First Tuesday Recipes for June

I’m writing this on a perfect June day, with the windows open and the temperatures in the high 60s. And, as usual, my thoughts are turning toward dinner.

I’m sharing three dinner recipes with you this month: a vegetarian dish, a grilled pork tenderloin, and a big salad.

* * *

Red Thai Veggie Curry

1 T. coconut oil (olive oil can be substituted)

small onion, chopped

1 T. fresh ginger, grated

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 red pepper, sliced

1 green pepper, sliced

2 carrots, thinly sliced

1 zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced

2 T. Thai red curry paste

1 can (14 oz.) regular coconut milk

1/2 c. water

1/2 T. brown sugar

1 T. soy sauce

1 T. rice vinegar

sliced fresh basil

Melt coconut oil over medium heat and add onion. Cook until soft, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add ginger and garlic and cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly.

Add peppers, carrots, and zucchini; cook for about 5 minutes. Add curry paste and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add coconut milk, water, and sugar. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Do not boil. Reduce heat to low and cook until vegetables are cooked to your preference.

Remove curry from heat and stir in soy sauce and vinegar. Serve over rice and garnish with basil.

* * *

Grilled Pork Tenderloin

1/2 c. frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed

6 T. soy sauce

4 T. toasted sesame oil

2 T. fresh grated ginger

1 pkg. pork tenderloin (1-2 pounds)

In a large gallon-sized zip-top bag, combine all ingredients. Squish it around to coat the pork and refrigerate for 6-24 hours, turning occasionally if possible.

Preheat grill to medium-high and discard marinade. Grill tenderloins over indirect heat for 20-35 minutes or until thermometer inserted into thickest part of tenderloins reaches 145 degrees F. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

* * *

Greek Salad

Salad:

1 head Romaine lettuce, cut into bite-sized pieces

4 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped

1 large cucumber, seeded, peeled, and chopped

1 medium red onion

1 yellow pepper, sliced and cut into bite-sized pieces

1/2 c. Kalamata olives, halved

3/4 c. feta cheese

salami, thinly sliced, optional

Dressing:

6 T. olive oil

2 T. red wine vinegar

1 T. fresh lemon juice

1 t. dried oregano

2 t. fresh parsley, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

salt and pepper to taste

Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl. If you want a heartier dinner, add the salami (coarsely chopped deli ham is also a good choice).

In a small bowl, whisk dressing ingredients. Just before serving, pour over salad and toss gently to coat.

Enjoy!

Until next time,

Amy

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First Tuesday Recipes for May

Has anyone else noticed how quickly 2019 is going? It’s already May! The weather here in New Jersey is getting warmer and the frost-free date is upon us. It’s time for a few recipes to use springtime produce! In this post, as I’ve done a couple times in the past, I’ll post links to recipes I’ve enjoyed rather than writing out my own. Click on the title of the recipe to link to the original.

Asparagus and Goat Cheese QuicheThis recipe is one I found in Southern Living Magazine and two of my children, both of whom hate asparagus and leeks, loved it. I did have some trouble with the filling overflowing the crust, so next time I would make it in a pie plate or a springform pan rather than a tart pan.

Strawberry, Kiwi, and Spinach Salad. This salad is perfect for a light meal. If you prefer to have it with a larger meal, it’s great with pork!

Cold Sesame Noodles with Crunchy Vegetables. This is a great dish if you’re looking for something meatless (which, as I look at the recipes I’ve given you, seems to be a theme this month) and filling. Change up the vegetables you use so it’s different every time! I use peanut butter in this recipe instead of tahini or another nut butter, but I bet those substitutions would be good, too. Spaghetti works just fine in this recipe, so don’t go nuts looking for Chinese egg noodles. And one more thing: I don’t use the hot sauce/Tabasco, but I put it on the table to pass in case someone else wants it.

Let me know if you try any of these! And please remember that I love to have submissions from readers, so don’t hesitate to send me any recipes you’d like to share.

Enjoy!

Until next time,

Amy

 

 

First Tuesday Recipes for April

Monte Cristo sandwich

Spring is finally here! I intended to share recipes this month starring strawberries and asparagus and lemons, but then I got looking through my recipe files and these are the ones that caught my eye. I’ve got three main dishes for you this month–two with chicken, one with beef. I hope you’ll try them and let me know what you think.

Chicken-Rice Salad with Cashews

My sister gave me this recipe years ago and everyone likes it.

3 c. chicken, cooked and diced

1/2 c. celery, diced

2 green onions, sliced thinly

2 c. cooked brown rice

1/2 c. mayo

1/2 c. plain yogurt

1 T. lemon juice

1 t. honey

1 t. salt

cashews

Combine chicken, celery, and rice in a large bowl. In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, yogurt, lemon juice, honey, and salt. Mix well.

Pour dressing over chicken and toss lightly to coat. Cover; chill for two hours before serving. Add the desired amount of cashews just before serving. Delicious on naan or over salad greens.

 

Monte Cristo Sandwiches

8 slices thick white bread

8 slices deli chicken

8 slices deli ham

4 slices Swiss cheese

2 large eggs

1/2 c. milk

dash salt and pepper

powdered sugar

cherry preserves

Preheat griddle to medium-high.

On each of four slices of bread, layer two slices of chicken, two slices of ham, and one slice of cheese. Top with second piece of bread.

In a shallow bowl mix the egg, milk, and salt and pepper. Holding the sandwiches carefully, dip each in the batter and place them on griddle. Lower heat to medium.

Cook sandwiches until golden brown and cheese is melted. Before serving, lightly sprinkle each sandwich with about a teaspoon of powdered sugar. Serve hot with cherry preserves.

 

Pepper Steak

1 – 1 1/2 pounds sirloin steak, cut into narrow strips

2 T. oil

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 t. salt

1/4 t. pepper

1/4 c. soy sauce

1 t. sugar

1 c. bean sprouts (optional)

10 oz. sliced fresh mushrooms (optional)

1 c. canned tomatoes, coarsely chopped

2 green peppers, cut into strips

1 T. cornstarch

2 T. cold water

In a large skillet, brown steak in oil. Combine with garlic, salt, pepper, soy sauce, and sugar in crock pot. Cook on low 6-8 hours. Switch crock pot to high, add sprouts/mushrooms, tomatoes, and peppers. Dissolve cornstarch in water and stir into pot. Cook 25 minutes longer. Note: you may want to add more time to cook the vegetables if you like them soft.

Serve over rice or egg noodles.

Enjoy! And remember, please send in your own recipes to share!

Until next time,

Amy

First Tuesday Recipes for March

Photo courtesy of pixabay/alexas_fotos

It’s the first Tuesday in March, so you know what that means…it’s time for a few new recipes to try. I’ve got some good ones for you.

The first one is good for nights when the weather is still cool during the early weeks in spring.

Chicken Vegetable Chili

If you’re a chili purist, call this a stew and enjoy! I adapted this recipe from one by Chef Ed Daggers.

3 chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces

olive oil

1 med. zucchini, diced

1 med. yellow squash, diced

1 onion, chopped

4-5 green onions, sliced

8 oz. mushrooms, sliced

8 oz. fresh spinach, chopped

1 can black beans

2 15-oz. cans crushed tomatoes

1 8-oz. can tomato sauce

4 T. chili powder (you can use a mixture of different types of chili powders)

1 1/2 T. cumin

salt and pepper to taste

Toppings (optional): sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, jalapeno slices, corn chips

In a Dutch oven, cook chicken in olive oil over medium heat until browned. Add zucchini, yellow squash, onion, green onion, mushrooms, and spinach. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes.

Add tomatoes and tomato sauce; mix well. Add beans and seasonings (NOTE: if you don’t like your chili/stew spicy, adjust the seasonings to suit your tastes); simmer soup over low heat for 45 minutes.

Serve with cornbread or over rice. Garnish with optional toppings.

 

Porcupine Balls

I grew up eating these. The first time I made them for my own family, they were a huge hit!

1 lb. ground chuck

1/3 c. uncooked rice

1 t. each salt and pepper

1 t. dried basil

1/4 t. celery salt

1 T. canola oil

1/2 medium onion, chopped

1/2 green pepper, chopped

2 small cans tomato sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray an 8 x 8″ baking dish with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, mix all ingredients together except for one can of tomato sauce. Form into loose meatballs. Place meatballs in baking dish and cover with remaining tomato sauce.

Cover and bake for 1 to 1 1/4 hours.

Please note, these may fall apart when you serve them. They’re still delicious!

 

Pistachio Cake

Courtesy of my sister. This disappears in a jiffy anytime I take it somewhere.

Cake:

1 pkg. white cake mix

1/2 c. canola oil

4 eggs

1 c. sour cream

1 pkg. pistachio pudding

Mix above ingredients and set aside.

Filling:

1/2 c. sugar

1 t. cinnamon

1/2 c. chopped nuts (I use pecans)

Mix filling ingredients.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a Bundt pan very well.

Layer the batter and filling as follows:

Bottom: 1/3 batter

2nd layer: 1/2 filling

3rd layer: 1/3 batter

4th layer: 1/2 filling

5th layer: 1/3 batter.

Bake for one hour.

Enjoy!

As always, please send me your recipes to share! And if you try any of these, please let me know what you think!

Until next time

Amy

First Tuesday Recipes for February

How did it get to be February already? This month a lot of things get squeezed into fewer days than normal, but cooking is always a good way to slow down and take a deep breath. I’ve tried a few recipes lately that I found on the internet, so I thought I would share those with you. Rather than posting full recipes this month, I’m going to post the links to the pages where I found these foods.

Chicken Casserole d’Iberville

This casserole is delicious. You might shrink from the length of the instructions, but it can be made in steps. Honestly, I thought it was far less work than I anticipated. I also cut the recipe in half (give or take) and it still made a ton of food.

https://www.southernliving.com/syndication/chicken-casserole-diberville?6497

 

Chicken with Mustard Mascarpone Marsala Sauce (pictured above)

Say that ten times fast. This was fabulous. My husband loved it and even my daughter liked it after picking out all the mushrooms. And speaking of mushrooms, the recipe calls for cremini. They’re expensive. I bought a few and used button mushrooms for the rest, but next time I might just use button mushrooms. It would be just as good.

https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/chicken-with-mustard-mascarpone-marsala-sauce-recipe-1944096

 

And because…dessert.

 

Ina Garten’s Chocolate Cake

I actually got this from Taste of Home, who reprinted the famous cake recipe. Valentine’s Day falls on February 14th, as you know, and this would be great for anyone who loves chocolate.

https://www.tasteofhome.com/article/ina-garten-chocolate-cake/?_cmp=recipeofthedayOld&_ebid=recipeofthedayOld1302019&_mid=263699&ehid=d0e74992f1aafbbb0409208a7b47f9718c561fb5

 

If you give any of these a try, let me know what you think. And please send in your own recipes if you’d like!

Until next time,

Amy

First Tuesday Recipes for January 2019!!

I know the First Tuesday Recipes are appearing on the Second Tuesday this month, but with last Tuesday being New Year’s Day, I figured you might want a break.

With that being said, Happy New Year! I’m looking forward to everything 2019 might bring and planning to share lots of good content with you.

For the first First Tuesday Recipes of the year, I’ve got a wonderful soup I made just a couple nights ago, a grab-and-go breakfast idea, and a dessert (at the request of Maggie King. Maggie, I hope I’m sharing the right recipe!)

Zuppa Toscana

This is one of my niece’s favorites, though my sister makes it a bit differently than I do.

1/2 lb. bulk sausage

1 onion, chopped

1/2 lb. bacon

4 c. chicken broth

5-6 medium potatoes, peeled and diced

1 can white kidney beans, drained

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 tsp. hot pepper flakes (optional)

1 c. heavy cream

4 c. baby spinach

salt and pepper to taste

Cook sausage and onion in a skillet until sausage is no longer pink and onion is translucent. Set aside. Cook bacon and set aside (I prefer to cook the bacon in the oven). Crumble when cool.

Put chicken broth, potatoes, beans, garlic, and hot pepper flakes (if using) in a Dutch oven and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until potatoes are tender, about 12-14 minutes.

Using an immersion blender, blend soup until about half of it is pureed. Leave about half of the potatoes and beans solid. If you don’t have an immersion blender, you can use a regular blender–just be careful because the soup is hot.

Add sausage, onions, and crumbled bacon to soup; stir. Add heavy cream; stir. Bring mixture to a boil and let boil for one minute.

Add spinach, swirl around for about a minute, and serve. My sister serves it with garlic bread and it’s delicious that way!

* * *

Breakfast Burritos

10 slices bacon

12 eggs, lightly beaten (I do not add water or milk to the eggs, but I suppose you can if you want)

salt and pepper to taste

10 flour tortillas (8 inches)

1 c. shredded cheddar cheese (I use less)

5 scallions, sliced

Cook bacon until crisp; set aside to cool. Reserve 2 tbsp. bacon fat. When cool, crumble bacon.

In a large skillet, cook eggs in bacon grease and season with salt and pepper.

Set out the tortillas on a table or large counter space. Place appr. one scrambled egg on each tortilla. It helps to fill all the tortillas at the same time because if some have too little egg and some have too much, it’s easy to adjust. Top each egg with a bit of crumbled bacon. Top the bacon with a bit of shredded cheese and top the cheese with sliced scallions.

Roll up each tortilla, tucking in the ends, and wrap each one lightly in a paper towel. Then wrap each one in a small sheet of tin foil. Place in freezer.

When you’re ready to eat a burrito, remove the foil. Remove the paper towel, then wrap the paper towel around it again (this is just so the paper towel doesn’t stick to the burrito while it cooks). Place burrito in the microwave and cook for about a minute and 15 seconds (you may have to adjust this time, depending on your microwave).

This is delicious with salsa, but it’s also perfect to just grab and go. It can be easily adjusted–if you like sausage or ham instead of bacon, use that. No meat? Fine! Veggies instead? Fine! Just make sure they’re cooked and patted dry before adding them to the burrito. Lots more cheese? Fine! Less cheese? Fine! No scallions? Whatever you want!

* * *

Hello, Dolly Bars (also known as Seven Layer Bars)

10 tbsp. butter

1 1/2 c. graham cracker crumbs

1 c. chocolate chips (chef’s choice of kind–milk, semisweet)

1 c. butterscotch chips (This is the layer I skip, but feel free to use them)

1 c. flaked sweetened coconut

1 15-oz. can condensed milk

1/2 c. chopped pecans

Do not mix the layers in this dessert.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in a 13×9″ baking dish. Press graham cracker crumbs into melted butter.

Sprinkle graham crackers with chocolate chips. If using, sprinkle the chocolate chips with butterscotch chips. Sprinkle the layer (or two) of chips with the coconut.

Pour the condensed milk over the top of the coconut; sprinkle with pecans.

Bake for 30 minutes. Cool; cut into squares (small ones–a little goes a long way!)

Enjoy! Please remember that I always welcome recipes from readers, so let me know if you’ve got one you’d like to share!

Until next week,

Amy

First Tuesday Recipes for December

The only reason I use the photo above is because it’s one of my favorites–not because it’s snowing here or even acting like winter is on its way. In fact, today I’m sitting at my desk in a short-sleeved shirt and capri pants, wondering when the temperatures are going to dip.

To me, the holidays don’t seem like the holidays without cold and maybe even some snow. But since it’s the first Tuesday in December and I have a job to do, I’m going to share a few recipes with you today that are great for this time of year for a few different reasons. The first one is quick and easy, great for those nights when you might have shopping, wrapping, play practice, crew practice, basketball practice, etc. to check off your list.

The second is good for rainy or snowy days when you just want to stay indoors. It’s time-consuming, yet relaxing and almost meditative. And it makes a wonderful gift!

The third is just plain delicious, and perfect for cookie exchanges or to just sneak for yourself.

And finally, there’s a dog treat recipe for anyone who may have missed it a couple weeks ago, courtesy of Heather Weidner!

Q’s Chicken

6 T. soy sauce

2 t. brown sugar

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves

3 T. mustard

1 1/2 t. cornstarch

milk

salt and pepper

Combine soy sauce and brown sugar. Marinate chicken in mixture for 15 minutes.

Cook chicken in a skillet with a little bit of canola or vegetable oil and all the soy sauce mixture. Cover and cook until juices run clear. In a saucepan, mix mustard, cornstarch, enough milk to make it liquidy, and salt and pepper to taste. Heat through.

Pour mustard mixture on plate and place piece of chicken on top.

Serve with rice.

 

German Christmas Stöllen

For this one, I’m sending you to another page. Even if you don’t like Stöllen or don’t know what it is or don’t feel like making it, I suggest you take a look at the link because it tells a great story of the history of this special bread. If you do make the recipe, have fun with it. I even made my own candied citrus as the post suggests because I was having a bad day and candied citrus makes everything better.

https://www.daringgourmet.com/stollen-german-christmas-bread/

 

Christmas Crack

If you’ve never heard of this, try it and you’ll agree that the name fits. I have yet to meet a person who doesn’t love it. The first time I made it the entire tray ended up in the dishwater–it was a Christmas tragedy.

2 sleeves Saltine crackers (I’ve also seen this made with Ritz crackers or graham crackers)

2 sticks butter, melted

1 c. light brown sugar, packed

2 c. (1 package) semisweet chocolate chips

1/2 c. chopped almonds (or nut of your choice)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Line a jelly roll pan with foil and coat with cooking spray. Place the crackers in a single layer on the pan. You’ll probably use about 40 crackers and you may have a little bit of pan not covered by crackers–feel free to break the crackers in half to make them fit the entire pan.

Place the butter and brown sugar in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil. Boil for three minutes–no more, no less.

Being VERY CAREFUL, pour the sugar syrup/caramel over the crackers. Using an offset spatula, spread the caramel to cover the crackers.

Place the pan in the oven and cook for 3-5 minutes, or until bubbling.

Remove pan from oven; sprinkle chocolate chips over the caramel, trying to cover as much of the crackers as possible. Place pan in oven for 2-3 more minutes.

Remove pan from oven. Again using an offset spatula, spread melted chocolate over the layer of caramel.

Sprinkle top with chopped nuts and allow to cool. Once it’s completely cool, t’s easier to break the crack into pieces than to cut it, so do whatever works for you!

 

Jocelyn’s Peanut Butter Dog Treats

1/4 c. smooth peanut butter

2/3 c. pumpkin puree (fresh or canned)

2 lg. eggs

3 c. flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Beat the peanut butter, pumpkin puree, and eggs with an electric mixer on medium/medium-high speed. Mix ingredients well.

Add flour and mix well.

Knead dough on a lightly-floured surface and pat it to approximately 1/4-1/2 inch thickness. Use cookie cutters to cut out shapes. Bake until brown (checking often for burning).

 

Enjoy! Share your favorite holiday treats in the comments. You don’t have to provide the recipe–just tell me what you love to eat during the holiday season.

Until  next time,

Amy