Sirloin Steak & Salad with Honey Roasted Walnuts, Blue Cheese, Strawberries with Strawberry Honey Vinaigrette

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I have been on a bit of a health kick lately, but I refuse to completely give up red meat and, today,  realizing it has been a while since I’ve had a good steak, I knew just where to go to get one… Trust me I know this may surprise you… Target! They sell steak from a meat company named Sutton and Dodge, and if you hadn’t noticed we share the same last name which for that reason and because it looked like a darn good steak, I had to try it! Let’s just say the sticker on the front that says “steak house quality” is not lying. They are now one of my go-to choices when I want to fry up a steak at home.

Now on to the salad… It feels like a bit of an indulgence, but it’s actually good for you as well. I dressed up the walnuts with fresh honey to give sweetness that I balanced out with salty blue cheese, then topped it with strawberry vinaigrette made from fresh strawberries, threw on some more fresh strawberries; and, boy was it good!

This made for a great lunch and it satisfied my craving for beef but was light enough so that I didn’t compromise my diet… Too much. 😉

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For salad:

Bed of greens of choice
Honey Roasted Walnuts (recipe follows)
Chunks of blue cheese
Diced strawberries
Strawberry Honey Vinaigrette (recipe follows)

Top a bed of greens with blue cheese, honey roasted walnuts, and strawberries. Then drizzle vinaigrette on top.

For Strawberry Honey Vinaigrette:

6 strawberries
1/2 – 1 teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon white whine vinegar
2 tablespoons good olive oil
Dash of salt
Dash of freshly ground black pepper

Add strawberries to a blender and puree until smooth. Then add honey, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Then set your blender to “mix” mode and blend while slowly adding the oil. Adjust any ingredients to your taste. Chill in fridge while cooking your steak.

For honey roasted walnuts:

Chopped walnuts, approx 1/2 cup
Honey, 1-1 1/2 tablespoons
Sprinkle of salt

Roast walnuts in 400° oven for one minute. Remove and mix with honey and salt. Roast for one to two more minutes. Careful not to burn.

For steak:

Sirloin Steak (cut 1 1/2 inch thick)
Salt
Coarse ground freshly black pepper
Oil for frying

Method for steak:

Pre-heat oven to 400°. Then heat heavy duty skillet on med high to high heat. Season steaks with salt and pepper liberally for good flavor. Add oil and heat just until starting to smoke, then add steak. Your pan must be very hot and you should hear the sizzle! If not, remove steak and try again. Cook steak for 3 minutes on each side until a nice crust has formed. This is where you create all your flavor. Then put steak in preheated oven and cook for about 6 minutes more or until meat thermometer reads 145° for medium rare, or cook to your preference.

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Peppermint Bark

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It’s time to deck the halls… And our food blogs with holiday treats! This one came as a request from my parents, it is their absolute favorite candy to eat during Christmas time. Good thing is, it is super easy to make and also quite fun!

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Ingredients:

16 oz semi-sweet milk chocolate (four 4oz bars)
3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
16 oz white chocolate (four 4oz bars)
Candy canes, crushed

Tip: good quality ingredients will leave you with better tasting candy

Start by melting the milk chocolate in a glass bowl sitting over a pot of gently boiling water. Once melted, add the peppermint extract and stir. Take off heat and pour onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Spread evenly to desired thickness and let sit in fridge until hardened.

In the meantime, melt the white chocolate in the same manner. Once the milk chocolate has hardened, pour the white chocolate over and spread evenly over top the milk chocolate.

Crush candy canes and sprinkle over white chocolate while it is still melted. The chocolate should be pretty well covered with the candy. I like to break the candy into fine pieces.

Put the baking sheet back in fridge until the chocolate has hardened completely. Once this is done, remove from fridge and break the candy into pieces sized to your preference. They should not be perfect cuts.

Then serve! 🙂

Merry Christmas everyone!

Creamy Mushroom Soup (made with pork bone stock)

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I have a recent obsession, (not soup, that’s a life long love of mine) it’s Shabu Shabu. For anyone who is unfamiliar, Shabu Shabu is served at Japanese restaurants, and it consists of thinly sliced meat and fresh vegetables that is cooked in boiling broth and served with different sauces; at restaurants it is do it yourself. Fortunately for me, there is a fantastic restaurant for Shabu Shabu, Itchikawa, near my home that has the most amazing broth I have ever had! Pork bone. Its so rich and meaty (also a little fatty 😉 )… Oh so good! So I started taking the left over broth home to cook with, and just as I expected, it makes for an amazing additive.

Today, I made my Creamy Mushroom Soup with pork bone broth in place of chicken stock. Of course, any stock will do just fine, chicken or vegetable for a vegetarian version. I paired it with a seared pork chop. And well, I live in Southern California, so it’s not exactly cold yet… But nonetheless, it made a pretty darn good fall dinner!

Ingredients:

2 leeks, chopped, white and light green parts
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 1/2 lbs mushrooms, sliced (button, baby Bella)
3/4 teaspoon fresh thyme
2 cloves garlic, chopped
3-4 cups stock of choice (pork bone, chicken, vegetable)
1-2 cups heavy cream (add to your preference)
Salt and pepper
Fresh finely chopped parsley for Garnish (optional)

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Simple really… In a big pot or dutch oven: saute onions and leeks for a few minutes before adding mushrooms and thyme and sauteing for about 7 more minutes. Don’t forget to season with salt and pepper during this. Add garlic, cook for about two more minutes. Then add stock or broth and simmer for about 15-20 minutes. At this point, check seasoning. Transfer about 3/4 of the veges to a blender and puree until smooth, add back to pot . Add heavy cream and heat through. Serve and garnish with parsley and cheese if desired.

Enjoy!

© Priscilla Sutton and HotBites.WordPress.com, 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Priscilla Sutton and HotBites.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Chicken Piccata and Orzo

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One of the things I love about cooking is we’re able to make a dish our own by having it fit our taste. Like taking a classic and whipping it up the way we want. Add one ingredient or nix another, we play by our own rules in the kitchen! There is usually some trial and error involved…  Sometimes we score and other times perhaps it would have been best to leave it well alone. But either way, it is fun right?!

This is one of my versions of a familiar dish, Chicken Piccata, which basically translates to breaded sauteed chicken in a sauce. I kept mainly to the tradition but did leave out the white wine, simply because I had none; and, to my preference, used an abundance of regular yellow onions instead of shallots. However, on other occasions I do use the ingredients I just mentioned, so don’t think I’m ruling them out!

Here’s how I did it:

Serves 2-4 people

Ingredients:

2 large chicken breasts, cut in half and pounded out to about 3/4 inch thickness

Flour

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons olive oil

For sauce:

1 small yellow onion, sliced thinly in quarter moons

1-2 cloves garlic, minced

1 1/2 – 2 cups chicken stock

1 1/2 – 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

3/4 – 1 cup heavy whipping cream

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Serve with Orzo (1/2 cup per person)

Start out by seasoning the chicken well with salt and black pepper. Then dip into flour to lightly coat, shake excess flour off. Add to a skillet with oil heated to medium heat. Cook about 5 minutes on both sides or until golden brown on both sides and cooked through. Juices will run clear when done. Remove chicken from skillet and set in warm place.

Add onions to skillet, sprinkle with salt and pepper and allow to cook for about 7 min, or until soft. Then add garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes more being careful not to burn. Add chicken stock and simmer for about ten minutes until the liquid has reduced by more than half. Once reduced add lemon juice and turn heat to low. Allow sauce to cool down and then add heavy cream. If stock is too hot, when added, the cream will separate. Season sauce to taste.

Plate chicken and cooked Orzo and top with sauce. Enjoy!

© Priscilla Sutton and HotBites.WordPress.com, 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Priscilla Sutton and HotBites.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Mushroom Onion Swiss Burger

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My husband ate a burger while in Las Vegas some time ago and came home to tell me how amazing it was and that he must take me there to try it. So yesterday, remembering some of the ingredients he mentioned, I decided to make a similar burger and see if he would connect the dots. I did not, however, try to replicate it.

I was sneaky and never mentioned the burger he loved from Vegas, but after he took the first bite and immediately said “heey!” I knew I did good!! He was very pleased… it was pretty awesome.

Ingredients:

Ground Angus beef patties
Sliced Swiss cheese
Caramelized onions
Sauteed mushrooms
Sliced tomatoes
Worsheshire mayo, recipe follows
Kaiser rolls
Salt and ground black pepper

Caramelized onions:
Large onion
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
Salt and pepper

Heat oil and butter on med low heat. Add onions and cook for 30 min until caramelized, season with salt and pepper.

Sauteed mushrooms:
Sliced baby bella mushrooms
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Saute in skillet for about 7-9 min on medium heat.

Cut kaiser rolls and butter insides of both pieces, grill until golden brown.

Season with salt and pepper then fry burgers in skillet on med high heat on both sides until barely pink in middle. After the first flip, add 2 slices of swiss cheese to each patty and allow to melt completely.

Worsheshire mayo:
Mayo
Worsheshire sauce
Fresh cracked black pepper
Salt

Mix all ingredients to taste.

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Pile all ingredients on bun, including sliced tomato, and dig in!

I served burger with oven roasted potatoes. Toss cut potatoes in olive oil, salt, pepper, and seasoning salt. Roast at 400° for about 30 min, or until golden and crispy. Serve with ketchup.

© Priscilla Sutton and HotBites.WordPress.com, 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Priscilla Sutton and HotBites.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Grilled Roasted Garlic Chicken and Fresh Orzo Salad

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It hasn’t quite felt like summer to me until this week when I have been spending most all my free time in the pool and next to the grill. My daughter likes hot dogs, so needless to say I have grilled many of them, but tonight it was all about the chicken!

My inspiration for this dish came from Anne Burrell’s Garlic Chicken Casserole with Israeli Cous Cous. Its basically a variation of that using almost the exact same chicken recipe, but I paired it with my cold Orzo salad instead that’s zesty and simple to make, which I think is great for a summer night. I changed the increments of the chicken marinade a bit. Then I used rosemary instead of thyme and ground cumin instead of toasted cumin seeds as Anne Burrell used, only because that is what I had on hand.

Ingredients:

For chicken:
About 6 cloves roasted garlic
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
3/4 – 1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 large rosemary sprig, leaves removed and chopped
1/4 cup or more extra virgin olive oil
2 chicken breasts or 2 quarters (skin on and bone in)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For Orzo salad:
1 cup Orzo
1 tomato
1 1/2 tablespoons red onion, finely chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley
3 1/2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese
Zest of 1 lemon
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup good extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

To roast garlic: place garlic in their skins on a baking sheet in a 375° oven for 20 minutes

To make marinade I added the peeled roasted garlic, cumin, rosemary, lemon juice, and lemon zest into the food processor and pulsed while adding the olive oil until well blended. Then I poured the marinade on top of the chicken in a zipper lock bag and let marinade for 3 hours. Before putting the chicken on grill I sprinkled it with salt and pepper and grilled it on medium-low heat, about 10 minutes each side. Cooking time might vary depending on what part of the chicken is being cooked, breasts cook for less time.

To make Orzo salad, I added the orzo to a pot of seasoned (liberally with salt) water and let boil for 9 minutes. Once done I rinsed with cold water and allowed it to cool completely. For the vinaigrette I mixed the lemon juice, zest, garlic, salt and pepper together; and then whisked in the olive oil. I add the remaining ingredients to the Orzo and then mix with vinaigrette. It needed a bit more salt so I adjusted the seasonings once done.

I really enjoyed this; it is a great summer dinner.

© Priscilla Sutton and HotBites.WordPress.com, 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Priscilla Sutton and HotBites.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Chicken Linguine in a Lemon Garlic Cream Sauce (infused with rosemary)

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It seems I can never get enough pasta lately! I created this recipe one day when my pantry and fridge were running low on food, so I pulled out the ingredients I had and ended up with one of my favorite pasta dishes. That week I probably made it for lunch two more times. There are so many flavors going on in this dish, it’s creamy and fresh tasting from the lemon, and there’s a hint of rosemary to compliment the meatiness of the chicken and stock.

Ingredients: (these may not be exactly precise so you can eyeball it)

Feeds 2-3 people

2 chicken breast cutlets (or pound out 2 small breasts)
1/3 onion, chopped
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 rosemary sprig (leaves attached)
1/4 – 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 cup freshly grated parmesan
Linguine , about 1/2 box
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil

Boil water and prepare chicken: heat olive oil in skillet on med-high heat, season chicken liberally on both sides with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Add to hot skillet and cook through and until golden brown, about 2-3 min each side. Remove chicken and set aside. Season boiling water liberally with salt and then add linguine, cook until al dente about 9 min. Add onions into same skillet; cook until fragrant, about two minutes. Add garlic and a pinch of salt, cook, stir occasionally, about 2 min. Add chicken stock and whole rosemary sprig and bring to boil; once the stock is at a boil and the rosemary is fragrant, remove it from the stock; stock should reduce in volume by half or more. Cut chicken into small pieces, do not add yet. Add lemon juice and black pepper to taste (add salt if needed). Turn heat to low and allow to cool for a couple minutes, then add heavy cream (if stock is too hot the cream will seperate). Stir and add chicken to sauce. Check seasoning, add salt and pepper if needed. Add linguine straight to pan and before stirring add parmesan cheese, then mix well. Transfer to serving dish and garnish with some of the parmesan cheese.

© Priscilla Sutton and HotBites.WordPress.com, 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Priscilla Sutton and HotBites.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.