Hash Brown Quiche: for breakfast, lunch, or dinner

This recipe is putting two great dishes together to create a hybrid that is spectacular. What is it? you may ask. Well I shall tell you. This hybrid is a mashup of hash browns (or better known as latkes) and a quiche. (Yes, the title does give it away a little). This quiche can work perfectly as a breakfast substitute; it has eggs, potatoes and bacon, because bacon makes everything better. But, you can also enjoy this for lunch or dinner with a side of salad or just on its own. The crust for the quiche is made from the hash browns which scared me at first because there was so much that could go wrong here. But it actually turned out quite nice. This quiche comes from Better Home and Gardens and it’s definitely one worth trying.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Wash and peel the potatoes and then shred them to pieces… Muahahah…ha…ha! Sorry, got a little carried away there. I used my food processor to coarsely shred the potatoes. Place the potatoes in a large bowl and fill it up with water. Stir the potatoes a little and then drain them through a colander. Repeat this process several times until the water runs clear.  Use a salad spinner to dry the potatoes. I didn’t have one so I just manually squeezed out as much water as I could. It’s important that the potatoes are completely dry in order for your crust to come together.  Put the shredded potatoes in a large, dry bowl and combine with the salt and pepper.

Heat the oil and butter in a large non-stick skillet until the butter starts to foam. Put the potatoes in the skillet and press them down so that they from an even layer on the bottom of the pan. Let them cook without stirring until the bottom becomes a golden brown. This should take about 12 minutes.

Now for the hard part. Place a baking sheet on top of the skillet and flip them both over. Remove the skillet and put it back on the heat. You should have inverted your giant hash brown onto the baking sheet. I managed to accomplish this with the help of my mom. As you can see, our hash brown fell apart a little but that’s ok. You can easily reshape it later.

Add some more butter to the skillet if necessary. Slide the potato crust from the baking sheet to the skillet making sure that the browed side is facing up. Use your spatula to reshape the potatoes back into a large flat cake. Cook until the underside turns golden brown.

Spray a pie pan with non-stick spray and slide the potato crust from the skillet to the pan. Again, use a spatula to reshape the crust and push it down to the bottom of the pan and up the sides as well. Yay! The hard part is over.

For the filling cook some bacon on the same skillet we used for the potatoes until they become nice and crisp. Take the bacon out of the skillet and let it cool of on a paper towel. Remove most of the bacon grease from the pan, leaving enough to use later for the vegetables.

Dice half of the onion and shred the zucchini. Toss them onto the skillet and sauté on medium heat for about 5 minutes. Make sure they don’t get brown.

In a small bowl combine the shredded cheese and flour. Mix together and set aside for now.

In a large bowl beat the eggs with the milk, salt, and crushed red pepper. Add your zucchini, onion, and cheese to the eggs and stir to combine. Make sure that the zucchini is not too hot before mixing it with the egg.

Pour the filling into the hash brown crust making sure that the filling doesn’t spill over the sides of the crust. Bake the quiche for 50 minutes or until the top is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Let the quiche cool for 10 minutes before slicing it up and devouring.

Hash Brown Quiche

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Time: 1hr 45mins
  • Difficulty: intermediate
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Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 pounds russet potatoes 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 6 slices bacon
  • 2 coarsely shredded zucchinis
  • 1/2 chopped onion
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 cup shredded cheese (4 ounces)
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Peel and coarsely shred potatoes. Place potatoes in a large bowl; add enough water to cover potatoes. Stir well. Drain in a colander set over the sink. Repeat rinsing and draining two or three times until water runs clear. Drain again, pressing out as much water as you can with a rubber spatula. Line a salad spinner with paper towels; add potatoes and spin. Repeat, if necessary, until potatoes are dry. Transfer potatoes to a large bowl. Sprinkle potatoes with 1/4 teaspoon of the salt and the black pepper, tossing to combine.
  2. In a 12-inch nonstick skillet heat 1 tablespoon of the oil and the butter over medium-high heat until butter foams. Add potatoes to the skillet, spreading into an even layer. Gently press with the back of a spatula to form a cake. Reduce heat to medium. Cook, without stirring, about 12 minutes or until the bottom is golden brown and crisp.
  3. Place a baking sheet or cutting board over the top of the skillet. Carefully invert the skillet to transfer the potatoes to the baking sheet. If needed, add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the skillet. Using the baking sheet, slide the potatoes back into the skillet, uncooked side down. Cook about 8 minutes more or until the bottom is golden brown.
  4. Lightly grease a 9-inch pie pan or plate. Use the baking sheet to transfer hash browns to pie pan, pressing hash browns into the bottom and up the sides of the pie pan.
  5. In a large skillet cook bacon until crisp Drain, reserving 1 tablespoon of the drippings. Crumble bacon; set aside. Cook zucchini and onion in the reserved drippings over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes or until tender but not brown.
  6. In a large bowl combine eggs, milk, the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and the crushed red pepper. Stir in bacon and zucchini mixture. In a small bowl combine shredded cheese and flour. Add to egg mixture; mix well.
  7. Pour egg mixture into the hash-brown lined pie pan. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Feta and Zucchini Bread: how I went from a sweet dish to a savory one

This is a prime example of how you can take a recipe and change it up to match your own personal taste or purpose. When I came across this recipe from Use Real Butter (again) I got very excited. But that was before I realized that their zucchini bread was sweet and not savory. There is nothing wrong with sweet zucchini bread, it actual sound quite interesting. But I was already making a dessert this week and needed something salty on my plate. So, long story short, I changed up the recipe and made my own version of the zucchini bread. It involves feta cheese, and it’s quite good. Most importantly, it’s simple and easy to make.

Preheat the oven to 350 Degrees Fahrenheit and spray a loaf pan with non-stick spray. We want all of our ingredients to be ready before we begin so that the batter doesn’t have to sit there and wait while we get the rest of the ingredients. So in a medium sized bowl combine the flour, salt, and baking soda.

Wash and grate the zucchini. Then make sure to squeeze out as much liquid from it as possible. The less moisture the better.

Chop up the walnuts and cube the feta cheese. Now that we have all of that set up, we can begin with the batter.

In the bowl of your electric mixer fitted with a whisk, beat the eggs until they become frothy and foamy but not stiff. We’re not making meringues here.  Add the sugar and oil and beat on medium speed until just combined. Don’t worry too much if your eggs fall.

From here on out, we will be mixing the batter by hand. Gently fold in the zucchini and feta cheese until evenly distributed.

Add the flour and fold in until just combined then fold in the walnuts. Make sure that you fold the batter slowly and gently and only as many times as you need to get everything combined. Over mixing will change the consistency of the bread when it is done.

Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes to an hour or until the top is golden brown and a toothpick comes out almost clean.

Take the bread out of the oven and let it cool on a wire rack. Now you have made delicious zucchini bread that you can slice up and enjoy for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

Feta and Zucchini Bread

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Time: 1hr 35mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 3 eggs 
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 1 tbs sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup cubed feta
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tbs salt
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. In a medium bowl combine the flour, salt, and baking soda. Grate and drain the zucchini. Chop the feta and walnuts.
  2. Beat the eggs on high until foamy. Gradually beat in the sugar and oil on a medium speed until just combined.
  3. Fold in by hand the grated zucchini and feta.
  4. Add the flour mixture and fold in until just combined. Fold in chopped nuts.
  5. Pour batter into two greased loaf pans. Bake for 45 minutes to an hour or until a toothpick comes out almost clean (moist crumb stage).

Million Dollar Chicken: how to tackle a whole chicken and not burn down the house

This is a really simple recipe that yields delicious results. The chicken is definitely worth the million bucks after being double glazed in a creamy lemon glaze and all of the juices get soaked up in the bread that the chicken sits on. I would make this whole chicken just to get the bread. It’s that good. This amazing recipe comes from Food Wishes and it was so good that I didn’t even have to make many any changes to it. The only difference was that I swapped the crème fraiche or sour cream because I didn’t have any. However, if you would like to, you can make your own crème fraiche using this great recipe from the same blog.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Then wash and pat dry the chicken.

Sprinkle salt and pepper in the cavity and the back of the chicken. Squeeze the juice from one lemon into the cavity. Stuff the remaining lemon halves into the cavity as well. Add fresh thyme, garlic, and a bay leaf.

Prepare the heavy roasting pan by drizzling in some olive oil and then place three slices of bread in the center. Drizzle some more olive oil on top of the bread.

Place the chicken on the bread and tie the legs together with kitchen twine. Brush the chicken with olive oil and sprinkle the outside with salt. Bake the chicken in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour. If you notice that the chicken is getting too dark or burned on the top, cover it lightly with foil.

While the chicken is roasting we can make the glaze. Combine the sour cream or crème fraiche with the lemon zest, lemon juice, shallot puree, and Aleppo or chili pepper. Stir to combine and refrigerate until you are ready to use it.

Take the chicken off the bread in order to flip the bread over onto the other side. Then return the chicken to the pan. Don’t be scared if your bread has become very brown or even black. It will still taste amazing. I kinda forgot to flip my bread so only one side got super brown. Whoops. Glaze the chicken with the cream mixture, making sure to coat it generously. Then roast the chicken for ten minutes.

After the ten minuets are up, give the chicken a second coating of glaze and pop it back into the oven for another ten minutes. You can take the remaining glaze and heat it up on a skillet until bubbling. Stir until it the raw shallot is cooked and the glaze has reduced slightly.

Let the chicken cool for ten minutes before cutting it up into portions. Serve the chicken over a slice of the browned bread and drizzle with the thickened glaze we just made.

Million Dollar Chicken

  • Servings: 4-5
  • Time: 1hr 30mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 4 1/2 pound whole chicken
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 bunch fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf 
    3 cloves garlic
  • olive oil, as needed
  • 3 thick slices day-old French bread
  • 1 cup crème fraiche or sour cream
  • 1 zest of one lemon
  • juice of one lemon
  • 1 tablespoon grated shallot puree
  • 1 teaspoon Aleppo or chili pepper

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat an oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).
  2. Season inside of chicken cavity and the back generously with salt and black pepper. Squeeze lemon halves into cavity and drop squeezed peels inside. Stuff cavity with garlic cloves and fresh thyme; add a bay leaf to cavity.
  3. Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil into a heavy roasting pan. Place bread slices into pan and press slices lightly into olive oil to help coat bottom of bread. Drizzle 1 more tablespoon olive oil on top of bread slices. Place chicken on top of bread slices and tie legs together with kitchen twine. Brush outside of chicken with 1 tablespoon olive oil and season entire outside with salt.
  4. Bake chicken in the preheated oven for 1 hour.
  5. Mix crème fraiche, grated shallot, and Aleppo pepper together in a small bowl. Stir 2 tablespoons lemon juice and lemon zest into sauce. Refrigerate until needed.
  6. Lift chicken off bread slices using a tongs and flip the bread slices over (they will be very brown). Place chicken back onto the bread slices. Generously brush the outside of the chicken with crème fraiche sauce, putting enough on to drip down onto bread slices.
  7. Return chicken to oven and bake for 10 more minutes to brown the glaze. Repeat, brushing more crème fraiche sauce generously onto the chicken. More is more. Bake 10 more minutes. Remove chicken from oven and let stand for 10 minutes. An instant-read meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a thigh, not touching bone, should read 165 degrees F (75 degrees C).
  8. Pour remaining crème fraiche glaze into a small skillet, place over medium heat, and bring to a boil. Stir constantly, cooking until the shallot is cooked and sauce reduces slightly, 1 or 2 minutes. Turn off heat.
  9. Transfer chicken to a cutting board and cut bread pieces in half crosswise. Cut chicken up into 8 serving pieces (drumsticks, thighs, wings, and breasts) and serve with pieces of drippings-soaked toasted bread. Drizzle thickened crème fraiche sauce over chicken and garnish with chopped chive blossoms.

Coffee Rubbed Brisket: because coffee makes everything better

If you love coffee and you love brisket, then your house will smell of caffeine when you roast this incredible dish. It’s a very simple recipe to follow, and there isn’t much to mess up on. This particular recipe is from Epicurious. Slather your brisket in coffee rub and stick it in the oven and let the cooking proses do its thing.  Don’t get scared by the long cook time. Most of that time the brisket will be in the oven and you can do whatever else you need for those 5 hours. When the smoke clears and the brisket is finally ready, it will be so moist and aromatic that you’ll want to eat the whole thing by yourself. Even my younger brother approved of the brisket. And you should know, he is a very picky eater.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In order to make this coffee brisket, we are going to need some veggies. Peel and quarter two onions, roughly slice two potatoes, peel and cut one carrot into 2-inch thick pieces, one whole garlic head (yup, you read that right) cut in half, one bunch of cilantro stems, and a 2-inch piece of ginger. The last two items were not in the original recipe, they were in my fridge and my mom wanted me to get rid of them. They turned out to be a great addition to the brisket.

Combine the above ingredients in a large roasting pan and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and toss to combine.

In a small bowl combine the coffee, cinnamon, smoked paprika, cardamom, salt and pepper.

Wash and dry your brisket. Then give it a nice coating with the coffee rub, making sure to get all the sides evenly covered.

Place the brisket into the roasting pan, nestling it into the bottom so that it can snuggle with the vegetables. If you have any extra coffee rub, just sprinkle it on top of the brisket and vegetables. i switched roasting pans here because the white one was too small.

Bake the brisket uncovered for 45 minutes or until the vegetables are lightly browned. Then cover the roasting pan tightly in foil and lower the oven temperature to 300 degrees. Roast the brisket until it is tender enough to twist a fork through with ease. This should take between 4 and a half to 5 hours depending on the size of your brisket. Make sure to check up on your brisket every 45 minuets or so and add water to the pan if it begins to look dry.

When it is ready, take the brisket out of the oven and let it cool before serving. If you would like, refrigerate the brisket until the fat turns hard so that you can skim it off. Serve the brisket warm with a side of the vegetable and drizzle some of the liquid left at the bottom of the pan on top of the dish. And there you have it, a lovely coffee rubbed brisket to serve up and enjoy.

Coffee Rubbed Brisket

  • Servings: 6-7
  • Time: 5hr 15mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 2 onions, peeled and quartered
  • 2 large potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1-inch-thick wedges
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 garlic head, unpeeled, sliced in half crosswise
  • 1 bunch of cilantro stems
  • 1 2-inch piece of ginger
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1 tablespoon finely ground coffee or espresso
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • One 3 1/2- to 4-pound brisket

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Place onions, potatoes, carrot, fennel, garlic, cilantro stems, and ginger in a heavy roasting pan. Toss with olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.
  2. In a small bowl, combine coffee, cinnamon, smoked paprika, cardamom, remaining 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Rub all over brisket and nestle brisket into vegetables to rest on bottom of pan. Roast until vegetables are lightly browned, 45 minutes.
  3. Cover tightly with foil, lower oven to 300°F, and roast until fork-tender (you should be able to insert a roasting fork in the center and twist slightly with little resistance), 4 1/2 to 5 hours for first cut and 5 1/2 to 6 hours for second cut. As the brisket cooks, check on it every 45 minutes, adding 1/4 cup water to the pan if it starts to look dry.
  4. When the brisket is cooked, remove roasting pan from oven, cool to room temperature, and refrigerate with the vegetables until fat is solid, 8 to 24 hours. Transfer brisket to a cutting board and slice across the grain. Skim and discard fat in the roasting pan. Return brisket slices to the roasting pan with the vegetables and cooking juices. The brisket can last for up to a week if refrigerated.

Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken: takeout at home

damndelicious.net

I absolutely adore sweet and sour chicken. In fact, I love most foods that combine two juxtaposing flavors which complement each other in such a melodious way that that the end result is scrumptious. For example, coffee rubs for beef or pork, salted caramel, and the whole chocolate bacon phenomenon. Sweet and sour chicken is one of my favorite juxtaposing flavor combinations. I had never attempted to make this dish before and was a little pensive about the recipes I found. I finally settles on this recipe from Damn Delicious. There are many different versions of the same dish all around the web. The process for preparing the chicken is very similar in each. The main difference was with the ingredients for the sauce. Some recipes use soy sauce and other shave pineapples for the base. I opted for a nice and simple combination that turned out tasting very similar to restaurant quality, if I can say so myself. This recipe didn’t explain how to prepare the rice, so I took it upon myself to make my own rice dish for the chicken. The overall result was wonderfully delectable. Don’t believe me? I guess you’ll just have to try it out yourself and see.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and lightly coat a baking dish with nonstick spray or oil. Wash and dry your chicken. Then, cut it into strips. Cut the strips to create small, bite-sized pieces of chicken.

Put the chicken into a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Mix to coat evenly.

Put your cornstarch into a shallow dish or bowl and your egg into another. I was running low on cornstarch so I mixed in some flower to compensate. The original recipe wanted us to mix the cornstarch with the chicken along with the salt and pepper. But I knew from past experience that the moisture from the chicken would just make the cornstarch into a gooey paste. It’s much easier, and cleaner, to coat each piece of chicken individually.

Using a fork or your hands, coat the chicken in the cornstarch and then dunk it into the egg. Heat oil on a large skillet over medium high heat. It’s important that the oil gets very hot, but not burnt.Lay the chicken onto the skillet in a single layer. I found it easier to cook the chicken in small batches. Let the chicken cook on each side for 30 seconds to a minuet. Then take it off the skillet and into the prepared baking dish

IMG_1911

For the sweet and sour sauce, combine the sugar, ketchup, apple cider vinegar, soy sauce, and garlic powder.

Pour the sauce over the chicken and mix so that the chicken is evenly coated. Bake the chicken in the oven for 30 to 35 minutes, giving it a stir every ten minutes.

While the chicken is baking, we can prepare the rice. Dice an onion and begin sautéing it in the same skillet that you cooked the chicken.

Once the onion has become translucent, add the rice and quinoa to the skillet. Cook the rice until it starts to turn translucent, about five minutes.

Pour in the chicken broth and cover the skillet. Let the rice cook on a low heat until it is tender and the liquid has been absorbed. This should take abbot 20 minutes.

To add some color and texture variation, I chopped up some bell peppers and cherry tomatoes. Once the rice has finished cooking and cooled down, add the vegetables and stir to combine.

Time to plate. Take the chicken out of the oven and test to make sure it is nice and tender. Serve the sweet and sour chicken with the rice and top with sesame seeds. The most important thing though is to devour the restaurant quality meal and enjoy your sweet and sour chicken. After this, you will probably never order.

Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken

  • Servings: 5-6
  • Time: 1hr 20mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil

For the sauce

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

For the rice

  • olive oil for the skillet
  • 1 onion
  • 1 cup of rice
  • 1/2 cup of quinoa
  • 1/4 cup of white wine
  • 3 cups of chicken stock
  • 1 bell pepper
  • 10 cherry tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly oil a 9×13 baking dish or coat with nonstick spray.
  2. In a large bowl, season chicken with salt and pepper, to taste and gently toss to combine. Working one at a time, dip the chicken into the cornstarch and then the eggs.
  3. Heat vegetable oil in a large saucepan. Add chicken and cook until golden brown, about 30 seconds to a minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate; discard excess oil. Then transfer the chicken to the baking sheet
  4. To make the sauce, whisk together sugar, vinegar, ketchup, soy sauce and garlic powder in a large bowl.
  5. Add chicken to prepared baking dish. Top with sweet and sour sauce. Place into oven and bake until the sauce has thickened, about 30 minutes, turning over every 10 minutes to evenly coat the chicken.
  6. Dice onion and sautéing on medium heat in the same skillet used earlier until the onion is translucent.
  7. Add the rice and quinoa, stirring occasionally until the rice turns translucent as well.
  8. Pour in the wine and stir until he liquid is absorbed. Then add the chicken stock and close the lid of the skillet. Let the rice cook until it becomes tender and most of the liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and let cool slightly.
  9. Chop the bell pepper and cherry tomatoes. Add them to the rice and top with sweet and sour chicken.

Thai Chicken Coconut Soup: yes you can make soup out of coconuts

I’m always curious to try new flavors and intriguing dishes. I was inspired to try this recipe while watching Cutthroat Kitchen. This December, like most other Decembers, my family and I flew to Colorado during winter break. It wasn’t a very exiting trip thought. Usually we spend the week skiing on the slopes and enjoying the fresh, crisp air. This year, however, I was struck by the flu. So instead of racing down snow covered mountains, I was stuck at our hotel where I spent the time watching TV, and quite often found myself stuck on the Food Network. On one of the episodes of Cutthroat Kitchen, the chiefs were asked to make a Thai Coconut Soup. I decided that I would also try and make my own coconut soup. I wanted to know what this soup would taste like and what better way to find out than to make it yourself. I adapted this recipe from Food and Wine. This soup is relatively easy to make. It doesn’t take much time or preparation. Just dump the ingredients into your saucepan and let simmer. Well, it’s almost that simple.

First thing first, start by marinating your chicken. I swapped chicken breast for some chicken thighs instead. The thighs are softer and I was getting bored of chicken breast. Cut the chicken into thin strips, then coat it in lime juice and fish sauce. I couldn’t find any fish sauce, so I used some oyster sauce instead. (It was the only thing similar that I could find in the store). If you can’t find either of those, the fish sauce can be substituted with some soy sauce.

Now, let’s prepare the ginger and lemongrass. Peel and slice the ginger into several pieces.

For the lemongrass, start by cutting off the top and bottom. Use the handle of you knife to smash the lemongrass, releasing the essential oils. Peel off the first layer and discard. Cut the remaining lemongrass into several strips.

This is a great video that shows you how to prepare the lemongrass if you need a visual.

 

Throw the ginger and lemongrass into your pot and fill with the chicken broth. Bring to a simmer.

Rinse the rice before adding it to the broth mixture. Simmer until the rice is almost done. This should take about fifteen minutes.

Here is where the coconut milk comes in. Pour it into the broth and bring the mixture back to a simmer. Don’t be afraid when you open the can of coconut milk and find a thick solid layer. This is just the milk that has solidified sort of like a cream. The milk itself will be right underneath the solid layer. Add both of these things into your soup for a nice rich favor. I followed the recipe’s recommendation and uses full fat coconut milk. If I did this soup again, I would switch it out for low fat coconut milk. The full fat was a little too heavy for me in the end result.

Stir in the marinated chicken along with all those flavorful marinade juices.

Prepare the chilies or jalapeño (as you can see, I opted for the jalapeño here) by cutting them in half and removing the seeds. Then slice the pepper into thin strips and add to the soup.

Chop your cilantro and stir that into the soup as well. Now go ahead and taste the creamy goodness. I found the result to be a little bland at first. But, no worries, I combined some soy sauce, salt, pepper, and extra lime juice into the soup and… voilà! Perfection.

The combinations of the zesty lemongrass and ginger with the creamy coconut milk and spicy peppers makes a lovely melody of flavors that balance each other perfectly. Serve the soup warm, topped with cilantro and a lime wedge. The soups should last refrigerated for up to a week. And, most importantly, enjoy!

Thai Chicken Coconut Soup

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 45mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs cut into 2 1/2-by-1/4-inch strips
  • 3 tablespoons Asian fish sauce or oyster sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 quart plus 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • 3 stalks lemongrass
  • 1 1-inch piece peeled fresh ginger, cut into thirds
  • 1/2 cup long-grain rice
  • 1 3/4 cups unsweetened coconut milk
  • 2 fresh red chilies or jalapeño peppers
  • 3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon of soy sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. In a medium glass dish or stainless-steel pan, combine the chicken strips with the fish sauce and lime juice. Set aside.
  2. In a large saucepan, bring the broth, lemongrass, and ginger to a simmer.
  3. Add the rice; simmer until the rice is almost done, about 15 minutes.
  4. Add the coconut milk and bring back to a simmer. Stir in the chicken and marinade and cook until the chicken is just done, about 2 minutes.
  5. Stir in the chilies and cilantro. Then season with soy sauce, lime juice, salt and pepper to taste.

Parmesan, Herb, and Garlic Popovers: or what happens when you bake pancake batter

So what are popovers exactly? Well I’m glad you asked! Popovers are this amazingly delicious and versatile pastry. You can make them savory or sweet and eat them with anything, or just gobble them up on their own. The batter for popovers is essentially the same batter you use to make pancakes – flower, milk and eggs. The whole idea of popovers is that they expand and “pop over” the top of the muffin tins. Whenever I make popovers at home, my brother and I sit in front of the oven door and watch how they expand. But don’t worry, they won’t spill over too much and make a mess. Hopefully.

This particular recipe from Jane’s Sweets and Baking Journal makes savory popovers with garlic. (Something you should probably know about me – I am obsessed with garlic. So don’t be surprised when I double or triple the amount of garlic in some recipes) However, if you would like something sweet, you can always change up the toppings. Recipes are not written in stone. There is always wriggle room for creativity in flavor.

First up you should preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Then grease your pan so the popovers won’t stick. The original recipe yields 12 popovers. I decided to half the recipe for a result of six because I only had one popover pan.

Pour the milk into a saucepan and set it on a low heat while you prepare the rest of the ingredients. Make sure to stir the milk occasionally and don’t let it boil. You just want the milk lukewarm. If it’s too hot, you’ll make scrambled eggs instead of pastry.

In a medium bowl, sift flower and then add the salt and baking powder. Stir to combine.

In an electric mixer with the wire whisk attachment, beat the eggs on a low speed until they become uniform. If you don’t have an electric mixer, this can easily be done by hand (and you won’t have to deal with cleaning the mixer afterwards).

Once the eggs are combined, add the warm milk. Test the milk’s temperature with your finger to make sure it didn’t get too hot. Now you can slowly start adding the flower mixture. While the mixer is still running, add the flower in gradually. Increase the mixer’s speed and let the whisk do its thing for two more minutes. Turn off the mixer and cover the bowl with plastic. Let your batter rest for about an hour. It just went through quite a lot of exercise and needs to rest a bit before we can continue.

While the batter is taking a nap, start working on the topping. In a small bowl mix the cheese and spices together. The original recipe also called for chopped garlic, but I omitted that because I was afraid that the garlic would just burn and turn bitter. (This proved to be a wise decision as the resulting popovers got very brown). But don’t worry, I compensated with the lack of garlic by adding some garlic powder instead. This is the part of the recipe where you can get creative. Add whatever spices or flavors you like to the mixture. If you want sweet popovers, try a combination of brown sugar and cinnamon.

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Now that our batter has rested, we can fill up our popover cups. You want to pour the batter almost to the top, but not quite. Sprinkle the cheese mixture on top of each cup. The more the merrier. Place a square of butter on top of each cup of batter. I forgot to divide the amount of butter by 2 and put a whole lot more than was needed. It bubbled over and spilled into the oven making quite a mess. However, the popovers turned out nice and brown. And I think I learned my lesson about reading carefully as I kneeled on the floor scrubbing at the burnt butter on the bottom of the oven. Oh well.

Here comes the fun part. Put the popovers into the oven and set the timer for 15 minutes. Grab a comfy pillow and plop down on the floor in front of the oven door. You should start to see the popovers grow after about 5 minutes, give or take. IMPORTANT – do not open the oven door at this time. In fact, for best results, do not open the oven door at all while the popovers are baking. After the 15 minutes, turn the heat down to 375 for about 25 to 30 minutes, or until the popovers turn a deep gold brown and look crispy.

Take the popovers out of the oven and immediately poke the tops with a knife. This creates a small opening for the steam to escape which makes the inside of the popovers nice and dry instead of getting soggy. Nobody wants soggy popovers.

So this here is my result. Granted, they don’t look as perfect as the popovers in original pin, but I’m absolutely certain that they taste just as good. Yes, I know that there is some bias in that judgment, but I received similar opinions from family and friends. Don’t believe me? Try them out yourself. I’m sure you probably have most of the ingredients in kitchen already. (If not, you can always improvise)

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These popovers should preferably be eaten as soon as they cool down enough so that you don’t burn your fingers. However, they can last for up to a week if you keep them in a closed container. Pop them in a toaster oven for a couple of minutes to heat back up. Microwaves will just make them soggy, and we worked so hard for that lovely brown crunchiness. Don’t let all that work go to waste. But most importantly, eat up and enjoy!

Parmesan, Herb, and Garlic Popovers

  • Servings: 6
  • Time: 1hr and 20mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 1 and ¾ cups milk
  • 2 cups All-Purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cups grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 Tsp. Garlic powder
  • 1 Tsp. Dried thyme
  • 1 Tsp. Fresh rosemary
  • 1 Tsp. Dried basil
  • 1 Tsp. Oregano
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into 6 equal chunks for topping
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Generously grease 6 popover cups or jumbo muffin cups; grease the top of the pan(s) as well. Place each pan on a baking sheet.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the milk until it’s just lukewarm, about 110 degrees, then take it off the heat.
  3. Sift the flour, salt, and baking powder into a medium mixing bowl.
  4. In the large bowl of your electric mixer, fitted with the wire whisk, beat the eggs on low speed for about 3 minutes, until they look pale and foamy, then add in the warm milk. Add the flour in gradually, still mixing at low speed, then raise the speed to medium and beat for 2 more minutes.
  5. Let the batter rest in its bowl, unrefrigerated, for one hour. While the batter is resting, mix together the remaining spices and cheese.
  6. After the batter is done resting, fill each well-greased cup with batter, almost to the top.Sprinkle at least one tablespoon of the cheese-herb mixture on top of each one. Plop a chunk of butter on top of that.
  7. With the pans on baking sheets, place the popovers into the oven and bake for 15 minutes at 450 degrees. Then, turn the oven down to 375 degrees. Bake 25 to 30 minutes longer, or until the popovers look very crispy and are a deep golden brown on the outside. As soon as you take them out, puncture the tops carefully with the tip of a knife; this will allow excess steam to escape and help prevent the insides from becoming soggy.
  8. Best served warm. Freeze any extras after they’re cooled. Reheat these easily, even if frozen, in a warm oven. They’ll be almost as good as new.