Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Cavatappi with Browned Brussels Sprouts and Buttery Breadcrumbs

D made this. He added 8 oz of chicken.

The portions were a good size and there were closer to 5 servings and 4 and that's with 2 Cups/serving.  I think it would have been better with a link of Italian Sauage, Pancetta, or bacon (which is what I thought was in the picture).  D thought it would have a deeper flavor with white wine instead of lemon.  Still we both liked it.

Will have again.

Cavatappi with Browned Brussels Sprouts and Buttery Breadcrumbs

Cut the sprouts lengthwise to keep their shape, about four slices per sprout. They'll be thin enough to get a deep caramelized sear quickly but still keep a good crunch.

Yield: Serves 4 (serving size: 1 1/2 cups)
Hands-on: 25 Minutes
Total: 25 Minutes

8 ounces uncooked cavatappi pasta (couldn't find so used rotini)
2 teaspoons unsalted butter
Photo by: Photo: Johnny Autry;
Styling: Cindy Barr
1/4 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
4 teaspoons olive oil
12 ounces Brussels sprouts, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 cup thinly sliced onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2/3 cup organic vegetable broth
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice (use white wine next time)
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 ounces pecorino Romano cheese, shaved (about 1/2 cup)
2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
Add 8 oz of meat, such as chicken, sausage or bacon

1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain and transfer to a large bowl; keep warm.

2. Melt butter in a small skillet over medium heat; swirl to coat. Add panko to pan; cook 3 minutes or until browned, stirring frequently.

3. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add Brussels sprouts to pan; cook 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add onion and garlic; cook 3 minutes or until onion is tender and the Brussels sprouts are lightly browned. Add broth and next 5 ingredients (through pepper). Cover and cook 2 minutes or until Brussels sprouts are crisp-tender. Add Brussels sprouts mixture to pasta; toss well. Sprinkle with cheese, pine nuts, and panko. Serve immediately.

Wine Match: A yeasty sparkling wine like the Lucien Albrecht Cremant d'Alsace Brut ($20) is a refreshing foil for the earthiness of the onions and sprouts and the nutty, salty cheese in this pasta dish. --Gretchen Roberts

Nutritional Information
Calories: 377; Fat: 12g; Saturated fat: 3.3g; Monounsaturated fat: 4.6g; Polyunsaturated fat: 2.1g; Protein: 13.1g; Carbohydrate: 56.8g; Fiber: 5.9g; Cholesterol: 10mg; Iron: 3.4mg; Sodium: 361mg; Calcium: 103mg

Cooking Light NOVEMBER 2012

Monday, October 29, 2012

Fantastic Bourbon Smoked Chicken

So this is a dish I would serve my MIL.  It isn't very adventurous on taste but is a good chicken.  It actually tasted decadent because of the buttery flavor.  I didn't really taste the bourbon.

I know D didn't brine it the full time.  I think he brined it for 10 hours. We had with  Oven Roasted Parmesan Green Beans.  Would have again.

Fantastic Bourbon Smoked Chicken

After Steven Raichlen sent us this recipe in 2011, we declared it the most beautiful and best-tasting chicken we’d ever had. To reinforce the whiskey flavor in the brine and basting butter, Steve says to use Jack Daniel's whiskey barrel chips for smoking--widely available in grill and gourmet shops. This bird is so wonderfully moist and flavorful, it doesn't need added embellishment.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 5 ounces chicken)
Hands-on: 20 Minutes
Total: 20 Hours, 35 Minutes

2 quarts water
9 tablespoons bourbon, divided
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons kosher salt
Photo by: Photo: Levi Brown;
Styling: Tiziana Agnello
2 quarts ice water
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
3 bay leaves
3 garlic cloves, peeled
1 small onion, quartered
1 small Fuji apple, cored and quartered
1 lemon, quartered
1 (4-pound) whole chicken
2 cups applewood chips
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Cooking spray
1 tablespoon butter, melted

1. Combine 2 quarts water, 1/2 cup bourbon, sugar, and kosher salt in a large Dutch oven, and bring to a boil, stirring until salt and sugar dissolve. Add ice water and next 7 ingredients (through lemon), and cool to room temperature. Add chicken to brine; cover and refrigerate 18 hours, turning chicken occasionally.

2. Soak wood chips in water for 1 hour; drain.

3. Remove the chicken from brine; pat chicken dry with paper towels. Strain brine through a sieve; discard brine and reserve 2 apple quarters, 2 lemon quarters, 2 onion quarters, and garlic. Discard remaining solids. Sprinkle chicken cavity with pepper; add reserved solids to chicken cavity. Lift wing tips up and over back; tuck under chicken. Tie legs.

4. Remove the grill rack, and set aside. Prepare the grill for indirect grilling, heating one side to high and leaving one side with no heat. Pierce the bottom of a disposable aluminum foil pan several times with the tip of a knife. Place pan on heat element on heated side of grill; add 1 cup wood chips to pan. Place another disposable aluminum foil pan (do not pierce pan) on unheated side of grill. Pour 2 cups water in pan. Let chips stand for 15 minutes or until smoking; reduce heat to medium-low. Maintain temperature at 275°.

5. Coat the grill rack with cooking spray; place on grill. Place chicken, breast side up, on grill rack over foil pan on unheated side. Combine the remaining 1 tablespoon bourbon and butter; baste chicken with the bourbon mixture. Close lid, and cook for 2 hours at 275° or until thermometer inserted into meaty part of thigh registers 165°. Add remaining 1 cup wood chips halfway through cooking time. Place chicken on a platter; cover with foil. Let stand for 15 minutes. Discard the skin before serving.

This recipe originally ran in Cooking Light August, 2011 and was updated for the November, 2012 25th anniversary issue.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 299; Fat: 12.6g; Saturated fat: 4.4g; Monounsaturated fat: 4.3g; Polyunsaturated fat: 2.3g; Protein: 35.8g; Carbohydrate: 6.2g; Fiber: 1g; Cholesterol: 114mg; Iron: 1.8mg; Sodium: 560mg; Calcium: 30mg

Cooking Light NOVEMBER 2012

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Fiery Chicken Thighs with Persian Rice

I must not have taste-buds. D neither. We didn't find this hot. So D made this. He thought the rice making was odd. But thinks I could make it considering it isn't the traditional way of making rice. The result of the rice was this crispy stuff that was really good. Even better with some Sriracha. The Chicken was better the next day. I don't know if it needed more marinating time or what. But it was kind of bland yesteday. For lunch a little more spice. Still nothing "fiery." I think I would have again, though.

Fiery Chicken Thighs with Persian Rice

Pay close attention to the rice as it cooks over medium-low heat--when you hear it begin to crackle, turn the heat down to low. Continue to cook until the bottom side of the rice develops a golden crust. Serve with 1 pound fresh green beans sautéed in 1 tablespoon butter. Toss with 3 tablespoons toasted sliced almonds and fresh parsley. Although the ­buttery rice cuts through the heat of the chicken, use less chile paste if you are not a fan of spicy foods.

Yield: Serves 4 (serving size: about 1/2 cup rice and 1 chicken thigh)
Hands-on: 40 Minutes
Total: 1 Hour

5 cups water
3/4 cup long-grain white rice
Photo by: Photo: Johnny Autry;
Styling: Cindy Barr
2 1/2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
3/4 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin, divided
1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 cup plain 2% reduced-fat Greek yogurt
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon sambal oelek (ground fresh chile paste)
1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
Cooking spray

1. Bring 5 cups water to a boil in medium saucepan. Add rice; boil 10 minutes. Drain. Rinse rice; drain.

2. Heat a medium, heavy-bottomed skillet over medium heat. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion, and cook 5 minutes. Stir in 1 teaspoon cumin, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and turmeric; cook 1 minute. Combine rice, onion mixture, and yogurt in a bowl.

3. Return pan to medium-high heat. Add butter and 1 tablespoon oil to pan; swirl until butter melts. Add rice mixture to pan, lightly packing rice down. Reduce heat to medium-low. Wrap a clean, dry dish towel around the lid, tying it at the handle; place prepared lid on pan. Cook rice, covered, over medium-low heat 10 minutes (do not stir or uncover). Reduce temperature to low; cook an additional 20 minutes or until rice is tender on top and a golden crust forms on bottom.

4. Loosen the rice crust with a rubber spatula around the edges. Place a plate over the top of pan, and invert the rice onto plate, browned side up.

5. While rice cooks, preheat broiler to high.

6. Combine remaining 1 tablespoon oil, remaining 1/2 teaspoon cumin, sambal oelek, garlic, and coriander in a small bowl, stirring well. Scrape spice paste into a zip-top plastic bag. Add chicken to bag; seal. Toss to coat. Let stand 20 minutes. Remove chicken from bag; discard marinade. Sprinkle chicken evenly with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt.

7. Place chicken, skin-side up, on a foil-lined broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Broil 8 minutes or until browned. Turn chicken over; broil an additional 4 minutes or until done. Serve with rice.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 439; Fat: 23.9g; Saturated fat: 6.5g; Monounsaturated fat: 10.6g; Polyunsaturated fat: 4.8g; Protein: 21.1g; Carbohydrate: 33.7g; Fiber: 1.4g; Cholesterol: 71mg; Iron: 2.8mg; Sodium: 547mg; Calcium: 56mg

Cooking Light NOVEMBER 2012

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Ancho Chicken Tacos with Cilantro Slaw and Avocado Cream

D made these.  I think they were easy because I was supposed to make them, but I was walking dogs and running and got home about the same time he did.  So he made them.  They had a nice kick to them.  Not really sure it it was from them or if the knife he used still had chipotle on it.  Regardless, very good and flavorful.  My only issue is the Avocado Cream.  Just call it Guacamole.  We had with Chipotle Refried Beans.

Ancho Chicken Tacos with Cilantro Slaw and Avocado Cream

Photo by ALB

Create authentic Mexican-style tacos by cooking the chicken in a mixture of ancho chili powder and cumin and serving over corn tortillas topped with slaw and avocado cream.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 2 tacos)
Total: 20 Minutes

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1/4-inch strips
3/4 teaspoon ancho chile powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
Cooking spray
1/8 teaspoon grated lime rind
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, divided
1/4 cup light sour cream
2 tablespoons 1% low-fat milk
1/2 ripe peeled avocado, diced
2 cups packaged angel hair slaw
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon canola oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas

1. Heat a large skillet over high heat. Sprinkle chicken evenly with chile powder, garlic salt, and cumin. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add chicken to pan; cook 4 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove chicken from pan.

2. Combine rind, 1 tablespoon juice, and next 3 ingredients (through avocado) in a blender or food processor; process until smooth.

3. Combine remaining 1 tablespoon juice, slaw, onions, cilantro, oil, and salt, tossing to coat.

4. Heat tortillas according to directions. Divide chicken mixture evenly among tortillas. Top each tortilla with about 1 tablespoon avocado mixture and 1/4 cup slaw mixture.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 319; Fat: 11.6g; Saturated fat: 2.3g; Monounsaturated fat: 5.5g; Polyunsaturated fat: 2.4g; Protein: 30g; Carbohydrate: 25.3g; Fiber: 5.1g; Cholesterol: 72mg; Iron: 1.3mg; Sodium: 385mg; Calcium: 80mg

Cooking Light MAY 2011

Hot Szechuan Style Green Beans

D and I always joke about green beans. I didn't know they didn't come from a can growing up. He didn't know that you didn't have to cook them with a ham hock for 15 hours and have a pile of mush.

So we are almost always willing to try recipes for them.  I got this one from a Weight Watchers Chat Page.

Really, you should make these now.  They were delicious. We actually put the sauce on the boring chicken to help it get some flavor.  Will have these again.

Hot Szechuan Style Green Beans 

Posted by donna1408
4 servings

2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
2 tsp sugar
1 serving(s) hot chili flakes, 1/4 tsp (we didn't have)
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (used 1/2 tsp)
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
2 clove(s) garlic clove(s), minced
2 tbsp ginger root, minced
1 pound(s) cut green beans, fresh

Cut beans 2 to 3inch lengths. In a small bowl, mix the soy sauce, rice vinegar, sugar, chili flakes and pepper. Place a large skillet over high heat, when the skillet is hot add the beans and 1/4 cup water. Cover and cook, stirring once, until the liquid is gone. Add the oil, garlic and ginger to the skillet, stir until the beans and garlic are slightly browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Add soy sauce mixture to the skillet, bring to a boil and stir until most of the liquid is evaporated and the sauce thickens and coats the beans, 2 to 3 minutes. Pour into a serving dish and serve hot or cold.

Thai Cilantro Chicken

Disappointing and surprised.  D and I rarely have something we don't like from Weber.  And when we end up not liking something it is usually some ingredient that we were trying for the first time.  

So I bit into my chicken, and really thought, "Wow, did he just throw chicken on the grill?  Bland."  He bit into it and didn't say anything.  I asked if it would be rude to go get Stubbs.  That's how bland it was...all those ingredients and I didn't think Stubbs would jack up the flavor.

Definitely not having again.  We had with Szechuan Green Beans which you should try.

Thai Cilantro Chicken

Serves: 6
Prep time: 10 minutes
Grilling time: 48 minutes to 1 hour

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup finely sliced scallions (white and light green parts only)
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon miso (hot bean paste)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

6 whole chicken legs, each 8 to 10 ounces, trimmed of excess fat and skin
Vegetable oil

In a medium bowl combine the marinade ingredients.

Place the chicken legs in a large, resealable plastic bag and pour in the marinade. Press out the air and seal the bag tightly. Turn the bag to distribute the marinade, place the bag in a shallow dish, and refrigerate for 2 to 4 hours, turning occasionally.

Prepare the grill for direct and indirect cooking over medium heat (350° to 450°F).

Remove the legs from the bag and discard the marinade. Brush the cooking grates clean. Grill the legs, skin side down first, over direct medium heat, with the lid closed as much as possible, until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes, turning occasionally. Then move the chicken over indirect medium heat, close the lid, and continue cooking until the juices run clear and the meat is no longer pink at the bone, 40 to 50 minutes. Remove from the grill and let rest for 3 to 5 minutes. Serve warm.


Friday, October 12, 2012

Lamb Burgers with Feta-Cucumber Raita

Last night for dinner these were good. Today for lunch, way too much curry. Ate half and dumped the rest. I doubt we will have again, just because lamb isn't a staple in our house. We had with fries.

Lamb Burgers with Feta-Cucumber Raita

Although lamb gives this burger the most flavor, feel free to substitute lean ground beef or turkey.

Yield: 6 servings (serving size: 1 burger and 2 tablespoons raita)
Cook time: 11 Minutes
Prep time: 17 Minutes
Other: 1 Hour

Feta-Cucumber Raita
2/3 cup bulgur
2 tablespoons chopped sun-dried tomato, packed without oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3/4 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 pound lean ground lamb
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
2 garlic cloves, minced
Cooking spray
6 (2-ounce) onion sandwich buns
6 Bibb lettuce leaves
Feta-Cucumber Raita

Prepare raita.

Combine bulgur, tomato, and lemon juice in a small bowl.

Bring broth to a boil and pour over bulgur mixture. Let stand 30 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.

Preheat broiler.

Combine bulgur mixture, lamb, and next 6 ingredients in a medium bowl. Divide lamb mixture evenly into 6 (1/2-inchthick) patties. Place patties on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray; broil 4 to 5 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness.

Top bottom half of each bun with a lettuce leaf; add burgers. Spoon Feta- Cucumber Raita evenly over burgers; top with remaining half of bun.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 391; Fat: 14.4g; Saturated fat: 5.4g; Protein: 21.1g; Carbohydrate: 44.3g; Cholesterol: 53mg; Iron: 3.4mg; Sodium: 918mg; Calories from fat: 33%; Fiber: 5.0g; Calcium: 134mg

Oxmoor House JANUARY 2004

Feta-Cucumber Raita

This recipe goes with Lamb Burgers with Feta-Cucumber Raita
Yield: 3/4 cup (serving size: 2 tablespoons)

1/4 cup plain fat-free yogurt
2 tablespoons fat-free mayonnaise
2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese
1 garlic clove, chopped
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1/4 cup diced peeled cucumber

Combine first 6 ingredients in a small bowl; add cucumber. Cover and chill 30 minutes.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 18; Fat: 0.8g; Saturated fat: 0.5g; Protein: 0.9g; Carbohydrate: 2.1g; Cholesterol: 4mg; Iron: 0.1mg; Sodium: 81mg; Calories from fat: 38%; Fiber: 0.2g; Calcium: 30mg

Oxmoor House JANUARY 2004

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Mushroom and Caramelized-Shallot Strudel

Note to self: If you want to end up in a straight jacket, keep putting phyllo dough recipes on the week's menu.

D doesn't do dough. I can't say I blame him. I buy already-made pie crusts, Boboli's instead of Pillsbury pizza dough, etc. Phyllo dough...I hate it. I wasn't really thinking about it when I saw this recipe.

I came home and D informed me I had to finish dinner. After throwing Phyllo on the floor, cussing him out, burning myself on a pot of boiling water for broccoli, cussing him out, breaking into tears, cussing him out, threatening to let the dog out the front door, cussing him out, throwing more phyllo on the floor and cussing him out, we finally got dinner made. It cooked much faster than 20 minutes. Luckily for the sake of my sanity, D checked on it periodically, so it didn't burn. Ours did look like the picture.

It was good, but not worth all that. Never making again. D informed me later that he had tried to work with the phyllo and a lot of it was thrown on the floor, and a lot of cussing had gone on while I was not there. This made me feel better. We had with broccoli. We each had 2 servings.

Mushroom and Caramelized-Shallot Strudel

This recipe makes two strudels; for an eye-catching centerpiece, place them on a large platter, and surround them with fresh thyme sprigs.
Yield: 2 strudels, 8 servings (serving size: 1 slice)

1 teaspoon olive oil
1 1/2 cups sliced shallots (about 8 ounces)
1/8 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon water
Photo by: Becky Luigart-Stayner;
Jen Rotenstreich
4 (8-ounce) packages presliced mushrooms
2 tablespoons dry Marsala or Madeira
2/3 cup low-fat sour cream
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon minced fresh or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
8 sheets frozen phyllo dough, thawed (more like half a box because 8 is all you have left after throwing it on the floor)
Cooking spray
1/3 cup dry breadcrumbs, divided
1 tablespoon butter, melted

Preheat oven to 400°.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add shallots and sugar; cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Sprinkle with water; cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until shallots are soft. Add mushrooms; cook, uncovered, over medium-high heat 20 minutes or until liquid evaporates, stirring frequently. Add Marsala; cook 1 minute. Remove from heat, and cool. Stir in sour cream, parsley, salt, thyme, and pepper.

Place 1 phyllo sheet on a large cutting board or work surface (cover remaining dough to keep from drying), and lightly coat with cooking spray. Sprinkle with about 2 teaspoons breadcrumbs. Repeat the layers with 3 phyllo sheets, cooking spray, and breadcrumbs, ending with the phyllo. Spoon 1 3/4 cups mushroom mixture along 1 long edge of phyllo, leaving a 1-inch border. Starting at the long edge with the 1-inch border, roll up jelly roll fashion. Place strudel, seam side down, on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Tuck ends under. Repeat the procedure with the remaining phyllo sheets, cooking spray, breadcrumbs, and mushroom mixture. Brush strudels with butter. Bake strudels at 400° for 20 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes. Cut each strudel into 4 slices.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 176; Calories from fat: 28%; Fat: 5.5g; Saturated fat: 2.7g; Monounsaturated fat: 1.6g; Polyunsaturated fat: 0.5g; Protein: 7.4g; Carbohydrate: 24.9g; Fiber: 2.1g; Cholesterol: 11mg; Iron: 2.6mg; Sodium: 314mg; Calcium: 60mg

Cooking Light NOVEMBER 2001

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Fennel-Rubbed Pork Tenderloin with Shallot-Onion Agrodolce

So D made this after a run.  He said it was really easy.  When I came in, he claimed the onions rocked.  I took one from the pan, and yes, they did.

There is nothing bad I have to say about this.  I would serve it for company and since D said it was quick and easy, that is always a good thing.  We will definitely have again.

We had with Roasted Cauliflower with Browned Butter.

Fennel-Rubbed Pork Tenderloin with Shallot-Onion Agrodolce

Agrodolce is an Italian sweet and sour sauce that combines sugar and vinegar. In this version, acidic wine and vinegar harmonize with the sweetness from the onions and raisins.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 3 ounces pork and about 1/2 cup agrodolce)

1 tablespoon olive oil
Photo: Howard L. Puckett;
Styling: Melanie J. Clarke
3 cups vertically sliced onion
1 cup sliced shallots
1 tablespoon sugar
3/4 cup dry white wine
1/3 cup golden raisins (didn't use because raisins are gross)
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Pork tenderloin:
2 teaspoons fennel seeds, crushed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 (1-pound) pork tenderloin, trimmed
Cooking spray

1. To prepare agrodolce, heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, shallots, and sugar to pan; sauté 12 minutes or until golden. Stir in wine, raisins, and vinegar; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 9 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates. Remove from heat; stir in 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.

2. Prepare grill.

3. To prepare pork tenderloin, combine fennel seeds, 1/2 teaspoon salt, coriander, cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl. Sprinkle pork with fennel seed mixture. Place pork on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill for 20 minutes or until a thermometer registers 155° (slightly pink), turning pork occasionally. Let stand for 10 minutes. Cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Serve with agrodolce.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 281; Calories from fat: 24%; Fat: 7.6g; Saturated fat: 1.9g; Monounsaturated fat: 4.1g; Polyunsaturated fat: 0.8g; Protein: 25.2g; Carbohydrate: 28.9g; Fiber: 2.8g; Cholesterol: 63mg; Iron: 2.6mg; Sodium: 502mg; Calcium: 64mg

Cooking Light MARCH 2008

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Italian Stuffed Portabellas

So Tami from Nutmeg Notebook posted this recipe. She obviously has much more experience in the kitchen and in photography (her picture looks much better than mine and her mushrooms don't look broken). But whatever, her picture made me want to try this recipe because I do love stuffed mushrooms and cheese and lasagna (this seemed to be a combo of all).

I made this. It took about 45 minutes with the cooking time. I more chopped things than minced, but if I had done that it would have taken more like 75 minutes, as we all know I'm the slowest chopper on the universe.

Because I don't use the best ingredients (Aldi Parmesan and Kroger Mozzarella both seem to miss a little salt), there are things I would change for next time (like add some more salt, and add some pepper because I like pepper).

But I would definitely have again. We had with a Caesar Salad.

Italian Stuffed Portabellas

Photo by ALB

4 large portabella mushrooms (4 1/2 to 5 inches)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup minced onions (I chopped 1 onion)
3 garlic cloves, minced or pressed (I used 6)
2/3 cup minced red bell peppers (I used 2/3 of an orange bell pepper...I couldn't find the measuring cup)
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2/3 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt (need more if you use Aldi Cheese)
2 tablespoons bread crumbs*
(Add some black pepper)

* Pulverize stale or lightly toasted whole wheat, sourdough, or Italian bread in a blender or food processor. (used canned bread crumbs)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Lightly oil a baking dish.

Carefully brush or wipe off any soil from the mushrooms. Twist off the stems and discard. Rinse the mushroom caps and pat dry with a towel. At this point using a small spoon I removed the gills to make room for all the stuffing. Otherwise it wouldn’t have fit. In a skillet, warm 2 tablespoons of the olive oil (you cfan use less) and saute the onions for about 5 minutes, until they begin to soften. Add the garlic and peppers and saute for 5 minutes more. Remove from the heat and set aside.

In a bowl, mix together the basil, ricotta cheese, mozzarella, Parmesan, salt, and bread crumbs. Stir the sauteed vegetables into the cheese mixture. Brush the portabellas with the remaining tablespoon of oil and place them gill side up in the prepared baking dish. Mound cheese mixture in each.

Bake uncovered for 20 to 25 minutes, until the mushrooms release their juices and the cheese is melted. Serve hot.

Serving suggestion; This dish is nice served on a bed of pasta topped with Tomato Sauce. (I served them with a salad)

Serves: 4

Nutritional Information Per serving:
317 calories, 16.5 G Protein, 22.8 G Fat, 13.8 G Carbohydrates, 8.7 G Saturated Fatty Acids, 40.6 MG Cholesterol, 488.3 MG Sodium, 2.3 G Total Dietary Fiber. WWPP 9 (If you use reduced fat cheese and cut back on the olive oil you can greatly lower the numbers)

Recipe adapted from a Moosewood recipe found on the Cooking Light message board.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Slow Cooker Creole Black Beans and Sausage

My brother showed me this recipe from and said it was on his to-try list. I decided to put it on mine too. D said ok.

D and I made it together. He browned the meat and I chopped and dumped stuff into the crockpot. We made it the night before we turned on the slow cooker. We put the tomato sauce and chicken stock (a modification) in the pot in the morning.

So I got home and tasted... it needed salt. Added that and it simmered a few more hours. I think it was on low and warm for about 9 hours. Everything was soft. And it was nice to not have to think about dinner.

Both of us thought it needed more flavor. There was no tomato flavor what so ever. D thought flavored diced, I thought crushed. Also I but in 1/2 tsp of cayenne but probably needed 1 tsp. And next time 10 cloves of garlic. A good base that needs some tweaking.

We had over rice.

Slow Cooker Creole Black Beans and Sausage

Servings Per Recipe: 10
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 6 Hours 5 Minutes
Ready In: 6 Hours 20 Minutes

"This creole recipe is not too spicy -- it has just enough kick to please your whole family. Serve over steamed white rice."

2 pounds smoked sausage, cut into 1 inch slices (used andouille and smoked sausage)
3 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 1/2 cups chopped celery
1 1/2 cups chopped green pepper
1 cup water (we used a can of chicken broth because we knew we would be gone longer than 6 hours)
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce (use a can of crushed tomatoes or diced tomatoes)
4 cloves garlic, minced (needs 10 cloves)
2 teaspoons dried thyme
1 teaspoon chicken bouillon granules (didn't use because we used chicken broth)
1 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (use 1 tsp next time)
2 bay leaves
Needed 1/2-1 tsp of salt

1. Place a large skillet over medium heat, and add sausage. Cook, stirring, until sausage is browned, about 5 minutes. Drain fat, and transfer sausage to slow cooker.
2. Stir the black beans, onion, celery, green pepper, water, tomato sauce, garlic, thyme, bullion granules, white pepper, cayenne pepper, and bay leaves into the sausage in the slow cooker. Cover, and cook on Low until vegetables are tender, about 6 hours. Remove bay leaves before serving.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 380; Total Fat: 29g; Cholesterol: 62mg; Sodium: 1534mg; Total Carbs: 7.9g; Dietary Fiber: 1.6g; Protein: 21.2g