Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Pan Roasted Chicken Stew

This time of year is when the hearty dishes start taking the spotlight on our dinner table. Pots and ceramic dishes filled with herbs, root vegetables, and spices topped with chicken, meat, or even salmon make the warmest and most filling meals. Just right for the season, this chicken stew comes out so soft , while the vegetables soak up all the great flavors from the spices and chicken broth. I love to sop up the broth and soft tomatoes on warm bread or eat this out of a bowl with a spoon over quinoa or rice.
2 Tbsp. olive oil
4 skin-on, chicken thighs 
4 skin-on, chicken legs 
Kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
2 cups chicken broth or vegetable broth
2 cups pearl onions
1 cup garlic cloves
4 soft medium tomatoes, medium chopped
2 cups crimini mushrooms, quartered 
2 cups mixed colored baby potatoes
1 handful, fresh oregano
8 fresh bay leaves
1 Tbsp. turmeric
2 Tbsp. hot paprika
Preheat oven to 450°. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season chicken legs and thighs with salt and pepper on both sides. Working in two batches, cook chicken until browned, about 5 minutes per side. Set chicken aside on a plate (**keep chicken uncovered). Leave the drippings on the pan, and pour in the vegetable broth. scrape the chicken drippings from the pan in the broth and let cook until bubbling.
2. In a separate oven proof dish or dutch oven mix together the pearl onions, garlic, tomatoes, mushrooms, potatoes, oregano bay leaves, turmeric, and paprika, kosher salt and black pepper. Pour broth over vegetables. Top with chicken pieces, skin side up; transfer dish to oven. Roast until chicken and potatoes are cooked through, 40 minutes. Serve with lemon wedges.
** Keep chicken uncovered so the skin stays nicely crisp. 
Serves: 4 servings
Bon Appétit! 

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Toasted Almond Thumbprint Cookies

These almond thumbprint cookies are fun to make, and the perfect recipe to follow if you're not a baker- since they are so simple. They are just the right blend between linzer cookies and almond thumbprints, both holiday friendly cookies that look beautiful when gifted. I like when cookies are more toasted so they have a good crunch to them. For a softer version bake these two minutes less. You can buy roasted almonds however, toasting your own in the oven for a few minutes gives a bolder and fresher flavor.
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups unsalted, roasted almonds
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup raw cane sugar 
Jams for filling
1.Preheat oven to 375°. Place racks in the middle and upper part of oven. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. In a food processor combine the almonds and flour until they are finely ground. Add baking powder and salt and blend. 
2.In a separate bowl with a hand held mixer or standing mixer, beat the butter and sugar until fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Add egg and vanilla and beat until fluffy, about 4 minutes. Put the mixer on a low speed, and gradually add the dry ingredients. Mix just until they are combined.
3. In a medium bowl pour in the raw sugar cane. *Spoon the dough (using a tablespoon) and roll into balls. Roll each ball of dough into the sugar cane and place on the baking sheets. Each cookie should be about 2 inches apart. Using your thumb make a hard indent in each ball. Bake cookies until golden for about 13-14 minutes. Let cookies cool and fill with with jam. 
*If the dough seems sticky, you can chill it in the fridge for 20 minutes before forming cookies. 
Servings: 3 dozen cookies
Bon Appétit! 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Sweet & Sour Herb Meatballs

Sauce Ingredients 
3 medium Spanish onions, thinly sliced 
2 shallots, thinly sliced
1/2 cup Turbinado sugar
1 handful fresh parsley, medium chopped
2 sprigs fresh rosemary 
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp kosher salt
1 tbsp coarse black pepper 
2 cups Hunt's crushed tomatoes
2 cups red wine
24 oz can marinara sauce
1 cup vegetable broth
Meatball ingredients 
1 1/2 lb. ground beef
1/3 cup dried parsley flakes
1 small onion, minced 
1/2 tbsp kosher salt 
1/2 tbsp coarse black pepper 
1 large egg, beaten 
1/4 cup water 
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1. In a 6-qt pot saute the onions, shallots, sugar, parsley, rosemary, olive oil, salt and pepper over a medium-low flame. Keep pot uncovered and let onions slowly caramelize, stirring occasionally. Once onions are caramelized, deglaze the pot with 1 cup of red wine. Add crushed tomatoes and gently stir for 1 minute. once tomatoes begin to bubble add marinara sauce, vegetable broth, and the remaining cup of red wine. Stir, cover pot and leave on a low flame. 
2. In a large bowl combine all meatball ingredients well. Let mixture set for 15 minutes. Make 1 1/2 inch round meatballs and gently drop them into the pot. Leave flame on medium low and cover pot with lid. After 7-10 minutes of cooking, carefully toss meatballs covering them completely in the sauce. Finish cooking the meatballs on a low flame covered for 20 minutes.
Bon Appétit! 

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Red Lentil Soup

5 shallots, thinly sliced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 tbsp fresh ginger
1 tbsp kosher salt
2 tsp coarse black pepper
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tbsp cumin
1/2 tbsp curry
1/2 tbsp turmeric
1 1/2 cups red lentils 
3 small sweet potato yams, peeled and chopped 
2 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and chopped
3 cups vegetable broth
1/4 cup rice vinegar
3 cups water
*Leben yogurt and Fresh Parsley for serving

1) Sauté the shallots, garlic, onion, ginger, salt, pepper, and olive oil in a large pot until lightly browned. 
2) add cumin, curry, turmeric and lentils. Toss lentils in for 1 minute. 
3) add sweet potatoes and Yukon potatoes. Cover with vegetable broth, vinegar, and water. Bring to a boil and let soup simmer for 25- 30 minutes.
4) let soup cool, then puree with a hand blender. Add leben yogurt and fresh parsley before serving to each bowl.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Poached Eggs & Salsa

Post Passover, I came home and hastily restocked my fridge with clean ingredients like Greek yogurt, firm tomatoes, eggs, and vegetable juices. This light creation is full of flavor, spice, and texture. Although perfectly poaching an egg in water is very empowering, breaking them in a Poachpod guarantees perfect-poached eggs every time. If you don't have silicon Poachpods, I highly recommend making the ten dollar investment. You won't be able to eat a meal without wanting a poached egg! 
1 cup Plain Greek Yogurt
2 firm Plum Tomatoes, small diced
1 Jalapeño, seeded, small diced
1/2 red onion, small chopped
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp Tabasco sauce
2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp coarse black pepper
2 large cage free eggs  
1/2 an avocado, thinly sliced
Serves: 2 servings
1. In a medium bowl lightly toss tomatoes, jalapeños, onion, lime juice, tabasco sauce, kosher salt and black pepper. 
2. In a saucepan bring water to a boil. lightly butter or spray Poachpods. Crack eggs into poach pods. Place in water and cover pot. Let eggs cook for 5 minutes on a medium flame.
3. On the bottom of a plate or bowl scoop out Greek yogurt, top with salsa (make sure to strain juice), slip poached eggs atop, and eat with avocado on the side or over your egg. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Bon Appétit! 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Chestnut Stuffing

I never really thought of serving stuffing on it's own-- and it's probably because on thanksgiving I top it with cranberry or rhubarb sauce, and then forked together with a juicy piece of turkey; It sort of gets lost in the thanksgiving holiday even though it's the key to the incredible holiday bites. Stuffing can be made from any extra bread, chicken or turkey left over from the meal the night before, and extra chicken soup; it's a great way to be resourceful. It's also a great dish to explore creativity and variations. If you are making a turkey I always like to take a little stuffing and put it inside of the turkey so it can cook in the gravy and soak up lots of flavor.
3 cups roasted and shelled chestnuts, halved 
*You can use the already shelled and roasted chestnuts 
that come in a package (Galil, Nature's Garden)
1 lb rustic bread, medium diced 
4 cup chicken stock (chicken soup broth)
2 large eggs, beaten 
3 tbsp canola oil 
1 large carrot, peeled and medium diced 
1 cup celery (2 stalks), small chopped 
10 oz crimini mushrooms, small sliced 
1 yellow onion, small chopped 
2 minced garlic cloves 
2 tbsp dried parsley
1 tbsp dried rosemary 
1 tsp ground sage 
1 tbsp kosher salt
1 tbsp black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 375°. In a large bowl add the chestnuts, bread, beaten eggs, and chicken stock, toss until combined. In a large skillet lightly sauté the carrots, celery, mushrooms, and onion; mix in the, garlic, parsley, rosemary, sage, salt, and black pepper. Once vegetables lightly brown, pour mixture into bread bowl. Toss all ingredients until combined well and transfer to a large baking dish. Cover with foil and bake for 35 minutes. uncover and bake for another 15 minutes until top of dish is crisp.

Bon Appétit! 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Original Latkes & Greek Yogurt Topping

Not being a big fryer- and latkes are the best when fried (there's just no two ways about it) I eagerly await Channuka every year for the perfect Latke. I'm pretty picky when it comes to what makes a latke just right; In my opinion you want the edges to be crisp, and the center to be soft and oozing with hot batter. I remember walking through Williamsburg when I was about nine or ten and marveling at all the store fronts filled with Channuka menorahs and magical window displays. My mother and I went into a houseware store that was showing off how incredible their skillets were. Lucky us, it was Channuka and they were frying up batches of hot latkes for everyone to come and taste. That was fourteen years ago and I can still remember that crisp and oozing warm potato latke that was so right- no sour cream or applesauce was needed. I probably should've bought one of those skillets but to be honest, it's all about the batter.
2 pounds (6 medium) Yukon gold potatoes
1 large yellow onion, halved
2 large eggs
1/4 cup all purpose flour 
2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
Canola oil for frying
1 cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt
2 tbsp horseradish sauce
1 bunch chives, small chopped
 1/2 bunch parsley, small chopped
Kosher Salt to taste
Black Pepper to taste  
1. Fill a large bowl with cold water. Peel the potatoes and put them in the cold water to keep them from browning. 2. In a large food processor, on a fitted blade finely chop the onions. Put the chopped onions into a large bowl. Quarter the potatoes and finely chop them in the processor. Add them to the onions. Add the eggs, flour, salt and pepper to the potatoes and onions. Mix well until combined. 
2. In a large skillet on a high flame, heat canola oil for frying (about 2 cups). You can see if the oil is ready by dropping a spoonful of batter in, if the oil sizzles it's ready to fry. Put the flame to medium-high. Add 1/4 cup of batter to the oil at a time (don't over crowd pan). Give each latke about a three minutes on each side, or until browned. Drain latkes on layers of paper towels to take away excess oil. 3. In a small bowl whisk the Greek yogurt, and horseradish sauce. Mix in the chives, parsley, salt and pepper. 
Yields: 15 latkes
Bon Appétit!