Sunday, May 29, 2011

Cheesy Au Gratin Potatoes

Serves 6-8

3 T butter
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1/4 C flour
1 1/2 C low-sodium chicken broth
1 C milk
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 C shredded sharp cheddar cheese (8 ounces)
26-oz bag frozen shredded hash browns
1/2 C light sour cream

3 C cornflakes, lightly crushed
2 T butter, melted

Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until the onion is softened and translucent about 5-6 minutes. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for about a minute. Combine the chicken broth and milk in a liquid measuring cup and slowly whisk in the mixture. Add the salt, pepper and thyme. Stir to combine. bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring frequently, until the mixture is slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.

Take the pot off the heat and stir in the cheese until smooth. Mix in the frozen hash browns, lifting and folding the mixture until well combined. Finally, stir in the sour cream.

In a medium bowl, toss the lgithly crushed cornflakes with the butter util evenly combined. Scoop out the potato mixture into a 9X13 inch baking dish and top with the buttered cornflakes. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes, until hot and bubbly around the edges. Let the potatoes rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Honey-Lime-Ginger Chicken

Serves 2-4 entrees (I think this is about right)

2 tsp butter, divided
2 tsp olive oil
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 2 breast halves), tenderized

1/4 cup liquid (chicken stock, water, fruit juice, herb tea, white wine, etc.)
1 heaping Tbs honey
1 tsp ginger, minced
2 large garlic cloves, minced
juice and zest of half a lime (or more)
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp soy sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Heat medium, (oven-safe) saute pan on medium high. Sprinkle chicken breasts with salt. Add 1 teaspoon butter and oil and when oil is hot, brown chicken in pan, turning once after 2 minutes.

Add all other ingredients to pan, stirring liquids with a whisk. Pan will steam and bubble vigorously. Take pan off heat and cover loosely with foil.

Bake in oven until chicken is cooked through, approximately 7-10 more minutes. Carefully take pan out of oven and transfer chicken to a plate (pan handle is HOT). Do not clean pan. Return same pan with cooking juices to the stove. Reduce sauce by boiling down liquids until thickened and shiny, about 2 minutes, whisking constantly. Remove sauce from stove and whisk remaining 1 tsp butter (to give sauce body, flavor, and shine). Serve chicken, spooning sauce over top. Garnish with lime wedge and cilantro sprig if desired.

She suggests serving it with a green salad, sliced pineapple, and steamed quinoa for an easy, healthy meal. We ate it with the quinoa which was delicious. It has a great texture and an almost earthy or nutty taste. We cooked the chicken in the crockpot ahead of time, so I don't think we got as much sauce out of it as I was expecting, but it still tasted excellent. We debated whether or not we even needed to stick the chicken in the oven the way we made it. I used chicken broth and dried, ground ginger. I used the juice of one lime but no zest, and the flavor was subtle and not overpowering.

From Miracle Pill, by Tres Prier Hatch

Beef & Broccoli with Black Bean & Garlic Sauce

Serves 2-4 (I think it easily serves 2-3 adults and 2-3 children)

2 tsp soy sauce
1 Tbs fresh ginger, minced fine, or 1 tsp dried ground ginger
2 tsp dry sherry or rice wine
1 Tbs cornstarch

Stir Fry Ingredients
3 Tbs peanut oil
1/2 lb beef, thinly sliced--use any cut of beef because the marinade will tenderize meat
2 lb broccoli, washed, florets separated from stalks and cut into 1-inch pieces
1/2 green pepper, cut into pieces
1/2 yellow onion, cut into pieces
1 cup fresh bean sprouts
2 Tbs black bean and garlic sauce (found in Asian section at grocery store)
1 Tbs oyster sauce (available in most markets)

In a small bowl combine beef with marinade ingredients. Allow meat mixture to rest at room temperature at least 10 minutes and up to 1/2 hour.

Heat oil in wok. Add beef, and chow (stir) until seared, but not cooked all the way through. Remove meat to a bowl and set aside. Without wiping out wok, add broccoli florets, green pepper, onion, and Black Bean and Garlic Sauce, and stir-fry for 2 minutes. (I added oyster sauce at this point, too. I thought she forgot about it?) Add 1 cup water and cover with lid. Simmer covered one minute or until broccoli is bright green and crisp-tender. Return beef to wok. Add bean sprouts. Stir until beef is cooked to desired doneness, mixture is shiny, and sauce is slightly thickened. Serve with rice.

From Miracle Pill, by Tres Prier Hatch

Cauliflower Soup with Chicken, Corn, & Cumin

Serves 6

1 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs cumin seeds, finely ground in spice mill or with mortar and pestle
2 lb cauliflower, trimmed into 1 inch florets
1 tsp white pepper
3 cans low-sodium chicken broth (14 oz each), or vegetable broth
1 can whole kernel corn with liquid (15.25 ounce)
28 oz canned cooked chicken chunks with liquid

Heat oil in a large pot on medium heat, until it sizzles when a cumin seed or bread crumb is dropped in it. Add ground cumin and stir 10 seconds until fragrant. Add prepared cauliflower and stir 1 minute more. Add all other ingredients and simmer on low heat until cauliflower is tender and flavors are combined, about 20 minutes. Serve with rye bread and butter.

From Miracle Pill, by Tres Prier Hatch