Brown Sugar Baby! Recipes for your Sweet Tooth

There are those among us carbohydrate addicted sugar junkies that prefer brown sugar to white when it comes to a choice of sweetener. While I know in my head and heart that there is no real difference in calories or sweetness between the two, brown sugar, with its mellow smoky taste is truly my favorite

For the uninformed, brown sugar is just white sugar combined with molasses. Molasses is actually a byproduct of sugar production. Normally, molasses is separated and removed when sugar is created from sugarcane. With brown sugar the molasses is either left in or reintroduced after the white sugar has been created.  Light and dark are the two most common styles of brown sugar. In general, the lighter the brown sugar, the more delicate its flavor. Dark brown sugar has a more intense molasses smoky flavor.

Most of us are familiar with the slightly moist, clumpy kind of brown sugar that turns into a door stop if left out in the air too long. Now a days a dryer granulated brown sugar and a liquid form of brown sugar is available. Be warned however that a 1 cup of the granulated brown sugar weighs about 5 ounces as opposed to a cup of packed regular brown sugar which weighs about 7 ounces.  Makes sure you weigh your granulated brown sugar (as opposed to just using a measuring cup) and your recipe should turn out just fine.

So the next brown sugar question is, have you’ve ever been confronted by a solid brick of brown sugar sweetness?  What looks like a catastrophe is actually a problem with a simple solution. You can re-soften it by including a few slices of apple in the bag of brown sugar and sealing tightly for 1-2 days or you can try microwaving it for about 20 or 30 seconds. You can also substitute 1 cup of packed brown sugar for 1 one cup of regular granulated sugar without any problem (other than a subtle chance of taste) in just about any recipe.

Brown sugar is super in both the main course and dessert sections of your life so it should be no surprise that the following recipes run the gamut from bbq rubs to cheesecakes. Bon Appitit.
WHIPPED SWEET POTATOES WITH BROWN SUGAR TOPPING

 

1 can (approx 22 ounces) red-skinned sweet potatoes or 3 large fresh, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces and cooked for 15 minutes in boiling water
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 large egg
6 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
Pinch of salt

Topping
1 1/2 cups cornflakes crumbs
1/2 cup (packed) brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans
6 Tablespoon unsalted butter, melted

 

Preheat oven to 400. Peel and cut potatoes into one inch cubes. In the bowl of an electric mixer combine the sweet potatoes and butter. Beat until smooth. Add the egg, brown sugar, spice and salt; beat to blend. Transfer the mixture to 8 x 8-inch baking dish. (this can be made 1 day ahead). Cover and chill. Bring to room temperature before continuing.) and prepare the topping. Bake potatoes until beginning to brown around edges and slightly puffed, about 25 minutes.

Prepare topping:
Combine all topping ingredients together in medium bowl and mix well. Spoon the topping evenly over potatoes. Bake until golden brown and crisp, about 10 minutes longer. Serves 6

 

BROWN SUGAR FROSTING

 

12 tablespoon brown sugar
4 tablespoon milk
6 tablespoon butter
1 cup powdered sugar (or a little more depending on the consistency you want)

 

Place the brown sugar, milk and butter one in a saucepan and boil for minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and mix in the powdered sugar. Let cool, then beat until smooth. Makes 1 cup

 

BAKED BEANS WITH PASTRAMI AND BROWN SUGAR

 

1 (14- to 15-oz) can crushed tomatoes in thick puree
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 (19-oz) cans small white beans, rinsed and drained (4 cups)
1 onion, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
6 pastrami slices (1/4 lb)

 

Preheat oven to 350. In a bowl combine the tomatoes, brown sugar, mustard, and salt. Gently stir in beans and transfer to a -quart shallow baking dish. Arrange onion slices in 1 layer over beans, and then cover onion with pastrami. Bake, uncovered, until pastrami is browned and beans have absorbed most of liquid, about 1 1/4 hours. Serves 6.

 

BROWN SUGAR STREUSEL PIE

This recipe is by Danielle Nettuno of Titusville, Florida, won the 2008 Junior Chef Division Best of Show in the American Pie Council-Crisco National Pie Championships.

 

Crust
1-1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shortening
3-4 tablespoons water
1-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon sugar

 

Bottom layer
4 ounces cream cheese
1/6 cup brown and white sugar mixed
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/2 egg

 

Top layer
1/4 cup butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
1/8 teaspoon vanilla
1-1/2 eggs

 

Crumb topping
1/4 cup shortening
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup oats
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt

 

Combine flour, salt and cinnamon sugar in a medium bowl. Cut in shortening until it looks like crumbs. Add in the water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until dough is flaky. Roll out on a floured counter and place in a 13- by 9-inch pie pan.  Fork the pie crust. In another bowl, cream the cream cheese with the sugars, and then add the salt, vanilla and maple syrup. When this is combined, add the egg. Mix until blended. Spread it out evenly on the bottom of the pie crust. Place it in the refrigerator and chill when making the next two layers. Melt butter and brown sugar together in a medium sauce pan until blended. Let it come to a boil, stirring constantly. Let the mixture cook an additional 2 minutes. In a separate bowl, combine cream, vanilla and eggs. Once the butter and sugar is ready, slowly combine the two. Let cool. For the crumb topping, combine brown sugar, flour and oats in another bowl. Cut in shortening. Add walnuts, salt and cinnamon. Slowly pour the brown sugar layer on top of the cream cheese layer (it is okay if it combines). Evenly distribute the crumb topping on the pie. Place in a 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes, checking frequently after 20 minutes.  Take out and let cool, then refrigerate. Serves 10 to 12

BROWN SUGAR BANANA POUND CAKE

 

1 pound brown sugar

1 cup sugar

1 pound butter

5 large eggs

2 bananas, mashed

3 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons salt

1 cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup pecan

 

Preheat oven to 350. In the bowl of an electric mixer cream the brown and white sugars with butter until very light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the mashed bananas. Sift flour with baking powder and salt. Mix milk and vanilla together. Add each to the egg mixture alternately. Stir in the pecans. Pour the batter into a 10 inch well-greased bunt pan. Bake for 1-1/2 hours, or until firm. Place upside down on a cake rack; when cool, invert and turn out onto rack. Serves 12

 

BROWN SUGAR SHEESECAKE WITH BURBON SAUCE

A rich cheesecake made with bourbon and pecans

 

Crust

1/3 cup pecans

16 thin chocolate wafer cookies

4 (5 x 2 1/2-inch) graham crackers

1/3 cup packed brown sugar

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, softened

1/4 teaspoon salt

 

Filling
24 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 large eggs
3 tablespoons Bourbon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup packed brown sugar

 

Topping
1 (16 ounce) container sour cream
2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

 

Make crust: Preheat oven to 350. In a baking pan toast pecans in one layer in middle of oven until golden, about 10 minutes, and cool. In a food processor finely grind pecans, wafers, and graham crackers. Add brown sugar, butter, and salt and pulse until combined well. Transfer mixture to a 9 1/2-inch spring form pan and press evenly onto bottom and 1 1/2 inches up side.

 

Make filling: In a bowl with an electric mixer beat cream cheese until fluffy and add eggs, one at a time, beating at low speed until just combined. Beat in Bourbon, vanilla extract and brown sugar until just combined. Pour filling into crust and put spring form pan in a baking pan. Bake cheesecake in middle of oven 35 minutes. Leaving oven on, transfer cake in spring form pan to a rack and let stand 5 minutes. (Center of cake will set as it cools.)

 

Make topping: In a bowl stir together sour cream, brown sugar, and vanilla extract. Drop spoonfuls of topping around edge of cake and spread gently over center, smoothing evenly. Bake cake in baking pan in middle of oven 10 minutes and cool completely in spring form pan on rack. Chill cake, covered, at least 8 hours and up to 4 days. Run a thin knife around inside edge of pan and remove side of pan. Transfer cake to a serving plate and let stand at room temperature 30 minutes. Serve cake with sauce. Serves 12.

 

Bourbon Butterscotch Sauce
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup bourbon
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter

 

In a dry 3-quart heavy kettle cook sugar over moderately low heat, stirring slowly with a fork (to help sugar melt evenly), until melted and pale golden. Cook caramel, without stirring, swirling kettle, until deep golden. Remove kettle from heat and carefully add water and bourbon down side of kettle (mixture will bubble and steam). Simmer mixture, stirring, until caramel is dissolved. Stir in butter until incorporated and cool sauce to warm. Bourbon Butterscotch Sauce may be made 1 week ahead and chilled, covered. Reheat sauce to warm before serving.

Makes about 1 3/4 cups.

 

Modified from epicurious.com

 

APPLE CAKE WITH COCONUT BROWN SUGAR TOPPING
3/4 cups sugar

1/2 cup vanilla yogurt or sour cream

1/4 cups oil

1 egg

1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, ground, divided

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon ginger

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1 1/4 cups flour

1 pounds apple, Granny Smith, cored and coarsely chopped (3 cups)

1 cup coconut, flaked

3 tablespoon butter

3 tablespoon sugar, brown (packed)

2 tablespoon milk

 

Preheat oven to 325. Line two 8x4x2-inch loaf pans with foil; coat foil with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.   In a large bowl, stir together granulated sugar, yogurt, oil, egg, the 1 teaspoon cinnamon, the vanilla, baking powder, salt, baking soda, ginger, and nutmeg. Stir in flour just until combined. Fold in apples (batter will be very thick and chunky).  Spoon batter into prepared pans; spread evenly. Bake about 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near centers comes out clean and tops are browned.  Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine coconut, butter, brown sugar, milk, and the 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. Cook and stir over low heat until the butter is melted. Preheat broiler after removing cakes from oven. Gently spread coconut mixture evenly over tops of cakes. Broil 4 inches from heat for 2 to 3 minutes or until topping is bubbly and lightly browned.

Cool cakes in pans on wire racks for 45 minutes. Use foil to lift cakes from pans; remove foil. Serve warm. Serves 10 to 12

GARLIC BROWN SUGAR CHICKEN

 

1 broiler/ fryer chicken, cut up (3-1/2 – 4 lbs) or about 6 boneless skinless breasts

1 cup packed brown sugar

2/3 cup vinegar

1/4 cup lemon-lime soda (diet is fine)

2-3 tablespoons minced garlic

2 to 3 tablespoons soy sauce

1 teaspoon pepper

 

Place chicken in a large ziploc bag. Combine remaining ingredients, pour into bag and seal. Shake several times to coat the chicken. Refrigerate 2-4 hours. Transfer chicken and marinade to a large skillet, bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 45 minutes or until juices run clear.

 

BROWN SUGAR SPICE RIB RUB
2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup garlic powder
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/4 cup paprika
1/4 cup lemon pepper
1/4 cup chili powder
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried basil

 

In a bowl combine all the ingredients. Rub into both sides of ribs and let marinate. Makes 3 to 3 1/2 cups. Enough for 5 to 6 lbs of ribs

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Cilantro, Love it or Hate it/ Recipes for Everyone

There are very few things in the world of herbs and spices that evokes as strong an opinion and feelings as those generated by cilantro. Love it or hate it, it is a fundamental flavor/ingredient in many a recipe. I freely admit that I belong to the not so fond of it group. To me, the taste is sort of a cross between parsley and soap. Still I do find it occasionally does really perk up a dish and that quite a few of my readers adore the stuff. I’ve always know that cilantro is part of the coriander plant and is sometimes referred to as Chinese parsley but what I didn’t know is that it is front and center in recipes from around the world.

Coriander is used in Middle Eastern/Mediterranean, Central and South American, Indian, Thai, Mexican, Chinese and African cuisine and so is cilantro.  You can get cilantro year around and it looks a lot like flat-leaf parsley. The best way to tell if what you’re getting is cilantro is to smell it. The leaves should be bright and crisp (avoid the wilted stuff). You can store it in the refrigerator for up to a week. Just cut off the ends and plunk it in a jar or glass of water and cover it loosely with a plastic bag. I suggest that you change out the water every other day.  You can, of course, store it in a plastic bag but it won’t stay as fresh.

There are health benefits associated with eating cilantro and it’s considers a really good addition to any diet due to its anti-inflammatory and cholesterol lowering properties. It also been shown to help lower blood pressure and is a good source of fiber, magnesium and iron.

So, even though I’m not cilantro’s biggest fan I have tons of readers who can’t live without the stuff. The following recipes are all just a little different and use cilantro in really wonderful ways.

CILANTRO CORN AND CHICKEN DIP

 

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, grilled, cooled and cut into bite sized pieces

Salt and pepper to taste

1 to 2 avocados, diced

2 tomatoes, seeded and diced

2 cups fresh or frozen corn

1 red pepper diced

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 to 1 teaspoon cumin

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1 teaspoon grated lime zest

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1/8 teaspoon chili powder

 

In a bowl combine the chicken, avocado, corn, tomato, red pepper, oregano, cumin, cilantro, lime zest, lime juice, and chili paste. Mix together gently. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve with corn chips or pita.  Serves 6 to 8

 

AVOCADO AND CILANTRO PASTA

 

2 1/2 cups pasta shells or bow tie pasta

4 cups chicken stock or 1/2 stock and 1/2 water

4 stalks celery, finely chopped

2 avocados mashed

1 tablespoon chopped cilantro leaves

1 cup white cheddar, grated

1/2 to 1 cup pine nuts, toasted

 

DRESSING:

1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar

2/3 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons lemon or lime juice

Zest of 1 lemon or lime, grated

1/2 teaspoon coriander

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

cilantro leaves for garnish

 

Cook the pasta in the stock until al dente about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain. Place pasta into a large bowl and toss with 1 tablespoon of the oil. In another combine the celery, avocado, garlic, and cilantro and set it aside. Make the dressing by combining all of the ingredients in a small bowl or tightly lidded jar. Whisk or shake until well combined. Toss the dressing with the celery/avocado mixture. When the pasta has cooled add the dressing to the pasta and stir to coat. Add the cheese and pine nuts and toss gently again. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with the cilantro leaves. Can be refrigerated and served later or served immediately at room temperature. Serves 6

 

Modified from Cooking with Herbs & Spices

 

CILANTRO CHICKEN WITH ZUCCHINI AND CREAMY PASTA

 

2 to 3 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/3 cup lime juice

1 small bunch cilantro, chopped and divided in half

1/3 cup olive oil

12 oz ziti pasta cooked and drained according to package directions

2 medium zucchini, diced

1 tablespoon olive oil

3 diced tomatoes

6 green onions, diced

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1 1/2 cups Parmesan cheese

16 oz whipping cream

pepper, to taste

 

Cook In a plastic sealable bag combine 1/2 the cilantro, lime juice and olive oil. Add the chicken breasts, close and marinate in the refrigerator for an hour, turning once. Remove chicken from marinade and cook in a grill pan until just done, turning about half way through cooking. When done, remove from pan and cut into bite size pieces. In a skillet, while the chicken is cooking saute the zucchini with the tablespoon of oil until the zucchini is just starting to soften. Add the tomatoes, remaining cilantro and garlic. Simmer for 4 or 5 minutes. In another pan the cream to a simmer and then add it to the vegetables and simmer on low for 2 or 3 minutes stirring constantly. Add the pasta to the vegetable mixture and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove the pasta and vegetable mixture from the heat and add the chicken pieces and the Parmesan and toss to combine. Place in a serving bowl and garnish with the green onions. Serves 4 to 6.

 

 

SIZZLING SZECHUAN BEANS

 

2 cups oil, plus 1 tablespoon

1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1/4 cup soy sauce

1 ounce hot chili garlic sauce

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar

2 tablespoons hoisin sauce

1 tablespoon white wine

1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

1 teaspoon chopped fresh cilantro leaves

1 pound green beans, cleaned

2 tablespoons chopped peanuts

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley leaves

 

In a Dutch oven heat 2 cups of oil to 350. In medium saute pan over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon oil. Add ginger and saute for 2 to 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute or until it turns light brown; quickly add soy sauce, chili sauce, rice wine vinegar, hoisin, mirin, sesame oil and cilantro.

 

Fry the green beans in the canola oil for about 45 seconds, or until beans turn dark green. Remove, strain, and add to sauce. Toss and garnish with peanuts and parsley. Serves 4 to 6.

 

Modified from the FoodNetwork.com

ORANGE CILANTRO SLAW

 

1/3 cup frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed

1/3 cup rice wine vinegar

1/3 cup oil

1 tablespoon sesame oil

2 (8-ounce) bags coleslaw mix

2 cups fresh or frozen corn

1 cup shredded carrots

1 red pepper, chopped fine

6 medium green onions, thinly sliced

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1 cup mandarine oranges, drained

 

In a bowl combine the orange juice concentrate, vinegar, and oils in small bowl. Season with salt and pepper. This dressing can be made ahead of time and refrigerated.

 

In a large bowl combine the coleslaw mix, oranges corn, carrots, red bell, sliced green onions, and cilantro. Toss with enough dressing to coat. Season slaw to taste with salt and pepper. Let stand 15 minutes for flavors to blend. Toss again and serve.

 

Submitted by Candi Simmons Boca Raton FL modified from epicurious.com

 

SALMON WITH PECAN CILANTRO PESTO

 

1 cup pecans, chopped and toasted and divided in half

2 1/2 cups chopped cilantro

1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup chicken or vegetable broth

1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar

1/4 cup olive oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper

4 6- to 7-ounce salmon fillets, with skin

 

Season salmon with salt and pepper and set them aside.  In the bowl of a food processor, combine 1/2 the pecans, cilantro, cheese, stock and vinegar and process to a puree. With the machine running gradually add the olive oil in a thin stream. Season the pesto with salt and pepper. In an oiled grill pan grill the salmon until done, about 4 minutes on each side. When done place the salmon on a plate and top with a dollop of the pecan pesto. Garnish with the remaining toasted pecans Serves 4.

 

Submitted by Raymond Liturie Chicago IL

 

KRAZY COUSCOUS

 

1 to 1 1/2 cup chopped onion

2 teaspoons minced garlic

6 to 8 sliced mushrooms

2 tablespoons cooking oil

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1 cup vegetable or chicken broth

3/4 cup peas

3/4 cup coarsely chopped tomatoes

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

3/4 cup couscous

Fresh cilantro for garnish (optional)

 

In a large saucepan saute the onion, mushrooms and garlic in the oil until the onion is tender. Add the cumin and cook, stirring constantly for about 1 minute. Add the broth, peas, tomato and cilantro. Bring the mixture to a boil and add the couscous. Stir over the heat for 1 minute, cover and then remove from the heat. Let stand for 5 to 7 minutes. Uncover and spoon the mixture into a serving dish and garnish with extra cilantro if desired. Serves 6

 

HONEY CILANTRO DRUMBSTICKS

 

1/4 cup hoisin sauce

1 tablespoon minced cilantro

1/4 cup honey

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon sesame oil

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1 teaspoon dried ginger

12 chicken drumsticks

2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds

Cilantro sprigs for garnish

 

Mix the hoisin sauce, cilantro, honey, sesame oil, soy sauce, garlic and ginger in a large bowl to blend. Use a sharp knife score the drumsticks in at least 4 or 5 places. Add the chicken to the marinade and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour but preferably overnight. Preheat the oven to broil and place the rack in the top 1/3 of the oven. Line a large rimmed cookie sheet with heavy-duty foil. Place the drumsticks on the foil covered pan and broil for 15 to 20 minutes turning every 4 or 5 minutes to make sure they don’t burn.  When the drumsticks are done, place them on a serving platter and garnish with the sesame seeds and cilantro. Serves 4 to 6.

Buffalo Wing Bananza

When I announced to my cooking class of pre schoolers that we were making Buffalo wings they all started giggling.BUFFALO’S DON’T HAVE WINGS MRS. GOLTZ!!!! Was the universal consensus of these 4 and 5 year olds. It was at this point that I realized explaining we’re talking chicken wings here and that we just call them Buffalo wings because the original hot and spicy dish was invented in a small bar onMain St.in downtownBuffaloNew Yorkwouldn’t get me very far. I mustered up my best I’m not kidding voice and said that these wings were from very teeny tiny special Buffalo and that they tasted a lot like chicken. Needless to say they didn’t believe me

It’s hard to believe that balabustas used to consider chicken wings as scraps. Not worth much except to enhance the flavor of stock or soup. Then, on October 30, 1964 inBuffalo, Anchor Bar owner Teressa Bellissimo was faced with feeding her son and his friends a late snack. She happened to have a lot of extra chicken wings on hand so she fried up the wings, dipped them in a spicy chili sauce, and served them with celery and creamy dressing. The wings were an instant hit and have since become a menu staple everywhere.

TraditionallyBuffalostyle sauce is cayenne pepper based sauce and usually has some spices added to enhance the basic flavor. These combinations of spices are what distinguish one Buffalo Wing sauce from another Today there are a gazillion different recipes for chicken wings, ranging from jerked wings to Oriental or even pizza. So, even if you can’t, like my family, handle the original hot stuff recipes you can experiment with what ever flavors and taste combinations you like and still enjoy the fun of eating wings.

Of course you can use other parts of the chicken with the following recipes if you want to make a main course instead of an appetizer. The parts of the wing used for wings recipes will vary from recipe to recipe. Some recipes want you to cut off the wing tip and use just the drummette and double-bone pieces without separating them. Some separate the drummette from the double-bone. You can use any or all the parts you like best, there is no one right way.

Plan on about five to six wings per pound, depending on size. Four to six wings per person makes an adequate serving. Raw wings can be frozen up to nine months and the cooked wings can be prepared and frozen up to one month in advance of when you’ll need them.

PIZZA WINGS

3   pounds chicken wings, about 18

1 jar pizza sauce (14 oz)

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons dry pizza seasoning

2 tablespoons fresh parsley — chopped

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon coarse-grind pepper

Preheat oven to 425.  Line 2 jellyroll pans or cookie sheet with foil.  Arrange the chicken wings, skin side up, on the foil.  In a bowl combine the pizza sauce, vinegar, pizza seasoning, parsley salt and pepper. Mix to combine and set 1/2 cup of the mixture aside.  Brush the wings with the sauce mixture making sure to coat both sides.  Bake the wings for 20 to 30 minutes  Remove them from the oven when they are crispy.  Brush the cooked wings with the remaining sauce and serve. Serves 6 to 8.

BETTER THAN EVER BUFFALO WINGS

1/4 cup margarine, melted

2 to 3   tablespoonsTabascosauce

1   tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1    teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

3    pounds chicken wings, about 18, tips removed

Preheat oven to 425. Using knife or scissors cut each wing at joint into 2 pieces. Rinse the pieces and dry them very well.  Line 2 jellyroll pans or cookie sheets with foil.  In a glass or ceramic bowl combine the margarine,Tabasco, vinegar, cayenne, salt, and paprika and garlic powder.  Mix well. Add the chicken to the mixture and toss to coat.  Arrange the coated wings on the prepared pan.  Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown and meat is no longer pink near bone. Serves 6 to 8.

TACO WINGS

A beautifully different way to serve a simple appetizer

3   pounds chicken wings, about 18, tips removed

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 tablespoon chili powder

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

2   cups iceberg lettuce, shredded

Optional:

2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped lime wedges, pareve sour cream and guacamole,

Preheat oven to 425.  Line 2 jellyroll pans or cookie sheets with foil.  Arrange wings skin side up on pans.  In a bowl combine the oil, chili powder, cumin, onion powder and salt and pepper. Mix to form a paste.  Rub the paste all over wings.  Bake until crispy and golden, 25 to 30 mins.  Spread the lettuce over serving plate and place the wings on top.  Sprinkle the chopped cilantro over the top of the warm wings.  Serve with lime wedges, pareve sour cream and guacamole, if desired.  Serves 6 to 8.

GRILLED MARGARITA WINGS

2 pounds chicken wings, cut into 2 pieces at joint, tips removed

1/2 cup tequila

1/4 cup frozen orange juice concentrate

Grated zest of 1 lemon

Juice of 1 lemon

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon freshly ground coarse black pepper

1 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons minced cilantro

Wash the wings, pat dry and place in a large, heavy-duty resealable plastic food bag. In a small bowl, combine the tequila, orange juice concentrate, lemon juice and zest, garlic, cumin, pepper, salt and cilantro. Mix well and pour the marinade over the wings in the bag. Seal the bag and refrigerate several hours or overnight. Prepare a medium-hot grill. Drain the wings, discarding the marinade. Grill the wings, turning often, until they are slightly charred and cooked through, about 25 minutes. You can broil these wings if grilling is not an option. Serves 4 to 5.

TACO CHIP CHICKEN WINGS

This is a very quick appetizer recipe and a good way to    use up the crumbs from your tortilla chips. Flavored chips work well with this recipe. Also try using the spicier taco seasoning mix if you want a hotter chicken… Great serves with hot pepper sauce,

2 lb. chicken drumettes

2 (1.25 ounce) package taco seasoning mix

4 cups crushed tortilla chip crumbs

Preheat oven to 350. Rinse chicken pieces and pat dry. In a shallow dish or bowl combine the taco seasoning mix and tortilla chip crumbs. Mix to combine. Roll the chicken pieces in the chip mixture and place the coated drumettes on a lightly greased cookie sheet or jelly roll pan. Bake for 20 minutes. Turn the drumettes and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes. Serves 4. This recipe can be doubled or tripled.

ORIENTAL CHICKEN WINGS

The trick to these is roasting them in a very hot oven.

1 cup soy sauce

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1/2 cup rice wine vinegar

1 cup peanut or vegetable oil

1/2 cup green onions, finely chopped

1 1/2-inch piece fresh ginger, finely minced

1 tablespoon fresh garlic, finely minced

4 pounds chicken wings cut into 2 pieces at joint, tips removed

Combine the soy sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, oil, green onions, ginger, and garlic in a saucepan. Mix to combine and heat the sauce just to the boiling point. Set the mixture aside and cool to room temperature.  Rinse the chicken wings and pat it dry (make sure it’s very dry). Place all the pieces in a large glass or ceramic (not aluminum) bowl*. Pour the marinade over wings and stir to coat. Cover the chicken and allow it to marinate for several hours, or overnight in the refrigerator. When you’re ready to cook the wings preheat oven to 500. Line 2 jelly roll pans or cookie sheets with aluminum foil and arrange the wings on them. Brush the wings with the left over additional marinade. Cook for 35 to 40 minutes, turning once, until the wings are cooked and crispy brown at the edges. Serve hot or cold as an appetizer or as an entree. Serves 5 to 6.

*Or use large lock-style plastic bag.

Open Sesame

 

 

I may not be Scheherazade with her tales of wonder  but say the enchanted words “open the sesame seed jar” (ok, so I took a few liberties with the phrase) and a magical world of flavor is open to all. Sesame seeds are one of the oldest condiments in recorded cooking history dating back to as early as 1600 BCE and are an integral part of the cuisines in the Middle East, Asia, India and Turkey probably originated in an area of the world called the Spice Islands.

Because sesame seeds are a plant food, there’s no cholesterol. Natural sesame seeds (unhulled) are high in calcium,
hulled not as much. However, they contain copious amounts of B vitamins riboflavin, thiamine, and niacin so it’s all good. Most of the sesame seeds sold in the United States are already hulled and come in light, brown and black colors. As far as I can tell the only difference is in the color, not the flavor. Sesame oil comes in two varieties. The first is cold pressed with very lightly golden color and a subtle flavor. The Asian variety of sesame oil that most of us associate with Chinese/Thai and other oriental foods is made from roasted sesame seeds and is much darker in color and has an intense almost smoky flavor.

Tahini or sesame seed paste and hummus two very popular Middle Eastern dishes have sesame seeds as their base and are served instead of butter or oil as condiments throughout many countries in the world.

To keep your sesame seeds from becoming rancid, store them in the refrigerator or the freezer. Sesame oil has an exceptionally long shelf life but since it’s rather expensive so most people tend to buy it small quantities so it isn’t in the cabinet all that long.

Many recipes call for you to toast your sesame seeds so that they have a slightly nuttier flavor. Easy to do. You can either place
them in an ungreased frying pan and cook, stirring constantly over medium heat for a minute or two, just until they are lightly browned. Remove them from the pan immediately by putting them into a dish. Leaving them in the pan can cause them to burn from residual heat. Or you can also toast them in the oven on a cookie sheet with sides at 350 but you have to watch them CAREFULLY. They will
burn quickly.

So open sesame already and get started creating your own treasure trove of dishes with a rich nutty flavor that adding sesame seeds create.

SESAME ANISE MELTS

 

2   cups flour

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 cup shortening

3/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon anise seed, crushed

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 egg

about 1 cup toasted sesame seed

 

Preheat oven to 400. Grease 4 large baking sheets and set them aside. In large mixing
bowl combine flour, baking soda and then set it aside. In another large bowl combine
the shortening, sugar, anise seed and salt and beat until light and fluffy. Beat
in the egg and then add the flour mixture 1/2 cup at a time. Roll rounded
tablespoons of the dough into the sesame seeds. Arrange the balls on the cookie
sheet about 1 1/2 inches apart and flatten cookies with the bottom of a glass
to about 1/4 inch thickness. Bake 6 to 9 minutes or until lightly browned
around edges. Cool on rack. These freeze well. Makes 3 dozen

 

Submitted by Constance Kadish Teaneck NJ,
Adapted from joy of cookies

CLASSIC SESAME CHICKEN

2 teaspoons cornstarch

2 tablespoons rice wine

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 dash hot pepper sauce

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger

1 clove crushed garlic

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into bite size pieces

2 tablespoons sesame seeds

1 tablespoon sesame oil

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

4 ounces fresh mushrooms, quartered

1 green bell pepper, sliced

4 green onions, sliced diagonally into 1/2inch pieces

 

To Make Marinade: In a nonporous dish or bowl blend cornstarch with wine or
sherry; then stir in lemon juice, soy sauce, hot pepper sauce, ginger and
garlic. Blend together and stir in chicken strips. Cover dish and refrigerate
to marinate for 3 to 4 hours.

 

In a wok or large skillet, place sesame seeds and dry-fry over medium heat,
shaking the wok, until the seeds are a golden brown color. Remove seeds and set aside.

To same wok or skillet add sesame oil and vegetable oil and heat slowly. Drain
chicken, reserving marinade, and stir-fry in wok a few pieces at a time, until
browned. Remove chicken with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add mushrooms and green bell pepper to same wok or skillet and stir-fry for 2 to 3
minutes. Add the scallions and stir-fry 1 minute more. Return chicken to wok,
together with reserved marinade, and stir over medium high heat for another 2
to 3 minutes, or until the ingredients are evenly coated with the glaze.
Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds on top and serve immediately. Serves 4.

Modifiedfrom about.com

PEANUT AND SESAME NOODLES

For peanut dressing

1/2 cup smooth peanut butter

1/4 cup soy sauce

1/3 cup warm water

2 tablespoons chopped peeled fresh ginger

1 heaping teaspoon minced garlic

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 1/2 tablespoons dark sesame oil

2 teaspoons honey

1 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes

 

For
noodle salad

3/4 lb dried linguine or spaghetti

4 green onions, thinly sliced

1 red bell pepper, cut into 1/8-inch-thick strips

1 yellow bell pepper, cut into 1/8-inch-thick strips

3 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted

 

Make dressing:

In the bowl of a food processor or blender combine the dressing ingredients and process until smooth then transfer to a
large bowl.

Make salad:

Cook pasta in a 6- to 8-quart pot of boiling salted water until tender. Drain in a colander, then rinse well under cold
water.  Add the pasta, scallions, bell peppers, and sesame seeds to dressing, tossing to combine, and serve
immediately.  Serves 4

Modified from Gourmet  June 2002

LEMON AND SESAME DRESSING

 

1/2 cup sesame oil

1 cup honey

1 cup rice wine vinegar

2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Zest of 1 lemon

2 teaspoons minced garlic

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine ingredients in a large jar with a tight fitting lid and shake well.  Refrigerate until ready to use. Shake again before dressing salad. Makes
2 1/2 cups

SESAME TURKEY BURGER

2 lb ground turkey

3 tablespoon sesame seeds

2 tablespoon soy sauce

2 cup sliced green onions (white and green parts)

2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro or parsley

2 teaspoons minced garlic

2 tablespoons sesame oil

3 to 4 cup breadcrumbs

Salt and pepper to taste

Oil for cooking

 

In a bowl combine the turkey, sesame seeds, soy sauce, green onions, cilantro, garlic, sesame oil, about 1 teaspoon of
salt, and bread crumbs. Cover and let the mixture sit for at least 2 hours for the flavors to meld. Form the mixture into 6 to 8 patties and brush them with a little oil before cooking (the turkey has very little fat and may stick to the grill pan or grill). Grill for 4 to 5 minutes on each side or until the center is hot and no longer pink. Makes 6 to 8

Fro my files, source unknown

 

SESAME SEED COOKIES

One of my all time favorite cookie recipes

2 3/4 cups flour

2 teaspoons McCormick® Gourmet Collection Cream of Tartar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract

2 jars (1.62 ounces each) McCormick® Gourmet Collection Sesame Seed, Toasted (about 1 cup), divided

2 ounces bittersweet baking chocolate, melted

 

Mix flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt in medium bowl. Set aside. Beat butter in large bowl with electric mixer
on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add sugar; beat until well blended, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Gradually beat in flour mixture and 1/4 cup of the toasted sesame seed on low speed until well mixed. . Refrigerate dough 2 hours or until firm.  Preheat oven to 400. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll in remaining 3/4 cup toasted sesame seed. Place 2 inches apart on
ungreased baking sheets.  Bake 6 to 8 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on baking sheets 1 minute. Remove to
wire racks; cool completely. Drizzle cookies with melted chocolate. Let stand until chocolate is set.

From mccormick.com

LEMON AND SESAME POUND CAKE

1/2 cup flour

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/ 8 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup sugar

4 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1 large egg

1 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest

1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 teaspoon black sesame seeds

 

Glaze

 

2 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Adjust an oven rack to the middle position, and heat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour a 5 1/2 by 3 inch loaf pan.
Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg, sugar, butter, lemon zest, juice and vanilla extract. Then combine 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture with the sesame seeds. Add half the remaining flour mixture to the egg mixture, until only a few streaks of flour remain. Repeat with the second half of the batter and the sesame mixture. Do not over mix. Give the batter a final stir with a rubber spatula, to ensure a smooth batter. Pour into the mold. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until golden and an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Meanwhile, combine the sugar and lemon juice. Place in the microwave for 30 seconds to 1 minute, until the sugar is
dissolved and the mixture is slightly thickened. Once the cake has been removed from its mold, brush it with the glaze.

Recipe adapted from Cook’s Illustrated

SESAME ASPARAGUS AND BEEF SALAD

2 to 3 lbs. rib steak

4 to 6 cups sliced fresh asparagus (cut into bite sized pieces)

3 to 4 tablespoons soy sauce

2 to 3 tablespoons sesame oil

1 to 2 tablespoon rice vinegar

1/2 teaspoon grated ginger

3 tablespoons sesame seeds

4 green onions, sliced thin

Chopped romaine lettuce

3 shredded carrots

Red pepper flakes (optional)

Cook steak to desired doneness. Cool and cut into thin strips or bite sized pieces.

Cook the asparagus until it’s just crisp tender. Drain and cool. In a bowl combine
beef and asparagus and set it aside. In another bowl combine the soy sauce,
sesame oil, vinegar, ginger and green onions. Mix to combine. Pour the dressing
over beef and asparagus. Mix to coat. You can heat this up if you prefer a warm
salad. Place the chopped lettuce and shredded carrots on a serving platter and
spoon the beef and asparagus over the top. Sprinkle the top with sesame seeds
and red pepper if you’re using it and serve warm or at room temperature. Serves
6.

From my files, source unknown

Oodles of Noodles

When my son discovered that the money train AKA his parents credit card had left when he entered grad school he quickly discovered the joys of pasta, or more specifically, ramen noodles. Left to his own devices (and given his limited time to spend in the kitchen) this staple in his pantry would have been the entree of choice. I convinced him, though a little culinary magic, a few simple recipes and a $50 gift card to Kroger have to try a few different types of noodles to kick up his menu variety.

Created in China (not Italy as most people believe) noodles were an integral part of the Chinese diet from as early as 200 B.C There are several kinds of noodles in Chinese cuisine, mien noodles (egg), rice noodles, wheat noodles and bean noodles. In northern China,
wheat noodle are eaten more regularly than rice or rice noodles. Rice noodles are considered a southern Chinese staple. I told my son that while there were nice inexpensive “Americanized” alternatives to the Asian noodles (lets not forget Japan here) that the originals were actually tastier and more interesting.

The first noodle I introduced him to was the Soba noodle. A Soba noodle is made with wheat flour and buckwheat. It’s high in fiber and has a nutty full bodied flavor. The higher the buckwheat content the more expensive the noodle. Soba noodles are typically served in soups or with a plain with a dipping sauce. Less expensive alternative: whole wheat spaghetti or linguini.

He already knew about Ramen but for the uninformed, Ramen are thin and skinny curly dried egg noodles that are typically sold in an instant soup form. There is usually a packet of flavored instant soup powder in the package. My son has eaten it for years and has added veggies and left over chicken or turkey. There isn’t really a less expensive alternative as they are cheap cheap cheap but regular spaghetti noodles are pretty close.

Rice noodles are round or flat, thin and slightly translucent white noodles made from rice flour and water. They kinda have zero flavor of their own (just a great squishy texture) and they pair with just about any strong meat of fish flavor. You can substitute vermicelli, linguine, or fettuccine but it’s not really a close match.

Bean thread, cellophane or mung bean noodles are very thin noodles that are semi-transparent noodles made from the starch of mung beans. Bean threads become very slippery when cooked. Their subtle flavor is the perfect complement to any meat or fish dish. I would suggest rice noodles or vermicelli as a substitute but they are sort of a one of a kind noodle.

For most the tried and true method of cooking noodles is to boil the and then add them to the other ingredients, pour sauce over them or add ingredients to the pot they were cooked in. I really don’t have much to add to that for my column other than don’t over cook them and read the instructions on the package.

If possible try and buy fresh noodles as opposed to the dried variety. Fresh noodles should be soft but not limp, sticky, or brittle. Fresh will keep for 3 or 4 days in the refrigerator and for 1 month in the freezer. Dried noodles can be kept until just about the next ice age in a cool, dry, dark place.

One final “noodle note” those ‘chow mein’ found in most Chinese restaurants are an American invention so if you’re looking for “authentic” pass the up and get yourself the real stuff. For those of you that don’t eat shell fish you can always substitute chicken or fish.

SLEEPING DRAGON NOODLE SALAD

1/4 cup sesame oil

1 tablespoon hot sauce

2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 1/2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

2 1/2 tablespoons sugar

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

zest of 1 lemon

3/4 cup thinly sliced green onions

2 carrots julienned

1/4 cup chopped celery

4 radishes julienned

2 cups shredded Chinese cabbage

4 packages ramen egg noodles, cooked, rinsed and drained

2 tablespoons black or toasted sesame seeds

 

In a large
salad bowl combine the sesame oil, hot sauce, soy sauce, lemon juice, vinegar,
sugar, lemon zest, and salt. Whisk to combine. Add the noodles and toss to
coat. Add shredded cabbage and toss to coat. Add the green onions, carrot,
celery and radishes. Toss to combine and top with sesame seeds before serving.
Serves 8.

 

SHRIMP NOODLE STIR FRY

2 teaspoon cornstarch

2 egg whites

1/3 to 1/2 lb shelled shrimp (raw) cut in half

3/4 lb noodles (any kind will work but I like soba noodle with this)

salt

3 tablespoons sesame oil

3 to 4 green onions cut into 1 inch pieces

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1/8 teaspoon ginger

1 1/2 tablespoon white wine

1 1/2 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon sesame oil

 

In a bowl mix the cornstarch and ginger with the egg white and whisk to combine. Add the shrimp and toss to coat. Set aside. Cook the noodles in boiling salted water for about 4 to 5 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold running water. Heat the 3 tablespoons sesame oil in a skillet. Add the green onion, and shrimp and stir fry for about 1 minute. Add the soy sauce, wine and sugar and mix to combine. Cook for about 1 minute. Add the noodles and mix to combine. Continue cooking for 2 to 3 minutes and just before you’re finished add 1 teaspoon sesame oil, cook
for 30 seconds, stirring constantly and serve. Serves then add the sesame seed oil just before serving. Serves 2 to 4

Modified from a recipe submitted by Carlie Smyth Chicago IL

 

HOT AND SPICEY PORTABELLA AND EDAMAME WITH NOODLES

For sauce

1/3 cup water

1/3 cup soy sauce

2 teaspoons Wasabi paste (this is hot, you can use less)

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1/4 cup oil

2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger

1 tablespoon minced garlic

10 ounces portabella mushrooms, chopped into small pieces

8 cups shredded Napa cabbage

6 green onions, thinly sliced

8 to 9 ounces soba

1 cup frozen shelled edamame

3 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds

 

In a bowl combine the water, soy sauce, Wasabi and brown sugar and whisk until the sugar is dissolved. Set the sauce aside.  Heat the
oil in skillet then add the ginger and garlic and cook for about 30 seconds. Add the portabellas and saute, stirring frequently for 3 to 4 minutes. Reduce the heat and add cabbage and 2/3’s of the green onions (save a tablespoon for garnish) and cook, stirring occasionally, until cabbage is crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Add the sauce and simmer 2 minutes.

 

While cabbage is cooking, cook the soba and edamame together in a pasta pot of boiling salted water until the noodles are just tender, about 5 minutes. Drain the noodles and edamame in a colander and rinse with cool water. Place the noodles and edamame in a large bowl and add the vegetable mixture. Mix to combine. Serve sprinkled with remaining green onions and toasted sesame seeds.

 

BOTH SIDES BROWNED NOODLES

Kind of like a noodle pancake

1 pound fresh or dried egg noodles

2 tablespoon sesame oil

2 tablespoons peanut or vegetable oil (or more if needed)

In a large stock pot, add enough water to cover the noodles and bring the water to a boil. Add the noodles, stirring to separate. Cook until the noodles almost done, tender, but still firm. Drain and rinse thoroughly. Place the noodles back into the pot and add the sesame oil and toss to coat. In a frying pan or a wok, heat 2 tablespoons oil over a high heat. Add the noodles. Spread the noodles out to the edges of the pan, and then let them cook, without stirring, until they are browned on the bottom (6 to 8 minutes). Flip over and brown the other side. You can do this by placing a plate over the top of the pan, flipping the noodles out onto it and then sliding them back into the pan. You may need to add a little more oil to keep them from sticking. Cook on the second side until crispy, 4 to 5 more minutes. Remove the fried noodle pancake to a serving plate.  Cut into wedges and serve with stir fried vegetables or grilled meat. Serves 4 to 6.

 

Submitted byTony Easteron River GroveIL

WARM GINGER AND PEANUT NOODLE SALAD

1/4 cup peanut butter

1/4 cup soy sauce

1 tablespoon rice vinegar

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1 1/2 teaspoons sesame oil

1 teaspoon wasabi

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1/2 teaspoon ginger

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 pound uncooked angle hair pasta or linguini

1 1/2 cups shredded carrot

1/3 to 1/2 pound snow peas, trimmed and halved crosswise

1 cup thin strips red or yellow bell pepper

3/4 cup thinly sliced green onions

1 can sliced water chestnuts

1/2 to 3/4 cup honey roasted peanuts

 

In a large
bowl combine the peanut butter, soy sauce, vinegar, lime juice, sesame oil,
Wasabi and garlic. Whisk to combine and set aside. Cook the pasta according to
the directions on the box. When the noodles are al dente (still a little
crunchy) turn off the heat and add the carrot and snow peas. Let the mixture
sit for 2 minutes then drain, saving 1/4 cup of the liquid. Add the drained
pasta and noodles to the salad dressing in the salad bowl. Toss to coat. Add
the bell pepper, water chestnuts and onions. Toss to coat. Add the pasta water
and toss to coat. Sprinkle the honey roasted peanuts on top and serve warm.
Serves 4. This recipe can be doubled or tripled

 

SPICY CASHEW NOODLE SALAD

8 oz dried linguini, spaghetti, or soba noodles

2 cups broccoli florets cut small

1/4 pound pea pods, sliced in 1/3’s

1 carrot, peeled, julienned

1/2 red onion chopped fine

3 tablespoons sesame oil

2 to 3 teaspoons minced garlic

1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger

2 tablespoon soy sauce

3 tablespoons lime juice (fresh is best)

1/8 teaspoon cayenne

1/2 teaspoon paprika

2 tablespoon chopped fresh basil

3 green onions, sliced

1 large tomato seeded and chopped

1/2 cup red pepper, julienned

1 cup toasted cashews

 

Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain, rinse and drain again and then set it
aside. Steam the broccoli, pea pods, and carrots for about 2 minutes, making
sure they are still crisp. Rinse them in cold water and set them aside. Heat 1
tablespoon of the sesame oil in a frying pan, add onion, ginger and garlic and
saute for 2 to 3 minutes until just soft. Add the green onions, tomato and red
pepper. Mix to combine and cook for about 2 minutes. In a bowl combine the lime
juice, remaining 2 tablespoons sesame oil, soy sauce. Add the sauteed onion
mixture to the sauce and mix to combine. Add the noodles and steamed vegetables
to the sauce. Toss to coat the pasta. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before
serving. Great at room temperature or served cold. Before serving sprinkle the
pine nuts on the top. Serves 6.

 

SALSA SHRIMP AND NOODLE SOUP

1 lb shrimp, peeled and divined

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon chili powder

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

5 cups water

2 packages  flavored Ramen Noodles (use 1 packet of seasoning)

2 cups salsa

1 15 oz can black beans rinsed and drained

1 can corn

1 green onion thinly sliced

 

In a medium bowl combine the lemon juice chili powder, cumin, and pepper. Mix to combine
and add the shrimp. Toss to coat and let sit for 1/2 hour. In a large sauce pan
bring water to boil, stir in 1 ramen flavor packet, break the ramen noodles
into pieces and add them to the saucepan. Bring the liquid to a boil cook for 1
minute. Add shrimp, salsa, beans, corn, and green onion and then reduce the
soup to a simmer. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes or until the shrimp turns pink.
Serves 4.

 

Submitted by Lenore Hentz Trenton NJ

 

ASPARAGUS AND NOODLE STIR FRY

3 oz. pkg. oriental or shrimp flavor ramen noodle soup mix

1 tablespoon sesame oil

1 lb. asparagus, cut into 1″ pieces

1 red bell pepper, cut into strips

1 red onion chopped

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1 lb. sea scallops cut in half or talapia cut into pieces

1 tablespoon soy sauce

2 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon sesame oil

1/8 teaspoon hot pepper sauce

Cook and drain ramen noodles as directed on the package and set them aside. Heat 1 tablespoon sesame oil in wok or large skillet. Add the asparagus, bell pepper, onion and garlic. Stir fry for 2 to 3 minutes or until the vegetables are crisp-tender. Add the scallops and stir-fry until they are white and firm. Add the ramen seasoning packet, soy sauce, lemon juice, 1 teaspoon sesame oil and hot sauce and stir into scallop mixture. Stir in the cooked noodles. Cook for 3 or 4 minutes until everything is hot throughout. Serves 4 to 6.

Modified from about.com

 

 

Perfect Pot Pie

SLICE OF LIFE BY EILEEN GOLTZ

The phrase “it’s as easy as pie” to make is one that readily comes to mind whenever I’m in the mood to make pot pies. Surprisingly the mood seems to strike whenever I have leftovers that don’t seem to be just quite enough to make a full meal all by themselves. The light bulb in my head (the one that looks eerily like the one in my fridge) goes on and the word balloon appears and it blinks, pot pie, pot pie, pot pie.
Recipes for pot pie cooking methods date back to the Middle Ages in Europe, and were brought to America along with all the other hand me down recipes our ancestors had in their own personal cookbooks. Simply put, a pot pie is a savory meat or vegetable stew/thick soup cooked in a single or double crusted pan depending on your personal preference and your geological frame of reference. A lot of recipes from south of the Mason Dixon line have  a biscuit type of crust and those from those Yankee states are more apt to use pastry dough or puff pastry. Those that originated in other countries use potatoes or barley or even rice in the crusts. It just goes to show you that even though cooks all over the world may have a different set of staples in the house we know what to do with them when it comes to making the best of leftovers.
. The following recipes include several that I’ve made for years and years and more years and have absolutely no idea where the original recipe came from and the rest have been sent to me by readers who love pot pies as much as I do. .So, even if you’re ordinarily a the kind of cook that burns water, making a pot pie will raise your confidence level 10 fold and your standing as the best cook in the world for turning leftovers into a spectacular meal 100 fold.

REMINDS ME OF MARSHALL FIELDS CHICKEN POT PIES

2 sheets puff pastry dough, thawed
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups chicken broth
Salt and pepper to taste
Pinch of thyme
12 ounces cooked chicken meat, cut into strips
1 onion, minced
1/2 cup peas, if frozen, thawed
1/2 cup diced cooked carrot
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped red pepper

Preheat oven to 450. Grease a 9×13 baking pan and place on sheet of the dough on the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Press to push it slightly up the sides of the pan. set it aside. In a sauce pan melt the butter and then stir in the flour. Cook, whisking until the flour is incorporated into the butter and then add the broth and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Increase the heat and bring the mixture to a boil and cook for 1 to 2 minutes until the mixture is thickened. Add the pinch of thyme and salt and pepper to taste. Mix to combine.  Add chicken, peas, onions, celery and carrot and mix to combine and pour the mixture into the prepared pan over the dough. Top with the second piece of puff pastry dough making sure to tuck the edges into the pan and connecting it with the bottom dough if possible. Bake for approx 25 minutes until the top has puffed up and is golden brown. Cool 5 minutes and serve. Serves 4 to 6.

RICE AND CHICKEN POT PIE

2 tablespoons butter
1 large onion, chopped
2 teaspoons minced garlic
3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon sage
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup flour
2 cans (14 1/2-ounce) chicken broth
1 package (16-oz) mixed frozen vegetables
3 cups cooked rice
2 cups cooked chopped chicken
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 1/2 cup baking mix
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup finely chopped green onions

Heat butter in skillet  and add onion, garlic, thyme, sage and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly for about 5 minutes until onion is tender. Add flour, cook and stir 1 to 2 minutes. Whisk in broth; cook, whisking 4 to 6 minutes or until sauce boils and thickens.

Stir in vegetables; cook 5 to 7 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in rice, chicken and parsley; cook, stirring 2 to 3 minutes more. Place in 2-1/2-quart casserole. (May be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before baking.)

Combine baking mix, buttermilk and green onions in medium bowl. Gently stir, just until dough comes together. Form dough into 9-inch long log on lightly floured surface; cut crosswise into 6-1/2-inch rounds. (Or roll out dough on lightly floured surface to 1/2-inch thickness and cut with different shaped cookie cutters.)

Top casserole with biscuits, spacing evenly. Bake in 425-degree oven for 20 minutes until filling is bubbly and biscuits are golden brown. Serve immediately.

Modified from cdkitchen.com

MASHED POTATO TURKEY POT PIE

1 tablespoon oil
2 pounds ground turkey
1 onion, chopped
3 stalks celery, diced
1 red pepper diced
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
3 (16 oz.) cans cream style corn
8 white potatoes, cooked and mashed
Butter or margarine
Panko bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 325. In a skillet sauté the onion, celery and red pepper together in the oil. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes and then add the turkey. Cook until turkey is no longer pink.  Drain any liquid, add the poultry seasoning, mix to combine and put the mixture in a 9X13 casserole dish. Pour the creamed corn over the mixture and top with the mashed potatoes. Place small pieces dabs of butter or margarine on the potatoes. Cover and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover and sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the top. Bake an additional 10 minutes and serve. Serves 6 to 8.

Submitted by Audry Snarling

VEGGIE POT PIE

1 tablespoon oil
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 onions, diced
1 green or red pepper, diced
3 to 4 carrots, peeled and diced
3 or 4 yellow or zucchini squashed, diced
15 ounces can vegetarian chili (you can use the stuff with meat if you like)
1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
6 ounces box cornbread mix (or your favorite recipe)
salsa and sour cream

Preheat oven to 375. Prepare the corn bread mix and set it aside. Grease a 9×13 baking pan and set aside. In a large skillet sauté the garlic in the oil for about 1 minute and then add the onion, green pepper, carrots, and zucchini; cook 10 to 15 minutes or until vegetables are tender but not mushy. Stir in the chili, mix to combine and then spoon the mixture spread into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the top with the cheese. Spread the corn bread mixture over the top of the cheese. Bake for 20 minutes or until the cornbread is golden brown.  Let sit for 3 to 5 minutes then serve. Serves 6

SWEET POTATO POT PIE

3 tablespoons   olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 teaspoon minced garlic
3 cups fresh sweet potatoes, peeled and diced into small  pieces
1/2 teaspoon salt or more to taste
1 jalapeno pepper, minced
1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen
2 cups milk
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 sheet puff pastry dough, thawed
1 egg mixed
Poppy or sesame seeds

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large skillet sauté the onion, jalapeno, garlic and, sweet potatoes in the oil. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Stir in the corn.

In a small bowl whisk together the milk and cornstarch, then pour the mixture into the sweet potato mixture. Bring the mixture to bring to a boil, stirring constantly, and cook until the liquid starts to thicken, about 2 minutes. Remove the mixture from heat and season to taste with salt and pepper. Pour the mixture into a 9X13 pan and then gently lay a sheet of the puff pastry dough on top pushing the edges in to the mixture around the side of the pan.  Brush the top of the dough with the beaten egg and then sprinkle the top with sesame or poppy seeds. Using a sharp knife, cut a few slits in the top of the crust (you can make a design) to let the steam vent. Place the casserole on a cookie sheet with sides just in case it bubbles over. Bake about 15 to 20 minutes until the top is golden. Serves 4 for dinner 6 for lunch

Note: you can use canned sweet potatoes but don’t saute them with the other vegetables, add them with the corn.

HONEY DIJON MUSTARD POT PIE

1 cup chicken broth
2 tablespoons oil
1 lb chicken breasts, no bones or skin
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup peas, frozen or canned
2 ready make pie crusts, defrosted
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
5 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons parsley
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 cup minced onion
Water, as needed
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 425. Marinate the chicken in the soy sauce for about 10 minutes then drain. In a skillet sauté the garlic and onions in the oil. Cook until they just start to wilt and are still firm. Add the chicken and cook until the chicken is done through. Add the honey, carrots, broth, parsley, salt, pepper and mustard. Mix to combine and cook on a low heat. In a small bowl combine the cornstarch and enough water to make paste. Bring the chicken mixture to a boil and add the cornstarch mixture, stirring constantly as you add it. Cook until the liquid starts to thicken. You can make more of the cornstarch mixture and add it if the liquid to too runny. Spoon the chicken  mixture into one of the pie shell and then top it with the other crust. Cut a few slits in the top so steam can escape while it bakes. Cook for 15 minutes, then turn the oven down to 350 degrees F and bake for another half an hour or until the crust is golden brown and the pie is hot. Serve immediately with vegetables and mashed potatoes. Serves 4 to 6.

Krazy Kool Kale

            These days we see superheroes everywhere. From the big screen action figures like Green Lantern, Thor and Harry Potter to the billionaires like Gates, Buffet and Zuckerberg pledging to give away their personal bounty to worthy and noble causes. While taking the global view is fine for an evening’s entertainment or the news when you want to be a superhero in your own home you need to start serving what I like to call “super foods”.

            In my perfect world, chocolate would be front and center as the number one super food. Alas, while dark chocolate is really good for you, a better choice for the top spot would be kale. Ok, stop laughing and scratching you head and let me explain exactly why, even if you have no idea what kale is, you should start utilizing kale in your diet ASAP.

Kale (AKA borecole)  is veggie that belongs to the Brassica family (which includes Brussel sprouts, broccoli and collards is related to cabbage (a second cousin once removed) and is currently being touted  as one of the primer healthy vegetables on the planet.  A leafy green plant, kale is available in curly, ornamental, or dino varieties and comes in a variety of colors from deep green to purple to deep red.

In addition to being “burdened” with an abundance of calcium, vitamins A, C, K, E, copper, potassium, iron, manganese, and phosphorus kale is a fiber rich food as well as a low-glycemic food which is great to add to your diet when trying to lose weight. Kale and collards are very similar and they both are like cabbages in that they can because, for lack of a better phrase, be flatulence producing,  so be warned.

I always say it’s best to eat your veggies, fresh and raw so utilizing kale in salads is always a good choice. However, I will concede that kale has a very distinctive, slightly bitter taste in its raw state so most people prefer the taste of kale when it’s been cooked slightly. While you do lose some of the nutrients and benefits it’s not enough to forsake the gains. You should look for firm, deeply colored leaves with firm stems. Smaller leaves tend to be milder in flavor and taste. To store your kale keep it unwashed, in an air-tight container. It should last for up to a week in the refrigerator.

If you want to keep the cooking simple I suggest you do I like do and just lightly saute the kale with garlic and olive oil and add pine nuts and lemon juice or balsamic vinegar. You can also steam your kale for to five minutes and use it as substitute it for spinach.

Or, if you’re feeling just a tab bit adventurous yet want to keep your recipes user friend, tasty and “healthy” I suggest the following recipes. Trust me; your family will never guess they’re actually eating something that’s good for them.

 

BEAN AND KALE SOUP (meat or pareve)

 

1 bunch kale, trimmed

1 onion, minced

1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus additional to taste

2 teaspoons soy sauce

1/4 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves or dried

1/3 cup olive oil

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1 cup cooked small white beans or drained and rinsed canned beans

4 cups chicken or vegetable stock

freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1/2 cup small shell macaroni

freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional if using vegetable broth)

 

In a medium saucepan, simmer the kale with 1/2 cup water and the salt until tender, about 5 minutes. Drain the kale, reserving any liquid that remains. Coarsely chop the kale. In the saucepan, stir together the oil, onion and garlic and saute, stirring frequently, until the garlic and onion are light gold in color, about 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the soy sauce and rosemary. Cook, stirring for 1 minute.  Stir in the kale and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring to combine coat. Add in the beans, mix to combine and cook for an additional 3 minutes. Add the reserved cooking liquid and the stock. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and stir in the macaroni. Boil for 6 minutes, or until the pasta is tender. Adjust the seasoning, if necessary. You can serve it with Parmesan cheese as a topping at the table if the soup is pareve. Serves 4. This recipe can be doubled.

 

Modified from: Soup: A Way of Life by Barbara Kafka

 

WILD RICE WITH KALE, TOMATOES AND ALMONDS (pareve or meat)

 

1 cup wild rice

2 cups water or broth

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1/4 cup minced onion

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 14-ounce cans plum tomatoes, drained, seeded, and chopped

3 to 4 cups finely chopped rinsed kale leaves

1/2 to 1 cup toasted almonds

 

In a  saucepan bring 2 cups water to a boil, add the rice and salt, cover and cook  over low heat for 20 minutes, or until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender. In a heavy skillet saute the garlic and onion in the oil stirring constantly, until soft and golden. Add the tomatoes and kale, and cook the mixture, stirring occasionally, for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the kale is just wilted and tender. Place the rice in the serving bowl and add the kale mixture. Mix to combine and season with salt and pepper to taste and top with toasted almonds. Serves 6 to 8.

 

Modified, Submitted by Katie Marscaroni, Chicago

 

KALE PASTA SALAD WITH PISTACHIO DRESSING (pareve)

 

8 ounces angel hair pasta (you can use whole wheat spaghetti) broken into 2 inch pieces

1 cup pistachios, toasted

1 tablespoon minced garlic, smashed and chopped

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

1 large bunch of kale chopped into bite-sized pieces

1 cup dried cranberries or cherries

 

In the bowl of a food processor or blender combine 1/2 cup pistachios, garlic, salt, olive oil, rice wine vinegar and process to combine. Set it aside. Bring a large pot of water (with about 1/2 tablespoon of salt) to a boil. Add the pasta and cook al dente.  Just before the pasta is done add the kale and let cook for about 20 seconds then immediately drain the pasta and kale into a colander and rinse it with cold water. Drain well, using paper towels to soak up any excess water. Place the mixture into a serving bowl and add about 1/3 of the dressing.  Toss to coat.  You can refrigerate the salad at this point and finish just before serving if you like. To finish add half the cranberries and 1/2 the remaining pistachios. Toss to combine.  Season with salt and pepper to taste and sprinkle the remaining   cranberries and pistachios on top. Drizzle the remaining dressing over the top and serve.

 

CHICKPEA AND KALE BULGUR STEW (pareve or meat)

 

1 large onion, chopped

2 teaspoons olive oil

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon sugar

2/3 cup uncooked bulgur

1 14-ounce can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed

4 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock

1/2 cup orange juice

1 1/2 cup cauliflower, trimmed into small trees

3 carrots, peeled and sliced into thin rounds

3 stalks celery, cut into chunks

2 cup kale, de-stemmed and cut into thin slices

olive oil

1 small red onion, chopped for garnish

 

In a soup pot over medium-high heat saute the onion in the olive oil for a minute  then add the sugar and salt and cook for 1 more minute until the onion begins to soften a bit. Stir in the bulgur. Stir in the chickpeas and the stock. Bring the mixture to a simmer. Cook for another few minutes, it should start to thicken. Taste to see if the bulgur is cooked through, if so add the orange juice. If not, simmer for a couple more minutes before adding the juice. Stir in the cauliflower, carrots, celery and the kale and then simmer another 4 to 5 minutes or until the cauliflower is just tender. If the stew is on the thick side, thin with a bit more water or stock. Taste, and add salt if necessary. Serve garnished with a drizzle of olive oil and red onions. Serves 4 to 6.

 

Modified from cookbook101.com

 

CHICKEN KALE AND WHITE BEAN SOUP (pareve or meat)

 

2 boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into bite size pieces

4 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup diced onion
1 tablespoon minced garlic
4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
4 cups packed chopped kale
1 (14.5-ounce) can Italian-style diced tomatoes
1 (14.5-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
2  large carrots, peeled and sliced

3 stalks celery, diced

In a large saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the chicken and onion and cook 4 to 5 minutes stirring constantly. Add the garlic and cook 2 minutes longer. Add broth, kale, tomatoes, celery and carrots and stir to combine. Cover and cook 5 minutes or until kale is tender. Add the beans and cook an additional 4 to 5 minutes until the beans are hot. Serve immediately. Serves 4

SUPER SIMPLE KALE SALAD (pareve)

 

1 head kale, shredded

1 cup chunky salsa (I use mango salsa)

2 avocados, diced

2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil

1 to 2 tablespoons lemon or lime juice

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt or to taste

1/8 teaspoon cayenne or black pepper

1 cup raisins or dried cranberries

1/2 cup pine nuts or almonds

2 tablespoons sesame seeds

 

In large salad bowl combine all ingredients together and toss to combine. Serves 6

 

© Eileen Goltz kale11a

 

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