Sweet Potato Kale Skillet with Chicken, Garlic & Onion

No process shots this week, kids. Just the final product – this is a planned over.  When chicken breasts are on sale for 99 cents a pound, I always buy a big pack and roast them, then dice them and freeze them for quick meals through the week. 

 ChicKale2MED

This dish features beautiful kale – they way it is best. Sautéd with garlic, served with a touch of balsamic vinegar.  Not puréed in to some hipster smoothie like a hamster shat in your glass, or baked to a chip that looks and tastes like the shit petrified in your fridge for six months.  No, this is luscious, tender but firm, sweet and slightly bitter.  A fantastic foil for the melting sweetness of the onion and potato. Yum!

ChicKale3

 

Sweet Potato Kale Skillet with Chicken
Serves 2
Quick planned overs - sweet potato and onion sauteed with kale, garlic and chicken. Served with a nice balsamic vinegar.
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Cook Time
20 min
Cook Time
20 min
272 calories
18 g
37 g
15 g
17 g
2 g
274 g
347 g
4 g
0 g
12 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
274g
Servings
2
Amount Per Serving
Calories 272
Calories from Fat 134
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 15g
23%
Saturated Fat 2g
12%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 10g
Cholesterol 37mg
12%
Sodium 347mg
14%
Total Carbohydrates 18g
6%
Dietary Fiber 3g
10%
Sugars 4g
Protein 17g
Vitamin A
185%
Vitamin C
9%
Calcium
5%
Iron
8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2Tbsp olive oil
  2. 1/2 medium white onion, sliced in crescent moons
  3. 3 minced cloves of garlic
  4. 1 large roasted sweet potato, cubed
  5. 1 large cooked chicken breast, cubed
  6. 1 small bunch of kale, chopped
  7. 1 c. chicken broth
  8. S&P
Instructions
  1. First, roast the sweet potato. Pierce it a couple times and roll it up in sheet of wax paper, twisting the ends. Cook it in the microwave for 7-8 minutes. Get the rest of your mis en place done while it cooks. Let it cool for a couple minutes, then peel and cube it. It will be HOT, be careful. And it doesn't have to be 100% done because it's going to cook in the pan with the kale.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet.
  3. Add the onions and stir over medium high for a couple minutes until they're halfway translucent. Add the cubed sweet potato and chicken, toss to coat with the oil and onion. Lay all the kale on top, and sprinkle the garlic over the kale. S&P. Reduce the heat to low, pour in the chicken broth and cover.
  4. Cook about 20 minutes, until the kale is what you consider done. Check after 10 if you like it still mostly raw.
  5. Serve with a sprinkling of good balsamic vinegar and a grind or two more of the black pepper.
Notes
  1. You could totally make this with rotisserie chicken, or even those frozen cooked chicken breasts, but I would leave out the salt and use 2/3 c stock and 1/3 c water. You can always add more salt at the end if needed.
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calories
272
fat
15g
protein
17g
carbs
18g
more
Bucket of Yum http://bucketofyum.com/

The Great Pasty Experiment

Rich meat pocket pie with peppery onion gravy.
Rich meat pocket pie with peppery onion gravy.

So, please forgive me but this is more a story of what I tried than an actual recipe.  It must be the cooling weather but I am obsessing on shepherd’s pie and pot pie and pasties.  So I was browsing the interwebs and its plethora of awesome food blogs and came away with general idea: a pasty is pie crust filled with meat onion and potato, or more. So after a grocery store run, I set off.

First up? The crust.  Just a double batch of Martha’s pâte brisée, only going with half lard/half butter for the fat.

P1med

Only thing is, the lard is WAY softer than the butter, so with the second round in the cuisinart I whirred the butter several times before adding the lard.

P2med

I added the cold water by hand, and then divided the dough in to 9 balls, wrapped ’em in wax paper, flattened them and put them in the fridge for a couple hours.

P3med

Next up, the filling.  Not even remotely traditional. I diced one celery stalk, half an onion, one large russet potatoe, two medium carrots and sliced 4 oz of button mushrooms.  Then, browned the lean (10%) ground beef and added the veg until they were halfway cooked.

P4med

 

I let that cool in ice box, and took a little nap.  A couple hours later, it was assembly time. I heated the oven to convection 400*. And rolled out, then filled the dough. 

P5medP6med

 

Sealed those mofo’s up.

P7med

 

Brushed them with an egg wash.

P8med

 

And baked them for forty minutes. At the halfway point, I flipped the trays. Meanwhile, I started the gravy.  I had put aside about half a cup of the filling, and put that in a saute pan with the other half of the onion, sliced in to thin half-moons.  I cooked them with about a teaspoon of butter on low for about thirty minutes, until they were browned and tender and almost falling apart.  Here I debated – just use a flour slurry, or go for the Bisto?  I went with the bisto. Stirred that in and cooked until thickened.  Then, after I tasted it, I realized it needed some more flavor, so I added some beef broth base.  Then we were done.

These are tasty. But very, very rich. As in, now I want to go take another nap rich.

Try some – they’re good!

Pastymed

Torta di Pastore…ok, fine. Shepherd’s pie.

 

 

Ready for the oven….

Potato-y goodness ready for the oven.

SPshepherdPie2So, planning the menu this week I intended to make Budget Bytes’ super amazing  lentil and sausage stew. Only it was a hellacious day. And when I got home, these bewitching comfort-in-starchy-skins were staring at me from their basket above the counter. I answered their Siren’s song, dammit. The base of this perverted autumn classic is the sausage and mire poix with a veg stock/maizena sauce, a layer of frozen chopped spinach, and then the topping with those luscious spud sirens smooshed to submission with butter, olive oil, parsley, garlic salt and chopped kalamata olives.  Screw you, Tuesday. This is delicious.

 SPShepherdPie3

Torta di Pastore (Shepherd's Pie)
Yields 6
An italian sausage and chickpea base, layer of chopped spinich and luscious kalamata parsley mashed potatoes.
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
524 calories
39 g
61 g
35 g
14 g
12 g
421 g
487 g
4 g
0 g
21 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
421g
Yields
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 524
Calories from Fat 312
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 35g
54%
Saturated Fat 12g
58%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 4g
Monounsaturated Fat 17g
Cholesterol 61mg
20%
Sodium 487mg
20%
Total Carbohydrates 39g
13%
Dietary Fiber 5g
19%
Sugars 4g
Protein 14g
Vitamin A
114%
Vitamin C
43%
Calcium
16%
Iron
20%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 Tbsp olive oil
  2. 12 oz ital. sausage
  3. 1 c chopped celery
  4. ¾ c chopped carrot
  5. ¾ c chopped onion
  6. 2 tsp minced garlic
  7. 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  8. 14 oz can garbanzos, drained
  9. 2 tsp Penzey's Tuscan sunset (or just Italian Seasoning)
  10. 1 tsp fennel seed
  11. 1 tsp veg stock base
  12. 1 tsp corn starch
  13. 1 c water
  14. 1/2 c. chopped parsley
  15. ¾ c chopped frozen spinach
  16. 5 potatoes, mashed with
  17. 4 Tbsp butter
  18. 4 Tbsp olive oil
  19. 1/3 - 1/2 c. (almond) milk
  20. garlic salt & pepper
  21. ¼ c chopped kalamata olives
  22. ¼ c minced parsley
Instructions
  1. Make your mashed potatoes, stirring in the olives and parsley last.
  2. Preheat oven to 375*. Heat olive oil in a large non-stick skillet on medium high. Add the italian sausage, and cook until no pink remains. (Drain oil here if necessary). Add the chopped vegetables, tomato paste and garlic. Reduce heat to medium and cook stirring occasionally for five minutes. Add the garbanzos, herbs and fennel. Mix the water, corn starch and veg stock base and stir in to the pan, reduce heat to medium low and simmer until sauce is thickened. Stir in the chopped parsley and remove the pan from the heat.
  3. Transfer filling to a 9'x9" square pan. Sprinkle with the frozen chopped spinach. Then layer on the mashed potatoes. (Or pipe them on with an 8B French star tip if you are a total spaz like me.) Sprinkle with some grated pecorino romano or the like. Slide in the oven, bake 50 - 60 minutes, until the potatoes are beautifully browned.
Notes
  1. Serve with a salad, and dinner here we come!
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calories
524
fat
35g
protein
14g
carbs
39g
more
Bucket of Yum http://bucketofyum.com/

Count Dracula’s Pasta Dinner

CDplate 

 

We are so lucky to have this amazing Italian deli and food shop in town, Roma Imports. They make their own sauces, sausages, desserts, and carry salume  and pasta like that reginette in the photo that we otherwise just would not find here.

We are in love with their Count Dracula sausage, and it is my favorite to use when making what my Italian-American friends call “gravy” (and what the rest of us call pasta sauce.)  It is a beautiful thing, bursting with juicy porky goodness, seasoned with lots of hot pepper and garlic. YUM! 
Since we don’t do the whole primo/secondo thing at our house, we like to slice the sausage in the sauce after it’s cooked. It serves more that way, I think. But hey, I’m a cheap ass. Ask my husband. 

SauceINGRED

 

Count Dracula's Pasta Dinner
Serves 8
Spicy sausage tomato sauce served with reginette noodles, whose wavy edges really hold the sauce.
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
3 hr
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
3 hr
711 calories
95 g
43 g
25 g
25 g
7 g
369 g
584 g
9 g
0 g
16 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
369g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 711
Calories from Fat 222
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 25g
38%
Saturated Fat 7g
37%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 4g
Monounsaturated Fat 12g
Cholesterol 43mg
14%
Sodium 584mg
24%
Total Carbohydrates 95g
32%
Dietary Fiber 6g
25%
Sugars 9g
Protein 25g
Vitamin A
59%
Vitamin C
26%
Calcium
9%
Iron
21%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 pound hot italian sausage
  2. 1 28oz can peeled tomatoes
  3. 1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes with onion and garlic
  4. 1 14.5 oz can tomato sauce
  5. 3 stalks of celery, diced
  6. 1/2 medium white onion, diced
  7. 2 medium carrots, diced
  8. 2 cloves of garlic, minced or pressed
  9. 2 Tbsp. Penzey's Tuscan Sunset seasoning (or plain old Italian seasoning, or1 1/2 tsp each dried: marjoram, basil, oregano, and 1 tsp rosemary)
  10. 1 Tsp. Fennel seeds
  11. 1/3 bottle soft red wine (TJ's 3-buck-chuck Syrah or Merlot, for example)
  12. 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  13. 2 pounds long pasta (spaghetti, reginette, linguini, whatever floats your boat)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350*. Get out your big enameled dutch oven, or your crock pot. Open the canned whole tomatoes, dump them in and smoosh them with your clean hands (or your potato masher if you're a big wimp). Dump in the other tomatoes and sauce, and add the garlic and herbs. Set aside.
  2. Heat a large non-stick skillet on medium. Add the olive oil and the veggies and sauté until they begin to soften. Add them to the sauce. Now turn up the heat to medium high and brown the sausages on all sides. When they are on their last side, pour the wine over them and cook it down for just a couple minutes while you deglaze the bottom of the pan. Toss all that in to the sauce. Stir. Cover and put in the oven (or the crock pot on high) for two and half to three hours. Go past that at your own risk (the tomato starts to taste burn-y) or else have that oven at 300* from the get-go and cross your fingers.
  3. About half an hour before you're ready to have dinner, put on the pasta pot and follow the package directions to cook the noodles of your choice. While the water is heating, take the dutch oven out of the oven and remove the sausages to a plate to cool a few minutes. While they cool, take your stick blender or your potato masher and puree the sauce. Taste the sauce and adjust any seasoning (need more garlic? more herbs? more hot pepper? Possibly salt?) Once they're cool enough to handle, slice them or dice them and put them back in the sauce. Or, leave them whole. Since we don't do the whole primo/secundo thing at our house, I like to dice them up so I get yummy sausage in every bite.
  4. When your pasta is done (don't overcook it!!), reserve about half a cup of the pasta water before you drain it. Return the pasta to the pasta pot, and put in a couple cups of the sauce and the pasta water. Stir it all together. Serve, garnished with a good freshly grated pecorino romano and red pepper flakes, and extra sauce on the side.
  5. BUON APETITO!
Notes
  1. This sauce is also really good over polenta. It freezes beautifully, too.
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calories
711
fat
25g
protein
25g
carbs
95g
more
Bucket of Yum http://bucketofyum.com/

Don’t Let Your Meat Loaf

ML8Bill is full of catchy little sayings – “What’s the word, hummingbird?” and “Don’t let your meat loaf.” They make me groan and laugh at the same time.  He also decided we should call these duchess potatoes, “tater titties”. Despite all this I love him, Pa. And I’d rather have duchess potatoes than tots any day.

That being said, meatloaf is a popular dish at our house. For dinner and then sandwiches the next day (With mayonnaise -something else Bill taught me. I always thought ketchup was best, but I was wrong!)

We’re partial to ground turkey in our house – the old beef/pork combo is just too rich for us.  

 Want to try it?

picture of ground turkey, bread crumbs, sriracha, ketchup, egg, onion and chopped bell peppers
The usual suspects
Egg, chopped peppers, grated onion, bread crumbs in bowl
Mix
Mold.
Mold.
ML3
Glaze.
Bake.
Bake.
Rest.
Rest.
Slice.
Slice.

 

Meat Loaf, Don't Let Your
Serves 4
Easy turkey meatloaf with a spicy sweet tomato glaze, served with a chunky tomato sauce.
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Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
50 min
Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
50 min
235 calories
20 g
74 g
13 g
11 g
3 g
174 g
550 g
11 g
0 g
9 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
174g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 235
Calories from Fat 115
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g
20%
Saturated Fat 3g
13%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 7g
Cholesterol 74mg
25%
Sodium 550mg
23%
Total Carbohydrates 20g
7%
Dietary Fiber 2g
6%
Sugars 11g
Protein 11g
Vitamin A
14%
Vitamin C
51%
Calcium
7%
Iron
12%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1.25 # ground turkey (Jennie-O 93/7 is best!)
  2. 1 egg
  3. 1/3 c. dried bread crumbs
  4. 1/3 c. diced bell pepper
  5. 1/4 c. grated onion
For the glaze
  1. 1/4 c. tomato ketchup
  2. 2 Tbsp. Sriracha
  3. (Ok, ok - I just totally made up those glaze measurements because I just squirt them both on and then smear them about.)
For the sauce
  1. 1 14oz can diced tomatoes with onion, celery & bell pepper
  2. 2 Tbsp olive oil
  3. 1&1/2 tsp worsteshire sauce
  4. 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  5. 1Tbsp sugar
  6. 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  7. 1/4 tsp. dried thyme
  8. 1/8 tsp ginger powder (or better yet, a quarter-size piece of candied ginger slice)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375*. Line a small cookie sheet with silver foil and spritz it with non-stick spray.
  2. Grate the onion in the mixing bowl. Chop the pepper, add to bowl along with the egg and bread crumbs. Mix with a fork. Add the ground turkey. Mix gently with your hands. In the bowl, form the mixture in to a general loaf shape. Invert the bowl on to the prepared cooking sheet and touch up the loaf shape.
  3. Squeeze the ketchup and sriracha on to the loaf, and using your fingers since they're already dirty, mix the two sauces and spread them evenly on the top, ends and sides of the loaf. Slide a meat thermometer in to that bad boy and in to the oven he goes. Should be done (165* ) in about 35-40 minutes.
  4. Let it rest for five minutes before serving.
For the sauce
  1. Once the loaf is in the oven, put all the sauce ingredients in a sauce pan on low. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the meatloaf is done. Serve with the slices.
Notes
  1. You could cook this in a loaf pan, but cooking it "open style" on the cookie tray makes for that yummy crust and glaze on three sides of the loaf instead of just the top.
  2. Be careful with your ground turkey selection - read those nutrition labels because some can be 80/20. If you're going that route, may as well do a ground beef meat loaf!
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calories
235
fat
13g
protein
11g
carbs
20g
more
Bucket of Yum http://bucketofyum.com/