Creamy Herb & Mustard Dressing

Creamy Herb and Mustard Dressing

I’ve been trying to make a batch of this every weekend to last us the week.

Creamy Herb & Mustard Dressing
1/2 cup Light Mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Whole Grain Mustard
3 tablespoons Mixed Herbs (Parsley, Thyme, Dill, etc.)
1 tablespoon grated Red Onion
1 cup Milk
Salt and Pepper
Place all ingredients into a blender and blend until completely mixed.
Add more milk to adjust the thickness of the dressing.
Store covered in the fridge for a week.

Basil Pesto

Basil Pesto

My Basil has been going crazy lately! We all know that when life gives you Basil you make pesto!

Basil Pesto

3 cloves Garlic
1 teaspoon Lemon Zest
Juice of half a Lemon
1 tablespoon Red Wine Vinegar
4 cups fresh Basil leaves
3 tablespoons Pine nuts
1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese
1 cup Olive Oil

Combine the garlic,lemon zest and lemon juice, and vinegar in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to chop up the garlic and lemon.
Add the basil leaves, cheese and the pine nuts. Pulse to combine.
Basil Pesto

Remove cap to the feed tube at the top of the machine. Set the processor to mix and then slowly drizzle in the olive oil.
Place your pesto into a air tight container and refrigerate. Your pesto should stay fresh for about a week.
Or freeze and it will keep for about a month or longer.

Herb and Pea Alfredo

Herb Alfredo

It’s still too warm to crank on the oven. Oh how i’m craving a hot cheesy gratin and roast chicken! I suppose it’ll have to wait a few weeks yet. This cheesy, creamy dish is helping me get over it. No oven required.

Herb and Pea Alfredo
1 lb. Penne Pasta
2 Eggs
2 Egg Yolks
1 cup Heavy Cream
1 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
1 cup Peas (fresh or thawed from frozen)
1/2 cup chopped Herbs (chives, parsley, tarragon, basil)
1 tablespoon Butter

Combine the eggs, egg yolks, cream and 1/2 cup of the cheese.
Whisk until well combined then set aside.

Boil the pasta in a large pot with 2 tablespoons of salt added to the water for 10-12 minutes.
Drain, return to the pot and set back on the burner turned to medium low, add the butter.
Add in the cream/egg mixture and stir continuously until the sauce has thickened.
Add in the peas and herbs, stir to combine.
Serve with the remainder of the cheese sprinkled over the top.

Scallops and Herbed Risotto

scallops2

If you’re celebrating something this is the dish for you! Yet it’s so easy to make you could go for it on a weekday as well.

Scallops and Herbed Risotto
For the Herbed Risotto:
1 1/2 cups Risotto/Arborio rice
6 cups Chicken or Vegetable stock
3 tablespoons Olive Oil
1 Small Onion (finely chopped)
1 cup White Wine
2 tablespoons Fresh Herbs (Thyme, Rosemary, Parsley, Tarragon, etc.)
1 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
Salt & Pepper

Heat up the chicken stock in a large sauce pan and set aside.
In a large heavy bottomed saute pan heat the olive oil on medium high heat. Add the diced onion, cook until translucent and tender, about 5 minutes. Add the salt and pepper and half the fresh herbs.

Add the rice and stir to ensure it gets coated thoroughly in the oil. Toast the rice for about 3 minutes.
Add the wine. When the wine is all absorbed you can start to add the stock one ladle full at a time.

Ladle the hot stock into the rice by half cup increments, stir and wait until all the stock is absorbed until you add more. Continue with this process until the rice is fully cooked and tender. About 20-30 minutes.
You might not need all the stock, I always give the rice a taste every 10 or so minutes to test for doneness.

Right before you add the last couple of ladles full of stock add the rest of the fresh herbs. Lastly, stir in the parmesan cheese.

scallops1

For the Scallops:
1 lb. large Scallops (about 10-15)
4 tablespoons Compound Butter (divided) or, Plain Unsalted Butter if you’d rather.
2 tablespoons Olive Oil (divided)
1/4 cup Heavy Cream
Chopped Fresh Chives
Salt & Pepper

In a heavy bottomed sauté pan turned to medium high, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter and add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Pat the scallops dry with a tea towel or paper towel and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place 5-7 of the scallops into the butter and fry for about 2 minutes or until golden brown on one side. Flip and then fry for another 2 mins. Remove and place on a warm plate and cover with foil while working on the next batch.
Correctly cooked scallops are rare in the middle.
Repeat procedure for the remaining scallops.
Remove the scallops and place on the plate. Whisk in the heavy cream and reduce for 2-5 minutes, or until it is thickened.

Serve with the Risotto, the cream sauce poured over. Garnish with chives.

Cheddar Cheese Risotto

cheddar cheese risotto

Nigella Lawson is usually a very good influence to me. Needless to say when I found this recipe on her blog all dinner plans screeched to halt and we had this instead.

Cheddar Cheese Risotto

1 tablespoon Butter
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
1/2 medium White Onion (finely diced)
1 1/2 cups Risotto Rice
1/2 cup white wine
4-6 cups hot Vegetable Stock
1 cup shredded Cheddar Cheese
2 tablespoons chopped Fresh Herbs

In a large saute pan heat the olive oil and butter over medium high heat. Once the butter is melted add the onion and cook until soft and translucent.
Add the risotto rice and stir to coat in the butter and oil. Add the wine and stir until it is absorbed by the rice.
Add the stock about a 1/2 cup at a time to the rice. Once one portion is absorbed by the rice add the next.
Continue until the rice is tender and cooked (About 20 minutes)
Add the cheese and stir gently until combined with the risotto.
Serve with a sprinkling of herbs over the top.

The Wolf’s Chicken Stew

w chik stew 2
Once upon a time, there were two little boys who loved a story by Keiko Kasza about a Wolf and his plan to fatten up a little chicken so he could make her into a tasty stew. The story went that the wolf, an excellent cook, dropped off treats and goodies on her door step in order to get her nice and fat for his stew pot. (Spoiler Alert) Things didn’t really go the way he planned, but he made a new friend and Mrs. Chicken cooked him a nice dinner that evening anyway. And that’s why this dish is called The Wolf’s Chicken Stew. Although the chickens within my vicinity suffer a different fate than in the story, try explaining that to a 3 & 5 year old.

wolfs chik stew

The Wolf’s Chicken Stew
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
8 boneless/skinless Chicken Thighs
1 cup diced Bacon or Pancetta
2 cups chopped Leeks
3 cloves Garlic (sliced)
1 bottle White Riesling Wine
1-2 cups Chicken Stock
1/2 cup chopped mixed Herbs (Dill, Rosemary, Parsley, Sage, Chives…)
1/2 cup frozen Peas
1 cup frozen Artichokes
1 small Zucchini (diced)
1/2 cup Celery (diced)
1/2 cup fresh Snow Peas (chopped)
Corn Starch Slurry (2 tbsp Corn Starch + 2 tbsp. cold water)
Dash of Cream

In a large stew pot over medium high heat brown the chicken in batches then set aside. Drain off the chicken grease then put in the bacon and fry until crispy. Add the leeks and garlic and cook until the leeks are soft and the garlic is fragrant.

Add the wine and scrape the bottom of the pot to release the yummy sauce making bits that are there. Add back in the chicken thighs and cover with about 1-2 cups of chicken stock. You might not need all the stock.

Add half the fresh herbs and stir well. Place the lid on the pot and simmer for 15 minutes.

Add the vegetables and stir well to combine. Place the lid back on and cook at a simmer for 15 more minutes.
Prepare the corn starch slurry and add to the pot. Stir well to thicken the sauce.
Add a dash of cream and the rest of the fresh herbs to serve.

I served it over wide noodles with a dollop of sour cream.