Monday, March 12, 2012

Corned Beef Cabbage Rolls

Salty, fatty, tender corned beef. It's good by itself.

But add some potatoes, cabbage and mustard and the combination is plain delectable.

Wrap it in a cabbage roll and it's plain awesome.

I never thought that a St. Patrick's Day feast was one that I could eat with my hands, but by the end of dinner on Saturday night my fork and knife remained untouched.

The Lerner clan ate our corned beef and cabbage a week early and in an entirely new, delicious and portable way with corned beef, mashed potato and cabbage rolls.

I got the idea after watching Diners, Drive-ins and Dives last week. They were in Annapolis, Maryland and visited a place called Galway Bay. The restaurant specializes in Irish food with a unique spin, like, turning a traditional corned beef and cabbage dinner into something that resembles a sushi roll.

Now, some might call this blasphemous - and I was a little hesitant to stray from the Irish-American dinner I know so well (my maiden name is Clancy and my freckles number in the thousands) - but I think a new tradition has begun.

Meet the most hearty, dense and delicious way to get your St. Patty's Day feast in your belly...

Corned Beef Cabbage Rolls

3 lbs corned beef
3 lbs potatoes (any kind will do)
1/2 cup spicy mustard (or yellow if you prefer)
1 large head of cabbage

Boil your corned beef in pickling spices for three to four hours. Boil your potatoes until tender and mash with milk, butter, salt and pepper. Peel the leaves off of a head of cabbage gently and boil each leaf (a few at a time) for two to three minutes or until tender.

Make an assembly line.

Have the cabbage leaves ready.

And the cubed corned beef.

And have the mashed potatoes nearby.

And some mustard too.

In a large bowl combine about 1/4 cup of the mashed potatoes, about the same of the corned beef and about a tablespoon of the mustard. (I like to combine the mixture in small batches for each cabbage roll instead of making one large bowl of mashed potato and corned beef)

Place in the center of a cabbage leaf and roll.

Steam over boiling water for another five to seven minutes.

Serve with more mustard for dipping and a tasty beer. And Happy St. Patty's Day!

(You'll likely have some left-over corned beef which is delicious the next day in hash...)

Friday, March 9, 2012

Chop Suey & Jennie-O Giveaway

If I were to write a post about the top five foods that I eat, Jennie-O turkey burgers would top that list. I always have them in my freezer because they're healthy, tasty, and gluten-free. Also, they cook up in minutes.

So, I was pretty excited when the company contacted me and offered to give away $15 in Jennie-O coupons (read: $15 to spend on Jennie O foods) to one lucky reader.

I already had a package of their ground turkey in my fridge and a quick browse on their site for a recipe had me whipping up some Chop Suey in no time. I've never made it before because I was intimidated by what I thought you would need, but it turns out chop suey - at least Jennie O's version, is quite simple. I adapted it to be gluten free and left out the water chestnuts. (See original recipe here)

Jennie-O Ground Turkey Gluten Free Chop Suey
(serves 4)

4 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded, caps sliced, or 2 cups sliced mushrooms

2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic

1 package JENNIE-O TURKEY STORE® Extra Lean Ground Turkey

3 tablespoons gluten-free soy sauce

4 green onions, cut diagonally into 1/2-inch slices

1 cup chicken broth

1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch

1/2 package (about a cup, cooked) of thin rice noodles soaked in hot water for ten minutes and loosely chopped

Coat a large deep skillet or wok with cooking spray. Crumble 1 package JENNIE-O TURKEY STORE® Extra Lean Ground Turkey and cook as specified on the package. Always cook to well-done, 165˚F as measured by a meat thermometer. Add 4 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded, caps sliced, or 2 cups sliced and 2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic; stir-fry 2 minutes add 3 tablespoons gluten free soy sauce. Cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 4 green onions, cut diagonally into 1/2-inch slices.Then add the chopped rice noodles and stir. Combine 1 cup chicken broth and 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch, mixing until smooth. Add to skillet; simmer uncovered 5 minutes or until thickened.

To enter to win, comment on this post by 11:59pm on Tuesday, March 20th.

A winner will be notified by email (please leave a valid email address) by 12pm on Wednesday, March 21st.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Must-Go Night & A Quick Dinner

There was this thing called "Must Go" night in my house growing up.

For a long time I thought my parents were calling it "Muskgo Night" - like Muskgo was the name of some Slavic country whose food we were going to sample that night. But the food always turned out to be a weird mixture of things. Like, a meal of potato pancakes, teriyaki chicken and tomato salad.

That's when I figured out my parents were saying "Must Go," as in, we're eating all of the things in the fridge that must go before they go bad.


We had a "Must Go" night of our own the other evening. Left to use up were roasted split chicken breast, spaghetti squash, goat cheese and spinach. And I have to say, when cooked together with a little love the results are delicious.

Roasted Chicken and Spaghetti Squash with Spinach and Goat Cheese
(serves one for dinner)

1/2 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
the meat of one roasted chicken breast
one half of a cooked spaghetti squash, squash removed from shell
two large handfuls of baby spinach
1 teaspoon garlic powder
salt and pepper to taste
about 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
1 tomato, quartered
1 tablespoon of crumbled goat cheese

Saute the onion in the olive over medium heat in a large pan until tender. Add the chicken and cook until warm. Then add the spaghetti squash and baby spinach, then the salt, pepper and garlic powder. Add the tomatoes and toss gently while cooking. Then add the balsamic vinegar. Cook another few minutes and serve with crumbled goat cheese on top.