Sunday, June 17, 2012

Easy Maple Granola

I found this recipe from Alton Brown, on the Food Network. It is an easy granola, and was really crispy, light and sweet.  It may become my new favorite granola!  Nicole just happened to make the same granola the other day and also loved it.

Easy Maple Granola
adapted from: Alton Brown (

3 c. rolled oats
1 c. sliced almonds
3/4 c. shredded, sweetened coconut
1/4 c. plus 2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/4 c. plus 2 Tbsp. maple syrup (I used homemade)
1/4 c. vegetable oil
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 dashes nutmeg

Preheat your oven to 250 degrees.  In a large bowl combine the oats, almonds, coconut and brown sugar.  Stir it well.  In another bowl, mix together the maple syrup, oil, salt, vanilla and nutmeg.  Combine the oil mixture in with the oat mixture and stir them well.  Spread the granola evenly onto two cookie sheets.  Bake it for 1 hour and 15 minutes, stirring it every 20 minutes.  When it is done, let it cool completely before putting it in a zip lock bag.  

Monday, June 11, 2012

Mango Sauce (2 Versions, Sweet and Spicy)

One night we had 3 ripe mangoes, sitting, beckoning to us to eat them.  I love mangoes.  They are my favorite fruit.  We looked online for a main dish involving mangoes and ended up finding two great ideas!  Dinner and dessert, for the price of the same mango!  We found a chef on youtube who taught me how to properly cut, squish and dice a mango (see pictures below).  Then I looked at his food blog and adapted the spicy sauce from that website.  
Here is the way to finely dice your mango.  First, peel it, using a peeler.  Discard the peels.  Then continue to peel the actual mango onto your cutting board.  
Next, using your fingers, squish all that mango juice onto your pile of mango slices.  A lot of juice will come off of that mango.  I was a little surprised.
Now take a large knife and finely dice your mango.  If you puree it, according to the youtube guy, it will throw the universe off.  So don't do that.  Just dice it.
Now you are ready to add the other delicious ingredients.

Sweet Mango Sauce
adapted from:

1 large, very ripe mango, finely diced
1/2 can coconut milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1/8 c. brown sugar (plus a teeny bit more)

Mix all ingredients in a saucepan and heat it over low heat until it is warm.  And that is it. Split the sauce in half and reserve one half to put over vanilla ice cream.  Mmmm.

Using the other half of your mango sauce, make this recipe to put over grilled chicken:

Spicy/Sweet Mango Sauce
adapted from:

1/2 recipe sweet mango sauce (see above)
1/4 tsp. minced garlic (actually, just a slightly less)
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. seasoned rice vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
1 sprig cilantro, chopped

In a medium sauce pan, combine all the ingredients and stir gently.  Serve over grilled chicken.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Chicken Milano

I have made this recipe many times.  I was going to make it for a church dinner, but couldn't perfect it in the slow cooker.  Needless to say, we ate it almost every night for about a week.  In order to avoid an uprising from my family, I waited a few months before trying it again.  And it was just as delicious as I remember (I never could get it to work right in the slow cooker).  The original recipe calls for heavy whipping cream (that is how you know it is going to be delicious).  I didn't have any this last time that I made it, so I used evaporated milk instead and it still tasted great!  So, if you are in a pinch, substitute and try different things.  I have served mine with steamed red potatoes or fettuccine noodles and it is great either way.

Chicken Milano
adapted from:

1 Tbsp butter
2 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 c. sun dried tomatoes, chopped
1 can sliced mushrooms
1 c. chicken broth, divided
1 c. heavy whipping cream (or evaporated milk worked, too)
1 lb. chicken breasts, cut in thirds
salt and pepper to taste
2 Tbsp oil
2 Tbsp chopped fresh basil (or a sprinkle or two of dried basil)

In a large sauce pan, melt the butter and saute' the garlic for about one minute, on medium-low heat.  Add the sun dried tomatoes and mushrooms and 3/4 cup of the chicken broth, bring it to a boil over medium heat and cook it until the tomatoes are tender, about 10 minutes.  Stir in the heavy whipping cream and boil it gently until it begins to thicken, or until it will coat the back of a spoon.  Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides.  Pour the oil into a skillet and cook the chicken until there is no more pink on the inside.  When the chicken is cooked through, pour the remaining 1/4 cup chicken broth over the top and let it simmer.  Pour the cream sauce over the top of the chicken and stir in the basil.