April 2010 Archives

Unlike traditional tortillas with just flour, oil. and water, these are made with baking powder to help them puff and milk to add a chewier texture. The result: almost as good as the ones I remember from Austin. =)

2 cups of all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
1 teaspoon of salt
2 teaspoons of vegetable oil ( I used 1 TBS)
3/4 cups of warm milk
In a mixing bowl mix together the flour, baking powder and salt. Slowly add the warm milk and oil. Knead until it forms a ball.
If need be, add a bit more milk especially if your dough is too stiff. Knead for an additional 2 minutes. The dough should be soft and supple.

Place dough in a bowl and cover plastic wrap for 20 minutes.

Form into 8 balls. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest for an additional 10 minutes (optional).

Lightly flour your counter take a ball and roll out into a thin circle.

Heat skillet on high and then lower to med/low and place the tortilla to cook for thirty seconds on each side. It should puff a bit and form bubbles.

Keep cooked tortillas covered ...this will help them to not dry out. You can easily freeze the tortillas, especially if you double or triple the recipe.
Original recipe


This chicken salad is only slightly sweet from the apple, with a strong curry flavor & lemon tang. Serve in sandwiches or on lettuce.

3 c. chopped cooked chicken
1 large red apple, finely chopped
½ c. plain yogurt
1/3 c. mayonnaise
1-2 tbs. lemon juice
1 tbs. curry powder
1/3 c. chopped fresh parsley
¼ c. grated onion (optional)
Combine chicken and apple in large bowl.
In small bowl, blend yogurt, mayonnaise, lemon juice and curry powder.
Add to chicken mixture, toss to coat.
Stir in remaining ingredients.

Source: First Come, First Served... In Savannah
Light, sweet salad with addictive candied walnuts

Lettuce or spinach
Craisins
crisp apples
Orange juice (enough to toss apples in to prevent browning and add a little flavor)
cheese (Parmesan, Feta, goat, etc)
1/2 c. chopped walnuts
1/4 c. sugar
Honey Red Wine Vinaigrette:
1/2 c. red wine vinegar
1/3 c. honey
1-2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped (really, that's pretty optional; it all goes in the blender)
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1 tsp. coarsely ground black pepper
1/4 c. olive oil
Dressing:
In a blender, combine vinegar, honey, garlic, salt, and pepper. Place lid on blender and blend on high. While blender is running, add oil in a steady stream. Store in refrigerator for about 2-3 weeks. Shake well before serving.

Candied Walnuts:
combine walnuts and sugar in a medium skillet over medium heat. Stir constantly. After a few minutes, the sugar will look very fine and then a few minutes after that, it will start to liquefy. This is when you have to be absolutely vigilant about scraping the bottom of the skillet and making sure everything gets stirred around. The syrup will begin to darken and will coat the nuts. When they reach a golden brown color, remove from heat. Stir occasionally as the nuts begin to cool. After a few minutes, spread candied nuts onto a greased piece of parchment or wax paper or a greased cookie sheet and allow to cool completely. Set aside.

Salad:
Chop apples and toss in orange juice
When ready to serve, toss lettuce, cranberries, walnuts, apples, and cheese in a large bowl. Add dressing if desired; it really is better all mixed together rather than on top, but the dressing will wilt any leftovers.

Original recipe
poblano_sm.jpgA bit complex to put together, but the smoky rich flavors are well worth it.

1 large tomato or 4 plum tomatoes (about 3/4 pound)
6 medium fresh poblano peppers
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and quartered
2 large cloves garlic, unpeeled
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
 Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 cup coarsely grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese
Cheese Grits:
2 teaspoons sea salt, plus more to taste
1 cup stone-ground yellow grits (or yellow cornmeal for quick-cook)
1 cup milk
1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 cup grated cheddar or pepper jack cheese (about 3 ounces)
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
Grits:
Bring 3 cups of water to a boil in a large saucepan over high heat. Stir in the salt. Add the grits in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly.

Reduce the heat to medium low, and cook the grits, stirring frequently, for 40 to 45 minutes (5 minutes for cornmeal), until they are thick-soupy and the grains are tender to the bite. Stir in the milk and corn kernels, and cook for about 2 minutes to warm the corn.

Remove the grits from the heat, stir in the butter,cheese and pepper, and continue to stir until butter and cheese are melted. Season to taste.

Vegetables:
Core the tomato with a sharp paring knife. Arrange the tomato, pepper, onion, and garlic in a 9-x-13-inch roasting pan, with the peppers gathered at one end. Brush all the vegetables with the olive oil, and sprinkle them with salt. Slide the pan under the broiler (about 3 inches from the flame or heating element), with the peppers nearest you; you'll be turning them frequently as they roast. Turn the peppers every 3 minutes until their skins are blistered and blackened all over, about 9 minutes total. Transfer the peppers to a large bowl. Transfer the tomato, onion, and garlic to a medium bowl, and let them cool. Set aside the roasting pan.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Assembly:
When the peppers are cool enough to handle, gently massage their skins to remove them and discard. Cut a 3-inch slit down the side of each pepper and gently spoon out the seeds and any whitish, fibrous veins. Fill each pepper with 1/2 cup cheese grits, and place in the roasting pan.

When the tomato, onion and garlic have cooled, remove the skins from the tomato and garlic. Process the tomato, onion and garlic in a blender or food processor, about 30 seconds. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Pour the sauce over the peppers.

Bake the peppers on the middle rack until the tomato sauce bubbles gently, about 15 minutes. Scatter the cheese on top, and place the pan under the broiler about 2 inches from the flame or heating element until the cheese has browned.

Original recipe

This Southwest vegetarian dish is a nice change from the usual Asian tofu recipes

1 pound extra-firm tofu, drained and pressed
1 cup milk
1 cup cornmeal
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
1 tablespoon grated lime zest
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
Slice the tofu widthwise into eight slices, the cut each of those slices in half diagonally- from the upper left corner to the lower right corner-so that you have sixteen long triangles. Set aside. Combine the soy milk and cornstarch in a wide, shallow bowl. Mix vigorously with a fork until the cornstarch is mostly dissolved. In another shallow bowl, toss together the cornmeal, spices, lime zest, and salt.

Dip each individual tofu slice in the milk mixture. Drop it into the cornmeal with your dry hand and use your other hand to dredge it in the mixture, so that it's coated on all sides.

Frying directions:
Heat about 1/4 inch oil in a large skillet, preferably cast iron, over medium heat. To test if the oil is ready, sprinkle in a pinch of batter. When the batter sizzles and bubbles form rapidly around it, you're good to go. Transfer the tofu to the skillet in two batches so as not to crowd the pan. Fry tofu for 3 minutes on one side, use tongs to flip over each piece, and fry for two more minutes. Drain the fried tofu on a clean paper bag or paper towels.

Baking directions:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Place the coated tofu on the baking sheet in a single layer. Spray with oil until lightly coated. Flip over and spray the other side. Bake for 12 minutes on each side.

Original recipe
Daniel's famous grilled chicken. Serve with yellow rice and black beans.

½ c. gold tequila
1 c. lime juice (5-6 limes)
½ c. orange juice (2 oranges)
1 tbs. chili powder
1 tbs. minced fresh jalapeno pepper
1 tbs. minced fresh garlic (3 cloves)
2 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp black pepper
6 boneless chicken breasts, skin on
Combine tequila, lime juice, orange juice, chili powder, jalapeno pepper, garlic, salt, and pepper in large bowl. Add chicken. Refrigerate overnight.

Heat a grill with coals and brush the rack with oil. Remove the chicken from the marinade, sprinkle well with salt and pepper, and grill them skin-side down for about 5 minutes, until nicely browned. Turn the chicken and cook for another 10 minutes, until just cooked through. Remove from grill to a plate. Cover tightly and allow to rest for 5 minutes.

From: Barefoot Contessa
Takes some prep work ahead of time, but it's delicious & makes enough to feed a crowd.

5 lbs. chuck roast / sirloin tip roast / 7 bone roast
1 1/2 T. oil
1/4 C. Flour
5 cloves garlic
1 1/2 C. beef broth (from roast or can)
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp cumin
2 cans enchilada sauce
1 1/2 C. of salsa (Pace Medium Picante)
salt to taste (usually not needed)
Cook beef in crockpot for until done (about 6 hours on high) and shred meat. Save broth (remove fat/grease). Saute garlic and oil until brown. Add flour and then slowly add broth and spices until lightly browned. Add remaining ingredients. Simmer 10 minutes. Add shredded beef and simmer on low before serving.
Serve with: Tortillas, refried beans, sour cream, tomatoes, lettuce...

Cummings family recipe

Fresh tasting salsa built on the backbone of jarred Pace. Chopped black olives add richness, but you'd never guess they're in there.

2-3 C. chopped plum tomatoes (about 6)
1 small jar medium pace picante
1 small jar mild pace picante
1/2 small can chopped black olives
1 can green chilies
2 T. olive oil
1/2 T. white vinegar
1/4 C. green onions (chopped)
1 T. fresh cilantro (minced)
1-2 Jalapenos (finely chopped)
Mix ingredients together. Vary the amount of Jalapenos used to desired "heat" level (I usually use at least a half of one).

From: the Sutton family
chicken_pasta_salad_sm.jpgFinally, a pasta salad I like! The bright citrus dressing and red grapes are balanced by the addition of a few toasted walnuts & chopped green onions.

3  cups  uncooked farfalle (bow tie pasta)  or rigatoni (about 8 ounces)
1/3  cup  fresh orange juice (~1 orange)
1/4  cup  fresh lemon juice (1/2 lemon)
2  tablespoons  extravirgin olive oil
1  tablespoon  stone-ground mustard
2  teaspoons  sugar
1 1/4  teaspoons  salt
1/2  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
2 tbs  white wine vinegar
2  cups  shredded cooked chicken breast (about 2 breasts)
1 1/2  cups  seedless red grapes, halved
1  cup  thin diagonally cut celery
1/4 c. sliced green onions
1/3  cup  coarsely chopped walnuts, toasted
2  tablespoons  chopped fresh parsley
optional: lettuce or arugula to serve it on

Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain. Cool completely.

Combine orange juice and the next 7 ingredients (orange juice through rice vinegar) in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk to combine. Add pasta, chicken, grapes, celery, green onion, walnuts, olives, and parsley; toss gently to combine.


Original recipe (Cooking Light)

Ultimate crock-pot convenience: put all the ingredients in and just let it cook till you're ready to eat.

1 medium onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 clove garlic
½ tsp. dried oregano
½ tsp. dried basil
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
1 can whole or chopped tomatoes (14.5 oz)
1 can tomato sauce
1 can tomato paste (6 oz.)
1 ½ lb. chicken breasts, cut into 1" cubes
½ lb. sliced mushrooms
½ c. celery, chopped

Combine all ingredients, cook in crock-pot on high 4 hours. Serve with noodles.
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