Friday, May 31, 2013

Summertime Salad Series- Watermelon and Feta Salad

Barcelona Beaches
My bathing suit season is starting soon, very very soon.  It scares me.  I leave for Spain on Wednesday, so not only do I need to be bathing suit ready but I also need to be tan.  I am so shockingly white I will scare the Spaniards.  That can easily fixed by a quick trip to the spray tanner, the bathing suit issue is another problem all together.  My plan is to eat lots of greens and fruits.  I have an obsession with fruit in particular watermelon.  I could eat an entire watermelon in one sitting, so the salad for this week's salad series is a perfect combination.  It has my greens as well as my watermelon.  I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do!


Watermelon, Feta, Arugula Salad
 8 cups of cubed seedless watermelon
1 bag of baby arugula (15 ounces)
2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
1 7 ounce container of crumbled feta cheese


Add all ingredients into a large bowl with the exception of vinegar.  Toss to combine and drizzle with vinegar.  

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Think Outside the Bun

No one openingly admits they love Taco Bell without a small feeling of shame.  Who would like to proclaim that they like grade d beef?  Well folks, I'm out and I'm proud.  I love Taco Bell.  I think it's one of life's pleasures: a greasy soft taco with some cinni twists on the side.  I also am in love with the new Doritos Locos tacos, nacho cheese not cool ranch (I never understood why people like cool ranch Doritos).   



I wanted to try something new this week for our recipe of the week so I want to recreate a Taco Bell favorite of mine, the Mexican Pizza.  It's such a clever idea and I hope my homemade version measures up.  

Enjoy! 
Jen


Supper Sister's Mexican Pizza!
makes one pizza
  • 2 flour tortillas (you can use whole wheat)
  • 1 can refried beans (if you want to make your own check out this recipe... I use canned)
  • 1/2 lb of ground beef
  • Taco seasoning (recipe below)
  • Red Enchilada Sauce (recipe below)
  • Shredded cheddar cheese 
  • Diced Tomatoes
  • Diced Onions
  • Cilantro

In a large pan saute beef with taco seasoning until cooked.  Remove from heat

Heat another pan up over medium high heat.  Add a small amount of olive oil and sear the flour tortillas on both sides (roughly 2 minutes per side) until they are a light golden brown.

Remove from heat and place on a cookie sheet lined with foil.   Spread a layer of refried beans on one tortilla.  Place the ground beef on top of the refried beans.  Place the second tortilla on top of beef.  Spread a layer of enchilada sauce on top.  Sprinkle with tomatoes, onions, cheddar cheese.

Place under the broiler set on high until cheese is melted and bubbly.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste and cilantro.

Taco Seasoning
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground pepper

Red Enchilada Sauce
1 tablespoons olive oil
2 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons flour
1 15 ounce can of purreed tomatoes
1 1/2 cups lower sodium chicken broth
3/4 teaspoons garlic powder
3/4 teaspoons onion powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 teaspoons cumin
  • In a large sauce pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add chili powder and flour whisking constantly to combine. Mixture will be a thick paste
  • Slowly add in a small amount of tomato sauce whisking constantly until the paste has dissolved. Once the paste is combined, add the rest of the tomato puree and chicken broth. Whisk to combine.
  • Add in the rest of the spices, stir to combine.
  • Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Remove from heat 


   

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Terriyaki Chicken & Shrimp Kabobs- Joanne's Savory Summary

Between the weather turning from not-so-good to beautiful to the four day weekend of relaxation, this really was the perfect way to kick off the summer.  I waited until Monday to make the kabobs so David and I would have some leftovers for the week.  In fact, I just finished the last two skewers and they were still delicious.  Also, since David typically mans the grils, this gives us a chance to make the meal together, something that we normally don't do.  Finally, the easy assembly and clean up make this perfect for any summer night.
 
Not being fresh off a 21 hour flight like Jen, I bought my veggies and chicken separate so I could chop them up myself.  This time I went with yellow zucchini, onion, mushrooms and grape tomatoes.  I also opted to forgo the shrimp since I thought the chicken would reheat better and, as I mentioned before, we always have leftovers.  I let the chicken marinate in the glaze for 4 hours while we relaxed outside.  Finally, we assembled the kabobs which took less than 20 minutes while simultaneously preheating grill. 
Ready to cook!
David cooked the kabobs over medium heat for about twenty minutes, flipping them 3-4 times and dousing them with extra glaze every time he did.  The result was the same consistently delicious meal, both healthy and easy to make.  This will once again be a summertime staple in our house!

Hope you had a wonderful holiday weekend.  
Joanne

Terriyaki Chicken & Shrimp Kabobs- Jen's Savory Summary

SEMI HOMEMADE!!
I can't tell you how much I've missed cooking. Last night as I was preparing everything I realized I hadn't cooked in close to two weeks.  Cooking is my stress reliever.  It just zones me out and relaxes me.  I so needed that repetitive chopping, mixing, sizzling in the pan...it brought me to my happy place.  This was a super simple recipe this week and I made it even easier.  Okay, don't call me lazy just yet.  I will tell you I made two chopped little salads to go as sides with this week's meal. I also cut up an entire pineapple for dessert.  I totally Sandra Lee-ed it this week.  I hate Sandra Lee, loathe her in fact.  Parading around like a chef when her meals consist of reheating most things.

Well I'm ashamed to admit..... I bought my kabobs pre-assembled.  I know... so LAZY. They were just staring at me in the Whole Foods case saying: "buy me... buy me...I look so yummy".  So I bought them and they were delicious.  I did however make that delicious glaze.  I love ginger.  Most things I was served in China had ginger in it and it is so refreshing.  I think I am the only person who enjoys ginger ale when they don't have a stomach ache.  Perhaps it's from having it so much as a kid at my grandma's house.  So back to the lazy kabobs.  I had one with chicken and one with swordfish.  I would highly suggest eating more swordfish.  It gives you that steak feeling without the steak calories. Also, the swordfish tasted amazing with the terriyaki glaze.  Finally, for all you apartment dwellers like myself, don't say I can't make this because I don't have a grill.  I did!  With my amazing grill pan that gets so much use this time of year!!


I hope you all enjoyed this recipe!  It definitely felt like a kick off to summer for me.

Happy Cooking!!

Jen

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

我爱它 (I'm Lovin' It!)

I'm back everybody!!  Sorry for the long hiatus, but apparently in China no blogging allowed...  I know what you are wondering... How was the food?  What was your favorite?  Where did you spend your last meal in China?!?!  Well, let me share with you.  I have a strange obsession when I travel.  It's completely absurd especially since I parade around as being so into good food, but it's an interesting obsession.  When I'm abroad, I am fascinated in what the local McDonalds has to offer.  I want to see how different it is in other countries   I'm not going to lie...I'm a huge fan of the nugget and I will tell you this, they love the nugget around the world.


For my last meal in China, I stopped at the local Mickey Dee's at the airport.  It was the busiest of the different food outlets, a close second was the Popeye's next store.  The only Popeye's I've seen in the U.S. is either on Street Road in Bensalem or right next to Fenway Park.  I counted five, yes FIVE, just in the airport. The most spotted chain food store in China was the Colonel himself and his wee beety eyes (So I Married An Axe Murderer reference for those of you scratching your head), Kentucky Fried Chicken.  People love this man over there, especially the American style potatoes with sauce (mashed tatters and gravy for us here).

I digress.  Back the Mac's.  There were a lot of local items on this menu that I would never find at home.  First of all, happy meals with some nugs and french fries at home is boned chicken wings, side of corn and warm milk in China.  I was most intrigued by this item called the White Burger there.  They had advertised a white burger and a black burger.  As interesting as the black burger looked, I stuck with the white burger.   The black burger was a beef patty, sweet onions, and a sweet and sour sauce.  Having gotten severe food poisoning from a burger at Checkers when I was kid, I cannot get burgers at a fast food restaurant    The white burger was a fried chicken patty, mashed potatoes, mushrooms, and tangy spicy sauce.   It sounds so wrong, but sweet Jesus, it was oh so good.  I won't openly say this was my favorite meal in China but it was definitely up there.
Hong Kong Skyline

I'm so happy to be back home.  As much of an adventure this trip was, there is no place like home! Hope you all had a great memorial day weekend!  Look forward to our recipe reviews tomorrow!


Back home in Boston!

Happy Eating!
Jen

Friday, May 24, 2013

Summertime Salad Series - Quinoa Salad

http://images.cpcache.com/merchandise/514_400x400_NoPeel.jpg?region=name:FrontCenter,id:69837659,w:16
So we meet again...
Since we are almost into the summer season, I thought we could kick off a weekly summer salad series where we pass on delicious and healthy summer salads recipes.  These can be enjoyed as a side for a group or as a light lunch.  Also, with the anticipation (and honestly pure fear) of wearing a bikini very soon, I'm hoping these can reinforce a healthy diet while not falling into a boring, diet food rut. 

The first salad has a quinoa base with a lot of Mediterranean elements.  I love a traditional Mediterranean salad and thought I could give it more substance by substituting the quinoa for the lettuce.  This is very much an add until you get your acquired taste type of salad.  So I encourage taste testing throughout.  I will be serving this on Monday with the kabobs.  I hope you enjoy it as well!

Joanne

Quinoa Salad
  • 1-2 cups uncooked quinoa based on how many you are serving (I recommend the traditional quinoa from Trader Joe's)
  • Feta cheese
  • Red onion, diced
  • Cucumber, peeled and diced
  • Kalamata olives, diced
  • Slivered almonds
  • Plum tomatoes, diced
  • Red bell pepper
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • Salt & pepper to taste
Prepare the quinoa according to package instructions and allow to cool.  Once the quinoa is cool combine with feta cheese, red onion, cucumber, olives, almonds, tomatoes and bell pepper.  Drizzle with olive oil (not too much) and lemon juice until coated but not soaked.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Serve chilled. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Terriyaki Chicken & Shrimp Kabobs

http://www.fwdnation.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/SummertimeOnTheBeach.jpg
It's Summer!!!
It is finally the start of summer.  After the long trudge through winter we are almost home free to tan skin, cold beer and lots of outdoor time including some time spent at the barbeque.  Since my previous attempt at barbeque was thwarted by the predictable spring showers, I figured we would give it another go this weekend.  Also, since we have the holiday weekend approaching, I thought I would pass along a tried and true kabob recipe.  

As fair warning, I will say this recipe is ridiculously easy.  A child could put these skewers together.  Which may actually work in your favor if you happen to be hosting a family barbeque and want to enlist the help of the kiddies.  The variation of vegetables can be altered based on your family's likes and dislikes.  The ones listed below are just what I have typically stuck to because it's what works for us.  

I recommend leaving the meat to marinate overnight for the most robust flavor.  You can simply brush the glaze on the veggies after they are already on the skewers and they should hold the flavor well enough.  

For the glaze, I've been using the recipe on AllRecipes for years with few slight variations of my own.  It is simple to make and can be used on all types of meat.  The portions of meat and veggies can be adjusted to your needs but I always end up over buying.  Luckily these makes great leftovers.

I hope you have a great holiday weekend!  
Joanne

Terriyaki Chicken & Shrimp Kabobs

  • A bag of wooden skewers.  I would recommend soaking them in water for an hour to avoid them catching on fire.  Or you can invest in a metal set.  Just be careful when eating since they will get very hot!

For the kabobs:
http://trialx.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/recipes/Grilled_Chicken_Kabobs-1.jpg
  • Boneless skinless chicken breast cut into cubes
  • Shrimp, deveined and deshelled
  • Zucchini (green and yellow)
  • Grape tomatoes
  • White onion, cut into 1-2 inch squares
  • Bell pepper (any color is fine)

For the glaze (Adjust based on your needs.  This is based on serving 4) 
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 large garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 teaspoons dark sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon of sesame seeds
Whisk together the glaze in a bowl until combined.  Put chicken and shrimp into a plastic bag and coat with glaze.  Reserve enough glaze for basting the skewers and veggies on the grill.  Let the chicken and shrimp marinate for several hours.  The longer the better!  Once you are ready to cook, preheat your grill to medium heat.  Make sure to coat your grill with nonstick spray.  Build your kabobs alternating veggies and different proteins.  Grill the kabobs until the chicken and shrimp are cooked through and the vegetables are soft, turning the skewers periodically.  Continue to baste the skewers with the glaze during the cooking process.  Serve immediately and enjoy!

Monday, May 20, 2013

We're Baaaaccckkkk

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_1n_XrueUgD8/TRFO9LNI2FI/AAAAAAAAAFg/8ZGMhxB0NKA/s1600/cookie-8%255B1%255D.jpg
My assessment of our recent blog behavior...
OK well one of us is (Joanne).  The other (Jen) is literally half way around the world in China and Hong Kong making important decisions about important water purification related items.  That was my attempt at even marginally trying to appear to know what my sister does.  Since traveling to Asia isn't an everyday affair but instead requires visas that can only be obtained in New York City and other last minute preparations, we dropped the ball on this week's recipe.  Our apologies.  Or as the Chinese would put it...对不起 (according to google).

To get things back on track, I figured let's roll with this Asian theme and talk about some of our favorite Chinese food.  For all of those foodies out there (I'm talking to you Jen), I am not referring to the authentic Chinese food Jen is probably partaking in right now.  Hold your monkey brains because what I am referring to is Chinese-American food that can be ordered at 4am in New York and comes with a fortune cookie and those deliciously fried noodles and duck sauce.  While there was an 'Asian Fusion' explosion a few years back, I think we are finally coming to our senses.  No, not everything needs a ginger soy glaze nor do we want it wasabi crusted.  Enough already.

Holidays Clinton Kelly General Tsos Chickenjpg
Photo Credit - The Chew
Since after any Chinese meal I have trouble getting my ring off due to 5 lbs of increased water weight, I normally opt for the steamed broccoli and rice.  However, David consistently gets the General Tso's chicken.  The breading and sauce ratio to the chicken is about 15 to 1 but he loves it.  So in an attempt to hopefully maintain this dish's addictive deliciousness while maybe cutting some of the fat and calories, I scoured the internet for a slightly healthier alternative.  And because the internet never lets me down, I found it featured on The Chew.  While I haven't made this yet, I plan to very soon.  This could be a success.  Or we could be calling Chinese Delight after my attempt turns out to be an epic fail.  What's your favorite Chinese food?



Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Pulled Pork- Jen's Savory Summary

Katie- happy to help!
This past Sunday was my first Sunday Supper including the littlest sister.  I was happy to finally make something for more than two people.  For some reason, I get more enthused when there are more people to cook for.  Also, having Katie here was such a huge help.  This girl loves to help cook.  I even gave her the bad jobs, i.e. taking the pork off the bone and she happily helped!

Dinner for Three!




So let me tell you why I love this recipe.  It all come down to this one sentence: cook for 8 hours.  I was so excited!  This weekend was hell for me.  I have my final tonight for my grad school class and I was just told I'm leaving for Hong Kong on Friday (let the freak out commence).  So the eight hours of non active cook time was a God-send and gave me so much time to just get stuff done.  Also, expect some Chinese food featured in this week's recipe with my impending trip!

Finished Pork with a side of beets!
Onto the recipe...it was super easy even for an non crock pot owner like myself.  Since I didn't have a crock pot I baked this bad boy for 6 hours at 225F.  The slow and low method always results in deliciousness.  I didn't cube my pork either.  This may of been a mistake since Katie had to shred off the pork from the bone after it was cooked.  This recipe resulted in a super delicous, tender, and flavorful pulled pork.  I also loved the fact that it didn't use a store bought BBQ sauce.  Instead you made your own delicious one.  Also, since we are a bread free family we had ours sans bun.  Even then it was still delicious!  Hope you enjoyed as much as we did!

Monday, May 13, 2013

Just Beet It!

On Friday, my adopted 21 year old daughter (technically youngest sister Katie) moved in with us for the summer.  Well, for two weeks, but we will call it the summer.  She is interning at a company up in the Boston area for the summer and is living in Boston University housing once the semester starts.  I love Boston in the summer and I think living here during this time will brainwash anyone to move here.   Sure, the winters are awful, maybe even downright horrendous, but the first few days of sunshine make me forget all of that.  I hope Katie falls in love with Boston as much  as I did the first time I was here in the summer.  It really is magical...


So this past weekend started our weekly trips to the SOWA market.  It has grown by leaps and bounds this year.  What used to take place in one parking lot with a few vegetable stalls and some homemade soup carts has multiplied into include three different areas, the food truck court, farmers market and vintage market.   This weekend we went to the food truck court where there were over 10 different food trucks to choose from, brand new ones too.  I was in street meat heaven!  

After the food truck court, we went over to the farmers market to see what vegetables were available for this time of year.  Turns out - not many.  However, there was a cage of live chickens that Ethel got a kick out of.  This farmers market was where  I was first introduced to beets and now I can't get enough.  Last night, I introduced Katie to beets and now she is obsessed!  They look scary but are oh so good.  

Beet Salad
3 large beets
1 log of goat cheese
Toasted hazelnuts
Olive Oil 
Red Wine Vinegar
Salt and Pepper

Preheat oven to 350F.  Cut off the top and end of the beets.  Wrap in aluminum foil with a dash of oil and salt and pepper.  Place on a cookie sheet and roast for about 1 hr or until tender.

Remove from the oven and remove from the foil.  Peel off skin and chop into bite size pieces (be careful beet juice stains clothing but it will wash off you fingers).  Toss with olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt pepper.  Add goat cheese and toasted hazelnuts.
Enjoy!!
Jen

Friday, May 10, 2013

An Ode to Mom


Mom and Her Girls!

With Mother's Day fast approaching, I thought I would take some time to publicly say what a fantastic mother Jen, Katie and I have been blessed with.  When we were growing up, it was our Mom-Mom's kitchen table that was our favorite gathering place for snacks, sharing and some harmless gossip.  Now this has seamlessly transitioned to my Mom's kitchen island where I can comfortably go to bare my soul over some chilled Kendall Jackson and nibblies.  While it sounds cliche, she would truly do anything for her children and will always think of us as her little girls (it's true... she still refers to us as her chickies).  And conversely, we will always look to her for comfort, advice and love.  So just in case there was any doubt, Mom, we love you.  Happy Mother's Day.

Joanne

In case you want to make the mothers in your life feel special, here is a delicous quiche recipe to make for your Sunday brunch.  It's easy enough so you're not slaving away all day instead of spending quality time but still special enough for this holiday. 

Ingredients

    Basic Quiche
    Photo Credit - Real Simple
  • 1 9-inch refrigerated piecrust
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup half-and-half
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 8 ounces Gruyere, grated
  • 4 cups mixed greens

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 375° F. Fit the crust into a 9-inch pie plate. Place on a baking sheet.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the onions and ½ teaspoon each of salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the parsley.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, half-and-half, nutmeg, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Stir in the onion mixture and the Gruyère.
  4. Pour the egg mixture into the crust. Bake until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Let sit for 5 minutes. Drizzle the greens with the remaining tablespoon of oil and sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Serve with the quiche. 

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Pulled Pork Sandwiches


GO AWAY!

With the warm weather every year comes even more cooking possibilities in large part due to my friend, the grill.  When David and I bought our house three years ago, one of the very first purchases we made was our Weber grill and we have certainly put it to use.  This weekend was supposed to kick off the summer grilling season with us hosting a family barbeque.  Apparently Mother Nature had other plans.  So while I won't be featuring my world famous (OK maybe just household famous) chicken & shrimp skewers, I will be serving up another summer time treat, pulled pork sandwiches.

The best part of these sandwiches is that they literally take 15 minutes of prep work.  The secret behind this no muss, no fuss recipe... let me introduce my other friend, the crock pot.  I have made these pulled pork sandwiches on many occasions using this recipe and they are always a hit, especially when cooking for crowds.  While you can get even more low-key and use a store bought barbeque sauce, I prefer to smother my pork butt in a homemade concoction. 

I hope you enjoy pulled pork sandwiches...a delicious solution to a rainy day problem!!

Joanne

Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Ingredients
2 medium onions, chopped
1 cup ketchup
2/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup tomato paste
4 tablespoons paprika
1/2 tablespoon cayenne pepper
4 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
4 teaspoons salt
3 teaspoons black pepper
5 pounds pork butt, cut into 2 pieces
Rolls or buns

Directions
1. Combine all of the ingredients except the pork butt and the buns in a large slow cooker. Stir together with a spoon until well combined.  Add the 2 pieces of pork and place the lid on the slow cooker. Cook for 8 hours on low or until pork is tender and easily pulls apart from the bone.
2. Take two forks and shred the pork. Place the pork back into the slow cooker with the remaining sauce. Stir well and serve on rolls or buns.

**The ingredients in this recipe are definitely enough to feel a crowd.  If you want to make this for a weeknight meal just scale back proportionately. 


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Enchiladas Verdes- Jen's Savory Summary

I had every intention of making this week's recipe. I seriously did.  I bought the chicken and had it sitting out on Sunday to defrost.  I even got the corn tortillas.  Then, Sunday happened....  

Apparently, I cannot enjoy a lovely day of day drinking like I used to. In college, this was a weekly occurrence, especially in the fall. Saturday football games, yes University of Delaware had football where we did tailgate, were centered around day drinking. These days, this Sunday of day drinking destroyed me.  I thought I could muster up the energy to make it on Monday evening, but the thought of anything green made me sick.  It was a full 24 hours since I had my last glass of delicious bubbles but I still was feeling "wicked hungovAH".  Instead of delicious enchiladas, I dove into the yearly supply of Omaha Steaks my father-in-law sends us.  So last night my meal consisted of a twice baked potato and a piece of fish.  

I hope you all enjoyed your enchiladas .. I hope to make them this Wednesday instead.  Maybe this hangover will be gone by then...

  
Funny Cinco de Mayo Ecard: My hangovers now take as much recovery time as major surgery.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Muy Bueno Guacamole!

http://elpulposd.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Cinco-de-Mayo.jpgI'm not usually one to toot my own horn, but I do think I know where my strengths lie.  And one of those strengths is my guacamole making skills.  Maybe not so marketable in the real world, but, hey, I can create one heck of a nosh as Jen previously mentioned.  Since Cinco de Mayo just passed and I spent it running 10 miles at the Broad Street Run instead of sipping margaritas, I am postponing my observation of this Mexican themed holiday to doce de mayo (May 12th) and making this delicious dip on this upcoming Saturday for a family party. 

Truth time... this is one of those recipes that you have to master with a trial by error approach.  A little of this, a little of that, some taste testing in between and your guacamole will end up deliciously individualized to your particular taste.  A few things I do add which may set it apart are olive oil and fresh lime juice.  I don't know why but the fresh lime juice rather than the prepared kind you get in the plastic lime makes a huge difference for me. 

So below is the ingredient list for my guacamole.  The directions are simple - just combine them all until you achieve the taste you want and serve with chips.  Taste testing throughout is encouraged!

Joanne

Guacamole Ingredients
  • 4 Haas avocados - Make sure they are dark in color and soft when squeezed.
  • Olive oil
  • 1 large tomato
  • 1-2 limes for juicing
  • Salt
  • Cilantro
  • 1 jalepeno pepper finely diced (optional based on how much heat you want)
  • 1 small onion very finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove pressed or minced


Friday, May 3, 2013

Kiss Me I'm Mexican


Jason and I five years ago today
 Cinco de Mayo has a special place in my heart.  It was the day I met my husband (well not actually May 5th - we actually met five years ago today)   On that fateful night I went out to Manayunk with my friend Jackie with a list of goals (we're weird I know).  Here were our goals: Dance to Miley Cyrus "Party in the USA", make friends with a boy band (definitely didn't happen), get someone to buy us a shot, and wear a sombrero.  Well, the night was winding down and Jackie saw a guy walk by with a sombrero on and shouted "HEY! Can I wear that?".  I swooped in, stole the hat and the guy.  Of course, I thought his name was John and he did not remember what I looked like, but it was total magic.   


We usually celebrate this holiday with some good tacos on Cinco de Mayo.  And although Jason still doesn't have the sombrero, he still has his "Kiss Me I'm Mexican" t-shirt.

I hope all you single ladies go out on this holiday weekend and meet your future match! Just go out with a list of goals!  Dancing to Miley Cyrus is always a good idea! 

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Jen 


Thursday, May 2, 2013

Enchiladas Verdes

TEQUILA!
Break out the tequila everyone!!!  It's Cinco de Mayo time!  Yes, that one day of the year when everyone is Mexican and we all drink lots of margaritas   To help you sop up all of that tequila, this week we are featuring enchiladas verdes, my favorite among enchiladas.  When I was kid I just didn't like anything red, I think it was my fear of tomatoes.  I would even scrap off tomato sauce from pizza, always preferring white pizza.  This is why I love enchilada verdes. It's still tomatoes but my little child brain did not understand that tomatoes can be green too.

That green stuff can't
 have tomatoes in it!
I hope you all enjoy this week's recipe!  Here is a great mole sauce you can always try with this recipe too if you so dare!  
 

recipe image
Enchiladas Verdes
Enchiladas Verdes
recipe adapted from allrecipes.com

Ingredients

  • 2 bone in chicken breast halves
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 white onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 pound fresh tomatillos, husks removed
  • 5 Serrano peppers
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup crumbled queso fresco (for garnish)
  • 1/2 white onion, chopped (for garnish)
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped (for garnish)

Directions

  • In a saucepan, combine chicken breast with chicken broth, one quarter onion, one clove of garlic, and 2 teaspoons of salt.  Bring to a boil and then boil for 20 minutes.  Reserve broth and set aside chicken to cool. When cool enough to handle, shred chicken
  • Place tomatillos and Serrano chilies in a pot cover with water.  Bring to a boil and continue to boil until the tomatillos change color from bright green to a dull, army green.  Strain tomatillos and chilies and place into a blender with one quarter onion, 1 clove of garlic, and a pinch of salt.  Pour in enough reserved chicken broth until it covers the vegetables   Blend until smooth.  Place salsa into a medium saucepan and bring to low boil
  • Pour oil into frying pan, heat until smoking.  Slightly fry tortillas one at a time, set onto paper towel afterwards.  After all tortillas are fried, dip into simmering salsa until the tortillas become soft again.  
  • Fill tortillas with shredded chicken and more green salsa and place in rectangular casserole dish.  Top with crumbled cheese, chopped onion, and chopped cilantro.  Place under broiler from 5 minutes, until cheese is melted.    

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

When Life Gives You Brown Bananas...

http://janaemonir.files.wordpress.com/2010/08/img_6388.jpg...you make banana bread!  Monday night I was on a cooking kick.  After my quick out and back trip to San Francisco, Jess's wedding on Friday, then followed by a weekend of more or less purposeful laziness, it was time to assess the food situation, starting with the produce.  David and I both eat lots of fruits and veggies throughout the week but when I am away David tends to fall into the fast food trap (he admitted to a KFC run last night).  This latest bout of his eating out was evident by the pair of brown bananas sitting on our baker's rack.

Since I literally cringe throwing away food (I really need to cancel my membership to the clean plate club), I decided to make some chocolate chip banana bread as a special treat for David.  I've made this before and David has always loved it.  I use the banana bread recipe from the America's Test Kitchen Baking Book but any basic bread recipe will do.  It turned out great and David even had 2 slices Monday night straight out of the oven.  A perfect treat for a rainy Monday night.

Joanne