Go Green: Enchiladas Verdes

Enchiladas Verdes

Mmm, I love the green enchilada sauce, to me it is so much better than the red. I love the tart, tangy flavor of the tomatillos. If you are unfamiliar with tomatillos, check out a previous post I wrote Tomatillos 101.  I don’t know why I don’t use them more often. I made this dish using a store bought rotisserie chicken to save me time and effort, a great weeknight cheat. These would also be great with any left over shredded meats like pork or beef.

Enchiladas Verdes

1 lb fresh tomatillos, husks removed an quartered

1 Jalapeño pepper halved with seeds and membrane removed

1 onion peeled and cut into 1/8s

1 T olive oil

1 t chopped garlic

1 T fresh cilantro 

1/2 t cumin

10 corn tortillas

4-5 c shredded or chopped chicken

1 c shredded Monterey jack cheese

Optional for garnish

1/2 c crumbled queso fresco cheese

chopped onion

chopped cilantro

sour cream

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, place tomatillos, onion and jalapeno pepper on a rimmed baking sheet, toss with oil. Bake for 15 min or until soft and blistered in areas. 

Enchiladas Verdes

Scrape mixture into a food processor or blender bowl, add garlic, cilantro, and cumin. Puree until almost smooth, I like a little bit of chunk in my sauce. 

Enchiladas Verdes

Add 2 T sauce to the bottom of a 9×11 baking pan. Then take a tortilla and spread a light coating of the sauce with a spoon or spatula on top, add chicken on top (about a 1/4 c) and roll up, place the tortilla seam side down in the baking pan. Continue with the remainder of the tortillas and chicken.

Enchiladas Verdes

Enchiladas Verdes

Top with remaining sauce and cheese ( you may want to reserve a small amount of the sauce to top finished enchiladas with. 

Enchiladas Verdes

Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees. 

Enchiladas Verdes

Let cool for 5 minutes, then use a spatula to serve. Top with any remaining sauce, onion, queso fresco, chopped cilantro and sour cream.

Enchiladas Verdes

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Roll Out the Barrel: Oktoberfest Party

Oktoberfest Party: Photo Booth

It was one of my best friends birthday recently so we decided to throw her a birthday party with an Oktoberfest theme. Whats not to like, beer, costumes, and German food.

To start I decorated with some beer and fall things I had around the house, empty bottles, beer steins, burlap runner, dried wheat and fall leaves. I also bought a blue and white harlequin tablecloth ( the official Oktoberfest pattern) from a party store and hung it over a curtain rod in my family room to make a back drop for a ” photo booth”. I had props like steins, lederhosen, German signs and Oktoberfest bibs from the party store. I set my camera on a tripod in front of it and tried to get shots of all the party goers.

I am also very lucky that I have some home brewing friends who made a keg of beer especially for our party, delicious!  But this is a great time to taste some of the fall varieties of craft beers like Oktoberfests and Pumpkins.

For appetizers I set up a “Pretzel Stand” I had assorted flavors, shapes and sizes of pretzels and dips to go with them. I even made some homemade Pretzel Bites by following this recipe. http://www.snixykitchen.com/2012/10/24/pretzel-bites-with-four-distinct-dipping-sauces/. I made the dough a day ahead of time and covered it tightly with plastic wrap. then boiled and baked the pretzels the next day. I also found that I needed to add about 3/4 c more flour than the recipe called for to get the dough to be the right consistency but I live in Florida and baking here can be weird.

Oktoberfest Party: Homemade Pretzel Bites

Oktoberfest Party: Pretzel Stand

For dips I made a Sweet and Spicy Mustard Sauce

1 c mayonnaise

3/4 c coarse mustard

2 T  jarred grated horseradish

2 T honey

Oktoberfest Party: Sweet and Spicy Mustard

a Chocolate and Toffee Dip

1 brick cream cheese softened

1/2 c brown sugar

1/4 c white sugar

1/4 c cocoa powder

1/2 c toffee chips (Heath)

1 t vanilla

Mix all ingredients together in a mixer on low until combined.

Oktoberfest Party: Chocolate and Toffee Dip

I also made Beer Cheese Dip using an Oktoberfest Beer instead of an IPA.

To make all of the food seem more festive I labeled them with German names on the tables.

For the main course we had Brats braised in Beer, Rouladen, Oma’s Potato Salad, Saurkraut with beer and apples, and Homemade Cucumber Salad

Oktoberfest Party: Rouladen

Cucumber Salad

4 cucumbers peeled and sliced thin

1 cup sour cream

2 T sugar

2 T white vinegar

1 t dried dill

1 t salt

1/4 t black pepper

Slice cucumbers and place in a colander to drain for 20 minutes, then mix all ingredients together in a large bowl

Oktoberfest Party: Cucumber Salad

Last but not least, everyone’s favorite, cupcakes. My friend made 3 different kinds for our Oktoberfest themed party. Apple Strudel, German Chocolate and Bavarian Cream. ( I will try to get the recipes to post on here)

Oktoberfest Party: Cupcakes

Fun was had by all, the food, beer and company was all delightful. Go on try some of these ideas at your next Fall party and share your tips below.

Roast Beef With Creamy Peppercorn Sauce

Roast Beef with Creamy Peppercorn Sauce

 

 

Roast Beef with Creamy Peppercorn Sauce

2 lb top round roast

1 T Montreal Steak Seasoning

1 T Black Peppercorns ( Add to a ziplock baggy and crush slightly with a meat mallet)

2 t olive oil

3 garlic cloves minced

1/4 cup minced shallot or onion

1/4 c brandy

2 T corn starch

3/4 c heavy cream

1 t Dijon mustard

Preheat oven to 325, place in roasting or broiler pan, sprinkle all sides with Montreal Steak seasoning. Cook for about 1 1/2 hours or until it reaches 150 degrees. Remove from oven and cover with foil and let rest for 10-15 minutes before slicing ( * slice this cut of beef thin to avoid toughness)

In a lage pan heat oil over med high heat add onions and cook until soft, add garlic and peppercorns and cook 1 more minute. Deglaze pan by adding brandy while still over med high heat. Add beef broth and bring to a simmer. Combine cold cream with cornstarch in a small bowl. Whisk into pan with broth and cook over low until sauce thickens, add mustard . Serve over sliced meat.

Roast Beef with Creamy Peppercorn Sauce

Roast Beef with Creamy Peppercorn Sauce

Hungarian Beef and Pepper Stew

Hungarian Beef and Pepper Stew

 

Hungarian Beef and Pepper Stew

2lbs Beef Stew Meat

1/2 onion cut into chunks

1 T olive oil

1 t salt

1/2 t black pepper

2 T Sweet Hungarian Paprika

2 T flour

2 garlic cloves chopped

2 T tomato paste

10-12 oz beef broth

3 bell peppers sliced

1/2 t caraway seeds

2 T balsamic vinegar

Add  1 T paprika, flour, salt and pepper to a large bowl or plastic bag. add meat and toss or shake to coat. Heat olive oil in a large pan add beef and onion and cook until browned. add garlic and caraway seeds and cook 1 minute more. add beef broth (enough to cover meat), remaining paprika, tomato paste and vinegar, bring to a boil and then reduce heat to simmer. Cook over low heat for 45 minutes-1 hr, sauce with thicken and meat will become tender. Add peppers and cook 20 minutes more over low heat or until peppers are soft. Serve over buttered noodles or mashed potatoes.

Hungarian Beef and Pepper Stew

 

Greek Pasta Casserole

Greek Pasta

 

Think of this as a Greek Bolognese Sauce, it is a hearty and comforting dish. I served it with a salad of lettuce, radishes and beets and toasted pita with garlic.

Greek Pasta Casserole

16 oz of cooked pasta ( I used rigatoni)

1 lb ground Turkey (you could use lamb, beef or chicken)

1 can diced tomatoes (Undrained)

2 c chopped fresh spinach

2 T greek seasoning

2 cloves garlic chopped

2 T red wine vinegar

1 c cream

1 c crumbled feta

1 c mozzarella cheese

in a large skillet saute ground turkey until no longer pink, add 1 T greek seasoning, garlic, and spinach, cook over med until spinach is wilted and add tomatoes and vinegar.

Greek Pasta

Mix together with drained pasta and add to a large 9×12 baking dish. Add cream and feta and mozzarella cheese and remaining Greek Seasoning.

Greek Pasta

 

Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally so pasta on top doesn’t get dry. Sauce will thicken and cheese will melt.

Greek Pasta

Greek Pasta

 

 

 

Homemade Spicy Sloppy Joes

Homemade Spicy Sloppy Joes

Easy comfort food with a kick !

Homemade Spicy Sloppy Joes

2 lbs ground beef (use turkey or chicken if desired)

1/2 c chopped yellow onion

1/4 c chopped green pepper

2 t minced garlic

1 12 oz bottle of chili sauce ( I used Heinz)

1 6 oz can tomato paste

2 T Worcestershire sauce

2 T hot sauce

1/2 t salt

1/4 t cayenne pepper

1/2 t dried oregano

1 t mustard

1/2 c water

Brown ground beef with onions peppers and garlic over med high until meat is cooked through. drain off excess fat or liquid if needed. add chili sauce, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, salt, cayenne, oregano and mustard, stir to combine and heat through, add water and stir. Turn heat down to low and cook for about 10 minutes. Serve on toasted buns, add arugula and shredded cheddar if desired.

Homemade Spicy Sloppy Joes

Homemade Spicy Sloppy Joes

 

**Leftovers make great nachos, heat, spread on tortilla chips and sprinkle with cheese and sour cream

Leftover Wine Beef Stew

Left Over Wine Beef Stew

 

Left over wine, whats that? I know, I think 750ml is a serving size too, but hey sometimes it happens. Maybe you invited a friend over and you finished your bottle but she had to drive or maybe you thought it was a good idea to open a second bottle and found out you were wrong. Anyway if you somehow find yourself with some extra red wine this is a delicious recipe to make and then open a new bottle of wine to drink with it. It is light, delicate and delicious. I served it with a side of creamed kale.

Leftover Wine Beef Stew

1 1/2 lbs stew meat ( cut into chunks)

6  larger potatoes peeled and cut into 1/8s

2 carrots chopped

1 T corn starch

1/2 t salt

1/8 t pepper

2T oil

1/2 c chopped shallot

1 T chopped parsley

4 sprigs of thyme

1 c red wine ( I used a Cabernet)

1 c beef broth

1 t Dijon mustard

1 T red wine vinegar

Add corn starch salt and pepper into a large ziplock bag. Add meat and shake to coat. Heat oil in a large skillet, add coated meat and shallot and stir until meat is browned on all sides. Add to slow cooker. Add Potatoes, carrots, parsley. thyme, wine, broth, mustard and vinegar to slow cooker, cover and cook on low for 6 hours (or high for 3) or until potatoes are cooked through.

Left Over Wine Beef Stew

Left Over Wine Beef Stew

Left Over Wine Beef Stew

 

Easy Sunday Dinner: Steak, Hasselback Potatoes and Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

Easy Sunday Dinner: Steak, Hasselback Potatoes and Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

 

Here is a menu for an easy, yet elegant Sunday dinner. Montreal Seasoned Top Sirloin Filets, Cheesy Hasselback Potatoes and Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

For the steak liberally sprinkle both sides with Montreal steak seasoning (found in the spice aisle at the grocery store). Grill to your desired doneness. See so far so easy.

Hasselback Potatoes

5 large baking potatoes

6T melted butter

1 t chopped garlic

1 t dried parsley

1/2 t salt

1/4 t black pepper

1/2 c shredded cheddar cheese

Pre heat oven to 400. Peel and dry potatoes. carefully slice potatoes 3/4 of the way down, making sure not to slice all the way through in 1/4 ” slices (this is the hardest part of the meal) In a small bowl combine butter, garlic, parsley, salt and pepper. Place potatoes in an oven proof baking dish and pour butter mixture over top making sure to get into all the crevices.

Hasselback Potatoes

 

Cook for 1 hour, basting the potatoes every 15 minutes. Using a hot pad, tilt baking pan to the side and use a spoon to catch the butter, spoon back over potatoes.

Hasselback Potatoes

 

Remove from oven, sprinkle cheddar cheese on top and place back into the oven until cheese is melted

Hasselback Potatoes

 

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

16-20 spears of asparagus

4 slices of Prosciutto Ham

 

Preheat oven to 400. Bundle 4-5 spears of asparagus together and wrap with prosciutto. Place on a baking sheet.

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

 

Cook for about 10 minutes or until ham is crispy.

Serve meal with sour cream and bernaise sauce if desired.

Easy Sunday Dinner: Steak, Hasselback Potatoes and Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

 

 

 

Southwestern London Broil

Southwestern London Broil

Southwestern London Broil

1 1/2 lb london broil

1 c diced tomatoes ( I used canned)

1 t salt

1 t cumin

1 t chopped garlic

1/4 t cayenne pepper

1 lime juiced

Put london broil in a gallon sized ziplock bag, add remaining . Close bag and mix and massage marinade into meat with your hands. Place bag in refrigerator for 6-24 hours, turning occasionally. Preheat oven to 450. Place meat and marinade on a baking sheet, add sliced peppers and onions if desired.

Southwestern London Broil

 

Cook for about 15 minutes, then turn on broiler and cook for 5 minutes more per side ( use a meat thermometer to check doneness, cooking time will depend on thickness and weight of meat)

Let rest 10 minutes and then slice thinly against the grain. Great by itself or served in tortillas.

Southwestern London Broil

Southwestern London Broil Southwestern London Broil

 

 

Guinness Beef Stew: Alternative to Corned Beef and Cabbage

Guinness Beef Stew

I myself love Corned Beef and Cabbage , well if it’s cooked the right way, but I know many people who do not. So if you are planning a St. Patrick’s Day celebration and want to veer slightly from the traditional, give this recipe a try.

Guinness Beef Stew

2 lbs Beef Stew meat

1/4 c flour

1/4 t garlic powder

1/4 t salt

1/8 t black pepper

1/8 t dried thyme

1T oil

1 large onion cut into 8ths

115 oz can diced tomatoes

1 t chopped garlic

1/2 c Guinness stout  (or any stout)

1 T brown sugar

2 T Dijon mustard

3/4 c beef broth

6 carrots peeled and cut in half

10 small potatoes peeled and cut in half

1 cup baby portabella or button mushrooms

salt and pepper to taste

Add flour, garlic powder, salt, pepper and thyme to a large ziplock bag, add meat and shake until well coated. Heat oil in a large pot, add meat and onion sauté until browned. add garlic and saute 1 minute. Add beer, tomatoes, mustard, brown sugar and broth. Cover and simmer 45 minutes, add potatoes and carrots and cook 45 minutes more. Add mushrooms and cook 10 more minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Guinness Beef Stew Guinness Beef Stew