Mexican Roasted Corn Salad

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Mexican Roasted Corn Salad
I love salads, especially in the summer. J made this the other night for dinner with a seared flank steak and chimichurri sauce. Don't get me wrong, the steak was delicious but the corn stole the show. Plus, it's simple enough for a weeknight dinner. He got the recipe here.
Servings
people
Ingredients
Salad Ingredients
Dressing Ingredients
Servings
people
Ingredients
Salad Ingredients
Dressing Ingredients
Instructions
  1. For the salad, lightly brush each corn cob with olive oil and sprinkle salt and pepper. We roasted ours in the oven under the broiler. Cook about 2-3 minutes on each side, flipping for about 12 minutes total. You want to achieve some char marks on each side.
  2. Set corn aside and allow to cool enough to handle.
  3. Carefully cut the corn kernels off the cob on a cutting board.
  4. In a large bowl combine corn, onion, bell pepper, cucumber, avocado, garlic, jalapeno, cilantro and ¼ cup of cheese.
  5. For the dressing, whisk together yogurt, lime juice, zest, chipotle pepper, cumin, and salt.
  6. Slowly drizzle in olive oil and whisk into dressing until smooth. Taste dressing and add more salt and pepper as desired.
Recipe Notes

My opinion:
I was so sad when it was all gone. Luckily, we still had some dressing left over, which made an excellent chicken breast marinade!

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Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

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Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore
We've been using our crockpot quite a bit lately. We've also discovered the wonderful boneless skinless chicken thighs from one of our favorite grocery stores (or go-see store as our toddler calls them). The benefit of cooking the thighs in the crockpot is they dry out less and are more flavorful than the traditional chicken breasts. Cooking Light's crockpot recipes have become a go-to source. I did not expect this recipe to be as good as it was. Even the toddler ate some of it!
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Ingredients
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Combine 1/2 cup water and flour in your favorite crockpot, stirring with a whisk. (Note: You can also use corn starch, which we will do next time.)
  2. Stir in stock and next 8 ingredients (through mushrooms).
  3. Add chicken thighs to the stock mixture; submerge in liquid.
  4. Cover and cook on LOW 7 1/2 hours (ours cooked about 9).
  5. Remove chicken.
  6. Leave whole or chop if using boneless skinless. If using bone-in, wait for them to cool, then remove bones.
  7. Add oil and pasta to slow cooker sauce; cover and cook on HIGH 15 minutes or until pasta is done to your liking. (It took a little longer than 15 minutes for us.)
  8. Stir in spinach until wilted.
  9. Divide pasta mixture and top evenly with chicken. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
Recipe Notes

My opinion:
I didn't expect the capers to add so much to the dish. It was the right amount of salt and sweet from the tomatoes. The pasta cooked perfectly. Next time, I will use the corn starch and reduce the amount of liquid a little for the initial cooking phase. If we need more to cook the pasta, I'll add more at that time. All in all a good, flavorful dish that is perfect for a weeknight.

 

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Weeknight Spicy Chicken Soup

Spicy Chicken Soup

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Weeknight Spicy Chicken Soup
As the weather cools, we start eating more and more soups. I would never have tried this without the urging of J. It doesn't sound delicious.  Plus when he told me it was a Bon Appétit recipe, I thought it would be way too complicated and complex. Turns out, it's super simple and  does taste delicious. It's definitely a new favorite. We've used leftover turkey and rotisserie chicken and both have been wonderful. The recipe says it serves four, but it can stretched to serve more, or cooked down longer to serve less.
Course Main Dish
Servings
people
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Servings
people
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Pick meat from chicken, shred, and place in a small bowl (you should have about 4 cups); discard skin and bones.
  2. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat.
  3. Add onion and mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and golden, about 8–10 minutes.
  4. Add garlic and ginger and cook, stirring often, about 2 minutes; season with salt and pepper.
  5. Add shredded chicken, broth and cayenne and bring to a boil.
  6. Turn heat to low.
  7. Add spinach and divide soup among bowls.
  8. Top with scallions and serve lime wedges alongside for squeezing over.
Recipe Notes

My opinion:
That's it, really. It takes a total of between 15 and 20 minutes to prep everything and about 40 minutes to cook per the recipe.  This recipe is easy enough to be a weeknight dinner. If you let it cook down longer or reheat it for lunch the next day, the flavors intensify and meld together even more. If I am planning to eat it the next day, I leave the spinach out and add it in right before eating.  I adore this dish!

Crockpot Alton Brown Pork Loin

AB Crockpot Pork Loin
I haven’t been shy about my love for all of AB’s recipes (for example our Christmas ham, gyro meat and a peach buckle). This one started out as a delicious grilled summer meal, but quickly morphed into a scrumptious year round crock pot meal. Extra bonus, we make it ahead and freeze it so it’s super simple to just pop into the crockpot!

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Crockpot Alton Brown Pork Loin
Servings
Ingredients
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Place the lime juice, honey and garlic powder in a ziptop bag and shake to combine.
  2. Add the chipotle pepper (s) and squish together to combine.
  3. Add the pork tenderloin to the bag and seal, removing as much air as possible and squish to coat the tenderloin. (At this point, we usually freeze this mixture together.)
  4. If not freezing, marinate in the refrigerator for 6 to 24 hours (we like overnight).
  5. When you're ready to cook, dump the entire mixture into the crockpot, marinade and all. Cook on low for 8 to 10 hours. (Always double-check your specific crockpot settings for correct cooking times).
  6. If you can, flip it once, but if you can't it's ok.
  7. When you're ready to eat, remove the pork loin. Make sure to reserve the juices! We enjoy pouring it over rice to go with the pork.

My opinion:
Like I said above, this is great year round. It’s just as good with a salad as it is over rice. Enjoy!

p.s. Summer 2016 update: without the chipotles in adobo sauce, our toddler eats this up! We just add the chipotles and adobo sauce to our plates. 

Langlois Stuffed French toast

Finished stuffed french toast
This is another recipe J and I learned to make while at the amazing Langlois Culinary Crossroads. It is perfect for a new year’s day breakfast or brunch. While it looks complicated, it’s actually pretty easy. The hardest part os stuffing the brioche!

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Langlois Stuffed French toast
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Bread and filling ingredients:
Custard ingredients:
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Bread and filling ingredients:
Custard ingredients:
Instructions
  1. Cut the Brioche into about 6 2 by 2 rectangular pieces. Using a skewer precut the hole for the filling. You will have to turn it around to make a hole larger than the skewer. This is where slightly stale bread comes in handy.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, beat the softened cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla and lemon zest and juice together on medium speed until well blended.
  3. Put the filling into a ziptop bag. Cut off the corner. Pipe into the skewer holes.
  4. If this doesn't work, you can make a sandwich by making a pocket (think pita pocket), just make sure to only cut through one side of the bread or it will be more difficult to brown. Set this aside.
  5. In another medium-sized bowl, beat the eggs, milk, sugar, vanilla and salt. Dip each piece of stuffed bread into the custard and turn once to completely coat. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes (overnight is better!) but no longer than 24 hours.
  6. When you're ready to cook, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  7. In a large skillet melt the butter over medium to medium-high temperature.
  8. Brown each piece of stuffed bread on all sides. Do not move it around. Do not check and see if it's browning.
  9. Let it sit longer than you think it needs to. About 5 minutes per side.
  10. Place the browned pieces into a casserole dish and cook in the oven for about 10 minutes. Garnish as you please and serve.

My opinion:
Sometimes we cover this in powdered sugar, other times maple syrup. It’s just as good alone though. We’ve served this to friends and family and everyone has raved about it each time.