Diary of a Foodie

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Beef and Broccoli

You will never want to order take out Chinese food after the next few posts. It is so easy, fast, and tastes better than your local joint. I gotta believe it's beter for you also.

Beef and Broccoli

2 lbs skirt steak, cut into thin strips against the grain of the meat
2 cups fresh broccoli florets
1/2 yellow onion, sliced thin
1/3 c light soy sauce
1 TBSP corn starch
2 TBSP sugar
1 TBSP sweet red chile sauce (found in the Asian section of the grocery store)
1 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp ground fresh ginger
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

In a mixing bowl, whisk together soy, corn starch, sugar, red chile sauce, garlic, ginger and red pepper flakes. Set aside until ready to add to beef and broccoli.

In a large non-stick skillet, heat 2 TBSP vegetable oil over medium heat. Once oil is hot, add the sliced onion and sweat the onions until the softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat of pan to medium high heat and add the sliced steak strips. Saute them for 3-4 minutes, being careful not to overcook or the meat will toughen up. Add the broccoli florets and the sauce you made earlier. Cook for only 2-3 minutes, stirring continually, until sauce coats everything and broccoli is slighly cooked. Serve immediately over rice.

* To cut meat against the grain will keep it from getting chewy and tough. If the meat grain runs horizontally, cut the meat vertically.

*To "sweat" onions means to cook them til softened, allowing them to release their juices, without letting them brown. If they start to brown, lower the heat to low.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Cranberry Almond Chicken Salad

I don't know what is about Fall, but I start to crave dried cranberries. I know that's weird. But, in this chicken salad recipe, they fit perfectly as a great tart ingredient.

Cranberry Almond Chicken Salad

2 cups shredded, cooked chicken (rostisserie, boiled, baked, roasted, etc)
1/2 c dried, reduced sugar cranberries (aka craisans)
1/4 c sliced almonds
1 TBSP minced onion
3/4 c mayonnaise
1/4 c apple juice
1 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
3/4 tsp ground black pepper

In a bowl, mix together shredded chicken, dried cranberries, almonds and onions. In a separate bowl, whisk together mayo, apple juice and seasonings. Pour sauce over the chicken mixture and stir until well coated. Let chill, covered, in the fridge for 1 hour. Serve alone or on a croissant, or on your favorite bread.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Pecan Sweet Potato Casserole

I love to make different sides to change up basic meals. When Fall hits, everything changes with it, food especially. This is a side I only make in the fall and winter. it's sweet, crunchy, smooth, slighty spicy, and delicious. Maybe try it for Thanksgiving!

Pecan Sweet Potato Casserole

3 or 4 large sweet potatoes
1 egg
1/2 c brown sugar
1/4 c butter, melted
2 tsp Kosher salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp ground cayenne
1/2 c flour
1/2 c pecans, minced
1/2 c brown sugar
1/4 c butter, softened
1/2 tsp Kosher salt

Wash sweet potatoes and place in a 350 degree F oven and bake for 25-35 minutes, or until fork tender. Remove from oven and carefully slit the potato down the center with a knife. Allow the potatoes to cool before handling. Once potatoes are cooled, use a spoon to scoop out all of the flesh into a bowl. Using a fork, mash the potatoes until smooth. Add the egg, brown sugar, melted butter, salt, pepper and cayenne. Mix until egg is incorporated and the sweet potatoes are smooth. Place the mixture into a 9X9 inch pan. In a seperate bowl, mix the topping of flour, minced pecans, brown sugar, softened butter and salt, until forms into pea-sized balls. Sprinkle the pecan topping onto the sweet potato mixture. Bake at 350 fo 25 minutes. Serve hot.