Roasted Green Beans & Cherry Tomatoes

This is a super easy side dish I got from Pam Anderson’s cookbook, The Perfect Recipe for Losing Weight & Eating Great. I prepared this for my Chef Spotlight dinner where we highlighted healthy chefs. It was a side dish that was colorful and complimented our menu well!

Roasted Green Beans & Cherry Tomatoes
recipe from Pam Anderson

1 lb green beans
1 pint cherry tomatoes, sliced in halves
1 tablespoon dried oregano
salt & pepper to taste
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil.

Preheat your oven to 375.
In a bowl, place your green beans, tomatoes and oregano.
Drizzle oil over vegetables and toss to coat.
Sprinkle with salt & pepper to taste.
Place vegetables on a baking sheet and baking in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes.

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Wasabi.. not only for Sushi!

In an attempt to use up some leftover wasabi, I decided to make a sushi inspired sauce combining wasabi and soy sauce. I call this, shrimp with wasabi soy noodles.Here’s my recipe:

1 lb large raw shrimp
1/2 package Shanghai egg noodles

2 cups water

2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon wasabi
1 tablespoon sugar
splash of mirin
splash of sesame oil
1/2 cup julienned green beans
1 tablespoon slivered almonds

In a wok, add water & shrimp.

Cook shrimp until pink.
Add remaining ingredients except noodles, beans and almonds.
Allow shrimp to simmer and absorb flavors.
Remove shrimp and set aside.
Add noodles and cook until softened and sauce is absorbed.
Add beans and almonds; toss to coat.
Serve noodles with shrimps on the side.

Fancy Green Bean Casserole

Tonight is focused on my Traditional fare menu and some desserts. Everything is set for the most part… and I approached it as if it were just one of my cooking class events where everything is prepped and ready to assemble. Here are recipes of the traditional Thanksgiving dishes on my menu.

Fancy Green Bean Casserole

2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup sliced mushrooms
2 1/2 cups half & half
2 lbs haricot verts or fancy green beans, julienned
1 canister of french fried onions

Preheat oven to 350.
In a sauce pan, melt butter.
Sautee sliced mushrooms in butter until softened.
Sprinkle flour into pan and stir to form a roux.
Slowly add the half & half until slightly thickened.
Add green beans and 1/2 of french fried onions.
Add salt & pepper to taste.
Place in casserole dish and bake for 25 minutes.
Add remaining french fried onions and bake again for another 5 minutes.

Care for Tamarind Soup?

Okay, my apologies to those that were grossed out with the previous post on balut. But please don’t say I didn’t warn you! 🙂 Moving on to daily eats, here’s a filipino dish that’s true comfort food for us, sinigang. We made this for dinner since we were feeling lazy with the heat wave coming through Chicago.

Sinigang is a filipno dish famous for the variety of ingredients one can use as well as for its taste. Sinigang is typically sour and is most often likened to Thailand’s tom yum.

Sinigang often incorporates stewed fish, pork, chicken, shrimp, or beef. Sinigang’s characteristic taste is attributed to the ingredient that gives its sour taste, not to the meat’s flavor.

Pork sinigang, the most common variety, is usually prepared with tamarind, tomato, leek, taro, and onion. Other vegetables cooked in sinigang may include cabbage, okra, spinach, radish, green pepper and string beans. Naturally, vegetarians would love this dish since various vegetables lends itself nicely with the flavor of tamarind.

Another variety is prepared with guava and is less sour than those with tamarind. Raw mango, calamansi and kamias can also be utilized. Surprisingly, that sour flavor is not because of vinegar, which many people may confuse it as. Powdered soup base or bouillon cubes cubes for sinigang are also used in place of natural fruits.

Most filipinos here in the US don’t have the time to gather those exotic fruits to create that sour flavor that sinigang is used for. Instead, most people use the powdered soup base such as that above.This is not a hard dish to make – even for those who aren’t familiar with filipino food. Here’s a common recipe for Sinigang, which is even found on the back of the powdered soup base package…

1-2 lbs pork (or beef)
8 cups of water
your choice of green veggies – cabbage, asparagus, green beans, spinach
1 large tomato, chopped
3 cloves garlic
1 medium onion chopped

In a dutch oven or pot, add pork.
Cover with water and let boil until cooked.
Drain pork and run through cold water to rid of the “residue”.
Place pork back in clean pot and cover with water.
Add 1 package of sinigang soup base.
Add tomatoes, garlic & onions.
Let it come to a boil.
Depending on which vegetables you use, add the veggies that take longer to cook first.
Reduce heat and allow veggies to cook through.
Remove from heat and add other veggies on top.
Cover and let steam to cook.
Stir before serving over rice or eat as a soup.

This can be made vegetarian my omitting the meats and cooking up the veggies in the soup base.

The Union of Curry & Rice

Often times, I’ll have leftover rice after cooking dinner for a family event. Usually my first instinct is to make fried rice. However this time I decided to make a different version with a Thai twist. It’s a little creamy, a little spicy and so good… its my green chicken curry fried rice.

In Thai cuisine green curry is one of the spicier variations of curry. The thickness of the sauce varies with the amount of coconut milk used. The main ingredients are coconut milk, green curry paste, sugar, fish sauce, kaffir lime leavees and thai basil leaves. Typically, green curry paste is made by pounding in a mortar ingredients including: shallots, green chillies, garlic, galangal, fresh turmeric, shrimp paste and salt.
Here is my recipe for green chicken curry fried rice:
6 chicken thighs
3 eggs, scrambled
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large “thumb” of fresh ginger, julienned
2 tablespoons green curry paste
2-3 cups cold leftover white rice
1 cup frozen green peas
1 can baby corn, drained
1 handful extra fine green beans
1 can (13.5 oz) coconut milk
cooking oil
In a pot, place chicken thighs and cover with water.
Boil chicken until fully cooked.
Allow chicken to cool and debone.
Chop chicken and set aside.
In a large saute pan, add cooking oil and fry eggs.
When scrambled and completely cooked, remove from pan and set aside.
In the same pan, add cooking oil, garlic, onion and ginger.
When onions have softened, add cooked chicken.
Stir and then add green curry paste.
Stir chicken until fully coated.
Add and fold in cold rice.
If needed, add a little cooking oil to prevent rice from sticking to pan.
Add peas, baby corn and beans; stirring to combine.
Slowly pour in coconut milk, a little at a time and fold in.
When fully heated through and combined, serve.
This is a meal on its own, but can accompany garlic spinach if you’d like.

Pancit Bihon

:Pancit Bihon
(Filipino stir fried rice noodles)

1 pkg Excellent brand “rice stick special bihon” noodles, soaked in hot water
Silver Swan or Lauriat soy sauce
1 cup water
carrots – sliced in match stick
red bell pepper, sliced thin
green beans, julienned
2 cups sliced cabbage
chicken – small cubed or bite sized pieces
2-3 cloves chopped garlic
1 medium to large chopped onion
1 cube chicken buillion
garlic salt
black pepper

1. Heat large wok with about 2-3 tablespoons of cooking oil (veggie, corn, canola will do)
2. Add chopped garlic and onions to the pot – cook til translucent.
3. Add all meats and cook til heated through.
4. Season meats with garlic salt, black pepper, chicken buillion cube
5. Add veggies, water and soy sauce (I start pouring and count to 3, then stop.) Let simmer till shrimp is pink and cooked through.
6. Add soaked noodles
7. Toss until heated through.
8. Place on platter and serve with lemon or calamansi (philippine lemon)