Category: Recipes

Recipes & cooking

Thai basil chicken fried rice

thai basil chicken fried rice

If you know me well, you know that I absolutely love chicken fried rice. Specifically, Thai chicken fried rice (and, yes, there is definitely a difference). Whenever I visit Thailand one of the first things I do is stop by a street vendor and order a plate of chicken fried rice. In my book, there is just nothing that tastes better. I’ve never been able to replicate the street version exactly but occasionally I do get close and this recipe for Thai basil chicken fried rice, if not exactly the way they make it on the streets in Bangkok, is pretty close. And either way, it’s delicious in it’s own right.

I stop by the Asian market by my apartment quite often and I almost always pick up a bunch of Thai basil but I never can actually use the entire bunch before it starts to go bad. Last night, I opened the fridge to see what I would make for dinner and saw the large bunch of Thail basil sitting on the middle shelf. I sighed. I used it in a chicken dish earlier in the week and now I couldn’t think of any other use for it. I knew it would probably go bad. And then I remembered seeing a Thai basil chicken fried rice recipe on pinterest. I couldn’t find the pin but I knew how to make fried rice and I decided to add the Thai basil to it and make up my own version. Here’s what I came up with: (more…)

Creamy pasta with chicken, peas & peppers

creamy pasta with chicken

I wind up making pasta for dinner approximately once a week. It’s not always the best decision as far as my waste line is concerned (I have a bit of a portion control problem) but pasta is so versatile, quick and easy that I wind up cooking with it quite often. It’s my go to when I don’t have a lot of time to cook and when I have random ingredients I need to use up. This was the case last week when I came up with this recipe. I needed to make something fast and I didn’t want to make a special trip to the grocery store. (more…)

Thai garlic pepper chicken

Thai garlic pepper chicken

Thai garlic pepper chicken also known as gai tod kratiem also known as one of my favorite Thai dishes ever.

Most of you know I grew up in Thailand. Most of you also know I used to figure skate, which ironically, I started in Bangkok, one of the hottest places on earth. The ice rink almost always had an inch of water on it. I loved the ice skating rink because I loved to skate (obviously) but I also loved it because of the little restaurant inside the rink. The restaurant served up the best gai tod kratiem on the planet. I have no idea if the other items on the menu were any good, or what the other items on the menu even were, because I always ordered gai tod kratiem, aka grlic pepper chicken. It’s funny the things you remember from childhood. This dish is something I remember vividly and it brings back all kinds of nostalgia for me. To this day, it’s still one of my favorite things to eat. (more…)

Orecchiette in spicy tomato sauce with roasted vegetables

orechiette

I apologize for the amount of pasta posts lately but I promise this is a good one. It’s also another meatless one and my meat loving husband actually admitted that he didn’t miss the meat in this dish so you know this recipe is a winner! It’s a rare occurence for my husband to admit he likes something without meat. (more…)

Black Bean Soup

black bean soup

I should really call this recipe bean soup instead of BLACK bean soup because, truth be told, I actually only had one can of black beans in my pantry when I decided to make this. I used a can of pinto beans as a substitute for the second can of black beans and it was just as good and it actually still looked like black bean soup. So, just pretend it’s truly black bean soup.

I made this soup for lunch one day when I was home sick from work. Nothing I had in my fridge sounded very good and I was craving soup. I always crave soup when I feel under the weather. So, I took stock of what I had in my pantry and came up with this delicious, flavorful, healthy soup. I used chicken broth but you could definitely use vegetable broth and make this vegan. (more…)

Blue cheese butter for steaks

blue cheese butter

For our wedding, which was two and a half years ago, one of our friends got us a gift certificate for some Omaha Steaks. We were cleaning and organizing the apartment the other day and stumbled upon it. Apparently we had never used it. I am notorious for doing this, by the way. I lose gift cards and gift certificates. I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I think part of the problem is I always want to save them for a special occasion and then I just forget about them. I should probably just use them right after I get them to avoid this problem. Anyway, we ordered the steaks. (more…)

Polenta rounds topped with creamy mushrooms

polenta rounds with mushrooms

Polenta is one of my new favorite items to pick up at the grocery store. I usually buy the precooked polenta “logs”, cut them into 1/3 inch rounds and then sear them in a pan with a little olive oil. Once the polenta rounds are seared you can top them with almost anything. One of the reasons I love cooking with polenta is because it’s a blank canvas and works well with so many different flavors. It’s an easy way to be creative in the kitchen. I’ve made many variations, but this recipe is probably my favorite polenta recipe.

Matt has been sick with the flu and hasn’t had much of an appetite the past few days so last night I was cooking for one, myself. I’ve mentioned before that Matt prefers meals that include some type of meat. I, on the other hand, can take it or leave it and try to eat meat free a few times a week. Since he wasn’t really hungry last night and it had been an incredibly busy day, I wanted to make something quick yet satisfying for myself, preferrably meatless. Enter polenta and portabella mushrooms. I suppose most people might consider this to be a side dish but last night it hit the spot as a main course for me. The creamy mushroom topping was the perfect accompaniment to my seared polenta rounds. (more…)

Spicy Broccoli Stir Fry

spicy broccoli stir fry

Broccoli is one of those vegetables I hated as a kid but somehow it’s turned into one of my favorites now that I’m older. I cook with it about once a week. My favorite way to cook broccoli is very simple. I usually just roast it with some olive oil, salt and pepper. It’s one of my staple vegetable side dishes because it always turns out really well and it’s so easy. But sometimes you have to switch it up and last night I was in the mood for something different.

I had some leftover brown rice and some soy and ginger marinated cod from Trader Joe’s so I decided to use some of those same flavors in my broccoli side dish. It turned out really yummy and was perfect served over the leftover rice, which soaked up all the stirfry sauce. (more…)

Make potato cakes with leftover mashed potatoes

potato cakes with leftover mashed potatoes

I love mashed potatoes but I often make too much for just Matt and myself and then we wind up eating mashed potatoes for days. Not that there is anything wrong with leftover mashed potatoes but sometimes they can get a little boring. These potato cakes are the perfect way to spruce up those cold, leftover potatoes.

You guys, these are SO good. I form small patties with the leftover cold mashed potatoes, coat them in crispy breadcrumbs and salty parmesan cheese and then pan fry them until they turn a golden brown color and the coating gets crisp. These take comfort food to a whole new level. They are the perfect side dish for almost any meal. Last night I served these alongside a mediterranean stuffed chicken breast I picked up from Trader Joe’s on the way home from work and Ina Garten’s green beans gremolata. (more…)

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