Sunday, March 30, 2014

Oatmeal, Chocolate, Dried Cranberry Cookies

Who doesn't love some fresh baked cookies full of yummy treats? We do in the Barber-Christensen house!!

Adapted from Food & Wine magazine, but with Lindsay's changes of chocolate chips and dried cranberries.

- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup oats (quick cooking)
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries (I will use a little bit more next time)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer (or in a stand up mixer) beat the butter with both sugars at high speed until pale and fluffy, about 2 minutes. beat in the egg and vanilla. At a low speed, gradually add the flour mixture until just incorporated, then mix in the oats, chocolate chips and dried cranberries.

Spread one inch sized cookie balls about 2 inches apart on large cookie sheets. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. EAT!!!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Chicken, Andouille Sausage and Kale Stew

My cousin recently asked me, "So, what's going on with your blog?" I responded that I just hadn't had the time to post anything as life has been busy with work, travel, the kids and wedding planning. But I haven't stopped cooking and trying new recipes. I am going to try and keep an updated blog in the hopes that someone will read it! 

I was in Washington, DC a few weeks ago for work and my boss and his wife had me over for dinner. Kristen is a great cook and always seems to have new recipes on hand. I also don't know anyone who loves kale as much as she does and she is a wealth of Kale knowledge and recipes. I made this recipe recently and Pete said it's the best soup I've ever made. I studied the original and adapted recipes below and developed my own. Next time I will add more thyme and either less chicken or more stock to make it more of a soup.

Chicken, Andouille Sausage and Kale Stew 
Adapted from How To - and The Kitchen Faerie 

- 3 parsnips, chopped
- 3 TBS olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- 1 Andouille sausage (we use Johnsonville brand)
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 large shallot, chopped 
- 3 large carrots, chopped
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 5 sprigs fresh thyme, thyme removed from stems
- 1 rotisserie chicken, skin removed and meat shredded
- One handful chopped kale, optional (ribs removed and torn into pieces)
- 1 cup frozen butternut squash, optional

Preheat oven to 375°F. Toss chopped parnsips in a bowl with salt, pepper and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Arrange in one layer on a baking sheet and bake for 25 minutes or until the parsnips are browned and softened. 

In a dutch oven, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil and add chopped onion and shallot, cooking until just tender, about 5 minutes. Add the sausage pieces and saute until completely cooked through. Add carrots and cook until softened. 

Add chicken stock, thyme, shredded chicken, butternut squash and parsnips. Bring to a simmer. Add kale and simmer 20 minutes longer. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve topped with parmesan cheese.