EwE: Grilled Tandoori Chicken Breasts~

7 03 2015

EwE-Chickentandoori

Ellie’s Grilled Tandoori Chicken Breasts, pg. 137 of Weeknight Wonders, was my selection for the week of Feb. 26th.  What an easy dish to put together….they all are, if you have all the ingredients!!  A few spices mixed into yogurt and smeared onto the chicken for a brief marination period, then off to the grill….or in my case…the grill pan!!

I owe my sister cooks an apology for this one… The US was hit with almost coast to coast bitter cold and snow, north to south, so grilling was a challenge at best.  Only a California gal could think “grilling” as a year ’round activity!  I’m sorry!  If it’s any consolation, by the time I had a moment to put this recipe together, we were having incredible thunderstorms and downpours.  I was glad for my grill pan….

We enjoyed this dish quite a lot.  I served the chicken with a simple steamed mixed veg on the side and steamed basmati rice underneath.  I’m looking forward to the next chicken dish as well!  Chicken Paprikash is up next!

If you’d like to cook along with us, please visit Eating With Ellie….





EwE: Pork tenderloin with fennel and grapes~

22 02 2015

 

I confess…I am a fennel fiend.  I love the anisity of it…but I don’t really care for licorice.  I know…doesn’t make sense to me either.  Regardless, I knew I’d love this dish from the start.  Fennel powder….fennel bulbs….oh my…garnish with fennel…
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Step 1 – toast fennel seeds….grind fennel seeds and release that aroma….  Sprinkle the pork medallions with the fennel, salt and pepper….brown them up, then make the sauce….yes…those are fennel bulbs in the sauce….

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This recipe was selected by Gaye, and is found on page 119 of Ellie Krieger’s Weeknight Wonders.  The recipe can also be found online here.  You can see what my cooking-mates did with their dishes at Eating with Ellie.

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This was a GREAT recipe…and if it had been any meat other than pork, maybe it would have been wonderful.  Maybe it was my choice to use Pork NY Steaks (I swear that’s how they were packaged!)…  Other than that, this was absolutely great!  There was just the right amount of sweet-tart going on…the fennel melted into gloriously buttery bites of numminess… The whole dish was cloaked with the delicate aroma of fennel…  I confess, no.  The fennel didn’t come with those lovely fronds…those are from my garden.  My Florence fennel is lushly gorgeous out there!  I’ll be fixing this dish again…with chicken the first time, and tenderloin after that.  There’s a lot of fennel out there!





WWD: White fish with Pine Nut Brown Butter~

21 02 2015

I love seeing how 5 women in different parts of the world prepare the same recipes.  It never ceases to amaze me how we all do the same thing…but each with their own touches….WWD-pinenutbutterfish2This week our recipe, chosen by Kayte, is White Fish with Pine Nut Browned Butter from Donna Hay’s book, New Food Fast.  The recipe can also be found on line here.  One of the things that truly fascinated me was the different varieties of fish we chose!  I was leaning toward Tilapia until I spied Pacific Rockfish!  Very mildly flavored and firm, these little fillets were perfect for this recipe.

WWD-pinenutbutterfish1Although I don’t feel like I browned my butter enough, we still enjoyed this dish quite a lot.   The fish still picked up a lot of the butteriness…a lot.  Buttery…and it might be too rich if it weren’t for that little bit of lemon.  We’ll do this one again.  I served it with broccoli…but sauteed Swiss Chard is screaming to me with this recipe.

If you’d like to cook along with us, stop by Wednesdays with Donna Hay.  The recipes are on the sidebar….

 





Eating with Ellie: Japanese-style savory pancakes with shrimp~

11 02 2015

Chaya selected this week’s recipe….Japanese-style savory pancakes with shrimp, found on page 183 of Weeknight Wonders.  What a hit at my house!

EwE-Japanesepancakes2This recipe is reminiscent of egg foo young in that it makes a battered vegetable pancake…but there are no bean sprouts nor is it heavily eggy.  It was more like a fritter in that regard.  However, without regard, this is quick and tasty…pretty much a weeknight wonder!

EwE-Japanesepancakes1I made a half-batch for the two of us as a “snacky” kind of dinner.  We had eaten lunch rather late, so we weren’t really very hungry….even so we ate every bite.   Cabbage, onions, carrots and garlic come together with bits of shrimp held together with a whole wheat pancake batter that was very light.  Hubby found these utterly wonderful and told me not to lose track of this recipe, as he “could eat a mess of these!”  The recipe also had a sauce to brush on top…very simple…ketchup, soy and Worcestershire sauce stirred together.  Next time…a few drops of toasted sesame oil will go into the sauce as well.  I’d also like to try Ponzu (a lemony soy sauce) or hoisin sauce with these.  Definitely a “keeper” recipe!

If you’d like to join us cooking Ellie Krieger’s Weeknight Wonders, please visit our blog page and jump on in!!





Wednesdays with Donna Hay: Dukkah Roasted Chicken

11 02 2015

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Our Donna Hay recipe of the week was selected by Gaye and is Dukkah roasted chicken with couscous and tahini yoghurt (p54 Donna Hay Magazine Dec/Jan 15).   For some reason I didn’t have coriander leaves (cilantro, as it’s known here in California), so I roasted potatoes “hassleback” style instead of making the couscous.  We really enjoyed this…the spice mixture is quite flavorful!

The Dukkah came first…it’s an Egyptian spice mixture made of ground nuts (I used cashews and pistachios) and seeds (sesame, coriander, cumin, fennel, peppercorns) all toasted and ground together.  I was tickled with the aromas from the toasting seeds…oh my!!  Super aromatic!!  Rather than roasting a whole spatchcocked (cut to lie flat by removing the backbone) chicken, I used two bone-in chicken breasts and we had plenty left over.  I did make the tahini and yogurt sauce to go with the chicken….  I don’t know that I have an opinion about that one way or the other.  It was “okay.”  The chicken was simply the star of the show.  We also had a salad on the side, to round out the meal.

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If you’d like to cook along with us, please visit our blog page, Wednesdays with Donna Hay.  Our cooking schedule is on the right sidebar, and these ladies are wonderful about sharing the harder to find recipes.  Donna Hay is in Australia….and I’m pretty excited about the recipes I’ve found on her web page!!





Eating with Ellie: Penne with Grape Tomatoes, Spinach and Toasted Garlic~

1 02 2015

This week our selection comes from Peggy… Penne with Grape Tomatoes, Spinach and Toasted Garlic.  Another recipe that goes together in less time than it takes to boil water and cook the pasta.   penne2

There isn’t a lot going on here…whole wheat penne pasta….grape tomatoes and spinach sauteed in toasted garlic olive oil, with a shake of freshly grated parmesan.  I think the lack of popping flavor has to do with the time of the year I fixed this….February.  This would be a lot better with fresh, Summer tomatoes…and a chiffonade of fresh basil.  My only complaint is the flavors are lacking.  Salt and pepper helped some, but not quite enough.  Again… I think it had a lot to do with almost red, semi-tasteless hot-house tomatoes.  That’s okay.  We’ll try it again during the height of summer with fresh from the Farmers’ Market tomatoes, when it’s hot and something quick off the stove is ideal.  There’s a time and place….

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If you want to join in, stop by our website, Eating with Ellie, and start cooking!  You’ll find the cooking schedule in the margin on the page.





Wednesdays with Donna Hay: Beef Ragu with Creamy Polenta~

31 01 2015

I don’t know if I can keep up with 2 groups…but I’m trying!  Donna Hay is a new chef to me…but I love the recipes I’ve been reading.  I’ve joined up with some very nice ladies cooking at Wednesdays with Donna Hay…They’re cooking out of an assortment of Donna Hay materials, thankfully….some from her website too!  The dish for Wednesday, February 4th is Sarah’s pick,  Slow Cooked Beef Ragu.

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I had to make a couple changes….  There is no beef brisket right now.  Not without buying a huge hunk o’ beef…  I’m thinking that St. Patrick’s Day is about 6 weeks away…corned beef is in the brine…so no brisket.  I’m not usually daunted by not having THE specific cut of beef, and I didn’t let it stop me this time either.  I had a cross rib roast in the fridge, so cross rib would work.   I cut it down to approximate the size of brisket so it would cook right, and that was that.  I was good to go until we got to the polenta part…  Instant polenta?  No….doggone it.  So, I hunted down a creamy polenta recipe using standard polenta and blended the recipes.  What I ended up with was a bit too soft, but ever so creamy regardless!!  It got soft but firm after it set about 45 minutes, but by then…we’d polished off our servings.  The polenta is a nice change from potatoes and even substitutes for bread as well.

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Personally…. I’m betting this is going to be even better tomorrow.  It strikes me as one of those type of dishes.  A lot of French casserole recipes that are slow cooked suggest putting the dish into the refrigerator after cooling and serving the next day.  I’m thinking by tomorrow the meat will pull all those flavors deep inside and it’ll make another wonderful supper sometime this week when I’m getting tuckered.  I can make the polenta again and see if I can do it better a second time!

Would I make this again?  You bet.  I’ll try to get back and update after we have the re-runs.  Ooh…yes…and with hot buttermilk biscuits and a salad…  Too bad I already have plans for tomorrow…but it sure won’t be the usual Super Bowl fare!  I’ll be stepping back to the recipes from Whisk Wednesday to roast a chicken with kielbasa and cabbage.  This comfort food is perfect for February…if we were having typical February weather!  It was 70+ outside today.  Loving it, but praying for rain and a snow pack!








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