25 January 2013

Week 3

 This was an experiment that went well.
 When I lived in Florida a woman I worked with was from Peru and she gave me this recipe for a green sauce that is very tasty.  It has been years since I made it and out of the blue I was craving some.  In the past we had used it on chili, spaghetti and Mexican dishes.  I had chicken to cook and decided to see how it worked together.

The Green Sauce
1 green bell pepper
2-3 jalapenos
1 onion
4-5 garlic cloves
1 teaspoon sea salt
Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Combine all ingredients in processor and mix adding Olive Oil slowly.  (Sorry I didn't measure how much I used.) You don't want it too runny.  You want it all finely diced and combined but somewhat thick in consistency.

I took 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts and cut into strips
Then marinated the chicken in soy sauce, a pinch of red pepper and ginger.  Let marinate while you cook up a pot of rice. (brown or white would work)
Saute the chicken in olive oil until cooked through.

Serve the chicken over rice and top with a spoon full or two of the green sauce.  I served it with toasted garlic bread.

I will be making this one again soon.  It was that good.

18 January 2013

Week 2 Recipe Challenge

Ham and Bean Soup

First, I soaked 1 1 pound bag of northern beans over night.  You could also use canned but be sure and  drain and rinse.

In a large stock pot I filled 3/4 with water and I added a large ham bone, celery tops and a couple of bay leaves and some fresh cracked black pepper.  I let that simmer for a couple of hours on low.  Strain and set aside.

I then sauteed one diced onion, 3 diced celery stalks, 3 diced medium carrots.

I added about 2 cups of diced ham.

Next, add the ham stock and beans and simmer covered for about an hour on low or you could add all ingredients in your crock pot and cook on low for 5-6 hours.

I served with cornbread and it was delicious!

07 January 2013

Week 1 of my personal recipe challenge

In 2011 one of my New Year's resolutions was to try one new recipe each week. For the most part I did very well with this resolution and even into 2012 I continued.   One thing I wish I would have done though is keep better track of those that I made.  So through 2013 I will again be making a new recipe each week only this time, record the ones I've tried, any thing I'd do differently and how we liked it.
This week the recipe was chosen by The Big Guy.  We were on a short road trip and I was reading the January issue of Food Network Magazine when he looked over and saw the picture of 'Nacho Chicken Drumsticks' and replied...OH we HAVE to try those.
Sundays seem to be the days that I have the most time to experiment so yesterday I tried the recipe and neither of us was disappointed, especially not him. :-)

Nacho Chicken Drumsticks from food network magazine
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 9 oz bag tortilla chips finely crushed ( I used about 5 cups)
4 large eggs
12 medium chicken drumsticks
Vegetable oil for frying
1 1/2 Cups grated cheddar, jack or muenster cheese ( I used cheddar)
Fresh salsa, guacamole and sliced jalapenos for topping

Put the flour in a large bowl.  Put the crushed chips in another large bowl and whisk the eggs in a third bowl. Coat each drumstick with flour. One at a time, dip each drumstick in the beaten egg and then dredge in the crushed chips turning to coat.  Place on a baking sheet until ready to fry.
Pre heat oven to 425 degrees.  Fill a large pan with 3 inches of vegetable oil and heat over medium high heat until a deep fry thermometer registers 350 degrees.  Working in batches, fry the drumsticks until golden and cooked through, about 15 minutes.  Drain on paper towels.

Arrange the drumsticks on a large ovenproof pan and sprinkle with the cheese.  Bake until the cheese melts, about 4 or 5 minutes.  to with salsa, guacamole and jalapenos.


Week 1 was a success.  It isn't something we will eat often but I see it being requested during football season. 

01 January 2013

Here is to 2013!!

When I first started this blog a few years ago my main focus at the time was simplifying my life, figuring out ways to live a more sustainable lifestyle and getting adjusted to moving back to the Midwest after living in SW Florida for 20 years.
Well I have adjusted to my community and I realize now that living in a sustainable and simple way is an ongoing lifestyle that I will continue to grow in and learn more about each day.

About a year or so later my interest in cooking flourished and I focused on recipes and food.  In fact, my New Years resolution in 2011 was to try one new recipe a week which I did.  We ate really well in 2011 and I had a lot of fun while learning new techniques.  I realize now that my interest in growing and cooking food really ties into my simple/sustainable lifestyle.

2012 I didn't blog once.  I was busy living and doing and didn't feel the urge to blog about it.  It was a great year though.  November of 2011 I finally found a job that I LOVE as an administrative assistant for a group of awesome doctors.  My husband and I found the perfect for us home in April and on my birthday it became ours. And our relationships and life has continued to flourish.

Now it is January 1st 2013 and I feel the urge to blog again.  What direction or genre this blog will take...I do not know.  I know I plan to continue cooking from scratch, growing some of our food, making our house our home and living as simply as possible. We have a lot of home projects planned for this year.  I am making plans for our garden.  I will be reading a lot of good books. I will be watching a few good movies.  I will be spending time with the ones I love and  I intend to live, laugh, learn and love a LOT this year. So if any of those things interest you, I'd love to have you follow along on the ride.

So here is to 2013...may all our dreams come true!!!