Tag Archives: rice

Spicy Southern Style Stew

Years ago I found a recipe on All Recipes called Sunday Gumbo. I never made it exactly as it was written because I never had the right spices and I didn’t use okra. But it helped guide me when I was venturing out to bigger and better one-pot meals. I have written a recipe all my own but I am not calling it Gumbo or Jambalaya. I’m calling it a stew. Spicy Southern Style Stew… because I don’t want to insult anyone by calling it something it is not.

Spicy Southern Style Stew

Boom! Spicy Southern Style Stew!

Boom! Spicy Southern Style Stew!

  • 1 pound package of sweet Italian sausage links
  • one small sweet onion
  • 2 Cups of chopped cooked chicken
  • 1 T Worcestershire sauce
  •  2 T Ketchup
  •  1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves
  •  1/2 tsp cumin
  •  1 tsp red pepper flakes
  •  1 tsp garlic powder
  • 4 cups of chicken stock
  • 2 small bay leaves or one large leaf
  • 1/2 C uncooked instant brown rice
  • 1 Cup peeled, thawed shrimp

Before you start, if you have frozen shrimp with the shells on, place about 1 cup of shrimp in a single layer on a plate with cool water. It will thaw by the time you need it.

1 pound package of sweet Italian sausage links  cut into bite size pieces and browned in a large cast iron skillet or dutch oven or just a heavy bottomed pan. (You can use hot Italian sausage if you’d like even MORE spice)

Remove the sausage from the pan and drain most of the fat.

Add one small sweet onion, diced, to the pan.

Place sausage back in the pan with the onion and sautee and scrape the brown bits off the bottom of the pan.

Add 2 Cups of chopped cooked chicken and toss around with the sausage and onions. (If your chicken is raw cook it with the sausage and onions. I just happened to have leftover cooked chicken.)

Here comes the flavor:  1 T Worcestershire sauce, 2 T Ketchup, 1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves,  1/2 tsp cumin, 1 tsp red pepper flakes, 1 tsp garlic powder

stir to coat the chicken, sausage and onions with these flavors

now add 4 cups of chicken stock and 2 small bay leaves or one large leaf

Add 1/2 C uncooked instant brown rice and stir.

cooking the stew BEFORE adding the shrimp

cooking the stew BEFORE adding the shrimp

Turn your attention to the shrimp. If you have cheesecloth you can place the shrimp shells in the cheesecloth and tie it up and place it in the stew. It adds flavor! If you don’t have cheesecloth, it’s no big deal to just skip this step.

shrimp shells in cheese cloth allow the flavor to permeate the stew.

shrimp shells in cheese cloth allow the flavor to permeate the stew.

Add the 1 Cup peeled, thawed shrimp to the stew and push down into the broth to cook. It will only take about 5 minutes.

raw shrimp added

raw shrimp added

It doesn’t take long for the shrimp to turn pink. You don’t want to overcook the shrimp so go. Eat some. Eat some now.

shrimp are done!

shrimp are done!

Remove the cheesecloth and squeeze it out to get all the yummy shrimpy broth out of it. Then put the leftovers in a container and put it in the fridge and eat it again tomorrow. It’ll be even better!!!

A Pan Full of Deliciousness

I kind of feel like I’m always running to the store and looking for ‘what’s on sale’ in the flyers when planning my menus. And then I realize, “I already have a bag of onions, a bag of sweet potatoes, a bulb of garlic in the pantry, … oh …. and five chickens, 9 pounds of ground meat, a dozen packages of hot dogs and 5 bags of frozen broccoli in the freezer. Why do I keep buying food??” So tonight I used leftover rice, a pound of ground turkey and some pantry veggies and created a pan full of deliciousness. I don’t even know what to call it. Goulash? Hash? Or do I just call it what it is?

 

Sweet potatoes, ground turkey, rice, and broccoli roasted… in a pan… No. That’s boring. I think I’ll call it A Pan Full of Deliciousness.

pan full of deliciousness

pan full of deliciousness

You need to be able to brown on the stove top and then put the pan in the oven to finish roasting so consider using an oven safe pan or wrapping the handle (if it’s plastic or rubber) with aluminum foil to protect it.

This is all you do. The idea is to allow each item to cook a bit in the pan as you are chopping the next ingredient. So while you are chopping the onion the turkey is browning. While you are chopping the potato the onion is softening. So don’t try to prep all these ingredients and toss them all in. This is a methodical but simple recipe.

Preheat oven to 375F.

Enter the following items into the largest pan you have, placed over medium heat …IN THIS ORDER….

1 tsp olive oil

1 pound ground turkey

3 small cloves crushed garlic

1 small sweet onion or half a vidalia onion finely diced

1/2 tsp salt

12-15 cranks cracked black pepper

one medium diced sweet potato

1 tsp dried thyme leaves crushed between palms to release fragrance

pinch of cayenne pepper

1 tbsp worcestershire sauce (3-5 heavy splashes)

1 Cup (or so) frozen broccoli florets

sprinkle broccoli with some more salt, just a sprinkle

toss well and then flatten into the pan so the bottom layer gets all toasty on the stove and then once entered into the oven the top gets roasty and toasty, too.

Place in oven for ten minutes, uncovered. Stir and flatten ingredients again. Roast again, ten more minutes.

Now add 3/4 cup to 1 cup of leftover rice, if you have it. If not, leave it out. I had it so I added it.

Heat through until you are satisfied with the roasty toasty deliciousness. Then stuff yo’ face.

Baked Rice Pudding with Cinnamon

Baked Rice Pudding

Not the prettiest picture. But pretty tasty.

This recipe was adapted from a cookbook I have called: Cheap Fast Good by Beverly Mills and Alicia Ross. It’s one of my favorite cookbooks because it has a lot to read and not just hoity toity recipes that require you to make a special trip to the store.

The other day I made pesto fish. Tilapia marinated with pesto and baked in the oven and then served over white rice. Served with pineapple wedges. Pretty looking dinner. Very easy on a busy night. Anyway, when I make rice I make way more than I have to so I can make leftovers with it. Namely RICE PUDDING. It’s one of my favorites.

So this recipe was adapted because I never have whole milk. I often have skim milk and I always have sweetened vanilla almond milk. So I adjusted the sugar, vanilla, and  rice because of the almond milk substitution.

Here’s MY recipe. The original follows below. By all means, if you have whole milk, follow the original.

Ingredients:

Butter or cooking spray for preparing the pan

1 1/2 cups already cooked rice

3 large eggs

1/4 cup sugar

2 cups vanilla almond milk (sweetened)

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

pinch of salt

1. Preheat oven to 325F. Lightly butter or spray an 8×8 square pan

2. combine rice in saucepan with 1 cup of water and heat over medium heat until the rice is rehydrated; about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool.

3. Whisk eggs, sugar, milk, vanilla and cinnamon and salt in medium bowl until thoroughly mixed. Add the drained plumped rice and stir well. Pour into prepared pan.

4. Bake the pudding, uncovered, until the center is just jiggly and a knife inserted about an inch from the edge comes out clean. (About 45 minutes) Serve warm, room temp, or chilled.

I ate mine with Adrian standing at the stove with the steam billowing off the spoonful of rice pudding thinking, “I’m sure this is going to burn my mouth.” So right before we ate it I told Adrian I had to put something in it. He pointed his finger up at me and said, “I know! ICE!” I said, “Oooh, that might not be the right choice. Let’s try some milk.” So after adding a touch of milk it was just the right temperature. He ate two helpings. I had two helpings. And then scraped some more right out of the pan with a big wooden spoon.

Here is the exact recipe from the cookbook.

Ingredients:

Butter or cooking spray for preparing the pan

1 cup already cooked rice

3 large eggs

1/2 cup raisins (if desired)

1/2 cup sugar

2 cups whole or 2% milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 325F. Lightly butter or spray an 8×8 square pan

2. combine rice and raisins in saucepan with 1 cup of water and heat over medium heat until the rice and raisins are rehydrated; about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool.

3. Whisk eggs, sugar, milk, vanilla and cinnamon in medium bowl until thoroughly mixed. Add the drained plumped rice and raisins and stir well. Pour into prepared pan.

4. Bake the pudding, uncovered, until the center is just jiggly and a knife inserted about an inch from the edge comes out clean. (About 45 minutes) Serve warm, room temp, or chilled.

ENJOY either way.

Slow Cooker: chicken and apples

Autumn. I have a love-hate relationship with you. My son and I have birthdays that wrap around the autumnal equinox (9/22 and 9/23). You bring cooler weather — I like wearing jeans after 3 months in bathing suits. I love your warm colors — I enjoy farmers’ markets and picking up pumpkins and mums to decorate my stoop. But I don’t like the dreary stark months that follow you — No matter how much sleep I get I still feel tired waking up when it’s dark.

It’s been raining here for 7 days straight. This Nor’Easter has been sitting over us for a week. But today is football Sunday so I must press on. I got the kids set up with art supplies at the table and Daddy has The Beatles playing until kick-off.

I just got out the crock pot and grabbed some frozen chicken breasts from the freezer. I looked around and my eyes landed on a fruit-bowl full of Red Delicious apples that the kids promised they would eat. Yeah right.

So I think some apples and onions and chicken in the crock pot would be a great fall dish. Alas, no onions. And since I don’t own a kayak I’m not going to the store for an onion. Hmm.. what else can I do? Think Jessie. Think. Here is the dish. It rocked, if I do say so myself.

Slow Cooker: chicken and apples

  • 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken – thighs or breasts (frozen is fine)
  • 1 can French Onion Soup – 18.5 ounce (I used Progressive. If you have an onion and 2 cups of beef stock… by all means… that’s what I would RATHER use. But I don’t have it so a can of French Onion Soup is it.)
  • 3 Red Delicious apples – cored and peeled (I didn’t worry too much about getting ALL the peels off. You’ll learn that I hate peeling things. Apples, potatoes, husking corn… ugh. Someone poke me in the eye.)
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 T chipotle pepper sauce (or any hot sauce you like)
  • 1/8 C balsamic vinegar
  • Add salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 C honey bbq sauce (or whatever your favorite bbq sauce is)

 

Chicken, bbq sauce, spices, apples, soup - because I didn't have fresh onions

Chicken, bbq sauce, spices, apples, soup – (because I didn’t have fresh onions) – not pictured is S&P, chipotle sauce and balsamic vinegar

toss apples and chicken in soup and spices and BBQ sauce

toss apples and chicken to coat

Now, if you use the slow-cooker bags you can twist the top up (tightly!) and toss all the ingredients making sure to coat all the apples. (this helps to keep them from turning brown)

Cook on high 4-6 hours or low 6-8 hours until the chicken is done. You can shred it and eat it over egg noodles or rice*. Or slice it and eat it with a salad and crusty bread.

 

pulled chicken, on another plate, added 1 cup white rice to broth, put chicken back in and continued to cook until rice was done.

I pulled the chicken on another plate and placed back into the broth.

*I added 2 cups cooked white rice directly to the slow cooker once the chicken was finished cooking and I shred it. But serving the barbecue chicken and apples with the rice as a base would also be very pretty.

Autumn… today, you’re alright.

Pork & wild rice soup

I love making soup.  It’s one of my favorite comforts during the cold months; warm soup. It’s so easy and delicious. And it’s different every time. And it freezes well. And it makes a great gift in a big canning jar. Aaah soup. I love you. And really, it’s so easy to make… unless of course you are trying to imitate some thick concoction with little tiny sirloin burgers in it… you need not buy another can all your life.

pork and rice soup

pork and rice soup

This is what I did:
Pork with wild rice.

Crock potted my chili lime (dry rub from Pampered Chef) pork shoulder with a large sliced onion, 1 Cup orange juice & 1/2 Cup water until it shred easily with a fork. Pulled some pork for sandwiches and gobbled them up. Put the leftovers in the fridge overnight to cool.

Soup day: Removed fat. Put orange juice, water, pork broth & onions in pot over low heat with a bunch of stuff*. Used the immersion blender to purée the onions in the orange juice, water, pork broth from the crock pot. Added raw carrots, uncooked wild rice, & shredded pork …that’s it. Bring to a boil and cover so rice cooks in the broth. So yummy.

*stuff = spices and liquids to add layers of flavors. I never follow a recipe exactly so… for this one I’d guess I added garlic powder, sherry wine vinegar, worcestershire sauce, cumin, red pepper flakes, etc. until it had a flavor I liked. The point is, TRY MAKING SOUP. Once you cook the meat, you just have to skim the fat off (waiting a day after it sits in the fridge is the easiest because the fat just pops off like a hockey puck) and add what you want to the broth. Voila! Soup is served!