Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Halibut Enchiladas in Red Chile Enchilada Sauce also Calabacitas with con Elote Squash & Corn

Had no idea I would be home sick today sick and had prepared the halibut last night for making tonights dinner when I got home. No way am I able to eat this tonight, but maybe after my virus is gone. This recipe is a PITA (Pain In The Ass) but worth it. The white fish (halibut in my case--but Orange Roughy and Red Snapper work just as well) must be poached in a marinated brine for 8 minutes and cooled and flaked before using in this recipe. I'll start with the basics..the brine. This is a great brine to poach fish for tacos or any other dish. You want your fish to be moist and flaky...not dry and firm like cooked on a grill.

Poaching the whitefish:

1 lemon sliced thin
1 onion, sliced thin
10 peppercorns
3 whole allspice
2 cloves of garlic crushed
1/2 cup white wine
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 cup white wine vinegar
1 box of seafood stock (or enough to cover fish

Bring all ingredients to boil. Add skinned whitefish and enough liquid to cover the fish. Reduce heat to simmer, cover with a lid and allow to mellow (NOT boil) for 8 minutes.

Remove from heat, remove fish to a dish and allow to cool. Reserve for later and de-bone if necessary.

Red Chile Enchilada Sauce

I love frozen chile the most and the next best option is the powdered. Follow the recipe on the tub or the label. If you need instructions, I can do that so call or email me.

24 yellow corn tortillas, softened in hot oil
3 lbs. colby, cheddar, Monterey Jack or a combination of the three, shredded
1 onion, diced fine
Poached halibut
Red chile enchilada sauce

In a large baking pan, coat the bottom with red chile enchilada sauce. Roll up halibut, onion and cheese in softened corn tortillas and place in rows on top of sauce. Repeat until all meat and cheese is used. Cover the entire dish with the remainder of the red chile sauce and bake at 375 for 40 minutes, sprinkle the top with cheese and bake until melted (another 7 minutes). Serve with beans and rice.

Now onto Calabacitas. This is a mix of New Mexico meets Colorado...BOTH my ancestry!. It refers to zucchini or squash and is traditionally mixed with green chile and corn.

There is no better side dish to a meal than this.

1 TBSP olive oil
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1 med. onion, chopped fine
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 yellow squash sliced in quarters
2 green zucchini, sliced in quarters
(may add mushrooms if you like)
1 can whole kernel corn
1 can chopped green chile
(*shredded cheese to top is optional)

Heat oil, saute garlic and onion powder. Add onion and garlic and simmer until lightly browned. Add the remainder of seasonings squashes, mushrooms, corn and green chile, stir to heat through. Serve with grated cheese on top

Friday, March 18, 2011

Kitchen Dinosaur Does It Again! MORE MUSTARD

Yes, the old GE Food Processor

came through once again. I understand now why Mom refuses to give up that insane mixer that abjectly pops its own cord, making the user have to replug numerous times. We hang onto what works for us. My old food processor is still working for me so I don't see the need to replace the old gadget. Getting the hang of makin' mustard! Although, I must say that I am not really fond of Dijon and that seems to be all that I am making with these ingredients. I can see combining the Honey Dill Mustard with some Greek Yogurt and baking that over a whitefish and the Oatmeal Stout Thyme will be terrific if mixed in with the eggs before making the Macadamia Nut Crusted Halibut (See February 2011 for that recipe). I am hoping the mustard flavor will decrease with time, but unfortunately this is not going to be the case. This stuff if HOT! It is Dijon! It has a flavor that won't be denied.



1 1/4 cup honey
2 1/2 cups white vinegar
1/4 cup peanut oil
5 tsp. Kosher salt
1 1/4 tsp. allspice
1 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 1/4 tsp. white pepper

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and stir constantly over med-high heat. Boil until thick (takes a long time...be patient and it happens quickly when it finally does).

Pour into 5 - 1/2 pint sterilized jars and cap. Water bath for 15 minutes to seal.

Oatmeal Stout Thyme Mustard
1/4 cup brown mustard seeds
1/4 cup yellow mustard seeds
3/4 cup flat Oatmeal Stout (I used our own Alaskan Stout)

Let this sit for 24 hours stirring now and then.

To this add:
1 TBSP. mustard powder (AKA mustard flour)
1 TBSP. minced dried onion
2 tsp. dried thyme leaves

Let this rest for more than 20 minutes. Pour contents into your own dinosaur (food processor) or blender and pulse a bit. Now add:

1/2 cup vinegar and 1 tsp. salt and blend until you have a paste. Store in a glass jar and don't use for at least 5 days.

Honey Dill Mustard (makes ONLY 1 cup):

3 1/2 TBSP. Mustard (ground)
2 TBSP water
2 TBSP fresh dill weed, chopped fine
1/4 cup honey
1/2 tsp. Kosher salt

Mix all ingredients to a smooth consistency. Allow to sit for at least 2 hours. Can eat after at least 2 hours or process in a hot water bath. (see directions below)

Hot Water Bath and Processing Mustard: If you want to process your mustard, bring a large stockpot with water to cover the lid of the jar. Boil the jars and lids prior to filling to ensure sanitation. Fill jars with mustard, leaving 1/4" headspace. Boil on the stove in a covered pot for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, remove immediately to a dry surface to seal jars. You will hear a "Pop" as they begin to seal. If you have jars that do not seal, store them in the refrigerator and use within 4 weeks.

I Love my toys....now onto steaming asparagus and peppers.....

Thursday, March 17, 2011


Don't laugh! Yes, you heard right! I am making Mustard. Why? Because I LOVE the stuff. I think most people are either a ketchup/catsup or a mustard person. My Germanic roots demand that I make things like saurkraut, brats, potatoes and other things that probably should not be in my diet. The recipe I am providing has been modified from the original because I don't particularly care for nutmeg in a condiment like the original recipe called for, and I wanted to sharpen the taste instead of sweeten it. By the way, I made a batch and hot-packed (canned) 5 small 1/2 pint jars. Please don't be put off by this. It's an easy-do because you don't need a home canner. You only need a big stock pot, enough water to cover the top of the 1/2 pint jars and boil for 20 minutes.

This recipe MUST shelve for at least 4 weeks before you open the jar.
1 1/3 C. Ground Mustard (I used Colemans Dry Mustard)
1/4 C. yellow mustard seeds
1/4 C. brown mustard seeds
1 C. water
Whisk this together in a saucepan.

In a separate pan combine and simmer for 20 minutes:
2 C. Apple Cider Vinegar
2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1/4 C. brown sugar
2 tsp. Kosher salt
1/2 tsp. ground Coriander
1/2 tsp. ground Cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground Ginger

Let the spices cool. Then add 2 TBSP honey and mix well.

Now you can pour the mix into small jars to hot water bath for 20 minutes if you want to save on your shelf for time eternal. If not, pour into a dish and it will keep for a month.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Halibut and Seafood Cioppino

Always up for trying new things with our halibut.  I couldn't find a recipe for the two ingredigents I had already thawed and needed to use; halibut and scallops.  It was my intent to make Roasted Halibut and Scallops (Lobster Buerre Blanc) and Potato Yvette (thanks Chef Suzanne Champagne Ivy--The Mill on the Floss)....but could not find the glace de fruits de mer gold (lobster base) in Fairbanks and no time to make my own.  I found a lovely cioppino base at Freds in the Seafood Dept and decided to give it a chance.  No...I am not following their guidelines, but...so what, seafood is seafood and I know what Jim likes.  To add to my halibut and scallops I bought a large lobster tail, 1 lb. of wild caught prawns, and 1 lb. of clams.  Here is the method.

Shrimp, Halibut, Clams and Lobster
1 jar Dominic's San Francisco Cioppino Sauce (I will add crushed red pepper to this without even opening the jar.)
2 halibut fillets (skinned, deboned and cubed)
2 lbs large scallops
1 lb. prawns, shelled and deveined
1 lb. clams
1 large lobster tail (cooked according to directions first and added last.

Heat Cioppino Sauce on the stove.  Add halibut, scallops and prawns.  Heat until halibut is flaky and prawns are pink.  Meanwhile, in a pot of cold water bring the lobster tail to boil.  Boil ONLY 5 minutes, take off heat and allow to rest for 10 minutes before shelling and dicing.  Add clams, when shells open, add cubed lobster and serve over rice---serve with sourdough bread.

Add clams (throw out any clams that are already OPEN--sorry to be gross, but the clam inside is dead and you don't want to eat it) to the sauce and wait for the shells to open.  Add lobster and mix through.  Serve over rice.

Creamy Shitake Mushroom and Asparagus Soup

Nothing speaks of spring more than fresh asparagus.  I adapted this recipe to include shitake mushrooms because they just lend that earthy or woody taste that marries so well with asparagus.

1 1/2 lbs. fresh asparagus trim or cut off woody ends
1 lb. shitake mushrooms
1/4 cup sliced green onions
2 T. butter
2 T. flour
2 tsp. chicken stock base (I use Better Than Broth)
3 1/2 cups 2% milk
salt and pepper to taste

Boil asparagus, shitake mushrooms and onions in just enough water to keep from boiling dry.  *Don't worry about overcooking-this mix will be pureed in a food processor anyway.  Puree vegetables.  In a saucepan melt butter, add flour, stock, salt and pepper to taste, add milk and stir until smooth and thickened.  Add pureed vegetables and stir to heat through.