Category Archives: Uncategorized

Stews

A look back at the winter of stews – one pot meals never tasted so decadent, yet comforting!

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The classic – Boeuf Bourguignon

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Pot au feu – a hearty French classic using prime cuts of meat, including bone marrow!

 

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Cassoulet for National Cassoulet Day back in January!

 

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Roasted Portobello Caps

As the weather cools down, I love roasting my meals as the main method of cooking.  I had some leftover portabellos after making these awesome veggie burgers, and thought their giant size would make for a filling dish.

Recipe adapted from Cooking.com

Ingredients: 1 large portobella cap, 1/4 breadcrumbs, 1 tsp minced garlic, 2 tablespoons minced broccoli, 1 tsp chopped parsley, 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper to taste, olive oil, cayenne pepper or crushed chilli flakes.

1. Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit

2.  De-stem and clean the portobello.  Brush with olive oil and add salt and pepper to taste.  Top with with the broccoli and garlic (gill side up).  Set on a lightly oiled baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes.

3.  As the portobello roasts, mix together the breadcrumbs, garlic, cheese, and parsley.

4.  Take out the mushroom and spread the cheese and breadcrumbs mixture all over.

5. Set back into the oven for another 5 minutes, until slightly golden brown on top.  Top with additional cracked black pepper and chili flakes.

Okinawan Sweet Potato Ice Cream

I was gifted a wonderful ice cream maker for my birthday and thought I would experiment with ice cream flavors.  Okinawan sweet potatoes are a variation of yams that have a vibrant purple color, with a number of nutritional benefits.

The recipe is based off of the classic vanilla ice cream, but mashed with the sweet potato.

Recipe adapted from Ang Sarap.

Ingredients: 2 1/2 cups cream, 1 1/2 cup milk, 1 1/4 cup sugar, 4 lightly beaten egg yolks, 2 cups cooked mashed sweet potato, 1 tsp vanilla extract

1. Heat milk, cream, and sugar in a saucepan until the sugar dissolves, but do not let it boil.

2. Whisk half of the cream and sugar mixture into the eggs.  Pour back into the saucepan with the rest of the cream mixture.  Continue to mix and heat until the liquid coats the backside of a spoon.  Take off from the heat.

3. Add in the vanilla and let cool.  Set in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.

4. Prepare the mixture with the mashed potato in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Prosciutto and Spinach Wonton Ravioli

This “Chinese-Italian” dish is the perfect influence of living in between the Little Italy and Chinatown neighborhoods in New York City.  Using wonton wrappers bought at the Chinese market and imported prosciutto from the Italian grocery, this ravioli dish will most likely become my go-to pasta recipe from now on.

Recipe adapted from Pioneer Woman.

Ingredients: one pack of wonton skins, 12 oz whole milk ricotta, 1 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, 2 whole eggs, 1 bunch spinach, 1/4 cup chopped prosciutto, salt and cracked black pepper to taste, olive oil, parsley for garnish

1. Cook the spinach, let it cool, then chop finely.

2. Combine the ricotta, Parmigiano Reggiano, 1 whole egg, spinach, prosciutto, salt and pepper to taste.  This will be the ravioli stuffing.

2. Make an egg wash by mixing the second egg with 3 tablespoons of water.  Place one wonton skin and scoop 1 tablespoon of the stuffing mixture onto the center.

4.  Apply an 1/2″ wide egg wash onto each of the four sides of the skin.  Place a second skin on top, and working from the center, seal the ravioli.

5. To cook the ravioli, boil for 5 minutes.  Since the prosciutto was salty enough, there is no need for a pasta sauce.  A drizzle of olive oil, additional freshly ground black pepper, and parsley leaves for garnish finish up this fantastic dish.

Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken with Roasted Potatoes

Two recipes in one post!

This is easily the fanciest poultry dish I have ever made.  These roasted potatoes are ridiculously easy to make and pair well with nearly everything.  And the best part is, they take around the same amount of time to cook at the same temperatures.

Prosciutto-Wrapped Chicken

Recipe adapted from Food Wishes

Chicken ingredients: 2 boneless and skinless chicken breasts pounded to 1/2″ thickness, salt + pepper, slices of prosciutto

Stuffing ingredients: 1/4 cup breadcrumbs, 1/3 cup dried cranberries, 2 cloves minced garlic, 1 tbsp grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, 2 tsp olive oil, 1 egg yolk, pinch of cayenne pepper, herb seasoning

1. Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees.  Mix all the ingredients together for the stuffing.

2. Lay out the chicken breasts on plastic wrap.  Spread a thin layer of stuffing over the chicken, and roll up the meat carefully.

2.  Lay out enough prosciutto slices so that they are the same width as the chicken.  Again, using the plastic wrap, roll the prosciutto over the chicken.

3. Using butcher’s twine, tie up the chicken roll every 2 inches.

4. Bake the chicken for about 25 minutes.

Roasted Potatoes

Ingredients: Small potatoes of any variety – I used baby red potatoes, chopped parsley to taste, grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese to taste, salt + pepper, olive oil

1. Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.  Slice the potatoes in half.  Toss with salt and pepper, olive oil, and bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until done.

2.  Remove the potatoes from the oven and toss with the cheese.  Set them back into the oven for another 10 minutes or until the cheese turns golden brown.

3. Take out the potatoes, toss with the chopped parsley, and serve warm.

Chardonnay Frosted Cupcakes

Chardonnay may be my favorite variety of white wine, but I do have some trouble finishing an entire bottle by myself.  These boozy cupcakes are a fun way to incorporate alcohol!

Recipe adapted from Lucinda & Millie

Serving Size: 2 cupcakes (again, great for a home-cooked dinner date!)

Cupcake Ingredients: 5 tbsp unsalted butter, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 egg, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, 1/2 tsp baking powder, pinch of salt, heaping 1/2 cup of flour, 1/4 cup milk

Frosting Ingredients: 2 tbsp butter, 1 tbsp cream cheese, 1 1/2 tbsp chardonnay, pinch of salt, 1 cup powdered sugar

1.  Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees.  Mix together all the ingredients for the cupcakes and pour the batter into cupcake liners.

2. As the cupcakes bake for 20 minutes, prepare the frosting.  Combine all frosting ingredients and whisk together.  Set in the refrigerator to harden for frosting.

3.  When the cupcakes are done, let them cool slightly and then frost them. 

 

White Wine Garlic Spaghetti

Pastas with wine reductions seem so fancy.  The reduction process takes some time, but produces rich aromas of the garlic, wine, and vegetable stock in every bite. 

Recipe adapted from Fitsugar

Serves: 2 (perfect for a home-cooked dinner date!)

Ingredients: 1/2 lb thin spaghetti, 4 oz spinach, 2 roma tomatoes, 3 white or cremini mushrooms, 1 cup vegetable stock, 1/4 cup white wine, 1 1/2 cloves of garlic, parsley for garnish.

1. Cook the spaghetti and set aside.

2. Finely mince the garlic, thinly slice the mushrooms, and chop the tomatoes into small chunks.

3. Heat oil in a pan and saute the mushrooms until caramelized.  Add 1 tablespoon of vegetable stock and cook until reduced.  Set the mushrooms aside.

4. Again, heat oil in a pan and saute the garlic until fragrant, about 2-3 minutes.  Remove from heat and set aside.

5.  Add oil and cook the spinach until wilted.  Then, add in 1 tablespoon of vegetable stock and cook until reduced. 

6.  Add the mushrooms and garlic back into the pan with the spinach.  Toss in the tomatoes and cook for 2 minutes on med-high heat.  Pour in the wine and reduce by two-thirds.  Add the remaining vegetable stock and simmer until the sauce begins to reduce and thicken; it should take about 5 minutes.

7.  Serve the spaghetti with the sauce and parsley.

Potato Salad

The addition of pan-fried bread crumbs and salty pancetta bits add a new complexity to classic potato salad. 

Recipe adapted from Jamie Oliver

Ingredients: 1/2 lb waxy potatoes (I used about 5 small red potatoes), 1/4 cup plain yogurt, 1/4 cup sour cream, 25g of pancetta or bacon, 1/4 cup breadcrumbs, small bunch of chives, salt, pepper

 

1.  Rinse and scrub the potatoes.  Cook them in boiling water for about 15 minutes or until tender.

2.  Drain the potatoes and set aside to cool for a while.

3.  In the meantime, fry the pancetta bits and set aside.  Fry the breadcrumbs in the oil from the pancetta.

4. Dice the potatoes and toss with the yogurt, sour cream, pancetta, breadcrumbs, salt, and pepper.

5. Chop up some chives for garnish and serve.

Peanut Butter Cereal Bars

This is a great snack option that is so easy to make and requires no baking.  I could eat the peanut butter mixture just by itself, – it’s that good!

Recipe adapted from Nurse Loves Farmer

Ingredients:

1. Combine butter, sugar, and corn syrup until it melts into a mixture.  Let boil for 1 minute and remove from the heat.

2.  Mix in the peanut butter and stir until melted.

3. Stir in the cheerios. 

4. Pour cereal mixture into a loaf pan and refrigerate overnight.

5.  Cut into bars and enjoy!

Summer Rice Noodles

Interestingly enough, this dish is delicious served cold or hot.  Citrus and a hint of spicy flavors are blended with the fragrant aroma of basil leaves and sauteed garlic to create the base sauce for these simple noodles.

Recipe adapted from Yotam Ottenlenghi via Golubka Kitchen

1. Soak rice noodles in hot (not boiling) water for 5 minutes.  Remove from the water and set aside.

2.  Make the base sauce by combining grated ginger, soy sauce and ponzu sauce (can substitute with lime juice).  Mix in 3 tablespoons of a nut-based or olive oil and 1 tablespoon of sugar.

3. Blanch the edamame, spinach, and snow peas in salted boiling water for 30 seconds.

4. Chop up some basil leaves and garlic.  Heat oil in a pan and saute the basil and garlic until fragrant.

5. Add the noodles back in along with the sauce and vegetables.  On low heat, toss until mixed together. 

5.  Top with a bit of chilli powder or chilli flakes on top and serve (hot or cold).

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