Saturday, May 21, 2011

Balsamic Roasted Carrots, Potatoes and Garlic Bulbs

It is getting sad in my fridge at the end of the groceries. Still, I managed to find some carrots and a few small golden potatoes and a several bulbs of garlic. Cha-ching! Roasted balsamic vegies are one of my favorite side dishes. The balsamic vinegar and olive oil mingles with the vegies to form a sweet-savory crispy coating. Transforms the lowly carrot and potato into something to "ooh and ahh" about, and with almost no effort and very little time.

Preheat oven to 400.

First peel about 6 carrots and then cut them into sticks or think slices. Then quarter several about 6 new,red or golden potatoes. You will use 2 full garlic need for any prep.

On a big thick sheet pan, squiggle a generous amount of olive oil. (About 1/8 cup.) Plop carrots and potatoes and garlic bulbs on the sheet and spread apart into one even layer. Sprinkle all, lightly, with Steak or Grill Seasoning (or salt and pepper and cayenne and garlic). Then generously sprinkle with Balsamic Vinegar. Toss or roll the vegies around until coated with oil, vinegar and seasonings.

(You can also add herbs or other vegies,for a variation on this basic technique.)

Roast for 10 -15 minutes until the bottoms of the vegies are golden and caramelized. Then turn with a spatula, turn heat down to 350 and roast another 10-15 minutes until done. Carefully lift garlic bulbs off of the pan (I use a paper towel) and cut off the ends, then squeeze the sweet roasted cloves into and among the carrots and potatoes.

These vegies are fabulous as they are, but you can also serve with a little Ranch Dressing or sour cream or onion dip to make them even more delectable.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Chicken Lime-Coconut Rice Bowls

I love the combination of fresh lime, coconut milk and spice! Hope you enjoy this creamy, easy one-bowl wonder. It can easily be doubled or tripled for a group.

I begin by making jasmine rice (1 3/4 cups of rice, 3 cups water, dash salt). If you have a rice maker, all the better as it takes less than 15 minutes. ($13.00 at Walmart.:) When it is done, stir in 1/2 can of coconut milk, reserve the rest for the chicken and sauce. (I like the organic lite coconut milk, Whole Foods brand. You want a little fat in there for creaminess and this one is perfect.)

In a large skillet, saute 2 cloves of fresh minced garlic in a T. of coconut or olive oil and a T. of sesame oil.

To this add any vegies you like and stir fry until tender crisp. (I use whatever I have on hand --- onions, mushrooms, sliced asparagus, frozen green peas, edemame, fresh pineapple, chunks of cooked sweet potato or carrots, sugar snap peas, water chestnuts and on and on! I had some fresh brussel sprouts left over so I removed the outer leaves and threw them in the pot,then sliced the little "cabbage core" in "coins" and stir fried them. They were amazing! Fresh grated ginger is also nice. )

Toss in about 1 to 2 cups of diced or shredded cooked chicken, depending on how many you are serving, allowing 1/2 c. per person. (I love rotisserie chicken for this.)

Over the hot chicken and vegies pour about 1/4 c. good teriyaki sauce, 1/8. c. sweet thai chili sauce, and the other 1/2 can coconut milk. Lightly stir. for seasoning and add soy sauce if it needs more saltiness. Squeeze juice of one fresh lime over all.

Let guests serve themselves a portion of hot jasmine coconut rice, and chicken vegie sauce.

Then let everyone add condiments as they like, such as:

Chopped nuts, sesame seeds, crisp fried Chinese noodles, fresh chopped cilantro or basil; extra Oriental sauces such as soy, teriyaki, hoison, thai red sweet chili sauce (I buy this in large bottles at World Market), Sriracha HOT chili sauce (pictured above), grated coconut and fresh lime slices.

Serves 3-4

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Halibut with Lemon & Capers

I must confess that I borrowed this picture of someone else's halibut, because we ate ours up so fast tonight and I was too hungry to search for my camera! (I promise to replace it with my own picture next time I make this recipe, which I hope will be soon. In all honesty, it looked even better:)

However, the fish turned out so great that I wanted to write down the recipe before I forgot what I did!

First I began with a thick piece (about 1/2 lb each person) of fresh halibut from Whole Foods. It is in season right now and the catch is so mild and fresh!

I sprinkled each side of the halibut with a light sprinkling of salt, pepper, and fresh grated lemon peel. Then I pan grilled (in a screamin' hot pan) the two pieces in about 2. T olive oil, 1 t. of butter and a couple of smashed garlic cloves.

After both sides had a nice golden caramel color, I poured in about 1/2 cup water (I was out of white wine, or I would have used that), the juice of one lemon, and about 1 T. of agave nectar (you could also use organic brown sugar) and 2 T. capers. Covered this with a lid and steamed just until fish was flaky and done.

Served the fish over brown and wild rice, pouring pan juices with capers evenly over both pieces.

Fish, Deelish!