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Two pans, just a little mess, and a whole lot of chicken and veggie goodness. I love a perfectly roasted piece of chicken with crispy, peppery skin. The Brussels sprouts were perfect tossed with the lemon pieces. I skipped the potatoes for paleo (ok, maybe I tried one or two to make sure they were done coming out of the oven!), but my darling husband said they were just right with this dish. I did pretty much all the prep right on the baking pans, much to his relief, and voilà! One tenth the mess, but all the flavor.

Chicken with Lemony Potatoes and Brussels Sprouts

Chicken with Lemony Potatoes and Brussels Sprouts
via real simple

2 tablespoons unsalted butter or ghee, at room temperature
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 2 1/2 pounds total)
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pound Yukon gold potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed
2 sprigs fresh rosemary, chopped
1 lemon, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil, or other cooking oil

Heat oven to 425° F, with the racks in the upper and lower thirds. Combine the butter and mustard in a small bowl. Place the chicken on a rimmed baking sheet and loosen the skin, using your fingers. Spread the mustard butter under the skin of each thigh, dividing evenly. Season with 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. On a second rimmed baking sheet, toss the potatoes, Brussels sprouts, rosemary, lemon slices, oil, and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper.
Roast the chicken on the top rack until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part (avoiding the bone) registers 165° F, 20 to 27 minutes. Roast the vegetables on the bottom rack at the same time as the chicken, tossing once, until tender, 18 to 22 minutes. Serve the chicken with the potatoes and Brussels sprouts on the side.

Chicken with Lemony Potatoes and  Brussels Sprouts

I was looking for a new chili recipe this weekend and stumbled across a post labelled The Best Ever Turkey Chili. A bit skeptical at first, I read through the ingredients and saw my favorite thing to add to a soup or stew: beer! I was sold. There were a few minor tweaks I made, such as adding a bit of cumin (can’t live without it in chili!) and doubling the beans (more is better!) and a little bit of shredded carrot to cut the acidity, but the flavor of this chili really was the best I’ve ever made. I know I’ll be coming back to this recipe again and again.

best ever turkey chili

The Best Ever Turkey Chili
adapted from food52

1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium-large onion, chopped
1/2 medium carrot, grated
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
3/4 teaspoon hot paprika
3/4 teaspoon cumin
2/4 teaspoon dried coriander
1/2 teaspoon oregano
Dash of cinnamon
1 pound ground turkey breast
1 cup dark beer such as Leffe Brown
28-ounce can diced tomatoes
2 15-ounce can kidney beans, drained
Dash of hot sauce
Salt and pepper
Sour cream, chopped chives, cilantro, shredded cheese for toppings

Heat a bit of olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, grated carrot and red pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened. Add the chili powder, cumin, hot paprika, coriander, oregano, and cinnamon; stir and allow to cook until aromatic, 1 minute. Add the ground turkey and cook, breaking up with a spoon, until lightly browned. Pour in the beer and allow to cook down slightly. Add the tomatoes, beans, and a dash of hot sauce (to taste). Season with salt and pepper. Allow to simmer, uncovered, until thickened, about 20 minutes. Top with sour cream, chopped chives, cilantro, and/or shredded cheese.

I should have taken a picture of this beauty when it came out of the oven, but it was 9 at night and I just wanted to eat it. The photo below just doesn’t do it justice. Serves me right for starting dinner so late!  I’ve become a little enamored with beets since my successful borscht, and this dish did not disappoint. And the chicken! Even if I can’t get my hands on beets every time, I’ll have to remind myself how much I love a simple roasted chicken with a great spice rub.

roasted chicken and beets w couscous and yogurt sauce

Roasted Chicken and Beets with Couscous and Yogurt Sauce
via real simple

2 1/4 pounds chicken drumsticks and thighs (8 total)
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
3 tablespoons olive oil
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 pounds beets, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch wedges
1 cup couscous
3/4 cup plain yogurt
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, plus wedges for serving
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

Heat oven to 425° F. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the chicken with the cumin, paprika, 1 tablespoon of the oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. On a second rimmed baking sheet, toss the beets with the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Roast, tossing the beets once, until the beets are tender and the chicken is cooked through, 30 to 35 minutes. Meanwhile, cook the couscous according to the package directions. In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt, lime juice, and cilantro. Serve the chicken with the couscous, beets, yogurt sauce, and lime wedges.

One of the things I love about Pinterest is surfing it for beautiful food Sunday mornings. When this gorgeous stew drifted across my screen, I knew I had to try it. Although we didn’t have snow cap beans available at our local grocery, I ordered online from a lovely shop and received them in just a few days! I’m sure the husband thinks I’m a little silly, ordering fancy beans online, but it was so worth it in the end. What I love about stews like this is that you can throw in just about any veggies you have on hand and it only makes it better! I followed the recipe almost to the letter, but did add chopped carrots, a small red onion and an extra potato. You can never have too many vegetables. And I picked up a new trick, adding a bit of cider vinegar (as directed). I love the tang it added to the broth. Might throw a parmesan rind in next time too. So much flavor! And vegan too!

Snow Cap Bean Stew
via healthy.happy.life

1 cup dry snow cap beans + soaking water (use more beans for an even heartier stew)
1/2 cup dry quinoa
4 cups vegetable broth
1-3 cups water (depending on how thick or brothy you’d like your stew, or more veggie broth)
2 15 oz. cans fire-roasted & diced tomatoes
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 large white onion, diced
1 small red onion, diced
2 medium carrots, diced
2 medium russet potatoes, peeled/diced
2-3 cups chard, chopped (or add right before serving to wilt)
3 stalks celery, chopped
3 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
1 cup mushrooms, sliced (any variety)
4-6+ dashes cayenne
1/4 tsp pepper + salt to taste (salt stew after beans are cooked through)

{Click here for the complete recipe.}

photo by kathy patalsky

Did you know November is world vegan month? I stumbled across that little fact the other day while browsing the online the food world, just after I had made this lovely vegan dish. Husband is a huge fan of Shepard’s pie (and I’m pretty sure just about anything that involves mashed potatoes). It turned out quite good, although the leftovers didn’t hold up as well as we had hoped! If I make it again, I’ll be sure to add twice as many mushrooms, since they’re my favorite and always add a extra level of richness and a bit more of a meaty texture. The lentils here were a lovely spicy choice for the filling and gave the meal an unexpected and wonderful flavor with a bit of bite.

Lentil Shepherd’s Pie with Parsnip and Potato Mash
via food52

2 1/2 pounds (about 4 large) russet potatoes, peeled and quartered
6 parsnips, peeled and roughly chopped
1 cup almond, soy, rice, or other milk
Sea salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided into 2 tbsp and 2 tbsp
1 large onion, diced
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
2 large carrots, diced evenly
2 ribs celery, diced evenly
6 ounces baby bella, cremini, or button mushrooms, sliced
1 1/2 cup brown or green lentils, dry
1 cup vegetable broth
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

Preheat oven to 350. Place potatoes and parsnips in a large pot and submerge in cold water (there should be at least 1 inch of water over the vegetables). Salt water well. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer and allow potatoes and parsnips to cook for approximately 25-35 minutes, or until both vegetables are very fork tender. Drain, return the vegetables to the pot, and add 2/3 cup milk, 2 tbsp olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Mash well with a potato masher. If you need more milk, add the remaining 1/3 cup. Set the mashed potatoes and parsnips aside.
While potatoes are cooking, bring 1 1/2 cup lentils and 3 cups water to a boil. Reduce and simmer until lentils have absorbed all liquid, and are soft (about 30 or 35 minutes). Set lentils aside.
Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large saute pan over medium. Add onions and garlic and cook until onions are translucent and golden (10 minutes or so). Add the carrots and celery and cook till both vegetables are tender (another 8 minutes). Add the mushrooms and cook for another 3 minutes before adding the lentils, the rosemary, the thyme, and 1/2 cup vegetable broth. Simmer the mixture, stirring well to incorporate flavors. Add more liquid as needed: you don’t want there to be too much broth or liquid in the bottom of the pan, because you’ll get a runny shepherd’s pie, but you do want it to be quite moist. When everything is warm and well mixed, season to taste with salt & pepper.
In a large casserole dish, layer the lentil and veggie mixture. Spread the mashed potatoes delicately and evenly over. Bake for 20 minutes, or until potatoes are browning. Sprinkle with extra rosemary, if desired, and serve.

We do turkey meatloaf now and again, and it’s always fine. Not my favorite, but definitely filling and mostly satisfying on a cold autumn night. It seems to always end up a little drier than I’m hoping, a little more bland, but this recipe knocked my socks off. The meatloaf came out incredibly juicy, packed with flavor, and the glaze was bright and tangy. I saved ever drop of the glaze I made and dipped almost every bite in it! I’ll never go back to boring meatloaf again.

Rosemary Turkey Meatloaf
via food52

2 pounds ground turkey
1/4 cup chopped fresh rosemary
1 cup seasoned breadcrumbs (I didn’t have seasoned breadcrumbs on hand, so I used plain and added 1/2 teaspoon each dried parsley flakes and ground thyme)
2 eggs
1 15 oz. can pureed tomatoes
1 teaspoon mustard
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 200C / 375F.
Mix the turkey, bread crumbs, rosemary, eggs, and season with salt and pepper. Press into a bread loaf pan. Whisk the remaining ingredients, season with salt and pepper, and put on top of the meat.
Poke a few holes in the turkey with a knife so the sauce will seep in, cover in foil and bake until the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees F, about an hour and a half.

A little over a week ago my friend Danielle made this amazing risotto – twice! Even though she was sweet enough to share a bit with me, I wanted a whole batch of my own. And since I’ve been on the mend, but not one hundred percent wonderful yet, my dearest husband whipped it up for me this week. So sweet! Definitely a fall favorite and on the short list for Thanksgiving.

Butternut Squash Risotto
via martha stewart

1 tablespoon butter (or olive oil)
1 1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 cup Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 cans (14 1/2 ounces each) reduced-sodium chicken broth, mixed with 1/2 cup water and heated
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage, plus more for garnish

In a medium heavy-bottom saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add squash; season with
salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until edges soften, 10 to 12 minutes. Add rice; stir to coat.
Add wine; cook until almost all liquid has evaporated, 1 to 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low; add 1/2 cup hot broth mixture. Cook, stirring, until almost all liquid is absorbed. Add remaining
broth mixture, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring until liquid is absorbed before adding more, 35 to 40 minutes total. Stir in parmesan, sage, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt.
Serve immediately, garnished with more Parmesan and sage, if desired.

Soup week continues! Ever so grateful my dear husband was craving soup last week, we whipped up another batch, this time with split peas. I love this soup on a cold night. Our weather is just starting to turn to true fall and the texture and classic flavors here are so comforting. I left out the meat options this time, since I’m still feeling a bit unwell, but it was delicious as always. Next time if we go a little hardier I may add the classic ham pieces or maybe a little kielbasa for some kick!

Split Pea Soup
adapted from the barefoot contessa

1 1/2 medium yellow onions, chopped
2 large stalks celery stalks, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/8 cup good olive oil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspooon ground thyme
1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3-4 medium carrots, diced
4 small red boiling potatoes, unpeeled and diced
1 pound dried split green peas
8 cups chicken stock (or vegetable stock)

In a 4-quart stockpot on medium heat, saute the onions and celery with the olive oil, oregano, thyme, salt, and pepper until the onions are translucent, 10 to 15 minutes. Add the carrots, potatoes, 1/2 pound of split peas, garlic and chicken stock. Bring to a boil, then simmer uncovered for 40 minutes.
Skim off the foam while cooking. Add the remaining split peas and continue to simmer for another 40 minutes, or until all the peas are soft. Stir frequently to keep the solids from burning on the bottom. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot.

image via my iphone

This week was a good week for soup. I’ve been out of commission with a bit of a stomach bug and thankfully since my dear husband was craving soups last weekend, our fridge was stocked with all the essentials. First up: Minestrone! Always a favorite. I don’t think I ever quite make it the same way twice, tossing in whatever veggies or herbs I may have on hand. This time we skipped the pasta and made it a little lighter. Below is what we had on hand this week and it turned out delicious as usual!

Minestrone Soup
adapted from martha stewart

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium red onion, chopped
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
2 large celery stalks, diced
1/4 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/4 teaspoon ground thyme
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes
4 small red potatoes, diced
1/4 head green cabbage (1/2 pound), cored and thinly sliced
1 can (15 ounces) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 pound green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups chicken broth (or vegetable stock)
3/4 cup grated Parmesan, for serving

In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion, carrots, celery, red pepper flakes, rosemary, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion begins to turn golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Add tomatoes; cook until some of the liquid evaporates, 1 minute.
Add chicken broth, potato, cabbage, cannellini beans, and 3 cups water; bring to a boil. Stir in green beans. Reduce to a simmer, and cook until all the vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper; stir in garlic. Serve sprinkled with Parmesan.

image via my iphone