Ground Beef with Chinese String Beans

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This was chockfull of vegetables and taste! And easy to make, too!

Ingredients:

1 lb. ground beef

4 cloves minced garlic

1 small onion, diced

1 bell pepper (any color), sliced

20 Chinese string beans, cut into 2″ strips

1 T. white wine

3 T. soy sauce

2 T. oyster sauce

4 T. ketchup

2 T. sugar

Pepper

Directions:

Saute the onion in some olive oil until softened. Add the bell pepper and garlic and cook until the bell pepper is soft.

Add the ground beef, breaking it up as it cooks. Cook until no longer pink.

Add the soy sauce, wine, oyster sauce, ketchup and sugar and mix well. Add the green beans. Mix well. Cover the pan and let it cook for about 5 minutes or until the green beans are softened to your liking. Season with pepper.

Serve over rice if desired.

Risotto with Pancetta & Mushrooms

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This was simply delicious – nice subtle flavors that went together perfectly!

Ingredients:

1/2 medium onion, chopped

2 oz. cubed pancetta

8 oz. sliced “exotic” mushrooms – I used trumpet mushrooms

1 1/2 c. Arborio rice

1/2 c. white wine

About 5 cups chicken broth

1/2 c. freshly grated parmesan cheese

Directions:

Heat some olive oil in a stock pot. Add the onions and sauté until beginning to become golden. Add the pancetta and cook until beginning to crisp. Add the mushrooms and continue cooking until softened.

Stir in the rice and coat it with the mixture in the pot. Add the wine and cook until the wine has been absorbed.

Begin adding the stock one ladle-ful at a time and stir constantly. When the broth has been absorbed, add more stock. Keep doing this until the rice is tender.

Stir in the Parmesan cheese until melted. Season with salt and pepper.

Cream of Mushroom Sauce

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This is a wonderful sauce that can be used on chicken and pork.

Ingredients:

8 oz. sliced mushrooms

4 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 c. chicken broth

1 c. half and half

1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese

Parsley

Directions:

Add the garlic to the pan in some olive oil and cook until soft. Add the mushrooms and continue cooking until they have released their water and softened.

Add the chicken broth and cook for a few minutes until the broth has reduced a bit. Add the half and half and cook for a few more minutes. Add the parmesan cheese and chopped parsley and stir until the cheese has melted. Taste the sauce and adjust the seasonings.

 

Chicken in Garlic Mushroom Sauce

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Years ago, I used to make my mushroom sauce by opening a can of Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom soup. Even though it was always very good, I knew that it wasn’t healthy. So when I tried this mushroom sauce, I was thrilled. The taste is just as good, if not better, and it’s authentic! You can use this sauce on pork, too.

Ingredients:

4 boneless skinless chicken thighs

8 oz. sliced mushrooms

4 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 c. chicken broth

1 c. half and half

1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese

Parsley

Directions:

Season the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides. Brown the chicken thighs well in some olive oil. Remove and set aside.

Add the garlic to the pan and cook until soft. Add the mushrooms and continue cooking until they have released their water and softened.

Add the chicken broth and cook for a few minutes until the broth has reduced a bit. Add the half and half and cook for a few more minutes. Add the parmesan cheese and chopped parsley and stir until the cheese has melted. Taste the sauce and adjust the seasonings.

Return the chicken to the pan. Cover the pan and reduce the heat. Cook until the chicken is done.

 

Grilled Pork Chops

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These were really good – and always, really easy! The important thing is to plan ahead and marinate them for at least 6 hours!

Ingredients:

2 bone in pork chops

1/3 c. white vinegar, divided

1/3 c. soy sauce

2 T. brown sugar

2 T. canola oil

2 bay leaves

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced

1/2 serano chile, seeds removed (wear gloves!)

1/4 c. thinly sliced green onions

Directions:

Combine 2 T. vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar, oil, bay leaves, red onions and serano chile in a Ziploc bag. Add the pork chops and mix well to coat the chops. Marinate in the refrigerator for several hours.

Remove the pork chops and onions from the bag. Strain the liquid into a sauce pan, discarding the solids.

Add the rest of the vinegar to the strained marinade. Reduce it down to about half on the stove, resulting in a syrupy consistency.

Heat the grill. Grill the chops well on both sides, brushing them with the reduce marinade.

Plate the chops. Top with the onions and green onions. Pour the remaining marinade over the top.

Sausage and Vegetables

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This is so simple, but yet so tasty! It’s a perfect outdoor cooking event!

Ingredients:

2 sausages

1 red pepper, sliced into thin rings

1 green pepper, sliced into thin rings

1 yellow onion, cut into rings

1 fennel bulb, sliced

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

Directions:

Grill the sausages until done. Slice into bite size pieces.

Coat the vegetables with olive oil. Sprinkle salt and pepper to taste. Grill the vegetables. We used a grill basket for the onions and fennel so that they wouldn’t fall through the slats. When done, cut them into smaller pieces.

Mix everything together and serve.

Steak Tacos

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The marinade for the meat is delicious!

Ingredients:

1 lb. flank steak, tenderized

1/2 c. soy sauce

4 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 c. olive oil

1 t. cumin

1 t. oregano

Salt & pepper

Directions:

Combine the steak and the rest of the ingredients in a Ziploc bag. Toss to coat. Marinate for a least an hour.

Remove the steak from the marinade and toss the marinade. Grill the steak until done.

Serve with corn tortillas, cheese, guacamole, and pico de gallo.