Thursday, January 31, 2013

Hot Wings

Opps, I just found this post that never made it to the blog.

We invited the Hetzel family over to watch the Super Bowl
this year. I knew that my husband wanted to watch the game
and we enjoy our time with the Hetzel family so it was
a perfect combination.

For dinner I made hot wings with home-made
blue cheese dressing and a Greek salad.
I made salted, carmel brownies for dessert.

This is a great hot wing recipe because
the wings are cooked right in the oven ~
no fuss with a deep fryer. We took the
time to brine the wings before cooking
them so the chicken was crispy on
the outside and so tender on the inside
it was falling off the bones.

I think the hot wings were a hit because
there weren't any left over :)

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Lentil Soup with Cauliflower

I usually use part of Sunday to get ahead with my cooking for the week.   It is a regular event for me to be cooking something like soup or a casserole that can be made ahead of time and served for dinner later in week. 

This weekend I took on a Moroccan recipe that I found in my Eating Well Magazine.
The recipe contains so many healthy ingredients and I really like the spice combination.
I made a few changes based on what I had in my pantry and refrigerator.

Moroccan Lentil Soup

2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 cups chopped onions

2 cups chopped carrots

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground pepper

6 cups vegetable broth or reduced-sodium chicken broth

2 cups water

3 cups chopped cauliflower (about 1/2 medium)

1 3/4 cups lentils
( I used a mix of green and orange lentils)

1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes

2 tablespoons tomato paste

4 cups chopped fresh spinach or one 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
   (I used kale instead of spinach, I find it freezes better).

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1.Heat oil in a soup pot or Dutch oven over medium heat; add onions and carrots and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 10 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add cumin, coriander, turmeric, cinnamon and pepper; cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute.

2.Add broth, water, cauliflower, lentils, tomatoes and tomato paste; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are tender but not mushy, 45 to 55 minutes. Stir in spinach and cook until wilted, 5 minutes.

**Set aside any of the soup you want to freeze now, before adding the last two ingredients to the soup you are going to eat or serve.

3.Just before serving,  add the cilantro and lemon juice.

This is an incrediblly" rich in flavor" soup.  So many great flavors coming together to make
a delicious meal.


You gotta love a husband who cooks dinner, especially, a good dinner!
Jim saw my Fine Cooking magazine sitting on the counter.  He flipped through the pages and came across this recipe for Brats and said, "I'll make this".   Well, that is an offer I did not turn down. I added the ingredients to our grocery list and said you got it. 

Beer Braised Bratwurst with Slaw

For the slaw

1 cup very thinly sliced red cabbage
1/4 cup mayonnaise
3 Tbs. pickle brine (from a jar of pickles, preferably dill)
4 tsp. cider vinegar
2 tsp. granulated sugar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2-1/2 cups very thinly sliced green cabbage
1/2 cup grated carrots
1/4 cup finely chopped white onion

For the bratwursts
2 12-oz. bottles lager beer, such as Budweiser
4 uncooked bratwursts
1 cup chopped white onion
4 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted
2 Tbs. spicy brown mustard, such as Gulden’s
Vegetable oil for brushing
4 hoagie rolls, split but not all the way through

Make the slaw

Soak the red cabbage in a bowl of ice water for 15 minutes to prevent its color from bleeding. Drain and pat dry. In a large bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, pickle brine, vinegar, sugar, 1/4 tsp. salt, and a grind of pepper. Add the red and green cabbage, carrot, and onion and toss well to combine. Refrigerate for 2 to 4 hours.

Make the bratwursts

In a 10- to 11-inch skillet, combine the beer, bratwursts, and onion. Add enough water to barely cover the bratwursts and bring just to a simmer over medium heat. Cover, remove from the heat, and let sit for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, position a rack about 4 inches from the broiler and heat the broiler on high.
In a small bowl, combine the butter, mustard, and 4 tsp. of the bratwurst-cooking liquid; set aside.

Arrange the bratwursts on a broiler pan and lightly brush them with oil. Broil until goldenbrown, turning once, about 4 minutes total. Transfer to a plate. Put the buns on a baking sheet cut sides up and broil until lightly toasted, about 30 seconds.

Spread the insides of the buns with the butter mixture and put the bratwursts in the rolls. Top with the slaw and serve.

                                                        Yum! What a great dinner.