I love a big bowl of veggies and meat. It’s the best. Filling and good for you – provided there’s not too much meat, that is. Maque Choux is a traditionally creole dish that fit the bill for a filling weeknight meal. We served this with rice to add a grain.
1T veg oil 12oz andouille sausage, halved lengthwise and cut into 0.5″ pieces 2T butter 1 small onion, finely chopped 1 small red bell pepper, stemmed and seeded, finely chopped 1 Anaheim chili, stemmed and seeded, finely chopped salt & pepper 2 garlic cloves, minced 0.5t dried thyme 2c fresh corn kernels (or 1lb frozen) 1t cider vinegar 4 scallions, thinly sliced
Heat oil in a 12″ skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the sausage and cook, stirring, until well browned, about 3 minutes. Transfer to paper-towel lined plate and discard any fat in the skillet.
Set skillet over medium heat and melt the butter. Add the onion, bell pepper, chili, and 0.5t salt. Con, scraping up browned bits and stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, 5-7 minutes. Stir in garlic & thyme and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Increase heat to medium-high and add corn, 0.75t salt and 0.25t pepper. Cook, stirring until corn is crisp-tender, 3-5 minutes.
Return sausage to skillet, stir and cook until heated through, about 1 minute. Stir in the vinegar, then taste and season with salt & pepper. Stir in the scallions.
Chicken and mushrooms is a classic combination. It’s one of my favorites. I saw this recipe in a Milk Street magazine and had to try it. It’s pretty good, very full of umami flavor, which was probably my generous hand with the miso. I served it with white rice, I’m sure there are other good combinations to pair it with.
0.5c mirin 6T white miso 2T soy sauce (I, as always, substituted gluten-free tamari) 1T finely grated ginger 0.5t ground black pepper 3lbs bone-in skin-on chicken thighs 1lb cremini mushrooms, trimmed & quartered 1 bunch scallions, cut into 2″ lengths, whites and greens separated 1T unseasoned rice vinegar
Mist a foil-lined baking sheet with cooking spray. (I skipped the foil for environmental reasons and scrubbed for awhile to get the pan clean, just FYI). In a large bowl, whisk the mirin, miso, soy sauce, ginger, and pepper. Cut two parallel slashes on each chicken thigh, slicing down to the bone. Add to miso mixture, and turn to coat, working the mixture into the slashes. Place skin-side up on baking sheet.
Add mushrooms and scallion whites to now-empty bowl; toss to coat. Add to the baking sheet, scattering around the chicken. Roast on the middle rack at 450F until everything is well-browned and the chicken thighs reach 175F, 30-40 minutes.
Transfer chicken to serving platter and spoon mushroom mixture over it. Sprinkle with the scallion greens. Pour pan juices into a bowl; skim fat & add rice vinegar. Mix, taste, season with pepper to taste. Serve with the chicken.
I don’t know if it’s still salmon season or not – isn’t it usually over about now? But there was some delicious salmon at the farmer’s market this weekend, so miso-glazed salmon called my name. I served it with oven fries and fresh-made chocolate chip cookies for dessert. It was a good Sunday night meal.
3T white miso 5t honey 1T soy sauce (I used tamari, because: gluten-free) 2t mirin 1.5t toasted sesame oil 0.25t cayenne pepper 4-6oz center-cut salmon pieces 2T water 1T sesame seeds 1 scallion thinly sliced on diagonal
Whisk miso, 4t honey, soy sauce, mirin, sesame oil, and cayenne together. Measure out 2t of sauce and brush onto tops of salmon. Let stand at room temperature for 20 minutes. Mix water and remaining teaspoon of honey into remaining sauce.
Evenly space filets, skin-side down on oiled wire rack set in rimmed baking sheet. Broil until thickest part of salmon reaches 115F (6-8 minutes). Transfer to platter, drizzle with 2T of remaining miso mixture. Sprinkle sesame seeds and scallion. Serve.
Let me be the 12 millionth person to recommend Salt Fat Acid Heat, both on Netflix and in book form. This is Samin Nosrat’s Vietnamese-style cucumber salad. I served it with pan-seared chicken thighs and rice, and it was the interest in an otherwise unremarkable meal. The extra dressing from the salad made a nice sauce for the chicken.
2lbs (about 8) Persian or Japanese cucumbers 1 large jalapeño, seeds removed if desired, thinly sliced 3 scallions, finely sliced 1 garlic clove, crushed 0.5c coarsely chopped cilantro 16 large mint leaves, coarsely chopped 0.5c toasted peanuts, coarsely chopped 0.25c neutral-tasting oil 4-5T lime juice 4t rice wine vinegar 1T fish sauce 1t sugar pinch of salt
Using either a mandolin or a sharp knife, thinly slice cucumbers, discarding the ends. In a large bowl, combine cucumbers, jalapeño, scallions, garlic, cilantro, mint, and peanuts. In a small bowl, mix remaining ingredients and stir until salt & sugar are dissolved. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and mix. Taste and adjust with more salt or lime juice. Serve immediately.
I’m not a huge chicken teriyaki fan, but I do like the combo of fresh vegetables and umami’ed up chicken in this one. Plus, it’s quick – you can make it on a weeknight.
4T sake 1T cornstarch 2lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1″ pieces 2T veg oil (not olive oil) 0.5c mirin 0.25c tamari (aka gluten-free soy sauce – use soy sauce if you’re not GF) 1T finely grated ginger 0.5t ground black pepper 3c cooked white rice 3 scallions, sliced thinly on the diagonal 3″ piece of cucumber cut into matchsticks 4t roasted sesame seeds
Whisk 2T sake and cornstarch. Add chicken, toss to coat. Heat 1T oil in a 12″ skillet until shimmering. Add half of the chicken in a single layer and cooking without stirring until browned, about 3 minutes. Flip chicken, cook another 2 minutes. Transfer to bowl, repeat with remaining chicken.
Return skillet to medium heat, add mirin, tamari, remaining 2T sake, and ginger. Bring to simmer and cook, stirring and scraping up brown bits until spoon drawn through leaves trail, about 5 minutes.
Return chicken and any accumulated juices to pan. Add pepper and cook, stirring until chicken is glazed, about 4 minutes. Season with additional tamari to taste. Divide rice amongst 4 bowls. Spoon chicken over rice, top with cucumber, scallions, and sesame seeds.
I enjoy enchiladas verdes: the bite of the tomatillos, the yummy cheese, the unexpected radish garnish… It’s a medley of delicious flavors. It’s a weekend dish, though, not something to make on a weekday unless you really, really like cooking.
Set oven to broil setting. Heat 2t oil in saucepan over med heat, once shimmering, sauté onion for 6-8 minutes. Add 2t garlic & cumin, cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in broth, add chicken. Cover and simmer 15-20 minutes (chicken should be 160F). Transfer chicken to plate to cool, remove 0.25c liquid, reserve remaining liquid for a different purpose (it makes a delicious soup base if you’re looking for something to save it for).
Meanwhile, toss poblanos and tomatillos with 2t of oil, arrange on foil-lined baking sheet with poblanos skin side up. Broil 5-10 minutes, until veggies soften and begin to blacken. Cool, remove skins from poblanos, and transfer poblanos and tomatillos to food processor. Decrease oven temp to 350F and discard foil from baking sheet.
Add 1t sugar, 1t salt, 1t garlic, reserved 0.25c liquid to food processor, process until sauce is slightly chunky, about eight 1-second pulses. Taste, add additional sugar and salt to taste.
Pull or cut cooled chicken into small bite-sized pieces. Combine chicken with cilantro & 1.5c cheese (you should have another 0.5c of cheese to sprinkle on top).
Smear bottom of 9″x13″ pan with 0.75c of tomatillo sauce. Place tortillas on baking sheet, spray with cooking oil, bake for 2-4 minutes, until soft & pliable. After removing them, increase oven to 450F. Place tortillas on countertop, and spread 0.33c filling down center of each tortilla. Roll tightly and place in pan, seam side down. Pour remaining tomatillo sauce on top, using spoon to spread to make sure it fully coats all tortillas. Sprinkle with remaining 0.5c cheese and cover pan with foil.
Bake 15-20 minutes, until cheese is melted and enchiladas are cooked through. Uncover, sprinkle with scallions & thinly sliced radishes. Serve immediately.
Because I am a working parent, quick dinners are a must. I’m a big fan of making a big pot of soup on the weekends and storing it in individual sized containers.
I’m also a big fan of stir-fries and pastas. This drunken noodle recipe is a bit of a hybrid. It’s an asian-style stir fry that uses rice noodles. Like any stir-fry, it requires some chopping, but it cooks quickly. It’s probably 45-ish minutes from pulling out the recipe to setting the serving dish on the table.
12oz rice noodles
12 oz chicken breast (the packages of chicken breast at our grocery store are 1lb, we just use the whole thing)
1T + 0.25c tamari or gluten-free soy sauce (or heck, if you’re not gluten-free, regular soy sauce is probably fine!)
0.75c packed brown sugar
0.33c lime juice (~3 limes if you’re juicing your own)
0.25c Asian chili-garlic sauce
0.25 c vegetable oil
0.5 head Napa cabbage, cut into 1″ pieces (~6c)
1.5c coarsely chopped cilantro
4 scallions, sliced thin
Cover noodles in very hot tap water. Leave until pliable (~35 minutes, which, if you do this first and then chop the chicken & veggies, is conveniently about how long until you’ll need them again).
Slice chicken breasts into strips 0.25″ thick. Toss with 1T tamari sauce.
Whisk together remaining tamari/soy sauce, sugar, lime juice, water, chili-garlic sauce. Set aside.
Heat 2T oil in 12″ nonstick skillet over high heat. Add chicken and cook for ~3 minutes. The strips should be nearly cooked through. Transfer to clean bowl.
Add 1T oil to skillet. Add cabbage and cook until spotty brown, about 3 minutes. Transfer to bowl with chicken.
Wipe out skillet, add 3T oil, heat over medium-high heat. Add drained rice noodles and tamari mixture, tossing gently until sauce has thickened and noodles are tender. (This typically takes ~5 minutes, but the recipe claims it could take as long as 10. That’s never been my experience.) Add chicken-cabbage mixture and cilantro. Cook until chicken is warmed through. Sprinkle scallions & serve.
In truth, this weekend was all about celery. I had some in the fridge, and it was wilting. I made tuna salad and potato-leek-fennel soup (which also uses celery) and this lovely little stir fry from Cook’s Illustrated known as Chinese Chicken Wraps. The kid, of course, still eats around the vegetables, but she does eat it. It’s intended to be an appetizer (if you spoon the filling into each lettuce leaf, rather than pile it all on top like I did), but add some rice and it’s a robust meal.
Place chicken on large plate, freeze until edges are getting hard. About 20 minutes. Mix all other ingredients in medium bowl. Pulse meat in food processor for 10-1 sec pulses. Transfer meat to medium bowl with sauce. Let rest for 15 minutes.
Stir fry 2T veg oil
2 celery ribs, diced
6oz shitake mushrooms, stemmed & sliced thin
0.5c water chestnuts, cut into 1/4″ pieces
2 scallions, white parts minced, green parts sliced thin
2 garlic cloves
8 leaves bibb lettuce
Heat 1T oil in 12″ non-stick skillet over high heat till smoking. Cook chicken. Move to separate bowl. Wipe out skillet. Heat remaining 1T oil (high heat, till smoking). Add celery & mushrooms; cook, stirring constantly, until mushrooms are about half the size, 3-4 minutes. Add water chestnuts, scallion whites, and garlic. Cook till fragrant, about 1 minute. Whisk sauce to recombine. Add chicken to skillet, then add sauce. Stir to combine. Serve over lettuce leaves.