Month: February 2019

Peanuts and Red Hots

Peanuts and Red Hots

It’s a combination that I will always love. It’s the simplicity of peanuts and red hots that reminds me of my childhood days, and in particular fond memories of my grandpa. My grandpa was a hardworking guy, and as I was growing up I knew […]

Bacon Patty Melt

Bacon Patty Melt

I’ve posted about the patty melt, what seems like many moons ago, and it may very well be one of my favorite burgers. There is something about it, and yes it has beef, onions, cheese, and butter, and possible other items. It’s not for the […]

French Onion Chicken Soup

French Onion Chicken Soup

I have mentioned this before, and since we are still fairly embedded in soup season in the Midwest, I love French onion soup.  I’m not sure I am the biggest fan of using a mandolin to slice lots and lots of onions, but the simple, slow caramelizing of those onions really brings joy to every bite of the soup. My wife often discuss the fact that we really love eating the once crusty and cheesy crostini that we float on top of the onion saturated broth, however we always say that we would never really enjoy that texture anywhere else. I mean, what else is there that has that texture that you know of? Bread pudding? Not sure.

Chicken French Onion Soup Recipe
Chicken French Onion Soup Recipe

So as I was deciding what to make the other day, I knew I had some ckicken stock that I batched out the day before, and decided that I would take some of the basic concepts of what I do for the French Onion Soup, but twist it up ever so slightly and go with a Chicken French Onion Soup. Was it worth it? You betcha!

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 5 whole onions, thinly sliced
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1/2 cup Marsala wine
  • 2 whole, skinless boneless chicken breasts, cooked, and shredded
  • 1/2 tbsp salt, to taste
  • Country style bread, cut into thick medallions
  • 2 cups shredded Gruyere cheese

Start by heating a skillet on medium heat, large enough to hold the onions, and add in the butter.

Let the butter melt, then toss in the onions. Give them a good stir, reduce the heat to a medium-low, and continue to cook. Stir every few minutes or so and watch the temperature. You want these to go low and slow for the most part. This should take about 25 minutes or so, maybe longer. Be patient and enjoy the sounds and more importantly the smell.

Ingredients for Chicken French Onion Soup
Ingredients for Chicken French Onion Soup

Once the onions have softened to your liking, add in the stock. Give it a good stir, then add in the thyme, marsala wine, and shredded chicken. Stir again, and bring up the temperature to a medium heat. Cover and let cook for 30 minutes. Season with salt. Go with about a teaspoon, stir and wait a few minutes. Taste, and add more salt if you desire. This one needs a bit of salt.

When you are about to serve, take your bread and lightly toast it under the broiler. Once the bread begins to crisp, remove, add the cheese to the tops, and return to melt the cheese.

Ladle the soup into your bowl, and top with a big cheesy crostini. Dig in.

Was this soup great? Yes, yes it was. It was a bit sweet, but that was A OK. This was a great use of chicken stock, and was a nice pathway to a pleasant family meal. Are you a chicken, beef, or straight up onion when it comes to French Onion soup? Me? I will make and eat any of the three!

French Onion Chicken Soup
Author: 
Recipe type: Soup
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
An easy soup that uses lots of onions, shredded chicken, and fresh thyme.
Ingredients
  • 5 whole onions, thinly sliced
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • ½ cup Marsala wine
  • 2 whole, skinless boneless chicken breasts, cooked, and shredded
  • ½ tbsp salt, to taste
  • Country style bread, cut into thick medallions
  • 2 cups shredded Gruyere cheese
Instructions
  1. Start by heating a skillet on medium heat, large enough to hold the onions, and add in the butter.
  2. Let the butter melt, then toss in the onions. Give them a good stir, reduce the heat to a medium-low, and continue to cook. Stir every few minutes or so and watch the temperature. You want these to go low and slow for the most part. This should take about 25 minutes or so, maybe longer. Be patient and enjoy the sounds and more importantly the smell.
  3. Once the onions have softened to your liking, add in the stock. Give it a good stir, then add in the thyme, marsala wine, and shredded chicken. Stir again, and bring up the temperature to a medium heat. Cover and let cook for 30 minutes. Season with salt. Go with about a teaspoon, stir and wait a few minutes. Taste, and add more salt if you desire. This one needs a bit of salt.
  4. When you are about to serve, take your bread and lightly toast it under the broiler. Once the bread begins to crisp, remove, add the cheese to the tops, and return to melt the cheese.
  5. Ladle the soup into your bowl, and top with a big cheesy crostini. Dig in.

 

Chocolate Toffee and Butterscotch Chip Cookies

Chocolate Toffee and Butterscotch Chip Cookies

I live a fairly standard, and boring life at this point in time. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t get that bored and I do everything I can to remain active, and occupied. It’s in my DNA and I often tell my wife that I […]

Carne Guisada Tacos

Carne Guisada Tacos

I talk a lot about tacos. I often say that if there was one thing I could eat every single day that it would be a taco. Then days later I might say pizza. Regardless, tacos have a special place in my heart. I recently […]

Beef filled Empanadas

Beef filled Empanadas

It seems as though empanadas fill my mind about once a week. I love an empanada, as does the rest of my family, especially when made correctly. A recent attempt, I forgot what premade dough I was using, totally failed. Granted I did not deep fry the empanadas at that time, I did bake them and they still failed. I will blame the dough as I know my meat mixture was really good. Regardless, I did not give up thinking about making more empanadas! A recent weeknight meal included a minced meat mixture to be served with a garlic and turmeric rice, and I had plenty of meat mixture left over. I knew what I was going to do next and that was hit up my local supermercado and hunt down premade emapanda dough. Low and behold they carried these great looking dough discs, and I was ecstatic. Yep, premade empanda dough excites me. That’s what it has come down to.

Beef filled Empanada Recipe
Beef filled Empanada Recipe

If you cannot find these frozen empanda shells, go ahead use the Internet and make your own. I have made these in the past and they have turned out well, but they require masa and I was out of that as well. So these are a perfect purchase. If you do not have a meat mixture, go ahead and make your own. That’s what I really love about the empanada (besides the awesome dough)… you can stuff them with anything you like!

Let’s get started.

Ingredients for the minced meat mixture:

  • 1 lb ground chuck, cooked, strained of fat
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp salt, to taste
  • 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 14 oz can diced tomatoes
  • Empanada dough
  • 5 cups canola oil
  • Cilantro chutney, optional

Begin by making your filling. Begin browning the minced meat. Start breaking it up as it is cooking. When it is done browning, remove a majority of the grease. You want about a tablespoon reserved, but no big deal if you don’t. Add in the onion and garlic. Stir. Season with salt, pepper, and cinnamon. Stir in the tomatoes, cover, reduce the heat to low, and cook for about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and let it come to room temperature. You can do this ahead of time as well.

Beef filled Empanada Recipe
Beef filled Empanada Recipe

 

Heat a pot full of oil on medium heat. You will want the oil to come up to about 350-360 degrees. During this time, let’s make the empanada.

Take an empanada disc and fill with about 1/2 cup of the meat mixture. Fold over the disc, and pinch the dough, edge to edge with a fork. Adjust the meat filling (or filling for that matter) to meat the size of your empanada dough. You do not want to over stuff, and you want to ensure you have a good seal.  Repeat. I made about 8 empanadas, as I wanted to use up my meat mixture, and more importantly wanted to see how these empanada discs would turn out.

Once the oil comes to temperature, slip an empanada into the oil, repeat with a couple of more as you do not want to overcrowd, and cook until golden in color. This does not take long, only a couple of minutes. Once they come to the desired golden color, remove them with a slotted spoon, strain any oil, and place onto a wired rim baking sheet. Season with any salt if desired.

Beef filled Empanada Recipe
Beef filled Empanada Recipe

 

Repeat with remaining empanadas. Once cooked, it is time to dig in. Serve on a platter and enjoy. The dough of these empanadas wasawesome. Flaky, and really perfect. They fried up in no time which I loved, and were a great use of leftover meat. This is great game day food if you have a fryer going, so stock up (I did) on the empanada dough if you can find it, and start making your own empanadas!  These would go great with some cilantro chutney as well. Hope you enjoy!

Beef filled Empanadas
Author: 
Recipe type: Appetizers
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
Ingredients
  • 1 lb ground chuck, cooked, strained of fat
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp salt, to taste
  • ½ tsp cracked black pepper
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon powder
  • 14 oz can diced tomatoes
  • Empanada dough
  • 5 cups canola oil
  • Cilantro chutney, optional
Instructions
  1. Begin by making your filling. Begin browning the minced meat. Start breaking it up as it is cooking. When it is done browning, remove a majority of the grease. You want about a tablespoon reserved, but no big deal if you don’t. Add in the onion and garlic. Stir. Season with salt, pepper, and cinnamon. Stir in the tomatoes, cover, reduce the heat to low, and cook for about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and let it come to room temperature. You can do this ahead of time as well.
  2. Heat a pot full of oil on medium heat. You will want the oil to come up to about 350-360 degrees. During this time, let’s make the empanada.
  3. Take an empanada disc and fill with about ½ cup of the meat mixture. Fold over the disc, and pinch the dough, edge to edge with a fork. Adjust the meat filling (or filling for that matter) to meat the size of your empanada dough. You do not want to over stuff, and you want to ensure you have a good seal. Repeat. I made about 8 empanadas, as I wanted to use up my meat mixture, and more importantly wanted to see how these empanada discs would turn out.
  4. Once the oil comes to temperature, slip an empanada into the oil, repeat with a couple of more as you do not want to overcrowd, and cook until golden in color. This does not take long, only a couple of minutes. Once they come to the desired golden color, remove them with a slotted spoon, strain any oil, and place onto a wired rim baking sheet. Season with any salt if desired.
  5. Repeat with remaining empanadas. Once cooked, it is time to dig in. Serve on a platter and enjoy. The dough of these empanadas was awesome.