Cleaning out the fridge: white bean chili

In the third and last chapter of desperation in the kitchen, I used my stash of white beans, frozen chicken breasts, onion and spices to make an amended version (for spicy weaklings) of Epicurious’ White Bean Chicken Chili. You’ll see some suggestions at the end on how to make it vegan or vegetarian, as well.

It’s pretty simple when you break it down. I sauteed onion, oregano and cumin; and added the frozen chicken breasts directly on one side of the pan. They required more cooking time since they were frozen, but easy regardless. Next, you basically add the beans and water (I didn’t have chicken broth) and it thickens over time. Note: I don’t think chicken is necessary; you could skip that step and I don’t think you’d miss it.

David and I are both sensitive to spicy foods, so I skipped the green chilies, red pepper and cilantro. Also, a tablespoon of cumin was too much; I almost wondered if it was a typo. In order to cut down on heat, I added about 3/4 a stick of butter towards the end, and it did the trick. (I skipped the whipping cream, so that may have had something to do with it.)

So to summarize, if you cut down on cumin and skipped the chicken, chicken broth and butter/cream, you’d have a vegan, dairy-free white bean chili.

Pulled Pork Enchiladas

One pork tenderloin turned into two great dinners and leftovers for three nights, with the help of @everydayfood and @epicurious. Here’s how it went down.

Monday night I made pulled pork on the stove, using an adapted recipe from Everyday Food, “Lighter Pulled Pork Sandwiches.” I skipped the coleslaw and served the pork on sourdough sandwich rolls.  I served corn on the side. Tuesday night I had leftovers.

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Tonight I made enchiladas with the leftover pulled pork, corn and a new sauce taken from Epicurious’ “Garden Vegetable Enchiladas.” I used 1% instead of whole milk, and only 1 tablespoon of chili powder. (The recipe called for 3, wow!)

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Everyone loved the new enchiladas, but we’ll always hold a special place in our hearts for Birthday Enchiladas.

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Eggs in Heaven

Inspiration from @epicurious iPad app + @farmfreshtoyou vegetables = heavenly potato, egg, veggie casserole. For tonight’s dinner, I had 8 eggs to use up and figured some sort of potato casserole would be a good route to explore. I came across “Eggs in Purgatory with Artichoke Hearts, Potatoes and Capers” through an Epicurious recipe search, but the tomato-artichoke sauce sounded a little like heartburn hell (plus I didn’t have all the ingredients). So instead, I improvised with fresh zucchini and carrots from Farm Fresh to You, and whipping cream for what I like to call, “Eggs in Heaven.”

The result was a deliciously creamy potato, egg, and vegetable casserole. Divine!

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Playing with Chards

Red chard and spring onions from @FarmFreshtoYou + @Epicurious risotto recipe = easy, healthy Sunday dinner. Tonight I made a quick Red Chard Risotto recipe from Epicurious (originally submitted to @BonAppetitMag by Sandra Rudloff of neighboring Los Altos in 1996). I’m still not an overwhelming fan of Swiss chard, but the buttery flavor and texture of the risotto neutralized the somewhat bitter red chard leaves, and also resulted in a curious pink color. Combined with a spinach salad, we filled up on vitamin and mineral-packed veggies, after a gluttonous weekend of steakhouse dinners and poolside drinks. (More to come on that!)

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Pancrepes

Pancakes – baking powder = pancrepes. Thick pancakes have never really been my thing. But I love crepes. I stumbled upon a way to make more crepe-like pancakes: leave out the baking powder. I used this recipe for Blueberry Pancakes from Epicurious but you could use virtually any pancake recipe. Just make sure to use less batter with each pancake and keep the heat to medium-low.

Another trick, when there’s just two of you: make the whole batch and freeze the leftovers (in baggies or with wax paper between each, otherwise they will stick together).

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