Monday, March 10, 2014

red pepper alfredo sauce

This recipe is good for laziness -- worked well with those jarred bell peppers that I never know quite what to do with. (With what to do?)
  •     12 ounces linguine (or whatever pasta you like, or whatever else needs sauce)
  •     2 tablespoons olive oil
  •     2 cloves garlic, minced
  •     1 onion, diced
  •     1/2 cup milk
  •     1/2 cup heavy cream (I skipped this and just used more milk)
  •     4 ounces crumbled goat cheese
  •     1/2 cup grated Parmesan, plus more for garnish
  •     1 (12-ounce) jar roasted red peppers, chopped (I did not bother chopping; the immersion blender took care of it)
  •     Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; drain well.

Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and onion, and cook, stirring frequently, until onions have become translucent, about 2-3 minutes. Stir in milk, heavy cream, goat cheese and Parmesan until cheeses has melted, about 1-2 minutes. Add red peppers and puree with an immersion blender. Stir in pasta and gently toss to combine; season with salt and pepper, to taste.





(This makes a lot of sauce; I also threw a can of drained chickpeas into the pasta.)

Serve immediately, garnished with Parmesan, if desired.

double chocolate cherry muffins

From All Recipes. I used frozen cherries, unthawed, and it worked just fine.
  •     2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  •     1 1/4 cups white sugar
  •     1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  •     2 teaspoons baking powder
  •     1 teaspoon baking soda
  •     1/2 teaspoon salt
  •     1 cup sour cream
  •     1/2 cup milk
  •     1/3 cup vegetable oil
  •     2 eggs, beaten
  •     1 teaspoon almond extract
  •     1 1/2 cups fresh dark sweet cherries, pitted and chopped (or frozen, unchopped, or TJ's jarred Morello cherries would probably be fine too)
  •     1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease 12 jumbo (3 1/2-inch) muffin cups or line with paper baking cups.

Stir together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a separate large bowl, and make a well in the center; set aside. Whisk together the sour cream, milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and almond extract in a bowl until evenly blended. Pour the sour cream mixture into the well, then stir in the flour mixture until just combined. Fold in the cherries and chocolate chips. Spoon into prepared muffin cups, filling half full.

Bake until a toothpick inserted into centers comes out clean, about 20 to 25 minutes. Cool in pan on wire rack 5 minutes. Remove from pan and cool completely on wire rack. Store tightly covered at room temperature.

crockpot chicken & rice soup

This is delicious and creamy -- I made it three times this winter. From Pinch of Yum.
  • 1 cup uncooked wild rice (I used brown rice)
  • 1 pound chicken breasts (I've used both frozen and fresh; both are fine and you can't tell a difference in the final product)
  • 2 cups mirepoix (TJ's containers of mirepoix are magical and the best-spent $3 ever)
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • ½ cup butter (Earth Balance is fine)
  • ¾ cup flour
  • 2 cups whole milk (I've tried 2%; gotta say, the whole is better)
  • a few tablespoons white wine (optional) (I didn't do)
  • up to 2 cups additional milk or water (definitely necessary upon reheating)
  1. Rinse the wild rice. Place the uncooked wild rice, raw chicken, mirepoix, chicken broth, and poultry seasoning in a crockpot. Cover and cook on low for 7-8 hours. The chicken should be cooked through and the rice should be soft. There will be extra liquid in the crockpot; do not drain.
  2. Using two forks, shred the chicken while still in the soup.
  3. When rice and chicken are done cooking, melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the flour and let the mixture bubble for 1 minute. Slowly whisk in the whole milk until a thick, creamy mixture forms. Stir in the wine (or not).
  4. Add this to the rice and chicken in the crockpot and stir to combine. Add extra water or milk to adjust the consistency as you like it. Season with additional salt and pepper.