Sunday, March 27, 2011

Orange rosemary salmon

Saturday morning I woke up with JW's alarm that goes off at the same time everyday, and all I could think about was HGTV.

Too bad nothing good was on. I kept flipping channels, and found some show called Home Made Simple. I flipped it on just in time to find this recipe. I was a bit skeptic at first, but then I figured- they though it was "oh my God" good... so why not?

It was easy and delicious. I'll make it again!
 I mean- 20 minute dinner. SOLD.

Orange Rosemary Salmon
Serves 4
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes

4 (6 ounce) skinless salmon filets
2 tablespoons orange juice
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 teaspoons crushed dried rosemary
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

1. In a small bowl, whisk together orange juice, honey, olive oil, rosemary, salt and pepper.
2. Arrange salmon filets in a glass baking dish or medium mixing bowl and pour the marinade over them, being sure they’re well coated. Marinate in the refrigerator for 10-20 minutes.
3. Preheat broiler to high and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Arrange marinated salmon filets on the prepared baking sheet, then broil until opaque and cooked throughout, about 10-12 minutes.  

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Walnut waffles

Waffles, that I adapted from

* 2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 4 teaspoons baking powder
* 2 tablespoons white sugar
* 2 eggs
* 1 1/2 cups warm milk
* 1/3 cup butter, melted
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 1/4 cup crushed walnuts


1. In a large bowl, mix together flour, salt, baking powder and sugar; set aside. Preheat waffle iron to desired temperature. (check out my old school iron I inherited from my mother...)
2. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs. Stir in the milk, butter and vanilla. Pour the milk mixture into the flour mixture; beat until blended. Add in nuts. (PS, whenever it says "in a separate bowl" I conveniently ignore. I think this is because my dad always made me clean up my messes. JW now cleans them up, but the habit is hard to break :) )
3. Ladle the batter into a preheated waffle iron. Cook the waffles until golden and crisp. Serve immediately.

Nutritional Information open nutritional information

Amount Per Serving Calories: 379 | Total Fat: 16.2g | Cholesterol: 123mg
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Delicious shrimp pasta

I made this great shrimp pasta when the kitchen was first done, but I made it with homemade pasta gone wrong. So today, I tried to make the pasta again with store bought whole wheat spaghetti

It was darn good and I drank the rest of it out of the bowl. yikes.

I sauteed garlic in a little butter and added the shells off the shrimp. I added some water (1.5 c) and bouillon cube, and then boiled the shells for 10 min.

Meanwhile, I sauteed the shrimps. I added frozen spinach, in butter and garlic, and added frozen peas and carrots. Added some chives and then dumped in the shrimp stock and a little of the pasta water. Added a few tablespoons of cream, and sprinkled Parmesan cheese on top to serve.

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Chocolate chip pancakes

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St. Patty's Day

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Guinness cake

My friend CHA made this cake once, and it was so good I had her send me the recipe. I took it to work once, and it was a hit- so of course to match the St. Patty's day meal, I decided to make it again. It is awesome. AND easy.

However, I put the bottom of the spring form pan in upside down, and now I need to clean my oven :( maybe that is why I should have lined it with parchment?!

Chocolate Guinness Cake
From Feast by Nigella Lawson (reprinted in the New York Times on 12/8/04)
Yield: One 9-inch cake (12 servings)
For the cake:
Butter for pan
1 cup Guinness stout
10 tablespoons (1 stick plus 2 tablespoons) unsalted butter
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 cups superfine sugar (I have used regular granulated sugar with no ill effects)
3/4 cup sour cream
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
For the topping:
1 1/4 cups confectioners' sugar
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup heavy cream
For the cake: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-inch springform pan and line with parchment paper. In a large saucepan, combine Guinness and butter. Place over medium-low heat until butter melts, then remove from heat. Add cocoa and superfine sugar, and whisk to blend.
In a small bowl, combine sour cream, eggs and vanilla; mix well. Add to Guinness mixture. Add flour and baking soda, and whisk again until smooth. Pour into buttered pan, and bake until risen and firm, 45 minutes to one hour. Place pan on a wire rack and cool completely in pan.

For the topping: Using a food processor or by hand, mix confectioners' sugar to break up lumps. Add cream cheese and blend until smooth. Add heavy cream, and mix until smooth and spreadable.
Remove cake from pan and place on a platter or cake stand. Ice top of cake only, so that it resembles a frothy pint of Guinness.

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Greek pasta with chicken sausages

I wanted to make this dish again, but was not in the mood for chicken. I went to WF's and found a chicken sausage with spinach and feta. It seemed like the perfect option to add to the Greek pasta!

  • 1 (16 ounce) package penne pasta
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound chicken sausage - cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 T capers
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley (I used dried)
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • salt to taste
  • ground black pepper to taste

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Wrap

After our Bootcamp class, I was speaking with my friend ES (as we ran to transit options) about what to make for dinner. I was telling her about how I was resitting the urge/need to go the grocery store and just continue to make food from the items in the house--- which gets to be a challenge since the last time I bought anything was $18 worth of snacks when AG and DP were here 2 weeks ago.

So, I rattled off a few things I did have, and ES mentioned making Buffalo Chicken Wrap she had seen in Fitness Magazine. Brilliant. I looked at buffalo chicken options on other websites, and they were about 3 times the calories as ES's version- so I made hers:

Servings: 4 servings
Prep: 35 mins
Total: 35 mins
2 tablespoons hot sauce, such as Frank's RedHot (I combined Frank's and Crystal from JW's collection)
3 tablespoons white vinegar, divided
1/4 teaspoon  cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons  extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound  chicken tenders (I used a 10oz can of chicken, it's what I had)
2 tablespoons  reduced-fat mayonnaise
2 tablespoons  nonfat plain yogurt
  Freshly ground pepper, to taste
1/4 cup  crumbled blue cheese
4   8-inch whole-wheat tortillas
1 cup  shredded romaine lettuce
1 cup  sliced celery (I had to throw out my celery, it was old...)
1   large tomato, diced
1. Whisk hot pepper sauce, 2 tablespoons vinegar and cayenne pepper in a medium bowl.
2. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken tenders; cook until cooked through and no longer pink in the middle, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Add to the bowl with the hot sauce; toss to coat well. (I didn't have to cook the chicken, so I added the sauce to the canned chicken and microwaved it for 30 seconds, then added the next ingredients too it. My only issue was that I didn't drain the chicken enough, and it was a bit runny... next time- real chicken!)
3. Whisk mayonnaise, yogurt, pepper and the remaining 1 tablespoon vinegar in a small bowl. Stir in blue cheese.
4. To assemble wraps: Lay a tortilla on a work surface or plate (I first heated it over the rill pan to get them warm from the fridge). Spread with 1 tablespoon blue cheese sauce and top with one-fourth of the chicken, lettuce, celery and tomato. Drizzle with some of the hot sauce remaining in the bowl and roll into a wrap sandwich. Repeat with the remaining tortillas. 
PS the photo is from the website, I served mine with a side of sliced sweet potatoes, cooked in butter (I ran out of olive oil...) and a dash of salt.
JW really enjoyed this dish, and said that we could ABSOLUTELY have it again.  Maybe next time I'll add more hot sauce to his, make it a little less runny,and maybe more bleu cheese. I couldn't get enough.
Nutrition Facts
Calories 275, Total Fat 8 g, Saturated Fat 2 g, Monounsaturated Fat 2 g, Cholesterol 55 mg, Sodium 756 mg, Carbohydrate 29 g, Fiber 3 g, Protein 24 g, Potassium 266 mg. Daily Values: Vitamin A 35%, Vitamin C 20%. Exchanges: Starch 1.5,Vegetable 1,Lean Meat 3,Fat 0.5.

Here is the 600 calorie version from

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Brolied Chicken with asparagus and whole grains

When I was making Chicken Tikka Masala, I had tasted the chicken out of the broiler before it went into the sauce, and it was tasty by itself.

With a little advance prep to marinade, broiling chicken in 15 minutes seemed like a great solution to a late work night.  Planning ahead, I marinaded the chicken the night before:
  • 1 cup plain low-fat yogurt
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs, fat trimmed
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
 The next day, when I got home from work, I wiped the marinade off as much as possible, and laid the chicken on a baking dish. Be sure if can withstand the heat of the broiler- as mine curled and almost made a mess with the juices. Broil about 15 minutes, flipping throughout the process.

On the side I made asparagus and a side of whole grains from a box. SO GOOD. And so quick.

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Spinach lasagna

With AG and DP in town, we took some time off from work and did some touristy things! We went to the Wharton Esherick museum, we climbed the tower at City Hall and took the tour... and we were tired from all the sight seeing. DP went to band practice, and we went home to eat.

Spinach Lasagna, adapted from the Barilla noodles box:
1 box of oven ready noodles
2 jars pasta sauce
15oz ricotta cheese
4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 c Parmesan cheese
1 block of frozen spinach

Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray 9x13 dish with spray.

In a skillet, defrost and heat the spinach. Add some garlic to the pan. Possibly chopped onion if you want.

Meanwhile, in a bowl, beat eggs, ricotta, and 2 cups of the mozz cheese. I also like to add a sprinkling of oregano and garlic powder.

Pour about 1 cup of sauce in the bottom of the pan. Lay 4 sheets of pasta next to each other- slightly overlapping and breaking where necessary to fit pan. Spread 1/3 of the cheese mixture on top of noddles. Spread 1/2 of the spinach on top of cheese. Pour on 1 c of sauce.

Repeat with more noodles, more cheese, more spinach, and 1.5 c sauce.
Repeat with more noodles, remainder of cheese, if there is any leftover spinach, and 1 sauce.
Layer 4 more noodles, last of the sauce*, and 1 cup of mozzarella and Parm sprinkled across top.

Cover with foil. Bake 50-60 minutes, until bubbly. Uncover for 5 minutes, and bake until cheese is melted and slightly brown. Let stand 15 minutes before cutting.

*Trick to keep lasagna from getting too watery, do not rinse out jar. I know, there is a few teaspoons of sauce left in the jar, but find another use for that- if you rinse the jar and pour it on top... soup city. I know. Trust me.

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Tomato soup and grilled cheese

My friends AG and DP came in from Chicago for the weekend, and after picking AG up from the airport, we NEEDED lunch. Ok, I needed lunch. We thought about a local sandwich shop, but then I decided, it might be nicer to whip up grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup, and be able to have a cold beer and relax while we catch up!

For the sandwiches, I used 2 slices of munster and 2 slices of lite swiss on pumpernickel bread. DELIC.

I've blogged about this easy, amazing soup before, but here are the list of ingredients:

29 ounces can diced tomatoes
10.5 ounces chicken broth
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons white sugar
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup heavy cream

Dip your sandwich in this soup... amazing.

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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Cous cous with chicken and broccoli

Are you ever in a hurry to make a tasty and filling meal? Yeah, me, every night.

Here is an easy dinner... box of broccoli au gratin cous cous (I actually didnt mean to use the cous cous, but it tastes the same as the rice version and cooks even faster!), chicken breasts and broccoli diced.

I started with 1 large frozen chicken breast. I defrosted it slightly, and then diced it in cubes while I boiled water, milk, butter, and seasoning (according to the cous cous box) in a deep saute pan.  I added the diced chicken and allowed it to poach, and then added the cous cous to the liquid. As the cous cous began to absorb the liquid, I added the broccoli on top to slightly steam. Then I mixed everything together, and allowed it all to finish cooking.

10 minutes, tops.
Salad of apple, walnuts, and goat cheese. Red onion would have been a great addition.

Pulled pork sandwiches with butternut squash fries

This recipe for pulled pork was amazingly good and easy! JW said it is what you'd get from a sandwich shop! restaurant worthy!

In the morning, I put 1 lb of pork tenderloin in my crock pot (it's what I had, next time ill try shoulder, its cheaper).

I poured in a 12 oz can of root beer I bought for 89 cents, and set the pot on low. It sat for 9 hours, but 7 is plenty.

I drained the pot and added 10 oz of bbq sauce. I warmed the buns on the stove by the vent of the oven, and added a slice of swiss cheese and served! It made 4 sandwiches, we each had one for lunch the next day.


  • 1 (2 pound) pork tenderloin
  • 1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle root beer
  • 1 (18 ounce) bottle your favorite barbecue sauce
  • 8 hamburger buns, split and lightly toasted

In the oven I baked slices of butternut squash with oil and salt for fries. bake for 30 min at 425.

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Fat Tuesday

We went to a Mardi Gras happy hour to support the St. Bernard project, and I knew that I had to make pancakes for dinner on Fat Tuesday.

Why, you ask?

Fat Tuesday or Shrove Tuesday, proceeds Ash Wednesday, the start of Lent. Lent is a time of fasting. "In the United Kingdom and many other countries, the day is often known as Pancake Day. Making and eating such foods was considered a last feast with ingredients such as sugar, fat and eggs, whose consumption was traditionally restricted during the ritual fasting associated with Lent." Also, you figure when there weren't refrigerators, you weren't keeping those ingredients around for very long.

Several Catholics, JD and SZ, not knowing this tradition, were intrigued and came over for pancakes, sweet and regular potato hashbrowns, turkey sausages, and sliced oranges and grapefruit.

This pancake recipe is worth keeping. I got it from a friend's mom in college. AWESOME:

2 eggs
2 cups milk
2 cups of flour
4 T oil
2 T sugar
2 t baking powder
1 t baking soda
1 t salt

(this made enough for 4 people, half it easily for 2 :))

For the potatoes, I added olive oil to the saute pan, and diced the regular potatoes because they take longer to cook, and 1 T of garlic (I like garlic). Then I diced the sweet potato, and added it and some salt. DONE!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Greek penne chicken


What a great meal!I was cruising through the blog, updating all the labels so I could find things easier, and I ran into this recipe, and was like- I need to make that more often!

So tonight was the night!


  • 1 (16 ounce) package penne pasta (because I was using whole wheat, I didn't use the full 16 oz so it wouldn't be too dry)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 (14 ounce) can artichoke hearts in water (I used half capers, because I only had 3 hearts left, because after last time I made this, I bought hearts!)
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley (I used dried)
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • salt to taste
  • ground black pepper to taste


  1. In a large pot with boiling salted water cook penne pasta until al dente. Drain.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium-high heat melt butter, add onion and garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add chopped chicken and continue cooking, stirring occasionally until golden brown, about 5 to 6 minutes.
  3. Reduce heat to medium- low. Drain and chop artichoke hearts and add them, chopped tomato, feta cheese, fresh parsley, lemon juice, dried oregano, and drained penne pasta to the large skillet. Cook until heated through, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Season with salt and ground black pepper. Serve warm.
With 685 calories, no wonder it is so amazingly good! Well, if that's all you are eating, I suppose it is ok....

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Sunday, March 6, 2011

Pork and risotto

After the marinade process, I roasted the pork in the oven at 350, for 35 minutes. I added root veggies (carrots and celery) around the outside of the pork. I am not the biggest fan of the celery, but for some reason, I always have tons of it (I think I get it for one recipe, and it only uses 1 stalk and then I have 10 left!).

I then made the butternut squash risotto, with resourceful modifications from the first time I made it.

1.5 T olive oil
2 c butternut squash, cubed
1 diced onion, I didn't have leeks
1/2 T thyme
1 c arborio rice
1/2 c beer, I didn't have white wine
3 c broth
1/3 c cheddar cheese, I didn't have Parm!

Peeling the squash is a pain, but I find it faster than roasting and then scooping. So I use a combination of a veggie peeler and a pairing knife. I used small diced cubes this time, so I only ended up using half of the squash (see a later post for the fries I made out of the rest).

Heat 1 T oil and saute squash about 5 minutes. Add rest of oil and saute onion over medium heat for 5 minutes, tender not brown. Add rice and coat in oil.  After 1 minute, add beer. Once rice has absorbed beer, add 1/2 cup of broth at a time, waiting for rice to absorb liquid before adding more. (Ok, so I would have done it gradually, but I needed a shower, so I poured half the broth in, and then came back to add the rest!) Stirring often, about 15 minutes.

Return squash to pan and cook about 10 more minutes. Add cheese and S&P. 

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Pork tenderloin marinade


1 (1 1/2 pound) pork tenderloin, trimmed
1/2 cup olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
  1. Whisk together oil and garlic in a medium bowl. Add remaining ingredients and whisk well.
  2. Prick tenderloin, and add to marinade. Marinate pork tenderloin in refrigerator for 4 hours to overnight.
I ended up putting the pork in the dish I wanted to bake it in, instead of a bowl. I might regret this later...

I'm serving this up tonight with Butternut Squash and Leek Risotto.

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Breakfast at the W's

I was having a craving for popovers again, having seen my grandmother last weekend.

2 T butter
1 c milk
1 c flour
2 eggs
1/4 t salt

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Add the butter and milk into a microwavable bowl, and heat milk until butter is melted. Add the flour, salt, and eggs to the liquids. Mix until blended.

Pour into a muffin tin, about 3/4 of the way full. Fill remaining cups 1/2 way with water.

Cook for 20 minutes at 450, and without opening the oven door, finish cooking for 10 minutes at 350.

While the popovers were baking, I began to make the eggs.
1 t olive oil
1 t garlic
2 T red onion, diced
1/2 c precooked broccoli
5 slices of cooked bacon, broken into pieces
4 eggs
6 1/8" slices of extra sharp cheddar, white

I started with the oil, garlic and onion in the pan. And heated it for a minute or two, and then added the chopped, pre-cooked broccoli, and bacon pieces.

As the additions cooked, I broke 4 eggs into a bowl, and whisked in 1 T of water, salt, and pepper. I poured the eggs over the additions into the saute pan. I cooked the eggs for a minute, then added the cheese to melt.

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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Chicken salad and sweet potato chips

This chicken salad recipe comes from my friend ES... she told me about it one day when she made it for me for lunch. What a special friend shares her lunch?!

Anyway- it is so good and so easy!  So, when I defrosted the chicken breasts for last night's dinner, I decided instead of refreezing a few extra pieces that I would poach it and save it for chicken salad.

So, in a frying pan, I put 1/4" of water and placed the chicken in and put on the lid. I let it cook until it was done. I refrigerated in Tupperware, and the next day, I diced it in 1/2" cubes. I added mayonnaise, celery, salt and pepper.

I sliced up sweet potatoes, and added it to some olive oil and heated. Then added some salt after browning!

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Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Lemon chicken with mushroom sauce

I get Daily Dish emails from, and this looked like a good one! The site estimated 246 calories a serving, so it seemed easy enough to try! Of course, with modifications.

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 lemon
1/4 cup butter
3 cups fresh sliced mushrooms
1/2 cup chicken broth
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley


1.Place the olive oil and garlic a sautee pan that has a lid. Place the chicken breasts in the pan, coating each side with oil. Squeeze the juice of 1/2 lemon over all. Slice the rest of the lemon and place a lemon slice on top of each chicken piece. (I didn't have a lemon, so i used bottled lemon juice.) Cook over medium with the lid on, turning once when half way done.

2.In a large skillet (I used a sauce pan because I didn't have many mushrooms), melt the 1/4 cup butter or margarine. Add the sliced mushrooms. Cook and stir until the mushrooms are brown and have exuded their juices, about 6 minutes. Sprinkle with the flour and blend. Add the chicken broth, stirring to make a medium thick sauce. Allow to reduce, adjusting with a little more broth to make a creamy sauce. Add fresh parsley at the last minute.

3.Spoon the sauce over the lemon baked chicken breasts.


I served it with a side of Brussel Sprouts, a baked potato (microwaved) and sour cream, and a ceasar salad, which was tooo much food. We each had leftovers for lunch.  JW thought it was amazing- and would have enjoyed more sauce, if I had more. It was very tasty- and easy- I'll make again!