Soba Noodles with Swiss Chard

This is a simple, nutritions, and surprisingly delicious dish that comes together in about 10 minutes.

Ingredients

  • 2 servings Soba noodles, 110g (I like Eden Organic)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or butter
  • 1 large clove garlic, sliced or minced
  • 1 medium bunch Swiss Chard, stems removed
  • 1/2 teaspoon Better than Bouillon Chicken (or vegetable flavor)
  • Freshly cracked pepper 
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce

Directions

  1. Cook soba noodles according to package.
  2. Drain the soba noodles, reserving a little cooking water.
  3. Optional: Stir the noodles with a little butter and pepper.
  4. Meanwhile, heat a little oil or butter in a large saucepan or pot.
  5. Add garlic and crushed red pepper; cook until fragrant.
  6. Add bouillon and 1/4 water; stir.
  7. Add chard and cook until soft and wilted, approximately 5 minutes.
  8. Add the chard and soy sauce to the noodles and toss well. If the noodles seem dry, add a little bit of the reserved cooking liquid.


Whole Wheat Orzo Risotto with Shrimp and Artichoke Hearts (low-fat)

Inspired by Ellie Krieger’s Herbed Salmon and Orzo Casserole with Feta. I love the way she cooks the orzo in minimal liquid. It adds a yummy creaminess.

Serves 2

Ingredients

  • 1 (12oz) package frozen artichoke hearts
  • 1 cup whole wheat orzo
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 3/4 cups water or broth
  • 12 large raw shrimp (21-30 count)
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 4 cups greens (kale, Swiss chard, spinach)
  • Juice of a lemon
  • Spices – Whatever you like -I like to use lemon pepper, celery salt, cayenne pepper, and garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (divided), more for drizzling 
  • Parmesan or feta cheese for serving

Directions

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. 
  2. Place fresh or frozen shrimp in a single layer. Sprinkle each piece with preferred spices.
  3. Cook for a minute or two and then flip the shrimp. Cook on the second side until pink and no longer translucent. Remove to serving plate.
  4. To the skillet, add another tablespoon of olive oil, garlic and artichoke hearts and cook for a minute or two until artichokes are slightly browned.
  5. Add the orzo, water/broth, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer; cover and cook for 5 minutes.
  6. Remove lid and stir; continue to cook 3 more minutes or until tender and all liquid is absorbed. If the orzo is still firm, add a bit more water and cook until tender.
  7. Turn off the heat, stir in greens and a squeeze some lemon juice. Toss until the greens are wilted. Remove from heat.
  8. Stir in the shrimp to heat them up a bit, and serve.
  9. Sprinkle with feta or parmesan and a drizzle of olive oil.

30 Minute Cardamom-Lime Chicken and White Beans

Photo from Milk Street
Adapted from Milk Street.

Ingredients

  • 1.5 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 2 inch chunks (bone-in would also work, but would need more cooking time)
  • 2.5 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly grated black pepper, divided
  • 3 tablespoons salted butter
  • 4 bunches scallions (2 bunches are plenty) thinly sliced, white and green parts used separately
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala (I usually omit this or use just a pinch)
  • 1.5 teaspoons ground cardamom (I omit this – too strong of a flavor for me)
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans cannellini beans, drained, liquid reserved
  • 1 cup chicken broth (I use 1 teaspoon Better than Bullion with 1 cup water)
  • 2 teaspoons grated lime zest
  • 1/4 cup lime juice (approximately 2 limes)

Directions

  1. Season the chicken with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  2. In a large pot over medium-high, melt the butter.
  3. Add the chicken and scallion whites, then cook, stirring once or twice, until both the chicken and scallions begin to turn golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes.
  4. Add the tomato paste, garam masala, cardamom, turmeric, 1.5 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 30 to 60 seconds.
  5. Add the bean liquid, broth, lime zest and juice, then bring to a boil. Reduce to medium and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally and adjusting the heat as needed to maintain a simmer, until the chicken is opaque when cut into, 5 to 7 minutes (I like to cook this, partially covered, for at least 15 minutes to allow the chicken to get really tender.
  6. Stir in the scallion greens and the beans, then cook until the beans are heated through, another 2 minutes. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Tip: Don’t forget to save the liquid when draining the beans. It adds both body and flavor to the dish. If you do accidentally discard it, simply increase the chicken broth to 2⅓ cups. The braising liquid will be thinner, but the dish will still be tasty.


Anthony Bourdain’s Mushroom Soup

Photo from epicurious.com
This is an easy, delicious soup from Anthony Bourdain’s Les Halles Cookbook. Recipe adapted from epicurious.com.

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons butter (I use 3 tablespoons)
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced (I use 3/4 cup)
  • 12 ounces/340 g button mushrooms, sliced (I use 16 ounces: 1 (8oz) package Cremini and 1 (8oz) package button
  • 4 cups/900 ml light chicken (or vegetable) broth (I use 4 cups water with 4 tsp Better than Bouillon, Chicken)
  • 1 sprig of flat parsley
  • Salt, to taste (at least 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 ounces/56 ml high-quality sherry (I skip this)

Directions

  1. In a medium saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter (I use 1 tablespoon) over medium heat and add the onion. Cook until soft and translucent.
  2. Add the mushrooms and the remaining butter (I use 2 more tablespoons). Let the mixture sweat for about 8 minutes, taking care that the onion doesn’t take on any brown color.
  3. Stir in the chicken stock and the parsley and bring to a boil. Immediately reduce the heat and simmer for about an hour.
  4. After an hour, remove the parsley and discard. Let the soup cool for a few minutes, then transfer to the blender and carefully blend at high speed until smooth. (Blending the soup really well at high speed is very important to ensure a creamy consistency, especially if cutting back on the butter. I tried using an immersion blender and it wasn’t able to blend enough to create the desired texture).
  5. Return the soup to the pot, season with salt and pepper, and bring up to a simmer again. Add the sherry (if using), mix well, and serve immediately.