Saturday, April 24, 2010

Recipe round up

I've been reading a lot about quinoa lately. Recipes for it have been showing up a lot in my food network magazine. People seem to be talking about it. Apparently it's the hot new 'healthy' thing to eat these days. First couscous, now quinoa. I decided to get some and give it a try.

I marinated some chicken in olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon thyme, dill and spicy oregano (all herbs from my little garden). That was thrown on the grill and I made the quinoa w/roasted garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.  The veggies I cheated on, they were just frozen microwave veggies.

I have to say, I don't think a huge fan of quinoa. It just tastes...healthy. I think I'll stick with couscous. The herbs were great on the chicken though.

Recently for dinner I made this recipe. Italian Baked Chicken and Pastina (sorry, no pictures). I changed it just a wee bit based on the reviews. I used two cans of diced italian tomatoes (to avoid the dryness people complained about), two chicken breasts, bow tie pasta and a healthy squeeze of my sun dried tomato paste. It's a pretty tasty recipe. It's light since there aren't any heavy sauces involved and it makes a crap ton. Definitely enough for leftovers for a few lunches. It's super easy and great to throw together when I don't want to be too involved for dinner but want to make sure there's something leftover for lunch.

Lastely, this morning I tried a little trick I've read on the internet in a few places. Candied bacon. Basically you sprinkle bacon with brown sugar and bake it until crispy. Kev's out of town this weekend so I figured it would be a great time to try it (he'd never understand). It was mostly out of curiosity. It was...ok. I thought it'd be more nirvana like based on the way people rave about it. Honestly, I think I prefer my bacon straight up fried and salty. What can I say, I'm a purist.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Playing Catch up

So I've slacked off a bit on posting my food stories and experiments. I'm not branching out as often as I was (laziness) but there are a few things to share.

First, some strawberry short pound cake.

The pound cake was make with this recipe. Very traditional. Loads of butter, eggs, sugar and flour. Nice and basic. I baked it in my silicone bundt pan however and it took FOR-EV-ER. Seriously, like an hour and a half and the middle was still a little runny when I gave up and pulled it out. I let it cool for a good long time and it actually turned out about perfect. The edges were a little over done but the middle was nice and moist.

To top it off I sliced up strawberries and sprinkled them with sugar just let the magic happen while the cake was baking. I also got ambitious and whipped up my own whipped topping using whipping cream, vanilla, and a bit of sugar. Why didn't anybody ever tell me it was so easy? And delicious! Yum!

The pound cake recipe makes a lot of pound cake. Seriously, like a lot. I'm pretty sure that cake weighed like 5lbs when it was all said and done. So I make up Alton Brown's lemon curd recipe (found in the link I just posted) and brought slices to work to share. My lemon curd was a bit too runny and didn't set up properly but still tasted quite delicious when drizzled over the cake.

Speaking of strawberries...

This little guy came off of my strawberry plants I just planted last weekend. So far it's the only ripe berry we've gotten and he was kind of tiny but uber delicious. I can't wait until we get more berries. I'm not sure how many berries 3 plants will produce so I'm considering getting a few more. Fresh strawberries > Kroger strawberries.

Strawberry plants.

Along with strawberries we are also growing herbs, lettuce, tomatos and peppers.

In this box you will find sage, cilantro, lemon thyme, spicy oregano, rosemary, mixed lettuce plants, dill, and parsley.


Green peppers (they're in pots now).

Kevin still has to build a second box for me. I want cherry tomatoes and hot pepper plants too. We're on week 3 of our little garden and so far nobody's died yet so I'm pretty excited. I'm looking forward to using my own herbs in my cooking. I can't wait to try that lemon thyme on some chicken. It smells so delicious.