Happy Memorial Day

First off – Happy Memorial Day. Take this time to remember those that have given so much so we can have the freedom we enjoy.

Today is also Coc Au Vin Day. This is basically French for cook in wine. This classic recipe slow cooks chicken in red wine. Even though I made this in the slow cooker and it was edible, I probably won’t do it again. It was not that tasty and there was actually more onions than anything else. Below is the recipe from Ina Garten that I tried if you want to cook a classic French meal.

2 tablespoons good olive oil
4 ounces good bacon or pancetta, diced
3 to 4-pound chicken pieces
Kosher salt and black pepper
3 carrots, cut diagonally in 1-inch pieces
½ large yellow onion, sliced
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1/4 cup Cognac or good brandy
2 cups good dry red wine such as Burgundy
1 cup good chicken stock, preferably homemade
3 tsp. thyme
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 tablespoons flour
1/2 pound frozen small whole onions
1/2 pound cremini mushrooms, stems removed and thickly sliced

Cook bacon over medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove the bacon to a plate with a slotted spoon.

Meanwhile, lay the chicken out on paper towels and pat dry. Liberally sprinkle the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. When the bacon is removed, brown the chicken pieces in batches in a single layer for about 5 minutes, turning to brown evenly. Remove the chicken to the crock pot/slow cooker and continue to brown until all the chicken is done.

 

 

Add the carrots, onions, garlic, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper to the pan and cook over medium heat for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are lightly browned.

 

 

Add the bacon, carrots, onions, garlic and any juices that collected in the pan, Cognac, wine, chicken stock, and thyme into the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.

 

 

If you would like a thick sauce, in a medium saute pan, mash butter and the flour together over medium-low heat for 5 to 10 minutes. Add to the stew. Add the frozen onions and mushrooms. Let stew cook for another 10 minutes. Season to taste. Serve hot.

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Paprika Pork

Happy Mothers Day to all the mothers out there.  Yesterday I shared a recipe for Spinach & Ham Frittata Muffins for Mothers Day that is easy and delicious.  Here is another easy recipe that can be started in the morning and ready  when you are later in the day.  These 2 recipes will give you time to spend with your mother instead of spending the whole day cooking.

2 to 2 ½ lb. Country-style pork spareribs
3 Tbsp. Red wine vinegar
3 large green onions, chopped
4 cups water
2 Tbsp. Paprika
1 tsp. Liquid hot pepper sauce
2 bay leaves
1 rutabaga, cut into cubes
2 carrots, cut into 1” slices

Place all ingredients in a slow cooker/crock pot. Let cook on low for 6 to 8 hours until pork is fork tender. Serve.

Garlicky Pickled Veggies

Today is Garlic Day and Amaretto Day. I couldn’t find Amaretto at my local grocery which makes it a little hard to make a drink for Amaretto Day. So I will share this recipe for Garlicky Pickled Veggies from Better Homes and Gardens. I made some adjustments to the recipe because I didn’t have quart jars. At the beginning of April, I mixed everything and put them into two half gallon mason jars. After waiting the week needed for the pickling, I was pleasantly surprised. This is a great way to pickle any vegetables you have around. I will probably put more garlic in next time I make it because the garlic in this batch is sort of overpowered by the red pepper flakes. These pickled vegetables are great as an appetizer or on a veggie tray for company.

3 c. cauliflower florets (1 head)
2 med. Red bell peppers, seeded & cut into 1: pieces
12 oz. Green beans, trimmed and cut into 1” pieces
2 med. Carrots, cut into 1/2” slices
1 med. Onion, cut into thin wedges
4 c. vinegar
2/3 c. sugar
1 Tbsp. Salt
12 garlic cloves, smashed
1 ½ tsp. Crushed red pepper

 

In a large pot, combine vegetables. Add enough water to cover. Bring to boiling. Cook uncovered, 3 minutes, drain.

 

In another large, nonstick, heavy pot combine 4 cups water, vinegar, sugar and salt. Bring to boiling, stir to dissolve sugar.

 

Pack vegetables into hot-sterilized canning jars, leaving 1/2” head-space. Add garlic and red pepper evenly between the jars. Pour hot vinegar mixture over vegetables, maintaining the 1/2” head-space. Wipe jar rims; screw on lids.

Let cool 30 minutes. Chill for at least 1 week before serving. Store in refrigerator for up to 1 month.

Beef Stew

Fall weather is getting here with the cooler nights.  Here is a great beef stew recipe that’s easy to make and taste delicious! I prefer using a slower cooker. So do the garlic and beef in a pan on the stove top. Then place everything in your slow cooker on low for 6 to 8 hours.

beef-stew-32 lb. Cubed beef
1 pinch salt
1 pinch ground black pepper
2 Tbsp. Extra-virgin olive oil
2 minced garlic cloves, plus 6 cloves smashed
1 bay leaf
1 lg. Carrot, cut into 1” dice
1 zucchini, cut into 1” dice
1 onion cut into 1” dice
1 ½ c. beef broth
1 ½ c. red wine

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Season the beef cubes with salt & pepper.

beef-stew-7

 

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Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven (or heavy oven-safe saucepan with a lid) on the burner over medium heat. Add minced garlic and cook until lightly brown. Add beef, stir to coat with oil, and cook until browned on all sides, about 3 minutes each side.

 

 

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Add smashed garlic, bay leaf, carrot, zucchini and onion, and stir. Add a pinch of salt if desired. Add broth and wine and stir.

Cover pan, transfer to oven and cook until meat is meltingly tender, 2 ½ to 3 hours. Transfer beef, vegetables and all liquid in a deep serving dish.

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National Meatball Day

meatball day

Vietnamese Pork Meatballs (5)

It’s wonderful to have a day to celebrate meatballs.  I usually do the classic Italian meatball with a ground beef and ground pork combination.  But for today, I will share a great recipe for  Vietnamese Pork Meatballs. Besides just squeezing lime juice over everything, I did add a vinaigrette to the cabbage, carrots & radish mixture like a salad.  This was just delicious and is definitely a Ketogenic friendly recipe with 26 grams of fat and only 2 grams of carbs.  Enjoy!

Meatball Ingredients (2)1 ½ lbs.ground pork
4 tsp. Grated fresh ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tsp. Asian fish sauce
1 ½ tsp. Lime zest
1 Tbsp. Canola oil
Finely shredded green cabbage
Shredded carrots
Thinly Sliced radishes
Lime wedges

In a large bowl, combine pork, ginger garlic, fish sauce and lime zest. Using damp hands, form into 20 1 1/2” meatballs.

Vietnamese Pork Meatballs (2)In a large skillet heat oil over medium-high. Add meatballs. Cook 12 to 15 minutes or until done(165 degrees), turning occasionally.Vietnamese Pork Meatballs (3)

Serve meatballs with cabbage, carrots, radishes and lime wedges. Drizzle with lime juice.