Thursday, January 31, 2013

Roasted Asian Vegetables

Prepared January 30, 2013 as a side dish for grilled Asian-style cornish game hens.
1 bunch green onions, cut into 1 inch lengths
1 c snow peas
2 c baby bok choy, diagonally cut
2 c mini sweet peppers, cut into rings
1/2 c enoki mushrooms, cut into 1 inch lengths
2 to 3 T vegetable oil
1 t toasted sesame oil
1/4 t garlic powder
1/2 t sugar
1 T balsamic vinegar
2 T soy sauce
Preheat toaster oven to 400 degrees F (204 C). Toss the vegetables in a 8x8 inch metal baking pan with vegetable oil and sesame oil. Then mix in the other seasonings. Roast for 20 minutes undisturbed until tops are lightly browned. Mix and serve over couscous. Serves 4 to 6 as part of a meal.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Hot Chicken and Cheese Sandwich

This recipe extends the tuna melt recipe posted earlier. It's versatile, making it easy to combine various meats, cheeses, spreads, and condiments.
1 large slice of hearty white bread, such as a rustic boule
1 oz Swiss cheese, sliced
3 oz chicken, sliced thin (boiled, roast, or deli slices)
1 oz ripe tomato, thinly sliced
1 oz grated cheddar cheese
2 T piquant mustard
Heat a toaster oven on broil for five minutes. Place the bread on a pan and toast until nicely browned. Apply spread, then the Swiss cheese, then the meat dressed with more of the piquant spread, followed by the tomato slices and topped with the grated cheese. Return to the oven for about 5 minute more, until cheese is melted and browned. Variations: top with parmesan cheese, replace the Swiss cheese with another mild cheese, substitute a horseradish spread for the mustard, use a tangy herb cheese in place of the Swiss, use other meats such as turkey or pork. Serves 1 or 2.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Ingredients: Boiled Chicken and Chicken Stock

Prepared January 23, 2013. The simple recipe yelds several pounds of recipe-ready boneless boiled chicken and three pints of rich chicken stock. And treats for a cat or dog.
1 4 lb chicken
water sufficient to cover
1 T salt
4 sprigs of fresh thyme
4 cloves of garlic, peeled and lightly crushed
Set aside the packet of organ meats. Rinse the chicken inside and out under cold running water. Remove and discard any visible fat, or make into schmaltz. Place the chicken, breast side up, in a deep pot and cover with cold water. Rinse the neck, heart and gizzards  and add to the pot, setting the liver aside for another use. Add the salt, thyme, and garlic. Bring to a boil, lower heat to a fast simmer, and cook partly covered for 30 minutes. Using tongs, turn the chicken breast side down, replace cover, and simmer another 15 minutes. Take off heat, cover tightly, and let cool undisturbed at room temperature. When cool, remove from stock to a colander set in a bowl to drain. Remove and discard the skin and any visible fat. Break the chicken apart, harvesting largest possible pieces of meat from the bones. Return the bones and trimmings to the stock. Chill the meat tightly covered for later use. Return the stock, bones, and trimmings to a boil and cook until reduced about half. Pour stock through a strainer to remove solids, and freeze in small lots for later use. Suggested use for breast meat and stock is chicken enchiladas in sour cream-chili sauce.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Chicken Canzanese

Not DrDaddy's recipe but too good not to share. It's the spicy flavor profile that makes the dish so memorable. From America's Test Kitchen.
1 T olive oil
2 oz lean salt pork or pancetta, cut into 1/4 -inch cubes
4 garlic cloves, sliced thin
8 chicken thighs (about 3 pounds), trimmed of excess fat and skin
ground black pepper
1 T unbleached all-purpose flour
2 c dry white wine
1 c chicken stock
4 whole cloves
1 sprig fresh rosemary, leaves separated, stem reserved
12 whole fresh sage leaves
2 bay leaves
1/4 to 1/2 t red pepper flakes
2 T butter
1 T fresh lemon juice
salt & pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 C), and adjust rack to lower-middle position. Heat 1 t oil in 12-inch heavy stainless steel skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add pork and cook, stirring frequently until just starting to brown, about 3 minutes. Add garlic slices and cook, stirring frequently until garlic is golden brown, about 1 1/2 minutes. Transfer garlic and pork to small bowl and set aside. Do not rinse pan. Increase heat to medium-high; add remaining 2 t oil and heat until just smoking. Dry chicken thoroughly with paper towels and season with ground black pepper. Add chicken, skin side down, and cook without moving until well browned, 5-8 minutes. Using tongs, turn chicken and brown on second side, about 5 minutes longer.

Transfer chicken to large plate. Discard all but 2 T fat from pan. Sprinkle flour over fat and cook, stirring constantly for 1 minute. Slowly add wine and broth; bring to simmer, scraping bottom of pan with wooden spoon to loosen browned bits. Cook until liquid is slightly reduced, 3 minutes. Stir in cloves, rosemary stem, sage leaves, bay leaves, red pepper flakes, and reserved pork and garlic. Nestle chicken into liquid, skin side up (skin should be above surface of liquid), and bake, uncovered, until meat offers no resistance when poked with fork but is not falling off bones, about 1 hour 15 minutes. (Check chicken after 15 minutes; broth should be barely bubbling. If bubbling vigorously, reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees F (150 C).) Using tongs, transfer chicken to serving platter and tent with foil. Remove and discard sage leaves, rosemary stem, cloves, and bay leaves. Place skillet over high heat and bring sauce to boil. Cook until sauce is reduced to 1 1/4 cups, 2-5 minutes. Off heat, stir in minced rosemary, lemon juice and butter. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Pour sauce around chicken and serve. Suggested sides: roasted baby bok choy and couscous.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Creamy Savory Grits

Conceived Jan 18, 2013. This method, unlike the traditional method, combines the liquid and the grain when cold and prevents lumps. Bye-Bye, lumpy grits. Using two kinds of corn gives more textural contrast but is optional.
1 c chicken stock (more if needed)
1 c light cream
1/2 t salt
2 T butter, divided
1/4 c stone-ground yellow grits
1/4 c stone-ground white grits
1/4 t ground black pepper
Stir stock, cream, salt, and grits together in a saucepan over medium-high heat until it begins to steam. Add a tablespoon of butter, lower heat to medium, and continue stirring until the grits begin to bubble and thicken, about 10 minutes total cooking time. Take off heat, stir in remaining butter and the pepper, cover, and let stand 10 minutes to thicken. Add stock if needed to adjust thickness, and taste for seasoning. Excellent side dish at breakfast or as the basis for shrimp and grits, a low-country classic. Variation: chop 2 pieces of crispy toaster oven bacon and stir in with butter and black pepper. Serves 4 to 6.

Toaster Oven Tuna Melt, Jersey Diner Style

Tuna Melt in Toaster Pan

Prepared January 20, 2013 for a late-night Sunday supper. Adapted from an online recipe. This dish begs the question of whether an open-face dish can be a Sandwich. The Earl of Which asks of that, 'Who cares?'
2 slices Jewish-style rye bread (Arnold's™ is good)
2 oz Swiss cheese, thinly sliced
6 oz tuna salad
2 oz ripe tomato, sliced
2 oz grated sharp cheddar
Preheat the toaster oven on the broil setting. Place the bread on a pan, place the pan as far below the element as possible, and toast until the bread is nicely browned. Place slices of Swiss cheese on the hot bread, pile on the tuna salad, the tomato slices, and top with the grated cheddar, and return to the oven. Continue broiling for about 5 minutes longer, until cheddar is melted, bubbling, and browned. Serves 2.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Quick Soup with Salad Shrimp and Vegetables

Prepared January 17, 2013 for a late supper, recovering after a Charleston trip. Just Jon and Dr Daddy.
about 2 T vegetable oil
2 c mini sweet peppers, sliced into thick rings
6 oz mushrooms, sliced thickly
2 c baby bok choy, sliced diagonally
2 t garlic, minced
1/8 t crushed red pepper
4 c hot seafood or chicken stock
2 c hot water
1/2 c frozen petite garden peas, thawed in cold water and drained
1 4-oz package of ready-to-eat frozen salad shrimp
1 c bean sprouts
1/2 c cilantro, coarsely chopped
2 t roasted sesame oil
2 T soy sauce
1 t salt
1 t sugar
1 T fish sauce
2 T rice wine
1 T rice vinegar
1 t lime juice
1 T mushroom powder
steamed white rice
Heat 1 T oil in a 4-qt saucepan until beginning to smoke. Add the peppers and sauté for about 3 minutes until lightly colored. Add the mushrooms, continuing to cook until they darken. Add a bit more oil with each addition. Add the bok choy, cooking until it softens a bit, and then the garlic and crushed red pepper. Add the hot stock and water, and bring to a fast simmer. Stir in the seasonings and continue to cook for five minutes. Add the peas and the shrimp and cook gently for 5 minutes more. Adjust the seasonings. Serve over warm steamed rice and garnish with sprouts and cilantro. Serves 2 to 3.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Quick and Easy Chicken and Dressing Casserole

Created January 2, 2012. A local market had chicken tenders on sale. A Desperation Dinner.

1 pkg Stove Top™ Dressing for Chicken
1 c water
1/4 c soft margarine
1 lb chicken tenders, tendons removed, or chicken breasts cut into 1-inch strips
1 10-1/2 oz can chicken gravy (Campbell's™ is good)
1/4 c sliced green onions
1/2 t dry tarragon
salt and pepper
Prepare the dressing according to package directions but use less water as indicated. Place 2/3 of the hot dressing in a 1-1/2 quart covered casserole or other microwaveable vessel. Distribute one-third of the gravy over the dressing. Arrange the chicken tenders side by side in a known direction. This will make it easier to divide into serving portions. Season well with salt, pepper, and rubbed tarragon. Cover chicken with another one-third of the gravy. Top with the remaining dressing and then the remaining gravy. Sprinkle on the green onions. Cover. Microwave on 30% power (1250 watts maximum) for 25 to 30 minutes,  until temperature at center reaches 165 F (74 C). Divide into serving pieces parallel to the chicken tenders. Serves 3 or 4.