cooking for your boyfriend

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Salmon with Breadcrumbs

Serves 4 hungry boyfriends in 20 minutes




Ingredients
1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
1/4 cup parsley
1 dinner roll, broken into pieces
Juice from half a lemon (use the remaining half for lemon vinaigrette)
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper
4 salmon fillets*
2 tablespoons dijon mustard

Directions
1.  Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees F.  Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and set aside.  In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade, pulse garlic until finely chopped.  Add parsley, dinner roll, lemon juice, and olive oil.  Pulse until parsley and bread are finely chopped.  Season with salt and pepper.

2.  Place salmon fillets on baking sheet.  Season fillets with salt and pepper.  Evenly spread mustard over each fillet and top with bread mixture.  Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, until bread is golden brown.

3.  Present to your boyfriend.  I like to serve this dish with a spinach and onion salad with a lemon vinaigrette**.

*Salmon can be swapped with any thick fish

**Lemon Vinaigrette
Ingredients
1/2 cup of olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice (from about half a large lemon)
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Directions
1.  Whisk together all ingredients in a measuring cup

Labels:

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Meat Temperatures

Meat temperatures are very important for flavor and safety.  The last thing you want is your boyfriend not liking the meal because the meat is overcooked or undercooked.  To make sure it’s cooked just right follow these simple instructions.
1.       After cooked, place the cooked meat on a plate or board.
2.       Stick the thermometer into the center of the meat and make sure the temperature is consistent with what’s listed below.  (note: for you vegans out there, different types of meat need to be cooked to different temperatures.)
If the cooking temperature is right, you can be confident your boyfriend will be very pleased with his meal.


Beef
  • medium rare: 145 degrees F
  • medium: 160 degrees F
  • ground beef: 160 degrees F
Pork
  • medium: 160 degrees F
  • well done: 170 degrees F
  • ground pork: 160 degrees F
Poultry
  • 165 degrees F
Lamb
  • medium rare: 145 degrees F
  • medium: 160 degrees F
  • ground lamb: 170 degrees F

Labels:

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Argentinian Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

Serves 2 boyfriends in 1 hour


Ingredients

1 1/2 lbs flap steak (flank or skirt steak will also work)

For the Marinade:
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine
1 tablespoon white vinegar
3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

For the Chimichurri:
3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 bunch of Italian flat-leaf parsley
3 tablespoons fresh oregano (or 1 1/2 tablespoons dry oregano)
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoons red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons water
1/4 cup oil
1/2 teaspoon salt

Directions


1.  In a measuring cup mix together all the marinade ingredients.  Place steak in ziplock bag and pour marinade into the bag and over the steak.  Tightly seal.  Shake around making sure marinade completely dresses the steak.  Place in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes (over night is even better).

2.  Take steak out of the refrigerator and allow to sit at room temperature for 15 minutes.  Heat cast iron skillet over high heat*.  Sear steak for 3 to 4 minutes per side until medium rare.  Transfer to a board, loosely cover with aluminum foil (tenting), and allow to rest for 15 minutes while you make the chimichurri sauce.

3.  In a food processor fitted with a steel blade, pulse garlic until finely chopped.  Add parsley, oregano, vinegar, red pepper flakes, water, oil, and salt.  Pulse until herbs are finely chopped.

4. Serve your boyfriend:  The way in which you slice the steak is very important.  Make sure you cut against the grain.  Otherwise you will end up with long, stringy pieces.  Cut steak into 1/2 inch slices and place on the side of a dinner plate.  Pour chimichurri sauce into a small dish or bowl.  Allow your boyfriend to pour the sauce any way he chooses.

*Make sure the skillet is very hot before you add the steak.





Labels: , ,

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Chicken Lettuce Wraps



Serves 2 hungry boyfriends in 30 minutes


Ingredients
2 tablespoons safflower oil
1 1/2 lbs boneless/skinless chicken breasts, halved horizontally and thinly sliced
Salt and pepper
1 red pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
1 yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons grated ginger* (see photos below)
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon water
1 head of lettuce, preferably boston or butter

Directions
1.  Season chicken with salt and pepper.  Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large non-stick skillet over high heat.  Add half the chicken and cook 2 minutes per side, or until cooked through.  Transfer to a plate.  Repeat with the remaining chicken.

2.  Lower heat to medium.  Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the skillet along with the pepper and onion.  Cook, stirring constantly until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes.

3.  Add garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring constantly for 1 minute, until fragrant.

4.  Stir in soy sauce, vinegar, and cornstarch mixture, and cook stirring constantly for 30 seconds.  Remove from heat.  Add the chicken and any accumulated juices.  Toss to coat.

5.  Serve your boyfriend.  Pour chicken mixture into a bowl with a spoon for scooping.  Place clean lettuce leaves on a large plate.  Let your boyfriend assemble his own wraps.   He'll have fun doing it.

*Ginger root-You can find this in the produce section at the market.  This is what it looks like before you peel and grate it.
*Break off a chunk and peel using a paring knife.

Tip: Peel unused ginger, tightly wrap in plastic wrap and aluminum foil, then place in a freezer bag.  Freeze for up to 3 months.  No need to defrost.  Frozen ginger can be grated or cut.

Labels: , ,

Monday, September 13, 2010

Chocolate Chip Kugel

Serves 12 hungry boyfriends in 1 hour and 45 minutes

Ingredients
1 lb wide egg noodles
5 extra large eggs
4 cups half and half (1 quart)
1/3 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cup milk chocolate ships
3 cups frosted flakes

Directions
1.  Preheat oven to 350.  Butter a 9 by 12 baking dish.  Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Add 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt and a splash of olive oil.  Cook the noodles for 6-8 minutes until tender.  Strain.

2.  In a large bowl whisk together eggs until yolks are broken.  Mix in half and half, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, salt, and ricotta.  Whisk until smooth.  Fold in chocolate chips with a wooden spoon and mix in drained pasta.

3.  Pour the noodle mixture into the baking dish.  Gently crush frosted flakes with your hands and sprinkle over the entire kugel.  Place it into a larger pan and pour in enough hot water to come up half way.  Cover the entire assembly with aluminum foil.  Bake for 45 minutes, then remove the foil and bake another 45 minutes.



4.  Serve your boyfriend.  Cut the kugel into 12 individual squares.  Take out a piece, place it on a dessert plate, and dessert is ready!

Labels:

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Veal Pizzaiola

Serves 2 hungry boyfriends in 


This is one of my boyfriend's favorite meals

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 sweet onion, cut in half lengthwise and thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 red pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
1/2 lb mushrooms, stems removed and sliced
2 28 ounce cans diced tomatoes
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3/4 teaspoon pepper
4 veal cutlets
8 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded

Directions

1.  Heat oil in a large skillet (12 in) over medium heat.  Add onions and peppers and saute for 5 minutes, until onions are translucent and peppers are soft.  Add mushrooms and saute another 5 minutes, until moisture absorbed.  Add garlic and saute for 1 minute until fragrant.  Stir in tomatoes, basil, oregano, salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil then lower to a simmer.  Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

2.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Pour 1 cup of sauce into a baking dish, coating the bottom.  Set baking dish aside.  Pat veal with paper towel.  Season both sides of veal with salt and pepper.  Add the veal to the skillet of simmering sauce, cover, and cook 2 minutes per side.  Add veal to the sauce-coated baking dish, pour over the rest of the sauce.  Add mozzarella on top.  Cook in the oven for 20 minutes until the cheese is melted.



3.  Serve your boyfriend. Place a few pieces of the veal onto a plate and let your boyfriend know his Veal Pizzaiola is served.  It's so good it can be served as a stand-alone meal.

Labels:

Friday, September 10, 2010

Mediterranean Chicken

Serves 2 hungry boyfriends
Makes great leftovers!


Ingredients
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 sweet onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, sliced into matchsticks
1 28 ounce can diced tomatoes
1 red pepper, seeded and diced
1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 pinch of red pepper flakes
1/4 cup of Marsala wine
1/4 cup of water
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 teaspoons honey
4 boneless skinless chicken breast, pounded moderately thin

Directions
1.  Heat oil in a large skillet (12 in) over medium heat.  Add onions and saute for 5 minutes, or until translucent.  Add garlic and saute for 1 minute until fragrant.  Stir in tomato puree, rosemary, oregano, red pepper flakes, wine, water, salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil then lower to a simmer over medium-low heat for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Stir in honey and simmer for another minute.

2. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.  Bring sauce to a boil and add the chicken.  Cook for 5 minutes.  Cover the pan, lower the heat to medium-low, and cook for another 5 minutes.  Turn chicken, cover, and cook another 5 minutes, or until cooked through (if you press the chicken with your finger, it should feel very firm).

3.  Take the chicken out and set aside.  Let the sauce simmer over medium-low heat for another 5 minutes until the sauce thickens.

4.  Serve your boyfriend.   Place 2 pieces of chicken on a dinner plate and spoon over some sauce.  Sprinkle some parsley or cilantro over the food (optional), and dinner is served!

Labels: ,

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Rack of Lamb with a Rosemary Mustard Crust

Serves 4 Hungry boyfriends in 1 hour and 45 minutes


Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 racks of lamb, "frenched" (see note)

Directions

1.  In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade, process the salt, rosemary, and garlic until they're as finely minced as possible. Add the mustard and balsamic vinegar and process for 1 minute. Place the lamb in a roasting or sheet pan with the ribs curving down, and coat the tops with the mustard mixture. Allow to stand for 1 hour at room temperature.
2.  Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
3.  Roast the lamb for exactly 20 minutes for rare or 23 minutes for medium-rare. Remove from the oven and cover with aluminum foil. Allow to sit for 15 minutes, then cut every two ribs and serve.
Note: "Frenching" refers to scraping the meat off the tips of the bones. Ask your butcher to leave 1/8 inch of fat on the meat.
4.  Serve your boyfriend.  During the Spring serve with roasted asparagus.  During other seasons serve with a salad with rosemary vinaigrette*
*Rosemary Vinaigrette
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon chopped rosemary
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
Directions
1.  In a measuring cup quickly whisk together the first 5 ingredients.  Season with salt and pepper.  Whisk again.



Labels:

Friday, September 3, 2010

Grilled Marinated Chicken with a Tarragon Corn Salad

Serves 2 hungry boyfriends in 45 minutes
Ingredients
  • 4 chicken cutlets
  • 4 ears of corn, husks and silk removed
  • 4 scallions, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • Safflower Oil

For the Marinade/Dressing:
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons chopped tarragon leaves
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper


Directions
1.  Make the marinade/dressing:  In a measuring cup whisk together olive oil, vinegar, tarragon, garlic, salt and pepper.

2.  Place chicken in a large sealable plastic bag.  Pour in half the marinade/dressing and set aside the other half for the corn salad.  Toss around the chicken making sure each cutlet is soaked in the marinade.  Place in the refrigerator and marinate for 30 minutes (or over night).

3.  Stand ear of corn in a large mixing bowl.  Using a sharp paring knife, slice downwards releasing the kernels.  Discard cob.  Repeat with the rest of the corn.  Add the scallions and the rest of the marinade/dressing.  Toss the salad and season with pepper.  Set aside at room temperature until you're ready to serve your boyfriend.


4.  Heat grill pan (or skillet) over medium-high heat.  Lightly oil grates with safflower oil.  Add chicken and grill 4 minutes per side (if your pan is small grill in batches).  


5.  Serve your boyfriend.  Place 2 pieces of grilled chicken on a dinner plate.  Add corn salad to the opposite side of the plate.  This dish is great for a summer evening.  Dinner is served!  

Labels: , ,

Thursday, September 2, 2010

The Boyfriend Salad with Shrimp

This salad serves 2 hungry boyfriends in 20 minutes
It's also healthy and hearty!

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 lb medium shrimp, peeled and deveined with tails off
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 ear of corn, silk and husk removed
  • 3 bell peppers of different color, seeded and chopped
  • 2 seedless cucumbers, peeled, cut in half long ways and sliced 1/2 inch thick
  • 1/2 red onion, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 1 cup basil, julienned

For the Dressing

  • 2 gloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup champagne vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
Directions

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.  In a medium bowl mix together shrimp, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.  Evenly spread shrimp on baking sheet and cook in the oven for 6 minutes.  Set aside.

2.  Make the dressing:  In a measuring cup whisk together garlic, champagne vinegar, and mustard.  Continue to whisk and slowly add olive oil.  Season with salt and pepper. 

3.  Stand ear of corn in a large mixing bowl.  Using a sharp paring knife, slice downwards releasing the kernels.  Discard cob.  Add the rest of the ingredients (bell peppers, cucumbers, onions, basil, and shrimp).  Drizzle on the dressing and toss the salad.  Season with pepper.

4.  Present to your boyfriend.  There are 2 options.  1.  Evenly spread salad onto a dinner plate.  Sprinkle on some feta cheese.  2.  If your boyfriend is starving, let him eat the salad straight from the bowl.  


Labels:

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Seared Tilapia with a side of Roasted Tomatoes over Croutons

Serves 2 hungry boyfriends in 45 minutes
My boyfriend doesn't like tomatoes, but he loved this one!
Ingredients

  • Olive Oil
  • 2 cups cubed (1/2 in dice) bread from a ciabatta loaf 
  • 2 cups grape or cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 splash balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup fresh basil, julienned
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

  • 4 small Tilapia Fillets
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon safflower oil

Directions
1.  Preheat oven to 350.  Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the bread cubes and toast until evenly browned, about 5-10 minutes.  Add more olive oil when needed.  Sprinkle with salt.  Transfer croutons into 2 gratin dishes and set aside.

2.  Meanwhile mix together tomatoes, sugar, and garlic in a medium bowl.  Add the tomato mixture to the same skillet you used for the croutons.  Cook over medium-high heat, stirring often.  Season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.  After 5 minutes add a splash of balsamic vinegar.  Cook another 2 minutes.  Off the heat stir in basil.   

3.  Pour the tomato mixture in the gratin dishes over the croutons.  Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.  Place gratin dishes on a baking sheet.  Cook in the oven for 30 minutes until the tops are browned and the tomatoes are bubbling.  

4.  Meanwhile pour flour into a shallow dish.  Season fish with salt and pepper.  Dredge the fish in flour, shaking off the excess.  

5.  Heat 1 tablespoon of safflower oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat*.  Add the fish and sear 3 minutes per side (if your skillet is small, sear the fish in batches).  

6.  Present to your boyfriend.  Carefully transfer 2 tilapia fillets onto a dinner plate.  Place a sliced lemon next to the fish.  For color, add a bouquet of parsley or basil.  Place the gratin dish of bubbling tomatoes next to the dinner plate.  Make sure you warn your boyfriend that the gratin dish is hot!  Bon Appetite!

*Make sure the skillet is very hot before you add the fish or the fish will stick to the pan

Labels: ,