Garlic Chicken

Garlic Chicken

Ingredients

  • 2 large garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 T vegetable oil
  • 1 T cornstarch
  • 1/8 tsp. pepper
  • 1 lb. boneless chicken breasts or thighs
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions
Marinate chicken in marinade for two hours. Drain and reserve marinade from chicken. Cook chicken in oil until almost done. Add marinade mixture and cook until thickened. Add green onions at last minute. Serve with snow peas and rice.

Stacked Tomato Salad

With the BBQ season soon upon us, this is a great alternative to the traditional salads…

Stacked Tomato Salad with Black Olive Tapenade and Sweet Basil Dressing

Ingredients

3 pounds ripe tomatoes, (beefsteak, yellow, and heirloom), sliced into 1/2-inch thick rounds

Tapenade, recipe follows*

1 pound goat cheese, thinly sliced (or use Mozzarella, but goat is better)

Fresh basil leaves and sprigs, for layering and for garnish

Sweet Basil Dressing, recipe follows

Directions

Place a tomato slice on a plate and spread with some of the tapenade. Then place a slice of the goat cheese on top, add a few basil leaves, and finish with another tomato slice. You can add another layer to make Napoleon as high as you desire. Top with another small spoonful of the tapenade and then drizzle the Sweet Basil Dressing over the tomato and around the plate. Garnish with a sprig of fresh basil and repeat to make 4 to 6 plates.

Tapenade (Honestly, I buy a small jar at the store…a whole lot easier)

2 cups kalamata or nicoise olives, pitted

3 cloves garlic, peeled, coarsely chopped

5 anchovy fillets

2 tablespoons pine nuts

1/2 cup olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Combine olives, garlic, anchovies and pine nuts in a food processor and process until smooth. With the motor running, slowly add the oil until emulsified. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Sweet Basil Dressing

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons honey

3/4 cup pure olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

12 basil leaves, cut into chiffonade (roll the leaves in a little tube shape and slice across the leaves)

Whisk together vinegar, Dijon mustard, and honey in a medium bowl. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until emulsified. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and then stir in the basil.

Arugula Salad with Fried Gorgonzola

I have never been a fan of regular arugula due to its somewhat bitter taste. In this recipe I used baby arugula which is much less bitter and I loved it…well maybe it was the cheese balls?

Arugula Salad with Fried Gorgonzola Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis (Food Network)

Ingredients

7 ounces Gorgonzola

1 large egg, beaten to blend

3/4 cup dried Italian bread crumbs

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 garlic clove, minced

1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel

1/3 cup olive oil, plus more for deep-frying

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

12 cups  baby arugula (about 10 ounces)

Directions

Blend the Gorgonzola in a food processor until smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides of the work bowl occasionally. Using 1 rounded teaspoon of cheese for each, form the cheese into 18 (1-inch) balls. Working in batches, coat the balls with the egg then with the bread crumbs. Repeat coating the balls in the egg and bread crumbs. Arrange the balls on a small baking sheet. Cover and refrigerate until cold, at least 2 hours or overnight.

Whisk the lemon juice, garlic, and lemon peel in a medium bowl to blend. Gradually whisk in 1/3 cup oil. Season the dressing, to taste, with salt and pepper. Set the dressing aside.

Add enough oil to a heavy small saucepan to come 2 inches up the sides of the pan. Heat the oil over medium heat. At this point, remove the refrigerated Gorgonzola balls from the refrigerator. Working in batches, add the cold balls to the hot oil and fry just until golden brown, about 20 seconds. (It is essential that the Gorgonzola balls be cold when they go into the oil, otherwise they will fall apart in the oil. If they start to warm up at any point, return them to the refrigerator to firm back up.) Using a slotted spoon, transfer the fried balls to paper towels to drain.

Toss the arugula in a large bowl with enough dressing to coat. Season the salad, to taste, with salt and pepper. Mound the salad on plates. Top the salads with the hot fried Gorgonzola balls and serve immediately.

Pavlova Dessert

Pavlova Recipe – as shared by Joanne Dueck from the book ” Joy of Baking”

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4 large (120 grams) egg whites
1 cup (200 grams) superfine or castor sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1/2 tablespoon cornstarch (corn flour)
Topping:
1 cup (240 ml) heavy whipping cream
1 1/2 tablespoons (20 grams) granulated white sugar (or to taste)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Fresh fruit – kiwi, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, passion fruit, peaches, pineapple, or other fruit of your choice

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Preparation:

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F (130 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and draw a 7 inch (18 cm) circle on the paper. Turn the parchment paper over so the circle is on the reverse side.
In the bowl of your electric mixer, with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on medium speed until they hold soft peaks. Start adding the sugar, a tablespoon at a time, and continue to beat, on high speed, until the meringue holds very stiff and shiny peaks. (Test to see if the sugar is fully dissolved by rubbing a little of the meringue between your thumb and index finger. The meringue should feel smooth, not gritty. If it feels gritty the sugar has not fully dissolved so keep beating until it feels smooth between your fingers).

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Beat in the vanilla extract. Sprinkle the vinegar and cornstarch over the top of the meringue and, with a rubber spatula, gently fold in. Spread the meringue inside the circle drawn on the parchment paper, smoothing the edges.
Bake for 60 to 75 minutes or until the outside is dry and a very pale cream color. Turn the oven off, leave the door slightly ajar, and let the meringue cool completely in the oven. (The outside of the meringue will feel firm to the touch, if gently pressed, but as it cools you will get a little cracking and you will see that the inside is soft and marshmallowy.)

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The meringue is best made on a less humid day – for those of us in Yucatan plan accordingly!

The cooled meringue can be made and stored in a cool dry place, in an airtight container, for a few days.
Just before serving gently place the meringue onto a serving plate. Whip the cream in your electric mixer, with the whisk attachment, until soft peaks form. Sweeten with the sugar and vanilla and then mound the softly whipped cream into the center of the meringue. Arrange the fruit randomly, or in a decorative pattern, on top of the cream. Serve immediately as this dessert does not hold for more than a few hours.
Serves 6 to 8.

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork – KISS

This recipe is so easy, a child could do it. Well, in fact my daughter gave me this one…LOL. I am setting up a category – KISS – Keep It Simple Stupid..these will always be very simple recipes with minimal ingredients and prep time. These will be great recipes for the summer ahead!

My daughter used this on some wonderful onion buns, but more recently we used it to make soft tacos. If you do the latter, accompany it with some shredded lettuce, grated cheddar or Monterrey Jack cheese, chopped onions, some different salsas, sour cream, cilantro, etc. Let everyone fix their own…

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

2 to 4 pork tenderloins with the silver and fat removed as much as possible (I used 6 loins for 45 people).

1 can of Coca-Cola  (use enough to cover all of the pork)

1 cup of BBQ sauce…whatever your favorite is…

cloves of garlic (to taste)

Cut slits in the tenderloins and insert the garlic cloves (as many as you want)

Put loins in slow cooker and pour over them the Coke and BBQ sauce.

Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.

In the last hour use two forks to pull the pork apart and return it to the cooker to soak up some juices.

Serve immediately with buns or tacos.

Can be made ahead and rewarmed in a low oven for about 30 minutes.

Gee I wonder how this would work with boneless chicken breasts??? Maybe use a bit of Chinese Hoisin Sauce?

Larry’s Ginger Cookies!

Okay, the agony is over…here is the recipe, but I warn you that Larry likes to modify his recipes every single time he makes these!!!

Larry’s Ginger-Orange-Molasses Cookies

Ingredients :

4 cups of all purpose flour , whole wheat is OK  ( I think it is better!)

2 1/2 tablespoons  ground ginger, more or less “a tu gusto”!

1 1/2 to 2 tsp of coarse ground black pepper  This amount gives a good kick without over powering!

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup softened butter, (I use unsalted)  if  you use salted you may want to adjust the amount of salt above

1 cup of  brown sugar

1 cup  dark molasses

1 teaspoon  baking soda dissolved in 1 tablespoon of water

Zest of 3 or 4 medium  oranges

About 1/2 to 3/4 cup cranberries, finely chopped

Powdered clove (add to enhance taste but not so much as you can taste it…start with about 1/4 tsp and experiment)

Preparation :

Step One

In one bowl add the dry ingredients, including cranberries and orange zest. Whisk together thoroughly.

Step Two

In a separate bowl large enough to blend together all of the ingredients, put the butter and brown sugar.
Using a mixer on slow speed, blend the butter and brown sugar until creamy.
Blend in the  molasses.
Finally, blend in  the dissolved  baking soda mixture.

Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients.
Fold in completely!  Use the mixer to finish blending thoroughly. The mixture is easier to work with if it is slightly chilled.  If too hard, let it soften slightly.

Baking :
I use a small, releasing type, ice cream scoop. It helps to make the cookies more uniform in size. I spray the inside of it with a small amount of PAM to make the batter release better.
If the mixture begins to stick, spray a little more PAM into the scoop.
I use silicone baking sheets for ease of  removing the cookies and cleaning.
Bake about 10 to 11 minutes @ 350 F.  Longer for a firmer textured cookie, shorter for a softer cookie.  I put the silicone on a good quality light coloured baking sheet….it seems to prevent the bottom of the cookies from over-browning.

Yield:  7 dozen or more using the mini ice cream scoop.

Enjoy! And, of course, adjust the ginger, clove, black pepper and orange zest and cranberries to suit your own taste buds.  Or be creative and vary the recipe!   Let me know if you come up with some yummy variations!

larry225mc@gmail.com

Reg’s House Salad Dressing

Technically, this recipe was stolen from a little restaurant in Kingsville, Ontario, Canada. The restaurant is/was The Rose and Thistle.  As a special request was made I decided to post this one early…let me know how it turns out Bev…

 

1/3 cup cider vinegar

1 cup salad oil (NOT Olive)

crushed garlic to taste

1/2 tsp dry mustard

1/2 tsp salt

1/3 cup brown sugar

1 T honey

Dash Worcestershire

Dash pepper

Put into a blender for 1 to 2 minutes. I cheat and pout it in a shaker and shake hard.

Make it ahead as it keeps in the refrigerator for several weeks. It is great on almost any salad, including spinach!