two skinny jenkins


130306 – Easy Corn and Tomato Soup
130307, 11:34 am
Filed under: DINNER, LUNCH, SIDE | Tags: , , , , ,

corn-tomato-soupI have finally used up our roasted chicken from the other night.  I was shocked at how much meat was there was.  I shredded it and slow baked it to make a nice, crispy, lightly salted garnish for our soup.  This soup is a combination of several recipes I perused online.  If I make it again, I’ll definitely blend it more.  The only food processor i have here in Guate is this tiny thing that barely chops stuff up enough for pesto.  Otherwise, I think the flavors were really good, especially with the garnish.

[Serves 4-6]

Soup

  • 4 corn cobs
  • 6-7 medium sized tomatoes
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • 1 jalapeno, halved and seeded
  • 3 T evoo

Garnish

  • 3 T coarse chopped cilantro
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 1/2 C roasted chicken

Method

  1. Husk the corn, chop off all the kernels and set them aside.  Place the cobs in a large pot and cover with cold water.  Bring to a boil then remove from heat and let the cobs steep for 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400F.  Arrange tomatoes and garlic so they’re spaced evenly apart on a rimmed baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and bake for about 15 minutes, or until the tomatoes start to wrinkle.
  3. Once the corn stock is finished, strain it into a medium sized pot (or large if you have another large one).  Add tomatoes, onion, halved jalapeno, garlic and the extra evoo from cooking.  Simmer for 15 minutes, until vegetables are tender.  Then add reserved corn kernels and cook another minute or two.
  4. While the veggies are simmering, turn the oven down to 350F and bake the shredded chicken on the same baking sheet that the veggies were on for 20 minutes, stirring after 10.
  5. Working in batches, transfer soup to a food processor and pulse to desired consistency.  At this point I wanted to cook off more of the liquid, but you can also make the soup ahead of time and just refrigerate till you’re ready to serve.
  6. Garnish each bowl with a quarter of the avocado, chopped, crunchy chicken and cilantro.


130305 – Curried Chicken Salad
130306, 11:05 am
Filed under: DINNER, LUNCH | Tags: , , ,
chicken salad
Making use of our leftover chicken from last night, and the remaining curry powder from making this dish a few nights ago (one of our staples that I finally know by heart).  I won’t change a thing about the recipe below when I make it again.
[Serves 4]

  • 1/2 C plain, whole-milk yogurt
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 1/2 T freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice
  • 1 T minced onion
  • 2 t curry powder
  • 2 t peeled and minced fresh ginger
  • 2 C cooked, medium-dice roasted chicken
  • 1/2 C small-dice sweet apple, such as Fuji
  • 1/2 C toasted, unsweetened, shredded dried coconut
  • 1/4 C raisins
  • 3 T coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
  • flaky sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Method

  1. Whisk together the yogurt, olive oil, lemon juice, curry powder, ginger, and onion in a medium bowl until smooth.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients, season with salt and pepper to taste, and stir until evenly combined.


090829 – Light Wheat Bread | BBA #18
090829, 9:41 pm
Filed under: BBA Challenge, LUNCH | Tags:

Light Wheat Bread

BBA #18

new kitchHere is a shot of my new kitchen! Surprisingly, it has more cabinet space than our last one (even though the apartment is 50% smaller) and i find it is easier to work in. One cook at a time.

I, like a lot of Americans right now, don’t have a lot of expendable income, and so i have not yet bought a copy of the Bread Bakers Apprentice.  I have been checking it out from the library in DC (and then for a short while in Charlottesville).  I have not yet gotten my driver’s license for Massachusetts, and therefore cannot yet get a library card here.  I could not find the recipe for ‘Light Wheat Bread’ on Google BooksPanic.  Luckily, Smitten Kitchen has published the full recipe on her site!  Thanks to her, i am saved for this week, and should be able to get my hands on a copy from now on.  For free.

Also to save money, i did not buy the powdered milk that the recipe called for.  Instead, I substituted 4 T regular milk for 3 T of powdered.  Otherwise i followed the recipe exactly and the bread came out GREAT.  It was a little on the sticky side after 10 minutes of kneading, and approximately an additional 1/2 C of flour (white wheat flour added during kneading).  I sampled a slice while it was still warm and it was delicious with bit of jam on top.  This will also make some excellent sandwiches.  I think next time (there WILL be a next time) I will try adding some sunflower seeds to mimic my favorite bread in Charlottesville – sunflower wheat from Bread Works.

Check out more of my Light Wheat Breadmaking photos on FLICKR!



090721 – English Lunch
090721, 2:35 pm
Filed under: BBA Challenge, LUNCH | Tags: , , ,

English Lunch

I had planned a 4 course dinner for our anniversary, but with moving out in 3 days, we are working on clearing out our fridge, not add to it.  There was only one thing on the menu that used ingredients we already had, English Mint-Pea Soup.  With it, I toasted one of my English muffins from the BBA Challenge this week.

chilled minty pea soup:

  • 1 C low-fat buttermilk
  • 2 C shelled peas, plus more for garnish
  • Salt
  • 10 mint leaves
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  1. Bring buttermilk to a boil over medium heat.   Add peas and simmer for 1-2 minutes.
  2. Puree in immersion blender with mint leaves and cool in the fridge (or freezer if in a time crunch) until chilled.
  3. Garnish with mint leaves and freshly ground pepper.


090718 – Friday night pizza, con’t
090718, 2:59 pm
Filed under: DINNER, LUNCH | Tags:

Pizza Lunch

We had a couple of friends over for pizza last night but i was too shy and hungry to take pictures while we were baking the pizzas.  I made  5 ‘personal’ doughs ahead of time, and we each topped one, leaving the one photographed above for today’s lunch.  I must say that they were some of my best pizza crusts EVER.  They were very bubbly and soft on the inside, slightly crunchy on the outside. Last night we had green peppers, pepperoni, red onions, sun dried tomatoes, mushrooms, spinach, and kalamata olives for toppings.  A little bit of everything was leftover today, so our lunch pizza looks like a Smörgåsbord.

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090704 – Dad’s foccacia bread
090705, 9:52 pm
Filed under: DINNER, LUNCH | Tags:

dad's foccacia

GUEST CHEF: DAD

I think that my dad has a natural knack for making bread.  I remember when i was little, growing up in Vermont, he would bake bread on occasion.  He made this focaccia loaf yesterday, and we had sandwiches on it for dinner tonight.  It is a very tasty recipe, and super quick to make.  I have made the recipes a few times myself, and am anxious to see how Peter Rinehart’s 2 day recipe (Challenge #13) compares.

  • 1 T honey
  • 2 C warm water
  • 1 T active dry yeast
  • 1 T kosher salt
  • 1 T EVOO
  • 1/2 C coarsely diced onion
  • 5 C all-purpose flour
  • 3 T EVOO
  • 2 T chopped rosemary
  • 1/4 C freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 T kosher salt to sprinkle
  1. Dissolve honey in the warm water in a large bowl, then sprinkle yeast over the top. Let stand for 5 minutes until the yeast softens and begins to foam. Stir in 1 T of salt, 1 T olive oil, onions, and 5 C of flour until the dough comes together. Knead on a well floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 20 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 415 degrees F (215 degrees C).
  3. Place dough onto oiled baking sheet, and flatten to cover the whole sheet evenly. Use the tips of your fingers to make indentations all over the dough spaced about 1 inch apart. Drizzle the focaccia with 3 tablespoons olive oil, then sprinkle rosemary, Parmesan cheese, and remaining 1 tablespoon of kosher salt over the top. Let rise for 10 minutes
  4. Bake in preheated oven about 20 minutes until golden brown.


090624 – Guacamole – revised
090625, 11:59 am
Filed under: DINNER, LUNCH, SNACK | Tags:

Guacamole-to-be

For two people it is really best to make just two avocados worth of guac.  The original recipe i used called for three, but it always leaves too many leftovers that turn brown in our fridge.

  • 2 large Haas AvocadosGUAC
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced (let the garlic sit for a min. after mincing to let the juices intensify)
  • 1/2 C petite diced canned tomatoes, drained (i just scoop in a couple spoonfuls)
  • 1 1/2 t red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 small onion, diced
  1. stir together avocado, garlic, salt, and lime juice in small bowl.  Add tomato, red pepper, and onion.  Let sit in the fridge for 15 or so minutes before serving.




090420 – fantastic salad
090420, 10:30 pm
Filed under: DINNER, LUNCH | Tags: , ,

img_3295

this was such a treat.  this salad was like candy!  i have read somewhere that eating avocado with other foods helps your nutrient absorption.  i wish i had allowed a good hour and fifteen to prepare all the ingredients (mainly the beets), because i was pressed and had to cut corners (turned up the oven).

  • 3 medium beets, peeled and cut into 6-8 wedges
  • 3 T minced onion
  • 1/4 C balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 C olive oil
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • 1/2 C (or so) dried cranberries
  • 1/3 C feta cheese
  • romaine lettuce
  • 1/2 C walnuts
  • 3 T brown sugar
  • 1 T canola oil

BEETS:

  1. preheat oven to 425°
  2. to make dressing, mix together balsamic vinegar, evoo, and onion in medium sized bowl.  toss beets in dressing and let marinate while the oven heats up.
  3. bake beets for 25 min, then flip and bake another 20 min, or until soft through.

CANDIED WALNUTS:

  1. heat canola oil and brown sugar (and a tiny pinch of cayenne pepper) in medium saucepan with walnuts.  keep stirring as the sugar caramelizes and begins to coat the nuts (about 5 minutes).
  2. when the sugar is fully caramelized, remove from heat and pour the nuts onto a piece of parchment or a plate to cool.  THEY LOOK NICE, BUT ARE VERY HOT AND WILL BURN YOU.  i found this out the hard way…


    090420 – mac n’ cheese
    090420, 10:17 pm
    Filed under: DINNER, LUNCH | Tags: ,

    img_3297

    this is secret family recipe material.  it is  SOOO good!  it is one of joe’s recipes and this is the first time i have made it.  unlike boxed mac n’ cheese, it actually tastes good the next day!  I used some nice sharp Cabot cheese (we usually buy store brand but it was on super sale) and i think that added a lot to it.  Next time i might use a tad more Worcestershire sauce.

    • 2 C elbow macaroni
    • 2 C skim milk
    • 2 T corn starch
    • 6-8 oz. cheddar cheese, shredded
    • 2 1/2 t Worcestershire sauce
    • S+P to taste
    1. cook macaroni in pot of boiling water 1 min less than indicated, then preheat oven to 350°
    2. in a small saucepan, whisk together milk and corn starch, turn to medium heat and continually whisk until it begins to bubble
    3. take milk off the heat, stir in cheese, Worcestershire, and s+p.
    4. mix together pasta and sauce in baking dish and cook for 12-15 min in preheated oven.


    090418 – asparagus pasta
    090418, 9:46 pm
    Filed under: DINNER, LUNCH | Tags: , , ,

    img_3273

    Last week Carolyn bought two bunches of asparagus, we ate one as a side with chicken but had one bunch left. We’re racing a triathlon tomorrow, so we wanted something high in carbs but we needed to use the asparagus before it went bad. This pasta was the logical choice. I’ve made it before, and it is tasty and super quick.

    Ingredients:

    • 1 bunch of asparagus
    • 3 cloves of garlic – minced
    • 1/2 box of pasta, we use angel hair
    • 2 cans diced tomatoes – petite diced is the best
    • olive oil
    • dried basil

    Get your pasta water boiling in one pot.  In a large skillet, heat a few tablespoons of olive oil over med-high heat. Once hot, put the minced garlic and about a tablespoon of dried basil (fresh would be better if you have it) in the skillet. Cook the until the garlic is golden brown.  Once brown, turn the heat down a bit and pour in your cans of diced tomatoes. They have a lot of juice and will taste better if you let it cook down a bit, about 10 minutes.

    Once your water is boiling, put in your pasta. You want to put the asparagus in with the pasta with about 4.5 minutes to go, so watch the timer. Cook the two together until the pasta is al dente and the asparagus is done, but not mushy. Drain in a collander and the pour into the skillet with the tomatoes and garlic. Mix well and serve with grated parmesean.




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