Thursday, September 18, 2008

Chicken Enchiladas with Roasted Tomatillo Chile Salsa

For the salsa: On a baking tray, roast tomatillos, onion, garlic and jalapenos for 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer the roasted vegetables and any juices on the bottom of the tray to a blender. Add the cumin, salt, cilantro, and lime juice and pulse mixture until well combined but still chunky.
Enchiladas: Meanwhile heat a 2 count of olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until soft and caramelized - this should take 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cumin then cook for a further minute. Sprinkle in the flour and stir to ensure the flour doesn't burn then gradually add the chicken stock to make a gravey. Continue stirring over a low simmer until the flour cooks and the liquid thickens. Turn off the heat, add half of the roasted tomatillo chile salsa, some additional fresh chopped cilantro and fold in the shredded chicken meat. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.
Change the temperature of the oven to 350 degrees F and begin assembling the dish. Take a large baking dish and smear the bottom with some of the reserved tomatillo salsa. Now take the flour tortillas and briefly flash them over the stove-top flame (or put them briefly under the broiler if using an electric stove). Using a shallow bowl, coat each tortilla lightly with the

Spicy Black Beans:
2 cups (about 1 pound) dried black beans, picked over, soaked overnight 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1/2 medium onion, diced 1 jalapeno pepper, chopped 2 cloves garlic, chopped 1 bay leaf Kosher salt freshly ground black pepper
In a large pot, soak beans overnight covered in water by 2 inches. Drain and set aside.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Roasted Zucchini Spread

Super easy to do if you’ve got the time.

Cut zucchini into spears. If there are large seeds, scoop them out. Make sure the spears are as even as possible.

One medium onion, cut into eighths.

Two or three cloves of shelled garlic.

Olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.

Toss spears, garlic and onions in olive oil, salt and pepper.

Roast on a jellyroll pan in a 300 degree oven for 2-3 hours, turning occasionally.

When tender and bits are caramelized, place in a food processor and puree until mostly smooth. Serve with pita slices, sourdough baguettes etc.

*Note: You can turn this recipe into a soup by adding chicken broth and half and half over med. heat on the stove.

Be daring and add carrots, butternut squash etc. to the roasting process. A bay leaf or thyme would be compliment the flavor as well. Cloves, if making the soup, used sparingly will give it a very fall-flavor.

Zucchini No-Crab Cakes

Zucchini No-Crab Cakes Ingr

Crab cakes without the crab? I suppose a Bocca Burger without the burger is still a burger, no? Anyway, these were made for an awesome RS Enrichment Activity featuring everything under the sun made with zucchini.

Start with grated zucchini (yellow or green) and squeeze the ever-love’ n tar out of it until it has no more left to give. This will not only relieve the tension that's been built up over the course of your day, it keeps the cakes from falling apart. I added just over two cups (2 1/4 ish) of strangled zucchini though the recipe only calls for 2 cups.

Toss it in a bowl and add salt, pepper, mayonnaise, diced onion, minced garlic and a squirt of lemon juice. The secret ingredient that make these no-crab crab cakes taste even remotely seafoodish is Old Bay. I was lucky enough to find it at Albies, a little spendy but worth. Scramble your eggs, dump the crumbs and mix. It’ll be ‘wet’ but don’t worry.

Heat 1/4 inch oil in a fry pan, form patties and fry. Approx. 2 min. per side. Cool on a paper towel just before devouring.

Zucchini No-Crab Cakes

2 cups zucchini, unpeeled, coarsely grated
1 small to medium onion, finely chopped or grated
1 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs (used a little more of that too)
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
2 1/2 teaspoons Old Bay Seafood seasoning
1 large egg, beaten (2 med.)
Pepper to taste

Put zucchini and onion in colander to drain some of the liquid out, or use salad spinner. Combine with the remaining ingredients. Form mixture into patties.
Heat oil in skillet. Saute patties over medium heat until golden brown about two minutes per side.
Makes 4 big or 6 medium cakes
Adapted from unknown source

*Optional: 1 tsp lemon juice

Zucchini No-Crab Cakes

Monday, September 15, 2008

Jalapeno Poppers...YUMMY!!

This is more of an appetizer, but with football season coming up.....OOOHHH they are SO GOOD!!!

Here is what you need.....

20 jalapenos, cut in half lengthwise and 'gutted'...all the seeds and veins taken out
1 - 8oz brick cream cheese, softened
1 small can crushed pineapple, drained as much as possible
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
14 slices bacon, cut into thirds

If you like the peppers HOT, keep the veins in the peppers.  If you have some food gloves, you might want to use them when scraping out the veins, or use a spoon.  If you use bare hands, it will BURN LIKE CRAZY(like an hour later)!!!
Mix the cream cheese, pineapple, and cheese.  Scoop mixture into peppers.  You can either wrap the bacon around or just lay it on top like I did.  

Sorry, the pix are not the greatest, but believe me that the taste results were AWESOME!!!