Thursday, April 02, 2009

Food Week Q & A (Recipes: 3 More Fav's)

Mark and Sarah said... From what I have read about you guys and food, it seems you have great taste. Would you be willing to share your Top 10 favorite dinners (and accompanying your spare time!!).
Heather said... I'm going to also put in a request that food week include some wonderful recipes! Thanks for sharing -- I always love to read what you're cooking up! HCP

Mark and Sarah, Heather, and everyone-- This isn't a Top Ten list per se, but here are a few more of our trusted easy/healthy favorites~~~~

Kyle’s Favorite Roast Chicken

This recipe was originally the “Rosemary Roast Chicken” from the Williams Sonoma Fun Food Cookbook. But I have altered it pretty significantly. Kyle's favorite vegetable is green beans, so I almost always serve green beans with it for him... making this a super-duper special meal for Ky Ky (although Owen loves this too-- especially the 'sauce'). I often buy the green beans that come clean and prepped in the microwavable bags from the produce section. We serve this with mashed potatoes to soak up that great 'sauce.' And again, I often use the bag of microwavable potatoes and then mash them to make it fast (or, even faster: buy the pre-made store-bought kind from the refrigerated section of the grocery store—we like the ‘Country Crock’ brand of mashed potatoes the best). By using the store-bought mashed potatoes and the microwave-in-bag green beans it makes this tasty, homey, cozy dinner super easy to get on the table!!!

  1. Place 6-8 chicken pieces (the bone-in, skin-on kind) in bottom of baking dish. (I usually make this with just chicken breasts -- whole/”split” breasts, bone-in, skin-on – because that is what we all like best; however you can use chicken thighs, legs/drumsticks, wings too).
  2. Mix together: juice of 2 whole fresh lemons, ½ cup olive oil, 6 tablespoons of whole-grain Dijon mustard. Pour mixture evenly over chicken.
  3. Cover with plastic wrap and place in fridge to marinate overnight.
  4. When ready to cook--- Pre-heat oven to 400. Take chicken out of fridge to let stand at room temperature while oven is pre-heating.
  5. Place baking dish in oven, uncovered, and roast chicken until the skin is browned and the chicken is cooked through ~~ about 40-50 minutes.
  6. There will be quite a bit of delicious ‘juices’ in bottom of baking dish when done… this is the “sauce” that makes this chicken so awesome. Serve chicken by spooning the “sauce” over the chicken pieces.


J-M Favorite Stir-Fry

This recipe originated as something called "Molasses Marinade." Our friend from grad school, Patricia (HI PATRICIA!), and her roommate Michelle, made this for us one night at their apartment in Boston. The original recipe called for for using this marinade with pieces of pork loin and then sauteeing the marinated pork with red peppers. They served it over rice. Braydon and I both loved it. Over the years I've greatly modified the way I use this recipe, but the original marinade recipe remains in tact. K & O both love this but it is a particular favorite of Owen (especially if made with pork). The first time I got the boys to eat broccoli it was broccoli and chicken stir-fried with this marinade/sauce.

For the marinade/stir-fry-sauce, mix together:

  • ¼ cup canola or vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • 1 Tb fresh ginger, or 1 tsp ground
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 Tb molasses

For the protein (choose one or more of the following and cut into bite-sized pieces):

  • pork
  • beef
  • chicken
  • shrimp
  • firm tofu

For the veggies (choose one or more of the following --or whatever you have in the fridge!-- and cut into bite-sized pieces):

  • green and/or red bell peppers
  • broccoli
  • carrots
  • celery
  • onion
  • mushrooms

Marinade the meat/tofu/whatever for anywhere from 30 minutes to overnight. Remove from the marinade and sauté in a wok or large pan with a tiny bit of canola/vegetable oil. Remove from wok/pan and set aside. Sauté veggies in same pan, adding some/most (or all) of the leftover marinade to use as stir-fry-sauce. Once veggies are cooked through, return meat/tofu/whatever to the pan and mix together. Serve with white or brown rice.


“Sunny Chick” (Pasta with Sundried Tomatoes & Chicken)

My old friend from college, Rachel (HI RACH!), made this for me once and I fell in love with it on the spot. We've been eating it ever since. It is such a hit with everyone that it is often my go-to recipe for bringing to pot-luck dinners or dropping off for families with newborn babies.

  1. Cook/Boil 1 box of pasta (I usually make with penne or farfalle)
  2. While pasta is cooking… Cut 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces.
  3. Slowly saute chicken over medium-low heat in pan with olive oil (just enough to cover bottom of pan), garlic (I buy the jar of ‘chopped garlic’ that you can find in the produce section, and I use maybe 2 tablespoons of it), and a couple pinches of salt, pepper, oregano to taste.
  4. When chicken is almost cooked through (maybe 5-10 minutes max), squeeze juice of one whole fresh lemon into pan.
  5. Add a whole jar of sundried tomatoes to pan (I buy the ones that are julienned and packed in a jar with olive oil and herbs -- I find it in the produce section), sauté with chicken mixture until tomatoes are soft and heated through.
  6. Toss chicken/’sauce’ together with the cooked penne.
  7. Serve with fresh Parmesan cheese.

K & O Making "Sunny Chick":


Monique said...

I just want to let you know that I look forward to checking your blog everyday! You really are an impressive mom and it shocks me when I read your posts where people have responded negatively to you. I feel your honest and you put your family first...and that's all that matters!
Anyway, here is my entry:

Torta Di Pasta

8 ounces dried spaghetti, or leftover cooked pasta
1/2 cup drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
4 large eggs
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
3/4 cup freshly grated fontina cheese
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon olive oil

If using dried pasta, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the spaghetti and cook...about 8 want the pasta tender but firm to the bite. Drain, in a large bowl, toss the spaghetti with the sun-dried tomatoes, then set aside to cool.
In medium bowl, whisk the eggs, Parmesan cheese, fontina cheese, 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt and pepper to blend. Add the egg mixture to the cooled spaghetti mixture, and toss to coat.
Preheat the broiler. In a 9 1/2-inch-diameter ovenproof nonstick skillet, melt the butter and oil over medium heat. Transfer the spaghetti mixture to the skillet, pressing to form and even layer. Cook until the bottom is golden brown, about 3 minutes. Transfer the skillet to the oven and broil until the top is golden brown, about 5 minutes. Let the torta cool in the skillet to room temperature, then invert in onto a platter. Cut the torta into wedges and serve at room temperature.

(I like to pack leftovers in my lunch for work since it is eaten at room temperature).

Mark and Sarah said...

THANK YOU!! I love how food is such a part of your family's life and how you really like to be generous with your kids by making "special" dinners that each of them likes so much. Seems like such a great way to show your kids respect and love. It's awesome to see them enjoying cooking so much too. I can understand why one of your dreams is that they "may" become famous chefs (and guess who would have lots of opportunity post-retirement for gourmet meals?!?). Lucky mama.


p.s. please ask your mama about the almond bread, i beg.