Friday, October 30, 2009

OMG!! This was SOOO GOOD! ( Roasted chicken)

Be warned that it was greasy... BUT, delicious!!! I found this when I looked at the current message board and found that this thread had a good number of views. I just loved it...with the lemon and the garlic and the thyme!!! YUM! I also made some chicken stock!!
I had never cooked with a fennel bulb before. It reminded me of a onion/celery. Are you suppose to eat it? I wasn't sure since it smells like black liquorice. I put it with the broth, but then didn't eat it :)
* Exported from MasterCook *

Perfect Roast Chicken
1 roasting chicken -- (5 to 6 pound)
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 large bunch fresh thyme -- plus 20 sprigs
1 lemon -- halved
1 head garlic -- cut in half crosswise
2 tablespoons butter -- (1/4 stick) melted
1 large yellow onion -- thickly sliced
4 carrots -- cut into 2-inch chunks
1 bulb fennel -- tops removed, and cut into wedges
Olive oil

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Remove the chicken giblets. Rinse the chicken inside and out. Remove any excess fat and leftover pin feathers and pat the outside dry. Liberally salt and pepper the inside of the chicken. Stuff the cavity with the bunch of thyme, both halves of lemon, and all the garlic. Brush the outside of the chicken with the butter and sprinkle again with salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with kitchen string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken. Place the onions, carrots, and fennel in a roasting pan. Toss with salt, pepper, 20 sprigs of thyme, and olive oil. Spread around the bottom of the roasting pan and place the chicken on top.

Roast the chicken for 1 1/2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and thigh. Remove the chicken and vegetables to a platter and cover with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes. Slice the chicken onto a platter and serve it with the vegetables.

Source:"Barefoot Contessa Cookbook page 130"

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Balsamic Glazed Pork Chops with Red Pepper Grits

We love pork chops at our house. Those things are always on sale and they are pretty good. We usually don't do much to them. Just some salt and pepper, maybe a simple marinade works for us as a week night staple. They are pretty healthy too. ( Ya know, the other white meat.) I am so glad I pulled up this thread with so many great chop recipes for me to try. Tonight we tried the recipe below and thought it was so simple and delicious.

Balsamic Glazed Pork Chops with Red Pepper Grits
* Exported from MasterCook *
Recipe By :Lorrie Hulston Corvin/Krista Montgomery

3 cups water

3/4 teaspoon salt -- divided

3/4 cup uncooked quick-cooking grits

2 tablespoons butter

1/2 teaspoon bottled minced garlic

1 (7-ounce) bottle roasted red bell pepper -- drained and diced

Cooking spray

4 (4-ounce) boneless center-cut loin pork chops (about 3/4 inch thick)

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons honey

Bring water and 1/2 teaspoon salt to a boil. Add grits, butter, and garlic, stirring with a whisk. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in red pepper.While grits cook, heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Sprinkle pork with 1/4 teaspoon salt and black pepper. Add pork to pan; cook 4 minutes on each side or until done. Remove from pan. Stir in vinegar and honey, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Bring to a boil; cook 1 minute or until thick, stirring constantly with a whisk. Return pork to pan; turn to coat. Serve pork and sauce over grits.

Source:"Cooking Light Jan/Feb 2003"

NOTES : Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 pork chop and 1 cup grits).

Monday, October 26, 2009

Shrimp Marinara

I have to admit this CLBB is not easy to navigate and I find it a bit clicky. The search feature isn't the best and leads to a lot of dead ends. By chance, I found this recent post and followed it to a new blog for this shrimp marinara. It was really good, quick and light tasting. I didn't make my own sauce but I did use the Mom's Special Marinara brand sauce that I like to mention. When I went back to look for the thread it had been deleted and every CLBB member was blasting her for promoting her new blog in the forum ... apparently there are rules about what you can and can't talk about. Anyway, make what you want of it ... I thought it was a great recipe.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Chipotle Roast for Tacos


In case you missed it, someone has started a weekly "what a crock" thread about using their slow cookers. I am not sure if I have mention it on this blog, but I have a love/hate relationship with my crock pot. I just think it still cooks a little high and for best results, I use my oven. Since I am a SAHM, I am able to do this. But still, you can find apropiate crock pot recipes and I was hoping this was one.

Chipotle Roast for Tacos

3 lbs Beef Chuck Roast, trimmed of visible fat
*(or try with a Pork Roast)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
3 chipotle chiles in adobo, chopped

1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chilies

1 (7 ounce) can Salsa Verde
1 cup chopped Yellow or Red Onion
3 teaspoons minced garlic
1 cup beef broth

**Place chuck roast in large crock pot and sprinkle with the salt and pepper, chili powder and cumin.
**Add the remaining ingredients and simmer on high for 5 hours or on low for 7-8 hours.
**Shred the meat with a fork and simmer on high for additional 10-15 minutes.
**Serve in taco shells, rolled up in Tortillas, or on crusty rolls with some of the juice for dipping (ala a French Dip)

I pretty much followed the recipe as written, well, I just didn't use much beef broth. I find there ends up being plenty of liquid. It was ok. I think I like using a rump roast for this as it shreds easier. It was a good basic taco filling.

I served it with mexican rice from another thread. This rice turned out pretty close to what you get in "real" mexican restaurants. I was still a little disappointed. It might need a little more salt, but I did mix it up ahead of time, and put it in the oven with the start timer set. That might have affected the consistancy a little big.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Pork Lo Mein

I was recently following this thread, because it also annoyings me that ATK and CI do not allow for easy access to their recipes. But in this internet age, all you have to do is ask the right people and there you have it. Anyways, I was inspired to make the Pork Lo Mein that ended up being posted.


I did really like this one and it came out looking pretty authentic (ie was made in a real fake chinese restaurant like Pei Wei). My only complaint was that I felt the 5-spice powder was overwhelming. I don't think it really was, I just feel it was. I use the Penzy's 5 spice powder and there is just too much cinnamon for me. Mark really like it. He said, "this is pretty good." which is an overwhelming compliment for him. I served it with the crunch edamame that KAJ posted.


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Risotto with Porcini Mushrooms

I found this recipe for risotto, but I was similar to this Mushroom Risotto I made a while back. I probably won't make it again, but would like to try some of the other recipes on the board...

My kids liked it as well :)

Halibut Kebabs

I had intended to follow the recipe exactly on these Halibut Kebabs but then I found that wonderful tomato parmesan focaccia at Sprouts and I had to go with it. I also forgot to buy the pancetta for the kebabs. So, I didn't have high expectations going into this one because I thought without a little pancetta it may be bland. These were outstanding without the pancetta and probably would be unbelievable with it. I can't wait to make these again! Who would have thought a little EVOO, salt, pepper, garlic and rosemary could have been so great on fish. FYI ... there are several recipes on this thread that I would like to try.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Bourbon-Glazed Salmon with Crunchy Edamame

So we have had success with Salmon in our house a number of times. Mainly on Monday nights because trash day is on Tues morning:) Anyway, I usually just go with some of the recipes that I have and they are GREAT, but I did do a search on the Cooking Light message board for Salmon. What is funny is that one of my recipes it the BBQ Salmon, but my husband doesn't really love it.

Anyways, I found this recipe for Bourbon-Glazed Salmon. I did some substituting. In lieu of Bourbon, I used Vodka and Vanilla extract. In lieu of brown sugar, I used white sugar:) Everyone ate it up and I think it is mainly due to how well my husband grills it!!

I also decided that I wanted to have some edamame as a side and did a search. I found this recipe for crunchy edamame had a lot of responses, so I tried it. They ended up like peanuts. I did not add the red pepper because I didn't want it too spicy for my kiddos. They were pretty tasty:)
Roasted Chile-Spiced Edamame
1 (14-ounce) package frozen blanched shelled edamame (green soybeans), thawed
Cooking spray
1 tablespoon New Mexico red Chile powder or chili powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
Preheat oven to 350.
Arrange edamame in a single layer on a baking sheet, and coat with cooking spray. Combine Chile powder and remaining ingredients. Sprinkle over edamame; toss to coat. Bake edamame at 350 for 1 1/2 hours, stirring beans every 30 minutes.
My daughter ate all her crunchy edamame, but still insisted I take a picture of her plate!!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Fall Garden

I'm ba-aaack. Sorry, for the long hiatus ... but a new job with a killer commute and over-scheduled weekends have left me with little time for new cooking inspiration. I so wanted to join in the Julia Child challenge last month, but her recipes are really difficult plus there was not one book available through the Phoenix Public Library since the movie had just come out.

Anyway, I still don't have any cooking inspiration to share ... but I do have photos of my fall, desert, organic, veggie garden that I promised you back in April. And, I have a great garden book to recommend. Maybe everyone already knows of the Square Foot Gardening method but I only recently learned of it. If you like gardening, this book is so inspirational. And, the picture above shows my first attempt using the method. Hopefully, I will be able to report back on how it works ... I grew about half of the garden above from seed. The startup costs of the above 4x4' garden was about $100 ... but only because I chose a fancy container for it. I'll keep you posted on the results!

Italian Beef


This isn't a real earth shattering recipe and I am sure everyone has made a version of this at one time, but it is a good tried and true. I made it tonight and served it "Sunday dinner" style, and will have leftovers later on sandwiches. Both are good. Here is a link to the original thread.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

October - My Cooking Light Message Board

Before blogs, there were message boards and I have been a member of the cooking light message board since 2000. That is right after the internet was invented...I think. I don't post much, but lurk a lot and always get so much out of it.

Cooking Light Message Board

Follow that link and then head to the "good food" board. In some ways this will be an easy challange. Low fat, full fall, vegetarian, freezer meals, make ahead, breads, soups...everything is on there. However, it will be difficult just due to the amount of information on there. You can just follow the day's threads or do a search of your own. The search feature is a little tricky. I suggest doing an advanced search and then "search titles only".

The term cooking light is really just a title at this point. When I first discovered this board, everyone was indeed trying to cook light, but now the emphasis is on cooking healthy: little-no processed foods, veggies, healthy sources of fat. However, there should be something for everyone! Happy cooking!