Potato Chowder

Ingredients:
2 stalks celery
2 russet potatoes
1 carrot
1 yellow onion
1 bunch chives
1 clove garlic
mustard seed
sweet paprika
cayenne
smoked paprika

Directions:
1. Peel the carrot; cut in half lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. Small dice the celery. Peel and medium dice the potatoes. Peel and small dice the onion and garlic. Thinly slice the chives.
2. In a large pot, heat 2 tsp olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the carrot, celery, potatoes, onion, and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 7 to 9 minutes, or until slightly softened.
3. Add the spices to the pot of vegetables. Cook, stirring frequently, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add 3 1/2 cups of water; season with salt and pepper. Heat to boiling on high. Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, 15 to 17 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork. Turn off the heat. Using a spoon, carefully mash the potatoes against the side of the pot to achieve your desired consistency: stir to thoroughly combine.
4. Garnish with chives.

Chicken Hekka

Ingredients:
1 1/2 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast
3/4 c white sugar
3/4 c soy sauce
3/4 c mirin (japanese sweet wine)
2 TBS vegetable oil
1 TBS grated fresh ginger
3 carrots, julienned
2 onions, thinly sliced
1 (14 oz.) can shredded bamboo, drained
1/2 lb. fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 c trimmed and coarsely chopped watercress
1 (8 oz.) package rice noodles, soaked and cut into 2″ pieces

Directions:
1. Cut chicken meat into bit size pieces. In a medium bowl, combine the sugar, soy sauce, and mirin wine. Mix well, and set aside.
2. In a skillet or wok, heat oil over medium-high heat. Squeeze juice from grated ginger into wok, add grated ginger, and stir fry until brown. Discard ginger fibers. Increase heat to high, and stir in chicken. Season with soy sauce mixture, and cook for 2 more minutes.
3. One at a time, add the carrots, onions, bamboo shoots, mushrooms, and watercress. Stir after each addition. Add rice noodles; cook, stirring, for about 3 more minutes, or until done.

Light Alfredo

Ingredients:
1/4 onion, chopped
1/4 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp vegetable oil
1/2 c skim milk
1/4 c chicken broth
2 1/4 tsp all-purpose flour
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
2 TBS grated parmesan cheese
1/4 lb fettuccini
2 lb broccoli

Directions:
1. In a medium saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, and saute until golden brown.
2. In a small saucepan, stir together milk, chicken broth, flour, salt, and pepper over low heat until smooth and thick. Stir into onion mixture. Continue to cook over medium low heat, stirring frequently, until the sauce is thick. Stir in parmesan cheese.
3. Meanwhile, boil broccoli in boiling water. After several minutes, add pasta.
4. Drain the pasta and broccoli, and transfer to a large bowl. Toss with sauce. Serve.

Day Before Mashed Potatoes

Ingredients:
2 1/4 potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 1/2 oz. cream cheese
1/4 c sour cream
1/2 tsp chopped onion
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
1 1/2 tsp butter

Directions:
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Drop in potatoes, and cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes.
2. Transfer potatoes to a large bowl, and mash until smooth. Mix in the cream cheese, sour cream, diced onions, salt, pepper, and butter. Cover, and refrigerate 8 hours, or overnight.
3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a medium baking dish.
4. Spread potato mixture into the prepared baking dish, and bake in the preheated oven about 30 minutes.

Cranberry Spinach Salad

Ingredients:
1 TBS butter
3/2 c almonds, blanched and slivered
1 lb spinach, rinsed and torn into bite-size pieces
1 c dried cranberries
2 TBS toasted sesame seeds
1 TBS poppy seeds
1/2 c white sugar
2 tsp minced onion
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 c white wine vinegar
1/4 c apple cider vinegar
1/2 c vegetable oil

Directions:
1. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Cook and stir almonds in butter until lightly toasted. Remove from heat, and let cool.
2. In a large bowl, combine the spinach with the toasted almonds and cranberries.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the sesame seeds, poppy seeds, sugar, onion, paprika, white wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar, and vegetable oil. Toss with spinach just before serving.

Zucchini Wrapped in Tortillas

Ingredients:
1 TBS vegetable oil
1 tsp mustard seed (optional)
1 tsp cumin seed
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 TBS grated fresh ginger
4 c grated zucchini
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
salt to taste
4 (10″) flour tortillas
4 fresh chives
1/2 c sour cream (optional)

Directions:
1. In a medium size wok or saute pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add mustard and cumin seeds. As they begin to pop, lower the heat and add the onion and ginger. Saute until onions are soft and light pink in color.
2. Add the shredded zucchini, increase the heat slightly. Stir frequently until the zucchini gets soft and well-cooked, approximately 5 to 10 minutes. Stir in the chili powder, pepper, clove, cinnamon, and salt.
3. Warm the tortillas and place the tortillas on a flat surface. Place 1/4 of the zucchini filling in the center of each tortilla. Roll up each tortilla and tie it closed with a chive. You can serve the wrap with a dollop of sour cream on the side, it makes for a well rounded wrap.

Almond Sauce Chicken Breast

Ingredients:
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
salt and pepper to taste
1 egg
1/2 c water
2 c finely chopped almonds
1/4 c butter
3 TBS olive oil
1 lb fresh mushrooms
1 onion, sliced into rings
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 c heavy cream
1/4 c almond paste
1/2 tsp freshly ground nutmeg

Directions:
1. Pound chicken breasts to flatten; Season with salt and pepper to taste. In a small bowl, beat together egg and water to make egg wash. Place almond crumbs in a shallow dish or bowl; dip chicken in egg wash, then dredge in almonds.
2. Melt butter with olive oil in a medium skillet over medium high heat. Brown coated chicken quickly, then transfer to a 9×13 inch baking dish.
3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
4. In same skillet, brown the mushrooms and onions with the garlic. Mix together and spread mixture over the chicken.
5. In same skillet, combine the cream and almond paste and mix together; heat through, then stir in nutmeg. Pour sauce over chicken, mushrooms, and onions.
6. Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and no longer pink inside.