Saturday, June 21, 2008

Hearty Bean and Barley Soup

A hearty, spicy, and simply delicious soup that is easy to prepare and just gets better the longer it cooks/sits. Perfect for cold winter days. Serve with a salad or homemade bread for a real treat.

yield: 8 1-cup servings

7 cups chicken broth
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
6 garlic cloves, minced
19 oz dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 tsp olive oil
1 cup chopped carrot
1 cup chopped onion
2 stalks celery, chopped
14 1/2 oz diced tomatoes
1 cup uncooked quick-cooking barley
4 oz torn spinach leaves
1/4 tsp pepper
Parmesan cheese

1. Measure one cup of kidney beans and mash with a fork.
2. Heat oil in large dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrot, celery, garlic, and crushed red pepper. Sauté 4 minutes or until tender. Add broth, tomatoes, barley, and mashed and whole beans. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 30 minutes.
3. Add spinach and pepper. Simmer 10 minutes or until barley is tender. Sprinkle each serving with Parmesan.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Sweet and Sour Chicken

yield: 4 1-cup servings

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp minced garlic (about 3 cloves)
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
1 1/2 lbs skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
3/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
1 cup canned pineapple
1/2 cup canned pineapple juice
1/3 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
2 tsp brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped cashews

1. Heat oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic, ginger, red pepper, and chicken to pan; sauté 5 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove from pan; set aside.
2. Add onion, celery, and bell pepper to pan; sauté 4 minutes or until crisp-tender. While this sautés, combine pineapple juice, soy sauce, cornstarch, and brown sugar in a bowl, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Add pineapple chunks to veggie mixture; cook 30 seconds.
3. Return chicken mixture to pan. Stir in juice mixture; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute. Sprinkle with cashews. Serve over rice.

German Chocolate Bundt Cake

yield: 16 servings

1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp cold butter, cut into small pieces
1/3 cup flaked coconut
1/3 cup chopped pecans

Cooking Spray
1 Tbsp sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1 oz baking chocolate
1/2 cup boiling water
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup softened butter
2 tsp vanilla
2 egg whites
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk

1 cup powdered sugar
1 Tbsp melted butter
4 tsp milk

1. Preheat oven to 325° .
2. Prepare streusel: Combine flour and brown sugar. Cut in butter until coarse and crumbly. Stir in nuts and pecans. Set aside.
3. Prepare pan: Coat a bundt pan with cooking spray and sprinkle with 1 Tbsp sugar. Set aside.
4. Prepare cake: In small bowl combine cocoa, baking chocolate, and boiling water; stir until chocolate melts. Set aside. Combine 1 1/2 cups sugar and 1/3 cup butter with mixer set on medium-high. Add vanilla and eggs, beating until thoroughly mixed. In a separate bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, stirring with a whisk until combined. Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk to sugar/butter mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Stir in cocoa mixture.
5. Pour half of cake batter into prepared pan; top with streusel. Pour remaining batter over streusel. Bake at 325° for 1 hour or until a knife inserted comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes; remove from pan. Cool completely before adding glaze.
6. Prepare glaze: Combine powdered sugar and butter in a small bowl. Add milk; stir with a whisk to combine. Drizzle over cake.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Louisiana Dirty Rice and Beans

A favorite in the Scarbrough household. Spicy red pepper gives this super-easy dish a mighty kick. Satisfying and simple, we could easily demolish the entire 6 servings in one sitting.

yield: 6 1-cup servings

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 cup chopped green pepper
3/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup sliced celery
1/2 lb skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 cup uncooked brown rice
2 cups chicken broth
1 14-oz can diced no-salt-added tomatoes
1/2 cup sliced green onions
1/4 tsp ground thyme
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp ground red pepper
2 minced garlic cloves
1 15-oz can kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. Heat oil in dutch oven over medium heat. Add bell pepper, onion, and celery to pan; sauté until tender (about 4 minutes). Add chicken; cook until lightly browned. Stir in rice; cook 30 seconds. Add broth and remaining ingredients; bring to a simmer. Cover and bake at 350° for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Fettuccine Alfredo

Creamy and cheesy, this fettuccine is better the second day.

yield: 6 1-1/2-cup servings

1 lb fettuccine noodles
1 Tbsp butter
1 1/4 cups half-and-half
3/4 cup grated fresh Parmesan
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

1. Cook fettuccine.
2. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add half-and-half, cheese, salt and pepper; cook 1 minute or until cheese is melted, stirring constantly.
3. Add fettuccine noodles, turning to coat.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Oatmeal Pecan Pie

yield: 12 slices

1 9-inch pie crust

1 cup brown sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
2/3 cup oats
1/2 cup chopped pecans
2 Tbsp melted butter
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 egg whites, lightly beaten

1. Preheat oven to 325° .
2. Combine brown sugar through egg whites in a large bowl. Stir with a whisk to combine. Pour into pie crust. Bake at 325° for 50 minutes or until center is set. Cool completely before serving.