Friday, May 20, 2016

Thai Coconut Chicken Soup

2 lemongrass stems, white parts only, or 1 tsp lemon zest
8 small button mushrooms, stems trimmed and quartered
2 chicken breast fillets
4 cups chicken stock
1 inch piece ginger, peeled, cut into matchsticks
2 tsp sugar
1 can coconut milk
1 TBS fish sauce or soy sauce
2 TBS lime juice, plus wedges to serve
2 TBS coarsely chopped mint leaves
2 TBS coarsely chopped basil leaves

Bruise the lemongrass stems with the back of a knife and cut each one in half. Cut the chicken breast into bite size pieces. In a saucepan, bring the chicken stock, lemon grass, ginger, and sugar to a gentle boil over medium high heat. Add the chicken, mushrooms and coconut milk. Simmer without boiling for five minutes, until chicken is cooked. Add fish sauce and lime, mint and basil leaves, serve right away.

Oven baked Squash Sticks

2 TBS bread crumbs
2 TBS parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp granulated garlic
1/2 teaspoon granulated onion
1/2 tsp dred herbs, like oregano and thyme
2 large squash cut into thick sticks
1 egg white

Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Ina small bowl, combine breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, salt, pepper garlic, onion and dried herbs, then pour out onto a large dinner plate or you could use a baking dish. In a large blow, toss the squash sticks with the egg white to coat. Roll each stick in the breadcrumb mix to coat and lay on a sheet pan in a single layer, without them touching. Bake for 15 minutes, until golden brown.

Cherry Frozen Yogurt

3 cups pitted fresh cherries
2 TBS lemon juice
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup whole milk
1 1/2 cups full fat yogurt

Place the pitted cherries, lemon juice, and sugar in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer, stirring until the sugar is completely dissolved. When all of the sugar has dissolved, remove from heat and let cool for 10 minutes. Place contents in a blender and pulse until smooth. Combine the cherry puree, milk, and yogurt together in a bowl. Chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour and overnight if needed. Process the mixture in your ice cream maker for 25 minutes. Eat it right away or let it freeze in the freezer until hardened.

Strawberry Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette

1 TBS balsamic vinegar
2 TBS olive oil
1 tsp honey
1 TBS minced spring onion
1/4 tsp salt
1 bunch arugula, washed and chopped
1 head lettuce, washed and chopped
1 cup sliced strawberries
1/4 cup crumbled bleu/feta/goat cheese
1/4 cup chopped toasted sliced almonds
1 avocado sliced
Salt and pepper

Combine the vinegar, honey, minced onion, salt and olive oil, whisking together in a large bowl. Add in the remaining ingredients and toss to coat everything with the dressing. Adjust the seasoning with salt and fresh ground pepper if needed. Eat right away.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

December Chalkboard Drawings

Minestrone Soup

2 large carrots, peeled and diced
2 celery ribs, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 TBS olive oil or butter
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp salt
32 ounces chicken or vegetable broth
1 16 oz. can of diced tomatoes
1 16 oz. can white beans or kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 cups chopped cabbage
1 tsp dried basil
1 TBS fresh chopped parsley
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp pepper
1 cup uncooked elbow macaroni
grated Parmesan cheese

In a large saucepan, saute the carrots, celery and onion in oil or butter until tender.

Add garlic and salt; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in the broth, tomatoes, beans, cabbage, basil, parsley, oregano and pepper.

Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

Add the uncooked pasta and cook until the pasta is done about 12 minutes, serve right away.

(If you want to make this ahead, cook the pasta separately, and add it at the time you reheat the soup.)

Ladle into bowls and garnish with cheese.

Winter Vegetable Fritters

1 medium sweet potato or 3 peeled parsnips
3 broccoli stems or peeled kohlrabi bulbs
2-3 carrots
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 eggs
2 TBS oil

Peel and grate, the sweet potato, parsnips, kohlrabi, broccoli stems and carrots.

Combine everything in a large bowl and add the salt, pepper and eggs. Mix well to combine.

Heat a nonstick pan, over medium heat, add the oil and drop 1/4 cup of the vegetable mixture into the pan. Help it to spread out a little then repeat 2-3 more times, so you have 3-4 small pancakes.

Turn the heat down and allow them to cook for 8-9 minutes then turn the fritters over and cook for another 6-7 minutes. Remove them and cook another batch to use the remaining vegetables.

Enjoy right away, they are also great reheated.

**Rancho Piccolo newsletter recipe**