Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Diane's Menu 11/08/09 - 11/18/09

Diane's Menu 11/08/09 - 11/18/09

Sunday 11/8 Honey Ham, Cheddar Cheese Grits, Steamed Carrots
Monday 11/9 Pizza
Tuesday 11/10 Black Bean Stew with Ham, Rice and Vegetables
Wednesday 11/11 Pork Stir Fry with Asian Vegetables
Thursday 11/12 Chicken Sorrentino, Spinach, Rice Pilaf
Friday 11/13 Burgers, Twice baked sweet potatoes
Saturday 11/14 Grilled Chicken over salad with apples, spiced pecans and blue cheese crumbles
Sunday 11/15 Football Fare - Buffalo Wings, Stuffed Potato Skins, Vegetable Crudite etc
Monday 11/16 Pizza
Tuesday 11/17 Vegetable Risotto in Rice Cooker **
Wednesday 11/18 Curried Cider Pork Stew **

** Recipes below


Risotto in your Rice Cooker

Some of the best rice cooker recipes are not just for plain old rice, but for that Italian specialty, risotto. Less labor-intensive than making on the stove, making risotto in your rice cooker is easy.

To make 4 servings, you'll need:

2 tablespoons butter, olive oil, or a combination of both
1/4 cup onion, shallot, or leek
1/4 cup white wine or vermouth
1 cup Arborio rice
About 2-3 cups of a vegetable of your choice, such as asparagus, mushrooms, squash, etc. The vegetable should be cut into bite-sized pieces, about 1 inch
3 cups stock or broth (either chicken or vegetable work best)
1/4 to 3/4 cup chopped fresh herbs or flavorful greens, such as parsley, arugula or watercress (use less if the herbs are very pungent; more if they're mild)
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
salt and pepper

First, set your rice cooker to "Quick Cook" or "Regular" or "Brown" and let the surface of the rice-cooker pot heat up for a minute or two. Add the butter or olive oil to the pot and use a wooden spoon or a silicone spatula to spread it across the surface of the pot. When the oil is heated, add the onion, shallot or leek and stir to coat with the oil. Sauté it, stirring occasionally, until it softens and turns translucent. This should take about 4 to 5 minutes.

Pour in the white wine or vermouth and stir to combine. Cook for a few minutes to allow the alcohol to evaporate and the wine to heat up and reduce a little.

Add the rice to the pot and stir to coat the grains of rice completely with the wine. Sauté, stirring frequently, until the rice starts to absorb the wine. The rice will eventually become translucent around the edges, with a small white dot remaining. This means it's ready for the stock.

But before you add the stock, add the vegetables and sauté them for a minute or two, stirring occasionally. Leafy vegetables, such as arugula or, in the case of this recipe, watercress, should not be added until the last minute. But harder vegetables like asparagus or squash, need time to simmer and cook through.

Pour in the stock or broth, all at once, and stir to combine it with the rice.

Close the lid on the rice cooker. If your cooker has a porridge setting, set it for this. If it is an on-off cooker, or only has a "Regular" setting, then use that setting. Either way, set a timer for 20 minutes.

After 10 minutes, check on the rice and give it a stir to recombine the ingredients. When the timer goes off, check on the risotto. If there is still a lot of liquid remaining, and the rice is still hard in the middle, cook it a little longer. The rice should be tender, but still have a little "bite" to it, what the Italians refer to as al dente. And there should be enough liquid remaining to make it just slightly soupy.

Stir in the cheese, season with salt and pepper, and add up to another tablespoon of butter, if desired.

If you're using fresh herbs or chopped greens, add them now, stirring them in to combine and wilt. You can close the lid and let the risotto sit for a minute to wilt the greens.

Spoon risotto into a shallow soup bowl and sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese and, if desired, some fresh chopped herbs such as parsley or basil. Enjoy!

Curried Cider-Pork Stew

2 lb. boneless pork shoulder
4 medium red and/or green crisp-tart cooking apples
1 Tbsp. cooking oil
1 large onion, cut into thin wedges
2 tsp. curry powder
1 (14-oz.) can chicken broth
2/3 cup apple cider or apple juice
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
12 oz. baby carrots with tops, trimmed, or packaged peeled baby carrots
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 (1-1/2-lb.) butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed (2 cups)
Sour cream, shredded orange peel, snipped fresh oregano and/or freshly ground pepper (optional)

1. Trim fat from pork; cut pork in 1-inch cubes. Peel, core, and chop two apples; set aside. In a 4-quart Dutch oven brown pork, half at a time, in hot oil; return all pork to pan. Add chopped apples, onion, and curry powder; cook and stir 2 minutes. Add broth, cider, salt, and pepper. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2. Add carrots and celery to pork mixture; return to boiling. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cut remaining apples into 1/4-inch-thick wedges. Add apples and squash to pan. Cover; cook 10 to 12 minutes or until pork and vegetables are tender. Serve with sour cream, orange peel, oregano and pepper. Makes 6 servings.

Nutrition Facts
Calories 379, Total Fat (g) 14, Saturated Fat (g) 4, Monounsaturated Fat (g) 6, Polyunsaturated Fat (g) 2, Cholesterol (mg) 102, Sodium (mg) 526, Carbohydrate (g) 31, Total Sugar (g) 15, Fiber (g) 6, Protein (g) 32, Vitamin A (DV%) 0, Vitamin C (DV%) 52, Calcium (DV%) 10, Iron (DV%) 19, Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet

Source: Better Homes and Gardens