Saturday, April 30, 2011

General Tso's Chicken

  • 4 chicken breasts, cubed
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3-4 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 6-8 spring green onions, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons fresh ginger, finely chopped or grated (optional)
  • hot pepper flakes (optional)

Mix together the brown sugar, hoisin, rice wine vinegar, ketchup, soy sauce, and water and set aside. This is the sauce.

Dredge the chicken cubes in the cornstarch, shaking off any excess. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil and saute the chicken until browned. Remove the chicken to a plate and tent with foil to keep warm.

Wipe pan clean with paper towel and add sesame oil with onions and chopped ginger. Fry about 1 minute, until fragrant. Add sauce mixture. Bring to a boil and simmer about 2 minutes, until the sauce thickens a bit. Add the chicken back to the skillet, toss to coat with sauce and continue cooking until the chicken is cooked through. Serve garnished with green onion tops and red pepper flakes, if desired.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Chicken and Dumplings

Oh wow, ok this was SO GOOD! Like phenomenal. Because it's not gluten free, I saved this recipe for when Mark was away on business and it was amazing! And surprisingly easy! And the sauce was surprisingly thick (despite it looking soupy in the picture)! Got the recipe from here.


  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • ½ cups All-purpose Flour
  • 1 whole Chicken, Cut Into Pieces (could also use breasts and thighs)
  • Salt And Pepper
  • 2 Finely Diced Carrots
  • 2 ribs Finely Diced Celery
  • 1 whole Medium Onion, Finely Diced
  • ½ teaspoons Ground Thyme
  • ¼ teaspoons Turmeric (optional)
  • 6 cups Low Sodium Chicken Broth (I used 3 cups vegetable broth and 3 cups water)
  • ½ cups Apple Cider (do they even sell this in australia? had to omit this)
  • ½ cups Heavy Cream (I used probably closer to a cup)
  • Dumplings:
  • 1-½ cup All-purpose Flour
  • ½ cups Yellow Cornmeal
  • 1 Tablespoon (heaping) Baking Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1-½ cup Half-and-half
  • 2 Tablespoons Minced Fresh Parsley (optional)
  • Salt As Needed

Preparation Instructions

  1. Sprinkle chicken pieces with salt and pepper, then dredge both sides in flour.
  2. Melt butter in a pot over medium-high heat. In two batches, brown chicken on both sides and remove to a clean plate.
  3. In the same pot, add diced onion, carrots, and celery. Stir and cook for 3 to 4 minutes over medium-low heat. Stir in ground thyme and turmeric, then pour in chicken broth and apple cider. Stir to combine, then add browned chicken. Cover pot and simmer for 20 minutes.
  4. While chicken is simmering, make the dough for the dumplings: sift together all dry ingredients, then add half-and-half, stirring gently to combine. Set aside.
  5. Remove chicken from pot and set aside on a plate. Use two forks to remove chicken from the bone. Shred, then add chicken to the pot. Pour heavy cream into the pot and stir to combine.
  6. Drop tablespoons of dumpling dough into the simmering pot. Add minced parsley if using. Cover pot halfway and continue to simmer for 15 minutes. Check seasonings; add salt if needed. Allow to sit for 10 minutes before serving.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Macaroni and Cheese

I got this recipe from The Kitchn.  It's so good! I've tried homemade mac & cheese recipes before and this one is the best.

  • 1 pound (450 g) pasta, any shape
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2-3 cups shredded cheese (I used 2 cups cheddar plus some cream cheese) 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon powdered mustard
  • Optional extras (cook before adding): Ham, bacon, onions, peas, mushrooms, peppers, broccoli, cauliflower
What you do:
  1. Bring a large amount of water to a boil. Add a handful of salt and the pasta. Cook until the pasta is al dente. Drain and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, begin heating 1 cup of milk over medium heat. Whisk together the remaining 1/2 cup of milk and the flour until there are no lumps. Whisk this into the heating milk and continue whisking gently until the milk thickens to the consistency of heavy cream.
  3. Turn the heat to low and add the 2 cups of the cheese, salt, and mustard. Using a wooden spoon, stir until all the cheese is melted and the sauce is creamy. Taste and add more cheese or adjust the seasonings as desired.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the pasta, any extras, and half of the cheese sauce. Continue adding cheese sauce until the pasta is as coated as you like it. Serve immediately while still warm.
Variation: You can also bake this into a casserole. Heat the oven to 350°. Pour the macaroni and cheese into a baking dish, cover with a lid or foil, and bake for a half an hour. Remove the covering, sprinkle with breadcrumbs if desired, and bake uncovered for another 15 - 20 minutes, until the top is golden and the interior is bubbly.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Baked Salmon with Lemon Wine Sauce

This is my go-to salmon recipe.  It's very yummy and easy!

  • 2 salmon fillets, bones removed
  • fresh cracked pepper and kosher salt
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill (optional)
  1. Preheat your oven to 450 (230).
  2. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick spray.
  3. Place salmon fillets on the prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle fillets with kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper. Place 2 lemon slices on top of each fillet. Bake for 12 minutes. Remove and tent with aluminum foil for 10 more minutes. Fish will continue to cook during this time. It will flake easily when done.
  4. While salmon is baking, melt butter in a skillet over medium heat. Once melted, add minced garlic and cook just until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Pour in wine. Cook for 5 minutes or until sauce reduces by 1/3. Stir in fresh dill and remove from heat.
  5. Remove lemon slices from the top of the salmon and discard. Gently slide a turner or serving spatula between the skin and the flesh of the fillet to remove the skin, it should separate very easily. Transfer to a serving platter and spoon white wine dill sauce over the top.
  6. Serve.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Island Chicken

Oh wow ok, I have to admit I was a little skeptical about this recipe.  There's nothing special about the ingredients and the picture made the chicken look plain.  But let me assure you, this is anything but plain! It was FANTASTIC! Definitely will become a staple in our house.  Not too lemony at all! I got it from here.

½ cup vegetable oil
3 tbsp. lemon juice
1½ tbsp. soy sauce
1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
½ tsp. dried oregano
¼ tsp. salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2-4 chicken breasts

  1. Combine all ingredients except chicken in a mixing bowl or large airtight plastic bag.  Whisk or shake well until the marinade is well mixed.  Add the chicken breasts to the bowl or plastic bag so that they are covered by the marinade.  If using a bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap.  If using a plastic bag, press out all the excess air and seal the bag tightly.  Refrigerate and marinate up to 10 hours.
  2. When ready to cook the chicken, preheat the oven to 350° F (180 C).  Place the chicken breasts in a baking dish and pour the excess marinade over them.  Bake in the oven until cooked through and the internal temperature reaches 165° F, about 45 minutes (exact baking time will depend on the size of your chicken pieces.)  Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.
  3. Serve with mashed potatoes and green beans. 

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Chicken Caesar Salad Sandwich

These were great!  Got the recipe from here.

1lb (500 kg) boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 large head romaine lettuce leaves (torn into bite sized pieces)
1 bottle Caesar salad dressing
Grated parmesan cheese (to taste)
salt and pepper (to taste)
1 package pocket pita bread (or use turkish bread)
Croutons (optional)
olive oil

What you do:
Step 1: Grease an indoor grill pan or an outdoor grill and heat to medium high heat. In a small bowl combine garlic powder, thyme and rosemary. Season chicken breasts with the garlic powder mixture on both sides. Place chicken on the grill and cook chicken until it is fully cooked and the internal temperature has reached 165 degrees. Remove from the grill and allow to cool.  Once the chicken has cooled slice the chicken breasts into thin strips.
Step 2: In a large bowl combine chicken, lettuce, and croutons (if using). Toss with Caesar salad dressing and parmesan cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon the Caesar salad mixture into pita bread halves.
(Makes 4 Servings)