Saturday, April 25, 2009

Crunchy Asian Salad

Makes a very large salad- great for parties.

2 heads green lettuce, broken bite size peices
1-2 bunches grn onions chopped
very small red cabbage, shredded
4 carrots, shredded
1 red pepper, chopped
optional cooked chicken chunks
2 Tbsp butter
2 packages of Ramen noodles, broken without sauce powder
3/4 cup sliced almonds
1/3 cup sesame seeds
1/3 cup vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
2/3 cup oil
3 Tbsp soy sauce
Optional Ground Flax seed- I add this to the crunchy noodle mixture after toasting.

Prepare the vegetables and optional chicken and throw together in a large bowl.

Melt the butter in a saucepan and toast the Ramen noodles, then almonds and then sesame seeds. Watch carefully so not to burn.

In a ziploc bag, tupperware, empty jar or salad cruet mix the vinegar, sugar, oil and soy sauce until well mixed.

Pour noodles and nuts over individual salads and dress just before serving.

Coconut Chicken with Mango Salsa

1 lb Chicken Tenders

1/2 bag flaked coconut

1 c. Coconut milk

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1/2 tsp curry powder or 1 tsp if you like it spicier

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Spread coconut on a cookie sheet. Toast in the oven until just barely golden brown, about 7 minutes. (Keep your eye on it so it doesn’t burn.) Once the coconut is toasted pull out of the oven and let stand for 2 minutes. I leave a little bit of white since this will go back in the oven with the chicken.

Cut chicken into 1 inch cubes place in a mixing bowl. Toss with salt, pepper and curry powder. Pour coconut milk over chicken mix until well coated. Then coat the coconut milk chicken in the flaked coconut. I just pour all the coconut (reserve 1/4 cup for your coconut rice!) in with the chicken stirring it with one hand. Spread the coated chicken pieces on a greased baking sheet so that they are not touching . Bake the chicken pieces at 400 degrees for 15 minutes until they are golden brown. Serve with Mango Salsa.

Mango Salsa

1 ripe mango , peeled, pitted, and diced (about 1 1/2 cup) (See: How to Cut a Mango)
1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped (if the onion is bigger than a baseball use 1/4 of it)
1 JalapeƱo chile, minced (include ribs and seeds for a hotter taste if desired)
3 Tbsp fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
3 Tbsp fresh lime juice
Salt and pepper to taste

Also good with diced red bell pepper and jicama.

Watch the tutorial on How to Cut a Mango. Once ou have cut away the pit, rather than cubing it and then cutting off the skin, I cut off the skin and cut it sideways into very thin slices. Then I cross cut it like so:

Then I turn those pieces on their side with the knife and cut in half. This way you end up with tiny salsa size mango cubes.

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. If the salsa ends up being a little too hot or acidic for your taste, you can temper it by adding some diced avocado.

Asian Fusion

After my husband took me to Asia de Cuba and I realized the joys of fusion food I was inspired to try some recipes at home. Enter Coconut Chicken with Mango Salsa, Coconut Rice and a crunchy Asian Salad.

The coconut chicken is surprisingly easy and paired with the hot n sweet mango salsa you will be licking your lips. I know we were. It was like "What About Bob" at our house with my husband exclaiming "Mmmmm!"..."Mmmmm this is sooo good!"

The coconut rice is mild and at first just tastes like rice, and then slowly you taste more and more coconut and have to have another bite, and another....

And the crunchy Asian Salad is one of my old faves I new would go well with the rest of the meal. The dressing is simple to make and the toasted Ramen noodles, almonds and sesame seeds add the nice crunch.

Prepare the salsa first so the flavors have time to meld. Then prepare the salad ingredients keeping the noodle mixture and dressing separate until serving. The rice and chicken should be cooked just 30 min before dinner time so they are nice and hot.

Coconut Chicken with Mango Salsa

Coconut Rice

Crunchy Asian Salad

Coconut Rice

Recipe and Photo by Steamy Kitchen

1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon sea or kosher salt (or 1/2 teaspoon table salt)
2 cups jasmine rice, washed and drained well
1 1/2 cups good, thick coconut milk (shake can to mix well before opening)
1 1/2 cups water

1/4 cup sweetened coconut flakes

This recipe is from Steamy Kitchen and I think it is yummy! It turned out perfectly and I didn't even use jasmine rice- just regular white long grain rice- not instant though!

Heat butter a medium sized, heavy saucepan over medium heat. When butter is melted, add brown sugar and salt, stir until dissolved. Turn heat to high, add rice and stir until all grains coated evenly. Add coconut milk and water. Stir. When boiling, immediately cover with tight fitting lid, turn heat to medium-low and simmer undisturbed for 20 minutes. Remove pot from heat but do not open lid. Really, no peeking! Let sit for 10 minutes. While rice is cooking, toast coconut flakes on a dry skillet over medium high heat. Stir frequently to avoid burning, remove from pan as soon as coconut is golden brown, about 2 minutes.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Eggs Benedict with Hollandaise Sauce

4 egg yolks

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted (1 stick)

Pinch cayenne

Pinch salt

Vigorously whisk the egg yolks and lemon juice together in a stainless steel bowl and until the mixture is thickened and doubled in volume.

Place the bowl over a saucepan containing barely simmering water (or use a double boiler,) the water should not touch the bottom of the bowl. Continue to whisk rapidly. Be careful not to let the eggs get too hot or they will scramble. Slowly drizzle in the melted butter and continue to whisk until the sauce is thickened and doubled in volume.

Remove from heat, whisk in cayenne and salt. Cover and place in a warm spot until ready to use. If the sauce gets too thick, whisk in a few drops of warm water before serving.

For Eggs Benedict:


1/2 cup distilled vinegar, divided

12 large eggs

12 slices Canadian bacon

6 English muffins, split

Pour enough water into a skillet to reach a depth of about 3 inches, and add the vinegar. Bring skillet to a gentle simmer over medium heat. Crack an egg into a cup and carefully slide it into the hot poaching liquid. Quickly repeat with all the eggs. Poach the eggs, turning them occasionally with a spoon, until the whites are firm, or to the desired degree of doneness, about 3 to 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove the eggs and transfer to a kitchen towel. Lightly dab the eggs with the towel to remove any excess water.

While the eggs are poaching, heat the bacon or ham in a skillet or microwave until warm.

To serve, toast the English muffin halves and divide them among plates. Top each half with a slice of Canadian bacon, and set an egg on top. Spoon the hollandaise sauce over the eggs and garnish with the chives. Serve immediately.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Tri-Color Sweet Pepper Quiche Re-Do

The first time I made the Tri-Color Sweet Pepper Quiche. I was worn out by the process and the list of ingredients. And the long strips of pepper that would pull out of the quiche when you went to take a bite overwhelmed the other flavors. But I knew the recipe had potential. So, here is my much easier and I think, tastier version. You will save a lot of time using store bought roasted peppers, pesto and pie crust rather than making all that from scratch as the original recipe directs. And the overall taste is improved by dicing the pepper- so you spread the taste rather than getting whole bites of just pepper.

We eat this for breakfast or dinner and it makes a great dish for brunch parties.

Red Pepper and Olive Quiche

1 jar of roasted peppers, diced
4-5 Tbsp pesto
2 whole eggs plus 2 egg yolks
1 cup milk
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 cup grated cheese (your favorite “white cheese” provolone, Monterey Jack etc..)
1/2 cup pitted olives (kalamata or Spanish), sliced
1 Pie Crust
Optional 2 handfuls spinach sliced very thinly

1. Preheat the oven to 400°F and prebake the pie crust until just before browning. (You will see the “wetness” has gone out of the dough.)
2. Prepare the peppers, olives, spinach (if using) and cheese (dicing, slicing and grating.)
3. Prepare the egg mixture. Whisk together the eggs and yolks in a bowl. Add the milk, heavy cream and about 1/2 teaspoon salt and whisk till smooth.
4. To assemble the quiche, spread the pesto across the bottom of the crust. Top with half of the cheese, then all the peppers and spinach if using. Dot the olives over that. Spread the remaining cheese and pour in the egg and cream mixture.
5. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean and the edges of the crust are very golden. Remove and let rest for 10 minutes, then serve.