Monday, May 31, 2010

Week 21: Pepper Steak

The Recipe
1/2 pound pork chops, cut in 1/4" strips
1 green pepper in strips
1 onion in slices
1 500g jar spaghetti sauce
1/2 cube beef broth
1 tbsp Worchestershire sauce

In a large wok, heat oil and cook meat until done to your liking. Add peppers and onion and cook 3-5 minutes or until tender.
Stir in pasta sauce, beef cube and Worchestershire sauce and heat to boiling. Reduce heat and let simmer for about 10 minutes.

Serve with pasta and a salad.

The Verdict
Not bad at all, but I'm really not sure I needed a recipe for this! It was good to be reminded that one can make meat sauces without ground meat though, so I guess I did need a recipe after all. I served it with feta cheese on top which added a very nice touch. A nice variation to the usual spaghetti bolognese.

Week 20: Satay Pork with Peanut Sauce

The Recipe
250g pork cut into 1/4" slices

1 tbsp soya sauce
1 clove garlic
2 tsp fresh ginger
1/4 tsp ground chili or 1/2 fresh chili
1/4 tsp cumin
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp sesame seeds
1/2 lime
Mix everything together. Put meat and satay in a bag and shake to coat. Marinate for at least 30 minutes before cooking.

Peanut sauce
1/2 small onion
1 clove garlic
1-1.5 fresh chili
1 tsp oil
2 tbsp peanut butter
1/2 lime
1 tbsp soya sauce
2 tsp sugar

Heat the oil in a small pot and cook onion, garlic and chili for a couple of minutes. Add 1 dl (7 tbsp) water, peanut butter, lime, soya and sugar. Let the sauce simmer for a couple of minutes until it's reduced a bit.

Serve the satay with rice and a nice salad.

The Verdict
Very yummy. DH didn't care much for the peanut sauce, but I loved it, and it was really easy to make, so I may just do that again another day, and then make another sauce for him. Definitely worth a repeat. Oh, and I used chunky peanut butter which turned out to be a good thing. I'm not sure it would have been as good with smooth.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Week 19 - Mediterranean Roasted Chicken

The Recipe
Saute boneless skinless chicken breast halves in a skillet until brown on both sides, remove from pan and put in an oven-proof dish. In the skillet stir-fry garlic, onion, bell pepper and tomatoes until tender. Pour over chicken. Season with black pepper and fresh basil leaves. Cover with aluminum foil. Cook in oven at 200C for half an hour or until chicken is done. Serve with rice.

The Verdict
So boring I couldn't even be bothered typing out the recipe in full. I added chili sauce which did help somewhat, but the chicken was still really, really bland. Not worth a repeat.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Week 18: Eggplant pasta

This week's recipe was a very nice surprise! I'd planned on making chicken satay, but discovered too late that it had to marinate for 3-4 hours, and as I don't get home from work until after 5pm, that just wasn't happening. Instead I found this recipe and thought I might as well give it a try.

The Recipe
1 small eggplant
1/2 can tomatoes
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella (about 1 handful)
2 cloves garlic
2 handful fresh basil
120g durum pasta
1tsp olive oil
salt, pepper

Chop the eggplant up into 1cm cubes and put them in a sieve or a colander, toss with salt and leave for about 30 minutes. Apparently this draws out some of the bitter taste of the eggplant. I have no idea how it would taste if you obit this step though. Meanwhile, boil the pasta according to the instructions on the bag.

In a pan (make sure it's large enough for the eggplants to be in one layer, or you'll get boiled rather than browned eggplant) heat up the olive oil and cook the eggplant, garlic and basil for about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, pasta and mozzarella and let it simmer for a couple of minutes until the mozzarella is melted.

The Verdict
Very yummy! However, either I didn't cook the eggplant long enough, or I ought to have peeled it before starting, because the skin was kinda chewy and not very tasty. Since I was alone I just ate around it, but I'll definitely do that differently next time. Delicious as a vegetarian meal, and the taste combination would work very well with bacon as well. Definitely a keeper! This recipe was a bit much for me, so I think double would be fine for 3 people - especially with a nice salad or some garlic bread on the side.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Week 17: Braised Crock-Pot Chicken

The Recipe
3 chicken breast halves
0.5 tbsp butter
1/4 tsp salt
pinch of pepper
1 clove chopped garlic
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1 bell peppers, sliced
3 spring onions, sliced
1 small onion, sliced in rings
4 tbsp cooking sherry
2 tsp orange juice
6 large green olives, chopped

Plug in your crockpot and turn it to low. Add the butter, chicken and all of the dried spices. Cut the peppers and onion, and chop or mince the garlic, to add to the mix. Top off with the cooking sherry and orange juice. Chop up the green olives, and sprinkle them on top.

Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.

The Verdict
I'm still getting to know my crock-pot and unfortunately find it really difficult to find good recipes for it. Somehow they all end up tasting pretty bland. Unfortunately this was no real exception. It smelled delicious as it was cooking, but didn't really taste of anything. Plus the chicken was dry.

Moving on, I guess.