Portuguese Paella

I know I’ve mentioned a few times in the last three years of writing this blog that I google my blog when I want to make one of my recipes. While this is not how I started out saving recipes, it really is faster than looking through the hundreds of printed pieces of papers or trying to decipher my terrible handwriting. Even though I do try to keep the papers organized, it truly is organized chaos.

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My daughter said Anne Burrell would be proud of my Misen en Place!!!


Last week New Orleans celebrated Fat Tuesday aka Mardi Gras – here in NH it was going to be just another day or so I thought! We had dinner with some friends who had a master plan to throw a Fat Tuesday party right here in the North. Well of course we are always up for a party – even on a school night.
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It’s funny how plans can change super quickly. We held ours on Monday night, it was supposed to be at our friends house but was changed last minute to mine and the number of people kept growing. In the end it all worked out beautifully. Fun was had by all, the food was excellent and the wine was flowing the only thing we didn’t have was mardi gras beads.
img_5783.jpgThe initial menu was a case of oysters and my daughter was going to Beignets – I contributed by making a Paella; it is a Portuguese Paella and I really love making and eating it. So back to my initial statement I googled me for the recipe and it didnt pull up, how could I have not shared this with you yet? I hope you enjoy it!
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Portuguese Paella
Ingredients

8 Boneless skinless chicken thighs, chopped into bite size pieces
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
Kosher salt and Freshly cracked black pepper
Vegetable oil
1 link Portuguese chourico, sliced into rounds
1 cup chopped onion
1 red bell pepper chopped
2 cups arborio rice
2 plum tomatoes diced
1 teaspoon paprika
¼ teaspoon saffron threads, crushed
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups chicken broth
1 pound large, peeled and deveined shrimp
Bunch of asparagus, cut diagonally
½ cup frozen peas, thawed

Pre-heat oven to 400’ F

Season chicken with salt, pepper and rosemary
Heat oil in a large oven proof pan over medium heat
Add chicken and cook on each side until lightly browned
Remove chicken from the pan
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Add Chourico, brown on each side, add onion and the pepper cook stirring constantly for about 5-7 minutes. Add rice, tomato, paprika, saffron and garlic. Cook for a minute or so; return the chicken to the pan add broth, season with salt and pepper. Cover pan and bake for 10 minutes.
Stir in shrimp, asparagus and peas. Replace cover and make for an additional 5 minutes or until the shrimp are cooked through.

Approx Macros = 1.5 cups per serving
336 Calories – 5g Fat – 47g Carbs – 23g Protein

Chocolate stout chili

Just the name of the recipe intrigued me.  I have never cooked with chocolate; baked, eaten and eaten even more chocolate but never cooked with it. And to be perfectly honest I still really haven’t.
IMG_5711I didn’t want to run out to the store so I used a beer we had in the fridge that I thought most identified with what they were looking for in the recipe I was trying. This recipe also piqued my interest because I have never made a chili without beans. When I mentioned this to the fam they were all curious as well.
IMG_5713The taste of this chili is deep with flavors and to be perfectly honest a little too spicy for my taste buds but I loved how it went together and the flavors were excellent so I will be making this again, just going to lay off a little on the chipotle in adobo sauce. That little tiny can packs a wallop of heat let me tell you.
IMG_5701I’ll give you the recipe how I made it and you decide how hot you want it!

Ingredients

1 ½ tablespoon ground cumin
1 ½ tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon ancho chili powder
2 ½ teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon cinnamon
3 pounds beef chuck cut into ½ inch pieces
1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes and their juice
1 6 ounce can tomato paste
1 chipotle plus 2 teaspoon adobo sauce from the can
2 tablespoon packed brown sugar
½ teaspoon coffee extract – I just used coffee
Olive Oil as needed
1 large yellow onion diced
1 ½ tablespoon garlic chopped or minced
12 ounce chocolate stout

Directions
In a large bowl combined the cumin, salt, chili powder, oregano and cinnamon.
Add the beef and coat the meat with the spice mixture. Let the meat sit out for about 30 minutes.
IMG_5706In your blender combine the tomatoes, paste, chipotle in adobo, sugar, coffee and a teaspoon of salt. Puree scraping down the sides as needed.
In a dutch oven or heavy-duty oit heat the oil; once hot add the beef in batches. Brown the beef on all sides transfer the meat to a bowl or plate and continue the process until all the beef is browned.
IMG_5716Lower the heat to medium and add the onion cooking till soft and translucent scraping up any browned bits left in the pot. Add the garlic stirring for about 30 seconds and then add the beef to the pot. Stir in the blender mixture along with the beer. Bring to a boil and reduce to low and simmer with the cover slightly ajar for about 3 hours.

You can eat it right away or wait a day or two for the flavors to get even better.
Enjoy with grated cheese, sour cream, not hot enough add some pickled jalapenos.


Another wonderful recipe from Fine Cooking

Cod, sausage and fennel cioppino

I am on another trek to try to empty out the fridge and freezer since I can’t fit another thing in any of them (I have another one in the garage) yet I still seem to go to the store and buy more food to make some recipe I just saw. I think I have a problem.
IMG_5744.JPGThis recipe I happen to have had everything on hand. Well mostly everything; I had made clam chowder last weekend so I picked up a few extra clam broth bottles so I had it on hand but I did have to buy the fennel bulb. I tend to always have some flash frozen fish in the freezer, it makes for a very quick meal during the week. I truly wish we had a fresh fish market close by but I have never had a bad flash frozen fish so I can’t complain.
IMG_5734.JPGIf you were wondering what Cioppino means you were not alone, I had to google it so I’ll save you the trouble.  Define cioppino: a stew of fish and shellfish cooked usually with tomatoes, wine, spices, and herbs. They are saying it came from San Francisco and is an Italian-American dish. It doesn’t matter to me who or where I just would like to thank them. The broth is so deep with flavor that I will most definitely be making this again soon!
IMG_5740Cod, sausage and fennel cioppino

2 tablespoons olive oil
6 ounces Italian sausage, casing removed – your choice sweet or hot, chicken, turkey or pork I used sweet pork
1 medium onion diced
1 small bulb fennel, trimmed and cored, sliced thinly – I chopped mine
½ cup dry red wine
3 cups bottled clam juice
1 cup marinara sauce – jarred or homemade
Pinch crushed red pepper
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
1 lb skinless cod cut into 1 inch chunks

Heat the oil in a medium pot over medium-high heat, add the sausage breaking it up, add the onion and fennel, cook until the veggies start to brown and the sausage is cooked through.
IMG_5735.JPGAdd the wine and simmer while scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Reduce the wine by half. Add the clam juice, marinara and pepper flakes, bring to a simmer reduce the heat to low and cover, simmer until the veggies are tender about 10-15 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Place the fish into the stew, cover and simmer gently without stirring until the fish is flaky and is just opaque. Takes about 5 minutes.
IMG_5736.JPGI made my broth the day before and reheated it and then added my fish.  


Another wonderful recipe from Fine Cooking

pork medallions in whisky-marmalade sauce

I even love how it sounds – whisky-marmalade sauce / say it with me.
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I have to confess that I am actually kind of a train wreck in the kitchen at times. I tend to use ALL or at least close to all of my utensils, bowls, measuring cups, pots and pans. It is truly ridiculous. I like to; or actually have to  work in a clean kitchen so I will clean up before I start and when I am done making whatever it is I am making for the day it looks like a war zone. Flour on the floor, dishes exploding from the sink, every tasting spoon used up. This is probably why I always told my kids “it doesn’t matter how messy you make the kitchen but make sure to clean it up after”
IMG_5724My favorite kitchen mess up moment was cracking an egg for my poached egg breakfast when the egg left the shell and landed between the counter and stove top. You know the space that is most impossible to clean; the whites were seeping down the cracks and the yolk sitting all pretty by itself. Eyes wide, mouth open and not a clue what to do I just had to laugh.  Lets just say that was fun to clean and no I did not get the yolk out of its predicament whole.
IMG_5719One of my favorite magazines is Fine Cooking – I was reading and marking pages of recipes I want/need to try last weekend. For Sunday dinner I was making one of them and sharing a bottle of wine (actually she brought a box) with my daughter. Kitchen was looking crazy with ingredients everywhere, sink full, magazine propped open on the counter alongside my glass of wine when I have no idea how I did it but glass broken and wine spilled IN magazine I’m still baffled.     

Pork Medallions with Whisky-Marmalade sauce
apparently I forgot to take a picture of the end result – sorry about that; they looked beautiful and tasted great.

¼ cup orange marmalade
¼ cup fresh orange juice
4 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp dry mustard
2 Tbs olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
1 ¼ lb. pork tenderloin, trimmed and cut into 1 inch-thick medallions
1 Tbs unsalted butter
2 Tbs shallots – finely chopped
Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
3 Tbs scotch whiskey
¼ tsp cornstarch

In a small bowl combine the first four ingredients and set aside.
Heat the oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.

Generously season the medallions with salt and pepper.  Cook medallions about 5 minutes on each side, you want them golden brown and barely cooked through.  Remove pork to a plate.

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Add butter, shallot, red pepper to pan until the shallots are tender. Add the whisky and cook, stirring until it’s almost evaporated.  Stir in the marmalade sauce and bring to a boil.

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Take the ¼ tsp cornstarch and add a Tbs of water in a small bowl stir till combined. Add this to the marmalade sauce and simmer until it thickens. Season to taste with salt and pepper and a little lemon juice.
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Add the pork and the collected juices back to the pan just to reheat the pork. Serve the sauce drizzled over the pork medallions.

Recipe – Fine Cooking 

Macaroni & “Cheese” butternut squash

I mentioned a bit ago that I heard you could make a pretty decent macaroni and cheese using butternut squash. A few years ago I would have told you you were crazy. Now I am coming around; so much so I tried it. I looked around the internet for a few recipes but decided to make my usual one and replace most of the cheese with the butternut squash. I was still a little skeptical but what was there to lose?
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I will advise you that if you are going to have your family or anyone for that matter try your new recipe I would not tell them what was in it.  I find that if you tell them it’s different or lighter or different in anyway, their senses are on high alert and they are sure to find or even look for something different with it.
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Case in point; my husband was home when I was making my lighter macaroni and cheese and when it was finished I just brought over a fork full and gave him a bite. First reaction was “mmmm good” I had to ask him what he thought it was. He looked at me a little funny and said “macaroni and cheese” but I think my comment made him add “of some sort” I had to confess it was made with squash and very little cheese. Oh and I also used rotini that was made from Chickpeas.  If you haven’t tried chickpea pasta I really think you will be pleasantly surprised. I have made 2 dishes with great success.

You might be thinking why chickpea pasta it has less carbs than average pasta, more protein and more fiber. So it is just a little better for you than ordinary box pasta. Unfortunately I haven’t seen any at either of my local stores my boxes were bought by my daughter when she visited one of Mario Batali’s Eataly. Looks like I will have to go and check it out.

Macaroni and “Cheese”

Small onion – diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves – minced
2 pounds cubed butternut squash – I used frozen
2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
box of chickpea pasta
4 ounce gruyere cheese – grated
few drops sriracha sauce
Parmesan cheese – a small amount for grating on top
1/4 cup seasoned panko breadcrumbs
salt and pepper to taste

saute onion for a couple of minutes in the olive oil.  Add garlic saute another minute. add mustard, nutmeg, butternut squash, stock and milk still squash is softened.
Remove from the heat and using either a stick blender or however you puree your soups. puree the mixture and then add the cheese, season with salt and pepper to your taste.
place in a baking dish and grate some Parmesan cheese and a little seasoned panko bread crumbs.

Per 11 ounce serving
215 Calories – 12g Fat – 14g Carbs – 16g Protein  

 

Fish en Papillote – baked fish in parchment

I have always wanted to try making fish e paillote which is a fancy way of saying fish baked in parchment paper. Don’t ask me why it has taken me SO long; it was easy, delicious and was a huge hit with the fam. plus it looks pretty cool.
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I bought some wonderful cod from my local market along with some asparagus; I really didn’t have a plan yet but I thought it would at least look pretty with the green vegetable over the white fish. I figured I would slice up some onions or shallots or both and add a slice of lemon a little salt and pepper and voila a meal was born. Well almost!
IMG_5460I figured I needed to add some liquid so everything would steam in the packet and from some reason I was leaning toward an Asian profile.  So I started looking around the internet for some flavor Ideas and there are some great ones out there but I wanted something simple with ingredients I had on hand. I always have soy sauce and I found a bottle of Mirin next to the Soy Sauce; which Mirin is a type of rice wine vinegar that along with some sugar and it made a wonderful light taste to go along with the everything else in my little paillote; well mine was much larger than I think it should have been. When I make it again I will use a smaller piece of fish or at the very least only a few pieces of asparagus. I would do everything else the exact same, it was a very nice simple meal that took under 30 minutes from start to finish even cleanup was minimal.
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Ingredients
Cod Fillet – roughly 4 oz serving per person
Asparagus – trimmed
Fresh Thyme
Lemon – sliced
Cherry tomatoes – halved
Shallots – sliced
Onion – sliced – one of my super small ones from my garden
Kosher Salt
Freshly cracked Black Pepper

Flavoring
3 Tablespoon Mirin
3 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
whisk all in a small pan and heat long enough for the sugar to melt
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place fish in the middle of your piece of parchment, salt and pepper, add slices shallot and tomatoes, place a few pieces of asparagus and a slice of lemon. Pour some of the soy sauce mixture over each packet.
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Start on the side of the parchment and crimp and roll until it is completely closed. Place on a sheet pan with your other packets and place in a 350’F oven for about 15 minutes.
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Macros per packet using 3 spears of asparagus
212 Calories
23.5 Protein
24 Carbs
2.7 Fat

 

Egg Roll in a Bowl

Tis the season for the gardens to be cleaned out and prepped for next year!  It has been a pretty disappointing gardening season for me this year.  My garlic and onions were small, I didn’t get any cucumbers, my pepper and eggplant plants died and I may have gotten 10 squash in total. It wasn’t a total loss I still have a couple of enormous cabbages and I still have some rainbow beets and rainbow carrots that I am leaving in the ground until I need to take them out.
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So processing produce has been kept to a minimum this year and that is OK with me; though who eats that much cabbage? I know we don’t I gave some to my family but they wouldn’t even take one of the huge ones – gosh I can’t understand why…
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I did find a great recipe for Eggroll in a Bowl. Basically it is everything that goes into an eggroll minus the fried wrapper. I know that is probably the best part, this very easy and better for you. The first batch I made it was a little too spicy for my husband so I cut back on the crushed red pepper flakes and it still taste delish. Since I made it twice in a very short period of time, I ended up portioning it out and put them in the freezer. Great when/if you bring lunch to work and have access to a microwave.
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Egg Roll in a Bowl

Ingredients

9 cups shredded or chopped cabbage
1 1/2 cup shredded carrots
2 medium onions, diced
1 1/2 Tablespoon sesame oil
1 1/2 teaspoon dried ginger
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 cup beef broth
4 teaspoon Tamari or soy sauce
1 1/2 pound ground or diced chicken – can also use turkey or pork
Scallions for garnish

Instructions

using a large skillet cook the meat till browned, add the onions and sesame oil. cook until lightly browned. Reduce heat to medium; add spices and broth and stir well.
Add the cabbage and stir to coat. Cook stirring frequently until the cabbage slightly wilts.
Add carrots and cook for 2-3 minutes until soft.
Add tamari to taste and adjust flavorings as desired.
Serve plain or you can serve over rice
Garnish with green onions if desired.
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Macros – using diced chicken and 1 cup
97 Calories
2 Fat
16 Carbs
5.5 Protein