Monday, January 30, 2012

Spicy Bean Burritos

These were so yummy even though they are meatless =D
I got this recipe from right here: Kitchen Simplicity

Don’t throw out the extra chipotles! Put them in a freezer bag and pop them in the freezer. When you need some for a recipe, chop off as much as needed and thaw to use.
Bean Filling

2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon minced chipotle in adobo sauce
1 teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon salt
dash cayenne pepper
1/3 cup chicken broth
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15 oz.) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
6 tablespoons salsa
To Serve
shredded cheese
diced tomatoes
chopped lettuce
chopped green onions
sour cream

Cook garlic in a small amount of oil just until fragrant (30-60 seconds). Add spices, broth and beans. Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in salsa.
Spoon bean filling into tortillas, top with cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, green onions and sour cream to serve.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Zucchini, Black Bean and Rice Skillet

I am always in search for the yummy veggie dishes that my boys will eat without begging them and THIS recipe is one of them =D I had pinned this recipe in Pinterest and just had to share it with was so tasty! 
Here is the blog I got the recipe from: Ready,Set, Eat

1 tablespoon Canola Oil
1-1/2 cups quartered lengthwise, sliced zucchini
1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
1 can (15 oz each) Whole Black Beans, drained, rinsed
1 can (14.5 oz each) Organic Diced Tomatoes, undrained
3 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup water
brown rice already cooked
shredded Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese 

Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat...cook your minced garlic until fragrant

  Add zucchini and bell pepper; cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add beans, undrained tomatoes and water. Increase heat and bring to a boil.

Add rice; stir well.  Sprinkle with cheese.

Nutritional Information:

4 servings (1-1/4 cups each) Calories 276; Total Fat 9 g (Saturated Fat 3 g); Cholesterol 15 mg; Sodium 515 mg; Carbohydrate 37 g; (Dietary Fiber 7 g, Sugars 5 g); Protein 10 g; Percent Daily Values*: Vitamin A 17%; Vitamin C 38%; Calcium 17%; Iron 21%

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Eggplant Parmesan

    (this is for 2 servings so double recipe if you want more) =D
    olive oil
    1 can organic tomato sauce
    1 can organic tomato paste
    1 can organic stewed tomatoes
    3 garlic cloves, chopped
    1 Tbs. marjoram or oregano
    Salt, to taste
     1 large Eggplant cut  into slices 1/2 inch thick
    1/2 tsp. salt
    mozzarella cheese, shredded
    oregano and Italian seasoning
    grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
    1 1/2 Tbs. unsalted butter, cut into bits
    In a bowl mix together tomato sauce and tomato paste with 2 tbls of Italian seasoning and 1 tbls of oregano and 1 teaspoon of garlic salt and set aside. In a large saucepan over medium heat, add about a tablespoon of olive oil. Add the garlic and sauté 2 to 3 minutes; do not allow to brown.

    Add the stewed tomatoes, 1 1/2 cups of the tomato sauce mixture and marjoram

    Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, until the tomatoes have cooked down to a sauce.Taste and season with salt, if needed. 

    Preheat an oven to 450°F. 

    Place the eggplant slices in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Drizzle evenly with 2 Tbs. of the olive oil and sprinkle with the salt. Turn the slices over and drizzle with the remaining 2 Tbs. olive oil. Top with the thyme and place in the oven. 
    Cook until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Turn and cook until lightly browned on the other side, 5 to 6 minutes more. Place under a preheated broiler until a slightly golden crust forms on the tops of the slices, 2 to 3 minutes. Turn and broil on the other side until golden, 2 to 3 minutes more. 
    Reduce the oven temperature to 400°F.

    Arrange one-third of the eggplant slices in a shallow 2-quart baking dish. Top with layers of sauce, mozzarella, oregano and Parmigiano-Reggiano. 

    Repeat the layers, beginning with the eggplant. Reserve a layer of eggplant, sauce and then Parmigiano-Reggiano for the top. Dot evenly with the butter. 

    Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, cover loosely with aluminum foil and let stand for 10 minutes. Scoop from the dish to serve.

Egg Fried Rice...with my special ingredient


 Day old brown rice
olive oil
1/2 Medium onion, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
2 carrots, chopped
1 cup of frozen organic peas (purchased at Costco)
2 eggs
Poultry Seasoning (secret)
celery salt (secret)
Fish Sauce
low sodium fish sauce
fresh ground pepper and salt to taste
2 tablespoons of I can't believe its not butter =D or regular butter


Here is a little tip to mincing garlic. Take your garlic clove and turn your cutting knife to its side and lay on top of the clove. Press firmly with the palm of your hand to squish it or even pound it with the palm of your hand. This helps to take the peel right off the clove and easier to slice and then mince.

In a skillet add your butter, onions, garlic and carrots and saute them until soft and tender.
Doesn't it smell like Thanksgiving in here? =D

when its cooked tender go ahead and add your brown rice and frozen peas. It is important to use at least day old rice when making fried rice instead of freshly made rice. Otherwise,  your friend rice will be mushy. We are then going to add about 2 teaspoons of low sodium soy sauce. I don't really measure so this is approximate ;p 

Then add a couple teaspoons of fish sauce, a dash of celery salt, salt and freshly ground pepper. Then you will want to drizzle olive oil all over the rice.

I sprinkle the poultry seasoning in...I am guessing its about a teaspoon.
Lastly, push the fried rice to the side, add some olive oil on the pan and crack two eggs.
Use a wooden spatula and mix beating the egg...let cook for a minute and then go ahead and mix it all in with your friend rice and cook through. Its now ready for you tummy!

Chicken Lo Mein


Rotisserie Chicken 
1/2 pound angel hair pasta
3 tablespoon hoisin sauce
1/4 cup chicken broth
2 tablespoons light sodium soy sauce
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon starch
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger
2-3 cloves garlic minced
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 cup chopped carrots
1 1/2 cup chopped broccoli florets
1 to 1/14 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast cut into bite size strips or what I do is use the Rotisserie chicken purchased from Costco =D they are so yummy and only $4.99 and are so handy to add to dishes like these


Cook the noodles according to the package directions until just tender. Drain and run the noodles with cold water, drain well and set aside.

In a small bowl, mix the hoisin sauce, chicken broth, soy sauce, sesame oil and cornstarch. Then set sauce aside. 

Heat 1 tablespoon of the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir fry the ginger for a minute then add the onion and stir fry for 2 minutes.

Add the carrots and stir fry 2 minutes more. Finally, add the broccoli and stir fry another 2 minutes. Add to the skillet the noodles,cut up rotisserie chicken and the sauce and using two spatulas or wooden spoons, lightly toss the mixture until heated through and when its all mixed. 

Filipino Pork Sinigang Soup (Tamarind or Sour Soup)

 Small potatoes, peeled and diced into one inch cubes

Tara Root (purchased at an Asian market) peel them just like potatoes 
and cut them also in 1 inch cubes

put the potatoes and taro root cubes in a pot of 6 cups of water and cook on medium heat for about 15 minutes until you can
poke a fork in them. It is important to cook the potatoes first before you cook the other veggies because the acid from the tomatoes and the tamarind mix prevent the potatoes from cooking through if you add them straight away.

I love to add about 1 cup of chopped zucchini
3 small tomatoes cut up
1 medium onion, diced small
4-6 garlic cloves, minced 

1.5 1b of pork ribs preferably with bones

2 packages of Mama Sitas Sinigang Mix (can be purchased at Asian Market)
a note about this mix:  if you are MSG sensitive double check the ingredients on
these packets they might have it in them. You can find real tamarind in Asian markets
and I have seen them at Winco Foods stores. You just remove their hard outer shells and the soak the tamarind pulp, seeds and all, in a cup of warm water. Mash with a fork to remove most of the tamarind from the seeds. Take out the seeds and membranes and reserve the liquid to add to potatoes after they are cooked. You will need to add a little lemon juice to this liquid too.   

3-4 heads of baby bok choy 

After the potatoes are almost cooked through add the remaining veggies and the seasoning mix packets and cook for 15 minutes more. Once the veggies are cooked to your desired consistency the soup is ready to be served. Serve over a bowl of white rice. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Black Eyed Pea Soup with Turkey and Chicken Sausage

4 Chicken sausage links
1 pound ground turkey
1 large onion, diced
 4 cups beef broth
2 cans black-eyed peas, drained
1 can diced tomatoe, drained, 1 can diced tomatoes undrained
 2 small cans green chile peppers 
  1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
3/4 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons molasses
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin


1) In a large skillet or indoor grill pan, cook chicken sausage links. In a separate skillet cook ground turkey with the onion over medium heat until the meat is no longer pink, 10 to 12 minutes; drain off excess fat. Pour in the beef broth, and stir in black-eyed peas, diced tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, garlic salt, salt, canned green chilies, molasses, beef bouillon cubes, black pepper, and cumin until thoroughly mixed.

2) Bring the soup to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and simmer for 45 minutes.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Garlic Parmesan Mashed Potatoes


  • 4 lb. russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks (Note: I use Organic potatoes..
  • the regular potatoes are really high on the dirty list)
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • 10 Tbs. (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
  • 1/2 teaspoon of thyme
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 3/4 to 1 cups half-and-half, warmed
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste


Put the potatoes in a large pot, add water to cover by 3 inches and generously salt the water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, reduce the heat to medium-low and gently cook the potatoes until tender when pierced with a fork, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain well in a colander. Take a potato masher or if you own a ricer or food mill this will work great. You will want to mash the potatoes. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat,  add a little olive oil to the pan and add your minced garlic...for about 60 seconds. Then combine the butter, chives and thyme. Heat until the butter melts and begins to foam. Remove from the heat. Stir the butter mixture into the potatoes, then slowly stir in the half-and-half. Season with salt and pepper and serve immediately.

Cheesecake Factory Chicken Madiera Recipe


1 tablespoon olive oil
4 skinless chicken breast fillets
8 asparagus spears
(you will want to cut the ends of your asparagus like this)
4 mozzarella cheese slices
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups sliced fresh white mushrooms
2 cups madeira wine

2 cups beef broth (for beef broth I always use this Organic
Better Than Bouillon mix) it is the best!

1 tablespoon butter
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

How to:

First put your chicken breast in between two sheets of aluminum foil or two sheets of plastic wrap to cover them. We are then going to get a meat mallet to flatten the chicken until it is about 1/4 inch thick, this is a very important step. Sprinkle each breast with salt and pepper on both sides. We are going to heat up 1 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook the chicken breasts for appox. 5 minutes per side. Do not keep turning the chicken breasts as they are cooking. This is also very important. Let cook for 5 minutes without flipping then turn over.  Once chicken is browned removed the chicken from the pan and wrap them in foil to keep warm while you start on the sauce. 

Sauce: keep heat still on medium and add two tablespoons of olive oil to the pan. Add thesliced mushrooms and saute for about two minutes. Add the madeira wine, beef broth, butter and pepper. Bring the sauce to a boil, then reduce heat to a bubbling simmer. It will need to be at a bubbling simmer for about 30-40 minutes to reduce to about one quarter of its original volume. When the sauce is done it will have thickened and turned a dark brown color.
As the sauce is simmering, bring a medium saucepan filled about halfway with water to a boil. Add a little salt to the water. Boil asparagus for 3 to 5 minutes, depending on thickness of spears. Drop asparagus into a bowl of ice water to halt the cooking. The asparagus should be slightly tender when done, not mushy. Set oven to broil. Prepare the dish by arranging cooked chicken fillets on a baking pan. Cross two asparagus spears over each fillet, then cover each with a slice of mozzarella cheese. Broil the fillets for 3 to 4 minutes or until light brown spots begin to appear on the cheese. To serve, arrange one or two chicken breasts on each plate, then spoon 3 or 4 tablespoons of madeira sauce over the chicken.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Thai Panang Curry Chicken

This recipe will feed about 2-4 is served with rice and you can also serve this along with a veggie dish or a Thai salad

1 pound of chicken breasts
1 can of coconut milk
1 teaspoon of palm sugar
1 tablespoon of Kaffir Lime Leaves (sold in Asian markets)

10 big red dried chilies...
these large chilies are less potent so if you want a spicier 5 star panang
then you can add a few small dried chilies to it.

2 teaspons of Galangal, cut into matchsticks
Galangal looks like ginger root but do not substitute with ginger
this is important. Galangal can be purchased at Whole Foods Market or an Asian Market. Store in refrigerator. 

2 tablespoons of Lemongrass, minced
with lemongrass only the bottom part of the stalk is used, the first 1/3 to 1/2.

1 tablespoon of Coriander root...

ok so this is one of the most important ingredients in this dish and it is so hard to find fresh coriander with its roots still on anywhere around here...even in the Asian Markets. Some Latino or Asian markets might have some but I haven't found any. buy a pot of coriander and use the roots lol!! Cut the root with about 1/2″ of green (like shown) and wash very very well before adding to the dish. To get even more flavor in a soup, bruise the root with a stone mortar & pestle first. A trick to washing the dirt off is to place the coriander with its roots in a large bowl and fill the bowl with cold water. Let stand for 10 mins, after this you'll see that all the dirt and mud will have sunk to the bottom. Using a small sieve scoop up the stems without disturbing the bottom. 

1 teaspoon of toasted Coriander seeds
1 teaspoon of toasted Cumin seeds
2 tablespoons of minced garlic
2 tablespoons of shallots

1 teaspoon of shrimp paste...also sold at Asian markets or online

The first step is to make the curry paste. Start by soaking the chilies in water until they’re soft. This could take up to a half hour. When they’re soft, cut them open to remove the guts & seeds. Put your Chilies with the salt in a stone mortar and pestle and pound until it is a paste. The skins are difficult to mash, be patient, it is going to take awhile. When your chilies are a uniform paste, add the lemongrass. Pound until a paste. Then add the galangal and coriander roots, and again, smash until paste.

Toast the cumin seeds and cilantro seeds separately in a pan over medium heat. Roast each until fragrant, about 3-5 minutes. Then put in a stone mortar and pestle until it is a powder. Set aside. 

Add the shallots, garlic and your powdered cumin & cilantro seeds. Mash until paste. Add the shrimp paste and pound to mix well. Set aside.
Cut your meat into slices about 1.5″ long
Now we are going to fry our curry paste. Heat up your pan first on medium-high heat, then add  a tablespoon of peanut oil or even coconut oil and add the paste. fry the paste. keep stirring the paste so it doesn't burn. Then add 1/2 cup of the coconut milk. It should sizzle right away and boil. Stir all the paste and mix well.
Keep adding coconut cream about 1/4 cup at a time, every minute or two. You should start to see a lot of oil coming to the top of the curry. This is normal and a sign that you’re doing it right! Your paste should start to smell really good after 4-5 minutes. You’ll start to see a lot of oil rising to the top, especially where it’s bubbling. When it does, add your meat. I even add sliced red bell pepper. Cook the meat until cooked, add the lime leaves, fish sauce and palm sugar, then keep going about 3-5 minutes so the meat is soft. Remove and serve.
Garnish with shredded lime leaves and a few leaves of Thai basil. Some fancy restaurants serve it like shown with a bit of thickened coconut cream (thickened with a bit of tapioca flour) =D