Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Grilled Chicken Salad with Corn and Blueberries

Want a way to use up all those blueberries that isn't in muffins or a smoothie? How about something savory! While you may not believe it, this here salad does in fact contain blueberries! No, they're not hiding, I just started making it and realized a little too late that my stash had diminished somewhat. NO matter- it's good with a few blueberries and it's great with a lot of blueberries!

This is such a great mix of unexpected flavors and textures- bonus? It's a lot of veggies! And I do love veggies. It was great on it's own, but I'm sure it's pretty good piled onto a piece of toast nestled into some butter lettuce.

Give it a go! Blueberries won't be here forever!

Grilled Chicken Salad with Corn and Blueberries

  • 4 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • salt & pepper
  • 3 stalks celery finely diced
  • Kernels from 2 ears of fresh corn
  • ¼ whole medium red onion, finely diced
  • 1-½ cup blueberries
  • 3 tblsp fresh dill, minced
  • 4 tblsp mayonnaise
  • 4 tblsp sour cream
  • ¼ cups milk
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • ¾ cups crumbled feta (or goat cheese)

Start by heating a grill (or in my case, a grill pan) to a very high heat. Season the chicken breasts on both sides with salt and pepper. Grill the chicken until done, about 7 minutes per side. Remove and allow to cool.

In a large bowl, combine the celery, corn, red onion, blueberries and dill. Stir to combine. In a small bowl make the dressing by combining the mayonnaise, sour cream, milk, lemon juice & feta. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.

Once chicken is cool, tear into bite-size shreds and add to the vegetable mixture. Add half of the dressing to the salad and taste. Add more dressing if necessary.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie

Last week my boyfriend had a birthday and as I tend to do, I made him a cake. Well no, I made him a pie. No, actually, I made him 4 pies- he got 2 of them.

Maybe you're wondering: "but Claire, I thought you were on a diet? Or at least attempting to be healthier? this does not seem to fit into that plan!" Well dear reader(s), I was very well behaved. I sampled. I just hope a pie post doesn't make me a cheater!

And the reason I made 4 pies? I based the recipe off one by Ms. Paula Deen and hers is meant to make two 9" pies. Who scales a recipe to that size?! It's like reading through the CIA cookbook all over again! "To make 6 banana loaves, begin by creamer 12 sticks of butter". Craziness!

I probably could have avoided the whining by halving the recipe but I figured with people in town, we could use the extra pie- only problem is that my mother apparently doesn't own a pie dish. I had the one Kris gave me for Christmas one year so I greased that one up and went searching for my mom's. I must have been making it up because I couldn't find it anywhere. In fact, Mother- you who loves pies- do you even MAKE pies?! Because I can't recall any! I know you went through a Lemon Meringue Pie Phase but then WHERE is the pie dish!? I found 2 tart pans! and 2 mini loaf pans and 2 regular loaf pans- a bundt cake pan, an angel food cake pan and even a tube pan! but no pie dish!

Mom- I think you've been outed as a pie phony.

Here- have some pie and realize what homemade deliciousness you've been missing out on.

I still love you.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie
Adapted from Paula Deen
Makes two 9" pie (or one 9" pie and three 3" pies)
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup (2-sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tbls vanilla extract
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup butterscotch chips
  • 1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 2 cups chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9" pie dishes.

In a large bowl sift together the flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder. In a mixer, cream together the sugars and butter until nice and fluffy. To the mixer, add the eggs one at a time, mixing well between each. Add the vanilla to the mixer then add the flour in little batches until well combined (without overbeating). Remove the bowl from the mixer and fold in the chocolate chips and walnuts.

Divide between the two pie dishes and level out with a spatula. Bake in the oven for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let the pies cool before serving topped with whipped cream (from the can), chocolate syrup and sprinkles. Don't forget the sprinkles.

Chocolate Syrup
Adapted from Bobby Flay's Burgers, Fries & Shakes

  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tbl light corn syrup
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened good quality dutch processed cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
In a small saucepan combine the water, sugar and corn syrup. Bring to a boil and whisk in the chocolate powder. Continue whisking until slightly thickened- about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in the vanilla. Let cool completely and transfer to a squeeze bottle and store in the fridge.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

EAT Superfood Salad

When trying to come up with a handful of healthy recipes I could just keep making over and over again, I wanted to make sure they were delicious. I don't see the point in eating something that isn't awesome. I wrangled together some of my favorites (which I shall be posting soon, I swear) and sought to recreate some tasty dishes I had eaten elsewhere. I started thinking about all the great sandwich shops in London and how they understood the quick and healthy lunch better than the US.

When I was living in London a trend was towards the "super food" salad. Each sandwich shop had their own version and although it seems like most of them didn't last and aren't on their menus anymore, I vividly remember the Superfood Salad from EAT.

I am so glad that I was able to recreate this salad because it is awesome. It has all you could hope for in a salad: crunchy, creamy, earthy, sweet, salty and tangy! There is so much going on and it all goes together so well. I think I could eat this everyday but I don't ever want to burn out on it so I've been cutting back to twice a week. I'm not even kidding you. I'm a master beet peeler now. And did you know sweet potatoes still taste good in the spring? That's rhetorical. Maybe you're not like me and can think of the sweet potato beyond thanksgiving casserole. Way to go! I diced this sweet potato and roasted it until tender and then tossed them with some of the dressing and- wait for it- poppy seeds. Doesn't that's just make you smile? I love poppy seeds.

Also this salad has been a great way to use up an old bag of frozen edamame that has been sitting in limbo for quite some time... And I hear they're healthy too!

EAT Superfood Salad
Adapted from a defunct salad at EAT.
Serves 2
Time: 30 minutes

  • 1 large sweet potato
  • 1 tsp poppy seeds
  • 1 bunch broccolini
  • 1/3 cup peas, frozen
  • 1/4 cup edamame, frozen
  • 2 small beets
  • 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 handful spinach
  • 1 handful alfalfa sprouts
  • 1-2oz goat cheese
  • 2 tbsp toasted seeds: pumpkin, sesame or sunflower
For the dressing:
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1/4 cup olive oil


Preheat oven to 375. Peel and dice sweet potatoes. Toss with some olive oil on a cookie sheet and spread out evenly. Roast until tender- 10-15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool. Mix together the ingredients for the dressing. Toss the sweet potatoes with 1 tbls salad dressing and poppy seeds.

Heat a pot of salted water to a boil and add in broccolini. Simmer for 2 minutes and add peas and edamame. Simmer everything for another 3 minutes. Drain and run under cold water. Trim beets of roots and shoots. Remove skin with a vegetable peeler and grate the beets through the large holes of a cheese grater (or use shredding attachment on food processor). Toss shredded beets with 1/4 tsp apple cider vinegar. Taste and add more vinegar if needed. Arrange salad in soup bowl starting with the spinach in one group, tuck in 3-4 stems broccolini, clump together some sweet potatoes and beets, fill in with the peas and edamame. Fit in a chunk of goat cheese and top it all off with alfalfa sprouts in the middle and seeds tossed on top of everything. Drizzle the dressing over top.

Friday, May 13, 2011

White Bean and Pork Toss

I have to admit right from the start that I love the name of this dish. I'm so hilarious.

I've been on a health kick lately- trying to not "treat" myself as much which can be hard when you like to bake as much as I do. But I've always eaten pretty healthy so it's just been a matter of focusing on all those delicious savory dishes I do and then forget about almost immediately. That's why I started this blog in the first place! Well it's been a really fun adventure thus far. I've had some crazy delicious food this week that has kept me pretty giddy about this "diet" I'm on.

This dish came about from leftovers. Personally, if I'm going to caramelize onions for a recipe, I'm always going to make extra which is exactly what I did last week. I shredded up a leftover pork chop, opened a can of which beans and chopped some marinated olives and finished off a bag of sun dried tomatoes (that have been lingering in the fridge since... i wanna say last summer when my mom bought them? don't judge..). I even had some leftover shallot dressing and all that combined with caramelized onions was just off-the-charts delicious. I thought I would want it slightly re-heated for lunch, but it was awesome cold, straight out of the fridge.Go try it and I promise you won't regret it!

White Bean and Pork Toss with Shallot Dressing
Serves 2
  • 1 16oz can white beans
  • 1 pork chop, cooked
  • 1 onion, caramelized
  • 8-10 sun dried tomatoes
  • 8-10 green olives, marinated
Shallot Dressing:
  • 1/4 cup minced shallots
  • 3 tbls balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tbls olive oil
  • 1 tbls dijon mustard
  • salt & pepper
To make the dressing, combine all ingredients in a mason jar and shake vigorously.

For the salad: shred the pork chop, rinse and drain the white beans and chop the olives and sun dried tomatoes. Combine all the salad ingredients in a large bowl and add half the dressing. Taste the salad and add more dressing if necessary.

Keeps for a few days in the fridge.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Pork Chops with Honey Mustard Sugar Snap Peas and Radishes

I made a gargantuan effort on Saturday morning to get up before 9am. Full disclosure- when my alarm went off I decided it really wasn't worth the effort to get up after all. But the rest of the house was getting ready and so off we went to the first farmer's market of the year. I had forgotten how much I love it there. And I'm not sure I've ever made it out this early in the year because I can't recall ever buying spring produce like this. Radishes, asparagus, strawberries, baby bok choy, sugar snap peas, the first tomatoes and the best damn fresh Mozzarella I've ever had. I'm a lucky girl. 

I've realized recently that although I eat really healthy on a day to day basis, my blog mostly shows off my efforts with butter and cream. A lot of sweets- not much in the way of healthy or savory. I think it has to do with the fact that a cake is a lot easier to photograph then say a salad which can start wilting immediately or that I might devour before I can grab my camera. Also- the European in me is never in a hurry to get dinner on the table before 8 o'clock which is not peak photography time.. so all of this is to say that I'm going to put my baking on hold for a while and try to bulk up my savory recipes on this here website and get a better representation of what's actually cooking in my kitchen.

This meal is a good example of that: making due with what I have in my fridge. At the farmer's market I bought what looked good, without planning ahead to what I would be making but it's not hard to come up with pork chops and a side of veggies. I adapted the recipes from Martha Stewart and just now realized that I was supposed to add some white wine to the onions- supposedly to make a glaze. I did not but I love caramelized onions any why way so these were very good on their own. As for the sugar snap pea and radish side, I have to admit that I haven't had much of these vegetables and after having a bad experience with some raw veggies for lunch, I felt the need to cook these slightly and add a sure-fire sauce. I usually makes this honey mustard sauce with sauteed asparagus but it worked quite well here. Give it a go- healthy but tasty!

Pork Chops with Caramelized Onions
Adapted from Martha Stewart
Serves 2 with extra onion compote
  • 2 small onions, sliced
  • 4 tbls butter
  • 3 tsp olive oil
  • 2 pork chops (preferably bone in)
  • Salt & pepper
Heat 3 tbls butter and 2 tsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium, almost low, heat. Add sliced onions and cook, stirring occasionally until caramelized, about 25 minutes. Turn heat to medium low if the onions start to burn or brown too quickly. 

Meanwhile, salt and pepper the pork chops. If they still have the bone, turn your oven on to 375 degrees. Once the onions are caramalized, remove from pan and keep warm. Heat the remaining 1 tbls butter and 1 tsp olive oil over medium high heat. Add the seasoned pork chops and sear until golden, about 3 minutes per side. If they aren't quite done yet, place them in the oven to finish cooking until desired doneness. Let stand before serving.

Honey Mustard Sugar Snap Peas and Radishes
Adapted from Martha Stewart
Serve 2
  • 8 oz sugar snap peas
  • 3 large radishes
  • 4 scallions
  • 2 tbls butter
  • 1 rounded tbls sour cream
  • 1 rounded tsp coarse ground mustard
  • 1 tsp honey
Prep the sugar snap peas by pulling the strings off and trimming the ends. Cut the radishes into equal segments. Chop scallions crosswise. Heat butter in a large saute pan. Add snap peas and cook for about 2 minutes. Add the scallions and radishes and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Add the sour cream, mustard and honey, flipping the veggies to combine the sauce. Let it simmer until the veggies are tender (just another minutes or so).