"What's for Dinner?!" I'm always thinking about it, thought I'd share.

"What's for Dinner?!" I'm always thinking about it, thought I'd share.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Roasted Beets with Goat Cheese and Walnuts

I love roasted beets and the goat cheese is such a classic go with.  I use latex gloves to handle the beets, so my hands aren't ruby red for the rest of the day.  Enjoy!

Serves 4

6 fresh large beets, peeled, washed and cut into 2” pieces
Good olive oil
A squeeze of fresh lemon juice
Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
1 tsp. fresh thyme
1/4 cup toasted and chopped walnuts
4 ounces of goat cheese, roughly crumbled

Preheat oven to 400°F.

In a medium sized mixing bowl toss beets with olive oil, lemon juice, thyme, salt and black pepper. 

Place on a rimmed baking pan that is lined with parchment paper. Place pan with beets into hot oven and cook for 15 minutes. Remove and using a kitchen spoon turn beets and return to oven for another 10-12 minutes or until beets are cooked all the way through.  Remove from oven and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Add crumbled goat cheese and top with walnuts, serve and enjoy!

Chicken stuffed with Ham and Mushrooms

Sometimes dishes just come to me.  I knew I was going to do something with the chicken breasts we had in the frig.  I normally don't like breast meat, I'm a dark meat guy.  Give me a succulent thigh, braised or brined, then grilled and I'm lovin' it.  But, this is what we had.  I saw the ham and put the rest together.  It came out great and pretty easy to assemble and cook.  I finished the chicken with a little butter and used the pan juices for a quick and easy sauce, but you could make a separate sauce too. Enjoy!

Serves 6

4 skinned and deboned chicken breasts
1/2# good smoked ham, shaved thinly
1 C. sliced baby Bella mushrooms
2 shallots, minced
1/4 C. Chicken stick or broth
3/4 C. Grated Gruyere cheese
1 large clove garlic, peeled and minced
3 Tbsp. Olive oil
1 tsp. fresh thyme
1/2 tsp. Paprika
Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper

Wooden toothpicks

Preheat oven to 400°F.
Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add some olive oil and get hot. Add shallots, stir and cook until translucent; about 3 to 4 minutes.  Add garlic and cook another minute. Add mushrooms and season with sea salt to help bring out moisture. Stir and cook until mushrooms get golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Add stock and fresh time to taste, mix well and reduce liquid until almost dry. Taste and correct seasoning with salt and black pepper. Remove from heat and let cool on the side.

Using a very sharp knife carefully cut a pocket in each chicken breast. Stuff each breast by layering some smoked ham, then mushroom mixture and top with some cheese. Gently press down on top of the chicken breast and using a few wooden toothpicks secure edges of the pocket, so filling does not come out during cooking. Place stuffed chicken on a rimmed baking pan and season with paprika, sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and place in hot oven. Cook for 25 minutes, then transfer under hot broiler for last 4-5 minutes to get brown. Remove from broiler and let rest for 10 minutes.

Remove toothpicks and slice on the bias. Serve and enjoy!

Monday, April 9, 2018

Colcannon Potatoes

Keeping with Sunday's Irish themed dinner, this staple was a must.  Traditionally done with cabbage, I substituted kale.  It came out a winner and added some nice color to the plate.  If you have left-overs, add a whole egg and form into small cakes and fry up golden brown.  Makes a nice take on hash browns for breakfast or goes great with a salad for lunch.  Enjoy!

Serves 4-6
1 small bunch kale, washed, stem removed, and shredded
1/2 cup chicken stock
4 large russet potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 Tbsp. mayonnaise
1/2 cup green onions, chopped
1/4 cup melted butter
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
3 strips of good smoked bacon, cooked and chopped

Garnish- Fresh parsley, minced

Place cut potatoes into a large pot filled with water, salt and bring to boil.  Cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until they are tender.

While potatoes are cooking, place kale and chicken stock in a large sauce pan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, simmer covered, until kale is tender about 10 minutes. Drain, reserving cooking liquid in a bowl. Place green onions in drained kale liquid and keep warm.

Drain potatoes; place in a large bowl and mash. Add mayonnaise, kale and chicken stock with onions.  Mix until just blended.  Correct seasoning with sea salt and fresh ground pepper.  To serve, drizzle with butter top with parsley and bacon. Enjoy!

Oven Braised Corned Beef

A good corned beef dinner is not just for St. Paddy's day. I served this with sautéed Swiss Chard, dates and toasted pumpkin seeds and a nice serving of Colcannon Potatoes.  I added some horseradish mustard on the side and away we go!  Of course, braised cabbage is traditional AND boiled potatoes of some sort. (Yes, and beer)  30-40 minutes before beef is ready to come out of the oven you can add carrots, cabbage, and potatoes to make a fabulous one pot meal if you like.  Have fun and Enjoy!

Olive oil
3# Corned Beef brisket with seasoning packet
1 bottle good hoppy beer
1/2 C. Chicken stock or broth
3 Tbsps. brown sugar
1 medium onion, peeled and sliced thinly
1 Tbsp. Garlic powder
2 Bay leaves

Remove corned beef brisket from package, reserve spice packet. Rinse thoroughly and pat dry.  Rub spice packet on fat side of brisket and garlic powder on all sides. Reserve off to the side for an hour to let reach room temperature.

Preheat oven to 275° F.
In a Dutch oven heat a tablespoon of olive oil over med-high heat.  Add sliced onions and cook till they soften and start to turn brown, 4-5 minutes.  Add beer, chicken stock, brown sugar, and bay leaves. Bring to a boil, add corned beef; cover and place into oven.  Cook for 1 1/2 hours then check the amount of liquid in Dutch oven around beef, add additional stock if low or starting to dry. Cover and continue to cook another 1 1/2 hours. Remove from oven and let sit covered for 30 minutes. Remove brisket from Dutch oven and slice across the grain with a serrated blade.  Serve with your favorite mustard or horseradish if you like. Enjoy!

Sunday, April 8, 2018

The Weekly Menu 4/8- 4/14

Braised Corned Beef with Horseradish Mustard sauce
Colcannon potatoes
Sautéed Swiss Chard with Toasted Pumpkin Seeds and Dates

Pan Roasted Black Cod Vera Cruz
Oven Roasted Eggplant
Crispy Asparagus with Shallots

Sticky Soy Glazed Pork Loin
Stir-Fried Vegetables
Chopped Salad with a Sesame-Ginger Vinaigrette

Marinated and Grilled Chicken
Spaghetti Squash with Olive Oil, Parmesan, and Garlic
Oven Roasted Broccoli

Wheat-Free Pasta and Vegetables with Roasted Tomatoes and Basil
Grilled Caesar Salad

Sous Vide New York Strip Steak
Chophouse Salad with Italian Vinaigrette
Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Whitefish with Crab Stuffing

I love this combination to "fancy" it up for dinner.  It's simple to make, so you don't have to wait for the weekend.  I served it with simple steamed broccoli and a sweet potato and smoked ham hash.  It works nicely with rice and asparagus also.  I served a nice New Zealand sauvignon blanc which paired perfectly.  Enjoy!

Serves 4-6

2 whitefish filets
olive oil

1 can crab meat
2 Tbsp. diced onion
2 Tbsp. diced celery
1 Tbsp. diced green bell pepper
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp. mayonnaise
1/4 C. panko breadcrumbs, plus a little extra fro topping
dash or two paprika
2-3 dashes Tabasco
sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375° F.

Prepare stuffing; in a mixing bowl combine all ingredients.  Mix to combine, being careful not to break up the crab too much.  Set aside.

Take a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Drizzle a small amount of olive oil on paper where you will be laying the fish.  Lay fish, skin side down.  Lightly season filets with salt and pepper.  Take stuffing and spread evenly on fish.  Sprinkle extra breadcrumbs on top and drizzle with olive oil. 

Place sheet tray with fish into hot oven and cook for 20-25 minutes or until fish is cooked through and stuffing is browned.  You may need to finish under the broiler to get the golden brown color you desire on top.  Remove fish from oven and let rest 5-7 minutes.  Serve and Enjoy!