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Thai Salad With Peanut Crusted Chicken

April 14, 2014

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Salad

Ingredients

  • Napa cabbage, cut in half lengthwise, then sliced thin
  • spinach
  • green onions, sliced thin
  • sliced radishes
  • cucumber, diced
  • tomato, diced
  • avocado, diced
  • mango. diced
  • fresh mint, sliced into slivers or small pieces
  • fresh basil, sliced into slivers or small pieces
  • fresh cilantro, sliced into slivers or small pieces
  • lime
  • 100% buckwheat soba noodles, cooked and chilled (optional)
  • salted roasted peanuts, cut into pieces (optional)

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Peanut Crusted Chicken Breasts

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 2/3 cup gluten free bread crumbs
  • 2/3 cup peanuts
  • 6 fresh basil leaves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup rice flour
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

Instructions

Slice chicken breasts down the middle, place in a plastic bag and pound evenly to 1/2″ thick. Place bread crumbs, peanuts, basil leaves, salt and pepper in a food processor and process until crumbly. Put beaten egg in a pie plate or a dish. Sprinkle nut mixture on another place and  the rice flour on another. One at a time dust the chicken breasts with the rice flour, dip in the egg, then set in the nut mixture and bring some of the mixture over the top and press the mixture evenly around each piece. Set on a plate in one layer and chill in the refrigerator for an hour. Heat a non stick sauté pan for 5 minutes on medium high. Add the butter and oil. (If you don’t have a large enough sauté pan, use two sauté pans so you can do all eight pieces at one time, dividing the butter and oil between the pans). When the butter and oil are hot carefully slip the chicken off the plate into the pan (it should sizzle) and cook 4 minutes on each side. Let rest for 2 to 3 minutes before cutting the pieces into strips.

Thai Dressing

 Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsalted peanut butter (chunky is fine)
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 6 tablespoons grape seed oil or light olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons Coconut Secret Coconut Aminos (soy free ‘soy sauce’)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, cut into small pieces
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha chili paste
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves

Instructions

Blend in a food processor until almost smooth. It’s better to use a food processor and not a blender so the cilantro will be small flakes and the dressing will be a nice color.

Assembly

Arrange the salad on a plate, drizzle with dressing  and lay the chicken strips across the top. Or pass the dressing and drizzle it on the salad (not the chicken).

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Chicken Enchiladas With White Cheddar Cheese and Avocado

March 30, 2014

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Ingredients

  • 1 pound chicken tenders
  • salt
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup onions, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon Spice Isands Chili Powder
  • 8 corn tortillas
  • 4 ounces mild white cheddar cheese, grated
  • 4 ounces jack cheese, grated
  • 1 1/2 cups La Victoria Enchiladas Sauce Mild Poco Picante
  • cilantro
  • sour cream
  • avocado

Instructions

Rinse and dry chicken, remove any membranes and tendons, and slice into small pieces. Sprinkle with salt and set aside. Heat olive oil in a skillet and sauté onions until translucent. Add spices and cook 30 seconds. Add chicken and sauté until pick is almost gone. Remove from heat and set aside.

Heat 1/4 cup olive oil and fry tortillas a few seconds on each side and drain on paper towels.

Mix cheeses together.

Spread 1 cup of enchiladas sauce on the bottom of a 9″ by 11″ casserole. Line up the tortillas, fill with the chicken and onion mixture and sprinkle with half the cheese, roll up and place on sauce in the casserole. Pour the remaining 1/2 cup of sauce on top and then the remaining cheese. Cover with foil and bake 30-35 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese is melted.

Top with cilantro, sour cream and diced avocado and serve with spanish rice and beans.

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Spanish Brown Rice and Beans

March 27, 2014

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Spanish Brown Rice

This rice tastes and smells like authentic Spanish rice in a good mexican restaurant. The trick is rinsing and drying the rice and coating it with melted butter so keep the kernels stay separated instead of gummy. The other things is to not disturb the lid until 10 minutes after it’s cooked. If you do it right, it will be as fluffy as white rice and  you won’t know it’s brown rice.

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup long grain brown rice
  • 2 teaspoons butter
  • 1/3 – 1/2 fresh jalapeño, diced*
  • 3 green onions
  • 1 small garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons tomato paste

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Rinse rice and dry on paper towels. Spread on a cookie, set in the oven and turn oven off. Let dry in oven for 30 minutes. Cut the white part only of the green onions and put with the chopped jalapeño and garlic. Chop green onion tops and set in a dish in the refrigerator. Melt butter  in a saucepan with tight fitting lid on medium heat. Add rice and stir to coat all the kernels (this will keep the rice kernels from sticking to each other.) Add the green onion whites, jalapeño and garlic. Sauté for 5 minutes. Add the cumin, paprika and salt and sauté 30 seconds. Add the chicken broth and tomato paste. Stir until blended. Bring to boil, reduce heat, cover and cook for 35 minutes. Do not disturb  lid. Remove from heat, keeping tightly covered and lest rest for 10 minutes. Fluff rice with a fork. Sprinkle with reserved green tops.

*This is a small but very hot pepper (some hotter than others). The older the pepper gets on its way to turning red, the hotter it will be. The hottest part of the pepper is the membrane. If you don’t want any heat, slice out as much of the light green part of the inside of the pepper as you can. If you have sensitive hands, you may want to wear kitchen gloves to clean and cut a hot pepper.

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Spanish Beans

Ingredients

  • 1 1/3 cup (half of a 16 pounce package) dry pinto beans, soaked overnight, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/3 cup celery, finely chopped
  • 1 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup green pepper, finely chopped fine
  • 1/4 cup anaheim pepper, finely chopped
  • 1/2 of a 4″  jalapena pepper, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup minced parsley
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 8 once can tomato sauce
  • 3/4 cup shredded jack cheese

Instructions

Place soaked beans, water, milk, garlic and salt in a large heavy pot or small dutch oven. Bring to a boil, turn down heat and simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until beans are soft. Add the remaining ingredients except the cheese and cook another 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender. You can leave the beans whole or mash them with a potato masher. Transfer to a casserole and sprinkle with the cheese. Bake in a 350 oven until hot and cheese is melted.

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Roast Chicken With Vegetables and Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Celery Root

March 19, 2014

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The leftovers from this roast makes the best chicken stock (recipe below) you’ve ever tasted. I think the secret is these wonderfully tender brined chickens and the Moscato wine.

Chicken Roast

Instructions 

  • 3 pound fresh organic chicken, brined (Trader Joe’s carries these)
  • 1/2 lemon
  • fresh rosemary, removed from stemsIMG_7395
  • fresh thyme, removed from stems
  • olive oil
  • 2 celery ribs, remove strings, cut into 3 inch pieces
  • 4 carrots, peeled and cut into 3 inch pieces
  • 1 rutabaga, peeled and cut into 3 inch pieces
  • 2 cups pearl onions
  • 3 shallots, peeled and quartered
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 cup Moscato
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided

 Instructions

Steam carrots and rutabagas for 10 minutes. Boil onions 2 minutes, drain and plunge into cold water. Cut ends and slip skins off. Saute onions and shallots in 2 tablespoons butter for about 10 minutes or until they start to brown. Place all vegetables in glass pyrex casserole. Add bay leaf and wine. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Rinse chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Sprinkle the inside with some fresh rosemary and thyme, place the half lemon inside and tie the legs. Place chicken on the vegetables. Drizzle olive oil on the chicken and sprinkle pepper and paprika and rub. Sprinkle with fresh rosemary and thyme. Cut remaining 2 tablespoons butter into pieces and place some on the chicken and the rest on the vegetables. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 1 hour and 45 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 180 degrees. Baste one or two times if you are able. Let stand 15 minutes.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Celery Root With Garlic

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Ingredients

  • 4 medium russet or yukon gold potatoes
  • 1  4″ celery root
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 garlic clove
  • salt
  • pepper

Instructions

Peel and cut potatoes and celery root into 2″ to 3″ cubes and boil until tender. Melt butter and sauté garlic 1 minute. Drain vegetables, sprinkle with salt and pepper and pour melted butter mixture over them. Mash with a potato masher or whip with a mixer.

Chicken Stock

Ingredients

  • 2 carrots, not peeled, cut in half
  • 2 celery stalks, cut in half
  • 1 onion, not peeled, quartered (the peel gives the stock a nice color)

Instructions

Remove vegetables from casserole and remove any meat still on the bones. Place the bones and juices in stock pot alone with the carrots, celery, onion and water. Bring to boil, lower heat and simmer for one hour. Strain, cool and refrigerate. Skim off fat before using.

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Shepherd’s Pie

March 11, 2014

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Shepherd’s pie is a lamb pie with a mashed potato crust. It originated in the UK and Ireland in 1791 as “cottage pie.” The term “shepherd’s pie” didn’t appear until 1877.  The theory behind the name is shepherds caring for sheep. It’s a wonderful comfort food. I have used less meat and more vegetables to the traditional recipes to add more nutrition to it.

Rutabaga is a crucifer that is high in antioxidants and other nutrients that protect the body from cancer and heart disease. Its most significant nutrient is vitamin C. It is beta-carotene-rich and also an excellent source of potassium and manganese, thiamin, vitamin B6, calcium, magnesium and phosphorus. Celery root is another cancer and heart disease fighter, an excellent source of riboflavin, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, vitamins, A, B6, C and K. Both rutabagas and celery root have fiber which is good for your digestive system.

Ingredients

  • 3 medium sized russet or yukon gold potatoes (or half potatoes and half celery root)
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • 3/4 cup diced onion
  • 3/4 cup diced rutabaga
  • 3/4 cup diced carrots
  • kernels cut off one ear of corn
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
  • 2 teaspoons fresh rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon rice flour
  • 2/3 cup beef broth
  • 1/3 cup peas
  • 1/3 cup grated gruyere cheese

Instructions

Cook lamb and add the Worcestershire sauce, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, thyme, rosemary, rice flour and beef broth, and set aside.

Saute onion, rutabaga, carrots and corn in 2 tablespoons butter for 5 minutes. (Note: Rutabagas can be tough and woody, especially in the Spring. If you have difficulty dicing it, you will know that you need to steam them until they are tender, then add them to the diced onions and carrots.) Add the meat mixture and simmer 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in peas.

Peel potatoes and cut into 2 to 3 inch chunks and boil until tender (if using half celery root, peel and cut into 1 inch pieces). Saute garlic in 2 tablespoons of butter for one minute and pour over potatoes and celery root.  Whip until smooth, sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Spoon the meat mixture into a 9″x 9″ casserole. Spread mashed potato mixture on top and sprinkle with cheese. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 30 minutes or until hot and golden brown. You can broil it at the end of the cooking time to have a delicious crusty top.

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Nutritional information is from Mercola.com.

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Coconut, Date and Walnut Candy

February 24, 2014

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Ingredients

  • 2 cups walnuts
  • 2 cups Medjool dates
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • bitter sweet dark chocolate, melted

Instructions

Place walnuts, dates, coconut, oil and salt in a food processor and process until crumbly. Roll into balls and then in coconut or melted chocolate. Chill in fridge until set.

*Lindt Excellence 85% Cocoa Extra Dark bar

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Salmon Burgers With Remoulade Sauce

February 13, 2014

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It’s a bit tricky trying to understand what fish is safe and healthy for us. ‘Farm raised’ can mean in a man made tank, or that they are raised in a net that is being moved around in the ocean. Whole Foods has done its homework and is a good store for knowing what you are getting.

Atlantic farm raised salmon, if cooked properly, is very tender, almost buttery. Wild salmon from Alaska has been in the cleanest water, and we are told it is the healthiest kind of salmon for us, but it is tougher. Making salmon cakes with it works great.

Serve salmon cakes in a sandwich bun with arugula and a sliced tomato, on a bed of arugula and tomatoes with a light dressing, or for dinner with brown rice and asparagus.

Salmon Cakes

Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh wild salmon, skinless
  • 1/4 cup red pepper, finely diced
  • 2 green onions, finely diced
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill, minced or 1 teaspoon dry dill
  • 2 teaspoons Penzey’s Cajon Seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups gluten free bread crumbs

Instructions

Cut salmon into 1 inch pieces. Place half in food process and pulse until coarsely chopped into 1/4 inch pieces. Repeat with second half. Mix all remaining ingredients together and gently mix together, then gently form into 8 patties. Melt 2 teaspoons of butter and 2 teaspoons of olive or coconut oil in a frying pan on medium heat. Fry patties on both sides for 3 to 5 minutes until they are a medium brown color. Spread two teaspoons of remoulade sauce over burgers before serving.

Remoulade Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups grape seed oil mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons Penzey’s Hungarian Sweet Paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Penzey’s Cajun Seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon prepared horseradish
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic, minced

Instructions

Combine all ingredients and refrigerate a few hours before using.

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Gluten Free Applesauce Muffins

January 9, 2014

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If you have wondered why the gluten free cooks on the you tube videos are mixing a bunch of different flours together, here’s the deal.

Rice and oat flour are relatively tasteless like wheat flour. Other flours, like buckwheat and quinoa, have a very distinct strong taste. So if you use too much of any one of them, you will taste their particular taste. But if you mix them all evenly – presto! – no strong taste.

If you’re wondering now  why you would want to go through the extra trouble of baking your own breads and using these other flours it’s because the gluten free products that you buy at the store are not really healthy. They are good for someone with a gluten allergy (which all of us seemed to have developed) and but they are not nutritious. In fact most of them are made with white rice flour, potato starch and tapioca flour – the white stuff health conscious people have been trying to avoid because they are, among other things, empty calories and not good for the digestive track.

Also, most of the products use xanthan gum to replace what gluten does. But xantham gum is an industrial processed product, derived from corn, wheat or soy, that’s beginning to show up in everything.  If you are eating natural and organic foods for allergy reasons or to avoid side effects, it’s off the list.  Muffins don’t need this stuff to stick together.

So go buy the flours and put them in your freezer in zip lock bags.

Take the extra time. It’s worth it!

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup each quinoa flour, sorghum flour, teff flour, millet flour, amaranth flour and gluten free oat flour (or substitute brown rice flour for any of these)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup applesauce
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Instructions

Butter a muffin pan. Combine all the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Whisk all the wet ingredients in a smaller bowl. Combine both mixtures and spoon into muffin pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 18 minutes or until top bounces back.

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Holiday Fruit Salad

November 13, 2013

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Salad

  • spring lettuce or baby spinach
  • pear
  • Fuyu persimmon
  • honey crisp apple
  • pomegranate seeds
  • blue cheese
  • sweet white onion
  • candied walnuts (see below)

Arrange all ingredients on a plate.

Dressing

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons Spectrum White Wine Vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Grey Poupon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

Place all ingredients in an jar and shake until well blended.

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Candied Walnuts (or Pecans)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups walnuts (pecan) pieces
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Instructions

Heat maple syrup in a sauté pan until bubbly. Add nuts and salt and cook until dry, about 3-5 minutes. (Use medium heat so it won’t burn. Three minutes will make them glazed and 5 will be candied). Transfer to a plate and let cool. Store in the refrigerator.

 

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Roasted Chicken and Potato Hash

October 24, 2013

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This is a wonderful comfort food you can make with leftover chicken or beef roast, but chicken is best. Like the traditional hash recipes, you can spoon the hash into a casserole and run it under the broiler, but it’s not necessary to go through the extra fuss. It’s yummy just the way it is. I am posting a recipe for roasting chicken below. Serve it with baked white sweet potatoes or yams and a salad then use the leftovers for hash the next day. There are you tube videos showing ways to tie chicken legs.

The hint of wine adds a wonderful flavor to all the recipes you can make with leftover chicken. Use the juices from the roasting dish for the 1/3 cup chicken broth in this recipe. Using the juices with the wine flavor is especially good in chicken tetrazzini.

Hash

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 large garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 green pepper, diced
  • 1 celery rib, diced
  • 2 large russet potatoes
  • 2 cups roasted chicken pieces
  • 1/4 teaspoon basil
  • 1/3 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • pinch allspice

Instructions

Saute onion, garlic, green pepper and celery in butter for 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients. Cook on low 1 hour or until potatoes are tender. Sprinkle with chopped parsley.

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(Note: You can use any kind of onion and root vegetables.)

Ingredients 

  • 3 pound fresh organic chicken, brined (Trader Joe’s carries these)
  • 1/2 lemon
  • fresh rosemary, removed from stems*
  • fresh thyme, removed from stems*
  • olive oil
  • pepper
  • paprika
  • 2 celery ribs, cut into 3 inch pieces
  • 4 carrots, peeled and cut into 3 inch pieces
  • 1 rutabaga, peeled and cut into 3 inch logs
  • 2 cups pearl onions
  • 3 shallots
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 cup Moscato wine
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided

Instructions

Steam carrots for 10 minutes. Boil pearl onions for 2 minutes, drain and plunge into cold water. Cut off ends and slip on skins. Saute onions and shallots in 2 tablespoons of butter for 10 minutes or until they start to brown. Place all vegetables in glass pyrex casserole. Add bay leaf and wine. Rinse chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Sprinkle the inside with some fresh rosemary, place the half lemon inside and tie the legs. Place on vegetables. Drizzle with  olive oil and sprinkle with pepper and paprika and rub. Sprinkle with fresh rosemary and thyme.  Cut remaining 2 tablespoons of butter into pieces. Place some on chicken and some on the vegetables. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 1 hour and 45 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 180 degrees. Baste one or two times if you are able. Let stand 15 minutes.

(If you like gravy, remove juices to a small sauce pan. Shake water and rice flour in a jar and add to juices. Heat, whisking occasionally, until hot and thick.)

*Remove the leaves from the stems and keep fresh herbs in baggies in the freezer so they are always on hand and they don’t go to waste.

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