Archive for October, 2011

Beef,Main Dishes

October 23, 2011

Chinese Beef with Broccoli
Posted by betsyjo

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Another good stir fry, another great recipe from Food Network Magazine.   Have you subscribed yet?

Chinese Beef with Broccoli

2 tablespoons cornstarch
4 tablespoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
5 tablespoons peanut oil
1 pound flank steak, thinly sliced against the grain
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 1/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
4 thin slices peeled ginger
1 head broccoli, cut into florets
1 large onion, halved and sliced 1/2 inch thick
3 plum tomatoes, quartered lengthwise (I used halved cherry tomatoes)
2 cloves garlic, minced
Cooked white rice, for serving

1.  Whisk 1 tablespoon cornstarch, 3 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 teaspoon sugar, and 1 tablespoon peanut oil in a large bowl.  Add the steak and toss to coat.  Refrigerate until ready to cook.
2.  Whisk the remaining 1 tablespoon each cornstarch and soy sauce, the oyster sauce, and chicken broth in a small bowl; set aside.
3.  Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over high heat.  Add the ginger, broccoli and remaining 1 teaspoon sugar and stir-fry 3-4 minutes; transfer to a plate.  Heat 1 more tablespoon oil in the skillet, add the onion and stir-fry 2-3 minutes.  Add the tomatoes and cook, turning gently, 2 minutes.  Transfer the onion and tomatoes to the plate with the broccoli.
4.  Reduce the heat to medium high; add the remaining 2 tablespoons peanut oil to the skillet.  Add the garlic and steak and stir-fry 1 minute.  Whisk the sauce mixture, then add to the skillet and simmer 1 minute.  Return the vegetables to the skillet; cook until the meat is cooked through, 3-4 minutes.  Serve with rice.

Main Dishes,Seafood

October 16, 2011

Cuban-Style Grilled Salmon
Posted by betsyjo

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We’ve made Salmon Sundays a pretty regular tradition here.  Usually Matt fires up the grill and makes Cedar-Planked Salmon, but this was a good change of pace and worked great on my grill pan.  This was delicious meal that came together easily.

Cuban-Style Grilled Salmon
Food Network Magazine, July/August 2011

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Juice of two lemons or limes
2 large cloves garlic, minced
2 large shallots, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin (we omitted this)
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Kosher salt
1/2 bunch cilantro, roughly chopped
4 6-oz center-cut salmon fillets, skin removed
1 14-oz can hearts of palm, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
Vegetable oil, for brushing
2 cups mixed salad greens

Preheat a grill to medium high.  In a large bowl, whisk 2 tablespoons olive oil, the juice of one lemon, the garlic, shallots, cumin, cayenne, 1 teaspoon salt and half of the cilantro.  Add the salmon and turn to coat.  Let marinate 15 minutes at room temperature.

Meanwhile, toss the hearts of palm and tomatoes in a bowl with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, the juice of the remaining lemon, and the rest of the cilantro.  Season with salt.

Brush the grill with vegetable oil.  Grill the salmon round side down until marked on the bottom, about 4 minutes.  Turn and continue grilling until marked on the other side and cooked through, 2 to 3 more minutes.  Divide the salmon among plates.  Serve with the greens and hearts of palm salad; drizzle the juices from the salad over the greens.

Main Dishes,Pork

Cajun Rice with Sausage
Posted by betsyjo

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This was a good, easy meal that was a little different from our every day cooking.  It was great left over for lunch the next day too.  I recommend a spicy sausage.

Cajun Rice with Sausage
Food Network Magazine, June 2011

2 slices bacon, chopped
12 ounces spicy chicken sausage (I used spicy pork sausage)
1 small onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 small green bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup long grain rice
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
2 cups chopped frozen okra, thawed
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Heat a large cast iron skillet over high heat.  Add the bacon and cook until crisp.  Transfer with a slotted spoon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.  Add the sausage, onion, celery and bell pepper to the skillet and cook, stirring, until the vegetables are soft and the sausage begins to brown, about 5 minutes.  Add the garlic, thyme, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper to the skillet, then stir in the rice.  Add the chicken broth and 1 cup water and bring to a boil.  Stir in the okra, then reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer 15 minutes.  Remove from the heat and let sit, covered, 5 minutes.  Add the bacon and parsley and fluff with a fork.

Main Dishes,Seafood

October 2, 2011

Halibut with Chipotle Compound Butter
Posted by betsyjo

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Matt and I are trying to eat more fish lately, which has been interesting because both of us become pickier eaters where fish is concerned.  Cedar-plank salmon has become a Sunday night tradition, but this is the first time we branched out to eating fish on a weeknight.  I couldn’t find halibut, and probably wouldn’t have paid up for it anyway.  I used a package of frozen fish called dory, (not this Dory), straight from the cold waters of New Zealand (carbon footprint be darned!).  It was cheap, and this whole dish was remarkably tasty.  I’m putting the original recipe here, but next time I think we’ll use lime instead of orange.  Also, instead of the chipotles in the butter, I used several spoonfuls of the salsa negra I had made the night before.  Not bad for fish!


Halibut with Chipotle Compound Butter in Foil Packets
Source: Annie’s Eats

4 skinless white fish fillets (such as halibut), 6-8 oz. each
Salt and pepper
4 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
2 tsp. minced chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, divided
1 tsp. grated orange zest
2 tbsp. freshly squeezed orange juice
2 cloves garlic, minced, divided
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups corn kernels
½ red onion, diced
2 scallions, chopped
¼ cup minced fresh cilantro, divided

Heat a grill to medium-high heat.  (Alternatively, preheat the oven to 425? F.)

Pat the fish dry with paper towels.  Season the fillets with salt and pepper.  In a small bowl, combine the butter, half of the chipotles, the orange zest, half of the garlic, ½ teaspoon of salt, and ¼ teaspoon of pepper.  Stir with a fork until well blended. Spread the mixture evenly over the top of the fillets.

In a medium bowl combine the remaining chipotles, the orange juice, the remaining garlic, the beans, corn, onion, scallions, and half of the cilantro.  Add in ½ teaspoon of salt and ¼ teaspoon of pepper.  Mix well to combine.  Lay four 14-inch squares of foil out on a work surface.  Divide the bean mixture evenly between the pieces of foil, placing it over the lower half of each piece.  Top each mound of the bean mixture with a fillet.  Fold the foil over the fish and fold up the edges to seal the packets.

Place the packets on the grill, cover, and cook for about 15 minutes or until the internal temperature of the fish registers 160? F.  (You can poke the probe of a thermometer directly through the foil rather than opening the packets.)  Alternatively, bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes just until the fish is cooked through.

Open the packets carefully to avoid contact with the steam and sprinkle with the remaining cilantro.  Serve warm.

Source: America’s Test Kitchen The Best Simple Recipes via Pink Parsley Catering

Condiments and Sauces

Salsa Negra
Posted by betsyjo

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I made this salsa from my hero Rick Bayless, and it is delicious and a departure from typical red Tapatio/Tabasco-type hot sauces.  It was extremely spicy when we first made it, but we think it mellowed out considerably after a few days in the fridge, (if such a thing is possible).  But this is a keeper.

Salsa Negra
Food & Wine July 2011

3/4 cup chipotles in adobo sauce (from a 7-ounce can), stemmed and coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon molasses, preferably unsulfured
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons soy sauce

In a blender, combine the chipotle chiles with the molasses, balsamic vinegar, dark brown sugar and 1/4 cup of the water. Blend until the mixture is smooth.  Strain the sweet chipotle puree through a fine strainer into a small saucepan, pressing on the solids with a spatula to extract as much of the puree as possible.  Simmer the chipotle sauce over moderately low heat, stirring frequently with a heatproof rubber spatula, until it is very thick, pasty and reduced to 3/4 cup, about 20 minutes. Remove the salsa from the heat. Stir in the soy sauce and remaining 1/4 cup of water. Serve the salsa negra hot or at room temperature.