Just Plum!

In last weeks farm box were 6 plums, that never ripened enough to be eaten.
Not wanting to throw them out I decided to experiment and use them in a dish.
A friend did cook this recipe before I put it in the blog and she felt the plum sauce did not thicken enough for her.
It’s not very crucial to have the sauce really thick, it’s the flavor that counts so don’t overthink it too much!

1 chicken breast per person
4-6 small plums
1 tbs balsamic vinegar

1-2 cups chicken stock, enough to cover plums and chicken
pepper, salt and 2 cloves garlic
1 tsp curry powder

Cut plums in 4 parts
Cover bottom of crock-pot with plums, one layer of chicken breast and cover with the balsamic vinegar and broth.
Add salt, curry powder, pepper and garlic.

Let simmer on high for 2 hours and low for another 2.5 hours.
Turn the chicken after you have cooked it for 2 hours.
The plum sauce should thicken some, if it looks too thick add a little broth.

Chicken will fall apart nicely.

I added sliced mushrooms 30 minutes before the time was over.

My boys ate this with rice.

Carne Asada

I hope my readers don’t mind a repeat recipe, I got food poisoning (undercooked chicken I didn’t cook but bought at a deli) and had to delay the cooking of flank steak I had.
I decided to marinate the steak for Carne Asada.

This recipe serves 8, it keeps well in the fridge for at least 3 days or until The Boy eats it all.
Really thin slicked steak is the key, it takes on the flavor so well.
If you are making this recipe outside the US ask your butcher for thin sliced beef, in France it’s called “Bavette”, in the Netherlands it’s “runder-rib lap”
It’s from the cows belly-side.

1-1/2 pounds flank steak
2 tablespoons and 2 teaspoons white vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 limes, juiced
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon paprika

Mix all ingredients in a bowl.
In order to get the marinade on all the pieces of meat I just dip them in the marinade so they coat evenly.
Layer beef in an oven proof dish so they can sit in the marinade, cover with remaining marinade.
Cover with plastic wrap and marinade 24-8 hours.

Either BBQ over medium heat or pan sear for 2 minutes on each side.
Serve with beans, guacamole and sour cream.

Enjoy.

Hot hot weather!

The weather has turned incredibly hot, very unusual for the time of year.
Granted we get this thing called “Indian Summer” but with temperatures close to 100 Fahrenheit?
So into the archives I went for this easy, cooling soup.

Because I do not want peels in the soup I used a simple chefs trick to remove the peels.
You’ll need:
Pan deep enough to cover tomatoes with water
paring knife

Boil the water
Using your paring knife score the top of the tomato cross wise


Immerse into hot water, reduce the heat!
Peel will come off after about 5 minutes
Take tomatoes out of the water and once they are cooler gently peel the skin off.

For the Gazpacho
4 tomatoes, I prefer vine ripened for taste
1 shallot
garlic, 2-3 cloves
2 tbs olive oil
2-4 Basil leaves
salt and pepper to taste.
water
Prepare tomatoes
saute shallot with garlic in olive oil until soft
in a food processor mix all ingredients together but do not overmix.
Keep one basil leaf on the side, cut it fine
At this point you can decide how thick you want the soup by slowly adding water to the mixture.
Cover and chill, when you are ready to serve it taste and add salt and pepper if needed.
Garnish with basil.

Happy Wednesday

My kind of math!

CollegeGirl pinged me on Facebook requesting I’d make her Wonton Soup when she is back home.
The blog got started because of her asking for Shrimp Scampi so I’ll be happy to oblige!

This recipe is not mine, she found it at a Disney site for cooking with kids called Familyfun.

Ingredients
FOR THE SOUP:
5 cups chicken broth (regular or low-sodium)
2 cups water
2 to 3 thin slices fresh ginger
5 or 6 bok choy leaves, washed
Pepper to taste
FOR THE WONTONS:
1/2 pound ground pork (for lower-fat wontons, use ground turkey)
2 scallions, finely chopped
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 small clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon rice vinegar
1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon cornstarch
35 to 40 wonton wrappers

Instructions
In a large saucepan, combine the chicken broth, water, and ginger slices.
Cover and bring the broth to a gentle simmer, then turn off the heat.
Cut the bok choy into small pieces and set it aside.
Combine the pork, scallions, ginger, and garlic in a mixing bowl.
Add the soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil, salt, pepper, and cornstarch and mix well with a rubber spatula.
Remove the wonton wrappers from their package and cover them with a damp paper towel to keep them from drying out.
Assemble the wontons (see below), place them on a large plate or a baking sheet lined with waxed paper, and cover them loosely with plastic wrap..

Assembling the Wontons:
1. Place a wrapper flour side up on your work surface.
Using a spoon and a chopstick, drop a scant teaspoon of the meat mixture onto the wrapper.
2. Moisten all the edges of the wrapper with a wet fingertip, then fold it over so the edges meet. Pinch the edges to seal them.
3. Using your finger or a chopstick, make an indentation in the middle of the filled wonton.
4. Dab a drop of water on the two corners and fold them in so they overlap above the indentation. Pinch them together to secure them in place.

Bring the chicken broth to a boil.
Use a slotted spoon to add the wontons a few at a time, keeping the broth at a low boil.
Cook the wontons until they are no longer pink inside (remove one and cut it open to check), at least 7 minutes.
Turn the heat back to high, add the bok choy, cover, and cook it for 3 minutes. Turn off the heat and add pepper to taste.
Transfer 5 or 6 wontons to each soup bowl and ladle on the hot broth.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Enjoy!

Happy Wednesday!

If only this was possible!

Bok Choy salad with chicken.

Our Asian market sells Bok Choi by the bag.
There have to be at least 10 heads in the bag, way too many to use in a stir-fry so sometimes they go unused and ultimately spoil.
This salad is easy and refreshing.
Lunch made really simple and healthy!

½ cup of finely minced spring onion greens
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
2 Tbs. mayonnaise
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 tsp. soy sauce or tamari
1 tsp. finely minced fresh oregano
1 head of bok choi, finely chopped
1 cup of radish, cut into coins
¾ lb of grilled chicken breast, thinly sliced

Prepare the dressing by adding all ingredients except the bok choi and radishes.
Allow to marinate for ten minutes (this will ease the bite of the onions and let the flavors meld together).
Meanwhile, prepare the bok choi and radishes, and then toss with the dressing. Refrigerate for 15 minutes while you grill the chicken.
Add the meat to the salad.

Enjoy!

Baba Ghanoush, super easy.

In my organic farm delivery last week I got an eggplant.
My boys don’t like eggplant unless it’s made into this lovely dish.
It’s vegetarian and the Tahini gives it a tiny bit of punch.
You can buy Tahini at most Middle Eastern stores.

1 Eggplant
¼ Cup lemon juice
¼ Cup Tahini
2 Tbs sesame seeds
2 Cloves minced garlic
1 ½ Tbs olive oil
salt and pepper

Make a dozen holes in the skin of the eggplant with fork. Place eggplant on cookie sheet in oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 to 40 minutes, turning occasionally.
The eggplant should be completely mushy on the inside and the skin may look black. (this can be done on a grill.)
Dunk eggplant in cold water and peel off skin.
Blend eggplant, lemon juice,tahini, sesame seeds, and garlic together using either an electric mixer or immersion blender. Stir in olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.

Enjoy!

This was a hit, Cioppino made easy.

I made this dish 4 weeks ago when TheGirl was still home.
It was a clean-your-plate kind of dish and quite the success.

I started with a recipe from Allrecipes that I changed here and there.

3 tbs butter
2 shallots, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bunch fresh parsley, chopped
2 (14.5 ounce) cans stewed tomatoes
28 ounces fish stock
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 cup water
1 1/2 cups white wine
1 pound large shrimp – peeled and deveined
1 pound bay scallops
18 mussels, cleaned and debearded
1 pounds cod fillets, cubed

Over medium-low heat melt butter in a large stockpot, add shallots, garlic and parsley. Cook slowly, stirring occasionally until shallots are soft.
Add tomatoes to the pot (break them into chunks as you add them).
Add fish stock, bay leaves, basil, thyme, oregano, water and wine. Mix well. Cover and simmer 30 minutes.
Stir in the cod,scallops, mussels. Add shrimp . Bring to boil. Lower heat, cover and simmer 5 to 7 minutes until mussels open. Ladle soup into bowls and serve with warm, crusty bread!

Easiest chicken ever!

I need to get back to cooking for 3 because TheGirl has left for college.
Also BubbleWrapBoy seems to have left the clumsy/for ever hungry stage indicating he might very well have stopped growing. For now.
Less food is being eaten, we’ll see if in a week or so he reverts back to his inhaling everything food wise.

This is one of those really simple dishes, easy to adapt because it’s one chicken breast per person.
Count on 1 ounce of cheese per person and 2 slices of prosciutto ham.

Chicken with mozerella and ham

4 chicken filets
4 ounces mozerella, cut in 4 slices
8 slices prosciutto ham
2 tbs olive oil
2 sprigs rosemary
salt and pepper to taste
Cut chicken filets in half but not all the way,
salt and peper
layer with mozzerella
roll and wrap ham around.
cook on both sides for 3 minutes on each side.
transfer to oven proof dish
add rosemary sprigs and cook in 350 oven for 15-20 minutes

Enjoy!

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