thesoupfairy: (spices)
Spicy Romaka Chicken

This is the maka version of the Spicy Romano Chicken i had at Johnny Carino's the other night.

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients
  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts

  • salt and pepper to taste

  • 1 pound pasta of your choice (i've used bow-ties and whole-wheat penne)

  • 5 tablespoons butter, divided

  • 8 ounces fresh mushrooms, stems discarded, caps sliced

  • 3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped

  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped

  • 4 green onions, white and green tops

  • 1 cup sun dried tomatoes, dry packed, cut into strips

  • 1 can artichokes packed in water, chopped

  • 1 pint heavy cream

  • 1/2 cup shredded romano cheese

  • salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste


Directions

Heat the broiler and broil salted and peppered chicken breasts 4-6 inches from heat for 6-7 minutes, then turn and broil another 8 minutes or so until internal temperature reaches 160°F.

Meanwhile heat a pot of salted water to boiling and cook pasta according to package directions. When pasta is done, drain and toss with 2 tablespoons butter.

Melt 3 tablespoons butter in skillet and sauté mushrooms, garlic, and bell pepper.

When chicken is done, slice thinly or dice and add to skillet.

Add green onions, sun dried tomatoes, and artichokes to skillet. Continue to sauté until everything is heated through and onions have wilted.

Add heavy cream to skillet and simmer, stirring frequently, until reduced by almost half, about 7 minutes. Add romano and stir until melted. Season with salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
thesoupfairy: (Default)
The raita and naan recipes are over here.

Curry Paste

Store this paste in your fridge. It gives an amazingly rich flavor. If you can't find the curry leaves in a local store, you can get them here.

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Makes: about 1 cup

Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup whole coriander seeds

  • 2 tablespoons whole cumin seeds

  • 1 tablespoon whole fennel seeds

  • 1 tablespoon whole fenugreek seeds

  • 2 dried red chiles

  • 2-3 curry leaves

  • 1-1/2 teaspoons chili powder

  • 1-1/2 teaspoons ground turmeric

  • 2 tablespoons wine vinegar

  • 1/2 cup olive oil


Directions

Grind whole spices (seeds, chiles, leaves) into a powder. Transfer to a bowl and add the ground spices, use a fork to mix the spices together. Add the wine vinegar and stir to a thick paste. Add 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons water and stir to form a paste.

Heat 1/2 cup oil in a small skillet or a wok and stir-fry the spice paste for about 10 minutes or until all the water is absorbed. Allow to cool slightly before spooning into airtight jars.

Smooth the top of the curry paste, then heat another 2 tablespoons oil in a clean pan and carefully pour on top of the paste in the jar to help prevent mold while refrigerated.


Saffron Rice

This delicious rice will make everybody happy. My whole-grain-resistant husband loved it!

Prep: 5 minutes
Soak: 20 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Stand: 5 minutes
Servings: 6

Ingredients
  • 2-1/2 cups brown rice (basmati if you can find it)

  • 3 cups water

  • 3 green cardamom pods

  • 2 whole cloves

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 3 tablespoons milk

  • 1/2 teaspoon saffron


Directions

Wash rice in cold water. Soak in fresh cold water for 20 minutes.

Drain soaked rice and place in a saucepan. Pour in the water. Add the cardamom, cloves, and salt. Stir, then bring to a boil. Lower heat and cover tightly, and simmer for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, place the milk and saffron in a microwave-safe container. Heat for 1 minute on low heat.

Add the saffron milk to the rice and stir. Cover again and continue cooking over a low heat for 15 minutes.

Remove the pan from heat without lifting the lid. Leave the rice to stand for about 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork just before serving.


Chicken Jahlfrezi

Um... I really don't know what to say. This is one of the most complexly-flavored dishes I've made in a while. There is so much going on with the spices here, from the handmade curry paste to the fried whole cumin seeds to the blend of spices added during cooking. And note that you have cilantro in three forms here: whole seeds (coriander = cilantro), ground seeds, and fresh leaves. This dish is traditionally quite hot, too, so feel free to use any type of chile pepper you like, with as much heat as you want.

Sometimes I cheat and chop the veggies, etc. as I go - you do not want to do that with this recipe. You won't have time. Chop it all up-front. I even found it helpful to have the spices measured and prepared beforehand on this one.

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 35 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons oil

  • 1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds

  • 1 onion, finely chopped

  • 1 bell pepper, finely chopped (I use red; my husband can't eat green bell peppers)

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 3/4-inch piece of ginger root, minced

  • 1 tablespoon curry paste (see above)

  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder

  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1-1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes

  • 14-ounce can diced tomatoes

  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, divided


Directions

Heat oil in wok and fry cumin seeds for 30-40 seconds until they begin to splutter. Add onion, peppers, garlic and ginger and fry for 6-8 minutes.

Add curry paste to the pan and stir-fry for about 2 minutes. Stir in the chili powder, coriander, cumin and salt. Add 1 Tbsp water. Stir-fry for 2 more minutes.

Add chicken and stir-fry for about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and half of fresh cilantro. Cook, covered, for about 15 minutes until the chicken is tender. Sprinkle remaining fresh cilantro on top.
thesoupfairy: (garlic)
Sesame Ginger Chicken

Soooo easy! And soooo delicious, too. ;)

Prep: 10 minutes
Marinate: 1 hour to overnight
Cook: varies
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced

  • 3 tablespoons minced or grated fresh ginger root

  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

  • 1/4 cup (untoasted) sesame oil

  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar

  • 1/3 cup tamari (soy sauce)

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, sliced into "chicken tender" sized pieces


Directions

Combine all ingredients except the chicken. Pour marinade over chicken in container. Cover and refrigerate until ready to cook.

Stovetop: Using tongs, remove chicken to skillet. Pour marinade over chicken in skillet. Cook on medium-high, covered, for 15-20 minutes, turning chicken once or twice. Remove cover and simmer on medium to medium-low until most of marinade has reduced to about half the original volume, turning chicken pieces often.


Garlic Rice

This is delicious all by itself, and is a perfect side dish for this chicken.

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 40-50 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • 1 cup brown rice

  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced lengthwise

  • 2 cups water


Directions

Rinse rice several times. Place in saucepan and heat, stirring constantly, until water has evaporated and rice just begins to smell warm and nutty. Add garlic and water. Stir and bring to a boil, immediately lower heat to the lowest simmer you can get on your stove, and cover the pan. Do not remove the cover! When your timer goes off you may lift the cover slightly to see if the water seems to be completely absorbed, and remove a few grains to check for doneness. Try to be as quick as possible so you don't let out any extra steam. If done, remove from heat, leave covered for 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork. If not done, let cook another few minutes and check again. You will eventually figure out exactly how long your particular stove takes!

You can do this with white rice, too; cooking time will be 15-20 minutes.


Tonight's Salad

Play with the ingredients to suit you!

Prep: 7 minutes
Servings: 4 very generous servings, probably 6-8 regular servings

Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon plus 2-1/4 teaspoons rice vinegar

  • 2-1/2 teaspoons tamari (soy sauce)

  • 1 tablespoon plus 1-1/2 teaspoons honey

  • 1/2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger

  • 1 clove garlic, grated

  • 3/4 teaspoon Huy Fong Chili-Garlic Sauce

  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil

  • 2 tablespoons plus 2-1/4 teaspoons salad oil

  • 1 teaspoon lightly toasted sesame seeds

  • 5 ounces mixed salad greens - I prefer a half-and-half baby spinach/spring mix

  • 4 white mushrooms, stemmed and thinly sliced

  • 1/2 of a red bell pepper, thinly sliced

  • 2 thin slices of red onion

  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro


Directions

Combine first 9 ingredients in a jar. Shake well. Heating the honey slightly can help it mix better. Toss with remaining ingredients in a large bowl.
thesoupfairy: (Default)
Jerk Seasoned Chicken Wraps

This went over BIG with my family tonight! If you've got a grill, by all means cook the chicken on the grill. I buy my "Jamaican Jerk" seasoning blend in bulk at a local health food store. There are quite a few recipes online if you want to mix your own.

Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise

  • 1 tablespoon sugar

  • 1/4 teaspoon white vinegar

  • 1 tablespoon prepared mustard

  • 2 cups broccoli coleslaw mix (or your preferred coleslaw veggie mixture)

  • 1 medium tomato, chopped

  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced

  • 1-1/2 teaspoons Caribbean/Jamaican jerk seasoning

  • 2 large boneless skinless chicken breasts

  • 4 flour tortillas


Directions

Combine the mayonnaise, sugar, vinegar, and mustard in a small bowl. Toss with coleslaw mix, tomato, and jalapeño. Set aside.

Rub chicken with jerk seasoning.

If grilling, apply some oil to your grill rack with a brush or paper towel and grill, covered, over medium heat for 8-10 minutes on each side or until a meat thermometer reads 170°.

If broiling, apply oil to a baking sheet and broil, 4 inches from heat for 8-10 minutes on each side or until a meat thermometer reads 170°.

With either cooking method, let meat stand 5 minutes before slicing thinly.

Warm tortillas and place one-quarter of sliced chicken in the center of each tortilla. Top with one-quarter of coleslaw and roll up.

Peach Lassi

A lovely cooling drink, excellent on the side of these somewhat spicy wraps.

Prep: 5 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • 1 cup plain yogurt

  • 1-1/2 cups frozen peaches

  • 3 cups cold water

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • pinch salt

  • 1/4 cup lemon juice

  • dash ground cardamom

  • dash black pepper

  • dash cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


Directions

Combine ingredients in blender and process until smooth and frothy.
thesoupfairy: (spices)
Sour Cream Green Enchiladas

Soooo delicious. To hasten the prep, I used my food processor to shred the cheese, the onions, the peppers, and the chicken.

Prep: 1 hour
Cook: 30 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts

  • 3 chicken bouillon cubes

  • 1 cup sour cream

  • 1 pound cheddar cheese, shredded

  • 3 tablespoons flour

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 4 Anaheim chile peppers, chopped

  • 2 jalapeño peppers, chopped

  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

  • canola cooking spray

  • 12 corn tortillas


Directions

In a saucepan large enough to hold chicken breasts, bring 4 cups water to a boil. Add bouillon cubes and chicken. Reduce heat, keeping at a high simmer, until chicken is cooked through.

Remove chicken from broth and chop or shred (I put it through the food processor with the slicing blade). From shredded cheese, set aside enough to top the enchiladas (about 1/2 cup). Combine remaining cheese with sour cream and chicken. Set aside.

Measure broth from cooking chicken. Keep 3 cups - add water if you don't have 3 cups left. Whisk flour into 1 cup of broth until smooth. Whisk in remaining broth and cook in saucepan over medium heat until thickened, whisking often. Add onions, garlic, and peppers to broth; simmer until onions begin to soften.

Stir salt, pepper, and cumin into sauce.

Add sauce to sour cream mixture, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring between additions. This is your filling, so you want it to be pretty thick; don't add enough sauce to make it too thin.

Spread half of remaining sauce on bottom of casserole dish, set remainder aside.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Heat a small heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Spray a tortilla on one side with cooking spray. Cook 5 seconds. Spray other side with cooking spray, turn, and cook 5 more seconds. Place a scant 1/4 cup of filling on tortilla, roll up, and place in casserole dish. Repeat with remaining tortillas.

Top with remaining sauce and reserved grated cheese. Bake for 30 minutes, then turn on broiler for a couple of minutes to brown the top if you like.

Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
thesoupfairy: (garlic)
Evil Jungle Chicken (or Tofu)

Fabulous Thai dish that you may have eaten in a restaurant. (I used to eat Evil Jungle Tofu at Thai Kum Koon, a local Thai restaurant, all the time.) It is every bit as easy to make at home, though! This is my own version, which has a few more veggies than the ones I've seen in restaurants. I created this recipe to mimic the flavor of the Thai restaurant specialty without having to drive into the city to the Asian market, which means that in place of traditional Thai ingredients, I've substituted ones that are easier to find here.

A note: Often you can get away with chopping as you cook... I highly recommend having all of your ingredients chopped, zested, and ready before you start cooking!

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 25
Servings: 6

Ingredients
  • 2 cups white rice

  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil

  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into thin bite-size strips or firm tofu, drained and diced

  • 2 medium carrots, cut into matchsticks

  • 1 large red bell pepper, cut into matchsticks

  • 8 mushrooms, stems removed and caps sliced thinly

  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into matchsticks

  • 1 medium white onion, sliced into thin wedges

  • 4 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped

  • 2-4 serrano chiles (unless you have access to Thai red chiles - then use 2-4 of those) or more if you like it hotter

  • zest of 2 lemons (or 4 lemon balm leaves) combined with an inch-long piece of fresh ginger, minced (if you have access to lemongrass, use 1 stalk fresh or frozen in place of the lemon/balm + ginger)

  • zest of 2 limes (unless you have access to kaffir lime leaves then use 8-16 leaves)

  • 20 basil leaves

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 1 can coconut milk

  • 1/2 teaspoon tamari or soy sauce

  • 1-4 tablespoons fish sauce (or homemade Mock Fish Sauce, see below), to taste

  • 2 cups finely shredded cabbage


Directions

Cook rice according to package directions.

Meanwhile, heat oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté chicken or tofu, carrot, bell pepper, mushrooms, zucchini, onion, and 4 cloves of the garlic until chicken is done and vegetables are tender.

While sautéing, process chiles, remaining 2 cloves of garlic, lemon zest/lemon balm + ginger (or lemon grass), lime zest (or kaffir lime leaves), and basil leaves in food processor until you have a paste.

Add chile paste to skillet and sauté another 2-3 minutes. Stir in the coconut milk and cook another 7-8 minutes.

Reduce heat to medium-low and stir in tamari and fish sauce. Simmer until it seems ready. Serve on a bed of chopped cabbage with rice on the side.

Mock Fish Sauce

Not fermented like the real thing, so it won't keep as long and will need to be refrigerated.

Prep: 2 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes

Ingredients
  • 1/2 can anchovies, drained

  • 1 clove garlic, bruised and peeled

  • 1/4 teaspoon brown sugar

  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 cup water


Directions

Combine all in saucepan. Simmer for 10 minutes and strain.
thesoupfairy: (Default)
Orange Cherry Chicken

This sweet and spicy chicken dish is different enough to make your tastebuds wake up and say, "Hmmmm!" It's delicious!

Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 5 hours
Servings: 4-6 servings

Ingredients
  • 1 cup frozen tart cherries, thawed

  • 1 medium onion, chopped

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1-2 tablespoons fresh minced ginger root

  • 4 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped

  • 3-4 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts (or, if you're not as squeamish as I am about taking meat off bones, a 3-4 pound fryer chicken, quartered and skin removed)

  • 1 cup orange juice

  • 1 teaspoon orange zest

  • 1 pound bag wide egg noodles

  • 3 tablespoons butter

  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 2-3 tablespoons brown sugar


Directions

Stir together cherries, onion, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and garlic in slow cooker. Place chicken on top. Pour orange juice over the chicken and top with orange zest.

Cover and cook on low 5-6 hours.

Cook egg noodles according to package directions.

Meanwhile, use a slotted spoon to remove solids from sauce. Melt butter in saucepan. Whisk in flour, a little at a time, until golden and bubbling. Add liquid from slow cooker a little at a time, whisking constantly, until smooth and thickened. Stir in brown sugar and return chicken, onions, and cherries to the slow cooker.

Serve chicken mixture over noodles.
thesoupfairy: (Default)
Easy Chicken Noodle Soup

One of my many chicken noodle soups. I had planned to make chili for dinner tonight, but my husband wasn't in the mood for chili. I plan our meals pretty carefully, but it's pretty easy to pull the ingredients for this out of my freezer and cupboard anytime.

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Servings: 8

Ingredients
  • 6 chicken bouillon cubes
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 stalks celery, sliced thinly
  • 4 small carrots, sliced thinly
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled but left whole
  • 3/4 cup frozen corn, thawed
  • 1/2 lb wide egg noodles (or whatever pasta shape makes you happy), cooked about 1 minute less than the shortest time on the package directions
  • salt, pepper, and dill to taste

Directions

Fill your good-sized soup pot (preferably with a good heavy bottom) about half-full of water. Add bouillon cubes, chicken breasts, onions, celery, carrots, and garlic. Bring to a boil. Lower heat to a high simmer and cook until chicken is done and tender, and vegetables are softened. Remove chicken from pot, dice, and return. Add corn and noodles and season to taste.

Simmer a few more minutes until heated through.
thesoupfairy: (Default)
Immediately after dinner last night, we went to a friend's house for her birthday (for which I made this cake). I didn't have time to get these recipes posted, so here they are a tiny bit late. :)

Pesto-Topped Chicken Breasts

Delicious and tender and perfectly flavored! This takes just a tiny amount of pesto - most pesto recipes make pretty large quantities by comparison.

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • cooking spray

  • 4 teaspoons pine nuts

  • 1/4 cup packed fresh basil leaves

  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan

  • salt & pepper to taste

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts


Directions

Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray a casserole dish with cooking spray.

Place pint nuts in food processor with S-blade. Pulse a few times. Add basil and pulse a few more times. Add garlic and pulse a few times again. Now, with processor running, add olive oil in a constant fine stream. Stop to scrape down the bowl with a spatula. Add the cheese and pulse again until blended. Add a pinch of salt and black pepper to taste.

Place chicken breasts in prepared casserole dish. Divide pesto evenly among chicken breasts, spreading on top of each. Cover dish with foil and bake 45 minutes.

When oven timer goes off, turn off the oven but leave the chicken in while you make the fettuccine.




Creamy Fettuccine

This is delicious and lovely for a light lunch all on its own, or as a side dish or even a vegetarian main dish.

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 11 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • 1/2 pound fettuccine

  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted

  • 3/4 cup ricotta

  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • 1 Roma tomato, diced

  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil leaves, cut into ribbons

  • 1/4 cup fresh baby spinach leaves, cut into ribbons

  • salt & pepper to taste


Directions

Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, combine melted butter and ricotta. Add Parmesan and mix well. Toss with tomato, basil, and spinach. Add salt and pepper to taste. Toss with drained but still hot pasta.
thesoupfairy: (Default)
Peppery Artichoke Pitas

These are my husband's favorite dinner - if I don't make them once a week, he complains I'm not making them often enough. Fortunately, it's pretty easy to keep the ingredients on hand all the time. The original recipe was vegetarian - but my husband thinks he needs meat at every meal. <grins> I've added other veggies in the past with great success - sliced fresh mushrooms, diced or sliced red bell pepper, sliced red onion, etc.

Sometimes we serve these all by themselves - there's protein, veggies, and bread. Sometimes with a pasta salad, coleslaw, or chips on the side. What would you serve them with?

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 30-45 minutes if cooking the chicken, otherwise none
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts (cook them as directed here or just use leftover ones, even canned chicken will work)

  • 2 chicken bouillon cubes

  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon Spike or similar seasoning blend

  • 1 can great northern beans, rinsed well and drained

  • 1 can quartered artichokes, rinsed well and drained

  • 1/2 cup torn spinach leaves

  • 1/4 cup creamy garlic or Caesar salad dressing

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • 4 pita rounds


Directions

If you're using chicken and it's not already cooked, put your chicken breasts in a saucepan with enough water to cover. Add the bouillon, garlic powder, and Spike. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a high simmer, and cook until chicken is done in the middle and tender enough to shred easily.

Remove chicken from water and either dice or shred the chicken. In a large bowl, toss chicken with remaining ingredients except pitas. Taste and adjust salt, pepper, and salad dressing.

Cut the top 1 to 1-1/2 inches off one of the pita rounds. Very gently open the pocket of bread. Dice the piece of pita you cut off. Spoon the salad into the pita, filling about halfway. Put in the diced pita pieces, then fill the rest of the way with salad. Repeat with each pita.
thesoupfairy: (chili)
Chicken Tortilla Soup

I'll be putting this in the crockpot in a few hours. I'm willing to bet that my husband and son will eat a bowl right after school, and another for dinner!

Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 4 hours
Servings: 8

Ingredients
  • 4 cups chicken broth (or 4 cups water + 4 chicken bouillon cubes

  • 4 medium boneless skinless chicken breasts

  • 2 cups frozen corn, thawed

  • 1 can (14ish ounces) diced tomatoes or tomato puree

  • 1 can (10 ounces) diced tomatoes with green chiles ("Ro-Tel")

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon chili powder

  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne powder

  • 8 white or yellow corn tortillas (6 inch size), cut into 1/4-inch strips


Directions

In a large saucepan, bring broth to a boil. Add chicken and reduce to a simmer. Cook 20 minutes. While chicken is simmering, assemble remaining ingredients (except tortillas) in large slow cooker.

Remove chicken from broth, allow to cool enough to handle, and dice. Measure broth and add water if necessary to return to 4 cups. Add broth and chicken to slow cooker. Cover and cook on low heat for 4 hours.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Place the tortilla strips on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 5 minutes; turn. Bake 5 minutes longer. Discard bay leaf from soup. Serve with tortilla strips.
thesoupfairy: (Default)
This is my family's favorite dinner. Easy-peasy, too.

Sour Cream Chicken

The original recipe that inspired this came from my ex-husband's grandmother, who made it with pork chops. It's good that way, too.

Cook: 40 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • 2 cups chicken stock (or 2 cups water + 2 bouillon cubes)

  • 1-2 teaspoons lemon pepper seasoning (to taste)

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

  • 8 oz container sour cream

  • 2 tablespoons flour


Directions

Bring stock to a boil in large heavy skillet with good lid. Add lemon pepper and chicken breasts. Lower heat to a high simmer and cook, covered, 30 minutes.

Carefully remove chicken from skillet. Check for doneness (juices run clear when pierced to center of breast), simmer longer if needed.

Stir flour into sour cream until uniformly blended. Whisk into simmering broth until smooth. Continue whisking a few minutes until sauce begins to thicken nicely.

Return chicken breasts to sauce and simmer 10 more minutes, uncovered.




Glazed Carrots

So delicious. Like candy, really.

Cook: 25 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter

  • 1 cup water

  • 1/3 cup (packed) brown sugar

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1 pound carrots (baby, left whole or regular, scrubbed or peeled and chopped)


Directions

Combine butter, water, and brown sugar in heavy-bottomed saucepan. Heat over medium-high heat until butter and sugar melt. Add carrots and simmer 25 minutes or until carrots are softened and liquid is mostly evaporated.




Garlic Couscous

Israeli couscous (ptitim) is my preference over other types of couscous. It's larger and has a lovely texture.

Cook: 10 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients
  • 2 cups chicken broth (or 2 cups water + 2 chicken bouillon cubes)

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1-1/2 cups Israeli couscous

  • 8 cloves garlic, peeled but left whole

  • Bragg's Liquid Aminos or salt to taste

  • olive oil


Directions

Bring broth and pepper to a boil. Meantime toast couscous slightly in a dry skillet until it smells nutty. Add couscous and garlic to boiling broth, lower heat slightly, and boil 10 minutes or to desired texture.

Drain if liquid hasn't all been absorbed. Rinse if desired. Stir in Bragg's or salt and olive oil to taste.
thesoupfairy: (Default)
Coconut Curry Chicken

Rave reviews!

Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 5 hours
Servings: 6

Ingredients
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed

  • 1 small onion, chopped

  • 2 stalks celery, sliced

  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped

  • 1 Anaheim chili pepper, seeded and chopped

  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped

  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces

  • 1-1/2 cups coconut milk

  • 1 chicken bouillon cube

  • 4 teaspoons curry powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

  • 3 cups water

  • 1-1/2 cups uncooked white or brown rice

  • 1 tablespoon butter

  • 1 tablespoon flour

  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder

  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions

  • raisins or cranberries and/or chopped peanuts to garnish


Directions


Toss potatoes, onion, celery, peppers, and garlic together in a large slow cooker. In a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray, brown chicken on all sides.

Transfer to slow cooker. In a glass measuring cup, heat coconut milk and bouillon cube in microwave, 2-4 minutes, until bouillon cube begins to dissolve. Whisk in curry, salt, and pepper; pour over chicken. Cover and cook on low for 5 hours.

Bring water to a boil in a saucepan with a good lid. Add rice and lower heat to the lowest possible simmer. Cover immediately, and do not uncover or stir until the timer goes off: 15 minutes for white rice, 40-45 minutes for brown rice. Remove from heat, uncover, and fluff rice with a fork.

Meanwhile, a few minutes before rice is ready, remove chicken and vegetables from slow cooker to serving platter with a slotted spoon. Pour cooking liquid off into a measuring cup with a pour spout. Melt butter in a small saucepan and whisk in flour a very small amount at a time, continuing to whisk to a smooth paste. Add a very small amount of chicken cooking liquid, whisking constantly to make sure there are no lumps. Continue adding liquid in small amounts and whisking until all liquid has been incorporated and sauce is thick and smooth.

Serve chicken and sauce with rice; garnish with green onions, raisins or cranberries, coconut, and peanuts.
thesoupfairy: (spices)
Creamy Chicken Pasta

My casserole-hating son liked it!!

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Bake: 35 minutse
Servings: 8

Ingredients
  • canola oil cooking spray

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked & cubed

  • 2 teaspoons olive or vegetable oil

  • 1/2 medium onion, diced

  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1/2 bag frozen cut spinach (not the kind that's frozen into a brick)

  • 1 pound extra-wide egg noodles or other similarly sized/shaped pasta

  • 1 can mushroom pieces and stems

  • 2 eggs

  • 3/4 cup heavy cream

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

  • 8 oz Swiss cheese, grated

  • 8 oz sour cream

  • 1/4-1/2 cup grated Parmesan


Directions

If your chicken breasts aren't cooked yet, you can simmer them in water for about 30-40 minutes or wrap them in foil and bake them at 350°F for 45 minutes. (The latter will make them more tender.) This is not included in the times posted at the beginning of the recipe.

Preheat oven to 350°F and spray a 9x13" casserole dish with cooking spray.

Put water on to boil and cook noodles according to package directions. Stir frozen spinach into cooking water just before draining noodles.

While water is coming to a boil, heat oil in skillet and sauté onion, red pepper, and garlic until onions are translucent. Stir together diced chicken, onion-pepper mixture, noodles & spinach, and mushrooms.

In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, heavy cream, salt and pepper. Stir in grated Swiss and sour cream. Mix well with the chicken-noodle-veggie mixture.

Spread in prepared casserole dish and cover with foil. Bake 30 minutes.

Heat broiler. Remove foil, sprinkle top with Parmesan, and place under broiler until Parmesan is bubbly.
thesoupfairy: (chili)
Perfect for this chilly windy evening.

Chicken Chili

You can make this with a pound of browned ground beef, turkey, venison, whatever meat you like in your chili. (Of course, you might change the broth/stock from chicken to beef or whatever to match the meat you use.) Or make it without meat (and with veg stock) for a vegetarian version - I invented this chili recipe when I was vegetarian. You can add TVP or some other meat substitute if you like, but it's not really necesssary. The chili is plenty good without it.

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Servings: 6

Ingredients
  • 1 pound chicken (I use two large breasts)

  • 2 tablespoons oil

  • 1 onion, diced

  • 2-3 stalks celery, diced

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 bell pepper, any color you like, diced

  • 2-3 carrots, diced

  • 2 Anaheim chile peppers, diced

  • 2 jalapeño peppers, diced

  • 2 tablespoons chili powder

  • 1 tablespoon cumin powder

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 1 cup chicken broth

  • 2 cans pinto beans

  • 16 oz can tomato sauce

  • 15 oz can diced tomatoes

  • 1-1/2 cups frozen corn, thawed


Directions

Put chicken in a soup pot with enough water to cover well (you want them to be able to float rather than sitting on the bottom of the pan). Bring to a boil and cook until done - about 15-20 minutes.

Meanwhile, chop all your veggies.

Remove chicken and dice or shred. Heat oil in soup pot and add chicken and veggies. Cook until onions are translucent and carrots start to soften. Add spices and stir for 30 seconds. Add broth, beans, tomatoes, and corn. Bring to a boil, lower to a simmer, and cook 30 minutes or so, stirring often, until a bit thickened and the flavors have all blended nicely.

Serve with whatever "fixins" you like with chili - we like corn chips, grated cheese, sour cream, diced onions...
thesoupfairy: (desserts)
This is my husband's celebration dinner - he attended his first day back in school yesterday!

Chicken Tacos

This cooks up in the crockpot all day for perfectly tender, delicious chicken taco filling with almost no effort.

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 5-6 hours
Servings: 6

Ingredients
  • 1-1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts

  • 1 white or yellow onion, diced

  • 1 bell pepper, diced (I used a red bell because the green ones hurt my husband's stomach, but use any color)

  • 1-2 Anaheim peppers, diced

  • 1-2 Jalapeño peppers, diced

  • 4-6 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1/4 cup lime juice

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder

  • 1 tablespoon cumin

  • 1 cup frozen corn, thawed

  • 1 cup chunky salsa

  • flour tortillas, corn tortillas, or crispy taco shells

  • sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese and shredded lettuce


Directions

Place the chicken in a large slow cooker. Top with onion and peppers. Combine lime juice, chili powder, and cumin; pour over chicken. Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours or until chicken is tender.

Remove chicken and shred with two forks and return to the pot. Stir in corn and salsa. Cover and cook on low another 30 minutes or until heated through.

Serve in warmed tortillas with sour cream, cheese and lettuce if desired.




Spanish Rice

This rice is a perfect accompaniment to Mexican entrees such as tacos or enchiladas. Browning the rice before cooking it in the stock is essential. This rice will be best if made with homemade chicken stock, but use canned stock or bouillon if you must.

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 onion, diced

  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 cups long-grain white rice

  • 3 cups chicken stock

  • 14-oz can diced tomatoes, drained, or 1 cup diced fresh tomatoes

  • pinch of oregano

  • small pinch of saffron threads

  • 1 teaspoon salt


Directions

In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Brown rice in oil until it smells nutty. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until onions are softened.

In a separate saucepan, bring stock to a simmer. Add tomatoes, oregano, saffron, and salt. Add rice and onion mixture to stock and return to a simmer. Cover and lower heat to a very low simmer. Cook 15 minutes without lifting the lid. Turn off heat and let sit covered for 5 minutes before fluffing with a fork.




Cuatro Leches (Four Milks) Cake

This sumptuously rich moist cake must be planned ahead, because it needs to chill for at least 4 hours. But it is not difficult to make at all.

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Chill: 4 hours or more
Servings: 12 servings

Ingredients
  • butter & flour for the pan

  • 2 cups (sifted) unbleached/all-purpose flour

  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt

  • 6 eggs, at room temperature, separated

  • 1-1/4 cups sugar

  • 1/2 cup whole milk

  • 3 teaspoons dark rum

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 2 cans sweetened condensed milk

  • 1 can evaporated milk

  • 1-1/2 cups heavy (whipping) cream


Directions

Heat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9 x 13 baking pan with butter and dust with flour.

In a small bowl mix dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, and salt). Set aside.

In a large bowl, with an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form, around 3 minutes. Add the sugar in a gradual stream, continuing to beat to soft peaks. Add the egg yolks one at a time, beating each in before adding the next.

Add one-third of the flour mixture, then one-third of the milk, beating after each addition. Repeat twice. Add rum and vanilla and beat again until smooth.

Pour into baking pan and bake until golden, about 30-35 minutes. Place cake aside for 20-30 minutes to cool. (Avoid cool breezes, though, as the hot cake will fall if it cools too quickly!)

Whisk together one can of sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk and heavy cream in a bowl. Using a knife, poke holes all over the top of the cake and slowly pour the milk mixture over it bit by bit until it is all used. Cover the cake in plastic wrap and set aside to let cool completely. Once cool, refrigerate at least 4 hours.

While the cake is chilling, remove the label from the final can of sweetened condensed milk. Put it into a large pot filled with water. Bring to a boil and continue boiling, covered, for 2 hours. Be sure the water level in the pot stays at least 1 inch above the can throughout the boiling time, to avoid risk of the can exploding. Remove the can with tongs and allow to stand and cool. Spread over cake before serving. (Two hours should produce a pourable caramel sauce. If it is too thick, cook for a shorter time in the future. If you want it thicker, cook a longer time. 3.5 hours gives a beautiful thick pudding-consistency caramel.)

Note: While you're cooking your caramel, you might as well add a few more cans to your pot. You can store the unopened cans on the shelf as long as you would the original product, then use them next time you decide to have ice cream night!
thesoupfairy: (Default)
Tonight's Dinner: Rosemary Cashew Chicken with Pasta and Sauteed Grape Tomatoes


Rosemary Cashew Chicken

Super-easy to do in your slow cooker/Crockpot. This is delicious, really. Truly.

Cook: 5 hours
Servings: 6

Ingredients
  • item

  • 3 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts

  • 1 white onion, sliced very thinly

  • 1/2 cup orange juice concentrate, thawed

  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, snipped (use 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed, if you can't get fresh)

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • dash or two of cayenne/habañero powder


  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 2 tablespoons unbleached/all purpose flour

  • 1/2 cup cashews (pieces or whole, as you like)

  • 1 pound pasta - I used rotini because it's what I had on hand - cooked according to package directions


Directions

Place chicken in the bottom of your slow cooker. If you've thawed it from frozen, make sure it's fully thawed before putting it into the slow cooker. Cover with thinly sliced onion. Combine orange juice concentrate, rosemary, salt and cayenne; pour over chicken and onions. Cover and cook on low head for 5 hours or until chicken juices run clear. Remove the chicken to a serving platter. Strain out the onions with a slotted spoon and top chicken with them. Keep warm.

In a saucepan, melt butter. Whisk in flour, a little at a time, until you have a thick, smooth paste. Add the cooking liquid from the slow cooker a little at a time, whisking all the while, until you have a thick, smooth sauce. Stir in cashews and pour over chicken. Serve with pasta on the side.

Sautéed Grape Tomatoes

So delicious! This is prepared slightly differently than the version in my cookbook. Comparing them might help those of you who've mentioned that you can follow a recipe but you don't know how to improvise. In this version, I used butter for the oil, green onions, and rosemary. This may seem like a small 6 servings, but these are really rich and delicious - a filling serving can be pretty small.

Be sure to pick over your grape tomatoes - I often find a few moldy ones in the bottom of the container.

Cook: 5 minutes
Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon butter

  • 6 green onions, sliced (white and green parts)

  • 2 pints grape tomatoes

  • 1/3 cup water

  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary

  • salt, pepper, and a dash of cayenne (to taste)


Directions

Melt butter in skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté tomato and onion until onion wilts. Add water, bring to a simmer, and cook, covered, for 5 minutes. Uncover and raise heat back to medium-high. Cook, stirring often, until tomatoes have softened and water has evaporated. Stir in rosemary and seasonings just before removing from heat.
thesoupfairy: (Default)
The Soup Fairy

October 2012

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