Friday, January 4, 2019

Hatch Pepper Chile Verde Enchiladas

Recently, I was on a quick work trip to Spokane, Washington.  On the trip, one of my co-worker mentioned that he loves Salsa Verde, and it’s so easy to make.  He showed me bottle of salsa he uses, and said just chop up the pork and pour in the sauce.  My kind of dinner!!  However we don’t usually eat pork, so I looked at a few recipes,and was like…..I have hatch chilies in the freezer I need to use up!  So I melded a few recipes that inspired me, and made Salsa Verde, and Salsa Verde Chicken Enchiladas.

Instant Pot “Hatch” Chile Verde

1 medium yellow onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic peeled and smashed
Olive oil
1/2 roasted hatch chiles (or one fresh jalapeño, stemmed), roughly chopped
2 cans tomatillos, drained
1/3 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
1 lime, juiced
1 tablespoon cumin
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

1. Press sauté, and allow the IP to warm up
2. Add onion and cook until tender.  Add garlic and stir until fragrant. 
3. Add chilies, stir
4. Add tomatillos, one at a time, squeezing each when you place in the pot. 
5. Add spices and stir.
6. Press, off. The press manual, and set the time for 15 minutes.
7. Allow NP release, remove lid
8. Using an emersion blender, purée sauce until smooth. 
9. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 
Chile Verde Enchiladas

3 pounds ground chicken or your choice of meat, cooked (Pulled pork, shredded chicken, etc.)
salt and pepper, to taste
10 ounces Queso Fresco cheese
1 tub cream cheese (I used jalapeño)
1 cup shredded cheese
12 corn tortilla shells

1. Preheat oven to 350° 
2. Place meat, cream cheese and shredded cheese into a bowl.  Mix and ladle 1 scoop of the verde into the bowl.
3. Place a couple ladles of verde sauce in the bottom of a 9 X 11pan
4. Steam the tortillas, one at a time
5. Place a tablespoon or 2 of the filling mix on to a tortilla, and roll up.
6. Place enchilada onto the sauce in the pan.
7. Complete, until out of tortillas
8. Pour several ladles of sauce over enchiladas, and top with crumbled queso fresco. 
9. Bake for 30-40 minutes until cheese in golden brown.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Potato Leek Soup

Potato Leek Soup

Last night I was craving soup, and didn’t have a lot of time, so out came the Instant Pot (contrary to popular belief, I do put it away!). What felt like 30 minutes last the soup was ready to go!!  I served it with rolls and crackers. I do love a good “cracker soup”!

Potato Leek Soup

4-5 Yukon Gold Potatoes, quartered

1 head (larger) celery root

3-4 leeks, cleaned , and cut into 2 inch pieces

4 cups chicken broth

Salt and pepper to taste

1/2-1 cup cream

Place the fist 5 ingredients Into the instant pot. Set in soup, and adjust to 20 minutes. Allow to naturally pressure down. Remove the lid and insert an immersion blender, and blend until smooth. Add in cream and blend until combined. Serve with bread or crackers. 

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Dennis’ Grilled Potatoes

This post is inspired by my brother-in-law Dennis.  Years ago, when he and my sister first invited me over for dinner, he make a dish he called grilled potatoes.  I was hooked.  I have make these for 1 and for 10+….they (almost) always turn out.  I’ve even made them for people who HATE onions (with Walla Walla Onion- how could you hate them then?) When he first started making them, I remember he only used lemon pepper seasoning.  Now, I typically use a different seasoning each time I make them.  You will love them. 

You all know I don’t measure, however I know people need quantities, so here is how I made the potatoes in the pictures. 

Dennis’ Grilled Potatoes

3 potatoes, cleaned (and peeled if you prefer)
1 Onion, sliced
3 Tbsp Monterey seasoning 
3 Tbsp olive oil
3 Tbsp butter (3 pats)

Take 2 sheets of foil and place on on top of the other.  Fold the edges closest to you 3 times to “seal” the foil. Open it up, and set aside. 

Slice potatoes and onion to 1/8-1/4 of an inch.  Place all in a bowl, and cover with oil and seasonings.  Toss to cover. Remove potatoes, one slice at a time, shingling them and placing the foil.  Top with the onions, and 3 pats of butter. Fold the foil over the top of the potatoes and “seal”.

Place potatoes on a hot grill, and turn down temp, so you don’t burn the bottom.

Cook for 10-15 minutes.  Allow to rest as the potatoes will continue cooking.

Serve. And enjoy!

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Flourless Chocolate Cake

We recently had some great friends come for a visit, now that we’re settled in our new home in Portland. They asked to meet up for dinner, and we recommend that they come to our house. Dinner’s here can be restaurant quality, and it’s a more relaxed environment. One thing is that they don’t eat dairy or gluten. What better to serve than Grilled salmon, corn, zucchini & tomato sauté and a flourless chocolate cake for dessert. 

If you remember my post from about a year ago when we visited O’o Farms in Maui, we had a flourless chocolate cake made with ground Cascara, the coffee bean cherry, dried and dehydrated. I wanted to recreate this, but don’t have access to Cascara. This recipe was amazing, and even if you aren’t dairy or gluten free it’s amazing. And you can cut it into portions and it freezes wonderfully. 

Flourless Chocolate Cake


Cake -
12 oz. dark chocolate, (roughly 2 cups)
12 Tablespoons (1 & 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
5 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons water
1/4 cup good quality unsweetened cocoa powder

Glaze -
4 oz dark chocolate (about 2/3 cup)
3 Tablespoons unsalted butter

Fresh raspberries or fresh strawberries

1. Preheat oven to 300°F.  Prepare a 9" cake pan by lining the bottom with parchment and lightly buttering the sides, then dust with cocoa powder and tap out any excess.
2. In a medium sized (microwave safe) bowl, heat the chocolate (break into pieces if using large bars) & butter at 50% power in the microwave until mostly melted (about 2 minutes, but check after 1 minute and every 30 seconds after).  Stir until fully melted and smooth, then set aside.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the eggs on medium speed about 1 minute.  While mixing, add sugar, vanilla, salt and water and continue whisking another minute or so, or until the mixture is very foamy, pale in color and has doubled in volume.
4. Reduce mixer speed to low, and gradually pour in the (cooled) chocolate mixture.  Increase mixer speed to medium and blend until well incorporated, about 30 seconds.
5. Add the cocoa powder and blend just until fully incorporated.
6. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake 40-45 minutes.  Bake just until the outside edges are fully baked, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist clumps, but not just wet batter.  It will seem under-baked by most cake baking standards.  Don't overcook.
7. Remove from oven and cool in the pan (on a wire rack) for 30 minutes.  The cake will sink quite a bit in the center, leaving a rim around the edge, this is OK.  Cover the pan with foil and move the cooled cake to the refrigerator and refrigerate until very cold, at least 6 hours or overnight.
8. Once well chilled, run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the cake.  Remove from pan and trim off the raised rim around the edge of the cake, as necessary to level.  Turn cake upside down onto a platter (so the bottom of the cake is now the top) and remove parchment paper.
9. Prepare glaze by heating the chocolate and butter in the microwave (at 50% power) until almost melted, then stir until fully melted and smooth.  Cool slightly, then use an offset spatula to spread the glaze evenly to within 1/4 inch from the edge of the cake.  Allow to set up (at room temperature, unless your house is very warm and in that case, cool in the fridge).  Cake should be served at room temperature.
10. To serve, cut into very thin slices using a knife that has been run under hot water, then wiped dry.  Clean knife between cuts as needed.
11. Garnish as desired and enjoy!

Monday, June 4, 2018

Crispy Caramel Chicken Skewers

I make teriyaki chicken all the time. Once I figured out how to make the sauce to the flavor profile I like, it became a weekly (or so) rotation. When I came across this recipe, I noticed a couple changes from the teriyaki I usually make. First off, it uses fish sauce. Which I’m never opposed to!  And there is a lack of soy sauce. Otherwise most of the ingredients are close to my version of teriyaki. 

One big difference for me is that you simmer the sauce into a glaze. I served a this over rice. 

Crispy Caramel Chicken Skewers

Crispy Caramel Chicken Skewers

For the Marinated Chicken:
2 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch chunks
2 tablespoons Asian fish sauce
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 tablespoon orange juice

For the Caramel Glaze:
2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup Asian fish sauce (Red Boat)
1/3 cup orange juice
1/3 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
4 medium cloves garlic, minced
2 medium shallots, chopped
1 (1-inch) piece peeled fresh ginger, minced
2 scallions, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced on a bias

For the Marinated Chicken: In a large zipper-lock bag or bowl, combine fish sauce, brown sugar, and orange juice. Mix well. Add the chicken chunks, shake well to coat. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or  overnight.

For the Caramel Glaze: In a medium saucepan, combine the brown sugar, fish sauce, orange juice, rice vinegar, and honey over medium heat. Stir until sugar dissolves. Add garlic, shallots, and ginger and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until glaze becomes thick and sticky and easily coats the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and set aside.

Grilling : Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all the charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and spread the coals evenly over half of coal grate. Alternatively, set all the burners of a gas grill to high heat. Set cooking grate in place, cover grill, and allow to preheat for 5 minutes. Clean and oil the grilling grate. (I used a gas grill, on high heat until the chicken skewers went on. Then turned to low to cook throughly. Then back on high for a final seat)

Thread the chicken on 6 bamboo skewers. Transfer to the grill and cook over direct heat, turning and brushing with the glaze every 5 minutes until chicken is cooked through and crisp, about 8 minutes.
Remove from heat, garnish with scallions, and serve.

Chicken Skewers

Crispy Caramel Chicken Skewers with glaze

Crispy Caramel Chicken Skewers finished

Crispy Caramel Chicken Skewers on rice