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Blog Archives

Slow Cooker Mongolian Beef

I know it sounds a little odd, but this is a very good dish served with rice or maybe Costco Ancient Grains. As usual my slow cooker had it ready in three hours on HIGH, contrary to what the recipe says. It seems every time I use my SC I have the same problem. What do the rest of you find? Mine is a Hamilton Beach with setting – High, Low and Warm. I can never go away and leave it even on LOW…grrr. Be aware…

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Mongolian Beef

  • 1.5 lb. trimmed flank steak
  • 2 cups sliced onions
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • ½ cup reduced sodium soy sauce
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 T. quick cooking Tapioca, crushed
  • 1 T. grated fresh ginger
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 green onions, sliced (whites and greens separated)
  • 3 cups hot cooked rice (or Ancient Grains)
  1. Cut meat into 6 portions. In a 3.5 cup slow cooker combine meat and sliced onions.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the next 6 ingredients (through garlic). Pour over the meat. Sprinkle with WHITE portions of the green onions
  3. Cover and cook on LOW 8 to 10 hours…or HIGH for 4 to 5 hours. (3 in my case!)
  4. Remove meat, reserving cooking liquid.
  5. Slice meat across the grain or coarsely shred and return to the cooker.
  6. Serve over rice and sprinkle with the GREEN portions of the green onions.

Makes 6 servings.

 

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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!

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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.

 

Beef Stir Fry with Brussels Sprouts

A 2008 survey by Heinz shows that Brussels sprouts now take the most-hated prize for Americans in general, with eggplant faring slightly worse among kids. Brussels sprouts seem to be universally loathed, practically: They make it to the top five in surveys of the most-hated vegetables around the world. From Just Disgusting, by Andy Griffiths…. check out the following link – Brussels Sprouts

I happen to be a big fan of these little gems. A simple little meal is a bunch of Brussels sprouts in a bowl with a few drops of water, microwaved with a little salt, pepper and butter. This time I decided to take it up a notch and use them in a stir fry (Thanks again to Pinterest). As Mikey would say…Try it and you will like it!

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Oriental cooking is all in the preparation…so lets get chopping!

Beef Stir Fry with Brussels Sprouts

Ingredients

4 Servings

  • 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts, halved
  • 8 ounces flank or skirt steak, thinly sliced against the grain
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 scallions, whites chopped, greens sliced (Substitute green onions if you like)
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped peeled ginger or fresh grated
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled, thinly sliced on a diagonal
  • 1 Fresno chile or jalapeño, sliced into rings OPTIONAL
  • Steamed rice (for serving)

Preparation

Whisk oyster sauce, soy sauce, vinegar, and 1/4 cup water in a small bowl; set sauce aside.

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add Brussel sprouts and cook, tossing occasionally, until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Cover and cook until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes longer. Transfer to a plate; wipe out skillet.

Season steak with salt. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in same skillet over high heat until just beginning to smoke. Add steak in a single layer; cook until browned, about 3 minutes. Turn and cook until nearly cooked through, about 30 seconds. Add to Brussel sprouts.

Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in same skillet. Add scallion whites, garlic, and ginger and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute, adjusting heat as needed. Add carrots and chile and cook, tossing occasionally, until carrots are slightly softened, about 2 minutes.

Return Brussel sprouts and steak to skillet and add reserved sauce. Cook, tossing occasionally, until sauce is thickened, about 3 minutes. Serve with steamed rice and garnish with scallion greens.

 

Thai Salmon in Foil

Since I had already prepared my Thai Jicama Salad, I needed something to go with the salmon I had thawed. Pinterest to the rescue again!

Thai Salmon in Foil

Prep Time: 10 minutes            Cook Time: 20 minutes           Total Time: 30 minutes

The flavors are sealed right into a foil packet with no clean up! The salmon comes out so tender/juicy. Sure to be a family favorite!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup sweet chili sauce
  • 2 tablespoons reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha, optional if you want more heat
  • 2 pounds salmon
  • 1/4 cup peanuts, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil.
  2. To make the sauce, whisk together chili sauce, soy sauce, garlic, fish sauce, ginger, lime juice and Sriracha in a small bowl; set aside.
  3. Place salmon onto prepared baking sheet and fold up all 4 sides of the foil. Spoon the chili sauce mixture over the salmon. Fold the sides of the foil over the salmon, covering completely and sealing the packet closed.
  4. Place into oven and bake until cooked through, about 15-20 minutes.
  5. Serve immediately, garnished with peanuts and cilantro, if desired.

*Baking time may need to be adjusted depending on the thickness of the salmon.

This delicious recipe brought to you by Damn Delicious
http://damndelicious.net/

Coconut Chicken (pollo al coco)

Here is a straightforward recipe for a quick meal. I came across it in our local Costco magazine this month and decided to give it a try. My suggested changes are in red as always.

Pollo al Coco (Chicken with Coconut)

  1. MIX together –

1 teaspoon cumin. 1 teaspoon paprika and 1 teaspoon cilantro

  1. BLEND into –

4 pieces of chicken cut into cubes ( I used thighs)

  1. COOK in 1 tablespoon of olive oil for 8 to 10 minutes until cooked through
  2. ADD –

1 teaspoon of olive oil

1 small chopped onion

1 teaspoon fresh minced ginger

2 jalapeno chilies minced without seeds (can be omitted)

2 teaspoons minced garlic

SAUTE to blend the spices with the chicken

  1. ADD –

1 can cubed tomatoes

  1. SIMMER 7 to 10 minutes, stirring very frequently.
  2. ADD –

400 ml of coconut milk (next time I would use coconut cream to make a thicker sauce)

  1. HEAT through…

SERVE over rice…sprinkle with chopped parsley

 

Slow Cooker Pork Chops

As promised that I would report on my latest find from FaithTap – https://www.facebook.com/faithtapping/?fref=ts

Slow Cooker Pork Chops

  • 6 medium thick pork chops
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  •  ½ cup soy sauce
  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • 2 cloves of smashed garlic
  •  salt and pepper to taste.

Pour all of the ingredients over the six pork chops and cover. The slow cooker does its magic for approximately 6 hours on low.

Results – Yes indeed they were very tender! They cooked in a little over 5 hours…by six they would have been burned dry, so watch them, depending on the thickness of your chops.

I would modify the ingredients to 1/4 cup soy and less sugar, and more garlic!

Personally I prefer my daughters slow cooker pulled pork sauce recipe  with Coca Cola! https://buenprovecho.me/?s=slow+cooker+pulled+pork

Thai Coconut Curry Soup

Thai is undoubtedly one of my favourite foods and this soup is no exception. Hope you will try it and let me know what you think. And..its from Michael Smith, one of my heroes…LOL. (My apologies to Michael for altering the original as shown)

Thai Coconut Curry Soup from Michael Smith
Meat
• 2 Chicken breasts (Good old Costco – I used their chicken strips in a bag – two handfuls partially thawed)
Produce
• 1 handful Bean sprouts (I substituted frozen broccoli pieces)
• 1 Carrot, shredded
• 1 bunch Cilantro, roots
• 1 bunch Cilantro, leaves
• 1 small knob Ginger, frozen
• 2 Green onions
• 2 stalks Lemon grass or 1 Tablespoon lemongrass paste
• 4 Lime, leaves
• 2 Limes, zest and juice
Canned Goods
• 2 cups Chicken broth
• 2 14 ounce cans Premium coconut milk
• 1 heaping tbsp Thai curry paste
Condiments
• 2 tbsp Fish sauce or less as you prefer
• 1 Sprinkle or two salt or soy sauce
Pasta & Grains
• 1 8 ounce package Rice noodles (Or skip either of these if you don’t want the starch)

Scoop the thick coconut cream from the top of just one of the cans into a large stockpot set over a medium-high heat. Melt the cream, add the curry paste and stir for a few minutes until they begin to sizzle.

Add the cilantro roots and chicken and sauté until the chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes.

Add the coconut juice from the first can and all the contents of the second can along with the chicken broth, carrot, lime leaves, lemon grass, fish sauce and lime zest and juice. Grate the frozen ginger into the broth with a Microplane grater or standard box grater. Simmer for 20 minutes or so.

OPTIONAL – Stir in the bean sprouts. Add the rice noodles, gently pushing them beneath the surface of the broth. Turn off the heat and let stand until the noodles soften, about 5 minutes. Rice noodles don’t need to simmer like pasta to cook; they simply need to rehydrate in the hot liquid.

Stir in most of the cilantro leaves. Remove the lemon grass stalks. Taste and season with a touch more salt (or soy sauce) as needed. Ladle into large bowls and garnish with the green onions and remaining cilantro leaves.

Chickpea, Sweet Potato and Quinoa Curry

A cold night in the Yucatan calls for a nice warm curry! It was 24 degrees C…LOL. One of my favourite chefs, Stefano Faita of Montreal fame created this tasty dish AND its VEGAN for my friend, Jaromey!

Packed with protein and flavour, this vegetarian one pot curry is quick and easy. For a milder flavour, rinse quinoa before using.

INGREDIENTS
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 small onion
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 tbsp. chopped ginger
1 tbsp. curry paste, or to taste
1 tbsp. garam masala, or to taste
2 cups vegetable stock or chicken stock
1 cup canned diced tomato
2 small to medium sweet potatoes, small dice
1 (14-ounce) can chick peas, rinsed and drained
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2/3 cup quinoa
1 cup packed baby spinach
Juice of 1 lime
2 tbsp. chopped cilantro

PREPARATION
Add vegetable oil to large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, ginger, curry paste and garam masala. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions start to soften, about 3 to 5 minutes.
Increase heat to medium high. Add 1 1/2 cups vegetable stock, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, chickpeas, and salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer. Add quinoa. Stir. Cover and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes until sweet potatoes are tender, adding remaining 1/2 cup stock if curry looks too dry.
OPTIONAL – Right before serving, stir in spinach. Let spinach wilt slightly. Finish with lime juice and fresh cilantro. Serve.

For more great recipes from Stefano, check out this CBC link to his TV show –

In the Kitchen With Stefano Faita

Cindy’s Pumpkin Pie

Just in time for Canadian Thanksgiving, Larry came across this recipe from allrecipes.com. He has been trying to perfect his pie crust recipes with some success. The problem here is finding the right flour, as whole wheat flower doesn’t taste that great, especially with pumpkin! Finding real pumpkin here in Mexico is a challenge except in late September or early October when we do have something called calabaza Halloween He bought a smallish one and roasted it in the oven for about an hour at 325 and then scooped out the seeds, followed by the pulp. He put the pulp in the refrigerator overnight to allow it to cool. Instead of the separate spices you could use Pumpkin Pie Spice which is not always available here*

The secret to this recipe seems to be the vanilla ice cream… Thanks CindyAnn whoever you are!

Cindy’s Pumpkin Pie

  • 1 1/2 pints vanilla ice cream softened
  • 4 eggs (original recipe called for 3)
  • 1 3/4 cups pumpkin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon*
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg*
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger*
  • 2 – 9 inch pie shells (Larry used only 1 and filled it up)

Preheat oven to 220 degrees Celsius. Place the ice cream near the oven to soften.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs. Stir in the pumpkin, sugar, salt, cinnamon. ginger and nutmeg OR pumpkin pie spice. Mix in the softened ice cream until smooth. Pour filling into the pie shell. (If you have two much filling, place the remainder in Pyrex cups and bake separately).

Bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Reduce temperature to 175 degrees C and bake an additional 30 to 40 minutes, or until filling is set.

Pork or (Chicken*) and Prawn (Shrimp) Wonton Soup

Costco’s large quantities usually leave me scampering to use up those quantities rather than leave them sitting in the freezer for months. Recently, a friend gave me a bag of chicken and cilantro frozen wontons. Since I enjoy Chinese soups I thought I could try and use some of them up. Searching online I found this Jamie Oliver recipe. The great thing was I never had to make the wontons, using what I had from Costco!!

Wonton Soup

Serves 6
For the wonton dumplings (makes around 36 small ones) OR head to Costco for the chicken and cilantro ones)
• 36 small wonton pastry wrappers, round or square (you can find these in the fridges of Asian supermarkets)
• 150g cooked and shelled prawns or shrimps or chicken, finely chopped
• 150g lean pork mince
• 1 tbsp grated ginger
• 1 tbsp light soy sauce
• 1 tbsp rice vinegar or rice wine vinegar
• 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
• 2 spring onions, finely chopped
• White pepper
For the soup
• 1.5 liters chicken stock
• 2 small heads of bok choy, or spinach roughly sliced
• 1 tsp light soy sauce
• 2 tsp rice vinegar or rice wine vinegar
• 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
• 2 generous pinches of white pepper
• 2 spring onions, finely chopped
In a large pan, bring your chicken stock to a gentle boil. Meanwhile, cook the dumplings. Fill the biggest saucepan you have with plenty of water and bring it to the boil. Add enough dumplings to create a single layer on the water. It’s important not to overcrowd the pot, so cook them in batches if you are cooking lots. Stir them gently as you bring the water up to the boil again. When the dumplings float to the top, they are cooked. OR, add your Costco wontons right into the stock mixture)
Once the dumplings float, use a slotted spoon to transfer them to your gently boiling chicken stock. Add the bok choy or spinach– first the white parts and then a minute later, the green parts. Bring the liquid up to the boil again and allow them to cook for around three minutes.
Turn off the heat and season your stock with the soy sauce, rice vinegar, toasted sesame oil and plenty of white pepper to taste. I’ve provided some guidelines, but feel free to amend according to your preferences.

Read more at http://www.jamieoliver.com/news-and-features/features/wonderful-wonton-soup-recipe/#MRxjEMwOQWFhRZlV.99