From My Carolina Home

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Chicken Chili – Hot, Filling and Gluten-Free

Chicken chili was on the menu in September when we had a cold snap, and I was working on the recipe.  Sometimes you just want something hot and filling, thick and richly flavored, a stick to your ribs kind of meal.  The best news for my gluten-free readers is you can eat this!  I didn’t do anything special, the recipe is naturally gluten free, thickened by pureeing some of the beans.  The green chilies are mild, yet full of flavor.  There is an axiom among chili enthusiasts that “if you know beans about chili, you know chili has no beans.”  But I am going to say it doesn’t apply to chicken chili, right?

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Economical too, it starts the night before with dried white beans.  I like the Great Northern beans for this as they let the chicken flavor shine.  Place the dried beans in a large pot, cover with water and bring to a boil.  Boil 2 minutes, then transfer to a bowl.  Don’t use your cooking pot for soaking, it will impart a metallic taste.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Cover the bowl and let the beans soak until the next day.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Drain the beans, and put back in the pot.  Add onion and black pepper.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Cover with water and bring to a boil.  Then turn down the heat and simmer for 1-1/2 to 2 hours, until tender.  Do not add any salt at this time as it will make the bean skins tough.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

When the beans are done, drain beans and return to pot. In a blender, place half a can of low-sodium, low-fat chicken broth and about half the beans.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Blend until smooth, and add to beans in pot.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

With the remaining broth, blend with green chilies and add to pot.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Bring heat up to medium to return to a simmer.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Meanwhile, in a small skillet, heat olive oil. Add onion and chicken, saute on high heat until lightly browned, turning chicken as needed.  Don’t move it around too much, developing good browning and flavor takes a bit of time.  The chicken starting to stick to the pan makes the best fond.  Any boneless chicken will do here, white meat tenders or boneless thighs, or a mixture of both.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

The better the chicken is browned, the more flavor the dish will have, so take your time with this part.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

When nicely browned, add chicken-onion mixture to beans. Chicken will not be done, but will finish cooking in the soup.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Add salt and pepper.  Simmer soup for 15 minutes more to be sure the chicken is cooked through. It can hold on low heat for an hour or more after that.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Garnish with chopped fresh parsley or sour cream if desired.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

If you like your chili spicier, add a few drops of hot sauce, or some dried red pepper flakes to the final simmer.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Thick and creamy, without any flour.  Gluten Free!

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

But if you can have bread, it is lovely to add a piece of garlic bread, or a thick slice of French sourdough.  Yum!

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

It is so good, I made it again just last week.  Of course, I had to be sure the recipe was right.  That’s my story and I am sticking to it.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Tasty the next day as well, just a cup finished it off for lunch.

Chicken Chili at From My Carolina Home

Chicken Chili

2 cups dried great northern beans
Water
1 thick slice of onion,separated into rings
2 large cloves garlic, smashed
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 4-ounce can green chilies
1 15-ounce can chicken broth
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
16 ounces boneless chicken,cut into bite size pieces
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Optional – few sprigs of fresh parsley
Optional – dollop of sour cream

Bring 6 cups of water to a boil, add beans and boil 2 minutes. Pour into a stoneware or glass bowl, cover and leave overnight to soak on the counter.

The next day, drain beans.   Place in a large pot and cover with water. Add onion, garlic and pepper, bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1-1/2-2 hours. Do not add any salt at this time as it will make the bean skins tough. Drain beans and return to pot. In a blender, place half the can of broth and about half the beans and blend until smooth. Pour over beans in pot. With the remaining broth, blend with green chilies and add to pot.

In a small skillet, heat olive oil. Add onion and chicken, saute on high heat until lightly browned, turning chicken as needed. When nicely browned, add to beans. Chicken will not be done, but will finish cooking in the soup. Add salt and pepper. Simmer soup for 15 minutes more, then it can hold on low heat for an hour or more. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley or sour cream if desired. Enjoy! (update – serves 8 right away, or 4 large servings, or 2 with leftovers)

Download a pdf of the recipe – Chicken Chili

Enjoy!!

Do you enjoy a bowl of chili on a cold day?  Ever had a Chicken Chili?

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Summer Chilled Corn Crab Soup

A luncheon on a hot summer day needs something cold and delicious!  I had an idea for a cold crab and corn soup, and decided to try it out on my friends at a recent luncheon.  They pronounced it good, and I liked it too.  I gave DH a bowl for his lunch, and he decided to heat it up in the microwave.  He said it was good hot too!  So, here’s the recipe for a cold refresher in summer, and would do nicely hot for a fall harvest soup too.  And it is gluten free too, as two of my friends have that dietary requirement.

Corn Crab Summer Chilled Soup at From My Carolina Home

Gather your ingredients, and chop some onions.

Corn Crab Summer Chilled Soup at From My Carolina Home

Reserve 1/2 cup of corn kernels in a covered container for garnish, with chopped green onion.

Corn Crab Summer Chilled Soup at From My Carolina Home

Sauté 1/2 cup chopped onion and 2 cloves garlic in 1 teaspoon olive oil until soft and translucent, don’t brown.

Corn Crab Summer Chilled Soup at From My Carolina Home

Remove from heat and put in blender.

Corn Crab Summer Chilled Soup at From My Carolina Home

Add one can of corn with liquid, and blend until smooth, pulsing as needed to get larger bits pureed.

Corn Crab Summer Chilled Soup at From My Carolina Home

Add 1 cup half and half (I used fat free), salt and pepper, and blend again until well blended and fairly smooth.

Corn Crab Summer Chilled Soup at From My Carolina Home

Add a second can of corn with liquid, and pulse for a rough chop of the second can of corn.  Remove blender jar from the base, and add 1/4 cup whipping cream (optional, but really makes the soup creamy and delicious, substitute more half and half instead if you want a lower fat content) and 2 cans of drained crab meat. Stir lightly with a spoon.

Corn Crab Summer Chilled Soup at From My Carolina Home

Cover and refrigerate at least one hour or overnight.

Corn Crab Summer Chilled Soup at From My Carolina Home

At serving time, ladle into small bowls, garnish with reserved corn kernels, a bit of green onion, and a few drops of white truffle oil (if you like). Enjoy!

Corn Crab Summer Chilled Soup at From My Carolina Home

Summer Chilled Corn Crab Soup

1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cloves Garlic
1 tsp olive oil
2 cans 15-oz each whole kernel corn, divided, liquid reserved
1 cup half & half
1/4 cup whipping cream (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
2 6-oz cans lump crab meat
1 green onion chopped
Optional – few drops of white truffle oil

Reserve 1/2 cup of corn kernels in a covered container for garnish. Sauté onion and garlic in olive oil until soft and translucent, don’t brown. Remove from heat and put in blender. Add one can of corn with liquid, and blend until smooth, pulsing as needed to get larger bits pureed. Add half & half, salt and pepper, and blend again for 30 seconds or so, until well blended and fairly smooth. Add the other can of corn with liquid, and pulse for a rough chop of the second can of corn. Remove blender jar from the base, and add the whipping cream and the crab meat. Stir lightly with a spoon. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour or overnight. At serving time, ladle into small bowls, garnish with reserved corn kernels, a bit of green onion, and a few drops of white truffle oil (if you like). Enjoy!

Download the recipe – Corn Crab Soup

Summer Luncheon at From My Carolina Home

Do you enjoy chilled soups?

 

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Beef Barley Stew for Two

I like beef and barley stew, but one of the problems with making it is the quantity it usually makes.  I have found that I really don’t care for leftover food much anymore, and would rather have something fresh (or at least freshened, LOL, see my Creative Leftovers).  For our holiday meal we had a prime rib, and the leftover meat after several meals along with the bones made the perfect base for a dinner for two.

Beef Barley Stew for Two ~ From My Carolina Home

Actually, any beef bones with meat on them will do for this.  The bones will flavor the broth nicely with the onion.  You can add other aromatics like garlic, leeks and/or carrots if you like.

Beef Barley Stew at From My Carolina Home

Chop the onion, garlic, carrots and any other veggies you like, and add to the pot with the bones. Add enough water to cover the bones and meat, usually around 7-8 cups. Some of it will boil away and reduce the broth.

Beef Barley Stew at From My Carolina Home

Bring it to a rolling boil.

Beef Barley Stew at From My Carolina Home

Then, reduce the heat and simmer for about an hour, and up to 2-3 hours.  This will get the most flavor from the bones, and tenderize the meat so it comes off the bone easily.  Add mushrooms if you like them. Measure out 1/2 cup of pearled barley.

Beef Barley Stew for Two ~ From My Carolina Home

Take the bones out and allow to cool so you can handle them while the barley cooks.

Beef Barley Stew for Two ~ From My Carolina Home

Shred the meat off the bones. You’ll be amazed at how much meat is on those bones! Cut away any fat and discard.

Beef Barley Stew at From My Carolina Home

De-fat the broth using a fat separator. I have to do this in three batches as I had about six cups of broth after simmering.

Beef Barley Stew at From My Carolina Home

Bring the broth back to a low boil or high simmer, add the barley and cook about 45 minutes, or until tender. The barley will take up much of the broth. Add the meat back to the pot.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  I don’t do any thickening of the broth for this meal, the barley is filling and it is nice to have the beef broth just served as it is.

Beef Barley Stew for Two ~ From My Carolina Home

Serve in a bowl, I like using the pasta bowls for stew.

Beef Barley Stew for Two ~ From My Carolina Home

I like to add a dollop of sour cream and some chopped green onions to my bowl.  I love the fresh flavor these garnishes give a meal.  DH just gets green onions as he isn’t a fan of sour cream.  He gave me some white truffle oil last month, and it was delicious on this stew too – adding an earthy flavor.

Beef Barley Stew for Two ~ From My Carolina Home

With a salad as the first course, the stew makes a filling supper, and there is enough just for two with maybe a small bowl left over for lunch tomorrow. This is a great way to use up the remains of a beef dinner, and make the leftovers into a fresh meal.  If you need a bigger amount, just increase the water and barley in a 3-to-1 ratio.  The amounts of onion and mushrooms can be increased too, this isn’t a precise recipe.  A bit more or less of any component will work.  You can add other things too, like green peas or carrots at the end of the cooking if you like.

Beef Barley Stew for Two

Leftover beef with bones
Thick slice of onion, split into rings or chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
Any other aromatic veggies you like – carrots, celery, leeks
8 cups water
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
1/2 cup pearled barley
Salt and pepper to taste
Garnish suggestions – sour cream, green onions, light drizzle of white truffle oil

Place bones, onion, any other veggies you like and water in large pot and bring to boil. When the stew has boiled, reduce the heat and simmer for about one hour and up to three hours. Add mushrooms if you like them. Measure out 1/2 cup of pearled barley. Take the bones out and allow to cool so you can handle them while the barley cooks. Shred the meat off the bones.  Remove as much of the fat as you can using a fat separator. Bring the broth back to a low boil or high simmer, add the barley and cook about 45 minutes, or until tender. The barley will take up much of the broth. Add the meat back to the pot, salt and pepper to taste. Serve in bowls with broth, garnish as you like, sour cream and green onions are tasty.

Beef Barley Stew for Two ~ From My Carolina Home

Do you enjoy beef and barley stew?  What do you like to do with leftover beef?

 


15 Comments

Squash Broccoli Casserole

Thanksgiving is coming up fast, and I am sure those of us in the US are getting our shopping lists ready and our tables set.   This really is my favorite holiday, in the thick of the holiday spirit with good food and family, football and friends.  My mother and I loved to cook together for this holiday.  Some things cannot be changed, though, we have to have turkey and dressing, and jellied cranberry sauce that shows the imprint of the can on the side.  We might change the dressing/stuffing recipe from year to year, make a pumpkin cake roll for dessert instead of pie, but the thing we liked to mess with most was the side dish.  Few usually care about the vegetable, so why not make it more memorable.  Steamed broccoli will do if we run out of time, but where’s the fun in that?  A few weeks ago I was in the kitchen with some inspiration, and made this dish.  It was a hit with the dinner party that weekend, and I thought the perfect time to show it to you was right before Thanksgiving. You know, it would make a great vegetarian entree too.

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Begin by gathering the ingredients.  Have I ever told you that this is called setting up a mis-en-place?  It is so you have everything at hand when you begin.

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Split the squash in half length-wise, remove the seeds, and place cut side down in a roasting pan. Roast the spaghetti squash at 350 degrees for one hour, then let cool for a bit so you can handle it. Rake the pulp into a bowl with a fork.

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Saute onion and leek in a pan with olive oil until translucent.

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Chop cooked broccoli, I sometimes use the leftovers from another meal.

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Mix egg with ricotta in a bowl.

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Add salt, pepper, and the sauteed onions and leeks.

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Mix until well incorporated.

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Add squash and broccoli and mix well.

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Pour into a baking dish, top with cheeses.  If you want to make it a day ahead, refrigerate at this point.  Let it come back to room temperature before proceeding, or put the casserole in a cold oven and add some time to the baking to allow for the oven warm up.

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Bake 35 to 45 minutes, or until casserole is bubbly and cheeses are lightly browned and melty. Guests dug into this so fast I almost didn’t get a finish photo!

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Yum!  It was definitely a hit, and would work wonderfully for Thanksgiving.

Spaghetti Squash Broccoli Casserole

1 3-lb to 3-1/2-lb spaghetti squash
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 large leek
1 tablespoon olive oil
15 oz ricotta cheese
1 large egg
1 teaspoon each salt and pepper
1 cup cooked chopped broccoli
4 oz grated Mozzarella cheese
2 oz grated Parmesan cheese

Split the squash in half length-wise, remove the seeds, and place cut side down in a roasting pan. Roast the spaghetti squash at 350 degrees for one hour, then let cool for a bit so you can handle it. Rake the pulp into a bowl with a fork. Saute onion and leek in a pan with olive oil until translucent. Mix egg with ricotta. Add salt, pepper, onions and leeks. Mix until well incorporated. Add squash and broccoli and mix well. Pour into a baking dish, top with cheeses. Bake 35 to 45 minutes, or until casserole is bubbly and cheeses are lightly browned and melty. Enjoy!

Winter Veggie Side Dish Casserole at From My Carolina Home

Download the pdf recipe – Squash Broccoli Casserole

One more thing, my turkey is in the refrigerator defrosting since Saturday. I’ll be brining it again this year. If you’d like to see how that is done, I posted it last November. Click on How to Brine and Bake a Moist Succulent Turkey. You need to get the turkey defrosted by Wednesday to start, it usually takes 4-5 days in the refrigerator to slowly defrost.  If you don’t have that kind of time, give it a head start on your counter for about 12 hours first, then finish in the frig.

What do you have as your vegetable dish with your holiday dinner?

 

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