Posted in Dinner, Quick

Easy Orange Chicken

My kids love orange chicken! Even my self proclaimed 10 year-old vegetarian will take a night off for the sweet and spicy chicken. I surfed the internet for an easy recipe and every one I tried has not compared to take-out, or it took forever to make. So…I created my own that was super fast. I also took a short cut and bought precooked organic chicken strips that I threw in the oven while I zapped up the orange sauce. Because… When I want orange chicken… I want it now. Seriously…now! Easy Orange Chicken

By: Bekie A

1 cup of orange marmalade

2 garlic cloves minced or pressed

1/4 low sodium fermented soy sauce

A Splash of Worcestershire sauce (about 2-3 tsp)

Dash Red pepper flakes

1/2 tsp of Chili powder

Dash of salt if needed depending on the saltiness of the soy sauce

2 Tbsp Terra Verde Mandarin balsamic vinegar (or use regular balsamic vinegar if you don’t have orange balsamic)

1/4 Tsp of ground ginger

Dash of cayenne or siracha hot sauce

2 Tbsp of garlic Grapeseed oil (or Olive oil with an extra garlic clove minced)

2 Tbsp of cornstarch mixed with 1 Tbsp of water

Sesame seeds for garnish

For extra fancy– garnish with sliced oranges and chives too.

Mix everything together in a large glass measuring cup.  Microwave for 1 minute. Stir. Microwave for 45 more seconds. For stove stop, combine in a small pot and stir constantly on medium high heat for 2-3 minutes until thoroughly infused. Allow to sit a couple of minutes and pour over the chicken and toss. 

Bake chicken strips as directed

cut into chunks

pour this glorious sauce over the top and toss

sprinkle sesame seeds on the top

Posted in Dinner, Quick, Seafood

Kim’s Cookin’ School Linguini

Linguini with Shrimp, Mushroom and Fresh Peas
Serves 4

garnish
1 1/2 lbs medium shrimp, peeled and de-veined
Salt, pepper and paprika
1 cup sliced mushrooms (any variety)
1/4-1/2 cup fresh garden peas  (how much do you like peas?)
4 large garlic cloves crushed, then chopped
Extra virgin olive oil
Butter
Red hot pepper flakes
28 oz can whole tomatoes, crushed by hand in their juices
1/3 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup or more to taste grated Parmesan cheese
1 lb fresh of dried linguini, cooked al dente

Warm a large skillet over med heat.  Heat a large stock pot of water to boil for the
pasta. Once pasta water starts to boil, add 3 large pinches of salt to the water. Cook linguini as per box instructions for pasta until just al dente, firm to bite, as it will finish cooking in the sauce.

If using fresh pasta, cook the noodles after the sauce is put together. Fish out the pasta as it floats to surface and add to the sauce.

Reserve about two cups of pasta water to loosen the sauce if necessary.

shrimpRinse shrimp under cold water, drain, than pat dry.  Cut into bite-size pieces.  Season with salt, pepper and paprika. Using half of the chopped garlic, rub into the seasoned shrimp, then set aside.

seasoned shrimpIn the warm skillet add 1 tablespoon olive oil and increase heat to med high. Add 1 tablespoon butter, a dash of pepper flakes and the shrimp. Stir and cook shrimp until just pink, about 2 minutes, as they will finish cooking in sauce.  Remove to a bowl and set a side.

sauceIn the same pan add another tablespoon olive oil, heat to medium and add 1 tablespoon butter. Put in the remaining garlic, and if you like spicy, another dash of red pepper flakes. Sauté and stir until garlic is fragrant then add the mushrooms. Continue cooking until mushrooms are lightly brown and have released their juices, about 5 minutes.

mushroomsIncrease heat to med high, add tomato sauce, cream, and peas, and stir until sauce come to a boil. Then reduced heat to a simmer and cook until peas are tender and sauce has reduced, about 5-7 minutes.  Taste for seasoning.

pasta in sauceReturn shrimp to sauce, stir to combine. Add cooked pasta to sauce, tossing to coat all the pasta with the sauce over medium heat. If pasta sauce is dry, add some of the pasta cooking water to loosen. Taste for seasoning.  Turn off heat and toss in cheese.  LinguiniServe promptly in warm pasta bowls.  Bon Appetite!

Posted in Quick

Almost Hamlin’s White Dip

This is for all of my Muskogee friends and family that grew up like me thinking all Mexican Restaurants were supposed to have a white dip. The glorious white dip must have been a sister to the red dip with a hefty amount of salty chip relatives to accompany. The first time I ate at a Mexican Restaurant outside of Muskogee, I was so confused by the lack of white dip. Here is a recipe that strongly favors the dip. It is kicked up with jalapeños and lightened with a little Greek yogurt because the thought of dipping chips into straight mayonnaise seems so wrong in many ways. Don’t worry, you won’t miss it.  

Almost Hamlin’s White Dip

By: Bekie A

2/3 cup of Faga 2% Greek yogurt or 0% will work too

2/3 Cup of mayo

1-2 Tbsp of bleu cheese (how strong do you want it)

2 Tbsp feta

1 Tbsp of relish

1 Tbsp of diced pickled jalapeños

2 Tbsp of diced black olives

1-2 tsp of garlic salt

1 tsp of onion powder

Salt & pepper

Pinch of sugar

1/2 tsp of vinegar

2-3 Tbsp of milk

Combine the mayo and Greek yogurt first. Add in vinegar. Stir baby stir. Add in remaining ingredients. Garnish with cilantro and paprika. The flavor will build in the refrigerator as it sits. 

Warning: if you are not a former Muskogeean, you may not get it. But try it anyway. 

Posted in Quick

Chipotle-Garlic Hot Sauce

Need a kick in your dip? How about a smokey sauce that won’t run screaming off your chip? The spicy-sweet marriage of chipotle and garlic will be perfect on any Texas dish. Top it on tacos, eggs, chips, enchiladas, or whatever your Texan heart desires.

finally a sauce that matches my personality
because it’s nice to share

Chipotle-Garlic Hot Sauce

By: Bekie A

2 Tbsp of dried cilantro or 1/2 cup fresh chopped

4 garlic cloves

28 oz can of Crushed tomatoes (I like Cento)

1 roasted jalapeño (broil in oven or over stove top) remove the stem and if you prefer mild, remove the seeds as well.

1 roasted poblano or banana pepper  (broil in oven or over stove top) remove stem

1/2 Tbsp smoked paprika

1/2 Tbsp onion powder or 1/4 cup of chopped onion

1 tsp of ground chipotle chili pepper

5 Tbsp of vinegar

1 Tbsp sea salt

Cracked pepper to taste

Place in a good blender/processor and pulse until it becomes a chunky sauce. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. This is also a great recipe to can.

Posted in Dinner, Quick

No-Cook Cheese Sauce 

I am not a fan of powdered cheese in a box, nor a gelatin mold of processed cheese. However, sometimes I don’t have time to whip up a rue and fancy cheese sauce every time my kids crave Mac N Cheese. This sauce is a fast, yummy, healthier option for Mac N Cheese.

No-Cook Cheese Sauce

By: Bekie A

1/2 cup Greek yogurt

1 tsp onion powder

A pinch of mustard powder

A pinch of red pepper (if preparing for adults)

1/4 tsp turmeric

2 tsp garlic salt

2 Tbsp Olive oil

1/4 cup half n half or whole milk

1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan

1 cup of shredded Colby Jack cheese or smoke Gouda for adult version

Black pepper & sea salt to taste

–Mix all ingredients together thoroughly and set aside. Cook a box of 12 0z rotini or pasta of choice according to directions. Stir in sauce    Immediately once pasta is drained so cheeses can melt. You may add 1-2 Tbsp of butter to pasta before adding the sauce. Salt & pepper to taste. 

 

Posted in Quick

Fresh Herb Greek Garlic Sauce

I love this on any style of Greek seasoned meat. My favorite way to serve it is with grilled lemon chicken, or Greek style wraps. It’s fast and addicting. My 3 year-old daughter whipped this up tonight since I set out premeasured ingredients. We had our own imaginary voyage to Greece.

Fresh Herb Greek Garlic Sauce

By: Bekie A

3/4 cup of Faga Greek yogurt

1/2 tsp onion powder

1/2 tsp minced garlic (about 2 cloves pushed through a garlic press)

Juice of 1 small lemon

2 Tbsp of mayo

2 Tbsp of cream or whole milk

1 Tbsp of garlic Olive oil 

4-5 mint leaves minced

1/4 tsp dill

1/4 tsp sea salt

Pinch of sugar

Pinch of cayenne pepper

Pinch of Himalayan sea salt

Black pepper

3 tbsp of feta

Optional-2 Tbsp of minced olives

Mix all ingredients together thoroughly. Refrigerate immediately and allow to sit 5 minutes before serving. To serve as a dressing, add an extra tablespoon of Olive oil and milk. 

 

Posted in Seafood

Grilled Shrimp 2 Ways: Mesquite-Smoked Paprika and Lemon-Garlic with Jalapeño-Peach Dipping Sauce

With Sunshine and Spring weather comes summer dreams of the beach. Fresh grilled shrimp and a spicy tropical sauce bring me close to the waves and a margarita.

By: Bekie A. 

Lemon-Garlic Shrimp

1/2 lb of large gulf shrimp

Lemon Olive oil 2-4 Tbsp

2 cloves of Garlic smashed

1-2 tsp sea salt.

2 Tbsp Butter

3- Tbsp Lemon juice

–Combine everything into a bowl minus the shrimp. Microwave for 30 seconds until garlic is fragrant. Add shrimp to the bowl and stir until covered. Allow to marinate for 30 minutes before grilling over medium heat until pink (about 2-5 minutes).

Mesquite-Smoked Paprika

1/2 lb of large gulf shrimp

3 Tbsp of Mesquite Olive oil

2 tsp of Smoke paprika

2 Tbsp of worchestire sauce

Dash of Thyme

1 tsp of Sea salt

-Combine everything in a bowl and coat shrimp thoroughly. Marinate for 30 minutes before grilling over medium heat until shrimp is pink (about 2-5 minutes).

  

Spicy Jalapeño-Peach Dipping Sauce

1/2 cup of jalapeño pepper jelly

1/3 cup balsamic peach vinegar

1 tsp Smoke paprika

Dash of Hot paprika

–Combine everything in a large jar and heat in the microwave on 30 second intervals until melted. Whisk thoroughly. It can also be heated on the stove top.

Posted in Breakfast, Dessert, Quick

GF Cornmeal Crepes with Lemon Butter

This recipe is super versatile! Serve it with a simple lemon butter and fresh fruit, or jazz it up for dinner with sautéed mushrooms and Carmelized onions with A feta arugula salad on the side.  My kid’s favorite way to eat them is rolled with honey and your favorite nut butter. You can replace the cornmeal with almond flour if you are sensitive to corn or if you want to turn the Crepes into a protein powerhouse. You can also use regular flour in place of the GF mix.

GF Cornmeal Crepes with Lemon Butter

By: Bekie A

4 eggs whisked

1 cup milk

1/4 cup stoneground cornmeal or almond flour

3/4 cup of Gluten Free flour mix or flour of choose

1 tsp salt

2 Tbsp of butter for the pan

–Mix together wet ingredients thoroughly. Add in dry ingredients  and stir until there are no more lumps. Using a buttered  pan or skillet (on Medium heat) pour a a little more than 1/4 cup onto the pan. Spread out either by shaking the handle of the pan or using a spatula to spread thin. Once they begin to bubble, flip. Cook for 30-45 seconds longer and remove with a large spatula.

Serve while hot.

Lemon Butter Sauce

4 Tbsp of butter melted

2 Tbsp lemon juice

Whisk together and drizzle on top.

Posted in Quick

Cilantro-Lime Jalapeño Taco Sauce

I made this sauce to take my carnitas to a whole another world. I later discovered that it compliments any type of taco, burrito, fish, or salad. The cool lime paired with the bite of jalapeño is a perfect match.

Cilantro-Lime Jalapeño Taco Sauce

By: Bekie A

6-8 pickled jalapeños diced finely

1/2 cup fresh cilantro chopped or processed 

1/2 lime juiced

A Dash of the following (about 1/4 tsp):

smoke paprika

Chili powder

Onion powder or 1 Tbsp of finely diced onions 

Garlic salt

Hot paprika (or red pepper) 

Cumin 

Pinch of sugar

Salt & pepper to taste 

1/4 cup mayo

1/2 cup Greek yogurt or sourcream 

2 Tbsp of milk

–Mix thoroughly. If you like it spicier, add an extra dash of hot paprika. 

To use as salad dressing, add an extra 2 Tbsp of milk.

Posted in Dessert

Old-Fashioned Cherry Cobbler with a Cinnamon Brown Sugar Crust

This homemade cherry filling will stand alone. It’s tart, sweet, and rich with a couple of secret ingredients. Top it on ice-cream, use it as jam, spread into a pie crust, or lattice it with this cinnamon, brown, sugar crust.  Either way… Eat it!

By: Bekie A

Old Fashioned Cherry Cobbler

2 bags of frozen cherries

1 1/2 cup sugar

2-3 tbsp cornstarch

1 tsp almond extract

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 cup red wine

1/2 tsp cinnamon

Juice of half a lemon

1/4 cup dried cherries 

–Mix all ingredients together in a large pot except for the extracts. Bring to a low boil for 10 min until it sticks to a spoon. Add extracts and stir. 

Cinnamon Brown Sugar Crust

2 sticks of salted butter diced 

2/3 cup brown sugar

2 tsp vanilla

1 tsp cinnamon

1/3 cup half n half

1/3 cup water plus 2 Tbsp

2 tsp salt

-Mix dry ingredients together. Cut butter into dry ingredients until crumbly. Add wet ingredients. Roll out onto a floured surface. Pour Cherry filling into a 9×9 buttered pan. Top filling with the crust. You can lattice the crust, cut stars, or cover completely.

Brush crust with milk. Sprinkle with brown sugar and dot with butter. Bake on 375 for 20-30 minutes until golden. Allow to set for 5 minutes. Serve withice-cream  or cream.