Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Chicken and Dumplings

The top one is mine- it's looking a little dry.  The bottom one is from the cook book.  Mine when I ate it looked more like the bottom, as far as sauce.  The top was Andrews after it had sat for a little bit and soaked up sauce.  So hopefully, when he reheats his tonight, it will get saucy again!

Here is the adaptation I made to the CHICKEN AND DUMPLINGS recipe found in my Complete America's Test Kitchen Cook Book (the white one).  The book involves cooking chicken thighs and such in the stew and letting it simmer for an hour, shredding etc.  I had some left over chicken breasts I had cooked earlier in the week, so I adapted the recipe to do it faster and easier!

1 1/2 cooked and shredded chicken breasts
2 Tablespoons butter
2 carrots, peeled and sliced 1/4 in thick
1 celery rib, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1/2 onion, minced
3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/8 cup "dry sherry" * I did broth with a little bit of white vinegar in it.  Maybe 1/2-1 tsp, I didn't measure
2 1/4 cups chicken broth
1/8 cup whole milk (it needs to be whole)
1/2 tsp thyme
1 bay leaf
1/2 c green peas frozen
1 1/2 Tablespoon parsley

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 Tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup whole milk (again needs to be whole, according to the test kitchen divas)
1 1/2 T butter

1.  Melt butter in Dutch oven over med-high heat.  Add carrots, celery, onion and 1/8 tsp salt and cook til softened, about 7 min.  Stir in the flour.  Whisk in the "sherry", scraping up any brown bits.  Stirin the broth, milk, thyme and bay leaf.  Add chicken.  Simmer til warmed through and slightly thickens and simmers.
2.  FOR THE DUMPLINGS: Stir the flour, baking powder and salt together.  Microwave the milk and butter in bowl until just warm, about 1 min.  Stir the warmed milk mixture into the flour mixture with a wooden spoon until incorporated and smooth. (only make this when you're ready to cook the dumplings- don't do ahead of time)
3. While stew is still at a simmer, stir in the peas and parsley.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Drop golf-ball sized dumplings over the top of the stew about 1/4 in apart (should have about 9 dumplings).  Reduce heat to low, cover and cook until the dumplings have doubled in size. 15-18 minutes.  Serve!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Tuna Cakes

I had extra of these tuna cakes made when my sister and mom were here that were frozen between sheets of wax paper in the freezer.  They came in handy when I needed dinner fast tonight.  This looks like a kids meal or school lunch all portioned out like that.  The kids ate it really well.  My mom looked up the recipe on my dad's iphone last month so I don't have the recipe.  But I'm sure you could google one.

Beef and Broccoli

This one is fast.  I'll put the recipe on soon.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Night 2: Mango Curried Chicken with Yogurt Sauce

This is a crock pot recipe that I've made in the past and liked.  Today it was very meh.  I'm not too excited to really ever make it again.  I'm not super big on curry seasoning but this is one of the dishes that I like it in.  I'm not going to include the recipe because I blogged about it here. (Yes it is called chutney curried but I don't ever have the mango chutney so I do pieces of mango instead)  But it looked pretty!  But it was easy and I did make dinner.  Here's hoping tomorrow is a smash hit!

A New Recipe Called Mushroom Agnolotti with Corn, Tomatoes and Arugula Pan Sauce

Ok, so I cook occasionally. I won't tell you how many times I actually cooked dinner at home during the last 3 weeks because it's embarrassing.  But, I've decided to turn over a new leaf.  I've begun meal planning again.  I've decided to get some different, better food back on the table.  Because, I was in a rut.  I preferred Hamburger Mac (no one was complaining though) to something a little more healthy.

So, my first try back to interesting but easy cooking was something with a crazy name but a pretty yummy and fresh looking picture. I have also wanted to know what the hype was about arugula so, I thought this would be perfect.  Especially since Utah corn is at its prime.  Yum.  Here are a few notes:

1.  I used frozen ravioli. Costco kind with the spinach in it.  They said I could.  Agnolotti is basically ravioli.  It just sounds more special.
2.  My ravioli did not have mushroom in it.   So I actually put in some white mushrooms for my husband.  And picked them all out of my bowl at dinner time.
3. Most important discovery:  I hate arugula.  It's gross. If you like it, pardon.  But if you don't like it, you know what I'm talking about.  Andrew took a bite and said, "What tastes so bitter?"  Yeah, so we both ate around the arugula.  If you want the rest of my arugula in the fridge, it's yours.

So if I were to make this again here are the good things:

1.  Great for meatless Monday.
2. Fast
3. My corn was white and awesome and fresh and inexpensive.  Delish.
4.  It was pretty healthy.
5.  We ate it with garlic bread.   Bueno.
6.  Substitute the stinking arugula with spinach.  That would be good.  And don't put a full 5 oz in.  That's a lot.  Maybe half of that?

Theirs (Better Homes and Gardens)


The Recipe:

2 ears sweet corn on the cob
18 oz wild mushroom agnolotti or ravioli
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 small onion thinly sliced
1 clove garlic thinly sliced (I have the jar of costco minced for ease)
2 medium tomatoes, cored and chopped
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
5 oz baby arugula (6 cups)  *too much!  Sub spinach if you don't like arugula
2 oz Parmigiano-Reggiano finely shredded (I used shredded parm)

1.  Bring large pot of salted water to boil.  Shave corn off the ears with knife and reserve.  Add the cobs and agnolotti to water, set timer for 6 min.
2.  Meanwhile, for pan sauce, heat oil in large skillet over med-high heat.  Add onion and garlic.  Cook until fragrant about2 min.
3.  Add corn kernels to skillet; cook over med-high heat until bright and crisp tender; 1 min.  Add the tomatoes (and mushrooms if adding) and toss until they begin to release some juices, about 2 min more.
4.  Drain the pasta, reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid.  Discard cobs.  Add pasta back to the pot with the reserved cooking water, corn mixture and butter.  Gently toss over low heat to melt butter.  Stir in arugula and toss until just wilted.  Divide among four bowls and top with finely grated cheese.
4 servings.

566 cal
6g fiber
(in case you were wondering)

Friday, December 9, 2011

homemade pine wreath

Well, something good had to come out my toppled pine trees in last weeks wind storm.  The top 5 ft of one of them was donated to a family who didn't have enough money for a Christmas tree.  Then, I made a homemade wreath from some of the limbs that were sitting on my curb. 

It was improvised.  I used what I had laying around (as in painters tape, zip ties and hot glue...)  But I don't think it turned out half bad.  Free Free Free.  It also needs a little more stuff on the top left portion- it's a little thin. But, who cares. 

Here is the website that I found the tutorial on.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Shush Kabobs (Apple Meatballs)

I wish this picture did it justice.  This was another good recipe I made lately.  I found it in Parents Magazine as a way to eat more apples.  The sauce that you put on them is really good.  I think I made one and one half the amount here.  I think I'd just double the amount of sauce for the amount of meatballs so that you can get enough on the rice.  Really good wish brown rice.  Yum!  I used gala apples, too.  Oh, and I had sticks and the recipe suggested using sticks to make your kids like them.  I put them on the stick for the picture then promptly took them off.  I didn't even give Nathaniel one so he didn't gouge his eye out.  Cute idea, but I'm definitely losing the stick next time I make these. Also, I didn't put my meatballs into the glaze.  I just put them on the plate and spooned glaze over them and the rice.  I'll try coating them next time and see which way I like better.

1 cup (whole-wheat) bread crumbs (I didn't have whole wheat, use any)
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 medium apple grated coarsely
1 Tbs. Dijon mustard (didn't have so I just sprinkled a little ground dried mustard in there)
1 Tbs. chopped parsley
1/4 tsp. each of salt and pepper
1 lb. ground turkey breast (I used hamburger because I didn't have turkey)
2 Tbs. vegetable oil
1/2 cup apple juice or cider
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 Tbs. balsamic vinegar

1.  In a large bowl, combine bread crumbs, cheese, egg, apple, mustard, parsley, salt and pepper.  Mix well.  Add turkey (or hamburger) meat and fold into wet mixture until just combined.
2. In frying pan (I used my big electric skillet), heat oil on medium.  Roll meat mixture into 12 balls.  Fry, turning frequently until meatballs are browned and cooked through, about 15 minutes.
3. Glaze: In a pot, mix apple juice, maple syrup and vinegar.  Simmer over low heat until reduced by half, about 15 minutes.  Toss meatballs in glaze, thread three onto each stick.  Makes 4 servings.