Saturday, November 29, 2014

Jalapeño Popper Soup

10288701_10152934674221663_2328675246946910909_n This is a delicious, creamy, spicy, hearty, filling soup and a great way to use up leftover chicken.  We enjoy the soup quite hot and spicy but you can mellow it out some by either removing the seeds from the jalapenos or using less of them.  Also, we use white meat in the soup but if you have a preference for dark meat, go for it!

10696402_10152934674176663_3491961607920753812_n Jalapeño Popper Soup

  • 2 chicken breast halves, roasted, skin & bones removed, shredded
  • 1 lb bacon, cut crosswise in 1/8-in strips
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4-6 whole jalapenos, stems removed, sliced in thin 1/2 rounds
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 cups cheaters chicken soup, or chicken stock of your choice
  • 6 oz. sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 8 oz. block of cream cheese, cut in chunks
  • salt & pepper to taste

In a soup pot, slowly cook the bacon pieces until crispy.  Remove the bacon from the pot and set aside, leaving the fat behind.  To the fat add the onion and sauté until golden.  Add the jalapenos and garlic and sauté until the jalapenos and garlic are fragrant and softened.  Remove half of the onion/jalapeno mix and set aside with the reserved bacon.  Add the chicken broth to the pot and bring to a simmer.  Stir in the cheddar cheese and while stirring, allow it to melt.  Add the cream cheese and using a hand blender, blend until fully mixed and creamy.  Return the soup to a simmer and add in the shredded chicken and reserved bacon and onion/jalapenos.  Allow to simmer for a few minutes and season to taste with salt & pepper.

Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Crack Slaw

10641082_10152890728091663_7226816134170495745_nSo a friend of ours (hi Heather!! Big wave!) posted a picture and recipe for a dish called Crack Slaw. It looked like a simple and delicious dish so we decided to give it a try.  Heather said that it’s one of those dishes that you adjust the amounts to make it your own and that’s just what we did.  Here is our delicious version of Crack Slaw10644845_10152890728001663_5973961366070589563_nCrack Slaw

In a large skillet brown the ground beef and season with the fish sauce and ground pepper.  Remove from pan and set aside.  In the same pan, heat the sesame oil and sauté the garlic, green onions, ginger & red pepper flakes until fragrant.  Add the coleslaw mix and cook until desired tenderness. (I like it so that it still had a bit of crunch.)  Stir in the coconut aminos and the vinegar and add back in the reserved beef and any accumulated juices.  Serve hot or cold, great either way!.

Enjoy!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Kombucha

10678822_10152845884056663_4140512940248326507_n First batch of kombucha with original “mother” Scoby.

Something new for us, brewing our own kombucha.  What the heck is kombucha?  Well, kombucha is a slightly effervescent fermented drink made with a combination of sweetened black and/or green tea.  It is produced by fermenting the tea using a SCOBY, Symbiotic Colony Of Bacteria Yeast.  Kombucha is not only delicious but it is used as a functional food as it contains b-vitamins, enzymes, probiotics and a high concentration of acetic, gluconic, and lactic acids, which all have numerous health benefits.

10698604_10152868696531663_2869971191490309204_nAfter two weeks a beautiful new baby SCOBY has formed on the surface, almost ready to drink or to go for a second ferment with fruit flavorings.

Many people know, that other than from whole, unprocessed fruits, we have removed all sugar and sweeteners, real and artificial, from our diet.  So, you may be wondering how we can make a drink which begins with sweetened tea.  When making kombucha, the sugar is used to feed the SCOBY and once fully fermented, the sugar is used up.

1911800_10152890918641663_7767147175992873123_nDelicious kombucha after second ferment, (l to r) plain, cherry almond, and mango.

To add some sweetness and extra effervescence to the drink, a second fermentation is done using whole fruit, which then also helps to add wonderful new flavors to the kombucha.

10429327_10152890918691663_385716612568531430_nKombucha

Initial fermentation:

  • 4 tea bags each of black tea and green tea (for loose leaf, 1 tsp = 1 bag of tea)
  • 1 cup white cane sugar
  • One healthy SCOBY
  • 1 cup starter liquid (kombucha from bottle or previous batch)
  • purified, spring, or ionized water

Boil 2 cups of water and add the tea.  Allow the tea to steep for 20 minutes.  Remove the tea bags and stir in the sugar until it’s dissolved.  Add approximately 4 cups of room temperature water to the tea to cool it to room temperature.  In a glass, one gallon vessel (which has been cleaned with vinegar, not soap) add the tea and then fill the vessel with water, leaving 1-2 inches at the top.  Add the mother SCOBY and the 1 cup of starter liquid.  Cover with a cloth and secure the cloth with a rubber band.  Set the container in a warm, darker place where it will get plenty of air flow and can stay undisturbed.  For the next 7-10 days give your brew lots of encouragement and love but don’t move or disturb.  At the 2 week mark there should be a nice thick baby SCOBY on the surface.  Taste your brew by carefully removing the cloth and using a straw, slide the straw down the side of the vessel and gather some liquid by placing your finger over the end of the straw to hold some liquid in there and remove the straw and taste.  If the brew is still sweet, cover and let is continue fermenting for a few more days, tasting each day until it has the flavor desired.  Follow directions below.

Second fermentation, if desired:

  • fresh, dried or frozen fruit
  • 100% fruit juice
  • flavorings of your choice, extracts, fresh ginger, herbal fruit teas, etc.

Once the kombucha has reached your desired flavor, remove the baby and mother SCOBY to a glass plate or container and cover to keep clean and insect free.  Strain the kombucha through coffee filters or multiple layers of cheese cloth to remove any particles floating in the liquid.  Place the desired flavorings in glass bottles which have air-tight lids and then fill to 1/2 to 1-inch from the top.  Do not leave too much headspace otherwise it will not carbonate properly.  Seal the bottles and place in a warm dark place.  As there is a chance the bottles could pop or explode, a cooler or box is a good choice to prevent a possible mess. At least once, if not twice a day, burp the bottles to release the accumulated gas.  Allow the bottles to ferment for 3 – 7 days tasting after the third day, until it reaches desired flavor.  Place the bottles in the refrigerator to stop the fermentation process.  I choose to keep the fruit in the bottles but if desired, the fruit can be strained out. 

Important info:

  • Sanitize all equipment with hot water and vinegar, not soap.
  • Air flow is important.
  • Keep kombucha out of direct sunlight.
  • If you see mold, throw the SCOBY and all liquid away.
  • Other than when steeping your tea, do not use metal around the kombucha or SCOBY.
  • Give your kombucha lots of love, it’s a living organism and like plants, feels the energy in the room.

Enjoy!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Chicken Satay with SunButter “Peanut” Sauce

1798783_10152874444621663_2347171758484762787_n Is it just me or does 2014 seem to be passing at warp speed?  Maisie’s 9th birthday has come and gone, Halloween with our adorable fart-gun-toting minion has passed and today marks the 8 year referral-versary of the first time we laid eyes on a picture of our A-Maisie-ing Maisie, and though Thanksgiving is still over three weeks away, all the stores have decked the isles with all things Christmas.  Today is also Secret Recipe Club reveal day!  This month for SRC we were assigned Jess’ blog, Inquiring Chef.  Jess, her husband and adorable 6 month old twin girls live in Bangkok so her blog is filled with the sights, sounds and recipes of Thailand…and other interesting travels and tastes too!  I’ll bet that time is flying for Jess too as it was just a few months back, when her cutie-patootie girls were just a mere 6 weeks old, that she cooked from our blog, making one of Maisie’s favorite treats, Oatmeal, Cashew & Chocolate Granola Bars

We here in the Cook Lisa Cook home adore Thai food so there were dozens of recipes that we wanted to make.  Many of Jess’ recipes, though a bit different, mirrored ones that we’ve already made. Jess has a Tom Yam Gung (Spicy Prawn Soup) similar but different to my Tom Yam Ghoong (Spicy Shrimp Soup), My Red Curry Chicken is almost identical to Jess’ Red Curry Salmon (going to have to try this as we adore Red Curry Chicken and know it would be delicious on salmon!)  Then there are the variations on another soup, my Thai Chicken Noodle Soup and Jess’ Thai Style Chicken Noodle Soup.  We both also enjoy tasty drinks with Jess’ Mango Lassi and my slightly spicier Mango Lassi.  How we would love to live and eat at Jess’s home as there were so many other delicious looking and sounding recipes which totally enticed us.  We looked at making Jess’ Thai Chili Eggplant, Thai Shrimp Salad, and her Thai Chicken Salad Lettuce Wraps and we really must try making some Nam Prik Pao instead of always buying it.  Oh, and don’t her Chocolate Banana Tarts just look divine!!  In the end we decided to make one of our favorite treats, which we’ve never made at home, Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce.

10271591_10152874444591663_3853995278277607541_n I of course made a couple of changes to Jess’ recipe to put it more inline with our dietary restrictions, the most notable was using SunButter in place of peanut butter.  Our other small changes included, replacing the sugar with a whole Medjool date, subbing Coconut Aminos for the soy sauce and roasted cashews for the peanuts.  Jess presented her Chicken Satay with two dipping sauces but we chose to omit her Sweet & Tart Thai Dipping Sauce, though delicious, it’s predominantly sugar so better for us to avoid.  Following Jess’ recipe was easy and the taste was… well, I was going to say just as good, but honestly it was SO much better than any Chicken Satay we’ve had previously.  All of us gobbled the chicken and sauce up with the only complaint being that we all wanted more!  A couple of notes if you plan to make this at home.  Sometimes finding fresh galangal and fresh turmeric can be difficult so when we do find it, we purchase extra, wash and dry it, and store it in a sealed bags in the freezer.  Then when needed for a recipe we easily grate it right from frozen.  If you can’t find galangal feel free to substitute fresh ginger and if needed, dried turmeric for fresh.   

10612692_10152874444691663_3461340370640592316_nChicken Satay with SunButter “Peanut” Sauce  (Adapted from here)

Chicken:

  • 2 small skinless, boneless chicken breast (about 8 oz.)
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, bottom 2 inches only (discard top green stalk)
  • 2 1-inch pieces of fresh turmeric, peeled (substitute 2 tsp. ground turmeric if preferred)
  • 2 peels of fresh lime zest
  • 1 tsp. fresh grated galangal (or fresh ginger) 
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin 
  • 1 Medjool date, pit removed  
  • 1 TBS. Coconut Aminos 
  • 3 TBS. full-fat coconut milk 
  • 6 whole roasted cashews

Thinly slice chicken into equal strips, about ¼ inch thick and several inches in length.  Except for the chicken, combine all the remaining ingredients in a food processor  and pulse until mixture becomes a paste and only small pieces of the ingredients remain. Transfer the paste to a bowl and add the chicken, stirring to evenly coat. Refrigerate and allow the chicken to marinate for at least 30 minutes and up to 5 hours.

Thread a bamboo skewer through each piece of chicken. Grill the chicken skewers on an outdoor grill or a grill pan, until cooked through. Serve immediately with the dipping sauce, recipe below.

SunButter “Peanut” Sauce:

In a blender, place 1/4 cup of the coconut milk and add the Medjool dates, process to a smooth paste.  Heat the remaining 3/4 cup of coconut milk until boiling, stirring continuously to prevent it from boiling over, and allow it to boil for 1 minute.  Reduce the heat to a low simmer  Add the coconut milk/date mixture and all remaining sauce ingredients. Continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the mixture thickens, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.

Enjoy!!

My previous Secret Recipe Club Recipe Posts: 

Asian Pork Chops 
Mango Salsa 
Pomegranate Molasses Salad Dressing 
Beef Keema  
Roasted Grape Tomato, Garlic & Poblano Ragu
Mexican Feast: Cream of Ancho Chile Soup, Roasted Poblano Burger with Chile de Arbol Guacamole & Pork Crusted Baked Poblano Fries 
Zesty Zucchini Skillet 
Garlic Seafood in Coconut Milk 
Lamb & Eggplant with Chiles
Fijian Ceviche
Carrot & Sweet Potato Pancakes   
Chicken Burgers with Spinach & Mushrooms 
Paradise Mango Curried Shrimp 
Laura Goodenough’s Apple Coffee Cake 
Loaded Potato Soup
Lemon Almond Biscotti 
Creamy Mints 
Thai Peanut Noodles with Chicken 
Baked Buffalo Chicken Wings 
Fried Green Tomatoes 
Chicken Satay Noodle Salad 
Double Chocolate Mousse Cake 
Candied Popcorn
Fruit, Nut & Poppy Seed Chicken Salad 
Broiled Sushi 
Health(ier) Peanut Brittle 
Crunchy Fudgy Heart Bites 
Texas Chicken with Lime Butter 
Pork Belly Soup with Collard Greens 
Thin Mint Irish Coffee 
Levain Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookies 
Welsh Cakes 
Nutella Crêpes 
Cilantro Lime Chicken 
Holy Guacamole 
and
Home Style Chicken Curry

Check out the new SRC blog for more exciting recipes from past reveals

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Chicken & Avocado Soup

Chicken & Avocado Soup1 The weather is cooling down here in Georgia and unfortunately everyone in the CookLisaCook house has managed to get a cold.  So in our book, nothing could be more comforting, warming and healthier than some homemade soup.  But since EVERYONE has been sick, the soup preparation needed to be simple and the flavors bold to make it tasty for our dulled senses.  We all enjoyed this soup and the health benefits worked wonders, helping us all feel satisfied and just that much closer to being healthy again.

Chicken & Avocado Soup2 Chicken & Avocado Soup

In a soup pot, heat the avocado oil and add the cumin, coriander & chili powder and stir, toasting until fragrant.  Add the Chicken soup, shredded chicken & diced tomatoes. Simmer for 10 minutes.  Stir in the cilantro, diced avocado & lime juice.  Allow the avocado to heat through and season to taste with salt & pepper.  Serve with an extra slice of lime for added tang and corn chips if desired.

Enjoy!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Asian Pork Chops

1969300_10152809554831663_7995431898809530189_nThis month for Secret Recipe Club I was assigned the wonderful blog The Keenan Cookbook written by Chris and Rachel.  They post recipes twice weekly and mouthwatering recipes they are.  Chris and Rachel cooked from our blog back in March of 2012 when they made our Apple Dumpings so now it was time to cook from theirs.  There were so many delicious recipes including Grilled ginger chicken with peach salsa, and a perfectly delicious looking Green bean & tomato salad with lime & sesame dressing but the recipe that called to us this month was the Asian pork chops

Once again to better fit with our diet I made just a couple of small changes to the recipe.  I substituted Coconut Aminos for the soy sauce and a Medjool date for the brown sugar.  Otherwise I followed the recipe.  I allowed the pork chops to marinate overnight and then grilled them and WOW were they delicious!  Maisie has asked that I use the same marinade on chicken and steak so that is going to happen very soon.  Thank you Chris and Rachel for an awesome recipe and hop on over to The Keenan Cookbook for the original recipe and more amazing food recipes.  

10698535_10152809555006663_263808016829285033_nAsian Pork Chops (Adapted from here)

Add all the ingredients except the pork chops and sesame seeds to a blender and process until will mixed.  Place the pork in a large Ziploc bag and add the marinade and sesame seeds.  Seal and place in refrigerator over night to marinate overnight in the refrigerator.  Remove the pork chops from the marinade and grill over medium high heat about 4 minutes per side until done.  Allow to rest for 5 minutes before slicing and serving. 

Enjoy!!

My previous Secret Recipe Club Recipe Posts: 

Mango Salsa 
Pomegranate Molasses Salad Dressing 
Beef Keema  
Roasted Grape Tomato, Garlic & Poblano Ragu
Mexican Feast: Cream of Ancho Chile Soup, Roasted Poblano Burger with Chile de Arbol Guacamole & Pork Crusted Baked Poblano Fries 
Zesty Zucchini Skillet 
Garlic Seafood in Coconut Milk 
Lamb & Eggplant with Chiles
Fijian Ceviche
Carrot & Sweet Potato Pancakes   
Chicken Burgers with Spinach & Mushrooms 
Paradise Mango Curried Shrimp 
Laura Goodenough’s Apple Coffee Cake 
Loaded Potato Soup
Lemon Almond Biscotti 
Creamy Mints 
Thai Peanut Noodles with Chicken 
Baked Buffalo Chicken Wings 
Fried Green Tomatoes 
Chicken Satay Noodle Salad 
Double Chocolate Mousse Cake 
Candied Popcorn
Fruit, Nut & Poppy Seed Chicken Salad 
Broiled Sushi 
Health(ier) Peanut Brittle 
Crunchy Fudgy Heart Bites 
Texas Chicken with Lime Butter 
Pork Belly Soup with Collard Greens 
Thin Mint Irish Coffee 
Levain Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookies 
Welsh Cakes 
Nutella Crêpes 
Cilantro Lime Chicken 
Holy Guacamole 
and
Home Style Chicken Curry

Check out the new SRC blog for more exciting recipes from past reveals

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Mango Salsa

10550900_10152728088951663_7587840872357302494_n This summer the mangoes have been huge, sweet, juicy and delicious!  We’ve enjoyed them in so many ways, cut–up fresh plain or mixed into a fruit salad, in Mango Melon Banana & Chia Smoothies, as a refreshing Mango Gazpacho, as part of our main meal in Mango Thai Chicken and Eammon’s favorite, in a Mango Lassi.  So, when we received this month’s assignment for Secret Recipe Club (check out the new SRC blog) and started scrolling through recipes on Heather’s blog, The Tasty Gardener, we stopped dead in our tracks at her Mango Salsa and knew what we’d be making.  Trust me, there were plenty of other wonderful looking recipes like her Sesame Green Beans, Guacamole, and Green Bean Salad, but Mango Salsa just had to be made.

10455806_10152728089071663_8119404573924796178_nWe stayed pretty true to Heather’s recipe, only making two small changes.  One because of a mistake as I thought we had red onions in the house but only had Vidalia and the other was, we chose to use cilantro in place of her parsley.  We really enjoy the flavor of cilantro but I’ll bet that this salsa would be just as delicious with the parsley.  The sweet of the mango, the heat of the pepper, the sweet-sharpness of the onion and the tang of the lime juice all blended in perfect harmony to make one delicious salsa.  Oh and don’t leave out the salt and pepper as they really make the flavors pop!  We enjoyed the salsa with some chips, over some fish and just as a little side on our plate so it’s one very versatile dish.  If you don’t know how to cube up a fresh mango, Heather provides a nice visual tutorial on her blog so check it and the recipe out.  Also gardening tips and instruction as that’s her field of expertise so spend some time reading Heather’s blog, it’s an enjoyable way find some new recipes and learn some new things about plants and the garden. 

10600418_10152728089806663_6962831439350897451_nMango Salsa (adapted from here)

  • 2 mangoes, cubed
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 TBS. minced Vidalia onion
  • 1 Thai red chili, seeded and minced
  • 3 TBS. chopped cilantro
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • Himalayan Salt & fresh ground pepper, to taste

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and chill before serving.

Enjoy!!

My previous Secret Recipe Club Recipe Posts: 

Pomegranate Molasses Salad Dressing 
Beef Keema  
Roasted Grape Tomato, Garlic & Poblano Ragu
Mexican Feast: Cream of Ancho Chile Soup, Roasted Poblano Burger with Chile de Arbol Guacamole & Pork Crusted Baked Poblano Fries 
Zesty Zucchini Skillet 
Garlic Seafood in Coconut Milk 
Lamb & Eggplant with Chiles
Fijian Ceviche
Carrot & Sweet Potato Pancakes   
Chicken Burgers with Spinach & Mushrooms 
Paradise Mango Curried Shrimp 
Laura Goodenough’s Apple Coffee Cake 
Loaded Potato Soup
Lemon Almond Biscotti 
Creamy Mints 
Thai Peanut Noodles with Chicken 
Baked Buffalo Chicken Wings 
Fried Green Tomatoes 
Chicken Satay Noodle Salad 
Double Chocolate Mousse Cake 
Candied Popcorn
Fruit, Nut & Poppy Seed Chicken Salad 
Broiled Sushi 
Health(ier) Peanut Brittle 
Crunchy Fudgy Heart Bites 
Texas Chicken with Lime Butter 
Pork Belly Soup with Collard Greens 
Thin Mint Irish Coffee 
Levain Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookies 
Welsh Cakes 
Nutella Crêpes 
Cilantro Lime Chicken 
Holy Guacamole 
and
Home Style Chicken Curry

newsrcbanner 

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Pomegranate Molasses Salad Dressing

995062_10152654339876663_9097679169292867688_n I can’t believe that here in Georgia, summer is technically over as most of the children in public school return to classes today!!  Maisie has two weeks remaining to her summer break but she would happily return to school today as she loves school and her teacher.  In my mind it’s still summer as it’s Georgia and HOT outside!  With that being said, most meals are quick, cold or made on the grill.  Those three factors were a consideration this month when choosing a recipe for this Secret Recipe Club reveal.  This month I was assigned Sawsan’s blog, Chef in Disguise.  We were super excited when we perused Sawsan’s blog because she lives in the UAE and shares easy and authentic middle eastern, Levantine and arabic recipes and we adore middle eastern food.  We also knew that it would be a great opportunity to use some of our rarely-used pantry items in a new and different way.  Sawsan had quite a few recipes that caught our attention including her Kofta bi tahini which would have been made with sweet potatoes to better fit in with our diet; and then two totally off-diet and non-middle eastern treats, sfogliatelle, one of my favorite Italian treats and my all time absolute-favorite-cake-ever, Swedish prinsesstarta. But as I said, it’s hot here in Georgia and we’re trying to eat healthy so a new and interesting dressing on a salad topped with some sesame crusted seared Ahi tuna won the recipe contest.  We chose Sawsan’s Ponegranate molasses salad dressing because it sounded totally delicious AND we had all the ingredients in our pantry.  Big Win! 

10570383_10152654339701663_3476597734126377673_n I don’t know why the lemon and garlic were left out of this picture, but trust me, they made it into the dressing.  I love that we were able to use two of our rarely used ingredients in a new and delicious way.  We generally use pomegranate molasses when making Fesenjān and sumac combined with garlic powder, dusted onto poultry before roasting, makes for an easy and delicious way to make a bird

We followed Sawsan’s recipe for the dressing pretty closely, but since we have an abundance of mint growing in the garden, we used fresh instead of dried.  Also, Sawsan mentioned in her post that balsamic or apple cider vinegar could be used, each giving the dressing a different flavor profile.  We decided to split the difference and play off the sweet, sour and the tart notes of the dressing and used both types of vinegars.  Our decision to use both vinegars made for a totally delicious sweet, tart, complex and well balanced dressing.  I especially liked the mint component of the dressing, subtle and a wonderful addition.  We stored the extra dressing in a glass jar in the fridge and just gave it a shake each time we used it. 

Check out Sawsan’s blog for not only fabulous recipes and photos, but also for an interesting look at her culture, the country in which she lives and of course a few glimpses of her cute little kids.

10527459_10152654339526663_4237637794752415354_nPomegranate molasses salad dressing (adapted from here)

Add all the ingredients to the jar of a blender and process until well combined.  

Enjoy!!

My previous Secret Recipe Club Recipe Posts: 

Beef Keema  
Roasted Grape Tomato, Garlic & Poblano Ragu
Mexican Feast: Cream of Ancho Chile Soup, Roasted Poblano Burger with Chile de Arbol Guacamole & Pork Crusted Baked Poblano Fries 
Zesty Zucchini Skillet 
Garlic Seafood in Coconut Milk 
Lamb & Eggplant with Chiles
Fijian Ceviche
Carrot & Sweet Potato Pancakes   
Chicken Burgers with Spinach & Mushrooms 
Paradise Mango Curried Shrimp 
Laura Goodenough’s Apple Coffee Cake 
Loaded Potato Soup
Lemon Almond Biscotti 
Creamy Mints 
Thai Peanut Noodles with Chicken 
Baked Buffalo Chicken Wings 
Fried Green Tomatoes 
Chicken Satay Noodle Salad 
Double Chocolate Mousse Cake 
Candied Popcorn
Fruit, Nut & Poppy Seed Chicken Salad 
Broiled Sushi 
Health(ier) Peanut Brittle 
Crunchy Fudgy Heart Bites 
Texas Chicken with Lime Butter 
Pork Belly Soup with Collard Greens 
Thin Mint Irish Coffee 
Levain Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookies 
Welsh Cakes 
Nutella Crêpes 
Cilantro Lime Chicken 
Holy Guacamole 
and
Home Style Chicken Curry


Secret Recipe Club

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Beef Keema

10527312_10152582649766663_6709504565997041626_n This month for Secret Recipe Club I was assigned Ilona’s blog Ilonaskitchen.  Ilona’s blog is chockfull of wonderfully delicious sounding recipes but when Indian food lovers like us happened upon not one, not two, but three keema recipes, well we knew what would be making an appearance in our home this month.  Out of the three recipes that Ilona had posted, we decided on this version as she made it once without the addition of coconut milk and then revisited the recipe making it a second time with the coconut milk, so we figured if she loved it the first time and went back to add in an ingredient as delicious as coconut milk, well it just had to be really, really good.  And good it was, totally delicious in fact and the creaminess of the coconut milk with the spiciness of the meat…pure perfection!

10525944_10152582649626663_1868865758867977544_nOf course there were a few changes we made to the original recipe.  We really love intense flavors so we cut the amount of meat back but kept the original amount of spice.  Also, we haven’t been eating white potatoes or peas so we swapped out the white potato with sweet potato and just nixed the peas.  We enjoyed the Beef Keema with Plantain Wraps, which kept our meal gluten and grain free but totally flavorful and satisfying.  Enjoy this version or Ilona’s version, either way you won’t be disappointed.

10308216_10152582649821663_789507190292853144_n Beef Keema (adapted from here)

  • 1 tablespoon Ghee
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 TBS. minced fresh ginger
  • 2 TBS. Madras curry powder
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled & cut into 1/4-inch chunks
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • One 14-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk
  • One 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • Chopped fresh cilantro, for serving

In a large skillet, over medium high heat, heat the ghee. Add the ground beef, seasoning with salt and pepper.  Cook, breaking the meat apart into small pieces, until there is no pink left.  Add the onion, garlic, ginger & curry powder. Stir and cook until the onion has softened, about 5-7 minutes.  Stir in the sweet potato, making sure to coat it with all the flavors in the pan. Add the broth, coconut milk and canned tomatoes.  Bring to a boil, turn down to a simmer, and cook until the sweet potatoes are tender and the sauce has thickened, about 15-20 minutes.  Using a wooden spoon, crush about half of the sweet potatoes into the broth.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Serve sprinkled with chopped cilantro, accompanied by plantain wraps, naan or chapati.

Enjoy!!

My previous Secret Recipe Club Recipe Posts: 

Roasted Grape Tomato, Garlic & Poblano Ragu
Mexican Feast: Cream of Ancho Chile Soup, Roasted Poblano Burger with Chile de Arbol Guacamole & Pork Crusted Baked Poblano Fries 
Zesty Zucchini Skillet 
Garlic Seafood in Coconut Milk 
Lamb & Eggplant with Chiles
Fijian Ceviche
Carrot & Sweet Potato Pancakes   
Chicken Burgers with Spinach & Mushrooms 
Paradise Mango Curried Shrimp 
Laura Goodenough’s Apple Coffee Cake 
Loaded Potato Soup
Lemon Almond Biscotti 
Creamy Mints 
Thai Peanut Noodles with Chicken 
Baked Buffalo Chicken Wings 
Fried Green Tomatoes 
Chicken Satay Noodle Salad 
Double Chocolate Mousse Cake 
Candied Popcorn
Fruit, Nut & Poppy Seed Chicken Salad 
Broiled Sushi 
Health(ier) Peanut Brittle 
Crunchy Fudgy Heart Bites 
Texas Chicken with Lime Butter 
Pork Belly Soup with Collard Greens 
Thin Mint Irish Coffee 
Levain Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookies 
Welsh Cakes 
Nutella Crêpes 
Cilantro Lime Chicken 
Holy Guacamole 
and
Home Style Chicken Curry


Secret Recipe Club

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Plantian Wraps

10464077_10152582883741663_7526245433071474159_n Maisie, because of her allergies has been gluten, egg and dairy free for a couple of years.  I have never been a huge bread lover so I haven’t missed not having bread in the house and it’s done us no harm not having all the baked goods either.  Then about a year ago I cut all gluten/grains from my diet so gluten-free breads and corn tortillas were no longer on my plate, though Maisie continues to eat them.  Not eating grains I have come to love plain burgers on a plate and chicken and various other “sandwich” salads served in lettuce wraps.  Then I saw a number of recipes for plantain tortillas/wraps/bread and they captured my attention.  Some of the recipes were very plain, plantains, water, salt & pepper and then others included the addition of coconut or tapioca flour.  Some of the recipes called for green plantains while others wanted partially ripe yellow ones.  In the end I put together my own version and we’ve been happily enjoying them, warm or cold, wrapping a whole variety of foods. 

10479576_10152582709121663_6354987559437153414_nWe enjoy the slight banana taste of the ripe plantain so yellow with a few dark spots works perfect for us.

 10511333_10152582708931663_4993243137204266106_nThis recipe is beyond simple as all the ingredients are added to a blender and then once smooth, dollops are spread into rounds on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and baked until golden.  Easy-peasy!!

10458112_10152582843906663_7692423888870189819_nOh and don’t judge but my favorite filling for these Plantain Wraps is a slightly rare, cold, broiled chicken liver…Even if you hate liver, give these Plantain Wraps a try, they’re really quite amazing. 

10471427_10152582709011663_1684118762748472959_n Plantain Wraps

Preheat oven to 400F.  Line three baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.  Cut each plantain into a few pieces and then score and pry off the peel.   Place the peeled plantain pieces and all the other ingredients into a blender and process until smooth and about the consistency of yogurt.  Add additional water if necessary.  Using a large cookie scoop (approx 3 TBS) portion out the plantain mixture for 6 wraps per sheet (will only have 3-5 on the third baking sheet) and then using a small offset spatula smooth the batter for each wrap to an approximate 5-inch round.  Bake for 10 minutes and then rotate the pans to different shelves and turn each pan for even cooking, and bake for approximately 5 minutes longer until the wraps are golden and puffed.  Remove from the oven and allow the wraps to cool on the baking sheets.  Then easily peel the wraps off the parchment paper and enjoy.  Store the wraps in either a Ziplock bag or sealed container in the refrigerator.  There is no need to layer parchment between the wraps, they can just be stacked. 

Enjoy!

Related Posts with Thumbnails