Tag Archive | oil

Triple B (Beef, Barley, Bread ~ Hello Winter!)

Winter is in the air, and the first thing that comes to my mind is soup.  I love soup! It could be 100 degrees outside, and what I would want to eat is soup.  Recently found pressed barley at my local grocery store. (Well in all honesty I had bought it before, but I actually thought it was oatmeal!)  My husband came grocery shopping with me this past weekend, and as we stopped by the deli counter so I could get some ground beef, he saw some stew meat that he commented sounded good.  He was thinking I could fry it up and throw it in sandwiches or stir fry or something, not realizing that stew meat is usually rather tough, which is why it is for stews…they cook a long time.  Anyway, we got the meat, and I got the barley, and I new that this week  I would be making beef barley stew.

I started out by sauteing the beef with maybe a tablespoon of olive oil, and throwing some chopped up onion in the pan with it.  I cooked the meat and onions until the meat was just about done, and a little brown.

While that was cooking, I chopped up two carrots, opened and drained a small can of corn, and got out some frozen garlic.  I threw about a tablespoon of garlic in with the meat, and another one in the crock pot with the vegetables.

When the meat was done, I poured the entire pan, drippings and all into the crock pot with the vegetables and mixed it all up a bit.  I added 5 cups of water, a tablespoon of dried thyme, and some salt and pepper to the pot as well.  I also used a little chicken bouillon for flavor, as I don’t have any beef.  I then gave the entire pot a good stir.

I put a lid on the pot, turned it on low, and

I set aside 1 1/2 cups of barley, for my husband to add after he got home from work, after it had been cooking for over three hours.

When I came home I checked the soup, and the barley had expanded to the point there was almost no water in it the pot, and it was almost overflowing.  (Note to self * Your crock pot cannot handle 1.5 cups of barley for a soup…try less next time!)

I didn’t take a photo as I was more concerned with adding some liquid to the pot than taking pictures….I added another cup to the pot, and this made the texture very stewy, and not so much thick clumpy gooey oatmealy if you know what I mean.

This photo was actually taken after two bowls of soup had been dispensed…the barley BLEW UP in the pot, and it was amazing the lid did not overflow!

Since the soup was pretty much done, I did’t have to do anything but add water once I got home. However, a good winter soup does not seem right without some bread to go with it.  I made some quick rise bread sticks with rosemary sprinkled over the top of the dough, and garlic butter painted over the top.

I will be honest, the soup was pretty bland.  Both my husband and I added some salt to our bowls, as well as a sprinkle or 4 of tobasco sauce.  Then, this tasted great!

 I found the recipe for the bread sticks on food.com.  Here is the recipe that I used and is in my photographs.

1 cup warm water
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup oil
3 cups bread flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill Whole Wheat Flour)
2 1/2 teaspoons yeast (I used a tablespoon since I was using whole wheat)

Make dough using your favorite method- bread machine, mixer or by hand.
Roll out into a 10×12 inch rectangle.
Cut into strips about 3/4 inch wide.
Give each strip a twist and place on a greased cookie sheet.
Let rise for at least 20 minutes or more if you have time.
Bake at 375 for 10-15 minutes. (Mine took 8-10 minutes)
Brush with butter and sprinkle with garlic salt and parmesan cheese.  (I melted butter and garlic and brushed on the garlic butter)

The soup serves about 10 helpings, and is 5 weight watchers points a bowl.  The bread sticks with the garlic butter are 3 points each.  All in all, a healthy meal, that you can fill up on!

Cilantro Lemon Lime Chicken

I am still on a celebration of cilantro kick.  Today I marinated 4 chicken breasts in about a 1/4 cup of dried cilantro, with maybe 1/8 of a cup of lime juice, and maybe 1/3 of a cup of lemon juice. The amounts are a bit odd, because I used the lime juice I had left, and then had to fill the bag up with enough lemon juice to do the bag marinade method.  The recipes that inspired it all used lime (see the bottom for those links) but you could use all lemon or all lime.  I used a tablespoon of honey, and a big chunk of frozen garlic (maybe 4 cloves).  I put them all into a gallon ziplock, and sucked out as much air as possible.  The chicken was frozen when it went in, and I let it evenly marinade all day.
After it has been marinating 8 hours, I pulled out the grill pan.  I put it on top of the gas flame, and heated it up.  I spritzed the pan with oil, and lowered the flame, to maybe medium.
Once the pan was hot, I put the chicken on, and let it do it’s thing while I prepared the veggies.
I took a head of broccoli, and chopped it into flouretts, and put it into a bowl with a lid.  I poured enough olive oil to coat in the bowl, then put in some thyme (okay a lot of thyme cause I forgot my bottle was open and not a shaker lid), some garlic, powder, a coating of cayenne pepper, and a bit of lemon juice.  I put the lid on the bowl and shook to coat the broccoli pretty evenly.  Once the chicken was done and I took it off the pan, I threw the oiled broccoli on it.
It turned out more grilled than fried, with charred spots, and a nice coating of seasonings.  Once it was done, I plated up.
Husband loved the broccoli too, and he is not a huge fan of the stuff!
It is the first time I have cooked it like that, and it turned out almost as good as the chicken!
I did  make this recipe my own, but special thanks to myrecipes.com and the Artsy-Foodie for combining together to create dinner (and lunch)!

Almond Cilantro Chicken

I made ground beef stroganoff Yesterday, I hate to admit it, but needing two quick meals (lunch and dinner), we ate a lot of pasta…I figure that it being Organic pasta makes it all okay right???  First, for lunch yesterday, I made creamy almond cilantro pesto pasta (pictured above), and then for dinner .  On Sunday night, I made the Almond cilantro pesto sauce, then for lunch on Monday, I crisped up some Costco fried chicken strips to throw on top.  Wound up being such a high protein meal, I hardly touched half of it!

First let me start with the sauce.  I was very excited to get some Cilantro in my house this week!  I love the stuff and it is pretty difficult to find in Korea.  I made pineapple salsa with it a few days ago, and I decided to do a creamy pesto with it for one day this week.  Only instead of using cream, I thought I would try my hand again at almond cream.  I had tried it before, inspired by a recipe found here by macheesmo.com.  I looked up a few creamy cilantro pesto recipes, and the directions basically said cream, cilantro, garlic and pine nuts.  I skipped the pine nuts, as I was going to use almonds (and I didn’t have any pine nuts although I love them too!).  To start the almond cream, you have to soak almonds for a minimum of six hours.  Overnight works pretty well.  I have noticed that soaking tends to bring out the sweetness a bit of the nuts, but it also makes them very easy to peel.  So once the nuts are soaked, just squeeze the husk off to peel them.  I had two cups of nuts when that was done (remembering they are now swollen).  I put them in the food processor with two cups of water which seemed like too much at the time because the water started overflowing out of the machine.  I forgot there is a reason I usually do this in the blender, not the food processor!

Turns out actually looking some different recipes for nut creams online…there is supposed to be more nuts, less water…OOPS!  I still have a lot of nut pulp when I do this, as I don’t have a top of the line food processor with a powerful enough motor to really do what I want of it.  Once the cream was started (I was worried about how runny it was, I added in a loosely packed cup of cilantro, some garlic powder, Parmesan cheese, and some 1/4 cup olive oil and just let it mix together for a long time.  I pulsed the machine a few times to get some of the pulp off of the bottom.  Then my sauce was done.  I put it into a canister jar to serve the next day.  On the second day, I ran it through a blender to try and break up more of the pulp, and added maybe a 1/2 cup of sour cream, cause it needed a little bite to it.  It could have probably used more cilantro, but I already had the rest in the dehydrator.  I also threw in some artichoke hearts from Costco.

 I cooked this organic pasta from costco, and cooked my sauce to thicken it up a bit in the frying pan I cooked the chicken in, and then pored it over the top.  Turns out it will thicken quite a bit!  Holy Mole, it was so thick by lunch time, I could hardly stir it up to eat it!  The artichokes were a very nice touch, as they added the needed salt.  Even with the cilantro, the flavor was a bit bland in the sauce.  I have to admit, my favorite part was the chicken…

Well that is me and my food blog…I like to experiment, so not every recipe will turn out right and not every recipe will be good…
I will leave you to decide if you want to experiment also, or if you just want to read, and think that I am crazy!  I probably am, but what is life without a little crazy?! 

2 cups soaked and husked raw almonds
2 cups water
1/2 cup sour cream
100 grams of cilantro
1/4 cup olive oil
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 cups artichoke hearts marinated in oil (I used Kirkland brand)
4-8 slices of frozen fried chicken
1 bag of pasta
Milk (opitional)

blend the raw almonds and water in a blender or food processor until it is as liquefied as you can get it.  Add cilantro, sour cream, oil, and cheese one at a time until all blended very well.
Fry up pre-cooked frozen chicken to get it crispy in a pan.  Put sauce into the same pan when chicken is done.  cook until thickened.  Add some milk if you need to thin it out a little bit.
Boil water for pasta, and cook until al’ dente (or done if you are eating immediately).
Chop up artichokes and chicken into bite sized pieces.  Either mix in with the sauce or put over the top when done dishing it up.  Put pasta in a bowl, pour sauce on top, and if you choose, add the chicken and artichokes on top of that.

Note*I prefer the the artichokes in the sauce and the chicken on top…but that is just me.