Cooking up a storm...
On a very snowy Monday January 15, 3 members of the Connect Community Kitchen met to plan and organize our cooking night for this month. We chose to create 5 different recipes; Jane's Vegetarian Chili, Broccoli Chicken Macaroni and Cheese, Beef & Barley Soup, Oatmeal Cookie Pancakes & BBQ Meat Loaf.
On Thursday January 18, 7 members met and cooked up a storm! We went to work right away, by dividing into groups to create all 5 recipes. We seem to be getting better at this as we were done all prep work by 8pm and just had to wait on the food to cook, which is quite the task as everything smelled sooooo good! The following are the recipes we used from this month's session and any changes we made are in red.
As always we would like to thank our members for working so hard, our fearless leader Randi and our sponsors, Hayter's Turkey Products and Hansen's Independent Grocer for providing all of our supplies...you are terrific!
Broccoli Chicken Macaroni and Cheese
From Rachael Ray
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound chicken breast tenders, chopped we used boneless skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper 1 small onion, chopped
1 pound macaroni elbows or cavatappi corkscrew shaped pasta twists we used heart healthy whole wheat pasta
2 1/2 cups raw broccoli florets, available packaged in produce department
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
3 cups whole milk we used 2%
1 cup chicken stock we used reduced sodium
3 cups yellow sharp Cheddar
1 tablespoon prepared Dijon mustard
Place a pot of water on to boil for macaroni.
Heat a medium pan over medium to medium-high heat. Add extra-virgin olive oil and chicken and season with salt and pepper. Saute a couple of minutes then add onion and cook another 5 to 7 minutes until onions are tender and chicken is cooked through. Turn off heat and reserve.
To boiling pasta water, add pasta and salt to season the cooking water. Cook 5 minutes, then add broccoli and cook 3 minutes more or until pasta is cooked to al dente and florets are just tender.
While pasta cooks, heat a medium sauce pot over medium heat. Add butter and melt, then add flour, cayenne and paprika and whisk together over heat until roux bubbles then cook a minute more. Whisk in milk and stock and raise heat to bring the sauce to a quick boil. Simmer until the sauce thickens about 5 minutes.
Drain macaroni or pasta and broccoli florets. Add back to the pot and add chicken to the pasta and broccoli.
Add cheese to milk sauce and stir to melt it in, a minute or so. Stir in mustard and season sauce with salt and pepper. Pour sauce over chicken and broccoli and cooked pasta and stir to combine. Adjust seasonings and transfer to a large serving platter and serve.
Beef and Barley Soup
From Cooking Light
Lamb may be used in place of beef stew meat, if desired. Use one pound of boneless lamb leg, cut into one-inch pieces.
2 pounds beef stew meat, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 teaspoons canola oil
2 cups chopped leek (about 4 medium)
2 cups chopped carrot
4 garlic cloves, minced
6 cups water
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 bay leaves
2 (14-ounce) cans less-sodium beef broth
1 cup uncooked pearl barley
Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add half of beef; cook 5 minutes, browning on all sides. Remove from pan. Repeat procedure with remaining beef.Heat oil in pan over medium-high heat. Add leek, carrot, and garlic; sauté 4 minutes or until lightly browned. Return beef to pan. Add water and next 5 ingredients (through broth); bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour. Add barley; cook 30 minutes or until beef and barley are tender. Discard bay leaves.
"Barbecued" Meat Loaf
From Cooking Light Joeanne mixes up the BBQ Turkey meatloaf
1 cup ketchup
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 (1/2-ounce) slice white bread
1/2 cup 1% low-fat milk
1 cup minced fresh onion
1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup finely diced carrot
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley we substituted savoury
1 teaspoon chopped fresh or 1/4 teaspoon dried rubbed sage
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 pounds ground sirloin we substituted ground turkey for a healthier choice
1/2 pound lean ground pork
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Preheat oven to 350°.Combine first 4 ingredients in a small bowl.Place bread in a food processor; process until finely ground. Combine bread and milk in a large bowl. Add 1/2 cup ketchup mixture, onion, and the next 9 ingredients (onion through egg); stir until well-blended. Place beef mixture in an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 1 hour. Brush remaining ketchup mixture over top. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes. Remove meat loaf from pan. Cut into 8 slices. Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1 slice)
Jane's Vegetarian Chili
From Cooking Light
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups of water, divided
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sause
2 (14.5 once cans) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 (15.5 once) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 (15 once) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15 once) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 (16 once) can cannellini beans or other white beans, rinsed and drained
1 (6 once) can tomatoe paste
1/2 cup reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese (optional)
Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; sauté 3 mintues or until tender. Add 3 cups water and next 8 ingredients (through Cannellini beans), stirring to combine.
Combine remaining cup of water and tomatoe paste in a bowl, stirring with a whisk until blended. Stir in tomatoe paste mixture into bean mixture. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Ladle soup into bowls. Top with cheese if desired.
Oatmeal Cookie Pancakes
By Rachael Ray
Marley & Toni working away at the pancakes
1 cup old fashioned oats
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 onces, 1/4 chopped walnuts we omitted the nuts
3/4 cup sour cream we used low-fat
3/4 cup whole milk we used 2%
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 really ripe bananas, mashed up
3/4 cup raisins
1/2 stick butter, 1/4 cup, melted, plus additional for buttering skillet
Here's a great tip: if you cannot find really ripe bananas, just nuke them in the microwave for about 15 seconds and they will become super soft for mashing.
Mix dry ingredients, the first 7, in a bowl. In another bowl, mix the wet ingredients, the next 4. Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry until just combined, then fold in the mashed up bananas and the raisins. Stir in the melted butter.
Heat a griddle over medium heat and brush with additional melted butter. Cook pancakes, each about 1/3 cup, until bubbles form on the top, then turn. Cakes will cook in about 2 minutes on each side. Keep pancakes tented with foil as they come off the griddle to keep them hot. Serve with drizzle honey or maple syrup over the top. Clint poses for the camera
Robin & Randi divvy up the chili