Wednesday, October 31, 2007

My First Risotto!!!!

Saffron Risotto

I got this recipe while looking at I needed to use more of the saffron RW gave me and since we had kickball last night in the chilly weather wanted to make something that would literally "stick to our ribs." You can find the original recipe here I didn't alter it much, but because one of the reviews for the recipe said it didn't make enough for two I decided to double the reipe. Bad idea!!! There would have been plenty of risotto without doubling the recipe.

28 ounces chicken stock

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/2 onion, finely chopped

1 cup arborio rice

1 cup white wine

Large pinch of saffron

1 tablespoon butter

1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus shavings for garnish (optional)

Some ingredients: Arborio Rice, Onion, and Dry White Wine

Bring stock to a low simmer in a medium pot. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat for 1 minute. Cook onion until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add rice and a pinch of salt. Sauté until rice is translucent, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add wine and saffron; bring to a simmer, stirring, until rice has absorbed most of wine.

Add 2 ladles of stock to rice; simmer, stirring, until rice has absorbed most of stock.

Continue adding stock, allowing rice to absorb it before adding the next ladleful. Cook until rice is al dente and mixture is a little loose.

Stir in butter. Turn off heat. Stir in grated cheese. Cover and let sit 2 minutes. Divide among 4 bowls. Garnish each with cheese shavings, if desired.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Janet Strikes Again...

Okay so I love all of Janet's recipes. Honestly I have to say I use one or two of her recipes every week and I don't get bored. I came across this recipe searching for some ways to use the saffron the my friend RW gave me recently. Her mom went on a cruise in the Mediterranean and came back with some great spices---thank you Joyce! You can see the original recipe below in a link to Janet's site. I modified it a little, but it was super easy and fast.

Saffron Chicken with Peppers

1 package of boneless, skinless chicken thighs

Salt and Pepper

Red pepper flakes

2 tbsp olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 large red pepper, sliced into strips

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup long grain rice

1/4 tsp saffron threads, crushed

1 1/2 cups chicken stock

1/2 cup dry white wine

Several green olives with pimentos, chopped

1 Handful of frozen peas

Some flat leaf parsley

-Season chicken and sauté in olive oil over medium-high heat until browned. 5 minutes per side.

-Remove chicken to a plate and leave drippings in pan.

-Add red pepper, onion, and garlic S&P and red pepper flakes. Sauté until vegetables soften

-Stir in rice and saffron. Add the water, white wine and olives. Bring to a boil. Place chicken thighs and peas back into mixture, cover skillet and simmer for 25 minutes.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Shortcut Pizza

A week or so ago I went to Trader Joe's with a friend and bought this wonderful pre-made "Garlic Herb Pizza Dough."

I decided it would be a quick nice dinner for Tim and I and I was definitly hooked. The dough was easy to use and super tasty.

We topped the pizza with left over grilled chicken, basil, red onion, cherry tomotoes, green and red pepper.

Here's Tim chopping and getting the ingredients ready.

We decided to use a rectangular baking sheet instead of a round one since we don't have a baking stone.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Pumpkin Carving Day!!!

My pumpkin.

Root vegetables cut and roasted with olive oil and salt and pepper for 30-40 minutes at 400.

Garlic, Beets, Carrots, Yams and Golden Beets

Made a puree with turnips, parsnips, sweet potato. Added puree to base of shallots, roasted garlic, celery and veggie stock.

Put soup in pumpkin and baked at 350 for 35 minutes.

Tim carving his pumpkin.

Our table setting with the runner I made for Thanksgiving last year and the new fiestaware plates Tim's mom just gave us.

The finished pumpkins.

Robyn's Cupcakes

Chocolate Cupcakes-Food Network

1 box Devil's Food Cake Mix (recommended: Duncan Hines Moist Deluxe)
1 1/3 cups water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 (12-portion) muffin tins with paper cupcake liners and set aside. In a bowl, using an electric mixer, mix the cake mix, water, oil, and eggs on medium speed until moistened and smooth. Stir in 3/4 cup chocolate chips. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin tins, stirring it occasionally to redistribute the chocolate chips. The batter will nearly fill each liner to the top. Evenly sprinkle the remaining chocolate chips over the tops of the cupcakes. Bake until the cupcakes spring back when lightly touched, or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 15 to 18 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool.


1 cup heavy whipping cream
12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips

Bring whipping cream just to boiling over medium-high heat. Remove from heat. Add chips (do not stir). Let stand 5 minutes. Stir until smooth. Cool for 15 minutes.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Ready Or Not Here Comes Fall....

Lentil Sausage Soup
2-14 oz cans of broth (chicken)
1-2 cup(s) of water
1 cup brown lentils, soaked, rinsed and drained
2 celery stalks, chopped
-3-4 medium potatoes
2 carrots, chopped
1 yellow onion chopped
2 cloves of garlic chopped
olive oil
2 large sausage links, cut into bite sized pieces
salt, pepper, curry, red pepper flakes
-Soak lentils overnight, rinse and drain
-In a sauce pan combine oil, garlic, carrots, onion, celery, potatoes, curry, S&P and red pepper flakes
-Cook veggies until tender
-Add stock and lentils and simmer for about 30 minutes to incorporate flavors
-Add sausage
Topping for Lentil Sausage Soup
1 cup sour cream
1-2 TBl lemon juice
Fresh basil and parsley, chopped

-Mix ingredients and use as topping for soup

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

More on Soup and Chicken Salad

Curried Chicken Salad
1 rotisserie chicken
2 celery stalks, chopped
3 scallions, chopped
1-2 apples, sliced thinly
curry powder
salt and pepper
-Pull chicken off the bone
-Roughly chop chicken
-Add celery, scallions, and apples
-add mayo, curry powder and S&P to taste

Black-Eyed Pea Soup
1 cup black-eyed peas
2 carrots
3 celery stalks
1 yellow onion
2 cloves of garlic
2 cans of diced tomatoes
1 red pepper
1 box chicken stock
3-4 cups of water
3-4 bay leaves
couple of dashes of hot sauce
red pepper flakes
salt and pepper
-Soak peas in water for 4 hours, rinse and rain
-Add peas to soup pot with half the stock and two cups of water
-Bring peas and water/stock mixture to a boil and then simmer for 45 minutes
-While the peas are simmering saute carrots, onion, celery, red pepper, garlic, cumin, red pepper flakes and S&P.
-When peas are tender add sauteed veggies, tomatoes, the rest of the stock, 1-2 cups o water (your preference), bay leaves, hot sauce and re season with S&P
-Cook till the flavors blend--about 30 minutes.
-Serve with hot sauce and greens on the side.