Turkey Meatballs with Zucchini Ribbons

IMG_5988

I wanted to make some turkey meatballs and came up with this recipe trying to make the meatballs as moist as possible for turkey. It’s a three step cooking process that works well with the zucchini ribbons as a side instead of pasta.

  • 1-1/2 pounds of Ground Turkey 85/15
  • 1 cup chopped green onion
  • 1 tbsp of good mustard
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup breadcrumbs (I used panko bread crumbs)
  • 1 tbsp of italian herbs
  • Pinch of cracked black pepper
  • 2 cups of vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  1. Add onion, mustard, egg, herbs, breadcrumbs and black pepper. Mix in the turkey. Shape the turkey mixture into 1 1/4-inch-diameter meatballs. Place on a large plate or baking sheet.
  2. Heat the oil in a heavy large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs and saute until browned on all sides, about 5 minutes.
  3. Pour the vegetable stock in the pan and bring to a boil. Turn meatballs often to cook on all sides, about 10 minutes. Transfer the meatballs to a pyrex baking pan, leaving the vegetable stock
  4. Heat oven to 350 degrees and bake the meatballs for about 15-20 additional minutes. While this is cooking, you can prepare the vegetables for the dish.

IMG_5978

IMG_5980

And for the vegetable portion of the dish, I like to make ribbons out of zucchini by using a vegetable peeler and some diced veggies.

  • Vegetable broth leftover from meatball recipe
  • 1 large zucchini, peeled into ribbons
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, diced
  • 1 roma tomato, diced small
  • 1 cup of swiss chard or kale, cut into ribbons

IMG_5982

  1. Prepare all vegetables while letting the vegetable reheat using the same pan that you cooked the meatballs in. Bring to a boil and stir often, getting any meatball flavor from the bottom of the pan.
  2. Add all ingredients, stirring every couple minutes. Total cooking time  is about 5 minutes on medium heat.
  3. With a slotted spoon, place vegetables on a plate, top with turkey meatballs, parmesan cheese and pepper.

IMG_5986

Oven Roasted Crab

IMG_3454 Thinking back, one of the first recipes I ever wrote on my blog was my Roasted Crab recipe. I wanted to be able to share my love of making one of my favorite dishes at home, easily.

The fresh local Dungeness Crab and seafood is one of the best things about my hometown San Francisco. I look forward to Crab Season every year and like to celebrate with a nice crab dinner for friends and family.

You want to use a fresh live crab. Whether you get it cut and cleaned at the seafood market or do it yourself, start with one dungeness live crab and increase the recipe to include more. IMG_3450

  • 1 Large Dungeness Crab (or 2 small crabs), legs and arms removed and cleaned.
  • 2 cups of white wine or sake
  • 1/2 onion, cut into chunks
  • 2 lemons, cut into wedges
  • 4 tbsp of butter, chopped into small squares
  • 2 tsp of diced garlic
  • Old Bay Seasoning or pinch of Cayenne, Salt and Pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Put the crab, butter, garlic and onion in a large baking pan or pyrex casserole dish. Then pour the wine over the crab, then squeeze the lemon wedges over the crab and toss them in.
  3. Bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes depending on the amount of crab used. Occasionally  adjust and flip the crab while in the oven, to maximize the flavor that goes into the crab.
  4. Cool and serve with some of the broth from the pan mixed with butter. The lemon garlic sauce is really good with the crab and a nice toasted sourdough loaf.

IMG_3451

Acorn Squash Polenta

IMG_3353

I love the savory flavors that acorn squash adds to dishes, so I decided to try making  a healthier version of creamy polenta by using acorn squash that was first roasted and made into a puree.

  • 1 acorn squash, chopped into pieces
  • Olive oil cooking spray
  • 1 tbsp of butter -melted
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Bake for about 30-45 minutes until soft.
  2. Remove skins from acorn squash, chop into small pieces and mash. Mix with 1 tsp of melted butter or a little olive oil. Set aside

IMG_3336 Basic Polenta Recipe

  • 6 cups of water
  • 1-3/4 yellow cornmeal
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 3 tbsp of butter
  1. Bring 6 cups of water to a boil in a heavy large saucepan. Add 2 teaspoons of salt. Gradually whisk in the cornmeal.
  2. Add in the acorn squash mixture after the cornmeal, working the pieces into the polenta as it cooks.
  3. Reduce the heat to low and cook until the mixture thickens and the cornmeal is tender, stirring often, about 15 minutes
  4. Turn off the heat. Add the butter, and stir until melted.

IMG_3343

Easy Garlic Biscuits

IMG_5972One day I will write a blog about all of my crazy ideas and half-homemade recipes that I made with pop can biscuits. You know the ones, they last in the fridge for awhile. I tend to stock up and use them in creative ways. I wanted to make an easy twist on garlic bread with these biscuits.

  • 1 pop-can of ready to bake biscuits
  • 3 tbsps of chopped garlic
  • 3 tbsp of finely diced onion
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup of chopped chard or kale
  • 2 tsp of parmesan cheese
  • Black pepper
  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
  2. In a small skillet, cook garlic, onion, chard in a little olive oil. Cook for about 5 minutes until soft.
  3. Place biscuit dough on an ungreased cookie sheet and press down the middle of each biscuit.
  4. Add a 1/2 spoonful of the garlic mixture, sprinkle with black pepper and parmesan cheese
  5. Bake for 12 minutes until golden

IMG_5966

IMG_5970

Sausage Lentil Soup with Swiss Chard

IMG_5968Today I made this delicious lentil soup with sausage, vegetables and swiss chard. I was so inspired by the flavors, I decided to post it right away.

  • 3 Italian Sausages
  • 1-2/3 cups of lentils
  • 3 Carrots, diced small
  • 1/2 Yellow Onion, diced
  • 1 tsp olive oil or spray olive oil
  • 2 tbsp of diced garlic
  • 3 stalks of celery with tops, diced
  • 6 cups of vegetable broth
  • 3 cups chopped swiss chard
  1. Heat a large pot with a little olive oil, add garlic and onion.
  2. Remove sausage from casing and break up to brown a few minutes.
  3. Add carrots, celery and let cook a couple minutes.
  4. Add lentils, vegetable broth and bring to boil on medium heat.
  5. Boil for about 40 minutes, stirring often.
  6. Add swiss chard and let cook together for another 15 minutes.

IMG_5959IMG_5960IMG_5961IMG_5964

 

Bex Beef Bourguinon Crockpot Recipe

IMG_5894

After having a delicious Beef Bourguinon in Louisville, I wanted to try adapting this savory beef stew and use my crockpot to make it. I set up all the ingredients within 20 minutes and left it to cook for over 8 hours on low.

I used the formal recipe for Beef Bourginion, but made some adjustments and omitted the bacon to be a little leaner, add celery  and I made my own vegetable stock to use instead of beef broth.

  • 2 pounds of steak meat (such as round, chuck or cubed stew cut)
  • Steak dry rub or salt/pepper/italian herbs
  • 2 tablespoons of flour
  • 1 tsp olive oil (if you don’t use bacon)
  • 4-6 pieces of bacon, diced and cooked
  • 1 medium yellow onion – large diced chunks
  • 2 cups of cut carrots (or baby carrots)
  • 3 large potatoes, skinned and cut into smaller pieces
  • 2 cups of diced celery
  • 2 cups of mushrooms, sliced in half
  • 2 cups of Pinot Noir or Burgundy Wine
  • 2 cups of beef broth (or vegetable stock)
  • 1 small can of tomato puree -10 oz. (or tomato sauce)
  • 2 tbsp of cornstarch or flour (if desired to thicken up the sauce)
  • 2 tsp of butter (if desired to add creaminess to broth)
  1. If you are using bacon, fry diced bacon in a frying pan until done. Remove from pan and drain.
  2. Wash and pat dry beef cubes, add dry rub and toss in a bowl until coated. Add to pan with the olive oil (unless you use bacon grease) on medium heat, cook on  all sides until browned. Remove from pan and set aside.
  3. Sprinkle seared beef cubes with flour on all sides and prepare for crockpot.
  4. Turn on your crockpot to low and add the cut potatoes, onions, celery, carrots, potatoes, wine, beef broth or vegetable stock and can of tomato puree. Mix all ingredients with a large spoon and add beef and bacon to the crockpot
  5. Cook for approximately 8-9 hours on Low Heat.
  6. If you desire a thicker broth, you can add cornstarch or flour and raise the cook heat towards the end to High heat.

IMG_5891

IMG_5890

IMG_5897

HOT SAUCES

I am very pleased to present the new labels for my Chile Chipotle and Sweethawt Sauces!

The Chipotle Chile is a mild smokey sauce, very flavorful.  I often use it as marinade for meat or seafood or sauce for cooking vegetables in. The Sweethawt is a medium spicy arbol chile sauce with a sweet kick at the end.

Please follow this link to my online store to find out more information about purchasing my hot sauces.

STORE LINK: http://thisgirlreallycooks.storenvy.com

Chile Chipotle Label

IMG_2148

Chicken Noodle Soup

IMG_0066This is a quick recipe for a homemade chicken soup that will make anyone feel better. This is what I crave when I’m feeling under the weather and gets me back on my feet.

  • 2 Chicken Breasts, diced
  • 1 tbsp of butter
  • salt/pepper
  • 1/4 Medium Onion, diced small
  • 1-1/2 cup of celery, diced small
  • 1-1/2 cup of carrots, diced small
  • 1/2 stick of butter, diced
  • 8 cups of water
  • 1/2 package or 4 cups of egg noodles
  • italian herbs, parsley, savory mix – try mixing your own herb flavors
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Dice chicken breasts into 1″ or smaller size pieces to cook and grill easily. Add salt and pepper if desired.
  2. In a large sauce pot, melt a tablespoon of butter or more and cook the chicken pieces throughly. Make sure to stir often.
  3. When the chicken is cooked, remove from pan and set aside. Do not clean the pot. Raise temperature to medium high and add the 1/2 stick of diced butter.
  4. Add onion, carrot and celery and cook for about 5 minutes stirring often. Add the herbs to the vegetables. Once those are somewhat covered in the buttery flavor, add the 8 cups of water.
  5. Cover and let boil for about 25 minutes until the vegetables are cooked completely.
  6. Add the noodles and cook until the package suggests, usually like 12 minutes or so.
  7. When the soup is ready, add back in the grilled chicken and turn off heat. This is where I try it and add salt and pepper or cayenne depending. Once the soup is done you can figure out what it needs. I never add salt before it’s almost done.
  8. I usually let it sit for 15-20 minutes before serving.  Letting the flavors combine.

Chicken Pot Pies

IMG_8654

So I had this idea to make pie-less chicken Chicken Pot Pies by using pre-made croissant dough bought at the grocery store.  I hoped it would work out and it made for some great very yummy hand-held snacks.

  • 1 pkg of croissant dough in a tube (6-8)
  • 1 grilled chicken breast, diced small
  • 1/4 cup or less of chopped onion
  • 1/4 stick of butter
  • 1 stick celery diced
  • 1 cup boiled and diced potatoes
  • 1 cup of cooked butternut squash
  • 3 tbsp of milk or water
  • salt/pepper to taste
  1. Add butter to a medium skillet, sauté the onions and celery for a couple minutes.
  2. Add milk and let boil.
  3. Add potatoes, cooked chicken and squash and cook until mixture becomes thick and is done. About 15-20 minutes. Make sure it is not too wet. If it is, add a little flour to thicken it up.
  4. Add salt and pepper to taste

IMG_8640F

  1. Folding the Chicken Pot Pies, When you unwrap the croissant, they make long triangles.
  2. Lay them out on a lightly greased cookie sheet and place the mixture close to the longer straight side of the triangle.
  3. Fold smaller side over to cover like a stuffed croissant or turnover.
  4. Heat over to 400 degrees and cook for 15-20 minutes or so. Because they are stuffed, you need to add 5-7 minutes to the package directions and watch them get golden brown.

IMG_8645