Easy Cilantro Chicken Vegetable Soup

Standard

Based on a South Beach Phase 1 Recipe, tastes like a Mexican/Latin dish

Makes 4-6 servings in 30-40 minutes

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil
½ large red onion, chopped
½ tsp crushed red pepper
½ tsp chili powder
2 tsp minced garlic
2 tsp ground cumin
½ tsp salt, black pepper
4 cups chicken broth
1-2 boneless, skinless, raw chicken breasts
2-3 zucchini, sliced, halved
1 lb frozen chopped kale
1 cup salsa
1 cup V8 (or use more salsa)
1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
¼ cup lime juice (optional)

Directions

Prep all fresh vegetables. Defrost the chicken. Slice the raw chicken across the narrow end. Cut each slice into very thin strips, about ¼ inch thick. Mix the garlic, peppers, salt, chili, and cumin together in a small bowl.

Heat oil over medium heat in large cast iron skillet or your usual soup pot. Sauté onion for 5 minutes. Add chicken and the spices mixture. Stir over high heat until no longer pink and starting to brown. Add the zucchini, sauté over medium, stirring, about four minutes. Add kale or spinach, stir another 1-3 minutes.

Pour in the broth gradually, bring to a slow boil. Add in the salsa and V8 (if using), stir, bring back to a slow boil. Remove from heat. Stir in cilantro and lime juice.

The recipe is dairy-free, gluten-free, soy-free. Low-carb, clean eating friendly (use organic.)

Vegetarian/Vegan alternative: omit the chicken. Replace the chicken broth with vegetable broth. After pouring in the broth, add 1.5 cups of *cooked* brown rice and 1.5 cups of *cooked* black beans, drained. Follow rest of recipe as written.

Easy Cilantro Chicken Vegetable Soup PDF (print version)

[tweetthis]Easy Cilantro Chicken Vegetable Soup #dairyfree #gluten-free #soy-free #Lowcarb #cleaneating [/tweetthis]

 

Chili Rellenos (Contains Dairy and Gluten)

Standard

Note from Andrea: while I’m swamped with adoption stuff, my friend and sometime co-author Cindy Koepp offered to share some recipes with you. Enjoy!

Quico Piedra, the star of “Hard Knocks” and Joya’s bratty cousin in “Jewel Among the Stones,”* loves chili rellenos. Here’s a recipe for them…

*episodes from Avatars of Web Surfer

You’ll need…

Big, fat peppers (Anaheim, for example)

Cheese (queso asadero or cheddar or monterrey Jack or … whichever you like)

¾ cup flour … plus a bit more

2 eggs

1 tsp baking powder

Sour cream or salsa, if desired

Big toothpicks

Oil for frying

 

  1. Roast the peppers in a broiler, turning a couple times until they’re blackened all around.
  2. Put them in a covered container to cool off
  3. Meanwhile, mix eggs, flour, and baking powder to make dough. (some recipes have you add spices to the dough like cumin, cilantro, etc)
  4. Once the peppers are cool, rub off the charred skin
  5. Slit the peppers and remove the seeds and membranes
  6. Stuff the peppers with the cheese
  7. Pin them closed with toothpicks
  8. Dunk them in the batter then dredge them through the extra flour
  9. Fry them in the oil until they’re brown all around
  10. Serve with salsa and/or sour cream if you want.

 

If, however, you are like my folks who can’t do deep fried anything, you can also do this much simpler version, much more like jalapeño poppers.

You’ll need…

 

Jalapeños (or other peppers)

Cheese (any kind you like)

Sour cream or salsa

 

  1. Slice the jalapeños in half and remove the seeds and membranes
  2. Load with cheese
  3. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes at 350
  4. Serve with sour cream or salsa

[tweetthis]Chili Rellenos #recipe (Contains Dairy and Gluten) from Cindy Koepp @CCKoepp [/tweetthis]

UPDATED A New Easter Tradition–Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Standard
Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Someone else’s attempt at this classic, which is usually round.

 

In 2016, when I originally posted this, I was recovering from second degree burns and had been rather ill from them all week. Pretty much everything suffered, with my poor, sweet husband having to pick up some of the slack for me. God used a friend I hadn’t seen in forever to get me the meds I needed, and I finally had enough energy to clean my house.

I finished the Easter centerpiece I’d been working on in bits and pieces (flowers made from green straws and #2 cone coffee filters soaked in leftover Easter egg dye and left to dry. Carefully tear it open, fold accordion style 1/2 way, then wrap the other half around, tucking in the short corner. Twist bottom into a point, stick on straw, arrange in a vase or suitable substitute) I stuck saved cracked egg shells in the dye, too, and arranged them in the vase and on a plate (paper) around the vase, crumpled up a few extra dyed coffee filters to go with them. Cute and inexpensive. Not bad at all for a first try, while I’d been ill, really.

You know, this reads exactly like every recipe online where I get annoyed by the blather and skim to the actual recipe, lol.

A few years back, I decided to start a new family tradition of serving pineapple upside down cake on Easter. This new tradition is based upon my short story “Pineapple Upside Down Cake,” loosely based on actual events from my childhood. Namely, shortly before she died of Parkinson’s disease, my paternal grandmother promised to bake my dad said concoction when she got better. In the story, the local church sends a care package full of food to the family (as mine did) and among the items is a pineapple upside down cake. Not sure how much of this is fiction, but to the children in the story, the cake is a reminder of, and assurance of, the funeral preacher’s assurances Grandma was now in Heaven and was well again there. Thus the spiritual meaning it has for me makes it perfect for Easter.

That treat isn’t exactly kosher on my current diet (for health reasons). So I made a few modifications that seem to have worked.

Healthier (Gluten-Free, Dairy Free) Pineapple Upside Down Cake

1 hour and 10 minutes to make 9 servings

Ingredients:

Topping:
¼ cup Smart Balance® Omega-3 margarine (or butter substitute of your choice. Use Butter if not avoiding dairy)
2/3 c a natural brown sugar (Or make brown sugar by adding 1 tbs molasses to 1 c sweetener of choice)
9 pineapple rings, drained (reserve juice)
9 maraschino cherries, destemmed. (I add extra)
Cake:
11/3c Gluten-Free flour mix (I use Pamela’s Products Gluten Free All Purpose Flour Blend)
1/2 cup Swerve or Pyure sweeteners (OR 1 c of your preferred sugar or 1:1 ratio sugar alternative.)
1 1/2 tsps aluminum-free baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 c almond or cashew milk (increase pineapple juice if omitting)
1/2 c reserved pineapple juice (increase non-dairy milk if omitting)
2 eggs
2-3 tbs olive oil or avocado oil

Directions:
1) Heat oven to 350 degrees F. In a 9 in round pan, melt the butter substitute in the oven. (Trust me, do this FIRST). After it is melted, remove pan from oven. Ensure all surfaces are greased well to avoid the cake sticking. Sprinkle in the brown sugar then arrange the pineapple over the coconut sugar. Place cherries in the center of each pineapple ring. Note you can use a square brownie dish for this recipe but you’ll have to do some squeezing to get them to fit. Otherwise, the 9 in round pan is best.
2) In a bowl, stir together the flour mix, sweetener, the baking powder, and salt. Add in the oil, the nondairy milk and/or pineapple juice, and 2-3 eggs. Beat lumps out of the batter with an electric mixer on high, about 3 minutes, scraping bowl 2-3 times. Pour batter over the topping mix that’s on the bottom of the pan.
3) Bake 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Immediately place a heatproof serving plate upside down over the cake’s pan. Quickly flip over the plate and the pan. You may need to gently bang on the pan to get the cake to fall off it onto the plate upside down. Leave the pan on over the plate to let the caramelized sugar-oil mix drizzle down; you may need to scrape some off. Note I used a pizza pan as the serving plate before I bought a cake box that includes a serving plate. Cake tastes best warm but it is delicious cold, too.

Adapted from the classic Betty Crocker recipe.

[bctt tweet=”Discover why @andreajgraham makes a Pineapple Upside Down Cake each Easter. Includes #recipe #glutenfree #dairyfree” username=””]

photo by: