March 31, 2017 · 4:04 PM
Happy Friday! For the last two weeks I have been caught up in the vortex that is Spring Break. Whenever my daughter is on break from school, the routines get disrupted such that I feel like I only accomplish the bare minimum. In fact, I feel quite lucky that this post is getting written at all. It helped that the recipe of the week for Cook the Book Fridays was an easy one.
A large part of Spring Break was spent visiting my family in Seattle. It has become a bit of a Spring Break tradition for my daughter and I to spend some time there. We had a lovely visit and I even squeezed in a CtBF make-up recipe!
First we’ll talk about the recipe for this week, then we’ll discuss the make-up.
Green Beans with Snail Butter
Green Beans with Snail Butter had a hard time making on to the Cook the Book Fridays schedule. I think people took one look at the title and thought the butter was made from snails, but in reality it is the garlicky butter generally put on snails. Big difference!
This was a great recipe. Steamed green beans are simply tossed with a generous amount of butter, garlic, parsley, salt and pepper, and a squeeze of lemon juice. It couldn’t be easier and it couldn’t be more delicious. This was a hit with my whole family and may even be my new favorite green bean recipe.
Chocolate-Dulce de Leche Tart
I think I have mentioned before that my Mom is cooking though My Paris Kitchen with us behind the scenes. Chocolate-Dulce de Leche Tart is one of the few recipes neither of us had made yet, so we took the opportunity to make it together for a family dinner while I was in Seattle.
We had one problem with this recipe: the chocolate filling was very jiggly when the baking and resting time was finished. I decided to turn the oven back on and bake the tart for an extra ten minutes or so. That did the trick, but it also caused the dulche de leche to bubble up and parts of the chocolate filling to crack. Later, when we sliced the tart, I noticed that the distinct layers shown in the book did not really exist in our tart.
No worries, the minor problems we experienced did not diminish our enjoyment of this dessert. The tart was delicious! We chilled the leftovers and found that the filling got fudgier. I think I liked it even more the second day than I did the first. Another winner!
Both these recipes can be found in the cookbook, My Paris Kitchen, by David Lebovitz.
February 21, 2011 · 12:17 PM
A few years ago I received the book The Best 30-Minute Recipe as a gift. My favorite thing in this book is their “Create-Your-Own Stir-Fry” recipe. It’s basically a formula of how much meat or other protein and how many vegetables to use, by weight. Then there are 5 different stir-fry sauces to choose from. So you get to build your stir-fry inspired by what ingredients you have on hand or what’s fresh in the market. There are also a handful of “fully built” recipes using this formula and some of the sauces. I have made this stir-fry a number of times, with different meats, veggies and sauces.
In the Wok
This time I was inspired by some leftover coconut milk. The Coconut-Curry Sauce was the perfect use for it. I immediately knew I wanted to use chicken, and green beans sounded good too. Since this was a Thai-inspired sauce, I also included red bell peppers and a little basil. The end result was delicious! Flavorful, but not too spicy and the veggies were cooked perfectly.
Feel free to play around with the meats and veggies with this recipe. If you don’t like bell peppers, use something else! One note about the coconut milk: my coconut milk was really thick (almost like a paste). I ended up using a half cup of coconut milk and a half cup of chicken broth and it worked out great. If you use light coconut milk you probably won’t have this problem.
Chicken and Green Bean Stir-Fry with Coconut-Curry Sauce
- 1 cup coconut milk (or ½ cup coconut milk and ½ cup chicken broth if the milk is very thick)
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 1-2 teaspoons red curry paste
- 1 teaspoon light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 2 teaspoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 12 ounces green beans
- 1 large red bell pepper, about a half pound
- ½ red onion, about a quarter pound
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil
1. Mix the Coconut-Curry Sauce ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.
2. Cut the chicken breast into bite-sized pieces. Toss with the soy sauce. Set aside while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
3. Clean and trim the green beans. Cut them into pieces about 1½ inches long. Thinly slice the red bell pepper, and cut each slice in half. Thinly slice the red onion. Keep the vegetables separated as they will cook at different times.
4. Heat 2 teaspoons of the oil in a large skillet or wok over high heat. When the oil is just smoking, add the chicken. Cook and stir until cooked through and lightly browned. Transfer chicken to a clean bowl. Wipe out the pan.
5. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil to the pan and return it to high heat. Add the green beans to the pan, along with a ¼ cup of water. Cover and steam over high heat for 2 minutes. Remove the lid. Add the red bell peppers and red onions to the pan. Cook, stirring often, until crisp-tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Adjust the heat if the veggies are cooking too quickly or too slowly.
6. Clear the center of the pan and add the remaining teaspoon of oil, the garlic, and the ginger. Cook, stirring constantly, for about 30 seconds or until fragrant. Stir in the cooked chicken. Give the Coconut-Curry Sauce a stir and add it to the pan. Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook until it has thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the sliced basil and give everything a good stir to coat it with the sauce. Serve with white rice.
February 18, 2011 · 8:42 AM
I was very excited about this week’s selection for French Fridays with Dorie. We love green beans and welcome different ways of preparing them. I decided to make them as part of a Valentine’s Day dinner. I served them along side Chard-Stuffed Pork Roast, also from Around My French Table. Both the pork and the green beans were delicious!
The beans couldn’t have been easier to make. Start by cooking them in boiling salted water until crisp-tender. Cool in cold water and drain. The beans can be cooked up to this point and refrigerated until ready to cook. The pancetta is finely chopped and sauteed until crisp, then removed from the pan. The green beans are then sauteed in some of the leftover pancetta fat until heated through. Add the pancetta and serve!
We loved this! I really enjoyed the subtle bacon taste from the pancetta. My husband liked these so much he is considering requesting them for his birthday dinner next week.
If you’d like to make these delicious green beans, you can find the recipe in Dorie Greenspan’s book Around My French Table.