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Showing posts from January, 2012

Shrimp with Andouille and Angel Hair Pasta

For a change of pace, Andouille sausage is delicious ~ add some shrimp and seasonings and you’re sure to enjoy a tasty meal!  



Andouille sausage is French in origin, having a unique spicy flavor, being made primarily from pork, garlic, red and black peppers, wine and onions.  It is cased in a blackened skin, and then is heavily smoked over pecan logs and sugar cane.  It can be served cold, in slices, as an hors d’oeuvre; however, it is mainly used in Cajun and Creole dishes such as jambalaya and gumbo. 
Cajun cuisine is one of our favorites and always reminds us of NOLA ~ actually, I can’t get enough of either of them.  Serving it over angel hair pasta is pretty great!

Shrimp with Andouille and Angel Hair Pasta
Ingredients:
8 ounces angel hair pasta 2 tablespoons olive oil ½ pound Andouille sausage, cut into ¼” slices 3 garlic cloves, minced 1 cup salsa verde 4 teaspoons flour 1½ cups chicken broth ¼ cup heavy cream 1 pound shrimp, deveined and peeled 3 green onions, sliced into thin rounds for ga…

Robust Mushroom and Barley Soup

I adore the flavor and meatiness of mushrooms!   I like them equally ~ whether raw, sautéed in butter, or in my savory mushroom and mustard casserole.  But, I’ve been addicted to soup lately, probably because it has been very cold, windy and snowy here.  So, a while ago, when I saw the recipe for mushroom soup in The Chicago Tribune, I knew I had to try it.



This recipe I’m sharing with you combines mild earthy, fresh button mushrooms with the nutty-woodsy flavor of dried porcini mushrooms.  Both the texture and flavor of these mushrooms remind me of meat.  Mushrooms, being like tiny sponges, soak up the flavor of the sautéed shallots and garlic, giving them an appealing hearty flavor. 
I made a few changes in the recipe:  I added Montreal seasoning, substituted button mushrooms for cremini, since the grocery store had none; and, I added a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar to enhance the flavor of the mushrooms.  The recipe called for ½ cup of barley.  We really like barley, so I upped it …

Joy Bauer’s Food Cures Review and Healthy Chicken Parmesan and Broccoli

I have been a fan of hers since her well-rounded doses of nutritional segments started on the Today show! 
I am referring to Joy Bauer!   I was thrilled when Kathleen, Partnership Director at Joy Bauer.com, offered to send me a copy of Joy Bauer’s Food Cures.  

Other than being the nutrition expert for the Today show, Bauer also is the bestselling author of six other books on food and nutrition, and a contributing editor to Parade and Woman’s Day magazines.  Joy is the nutritionist for the New York City Ballet and the creator of www.JoyBauer.com.  She lives in New York with her husband and three children.   



Joy Bauer’s Food Cures is a great read and an informative reference for those of us who are taking steps to be healthier.  It’s a huge book ~ 516 pages ~ full of nutritional facts and recipes; grouped into sections regarding numerous diseases and issues.  

Joy shares her knowledge of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, weight loss, arthritis, osteoporosis, migraine headaches, cancer pr…

Cherry Muffins and Marshall Field’s

RIP, Marshall Field’s!



Well, I don’t know when I clipped this from the “Heirloom Cooking” column in the Chicago Tribune, but I do know it was before August 30, 2005 because the prize for printing a reader’s recipe was a gift certificate for $25 to Marshall Field’s department store.  


It infuriated many area people when Marshall Field’s doors closed on that August day to become Macy’s.  Its massive retail store at State and Washington Streets in theLoop—built in stages between 1893 and 1915—occupied an entire city block and was one of the world's largest retail buildings.
A fun Christmas time outing was to go to Marshall Field’s on State Street to take in its gorgeous animated holiday window displays.

Then, off for a delicious lunch in the wood paneled Walnut Room; seating 450 diners, under crystal chandeliers ~ surrounded by imported dark Russian wood paneling.

While enjoying lunch, the diner had an up-close view of the 45-foot tall Christmas tree with over 1,000 ornaments in the cent…

Mexican Lasagna

I never thought of the word “lasagna” in Mexican cuisine but, the word fits this recipe perfectly!


Technically, we all know lasagna is a wide flat type of pasta used in the Italian lasagna we all like ~ the baked casserole composed of layers.  

However; in this delicious south-of-the-border dish, flour tortillas replace the traditional pasta.  Unfortunately, I don’t know what magazine I clipped and then adapted this recipe from.
The tortilla shells are stacked between layers of enchilada sauce, Spanish rice, corn and creamy pungent cheese.  

There is a plethora of ways to make this; instead of ground beef, try ground turkey or chicken; refried beans instead of the corn, and add the seasonings that you like.  That’s the beauty of this Mexican lasagna ~ whatever your taste buds crave will most likely work!


Mexican Lasagna
Ingredients:
2 pounds lean ground beef 1 large onion, chopped 4 garlic cloves, minced 2 cans (10-ounces each) enchilada sauce 1 (11-ounce) can shoepeg corn, drained 1 tablespoon H…

Oven-fried Catfish with a Giveaway Winner

Ummmm!  Crunchy cornmeal-crusted fried catfish, piping hot hushpuppies and zesty coleslaw!  Ah!!!  Who could resist that meal?  

This falls into that category of favorite meals that I love to eat, but do not make any more because of the mess, the bother, and mainly because of the high fat content of deep frying.
These days, I clean up that greasy mess by making this oven-fried catfish.  Farm-raised catfish has a mild taste and is nutritious.  When “fried” in the oven, it stays lean and gets crisp from the cornmeal coating. 
This is “guiltless” “fried” catfish at its best and I hope you give it a try to find out for yourself!  It’s really GOOD! 


Oven-fried Catfish
Ingredients:
2 tablespoons canola oil 1½ pounds catfish fillets ½ cup cornmeal ½ cup flour 2 teaspoons paprika 2 teaspoons garlic powder 1 teaspoon sugar ½ teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon seasoned pepper ½ cup buttermilk
Method:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a baking pan with the oil and set aside. In a shallow bowl, combine cornmeal and next 6…

Chicken Kapama ~ Greek Chicken Stew

I fell under a Greek spell for the first time, many years ago, at Greek Islands restaurant on Halsted Street in Chicago.  Think Greek ~ you know ~ azure blue sky, turquoise sea, the warmth of sunshine on pure white buildings; and the FOOD; Greek Cuisine:  moussaka, gigantes, melitzana ima, baklava, saganaki, dolmathes, skewered kabobs and now kapama.
Stewed chicken or “kotopoulo kapama” is a colorful, hearty dish that can be made on the stove-top or in a slow cooker. 

The dish consists of chicken combined with plenty of tomatoes, garlic, onions and lemon juice.  

Adding pungent cinnamon, gives depth to the succulent stew, enlivening the flavors.  You can guess what the benefit of this simmering pot is ~ it’s the fragrant spicy aroma wafting through the air in your kitchen! 
This dish is a heart-healthy chicken dish that is low in calories, fat and cholesterol.  

Serve the stew piping hot over orzo or pasta with a tossed green salad on the side.  The bonus is that Chicken Kapama can be mad…

Robust Beef Tenderloin Tips

I love beef and am always on the lookout for recipes using a cut that is lower in fat. 



Beef tenderloin tips are perfect for that.  From filet mignon, the cut tapers at one end down the tenderloin.  It’s too small for nice steaks so is cut into “tips” which are used in stir fries, stews and so forth; rendering a cut that is much less costly than filets. Nutritionally, tenderloin tips are high in protein, moderately low in fat, and a source of great flavor. 
Like the fillets, the cut takes well to quick methods of cooking.  This recipe has some of my favorite ingredients ~ beef, mushrooms, garlic and tomatoes with a little bourbon to round out the flavors.  The demi-glace is savory delicious and I hope you try this and like it as much as we do!

Robust Beef Tenderloin Tips
Ingredients:
2 pounds beef tenderloin tips 1 tablespoon butter 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 small onion, chopped ¼ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon seasoned pepper ½ cup dry red wine ½ cup Jim Beam bourbon 1 (14-ou…









Summer was our best season: it was sleeping on the back screened porch in cots, or trying to sleep in the treehouse; summer was everything good to eat; it was a thousand colors in a parched landscape…

~ Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird






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