Sunday, October 18, 2015

Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta

In memory of and in the line with Chef Paul's "A Fork in the Road" (lighter, healthier, fare here is a recipe I've taken from taken from Eating Well. (per usual make it your own)  It's a zesty Cajun-style pasta full of lean chicken, peppers and onions. (Makes: 6 servings, about 1 1/2 cups each)
    8 ounces whole-wheat pasta (your choice)
    1 tablespoon canola oil
    2 slices bacon, chopped
    1 large sweet onion, (halved and thinly sliced)
    1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast (cut into 1-inch pieces)
    1 medium green bell pepper (sliced)
    3 cloves garlic (minced)
    4 teaspoons Cajun seasoning (see Tip)
    1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
    1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
    1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
    1/3 cup reduced-fat sour cream
    1/2 cup sliced scallions (for garnish)
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta until just tender, 8 to 10 minutes or according to package directions (Drain)
Meanwhile, heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add bacon and onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until starting to brown (2 min.) Add chicken, bell pepper, garlic, Cajun seasoning and pepper. Cook stirring, until the onion and bell pepper are beginning to soften (4 min.)
Add flour and stir to coat. Add tomatoes and their juice; bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring often, until the sauce is bubbling and thickened and the chicken is cooked through (about 2 minutes) Remove from the heat. Stir in sour cream; stir the pasta into sauce. Serve sprinkled with scallions (if desired)
  If you have a blend without salt; season the sauce with salt to taste.
(not whole wheat pasta)

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Vegetables as a Main Dish with Brown Rice

This is one of the first recipes developed for "A Fork in the Road" and being a "veggie freak" it was among the first I tried. Love all the colors in it.

2 tsp salt
2 tsp sweet paprika
1 ½ tsps onion powder
1 ½ tsps sweet basil leaves (dried)
1 tsp garlic powder                        

1 tsp garlic (minced)
1 tsp dillweed     
½ white pepper                   
½ ground nutmeg             
¼ black pepper                   
¼ tsp savory leaves (dried)

1 tsp dry mustard            
1 tsp thyme leaves (dried

1 eggplant
½ cup apple juice
2 cups onions (chopped)
1 ½ green bell pepper (chopped)
1 cup celery (chopped)
2 cups defatted chicken stock
4 cups fresh tomatos (peeled) or 2 14½ oz cans diced
3 bay leaves
3 cups fresh mushrooms

1 cup each zucchini and yellow squash (diced)
Combine seasoning ingredients in a small bowl. Peel eggplant and slice lengthwise sprinkle with ¼ the seasoning mix. Preheat a 2inch heavy skillet (non stick 5 min.) Cook eggplant until brown (2 min.) add apple juice and cook turning occasionally till eggplant is stick and caramelized. (6 min or so set aside)
Combine onions, peppers, celery with 1tbl seasoning til crust forms (12 min) add 1 cup of stock scraping the skillet to get all the brown bits. Add garlic and continuing to cook til evenly browned an sweet tasting. (5 min) When the liquid has evaporated and a new crust has formed add tomatos add remaining seasoning, bay leaves along with rest of the veggies. Reduce heat to medium simmering til eggplant is tender. (12-15 min) Serve over brown rice

Butternut Squash Marmalade

4 cups butternut squash (peeled and diced)
1 cup onion (chopped)   
1 cups apple juice
¼ tsp dillweed
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp white pepper
2tbs lemon juice
2tbs orange juice
12 pks of artificial sweetener
(he suggest use ½ & ½ Equal, Sweet & Low)
Place squash, onions and apple juice in a 3 quart pot cover bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and cook til squash is fork tender and almost all the apple juice evaporates. (25-30 minutes) Transfer mixture to blender or food processor with remaining ingredients.

Pepper cornbread

A homage to Chef Paul is this recipe. Taken from his own words he wasn't quite certain what to call it should it be peppercorn bread or pepper cornbread no matter here is this recipe.

1tsp salt
1 cup all purpose flour      
1 cup corn flour            
1 cup yellow corn meal
1/4 cup baking power

2 tbs olive oil 
1/4 cup nonfat mayonaise
1/4 cup nonfat cream cheese
2 cups evaporated skim milk

vegetable oil spray
1tbls crushed red pepper
1 tb pink peppercorns *
1 tb green peppercorns *
* if you can't find separate containers use the medley one

preheat oven to 350 degrees
 Place the eight dry ingredients mix thoroughly adding in the mayo and cream cheese. Mix using your hands forming small balls. Add the evaporated milk and oil   using a spatula fold completely til blended.