Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Chicken Chow Mein


Chicken-Chow-Mein






     Quick, minimal work, and full of flavor, this chow mein recipe will more than likely become one of your go-to dinners when craving that certain something. The term "Chow Mein" simple translates into stir fried noodle. Much better than any takeout you can get, this dish is inspired by one of my favorite Chinese chefs and from her cookbook; Ching-He Huang. Here is my Chicken Chow Mein.


 
Ingredients:


  • 4oz yellow wheat noodles (I used udon)
  • 1 large boneless skinless chicken breast
  • Soy sauce
  • 1 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
  • 1 tsp sriracha or chili sauce
  • 1 tbs corn starch
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 red bell pepper thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup green onion diced
  • 1/2 cup snow peas
  • Sesame oil
  • 1 tsp fresh diced ginger


 
1. Cook noodles in boiling water as directed. Drain and set aside.
 
2. Slice chicken into thin strips
 
3. Toss chicken in a bowl with five-spice powder, sriracha, and cornstarch. Let sit.
 
4. In a large wok over high heat pour in the vegetable oil and toss in the chicken. Continue to stir until almost cooked through.
 
5. Toss in the bell pepper, snow peas, and ginger. Stir and saute for roughly 1 minute
 
6. Pour in some soy sauce and a dash or two of sesame oil.
 
7. Stir in the noodles and let them saute and get slightly crisp on a few edges.
 
8. Toss in green onion and serve.


 
     This dish was so delicious. The interesting combination of flavors from the five-spice powder with the chicken and fresh vegetables all came together well with the noodles that were perfectly tender with a little bite.


 
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: under 5 minutes
Serves: 1-2



Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Spinach Artichoke "Dip" Ravioli






 

So I came up with this recipe the other weekend. I was trying to think of an interesting way to turn one dish into another. Something I like to do and have been successful at in the past. I decided to take a delicious typical party appetizer and turn it into a ravioli dish. Who doesn't like a good hearty spinach artichoke dip? So here goes! The outcome was extremely delicious and full of flavor. I must warn you though, this small recipe actually makes quite a bit of filling and ravioli so you could half the recipe and still have plenty. Spinach Artichoke Ravioli

 
Dough recipe:http://recipesiliveby.blogspot.com/2013/04/Fresh-Pasta.html
 
Filing Ingredients:
  • 1/2 10oz jar artichoke hearts diced
  • 1 1/2 cups ricotta
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup green onion
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 clove garlic diced
  • Salt/pepper
 
Sauce Ingredients:
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 3 oz fresh spinach
  • 1 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • Salt/pepper 
 
1. In a large saute pan, drizzle some olive oil and saute the artichoke hearts, garlic, and green onion just until tender and fragrant. 
2. Combine in a bowl with the ricotta and softened cream cheese.
3. Mix in the Italian seasoning and set aside.
4. Meanwhile, roll out the dough using a pasta maker.
5. Cut into about 2-3 inch squares across.
6. Place a small spoonful of filling in the center of each square. Fold over and seal with a fork.


7. Place in freezer until ready to cook to harden up.
8. Meanwhile, take the spinach, cream, and garlic and blend in a food processor or blender until creamy. Salt and pepper to taste.
9. Pour into a sauce pan and bring to a low simmer.
10. When ready to cook the ravioli, toss into a pot of boiling water and let come to a roll for roughly 5-7 minutes.
11. Serve with the warm spinach sauce over top and some fresh parmesan cheese.
 

Prep Time: 20 minutes with homemade dough.
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Serves: Makes roughly 30+ ravioli based on filling.



 
 
 

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Sticky Asian Short Ribs


Short-Ribs

 
     I have always wanted to make beef short ribs. I've ordered them in restaurants and was always under the impression that they are hard to fix. I've been told they can be tough, hard to work with, not much flavor, etc., however the ones I order in my favorite restaurants are always so tender, juicy, and flavorful. So I decided to give it a try. I thought a great combination of Asian flavors would be perfect for these ribs. Sticky Asian Short Ribs.

 




Ingredients:

  • 5-6 small beef short ribs
  • 1/3 cup soy
  • 1/2 cup beef stock
  • 1 tbs sriracha
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 up apple sauce
  • 1 tsp five spice powder
  • 1 tsp sesame oil

 
1. In a crockpot place the beef short ribs.

2. Mix together in a bowl the soy, stock, sriracha, brown sugar, apple sauce, five spice, and sesame oil.

3. Pour over ribs, cover, and cook on low for 6-7 hours. Serve over potatoes or rice.

 
     These were fall off the bone, juicy, sticky, tender, that I could not have asked for a better meal. Simple and cooked out of the way that made them perfect for a weeknight meal.

 
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 6-7 hours
Serves: 2.

 


 

 

 



Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Irish Salmon With Cider And Cream Sauce


Salmon



 
     So for this Saint Patrick's Day Celebration a few weeks ago, I decided to make a great Irish meal for my mother and father, especially since my father is the Irish one. Funny thing is he came dressed for the part. He had on a nice sweater, button up shirt with a nice tie underneath, and even wore one of those newsboy/Sheppard’s cap you would stereotypically see in some cliché way of an Irishman walking the stony path of some picturesque village in the green hills of Ireland. Anyways, I digress; I received a great Irish pub cookbook for Christmas and decided to try a new recipe. I served this great Salmon dish along with some new potatoes, mushy peas, and an apple bread pudding with Irish cream sauce. Irish Salmon with Cider and Cream Sauce.

 
Ingredients:
  • 4 Salmon filets
  • 1 Leek sliced in strips
  • Small bunch parsley chopped
  • 4 small Bay leaves
  • 1 lemon sliced
  • 1 cup hard cider
  • 1 cup cream
  • 2 tbs dill
  • 3 tabs butter
  • Salt/pepper

 
1. In a large baking pan lined with tinfoil, lay the salmon filets down.

2. Top with the strips of leek, chopped parsley, bay leaves, sliced lemon, and dill. Spread out all the ingredients so that each filet is covered with each item.

3. Top each salmon with a tab of butter.

4. Pour in the cider around the salmon. Cover with tinfoil and bake in 350 degree oven for roughly 15-20 minutes until salmon is flakey.

5. Remove juices that have accumulated and place in a pot on stove. Bring to simmer over high heat and pour in cream. Simmer until thickens.

6. Place salmon on platter, (without the leeks, parsley, etc.), and drizzle the cider cream sauce over and serve.

 
This salmon dish was so light, fresh, and delicious that even my mother who is not a fan "fish" fan loved it.

 
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20-30 minutes
Serves: 4

 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Riomaggiore Lasagne


Seafood-Lasagna



 
     This dish was inspired by the great seafood lasagne my brother had and I sampled while vacationing in Riomaggiore, Italy a few years back. There was just something about this pasta dish that was amazing. First off, it was the first time we had seen a lasagne that wasn't the typical layered dish we are use to in America. Even being first generation in America, our grandmother always made the layered baked version. It was just the lasagna noodle tossed and thrown on the plate. Second, this dish was light and had a distinct flavor of something you wouldn't expect from a pasta dish. It had that tomato flavor but there was just something else. Delving farther into this dish you find that those small hidden flavors are the simplest of additions. The coast of Italy is famous for it's use of bountiful basil and lemon. Chop up some fresh basil leaves and add a few zests of hearty lemons and viola, a simple yet delicious seafood lasagne packed full of flavor. This was amazing. Riomaggiore Lasagne.

 

Ingredients:

  • Fresh lasagne noodles
  • 2 filets of white fish (any kind you like) cubed
  • 10 shrimp
  • 6 anchovy filets (they are also famous on the coast)
  • 1 large shallot diced
  • 2 cloves garlic diced
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 can tomato puree
  • A handful fresh basil chopped
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • 1/3 cup cream
  • Salt/pepper

 
1. In a large skillet over medium heat drizzle some olive oil and saute diced shallots.

 
2. Next toss in the anchovy filets and saute. (They will begin to melt away).

 
3. Stir in chopped garlic until fragrant.

 
4. Stir in the white wine and reduce.

 
5. Now pour in the tomato puree, chopped basil, and lemon zest. Stir to incorporate.

 
6. Stir in the cubed white fish and fresh shrimp.

 
7. Mix in the cream, turn heat down to low, and simmer for roughly 5 minutes until the fish is tender
and the shrimp cooked through.

 
8. Toss on a plate with the fresh lasagne noodles.

 
This dish, according to my brother now, tasted just like the original he had sitting on the little patio facing the ocean that warm evening in Riomaggiore.

 
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Serves: 2-4

 

 







Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Salmon Cakes With A Wasabi Mayo



Salmon-Cakes





      I was craving some type of fish dish this week and since it is Lent and as a good Catholic I must abide by eating no meat on Friday's, I chose to make a simple salmon cake entrée. I have posted this simple salmon cake before, however it was in a sandwich. So today I am re-posting the actual recipe along with a simple yet flavorful sauce to accompany these delicious easy patties.  Salmon Cakes With Wasabi Mayo.

 
Ingredients:
  • 16 oz can pink salmon
  • 3 tbs pimentos
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup Breadcrumbs
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 tbs wasabi paste
  • 4 tbs mayo
  • 1 tbs lemon juice
  • Zest from half lemon
  • Butter
 
1. Combine the salmon, pimentos, diced onion, garlic, breadcrumbs, and egg in a large bowl and mix with your hands. Form into patties.


2. In a large saute pan fry the salmon cakes in some butter for roughly 2 minutes each side.


3. Combine the mayo, lemon juice, zest, and wasabi paste in another bowl until able to drizzle over each cake.
 
Easy, quick, full of flavor, and delicious. Perfect for any good Catholic or anyone at all. (insert laugh from a fallen away Catholic)
 
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Serves: 3+








Tuesday, March 7, 2017

BEANS and Cornbread: A Country Staple

 

 
 
     I have published the cornbread recipe on here before and briefly explained how to make the soup beans.  Since I was craving this dish again this winter I decided to give you one of the ways to make the beans for this dish.  Whether using a stockpot or crockpot, this dish cannot be any easier. Soup Beans

 
Ingredients:
  • 2 cups Northern White Beans
  • 1/4 white onion diced
  • 1/2 green bell pepper diced
  • Some ham or hamhock
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • Salt/pepper
 
1. Place beans in the crockpot and soak in water overnight.
2. Rinse and remove water from night before.
3. Dice up the onion, pepper, and ham and throw in the crockpot.
4. Cover with enough water to be about an inch above the bean mixture.
5. Turn on to low and let cook for up to 8 hours.

I like to once the mixture is done, take a masher and mash up some of the beans in order to make a thicker souper mixture.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Inactive Time: 6-8 hours
Cook Time: 7-8 hours
Serves: 4+

This is one of those simple, yet delicious country staples for any family. You will love it.

 
 
You can find the cornbread recipe here: http://recipesiliveby.blogspot.com/search/label/Cornbread
 















Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Chicken Mushroom Vol Au Vent



Vol-Au-Vent
 
 
    Vol Au Vent means "windblown" in French and is typically served as an appetizer in French cuisine. It is also found in Belgium and can be served as an entrée and is usually filled with chicken or other meat products. I came across this dish playing around online one evening and decided to try my hand at it. It was extremely quick, simple, and very delicious. Also the presentation made this such an elegant looking dish that you would swear I went to culinary school. Give it a try for your next dinner party and impress your friends or loved ones. Chicken Mushroom Vol Au Vent.
 
Ingredients:
  • 1 small shallot
  • 2 boneless chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cup chopped mushrooms
  • Olive oil
  • 1 tbs butter
  • 1 tbs flour
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • Handful chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp dried dill
  • 3 sheets puff pastry
  • Egg wash
 
1. I bought pre-made puff pastry that comes in 3 sheets. Cut each on in half and score out of one side a square hole. Take some egg wash and line the bottom one and place the holed out one on top. With a fork poke holes in the bottom layer. Bake in 400 degree oven for 15 minutes until puffed and brown.
 
 
2. Meanwhile in a large skillet drizzle some olive oil. Cut chicken into strips and saute until golden brown.


3. Toss in diced up shallot and mushrooms.


4. Pour in white wine to deglaze the pan.


5. Toss in the tablespoon of butter and flour and stir to incorporate.


6. Pour in the cream. Stir in the parsley and dill and bring to a slow simmer. Cover and cook for about 15 minutes.


7. Now for the fun part, take one of the pastry "baskets" and fill with the chicken/mushroom filling and serve.
 
This dish was delicious and very elegant in its presentation.
 
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 combined
Serves: 3
 

 

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Stuffed Peppers



Stuffed-Peppers



    Stuffed Peppers has to be one of my ultimate favorite meals of all time. It is just one of those comfort foods that I remember growing up as a kid. You own little meal placed nicely in a pocket of sorts and served hot. No need for any other items on your plate, this was a full meal in one. This recipe is exactly how my mother makes it. No subsitutions, no changes, no nothing. Just plain, delicious and simple. Stuffed Peppers.

Ingredients:
  • 4 Green Bell Peppers
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 white onion
  • 2 slices white bread torn into chunks
  • Parsley
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup uncooked minute rice
  • Salt/pepper
  • Marinara

1. Slice the tops off of the peppers and remove the inner veins and seeds. Shock in boiling water for 2-3 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, combine the beef, diced up onion, parsley, egg, salt/pepper, rice, and bread into a bowl.

3. Place each pepper bottom side down into a baking dish. Take a tablespoon of marinara and dollup into the bottom of each pepper. Pour about a cup of water into the bottom of the baking dish surrounding the peppers.

4. Take some of the beef mixture and stuff it into each pepper.

5. Top with another spoonfull of marinara.

6. Place in 350 degree oven and bake uncovered for 1 hour 15 minutes.



You can at just 15 minutes left to cooking spoon some more marinara over top of each pepper.

These are perfectly tender, juicy, and full of flavor. It will easily become one of your favorites.






Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Serves: 2-4



Saturday, February 4, 2017

S.O.S., (or in a more polite term), Chipped Beef On Toast


Chipped-Beef-On-Toast

 

 
     Surprisingly a vast number of people my age have never heard the term, S.O.S., for this dish. Some haven't even heard of the dish itself. The initials stand for the slang term of; Shit On a Shingle. Sounds appetizing doesn't it? I'm not quite sure of its origins, however I have been told it comes from the Military. A dish served to the soldiers. Now which branch, or which war, I'm still unclear, however growing up in WV we had this dish all the time. It became one of those staples that every country family seemed to serve. Quick, simple, and actually a great meal to have. My mother always made it for us for a quick dinner. She usually accompanied it with scrambled eggs as well. The terminology for this dish doesn't make it appealing, however once you taste it you will love it. Just in under 5 minutes is all it takes. Chipped Beef On Toast.

 
Ingredients:

 
  • 1 2oz package of dried beef
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 2 tbs flour
  • 1 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • Salt/pepper
  • Toast

 
1. Remove beef from package and dice up.

2. In a large skillet melt butter and whisk in flour.

3. Slowly pour in milk and cream and whisk to make a thick sauce. Thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

4. Stir in the beef and let simmer for roughly 5 minutes.

5. Salt and pepper to taste and ladle over some fresh toast.

 
     That's it! Simple, quick, easy, and you will definitely make this again. The perfect "go-to" meal for any bachelor. To this day, even though my mother and myself can make just about any 5 star kind of meal, this is always going to be one of those favorites that I can never let go.

 
Prep Time: 1 min.
Cook Time: 5-6 mins.
Serves: 2