Thursday, December 30, 2010

Turkey Shepherd's Pie (One dish holiday leftover meal)

This is a great way to clean out the fridge after a holiday. You could also make this dish with leftover chicken or ground meat (use leftover taco meat for a fun twist.

1 large Carrot - sliced thinly
1 small Onion - diced
1/2 Bell Pepper - diced
1/2 cup corn
1/2 cup frozen peas
Mashed Potatoes

Preheat oven to 375°.

In a large ovenproof skillet*, heat the oil and add the first three ingredients.

Season with s/p and CRP, stir and cook until the onion is clear but not brown.

Add garlic and cook another minute or two.

Stir in the turkey, corn and pea.

Mix a large spoonful of gravy into the pan and smooth everything out evenly.

Spread the potatoes evenly over the vegetable and meat mixture.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Radiatori with Squash and Tomatoes

This is a quick and nutritious vegetarian entrée or side dish. Here are some tips to make it your own:

- Substitute whole wheat pasta for a gluten free meal.
- You can add grilled meat, beans, artichokes, broccoli, and/or spinach which are all high in protein and other vitamins.
- A couple spoonfuls of cream at the end will add more fat, but it will also give you a richer, thicker sauce.
- A tablespoon of cold butter added to the tomato sauce before the pasta is tossed in will also help to emulsify it.

4 Green onions - sliced (reserve 1/2 of the green parts)
1/2 Bell Pepper - finely diced
4 cloves Garlic - finely diced or pressed
1/2 - 1 T Tomato Paste
1 Yellow Squash - diced
1 Zucchini - diced
Trader Joe's 21 Season
3 Fresh Tomatoes
Vegetable Stock
Large Pot of Water
Radiatori (or another type of pasta)

Heat oil in a sauce pan and add the onion and pepper. Cook for two minutes.

Stir in the garlic and paste. Cook for another two minutes.

Add the next seven ingredients to the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally till the squash is tender crisp.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Rainbow Trout with Lemon and Herb

This trout was cooked on an indoor grill. An outdoor grill will work just as well. Be sure not to place the fish directly over the flames, so that the skin doesn't burn. You could also dust the fish's skin with flour and then cook it in a tablespoon or two of oil and/or butter, in a sauté pan.

This recipe is for one fish. I served it with half a lobster tail and pasta, it was the perfect amount for the two of us. If the people you're feeding have larger appetites, cook one fish per person.

1 pan-dressed Rainbow Trout
1 Green Onion (green part only) - sliced
1 stalk Oregano
2 slices of Lemon - cut in half
Cooking String (optional)
Melted Butter (optional)

Rinse the fish and pat it dry. Lay it flat, skin side down.

Season the trout with s/p.

Place half of the onions and oregano on one side of the fish.

Top the herbs with your lemon slices.

Add the rest of the onions and oregano on top of the lemon slices.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Chipotle Black Bean Dip

I made this dip for a Christmas party. I served it with a store bought chips. Not supper creative, I know, but I was trying to keep it quick and simple.

1-2 T EVOO
1 small Onion - finely diced
6 Garlic Cloves - peeled
2-5 Chipotle Peppers
1 small spoonful of Adobo Sauce
1 can diced RO*TEL Tomatoes
Roasted Ground Cumin
4 cans Black Beans - drained

Heat EVOO on med-hi heat, in a pan that's large enough to hold all of the beans.

When the oil is hot, add the onions to the pan. I like to throw a little piece of onion into the pan as it's heating. When you hear the onion start to sizzle, that means the oil is hot.

If you have a garlic press, use it to press the garlic into the pan. If not, dice the garlic very finely and add it to the pan.

Remove your chipotle peppers from the can and place them on a cutting board. Use the tip of a pairing knife the cut each pepper open from the steam down to the tip. Then, use a fork or spoon to slide the seeds out. Discard the seeds and steams. Chop the peppers up and add them to the pan.

Add a small amount of the adobo sauce with the peppers.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Carrot Soup

I made this soup for a Thanksgiving starter, but I think it would be a great spring/summer soup as well. Adjust the amount of garlic, ginger, and juice to your taste. If you want a sweeter soup, add more apple juice (or you can also substitute orange juice). For a spicier soup, add more garlic and ginger.

2 T Butter
2 Celery Stocks - diced
1 Onion - diced
1/2 Orange Bell Pepper
Garlic - minced, diced, or crushed
Ginger - peeled and cut into small pieces
1 bunch Fresh Thyme
1 t Turmeric
8 Carrots - peeled and sliced
1 large Potato - peeled and diced
1 can Coconut Milk
Apple Juice
4 cups Vegetable Stock

Monday, December 6, 2010

Review - Gorkha Palace

Gorkha Palace
23 4th St. NE
Minneapolis, MN 55414

Tony and I have been wanting to try the new Gorkha Palace since it opened. We stopped by once, but it was a Monday and they were closed. We made it there on a weekend day for lunch, and they were open, but not very busy. With us, there were four groups of people.

The sever greeted us and took our drink order right away. Then she walked away, but still within eye sight. Another person came to our table and took our lunch order. After 10 - 12 minutes the server came back and told us that the other person was new and never turned in our order. So, we would have to wait another ten minutes before we got anything to eat. The server was nice enough, just not prompt. One man, after receiving his check and waiting for the server to return, had to go up to the bar to pay.

We ordered Chicken Mo Mo to start. Mo Mo is a steamed dumpling. Grokha Palace makess five types of Mo Mos including Yak, Mutton and Vegetable. They are served with a tomato chutney. They were pretty tasty, warm and well seasoned. The Mo Mo comes in a six or ten piece order and cost between six and twelve dollars. This appetizer was my favorite part of our meal.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Tuna Noodle Casserole

I made this for Tony, although I secretly wanted it too. It was fun making a classic without one of the usual ingredients, a can of cream of something soup.

1-2 T EVOO
1 small Onion - finely diced
1 Leek - sliced and cleaned
1/4 Red Bell Pepper
4 Cloves Garlic - diced
Hot Sauce (I used chili garlic sauce) - to taste
3 T Butter
1/4 cup Flour
3 cups Milk
White Pepper
Juice from 1/2 Lemon
Zest from Lemon
1 cup of Peas - steamed for one minute
small palm full of Dried Parsley
small palm full of Capers
2 6oz cans of Tuna - drained
10oz Dry Noodles or Pasta (I used Mafalada)
Pot of Boiling Water - heavily salted
about 1 1/2 cups of Cheese - separated (I used Sharpe Cheddar and Parmesan) - shredded or shaved
about a 1/4 cup of Panko Bread Crumbs

Preheat oven to 400°.

Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the onion, leeks, and peppers.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Potato Spinach Enchiladas

I made these enchiladas after it snowed. We didn't want to leave the house, so I used what was on hand. I like to keep a can or two of enchilada sauce in my pantry. It's great for all kinds of quick meals.

This recipe makes 6-8 enchiladas, depending on how full you stuff them.

1 Potato
1/4 Yellow Bell Pepper - diced
1/4 large Yellow Onion - diced
1-3 cloves Garlic - diced
1 Tomato - diced (peeled and seeded, optional)
Dried Oregano
Chili Powder
Fajita Seasoning
Vegetable Stock, Chicken Stock or Water
2 handfuls Spinach
Oil for frying*
Corn Tortillas
1 can Enchilada Sauce
Cheese - shredded or crumbled (I used Feta, Chipotle Gouda, and Parmesan)

Preheat oven to 375°

Clean the potato. Place it in a pot and cover it with cold water. Place a lid on the pot and bring the water up to a boil. Once the water is boiling, remove the lid. Cook the potato till it's fork tender (the fork should easily slide in and out of it).

As the potato boils, heat the EVOO in a small pan. Add the onion and pepper. Cook for two minutes. Stir garlic into the pan and cook for another 2 minutes.

Add the diced tomatoes to your pan. Stir.

Season the vegetables to taste.

Add a couple splashes of stock or water to the pan, carefully so that you don't splash yourself. Cover the sauce and cook it over med-low heat while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.