How was your weekend? Mine was productive and fun too! I met a friend on Saturday and we discussed health and products I can use from the company she works with. I will Blog about that later this week.
Saturday night we had our monthly dinner party. We had about 12 people there and it was loud and rowdy. Always a good time though. Of course I ate too much but I planned on it as my “splurge”.
On Sunday I was a cooking fool, but now I have healthy meals all week to eat.
I love this weather so I can cook hot and hearty meals again.
First up on the menu was Chipotle Chicken Chili. I have made this before and it is a winner in our house. It has Mexican flavors with chipotle chilies, cilantro and lime. So good and flavorful. How bad can it be with beer in it, right?
I got the recipe from The Pioneer Woman cooks but I modified it a little
Chipotle Chicken Chili
■2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
■1 whole Onion, Diced
■4 cloves Garlic, Minced
■2 pounds Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, Cut Into A Large Dice ( I cheated and used a cooked roasted chicken)
■1 bottle (12 Ounce Bottle) Good Beer
■1 can (14 Oz. Size) Diced Tomatoes
■3 whole Chipotle Peppers In Adobo Sauce, Minced (Start with one and adjust to taste)
■1 can (14 Oz. Size) Pinto Beans, Drained And Rinsed
■1 can (14 Oz. Size) Black Beans, Drained And Rinsed
■1 can (14 Oz. Size) Kidney Beans, Drained And Rinsed
■1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
■1 Tablespoon Ground Cumin
■1/4 cup Masa Harina or corn starch
■1 Lime, Juiced
■ Sour Cream, For Serving
■ Grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese, For Serving
■ Cilantro, For Serving
■ Lime Wedges For Serving
Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat then add the onions and garlic. Cook for a few minutes until onions soften. Add the chicken and cook until lightly browned. Add 3/4 of the beer, reserving the rest, then cook for a couple of minutes to reduce.
Add the tomatoes, chipotles, beans, chili powder, cumin and salt. Stir to combine, then cover the pot and cook for 1 hour.
Combine the masa harina with the rest of the beer and stir to make a paste. Add this into the chili, along with the lime juice. Stir and cook for 10 more minutes or until thick.
Serve with sour cream, cheese, cilantro, and another squeeze of lime!
The real test was both Dan and Danny loved it. Danny wanted to take it home with him but I wouldn’t let him.
Then I decided to make a roasted cauliflower, leeks and garlic soup. Here it is. I swear it took no time to make this.
Roasted Cauliflower & Leek Soup
2 medium cauliflower (or 1½ large)
6 cloves of garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp salt
2 tbsp lemon juice
½ tsp paprika
2 cups chicken stock
2-3 cups no fat evaporated milk
pepper to taste
¼ cup diced pancetta (optional)
Nutmeg to taste (optional)
1.Set the oven to 400 degrees
2.Cut the cauliflower into medium sized pieces and cut the leeks in 2 inch slices. Place the leeks and cauliflower on a baking sheet along with the peeled garlic cloves. Season with salt and drizzle the olive oil over top.
3.Place in the oven and cook for 20-25 minutes until the cauliflower is tender and has begun to brown. Half way through cooking remove the pan from the oven and flip the vegetables to ensure they don’t get too dark on one side.
4.Once cooked remove from the oven and put the cauliflower, leeks and garlic in a blender. Add in the lemon juice, paprika and chicken stock and blend.
5.After blending the soup, pour into a pot on the stove on medium-low heat and add the milk slowly until the soup reaches your desired consistency. Season with salt ,pepper and nutmeg.
6.While the soup keeps warm, quickly fry diced pancetta on medium high heat.
7. To serve ladle the soup into a bowl and top with a sprinkling of pancetta.
The leeks and the roasted garlic made this dish! The original recipe didn’t call for nutmeg but I thought it needed something and it gives it a nice Fall flavor.
Finally, I roasted some vegetables in the oven (broccoli, peppers, carrots and tomatoes) with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and garlic. Roast at 400 degrees for about a half an hour. Delish!
Besides cooking I had 2 letters to write this weekend. I have mentioned my idea of writing positive, inspiration letters to people and I have had many requests, I am so shocked by this. I wrote one to a very good male friend of mine. We have been friends for many years and I was shocked he asked for one. I had a hard time with this a little because I didn’t want to get too mushy and lovey and wig him out so I had a hard time letting go and writing what I wanted to. Felt a bit censored on this one but I got it out the way I wanted to so it worked it ok. Just took some time. Patience is NOT my virtue!
I wrote another letter to a female friend that I have known for some time, although, not that well. This letter was much easier and It flowed out in no time. Apparently, women are easier for me than men to wrote to!
I hope they both like them. It’s so fun to write them but then I get anxious to hear how people like them.
It was a really good, positive weekend which I have really needed.