Thursday, July 28, 2016

Deviled Eggs with Smoked Paprika

The weather here has finally begun to warm up and it's actually beginning to feel a bit more like summer. Last month the heater popped on once or twice which had me wondering if it was going to feel like March forever.

When it does heat up outside, I'm less inclined to get up in the morning to cook, preferring instead "prepared" food. This morning this took the form of deviled eggs which I put together last night. They were incredibly easy to make and a delicious start to the day.

6 hard boiled eggs, shells removed
2-3 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tbsp sliced chives
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp anchovy paste
1/2 tsp prepared mustard
1/4 tsp lemon pepper
salt, to taste, if needed

extra sliced chives and smoked paprika, for garnish

Cut the eggs in half lengthwise. Remove the yolks and place them into a small bowl.

To the yolks add two tablespoons of mayonnaise (to start), chives, paprika, anchovy paste, mustard and lemon pepper. Mash everything together with a fork until well blended.

If the mixture seems too dry, then add more mayonnaise until you get a consistency you like.

Taste and add salt if necessary. The anchovy paste usually provides enough salt.

Divide the deviled yolk mixture evenly between the egg whites by dropping it into the cavities left by the egg yolks.

Garnish with chopped chives and a small sprinkling of smoked paprika, if desired.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Chicken Pot Pies

(4 generous servings)

Whenever I bring home a rotisserie chicken, it's the breast meat that's often left over. I usually make roast chicken sandwiches or some form of chicken salad out of this the next day.

This time the leftover chicken found its way into these individual single crust chicken pot pies. For some inexplicable reason I loathe making pie crust. I prefer grabbing a box of ready made which I can easily roll out even thinner.

2 tbsp butter
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large stalk celery, sliced
2-3 medium carrots, sliced
2 tbsp flour
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup water
2 tsp Reduced Sodium, Better than Bouillon, Chicken Base
1 1/2 tsp dried summer savory
1 tsp sweet paprika
1/4 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
3 cups leftover cooked skinless chicken cut into bite sized pieces
1/2 cup fresh or frozen peas
1/3 cup heavy cream
salt and pepper, to taste

homemade or ready made pie crust, enough for about 1 1/2 layers (9")

In a medium sized pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until it becomes transparent.

Stir in the celery and carrots. Cook until the vegetables begin to brown lightly. Reduce the heat, if necessary.

Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and stir until the flour is evenly combined. Add the wine, water, Better than Bouillon, Chicken Base, summer savory, paprika and black pepper. Simmer gently for about 20-30 minutes.

Stir in the chicken, peas and heavy cream. Cook until everything has warmed through.

Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper, if needed. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Divide the chicken stew between four 2 cup ramekins.

Cut four circles of pie crust large enough so that they will extend beyond the edges of the ramekins by at least 1/2 an inch or more. Cut a few slits in each piece for venting and place over each ramekin.

Place the pot pies onto a cookie sheet and bake for about 40-55 minutes or until the pie crusts have browned and the filling is bubbling hot.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Rebecca's Jerk Marinade

(enough to marinate 2 lbs meat, poultry or seafood)

Some of the best recipes I have come across are those that get passed along. Several months ago a friend in Toronto, emailed this terrific recipe to me. She had received it from her friend, Rebecca.

I tried this with chicken and it turned out great!

Although I have a 12 cup food processor, I wasn't able to fit everything in at once. But, I didn't have to do it in batches either. I just rearranged the order of the ingredients. I also added the zest from the lime.

1 small onion, cut up
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1 - 2 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut into several pieces
3 tsp salt
2 tsp dried thyme
2 tsp allspice
1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
zest from one lime
3 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp brown sugar
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and cut up
1 bunch cilantro
1 bunch parsley
1/4 cup chopped green onion

Place the onion, garlic, ginger, salt, thyme, allspice, pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, lime juice, lime zest, soy sauce, olive oil and brown sugar into the bowl of a 12 cup food processor. If you are using something smaller, you might have to do this in batches. Pulse several times until the mixture is fine.

Add the jalapeno peppers, cilantro, parsley and green onion. Pulse until you have a coarse paste.

This can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two months if placed in a non reactive container and lid.