Santa Fe Hominy
This recipe is from the cookbook "Southwest the Beautiful Cookbook" and I tried it because I have never cooked with hominy.
Hominy is a dried corn that has been treated with slaked lime to dissolve and remove the hulls, then slightly cooled.
It is available in grocery stores as canned white or yellow hominy. I bought the white.
Quite honestly, it does not have much flavor and is definitely dependent on whatever else is added.
So I tried this as a side dish.
It takes quite a bit of salt and is best with lots of cheese.
The recipe said you could also add cooked chorizo to make this a maindish and I do think that would make it better.
So here is my first adventure using hominy...
2 Tbsp. CORN OIL
2 cloves GARLIC, minced
1 1/2 c. RED ONION, chopped
Two 15-ounce cans of HOMINY (yellow or white), rinsed and drained
3 TOMATOES, diced
2 POBLANO CHILIES, roasted, peeled, cored, seeded and diced
1 JALAPENO CHILI, seeded and minced
1 c. grated ASADERO or MONTEREY JACK CHEESE (I used marbled Colby Jack)
SALT to taste
Heat the oil in a skillet. When hot, add the garlic and onions; cook, stirring, over medium heat until the onions are translucent.
Stir in the hominy, tomatoes and chilies; cover and simmer over low heat for about 15 minutes, or until all the ingredients are well blended and the vegetables are tender.
Remove the cover and sprinkl the cheese over the hominy. Stir just until the cheese is melted and serve immediately.
Creamy Baked Grits with Sun-dried Tomatoes and Goat Cheese
Working in my little garden has kept me busy recently and our meals have been quite simple.
Tonight I was looking for comfort food and decided to try this recipe from "Bon Appetit, Fast, Easy, Fresh"
along with grilled chicken and some yellow squash from my daughter's garden.
This recipe is definitely a keeper. If you've never tried grits, I encourage you to do so.
So as I was making the grits, I sent my husband outside to pick some fresh thyme.
I knew that the label was not on that herb so I directed him to get some sprigs from a plant that looks like wire stems with tiny leaves.
I guess my description was adequate as he came in with the correct herb.
2 1/2 c. low salt CHICKEN BROTH
2 Tbsp. BUTTER
1 clove GARLIC, chopped
1/2 c. quick-cooking GRITS
3/4 c. HEAVY WHIPPING CREAM, divided
1/2 c. diced drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
1 tsp. fresh THYME
1 c. crumbled soft GOAT CHEESE (about 4 ounces)
SALT and PEPPER to taste
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Generously butter an 8x8x2-inch baking dish.
Bring broth, butter and garlic to a boil in a heavy medium saucepan.
Gradually whisk in grits and return mixture to a boil, whisking occasionally.
Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until grits are thick and almost all the broth is absorbed, whisking often, about 8 minutes.
Mix in 1/2 c. cream and simmer 5 minutes.
Mix in remaining 1/4 c. cream and simmer until very thick, whisking often, about 5 minutes longer.
Stir in tomatoes and thyme.
Season with salt and pepper.
Pour into prepared baking dish.
Sprinkle with goat cheese.
Bake until cheese softens, about 15 minutes.
Makes 6 side-dish servings
Orzo and Roasted Vegetable Salad
I picked up some golden beets from my friend Rick at the Rockwall Farmer's Market for this salad.
The recipe is from a favorite cookbook... "Sensational Salads" by Barbara-Scott Goodman.
4 small BEETS, preferably a mix of red and gold
6 Tbsp. extra-virgin OLIVE OIL
2 tsp. BALSAMIC VINEGAR
4 CARROTS, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch disks
4 PARSNIPS, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch disks
6 SHALLOTS, peeled
1 lb. ORZO PASTA
3 Tbsp. fresh LEMON JUICE
8 SCALLIONS, trimmed and minced
1/2 c. fresh FLAT LEAF PARSLEY
1/3 c. PINE NUTS, lightly toasted
Freshly ground PEPPER
Preheat the oven to 350 degreees F.
Wrap the beets tightly in foil to make 2 packages (2 beets in each) and roast until tender, about 1 hour.
Let cool, slip off the skins, and cut the beets into quarters lengthwise.
Transfer to a medium bowl and add 1 Tbsp. olive oil and 1 tsp. vinegar and toss together.
Meanwhile, put the carrots, parsnips, and shallots in a large roasting pan.
Add 2 Tbsp. olive oil and salt to taste and toss well to coat the vegetables.
Roast stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are lightly browned and tender, about 30-40 minutes.
Transfer to a medium bowl and add the remaining 1 tsp. vinegar and 1 Tbsp. of olive oil and toss together.
Cook the orzo according to the package directions.
Drain, cool, and transfer to a large bowl.
Add 2 Tbsp. lemon juide and toss well.
Stir in the roasted carrot mixture, scallions, parsley, and pine nuts and toss gently to combine.
Add the remaining 1 Tbsp. lemon juice, the remaining 2 Tbsp. olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste and toss well.
Spoon the reserved beets over the top of the salad.
Drizzle with additional lemon juice and olive oil if desired.
Serve at room temperature.
If you have leftovers, it is also good heated with some olive oil drizzled on top and sprinkled with some Parmesan cheese.
Chicken Panini with Salsa Verde
So for lunch today, I had some left-over grilled chicken breasts and some asiago bread and decided to pair these
with a salsa verde "green sauce" and cheese to make a panini.
Several years ago I bought a panini press that I absolutely love.
This salsa verde does not use tomatillos but rather uses parsley to make a sauce similar to a chimichurri.
It is easy to make in a food processor and can be used also as a topping for grilled meats or fish.
The salsa recipe is from one of my favorite cookbooks: "Bon Appetit Fast, Easy, Fresh"
Thank you to my daughter for the fresh salad greens from her garden and I picked a couple tomatoes from my petite garden.
3 c. (loosely packed) fresh ITALIAN FLAT-LEAF PARSLEY
3 GREEN ONIONS, sliced
3 Tbsp. fresh LEMON JUICE
3 GARLIC CLOVES, peeled
2 canned ANCHOVY FILLETS, drained
1 Tbsp. CAPERS, drained
1 Tbsp. DIJON MUSTARD
1 1/2 Tsp. LEMON PEEL, finely grated
1/2 c. extra-virgin OLIVE OIL
SALT and PEPPER, to taste
Combine first 8 ingredients and 1/2 cup oil in processor.
Using on/off turns, process until coarse paste forms.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.
To make panini:
CHICKEN BREAST, grilled and sliced
CHEESE, grated (I used Monterey Jack. Pepper Jack or any melting cheese would be good)
RUSTIC BREAD, sliced on the diagonal (I used Asiago)
Make sandwiches: slice of bread topped with cheese, chicken, salsa verde, more cheese and another slice of bread.
Brush outside of sandwich with olive oil and place in heated panini press until nicely toasted and cheese is melted.
Tacos de Pescado
Otherwise known as... easy fish tacos. This is a quick, easy meal, especially if you use the store-bought guacamole.
This recipe is from "Southwest the Beautiful Cookbook".
The photos in this book are so "delicious" that you may find yourself gnawing at the pages themselves!
6 FLOUR TORTILLAS
1 lb. firm white-fleshed fish fillelts such as SNAPPER, ROCKFISH or SEA BASS (I used tillapia)
2 Tbsp. LEMON JUICE
SALT and PEPPER to taste
2 GARLIC CLOVES, minced
1 Tbsp. VEGETABLE OIL
Garnishes: shredded lettuce, guacamole, sour cream, chopped tomatoes, cilantro, and a drizzle of lemon or lime juice
Warm the tortillas wrapped in foil in a 350 degree oven for 15-20 minutes, or heat in the microwave.
Rinse the fish with cold wter and pat dry.
Rub 1 Tbsp. of lemon juice over the surface of the fish.
Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and minced garlic.
Heat a large cast-iron skillet over high heat until almost smoking, add the vegetable oil, then the fish.
Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until golden.
Sprinkle with the second tablespoon of lemon juice, then shred or dice it and place in the center of the warm tortilla.
Garnish as desired. Fold and eat!
Strawberry Jalapeño Jam
What is it about that combination of sweet and hot flavors that I find to be so seductive?
This jam can be used as a spread for bread or toast or can be spooned over a block of cream cheese to serve with crackers as an appetizer.
The amount of "heat" will depend on how hot your peppers are. Yes, the heat level can vary.
Start with less and taste as you cook the jam. If not "hot" enough... add a little more to your taste.
4 c. STRAWBERRIES, crushed (I pulsed them a few times in the food processor)
1 c. JALAPENO PEPPERS, minced in the food processor
1/4 c. LEMON JUICE
1 pkg. POWDERED FRUIT PECTIN (1.75 ounces)
7 c. SUGAR
8 half-pint CANNING JARS WITH LIDS and RINGS
Place the strawberries, jalapeno pepper, lemon juice, and pectin into a large saucepan, and bring to a boil over high heat.
Once simmering, stir in the sugar until dissolved, return to a boil, and cook for 1 minute.
Sterilize the jars and lids in boiling water for at least 5 minutes.
Pack the jam into the hot sterilized jars, filling the jars to within 1/4 inch of the top.
Run a knife or a thin spatula around the insides of the jars after they have been filled to remove any air bubbles.
Wipe the rims of the jars with a moist paper towel to remove any food residue.
Top with lids, and screw on rings.
Place a rack in the bottom of a large stockpot and fill halfway with water.
Bring to a boil over high heat, then carefully lower the jars into the pot using a holder.
Leave a 2 inch space between the jars.
Pour in more boiling water if necessary until the water level is at least 1 inch above the tops of the jars.
Bring the water to a full boil, cover the pot and process for 10 minutes.
Remove the jars from the stockpot and place onto a cloth-covered or wood surface.
Allow to cool overnight.
Once cool, press the top of each lid with a finger, ensuring that the seal is tight (lid does not move up or down at all).
If the seal is not tight, place in the refrigerator; otherwise, store in a cool, dark area.
Be sure to refrigerate after opening.
As my niece might say, "This is 'The Bomb'!"
And by the way... Happy Doughnut Week!
From what I have read, the UK celebrates doughnuts from May 12-19 this year and the bakers donate money from the sale of doughnuts to the Children's Trust:
I think that's a marvelous idea and would love to see it take hold in this country.
We certainly eat enough doughnuts to raise money for a good cause!
So in honor of the everyday doughnut... I present you with a dessert using some of that Strawberry Jalapeno Jam.
These are the ingredients:
GLAZED DOUGHNUTS (1 per serving)
VANILLA ICE CREAM
STRAWBERRY JALAPENO JAM (see previous recipe)
MINT or LEMON BALM for garnish
Halve the doughnut and put the bottom half, cut side up on a dessert plate.
Top with vanilla ice cream.
Put a spoonful of jam on the ice cream.
Place top half of doughnut on the ice cream.
Drizzle some more jam on the doughnut.
Decorate with whipped cream and a strawberry on top.
Garnish with additional berries and mint or lemon balm.
Now that's "The Bomb"!
Mexican-Style Roasted Corn
Summer has once again come to Texas... temperatures of 90 degrees and sunny!
There are certain foods that I think of as "summertime" foods and one of them is corn-on-the-cob.
We've always eaten corn-on-the-cob simply boiled and then garnished with butter and salt.
The last time I went to Mexico I saw street vendors selling grilled corn with mayonnaise, chili powder and cheese.
I can still remember the aroma as the corn was grilling.
When I found this recipe in Saveur, I knew I had to try it.
Beware... this is the messiest and the most delicious corn you will ever eat!
Serve with lots of napkins or paper towels! This is no time to be fancy!!
Though amounts are given for the garnish... I prefer to just set out the necessary ingredients and let everyone fix their own corn to their liking.
4 large ears of CORN, with husks still attached
1/2 c. MAYONNAISE
1 1/2 c. COTIJA CHEESE, crumbled (you may substitute Parmesan cheese or Queso Fresco)
4 Tbsp. CILANTRO, minced
4 tsp. ANCHO CHILE POWDER
Kosher SALT and freshly ground PEPPER, to taste
1 LIME, cut into 4 wedges
Working with one ear of corn at a time, peel back the husks to expose the kernels, leaving husks attached at the base.
Remove the silk threads and tie husks together with kitchen twine around base of cob to form a handle.
Repeat with remaining ears.
Transfer corn to a large bowl or pot of water and let soak for 30 minutes (husks and all).
Build a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill or heat a gas grill over medium-high heat.
Transfer corn to grill; cook turning occasionally, until charred and cooked through, about 20 minutes.
Remove the corn from the grill and brush with mayonnaise.
Place cheese on a plate and roll each ear of corn in cheese to coat.
Sprinkle corn evenly with some of the cilantro, chile powder, and salt and pepper, pressing the corn so that seasonings and cheese will adhere to the mayonnaise.
Serve with lime wedges. (Do not omit the squeeze of lime juice! It is sublime!)
Grab a hold of the husks, (they make a natural handle)... and get ready to get messy!
Serves 4... but this is so good, that you may want to double the ingredients and plan on 2 ears per person!
BLT Blue Cheese Caesar Burger
Summer is here and it's time for burgers on the grill, and this is one of my favorites...
Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato, Blue Cheese Caesar Burger.
Now that's a mouthful!
Burger patty, seasoned to your preference (not too much salt please, as your Caesar is salty)
Blue Cheese Caesar Salad (see page 4 of "My Recipe Box")
Blue Cheese, a little extra to top the burger
Bacon, cut in pieces and cooked until crispy
Rustic Italian Bread (or roll of your choice), grilled
Grill burger. Top with some blue cheese and place on grilled bread or roll.
Top with a few tomato slices, Blue cheese caesar salad, bacon, and other piece of bread.
Peach, Prosciutto and Goat Cheese Salad
The farmer's markets are featuring their early season peaches and they are delicious... ripe, sweet and juicy, unlike the peaches you buy in the grocery store.
This is a simple salad to put together.
1/3 c. OLIVE OIL
1/4 c. fresh LIME JUICE
3 Tbsp. SHALLOTS, minced
1 1/2 Tbsp. HONEY
1/2 tsp. PEPPER
1/4 tsp. SALT
2 c. CURLY LEAF LETTUCE (or salad greens of your choice)
2 ripe PEACHES, peeled and sliced
8 thin slices PROSCIUTTO
1 ounce GOAT CHEESE
Combine oil, lime juice, shallots, honey, pepper and salt in a jar. Cover tightly and shake to blend.
Let stand 1 hour for flavors to blend.
Toss salad greens with some of the dressing and arrange lettuce, peach slices and prosciutto on individual plates.
Crumble cheese over salads.
(I served this with a Shrimp and Cilantro Pesto Pizza)
Shrimp and Cilantro Pesto Pizza
This recipe is an adaptation of a recipe I recently read that sounded good.
I was looking for a quick fix and decided to use naan flatbread to prepare this recipe rather than a homemade pizza crust.
You could also use an already baked pizza crust for ease of preparation.
Adjust amounts of ingredients depending on the size of crust you are using.
1 clove GARLIC
1/4 c. EXTRA-VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
1 handful CILANTRO
SALT, to taste
1/2 lb. SHRIMP, shelled and deveined
2 SCALLIONS, thinly sliced
PARMESAN CHEESE, shaved
DRIED CHILI FLAKES, to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Place crust on a baking sheet or cast iron skillet.
Buzz together the garlic, olive oil and cilantro in a food processor and add salt to taste.
Spread this over your flatbread or pizza crust.
Sauté shrimp in a little bit of olive oil for about 2 minutes on each side, or until pink and arrange on top of cilantro pesto.
Sprinkle with scallions, Parmesan cheese and dried chili flakes.
Bake for about 10 minutes until crust is lightly browned and cheese is melted. This will vary depending on the type of crust you use.
Focaccia with Potatoes, Cherry Tomatoes and Rosemary
So once again I am at Half Price Books and I'm flipping through the pages of a cookbook and this focaccia recipe had me drooling.
It is from the book "Healthy Cooking for IBS" and I have marked a lot of recipes to try.
This is not difficult to make and the flavor is incredible.
You could also add some caramelized onion, chopped herbs or olives when forming the flatbread.
8 c. WHOLEWHEAT FLOUR
COARSE SEA SALT, to taste
Freshly ground BLACK PEPPER, to taste
1 pkg. ACTIVE DRIED YEAST
1 tsp. SUGAR
2 3/4 c. LUKEWARM WATER
2 Tbsp. EXTRA-VIRGIN OLIVE OIL, plus a little extra
32-34 CHERRY TOMATOES (I used yellow and red)
1 medium POTATO, cooked and peeled
Several ROSEMARY SPRIGS
Put the flour, 2 tsp. salt, the yeast, sugar, water and 1 Tbsp. of the olive oil in a bowl or food processor.
Knead for about 5 minutes into a soft and slightly sticky ball. (I used the dough hook of my mixer).
Using your hand, smear a film of oil on top, to stop the dough from drying out.
Cover with a dish towel and allow to rise in a warm place for about 2 hours or until doubled in size.
While the bread is rising, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Put the tomatoes in a gratin dish with the remaining olive oil, salt and pepper and bake in the oven for about 1 hour until all the juices have evaporated and the tomatoes are caramelized.
Turn the heat down if the tomatoes are starting to burn.
When the dough has risen, coarsely break up the potatoes into small pieces and fold into the dough.
Lightly grease a baking sheet with olive oil and spread the dough out to form a round of about 12-18 inches diameter.
Dot over the tomatoes, smashing them into the bread, and smear any cooking juices from them over the top: this is the tastiest bit.
Scatter over the rosemary sprigs and finally season with salt and pepper.
Increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees F.
Leave the dough to rise again for about 30 minutes.
Once it has risen a second time, bake in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
As soon as it comes out of the oven, drizzle a little olive oil over it and leave to cool for 10 minutes before serving warm.