Cooking to Combat Cancer…

May 13th, 2010


Blog events are not exactly what they used to be… with the increase of facebook/twitter participation bloggers do not need to use events as much to get involved in the foodie world. Also with the Daring Bakers and Tuesdays with Dorie, how do people find the time to bake/cook so many different things?

However, I really enjoy them because 1. I’m always up for a new challenge. 2. I like discovering new blogs that I wouldn’t have found in another way.  3. I like it when the events have a purpose.

Chris of Mele Cotte invented this event that encourages healthy eating to fight cancer.  After looking over a couple lists of healthy cancer fighting foods…I realized that a recent dish I made fit perfectly with this event… Spiced Chicken on Melting Onions… it has garlic, onions and tumeric… I paired it with some whole wheat orzo (another food on the list)… it was delicious!

The recipe came from Crazy Water Pickled Lemons that I have had for years.  It was one of those cookbooks that I bought on a whim because it sounded cool.  It is a gorgeous cookbook of Middle Eastern, North African and Mediterranean food.  I love just looking through it and was happy to finally make something from it… next perhaps those chocolate dipped figs…



S
piced Chicken on Melting Onions
(adapted from Crazy Water Pickled Lemons)

4 chicken breasts
2 tbsp olive oil
3 onions, halved and sliced into half-moons
1/2 tsp ground tumeric
1 cup chicken stock or water (I used water and it was great!)
1/2 tsp. saffron threads
3 oz. green olives

Marinade
6 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp each of ground cumin, paprika and cayenne pepper
4 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp lemon juice
salt and pepper

1. For the marinade, mix together all the ingredients. Rub it all over the chicken and cover with the rest of the marinade. Marinate for a least 3 hours or overnight, turning the chicken occasionally.

2. heat the olive oil in the bottom of a shallow, ovenproof pan. Add the chicken and quickly cook the outside until nice and golden. Put the chicken aside.

3. In the same pan, start to cook the onions. When they are softening and beginning to turn translucent, add the turmeric and continue to cook, stirring, for another minute. bring the stock or water to a boil and dissolve the saffron in it. Add this to the pan, along with the chicken pieces and any juices that have come out of them.

4. Cook in an oven, preheated to 350F, for 30 minutes. Add the olives to the pan about 15 minutes before the end of the cooking time. Scatter with parsley or cilantro to serve.

Happy Easter!

April 4th, 2010


Happy Easter! I had a lovely Easter dinner with two of my friends… We did it Italian-style with a pasta course followed by lamb. Delicious!

The first time I made lamb (and until today, the only time), I was living in Rome… after attending Easter mass at the Vatican… my friends and I trooped over to a friend’s apartment to cook all day… Earlier that week, I had purchased lamb at the butcher shop… the butcher brought out half a lamb and I was frighten… How was I going to cook that? I was so used to seeing meat already boned not bloody and still lamb-like. However, I pushed through, asked my mom for advice and with the help of my friends handing me olive oil, garlic, rosemary and wine (that last one was for me)… I dived in, coated the meat with the herbs and threw it in the oven… It turned out well…

This time I still had a number of questions for my mom but it was a little smoother preparation. I did overcook it a little bit. I think my meat thermometer needs to be replaced. But it was well received. I served it with mashed potatoes and some green beans… However, the real gem of the evening and the favorite of my guests was my Culinary Mad Libs dish… Asparagus-Prosciutto-Chervil Ravioli

If you remember, I started up Culinary Mad Libs in an effort to find some inspiration. Well it worked. For this round, my ingredients were prosciutto (Mom), asparagus (Mark) and chervil (Tammy)… so I thought of raviolis with a white-wine cream sauce.

I mixed ricotta, blanched asparagus cut in little pieces, minced chervil, diced prosciutto, sprinkle of parm, and some pepper together.  I did not use any salt because the prosciutto was plenty salty.  Then, I put about a tablespoon of the mixture in the center of a wonton wrapper, moistened the edges with water, placed another wonton wrapper over it and using my fingers closed it up.  I boiled them in water for a few minutes and removed them as soon as they rose to the top (if not they will fall apart).  Then topped them with the white-wine cream sauce.  I recommend making them as you are going to serve them because they easily stick together.  This dish was quite the hit! 

Culinary Mad Libs was a success.  Also, Laura had suggested lamb so I did that one too… stay tuned for one more culinary mad lib dish and a new request for suggestions… including a giveaway…

Also, I’ve finally succumbed to twitter so… if you are so inclined click up the button on the right side to follow @ginnygetsfloury…

Just Improvising…

March 17th, 2010


cooking with Juan makes me happy… well, Juan makes me happy… there is just some special about making dinner together… sharing something I enjoy with him… plus, he is always agrees to cut the onions for me… I think I’m gonna keep him… we recently came up with this creation… it was delicious…

Ginny and Juan’s Pasta

1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tblsp. olive oil
1 can chopped tomatoes
about 1 1/2 cup chopped sausage (Alpine Sausage from Gene’s Sausage Shop)
garlic salt, pepper and italian seasoning to taste

In a saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Saute the onions and garlic. Add the tomatoes and heat through. Add the sausage and season to taste. Throw over some pasta and top with cheese.