29th August 2007

Chicken and Veggie Stir-Fry on new plates!

Lisa made a stir-fry tonight — no particular recipe, she just used all the vegetables we had on hand — and we finally got to put Jenn’s fantastic plates to use! Lisa marinated the chicken in soy sauce, garlic and sesame oil, and shallots, and then stir-fried with carrots, onions, tomatoes, spinach, chard, water chestnuts, zucchini, and broccoli. Simple, fast, and mighty tasty.

posted in Asian, Main Dishes | 0 Comments

28th August 2007

Tomatillo-Sauced Enchiladas with Spinach, Mushrooms, and Chicken

We’re back from our honeymoon and have been looking forward to cooking at home again, especially after receiving so many cooking related gifts at our wedding reception! Tonight, from Mexican Everyday, (thanks, Tabors!), and sitting on a new platter (thanks, Amy!) we made these delicious enchiladas filled with spinach, mushrooms, and chicken, and topped with a tart tomatillo sauce. It was a nice change from the cheese-laden enchiladas we normally encounter. It’s good to be back!

Tomatillo-Sauced Enchiladas with Spinach, Mushrooms, and Chicken
3 garlic cloves, peeled
2 serrano peppers, stemmed and quartered
1 1/2 lbs tomatillos, husked, rinsed, and quartered
3/4 cup roughly chopped cilantro
3 tbsp olive oil
2 cups chicken broth
8 oz mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
1 large red onion, thinly sliced
10 oz spinach
1 cup shredded cooked chicken
12 corn tortillas
3 tbsp creme fraiche
1 cup queso fresco, crumbled

Drop the garlic and serranos one piece at a time into a running blender or food processor, letting each piece get finely chopped before adding the next. Add the tomatillos and cilantro, process until smooth.
Heat 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the puree and cook until the mixture has reduced considerably, around 7-8 minutes. Add the chicken broth and simmer over medium heat for about 10 minutes.
While the sauce is simmering, heat the remaining 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook for a couple of minutes until they start to brown. Add about three quarters of the onions and continue cooking until the onions turn translucent. Add the spinach and chicken, stirring constantly, until the spinach is wilted. Season with a teaspoon of salt, and cover to keep warm.
Lay out the tortillas on a baking sheet and spray on both sides with cooking oil, then stack in twos. Bake for 3 minutes or until soft and pliable. Remove and stack in a single pile; cover with a kitchen towel to keep warm.
Stir the creme fraiche into the sauce. Taste and season with salt, if desired. Hold a tortilla by one edge and dip into the sauce and lay on a plate. Fill the center with 2 heaping tablespoons of the filling, then roll and lay seam side down on a plate. Repeat with two more tortillas, arranging them on the same plate. Douse the enchiladas with about 1/4 cup of the warm sauce, sprinkle with a quarter of the crumbled cheese and garnish with reserved onion and additional cilantro sprigs.

Serves 4 (3 enchiladas each)

posted in Main Dishes, Mexican Everyday | 2 Comments

7th August 2007

Swordfish with Roasted Fruit and Chile Sauce

We like to try out new recipes when we have friends over, and we were in the mood for fish, so we tried out this recipe from Healthy Latin Cooking. In spite of the late hour (or maybe because of it?) 😉 the dish got quite a few compliments. The sauce had many distinct flavors in it (from three types of roasted peppers, roasted tomatoes, pineapple, and plantains) and a deep dark red color that really contrasted the white of the swordfish. We served it with the green rice that we listed a few weeks ago. This was one of Lisa’s favorite dishes all year.

Swordfish with Roasted Fruit and Chile Sauce
6 swordfish steaks (6 oz. ea.)
salt and pepper
2 tbsp lime juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
5 ancho chile peppers
3 guajillo chile peppers
3 cups warm chicken stock
2 tomatoes
2 jalapeño peppers
3 tbsp slivered almonds
3 tbsp sesame seeds
1 tbsp olive oil
1 stick cinnamon (3″ long)
1 ripe plantain, peeled and chopped
1 cup chopped fresh or drained canned pineapple
1/2 cup chopped jicama
3 tbsp cilantro

Sprinkle the swordfish with salt and pepper. Place in a 13″ x 9″ glass baking dish. Sprinkle both sides with the lime juice and garlic. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 30 to 60 minutes.
Meanwhile, tear open the guajillo and ancho chiles. Remove and discard the seeds and stems. Roast the peppers on a dry nonstick skillet over dry heat for 10 seconds; do not burn. Place in a medium bowl. Add the stock or broth, place a small dish on the peppers to keep them covered, and soak for 15 minutes or until softened. Transfer the peppers and stock to a food processor.
Roast the tomatoes and jalapeños in the skillet for 5 minutes or until the skins blister. Scrape off the burnt skin and seed the tomatoes and peppers. Transfer to the food processor.
In the same dry skillet, over medium heat, roast the almonds and sesame seeds for 3 to 4 minutes, or until browned. Transfer to the food processor, and puree all ingredients until smooth, working in batches if necessary.
Heat the oil in the skillet over medium heat. Add the cinnamon stick, plantains, pineapple, and the pureed sauce. Simmer, stirring often, for 20 minutes or until thick and flavorful and the plantains are cooked. Season with more salt and pepper if desired. Remove the cinnamon stick.
Preheat a BBQ and grill the swordfish for 4 minutes per side or until firm and white and the fish flakes easily with a fork. Transfer to a platter and spoon the sauce over the top. Top with the jicama and cilantro.

6 servings.

posted in Healthy Latin Cooking, Main Dishes | 0 Comments

2nd August 2007

Shrimp "Dirty" Rice

Tonight Lisa made a dish that’s just a slight variation on the ‘Seafood “Dirty” Rice’ in Great Bowls of Fire. The main difference was that while that recipe called for a mixture of shrimp and scallops, Lisa used all shrimp, and she also replaced the white rice with brown. It was very flavorful, and the shrimp stayed juicy and tender. The recipe below is with those modifications.

Shrimp “Dirty” Rice
1 tbsp canola oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 large stalk celery, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup tomato puree
1 cup water
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp white pepper
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 lb medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/4 cup nonfat milk
4 cups cooked brown rice
4 whole green onions, chopped
2 tsp bottled red hot sauce

In a large saucepan, heat the oil. Add the onion, bell pepper, celery, and garlic and cook, stirring, for 6 minutes over medium-high heat. Stir in the tomato puree, water, oregano, thyme, salt, white pepper, and cayenne pepper and bring to a simmer. Add the shrimp and cook, stirring, over medium heat until they are opaque, 10 to 12 minutes. Stir in the milk and return to a gentle simmer. Fold in the cooked rice, green onions, and hot sauce. Spoon into shallow bowls and serve while piping hot.

Serves 4.

posted in Great Bowls of Fire, Main Dishes | 0 Comments