Sweet Potato & Pork Tacos

sweet pot tacos (27) WM sweet pot tacos (1) WM

I really dug this recipe.  I had sweet potato tacos at a local food truck, but decided that they needed a little something else, so I added pork and red quinoa.  Amazing.  Add the sharp white cheddar cheese and I had a hard time stopping myself from eating them!!

 

serves 4

time: about half hour

 

Ingredients for the pork & sweet potatoes (this amount for each, so double the ingredients below)

pork tenderloin, cubed

2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed

1/2 teaspoon cumin

1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

1 teaspoon chipotle powder

1 teaspoon brown sugar

pepper

salt

coconut oil

 

Everything else

1 cup uncooked red quinoa (you can use white, but I like the color that the red quinoa adds)

avacado

sharp white cheddar cheese (or cheese of your choice)

corn tacos, about 2-3 for each person or double if you use two taco shells per taco

 

Directions

1.Cook the quinoa according to the package directions.

2. Mix together the seasonings for the pork tenderloin, place the cubed pork in a bowl and coat with the seasoning.

3. Mix together the seasonings for the sweet potatoes, place the cubed sweet potatoes in a bowl and coat with the seasoning.

4. Heat up two skillets (or do the pork / sweet potatoes one after the other) with a scoop of coconut oil.  Once the coconut oil sizzles if you splash a little water in the skillet saute the pork until it is cooked through and the sweet potato cubes until they are soft.  After they are cooked place on a plate and cover until all of the rest of the goodies are ready.

5. Cut up your produce, grate the cheese.

6. Heat your tacos in a skillet until they are hot, then place all of the ingredients on top and enjoy!

 

 

sweet pot tacos (15) WM

sweet pot tacos (13) WM

sweet pot tacos (8) WM

sweet pota tacos (10) WM sweet pota tacos (4) WM sweet pota tacos (2) WM

Orzo, Arugula and Tomato Salad

Orzo, Arugula and Tomato Salad (8) WM

I love salad, and I like interesting salads.  This one combines arugula (though I’m sure it would be just as yummy with spinach!), orzo pasta, goat (or feta) cheese and tomatoes.  Super simple and full of flavor – how can you go wrong!??

 

serves: about 6

time: 20 minutes

 

Ingredients:

baby arugula

1/2 cup dry orzo, cooked

tomatoes (I used cherry), sliced

goat or feta cheese

5 tablespoons olive oil

3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

salt

pepper

 

Directions:

1. Boil the dry orzo according to package directions.  After it has cooked let it cool.

2. Wash and chop the tomatoes.  Wash the baby arugula

3. Mix the olive oil, balsamic vinegar and salt & pepper (to taste) together in a large bowl.  Throw in the baby arugula, cooked & cooled orzo, cut tomatoes and a handful or so of goat or feta cheese (the amount of cheese is to taste).

4. Gently stir the salad to combine all ingredients, serve immediately.

 

 

Orzo, Arugula and Tomato Salad (5) WM

Grilled Tandoori Chicken

Tandoori Chicken (2)WM

My husband has really wanted to make tandoori chicken in our Green Egg ever since we got it, so about 2 years.  We finally did and it was awesome!  Our homemade tandoori chicken isn’t as read as what you get in most restaurants, my husband said that’s because they add red food coloring.  I’m ok with our less red tandoori chicken! Raita is a Greek yogurt based sauce that is fantastic to eat with spicy Indian food!

 

Tandoori Chicken (22) WM

time: overnight + 2 hours

Chicken Ingredients:

small container of plain Greek yogurt
fresh ginger, roughly one inch, peeled and chopped finely
2 tablespoons paprika
one lime, squeezed
1 teaspoon chili powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
3 cloves garlic, chopped
mix of chicken pieces, about 2-3 a person
Veggie Ingredients:
broccoli, cut into bite size pieces
onion, sliced thickly
bell pepper, sliced thickly
Chicken Directions:

1. Combine all ingredients except for chicken in a food processor and blend until smooth.

2. Place the chicken in a ziplock plastic bag, add the marinade mix the marinade around the chicken and refrigerate overnight.

3. Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and leave on the counter for 30 minutes.

4. Get your grill ready.  For charcoal arrange the coals on either side of the grate, leaving a space in the middle.  Light and let sit for about 1/2 hour until the charcoal turns gray/black. For gas grills, heat one side to medium-high heat and leave one side without any heat.

5. Remove the chicken from the marinade; place the sliced side veggies in the bag with marinade after you remove the chicken.

6. Place the chicken on the unheated part of the grill.

5. Close the grill lid and grill the chicken for about 90 minutes until cooked through; turn the chicken every 20 minutes.

6. Serve the tandoori chicken with the chilled raita, veggies, and rice.

 

Raita Ingredients:

small container of plain Greek yogurt
one lemon, squeezed
garlic, crushed
1/8 white onion, chopped
tomato, diced
cucumber, peeled and diced
mint, chopped
salt
pepper
cumin seeds
Raita Directions:

1. Squeeze lemon, chop up veggies.

2. Stir into the Greek yogurt, season to taste.

3. Refrigerate for at least an hour.

 

Tandoori Chicken (20) WM

Tandoori Chicken (3) WM

Coconut-Hazelnut Shrimp

Coconut-Hazelnut Shrimp (15) WM

I have never made hazelnut anything, and this was a pretty cool dish to start with.  The only thing that I would change is to buy smaller shrimp – I bought the jumbo size and they tasted well, fishy.  I usually buy the medium size and don’t have that problem.  The peach salad was to die for.

 

Coconut-Hazelnut Shrimp (25) WM

serves 4

time: roughly 45 minutes

serve with wild rice and/or a salad

 

Coconut Hazelnut Shrimp Ingredients:

1 pound shrimp (not cooked)

1 cup Bobs Red Mill Hazelnut Meal

1/2 cup finely shredded coconut

4 teaspoons ginger powder

salt & pepper to taste

1/2 cup corn starch

1 egg, beaten

 

 

Coconut Hazelnut Shrimp Directions:

1) Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.

2) Combine the hazelnut meal, shredded coconut, ginger and salt & pepper in a flat dish.

3) Pour the corn starch into a flat dish, beat the egg and pour that into a flat dish.

4) Take each shrimp and coat with the corn starch, then dip in the beaten egg, and then dip and coat with the hazelnut mixture.  Place each shrimp on a cooking rack.

5) Bake the tray of shrimp for about 5 minutes on each side, until they are cooked through and the hazelnut mixture has hardened.

 

Peach Salad Ingredients:

2 peaches, pitted and cut into bite sized pieces

half red onion, chopped

half bell pepper, cut into bite sized pieces

1 jalapeno – diced finely

half bunch cilantro, chopped finely

1 lime, juiced

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground cumin

salt to taste

 

Peach Salad Directions:

1) Chop all of the produce and place into a serving bowl; squeeze the lime over the produce and sprinkle in the spices.  Stir to combine.  Keep the peach salad in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve.

 

Coconut-Hazelnut Shrimp (8)

Honey & Hoisin Chicken

Honey & Hoisin Chicken (4) WM

 

I eat a lot of chicken, so changing up the marinade is super important so that chicken doesn’t get boring.  This recipe hits the mark – it’s super tasty and a little different from other recipes that I have made!  I served with rice and a lovely salad.  And of course I washed it all down with a beer – wheat is my go-to in the summer.

 

Honey & Hoisin Chicken (11) WM

serves 4

time: about an hour

Ingredients:

chicken drumsticks & thighs

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 tablespoons soy sauce

3 tablespoons hoisin sauce

1 tablespoon Sriracha

3 tablespoons mild honey

ginger thumb size, minced

1 teaspoon sesame oil

sesame seeds

rice

salad of your choice

 

Directions:

1) Mix the sauce ingredients together in a large bowl.

2) Place the chicken pieces into the bowl and stir to coat evening.

3) Start your BBQ.

4) Start your rice (cook according to package directions).

5) Place the coated chicken on the BBQ, cook until no longer pink.

6) Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve with rice and a salad.

 

 

Honey & Hoisin Chicken (1) WM

Balsamic Reduction Lamb Chops

Balsamic Reduction Lamb Chops (16) WM

The first time that I had lamb was when I was in college; it was served with mint sauce and it was absolutely disgusting.  The second time I had lamb was a few months after I graduated college and my college friends and I went up to Guerneville, CA for a weekend to celebrate all of the libra birthdays (there were a ton of us!).  My one friend and I were camping and had brought hot dogs and other boring camping food.  We had befriended some older guys who were camping, and they invited us over for some fun drinks (I believe margaritas) – yes they camping in style, now know as “clamping” but that term wasn’t around in 2005! haha.  As we were sipping on our drinks dinner some how came up.  We told them that we were having hotdogs, and they said “No you are not!  You are going to have some lamb with us!).  They had been marinading the lamb in rosemary and white wine.  Again, this was camping and they were eating like queens!  I was blown away by my first grilled lamb.  Ah.maz.ing.

So, that’s my lamb story, after the dinner in Guerneville I became a believer of lamb.  The guys showed me that lam in fact is not nasty.

Balsamic Reduction Lamb Chops (2 WM)

Ingredients:

lamb chops (one per person)

1 cupsbalsamic vinegar

4 tablespoons brown sugar

5 springs fresh rosemary, chopped finely

3-4 cloves of garlic, crushed

salt

pepper

cast iron pan

 

Directions:

1.  Preheat your oven’s broiler.

2. Combine the balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, chopped rosemary and crushed garlic in a small pot over medium high heat.  Once the mixture has come to a boil reduce to medium low heat and simmer for about 10 minutes until it has thickened.

3. Place the cast iron skillet in the oven so it gets hot.

4. Season the lamb chops with salt and pepper on each side.  Place the lamb chops in the hot skillet Let one side sizzle for a second, then flip over.  Place the skillet with the lamb chops in the broiler and broil each side for roughly 3 minutes.  Lamb is like beef, you can eat it when it’s still pink (and you really, really don’t want to over cook it).  Which reminds me, I should have taken a picture with one of the lamb chops cut open.

5. Once the lamb chops have been cooked, place on each plate and drizzle with the balsamic rosemary reduction.  Serve with a fresh salad, and the carb of your choice.

 

Balsamic Reduction Lamb Chops (22) WM Balsamic Reduction Lamb Chops (8) WM

 

Buttermilk Baked/Fried Chicken

buttermilk fried chicken (20) WM

I made fried chicken a few years back after watching Driving Miss Daisy.  I could not believe how much oil it took!  It was rather gross.  The problem is that I love fried chicken, so this recipe is pretty much a compromise.  Fried slightly and then baked, so you still get that yummy crunchy coating.  Serve with these easy buttermilk biscuits.

buttermilk fried chicken (11) WM

buttermilk fried chicken (1)WM

Ingredients:
2 cups buttermilk
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
4 tablespoons hot sauce
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 onion, coarsely chopped
5 garlic cloves, diced
chicken drumsticks & thighs
2 cups panko breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
cast iron skillet
Directions:

  1. For the chicken marinade: stir together the buttermilk, dijon mustard, hot sauce, paprika, salt, pepper, chopped onion and diced garlic in a bowl.
  2. Place the chicken in a plastic storage bag and add the buttermilk mixture, then squeeze the outside of the zipped bag to coat all of the chicken.  Place the bag of chicken & buttermilk marinade in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
  3. The next day, when you are ready to eat preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  4. Pull out the chicken from the marinade and discard the marinade.
  5. Pour out the breadcrumbs out on a flat dish.  Press the chicken pieces into the breadcrumbs to completely coat all sides.
  6. Heat your cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat.  Once it is hot pour 2 tablespoons of oil into the pan.  Heat up the oil, then gently place the chicken pieces in the skillet.  Brown each side of the chicken for about 4 minutes until they start to turn brown.  You may have to do this in two batches or use two cast-iron skillets.
  7. Once all of the chicken pieces are browned in the skillet transfer the entire skillet with chicken to the oven and bake for about 20 to 30 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.

buttermilk fried chicken (18) WM buttermilk fried chicken (7) WM

Spiced Shrimp with Lime Cilantro Rice & Strawberry Mango Salsa Tortilla Bowls

Spiced Shrimp Strawberry bowls (5) WM

It is summer!  That means we have fresh fruits and veggies like avocados, strawberries and mangoes!  I absolutely love it!  This is the first time that I have made tortilla bowls, and they are pretty cool (not to mention super easy!).

 

Serves 4

Spiced Shrimp:

1 pound uncooked shrimp, peeled

4 tablespoons olive oil

5 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon smoked paprika
Lime Cilantro Rice:
1 cup uncooked basmati rice
2 cups coconut water
1/2 bunch cilantro, finely chopped
1 lime, squeezed
pinch of salt
Spicy Strawberry & Mango Salsa:
3/4 container fresh strawberries, chopped into pinky nail pieces
1 mango, peeled and chopped into bite sized pieces
1/2 jalapeno (or more / less depending on your spice level), finely chopped
1/4 bunch cilantro, finely chopped
Spiced Shrimp Strawberry bowls (29) WM
Bowl toppings & Tortillas:
Flour tortillas, one per person
1/2 bag of frozen corn, thawed
olive oil
1 can black beans
1 avocado
Mexican crema
Spiced Shrimp Strawberry bowls (16) WM
Directions:
1) Peel the shrimp. Combine the ingredients for the shrimp.  Stir the shrimp to coat.  Let sit until all other items for the bowl are ready to go.
2) Cook the rice with the coconut water and salt.  Chop the cilantro, set aside.
3) Chop and stir all of the ingredients for the spicy strawberry & mango salsa together in a bowl and set aside.
4) Heat your over to 400 degrees.  Get 4 oven safe bowls, turn upside down on a cookie sheet.  Heat the flour tortillas in the microwave for 30 – 60 seconds until soft, then drape over the oven safe bowls and press against the bowls.  Bake for roughly 10 minutes until they are hard and lightly brown.  Remove from the oven and set aside.
5) Heat a skillet to medium-high, place the corn in the skilled with a bit of olive oil and brown.  Set aside.
6) Heat the black bean until they are warm, once warm keep on low until ready to serve.
7) Once the rice has finished cooking, stir in the chopped cilantro and squeeze in the lime.
8) Slice the avacado.
9) When all of the items for the tortilla bowls are ready, cook the shrimp and sauce on medium-high heat until cooked.  Layer all of the ingredients into the tortilla bowls and drizzle with the Mexican crema – enjoy!  I know you will because they are supper tasty and refreshing!

Spiced Shrimp Strawberry bowls (42) WM

Rice Noodles with Shrimp & Cashews

Chilli Cashew Shrimp Noodles (52) WM

Serves: 4

Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

one package uncooked rice noodles
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1 lime, juiced
2 tablespoons peanut oil
1 pound raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 clove garlic, minced
4 red chillies, chopped
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1 cup whole roasted cashews
3 green onions, chopped
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

 

 

Chilli Cashew Shrimp Noodles (36) WMDirections:

  1. Boil a pot of salted water, and cook the rice noodles according to package directions (don’t overcook as they will continue to cook in the sauce).  Drain and rinse the noodles in cold water.
  2. Combine the honey, fish sauce, soy sauce, hoisin sauce and lime juice.
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Once the pan is hot spoon in half of the peanut oil, dump in the shrimp after the oil has gotten a tad bit warm.  Cook the shrimp until they are cooked through, then remove them from the pan.
  4. Add the other tablespoon of oil, the garlic, red chillies and red bell peppers; saute for about 3 minutes (you want the red bell peppers to still be crunchy).
  5. Add the cashews and stir fry for about a minute.
  6. Add the sauce and the shrimp to the vegetables then cook for another minute.
  7. Add the noodles and cook for about 3 minutes – stir until all of the ingredients are well combined.
  8. Scoop out the noodle mixture and place on individual plates, then top with the chopped green onions and cilantro.

 

Chilli Cashew Shrimp Noodles (70) WM

Taiwanese Pork & Homemade Noodles

udon noodles (77) WM

This was my attempt at making udon noodles.  done and done.  The noodles were tasty, but I need to work on getting them all a consistent size and smaller. The dough is a simple recipe that tastes pretty good.  I absolutely love the pork sauce, the Chinese Five Spice absolutely makes this dish!  If you have never had Chinese Five Spice you are missing it, it’s an amazing little jar of spice!

udon noodles (15) WM

Noodles

3 1/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoon water

1. Stir together the flour, salt and baking soda in a bowl.  Make a well, add the water in the center and slowly mix in the flour.  Knead the dough for about 5 minutes (until smooth).  Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let it sit for an hour.

2. Knead the dough for 5 minutes, cover in plastic wrap and let it sit again for 15 minutes.

3. Roll the dough 1/5 inch thick.  Make 3 folds and sprinkle flour on each fold to the layers don’t stick.

4. Slice the dough into small strips, then lay on a plate.

5. Boil a pot of water and let the noodles cook until cook through (they should be a tad chewy).

udon noodles (34) WM

udon noodles (92) WM

Taiwanese Pork

1 cup chicken broth
4 tablespoons dark soy sauce (or oyster sauce)
4 teaspoon light (regular) soy sauce
2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar (or Chinese black vinegar or young balsamic vinegar if you can find it)
1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
2 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 onion, chopped
1 pound ground pork
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
several large handfuls fresh shiitake mushrooms, diced
1 stalk green onion, chopped

1. Mix together the chicken broth, dark soy sauce, regular soy sauce, vinegar, five spice powder and brown sugar and set aside.

2. Heat a wok over medium-high heat. When it’s hot cook the ground pork until it’s mostly brown but still pink – drain and set aside.

3. Add in the onion to the hot wok and cook for 1 minute.  Push the onion to one side of the wok and fry the garlic for about 30 seconds.  Stir in the almost cooked ground pork and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the mushrooms and mix everything together.

4. Pour in the broth/soy sauce mixture and bring to a simmer.  Cook for 2 minutes, then stir in the green onions.  Serve over your homemade noodles.

udon noodles (77) WM

udon noodles (70) WM