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Buffalo Style Chicken Strips

Posted by on Feb 2, 2013 in Chicken, Entrees, Recipes | Comments Off on Buffalo Style Chicken Strips

Buffalo Style Chicken Strips

buffalochickenstrips

2/3 cup high-quality hot sauce (1 full 5 oz bottle)
1/2 cup high-quality butter
1 & 1/2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
1/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp pure salt
2 pounds chicken strips or chicken cutlets

  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • Combine all ingredients (except chicken) in a small pot and place over medium heat.
  • Bring to a simmer while occasionally stirring or whisking.
  • As soon as the liquid begins to bubble on the sides of the pot, remove from heat, stir, and set aside for use.
  • Place chicken in a 9 x 11 glass pyrex dish.
  • Pour 1/2 cup prepared sauce over chicken and toss to combine.
  • Bake 20 – 25 minutes – until cooked through.
Use the extra sauce for dipping.

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SIDE NOTES:

~  Cut up some carrot & celery sticks, and dole out the creamy blue.

~  I have not made these with actual wings, so the cooking time may vary if that’s what you’re using.

~  Yes, that plate is on the snow-covered picnic table on the deck.  Every time I make this, daylight is practically gone (this happens often in the winter around dinner time).  Just made this tonight.  Even though it was only 5:15 – it was still too dark inside, so I did what I had to do to get the shot   =)  Thought maybe someone would want to give this a go for Superbowl Sunday.  It’s ridiculously easy to make!

~  If cutting this recipe in half, an 8 x 8 pyrex works well.

~  Enjoy your Sunday, whether you’re watching football or not  =)

 For those avoiding certain foods, this recipe falls into the following categories:

Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free, Nut Free, Sugar Free, Vegan, Grain Free, Raw

If eating gluten and/or sugar free, be careful choosing any packaged products such as Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce.

~  Buffalo Hot Sauce adapted from http://allrecipes.com/recipe/buffalo-chicken-wing-sauce/

 

Buffalo Chicken Sauce

Posted by on Feb 2, 2013 in Condiments, etc..., Dips, Recipes, Sauces, Gravys | Comments Off on Buffalo Chicken Sauce

Buffalo Chicken Sauce

buffalosauce

2/3 cup high-quality hot sauce (1 full 5 oz bottle)
1/2 cup high-quality butter
1 & 1/2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
1/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp pure salt

  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • Combine all ingredients (except chicken) in a small pot and place over medium heat.
  • Bring to a simmer occasionally stirring or whisking.
  • As soon as the liquid begins to bubble on the sides of the pot, remove from heat, stir, and set aside for use.

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SIDE NOTES:

~  Makes about 1 & 1/4 cups sauce.

~  Click HERE for easy directions on how to make buffalo-style chicken strips.

 For those avoiding certain foods, this recipe falls into the following categories:

Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free, Nut Free, Sugar Free, Vegan, Grain Free, Raw

If eating gluten and/or sugar free, be careful choosing any packaged products such as Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce.

~  Adapted from http://allrecipes.com/recipe/buffalo-chicken-wing-sauce/

Creamy Blue Cheese Dressing

Posted by on Jan 24, 2013 in Condiments, etc..., Dips, Photo Slide Show, Recipes, Salad Dressings, Salads | Comments Off on Creamy Blue Cheese Dressing

Creamy Blue Cheese Dressing

4 oz organic, crumbled blue cheese
6 TBSP plain yogurt (or buttermilk)
6 TBSP high-quality sour cream
1/4 cup high-quality mayo
4 tsps apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp natural sugar of choice (or 1 drop liquid stevia)
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp pure salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste (about 1/8 tsp if measuring)

  • Mix all ingredients together and serve as a dip for fresh vegetables or drizzled over salad.

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SIDE NOTES:

~  This amount fills up a 12 oz wide mouth mason jar (you can mix the ingredients right in the jar, cover & refrigerate).

~  If you prefer… instead of vinegar, you can add 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce and 1/2 tsp dry mustard.

 For those avoiding certain foods, this recipe falls into the following categories:

Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free, Nut Free, Sugar Free, Vegan, Grain Free, Raw

If eating gluten and/or sugar free, be careful choosing any packaged products such as mayo.

Recipe adapted from allrecipes.com

Feta, Fig & Toasted Pine Nut Salad

Posted by on Jan 17, 2013 in Leafy Salads, Recipes, Salads | 1 comment

Feta, Fig & Toasted Pine Nut Salad

Mixed salad greens
2 – 4 TBSPs feta cheese
1 – 2 TBSPs pine nuts, toasted
4 dried figs, cut in half or quarters
balsamic vinaigrette (or dressing of choice)

Toast pine nuts in a dry skillet for a few minutes until aromatic & slightly browned. Toss everything together with dressing of choice and serve.

Serves 1.

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SIDE NOTES:

~ This is a really tasty combination that’s easy to put together. There are no real set amounts for something like this. Just toss in as much of everything as you’d like.

~ You can use fresh figs if you happen to have them. Of course, if figs aren’t your thing, you can swap them out for any other fresh or dried fruit.

 For those avoiding certain foods, this recipe falls into the following categories:

Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free, Nut Free, Sugar Free, Grain Free, Vegan, Raw

If avoiding dairy, omit cheese (can substitute sliced avocado).  If eating nut free, omit the pine nuts (can substitute sunflower seeds if they’re agreeable to you).  If eating gluten and/or sugar free, be careful choosing your dressing (or make your own).  If eating raw, use raw milk feta, fresh figs, and raw/sprouted nuts.

Minute Steak w/ Mushrooms & Onions

Posted by on Jan 9, 2013 in Beef, Entrees, Recipes | Comments Off on Minute Steak w/ Mushrooms & Onions

Minute Steak w/ Mushrooms & Onions

2 TBSP coconut oil, butter, or ghee
1 large onion
6 oz mushrooms of choice, washed & sliced
1 pound grass-fed minute steaks, roughly chopped
pure salt and pepper to taste
2 TBSP Worchestershire sauce

  • Saute onion in oil or butter until softened and lightly browned, about 7 mins.
  • Add mushrooms and saute for 2 – 3 minutes longer.
  • Remove vegetables from pan and add steak.
  • Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and saute until browned on all sides, 4 – 6 minutes.
  • Stir in Worchestershire sauce.
  • Add vegetables back to the pan and saute just a few minutes, until heated through.

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SIDE NOTES:

~  This is a very simple and delicious meal to prepare.

~  Minute steak is thinly sliced steak (sometimes called “shaved steak“) that’s easy to toss in a pan for a quick stir fry or something like this.

~  Shown here with balsamic-roasted-beets.

Enjoy!

 For those avoiding certain foods, this recipe falls into the following categories:

Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free, Nut Free, Sugar Free, Grain Free, Vegan, Raw

If eating dairy free use coconut oil instead of butter.  I don’t know that there are any sugar free Worchestershire sauces out there, so simply substitute soy sauce if need be.

Honey Roasted Pears

Posted by on Dec 30, 2012 in Baked Fruit, Baked Goods, Recipes, Sweets | Comments Off on Honey Roasted Pears

Honey Roasted Pears

4 ripe pears, quartered lengthwise and cored
3 TBSP butter, diced into small cubes (or cold coconut oil)
1/4 cup honey
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

  • Preheat oven to 450.
  • Place the pears in an oven proof skillet.
  • Drizzle with honey and dot with butter.
  • Sprinkle the vanilla over the pears and set the pan over high heat for 2 mins.
  • Transfer pan to the oven and roast for 15 mins.

Serves 4.

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SIDE NOTES:

~  Adapted from “Fresh Food Fast” – A nice, simple dessert when you’re in the mood for something sweet.

For those with various food restrictions, this recipe falls into the following categories:

Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free, Nut Free, Sugar Free, Grain Free, Vegan, Raw

If eating dairy free, use coconut oil instead of butter.  Some vegans will eat honey.  If this is a problem for you, use maple syrup instead.

Herb-Roasted Chicken

Posted by on Dec 19, 2012 in Chicken, Entrees, Recipes | Comments Off on Herb-Roasted Chicken

Herb-Roasted Chicken

2 TBSP chicken-herb-rub (click link or see below)
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup melted butter, ghee, or coconut oil
1 whole chicken (mine was 3 lbs)
1 lemon peeled & poked all over w/ a fork AND/OR 1 onion peeled & quartered (optional)

  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • Remove the insides of the chicken (if that hasn’t already been done).
  • Place chicken herb rub ingredients in a small food processor with the garlic and butter, and puree into a paste.
  • Rub the herb paste all over the chicken, being sure to get underneath as well as on the top of the skin (you’ll have to make a few slits in the skin to get underneath if an opening doesn’t already exist).
  • If time allows, let sit for up to 2 hours in the fridge. If not, proceed with roasting.
  • Place either or both, lemon and onion into the hollow inside of the chicken before placing in the oven (you can really put any vegetables or herbs in there you’d like).
  • Roast for a total of 60 minutes (give or take) as follows (adjusting the time depending on the size of the bird):  Roast for 20 minutes wing side up.  Turn the chicken so the other wing is facing up, and roast for 20 minutes more.  Turn the chicken breast side up for the remaining 20 minutes.  If you use a meat thermometer, roast until the internal temperature of the breast reads 160 and the thighs 165 – 170.
  • Let rest for 10 – 15 minutes before carving.

Chicken Herb Rub

Combine the following:
2 TBSP dried oregano
1 TBSP dried thyme
1 TBSP freshly ground black pepper
1/2 TBSP pure salt (or 1 TBSP coarse salt)

(This amount of herb rub will make more than you need for this recipe.  It’s enough for 2 chickens.  Save the remainder in a sealed container for future use.)

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SIDE NOTES:

~  Okay, this was my first attempt at cooking a whole bird.  It was actually our Thanksgiving dinner.  Somehow, I thought a chicken would be easier than a turkey, and I happened to have a this little guy in the freezer.  I had been avoiding looking it in the *neck* for quite some time.

~  While it’s pretty easy for me to handle and cook meat at this point (being a reformed vegetarian), still — I don’t really like looking at headless cluck-cluck on my kitchen counter.  Beyond that, I couldn’t believe how easy this was to prepare.  And of course, it’s much less expensive to buy a whole bird rather than parts.  I just assumed my first few attempts at this would flop.  Luckily – with tips and suggestions from friends, and guidance from a few trusted cookbooks – it was smooth sailing.

~  One book said to definitely truss the chicken (for even cooking), another said definitely not to.  We received ours already trussed (using only the skin itself), so that’s how we kept it.  For video instructions on how to truss a chicken, click HERE.

~  Adding the lemon/onion, or other vegetables/herbs to the cavity of the chicken supposedly helps to keep the bird moist and add a touch of flavor.  I think this topic is debatable.  Over time, I’ll experiment & see how it goes.

~  HOW BIG OF A BIRD SHOULD I BUY?  I now know to figure on one pound of bird for every person.  This 3 lb bird was not enough for 4 of us.  Luckily, there were plenty of side dishes for us to get our fill.

~  If you’d like, at the end of the meal, put the carcass in the fridge and use it the following day to make delicious, protein-rich CHICKEN BROTH.

~  I thought I’d post this recipe now in case anyone is considering a dish like this for the holidays.  Enjoy!

For those with various food restrictions, this recipe falls into the following categories:

Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free, Nut Free, Sugar Free, Grain Free, Vegan, Raw

If eating dairy free, use coconut oil instead of butter.

Chicken Herb Rub Paste:

Chicken Herb Rub

Posted by on Dec 19, 2012 in Condiments, etc..., Recipes, Seasonings | Comments Off on Chicken Herb Rub

Chicken Herb Rub

2 TBSP dried oregano
1 TBSP dried thyme
1 TBSP freshly ground black pepper
1/2 TBSP pure salt (if using coarse salt, use 1 full TBSP)

  • Combine.

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SIDE NOTES:

~  Feel free to double this and keep it labeled in an empty spice shaker for convenient, future use.

~  You can rub some of this mixture into your chicken (both on and under the skin) as is, or you can make a paste with it by blending 2 TBSPs of the spice mix with one chopped garlic clove and 1/4 cup melted butter (or ghee, or coconut oil) in a small food processor – and rubbing the paste into the chicken – again, both on and under the skin.

~  Recipe adapted from the Grass Fed Gourmet cookbook.

~  Here’s one way I tend to use this spice mix:  roasted-chicken-parts

Enjoy!

Chicken Noodle Soup

Posted by on Dec 11, 2012 in Chicken, Entrees, Photo Slide Show, Recipes, Soups | 2 comments

Chicken Noodle Soup

2 tablespoons coconut oil, ghee, or butter
1 medium onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced or crushed
3 medium carrots, roughly diced
3 celery stalks, halved lengthwise and roughly diced
4 fresh thyme sprigs (or about 2 tsps dried)
1 bay leaf
2 quarts (8 cups) chicken broth
8 ounces dried wide egg noodles (optional)
1 & 1/2 cups shredded cooked chicken (optional)
pure salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 handful fresh parsley, roughly chopped

  • Place a soup pot over medium heat and heat the oil.
  • Add the onion, garlic, carrots, celery, thyme and bay leaf.
  • Cook and stir for about 6 minutes, until the vegetables are softened but not browned.
  • Pour in the chicken broth and bring the liquid to a boil.
  • Add the noodles and simmer for 5 minutes until tender.
  • Add the chicken, and continue to simmer for another couple of minutes to heat through
  • Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with chopped parsley before serving.

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SIDE NOTES:

~  True comfort food…

~  You don’t technically have to put any chicken in this soup.  The broth alone can hold that part of the title.  Likewise, chicken soup doesn’t have to have noodles, but I wouldn’t omit both the chicken and the noodles.  One or the other should be in there.

~  Of course, you can use a high-quality store-bought broth for convenience if you prefer, but if you have your own broth in the freezer, all the better…

Enjoy!

For those with various food restrictions, this recipe falls into the following categories:

Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free, Nut Free, Sugar Free, Grain Free, Vegan, Raw

If eating dairy free, use coconut oil.  If eating gluten free and/or egg free, you can substitute rice noodles.  If eating entirely grain free, omit the noodles.

~  Recipe adapted from Tyler Florence at www.foodnetwork.com

Italian Wedding Soup

Posted by on Dec 4, 2012 in Beef, Entrees, Photo Slide Show, Recipes, Soups | Comments Off on Italian Wedding Soup

Italian Wedding Soup

24 – 40 cooked meatballs (depending on how many people you’re serving)
2 TBSP butter, ghee, or coconut oil
1 cup onion, diced
1 – 2 large cloves of garlic, minced or crushed
3 – 4 large carrots, diced (2 cups or more)
2 stalks celery, diced (approx 3/4 cup)
10 cups broth (chicken, beef, or vegetable)
1/2 cup dry white wine (optional)
12 oz baby spinach
pure salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
freshly grated parmesan cheese (optional)

  • Make meatballs (or use some you’ve defrosted if you made extra last time).
  • Heat butter or oil over medium heat in a large soup pot.
  • Add onion, garlic, carrot and celery, and saute for 5-6 minutes.
  • Add broth and wine, and bring to boil.
  • Add cooked meatballs and simmer for 2 minutes.
  • Stir in fresh spinach and cook for 1 minute, until spinach is slightly wilted.
  • Serve with a sprinkle of salt and pepper and topped with grated cheese if desired.

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SIDE NOTES:

~  I’m full blooded Italian and have been to many weddings, but don’t recall ever having this soup at any such occasion! Upon looking into this a bit, I found that somewhere along the way, the original (Italian) name for this soup, “Minestra Maritata” was mis-translated.  The literal translation is “married soup” which in this case, refers to the ingredients — a perfect “marriage” of meat and greens.  You may now kiss the spinach…

~  This is kind of like chicken or matzoh ball soup but with meatballs instead – very delicious!

~  Plan on using about 5 meatballs per person (this recipe will feed 5 – 8 people depending on portion size).  It’s a pretty easy meal to prepare, especially if you made an extra batch of meatballs last time & are just pulling them from the freezer.

~  Some like to add pasta or orzo to this soup.  In this case, simply add a cup or two of uncooked pasta to the broth mixture before you add the spinach, and simmer until al dente.

 For those with various food restrictions, this recipe falls into the following categories:

Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free, Nut Free, Sugar Free, Grain Free, Vegan, Raw

If eating dairy free, use coconut oil instead of butter and omit the parmesan cheese.  If eating gluten free, use gluten free breadcrumbs in the meatballs, and double-check your wine (or omit it if necessary).  Be sure to check labels of packaged ingredients if eating gluten and/or sugar free (omit the Worcestershire sauce in meatballs if necessary).  If eating grain free, use almond flour for the meatballs instead of breadcrumbs. 

Adapted from  www.foodnetwork.com