Archive for January, 2008

Sensational Smoothies

Difficulty: Easy

1/2 cup nonfat vanilla yogurt
1/2 cup frozen mango
1/2 cup frozen pineapple
1/2 cup milk

or 1 cup frozen strawberries in place of pineapple/mango

Blend all ingredients until thick and smooth, adding more milk if necessary. You can mix the variety of fruit however you like. Strawberries are wonderful though my favorite is this pineapple-mango. Makes 2 12-ounce servings.


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Honey-Wheat Bread

Difficulty: Moderate
This is my new favorite bread recipe. It is so moist and has amazing flavor! The dough was pretty sticky but don’t add more than the recipe calls for. It will still be moist but should not stick to your hands. Just trust it! You will be rewarded! When grinding your wheat make it a medium grade, not too fine so the bread has a nice texture.
1 3/4 cups milk
4 teaspoons salt
1 cup honey
14 Tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 Tablespoons yeast
1 cup warm water (105-115 degrees)
4 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
4 1/2 cups bread flour, extra 1/2 cup or so at the end
Egg wash
Wheat bran or ground flax seed
1. In a small saucepan, combine milk, salt, honey and butter. Heat to 115 degrees, then set aside.
2. In a mixer bowl ( I used my Kitchen Aid) dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Add the milk mixture, the whole wheat flour and 4 1/2 cups of bread flour. Knead, using the dough hook at low speed until the dough comes together. (At this point my dough was still sticky and not a cohesive ball, it is okay, don’t add more flour until you put it on the counter.)
3. Sprinkle 1/2 cup bread flour onto counter and turn dough out. Knead into flour until dough is smoother and not as sticky. Place in a large greased bowl and let rise until double in volume.
4. Punch the dough down, cover with plastic wrap and proof a second time until doubled in volume.
5. Punch the dough down and scale into 3 equal pieces. Form each piece into an oval loaf and place in greased bread pan. Brush egg wash on top and sprinkle with wheat bran or flax seed.
6. let the loaves rise until they have doubled in volume. Bake at 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes. Keep a close eye on them, mine got a bit too dark and spent 23 minutes in the oven. Still tasty!

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Cream Biscuits

Difficulty: Easy

2 cups flour
2 tsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups heavy cream

1. Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 450 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl. Stir in the cream with a wooden spoon until dough forms, about 30 seconds. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and gather into a ball. Knead the dough briefly until smooth, about 30 seconds.

3. Shape the dough into a 3/4-inch-thick circle. Cut biscuits into rounds or wedges. Place rounds or wedges on parchment-lined baking sheet. (The baking sheet can be wrapped in plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 2 hours.) Bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes, rotating baking sheet halfway through baking.

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Green Bean Salad

Difficulty: Easy

courtesy Ellie Krieger

1/2 pound green beans, trimmed
2 tablespoons chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley leaves
2 tablespoons chopped red onion
2 teaspoons walnut oil or olive oil
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper

Bring a large pot of water with a steamer basket to a boil, add green beans and steam for about 4 minutes. Transfer to a serving bowl.Toast the walnuts in a small dry skillet over medium heat until they become fragrant, about 2 minutes, and then transfer them to a small bowl to cool. Add the parsley and onion to the walnuts and stir to combine.In another small bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar and mustard. Toss the dressing with the green beans, top with the walnut mixture and season with salt and pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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Difficulty: Easy

Terrible picture but this is divine. We have it more as a main dish and eat fresh!

3-4 large ripe tomatoes, diced
2 TBS finely diced onionSalt & Pepper
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 TBS balsamic vinegar
Ciabatta or Foccacia bread, sliced & toasted
Fresh mozzarella, it has to be FRESH!
Fresh Basil, chopped

Combine all ingredients and let sit while you toast the bread. Dice the mozzarella into 1/4-inch chunks of yumminess. Spoon bruschetta over warm bread, sprinkle with mozzarella and basil. Eat to your heart’s content.

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Ginger Soy Stir Fry

Difficulty: Easy

You may use any protein (beef, pork, chicken, shrimp) for this meal.

1/4 cup soy sauce
4 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp honey
2 cloves galic, minced
1/2″ ginger, peeled and minced

Stir Fry
1 pound protein (shrimp, beef, pork, chicken)
1 package Wel Pac Chuka Soba Stir-Fry Noodles
1 bag stir fry veggies ( I found mine in the freezer section, if you find fresh, by all means!)
1-2 TBS vegetable oil
2 cloves galic, minced
2 tsp sesame oil
1/2″ ginger, peeled and minced
1/4 cup soy sauce

1. Combine marinade ingredients together and place your meat in it for at least 30 minutes. I used pork tenderloin, removed all fat and silver skin and then pounded it out to the piece was an even thickness throughout. Grill or cook in skillet over medium heat until medium-well, about 6 minutes per side. When done, remove from heat and let rest 5 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, add vegetable oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Let oil get smoking hot, literally. Add vegetables and saute for 5-7 minutes, until vegetables are tender and just starting to brown.

3. Cook soba noodles according to package directions and set aside.

4. Combine garilc, ginger and sesame oil in small dish. Clearing the center of the skillet add to pan and let sit for 30 seconds or until garlic and ginger are fragrant. Stir veggies to coat. Add soba noodles and toss together. Add soy sauce and remove from heat. Slice tenderloin across the grain and add to dish. Eat lots because it is so dang good.

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Sloppy Joes

Difficulty: Easy

1 TBS olive oil
1 1/4 pounds ground beef sirloin
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp Lawry’s seasoning salt
pinch red pepper flakes, optional
1 TBS steak seasoning, such as McCormick Montreal Seasoning
1 medium onion, chopped fine
1 red bell pepper, chopped fine
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 TBS red wine vinegar
2 TBS Worcestershire sauce
1 15-oz can tomato sauce
2 TBS tomato paste

4 crusty rolls, toasted
cheddar cheese

1. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add oil and meat to the pan. Spread the meat around the pan and begin to break it up. Combine brown sugar, steak seasoning, Lawry’s and red pepper flakes in small bowl. Add sugar and spice mixture to the skillet and combine.

2. When the meat has browned, add onion and red peppers to the skillet. Reduce heat to medium and cook onions, peppers, garlic, red wine vinegar and Worcestershire sauce with meat for 5 minutes. Add tomato sauce and paste to pan. Stir to combine.

3. Reduce heat to simmer and cook Sloppy Joe mixture 5 minutes longer until mixture has thickened. Using a large spoon pile sloppy meat onto toasted bun bottoms, sprinkle with cheddar or slice of cheese and cover with bun tops. Serve with crunchy celery and carrots and a side of ranch. Yum!

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