Showing posts with label Parmigiano-Reggiano. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Parmigiano-Reggiano. Show all posts

Monday, July 22, 2013

Healthy & Yummy Recipe: Turkey & Rainbow Chard Empanadas

You may recall I've posted in the past about my Urban Organics organic produce, my new slow food health kick and a call for healthier alternatives to traditional favorites.

Yesterday, I had planned on using some of the GOYA® Puff Pastry Dough for Turnovers I had bought to test out so I took them out and put this dish together. It was so delicious, I think you should try it.

Healthy & Yummy Recipe: Turkey & Rainbow Chard Empanadas

Ingredients:


  • 1 pack of lean ground Turkey
  • 1 bunch of rainbow chard, washed/chopped
  • 1 Tbsp of fresh sofrito (my mom makes mine from scratch. You can buy it frozen or try to make your own, recipe here
  • 1 tsp Kirkland's Organic No-Salt Seasoning 
  • 1 Yellow onion diced 
  • 2 garlic cloves 
  • 3/4 Jar of Marina Sauce 
  • 1 tsp Olive oil Fresh grated Parmesan
Servings: 12 open-faced empanadas

I started off by heating up a Dutch Oven pot or olla and adding a teeny bit of olive oil, once I got that hot I added the turkey meat, sofrito, garlic and chopped onion. I seared the meat on one side and mashed it with a fork to separate it and spread out. Next I added the seasoning, this seasoning has replaced my store-bought Adobo and Sazon and is a good alternative to those if you don't DIY. I also added a 1/2 tsp of turmeric, cumin, basil and paprika in addition to the seasoning. 

I covered the meat with a lid to get a thorough cook and chopped and soaked the rainbow chard to get all the soil and sand out. Then I threw that into the pot and cooked it down for about 10 minutes, stirring it about 1x. When the meat looked pretty done, I added 3/4 of a jar of marinara sauce, put the heat on low, and let it simmer for about 40 minutes covered.

I actually left this on the stove for about 1.5 hrs while I washed my hair and relaxed. Then I came back and took out 2 muffin tins, which I lightly sprayed with cooking spray. I inserted one piece of puff pastry into each opening making a little open pocket and cupping them as necessary.

Into each I added about 1 large tablespoon of the meat mixture and then grated fresh parmesan over them. Once I was finished I wet a paper towel with a bit of olive oil and dabbed the portruding ends of the dough to get them to crisp and brown. 

I cooked these in a pre-heated oven at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. They browned beautifully and the meat was really tasty and tender.

My boyfriend added hot sauce and sour cream to his and couldn't stop himself from literally eating about half a dozen - that's how good they were.

Things I would've done differently

I would love to find some whole wheat pastry and some organic marina sauce - next time I am in Trader's Joes, I will have to remember this, if you know of any, let me know.

Also if you have left over chili or meatloaf you can easily turn it into another dish by simply filling the pastries in. Next time, I am going to try using some canned salmon.









Thursday, June 20, 2013

Recipe: Baked Macaroni & Cheese

Growing up in a Puerto Rican household, the only Macaroni & Cheese I was familiar with was Kraft Mac & Cheese from the box that my mom reluctantly served us when she had little other option. Even then she added a bit of Adobo seasoning, garlic powder, basil and oregano leaves to the bland neon orange mix. She usually served it with a juicy chuleta Pork Chop.

As I got older and more familiar with the Southern, Soul, baked version, I was floored by the amazing difference in creaminess and richness. When I began cooking on my own, the recipe below was my favorite. The hint of mustard makes this a wonderful, sophisticated version that will amaze all who consume it. I think it came from an old Saveur Magazine:

Southern-Style Macaroni and Cheese Baked Macaroni and Cheese

MAKES:4 to 6 servings
PREP: 15 minutes
COOK: 40 minutes

1 (8-ounce) package dried elbow macaroni or favorite pasta (about 2 1/4 cups,uncooked)
1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1 tablespoon whole-grain Dijon mustard
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon hot sauce
1 (8-ounce) package shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (about 2 cups)
2 tablespoons grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (optional)
Toppings (optional):
1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons butter, melted

1. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. Cook macaroni according to package directions. Drain and set aside. Melt butter in a large heavy saucepan over low heat; add flour, stirring until smooth. Cook 3 to 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Turn heat to medium; gradually whisk in milk, and cook over medium heat, stirring or whisking constantly until thickened, about 10 minutes. Stir in pasta, mustard, and next 4 ingredients, stirring just until cheese begins to melt.
3. Pour pasta mixture into a lightly greased 13- x 9 inch baking dish. Sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano or more Cheddar. If desired, top with fresh breadcrumbs, and drizzle evenly with melted butter.
4. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 25 minutes or until bubbly and golden. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

However, cut from the same cloth as my mother, I amended the recipe and made it my own, grating onions and garlic into it, adding a dash of Worcestershire and other herbs and spices. It's been years since I've made it though because it's a lot of work to make and also because of the carb and fat content.

Recently, I ran a contest and asked you all to tell me what you would like to see more of posted here and the general consensus was Italian and Latin recipes so I am sharing this one with everyone but I would like to amend it to show you how to make a healthier version.

Updated Baked Macaroni and Cheese Recipe - The healthier, Tastier version:

1 (8-ounce) package dried whole wheat pasta (about 2 1/4 cups, uncooked)
3 tablespoons Olive Oil
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup low fat or non fat Greek Yogurt
1 cup plain almond milk
1 tablespoon whole-grain organic Dijon mustard
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon Sriracha
1/4 Worcertershire
1/2 cup grated onion & garlic
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil and oregano
1 (8-ounce) shredded reduced fat sharp Cheddar cheese (about 2 cups)
2 tablespoons grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. Cook macaroni according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

Heat up olive oil in a large heavy saucepan over low heat; add onion, garlic, basil and oregano in a teeny bit of oil. Once the onions seem soft and have been sweated down, add flour, stirring until smooth. Cook 3 to 5 minutes, stirring constantly. This is a roux, the basic thickener in soups and sauces.

Turn heat to medium; gradually whisk in milk & yogurt, and cook over medium heat, stirring or whisking constantly until thickened, about 10 minutes. Add more oil or flour, if needed until you get the right thick consistency. Your arm will ache from stirring but you will get the satisfaction of knowing you just made a cheese sauce from scratch. Booyah! Stir in pasta, mustard, and rest of the ingredients, stirring just until cheese begins to melt.

3. Pour pasta mixture into a lightly greased (Use Canola or Olive Oil on a paper towel, not butter, to grease) 13- x 9 inch baking dish. Sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano or more Cheddar.

4. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 25 minutes or until bubbly and golden. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Enjoy!
 
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