Archive | October, 2010

Curry Chicken Salad

25 Oct

Ingredients: Chicken thighs, shallots, garlic, brown rice, celery, apple, green onion, carrot, peanuts, butternut squash, shredded cabbage, mayonnaise, buttermilk, curry, cumin, ginger, garlic powder, honey, and salt.

Start by cooking four boneless skinless chicken thighs with two minced shallots and six minced cloves of garlic in a heavy bottom skillet. Chicken thighs take longer to cook than white meat, which is good because it gives the shallots and garlic time to caramelize into a savory paste. Remove the chicken and reserve the yummy shallots and garlic to use with the dressing later.

In a large bowl stir together half a cup of cooked brown rice (I like basmati because it is light and flaky), two chopped celery stalks, one chopped apple, three chopped green onions, one shredded carrot, one cup of cubed roasted butternut squash, one cup of shredded white or red cabbage, a quarter cup of unsalted roasted peanuts, and the cooled chicken thighs cut into small pieces.

For the sauce, combine half a cup of mayonnaise, one tablespoon of buttermilk, 2½ teaspoons of Indian curry powder, half a teaspoon of garlic powder, half a teaspoon of ground cumin, half a teaspoon of ground ginger, one teaspoon of salt, fresh ground peppercorns, a quarter cup of honey, and the reserved caramelized shallots and garlic.

Pour the sauce over the salad and mix it in.

This flavorful salad is great served cold all by itself, over a bed of fresh greens, or warm with pita, tortillas or naan.

Experiment: Try adding golden raisins and walnuts. Make it vegan by stir frying firm tofu instead of chicken and using vegan mayonnaise and soy milk in the sauce. Spice up the salad with cayenne, red pepper flakes, chili sauce, or another favorite hot sauce.

Low-Sugar Cookie Bars

18 Oct

Ingredients: Butter, banana, raw cane sugar, eggs, vanilla, buttermilk, honey, crunchy unsweetened peanut butter, unsweetened applesauce, spelt flour, almond pulp, rolled oats, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and sugar-free chocolate melt away candies.

This recipe makes a big pan of moist, delicious bars! Love, love, love, them with a hot cup of coffee!

In one mixing bowl, stir together all of the following wet ingredients: One stick of semi-melted butter, two mashed ripe bananas, two eggs, one teaspoon of vanilla, ½ cup crunchy unsweetened peanut butter, ¼ cup organic no sugar added applesauce, ¼ cup buttermilk, and ¼ cup honey.

In a second mixing bowl, blend together two cups spelt flour, one cup almond pulp, ¼ cup old-fashioned rolled oats, one teaspoon of baking soda, ½ teaspoon salt, ¼ cup organic raw cane sugar, and ½ teaspoon of baking powder.

Now, combine the wet and dry ingredients into one bowl. The batter will be thick but don’t over mix it. At the very end of stirring, add in two cups of sugar-free chocolate melt away candies.

Use whatever you like to grease a nine by thirteen cake pan. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Spread the batter into the pan. Sprinkle the top with a touch more organic raw cane sugar and then bake it for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.

Experiment: Make oatmeal raisin bars instead by adding raisins instead of chocolate, taking out the almond pulp, and increasing the oats to 1¼ cups. Try adding nuts if you like. For a lower fat version, cut the butter in half and increase the applesauce by a ¼ cup.

Butternut Squash, Bacon, and Goat Cheese Pizza

11 Oct

This pizza was inspired by my friend Elisabeth after she served something very similar and super tasty to my family.  Thanks, E!

Ingredients: Butternut squash, bacon, goat cheese, mozzarella, sweet onion, olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes, and pizza crust.

Start off by roasting about half of a Butternut squash in one inch cubes at 425 degrees until browned and softened (about twenty minutes).  Set them aside.

Cook ten slices of bacon and set aside to crumble once cooled.

In a heavy bottom skillet, caramelize one whole sweet onion. Set this aside.

Take your pizza crust (I use Boboli pizza crust if I don’t have time to make my own) and drizzle about two tablespoons of olive oil over the top. Evenly spread it over the surface of the crust. Take four to six minced cloves of garlic and sprinkle it evenly on the crust. Add about two cups of grated mozzarella cheese then the caramelized onions. Next, sprinkle about 1 to 1½ cups of baked squash followed by the crumbled bacon. Lastly, add another few tablespoons of mozzarella.

Bake for about ten minutes or for however long your pizza crust suggests as the best time. During the last two minutes of baking, add a ¼ cup of crumbled goat cheese and finish baking. Add one to two teaspoons of fresh dried red pepper flakes after baking if you like it spicy!

Experiment: Try adding a red sauce instead of the garlic and olive oil sauce. Top with fresh slices of cold tomato once the pizza comes out of the oven. Add thin slices of zucchini or mushroom. Hmmm… What else do you like on your pizza? Serve with baby spinach and arugula.

Mexican Squash Soup

4 Oct

Ingredients: Yukon Gold potatoes, garlic, carrots, a sweet onion, chicken broth, tomato sauce, salsa verde, acorn squash, Savory Cilantro Sauce, half and half milk, sea salt, dry ground mixed hot chili peppers, and mild cheddar cheese.

This smooth, rich, and spicy soup warms the body through and through. It is excellent served alongside your favorite Mexican dishes or as a meal in itself. The following makes a very large pot of soup. Halve the ingredients listed or make it as is and have a party! It will also freeze well.

Begin by preheating your oven to 400 degrees to roast the squash. I use one dark green acorn squash and one white acorn squash. These have a delicate sweet flavor and smooth creamy texture. Cut each in half and place them cut side down on a cookie sheet. Roast them for an hour and then turn the oven off. Leave them to rest in the oven for another thirty minutes or so. Note that the time may vary depending on the size of the squash. Remove them and let them cool completely for easy handling later.

Next, sauté seven chopped cloves of garlic and one chopped whole sweet onion with a touch of olive oil in a large stew pot. As they begin to soften and brown, add three chopped carrots and three peeled and diced Yukon Gold potatoes. Continue sautéing for another ten minutes or so. Then add one eight ounce can of organic tomato sauce, one cup of salsa verde, ¾ cup of Savory Cilantro Sauce and 32 ounces of organic free range chicken broth. Now, working with the roasted cooled squash, remove the seeds with a spoon and peel the skin from each piece. It should come off quite easily. Cut it into chunks and put it in the stew pot. Next, bring it to a boil and then reduce to a simmer and cover, allowing the lid to still vent a little. Allow the vegetables to cook until they fall apart easily when poked at. Now remove it from the burner and allow it to cool.

Using a blender or food processor, puree the cooked vegetables in batches to the consistency that you desire. Then add it all back into the stew pot. Turn the heat on low and stir in one cup of half and half milk, one cup of organic free range chicken stock, 1½ teaspoon of sea salt, ¼ to ½ teaspoon of dry ground mixed hot chili peppers and ¼ cup of mild cheddar cheese. Heat through and serve!

Experiment: Try different types of squash, add different peppers or chilies to the mix, use vegetable stock for a vegetarian alternative, add cooked rice for a different texture, top with fresh cilantro or green onion for added color, stir in cooked black beans or corn at the end for an even heartier soup, add shredded chicken or beef.