Sunday, June 26, 2016

Roast Ratatouille

I have several really good ratatouille recipes on this blog but I have to tell you that the one I tried tonight really takes the cake! I saw this online and tweaked it a bit and it was really delicious. For those of you who have made ratatouille you are familiar with the fact that it's a bit like a summer vegetable stew. Well, that changes entirely when you roast the vegetables instead of cooking on the stove top. You really appreciate the flavor of each and every vegetable in its own right.  There are many variations and changes you could make given what you might have on hand. Here's what I did and it was yummy!

1 eggplant, cut in large chunks
1 zucchini, cut in 1/2 inch rounds
1 summer squash, cut in 1/2 inch rounds
1 pkg mushrooms, cut in halves
1 large onion, cut in 12 wedges
1 pkg cherry tomatoes
10 garlic cloves peeled
1 red pepper in slices
salt and pepper
dried rosemary
dried thyme
olive oil
balsamic vinegar
fresh basil

On two parchment lined baking sheets distribute the veggies. Season with salt and pepper, rosemary and thyme. Roast at 400 for at least an hour, stirring every 20 minutes. When ready to serve, put veggies in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar--sprinkle with fresh chopped basil and mix together. Yum!

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Mole Potato Pie

A couple weeks ago I made a batch of mole sauce and had frozen 1/2 of it. Yesterday I defrosted it and looked around in the fridge and pantry and came up with this pretty tasty meatless meal. I garnished each serving with some yogurt, chopped fresh tomato and avocado.

10 corn tortillas
8 medium yukon gold potatoes, boiled for 20 minutes and chopped
mole sauce (see earlier post for that!)
Queso fresco (Mexican cheese)
chopped pickled jalapenos

Preheat oven to 350

In large deep pie dish, spread a little of the mole then layer 3 tortillas, layer chopped potatoes and some jalapeno, then sauce--you should be able to do 3 layers smooshing each layer down a bit with a spatula. Bake for 30 minutes and then allow to cool for easier cutting about 20 minutes.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Rainbow Power Salad

This salad is so pretty and so good--make it!!

1 bunch kale chopped
1 red pepper, diced
1 cup broccoli, chopped
2 carrots cut in thin match sticks
1 cup red cabbage sliced
1 can chick peas, rinsed and drained
3/4 cup peanuts, chopped

4 T smooth peanut butter
Juice of one lime
pinch garlic powder
2 T olive oil
1/2 t salt
1/2 t pepper
1 T Dijon mustard
6 T water

Blend in small processor.

Toss salad and add a couple T dressing per serving and top with chopped peanuts--delish!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Orange Julius Ice Cream!

Oh, how I used to love the Orange Julius at our indoor mall. Maybe I loved it because it was a throwback to my childhood. I adored those orange push up ice cream/sherbet things I'd get from the ice cream truck that plied its way through our neighborhood. The Orange Julius smoothie had that same sweet tang. I used to load my toddler son up in his umbrella stroller and we'd make the rounds at the mall and if all had gone well then the final stop was ORANGE JULIUS! You can imagine I was intrigued when I saw a recipe for a low sugar "ice cream" that might remind someone of an Orange Julius! Had to try it and really glad I did. So, to be honest, it's not really like an Orange Julius but it was a mighty tasty, pretty healthful cold sweet treat. Will definitely be making a second batch!

2 medium oranges, peeled and segmented
1 can unsweetened coconut milk (don't use low fat)
4 T honey or maple syrup
1 t vanilla
chocolate chips

Place orange segments on cookie sheet and freeze

In blender, add half the oranges and the coconut milk and blend well. Add the rest of the oranges, sweetener, and vanilla and blend well. Pour mixture into loaf pan, cover and freeze.

To serve, take out of freezer and let sit to soften a bit then scoop out and garnish with chocolate chips.
Pretty yum!

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Roast Eggplant Melange

Eggplant is very yummy roasted but it doesn't have a lot of eye appeal. If you combine it with a few other veggies it looks more appetizing.

1 eggplant, peeled and cut in chunks
1 onion, cut in large pieces
1 red pepper, cut in large pieces
1 yellow squash cut in chunks
2 garlic cloves, minced
salt and pepper

Fresh basil

Italian salad dressing

Mix all the veggies, garlic, salt and pepper in a big zip lock bag. Pour on some dressing and let the mixture sit on counter for an hour or so. Bake at 420 for 45 minutes, stirring several times. Stir in chopped fresh basil before serving.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Moraccan Chicken

Here's a yummy chicken dish that requires a little bit of work up front but then at the end you can pop it in the oven and go relax for 30-45 minutes. I recommend a good book and a large glass of wine.

pkg of boneless thigh
pkg of drumsticks

Spice blend:
2 t ground coriander
1 T ground cumin
1 t paprika
1 t tumeric
1/2 t cayenne
1/4  t cinnamon
1/4 t crushed red pepper
1/2 t salt

olive oil
1 large onion chopped
4 garlic cloves minced
1 cup chicken broth
1 can diced tomatoes
1 lemon, juiced and 1/2 sliced

Preheat oven to 420

Mix the spices and rub both sides of each chicken piece.

Heat 2 T oil in large oven proof skillet, brown the chicken pieces 3 minutes per side. Set aside.

In same skillet, heat 1 T oil and add onion and cook for 2  minutes, add the garlic and stir. Add the broth, lemon juice and tomatoes--stir and let simmer for a couple minutes. Nestle the chicken back into the pan with the lemon slices and put into oven.

Bake 30 to 45 minutes.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Mushroom Kale Ricotta Pie

The other day I made eggplant parmesan and needed 3 egg whites for the recipe. Consequently, I had these three beautiful egg yolks staring at me from their tupperware enclosure every time I opened the fridge. What to do with the yolks? No yolk! That brings us to this dish which called for 4 eggs and I decided that 3 yolks and 2 eggs would work just fine.

 4 eggs (or 3 yolks and two eggs)
1 bunch of Lacinato kale, de stemmed and chopped into small pieces
1 pkg shitake mushrooms, stemmed and chopped in large pieces
1 bunch of scallions white and green parts chopped
olive oil
pinch of nutmeg
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup shredded Parmesan
salt and peppe
1/2 T thyme
cooking spray

Preheat oven to 400. Spray a springform pan well with cooking spray.

Heat some olive oil in large sauté pan and add scallions, cooking for a couple minutes. Add the mushrooms and continue cooking for another 5 to 7 minutes. Add the kale and toss until wilted-one to two minutes. Set aside.

In large bowl, whisk the eggs, add the spices, the ricotta, and 1/2 cup of the Parmesan. Stir well. Add the vegetable mixture and combine. Pour into pan. Top with the other 1/2 cup Parmesan and drizzle with a little olive oil.

Bake 40 minutes--cool ten minutes, slice and serve.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Salmon Salad

As I mentioned earlier I bought a huge piece of salmon at Costco and still had leftovers after eating it two nights in a row. I knew that I needed to do something different with the end of the salmon. I decided to do a take on tuna salad but with salmon and a few surprises. It turned out GREAT! Now, I definitely will PLAN to have leftover salmon so that I can make this salad!

Leftover salmon
1/2 cup cubed cucumber
1/4 sweet onion minced
juice of one lime
some garlic powder
some fresh chopped basil
2 T mayo
a few shakes of hot sauce like Frank's Red Hot

Mix it all together and eat it up!

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Salmon Baked with Artichokes

I was at Costco yesterday and the very large salmon in the refrigerator section was calling out to me. It looked so good but it was a A LOT of salmon for two people. So, of course I brought it home and we enjoyed last night and TONIGHT and still have leftovers. However, having fresh baked salmon in the fridge for leftovers is not really a bad problem to have. This recipe is super easy.

1 piece of salmon (I had a 2 lb. piece but of course you could scale this back!)
Juice from two lemons
1 bag Trader Joe artichoke hearts, thawed
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 T olive oil
2 T white wine vinegar

Put the salmon in baking dish, salt and pepper fish well, sprinkle artichokes over the fish. Mix the rest of the ingredients in small bowl and pour over fish. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375. Uncover, and bake for about 25 minutes (depends on how think our salmon is).

Really tasty over some brown rice.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Orecchiette with Shrimp and Arugula

Orecchiette is a funny little pasta--meaning "little ears" in Italian. I used frozen, cooked shrimp which I thawed and removed the tails. This is really easy especially if you get the chopping done early.

1/2 bag of orecchiette
16 large cooked shrimp, thawed, tails removed
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 onion, diced small
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 large tomato diced
1 pkg arugula
salt and pepper
crushed red pepper

While orecchiette is cooking, in large skillet sauté onion in some olive oil, add the garlic and tomato, salt, pepper and crushed red pepper. Cook and stir--adding the wine and the broth and cook down a bit reducing the liquid. When pasta is done, drain. Add the cooked shrimp to the liquid and stir to coat, then add the pasta and arugula and mix well. Serve with a hunk of crusty bread. Bon Appétit!

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Basil Almond Cod

I know some people who love fish but they don't cook it much at home. Here's a really easy cod dish for two.

1 pkg of Trader Joe Cod, salt and pepper
olive oil
4 T butter
juice of one lemon
salt and pepper
fresh basil
1/2 cup slivered almonds

In dry skillet, toast the almonds. Set aside. To same skillet, add a couple T of olive oil and butter. Cook the seasoned cod skin side up for about 4 minutes. Flip and cook for another 3 minutes Or more if fish is very thick. Remove to warm platter and add some more butter to pan. Add lemon juice and stir. Serve fish with sauce drizzled over and almonds and basil. Pretty yummy!

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Sheet Pan Chicken

This recipe is from Melissa Clark of the NYT. I always love everything she makes. This dish is scrumptious. I actually had to make a few changes to the original recipe-some planned, some not. The original recipe called for both leeks and arugula to be used and I had neither. But I did have shallots and spinach so here we go!

4 boneless chicken thighs
1 1/2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, sliced in 1/2 inch slices
2 T Sirracha sauce
salt and pepper
3 T olive oil

2 shallots, sliced
lemon zest from 1/2 lemon
1 T olive oil
pinch of salt

1/2 cup plain yogurt
4 roasted garlic cloves ( or 2 t minced fresh garlic)

fresh spinach
fresh dill
lemon juice

Put chicken and and potatoes in large bowl. Salt and pepper everything. In small bowl, mix Siraccha, olive oil and some salt and pepper. Pour over chicken and potatoes and mix well. Cover bowl and let stand for 30 minutes.

In small bowl, mix shallots, zest pinch of salt and olive oil

Preheat oven to 425

On large sheet pan covered with parchment, spread out chicken and potatoes. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and stir and flip potatoes and sprinkle the shallot mixture over all. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes more.

While chicken is baking, mix the garlic with the yogurt. Set aside.

When chicken is done, sprinkle with fresh dill and dollops of yogurt. I served over fresh spinach. Before serving, drizzle a tiny bit of olive oil over each serving and fresh lemon juice.