Smoky and Sweet Turkey Chili

Great weeknight recipe! Quick, easy, and delicious! It was adapted from Katie Webster’s cookbook, Maple. I did modify a couple of things. The recipe called for adding 3 tablespoons of chili powder, I only added 2, and I omitted ground chipotle. It depends how much heat you like.  I topped it off with shredded cheese but, you can also add avocado, cilantro and toasted pepitas or anything you like.

 

Smoky and Sweet Turkey Chili

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 large Spanish onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed roasted crushed tomatoes
  • 1 15-ounce can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/3 cup dark pure maple syrup

 

Directions

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large heavy-bottom soup pot over high heat. Add the turkey and cook, breaking up with a wooden spoon and stirring occasionally, until completely browned. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
  2. Return pot to medium-high heat and add remaining oil. Add onion, garlic and salt. Cook, stirring often for about 6 to 10 minutes, until onion is soft and browned.
  3. Add chili powder, cumin, paprika, and cook stirring for 30 to 90 seconds, until the spices are fragrant and starting to toast and darken slightly.
  4. Add the vinegar and stir for 30 seconds to a minute, until the liquid is evaporated.
  5. Add water and bring to a simmer, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom.
  6. Add the tomatoes, beans, syrup, and browned turkey, stirring to combine. Increase  heat to high and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook stirring occasionally, for 10 to 14 minutes till onions and turkey are tender.

 

 

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Vaca Frita

I call this the cousin of the Cuban dish, Ropa Vieja.  It’s primarily  same, minus the tomato sauce. Adapted from Cuban Chicks Can Cook by Ana Quincoces Rodriquez.

Vaca Frita

  • Servings: 6 to 8
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  1. 2lbs flank steak
  2. 1/2 cup sour orange juice
  3. 1/4 cup lime juice
  4. 1/4 cup olive oil
  5. 2 medium onions thinly sliced
  6. 3 garlic cloves finely minced
  7. 2 teaspoons salt
  8. 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  9. 1 bay leaf

 

Directions

  1. In a large stockpot, bring 2 quarts of salted water to a boil.  Add the flank steak and bay leaf. Reduce the heat and simmer covered for  2 hours.
  2. Remove the beef from the water and let cool. Shred the beef by hand working with the grain. Season the beef generously with salt and pepper, sour orange and lime juices. Let it marinate for 30 minutes. Drain any excess juice.
  3. In a large hot cast iron skillet, heat half the oil over medium heat. Add half the beef, onions and garlic. Stir frequently for about 10 minutes or until crispy . Set aside and repeat with the other half.

 

 

Lamb Bolognese

Now that Fall has officially started, it’s time for some comfort food. You do need some time to make this but, it’s worth it.   Adapted from The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook by Tracey Medeiros.

 

Lamb Bolognese

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: moderate
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Ingredients

  • 1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes in juice
  • 1/4 pound bacon, diced
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 small onion diced small
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and diced small
  • 1 small fennel, fronds removed and reserved, bulb quartered and diced into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1 dried chipotle pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley stems
  • 4 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 medium garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • 3/4 cup fresh rough chopped flat leaf parsley leaves
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1 pound pasta or broad noodles
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

 

Directions

  1. Coarsely chop the tomatoes and place them in a bowl with juice and set aside.
  2. Saute the bacon in a large pot over medium heat until the fat begins to render. Add 2 tablespoons of oil to pot. Add the onions, carrot, fennel, chipotle pepper, parlsey stems, and thyme leaves.  Season with salt and cook stirring occaissionally, until the onions are soft and translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook till frangrant, about 2 minutes.
  3. Add the lamb and season with salt and pepper. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook breaking up the meat, until it begins to brwon, about 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes and all the juices, and parlsley leaves. Lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, stirring occaissionally, until the sauce is thick, about 35 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove and discard the chipoltle pepper and thyme sprigs.
  4. When the bolognese is almost done, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pastaand  cook until al dente. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup of pasta water. Return the pasta and toss with the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the sauce and toss to coat well. If too dry add pasta water. Garnish with the fennel fronds and sprinkle with cheese.

 

 

Sweet and Sour Cabbage Rolls

Part 2 of this week’s cooking with maple syrup. Adapted from Maple by Katie Webster.

 

 

Sweet and Sour Cabbage Rolls

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 8 whole leaves from 1 large cabbage
  • 3 cups boiling water
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 cup finely chopped mushrooms
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons dark pure maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

 

Directions

  1. Stack cabbage leaves in a large Dutch oven and pour the boiling water over top. Cover, set over high heat, and boil, rotating top leaves to the bottom. Cook for 4 to 6 minutes, until cabbage is just tender enough to be pliable, but not too soft that it tears. Drain the leaves on a work surface and let cool.
  2. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and salt, cook stirring often for about 6 to 8 minutes, until the onion is soft and starting to brown. Add the beef, mushrooms, and pepper.  Using a wooden spoon to break up the meat, cook for about 3 to 4 minutes until the beef is browned and no pink remains. Add tomato paste and coat the mixture. Add the vinegar, syrup and Worcestershire sauce and bring to a simmer, stirring often. Remove from heat.
  3. Spoon 1/4 cup of the filling onto each cabbage leaf and roll tucking in the sides. Arrange the rolls in the skillet with seam side down. Pour the tomato sauce over rolls. Cover and cook over medium-low heat. Cook for about 20 minutes. Uncover and add the mozzarella cheese. Cover and cook for about another 2 minutes., until cheese melts. Let sit for about 10 minutes before serving.

 

 

Turkey Rolls with Shiitake-Cheese Filling

Adapted from the Great American Grilling by Weber, a cookbook I’ve had for many years. I’m not really sure but, I think it came with Weber grill.

I’m not a big fan of turkey but, this was delicious and so easy to make!

 

Turkey Rolls with Shiitake-Cheese Filing

  • Servings: 6 to 8
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 8 ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms
  • 5 teaspoons oil drained from the sun-dried tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons minced, drained sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 8 skinless, boneless turkey breasts or cutlets
  • 8 ounces fontina cheese cut into sticks, about 1/4-inch thick
  • 16 large fresh sage leaves
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh thyme, minced
  • 1/2 cup grated Asiago cheese

 

Directions

  1.  Cut 4 of the mushrooms in half, and coarsely chop the remaining. Heat 2 teaspoons of the oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add the mushroom halves and cook till lightly brown, about 6 to 8 minutes. Set aside. In the same pan heat the remaining chopped mushrooms, tomatoes, and garlic. Cook, stirring often until the mushrooms begin to brown, about 6 to 8 minutes.  Let cool.
  2. Pound the turkey between 2 sheets of plastic wrap, until about about 1/8-inch in thickness.  Place the fontina cheese in the center, spoon over the mushroom mixture, sage, thyme and Asiago. Roll to enclose.
  3. Place on the grill and cook for about 6 minutes, turn over and cook for another 6 minutes. Serve with the mushroom halves.

 

 

Beef with Oyster Sauce

Part 2  of my Chinese cooking series. The book didn’t specify what type of  green vegetable. It does show pictures of the types of vegetables that are commonly used.  I think it would go nicely with snap peas or broccoli.

 

Beef with Oyster Sauce

  • Servings: 2 to 3
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 1 pound flank steak
  • 15 green onion cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 15 slices ginger
  • 4 cups oil
  • 1.2 pound green vegetables
  • 1/2 tablespoon wine
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar

For the marinate

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon soysauce
  • 3 tablespoons water

For the seasoning

  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

 

Directions

  1.  Slice the beef in 1-inch squares, put into a bowl and marinate for at least 1/2 hour. The longer the better. Then add 2 tablespoons of cooking oil.
  2. Boil the green vegetables in boiling water for about 2 minutes. Remove from pan and stir fry with 2 tablespoons of oil. season with wine, salt and sugar, then lay on a platter.
  3.  Heat 4 cups of oil on medium to high heat in fry pan and add beef and fry till it turns light, about 10 seconds. Remove the beef and drain off the oil from the pan.
  4. Use another 2 tablespoons of oil to fry the green onions and ginger over high heat. Add the beef stir quickly and add the seasoning sauce. Stir until thickened and heated through. Pour over the green vegetables and serve.

 

 

Provencal Spinach Meatballs

This was inspired by The French Slow Cooker cookbook by Michele Scicolone. I modified the recipe to adhere to stove top cooking time. It can be served over noodles or rice for dinner. Or it can be served over toasted brioche rolls lined with arugula for lunch.

 

Provencal Spinach Meatballs

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 1 28-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 2 large shallots chopped
  • 1 2-inch strip orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon piment d’Espelette or paprika
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 1/2 pound ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup plain dry bread crumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon herbes de Provence
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil

 

Directions

  1.  Heat up the olive oil in a deep pan over medium -high heat. Add the shallots and saute for a few minutes.
  2. Add the white wine and simmer for a few minutes more.
  3. Add the tomato puree, orange zest, and piment d’Espelette. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Let simmer on low heat.
  4. Meanwhile, place the spinach in a towel and squeeze out as much liquid as possible.
  5. In a large bowl add the turkey, spinach, eggs, bread crumbs, salt and pepper, and herb de Provence. Mix well and shape the mixture into 2-inch balls.
  6. Roll the meatballs lightly in the flour. Place it in the sauce.
  7. Cover and simmer on low for about 30 minutes. Or until the meatballs are cooked through. Stir occasionally.

 

Layered Beef, Cabbage, and Potato Casserole

Comfort food! Great dish for a cold and snowy day. Another great recipe from Lidia Bastianich’s show, Lidia’s Kitchen. I have provided a recipe below with a good guess on the measurements.  It can easily be cut in half for 4 servings as I had to.

 

Layered Beef, Cabbage, and Potato Casserole

  • Servings: 8 to 10
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

For the pestata:

  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup sage leaves
  • 1/4 cup  fresh rosemary needles
  • salt
  • olive oil

For the casserole:

  • 3 to 4 pound beef, shoulder cut
  • 3 pounds red potato, sliced
  • head of cabbage, shredded
  • 2 cups or more of Fontina cheese, grated
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 1 cup of white wine
  • salt

 

Directions

  1. Place the garlic, sage, rosemary and salt in a food processor. Drizzle the olive oil while processing.  Should look like a pesto sauce.
  2. Slice the beef into 1-inch slices, and place in a bowl.
  3. Slice the potatoes with skin on, into 1/4 inch slices. Place in a separate bowl.
  4. Shred the cabbage and place in another bowl.
  5. Pour half the pestata in the beef, making sure each slice has marinate. Add salt.
  6. Pour the rest onto the potatoes, making sure all slices are marinated. Add salt.
  7. Layer half the potaotes in a buttered casserole. Layer haf the cabbage on top. Layer all the meat on top. Add the rest of the potaotes. And then add the rest of the cabbage. Pour the white wine over. Cover with foil and bake in a 375F degree oven for about 2 hours or more. Check for meat tenderness.
  8. Uncover and cover the top with the cheese. Place back in the oven uncovered. Bake for another 30 minutes or until the cheese is all melted and browned.