Tag Archives: pepper

GARLICKY SAUCED PAN~SEARED CHICKEN

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GARLICKY SAUCED PAN~SEARED CHICKEN

INGREDIENTS
♥ 4 T. OLIVE OIL
♥ 1 LARGE PACK OF CHICKEN THIGHS
♥ ½ TSP. SALT
♥ ½ TSP. PEPPER
♥ 2 CUPS SLICED FRESH MUSHROOMS
♥ 1 T. CHILI PEPPER FLAKES
♥ 1½ FISTS OF GARLIC
♥ 2½ CUPS SAUVIGNON BLANC WHITE WINE
♥ ¼ CUP MILK
♥ 2 T. BUTTER
♥ ¼ CUP FRESH CHOPPED PARSLEY
♥ 2 SPRIGS FRESH ROSEMARY

DIRECTIONS
PREHEAT OVEN TO 375°F

HEAT THE OIL IN A DEEP DISH PAN ON YOUR STOVE TOP. (OR LARGE DUTCH OVEN OR CAST IRON POT) CAST IRON WORKS BEST I THINK AND THE DEEPER THE BETTER, YOUR APPLIANCE WILL THANK YOU LATER. SPLASHY GREASE BLAH.

SEASON THE CHICKEN THIGHS WITH SALT AND PEPPER AND PLACE CHICKEN IN THE PAN. SEAR THESE BAD BOYS UP UNTIL GOLDEN AND THE JUICES JUST RUN CLEAR. THEY WILL COOK MORE IN THE SAUCE.

REMOVE THE SEARED CHICKEN FROM THE PAN AND SET ASIDE.

SEPARATE THE GARLIC CLOVES AND PEEL THEM. ADD THE MUSHROOMS, PEPPER FLAKES AND GARLIC CLOVES TO THE CHICKEN PAN AND IT’S LEFTOVER LIQUIDS.

SAUTE UNTIL TENDER AND GOLDEN, BUT MAKE CERTAIN NOT TO BURN THE GARLIC. TILL JUST GOLDEN. GARLIC GOES QUITE BITTER WHEN OVERCOOKED.

ADD THE WINE, MILK, BUTTER AND STIR IN THE PARSLEY.

GENTLY ADD THE CHICKEN BACK TO THE PAN.

ADD THE ROSEMARY SPRIGS AND COVER.

PLACE IN PREHEATED OVEN. BAKE FOR 20-30 MINUTES. TURNING THE CHICKEN OVER HALF WAY THROUGH.

REMOVE FROM OVEN WHEN THE SAUCE STARTS TO REDUCE AND THICKEN UP.

I TRANSFERRED ALL OF THIS TO A HOT FRYING PAN FOR APPEARANCE PURPOSES FOR THIS BLOG BUT YOU CAN CERTAINLY FINISH IT UP IN THE OVEN IF YOU CHOOSE. LESS MESS. HOWEVER IF THE SAUCE IS TOO DRY YOU MAY WANT TO ADD MORE WINE AND LET IT SIMMER A BIT LONGER. THIS WAS DEFINITELY EASIER TO DO ON THE STOVE TOP.

SPOON THE GARLICKY SAUCE OVER THE CHICKEN AND SPRINKLE WITH A LITTLE MORE FRESH PARSLEY AND CHILI PEPPER FLAKES.

SERVED SEARING HOT OVER LINGUINE NOODLES.



I am needing a large tripod and to get my amazing Canon Rebel T3i camera up and running to do these blog photos now that the “Cooking With Hay” Kitchen is nearing completion!

At the time of making this dish I had cabinets, counters and some lighting in. Oh and the backsplash tile was added but had just been grouted. No appliances, no running water, just a much more appealing place for a food blog photo set.

Regardless, it’s all a vast improvement from the basement temp. kitchen, 2×4 studding and insulation backdrops seen in previous blog photos.

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Is ‘garlicky’ even a word ? ? ?

The recipe I was using called for white wine… I have drank wine in the past but by any means, don’t consider myself a wine drinker.

However… GalPal is!

She came to my rescue with some suggestions after I let her know my ingredients and what I was making.

Monkey Bay Sauvigon Blanc from New Zealand was the perfect wine, as this dish was phenomenal. Not too sweet, not to dry. I’m not even going to bother experimenting with other wines.

The bottle… as GalPal mentioned, coordinated nicely with the ingredients needed to make this dish. Thanks for the help Amber!! Guess I should make this for you now hey?!

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This pepper tho! Gift from Mother-In-Law and I’ve become quite addicted to it. I use it on my sunny side up eggs in the morning to grilled salmon and everything in between. It’s made just a few hours from my house in Keremeos BC. It’s pepper, onions garlic and herbs and is a great change-up to the regular black pepper or fresh ground peppercorns.

Season the chicken thighs with a little salt and sprinkle of pepper. There is enough flavour coming in the garlic and wine and parsley that not much seasonings are needed on the chicken.

I assure you. This dish packs a savory garlic KA-POW with a mix of fragrant herbs. Absolutely delish my gosh!

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My mom is a wonderful cook, and I’ve used many of her recipes to get me into cooking. She got me this gorgeous glazed cast iron KitchenAid dish and this is what I used to pan~sear my chicken thighs. Keeps even heat and kept the splatter in the dish rather than on my stove-top.

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I used this dish on the stove top to brown the chicken and saute the mushrooms, chili pepper flakes and the garlic. It also has a lid to cover so this same dish was what I used to baked it up into the perfect saucy chicken while in the oven. From Canadian Tire and I definitely recommend one for your cooking adventures also.

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After transferring the chicken, there was a fair amount of liquids, chicken grease and juices, left in the bottom of the pan. I removed most of it and left just a small amount in the bottom to saute the mushrooms and garlic in. Your choice.

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Now on the bottom of this dish was a dark golden layer from the chicken juices etc. searing up. Don’t be alarmed… I was thinking to myself… Oh shit, did I ruin this whole thing? Is everything now going to stick and burn?

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But the mushrooms and garlic seemed to soften it up and cook together and created such a rich flavourful sauce.

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I couldn’t have been more pleased. It is really a good day when things work out for me, haha. I’m sure you’d feel the same. Yay for good cooking. Go me Go. Feel free to do a little booty shakin touchdown dance when things like this happen. It’s all about the simple things in life am I right My Lovelies?! LOL

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Adding wine to things like this also acts as a de-glazer for your well cooked pans. Don’t waste that seared liquid. That’s your concentrated flavour right there. Just the same as the bottom of your roaster from your roasts and hams make the best gravies and soup broths.

In this case it’s our deglazer and the base for this sauce. I am not a wino so I will admit that I have always been apprehensive about dishes that are made with wine. If someone made this for me and I ate the whole thing… I don’t think I would have even known it was made with wine. I’m serious! So so so so so so good!

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**NOTE: Milk is added for volume. This will help create that thicker fuller sauce to coat the chicken. If you wanted a more concentrated demi-glaze like sauce, you can omit the milk completely. As mentioned in the recipe, you may need to add more wine if you find the sauce to dry when you turn over the chicken half way through cooking.**

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Time for the fun! Let’s bring it all together. Gently add the chicken back in once you’ve mixed in the wine, milk, butter and parsley.

Nestle it down in that fragrant garlic bath. Time for these thighs to tantalize.

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Cover it with a tight-fitting lid and place it in a preheated oven and bake it up so the sauce can thicken up.

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Don’t forget to check it half way through and flip that chicken over. Keep it saucy!

It will look soupy at first. As it continues to cook the sauce will get darker and richer in colour and of course flavour.

Be patient and wait for it. It will look ‘blah’ before it looks ‘ta da’

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There it is! TA DA!!!

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As mentioned in my recipe, I then transferred my contents of my kitchen aid glazed cast iron dutch oven to a pan for appearance purposes for this blog. LOL

Got to love dirty dishes! LMAO

This pan is worthy of a few photos though. Another splendid purchase from Canadian Tire. I think I’ve gotten every single one of my pans from Canadian Tire over my years. They always have good deals on cookware FYI. Watch the flyers. This is a Heritage Rock Forged Non Stick Pan. It’s got a big capital ‘H’ on the stunning stainless steel handle. My name, being Haley… thus…H-Town bitches…. hahah. Nah my Mommy has one and I used it while at my parents place this spring and of course I fell in love. It having a big ole ‘H’ on it for ‘Cooking With Hay’ is just an added perk. I love this pan so much that I don’t really use any other pans besides The H Rock, this KitchenAid glazed dutch oven or my cast iron dutch oven and griller.

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This will be a regular meal cooked in my kitchen. Please give it a try guys! Feedback is always appreciated. As is your SHARES and LIKES on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, etc…. Sharing is Caring and it would really help expand my page! Love you all! Thanks for your support.

There you have it. Garlicky Sauced Pan~Seared Chicken ♥

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Blackened Seasoning

Hi guys, I posted some pics of the Blackened Salmon and Blackened Fish Tacos to my Cooking With Hay Facebook page, and the requests came in for the recipe. As well as the request for me as your personal chef. Thank you for that! It actually is much easier to make the food than to blog the recipe… just in case you were curious. LOL so much time spent running a photoshoot and a kitchen at the same time. I love it tho and anxious to spend more time doing it. The balance between stoning the front of the fireplace and installing bathroom sinks… or blogging…. its a tough one….

I’m quite pleased with the photos from recent photoshoots. I’m working partially upstairs while I can get the good natural daylight and partially still down in the dungeon, errr, I mean, basement. Natural daylight makes for much more appetizing food pics. Less shadows and more true to life colouring of these meals. After all, we taste with our eyes and our noses before the food even hits our tongue or tummies.



I’ve laid out all the ingredients that I used to make the Blackened Seasoning, on this fancy bamboo KitchenAid cutting board that Hubby came home with for me! *SMILES* This is the seasoning for the Blackened Salmon Tacos and Blackened Fish Tacos that I’ve been mentioning. (Blog posts to follow guys!)

I pulled this from a website a while back, I haven’t altered anything except that I use whole wheat flour instead of white flour. It actually just adds to the crispy factor we’re going for here! Yummy


Don’t confuse T (tablespoon) for TSP (teaspoon)!!
Oh come on, like you haven’t done that before.

The original image said 2 T. Chili Powder… LOL its got to be 2 TSP. Teaspoons
I made the same error when I first made Butter Chicken. That was a hot hot hot meal. Great tho. Just a real kicker that’s for sure.

BLACKENED SEASONING

♥ 2 T. FLOUR (I use whole wheat)
♥ 2 TSP. CHILI POWDER
♥ 1 TSP. PAPRIKA
♥ 1 TSP. BROWN SUGAR
♥ ½ TSP. ONION POWDER
♥ ½ TSP. GRANULATED GARLIC
♥ ½ TSP. CUMIN
♥ ½ TSP. CAYENNE
♥ ½ TSP. SALT
♥ ½ TSP. PEPPER

Mix together well. Store in an air tight container.


↓ This made enough to do a big slab of salmon or 4 large cod fillets. If you’re doing more you may want to double this recipe. Or to save you some prep time on the next go around, make up a big batch now.

↑ I made one batch of this seasoning and mixed it in this shallow plastic container. All ready to go so I can just lay the piece of fish or meat or whatever it is that you’re going to use, onto the seasoning.
This works great for everything, even prawns and scallops. Try it out and I hope you like it.  I’ve made it 3 times this July.  Cuz it’s that good.  LOL yum!


Blog Post with recipe and pics COMING SOON!

Blog Post with recipe and pics COMING SOON!

Blog Post with recipe and pics COMING SOON!

Blog Post with recipe and pics COMING SOON!

Blog Post with recipe and pics COMING SOON!

Blog Post with recipe and pics COMING SOON!




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GARLIC & CHILI PEPPER HUMMUS

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GARLIC & CHILI PEPPER HUMMUS
1 CAN CHICK PEAS, rinsed and drained
1/4 CUP TAHINI
2 TBSP. LEMON JUICE
1 1/2 PRE MADE HOMEMADE GARLIC BALLS
2 TBSP. OLIVE OIL
WATER

I mix everything together in my food processor, except the olive oil. I once read that olive oil in a food process or more specifically, a blender, can turn the oil bitter and also cloud the bowl of the food processor. Well I love my food processor so I don’t take the chance. Once everything is smooth and creamy I transfer it to a mixing bowl and stir in the olive oil. Then if it’s thick, I add water until its’s the proper consistency.
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Of course, you can use as much or as little, garlic, as you want.
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Chopped up the remaining fresh veggies that I had in the crisper drawer to go with.
Actually, switch that around, I made the hummus so I had something to go with the veggies. As much as I love my breads, pita, naan, mmmmm naan…. this was a refreshing option.
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Kinda well needed after a not so healthy weekend. Ugh….
I wasn’t going to blog this one as I’m pretty sure most of you make hummus often, however, it just looked so nice and yummy, especially on the new surface prop Hubby made me! This is a classic dish and always a favorite. I do have some other Hummus recipes to show you. Some that are completely the opposite of classic. Hope you come back to visit. Stay tuned!
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Saucy ‘n’ Savory TURKEY Crepes

** I apologize for the picture quality, dark and gloomy here and I’m working in the basement remember. thanks for understanding. **

For months now I’ve been dreaming of these Turkey Crepes that my Mommy used to make for dinner. I’ve only ever heard of people having fruit in their crepes and I can still taste the flavor of these ‘non-fruit crepes’ from my childhood. I got on my ipad and messaged mom for the recipe. Here is her response.
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Love it, I now know the basics to this dish. How to make the crepes, I still don’t know, but I can work with this. Strapping on my “Will Cook For Bling” apron and into my temporary basement dwelling kitchen I go.
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Saucy ‘n’ Savory TURKEY Crepes

TURKEY:
1/2 TBSP. BUTTER
2 (1 lb) TURKEY BREAST, skin removed
SEASONED WITH SALT, PEPPER, DRIED OREGANO, DRIED PARSLEY & GARLIC
Bake the turkey breast in a covered dish until internal temp is 185F, approx 30-35 minutes.

CREPES:
4 EGGS
1.5 CUPS MILK
1 CUP FLOUR
1.5 TSP. DRIED PARSLEY
Whisk together eggs and milk.
Slowly add in the flour, mix until smooth, no clumps.
Add the parsley.
Cover it with Saran and keep it in the fridge for about 30 minutes for it to set up.
TO COOK:
Spray frying pan with cooking spray, medium heat.
1/4 cup of the mixture into the center of the hot pan, roll it around until it’s thin and round.
Once the bottom is golden and the top is firm, flip it gently with a spatula, brown the other side for about 30 seconds.
Repeat process, spraying the pan each time with cooking spray.
Stack on a plate, prepare to serve.

FILLING:
2 TBSP. BUTTER
1.5 CUPS ONION, DICED
2 CUPS CELERY, DICED
2 CUPS MUSHROOMS SLICED
TURKEY BREAST, COOKED AND CHOPPED
1 TSP. POULTRY SEASONING
SALT & PEPPER
1/2 OF THE BÉCHAMEL
Sauté the onions,celery and mushrooms in the butter.
Season with poultry seasoning, salt and pepper
Add in the cooked, chopped turkey
Before serving add half the hot béchamel sauce to the filling and mix until evenly coated.
Reserve the remaining béchamel to drizzle on top.

BÉCHAMEL:
4 TBSP. BUTTER
2 TBSP. FLOUR
2 CUPS HOT MILK
4 TSP. DIJON MUSTARD
SALT & PEPPER
Melt the butter in a saucepan, stir in the flour and cook for about a minute.
Slowly add the milk, then add the mustard, salt and pepper and cook until thickened, about 5-8 minutes.

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Bake the turkey breasts in a covered dish until internal temp is 185F, approx 30-35 minutes per pound. I used my Kitchen Aid, 4 quart, covered, cast iron oval casserole dish. This thing was a gift from my wonderful mommy a few years ago and it’s the best dish I have in my kitchen for cooking and roasting! Canadian Tire has them and usually on sale before the holidays. While the meat is cooking, continue on with the next steps.
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**I’ve discovered that writing a recipe is different from writing the method of procedure for the recipe. Everything is going on at the same time but yet at slightly different times. Broken up and here and there, good luck on following this one. I’ll do my best.**
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Whisk together eggs and milk. Slowly add in the flour, mix until smooth, no clumps. Add the parsley.
Cover it with Saran and keep it in the fridge for about 30 minutes for it to set up.
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Chop up your veggies!
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Sauté the onions,celery and mushrooms in the butter.
Season with poultry seasoning, salt and pepper
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The meat is done when it reaches an internal temp of 185F. I think mine was in a 325C oven for 1hour and 15 minutes. I used my meat thermometer to determine the temp. Love this kitchen gadget. How do you ensure properly cooked meat without one?
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The meat will be too hot to handle right after it’s cooked so let it rest for a few minutes, I’m sure you have some dishes to do.
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Remove any bones from the turkey breast and chop it up, dice it up!
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Add in the cooked, chopped turkey to the seasoned, sautéed veggies.
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To make the Béchamel Sauce (white sauce), melt the butter in a saucepan, stir in the flour and cook for about a minute.
Slowly add the milk, then add the mustard, salt and pepper and cook until thickened, about 5-8 minutes.
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Before serving add half the hot béchamel sauce to the filling and mix until evenly coated.
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Mmmmm this is what makes this dish “Saucy ‘n’ Savory”.
At this point, I could just skip the crepes and grab a fork!!! I may have done that, but then you would stop reading and all my hard work would be half in the trash. Please continue on and put the fork down. All good things come to those who wait.
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Spray frying pan with cooking spray, medium heat.
1/4 cup of the mixture into the center of the hot pan, roll it around until it’s thin and round.
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Once the bottom is golden and the top is firm, flip it gently with a spatula, brown the other side for about 30 seconds.
Repeat process, spraying the pan each time with cooking spray.
Stack on a plate, prepare to serve.
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Lay out the crepe on a plate and spoon some of the filling into the center of the crepe, in a horizontal line.
Fold in the sides and then fold up the bottom. Then fold the top down. Like a cute little envelope with a precious little package inside. A “Saucy ‘n’ Savory” package that is! Drizzle them with the remaining Béchamel.
I have a friend that actually mailed a plastic wrapped cupcake across the country as a joke. Needless to say it did not look like a cupcake when it arrived in Nova Scotia. Please don’t mail these little packages. Just eat them!
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And there you have it! A new recipe under my belt. I hope you try them and enjoy them!
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As I had mentioned in the beginning, hard. to. write. So please do let me know if you find errors or editing that needs to be done. Once I look at these blog html codings for so long I get wonky eyes and can’t see anything wrong. I have a feeling this one will need an edit.
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Another Greek Chicken Recipe

I found a recipe a few weeks ago while searching the interweb for new ideas. I followed it pretty closely but tweaked it just a bit… more garlic, less oil, etc.
I also added a bit more lemon then required and upon taste testing… too much lemon. So stick with this and you can’t go wrong
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GREEK MARINADED CHICKEN

INGREDIENTS:
1 + 1/4 CUPS PLAIN GREEK YOGURT,FAT FREE
1 T OLIVE OIL
5 CLOVES MINCED GARLIC (or a frozen premade homemade garlic ball 😉)
I LEMON (the juice and as well the zest)
1 T OREGANO
1 T PARSLEY
FRESH CRACKED PEPPER (at your discretion)
12 CHICKEN LEGS and/or CHICKEN THIGHS🍗🍖
DIRECTIONS:
Combine everything, except the chicken, in a bowl.
Place chicken pieces in a large ziplock bag.
Pour the marinade over the chicken. 🍗
Mix the chicken around in the bag for a consistent coating
Seal and chill in the fridge for at least an hour. I did 4 hours 😋 YUM
Preheat oven to 375
Line a large baking dish with parchment like I did or grease the pan
Bake chicken in the pan uncovered for about 1 hour or until slightly crispy and golden brown
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We had this along side a super fresh greek salad with light feta cheese and lemon rice pilaf.

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Brown Sugar Soy Sauce Baked Salmon

A week ago I made a new salmon dish, and it sure was tasty. Hubby and I love salmon, so I tested out a new recipe and it was good but needed some tweaking to satisfy our taste buds as usual. Here’s what I figure would be perfect

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Brown Sugar Soy Sauce Baked Salmon

1 salmon fillet
lemon and herb seasoning
minced garlic
salt
pepper
1/3 C soy sauce
1/3 C brown sugar
1/4 C water
2 T vegetable oil

You will also need a bit of soy sauce, lemon seasoning and brown sugar and salt to sprinkle on right before u bake it.

Season the salmon with the lemon seasoning, garlic, salt & pepper
Press it gently into the fish
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In a bowl mix the soy sauce, brown sugar, water and oil
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Marinate the salmon in the mixture in the fridge for at least 2 hours
Preheat oven to 425
Place marinated salmon on a foil lined, greased sheet.
Drizzle with a little soy sauce
Sprinkle a little brown sugar, lemon seasoning and salt
Bake for 15 minutes or until fish is flaky
Broil for 1 minute
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I served mine with a rice pilaf made with onion, celery, red pepper, garlic sauteed in butter and soy sauce, then cooked in chicken stock and a little bit of oyster sauce.
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Thanks for visiting. I hope you enjoy this new yummy salmon dish. I’ve got another recipe for salmon coming up in the next few weeks so if you like salmon as much as we do then stay tuned.
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GREEK! A meal without Avocado…. Finally! Too much of a good thing as my mom said.

While chatting with my wonderful mother again last night about the Creamy Potato & Cauliflower Soup and Roasted Garlic as well that I had just made, I thought I should ask her about avocado’s. We eat so many avocado’s because they are just sooo tasty and we really enjoy the meals that include this wonderful stuff. Well she said if you were to eat 1 a day you may start to gain weight…. Yikes, we eat more than 1 a day each… sometimes 3! YIKES again! I told her I really like them tho and she responded with… “too much of a good thing”

True!

It’s time to slow down on the avocado’s and so I decided to go Greek for the night!
Here are some new recipies I’ve managed to find and everything tasted really good.

Just some of the things needed for tonights dinner!
GREEK TONIGHT

LOW FAT GREEK SALAD DRESSING

Ingredients:
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 garlic clove
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup fat-free chicken broth

Directions:
Blend all the ingredients and let it sit a couple of hours .

I doubled this recipe to ensure I had enough for everyone for 2 nights.

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GREEK PRAWN & PASTA SALAD

Ingredients:
1 lb of raw prawns (without the shell or tails)
1 tbsp. butter
2 cloves of minced garlic
Salt & pepper
3-4 cups of cooked and cooled pasta (I used rotini noodles)
½ purple onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
½ red pepper, chopped
¼ yellow pepper, chopped
1 cucumber, sliced then quartered
1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes
I small tub of low fat feta cheese
*feel free to add olives… hubby doesn’t like em….
Low Fat Greek Salad Dressing

Directions:
1. Saute prawns in butter and garlic, season with salt and pepper. Chill in the fridge
2. In a salad bowl add the pasta, feta cheese, onion, peppers, cucumber, tomatoes, prawns and feta cheese. *olives if you choose
3. Gently toss with Low Fat Greek Salad Dressing
4. Garnish with a lemon wedge

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GREEK OVEN BAKED CHICKEN

Ingredients:
4 bone in split chicken breasts (I used chicken legs because I had some in the freezer)
1/2 cup olive oil
juice of 2 lemons
3 -4 cloves of garlic, crushed or minced (I used 5 cloves because we love garlic)
3 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. pepper

Directions:
1. Mix the olive oil and next 5 ingredients in a 9 X 11 baking dish.
2. Place chicken in the dish, turning them in the marinade a few times. I like to lift the skin and use my hands to spread some of the marinade underneath it. Leave them skin side down in the dish. Cover them and refrigerate overnight.
3. The next day, bake them at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Flip and bake an additional 30-40 minutes.
4. turn the broiler on high during the last 5 minutes to brown up the skins.

  

 

In the end I was very pleased!  A very refreshing juicy meal that made the husband quite pleased.  Success!

I would add a little more lemon to the chicken next time and they didn’t make for nearly as long because I used legs instead of breast piecese smaller than they should have been but hey they were what I had leftover in the freezer.

The best part is I have enough left over so I don’t have to make dinner tomorrow!

Thanks for reading!

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Creamy Potato & Cauliflower Soup with Roasted Garlic

There was a very good reason for roasting that garlic this afternoon, see previous post.
I was talking with my mom last night and she had made a yummy sounding creamy potato soup. It sounded like a great idea.
She sent me her recipe and with other recipes I found online and my own thoughts, I twisted it!
I made a recipe to suit my tastebuds and to use up more items in my fridge. Those items being chicken stock and… cauliflower!

Here’s the recipe and if you make it, please let me know what you think!

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Creamy Potato & Cauliflower Soup with Roasted Garlic

1 ½ fists of roasted garlic
2 cups cooked cauliflower, chopped in (approx) ½ inch chunks (half a head of cauliflower)
1 cup onion, finely diced
2 tbsp. butter
4 cups raw russet potatoes, chopped in even ½ inch cubes (2 large russets)
2 cups water
2 cups low sodium chicken stock
2 cups skim milk
½ cup fat free greek yogurt
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. pepper
green onions
cheddar cheese
cooked crumbled bacon

Add butter to soup pot, sauté onions till clear, do not overcook
Add garlic, potatoes, water, and stock and simmer for 10-15 minutes until the potatoes are tender
To the pot, add the cooked cauliflower, milk and greek yogurt, salt & pepper.
Give it all a good mix.
In small batches, puree till smooth and creamy
Pour back into the pot and reheat
You may need to add more milk depending on the consistency, you don’t want it too thick, or maybe you do 🙂

Garnish with more fat free greek yogurt, green onions, cheddar cheese and if you feel sinful, bacon!

I have to say, it tastes soooooo good, I filled a shot glass of it and downed it! Can’t wait for lunch tomorrow!

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Roasted Garlic ~ Everything happens for a reason :)

Can’t believe I’ve NEVER roasted garlic before!
What is wrong with me? It’s sooo easy and oh so good!
Have you roasted garlic? Now, I don’t have a fancy little clay pot to roast mine in so this is what I did…

You will need:
1 fist of garlic
drizzle of olive oil
salt & pepper
tinfoil

Preheat oven to 320F
Take the fist of garlic and slough off the outer skin leaving the fist intact and still with the inner skins.
Cut off the top part to expose the cloves.
Cut tinfoil to about 7inches square and place the garlic cut side up in the centre
Drizzle with the olive oil
Lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper
Now twist it up like a big Hershey’s kiss chocolate
Place in middle rack of oven and bake at 320F for about an hour.
Take it out and let it cool a little
It should be golden and succulent looking
The fragrance alone will make you drool so have a napkin nearby.
From the bottom of the fist you should be able to gently squeeze out the roasted yummy cloves!

Everything happens for a reason! 🙂 Stay tuned for my next post!

roasted garlic

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Filled my backpack with onions and… french bread

I woke up to sunshine in my eyes, shining through the trees in my back yard. It’s been this way the last few mornings. Absolutely beautiful the way the light dances along the walls and over my perfumes. Another nice day.

However I’ve been feeling “blah” lately. Can I use that, non-word? It really is the best word to describe how I feel. I think it’s because I’ve not been out in that sunshine… so this morning I threw my backpack on and pulled out my bike. It was crisp and the air smelled wonderful. There is definitely a different vibe out there now than there was just a few months ago. School kids here school kids there. There’s a kid, there’s another ok you get it. Even the sun looks different than it did before. I appreciated the change.

On my way back through my neighbourhood I stopped at the local market and filled up my backpack with a bunch of….. onions and a loaf of french bread…. Thankfully the bread fit in my bag so I didn’t have to finish my bike ride with a loaf of bread sticking out the top…. Time to fire up the slow cooker.

Upon purchasing my new slow cooker a few weeks ago, I’ve been filling up my book with new recipes to try. A basic, and one in which I’ve only ever tried twice in my life, caught my eye. French Onion Soup.

Now I’m excited to get this going. I’ve recently had two addictions…. onions and red pepper flakes. I’ve been going through onions like a crazy person gone mad. Luckily I wear contact lenses and thus…. no burning or teary eyes! Yes the rumor is true. Also, red pepper flakes…. why can’t they go in every meal? Give me one good reason why they can’t.  Mmmmmm spicy.

FRENCH ONION IN THE SLOW COOKER

Ingredients

3 Cans beef broth (I prefer Swanson)

3 T butter

2 yellow onions

¾ T sugar

1/3 C cooking sherry

1 t salt

Slices of crusty bread (I used french)

Gruyere Cheese (I had swiss in the fridge)

Directions

Turn slow cooker on to high

Add butter

Slice onions into rings and separate the rings from each other with your hands

When butter is melted add in the onion rings

Toss to coat onions evenly in the butter

Add beef broth, sugar, sherry, and salt

Cook on high for about 7-8 hours or low for about 10

It’s done when the onions are translucent and softened.

To Serve

Set your oven to broil

Toast a slice of bread for each person.

Cut the cheese into slices (My swiss was presliced)

Spoon soup into individual oven safe bowls

Cheese goes on the toasted bread

Float each piece of cheese toast in each bowl.   And hope they fit…

Place bowls of soup and cheese toast on a cookie sheet or baking pan for ease and safety

Put em in the oven under the broiler.

Broil for a few minutes until cheese is melty and slightly golden

Serves 4-6

While I had the butter melting in the slow cooker to start the soup, I started in on the next dish.  So incredibly glad I started this one early as I had no idea, nor did I even begin to think about just how long it would take!  OMG.  I made Beef Pot Stickers to go with Soup.  The filling itself is easy to make…. But it took a very long time to assemble each one.

I love gyoza and always order it when we have sushi..  It becomes the usual with our sushi order.  If you don’t know what gyoza are, well they are basically pork dumplings but I guess they can be made various ways.  They are fried on one side and slightly steamed I believe.  Yum Yum Yum  in my Tum Tum.  These are similar, and although I have not yet fried them up for dinner…. I can’t imagine them not being tasty

BEEF POT STICKERS

Ingredients

2 lbs extra lean ground beef

1 egg white

½ a carrot, finely diced

4 green onions, finely chopped

½ yellow onion, finely chopped

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1 red pepper, finely chopped

3T oyster sauce

3T soy sauce

72 wonton wrappers

1 egg yolk, beaten

Directions

In a food processor, combine the beef and egg white and grind to a paste.

Mix in the carrot, green onion, yellow onion, garlic, red pepper and the oyster sauce and soy sauce.

Lay 4 wonton wrappers out on a clean, dry surface, then place 1 Tablespoon beef mixture into the center of each wrapper. Wet all four sides with a pastry brush or your finger, then fold the bottom right-hand corner up the top left-hand corner and seal the edges, being careful to remove all air pockets. Transfer potsticker to a wax paper-lined baking sheet and press down gently to create a flat bottom.

Repeat with remaining wrappers and filling. Annoying!!!

To freeze: Place baking sheet into the freezer until potstickers are frozen solid. Transfer to a freezer-safe container or bag. When ready to eat, cook the same way as fresh.

To cook: Heat 1 teaspoon vegetable oil in a medium-sized skillet. Place potstickers, being careful not to crowd, into the skillet, getting oil on the bottom of each potsticker. Cook until golden brown on the bottom, then add enough water to come 1/3 of the way up the potstickers. Place a lid on top and let the potstickers steam for 2-3 minutes.

When there is just a couple Tablespoons water left in the skillet, remove the lid and allow the water to cook out and the potsticker bottoms to crisp back up. Use a spatula to gently unstick the wrappers from the skillet and serve with Au Jus dipping sauce (heat ingredients in a small saucepan or in the microwave.)

Serve as is or with chili-sauce-spiked soy sauce.

I don’t know how many wonton wrappers I originally had… I didn’t count and I ran out.  So I had to run out to the store.  The new ones seemed to work out quite a bit faster.  Don’t ask me why, but a trip to the grocery store when I had already been cooking for an hour was annoying!

Well I’m about to pull it altogether and serve Hubby his dinner.  Hopefully it all goes as planned. Wish me luck!

I’ll touch back later and add in some pics!

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