Adventures in Cooking 4/30/10

April 30, 2010 § 2 Comments

Another month has gone by, and I’ve been busy in the kitchen trying out some new recipes. Here’s a summary of the new things I tried for April.

1. Sausage, Peppers, Onions, and Potatoes. I know what you’re thinking, sausage? I have really wanting to make some good Italian sausage and I haven’t had it in over a decade I think! When I placed my order with U.S. Wellness Meats a month ago, I saw they offered nitrate, MSG, and antibiotic free Italian pork sausage. I decided to give it a try. When I tell you this sausage was seriously delicious. Yum! I found a recipe on allrecipes.com and changed it a bit. I fried up the sausages in a pan to get nice color on the outside. I cut them into chunks and put it in a baking dish. Then I fried up the peppers and onion for about 5 minutes and used 1/2 cup white wine to deglaze the pan. Once that simmered for a few minutes, I poured that over the sausages and added a handful of small potatoes to the dish. I baked it covered in foil for about a 1/2 hour – 45 minutes at 350 degrees. Here’s a photo of the dish:

2. Cauliflower with Ginger, Garlic, and Green Chilis. This is another recipe from “Quick and Easy Indian Cooking” by Madhur Jaffrey. It basically uses a head of cauliflower, cumin and mustard seeds, garlic, fresh ginger, garam masala and cayenne to taste, and a few hot green chilis. This was an easy and flavorful way to do cauliflower. Cauliflower can be pretty boring but it’s very healthy for you especially combined with all these spices. Here’s a photo of the finished dish:

3. Baked Chicken Breasts with Green Chilis and Onion. Another recipe from the Indian cookbook. This one used chicken breasts, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, onion, fresh ginger, hot green chilis, and mustard seeds. The sauce to pour over top before baking was a combination of dijon mustard, cumin, garam masala, tomato paste, lemon juice, cayenne pepper and heavy cream. I haven’t been eating dairy at all but decided to make an exception to try this dish. I used organic half and half instead of heavy cream just to lighten it up a bit. I served this along with the cauliflower recipe above. Here’s a photo of the finished dish.

4. Banana Bread. I had a ton of almost overripe bananas, and I decided to try another recipe from “Deceptively Delicious” by Jessica Seinfeld. In case you are not familiar, this cookbook takes ordinary recipes and adds fruit or vegetable purees to improve the fruit or veggie content in the foods. This banana bread recipe used mainly whole wheat flour (I used organic), and used banana puree along with cauliflower puree. Since I didn’t have any cauliflower puree made, I used some organic baby food sweet potatoes instead. I had them laying around since my daughter doesn’t eat baby food anymore. I liked the recipe, but felt it was almost a little too moist. The recipe calls for 1/4 cup of canola oil, but I don’t think it needs it. I made it a second time without the canola oil, and it was still a bit moist.  I added 2 teaspoons of flax meal, and 1 teaspoon of maca to the recipe as well.  This recipe is going to need some tweaking.

5.  Chicken nuggets.  This is another recipe from “Deceptively Delicous”.  The hidden vegetable is either spinach, broccoli, or sweet potato puree and it’s combined with 1 egg in the breading process.  I used organic carrot tomato baby food.  The breading is a mix of breadcrumbs (I used panko), parmesan cheese, and flax meal.  The recipe says to use cooking spray to cook these in a pan, but I chose to fry them in organic olive oil.  My kids are thin and could use the extra healthy fat.  I served this with roasted asparagus and french fries.  Here’s a photo of the dish:

Next month, I’m thinking of experimenting with some raw food recipes from “Thrive – The Vegan Nutrition Guide to Optimal Performace in Sports and Life” by Brendan Brazier.  Also, another kid recipe from “Deceptively Delicious”.

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