Monday, November 30, 2009

Halibut Veracruz

I made his recipe with red fish about 10 years ago and the fish was bad. I haven't made it since because it brings back such bad memories.  This fish is good so I think it will be a great meal. Chet Rawie caught the fish while in Alaska this summer, and shared his bounty with us.  Lucky us.  The recipe is from Guy Fieri from FoodNetwork

3 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup thinly sliced yellow onion
3 cloves garlic. thinly sliced
2 cups diced tomatoes
1 medium jalapena, diced
1 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoon butter
4 (8oz) hallibut fillets
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup spanish olives, cut into thin rounds, plus 2 tablespoons olive juice from bottle
2 medium avocadoes, peeled and sliced
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons freshly chopped cilantro leaves
Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Heat oil in medium skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, and cook until lightly colored, about 3 min. Add tomato, jalapeno and white wine. Cook until wine is reduced by 2/3, about 5-7 min. While sauce is reducing, heat butter in a separate skillet over medium heat. Season fish with kosher salt. When butter is melted, add halibut to the pan. Cook 2 min. flip over and then transfer pan to preheated oven and bake until cooked through, about 10 min. Remove sauce from heat when reduced and stir in olives and olive juice.

To serve, divide sauce equally among 4 dinner plates. Place halibut (first caramelized side up) in the center of each plate on top of the sauce. Place avocado slices on top of fish, sprinkle with lime juice and cilantro, as garnish.

Calico Chicken Soup

We love soup this time of year.  We make a different soup every week and eat on it for lunch. Now that the weather here in San Antonio is finally cold, I am really looking forward to this soup. This is one that I make over-and-over.  It is From the cookbook, "Is it Soup Yet" by Dot Vartan

3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 cup onions, minced
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 lb. boneless chicken breasts (skinned and cubed)
1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup carrots, diced
6 cups chicken stock
1/2 teaspoon ground thyme
1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 lb. green beans, cut into 1 inch pieces
1/2 cup fresh corn
1 cup zucchini, diced
1 small red pepper, minced
2 Tablespoons finely copped parsley
In a 4 quart stock pot, heat the olive oil. Add the onion and celery and saute' 5 min. on medium heat. Add the garlic and chicken and saute',stirring often for 10 min. Add the tomatoes, white pepper and salt. Bring to a boil, lower heat, cover and simmer for 20 min. Add green beans, corn, zucchini, and red pepper. Cover and cook for 10 min. Stir in the parsley. Serve

Fresh, colorful vegetbles gives this chicken soup a wonderful flavor and a festive look.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Prosciutto and Fontina Stuffed Chicken Breasts

This recipe comes from cooking light.

Cooking spray
1 ounce chopped proscuitto
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup (1 ounce) shredded fontina cheese
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
42 saltine cracker (about 1 sleeve)
1/2 cup all purpose flour
2 large egg whites or 1 large egg
1 Tablespoon dijon mustard
2 tablespoons canola oil
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add prosciutto to pan; saute' 2 minutes or until browned. Add rosemary and garlic to pan; saute' 1 min. Spoon prosciutto mixture into a bowl; cool to room temperature. Stir in fontina cheese; set aside.  Cut a horizontal slit through thickest portion of each chicken breast half to form a pocket. Stuff about 2 tablespoons prosciutto mixture into each pocket; secure with toothpicks that have been soaked in water to prevent burning. Sprinkle chicken evenly with pepper. Place crackers in food processor; process 2 min. or until finely round. Place cracter crumbs in a shallow dish. Place flour in another shallow dish. Combine egg whites and mustard in another shallow dish, stirring mixture with a whisk. Working with one chicken breast half at a time, dredge chicken in flour, shaking off excess. Dip chicken in flour, shaking off excess. Dip chicken into egg mixture, allowing excess to drip off. Coat chicken completely with cracker crumbs. Set aside. Repeat procedure with remaining chicken. Heat pan over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan, swirling to coat. Add chicken to pan; reduce heat to medium, and cook 10 min on each side or until browned and done. Turn often to prevent burning.

Milano's Chicken with Mustard Sauce

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
6 Tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup chopped shallots
8 ounces fresh mushrooms, chopped
1 pint heavy cream
3 Tablespoons whole grain Dijon mustard
Salt and Pepper to taste
Wash chicken breasts and pat dry with a paper towel. If desired, tenderize and flatten the breasts to a uniform thickness to allow them to cook evenly by placing them between two sheets of plastic wrap and pounding with a mallet until evenly flattened. I did not do this because mine were all the same size.
Heat 3 Tablespoons of the olive oil over medium-high heat in a large saute' pan. Maintain the heat at a fast sizzle, but do not let it smoke. Saute' the breasts until browned on one side, about 3-4 minutes. Turn with tongs and cook on the other side until meat feels firm when pressed and juices begin to emerge around the edges, about 3-4 min. more. (Done at 160 degrees). Remove the breasts to a warm platter and keep warm in oven set at 200 degrees. Add the remaining oil to the pan, allow it to heat, then add the shallots and mushrooms and saute' for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently. Mix the heavy cream and mustard together, then add to the pan. Reduce heat slightly and cook, stirring and scraping up the congealed browned bits with a wooden spoon, until the sauce has reduced about two thirds and thickened to desired consistency. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve the chicken breasts immediately on warm plates, topped with the mushroom cream sauce.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Garden-Fresh Tomato-Basil Soup

I usually double this recipe because we love it so much and we never get tired of it.  I make it often because it is easy to make and oh so good.
3 Tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups chicken stock
3 pounds medium roma tomatoes (9-10) peeled, seeded, and chopped. To peel the tomatoes, I put them in a large pot of boiling water and let them boil for about 45 seconds (just until they split) It makes them easier to peel.
3 sprigs parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon sugar\
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh thyme, or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil, or 1 teapoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1 bay leaf
2-3 drops tabasco sauce
freshly ground pepper to taste
chiffonade of fresh basil leaves for top
1 can of  tomato sauce if the tomatoes are not very ripe and flavorful
In a soup pot over medium heat, melt butter. Add onion and garlic and saute' until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in flour and blend until bubbly. Add stock and stir until slightly thickened, 1-2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients, except toppings. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, covered, for 30 minutes. Remove bay leafe and discard. Transfer in batches to a food processor or blender and puree'. Return to pot to reheat. I usually add 1 cup of whipping cream, half and half or whole milk but it is not called for in the recipe.  Ladle into bowls and top with a dollop of sour cream, if you didn't add whipping cream and a few strips of chiffonade basil.
When I made this soup again in Feb., I noticed that it did not have the tomato flavor I was looking for. I think the tomatoes were not as flavorful and a little unripe. I added a can of tomato sauce and it helped.