Wednesday, December 2, 2009

This Week in Food...

Weekly eats so far... Sunday, we ate the remainder of the Butternut Squash and Chipotle Soup and a side salad. My aunt got me the recipe and it is not a Tyler Florence like previously mentioned. Its from this website. Here is my aunts adaptation of it:
Chipotle Butternut Squash Soup

Makes about 6 servings

2 tbsp. butter (or margarine or oil)
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp. minced fresh ginger
1 carrot, diced
1 celery stalk, diced
5 cups water, chicken broth, or a combination
2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
2 medium butternut squash (about 2 lbs.), peeled, seeded, and diced
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. dried thyme (fresh is better)
1-2 tbsp. pureed chipotle with adobo
1/2 to 1 cup half and half
Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
In a large pot, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in onion, garlic, and ginger. Cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in carrots and celery, cook another 5 minutes. Add liquid, potatoes and squash, vinegar, brown sugar, and thyme. If you are using water, add a little salt. The liquid should cover the veggies. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer 30 to 45 minutes, or until vegetables are very soft. Remove from heat. Cool slightly. Working in batches, transfer mixture to blender or food processor and purée until smooth. Return puréed soup to pot. Season to taste with salt and pepper. At the last second and off the heat, add 1/2 to 1 cup of half and half.
I served my soup with some feta cheese. But on Thanksgiving, I added some candied pecans.

This soup is so perfect. Delicate and smooth with a hint of spicyness. I'm regretting giving my brother those leftovers....

Monday I made Chicken Parm Burgers. I found this recipe on Annie Eats. I pretty much did exactly what she did, although I used bulky rolls and melted provolone cheese on the rolls in the toaster and also added some mozzerela on the sauce. This was a fun dinner. Check out the recipe!
Chicken Parmesan Burgers

For the burgers: 1 lb. ground chicken 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese 1/4 cup bread crumbs 2 tsp. Italian seasoning 1 clove garlic, minced 1 shallot, finely diced Salt and pepper
For serving:
Pasta sauce
Mozzarella or provolone cheese (sliced or shredded)
Sautéed mushrooms (optional)
4 bulky rolls
Directions: In a medium bowl combine all of the ingredients for the burgers. Mix well until thoroughly combined. Form the mixture into 4 patties. Heat a large skillet on medium high. While meat marries together, saute a pound of sliced portobello mushrooms with EVOO for 10 minutes and remove to plate. Next, saute burgers on each side for 5-7 minutes until cooked through. At the same time, toast your rolls with Provolone cheese slives so the cheese melts. Also at the same time, microwave your store bought tomato sauce (I'm brand loyal to Classico). Then take your bulky roll, add your burger and mushrooms. On the other side of the roll, add the tomato sauce and sprinkle a little more mozzerela.

Last night we went out to dinner with my family before they headed back to the Midwest. It was a nice family gathering : )

Then tonight I made another recipe I saw on Annie's blog, Pineapple Chicken Salad.

Pineapple Chicken Salad
2 ½ cups cooked chicken breast
½ cup matchstick cut carrots
1/3 cup light mayonnaise
¼ cup finely chopped green onions
¼ cup finely chopped celery
¼ cup plain low-fat yogurt
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
½ tsp. garlic powder
¼ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
1 8-oz. can pineapple tidbits, drained
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Serve on rolls or in pita pockets with romaine lettuce.
I thought this was an interesting combination to begin with but I'm not sure I loved it. It was fine. (Which if you know me, if I used the word fine, you know I didn't really enjoy it!) I should preface this by saying I don't really like chicken salad to begin with. (As mentioned before, I'm a little scared of mayonnaise). I think I made this dish creamier than I had hoped. So all in all it was o-k. Not great, not horrible. The pineapple bits were definitely I nice sweet bite and texture. I like mixing fruit and meat (even though I don't really like fruit by itself). I know, weird. My aunt hates mixing fruit with meat but sometimes I think it works... so if you are thinking about trying this recipe, I would say go for it, but its not a huge favorite. (I'm pretending I have a huge blog following).

TOP CHEF season Finale!!! Who do you want to win? Michael is hot, but I'm pulling for Brian. I like that he is a true professional. I think Kevin is super talented but just not at the same level as the Voltaggio brothers. Thoughts? Also, I think I knew who was going to be in the top 4 after the first episode. Same with Project Runway.

Oh yes, and workouts:
Sunday: off
Monday: Physical Therapy, Eliptical, stairmaster, lifted legs, ran 2 miles, stim, ice
Tuesday: Boot Camp
Wed: Ran 3 miles (almost painfree, hip felt some pain), lifted legs

Plan for rest of the week:
Thurs: Muscle Conditioning
Fri: Run in the AM with Nancy!! (it's been forever!)

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