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Another Turkey Leftover Idea

Turkey rice soup with some freshly made croutons was a big hit today.  The rice is a wild and long grain  box mix I buy by the case because it’s so versatile – good as a side by itself or in soups or other recipes.  I made a wheat bread in the machine that wasn’t very pretty as a loaf but it cubed up nicely for these croutons.  Heat some oil in a skillet and toss the bread cubes to absorb the oil.  Keep tossing and turning the cubes because when the pan gets to temp they will all brown at once and they can go from toasted to burnt in an eye blink.

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Chicken Marsala

20150615_165337 (1600x1060)Mmm… this is so easy to make!  The link is to Emeril’s recipe but there isn’t much variation in the recipes that I’ve found on line.  The easy to yummy ratio is right up there with peanut butter jelly sammiches.  The green beans were steamed and then sauteed in garlic butter and a splash of balsamic vinegar and were very good that way.  I’m no cooking purist, the Zatarain box mix rice was on point for this.20150615_165351 (1600x1060)

Turkey Soup

DSC_7646 (1600x1060)It was pretty cold overnight, down into the teens.  We got a bare dusting of snow but that will go away today.  Strong south wind and warming temps today, we have made it into the 40s but there is a chance for sprinkles later.  Soup sounded pretty good.  This one has the turkey and some baby carrots along with a wild rice mix from Zatarain.  They make good rice mixes and we really like the wild/long grain rice mix they sell.  It’s been absent from the local market so we ordered a case online.

Dinner Menu: Buffalo Burgers and Stuffed Acorn Squash

Buffalo became the topic of conversation a few weeks ago. I use buffalo burger frequently but have never delved into roasts or steak. The idea appeals to me and I’ll let you know how it goes. Until then, I do have a nice buffalo burger recipe…

Tonight’s menu came to be as one of my kids’ night menus, but don’t let that fool you, it’s tasty. If you haven’t had buffalo before, this is your chance to try it. If you want to start out slowly, mix it half and half with a ground beef (I’d go with an 80/20 grind, because the buffalo is so lean), or mix in ¼ lb of spicy sausage. The stuffed acorn squash is a quick, easy recipe, but let it inspire you, because you can stuff acorn squash with any number of wonderful things, from rice to couscous to fruits and nuts. It can make for a fun, decorative holiday side. For the dessert, you can usually find frozen huckleberries, but if not, you can easily substitute with blueberries or even a selection of mixed berries like blackberries, raspberries and blueberries.

On the board tonight:

  1. Buffalo Burgers
  2. Whole Grain Rolls
  3. Stuffed Acorn Squash
  4. Cherokee Huckleberry Bread

Buffalo Burgers

  • 4 oz tomato sauce
  • ¼ cup Italian bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup finely chopped onion
  • ¼ tsp ea: thyme, rosemary, marjoram
  • 1 lb ground buffalo
  • 1 tbsp oil (skip if using hamburger)

large deep skillet w/lid

Mix ingredients, except oil, together well. Divide into 4. Create patties. Heat oil in skillet, add patties. Sear for 2 minutes, each side, then reduce heat and cover. Cook for 10 minutes. Buffalo is a very lean meat, so you want to cook it slowly and avoid over cooking it. Makes 4 large burgers.

Stuffed Acorn Squash

  • 2 acorn squash, halved and cleaned
  • 1 box wild rice mix, prepared according to directions
  • 4-6 button mushrooms, washed and diced
  • 1 tbsp butter, quartered

9×12 Baking dish

Pour about ¼ to ½ cup broth into baking dish. Place acorn squash, cut-side down, and bake at 375 degrees until fork tender (a fork easily pierces the skin) – about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Add mushroom pieces to rice mixture.Turn squash cut-side up, put a pat of butter in each half, then mound with stuffing, leaving just a rim of squash showing. Bake for additional 15 minutes, until stuffing is browned.

Cherokee Huckleberry Bread

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1-1/2 cup berries (huckleberries or blueberries)
  • ½ cup butter

Loaf pan, greased

Cream eggs, butter and sugar together. Add flour, milk, and vanilla. Toss berries with a bit of flour to prevent them from sinking to the bottom. Fold berries gently into mixture. Put in loaf pan, sprinkle top with a bit of sugar and bake in oven at 375 degrees for approximately 45 minutes or until done, when a knife comes out clean. Makes 1 loaf.

Shopping List:

  • 4 whole grain sandwich rolls
  • 4 oz can of tomato sauce
  • ¼ cup Italian bread crumbs
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 lb ground buffalo
  • 2 large acorn squash
  • 1 box wild rice mix
  • 4-6 button mushrooms
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 8 oz milk
  • 1 stick + 2 tbsp butter
  • 16 oz huckleberries, or equivalent

Also: oil, vanilla, baking powder, egg, thyme, rosemary, marjoram

Originally posted November 2010

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Roasted Duck

DSC_4946 [1600x1200]I had already started the duck in a 375 oven when the thought to look for sides struck me.  I wandered into this post and looked at the recipe for “gastrique” sauce and saw the honey roasted veggies and thought that they were something I could pull off.  I used what veggies I had on hand for the honey roasted side – parsnips and carrots.  I had no idea what a gastrique was.  Studying up after the fact shows such sauces to be made from fruits, usually.  Tons of recipes out there for those.DSC_4941 [1600x1200]If I do this again I will be more patient.  The sauce should have reduced more, and the honey roasted veggies needed more color.  The parsnips look like boiled French fries.  It all tasted pretty good but my technique really sucked.

 

Box mix etouffee

It doesn’t get much easier than this.  I used a box mix for both the rice and the etouffee, adding some thawed shrimp I had on hand.  It isn’t as good as from scratch, but it isn’t bad!

Thursday Recipe Exchange: Rice

JeffreyW makes a delicious rice side.

Rice is a staple in my house. I usually make a big batch and serve it with various things over the week. I’ve even switched over to brown rice pastas which I find far superior to most wheat pastas. Let’s get right to it. Here’s an overview of various types of rice:

Brown rice – I prefer long grain, though at the local Asian market I can get brown jasmine, basmati and aborio fairly easily, each with a unique flavor. Brown rice is nutty and a bit sweet.  It’s a great compliment with any fish, beef, poultry or pork.  The only addition it needs is a touch of butter and salt.  Besides being full of flavor, it is also packed with nutrients.  Per cup it has 5 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium and niacin, as well as other vitamins and minerals.  It’s a great side that adds flavor to many dishes.  Brown rice cooks like regular rice in a 2:1 ratio of water to rice.  But it takes longer to cook.  About 45 minutes at a low simmer.

I still use white rice, though.  White rice varieties are more delicate and are necessary when you want the rice to take on the flavor of a sauce or spice.  Brown rice’s rich flavor can overpower the balance of flavors in some dishes.

Jasmine—A long grain rice, delicately fragrant, soft, moist and slightly sticky, compliments any Asian dish.

Arborio (white) – A medium grain rice, with a chalky white appearance. It is this chalky area that makes this grain unique, allowing the grains to absorb unusually large amounts of liquid and hence flavor during cooking. This is also what makes it especially suited to risottos, paellas, dolmades and other Mediterranean dishes.

Basmati— An aromatic long grain rice that has the unusual characteristic of doubling in length but not width during cooking. This dry, separating grain is especially suited to Indian and Middle Eastern dishes, such as curries, pilafs.

Time to hit the comments with some of your favorite rice dishes.  I’m curious if anyone makes a good paella. Next week: Soup

Now here’s a little something with brown rice:

Chicken and Rice Wraps

Substitute raspberries, peaches or plums if you like.

  • 2 chicken breasts, cooked and cubed
  • 1 cup baby spinach leaves
  • 1 cup sliced strawberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup cooked brown or wild rice
  • 4 large tortillas (flavored ok)

Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup Raspberry Dressing
  • 2 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 2 tsp red wine vinegar
  • Fresh mint

Mix together chicken, spinach, strawberries, pecans and rice. Mix together dressing ingredients, toss with chicken mixture. Let sit 15 minutes or more. Roll 1/4 of mixture in each tortilla.


Chicken and Rice Wraps

This recipe takes advantage of what’s available from the garden these days.  Substitute raspberries, peaches or plums if you like.

Chicken and Rice Wraps

  • 2 chicken breasts, cooked and cubed
  • 1 cup baby spinach leaves
  • 1 cup sliced strawberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup cooked brown or wild rice
  • 4 large tortillas (flavored ok)

Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup Raspberry Dressing
  • 2 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 2 tsp red wine vinegar
  • Fresh mint

Mix together chicken, spinach, strawberries, pecans and rice. Mix together dressing ingredients, toss with chicken mixture. Let sit 15 minutes or more. Roll 1/4 of mixture in each tortilla.

Baked Fish, Roasted Asparagus

This was pretty easy.  Nothing much easier than baking fish except maybe roasting the asparagus.  Both done at the same time in a 400 oven.  The asparagus was drizzled with olive oil and lemon juice and sprinkled with salt.  I brushed some of the butter sauce on the fish before it really was a butter sauce.  Finished  adding the butter to the white wine/lemon juice reduction when the fish and veggies went into the oven.

The rice was a mix I picked up at the Amish run country store the other day.  They labeled it “exotic rice mix”.  Looks like brown rice, wild rice, and a red hued grain that looked just like the wild rice save for the color.  It badly needed a good seasoning packet, I’ll see what I can put together the next time I cook some.  I was hoping that the beurre blanc sauce would flavor it well enough but it just didn’t work.

And speaking of the beurre blanc sauce–no big deal.  Finely mince a bit of shallot or onion (I used the white part of a few green onions), about a tablespoon.  In a small sauce pan reduce 1/3 cup of white wine, a tablespoon of lemon juice, and the onions by about half or so.  You can leave it there while you do other stuff.  Once you start whisking in the pats of butter you are at the plating and serving stage of the meal.  It’ll be the last thing you do as your assistant plates the dinner and sets the table.  Don’t let it get too hot, and keep whisking.  You can play with the ingredients some, I minced a clove of garlic for this one.  Some recipes call for vinegar.  It’s all good.

Enjoy!

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Chicken Marsala

Looks like leftovers again today, so I’ll go to my archives for a recipe.Pound flat some split chicken breasts, dredge them in seasoned flour, and brown them on both sides in butter and olive oil. heat up a pan and add some butter and olive oil When they are browned nicely remove them from the pan.  Add some sliced buttons, adding more butter and oil as they will soak it up.toss in some sliced button mushroomsWhen the buttons are looking good add the marsala wine, about two cups or so.  now for the good partStir the wine as it reduces by half, then add two cups of chicken stock.  I also used some dried parsley, a few tablespoons worth.  (If you have some good fresh parsley use it, but wait until later to add that, stir it in just before serving.)  after the wine reduces by half, pour in 2 cups of stockPut the browned chicken back in, cover, and simmer for twenty or thirty minutes.  return the chicken to the panNow uncover the pan and turn the heat up to reduce the sauce to the proper consistency, and finally, add a pat of butter to finish it.now uncover and turn the heat up to medium, reduce the sauce until it suits you.  Add a pat of butter to finish the sauce.I served the chicken with a wild rice mix, along with steamed broccoli and carrots.  The bread rolls are great for soaking up the gravy when you go for that last drop.  Trust me, you’ll want to!chicken marsala-serving suggestion

Ps: click the pics!  They smell better that way!  LOL

Enjoy!