Showing posts with label black olives. Show all posts
Showing posts with label black olives. Show all posts

18 February 2014

A Dozen Pantry Staples I Can't Do Without

It's been snowing for nearly seven hours as I write this, and some prognosticators say it's not going to stop for another 20 or so. Oh, goody.

Fortunately, I've baked beans in the slow cooker. When you keep navy beans and condiments on hand, it's an easy meal to make. All you need are beans, bacon, ketchup, mustard, onions, bacon, molasses and brown sugar - pantry staples for most of us.

There are a few other pantry items I am never without, in addition to flour, sugar and other baking-related supplies. Here's my list:

03 January 2011

Kalyn's Pulled Chicken Salad with Green Olives and Celery


The start of a new year holds more charm for me than the winter holidays.

I like starting over.

This year, I am once again trying my luck with the South Beach Diet, which in 2007 kept me from rolling into Paris and instead strolling about that magic city feeling, if not slender, at least not fat. And that's essential in a city where all women are apparently slim and beautiful. The men aren't bad either.

You may already know that the first two weeks of South Beach are bread, pasta, potato and beet, pea, corn and carrot free. It's no easy feat avoiding at least a taste of those foods, but I can do anything for two weeks, right?

Right, but the absence of carbs and sugar (especially fruit) can get a bit boring.

So I turn to Kalyn's Kitchen for assistance. And Kalyn never fails me.

A few days ago she provided a roundup of Phase One recipes, using the photo for this particular salad. My mouth started watering immediately, but our house was full of holiday treats  and I am always meticulous about eating up what is on hand.

Besides, who wants to start a diet on Dec. 30 or 31? Only a seriously deranged person.

It should come as no surprise to Kalyn's fans that this salad was wonderful. I added lightly toasted almonds, but otherwise followed Kalyn's recipe to the letter. I used dehydrated green onions because I was unable to force myself to leave the house in frigid weather.

But oh, this was tasty! Preparing the salad got me through a rough spot and eating it was a treat.

I posted a new photo of myself above left - taken after a spa visit but before starting SBD - as a way of goading myself into weight loss. I was born with those cheeks, by the way.

23 March 2008

Poulet Provencal (Roasted Chicken with Tomatoes and Olives)

They say it is spring, although you would not know it here in Wisconsin. I may hear cardinals and mourning doves in the morning, but what I see is snow and more snow, although patches of brownish-green grass have finally begun to show through here and there.

Easter began blustery with flurries and I had no idea what we'd eat for dinner. We are both still recovering from longish bouts with the flu and worse yet, suffering from acute cases of cabin fever.

Searching for a new way to make grilled tomatoes, I stumbled upon this wonderful recipe at Epicurious. Then I noticed it was from the March Gourmet, which for some reason I have two issues of - a good thing, because I can never get enough of this fabulous variation on chicken from the South of France. The recipe calls for all my favorites: tomatoes, garlic, onion, olives, herbes de Provence and fennel seeds. Did I mention chicken?

I added some potatoes to the vegetable mix to please my husband, and I stuffed a quartered lemon inside for additional moisture. These two ideas came from the readers comments on the Epicurious site.

This was possibly the best Easter meal I have ever made. I knew I did not want ham this year, and by happy coincidence, I'd picked up the chicken yesterday.

March was a trying month for me, with several big projects and an auto accident to cope with (I'm fine and my car is fixed already). But a good meal, some scented candles and bouquet of daffodils cheer me today.

Better days lie ahead. I am planning three trips, one for work and two for pleasure. Soon I'll be able to walk outside and enjoy warmer temperatures. Maybe.

22 April 2007

Cleaning out the Fridge: Breaded Shrimp with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Garlic and Black Olives

Cleaning out the refrigerator and freezer the other day, I found a package of frozen, breaded shrimp my husband sneaked in the house a few weeks ago.

"Are you going to eat these before we go on vacation?" I asked.

"They have to be deep fried, and you won't let me do that," he responded.

Looking closely at the package I saw (A) the price, and (B) that they could be pan fried. I may never be a world-class cook, but if there is a way to salvage something and not waste it, I'll find it.

Whenever there is a hint of summer in the air, I want two things: Seafood and spicy food. So Friday night seemed like a good time to experiment with both.

What I came up with was Breaded Shrimp with Sun-dried Tomatoes, Garlic and Black Olives.
  • 1 package frozen breaded shrimp
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 cup sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup sliced black olives
  • 1-2 teaspoons dried basil
  • Dash lemon juice
  • Dash sel de fleur
  • Dash freshly ground pepper
Pan fry the shrimp according to package directions and set aside, covered. Brown garlic, then add sun-dried tomatoes and black olives. Sauté for 5-8 minutes, adding shrimp for the last two minutes. Season with lemon juice, salt and pepper.

Like most of my self-concocted meals, this one is a work in progress. It would be ideal, we both agreed, to make this with fresh, un-breaded shrimp. But we got rid of the frozen shrimp, used up a jar of sun-dried tomatoes and rescued a lemon from the crisper. So: mission accomplished.

Wine: I would pair this with something light and fruity, maybe with green apple undertones.