Author Archives: The Partial Ingredients

Slow Cooker White Chicken Chili

Slow Cooker White Chicken Chili

I tend to go in phases with meals and lately I’ve been really into using my slow cooker. Even though it’s almost July and not exactly slow cooker season, I’ve been enjoying the convenience of letting it do most of the work! Luckily there hasn’t been a heat wave yet to suppress my use of it yet. This recipe is a lovely combination of slow cooked chicken, white beans, peppers and spicy tex-mex flavors. I love the way slow cookers treat all kinds of meat–it just falls apart so nicely! And this recipe is no exception, the chicken turned out perfectly cooked and fall apart tender. As usual, slow cookers can vary by model so feel free to adjust cook time depending on how hot your cooker runs. This recipe can be adjusted based on your timing needs as well: cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4 hours. I used chicken breasts for the meat but feel free to mix it up and add dark meat–thighs, wings, etc. It all gets shredded in the end anyways and that is about all the work that is required for this recipe. It doesn’t get much better than that!
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Slow Cooker Beef & Vegetable Soup

Slowcooker Beef and Vegetable Soup

I used to eat alphabet soup with beef and veggies all the time as a kid. This recipe brings me back to those days. Even though this soup knocks anything canned out of the park, the flavors remind me just a bit of the soup I used to have back in the day. This recipe is easy to throw together, and then the slow cooker does the rest of the work for you. Something about the slow cooker really brings together the flavors of the beef, the vegetables and the herbs. I used high quality ground beef for the meat and fresh oregano and thyme for seasoning. While this soup is great for winter time, it also works perfectly year round as an easy weeknight meal.
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Cauliflower and Roasted Red Pepper Soup with Goat Cheese

Roasted Red Pepper and Cauliflower Soup

I love roasted red peppers. They go so well with so many things whether you add them on sandwiches, salads, soups or sauces–they are a lovely ingredient to work with. I hadn’t tried roasted red peppers in a soup but I was dying to try out this soup with cauliflower and goat cheese. Diced pancetta, fresh thyme and paprika flavor this soup while the goat cheese and heavy cream give it some tangy richness. It’s fairly low in carbs but surprisingly rich and filling. Even the cauliflower puree alone is rich in flavor and has a creamy texture, almost like creamed mashed potatoes. I served it with a dash of paprika and sprinkled with extra goat cheese. Serve with crusty french bread or croutons.
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Pimento Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Pimento Grilled Cheese Sandwich 3

Messy, gooey, hot grilled cheeses are one of my favorite guilty pleasures. Who can say ‘no’ to one of these babies? This sandwich comes from the South so you know it’s going to be healthy. Each sandwich is loaded with Pimento cream cheese (also known as the “Caviar of the South”) and smoked Gouda. Obviously, the sandwich is very rich and filled with delicious flavors.┬áThe red pimentos are the same pickled peppers found in green olives. You can find these sold in separate jars by the olives and condiments section in your grocery store. The pimento cream cheese can be served as a condiment as well, with crackers, chips or celery. This recipe pairs perfectly with a simple tomato soup and salad.
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Double Chocolate Chip Buttermilk Muffins

Buttermilk Double Chocolate Chip Muffins

Who says you can’t have chocolate for breakfast? These buttermilk muffins are the perfect excuse to have chocolate in the morning. They are full of chocolate flavor but won’t make you feel like you ate a heavy dessert. I reduced the amount of all purpose flour by half and subbed in a cup of whole wheat flour. If you’re out of buttermilk you can easily make “acidified milk” which is just milk with a dash of white vinegar mixed in. The milk curdles slightly and overall I’ve found it to be a good substitute for buttermilk. If going this route make sure to use at least 2% or whole milk as it does help with the flavor. While this is optional, you can add a little espresso powder to bring out even more of that chocolate flavor and give it some complexity. The texture was fluffy, delicate and perfect with tea and coffee!
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Tofu and Chickpea Massaman Curry

Tofu and Chickpea Massaman Curry

I love the flavors of Massaman curry. This recipe is a take on those flavors but with a twist. Traditionally Massaman curry is made with chicken, beef, or tofu. I chose the tofu version for this recipe and added chickpeas for protein instead of potatoes and peas for more veggies. You can make the red curry paste from scratch or go to a local Thai or Asian market and pick up a pre-made version. I like to buy a few cans of the Maesri brand curry pastes on hand for busier nights. Surprisingly, I haven’t found a huge discrepancy in quality or flavor of the dish. I was pleased with how quickly the recipe came together and how flavorful the dish turned out to be. If you make a large batch of the curry paste before hand it makes for a perfect week day dinner that comes together quickly and easily.
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Beef and Tomato Macaroni Soup

Beef and Tomato Macaroni Soup 2

For week night meals, I like to make a big pot of something tasty on Sunday to last me several days into the week. This is a great recipe for week night meals. It’s easy to throw together and the leftovers are just as good as the first day. The soup comes fully loaded with ground beef, elbow macaroni and the flavors of veggies, tomatoes and fresh herbs. This recipe calls for fresh thyme and marjoram, and I would recommend picking up some of the fresh stuff instead of the dried. It does impart way more flavor than dried herbs can. The combination of the fresh herbs with Worcestershire, tomatoes and ground beef were delicious. Garnish with a little grated parmesan and thyme springs and serve with some crusty french bread. As always with soups that have pasta, the noodles tend to soak up all the tasty broth if you add them in all at once. Make small batches and add a serving of noodles to each bowl so that none of the broth gets wasted.
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Recipe Round-Up: Top 5 Recipes for St. Patrick’s Day

Five St.Patricks Day Recipes

Every year I’m reminded that I really should start making more Irish food. There’s so many great options, and I tend to neglect them which is really a shame. St. Patrick’s Day offers a selection of great foods to indulge in. Some of my favorites are listed here. They’re all so good I can’t really pick favorites. They’re all easy to make and quick to prepare–even if you’ve had a few Guinnesses ;) .
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Homemade Roasted Tomato Sauce

Homemade Tomato Sauce

Who doesn’t love fresh tomato sauce? It takes a bit longer than opening up a jar or a can but the results are totally worth it. It’s hard to even call the stuff out of a jar and freshly made sauce even the same thing. When the sauce is the highlight of a dish it’s especially important to get the most flavor out of the tomatoes. To get that intense flavor, I roasted the tomatoes on the broil setting until the skins were well charred. This helps to concentrate the flavor of the tomatoes. While broiling the tomatoes, I added in some garlic cloves to get that amazing roasted garlic flavor into the sauce. Remember to remove the skins before pureeing because they tend to roll up into tiny little tomato skin skewers.

The recipe makes a lot so I was able to freeze it in batches so it should last a while. It works great for pretty much any pasta recipe that requires a red sauce and it’s especially good for lasagna or eggplant parmesan since you can tailor the water content to be thicker and less watery than conventional pasta sauces.
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African Chicken and Peanut Stew with Yams

African Chicken and Peanut Stew

This stew is a simple and flavorful recipe that combines savory, peanuty flavors with chicken and yams. My favorite part is the gravy that is flavored with peanut butter, toasted red chilis, garlic and fresh ginger. It reminds me a bit of an Indian curry gravy and has a similar consistency to a Massaman Curry. I would suggest using chicken meat on the bone (thighs or drumsticks) to get some of that lovely flavor into the sauce as well. You just have to fish out the chicken after its cooked and shred the meat. If you’re short on time, you can always get boneless/skinless thighs instead. The meat tends to fall of the bone after cooking it slowly for over an hour so it pretty much does the work for you. The combination of the spicy and peanuty gravy with the slow cooked chicken and yams was perfect for a chilly February day! Serve with a side of white or brown rice and garnish with cilantro.
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