January 19, 2013 at 1:02pm
The Pioneer Woman’s Chicken Tortilla Soup
So, the Pioneer Woman’s recipes are not usually my faves, just because she is cooking for a huge family and I am cooking for just the two of us. But this soup is TO DIE FOR. And don’t cut the recipe in half: you will be perfectly happy eating the leftovers for days! Note: I made this recipe quicker by a) boiling the chicken instead of baking in the oven, b) skipping the tortilla strips part and just served with chips, c) no cornmeal. It was still amazing. If you want to follow the original recipe exactly, follow the link at the bottom to The Pioneer Woman’s blog.
Prep Time: 30 min., Cook Time: 1.5 hours, Servings: 8
- 2 whole Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1-1/2 teaspoon Cumin
- 1 teaspoon Chili Powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1 cup Diced Onion
- 1/4 cup Diced Green Bell Pepper
- 1/4 cup Red Bell Pepper
- 3 cloves Garlic, Minced
- 1 can (10 Oz. Can) Rotel Tomatoes And Green Chilies
- 32 ounces, fluid Low Sodium Chicken Stock
- 3 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
- 4 cups Hot Water
- 2 cans (15 Oz. Can) Black Beans, Drained
- 3 Tablespoons Cornmeal Or Masa
- 5 whole Corn Tortillas, Cut Into Uniform Strips Around 2 To 3 Inches
- FOR THE GARNISHES:
- Sour Cream
- Diced Avocado
- Diced Red Onion
- Salsa Or Pico De Gallo
- Grated Monterey Jack Cheese
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Put chicken breasts in pot to boil. Mix cumin, chili pepper, garlic powder, and salt. After the chicken is done boiling, rub the spices on them. Use two forks to shred chicken. Set aside.
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a pot over medium high heat. Add onions, red pepper, green pepper, and minced garlic. Stir and begin cooking, then add the rest of the spice mix. Stir to combine, then add shredded chicken and stir.
Pour in Rotel, chicken stock, tomato paste, water, and black beans. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 45 minutes, uncovered.
Mix cornmeal with a small amount of water. Pour into the soup, then simmer for an additional 30 minutes. Check seasonings, adding more if needed—-add more chili powder if it needs more spice, and be sure not to undersalt. Turn off heat and allow to sit for 15 to 20 minutes before serving. Five minutes before serving, gently stir in tortilla strips.
Ladle into bowls, then top with sour cream, diced red onion, diced avocado, pico de gallo, and grated cheese, if you have it! (The garnishes really make the soup delicious.)
Original Post: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2011/01/chicken-tortilla-soup/
I earned the title of best-wife-ever with this DELICIOUS and SUPER-EASY recipe last night. Ian’s exact words were, “MMM this is so good…,” and then 20 seconds later, “you’re going to put this on frequent rotation, right?”. Ding, ding, ding, folks - we have a winner.
Prep Time: 30 min., Cook Time: 15 min., Serves: 4
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 pint red and yellow grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
8 basil leaves, minced
4 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts slice in half to create two thin pieces
salt and pepper, to taste
grated parmesan, to taste
In a small skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic and stir, lightly frying for about a minute, removing before the garlic gets too brown (it can be golden.) Pour into a mixing bowl and allow to cool slightly.
Add tomatoes, balsamic, basil, and salt and pepper to the bowl. Toss to combine, then taste and add more basil if needed, and more salt if needed (don’t oversalt, though!) Put the bowl in the freezer to chill while you cook the chicken.
Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper, then grill or saute them in the same skillet until done in the middle.
To serve, give the tomato mixture a final stir. Arrange chicken breasts on a plate (2 at a time) then spoon a generous amount of bruschetta topping over the top. Sprinkle as much parmesan on top as you like.
Wallah! Serve with skillet potatoes, a green vegetable, a fresh salad, and/or a baguette. Another great idea would be to make some extra tomato mixture and keep in the fridge for a snack the next day. Just toast a piece of bread and throw on top.
Hot Sesame Beef
This recipe came out of my “frame>by>frame Quick & Easy Cookbook”. While it was easy, it was a little messy, so I wouldn’t necessarily categorize it as quick. With my cooking, I’m trying to branch out and choose recipes that I wouldn’t usually choose. Read: just because my mom didn’t cook stuff like this growing up doesn’t mean I shouldn’t give it a go! Anyways, this one was a huge hit. Ian was practically salivating just looking at the cookbook. I bought a pricier hunk of beef than I normally would, but wow, it was so tender and delicious. If you’re not worried about money, it’s worth it! Also, heads up: this is not hot by my standards (which are wimpy when it comes to spicy food), but if you have kiddos I probably wouldn’t cook this for them!
Serves 4, Prep Time : 30 min., Cook Time : 30 min.
1 lb. beef tenderloin, cut into thin strips (opt: freeze for 1 hour before to slice easily)
1.5 tbsp sesame seeds
0.5 cup beef stock
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp grated ginger (or ginger juice - expensive, but a time saver if you cook Asian food!)
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp cornstarch
3 tbsp sesame oil
1 large head of broccoli, cut into florets
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded & thinly sliced
1 fresh red chile, finely sliced
1 tbsp chile oil, to taste
salt & pepper
wild rice, to serve
1 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
1. Chop all vegetables as specified in ingredients list.
2. Cook wild rice according to package directions.
3. Mix the beef strips with 1 tbsp. sesame seeds.
4. Heat 1 tbsp. of the sesame oil in a wok. Stir-fry the beef for 2-3 minutes. While it’s cooking, do step 5. Remove and set aside beef. Pour any extra liquid out of the wok.
5. In a separate bowl, stir together the stock, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, and cornstarch.
6. Heat the remaining sesame oil in the wok, add the broccoli, bell pepper, chile, and chili oil and stir fry for 2-3 min.
7. Stir in the stock mixture, cover, and simmer on medium-low heat for 2 min.
8. Return the beef to the wok and simmer until the juices thicken, stirring occasionally. Cook for an additional 1-2 min. Sprinkle with the remaining sesame seeds and season to taste with salt and pepper.
9. Serve immediately over the wild rice and garnish with cilantro. Yum!
April 30, 2012 at 10:51pm
Risotto with asparagus & walnuts
This was a fantastic healthy dinner, and super easy to cook - you can’t mess this up! We were going vegetarian that week, but I can imagine that you could sauté some chicken and throw it in if you so desired. Here is the recipe!
1 tbsp butter
3 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 & 3/4 cups risotto rice (see below)
2/3 cup dry white wine
6 & 3/4 hot vegetable broth
7 oz. asparagas stalks, cut into 2 inch lengths
1/3 cup chopped walnuts
salt and pepper
1 lemon, to garnish
Parmesan cheese, to garnish
What is risotto rice, you ask? I had a hard time finding it at the store, but pick the rice that looks Italian. It is important to get this variety of rice, because it has a distinctive texture and regular rice will not cook right for this recipe. Here’s the HEB brand:
1. Heat the butter and olive oil in a large saucepan and fry the onion, stirring, for 3-4 minutes, until
2. Add the rice and stir over medium heat for 1 minute, without browning.
3. Add the wine and boil rapidly, stirring, until almost all evaporated.
4. Stir the stock into the pan a ladleful at a time, letting each addition be absorbed before adding more.
5. After 10 minutes, add the asparagus and continue cooking, adding stock when necessary.
6. After an additional 5 minutes, test a grain of rice - it should be “al dente” or firm to the bite.
7. Stir in the walnuts, then add salt and pepper to taste.
8. Remove from the heat and serve immediately, adding a slice of lemon and parmesan cheese to each bowl.
The Eating Experiment… and the Organic List.
A couple of weeks ago, Ian and I underwent a food experiment: we cut out all processed foods and red meat/chicken from our diet. I have been having stomach issues for awhile now, and have been taking acid reflux medicine for it. This was an effort to see if a change in what I ate affected how I feel… well BIG surprise… of course it did! Now, just as a side note: I wasn’t eating terribly before this, I consider my diet to usually be average-American (not obese, average!)… casseroles, spaghetti and meatballs, hamburgers, that sort of thing. I think everyone knows there’s a lot of crap in the food we buy at the grocery store… but everyone just chooses to live with it for convenience sake. Apparently, my body has been protesting, because since the experiment, I’ve gone 3 weeks without medicine and felt fine!
So what have I learned from all of this, you ask? Certain things are worth the extra time and extra dimes to buy organic and make from scratch, other things not so much. For example, here is a list of produce you should try to buy organic vs. it doesn’t matter (from http://www.organic.org/articles/showarticle/article-214
12 Most Contaminated by Pesticides (buy Organic!)
- Sweet Bell Peppers
- Grapes (Imported)
12 Least Contaminated by Pesticides (don’t worry about it!)
- Sweet Corn (Frozen)
- Sweet Peas (Frozen)
- Kiwi Fruit
So… I will be posting some of my favorite recipes from our week of experimenting… our menu was:
Walnut and Asparagas Risotto
Quick Veggie Soup
Mexican Bean Salad
Sweet Potato Quesadillas