Thursday, 29 January 2009

Chicken with cranberry and orange sauce

2 chicken breasts
1/2 c orange juice (with bits)
1 tsp brown sugar
1/4 c Craisins
1 tsp Chinese Five Spice
2 tbsp olive oil

Place all the ingredients in ziploc bag and allow to marinate at least 4 hours in the refrigerator. I left mine 6 hours, you could probably do it overnight also. Preheat oven to 325F, Place ingredients of ziploc bag in oven proof dish, cover with aluminium foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 5-10 mins. Take leftover juice and put in pan and reduce down (simmer bubbling) for appx 15 minutes over medium heat. Turn heat off, stir in a teaspoon of butter and pour "sauce" over chicken. This was delicious.

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Risotto with chorizo, split pea and spinach

Tonight I am making the risotto with chorizo, split pea and spinach. I have precooked the split peas and chorizo and have them waiting for later when I will actually make the risotto. My spinach is all washed and ready to be chopped up and added at the last minute along with parmesan cheese. I hope it turns out good I had a chorizo sausage and thought why not put that great flavor in risotto. Fingers crossed it turns out okay.


1 chorizo sausage (I chopped half of it up and pan fried it, careful not to burn) reserve oil

1/4 cup split peas, pre cooked and set aside for use later

5 ounce Arborio rice

1 tbsp margarine

1 tbsp olive oil

1/4 c grated parmesan

2 cups broth, chicken or vegetable (I used chicken)

2 shallots

1 large handful chopped spinach

Place olive oil and oil from cooking chorizo in pan and stir fry shallots until cooked through. I like mine a little caramelized. Add in the rice and stir to coat. When bubbling add one ladle of the broth and continue to simmer stirring occasionally until it absorbs most of it then keep adding until it's all absorbed. When you add your last bit of broth keep stirring and when the rice has about 3 minutes to go add in the split peas and chorizo. I used yellow split peas but green would have been prettier I think. I used what I had. Then add in your margarine, chopped spinach and parmesan and stir to mix and serve.

Eddoes ~ a variety of Taro

A couple of weeks ago our local grocery store had something called Eddoes. Me being me I had to try them and I was not disappointed at all. They are a member of the Taro family. They are a small root vegetable, with an intense flavor. From what I read it said use them just like you would any potato or yam. I decided first to make mashed eddoe with some of mine. I cooked it in boiling, salted water after I peeled it just like you would a potato. You will notice when you peel it, it begins to feel kind of slick. Almost, like you are challenged to hold on to the slippery little stinker. But I did and chopped them up and into the pan it went. I will admit it got away from me a couple of times though. Then after I cooked it for appx. 15 minutes or until done. Then I drained them, added butter and milk and mashed them up. They make a very sticky thick eddoe mash. It's not bad. But for me it was different. A good different. Later, after I had already made these I read where you can just wash them, then boil them and peel them after they are done. Either way will work. With my last half of them I pan fried them in a little sunflower oil. They just don't brown. They don't no matter how hard I tried. I even added a little butter but they stubbornly refuse to brown. And I have to say an enemic looking fried eddoe wasn't the most appetizing. I think I'll stick to eddoe mash or maybe fritters.

Mooli aka Diakon Radish

Last Saturday when my husband and I went to the veggie market I saw what I thought was a Diakon Radish. I bought it and came home with my newest treasure and looked it up on the internet and it was a Japanese Diakon Radish aka as Mooli. Diakon meaning big root in Japanese and Mooli meaning radish in Hindu. It's called by many different names in different places. I lovingly call it Mooli. And it's a wonderful, versatile vegetable. I used it first in a chicken stir fry. When fried it takes on a little mild tartness. I then used it today in a salad along with lettuce, olives, smoked cheese, mooli and my homemade dressing. It was much better raw than cooked I thought. It has the texture to me of a water chestnut. I will definitely be buying some more of these. The one I bought was large and I want to try a smaller one to see if the taste is any different. Another advantage to the Mooli is if you eat three ounces it's only about 19 calories.

Sunday, 11 January 2009

Glazed Balsamic Chicken

Last week we had this chicken dish I got from Southern Food which you can find here .

This easy chicken is quickly cooked in the skillet then, it's baked with a tasty glaze. Serve this flavorful chicken with rice and green beans or peas for a delicious everyday family meal. I actually cut the recipe in half for us and it worked great. A definite will make again recipe.

Cook Time: 25 minutes
· 4 to 6 thin chicken breast halves (thinly sliced or pounded to about 1/2-inch thickness)
· Salt and pepper
· 1 tablespoon flour
· 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
· 4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
· 4 tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate (about 2 1/2 to 3 ounces)
· 1 tablespoon brown sugar
· 2 teaspoon spicy mustard
· 4 green onions, thinly sliced
Wash chicken and pat dry; sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Put flour in a plate and press chicken into the flour, just to coat both sides lightly. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Brown chicken in the oil for about 2 minutes on each side. Heat oven to 350°.
Meanwhile, combine the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil with the vinegar, orange juice concentrate, brown sugar, mustard, and green onions. Pour the mixture over the chicken, turning chicken to coat both sides. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake for 15 minutes, turning once, or until chicken is glazed and cooked through. Serves 4.

Monday, 5 January 2009

Asparagus Risotto

Last night for dinner I made Asparagus Risotto and it was delicious ! Creamy, asparagussy (is that a word?) I loved everything about it and it was so easy to make. I found the recipe in a magazine I had Good Food I think was the name. Actually, it was just an advertisement for Knorr Vegetable Stock Pots. I love this new product from Knorr. I know how most recipes tell you to stand there and stir it all the time. This one does also but I didn't and mine turned out perfect I did stir it from time to time. And make sure you don't let it stick. I will definitely make this again.

Here is the recipe, it serves 2-3

1-2 tbsp olive oil
1/4 onion, sliced (optional)
160 grams arborio rice that is appx. 6 ounces
1 splash of white wine
1 Knorr Vegetable Stock Pot dissolved in 750ml boiling water ( I used 2 cups water)
200 grams fresh asparagus, trimmed and chopped into 2 inch pieces (appx 1 cup)
1/4 cup grated parmesan
1 - 2 tsp butter
handful of chopped fresh flat leaf parsley or chervil, optional

Heat half the olive oil in a heavy based saucepan, add the onion and cook until lightly golden. Stir through the risotto rice, then add the white wine.

Pour in 100ml of the stock, or enough to cover the rice and stir continuously until the stock is completely absorbed. Repeat this process until all the stock has been used.

When the rice has about 5 mins of cooking time left (it should be al dente or tender tothe bite) add the chopped asparagus and stir until tender.

Stir through the grated parmesan and butter for a rich, creamy risotto. Season with a little salt and black pepper, then sprinkle over the parsley or chervil. Serve immediately.

Cavelo Nero Cabbage with Bacon and Roasted Chestnuts

During the Christmas holidays I tried something a little different with my love for cavelo nero cabbage. I won't go into how to cook it as I have already done that on here. But, what I did do was add bacon pieces (or ham would be wonderful also) that I had pan fried first and then I added the cabbage to my pan along with sliced roasted chestnuts. They really are good together. I had never tried roasted chestnuts in with my greens but it's really good.