Zucchini and Tomato Quiche in a Potato Crust

Sometimes you just don’t feel like making a traditional crust. This was one of those times. I had a homegrown zucchini, some cherry tomatoes, cheese, eggs, and 2 potatoes. Quiche for supper! This is a different filling recipe than my usual one; it is more eggs, half and half instead of milk and no cottage cheese; cubed mozzarella cheese. It was a delicious change of pace especially with the julienned fresh basil leaves sprinkled all over the top. You could use other veggies; I went with what I had. The garden’s bounty and it didn’t fail me.

Just baked, still pretty hot.

Angie’s Zucchini and Tomato Quiche

Ingredients

2 large russet potatoes, washed well and sliced very thin: about 1/8 inch thick.

cooking spray

5 large eggs

1/3 cup half and half

about 4-5 ounces cubed mozzarellla cheese

about 1/3 cup sliced onion; I used one small onion

2 Tsp EVOL

approximately 1 to 1-1/2 cups sliced zucchini

1/4 tsp garlic powder

1/2 cup or so cherry tomatoes, halved

6-7 large basil leaves Jullianned

Directions:

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 8.5-9 inch metal pie pan with olive oil cooking spray. Line it with potato slues on the bottom and half way up the sides. Spray again all over with the olive oil cooking spray. Bake 20 min; don’t let it get really brown. Turn oven down to 350 after removing pie shell.

Mix eggs and half and half in blender; 10 seconds or so.

Sautee the onion rings in some EVOL; maybe 2 tsp of it. Add squash after 2-3 minutes. Cook until softening; maybe 5 minutes. Sprinkle with garlic powder. Pour into warm potato crust. Sprinkle with tomato halves and cheese cubes. Pour egg mixture gently over it Sprinkle with basil leaves.

Bake in 350 degree oven 30-35 minutes; if it looks like it is browning too much turn heat back to 335 degrees.

Cool to lukewarm before cutting. Enjoy!

Thai Chicken Coconut Lime Curry

I was looking for a simple Thai curry without using curry pastes to flavor it. I was thinking some coconut milk for great flavor and I found a few recipes. I blended two or three together to make the best Thai chicken curry I have ever created. I loaded it with fresh vegetables and love it’s clean fresh flavor. And I hope you will too. You can use different vegetables – what you have and what you like. I found the amount of sauce to be perfect, actually ate it with a big spoon so I could get every soupy bit!

Notes: Please use full fat coconut milk for the correct consistency and flavor. I used boneless chicken thighs. It could be easily made with boneless split chicken breasts. I let Joe eat most of the hot pepper rings, to each his own. I do like how it makes it sing with a bit of controlled heat. Do not leave the fish sauce out; you won’t even know it is in there, but it really enhances the flavor. Enjoy!

Not a great picture at all but I wanted to post this recipe so here it is! Trust me it is delicious.

Thai Chicken Coconut Lime Curry

Ingredients

2 Tbsp mild olive oil

1.5-2 lbs. boneless and skinless chicken thighs

1/2-2/3 cup chopped onion

1 large carrot peeled and sliced thin on the diagonal: 1/4 inch width

1 large red pepper cut in long strips and then cut the strips in half

2 cloves of garlic pressed

1 Tbsp. fresh ginger grated (I freeze mine and it grates well that way)

1/3 of a jalapeno pepper or a red chili pepper of the heat you prefer, slice in narrow rings, remove seeds

1 can full fat coconut soup, shake it up before opening

1 Tbsp. fish sauce

Zest a lime and then juice it (need 2 Tbsp lime juice)

1 cup asparagus stems snapped into 1.5-inch lengths. If it won’t snap; pitch the rest of each stalk.

2 cups of baby spinach washed and drained

More lime – wedges to squeeze over each dish

Instructions: Prep work of cutting up all veggies into small pieces as described and similar lengths other than chopped onions which will be smaller. Prep work of cutting boneless thighs into halves or thirds depending on size. I would leave breasts the half size, so they don’t overcook. A whole breast would be too big. Split in half is perfect I am thinking.

I used a 15-inch-wide paella pan, mine is nonstick and gives me the room for all the veggies in this dish. Just use a large sauté pan that will hold everything. Heat it a few minutes, add 1 tbsp of the mild oil. When it is hot add the chicken. Brown it for 3 minutes on each side and then use tongs to remove them to a plate. Add the other tbsp. oil and then the onion when the pan is fairly hot. Turn the heat to medium low and cook until starting to get soft 4 minutes (stir it as it cooks so no burnt onion bits). Add carrot slices and red pepper strips; cook another 2 minutes. Add the fish sauce, grated ginger, garlic, stir well, add the coconut milk, stir well as it gets hot, stop just before a boil ensues. Return the chicken thighs to the pan and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes. Turn the chicken pieces over, cook 5 minutes, nestle the asparagus spears into the sauce and cover it again. Add the lime juice and zest and the spinach leaves after 5 more minutes, keep covered. By now the asparagus should be soft enough to stick in a fork. If not, cook another minute. The spinach just needs to wilt; it will continue to do that even after you turn off the heat.

If you like cilantro throw on a third of a cup of chopped fresh cilantro at the end, we don’t so I didn’t. If you can get Thai basil, use that instead! I can only find it if I grow it myself. So summer is the season for Thai basil. Great hot basil taste which is perfect in Thai curries.

Serve this curry over hot Jasmine rice. I make mine in a sauce pan that I cut a brown paper bag circle to fit between the pot and the tight-fitting lid, it should overhang by an inch or so; the paper liner keeps liquid from escaping and drying out the rice before it is done. Or make it in your Instant Pot. I made a full cup of uncooked rice, and it was just about the perfect amount of rice. Enjoy!

Another less than stellar photograph. Not sure why but I think I was so eager to dig in I didn’t bother to tidy up the plate. I will take a new one next time I make it.

Lima Bean Stew…not Quite Your Grandma’s Version!

Lima beans, old school. Not a particularly sexy vegetable. I like them steamed and I buy the baby limas generally. Kinda good when I scorch them but that’s a different recipe folks. This is an older recipe out of my ample reserves of printed out recipes which I changed up a bit because of my personal tastes and what veggies I had on hand. It is chock full of veg and has a light creamy broth. I made homemade chicken broth in my IP for making the stew but you could use a box of broth or even just water if you want vegetarian/vegan.

I grated sharp cheddar over the hot soup in my bowl. Get vegan cheese if that is your thing. Don’t skip the cheese; it really make it so rich and delish. The original recipe had canned corn but I am no fan of that; went with frozen kernels. Worked fine. I used less onion than the recipe and more cabbage. Personal taste preference. Great stew on a cold winter day and it is easy to veganize for those who go that path. Enjoy!

Lima Bean Stew

makes about 2 1/2 quarts

Ingredients:

2 Tbsp butter

1 cup chopped onion

1 cup chopped red pepper

1 cup chopped carrots

1 cup diced potatoes; I left them bigger than diced

12-13 oz frozen lima beans

3 cups broth or water

1 -1 1/2 cups frozen or canned corn

1 cup chopped cabbage

1 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp. black pepper

1 can evaporated milk, preferably not nonfat

8 oz sharp cheddar cheese.

Directions:

Melt butter in a large soup pan; 3 quarts is good. Add onions and pepper; cook about 5 minutes on medium low. Add chopped carrots and cook a minute. Add potatoes and broth; cook 5 minutes, add cabbage, cook 5 minutes, add corn and simmer 5 more minutes or until all the veggies are soft enough for your tastes. Next add seasonings. Stir well and pour in evap. milk. Bring back to hot but not boiling; simmer 2 minutes. Adjust seasonings and add more broth/water if too thick. Do not let it boil. Either grate cheese into bowls before adding stew or add it on top of individual bowls of hot stew. Enjoy!

Chicken Angelique

My family had this special dish that my mom found in a magazine. She always called it Chicken Angelique and I have never seen it in a cookbook. It was small bite sized cubes of chicken breast fried until browned and done inside. You make a lovely French sauce of celery, green onions, garlic, bacon, broth and milk. Serve it on top of fluffy white rice and have a side dish of steamed fresh asparagus and it was a meal for royalty. My mom made it only for company like my grandparents or aunts and uncles. She served it on her and my father’s twenty fifth wedding anniversary when I was a kid. When Mom turned 100 my sister Karen and I made it for her birthday supper and it was a good as I ever remembered it. A small labor of love for our lovely mother and she was thrilled to enjoy it on that momentous occasion. 

Notes: The raw chicken cuts into cubes better if it is partially frozen. I had frozen it for 5 days and I cut it up before it thawed fully.  Do use the entire scallion minus the roots of course! It adds a nice hint of scallion to the sauce. My sister put enough of the green leaves that her sauce was pale green; quite lovely actually. That one slice of bacon is very important; adds a special bit of flavor. Do not use anything less than 2 percent milk in the sauce. I prefer whole milk which is what my mom used. We had a milk cow, and she used a mechanical separator machine that gave a stream of milk and a lesser stream of thick cream. Use tender celery and real butter for the best flavor. I used rice flour, but you can use all-purpose flour if you don’t need to be gluten free.  Enjoy!

This is the only picture I took of it, the one of it in the pan was slightly out of focus; I was just too busy cooking and wasn’t thinking much about sharing pictures.
I did take a picture of the rice! Lovely fluffy basmati rice.

Mom’s Chicken Angelique,  serves 4-5

Ingredients:

2 chicken breasts

½ tsp. salt and 3 Tbsp. rice flour (pepper is optional)

1 Tbsp and 1 tsp. butter

1-2 Tbsp. mild olive oil or canola oil

Sauce:

1 slice cold bacon; mince it up

1 smaller rib celery chopped finely

4 green onions chopped finely

1 small clove garlic minced

1 Tbsp. mild olive oil

2 chicken bouillon cubes dissolved in 1 cup boiling hot water

1 small bay leaf

1/8 tsp. thyme, skimp it a bit

2 Tbsp rice flour or slightly less all purpose flour

1 cup plus 3 Tbsp. whole milk

1 medium egg yolk (I used the smallest egg out of a dozen large ones) Stirred up a bit

8 oz fresh small mushrooms; slice them medium thin after cutting of the bottom of the stem

1 tbsp butter and 1 tsp. oil

Make the sauce first. Using a large sauce pan; heat it; add oil, bacon, celery, green onions; cook 2-3 minutes; add the garlic and cook another minute. Light brown; not dark brown. Add the hot bullion, the bay leaf and the thyme. Simmer it covered for 15 minutes. (while the sauce simmers, slice the raw mushrooms and cook them in a tablespoon of butter and a dash of cooking oil. Turn off when they look done. Back to the sauce: you can then blend it in a blender until smooth but we never bother with that step. Mix a tablespoon of flour with half a cup of the milk and add to the sauce; heat on medium stirring constantly until it starts to thicken. Put the rest of the flour in with another half cup of milk; add to sauce and cook a few moments. Add a half cup of the sauce into the cup with the stirred-up egg yolk to warm it up and then dump it all back into the sauce pan. Stir well as you add the rest of the milk. It should be like slightly thick gravy. Add the sautéed mushrooms to it. Turn to the lowest setting to keep it warm while you make the chicken.

The chicken should be skinless; cut it up into 1-inch cubes. Roll in flour that you salted a bit. Heat a large saucepan, add the oil and butter. I did my chicken in 3 batches. There should be a bit of space between the cubes. Turn them 1-2 times to brown the sides. I used a dinner fork to do that. I put the done ones into a bowl, and you will probably need to add another tablespoon of oil for each batch.  When they are all browned you are ready to bring It together with the sauce. You should have made some white rice to serve with them. And a vegetable like asparagus, peas or whatever you enjoy. Pour the hot cooked cubes into the sauce and serve it on a bed of hot rice. Some people sprinkle some paprika or fresh parsley on top, but I don’t really bother with that. Enjoy!

Homemade Chili Rellenos and Super Easy Mexican Rice Made in an IP

Chili Rellenos and Mexican Rice

Chilly nights make me long for spicy food and I turn to Mexican dishes as well as Indian curries. They can warm your tummy and brighten up a dull day with vibrant flavors. Curries and Mexican food can be hot as in super spicy; depends on the pepper type and quantity added. I love zingy food but, my idea of spicy is probably on the mild side compared to many folks. Of course, you can always up the spicy ingredients, the jalapeno pepper in this comes to mind. Or cut back if you want it milder.

One of my favorites that I don’t get to eat these days are chiles rellenos. Spicy peppers stuffed with cheese, battered and fried. I bought a few poblano peppers at the farmer’s market for this purpose. I had Mexican cheese in the fridge. The rest of the ingredients were on hand. I do say that next time I will try it with Monterrey Jack cheese; in many of the recipes I previewed in my search for a suitable one that was the cheese of choice. I think it would have a bit more flavor and more melty quality so I do suggest you use that. I made 4 peppers; the recipe I altered was for 6, next time I will do six for sure. I did find the poblanos to be on the hot side for me. Thinking Anaheim for next time. I’m always tweaking recipes to make them more perfect, for me anyway!

The Mexican rice was to be from scratch and I wanted to go a bit more healthy; I used par cooked brown rice; cooked it 7 min in my IP. I think 6 minutes would be enough. If you use regular brown rice you will need to cook it much longer; more like 25 minutes so I suggest the par-boiled rice for quicker cooking.

I started the peppers; charred them in my broiler for about 5-6 minutes on opposite sides and then covered and let stand 10 minutes while I got the rice going. Once it was in the IP and the lid on I went back to the chile rellenos recipe and they both were done around the same time. Success!

Chili Rellenos

Pepper Ingredients:

6 big mildly hot peppers; choose Anaheim or Poblano

3 eggs, separated

6 sticks of Monterey Jack cheese; ½ inch dimeter and the length so they fit inside the pepper.

¼ cup white rice flour mixed with ¼ tsp. sea salt; on a plate

Canola oil to put 1/4-1/2 inch deep in medium fry or sauce pan. 1-2 cups

Sauce ingredients;

1 Tbsp mild olive oil

2-3 Tbsp. minced onion

¼ tsp. cumin

4 ounces tomato sauce (half an 8 ounce can; the rest gets used in the Mexican rice)

Directions: turn on oven to broiler. Place the whole peppers on a piece of aluminum foil on a small sheet. Broil 5-6 minutes until charred; take out and turn over with tongs or fingers. Do other side 5-6 minutes. Do stay near by to yank out before they get over done. Cover with foil and let stand 10 minutes. Then peel off skin of peppers, don’t worry if you can’t get all of it. Then cut a slice in one side and remove all the seeds. Then stuff the pepper with a fat stick of cheese. Fasten with 1-2 toothpicks to keep cheese in. Place on plate until you are ready to finish the dish.

Mexican Rice

Ingredients:

3-4 Tbsp. mild olive oil

1 ¼ cup par boiled brown rice (do not rinse)

¼ cup chopped onion

½-1 jalapeno pepper minced, no seeds unless you want it hotter

1 tsp. minced garlic

1 ½ cup water mixed with one veggie bouillon cube

4 ounces tomato sauce *the other half of the 8 oz can

1 carrot diced

½ cup frozen peas

Directions: turn IP onto sauté. Add oil, let warm a moment and add brown rice, stir with oil; let brown for 2 minutes. Add the onion and cook 2-3 minutes. Add minced pepper and garlic. Stir and cook 2-3 minutes. Add broth you created with water and bouillon cube, the tomato sauce and the chopped carrot. Stir up and put the lid on. Cook under pressure 6-7 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes. Release pressure, open, add peas, put lid back on (no need to lock) and let stand 2-3 minutes. Open, fluff gently with fork so peas are getting a bit blended in without breaking the rice grains. Serve and enjoy! This would be perfect with almost anything Mexican like tacos or enchiladas.

Continuation of peppers: while the rice cooks in the IP: fry those pepper babies up!

Use a small electric mixer to whip whites in a medium mixing bowl until they are stiff and then add egg yolks one at a time and blend briefly to make an even mixture. Heat the oil on your stove until hot but not smoking. I used an 8 inch fry pan that would hold 2-3 peppers at a time. Then roll the stuffed peppers one at a time in flour mixture. Next, dip them in the egg fluff coating and gently lay one in the hot oil. I tried to get as thick a coat as possible and cover the entire pepper. Get a second one ready and put it in there too. Turn them over gently once the bottom is a nice medium brown. I used a long big metal spoon with holes in it, tongs might help. As they get done remove them to a oven safe plate lined with paper towels. Add a third once you take the first pepper out. And so on; Put the plate in the oven warmed to 200 degrees while the rest fry. Meanwhile I put the sauce oil and onion in a small pan and let them cook 2-3 minutes. I added the cumin and stirred it. Cooked 30 seconds, added tomato sauce and cooked on low for 4-7 minutes.

Serve by placing some sauce on the plate and top with the fried peppers; 2 per person. Add Mexican rice to the dinner plate. I had a salad too afterwards to settle my fiery tummy, LOL! Those poblanos were a bit hot for me! Still delish…Ole!