Monday, May 30, 2011

More confessions

I know my blog is not pretty. I look at many gorgeous, eye-catching recipe blogs all the time so I do know what they look like. I apologize to those who look at my blog but I have no desire to do that. I don't take pictures of everything I make. I don't want my blog to become famous and don't really care if I have a million followers or not. To those of you with pretty blogs I LOVE them!! Sorry I'm not returning the favor :)

Spicy Pickled Carrots

I bet no one will make this recipe unless you've had these carrots! I had this what I called mexican pickled carrots at Taco Milagro and I've heard of these famous carrots served at Ninfa's. After becoming addicted to these carrots I actually tried to google a recipe but was a little unsure about what I was finding. So imagine my excitement when The Homesick Texan posted this! I just got around to making them and they were yummy!! I basically ate 8 carrots in 24hours! haha. So if you've had these before or if you want to have some more exciting carrots try them! For a non-spicy version, omit the chiles and jalapeno but add a dash of cayenne pepper (trust me, won't be super spicy but the flavor will be right.) And they tasted better after cooling off so what they taste like in the pot isn't the end result.

1 cup Water
¼ cup Vegetable Oil
2 cups White Vinegar
1 ounce Chiles De Arbol, stems removed
1 tsp Ground Cumin
1 tsp Oregano
1 tsp Black Pepper
1 tsp Kosher Salt (Plus More To Taste)
1 pound Carrots, cut into thin rounds
¼ cup Slivered Onions
1 Garlic Clove
1 Jalapeño, seeds and stem removed, sliced
In a medium-sized pot, add the water, vegetable oil, vinegar and chiles de arbol. Bring to a boil and then turn the heat down to medium. Cook for 5 minutes, uncovered.

Add to the pot the cumin, oregano, black pepper and salt. Continue to cook on medium for 5 more minutes. Add the sliced carrots, onions, garlic and jalapeño, and cook for 10 minutes, or until the carrots are your desired texture. Taste and add more salt if you prefer.

Cool and then refrigerate. Will keep for one month refrigerated.

Note: Chiles de arbol can be found at Mexican grocers and many regular supermarkets. And be aware that these carrots are very hot, so you might want to cut back on the chiles de arbol.

Shrimp Scampi Pasta

I forgot to post another recipe Corinne & I tried on our last visit. We didn't use olives because she doesn't like them. I liked this recipe because it didn't have pounds of butter like traditional shrimp scampi recipes.

Shrimp Scampi With Pasta, Spinach, Cherry Tomatoes And Olives
Self Magazine, don't remember the issue

2 ounces Whole-Grain Angel-Hair Pasta
2 tsp Extra Light Olive Oil
¾ pound Medium Shrimp, shelled
½ tsp Salt
1 Tbsp Finely Chopped Black Olives
1 Tbsp Finely Chopped Parsley
1 clove Garlic, finely chopped
1 cup Fresh Baby Spinach
4 Cherry Tomatoes, halved
¼ cup Low-Sodium Chicken Broth
2 Tbsp White Wine (or use extra broth)
2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
1 Tbsp Reduced-Fat Grated Parmesan
For pasta
Cook pasta 1 minute less than directed on package; set aside.
For shrimp
Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle shrimp with salt. Cook shrimp until pink, 5 to 6 minutes; transfer to a plate.
For vegetables
Reduce heat to medium; add olives, parsley and garlic. Cook until garlic becomes fragrant but does not brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Add spinach, tomatoes, broth, wine and lemon juice. Cover and cook until tomatoes soften, 2 to 3 minutes. Sprinkle with Parmesan.
468 calories per serving, 15.8 g fat (2.9 g saturated), 35.6 g carbs, 2.6 g fiber, 42.7 g protein

Raspberry-Pistachio Crusted Chicken

Here's a recipe Corinne & I tried this weekend. Not sure if it was the ginormous chicken breasts we had or what but the whole sauteing thing did not work at all. We ended up baking them at 425 until the chicken was cooked (not sure how long since they were partially cooked from the sauteing). It wasn't as amazing as I was daydreaming it was going to be but it ended up good and I think subtracting the drama we had with cooking it, I wouldn't mind making it again. And it was good cold the next day, would be good on a salad.

1 cup Fresh Or Unsweetened Frozen Raspberries
1 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
2 Tbsp Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
4 Skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, about 1 pound
½ cup Whole-Grain Bread Crumbs
2 Tbsp Coarsely Ground Pistachio Nuts
2 Tbsp Minced Fresh Parsley
dash Freshly Ground Pepper
pinch Sea Salt
2 tsp Olive Oil
Combine the raspberries, mustard, and lemon juice in a small food processor or blender. Process until smooth.Transfer to a shallow pan, cover, and set aside.

Place the chicken breasts between two sheets of wax paper and pound with a meat mallet to ½-inch thick. In another shallow pan, combine the bread crumbs, pistachios, parsley, pepper, and a pinch of salt. Dip each chicken breast in the sauce to coat both sides. Roll the chicken in the breadcrumb mixture to cover completely.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet and saute the chicken breasts over medium heat until the chicken is cooked through and the crust is slightly browned, 5 minutes on each side.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Roasted Balsamic Veggies

Super easy, super delish! And I love these cold too (actually even better!)

Yellow squash - sliced
Brussels sprouts - tough ends cut off then cut in half
Purple onion - sliced

Place in bowl or zip lock bag. Sprinkle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Mix well or shake bag so veggies are coated. Spread evenly on a foil lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt/pepper.

Bake at 425 degrees for ~20 minutes

*Feel free to try other veggies and combinations, adjust roasting time accordingly! Since using up my Brussels sprouts I've been addicted to this recipe just using yellow squash & onion.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad

My sis sent me a recipe that she thought I might like. It sounded sort of like a recipe that was so weird that it sounded delicious, if that makes any sense. Well in true Heather fashion, I did my own thing based on what I had at home and personal preferences. I liked it and I personally really like raw Brussels sprouts so I will likely make this or a variation of it again.

Here's what I made:

Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad
adapted from

4 cups raw Brussels Sprouts Ribbons
4 chopped green onions (white part)
1 cups fresh pineapple chunks, cut into bite size chunks
1 avocado, cut into chunks
3 tablespoons sliced almonds

¼ cup agave nectar (or honey, I just don't like honey too much)
¼ cup rice wine vinegar
1 small garlic clove, minced
1 tsp dijon mustard
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt And Pepper To Taste

Prepare salad dressing: mix agave nectar/honey, rice wine vinegar, garlic, and dijon mustard. Whisk in oil and add salt and pepper to taste. Set dressing aside.

Lay Brussels sprouts on their sides and cut thin slices creating ribbons for salad. T
oss together Brussels sprouts, scallions, pineapple, avocado, and almonds. Drizzle in dressing and toss well.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Creamy Chicken Taquitos

This is a recipe I tried from and came out quite good. I ate mine with some homemade guacamole, yum! You can use less cheese if you want and you can use flour or corn tortillas.
Here are some things I love about this recipe:
1. I can make myself two taquitos and keep the remainder of the chicken mixture to make another single portion fresh when I need it instead of having to eat leftovers.
2. I know that they are baked and not fried
3. I know that they have breast meat with the fat cut off and not the gross mystery meat that a store bought taquito probably has (sorry personal bias)
4. Lets not forget it was quick and easy

Creamy Chicken Taquitos

3 ounces Cream Cheese, softened (reduced fat is fine)
cup Salsa Verde
½ Lime, juice of
1 tsp Chile Powder
½ tsp Ground Cumin
pinch Cayenne Pepper
½ tsp Onion Powder
3 cloves Garlic, minced
¼ cup Chopped Fresh Cilantro
3 Tbsp Scallions, chopped
2 cups Chicken, cooked, shredded
½ cup Shredded Extra Sharp Cheddar Cheese
½ cup Shredded Pepperjack Cheese
8-12 (6-inch) Corn Tortillas
Kosher Salt And Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Cooking Spray
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, combine the cream cheese with the salsa, lime juice, cumin, chile powder, cayenne, onion powder, garlic, cilantro, scallions, and ¼ tsp kosher salt. Fold in the chicken and cheeses. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if necessary.

Working 3 tortillas at a time, stack them on a microwave-safe plate and cover with plastic wrap. Cook 30 seconds, or until tortillas are soft and pliable.

Spoon 2-3 tablespoons of filling onto the lower third of each tortilla, and roll tightly. Place seam side-down on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling.

Spray the taquitos lightly with cooking spray, sprinkle with salt. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until the tortillas are crisp and golden-brown. Serve with salsa, sour cream, and/or guacamole.