Archive | January, 2014

Poblano Macaroni & Cheese

27 Jan

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The first time I made this for my husband he asked me: “What’s the green stuff?”! He was skeptical, but after the initial forkful he smiled and mentioned to me how much he enjoyed it! He liked this side dish so much, he asked me to make it the next night again! It’s not your standard Mac & Cheese. It contains white cheddar and the outlier is the green stuff… Cilantro and poblano peppers! The peppers do not add much heat to the dish, but they do offer a nice depth of flavor. Coupled with the various seasonings this recipe calls for, it’s bursting with goodness! Enjoy!!

INGREDIENTS:
2 Poblano chiles
8 oz. elbow pasta
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 cloves of minced garlic
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 teaspoon mustard powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
Salt and pepper to taste
4 cups grated white cheddar (I was just shy of 4 cups, so I added some regular cheddar cheese)

DIRECTIONS:
Roast the poblano chilies under the broiler until blackened, about 5 minutes per side. Place the chiles in a paper sack or plastic food-storage bag, close it tightly, and let the for 20 minutes. Take the chiles out of the bag and rub off the skin. Take the chiles out of the bag and rub off the skin. Remove the stem and seeds and chop the chiles into 1-inch long pieces.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the pasta. Cook according to your package’s directions ad then drain the pasta. (You want the pasta to be cooked but not mushy; cook for 5 minutes.)

Preheat the oven to 375. Grease a large baking dish or a large 12 inch cast-iron skillet, and pour the drained pasta into the dish.

In a pot (you can use the pot the pasta cooked in or you can do this while the pasta boils), on low heat melt the butter. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Whisk in the flour and cook until a light brown, toasty paste is formed, about 1 minute. Whisk in the milk and stir until it’s thickened a bit but still fluid, about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the mustard powder, cayenne, cumin, cilantro, and chopped poblano chiles. Adjust seasonings and add salt and black pepper.

Slowly add half of the cheddar cheese and stir until it’s melted and well combined into the sauce. (If the sauce has cooled too much and the cheese won’t melt, return the pot to low heat on the stove seems a little thick return it to the stove until soft again. If however, the sauce gets too thick, like a custard, you can thin it by stirring in milk, a teaspoon at a time.) Pour sauce over pasta and top with the remaining half of the cheddar cheese and bake uncovered for 20 minutes or until brown and bubbling.

Recipe originally from The Homesick Texan

Adapted from http://www.nutmegnanny.com/2011/09/10/poblano-macaroni-and-cheese-the-homesick-texan-cookbook-spotlight-cook-off/

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Peas with Shallots

22 Jan

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Sautéed peas with salt, pepper, and shallots! I didn’t use a recipe in making this, just added as I went along and this side dish turned out delicious!

I diced 2 shallots and sautéed them in a small pan with a tablespoon of butter. Once browned, I added in a cup of frozen peas and continued to sauté until peas were fully cooked through. Add salt and pepper and it’s ready to serve!

Mini Herbed Pommes Anna

22 Jan

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Wow! These were amazing! They were crunchy yet soft toward the center of each stack… Perfect in my book!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup unsalted butter
12-24 small tender thyme springs plus 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped leaves
1 garlic clove, minced
1 3/4 pounds small waxy potatoes (I used Yukon Gold)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Any additional seasonings you may like; I used red pepper flakes, paprika, and Italian seasonings.

Special Equipment:

A standard 12 cup muffin pan

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Brush muffin cups all over with butter.

Add chopped thyme, garlic, and any other seasonings you may desire to remaining butter in saucepan. Stir over medium low heat until fragrant; about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat.

Slice potatoes crosswise into very thin rounds placing them in a large bowl as you work. Pour herb butter over and season with salt and pepper; toss to coat well.

Divide potato slices among muffin cups, layering overlapping slices to create a circular pattern. Lightly press center of each to make compact. Drizzle any remaining butter and seasonings from bowl over.

Bake until potatoes can be pierced easily with the tip of a knife, about 35 minutes.

Increase heat to 425. Bake until tops and edges are golden and crispy, 25-30 minutes.

**Please note you can substitute the butter on the bottom of the muffin pan and use cooking spray.
You can also use olive oil to substitute the remaining butter.
I substituted these ingredients in the most recent batch I made and they were just as good!

Recipe adapted from http://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/mini-herbed-pommes-anna

Homemade pizzas

18 Jan

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A picture is worth a thousand words…

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Chicken Pomodoro

7 Jan

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Happy New Year! I started this blog awhile ago to keep track of recipes and things I’ve cooked… And I haven’t done a great job at keeping up! I’m hoping to start this New Year on the right foot. Continue reading