Mexican Baked Tilapia from Chowhound

Using foil vs towels to keep food warm

You’ve just pulled something nice and crispy out of the oven, but the rest of your meal isn’t ready. How do you keep it warm? Should you use aluminum foil or a towel to keep your food warm?

If you cover your food with an impermeable material (i.e. something that won’t let steam escape such as aluminum foil), your food will continue to steam inside it’s cover, essentially removing the nice crispy layer you so wanted to sink your teeth into. Continue reading “Using foil vs towels to keep food warm”

Mexican Baked Tilapia from Chowhound

Magically Steamed Green Beans

To make super easy steamed green beans, simply add a small bag of pre-cut and pre-washed green beans to a rice cooker while you are making the rest of your dinner.  Follow the directions on your steamer.  Here’s the one I use.

Result: Beautifully steamed green beans with 30 seconds of effort!

P.S. I recommend setting the timer for 5 minutes less than the instructions, otherwise they come out a tad overdone.

P.P.S. Spend an extra minute trimming off the ends, which can get brown or soft after a few days in the frig. While you’re at it cut the longer ones in half and make them more uniformly sized, insuring they’ll all be cooked to the same doneness.

Avocado - Removing Pit 2

The Art of Dicing an Avocado

Years ago I learned (from somewhere — maybe my Mom, maybe a YouTube video, it hardly matters) the absolute best way to dice an avocado in beautiful, delicious, creamy, uniform cubes. Follow my pictorial below and you’ll be transforming avocados into gorgeous green gourmet goodness in no-time flat.

1) With a medium-sized very sharp knife (I always have very sharp knives, I sharpen them every single time I use them) slice the avocado all the way around lengthwise, cutting the flesh all the way to the pit. Twist the two halves apart.

Avocado cut in half Continue reading “The Art of Dicing an Avocado”

Pork Carnitas

EZ Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas

Pork Carnitas

The original version of this recipe received 733 reviews with an average 4.5 star rating on allrecipes.com.

My version of these yummy slow cooker carnitas is spicier and has a stronger Indian flavor.  You will also need to start it one day ahead but I promise you it is worth it!  You can either start it the night before and eat it the following night, or start it in the morning and eat it the following day.  Either way it needs to sit in the frig for 8-10 hours before cooking.

Here we go!

2 – 2 lb pork tip roasts (Costco, $2/lb)
2 C beef broth (either pre-made or bouillon is fine)

Seasoning mix:
2 t garlic powder
2 t cumin
1 t oregano
1 t ground coriander
1 t chili powder
1 t pepper flakes
1 t salt
1/2 t ground cinnamon

  1. Mix the seasonings in a small bowl. Set aside.
  2. Set the crock from your 5-quart slow cooker next to your workspace, with the lid off.
  3. Remove all packaging from pork roasts, rinse and pat dry with paper towels.
  4. Holding 1 roast in your hand, slowly sprinkle half the seasonings onto the pork, a little at a time, while rubbing them into the meat.  It’s easiest to use both hands to rub the pork. When done your pork should be evenly covered all the way around with seasonings.
  5. Put the roast in the crock and do the same with the other one.  They should be nicely nestled next to each other in the crock.
  6. Cover the crock and put it in the frig for 8-10 hours (I do it overnight).
  7. 8-10 hours later, pull the crock out of the frig and put it in the cooker base.  At this point I generally wait an hour to bring it up to room temp, but you don’t have to if you don’t have time.
  8. Cook on low for 8 hours.  Check it and if it’s not falling apart, cook for an additional hour or more until it is.
  9. Let cool slightly, then pull it apart and serve it on whole grain rolls with the beef juice for dipping.

Some embellishments for the sandwiches might include sweet onions, barbecue sauce, pickles, cole slaw, olives, chutney, and the like.  Please no ketchup or mayo (unless your kids insist :-)).

Note:  You could make this in the morning, put it in the frig all day and then let it cook all night.  The next morning just stick the crock in the frig until you’re ready to eat, pull the pork apart, and heat it all up in the microwave.

For a gluten-free version, serve with corn tortillas or gluten-free bread.

Makes 10 servings at 225 calories each.  With the roll it’s 400.

Turkey and Potatoes in the Oven

Roasted Turkey Thighs & Potatoes with Broccoli

Serves 2-4
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 1 hr 30 minutes

This weeknight meal is so effortless, it practically makes itself! If you use very large thighs you will have leftover meat to use in another meal later in the week.

Ingredients

  • 1 package of (2) turkey thighs
  • 1-2 Tbsp steak or other rub-type seasoning blend
  • 2 baking potatoes (white or sweet)
  • 1 bunch of broccoli (or replace with green beans or zucchini or salad or whatever greens you like)
  • olive oil
  • Salt & pepper or other desired seasoning
  • Potato fixings: Butter, chives, sour cream or plain greek yogurt

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 375F on convection, or 400F on regular.
  2. Scrub the potatoes under running water, and wrap them in squares of tinfoil.  Puncture with a sharp knife in several places. Set aside.
  3. Remove turkey thighs from package and cut away any excess fat or loose bone materials.
  4. Put the thighs skin-side up on a cutting mat or kitchen towel. Sprinkle with the seasoning mix and lightly rub the seasoning into the turkey.
  5. Dribble some olive oil onto a small roasting pan. Place the thighs skin side down in the pan and sprinkle the exposed side with the seasoning. Lightly rub the seasoning in with your fingers.
  6. Place the pan in the oven, along with the potatoes and set a timer for 30 minutes.
  7. After 30 minutes, turn the thighs over (skin side up now) and rotate the potatoes.  Set the timer for another 30 minutes.
  8. Prep your broccoli (or other green vegetable) by trimming off the hard ends and little leaves, and cutting into mouth-sized pieces.  Put into a sauce pan with a quarter inch or so of water in it (or use a steamer), and cover.
  9. When the turkey and potatoes are done remove them from the oven and set aside.
    Put a clean towel over the turkey (not foil).
  10. Cook the broccoli about 6 minutes or until crunchy tender.
  11. Serve all! Put some butter, plain greek yogurt (or sour cream), and salt and pepper on the table for dressing the potatoes.

Photos

Step 5 – Put turkey in pan.
Raw turkey thighs with rub

Step 6 – Put turkey and potatoes in oven.
Turkey and Potatoes in the Oven

Nutrition Info

Oops, not here yet. Coming soon!

Mexican Baked Tilapia from Chowhound

EZ Tri-Tip Roast Beef Stew (Slow Cooker)

Slow Cooker Pot Roast

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 pound pre-marinated stew meat
    • (I like the Asada Tri Tip roast from Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 pound baby red potatoes cut in half or quarters
  • 1 pound carrots, scrubbed and cut into large pieces
  • 1 sweet onion cut into large slices
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and cut into 1 inch strips
  • 4-5 garlic cloves, green shoots removed and chopped coarsely

Directions

  1. Prep all ingredients as indicated in the ingredients list.
  2. Place potatoes, carrots, onions, garlic, & jalapeno in a large slow cooker (in that order).
  3. Add meat and marinade juices into the cooker, directly on top of vegetables.
  4. Add 1/4 C red wine or water into the roast bag. Roll the open end over to close it, and give it a shake (over the sink in case it leaks). Pour the liquid over the roast and discard bag.
  5. Cover the cooker and turn to high setting. Cook on high for two hours then reduce heat to low and cook another 4 to 6 hours. The vegetables will be just tender, and the roast should be tender but not falling apart.

Photos

Step 1 – Prep Veggies

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Step 2 – Add veggies to cooker.

 

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Step 3 – Add meat to cooker.

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Step 5 – Cook and serve.

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Nutrition

Oops, coming soon!