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Category Archives: One Pot Meals

St. Patrick’s Day Recipes – NYT Cooking

St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner, and if you are looking for some great ideas of what to make this year or want something different beyond the usual corned beef and cabbage, New York Times Cooking has put together an excellent collection of recipes that cover everything you might need. From soda bread to side dishes to desserts and drinks, you will find it all. Check it out.

On a side note, I haven’t been around lately because I have been fighting a terrible cold for 2 weeks now. The cold has pretty much sapped all my strength and leaves me coughing quite a bit. When this has been combined with a heavy workload I have had recently, I have little time for blogging. I am hoping to kick the cold this week as it seems to be waning, and then I can get back to posting recipes. Please bear with me a little bit while I get my strength back. Thanks!

 

Source: St. Patrick’s Day Recipes – NYT Cooking

 

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Delight the Family with Bon Appetit’s Best Chicken and Dumplings Recipe

The weather here in our part of New York has been wild, to say the least. We had days of 70 degrees and higher last week, followed up by torrential rains and the wind and then a plunge back down into the 20s today. It is no wonder that we are all fighting colds here now! So what is better to make when you are fighting the sniffles than a nice stew or soup? I had recently made some homemade chicken stock and was ready to take advantage of it when I decided this would be a very good time to break out some chicken and dumplings. It gave me a great way to use up the leftover chicken I had and combine it with some vegetables, an excellent broth and wonderful dumplings to top it all off. I had seen this recipe in Bon Appetit for the best chicken and dumplings, so it only made sense to give the best a try.

The Best Chicken and Dumplings

4 chicken legs (thigh and drumstick)

1 leek, pale-green and white parts only

4 carrots, 1 whole, 3 chopped into ½-inch rounds

4 celery stalks, 1 whole, 3 chopped into ½-inch pieces

1 medium onion, chopped, divided

3 garlic cloves, smashed

4 sprigs thyme

Parsley stems from ½ a bunch

1 bay leaf

2 teaspoons whole peppercorns

Kosher salt

½ cup chicken fat (schmaltz) or butter, melted, divided

Freshly ground black pepper

1½ cups all-purpose flour, divided

2 teaspoons baking powder

¼ teaspoon baking soda

½ cup plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk

½ cup heavy cream

Chopped chives (for serving), optional

Bring the chicken, leek, whole carrot, whole celery stalk, half of the onion, garlic, thyme, parsley stems, bay leaf, peppercorns, and 3 quarts of water to a simmer in a large wide pot. Cook, uncovered, until the chicken is cooked through, about 40–50 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate and let it sit until it is cool enough to handle. Shred the meat from the thighs and legs, discarding the skin, bones, and excess fat. Cover the meat with foil to keep warm. Alternatively, shred any leftover chicken meat you may have (a mix of dark and white meat is great, but use whatever is available).

Strain the chicken stock through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl; discard the solids. Wipe out the pot, pour the stock back in, and bring the stock to a simmer. Stir in 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of salt. Alternatively, use homemade chicken stock that you have made previously and bring it to a simmer.

Heat ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon of the schmaltz or butter in a large skillet set over medium heat. Cook the chopped carrot, chopped celery, and the remaining onion, occasionally stirring, until the vegetables are softened but not completely tender, about 8–10 minutes; season the vegetables with salt and pepper. Add ½ cup of the flour and cook, stirring, until the vegetables are coated, about 1 minute. Scrape the vegetable mixture into the simmering stock and whisk until the liquid is thickened and no lumps remain, then continue to cook until the vegetables are tender, about 10–15 minutes.

Meanwhile, whisk the baking powder, baking soda, 1 teaspoon of salt, ¼ teaspoon of pepper, and the remaining 1 cup of flour in a medium bowl. Whisk the buttermilk and the remaining 3 tablespoons of schmaltz or butter in a small bowl. Fold the buttermilk mixture into the dry ingredients just until the dough comes together (be careful not to overmix, or the dumplings will be tough).

Add the heavy cream and the reserved chicken meat to the stew and return the mixture to a simmer. Drop tablespoon-sized portions of the dough into stew (don’t worry if they aren’t perfect, they will puff up as they cook). Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook for about 10 minutes. Uncover the pot and check the dumplings for doneness: They should be about 5 times larger and should cover the entire surface of the stew. To be extra sure, you can remove a dumpling and cut it in half to see if it’s cooked through; the interior should look like a soft dinner roll. If they’re not fully cooked, cover and cook for about 2 minutes more.

Divide the chicken soup and dumplings among the serving bowls, then top with the chives, if desired.

This is a very hearty and filling stew/soup. The flavor from the broth is splendid and you get a broth that is just thick enough to provide you with everything that you want. The dumplings are also perfectly soft and tasty and add just the right touch to the dish. I used butter since I didn’t have any chicken schmaltz, leftover chicken and previously made stock to simplify the process even more. All of these shortcuts allowed me to save a lot of prep time and get the dinner on the table in about 35 or 40 minutes and it still had all the flavor you want. This recipe makes plenty; Bon Appetit says it is 6 servings, but you could easily get more out of that, and we had leftovers available for lunches for days. The stew actually gets better the next day, and you can thin it out with a little water or stock to get it the way you want it. It is a nice change of pace from the traditional chicken soup when you want something a little different without a lot of extra work.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

 
 
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Posted by on February 27, 2017 in Cooking, Dinner, One Pot Meals, Poultry, Soups & Stews

 

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Make an Effortless Weeknight Meal – Sheet Pan Chicken with Sweet Potatoes, Apples and Brussels Sprouts

There are stretches of time around our house where things are quiet, and I have plenty of time to plan out a menu, go shopping and make an excellent meal. Then there are the rest of the days of the week where everything gets a little hectic, and we need a meal that can get put together quickly and without much fuss. I still would rather cook something at home than turn to getting a pizza or other takeout food, so there is nothing wrong with throwing a one-pan meal in there to make things quick and painless for dinner. Times like this are when your trusty sheet pan can be the perfect vehicle for your entire meal. I make quite a few one pan or one pot meals, often in a Dutch oven or cast iron skillet, but a sheet pan is perfect for these meals too. I came across this recipe at Well Plated for chicken, sweet potatoes, apples, and Brussel sprouts that was ideal for dinner the other night and thought I would see how it went.

Sheet Pan Chicken with Sweet Potatoes, Apples, and Brussels Sprouts

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of excess fat and lightly pounded to even out thickness

3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

4 cloves minced garlic

2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary, divided

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

1/2 teaspoon black pepper, divided

4 cups Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved (quarter if very large), about 1 pound

1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1 medium red onion, cut into 3/4-inch pieces

1 medium apple, peeled, cored and cut into rough 1-inch pieces 

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

Place the chicken breasts in a large, zip-top bag. Drizzle the chicken with 1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil, then add the garlic, 1 tablespoon of rosemary, the cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper. Zip the bag tightly, then shake and rub the bag to coat the chicken in the oil and spices. Set the chicken aside while you chop the vegetables and apples, or refrigerate the chicken for up to 1 day.

Once chopped, place the Brussels sprouts, sweet potato, onion, and apple on a large, rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle the vegetables and apple with the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil, then sprinkle everything with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper. Toss the ingredients to evenly coat everything, then spread the vegetables and apple into an even layer on the baking sheet.

Remove the chicken from the marinade and place the pieces on top of the apple and vegetables. Place the baking sheet in the oven and roast everything until the chicken is cooked through and the internal temperature reaches 160-165 degrees, about 18  to 22 minutes. Once the chicken is cooked through, remove it to a plate to rest and cover it with foil to keep it warm. Toss the apple and vegetables on the pan, then return the pan to the oven and continue baking until the contents of the baking sheet are caramelized and tender, about 10 to 15 additional minutes. Sprinkle the vegetables and apple with the remaining 1 tablespoon of fresh rosemary. Serve everything warm with the rested chicken.

This is an excellent meal any time of the year, though it seems particularly cozy and warming in the winter months. The flavors are great with the sweet potatoes, apple and Brussels sprouts all nicely roasted together, and the chicken picks up the subtle flavor as well when it is cooked with everything like this. I made two slight changes to this recipe, cooking the sweet potatoes, Brussel sprouts and apples alone at first for about 15 minutes and then adding the chicken pieces on top of everything to cook for the final 20 minutes, so I didn’t have to take the chicken out to let it rest. I also omitted the rosemary since Michelle is not a fan of it and just stuck with salt and pepper, though there are other herbs you could use instead if you wanted some extra punch and flavor. This is the kind of meal that would work well with any chicken pieces you like (drumsticks or thighs would work too) or even use some boneless pork chops instead for something different. The whole meal takes about 35 minutes to cook so you can’t go wrong giving it a try.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

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Posted by on February 16, 2017 in Cooking, Dinner, One Pot Meals, Potatoes, Poultry

 

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A Romantic Weeknight Dinner That’s a Breeze – Marcella Hazan’s Bolognese Sauce

It’s Valentine’s Day, and it’s a weeknight – not exactly a great recipe for putting together a nice, romantic meal with your special someone. The odds are pretty good that you both will be tired and maybe you will not feel like putting together a big meal. If you are like us, Sean has afterschool activities today until later in the evening, Michelle is working late at the office, and there probably won’t be time to do much of anything for dinner, so we’ll put it off until another night. However, it is not too late if you still want to throw something together for dinner, and nothing gets much easier than a nice pasta dinner. You can make a great dinner using this recipe for Marcella Hazan’s Bolognese sauce that I got from New York Times Cooking. It’s worth the little bit of effort you put into it to make a nice meal.

Marcella Hazan’s Bolognese Sauce

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

3 tablespoons butter plus 1 tablespoon for tossing the pasta

½ cup chopped onion

cup chopped celery

cup chopped carrot

¾ pound ground beef chuck (or you can use 1 part pork to 2 parts beef)

Salt

Black pepper, ground fresh from the mill

1 cup milk

Whole nutmeg

1 cup dry white wine

1 ½ cups canned imported Italian plum tomatoes, cut up, with their juice

1 ¼ to 1 ½ pounds pasta

Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese at the table

Put the oil, butter, and chopped onion in the pot and turn the heat on to medium. Cook and stir the onion until it has become translucent, then add the chopped celery and carrot. Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring the vegetables to coat them well.

Add the ground beef, a generous pinch of salt and a few grindings of pepper. Crumble the meat with a fork, stir it well and cook the beef until it has lost its raw, red color.

Add the milk and let it simmer gently, frequently stirring, until it has bubbled away completely. Add a little grating — about 1/8 teaspoon — of nutmeg, and stir.

Add the white wine, let it simmer until it has evaporated, then add the tomatoes and stir them thoroughly to coat all the ingredients well. When the tomatoes begin to bubble, turn the heat down so that the sauce cooks at a very light simmer, with just an occasional bubble breaking through to the surface. Cook the sauce, uncovered, for about 3 hours, stirring from time to time. While the sauce is cooking, you are likely to find that it begins to dry out and the fat separates from the meat. To keep it from sticking, add about 1/2 cup of water whenever necessary. In the end, however, no water at all must be left, and the fat must separate from the sauce. Taste the sauce and correct it for salt.

Toss the sauce with cooked, drained pasta, adding the tablespoon of butter, and serve the meal with freshly grated Parmesan on the side.

I am not a pasta person myself, but Michelle loved this dish when I made it. She said the sauce was perfect and full of flavor. You do want to make sure that you taste the sauce along the way so you can make any adjustments regarding seasoning, water, etc. so it turns out perfectly. The longer you cook this sauce, the greater depth of flavor it will have so you might want to make this when you have time to set in on the stove for hours and let it go, with just the occasional check to see how it is cooking. Bolognese by definition is a pretty straightforward and mild sauce without a lot of spices in it, so the simplicity here lets it shine into a delicious meat sauce. That hint of nutmeg does make a difference so don’t be afraid to put in there. You can certainly let the sauce cook for only an hour or two, but it might not have the deep flavor to it that it will if you go for 3, 4 or even 5 hours. Just keep a watch on it to see if it needs water now and then. This meal is perfect with your favorite fresh pasta, a nice side salad and some homemade or store-bought dressing, some homemade bread (or your favorite store-bought) and a bottle of wine.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day, have a lovely Valentine’s Day and enjoy your meal!

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Posted by on February 14, 2017 in Beef, Cooking, Dinner, Holidays, One Pot Meals, Pasta, Sauce

 

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17 Tips for Faster, Healthier, and Easier Weeknight Dinners | Bon Appetit

Coming up with ways to make easy, fast and healthy dinners can seem impossible sometimes. There are many days when the last thing you want to think about is what is for dinner and wish something could magically appear that you can cook quickly. Instead of turning to pizza delivery or fast food, start using some of these 17 ideas and tips Bon Appetit offers to keep healthy and easy dinner options right in your kitchen so you can throw something great together in just minutes and look like you have been thinking about it all day. Check it out!

Tomorrow should be the day our new appliances come, and hopefully, that will complete our kitchen. It’s been tough trying to cook meals just using an electric pressure cooker, a sandwich press and two small electric burners we borrowed, so it will be great to have a stove again that I can with each day. Fingers crossed it works out tomorrow, and I can get back to recipes!

Source: 17 Tips for Faster, Healthier, and Easier Weeknight Dinners | Bon Appetit

 

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What to Make with Holiday Roast Leftovers- Bon Appétit Recipe | Bon Appetit

The holiday meal is always a great one, but then you are left trying to figure out what to do with all of those leftovers from your roast, turkey, ham or other protein you made. Bon Appetit has put together 14 great recipe ideas with what you can make with some of those leftovers that you aren’t quite sure what to do with. Check it out!

Source: What to Make with Holiday Roast Leftovers- Bon Appétit Recipe | Bon Appetit

 

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More Than 23 Delicious Dinners in 5 Ingredients Or Less – Recipes from NYT Cooking

Like most people, finding time to cook regular meals during the holidays can be even more difficult then the typical weeks that go by. On top of everything going around to get prepared for the Christmas goes work, school, afterschool activities and more. For us, things have been really hectic around here as we are getting our kitchen renovated right before the holidays! I won’t be doing much cooking since the kitchen is going to be gutted and made over from top to bottom (something long overdue), but once it is done we will have a brand new space to work in and try new recipes. In the meantime, here are 23 great recipes from New York Times Cooking that use a minimal amount of ingredients and can be cooked quickly, both ideal for this time of year. Check it out!

Source: More Than 23 Delicious Dinners in 5 Ingredients Or Less – Recipes from NYT Cooking

 

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