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Showing posts from January, 2015

Chicken Mushroom Hotdish

I seldom rave about a recipe, but this is one recipe to rave about!
A “hotdish” is the colloquial term for a casserole in some parts of the Midwest.  It’s ideal comfort food ~ warm and wholesome, and suited to feed a crowd.  


For those of you familiar with the casseroles of years ago, the ones with an abundance of canned cream of mushroom or celery soup, this version will be a revelation.  The recipe is from Martha Stewart’s Martha’s American Food cookbook, one of my favorite cookbooks, that’s filled with treasured dishes, from coast to coast.
In cooking the hotdish, first off, I browned the chicken, transferred it to a plate, then, with the drippings left in the skillet, sautéed the cremini mushrooms, with green onions (Martha used leeks) and diced celery, until golden.  Finally, the sauce ingredients of flour, sherry, milk and chicken stock, were added to the mushroom mixture and simmered until thickened.  

But, here’s what is so special and delicious about this hotdish:  the chicken p…

Shrimp Étouffée

If you’ve never gone to Louisiana, you need to go down to where the Cajuns live to experience for yourself what fine eating is ~ where delicious food is an “everymeal” occurrence.
If that’s not in the stars for you, this recipe is about as close as you can get to being there:



In French, étouffée means smothered ~ and that perfectly describes this dish ~ shrimp that is smothered in a thick gravy and served ladled over rice.  Compared to gumbo, which is made with a dark roux, the color of chocolate; étouffée is made with a lighter roux, orange/brown in color.
Like many dishes down Louisiana way, this one includes the Cajun holy trinity:  bell peppers, onions and celery.  This spicy dish is stew-like and seasoned to perfection with paprika and other good seasonings.




Here’s what goes into Bubba’s étouffée, Bill loves it too, but I’m not that adventurous yet:



Shrimp Étouffée is a hit here any time!

Shrimp Étouffée 

Ingredients:

4 tablespoons butter ¼ cup flour
1 large onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, …

Balsamic Chicken

When you’re short on time, this is an easy one-pan entrée!
The chicken gets its delicious tangy flavor from balsamic vinegar.  Golden caramelized onions, red bell pepper, and fire-roasted tomatoes add some sweetness to the dish.

The good thing is ~ this Joy Bauer recipe makes a healthy dish containing 6 super foods:

Chicken breast is a low-fat protein.
Tomatoes contain cancer-fighting lycopene.
Bell peppers are rich in fiber and Vitamin C.
Onions and garlic are antioxidants.
Vinegar is a blood sugar regulator.

The bad thing is ~ I was so busy eating, I forgot about taking another photo after it was plated!

Balsamic Chicken
Adapted

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil 1 Vidalia onion, thinly sliced
1 large red bell pepper, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon seasoned pepper ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
1 (15-ounce) can Hunt’s Fire-Roasted Diced Tomatoes
Method:

Coat a large sauté pan with oil and preheat over medium-high h…

Easy Cornmeal Honey Biscuits

You can whip up these little biscuits in no time!



I’m pretty much hooked on anything cornmeal, and these tasty biscuits fill that craving perfectly.
You can use plain cornmeal, if you prefer ~ I’m a fan of stone-ground cornmeal for its crunchier texture.


With this easy recipe, from Food Network Magazine at hand, it's a piece of cake to have freshly-made biscuits on your dinner table. 
They’re plush, lip-smacking goodness with a little crunch, and a little heat!
Easy Cornmeal Honey Biscuits
Adapted
Ingredients: 1 1/3 cups flour
1/3 cup stone-ground cornmeal
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon kosher salt1/8 teaspoon cayenne
6 tablespoons butter, cold and diced 2/3 cup milk*
1 tablespoon honey
Method:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Whisk flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cayenne in a large bowl.
Work in butter with your fingers until crumbly.
Stir in milk and honey.
Let sit for 5 minutes.
Roll dough into 8 balls, place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Brush wi…

Simple Oven-Baked Tenderloin Pork Chops

They’ve done it again; new pork labels were in the grocer’s meat case the other day.  This time, the chops I bought were called "Tenderloin Pork Chops."  Never heard that one before, but here it is, the same chop as always:


The pork chop has a T-shaped bone running through it, similar to the T-bones of beefsteaks.  The chop is loin meat, separated by a t-bone, from a bit of tenderloin meat. 
Bill and I are both pork chop fans and this recipe, from Zweber Farms, is one of the best recipes for delicious, moist oven-baked pork chops that I’ve made.  
The chops are coated with a spicy rub and baked in a moderate oven, with the bone itself retaining moisture as it cooks, keeping the meat from drying out. 



The chops were tender and juicy; great tasting bone-in pork chops!

Ground Beef and Bell Peppers w/Egg Noodles

Everyday Midwestern home cooking means simple hearty dishes.  Beef is a major part of it, as well as noodles…






I don’t know what it is about egg noodles, but I think they’re great.  They’re flavorful ~ my favorite pasta.
This is a simple supper that’s substantial and full of good taste ~ perfect comfort food for the cold weather here now ~ which is all of 0 degrees now!
The good thing is that it can all be made on the stovetop, with it coming together quickly.  




You can probably have dinner on the table in 25 minutes, or maybe even before you can get the table set.

Ground Beef and Bell Peppers w/Egg Noodles
Ingredients:

1 pound 90% lean ground beef 1 Vidalia onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 small red bell pepper, chopped
1 small green bell pepper, chopped
1 (8-ounce) can sliced mushrooms
2 (15-ounce) cans diced tomatoes
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon seasoned pepper
½ teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon dried basil
¼ teaspoon dried thyme
8 ounces uncooked extra-wide egg noodles
Parmesan cheese, optional
Method:
C…










“He toasted his bacon on a fork and caught the drops of fat on his bread; then he put the rasher on his thick slice of bread, and cut off chunks with a knife, poured his tea into his saucer, and was happy.”


~ D.H. Lawrence, Sons and Lovers







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ᴡᴏᴏ ʜᴏᴏ!!!

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