Monday, October 3, 2016


D and I went to the local Hatch Chile Festival this past weekend. I found this recipe and D made it. It needs a little tweaking but overall was good.

We'll have again.


Photo by ALB

Adapted from Lisa Fain, Homesick Texan
Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients for the green chile salsa:
12 fresh Hatch or Anaheim green chiles
2 jalapeño chiles
1/2 pound ground beef, preferably coarsely ground (used 1 lb)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (use 1 tsp)
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
2 ripe plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups water
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin (use 1 tsp)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano (use 1 tsp)

Ingredients for the Frito pies:
4 cups Fritos (used 4oz)
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Monterrey Jack or Muenster (used 1/2 C)
1/4 cup diced onions
1 jalapeño, sliced
1/2 cup sour cream, for serving (Used 1/4 Cup)

If using fresh green chiles, roast the Hatch and jalapeño chiles under the broiler until blackened, about 5 minutes per side. Place the chiles in a paper sack or plastic food-storage bag, close it tight and let the chiles steam for 20 minutes. After the chiles have steamed, remove from the bag and rub off the skin. Remove the stems and seeds from both the chiles and finely chop.

In a Dutch oven on medium-low heat, add the ground beef, salt, and pepper. While occasionally stirring, cook until the beef has browned, about 10 minutes. Add the onions and tomatoes, and while occasionally stirring continue to cook until the onions have softened and the tomatoes are beginning to release some juices, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 more seconds. Stir in the diced chiles, water, salt, cumin, and oregano, turn the heat down to low, then while occasionally stirring cook uncovered for 30 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings (I usually add another 1/2 teaspoon of salt).

To assemble the green chile Frito pies, evenly divide the Fritos among 4 to 8 bowls, then top with the green chile salsa, cheese, onion, and sliced jalapeños. Serve with sour cream on the side.

Notes: If you don’t have access to fresh green chiles, you may substitute 16 ounces canned green chiles or 2 cups frozen green chiles, thawed. Drain and rinse them before using and be careful when adding salt since they may already have been salted, too.

Vietnamese Pork Salad

We've had this twice.  It is very good.  Lots of flavor, and the dressing has a good heat in it.

Vietnamese Pork Salad

Photo by ALB

Think of this impressive salad as a deconstructed version of a spring roll.

Yield: Serves 6 (serving size: about 1 1/2 cups) (we got 4 servings)

2 ounces uncooked rice vermicelli noodles
12 ounces ground pork (used 1 lb lean)
7 tablespoons fresh lime juice, divided
2 1/2 tablespoons sugar, divided
4 teaspoons fish sauce, divided
1 tablespoon peanut oil
2 tablespoons chopped unsalted peanuts
2 tablespoons sliced green onions
2 teaspoons Sriracha
4 cups chopped romaine lettuce
1 cup diagonally cut seeded cucumber
1 cup diagonally cut carrot
1/2 cup diagonally cut yellow squash
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint leaves (have used mint and have subbed basil)

1. Cook rice vermicelli according to package directions; drain and rinse with cold water. Drain.

2. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork to pan; cook 8 minutes, stirring to crumble. Combine 1 tablespoon juice, 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar, 2 teaspoons fish sauce, and oil in a bowl; add to pan. Cook 1 minute; remove from heat.

3. Combine remaining 6 tablespoons juice, remaining 2 tablespoons sugar, remaining 2 teaspoons fish sauce, peanuts, green onions, and Sriracha in a bowl. Arrange lettuce, cucumber, carrot, and squash on a large platter. Top with noodles, pork mixture, cilantro, and mint. Drizzle juice mixture over top.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 268; Fat: 16 g; Sat fat: 5.1 g; Monofat: 7.2 g; Polyfat: 2.4 g; Protein: 12 g; Carbohydrate: 19 g; Fiber: 2 g; Cholesterol: 41 mg; Iron: 1 mg; Sodium: 337 mg; Calcium: 38 mg; Sugars: 8 g; Est. Added Sugars: 5 g

Cooking Light, JUNE 2016

Easy Homemade Ramen

When we got back from vacation in August, I came down with strep throat, and then got a cough that hurt my entire body.  I was sick for about a month, and I really wanted comfort food, which included Ramen.  When I would get sick as a child, my father always made me ramen soup.  Just the $0.25 soup, which was probably $0.10.  So that's what I wanted, except I didn't want to get a headache from the seasoning packet.

So I found a recipe and adapted it to my liking.

Easy Homemade Ramen

Photo by ALB

Adapted from Damn Delicious
Yield: 8 Servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes; Cook Time: 20 minutes; Total Time: 30 minutes

1 tablespoon sesame oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
5 cups chicken broth
4 ounces shiitake mushrooms
1 tablespoon soy sauce, or more, to taste
5 packages Ramen, seasoning sauce packets discarded
2 tablespoons chopped chives

Heat 1 tablespoon sesame oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add garlic and ginger, and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes.

Whisk in chicken broth, mushrooms, soy sauce and 5 cups water.

Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until mushrooms have softened, about 10 minutes. Stir in noodles until loosened and cooked through, about 2-3 minutes.

Add chives and serve immediately.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Cheesy Sausage, Broccoli, and Quinoa Casserole

This dish was decent.  I thought it would be more of a comfort dish, but it really wasn't.  The tasted was better for left-overs.  Make sure to half the recipe if it's only 2 people.

Cheesy Sausage, Broccoli, and Quinoa Casserole

Photo by ALB

We traded white rice for whole-grain quinoa and kicked out any processed ingredients for a new take on this comfort classic. Freeze an extra pan of this whole-grain main for kid-friendly comfort. To add more flavor to quinoa, try toasting it. Here's how: After you've rinsed and drained the quinoa, heat a saucepan over medium-high heat and add the quinoa. Toast, stirring, until the grains begin to smell fragrant. Then, add the water and cook as normal.

Yield: Serves 12 (serving size: about 1 cup)
(Half the recipe)

2 1/2 cups water
2 cups uncooked quinoa, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup chopped carrot
4 (4-oz.) links sweet chicken Italian sausage, casings removed (used pork)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 cups whole milk
2 cups unsalted chicken stock (such as Swanson)
6 cups chopped fresh broccoli florets
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme, divided
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 cup whole-wheat panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
4 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded (about 1 cup)

1. Preheat oven to 400°F.

2. Bring 2 1/2 cups water and quinoa to a boil in a large saucepan. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 12 to 14 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove pan from heat; let stand 5 minutes.

3. Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion, carrot, and sausage; cook 7 minutes, stirring to crumble sausage. Remove sausage mixture to a bowl with a slotted spoon.

4. Add flour, butter, and garlic to drippings in pan; cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add milk and stock; bring to a boil. Cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly with a whisk. Reduce heat to medium; stir in broccoli, 2 teaspoons thyme, 3/8 teaspoon salt, 3/8 teaspoon black pepper, and red pepper. Cover and cook 2 minutes. Stir in quinoa and sausage mixture.

5. Coat 2 (8-inch) square microwave-safe glass or ceramic baking dishes with cooking spray. Divide quinoa mixture between dishes. Combine remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil and panko in a bowl; add remaining 1 teaspoon thyme, remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/8 teaspoon black pepper, and cheddar. Sprinkle cheese mixture evenly over casseroles. Bake at 400°F for 18 minutes or until browned, or follow freezing instructions.

How To: FREEZE: Cool unbaked casseroles completely; cover tightly with aluminum foil. Freeze up to 2 months. THAW: Remove foil. Microwave at HIGH 20 minutes or until thawed. REHEAT: Cover with foil and bake at 375°F for 25 minutes; then broil 5 minutes or until golden brown.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 296; Fat: 13 g; Satfat: 5.3 g; Monofat: 4.7 g; Polyfat: 2.3 g; Protein: 17 g; Carbohydrate: 28 g; Fiber: 4 g; Cholesterol: 48 mg; Iron: 2 mg; Sodium: 399 mg; Calcium: 154 mg; Sugars: 4 g; Est. Added Sugars: 0 g

Cooking Light, SEPTEMBER 2016

One-Pot Cheesy Pasta Bake

This was a good dish.  Except it was missing a key ingredient...garlic. So D added it in.  I liked it better as a left over but overall I'd have it again.

One-Pot Cheesy Pasta Bake

Photo by ALB

This easy skillet pasta bake is a surefire family hit. Pasta and meat sauce topped with mozzarella cheese will make everyone at the table happy, and the all-in-one-pot technique will have the cook smiling pretty. Cooking the pasta in the meat sauce not only lessens the amount of dishes you have to do and the time it takes to get dinner done, but the starches in the pasta thicken the sauce—without you having to do a single extra thing.

Yield: Serves 4 (serving size: about 1 1/2 cups)

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
Add garlic
8 ounces 90% lean ground beef
3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1 1/4 cups unsalted chicken stock
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 cups unsalted crushed tomatoes or tomato sauce
8 ounces uncooked whole-grain penne pasta
5 ounces fresh baby spinach
4 ounces preshredded part-skim mozzarella cheese (about 1 cup)

1. Preheat broiler to high. Heat oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high. Add onion (and garlic); sauté 2 minutes. Add beef and oregano; cook 3 minutes, stirring to crumble.

2. Add stock, salt, pepper, tomatoes, and pasta; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 12 to 13 minutes or until pasta is done. Stir in spinach.

3. Sprinkle cheese over pasta mixture. Place pan in oven; broil 2 minutes or until cheese melts and begins to brown.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 457; Fat: 16.6 g; Sat fat: 5.9 g; Mono fat: 6.3 g; Poly fat: 0.8 g; Protein: 31 g; Carbohydrate: 52 g; Fiber: 9 g; Cholesterol: 52 mg; Iron: 7 mg; Sodium: 598 mg; Calcium: 281 mg; Sugars: 8 g; Est. Added Sugars: 0 g

Cooking Light, September 2016

Rainbow Fried Rice

Eat this with the Char Sil.

Rainbow Fried Rice

Photo by ALB

1 tablespoon canola oil
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup minced yellow onion
1 cup chopped Char Sil
4 cups cooked long-grain rice, chilled
3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 cups shredded iceberg lettuce
1/2 cup frozen green peas, thawed
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 cup minced green onions
1 teaspoon dark sesame oil

Heat canola oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add eggs; stir-fry for 1 minute or until done. Remove from pan.

Add yellow onion to pan; sauté 2 minutes or until translucent. Stir in Chinese-Style Roast Pork; stir-fry 2 minutes over medium-high heat. Add rice and soy sauce; stir-fry 2 minutes. Return eggs to pan; cook 1 minute. Stir in iceberg lettuce, green peas, salt, and white pepper; stir-fry 1 minute. Sprinkle with green onions, and drizzle with sesame oil.

Yield: 6 servings (serving size: 1 cup)

Nutritional Information
CALORIES 219 (28% from fat); FAT 6.7g (sat 1.4g,mono 3.1g,poly 1.5g); PROTEIN 9.7g; CHOLESTEROL 85mg; CALCIUM 33mg; SODIUM 455mg; FIBER 1.7g; IRON 1.7mg; CARBOHYDRATE 29g

Cooking Light, SEPTEMBER 2005

Chinese-Style Roast Pork (Char Sil)

We have no Chinese Restaurants by us. So we have to come up with our own. I have made this. It is easy and good!  Use the extra Char Sil for Rainbow Fried Rice.

Chinese-Style Roast Pork (Char Sil)

Photo by ALB

1/2 cup hoisin sauce
1/2 cup ketchup
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup dry sherry
1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons minced green onions
1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 pounds boneless Boston butt pork roast, trimmed and cut into (2-inch) cubes

Combine first 9 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add pork; seal and marinate in refrigerator 24 hours, turning bag occasionally. Remove pork from bag, reserving marinade.

Preheat oven to 350°.

Place pork on the rack of a broiler pan lined with foil. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Turn pork over, and baste with reserved marinade. Discard remaining marinade. Bake an additional 20 minutes or until a thermometer registers 160° (slightly pink). Preheat broiler. Broil pork 5 minutes or until browned.

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 3 ounces)

Nutritional Information 
CALORIES 193 (41% from fat); FAT 8.9g (sat 3g,mono 4g,poly 1.1g); PROTEIN 21.2g; CHOLESTEROL 73mg; CALCIUM 28mg; SODIUM 249mg; FIBER 0.2g; IRON 1.5mg; CARBOHYDRATE 5.8g

Cooking Light, SEPTEMBER 2005