Posole

It’s winter, which means it’s soup time.  Was debating what to make the other night and came across a recipe I love that I hadn’t put together for awhile — Posole (from Cooking Light).  The true meaning of the word/name is hominy, so that is obviously a must in the ingredients.  There are many ways to make it/variations on the recipe.  The key is that it has to be made during the the cold weather season.

Ingredients

1 pound tomatillos (I normally use green salsa but the store was out this time so actually had to use what the recipe called for)
6 cups Brown Chicken Stock (not sure what brown vs. ‘normal’ is, and I just use broth)
2 cups chopped onion
3 pounds chicken breast halves, skinned
4 garlic cloves, chopped
2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and quartered (I usually just use Tabasco and/or chili powder)
1 (30-ounce) can white hominy, drained
1 teaspoon salt

—>below are all garnishes
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream
8 lime wedges

Preparation

Remove/discard husks and stems from the tomatillos. Cook whole tomatillos in boiling water for 10 minutes or until tender; drain.

Place tomatillos in a blender; process until smooth; set aside.

IMG_1913[1]Place stock and the next five (5) ingredients (stock through hominy) in a large stockpot; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 35 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove chicken from bones (I have always used boneless — and skinless); shred. Stir in pureed tomatillos and salt; cook for five(5) minutes or until heated.

Stir in chicken, and serve with cilantro, sour cream, and lime wedges, if desired.

IMG_1917[1]Delicious!  I served it with some guacamole, salsa and chips.  I also have plenty to eat for several days or freeze to keep on hand.

Wrap-up Dinner

The long weekend is over. Time to get back to ‘normal’ life. I wanted to make a healthy meal that both used some of the leftover turkey and would give me some lunch for the week. I remembered a recipe a friend passed along a few years ago and it was perfect for this time of year. It doesn’t actual call for turkey, but throwing the meat in at the end was a great addition. I used Ellie Krieger‘s Lemony Lentil Soup with Greens (from her So Easy, Luscious Healthy Recipes for Every Meal of the Week cookbook, 2009). It’s basic, nutritious and pretty quick. I made HALF (of all the noted quantities) and have tons.  You could also easily make this a vegetarian dish by using veggie vs. chicken broth.

Ingredients

2 tsp canola oil — used olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
16 oz. green lentils
12 cups low-sodium chicken broth, plus more as needed
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp salt
6 cups chopped kale leaves (about 6 oz)
3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp finely grated lemon zest

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Directions

Heat the oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring until softened and translucent, 3 to 5 minutes.

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Add the carrots, celery, garlic and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until the carrots are softened, about 5 minutes.

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Add 12 cups of the broth, the lentils, basil, thyme, and salt and bring to a boil.

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Reduce the heat to low, add the kale, and cook until the lentils are tender, 30-35 min, adding more broth as necessary.

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Stir in the lemon juice and zest, and serve. At this point I also threw in leftover turkey and let it heat through.

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Nice and hearty! I plan to eat this for the next couple days at lunch (and likely dinner based on how much I have, even with half the recipe).

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From Green Peas to Red Wine

I am the type of kitchen person who does not like to waste anything/throw it away. I won’t keep and keep, then keep and keep things forever in an attempt to use them, past their pull dates or until they’ve grown various levels of fuzz, etc. just to attempt to use them — that would qualify me for Hoarders (SO not going there) — but aim to make the most of my money.

So, from Supper Club on Sunday, I had leftover fresh mint.  As I’m typing this, I realize I could have saved cooking and just made Mojitos, darn…next time.  Anyway, one of my favorite quick, and beyond simple, recipes that I found years ago to use mint in is Mint Bruschetta.  What do you need?

IMG_1059 -Food Processor
-Frozen Peas (thawed — I defrost them quickly in the microwave)
-Fresh Mint leaves
-A bit of olive oil — maybe 1-3 tsp
-Sometimes, to taste, I add garlic and lemon juice

 

Just throw all of it in the food processor and blend to desired  consistency.  Season to taste.  How much easier could it get???

 

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End result? Green mush, right?  But GOOD green mush.

 

 

 

IMG_1067Then, after making this delicious mush, had to enjoy some wine.  Went to my wine rack and found a bottle.  I saw my scribble of $8 on the back of the bottle.  That works.  OH MY GOD, what am I drinking?  Smokey, deep, heavenly bliss.  Do peas merit this, does this merit peas?  Well, the only thing that matters is that I deserve both.  What am I enjoying?  Calina Carménère.  For only eight bucks, AMAZING.  Check it out!