Saturday, April 30, 2005

Better late than never - 4 recipes

So, a little delay in rating/reviewing ends up with a backup of recipes. I truly love to cook - and I learn more about my own style as I cook more. One thing I have learned - I really have to have all my ingredients out and measured before I start cooking (the French term is mise en place). If I start cooking and try to be preparing ingredients at the same time, I burn the food and/or forget to add ingredients. It might take longer to put things together before, but it's necessary for good food for me.

I also have to learn more about the quirks of my stove and oven. Medium-high on my stove seems to be hotter than the recipes use - or it may be that in trying to prep as I go I let the pan heat too high. It's definitely a learning process - but what learning process ends up with such a great result? As for my oven, it definitely heats high - I've melted a bowl on top of the stove just from having the oven preheated! It also makes me realize - I need to re-org my kitchen to put something that won't be affected by heat in the cabinet above the stove.

Okay - recipes. First is Curried Chicken Wraps, from Eating Well Spring 2003. I've been in the mood for sandwiches - and especially for pitas - so when I found pitas made by Thomas' in the grocery store, I needed something to fill them. I had a chicken breast in the freezer, so I finally got to try out this recipe, which I had had on my list of things to cook. And the result? The chicken definitely worked with the pita, the recipe was quick to put together, and the grapes definitely added a unique twist. The down side? I felt like there was a texture missing - I'm looking to add in a crunch, maybe from shredded red cabbage, if I make it again. I might also switch in raisins for the grapes - I'm more likely to have them on hand, and I don't feel that the grape flavor came through so much that it couldn't be substituted out.

Second is a recipe I made the same night as the pitas - Fresh Cucumber and Kiwi Relish, a recipe conceived on the Cooking Light BB - . It was a salad that came together quickly with fresh flavors, and might be nice served with hamburgers in the summer. It could use a little more color, though - both the cucumber and kiwi are green, maybe something red or purple could add some interest - strawberries, grapes, raspberries? Definitely a good base to work with.

Third was a recipe I didn't like quite as well as the first two. I've always said that I wanted to have more fish in my diet, since it is good for you. I've always been a little jumpy about working with fish though - it's expensive, and I have ruined some meat before in cooking, so I would hate to ruin something I spent a good amount of money on. So I decided to try Fish with Herbs and Lime. This recipe was a good recipe to begin with - although I did not love the result, it gave me a new fish I liked. The fish in the recipe is cod - not a fish I believe I have ever had before. The fish came out very tender - very nice texture. Unfortunately, there was not much flavor to it - the recipe has the fish baking with a tomato/herb mix on top, and it really didn't get much flavor into the actual fish - the flavors did not meld. I did like the taste of the fish - mild and not overly fishy - but it didn't really have an overwhelming flavor.

Last and not least, a recipe to use up the second half of the cucumber left from the relish. Some of the recipes for the June/July 2005 Eating Well have been posted on the web, so I quartered the recipe for Japanese Cucumber salad - . The picture with the recipe shows very thin slices of cucumber - I probably could have gotten them that thin with my food processor, but I was too lazy to pull it out for a half cucumber. So although my slices weren't as thin, I did feel I got a good sense of the recipe. The flavors are very similar to the relish I made before, and if I was to choose one, I'd go with the relish, because it has a more varied texture.

I'm only posting the Curried Chicken - the other 2 I liked are linked to.

* Exported from MasterCook *

Curried Chicken Wraps

Recipe By :
Serving Size : 4 Preparation Time :0:00
Categories :

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast
1 tablespoon canola oil
1/2 cup chopped scallions
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1 tablespoon grated orange peel
2 small jalapeno peppers
1 teaspoon curry powder
1 tablespoon rice wine
1/2 teaspoon salt -- or to taste
freshly ground black pepper -- to taste
8 ounces seedless grapes -- red, washed, dried, and halved
4 whole wheat pita breads

Cut chicken into 1/4-inch thick slices. Turn slices on their side and cut into 1/4-inch strips.

Heat a wok or large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil and tilt pan to coat it evenly. Add scallions, ginger, orange zest and jalapeno. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add chicken; stir-fry for 1 minute. Add curry powder, rice wine, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until chicken is browned and no longer pink in the center, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add grapes; toss to mix.

To serve, spoon about 1/2 cup of the chicken mixture into each pita.

"EW Spring 2003"
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 363 Calories; 7g Fat (16.4% calories from fat); 33g Protein; 43g Carbohydrate; 6g Dietary Fiber; 66mg Cholesterol; 687mg Sodium. Exchanges: 2 1/2 Grain(Starch); 3 1/2 Lean Meat; 1/2 Vegetable; 1/2 Fruit; 1 Fat.

Nutr. Assoc. : 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

No comments: