Monday, January 18, 2010

Curry Coconut Chicken

2 lbs boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 inch chunks
1 tsp salt & pepper, to taste
1 1/2 tbls vegetable oil
2 tbls curry powder
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 (14 oz) can coconut milk
1 (14.5 oz) can (stewed) diced tomatoes
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
3 tbls sugar

Season chicken pieces with salt & pepper. Heat oil and curry powder in large skillet over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Stir in onions and garlic, cook 1 minute more. Add chicken, tossing lightly to coat with curry oil. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 7-10 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink in center and juices run clear. Pour coconut milk, tomatoes, tomato sauce, and sugar into the pan, and stir to combine. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, approx 30-40 minutes. Serve over rice.

To Freeze: Prepare according to above directions, leaving out the coconut milk. Cool and pour into bag. Have coconut milk and rice on hand for serving day.

To Serve: Thaw 24 hours in fridge. Pour chicken mixture in large skillet and add can of coconut milk. Heat until hot and well combined. Meanwhile, in saucepan bring 3 cups of water to boil. Add entire contents of rice bag. Remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Serve chicken mixture over rice. (Note: if serving only half of the recipe be sure to only add half the coconut milk and make only half of the rice, which is 1 1/2 cups of water and 1 1/2 cups of rice).

Butternut Squash Soup

3 tablespoons canola oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 butternut squashes, about 3 lbs total weight, halved lengthwise and seeded
(I used a combination ratio of 2/3 butternut, 1/3 sweet dumpling squash)
1 large Granny Smith apple or Anjou or Bosc pear, peeled, halved and cored
2 yellow onions, quartered
6 cups chicken stock or reduced-sodium chicken broth
¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
Salt and freshly ground pepper
½ cup half-and-half or ½ cup plain yogurt
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
¼ cup chopped fresh sage

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.

In a small bowl, stir together the oil and vinegar. Brush the cut sides of the squash, the apple halves and the onions with the oil mixture. Place the squash and apple halves, cut side-down, and the onions on the prepared baking sheet. Bake, turning the fruit and vegetables twice, until tender and lightly browned, about 30 minutes for the apple and 45 -50 minutes for the vegetables. Transfer to a cutting board and let cool. Scoop out the flesh from the squash halves, discarding the peel. Coarsely chop the apple and onions.

Transfer the squash flesh, onions, and apple to a large saucepan and add the stock and nutmeg. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and then reduce the heat to medium. Simmer until very tender, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool. In a blender, puree the soup in batches until smooth (or use a hand blender in the pan as I did). Return the soup to the pan, stir in the half-and-half, season to taste with salt and pepper, and heat through over medium heat. (The soup can be prepared up to 2 days in advance and stored, tightly covered, in the refrigerator).

Just before serving, melt the butter in a small frying pan over medium heat. Add the sage and sauté until the butter browns lightly and the sage is crisp. Ladle the soup into warmed bowls and garnish with the sage butter.

Serves 8-10

Freezer method:

Prepare as directed and freeze flat in gallon freezer bag. When ready to use, thaw completely, either 24+ hrs in refrigerator or in pan of cool water. Poor thawed soup into saucepan and warm over low heat. Once warmed, prepare the sage butter and serve as directed.

Williams-Sonoma Thanksgiving Entertaining


3 pounds beef, cut into large cubes
1 cup lemon juice
1 1/2 tablespoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons dried oregano
3 cloves garlic, minced

Combine lemon juice, salt, pepper, olive oil, oregano and garlic. Place the beef into the mixture and marinate overnight in the refrigerator. Grill the meat on skewers.

Serve with sides of orzo and roasted vegetables or on a flat bread wrap.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Pork Chops with Asiago-Mushroom French Bread Topping

6 (1" thick) pork chops
3 tbls butter, divided
1 1/2 cup small cubes of French bread
1 cup chopped mushrooms
2 tbls minced onion
1/2 tsp dried rosemary, crumbled
1/2 cup crumbled Asiago cheese (2 oz)

Melt 1 tbls butter in heavy skillet over medium heat. Add bread and saute until golden, about 10 minutes. Transfer to medium bowl. Melt 1 tbls butter in same skillet; add mushrooms, onion, and rosemary. Saute until onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Add to bread. Refrigerate 15 minutes to cool before adding cheese. Mix cheese into bread mixture; season with salt and pepper.

Heat 1.5 tsp butter and 1.5 tsp olive oil in skillet over high heat. Season pork chops with salt and pepper. Brown pork chops in skillet 1 minute each side; turn heat to low, cover with lid, and cook chops for 4-5 minutes each side. Top with Asiago-Mushroom French Bread Mixture.

*Can also use as a stuffing with a pork loin roast, following directions of any general stuffed pork roast of the same size.

To Freeze: Prepare topping according to above directions. Cool and put in quart size baggie. Individually wrap uncooked pork chops in plastic wrap and place in quart baggie. Put both pork chops and stuffing in gallon size baggie; freeze.

To Prepare: Thaw 24 hours in fridge. Gently heat Asiago-Mushroom stuffing in small skillet. Meanwhile, prepare pork chops according to above directions. Top with heated stuffing.