Warm Millet Salad w/ Kale Balsamic Chicken Sausage {37 Cooks & Bilinski’s}

bilinski logo

It’s a new year which means 37 Cooks is back in action! Even though the past few months have been extremely busy with moving to NYC and starting my Dietetic Internship I have missed these fun recipe challenges, and I am happy that this first event is sponsored by one of my favorite brands, Bilinski’s.

If you aren’t familiar with Biliniski’s they are a family owned and operated company that specializes in chicken sausages (with no pork casings!) since 1929. Their products are made from every day ingredients, gluten-free, preservative-free, antibiotic-free, nitrate and nitrite free, all meat is raised in clean, comfortable conditions, no animal by-products in their feeds, and no hormones…but are full of flavor! These sausages are fully cooked and are also low in fat, so you need to be careful to not over cook them.

I wanted to create a healthy and hearty dish that incorporated ingredients that would compliment the flavors in the new  Kale Balsamic chicken sausage! Since moving here and not having an income I have tried to stretch my food dollar even further than before. One way I’ve found to do this is to create dishes that incorporate a lot of delicious and healthy ingredients that are filling and re-heat well…you could serve this dish to a family of four or if you are in a similar situation as myself, have leftovers for a few days (I promise it re-heats very well). Feel free to change-up the ingredients as you see fit. The Kale Balsamic Sausage and all vegetables used in my recipe were organic (I have strangely found that the organic items are cheaper than non-organic in the stores around me).

I know many of you are looking for healthier recipes to get this year started. Sometimes the word “healthy” is translated into “unsatisfying” or “bland”, but it doesn’t have to! Healthy can be (and should be) delicious, flavorful, hearty, filling, and all those other good things that you are craving. Try using a new ingredient each week to expand your horizons in the “healthy” department: try millet instead of rice one week. Using seasonal vegetables and fruits in dishes also means additional flavor.

Warm Millet Salad with Kale Balsamic Chicken Sausage

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Millet
  • 2 Cups Organic Chicken Broth
  • 1/2 Cup Olive Oil divided
  • 1/4 Cup Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 Package of Bilinski’s Organic Kale Balsamic Chicken Sausage, sliced into 1/4″ rounds
  • 1 1/2 Cups Diced Organic Sweet Potato
  • 1 Cup Diced Organic Baby Bella Mushrooms
  • 1 5oz Container of Organic Baby Kale
  • 1/4 Cup Organic Dried Cranberries
  • 2 Tablespoons Pine Nuts

Method of Preparation

  1. In a small pot bring the chicken broth to a boil.
  2. Add millet, reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 20 minutes or until all water has been absorbed
  3. Add 1 teaspoon of olive oil to a large skillet and brown the sausage on both sides
  4. Remove the sausage from the pan and set aside in a large bowl
  5. In the same large skillet, add 1/4 cup water and bring to a boil
  6. Add in sweet potatoes and cook until tender or until water has evaporated
  7. Reduce heat to medium and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to pan
  8. Add in mushrooms and cook until browned
  9. Next, add in the pine nuts, and brown lightly
  10. In a bowl whisk together the remaining olive oil and balsamic vinegar
  11. Add 1/2 of the mixture to the pan with the sweet potatoes, mushrooms, and sweet potatoes
  12. Once the vegetables have been coated with the olive oil and vinegar, add in the dried cranberries and kale
  13. Cook until kale has begun to wilt (about 1-2 minutes), remove from heat
  14. Once the millet has finished cooking, add it to the bowl with the sausage
  15. Add the remaining olive oil and balsamic vinegar mixture to the bowl with the warm millet and sausage, toss to coat well
  16. To the same bowl add the cooked vegetables, toss to incorporate all ingredients and serve

IMG_4017Thank you to the awesome folks over at Bilinski’s for sharing this new product with all of us at 37 Cooks! This post is sponsored, however the recipe and opinions are 100% my own.

Want more information on Bilinski’s? Find them here:

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One-Pot Meal: Spring Time Mushroom Risotto {Good Cook Kitchen Drawer Contest}

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I have really enjoyed working with Good Cook and getting to participate in their challenges and using their products. If you are anything like me, you get rather excited about kitchen gadgets, and trust me, Good Cook has some great ones. Starting on June 1, you will be able to build your kitchen drawer with 15 Good Cook tools and gadgets from goodcook.com, all you have to do is choose up to 15 items from the official list of products, and you might just win what you choose! If you are a bit suck on what to choose, you can always choose the same tools and gadgets that I did or any of the other participating bloggers…more info will be provided when the contest begins.

From June 2 – June 7th, Good Cook is hosting a 5-day product giveaway on their Facebook page, plus there will be instant winners. For each drawer that you build, you have a chance to be an instant winner and you can enter once daily for more chances!Read more:

Wondering which products are available? Look for the “ADD ME” icon below on the Good Cook website! Additionally, during this contest, all items on GoodCook.com are 25% off – there is no code needed…just head on over and start shopping. The “Build Your Kitchen Drawer” Contest will run from June 2nd – July 14th.

To begin this awesome “Build Your Kitchen Drawer” event bloggers were given five tools/gadgets to work with and create a one-pot meal with. We had to use at least two of the five tools provided us and create a delicious dish…not too hard right? Ha, I beg to differ…I got stuck on “one-pot meal”, thinking to myself “I could make a soup”, “Nah, its spring time”, or “chili…that’s always a one-pot meal”, “No, I don’t really want chili right now either”. So my next thought was fried rice, because, you know me, I LOVE Asian food, but when walking through the grocery store I came across this mix of mushrooms; it had baby bellas, shiitake, and oyster mushrooms, and decided to make a spring risotto with mushrooms and green onions, and of course some white wine. There are so many “one-pot” meals, and this one can be used as an entrée or as a side dish…you can even bake it, or roll them into balls and make fried risotto balls – endless possibilities!

The five items that we were provided are  SMART Ice Cream Scoop, Flip Measuring Spoon, Safe-Cut Can Opener, Egg Separator, and the Pot Clip Holder. All of these products are great – I did not use all of them to make this dish but I did try to test them out at least once so I could share them with you. The only item I did not use for this recipe was the Safe-cut Can Opener, but let’s start with the items I used…

  • SMART Ice Cream Scoop – LOVE this ice cream scoop…it has a split back to help release the contents, and can be used for many different things such as scooping the risotto out of the pan into my bowl, mashed potatoes, and obviously ice cream, you can read more about the SMART Scoop here – (hand wash only).
  • Flip Measuring Spoon – this is perfect for people who do not want a cluttered drawer, or are just starting out, it is four measuring spoons in 1, it doesn’t get much better than that. I used this to measure out the red pepper flakes and salt for the recipe below, you can read more about it here.
  • Egg Separator – is a pretty handy tool especially if you need only to use the egg whites or yolks in a recipe – I did not NEED to use that for this recipe, but I tested it out anyway…it just makes life a little easier, read more about it here.
  • Pot Clip Holder – How I have lived with out this, I’m not sure just yet. This is the perfect little kitchen gadget that I think everyone should own, maybe even several of them. This helps keep your stove top and counters nice and clean. It clips on to the side of the pot and holds your spoon when you aren’t using it. Read more about it here.
  • Safe-cut Can Opener – The one and only item I did not use, only because I had no can to open, but this can opener, as its name states is a “safe-cut” which means it leaves no sharp edges to get injured on! So this tool is perfect for having your younger ones help out in the kitchen, you can read more about it here.

 

photo 1(9)Here is what I made…

Spring Time Mushroom Risotto

photo 2(8)

Ingredients

  • Olive Oil                                               1 tablespoon
  • Butter                                                   1 tablespoon
  • Scallions, sliced                               1/4 cup
  • Mushrooms, sliced                           1 cup
  • Red Pepper Flakes                          1/4-1/2 teaspoon
  • Salt, Kosher                                        1/4 teaspoon
  • Arborio Rice                                       1 cup
  • White Wine                                         1/2 cup
  • Chicken Stock, low sodium            4 cups
  • Egg, whole                                         1 large
  • Parmesan Cheese, grated            1/4 cup

Method of Preparation:

  1. Gather all ingredients and equipment.
  2. In a small stock pot add four cups of chicken stock and heat over medium heat, then reduce to a simmer
  3.  In a large, heavy bottom skillet, heat olive oil and butter over medium heat.
  4.  Add sliced scallions and saute for 1 minute.
  5. Add mushrooms, and cook for an addition 2 minutes.
  6. Add white wine and cook for an additional minute.
  7. Season with salt and pepper
  8. If the pan is a little dry add an additional teaspoon of either oil or butter, then add the rice and stir to evenly coat.
  9. Stir in 1 cup of stock – just enough to cover the rice.
  10. Stir well and continue to stir until the rice has almost completely absorbed the stock.
  11. Continue this process until all stock has been added to rice and absorbed. This should take about 20-30 minutes.
  12. Push the risotto to the outer edges of the pan and add the egg.
  13. Fry egg, and carefully flip over to not break the yolk – you want it to be runny over the risotto when plating.
  14. Gently remove the egg and set aside.
  15. Remove from heat and stir in Parmesan cheese.
  16. To serve top with fried egg and sliced scallions.

Chef Notes:You can use any short grain rice instead of the arborio rice, as risotto is a style of cooking, not a type of rice.

 Be sure to check out more delicious recipes from the other Good Cook Bloggers and Kitchen Experts at the link below!


This post was sponsored by Good Cook as part of the Blogger and Kitchen Experts programs.

#goodcookcom #kitchendrawercontest #goodcookblogger

Asian Inspired Green Beans

When living in China a few years ago I feel even more in love with Chinese food (and Asian food in general).  I love the flavors, ingredients, smells and verity of cooking styles.  I had some of the best food I’ve ever tasted in Changping District.  Spicy cucumbers, Kung Pao Chicken, fresh made wonton soup and fresh soy milk (nice and warm) every morning.  One ingredient that I feel in love with was sesame oil.  It is one of those ingredients that just even smelling it makes me smile.

The other night when I was making Bryan some Sweet and Spicy Chicken I decided we need a vegetable to go along with it.  Our choices were broccoli or green beans and we opted for the green beans this time.  (I think both green beans and broccoli go well with Asian dishes).  Instead of just plain steamed green beans I wanted to spice things up a bit and came up with the following recipe (which I have since tested – as you can see from the photo above).

Asian Inspired Green Beans

1 pound green beans – ends trimmed

1/2 tsp sesame oil

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

1 tsp water

1/8-1/4 tsp honey

salt to taste

Steam green beans and drain – reserve one teaspoon of the hot water.  In a sauté pan add water, sesame oil and red pepper flakes over medium/high heat.  Add green beans and sauté for five-seven minutes (feel free to add more sesame oil or red pepper flakes to your taste).  Remove from heat and drizzle with honey.  Stir until green beans are coated well.

You can add any other vegetables you make like – mushrooms, shelled edamame etc.  As you can see in the above photo I added mushrooms and served them over some read quinoa…a great light and refreshing vegetarian and gluten-free side dish or lunch.

Also check out: P.F. Chang’s Shanghai Cucumber

Sautéed Chicken in Mustard- Cream Sauce

I find it rather interesting that there are so many recipes out there that are naturally gluten-free but don’t carry the title.  My big thing when I was diagnosed in 2008 was determination to take these everyday recipes that you find in your cookbooks and cooking magazines and recreate them to be gluten-free, however with many of them there is no need because they already are gluten-free!  I don’t know about you, but I find that to be rather exciting.

I love the Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food Magazines – I have about thirty of them (wish I had more!).  This is my go to magazine for recipe ideas – even before searching online I check these.  These magazines are jam-packed with great recipes that are not only easy to make but always turn out and taste fantastic.  These recipes are usually very easy to adapt if they do contain gluten and also easy to make other substitutions. For example for many of the recipes you can use chicken instead of shrimp (which you will see later this week) or vise versa.  I do the same thing with cookbooks as I do with cooking magazines; when I get them I go through the entire thing and put little tabs next to each recipe I want to try.

I’ve made this particular recipe a few times and have greatly enjoyed it each time.  Tonight I thought I would make it for Bryan seeing as he loves Dijon mustard.  While we were grocery shopping this weekend he really wanted to buy some peas – mind you I HATE peas, I always have since I was a little girl (I think I get this from my Aunt Sue).  I love green beans, snap peas edamame etc. but HATE peas.  However, I love Bryan enough to not only buy them but also give them a try, and yes, I sand by my previous hatred towards them.

Sautéed Chicken In Mustard-Cream SauceMartha Stewart Everyday Food Magazine Issue #3 page 58

(Serves 4 Prep Time: 20 minutes Total Time: 20 minutes)

1. Sprinkle 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 6 ounces each) – (I used two large chicken breast and butterflied them in half) with 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper.  In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat.  Add chicken; saute until cooked through, 10-12 minutes, turning once.  Transfer to a plate; keep warm.

2. Pour 1/4 cup dry white wine or chicken broth into hot skillet; cook, stirring, until reduced by half, about 1 minute. Whisk in 1/2 cup heavy cream, 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard, and 1 teaspoon dried tarragon (or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh).  Cook, whisking until thickened, about 2 minutes. 

3. Pour any accumulated chicken juices into sauce.  Right before serving, drizzle the cream sauce over the chicken.

Great Combination: This classic French combination of ingredients also makes an excellent sauce for fish, such as seared salmon and trout.

I served our chicken with mustard-cream sauce with sautéed mushrooms, peas and mixed greens with a light balsamic dressing.


Grilled Mini Portabella Burgers

Bryan’s sister is a vegetarian, and lately we’ve been talking about recipes and cooking together this summer, so I’ve been trying to think of some vegetarian recipes to try out and make together.  I honestly don’t know if I could ever be a vegetarian – I would miss chicken and fish way to much with the occasional read meat consumption.  I give people who are all the credit in the world But I tell you what, I could defiantly do it for a little bit especially if I ate a lot more portabella mushrooms.  They are so meaty and juicy that when I made my grilled portabella mushroom burgers I don’t even miss the hamburger aspect of it.  When grocery shopping today I grabbed a pack of mini (stuffing) portabella mushroom caps instead of the big ones.  Grab some romaine lettuce and some mozzarella cheese and made some mini portabella burgers tonight.  They were so good!  Plus you can’t really beat meal that takes 20-25 minutes to make (including marinade time)

Grilled Mini Portabella Burgers (you can do this with the large caps also)

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 table spoon chili oil

3 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper

1/2 teaspoon minced garlic

2 large portabella caps or four small caps – remove stems

In a shallow dish mix together the first six ingredients until well combined.  Add the mushroom caps and coat well.  Let them sit in the marinade for about 15-20 minutes, turning once or twice.  Heat grill or grill pan to medium, medium-high heat.  Oil the grates of the grill or grill pan to prevent sticking.  Place mushroom caps step side up for 4 minutes (for large caps, and 2 minutes for the smaller caps), turn and repeat on the other side.  Once cooked, top with mozzarella cheese and slices of tomatoes.  Instead of a bun I use romaine lettuce leaves.  Served with a yummy salad instead of fries! Enjoy

Leigha …. this recipe is for you!

(The Whole Gang – Friday Foodie Fix – Secret Ingredient – Balsamic Vinegar)