Smoked paprika, Orzo, Chicken stew

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There is nothing better on a gloomy day than a hot bowl of stew and on days when I can’t breathe out of my nose and my sinuses feel like they might explode, I need a stew with a bit of a kick. I have been obsessing over smoked paprika lately so I  put together this yummy southwestern stew  featuring the bright red spice.

For this recipe I used a pound of leftover shredded  ( unseasoned) chicken from taco night so if you don’t have cooked chicken on hand use chicken breast cut into tiny pieces and cook it up in a skillet with a bit of oil until just done.

What you need

  • 1 pound of chicken, cooked
  • 1 cup orzo
  • 4 cloves of minced garlic
  • 1/2 of a white onion, finely chopped
  • 1 32 oz can of tomato sauce (plain, no spices)
  • 2 cups of chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp each of smoked paprika, new mexico chili powder, cumin, black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • salt to taste

How to make it

  • Saute garlic & onion with a few tablespoons of olive oil until translucent
  • add chicken & spices and cook for a few minutes until chicken is well coated in spices
  • add tomato sauce, broth and orzo
  • cook on medium heat for 20 minutes or until orzo is done
  • add salt to taste
  • serve with a dollop of sour cream  and a warm tortilla
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Cooking with Edible Wasatch

i15-cvr-thumbOne of my favorite local publications, actually one of my favorite publications period, is a little magazine called Edible Wasatch. This seasonal magazine is packed full of bios and stories about local farmers, restaurants, chefs and producers. The best part of the magazine though, is the local recipes. 

Every time a new issue of Edible Wasatch hits the shelves I rush over to my local cafe and snatch my copy up and head right home to get cooking. The recipes featured are always exciting and easy and accessible for all to make. The directions are never complicated but the end result is always something fantastic.

The first recipe I tried was the mackerel pate and as luck would have it,  I had been holding on to a can of fancy mackerel for months just waiting for the perfect recipe to inspire me to crack it open.  I truly wish I would have ordered more cans of this little fish because the spread was  amazing.  I substituted aiolo where  it called for creme fraiche and added just a pinch of cayenne for a little kick.

The second recipe I tested was polenta with meatballs and tart cherries. I was planning on making something using the last of my ground turkey for dinner so I substituted the pork in this recipe for that and the cherries with the cranberries I had on hand. I had never used fruit in my meatballs before and the added sweetness was so delightful. On their own, each dish is lovely but together the polenta and meatballs really make something special .

Head over to http://www.ediblewasatch.com/ to find these recipes and more. I will be trying out their kombucha cocktails this weekend from their feature ‘The mother of all cocktails’, how cute!

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Easy sugar cookies and Utah love from Revolutah

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I am hosting a giveaway with Revolutah over on my other blog (Giveaway HERE)  and they were kind enough to send me this adorable cookie cutter to show off. What better way to show my Utah pride than with some delicious cookie love?

Sugar cookies are the easiest cookies to make and you can really do anything with them. Sprinkle on cinnamon and sugar, drizzle chocolate, add sprinkles,  whip up some colorful frosting or pipe on pretty designs, the possibilities really are endless.  These cookies are a breeze to whip up and roll out very nicely without getting sticky.

Use any cookie cutter you can dream up but if you are a lover of all things Utah, like myself, then head over to Revolutah and pick one of these gems up for yourself!

What you need

  • 3/4 C unsalted butter
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract ( or vanilla)
  • 2.5 C flour
  • pinch of salt

How to make it

  • preheat oven to 275
  • Cream together butter and sugar
  • add eggs and vanilla and whisk together well
  • in a separate bowl mix together flours, baking powder and salt
  • slowly add flour mixture until it all comes together
  • put in the fridge for at least a half hour
  • separate into 3 balls
  • roll out one ball at a time and cut out your cookie shapes
  • sprinkle with sugar and bake for 8-10 minutes until  light brown on the edges
  • eat up!

Chocolate, coffee crunch bars

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When you need chocolate you NEED chocolate so it’s always a good idea to store some for those days when the craving hits hard. This is one of those recipes born out of desperation, during a particularly fierce chocolate craving I gathered up some baking supplies and whipped this up. To my surprise ( and relief) these bars came out amazing and are now my new favorite treat.

This recipe makes quite a lot especially if you cut them into  2 inch squares. Store them in a bag in the freezer for emergencies  but remember to hide them behind the veggies so no one else eats them.
What you need

  • 1 c dark chocolate chips ( Or carob to make this vegan!) plus a handful for good luck
  • 1/2 c coconut oil
  • 6 cups rice krispies cereal, you can get it in bulk at Winco for so cheap!
  • 1 heaping tablespoon of fine ground coffee, espresso grind is best
  • coarse sea salt

How to make it

  • Melt chocolate and coconut oil together
  • in a big bowl mix together  rice krispies , ground coffee and melted chocolate mix until mostly coated
  • throw in your handful of chocolate chips for good luck
  • press into a baking dish lines with wax paper.  I used a deep baking pan for bars but you can do a baking dish for thicker slices.
  • Using a sheet of wax paper, press your bars into the dish gently to help it all stay together
  • sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt
  • put into the freezer for half hour to an hour until hardened
  • cut into pieces and devour!

Get Fresh recipes: raw peach tart & pâté rolls

Yesterday I had the great pleasure of participating in the annual ‘Get Fresh’ event at our local Oasis community garden. The ‘Get Fresh’ event is a local cook off sponsored by Ogden’s Junior League and helps raise awareness about eating healthy and raises money for the Junior Leagues projects including a new pavilion that is being built at the garden where they can host healthy cooking classes.

It was so much fun at last year’s event, eating all the amazing foods,  so when I got an invite to be a guest chef I could barely contain my joy. The  coolest thing about this cook off is that it isn’t a cook off at all, all the foods are raw! The Junior league makes a trip to our local farms and farmer’s market and gathers the freshest foods to display on a huge table.  The chefs can all bring 3 secret ingredients and  then at 3 pm sharp they  gather up as much fresh local goods as they can to prepare some creative raw foods.

Raw foods usually take hours to prepare and sometimes overnight with sprouting or freezing but during this raw foods (un)cook off we only had 1 hour! It was so much fun seeing what all the chefs prepared and I can not wait to get their recipes for everything from watermelon gazpacho to jicama pizza!  As for me, I made raw tart bites and pâté  rolls and as requested I am sharing my recipe with all of you!

Raw peach tart bites (makes 1 pie or 2 dozen pie bites)

What you need

  • 2 cups of flax seeds
  • 1 cup of almonds
  • 1/4 c chia seeds
  • 3 cups of dates (pitted)
  • 4 large peaches
  • water

How to make it

  • put flax, almonds and dates in a blender  a handful at a time and pulse
  • add a tablespoon or 2 of water to help it blend
  • add to a bowl and add chia seeds
  • mix together and let sit while chia absorbs the moisture ( about 30 minutes for full effect)
  • to make a whole tart line a tart pan  in plastic or oil with coconut oil
  • press crust into pie dish firmly
  • slice peaches and arrange on tart, put in freezer for 1 hour before slicing
  • for tart bites grab a tablespoon of crust and roll into a ball squeeze to firm it up
  • slice peaches into cubes
  • press your thumb into ball and but the peach cube into it, yum!

Zucchini Pâté  rolls (makes up to 50)

What you need

  • toothpicks
  • cherry tomatoes
  • several large zucchini
  • 2 bell peppers (red)
  • 4 cups of sunflower seeds
  • 1 bunch of basil
  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • 1/2 white onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • sea salt to taste

How to make it

  • Chop bell peppers and onion
  • Add bell pepper, onion, garlic, basil and olive oil to blender and pulse
  • add sunflower seeds a handful at a time
  • add sea salt to taste
  • using a veggie peeler slice zucchini into thin strips (do not use the center where the seeds are but sale that part for stews or stock  or your chickens!)
  • Add a teaspoon of pâté  to the zucchini strip and roll up
  • use a toothpick to stabilize it and garnish with a cherry tomato

Asian chicken sandwich with Sriracha mayo

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After watching a marathon of ‘Food truck wars’  and drooling  every time the Nom Nom  truck came on screen I knew I had to cook up some  bánh mì  ASAP.  I never was one to follow rules ( or recipes) so after checking out a few variations online I decided to put my own spin on it and  (I don’t use this term often but…) It was oralgasmic.

I started off by making pickled carrots (sans daikon because I forgot to grab one at the store DOH!) which are super easy to make, the recipe I used is right HERE.  Next I put the chicken breast in the crock for 3 hours until it shredded easily and then let it simmer while I finished off the rest. A little bit of sriracha mayo magic and toasted buns later and I was in foodie heaven.

This sammy packs up nicely for picnics or lunches or you can just shove it on your face and then eat your leftovers out of the fridge like I did.

*Makes 6 sammiches

What you need

  • buns of choice, toasted. There is much debate about the perfect  bánh mì  roll but I used a ciabatta roll and LOVED it
  • 2 lbs of chicken breast or more if you want to eat more
  • 2 c chicken broth
  • cilantro, mint & basil
  • sriracha
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 cup veggie oil ( I used grape seed)
  • picked carrots or for a quick and simple route use shredded carrots soaked in rice wine vinegar
  • cucumber slices
  • tamari/soy sauce
  • sesame oil
  • lemon slice
  • tsp of mustard
  • sea salt
  • lime

How to make it

Chicken

  • in a crock add chicken breast and 2 cups chicken broth, cook on high 3 hours
  • when chicken is ready shred and remove all but about 1/2 c of broth and let simmer on low for half hour while you prep everything else
  • when you are done prepping and ready to assemble sammies heat up coconut oil on the stove and toss chicken in the oil
  • add soy sauce and sesame oil to taste
  • cook until edges are crisp

Sriracha mayo

  • in a food processor add 2 egg yolks
  • squeeze about a tablespoon of juice from a lemon and whisk together with egg
  • add in mustard and whisk
  • slowly add oil drop by drop until you notice the mayo coming together
  • increase the amount of oil you add until you are all out
  • mayo should be white and thick like well…mayo
  • add sriracha and a bit of sea salt to taste, more sriracha is more spice

Garnishes & assembly

  • chop about 1/4 c each of basil, cilantro and mint and toss together
  • peel and slice cucumbers
  • Make picked carrots HERE or shred carrots and soak for half hour in rice wine vinegar
  • toast bun
  • spread mayo on both sides and assemble with chicken and garnishes and splash of lime.
  • EAT! NOM!

Home made mayo

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Mayo is one of my guilty pleasures, I knew it wasn’t good for me and yet I still found myself sneaking it into the cart. Once I cut out all processed foods I resisted buying it altogether, that is until I figured out how to make it myself.

Even all natural mayo has extra ingredients ( and a hefty price tag )  but conventional mayo has ingredients that just should not be consumed, what the heck is disodium EDTA? With a product that should just be oil and egg why risk consuming chemicals when it is so easy to make!

Once I figured out how to make my own mayo I started experimenting with flavors and textures and  my love affair with this creamy condiment became stronger than ever. This recipe is for a basic mayo base but try my suggested alterations below and don’t be afraid to come up with  your own!

What you need

  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 tbsp mustard
  • 2 teaspoons vinegar ( i like apple cider but you can use white too)
  • 2 teaspoons or lemon juice
  • 1.5 cups of oil, I used olive oil, avocado blend
  • salt to taste

How to make it

  • add egg yolks, mustard, vinegar and lemon juice in a mixer with a whisk attatchment
  • whisk until mixed
  • turn whisk to med-high and slowly add oil, mayo should turn white and thicken up when done
  • store in a mason jar in the fridge

Variations

  • Add garlic paste to make an aioli, for a twist use roasted garlic
  • add mulberry and dijon mustard for a sweet and spicy twist, recipe HERE
  • Add aioli and use as a dip for fried, recipe HERE
  • add chipotle or bbq sauce for a spicy spread
  • use horseradish mustard for a bit of a kick
  • add fresh herbs like chives or rosemary

Sesame kale chips & Raw kale salad

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I love kale so much, it is so rich and filling and  full of vitamins….it’s kind of like the meat of greens. Kale is an incredibly versatile plant and can be used as a pesto , sauteed  or in stews  but y favorite ways to eat it are raw and as a kale chip.

When eating raw kale it is always best to massage your kale first. I know , I know It sounds a bit weird to be giving your greens a massage but trust me on this. Kale is a  bitter green that is quite tough and to be honest  a little bitter. When you massage your kale you are breaking down the cellulose structure  making it more palatable, easier to chew and easier to digest.

Another awesome thing about kale is that just one cup contains  34 HEALTHY calories and zero fat along with a good portion of fiber. Kale also has a full days worth of vitamin A,C and K  as well as some calcium, magnesium, iron, potassium, phosphorous, copper and magnesium. Whew! Now you can see why I am a bit obsessed with this green so  try out these recipes and get eating!

These 2 recipe are made at the same time  so grab a big bowl!

What you need

  • 2 bunches of kale
  • sesame oil
  • Braggs amino acids or tamari  or soy sauce
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • sesame seeds
  • 2 carrots
  • 1/2 c almonds soaked at least 30 minutes, best if overnight ( Rad why you should soak your almonds HERE)
  • optional , dried cherries

How to make it

  • preheat oven to 175-200 depending on how hot your oven gets. My oven gets too hot so I use the lower temp.
  • separate the kale from the middle vein, this vein is touch and hard to chew
  • rip the kale into chunks and add to the bowl
  • add  sesame oil and soy sauce to taste
  • massage your kale  kind of like kneading bread. You will know it’s done when the green is no longer bitter and it is silky
  • toss with sesame seeds, about 2 tbsp
  • separate kale in half and add  one half to a baking pan and place in teh oven for 20 minutes or so until the edges are crisp, the chips will crisp up more as it cools
  • for the other half add  lemon juice
  • shred carrot and add to salad
  • add drained  soaked almonds, patted dry
  • optional (but it think its awesome) chop up some cherries and toss in as well
  • eat!

Vegan beet, arugula & avocado tacos

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Last night I made chicken and black bean tacos with a super yummy mango salsa and I couldn’t wait until lunch to eat leftovers. When I opened the fridge this afternoon I saw the saddest thing ever, and empty plate. Turns out the girl child had been sneaking pieces of chicken all morning and she had devoured the entire plate.

I was craving tacos so badly and I didn’t have any more meat around. And then I thought, who says tacos have to be made with meat? No matter how empty my fridge is there are always beets inside so I decided to fry some up and make some beet tacos. I added arugula for a bit of spice and  avocado to make them creamier.

These were so good and when my dog decided to eat all the tortillas I tossed all the ingredients into a salad and it was just as delicious. These are super quick and easy  so you won’t have to be in a hot kitchen long. If the kiddos want to help out let them assemble their own tacos!

 

*Makes 4 tacos
What you need

  • 1 beet
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 cup of arugula
  • cilantro
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 2 tsp ground chilis
  • 1 lime
  • corn tortillas
  • sea salt

How to make it

  • In a frying pan heat up a couple tbsp of oil
  • slice up the beets into thin slices
  • put beets into the frying pan in hot oil and sprinkle with sea salt, cumin and chili powder
  • Fry until edges are crisp
  • toast tortilla on open stove flame or in a pan
  • add beets, arugula, cilantro and avocado  to tortilla and drizzle in lime
  • for salad just toss all ingredients in a bowl with a drizzle of olive oil

Mulberries 4 Ways

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The other day my friend invited me over to pick some mulberries and cherries. It was so much fun climbing trees and ladders and picking a ton of fruit and staining our hands but when I got home I realized I had no idea what to  with all these mulberries. I Googled and asked around but the only suggestion I got was jam or cobbler. Don’t get me wrong, I love jam and cobbler but I wanted something a bit different.

Mulberries have a very light flavor, kind of like honey water, so they can be used in many different sweet and savory  recipes without overpowering it. They do  stain everything ( they would make a great dye!)  so wear gloves and an apron if you don’t want to be dyed purple, I stained 2 shirts during this kitchen adventure.

I am definitely a new fan of  mulberries and wish I would have found out sooner since I picked the last of this seasons berries. Next year I will be stocking up and freezing then to test out more recipes.

Mulberry BBQ Sauce

What you need

  • 1/4 c molasses
  • 1/4 c apple cider vinegar
  • 8 ounce can of organic tomato paste
  • 1/4 c pureed mulberries
  • 1 heaping tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • pinch of ceyanne pepper

How to make it

  • Put all ingredients in a sauce pan and simmer for half hour or until it is reduced by half
  • Be sure to stir occasionally to keep sauce from burning or clumping
  • Can be stored in the fridge for up to a month!

Mulberry & Dijon Aioli

What you need

  • 2 egg yolks ( room temp)
  • 4 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp horseradish Dijon mustard, or regular Dijon mustard
  • 1 C oil of choice, I used HALF pure olive oil and HALF safflower oil
  • 2 tablespoons of mulberry puree
  • pinch of salt

How to make it

  • Add egg yolks, 1 tbsp of the  mustard, lemon juice and salt to a food processor and puree
  • Turn on medium and very slowly add oil
  • Aioli should thicken up and become a creamy spread
  • Mix in mulberries and other tbsp of mustard
  • Keep in fridge until you use it

Mulberry Sorbet (serves 2) 

What you need

  • 2 cups of FROZEN mulberries
  • 1/2 cup of lavender syrup  or simple syrup

How to make it

  • To make simple syrup put 2 cups of water per 1 cup of sugar in a sauce pan and cook until dissolved
  • To make lavender syrup add lavender to the simple syrup in the pot and simmer for another 10 minutes and strain
  • cool syrup before making sorbet
  • puree mulberries with syrup and serve

Mulberry Oatmeal ( serves 3)

What you need

  • 3 cups of quick oats
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1.5 C milk
  • 1/2 c mulberry puree
  • 4 tbsp sugar

How to make it

  • Cook oats  with milk , sugar and butter
  • swirl in mulberries
  • yum!