Advertisements

Category Archives: KISS – Keep It Simple Stupid

Keep It Simple Stupid!

Chilled Strawberry Soup

I have always remembered this soup from my adolescent years for some reason. I was looking for something different for dinner with friends in place of a salad. Too warm for regular hot soup and we happened to have a box of strawberries in the fridge. Pinterest showed me this wonderful and simple recipe!

DSC_0005

TIP – Whether it’s a salad or cold soup, I always freeze my bowls before serving time!

Chilled Strawberry Soup

Author: This Mess Is Ours         Prep time:  2 hours 15 mins

Total time:  2 hours 15 mins     Serves: 4 cups

This soup only takes about 15 minutes of time to prepare but be sure to let it chill for 2 hours before serving so that the flavors intensify.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups sliced fresh strawberries, preferably organic
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • ½ cup white grape juice (or white wine)
  • 3 tablespoons raw honey (one tablespoon was sufficient)

 

To garnish

  • freshly ground black pepper
  • sliced fresh strawberries
  • 1 or 2 radishes, cut into thin shreds with a grater or mandoline
  • fresh mint

Instructions

  1. In a food processor or high powered blender process the 3 cups of sliced strawberries, Greek yogurt, white grape juice, and honey until smooth. Stopping periodically to scrape the sides. Cover and chill for 1½- 2 hours. Garnish with freshly ground pepper, sliced strawberries, shredded radishes, and bits of mint. Serve immediately. NB…dont skip the radishes, they were awesome!

 

Advertisements

Marinated Red Onions

This is an older recipe which I did not realize I had never posted before. I served this with my Slow Cooker Pulled Pork which was posted last year I believe. I served the pork on a ciabatta bun topped with a little sauce, the red onions and slices of avocados. Hope you might try this semi-Mexican dish. FYI…this recipe will last a couple of weeks in the fridge. Drain off the liquid before serving.

dsc_0041.jpg

And here is the recipe…

Marinated Red Onions (LCBO Food and Drink)

1 lb. red onions sliced (2 large)

2 cups white wine vinegar

¼ cup cilantro sprigs

½ cup lemon OR lime juice

½ cup orange juice

½ tsp. salt

 Put all of the ingredients together and marinade for at least 24 hours. The acid cooks down the onions… remember to drain it off before serving.

Serve with my Slow Cooked Pulled Pork!!

 

Roasted Garlic and Asparagus Soup

My mom always instructed me to snap off the bottoms of the asparagus stalks when I was a kid as they were never tender and I still follow that rule. She always threw them away in the garbage! I have started to save the end pieces by putting them in a freezer bag for latter use…i.e. soup! This latest find for soup combines two strong flavours  – asparagus and garlic. This recipe can be served cold by putting it in the fridge the next day OR serving hot. The former is more of a asparagus gazpacho. The latter is great with some shaved Parmesan cheese added after serving.

I would be interested in your opinion…

DSC_0042

Roasted Garlic and Asparagus Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds asparagus, trimmed
  • 10 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
  • 3 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • cracked pepper and chopped parsley, for garnish

 Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with foil and set aside.
  3. Toss asparagus and garlic with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Arrange asparagus and garlic on prepared baking sheet in one layer.
  5. Roast for 12 minutes, or until asparagus is soft, stirring once.
  6. Remove from oven and transfer asparagus and garlic to a blender. (I never blend it all as I like it a bit chunky).
  7. Add broth and milk.
  8. Blend until smooth. Depending on how large your blender is, you might have to do this part in batches.
  9. Transfer soup to a soup pot.
  10. Warm soup over medium-high heat, thinning with more broth by 1/4 cupfuls, if desired.
  11. Season with salt and pepper. Continue to taste for seasonings and adjust accordingly.
  12. Ladle into bowls.
  13. Garnish with parsley and serve.

Marinated Pork Chops

We are back! On March 10th we flew with two friends to Mexico City for three days and then we flew over to Puerto Vallarta for a few more days to visit with our friends who have moved over there last year. A bonus was seeing our old friends Bruce and Mary who we had last seen four years ago. FYI…Bruce and Mary have a wonderful blog Set Free in Mexico  https://setfreeinmexico.com/ if you want to read about their adventures.

Today’s recipe is an easy one…mix the marinating ingredients and pour over the chops, refrigerating for 6 hours or so. After that, just BBQ…

1aa5c99dc3707ab60c11ce241946f4b4

Marinated Grilled Pork Chops

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 to 6 pork chops
  • ¼ cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon brown mustard or gourmet mustard blend
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
  • 1 clove garlic finely minced
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper

 INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Wash chops and pat dry. Put in a large food storage bag. Combine the remaining ingredients and pour over the chops. Seal the bag and turn to coat the pork chops. Refrigerate for *3 to 6 hours, turning occasionally.
  2. Grill the chops over high heat for 5 to 7 minutes on each side or until the chops register about 160° on an instant read thermometer.

 

Broccoli Chicken Divan

Once upon a time I had a similar recipe, bit it must have flown the coup with the chicken…LOL. Pinterest to the rescue again! I think you will enjoy it in its simplicity. I served this with some fresh asparagus which I cooked in the same water as the broccoli, I just kept it simmering after I removed the broccoli.

2204020

Broccoli Chicken Divan

Ingredients

  • 1 pound chopped fresh broccoli
  • 1 1/2 cups cubed, cooked chicken meat ( I used leftover supermarket roasted chicken!!!)
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of broccoli soup ( substituted Cream of Mushroom)
  • 1/3 cup milk ( I used evaporated milk for more creaminess)
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 tablespoon butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons dried bread crumbs

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).
  2. Place the broccoli in a saucepan with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil, and cook 5 minutes, or until tender. Drain.
  3. Place the cooked broccoli in a 9 inch greased pie plate. Top with the chicken. In a bowl, mix the soup and milk, and pour over the chicken. Sprinkle with Cheddar cheese. Mix the melted butter with the bread crumbs, and sprinkle over the cheese.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, or until bubbly and lightly brown.

 

 

Sweet and Spicy Glazed Tuna Steaks

Yes we love tuna steaks when they are fresh. They never require a lot of effort to prepare them and two is always enough, along with  some steamed vegetables. The bonus is their quick cooking time!

img_20170215_1932591

Here I served it with some julienne carrots and some yellow cherry tomatoes.

Sweet and Spicy Glazed Tuna Steaks

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 Tbsp ginger, minced

1/4 cup homemade teriyaki sauce (or store-bought)

1/4 cup toasted sesame oil OR olive oil

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

1/2 tsp sea salt

freshly ground black pepper

2 wild-caught tuna steaks 1 1/2″ thick

Toasted sesame seeds to taste

Place Tuna steaks in a shallow baking dish or cast iron skillet. Mix all remaining ingredients and pour over the tuna. Reserve about 2 Tbsp of the sauce, and pour it on right before serving, or save it for dipping.

Bake uncovered at 400 degrees. 10 minutes for rare. 20 minutes for medium. 30 minutes for well done. I got nervous at 10 minutes and went an extra 7…it was almost too long…I will try 12 next time! ( I like pink centers in tuna)

The flavor of the sauce really penetrates the meat, so there is no marinating required.  This goes very well with a fresh green salad or steamed vegetables. Sprinkle a few toasted sesame seeds on before serving.

 

Honey Garlic Shrimp

Super supper meal! It does require a little time for marinating the shrimp, otherwise it is a KISS recipe! Instead of brown rice, I prepared some of the…you guessed it…Costco Ancient Grains!

Honey Garlic Shrimp

dsc_0031

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce (I use reduced sodium)
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
  • optional: 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1 lb. medium uncooked shrimp, peeled & deveined
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • optional: chopped green onion for garnish

Directions:

  1. Whisk the honey, soy sauce, garlic, and ginger (if using) together in a medium bowl.
  2. Place shrimp in a large zipped-top bag or Tupperware. Pour 1/2 of the marinade mixture on top, give it all a shake or stir, then allow shrimp to marinate in the refrigerator for 15 minutes or for up to 8-12 hours. Cover and refrigerate the rest of the marinade for step 3. (Time-saving tip: while the shrimp is marinating, I steamed broccoli and prepared the Ancient Grains according to the directions).
  3. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Place drained shrimp in the skillet. Cook shrimp on one side until no longer pink– about 45 seconds– then flip shrimp over. Pour in remaining marinade and cook it all until shrimp is cooked through, about 1 minute more.
  4. Serve shrimp with cooked marinade sauce and a garnish of green onion. The sauce is excellent on brown rice and steamed veggies on the side.

TIPwhen a recipe calls for minced ginger, I take out some of the ginger I keep in the freezer. Whenever I need some, I just grate it, rind and all depending o the amount I need, into the dish and put the ginger back in the freezer.

 

Traditional Mexican Shrimp Cocktail

Happy New Year Bloggers! I am going to try something different this year now that so many of you are really setting the bar high with your wonderful blogs. This old dog is not that techie…LOL…but like John Glenn I can take small steps. Hence my New Years resolution to use actual photos of the recipes when I cook them.

dsc_0002

I thought the cocktail looked quite nice in the ice cream dishes we got from our friends one Christmas. Here is the recipe –

Traditional Mexican Shrimp Cocktail (food.com)

Ingredients 

  • 1 (48 ounce) can V8 vegetable juice (spicy if desired)
  • 2 avocados, chopped
  • 2 cucumbers, seeded and chopped
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • 12 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 1 lb. large shrimp, peeled, de-veined and steamed or just buy frozen cooked and thaw
  • 2 limes, quartered
  • 4 dashes Tabasco sauce

Directions

Mix all ingredients in a large nonreactive container.

Chill and serve with limes and Tabasco sauce.

Do not over-cook the shrimp, as they will become tough!

Be careful when steaming the shrimp; you do not want it tough.

AND here is a BONUS..ta dah…if you do not use all of the mixture, put it into a blender and make…GAZPACHO…refrigerate for tomorrows meal!

 

Parmesan and Thyme Baked Potato Slices

Having bought a huge bag of small potatoes from…you guessed it…Costco, I was stuck as to what to do with so many. Voila Pinterest. I followed the recipe by slicing those little gems using my trusty mandoline. I should have used regular potatoes as it would have been easier. Nevertheless, the flavour was great and doing them in muffin tins simplified serving. Great if you are serving a nice roast or fish.

Parmesan and Thyme Baked Potato Slices

Prep time 15 mins Cook time 1 hr. Total time 1 hr. and 15 mins

 Ingredients

  • Makes about 4-6 servings
  • 3 tbsp (45g) butter, melted
  • 2 tbsp (25g) Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp (3g) garlic powder
  • 1 tsp thyme leaves
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8-10 gold potatoes (1.4 kg) sliced thin (about 1/16 inch -1.6 mm thick)

Directions

 Preheat the oven to 375°F (190C). Butter 12 muffin cups and set aside. Cut the potatoes into thin slices.
Place potato slices into a large bowl. Add melted butter, Parmesan cheese, thyme, garlic, salt and pepper. Toss to coat evenly.
Layer the potato slices into stacks and place in the prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle some freshly ground black pepper. Heap up the potatoes as they will fall into the tins while baking.
Bake until the edges and tops are golden brown and the centers are tender, 55 minutes to 1 hour.

Remove from the oven, let them rest for 5 minutes then remove from pan and garnish with Parmesan cheese and thyme.

 

Not So Secret Family Meatloaf

So I was in the need for some comfort food! Ground meat was in the freezer and I wanted something simple, something my granddaughters could make for their families. Pinterest to the rescue as always. Erica’s recipe was perfect except for one slight change I made since spouse doesn’t like sauces too sweet.  Let me know how you like this one…

Not-So-Secret Family Meatloaf      Author: Erica DeSpain

Prep time:  15 mins  Cook time:  1 hour 10 mins

Total time:  1 hour 25 mins Serves: approx. 6 servings

Ingredients

  • FOR THE MEATLOAF:
  • 1.25 lb. ground beef or ground turkey (we usually do ground turkey and never taste the difference!)
  • 1 egg
  • ⅓ cup milk
  • 4 tbsp ketchup
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 diced onion
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • FOR THE SAUCE:
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar (cut back the sugar unless you like it very sweet)
  • 3 tbsp vinegar
  • 3 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • ⅓ cup ketchup

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Combine meatloaf ingredients well and then shape in meatloaf pan.
  3. Combine sauce ingredients and pour over meatloaf.
  4. Bake uncovered for 50 minutes if using ground BEEF and 65 minutes if using ground TURKEY.
  5. Enjoy immensely!