprinkle with additional mini chocolate chips, if desired.
  • Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or up to overnight. 
  • You can cover and refrigerate any leftovers for up to 3 days.