Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Caldo Chicken-Vegetable Soup in a Tomato Broth

First prepared March 7, 2016. A quick and satisfying meal that offers balanced nourishment and flavor.
2 T olive oil
2 T butter
2 lb frozen caldo vegetable mix (corn-on-the-cob nuggets, red potatoes, pearl onions, celery, carrots)
5 cups hot water
1 cup chopped tomato (fresh or frozen)
1 T chicken base
1 t salt
1 t sugar
1 cup shredded cooked chicken breast (e.g., from rotisserie chicken)
freshly ground pepper, to taste
1/4 c coarsely chopped parsley
Heat the oil and butter in a four-quart saucepan. Rinse the frozen vegetables in a mesh strainer under cold, running water for 30 seconds to refresh them, drain well, and add to the hot fat. Cook over moderate heat for five minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the water, chopped tomatoes, and seasonings, and bring to a gentle boil. Cook covered for about 15 minutes, until the potatoes test done with the tip of a knife. Stir in the cooked chicken, pepper, and parsley. Let stand 10 minutes for flavors to meld. Serves four.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Steak Fajitas

Developed March, 2016 from Internet recipes. Easy, tasty meal that takes very little time to prepare or cook.
1/4 c soy sauce
1/4 c lime juice
1/4 c vegetable oil
2 T brown sugar, packed
1 t ground cumin
1 t ground black pepper
2 t chili powder
2 t garlic, finely minced
1 lb skirt steak, trimmed of fat and membranes, and cut into two pieces
1 large red bell pepper, trimmed, and cut into 1/2-inch strips
1 medium white onion, cut into 1/2-inch segments through the poles
8 small (or 4 large) flour or corn tortillas, softened in the microwave
Toppings: guacamole, tomato salsa, pico de gallo, sour cream, grated cheese, shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes, diced chilies, salsa criolla, pickled onions, etc.
Whisk the eight marinade ingredients together in a bowl. Transfer the meat to a large zipper-lock plastic bag, and pour in half the marinade. Squeeze out the air, seal the bag, and turn to cover the meat with marinade. Put the sliced vegetables into another zipper bag with the remaining marinade. Express the air and close the bag. Put both bags on a plate and into the refrigerator. Marinade for 2 hours, turning the  bags after one hour. To roast the vegetables, preheat a heavy 8x8 inch metal pan under the broiler of a toaster oven for 5 minutes. Carefully add the vegetables along with 2 tablespoons of the marinade. Caution, it will sizzle. Roast under broiler for about 8 to 10 minutes, until they are lightly charred and softened. Transfer to a serving bowl, cover and set aside. Prepare a charcoal grill with a very hot flame. Wipe the meat dry with paper towels, and place each piece directly over the flame. Cook two to three minutes to get a good char, and then turn it over to complete the cooking, about two minutes more. Do not overcook. Tent to keep warm. Slice thinly across the grain. Serves three to four.