Thursday, January 28, 2010

Chicken with 40 cloves of Garlic

When we went to the grocery store to buy the chicken, the one that was pre-cut was twice the price of the whole chicken so we decided to buy the whole chicken. When it came time to make dinner, Jud offered to cut-up the chicken.  I promised not to laugh at him. I asked his permission to tell the story of his chicken.  I have never in my life seen a chicken with these parts.  Some of the pieces, like the wings and legs, were recognizable, but the others (not so much). We had a good laugh, but I assure you it did not affect the taste.  I cut the garlic in 1/2 since I only wanted to do one chicken. The other ingredients, I kept the same.
Printable Recipe:

3 whole heads of garlic, about 40 cloves
2 (3 1/2 pound) chickens, cut into eighths
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 Tablespoons cognac, divided
1 1/2 cups dry white wine
1 Tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 Tablespoons heavy cream
Separate the cloves of garlic and drop them into a pot of boiling water for 1 minute. Drain the garlic and peel. Set aside. 
Dry the chicken parts with paper towels. Season liberally with salt and pepper on both sides. Heat the butter and oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. In batches, saute the chicken in the fat, skin side down first, until nicely browned, about 3-5 minutes on each side. Turn with tongs or a spatula; you don't want to pierce the skin with a fork. If the fat is burning, turn the heat to medium. When a batch is done, transfer it to a plate and continue to saute all the chicken in batches. Remove the last chicken to the plate and add all of the garlic to the pot. Lower the heat and saute for 5-10 minutes, turning often, until evenly browned. Add 2 Tablespoons of the cognac and the wine, return to a boil, and scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Return the chicken to the pot with the juices and sprinkle with the thyme leaves. Cover and simmer over the lowest heat for about 30 minutes, until all the chicken is done.
Remove chicken to a platter and cover with alluminum foil to keep warm. In small bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup of the sauce and the flour and then whisk it back into the sauce in the pot. Raise the heat, add the remaining tablespoon of cognac and the cream. Boil for 3 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour sauce and garlic over the chicken. I served this with the wild rice pilaf.

Wild Rice Pilaf

This recipe comes from Barefoot Contessa - Family Style Cookbook.

3 Tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
Kosher salt
2 cups pure wild rice
1/4 cup finely chopped scallions, white and green parts (2 scallions)
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
Melt 2 Tablespoons of the butter in a medium saucepan, add the onion, and cook over low heat for 5-10 minutes, until translucent. Add 5 cups of water, 2 teaspoons of salt, and the wild rice. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to very low, and simmer, covered, for 50 - 60 minutes, until the rice is tender. Drain well.
Place the drained rice in a bowl, add the remaining tablespoon of butter, the scallions, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and the pepper. Taste for seasonings and serve hot.  I used some homemade chicken stock that I had. Thought it would add more flavor.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Tequila Lime Chicken

The recipe calls for you to marinade overnight. I am notorious for not looking at the recipe until it is too late to marinade that long.  So I just marinaded this for 2 1/2 hours. I wrote at the top of the recipe to marinade overnight so next time I'll try it the way it is suppose to be.  From Barefoot Contessa's Family Style Cookbook.
1/2 cup gold tequila
1 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (5-6 limes)
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (2 oranges)
1 Tablespoon chili powder
1 Tablespoon minced fresh garlic (3 cloves)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 whole (6 split) boneless chicken breasts, skin on (I used two because that is what I needed for Jud and me)
Combine the tequila, lime juice, orange juice, chili powder, jalapeno pepper, garlic, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Add the chicken breasts. Refrigerate overnight.
Heat a grill with coals and brush the rack with oil to prevent the chicken from sticking. Remove the chicken breasts from the marinade, sprinkle well with salt and pepper, and grill them skin-side down for about 5 min, until nicely browned. Turn the chicken and cook for another 10 minutes, until just cooked through. Remove from the grill to a plate. Cover tightly and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Pumpkin Bread

I used to make this recipe in 1-pound coffee cans.  Now we buy our coffee in a sack so I make 3 loaves in regular loaf pans.  It is just as good, but I miss the round shape that the coffee can provided.
3 1/3 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
3 cups sugar
1--15 oz. can of pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling
2/3 cup water
1 cup canola oil
Sift dry ingredients together. Beat 4 eggs and 1 can of pumpkin, 2/3 cup water, and 1 cup of oil. Add dry ingredients and beat with an electric mixer. Bake in 3- 1-pound coffee cans (filling 1/2 full). Bake  350 degrees - 1 hour. Cool and tap on can to remove bread.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Pork Chops with Cranberry

This could go in the crockpot in the morning before you leave for work and have it smelling the house with frangrant smells of cranberries and pork chops by the time you get home.  If doing it in a crockpot use the same method, but layer it in the crockpot and turn it on low before you leave for work or errands.  From the blog,

4 porkchops - boneless ( I used little breakfast chops, but the thicker ones work for this recipe. I cut the cooking time since mine were so thin).
2/3 bag of cranberries (fresh or frozen)
3/4 cup of sugar ( I used about 1/4 cup, but it wasn't enough, so we added a little at the table) I think 1/3 - 1/2 cup would be plenty.
1 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
salt and pepper
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Season chops with salt and pepper. Spray the casserole dish with cooking spray and then place 1/3 bag of cranberries on the bottom of the dish. Sprinkle with 1/2 of the sugar you plan to use. Sprinkle 1/4  teaspoon thyme on top. Place two more chops on top of the cranberry mixture. Finish with remaining 1/3 bag of cranberries, sugar, and thyme. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 1 1/2 hours. (Mine were extra thin so I only cooked mine for 45-50 minutes. Great dish!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Pecan Chicken

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
3 teaspoons chicken bouillon
1/4 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon poultry seasoning
2 cups milk
1 Tablespoon lemon or lime juice
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped pecans
2 cups cubed cooked chicken
Hot toast, biscuits or Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry shells, for serving. Whole pecans, for garnish (optional
Melt butter and mix in bouillon. Blend in flour and poultry seasoning. Gradually add milk and lemon juice; cook over medium heat, strring constantly, until thickened. Stir in celery, chopped pecans, and chicken. Cook 2-3 minutes. Serve over hot toast, biscuits or pepperidge farm puff pastry shells and garnish with whole pecans, if desired.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Saffron Risotto w/ Butternut Squash

I made this dish tonight and cut all the ingredients in 1/2.  Jud and I both really enjoyed it. I opened a can of spinach, and cut up some baked chicken from the grocery store. and called it dinner.  I could have eaten the Risotto as my main dish. Saffron is pretty expensive. We bought ours several years ago in a little spice store in Seattle. I couldn't believe it was fairly cheep so I bought some. It was a Spanish saffron. That might be why it was cheaper. I personally think you could leave it out and you wouldn't miss much. Let me know.  The recipe comes from Barefoot Contessa - Family Style Cookbook.
1 butternut squash ( I used the other 1/2 several nights ago)
2 Tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
6 cups chicken stock, preferable homemade
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter
2 ounces pancetta, diced
1/2 cup minced shallots
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 teaspoon saffron threads
 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Prehead oven to 400 degrees.  Peel the butternut squash, remove the seeds, and cut it into 3/4 inch cubes. You should have about 6 cups. I only had about 2 cups and it was plenty. Place the squash on a sheet pan and toss it with the olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Roast for 25-30 min. tossing once, until tender. Set aside.
Meanwhile heat the chicken stock in a small covered saucepan. Leave it on low heat to simmer.
In a heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter and saute' the pancetta and shallots on medium-low heat for 10 minutes, until the shallots are translucent but not browned. Add the rice and stir to coat the grains with butter. Add the wine and cook for 2 minutes. Add 2 full ladles of stock to the rice plus the saffron, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Stir, and simmer until the stock is absorbed, 5-10 minutes. Continue to add the stock, 2 ladles at a time, stirring every few minutes. Each time, cook until the mixture seems a little dry, then add more stock. Continue until the rice is cooked through, but still al dente, about 30 minutes total. Off the heat, add the roasted squash cubes and Parmesan cheese. Mix well and serve.
It is advised that the correct heat is important in making risotto. It sould be "lively", too high heat and the grains don't cook evenly, and too low heat will result in a gluey mess. It should cook in 30 min. I cooked mine on 1 notch from the medium marker toward the low. It was perfect. We really enjoyed it.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Turkey and Artichoke Stuffed Shells with Arrabbiata Sauce

Make a big salad and you have a meal. Giada De Laurentiis - FoodNetwork
1 (12 oz.) box jumbo pasta shells
3 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 large onion (1 cup)
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 pound ground turkey
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus 1/2 teaspoon
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper, plus 14 teaspoon
1 (8-10 0unce) package frozen artichokes, thawed and coarsely chopped
1 (15 ounce) container of rocotta cheese
3/4 cup grated parmesan
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup choppped fresh basil leaves
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
5 cups Arrabbiata Sauce, recipe follows (or any marinara sauce
1 1/2 cups grated mozzarella (about 5 ounces)
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and partially cook until tender, but still very firm to the bite, strring occasionally, about 4-5 min. Drain pasta.  Meanwhile, in a large heavy skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and the garlic and cook until the onions are soft and starting to brown, about 3 minutes. Add the ground turkey, 1/2 teapoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the meat is no longer pink. Add the artichoke hearts and stir to combine. Remove from heat and lt cool slightly. 
In a large bowl, combine the cooled turkey mixture with the ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, eggs, basil, parsley, and the remaining salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
To stuff the shells, cover the bottom of a 9" X 13" baking dish with 1 cup of the arrabbiata sauce. Take a shell in the palm of your hand and stuff it with a large spoonful of turkey mixture. Place the stuffed shell in the baking dish. Continue filling the shells until the baking dish is full. Drizzle the remaining Arrabbiata sauce over the shells, top with the grated mozzarella cheese. To bak, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Bake until the shells are warmed through and the cheese is beginning to brown, about 60 minutes.
Arrabbiata Sauce:
2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
6 oz pancetta, coarsely chopped
2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
2 garlic cloves, minced
5 cups marinara sauce
Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add pancetta and saute until golden brown ( 5 min) Add garlic and saute until tender ( 1 min) Add marinara sauce and red pepper flakes and bring to a simmer. Allow to cool until ready to use.
Sometimes, I just use marinara sauce in a can and skip the pancetta, red pepper flakes, and garlic.

Penne With Five Cheeses

We had this with some panco coated fish from Costco that is ready in about 17 min. from freezer to plate.  From Ina Garten's Cooking Family Style
kosher salt
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup crushed tomatoes in thick tomato puree
1/2 cup pecorino romano (1 1/2 oz) - grated
1/2 cup shredded fontina (1 1/2 oz.)
1/4 cup crumbled gorgonzola (1 1/2 oz.)
2 Tablespoons ricotta cheese
1/4 pound fresh mozarella, sliced
6 fresh basil leaves, chopped
1 pound penne rigate pasta
4 Tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees.
Bring 5 quarts of salted water to a boil in a stockpot. Combine all the ingredients except the penne and butter in a large mixing bowl. Mix well. Drop the penne into the boiling water and parboil for 4 min. Drain well in a colander and add to the ingredients in the mixing bowl, tossing to combine. Divide the pasta mixture among 6 shallow ceramic gratin dishes (1 1/2 - 2 cup capacity) Dot with the butter and bake until bubbly and brown on top, 7-10 minutes.
I did not divide into gratin dishes. I just made it in a 4 quart casserole dish.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Sagaponack Corn Pudding

I love this corn pudding and make it often.  It is a winner! It is easily cut in 1/2 which I do often. It still makes enough for Jud and me to have 2-3 meals. As you can see, I served pea salad and pork tenderloin. I think the grilled pork tenderloin is under Jud's pork tenderloin. I may never make another corn pudding.  From Barefoot Contessa -  Family Style Cookbook

Printable Recipe:

1/2 pound (1 stick) unsalted butter
5 cups of fresh corn kernels cut off the cob (6-8 ears)  I used frozen corn this time
1 cup chopped yellow onion (1 onion)
4 extra-large eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup half-and-half
1/2 cup yellow corn meal
1 cup ficotta cheese
3 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 Tablespoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup (6 oz) grated extra-sharp Cheddar, plus extra to sprinkle on top
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease the inside of an 8-13 cup baking dish.  Melt the butter in a large skillet. Saute' the corn and onions over medium-high heat for 4 minutes. Cool slightly.  Whisk together the eggs, milk, and half-and-half in a large bowl. Slowly whisk in the cornmeal and then the ricotta. Add the basil, sugar, salt, and pepper. Add the cooked corn mixture and grated Cheddar, and then pour into the baking dish. Sprinkle the top with more grated cheddar cheese.  Place the dish in a larger pan and fill the pan 1/2 up the sides of the dish with hot tap water. Bake the pudding for 40-45 minutes, until the top begins to brown and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve warm.  This time I had some fennel left over from another dish that I had made last week. I didn't want to waste it so I used that instead of onion. It was delicious.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Apple and Artichoke Chicken Breasts

2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil            1 can - low-fat chicken broth
4 boneless chicken breasts                        2 apples, peeled and sliced
1 medium onion, sliced                              1 cup dry white wine
1 garlic clove, minced                                1 Tablespoon corn starch
4 oz - fresh mushrooms, sliced                   2 Tablespoons cold water
1-14 oz can artichoke hearts                      noodles- cooked and drained
Heat oil over medium high heat. Add chicken breasts and cook, turning once. Cook 8-10 minutes per side. Add onion, garlic, and mushrooms. Saute' 5 minutes. Add artichoke hearts, chicken broth, apples, and wine.
Simmer 10 minutes. Add cornstarch to cold water and mix thoroughly. Add to skillet. Simmer until sauce thickens. Serve over noodles.

Upside-Down Fudge-Almond Tart

I made this recipe last night, and I thought the almonds would toast while cooking and was afraid to toast them before.  Mistake.  You should toast the almonds (like the recipe says) before pouring in the cake.  Sometimes, I think I am smarter than those who wrote the recipe.  You would think I would learn.
Cooking spray                                                  1 cup coarsely chopped almonds, toasted
4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped                 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter
2.25 oz all purpose four (1/2 cup)                      3 Tablespoons sifted dutch process cocoa
1/4 teaspoon salt                                               2 large eggs
6 Tablespoons sugar                                          2 T. golden cane syrup (I used dark Karo)
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set oven rack to lowest third of oven. Doat a 9" round tart pan with cooking spray.  Sprinkle toasted almonds in the pan. Combine chocolate and butter in top of a double boiler. Cook over simmering water until chocolate melts, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; set aside.  Combine flour, dutch process cocoa, and salt in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Place eggs in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed 2 minutes or until thick and pale yellow. Gradually add sugar, 1 Tablespoon at a time, beating at medium speed 2 minutes  or until sugar dissolves. Add golden cane syrup and vanilla; beat on low speed 1 min or until blended. Addchocolate mixture a little at a time; beat 1 minute. Add flour mixture, and beat on low speed just until combined.  Pour batter over nuts into the prepared pan, spreading evenly. Bake in lower third of oven at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs. Cool tart in pan 20 minutes on wire rack. Invert tart onto serving platter.  I would suggest taking it out after 20 min. and let it set for the 20 min.  After 20 min. I didn't think it was done enough, but it continues to cook, and I think it was a little dry.  After adding cool whip, it was just fine.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Chicken with Lemon-Caper Sauce

This is a fairly quick meal, as it only takes about 8 min. to brown the chicken and not much longer to make the lemon-caper sauce. It is a meal I would not hesitate to make for company. I served rice as my side dish, but I added about 1 Tablespoon olive oil into a pan and cooked about 1 Tablespoon of shallot. Then I added about 1 teaspoon minced garlic to the pan. Cook until soft and then add rice (however much you need for your family) I used 1/2 cup rice. Let this cook in the pan for about 2-3 min. and then add twice as much beef stock as you used of rice. Cover and cook until all the liquid has dissolved. Then throw in a handful of english peas and turn off the heat. Cover again until ready to serve.  Recipe comes from

1/4 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 (6oz) skinless, boneless chicken breasts                        
1/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut in pieces
2 Tablespoons olive oil                
2 lemon wedges
Mix together salt and flour in a small dish or plastic bag, then coat chicken and shake off excess flour. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Brown chicken in hot oil until both sides are golden-brown, and the inside has turned white and firm, 3-4 minutes per side.  Remove the chicken, and set aside in a warm place. Pour white wine into the skillet, and allow to boil as you dissolve the cooked bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the lemon juice, and allow to come to a boil, cook for a few minutes until reduced by half.
Sprinkle the cubed butter into the boiling sauce. Swirl and shake the pan vigorously to dissolve the butter, thus thickening the sauce. The butter must never come to a rest, or the sauce will separate and become oily. Once the butter has completely incorporated, remove from heat and stir in capers. To serve, pour lemon-caper sauce over the chicken, and serve with a wedge of lemon.  I had some lemon-caper sauce left over last time I made this and I froze it for several months.  Tonight, I took it out of the freezer and allowed to thaw for several hours. When I was ready to serve, I placed the sauce in a sauce pan and heated over medium-low heat. It was just as good this time.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Chicken Kiev

 This recipe comes from a cookbook "Talk About Good."  This is my second one.  I wore the first one out.
8 boneless chicken breasts
2 eggs
bread crumbs
salt and pepper
1 can sliced mushrooms
2 cups sour cream
2-3 Tablespoons scallions
3/4 lb shrimp ( boiled, but still firm)
butter and olive oil
Flatten chicken breasts by pounding between two sheets of wax paper.  Dust chicken breasts with paprika. Place a pat of butter in the middle of each chicken breast and roll, securing with a toothpick. Season outside with salt and pepper. Dip in egg mixture and then rll in bread crumbs twice.  I used panko bread crumbs, and then sprinkled fine bread crumbs on all sides.  The reipe says to cook in butter, but I used 1/2 butter and 1/2 extra virgin olive oil so the butter wouldn't burn. Brown chicken on all sides. Remove to casserole dish.  In the same pan that you browned the chicken, saute' mushrooms and scallions for about 1 min. Add sour cream. Cook 3 min. and pour over chicken breasts. Bake 325 degrees -45 min. Just before serving, snip shrimp and saute in 1 Tablespoon butter.Sprnkle over chicken as a garnish after you plate the chicken.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Lemon Curd

One of our church members gave us a wonderful pound cake.  Every year, I freeze it until all the Christmas cookies and fudge are gone and then I bring it out to enjoy.  We had several pieces with strawberries and whipped cream, and several pieces just plain.  I decided to make some lemon curd to go over the top for the rest to give a little variety.  This is Alton Brown's recipe from Food Network.
5 egg yolks
1 cup sugar
4 lemons zested and juiced (to = 1/3 cup)
1 stick butter
Add about an 1 1/2 inches of water to the bottom of a double boiler. Bring water to a simmer over medium-high heat. Meanwhile, combine egg yolk and sugar in the top of the double boiler off the heat.  Whisk about 1 minute. Measure lemon juice and zest to get 1/3 cup.  Add it to the egg yolk mixture. Whisk to combine.  When the water reaches a simmer, reduce heat and place the mixture over the indirect heat of the double boiler.  Wisk for about 8 minutes or until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and add butter a piece at a time, allowing each piece to melt before adding the next piece. Place the curd in a clean bowl and cover by laying plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd. Refrigerate up to two weeks.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Fabulous Homemade Bread

My aunt Sherry sent me two recipes for homemade bread and I use them both. I make mine my hand.  We went to a chili-cookoff tonight that the college kids were having. I made bread to go with the chili.
1/2 cup warm water
3 (.25 oz) pkg dry yeast
1/4 cup bread flour ( I just use unbleached flour)
1 Tablespoon white sugar
2 cups quick-cooking oats (If you have old-fashioned, just put it in the blender and make it like flour)
2 cups whole wheat flour
4 1/2 cups warm water
1 Tablespoon + 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2/3 cup brown sugar (white sugar works fine, if you don't have brown sugar)
2/3 cup vegetable oil
10 cups bread flour
1. In the mixing bowl of an electric mixedr, stir together 1/2 cup warm water, 1 Tablespoon sugar, 1/4 cup bread flour, and yeast. Let grown for about 5 minutes. It will bubble almost immediately.
2. Measure oats, 4 1/2 cups warm water, whole wheat flour, salt, 2/3 cup brown sugar, and 2/3 cup oil intothe mixing bowl. Mix on low speed with a dough hook for 1-2 minutes. Increase speed slightly, and begin adding bread flour 1/2 - 1 cup at a time until dough pulls away from sides of bowl. Humidity determines how much flour you need before the bread pulls away from the edge of the bowl. It is normal for the dough to be sticky.
3. Place dough in an oiled bowl, and turn to coat the surface. Cover with a damp cloth. Let rise in a warm spot for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
4. Divide dough into 6 pieces. Shape loaves, and place in greased 8 X 4 inch pans. Let rise until dough is 1 inch above rim of pans, usually 1 hour.
5. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 min. or until tops are browned. Let cool in pans for 10 minutes, and then turn out onto wire racks to cool completely.