Showing posts from August 15, 2010

Spicy Corn Soup

There's still some summer left.  Time for soup!

I had this bright idea to serve a soup designed to be served like revenge: cold.  Except everyone hated this soup cold.  So I went back and heated it up again.  They were right.  This particular soup is really better hot.

The spiciness come from adobo sauce.  Adobo is Spanish for "burns like an SOB."  No, it actually means "sauce" or "marinade."  According to Wise Geek, it is usually made of tomatoes, chili peppers, garlic, vinegar, plus other spices depending upon the brand.  It comes in a small can packed with chipotle peppers. You can find it in the Mexican section of the supermarket.   

Tip Alert!  When I don't use the entire can in a recipe, I pour the remainder in a freezer bag, flatten then freeze it so I can break off a chunk the next time I need some of the sauce or just one pepper.

I must warn you, adobo sauce is rather spicy.  Despite being "cut" with olive oil, you might want to…

Chicken Spring Rolls - Easy

Spring rolls are wraps that you can see through.  Similar to egg rolls, they are made with translucent rice paper instead of egg roll "skins."  Different from egg rolls, they are usually not fried after wrapping.

Spring rolls are pretty versatile.  They can be served for lunch or dinner, as an appetizer or entree.

Not only are these wraps easy, if you start with leftover chicken this is super fast -- maybe 15 minutes to make, 20 if you count assembling all the ingredients beforehand.  And you do want to work fast -- the rice paper rounds tear easily and are a little difficult to handle if you let them soak too long.

In this recipe I prefer to use carcinogenic grilled chicken, but roasted is fine as well.  My preference is to use boneless breasts in order to slice easilly, but feel free to shred.  You are in charge here. 

Chicken Spring Rolls
Adapted from The Perfect Pantry
Yield:  8-10 rolls,depending upon how much filling is used per each

 2 skinless, boneless chicken brea…

Macaroni and Cheese - easy

A Faithful Reader had asked for a mac and cheese recipe a few postings ago.  Since he asked so nicely, I will indulge and you, and part with my family secret version.

I used to make macaroni and cheese several times a month.   I'd gently melt some butter, spoon in the same amount of flour, then stir stir stir for a few minutes to cook out the flour-y taste.  Only then would the milk be whisked in, slowly slowly slowly slowly to avoid lumps.  Then more stir stir stirring to prevent burnt spots on the saucepan bottom, which give a nasty burnt flavor to the delicate beurre blanc.

After the sauce came to a delicate simmer, I would add two different cheeses, cheddar (of course) and swiss, lovingly hand-grated using the large grate holes, which are more difficult to grate on especially when there's only a small piece of cheese left to grate.  I use swiss cheese because it smooths out the flavor and adds a hint of nuttiness.  The kids probably never noticed all the extra work, but I…

Spicy Tomato Rice Soup

This is the third and last item in Tomato Days, or What to Do When the Neighbors Leave a Bag O'Tomatoes on Your Doorstep.

I have tagged this recipe as Mexican only because it calls for chipotle pepper.   I could make it more mexican-ish by adding a few more items, but the semi-long list of ingredients already gives some of my readers heart palpitations ... I didn't want to kill them outright.  But for you more adventuresome readers, feel free to add a cup or so of corn (off the cob), couple tablespoons lime juice, up to one teaspoon cumin, and/or any other Mexican spice you like to really jazz up the final product. 

Speaking of which, by "spicy," I mean flavor, NOT heat.  But if you are still nervous, then simply leave out the hot paprika and chipotle pepper.   Just don't complain when you taste the soup and think it "needs something."

Spicy Tomato Rice Soup
Serves 4

1/2 cup long-grain rice
1 cup water
1 Tbl. butter or margarine
1 medium onion
1/2 tsp. ce…

Bruschetta - Easy

Second in the Tomato Days recipe is bruschetta.  Bruschetta is a round of toasted, thinly sliced baguette (I prefer French over Italian bread because it makes one-bite servings), topped with a mixture of tomatoes, vinegar, oil and herbs and spices.  Just like chicken soup, there are a myriad of ingredient variations.

The interesting thing is, if you change the basil to cilantro, you pretty much have salsa.   It's amazing how making such a little change can affect a recipe so.

Holey bread, Batman!

You can slice the baguette (and I hope that your has smaller holes) a few days prior to or a few hours before you plan to serve the bruschetta.  That way the slices can dry out naturally.  If you can't plan that far in advance, place the baguette slices in a single layer on an ungreased baking sheet.  Place in the broiler for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, watching carefully so they don't burn.  Remove as soon as the slices start to brown.

I can't believe that I've never posted th…

Tomato Salad - Easy

My neighbor the other day kindly dropped off a few  tomatoes of varying sizes and colors.  Now when you have an assortment of lovingly grown tomatoes that somehow managed to avoid the herds (and by herds I mean hordes) of deer we have around here, you do not want to just slice and slap them on a tuna sandwich.  Well, of course you can, and it would taste delicious.  What I mean is that they need to be the stars of a recipe.

By coincidence, I was perusing a rival's another food blog, and a recent post just happened to mention in passing the "traditional Italian tomato salad."

Perfect! Except that I am neither Italian nor traditional. So I fired up the laptop and surfed through a bunch of intertube recipes, taking a little from this recipe and a little from that, to (hopefully) create my very own. Note to my Italian readers -- hope this recipe meets with your approval.

Because all the kids were out of the house tonight, I only made a half-batch. As a result, the photos …