Thursday, March 29, 2012

sesame garlic green beans

Adapted from several recipes you too can find if you google "Sesame Garlic Green Beans"

I cannot find the original I made for Steve's birthday dinner, but it has seemed to work out okay. I am usually headlong into the rest of the meal prep and referring to a recipe isn't exactly a possibility.

Prep: ZERO
Total Cook Time: 15 minutes
Serves: Not nearly enough

1 bag of ready to steam green beans
2 tsp olive oil
2 tsp minced garlic
1 TBL sesame oil
1-2 TBL soy sauce
salt and pepper

Steam green beans until bright green.

Heat oil in saute pan, add garlic and cook 1 minute.

Add grean beans to saute pan.

Add sesame oil and toss to combine.

Cook 5-8 minutes.

Add soy sauce and toss to coat.

Cook for an additional 5 minutes until soft, but still crisp.


lemon parsley fish cakes

Found these Lemon Parsley Fish Cakes  a long time ago via my everydayfood app, courtesy of Martha
Stewart. The kids love these easy weekday friendly fish cakes. Will they eat a piece of fish? No. Serve it up like this and it disappears, plus Mom and Dad like it too. Feels fancy. I never considered flash freezing them before as it suggests on the website, but next time I plan to make a double batch and freeze half.

Prep: 20 minutes
Total Cook Time: 40 minutes  
Serves: Two Hungry Adults and two short people

1 pound fresh cod fillet

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard (I use less or I feel the flavor is a little overpowering)
6 tablespoons breadcrumbs
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
3 dashes hot sauce, such as Tabasco (I would like to add this, but to make it kid-friendly, I omit)
Coarse salt and ground pepper


1.Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place cod in a baking dish; rub with 1 tablespoon oil. Roast fish in oven until cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes. Let cool completely, then pat dry with paper towels. Flake with a fork.
(I do this part before I grab the kids, allowing it to cool while I brave the day care pick up)

2.In a large bowl, combine cod, egg, scallions, mayonnaise, lemon juice, mustard, breadcrumbs, parsley, hot sauce, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Mix gently until ingredients just hold together.
(I can usually count on one little chef to help with this part, sometimes to the point that they don't want to move onto the next step)

3.Form mixture into eight equal-size patties. Freeze on baking sheets until firm, then wrap each in plastic and store in resealable freezer bags, up to 1 month. Thaw before cooking.
(I usually make the patties and serve, but wow, great idea)

4.To serve the cakes: Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cook cakes until golden brown, about 2 minutes on each side. Serve hot.
I serve with the Citrus Butter Salad OR my new obsession Sesame Garlic Green Beans

Citrus Butter Salad

adapted from Rachel Ray's Spinach and Arugula Salad with Oranges

1 bag of Butter Lettuce (Dole Butter Bliss) or 1 head of Boston Lettuce (spun to dry)
1/2 small red onion diced

1 heaping TBL orange marmalade
pinch of salt and pepper
juice of 1 lemon
Extra Virgin Olive Oil to emulsify

Optional: 1 navel orange, peeled and sliced into discs arranged on top of tossed salad

Pour Salad into large bowl, add onions

In small bowl create dressing with whisk seasoning to taste


Add oranges and Serve

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Ryder's Turkey Chili

From Guy Fieri for Food Network Magazine

Makes 10-15 servings

10-15 dried pasilla chili peppers
4 T canola oil
1 red pepper, diced
1 green pepper, diced
1/2 jalapeño pepper, minced, seeds removed for heat
9 cloves garlic, minced
2 small red onions, diced
3 lbs. Ground turkey (thigh and breast meat)
1/3 C tomato paste
3 C tomato sauce
1 C low salt chicken stock
1 T granulated onion
2 tsp granulated garlic
3 T chili powder
2 T paprika
1 T cumin
2 tsp cayenne
Kosher salt and freaky ground pepper
3 C canned pinto beans with liquid
3 C canned kidney beans with liquid
2 C canned black beans with liquid

Shredded cheese
Sour cream
Tortilla chips

If you are using the pasilla peppers, rehydrate them for 20-30 minutes in hot water, or until soft. Remove stems and seed and dice.

Warm oil in large pot over high heat. Add pasillas, bell peppers, jalapeño, garlic, and onions and cook until carmelized, about 8 minutes.

Add turkey and gently stir, trying not to break up the meat too much. Cook until meat is no longer pink, about 5 minutes.

Add tomato paste and sauce, stir gently for 4 minutes, then add chicken broth.

Add spices.

Stir in beans and liquid.

Lower heat and cook at, uncovered, least one hour.

Garnish with cheese, sour cream and serve with chips.


I make this significantly more tame for my family. I actually remove a small portion to a small saucepan before adding the spices for the kids. I never use the pasillas or jalapeño. As much as I would enjoy it, Steve would not. It is kicked up enough without it for those who still like spice. The recipe also called for saltines on the side, which I am sure would help with the heat, but we like tortillas.

(photograph by Hallie Burton for Food Network)

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Ina's Pan Fried Onion Dip - Take II

Revisiting this a second time because I've given this recipe to people, but they often tell me they cannot acheive the same results I do. I share the recipe and then usually give the modifications I listed, but I think the pictures below will help anyone feeling dangerous enough to introduce this amazingly addictive concoction into their kitchen to acheive the same results I do each and every time.

1. Cutting. Before you even cut remove the cream cheese and sour cream from the fridge. Cut the cream cheese in half (4 oz) and put the rest back into the fridge. Instead of measuring 1/2 c. sour cream, get the very smallest container, it is about the right amount. Close enough, say. Let the cheese and cream sit there and get to room temp. Back to the onions; Cut in half, peel, cut in half again. VERY thinly slice half moons.

2. To a cold pan add oil and butter. Since I only use one onion, I use 2 T butter and "a glug" of oil. I keep the salt, pepper, and cayenne at the ready so I can add it immediately once those onions hit the pan. The last thing you want to do is scorch the onions searching for the cayenne. Please note, never use a nonstick pan to carmelize onions.

3. This is how the onions will look soaking on all that buttery, oily, cayenney goodness. I move them around over medium high heat for about 10 minutes. If you care, I use a nonstick spoonula to do this.

4. Having a cute helper that is standing dangerously close to your scorching hot pan putting his beloved "G'raffie" in danger of catching fire will keep you on your toes and prevent those onions from burning.

5. After 10 minutes, turn them down to low heat and let them carmelize to perfection for another 20 minutes. Don't forget to move them every now and again. For the recond, these are way more brown than they should be at this point. There is a lesson in this. Prepare the dip the night before the birthday party - you will be distracted by a child bleaching his onesie with bathroom cleanser and attempting to center a birthday banner. Also, the overnight will get the flavors really punched up.

6. This is after the 20 minutes. Again, way more burned than is acceptable under normal circumstances, but delish nonetheless (see aforementioned bleached onesie!). The dip was way darker, but still tasted great. A little more crunch, but no complaints. Steve ate the remaining bit this evening. He had no idea I had burned the onions, "I thought it was awesome." Lesson: this dip is hard to mess up.

8. Take your room temp cream cheese, drop it into a microwave safe mixing bowl and nuke it for about 20 seconds. When you whip it with your mixer it should be smooth and completely free of lumps. Cream cheese can be difficult to blend. Note my lovely mixer shadow.

9. Add a small container of sour cream, scoop out the mayo and pretend not to count the grams of fat you are adding. Mix together until well blended. Add onions, stir to combine. Taste to assure it will keep your guests chained to the bowl all night long.

10. Insert photo of finished product I never took here. I'll get better at this taking photos while cooking thing.

The Recipe

2 Large Onions
4 T Unsalted Butter
1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil
1/4 tsp Cayenne
1 tsp Kosher Salt
1/2 tsp Ground Pepper
4 Oz Cream Cheese
1/2 Cup Sour Cream
1/2 Cup Good Mayo
- Slice onions THIN
- Heat butter and oil in cold pan over medium heat
- Add onions and spices. Saute' 10 minutes
- Reduce heat to medium low, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes until brown and carmelized
- Mix sour cream, mayo and cream cheese
- Add cooled onions. Mix well
Serve Room Temperature
I know it is sacrilege to alter Ina's recipe, but 2 large onions was just too much for me. I find one large onion to be enough.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Five Bean Chili

From Semi Homemade With Sandra Lee

  • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • 1 (15-ounce) can light red kidney beans, drained
  • 1 (15-ounce) can dark red kidney beans, drained
  • 1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained
  • 1 (15-ounce) can butter beans, drained
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, drained
  • 2 (14 1/2-ounce) cans diced tomatoes with jalapenos
  • 2 (1 1/4 ounce) packets chili seasoning mix
  • 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • Salt and pepper
  • Suggested servings: cornbread, sour cream, cheese, chips, and fresh cilantro


In a skillet over medium-high heat, brown ground beef with the onions. Be sure to break up clumps as much as possible. Put the mixture in a slow cooker.

Add remaining ingredients and stir together. Cover and cook on high setting for 4 hours or on low for 7 to 8 hours.

Ladle into bowls and serve with your favorite chili fixings.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Gnocchi with Summer Veggies

From Everyday Food iPhone App via daily recipe

I substitute 2 bags frozen tortellini with excellent results!

1 T olive oil
2 zucchini or summer squash, quartered and sliced
2 minced garlic cloves
1 pkg frozen gnocchi (15 or 16 oz)
1/4 c fresh basil, chopped
2 T grated Pecorino Romano cheese
1 T butter
2 tsp fresh lemon juice

- In large skillet, heat oil over medium heat.
- Add squash and garlic. Season with salt and pepper.
- Cook stirring occasionally, until squash is crisp - tender, 4-5 minutes.
- Add tomatoes, cook, stirring occasionally, until juicy, about 2 minutes.

- Meanwhile in large pot of boiling salted water, cook gnocchi according to pkg directions. Reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid, drain gnocchi and transfer to skillet.

- Toss gnocchi, adding enough cooking liquid to create a sauce.

- Remove from heat and stir in basil, cheese, butter, and lemon juice.