Coq au Vin Assez Rapide Recipe

Chicken with wine is one of those special dishes I’ve found everywhere in my travels through Burgundy. Classic coq au vin can be fussy and time-consuming, as some recipes call for marinating the chicken in wine overnight and peeling a lot of petits oignons (here, frozen pearl onions are used – no one will know the difference). The assez rapide (pretty quick) recipe gets right to the heart of the classic dish without a lot of fuss.

The traditional wine for coq au vin is a Pinot Noir from Burgundy. But I’ve always enjoyed this dish most when made with that other Burgundian red – the terrific cru Beaujolais (made from the Gamay grape). To me, Beaujolais is the quintessential dinner-at-home wine – fruity, soft, and approachable – and it goes with everything. Get an extra bottle to drink with dinner.

3 to 4 pounds bone-in, skin on chicken breast halves and/or thighs
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
4 slices bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 medium-size carrot, peeled and diced
3 large shallots, thinly sliced (about 3/4 cup)
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups cru Beaujolais, such as Beaujolais Villages, Moulin-à-Vent, Fleurie, Morgon, or Brouilly (not Beaujolais Nouveau); you can also use Pinot Noir
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth, plus more if needed
1 tbsp snipped fresh parsley, plus additional snipped fresh parsley or chives, or a combination, for the garnish
1/2 tspn dried thyme, crushed
1 bay leaf
1 1/2 cups frozen pearl onions
3 tbsp unsalted butter
8 ounces fresh mushrooms, stems trimmed, left whole if small, quartered or halved if larger

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Snip away and discard any excess skin from the chicken thighs. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken in 1/2 cup of the flour, pat off the excess, and set aside. Cook the bacon in a braiser or oven-safe Dutch oven over medium heat until crisp; remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Add the vegetable oil to the bacon fat left in the braiser; heat over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Add the chicken and cook, turning occasionally, until brown on all sides, 10 to 15 minutes (reduce the heat to medium if the chicken browns too quickly). Transfer the chicken to a plate and pour off all but 2 tablespoons of fat from the braiser.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the carrot and shallots to the braiser; cook, stirring, until the carrots soften somewhat and the shallots are tender, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds more. Add the wine and chicken broth and bring to a boil, stirring to loosen any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the parsley, thyme, and bay leaf. Return the chicken, skin side up, to the braiser and add the bacon.
  4. Cover the braiser and transfer to the oven. Bake until the chicken is tender and no longer pink (the internal temperature should register 170 degrees Fahrenheit for breasts, 180 degrees Fahrenheit for thighs), about 1 hour.
  5. About 15 minutes before the end of the cooking time, cook the frozen pearl onions in a large saucepan according to the package directions. Drain and leave in the colander. In the same saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter over medium-high heat; add the mushrooms and cook, stirring, until tender and lightly browned, 4 to 5 minutes. Return the onions to the pan. Remove the pan from the heat and cover to keep warm.
  6. With a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken pieces to a large platter; cover with foil to keep warm. Discard the bay leaf. Pour the juices and solids into a large measuring cup and skim off the fat. You want a total of 2 cups of pan liquid, including the bacon, carrot, shallots, and garlic in the liquid. If you have more, boil the liquid in the pot over medium-high heat until reduced to 2 cups. If you have less, add additional chicken broth to make 2 cups, return the liquid to the pot, and bring to a boil.
  7. In a small bowl, mix the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and 2 tablespoons flour together to make a paste (a beurre manié). Add the beurre manié bit by bit to the cooking liquid, stirring with a wire whisk to blend away any lumps. Cook, stirring, until the mixture boils and thickens, then continue to cook and stir for 2 minutes more. Add the onions and mushrooms and heat through.
  8. Divide the chicken among six shallow bowls. Pour the sauce over the chicken, dividing the bacon, mushrooms, and onions evenly. Top each serving with a sprinkling of parsley or chives and serve.
Makes 6 servings

Recipe courtesy of The Bonne Femme Cookbook by Wini Moranville

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Easy Thanksgiving Dinner Recipe

Thanksgiving is our favorite holiday because it has nothing to do with politics or religion and it is all about getting family and friends together to enjoy great food. Many of us are fortunate enough to be a part of a large gathering on this day. However, many people will be spending this holiday alone because they are far from home, have a small family, have to work during the holiday, and/or many other reasons. Although they won't be able to join members of their family and friends, they can still enjoy a quick and easy Thanksgiving dinner that can be prepared by one person in less than 20 minutes. Here's how to do it.

3 boneless turkey or chicken breasts
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 and 1/4 cup water
1 10 3/4 oz. can condensed cream of chicken soup
1 6 oz. package of your favorite bread stuffing mix

serve these along with chicken and stuffing for a fast and easy Thanksgiving feast.
1 can Cranberry
1 store bought pie
1 bottle of your favorite wine (we chose Fritz's Riesling - $13 per bottle)

  1. Place the chicken at the bottom of a greased slow cooker.
  2. Pour the condensed soup over the chicken.
  3. In a bowl, mix together the stuffing, water, and melted butter. Distribute this mixture evenly over the chicken.
  4. Place cover on the slow cooker and cook on low for 4 hours.
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Italian Meat Balls Recipe

If you never seem to have time to cook during the week, try this recipe for Italian meatballs. You can make these on the weekend and heat them up in the microwave (for about 1 minute) when you need them during the week.

We will cover them in a simple tomato sauce before they go into the oven. In addition, we made a velouté sauce that can be poured over the meatballs when they are served. This sauce is optional but very easy to make.

The Italian meatballs can be eaten as a stand alone dish or they can be added to your favorite pasta (such as Risotto Milanese) and sauce. Regardless of how you decide to use them, they will save you time during the week.
risotto Milanese with meatballs

1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground beef
2 1/2 cups bread crumbs
1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp rosemary, chopped
1 tbsp red pepper flakes
1 tspn salt
1 1/2 tspn black pepper
1 1/2 tbsp dried porcini mushrooms, ground

  1. Preheat oven to 475 degrees Fahrenheit and grease a large casserole dish.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the pork, beef, bread crumbs, milk, eggs, garlic, rosemary, red pepper flakes, salt, pepper, and porcini mushrooms.
  3. Using your hands, form golf ball sized meatballs.
  4. Place the meatballs into the casserole dish and place the dish into the oven.
  5. Cook for 15 minutes.
  6. Remove the casserole dish containing the meatballs from the oven and reduce heat to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  7. Cover the meatballs with your favorite spaghetti sauce. I used canned pizza sauce.
  8. When the temperature in the oven has reached 350 degrees Fahrenheit, place the meatballs back into the oven and bake for 1 hour.
  9. Remove the meat balls from the oven and serve hot.
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Spicy Sesame Noodle Bowl Recipe

from  White Jacket Required by Jenna Weber.....

Whenever I am craving for Vietnamese food, I head to the kitchen and make this recipe.  Cooked shrimp make a nice addition.

1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup hot water
1/2 cup canola oil
1 cup tahini (sesame seed paste)
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/8 cup chili oil
2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
5 clove garlic, minced
8 oz. soba noodles, cooked and drained (drizzle with sesame oil after cooking)
sesame seeds for garnish
sliced raw vegetables of your choice (red pepper strips, carrot sticks, bean sprouts)

  1. In a large bowl, mix together the soy sauce and hot water until combined and smooth.  Add canola oil and mix again, then add tahini, sugar, and vinegar, mixing well after each addition.
  2. Add chili oil, sesame oil, and garlic.
  3. Whisk until everything is combined.
  4. Serve with noodles and top with sesame seeds and raw vegetables.

Recipe courtesy of White Jacket Required by Jenna Weber (author of the blog Eat, Live, Run

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Slow Cooker Feijoada Recipe

Feijoada is Brazil's national dish.  It is usually served in restaurants throughout the country every Saturday.   This dish can be traced back to the early days of Brazil.  Slaves that worked the sugar cane plantations used the undesirable parts of the pig that were discarded to make this hearty pork stew.  They served it with Kale, rice and farofa (made from casava root) to make a perfectly well rounded meal.  Combine it with a few caipirinhas or caipiroskas and you will learn why this is the most popular dish in Brazil. 

3/4 pound pork ribs
1/2 pound smoked bacon
2 ham hocks
1 tbsp tomato paste
8 oz. chopped tomatoes
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste
28oz. can of black beans
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 pound of pork filets
4 cloves garlic,minced
1 yellow onion, diced
1/2 pound linguiça or chorizo sausage, chopped into thin slices
1 4oz. can of green chiles
4 scallions, sliced lengthwise and then sliced across into 2 to 3 inch pieces

  1. Put the pork ribs, smoked bacon (slices unseparated), and ham hocks in the slow cooker.  Add the tomato paste, chopped tomatoes, black beans, bay leaf, salt, and pepper.
  2. Cover with lid and cook on low for 7 hours.
  3. Remove the ham hocks and ribs from the slow cooker.  Remove any bones that you can find and then place the pieces of meat back in the slow cooker.
  4. Heat a skillet over medium heat.  Remove the smoked bacon from the slow cooker and place it in the skillet.  Skim off the fat and add crisp bacon back to the slow cooker.
  5. Add the olive oil to the skillet along with the onions and garlic.  Cook the garlic and onions until the onions are translucent.  Place the onions and garlic in the slow cooker.
  6. Slice up the linguiça or chorizo into 1/4 inch slices and add them to the skillet.  Brown the sausage and then add it to the slow cooker.
  7. Add the can of green chilies to the slow cooker and cook on low for another hour.
  8. Chop up the scallions lengthwise and then into 2 inch slices.
  9. Serve the feijoada over steamed rice with the scallions as garnish.
Serve with couve or just lightly steamed kale and fresh orange slices.  Farofa, rice, and heart of palm are also served with feijoada as they taste great along with the pork and black beans!! 

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Jackie Kennedy's Beef Stroganoff Recipe

If you're looking for something to make for dinner on election night, we recommend this one direct from Camelot. You can fill up the slow cooker before you head out to the polls on Tuesday and by the time the election results begin to trickle in, you will be enjoying one of Jackie's best recipes.

From Holiday Slow Cooker by Jonnie Downing....

Was there anything this amazing woman wasn't good at?  Try the first lady's delicious beef stroganoff recipe and judge for yourself.  While this version is modified for the slow cooker, you'll still need to do some prep work.  It's worth it.

2 pounds top sirloin, trimmed of fat and cut into 2-inch strips
1/4 tspn salt
1/4 tspn pepper
1/4 cup grated yellow onion 
1 1/2 cups sliced baby portabello mushrooms
2 cups beef broth
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 tspn onion powder
egg noodles, for serving
1/2 cup sour cream

  1. Spray the inside of the slow cooker with cooking spray.
  2. Season the beef strips with the salt and pepper and place in the slow cooker.
  3. Lightly saute the onions. 
  4. Add the onion, mushrooms, broth, tomato paste, and onion powder.  Cover and cook on low for 10 hours, until the beef is tender.
  5. Shortly before serving time, cook the noodles according to the package directions.  While they are cooking, mix the sour cream into the meat mixture in the slow cooker.  Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper, as needed.
  6. Serve the hot stroganoff over the noodles. 

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Garlic Bread Recipe

Everybody loves warm bread when it arrives at the table, and when it has the scent of garlic wafting from it, you know it has the Italian touch.  The goal in making a good garlic bread is to rub the bread with the crushed garlic clove, not to load it with chopped garlic; remember, just the essence is enough to gratify your senses.

3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
12-inch loaf Italian bread without seeds
1 tspn dried oregano
Kosher salt for seasoning

  1. Combine the olive oil and garlic in a small bowl, and steep about 30 minutes, to let the flavors mingle.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.  Split the bread in half lengthwise, then cut in half crosswise, to make four pieces.  Set the pieces, cut side up, on a baking sheet, and brush the bread with the flavored oil, rubbing with garlic cloves and leaving them on top.  Sprinkle with the dried oregano.
  3. Bake until the bread is golden and crispy, about 4 to 5 minutes.  Remove any large garlic pieces, and lightly season the bread with salt before serving.
Garlic Bread Topped with Cheese (Pane Strofinato con Formaggio):  substitute 1/4 cup grated Grana Padano or Parmigiano-Reggiano for the oregano.

Garlic Bread Rubbed with Tomatoes (Pane Strofinato con Pomodoro):  Cut some ripe tomatoes in half crosswise.  While the baked bread is still hot, rub cut surfaces of the bread with the tomato halves, until the bread has absorbed the tomato juices, and the tomato pulp has rubbed onto the bread.  Season lightly with salt, drizzle some extra-virgin olive oil on top, and serve immediately.

Recipe courtesy of Lidia's Favorite Recipes by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich and Tanya Bastianich Manuali.

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Wild Mushroom Risotto Recipe

Everyone thinks of mashed potatoes and gravy or mac and cheese as comfort foods. But after tasting this risotto, you may just have a new favorite.

6 cups beef stock (or substitute chicken or mushroom stock)
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp butter
1 cup shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and julienned
1 cup oyster mushrooms, sliced
1 cup cremini mushrooms, sliced
salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup finely chopped shallots
1 pound Principato di Lucedio Arborio rice
1/2 cup Courvoisier cognac
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley.

  1. Pour the stock into a stock pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer.
  2. In a medium sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and 1 tablespoon of the butter over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and sauté for 5 minutes, or until tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  3. Heat the remaining olive oil and butter in a heavy bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and sauté until translucent. Add the rice and cook, stirring constantly, until golden brown. Pour in the cognac and keep stirring until it is completely absorbed. Using a large ladle, add the stock one ladle at a time, stirring constantly, until absorbed. Continue this process until all the stock is used and the rice is creamy.
  4. Add the mushroom mixture to the risotto and continue cooking and stirring. Stir in the heavy cream and cheese and continue stirring. Risotto should have a very creamy texture. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately, garnished with chopped parsley.
Serves 8

Recipe courtesy of Lobster for Leos, Cookies for Capricorns by Sabra Ricci

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Paglia e Fieno (Straw and Hay) Recipe

This colorful pasta dish has been on restaurant menus as far-back as I can remember.  Patrons love the two-tone pasta, crispy peas, prosciutto bits, and creamy sauce.  Your family and guests will ask for second helpings every time.  But, as traditional as this dish is, feel free to change the vegetables according to seasons; for example, I love adding fava beans in the spring, corn in the summer, mushrooms in the fall, and cooked chestnuts in the winter.

salt for the pasta pot
4 scallions
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup shelled fresh peas, blanched or frozen baby peas, defrosted
6 to 8 slices imported prsciutto, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick ribbons
2/3 cup chicken stock or canned low-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 pound fresh paglia e fieno fettucine, or 1/2 pound dry egg fettucine and 1/2 pound dry spinach fettucine
3/4 cup freshly grated Grana Padano or Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.
  2. Trim the roots, tips, and any yellow or wilted leaves from the scallions.  Cut them in half lengthwise, then crosswise into 3-inch lengths.  Cut the scallion pieces lengthwise into thin strips.
  3. Heat the oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat.  Add the scallions, and cook until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes.  Scatter in the peas and cook until just tender, about 3 minutes.  Add the prosciutto, and toss until it changes color, 1 to 2 minutes.  Pour in the chicken stock, and bring the liquid to a boil.  Reduce the sauce to a simmer, and cook until the liquid is reduced by half.  Add the heavy cream, and continue to simmer until the liquid is lightly thickened, 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Stir the pasta into the salted boiling water.  Return to a boil, and cook the pasta until al dente.  Fish the pasta out of the boiling water with a large wire skimmer, and add it directly to the sauce in the skillet, stirring to coat the pasta with the sauce.  Cook over high heat until the liquid is reduced enough to form a creamy sauce.  Remove from the heat, toss in the grated cheese, and serve immediately in warm bowls.
Recipe courtesy of Lidia's Favorite Recipes by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich and Tanya Bastianich Manuali.

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