Love and Other Indoor Sports

The title is inspired by that wonderful (timeless, unforgettable, every-little-girl-should-read but isn’t ever found on reading lists) book by Judy Blume: Starring Sally J Freedman as herself … it was my first introduction to WWII fiction for young ladies mini nerds um girls like I am – it was the perfect “pre Diary of Anne Frank” book … and I think I was probably married and considering formative books of my childhood before I understood what Sally’s reference to someone signing notes “love and other indoor sports” LOL but I do consider cooking to be one of the “other indoor sports” ….

 

Once Upon A Time …. there was a person who couldn’t and didn’t cook … that time was 5 years ago and that person was me …

since then I’ve learned a lot about pots and pans and things I can do with my hands ūüôā

and after finally getting over the creeping plague virus that was going around town last week I was itching to make some magic in the kitchen

So much so that I commented to a couple of people that I should change my name to Kitchen Witch. Then I thought about some of my fundamentalist / evangelical / 700 Club / religious friends and decided that Kitchen Witch was probably offensive / overly pagan / pushing it so I decided just to add some recipes to my blog & have a little category of Kitchen Witchery … if you’re offended, don’t be … it’s more a comment on the seemingly magical transition across 5 years from being someone who couldn’t cook to being someone who can (almost as magical as my assortment of diplomas, and those don’t offend you, right? LOL)

So here goes … these are the recipes that happened in my house this past week … feel free to try them (or don’t) or follow me on Pinterest (or don’t) http://pinterest.com/tiredstudent1/¬†… just remember: if you follow me on Pinterest & I can see your pins and you’re posting during “normal” parent/kid time (and you’re not at work staying awake on the late shift) about how important your blessings children are to you or how much you want to have a normal day like at my house go on a mommy daughter date I will be sitting here rolling my eyes sighing wondering what your kids are doing while you’re posting about how important they are (mine’s sleeping, it’s a snowy Sunday morning & I”ve been beyond burned out frustrated irritated done with my insidious ankle-biting back stabbing church since last Easter – so no, we’re not going there these days … but that’s a separate post)

SOOOO Recipes from last week:

Slow-Cooker Balsamic Pot Roast

 http://www.familycircle.com/recipe/slow-cooker-balsamic-pot-roast-1/

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Makes: 6  servings

Prep   15 mins
Slow Cook  10 hrs  LOW
Slow-Cooker Balsamic Pot Roast
Nutrition FactsServings Per Recipe 6


  • Amount Per Serving
  • cal.(kcal)371
  • Fat, total(g)11
  • chol.(mg)103
  • sat. fat(g)4
  • carb.(g)11
  • fiber(g)2
  • pro.(g)53
  • sodium(mg)256

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet

Ingredients

  • 1¬†beef chuck or bottom round roast, about 31/4 lbs
  • 1/2¬†teaspoon¬†salt
  • 1/2¬†teaspoon¬†dried thyme
  • 1/8¬†teaspoon¬†black pepper
  • 1¬†onion, chopped
  • 3¬†carrots, chopped
  • 3¬†ribs celery, chopped
  • 3¬†loves garlic, chopped
  • 2¬†cups¬†unsalted beef stock (such as Swanson)
  • 2/3¬†cup¬†balsamic vinegar
  • Prepared polenta and sauteed sweet peppers (optional)

Directions

1. Spray slow-cooker bowl with nonstick cooking spray. Season roast with salt, thyme and black pepper. Place in bottom of slow cooker.

2. Scatter onion, carrots, celery and garlic over roast. Pour stock and balsamic vinegar over top. Cover and cook on LOW for 10 hours.

3. Remove roast and allow to rest 15 minutes before slicing. Skim fat from cooking liquid. Mash vegetables in cooking liquid to slightly thicken sauce.

4. Serve sliced roast with sauce and, if desired, polenta and sauteed peppers. mashed potatoes.

Chicken Shawarma

 http://www.familycircle.com/recipe/chicken-shawarma/

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Makes: 6  servingsYield: 6 sandwiches

Prep   20 mins
Broil   10 mins
Chicken Shawarma
Nutrition FactsServings Per Recipe 6


  • Amount Per Serving
  • cal.(kcal)546
  • Fat, total(g)19
  • chol.(mg)120
  • sat. fat(g)4
  • carb.(g)49
  • fiber(g)11
  • pro.(g)35
  • sodium(mg)1098

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet

Ingredients

  • 6¬†pieces naan or lavash bread
  • 1¬†teaspoon¬†ground coriander
  • 1¬†teaspoon¬†ground cumin
  • 1¬†teaspoon¬†paprika
  • 1/2¬†teaspoon¬†ground cinnamon
  • 1/4¬†teaspoon¬†salt
  • 1/4¬†teaspoon¬†pepper
  • 2¬†tablespoons¬†fresh lemon juice
  • 2¬†cloves garlic, grated
  • 1¬†1 1/2¬†pound¬†package¬†boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 3/4¬†cup¬†prepared hummus
  • 2¬†plum tomatoes, sliced
  • 1/2¬†large cucumber, sliced

Original Directions

1. Heat oven to broil. Wrap bread in foil and warm in bottom of oven. Coat a broiler pan with nonstick cooking spray.

2. In a small bowl, combine coriander, cumin, paprika, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Stir in lemon juice and garlic to make a paste. Rub all over chicken thighs.

3. Place chicken thighs on prepared broiler pan and broil 2 to 3 inches from heat for 5 minutes. Flip over and broil another 5 minutes, or until thighs register 165 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. Transfer to a cutting board and slice into strips.

4. Spread 2 tablespoons of the hummus onto each piece of bread. Top with some of the tomato, cucumber and chicken. Fold in half and serve.

What I Really Did

1. Place 3 bone-less, skinless chicken breasts (halved) in a ziptop bag – add the herbs/spices/seasonings and a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and 1 sliced lemon (I like to slice them like wagon-wheels, you can cut them in wedges, they don’t care) and put it on a plate in the fridge so it can marinate for 24 hours (probably I should’ve pounded the chicken thin, but I’m not that skilled yet)

2. When you’re ready to cook them – prep the grill (different for everyone) and preheat to normal baking temperature (350 for me). Grill the chicken. Heat the naan on an electric griddle set at 200 degrees (if you trip the breaker in your outlet, reset it) and keep them in a tortilla keeper or plate covered with a tea-towel while you’re heating the others (I had the naan in the freezer so it took a little longer than normal)

3. when the chicken is grilled to perfection (aka looks like cajun blackened LOL) bring it in off the grill, let it sit for 5 – 10 minutes so the juice doesn’t run everywhere when you slice it

4. serve a few slices of the chicken with slices of cucumber, tomato (and dill pickle if you’re like us) on hummus schmeared naan (2 tablespoons seems excessive) or use tzatziki (http://www.skinnytaste.com/2010/08/skinny-tzatziki.html)

(Do NOT post on Facebook about grilling outside barefoot in February – you. will. get. snow. twice. in. the. subsequent. week. – possibly with a sunburn to add to your joy)

Moo-Shu Chicken

 http://www.familycircle.com/recipe/chicken/moo-shu-chicken/

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Yield: 10 rolls

Prep   10 mins
Cook   10 mins
Moo-Shu Chicken
Nutrition Facts


  • Amount Per Serving
  • cal.(kcal)190
  • Fat, total(g)5
  • chol.(mg)19
  • sat. fat(g)1
  • carb.(g)25
  • fiber(g)3
  • pro.(g)12
  • sodium(mg)897

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet

Ingredients

  • 1¬†tablespoon¬†sesame oil
  • 2¬†cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1¬†bag¬†(10 ounces) shredded coleslaw mix
  • 1¬†bag¬†(8 ounces) shredded carrots
  • 4¬†scallions, sliced
  • 1/4¬†cup¬†hoisin sauce
  • 2¬†tablespoons¬†reduced- sodium soy sauce
  • 10¬†flour tortillas (6 inches)
  • 3¬†cups¬†shredded cooked chicken (from a rotisserie chicken)

Directions

1. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, coleslaw mix, carrot and scallions. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes, until vegetables are softened.

2. Stir in the hoisin and soy sauce and cook 2 minutes. Add chicken; stir to combine with vegetables and heat through.

3. To serve, heat tortillas following package directions. Spoon 1/2 cup of chicken mixture down center of tortilla and roll up.

What I Really Did

1.¬†On Sunday afternoon I baked some chicken breast seasoned w/ salt & pepper in the oven (because I think the rotisserie thing is silly … especially when boneless skinless chicken breast is on sale … and my family doesn’t like dark meat …)

Then on Monday night (on which MKinz has basketball practice and my better-half is working the late shift, my better-half did this so that supper was ready)

2. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, coleslaw mix, carrot and scallions. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes, until vegetables are softened.

2. Stir in the hoisin and soy sauce and cook 2 minutes. Add chicken; stir to combine with vegetables and heat through.

3. To serve, heat tortillas following package directions. Spoon 1/2 cup of chicken mixture down center of tortilla and roll up. (for the gluten intolerant amongst us, use lettuce leaves instead, please)

Chile Verde РCrockpot style (from this book: http://www.amazon.com/Southwest-Slow-Cooking-Theresa-Howell/dp/0873588568/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1361718794&sr=8-1&keywords=southwest+slow+cooker+cookbook#)
Ingredients:
1 tbsp oil
1 large onion chopped
2 lbs lean chicken or pork cut into 1‚ÄĚ pieces
3 tbsp all purpose flour
1 tsp ground cumin

3 cloves garlic, crushed (I added garlic powder – again til it smelled right)
15 green chiles roasted, peeled, seeded & chopped (frozen or canned work fine too)
1 1/2 cups fat-free, low sodium chicken stock

Sautee the onion & garlic in the oil until the onion is browned (I season it with the cumin and garlic powder and some coarse ground black pepper – the recipe says to add those to the crockpot separately). Add the meat and cook til no-longer-pink. Add the flour and stir until the meat is browned. Put it in the crockpot, add the chiles and the chicken stock. Let it cook for as long as you want – all day or whatever. Serve it how you like it.

And the piece de resistance …. and the only reason I’ve ever found in 34+ years of living to want a stand mixer (although I did make this quite successfully with a 5 speed mixer) … and I should have purchased good cocoa powder (I used store brand that had been in the cabinet for a year). (and I skipped the framboise because I hate don’t have a sophisticated enough palate to appreciate raspberry & chocolate together)

http://www.barefootcontessa.com/recipes.aspx?RecipeID=395&S=0

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