Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Creamy Cauliflower and Red Lentil Soup

This is a gorgeous and flavorful fall soup. Even though it is very creamy, thanks to blending, there is no cream in it except the soup cream you garnish it with. Fresh ginger and a pinch of cayenne give it that touch of warm that is perfect for colder winter.
Creamy Cauliflower and Red Lentil Soup
Wouldn't that make a beautiful starter for Thanksgiving? Or just great meal with some bread on a busy weeknight? It is really complimented with rolls or pretzels with poppy seeds on them. You can make this ahead of time too since I think it was even better a day or two later.

Creamy Cauliflower and Red Lentil Soup

1 T unsalted butter
1 T olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1/2 T fresh peeled, minced ginger
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 small head of cauliflower, chopped (about 2 - 2 1/2 cups)
1 c red lentils
6 c water
1 t ground mustard
1 t coriander
2 t turmeric
pinch or two of cayenne
salt
sour cream

In a large heat pot heat the butter and olive oil over medium hight heat. Add the onion and ginger. Sauté until the onion is starting to become translucent. Add all the remaining ingredients except the salt and sour cream. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered for 20 - 30 minutes, until the vegetables and lentils are tender. Use an immersion blender, blender or food processor to blend to desired creaminess. We got our almost blended, but left a few chunks of vegetables for texture. Salt to taste.

Serve garnished with sour cream.

Makes 6 servings.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Thai-Inspired Chicken, Cabbage and Noodle Soup

This was another dish inspired by leftovers and what was in the fridge. Basically, I had some roast chicken that needed to be used up, plus a head of cabbage. I don't know why, but that just seemed like a start to an Asian soup to me. Add the fact, I had some fresh ginger and my path was clear.
Chicken, Cabbage and Noodle Soup
The ingredient that really makes this dish is the Thai Sweet Chili Sauce. It gives it a wonderful sweet and spicy flavor (very mildly spicy). A touch of lime juice added a little but of needed sour. What you end up with is a different take on a comforting chicken noodle soup that has a great fresh, almost lightness, to it.

Thai-Inspired Chicken, Cabbage and Noodle Soup
4 c chicken stock
1 t minced fresh ginger
2 green onions, sliced, white and green parts separated
1 carrot, sliced thin
3 T Thai sweet chili sauce
1/2 t soy sauce
2 t lime juice
2 c cooked chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
small cabbage, cored and cut into approximately 2 inch piece, about 2 - 3 cups
3 - 4.5 oz thin rice sticks (3 for 2 servings and 4.5 for 3)
salt

In large soup pot, stir together the stock, ginger, white part of the green onions, carrots, Thai sweet chili sauce, soy sauce and lime juice. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the carrots soften slightly. Add chicken and cabbage. Cook until cabbage wilts a little. Taste for salt and add if needed.

Meanwhile put the rice sticks into a heat proof bowl, I like to break them up a little. Cover with boiling water. Let sit for about 8 - 10 minutes until the noodles are softened, stirring occasionally.

Drain the noodles and divide between bowls. Pour soup on top of the noodles. Sprinkle with green onion greens.

Makes 2 very large or 3 smaller servings (Matt and I ate almost the whole thing ourselves, but it could have easily been divided between 3.)


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Leftover Chili Mac

It's Monday night and Matt and I haven't been to the grocery store in over a week. Time to see what I can create for dinner from the fridge and pantry. There's some leftover chili that needs to be eaten, but there isn't enough for two servings. What to turn it into?
Leftover Chili Mac
I also had some pasta and cheese (well, Velveeta, so kind of cheese), so decided to try a chili mac. This went over really well with Matt. It was cheesy and creamy. I'm torn a little on the beans in it, because there texture is a bit like the pasta, but Matt really liked them in it. It was definitely a good use of the leftover chili.

Leftover Chili Mac

1 1/2 c leftover chili (mine was a beef and black bean chili)
6 oz mild melting cheese (I used Velveeta, because there was some lingering in the fridge)
1 T milk, cream or half & half
pinch dry mustard
1 T all-purpose flour (optional)
8 oz cooked pasta (I used penne, but short pasta that holds sauce well is good.)
sharper cheddar cheese (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F.

Heat the chili. Cut the 6 oz of cheese into small pieces and melt into the chili. Stir in the milk and dry mustard. Now comes the optional part. My sauce was a little thinner than the cheese sauce I like to use for mac and cheese, so I whisked in the flour. I simmered the sauce while stirring for a few minutes until it was nice and thick. The chili you start with will really decided this for you.

Mix the sauce with the cooked pasta and pour into a casserole. Grate a little sharp cheddar over the top.

Bake uncovered for 25 minutes.
Leftover Chili Mac

If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Scenes from the MN State Fair 2013

Thanks to dreadfully hot weather, we almost didn't make it out to the State Fair this year. Luckily, the last two days the temps dropped into the 70's, perfect weather for looking at livestock and eating fried food. After a lot of bad reviews on Heavy Table, we didn't bother to try all the new foods this year. Some we wanted to try had crazy long lines (the day we went broke the all time attendance record). So, we had a nice mix of new items, classic foods and a few new to use things.
Mini Donuts Cheese Curds and Coffee
Breakfast was for the classics, Tom Thumb mini donuts, fried cheese curds, and just to make it a little more breakfasty, a latte.
IMG_8783
We topped that off with a Double from Harry Singh's, fried bread sandwiching curried chickpeas and chutney. This was taste and a break from fried foods.
IMG_8784
My Goldy Gopher mittens were on display, but I didn't take home a ribbon this year.
Pronto Pup
Matt need a Prono Pup with mustard. I still don't get the appeal of these, it just tastes like a hotdog covered in dough cornbread to me.
Luminarium Luminarium
I was skeptical, but the Luminarium was actually really cool. Bet it was the place to be during the hot days since they use cold air to keep it inflated.
Comet Corn Comet Corn
Comet corn was fun and tasty. Carmel puffcorn is coated in PCP (parmesan, cheddar and pretzels) and then dipped in liquid nitrogen. It's a cold treat, but it's popcorn and it's smoking.
Candied Bacon Canolli
We'd never tried Ollie's Cannoli's before, but had heard they were really good. This year they offered one with candied bacon which both of us tried. This is a really good cannoli, crunchy and sweet. Not sure the bacon added than much and next time I might just go more traditional.
Hawaiian Dog
Loved the Hawaiian dog, pizza dough wrapped around ham and pineapple and cooked golden brown. Perfect with a side of mustard.
Barrel Racing Piglets
A little break from eating to watch some women's barrel racing and visit the Miracle of Birth barn.
Izzy's Mini Donut Batter Crunch Ice Cream
Then we found Izzy's Mini Donut Batter Crunch Ice Cream. Izzy's is our neighborhood ice cream parlor and we love their ice cream. This one was good, but I'm not sure I would have known it was mini donut without being told. I mainly tasted cinnamon. Of course it came with an Izzy's scoop on top, so we paired it with Salted Caramel.
Chickens Chickens
Then we headed for a glass of Lift Bridge's Mini Donut Beer. Guess we shouldn't have waited until 2:30 since they were already sold out for the day! Ah well, we just contented ourselves with looking at the unusual chickens and headed home.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Dim Sum on a Stick

We are in the midst of a record breaking heatwave here in Minneapolis. Temps in the 90's with high humidity have not made going to the State Fair very attractive. But, but we need our food on a stick! Luckily, one of our local restaurants, Haute Dish, is offering a food on a stick menu served dim sum style until August 29th in air conditioned comfort.
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
Fourteen incredible bites on a stick all under $5 (cheaper than most food at the Fair actually), we had to try all of them! Each table was given a serving dish with holes in it for the sticks to stand in. Servers circled the restaurant with the different dishes throughout the evening. (Please excuse the bad, low light cell phone pics.)
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
Matt flashed the broken finger sign behind our first three dishes, tomatoes & melon, chicken liver bon bons and spicy scallop handrolls. (In case you are wondering, he caught his finger in the door of the car.) That was followed by a mini gyro (good, but maybe the weakest of the dishes of the night).
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
The next two dishes were amazing! Caesar Salad on a stick was a fried piece of brioche with melted cheese in the middle topped with a chicken drumette and a pickled anchovy. The richness paired with the pickling was perfect. Then it was the Carrot Corndog, a sous vide carrot coated in classic corndog breading with sweet peppers and a sriracha sauce. If we hadn't been told it was a carrot, we would have sworn it was a hot dog, the texture was perfect!
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
The servers called the next dish the most unusual, a foie gras lollypop edged with pop rocks. A fun pairing of rich and sweet with the special pop. The egg in gelee had a great texture and flavor especially for fans of head cheese like me. That baby corn done elote with a cheese, salty sauce was so good we ordered another round.
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
The chili and cornbread was a surprise. How they got real saucy chili into a fried square of cornbread crust I'll never know. Then came what Matt called the star of the whole meal, the BBQ Octopus. The Asian glaze with sesame seeds coated super tender octopus. We were told the octopus was sous vided for 12 hours before it went on the grill. If we weren't so full, we would have had another round of this.
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
A mini oyster po-boy was done very classically with perfectly fried, cornbread crusted oysters. The mix of textured in this one was great. Our last dish was a classic steak tartar topped with grated egg and rolled in cucumber (one of our favorites for their regular menu).
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
Everything ended with an ice cream sandwich on a stick, banana walnut ice cream between two chocolate cookies topped with a chocolate covered banana slice and a little peanut butter powder. I love frozen chocolate covered bananas and this sandwich tasted like just like a perfectly ripe banana dipped in dark chocolate.

Matt and I had such a great time trying all the different dishes and enjoying our "fair food" without the crowds and heat. (Ok, we'll probably still go to the fair before it ends Labor Day.) If you are in the Twin Cities area we highly recommend you get your yearly dose of food on a stick at Haute Dish.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski
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