Stir-Fried Honey-Ginger Chicken with Peppers

Stir-Fried Honey-Ginger Chicken with Peppers

Honey and ginger, two of my favorite things.

Honey and ginger, two of my favorite things.

Everyday Food certainly loves their stir fries.  I have to admit it is kind of nice.  Up to this point, with very few exceptions, I pretty much sliced up chicken or pork, tossed in a bag of stir fry style frozen veggies and added some Soy Vey Teriyaki Sauce (if you’ve never tried it, it’s truly delicious).  So, here is yet another example of how this blog has taken me out of my comfort zone.  Yay!

This stir fry was both incredibly beautiful and incredibly tasty.  I took the suggestion in the magazine and went with red, orange and yellow bell peppers.  It’s not often you have such a colorful meal in the middle of winter.  Additionally, the honey and the ginger made the chicken and peppers so flavorful!  As usual, I served it with brown rice.

This was a delicious and healthy dinner at the peak of comfort food season.  Give it a try!

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Buttermilk-cornmeal drop biscuits with honey butter

December 2011, pg. 87

Buttermilk Cornmeal Biscuits

Buttermilk-cornmeal drop biscuits with honey butter recipe 

These biscuits were going to be a perfect addition to our leftover chicken and gravy.  No honey butter for us.  I’m sure it would have been a nice addition to the biscuits if we ate them for breakfast or brunch.  I only help out with the sweeter recipes, and we don’t get as much exercise this time of year, so I reduce sugar when possible.

The biscuits were very easy and quick to make.  It is a perfect addition to a meal if you don’t have a lot of time or don’t feel like thinking too much.  The only problem I had with making the dough was it was very thin, like a batter.  I’m going to take complete blame for the dough/batter because I did use the powdered buttermilk again.  Last month when I made the black pepper buttermilk biscuits the dough was very wet.  Next time I use powdered buttermilk to make a dough, I’m going to add the water slowly and not just use the amount of water the powdered buttermilk container calls for.  So my finished product was a thin biscuit.

Looking far from perfect, the biscuits tasted great!  I really like cornbread, my husband not as much.  However, he had very positive comments regarding the texture of the biscuits from the cornmeal and I completely agree with him.  The honey provided a perfect amount of sweetness to the biscuit.

Biscuits with chicken and Gravy

Pat and I both had the leftover biscuits for breakfast without butter, honey butter, or jam.  They are sweet enough by themselves, but I’m sure if you wanted to add a spread, the honey butter would be delicious.

Guest post: Hot toddies, comin’ through!

Hot Toddies

So simple that you can fit everything in one picture

So simple that you can fit everything in one picture

This is a guest post from my one and only, D.  Please enjoy.  -G

D here, husband to G and resident Cooking the Stripes bar-tender, guest posting for the Hot Toddy recipe from November 2007.

“Make this for your holiday gathering” drink recipes are often problematic, because they only include instructions for how to make a batch for a crowd. This deters experimentation.  A Tom & Jerry might be delicious, but I wouldn’t know because I’ve never happened across 30 people who want a raw-egg drink at the same time.

As party recipes go, the EF Hot Toddy recipe is great, because though the top-line information says it makes 8 drinks, the actual instructions provide the precise measurements for a single, drink, so you can do one or two as easy as a party batch.  A “hot toddy” is one of those things that everyone name-checks but nobody drinks.  So G and I were both excited to see what a real live hot toddy tasted like.

Cutting to the chase, his recipe is fantastically simple and completely delicious and you have to go make one right now (or at least the next time it snows). Aside from Martha’s instructions, here’s what you need to know:

On the ingredients: don’t waste a bunch of cash on good brandy just for this. The cocktail authority over at Esquire, David Wondrich, did a feature on the best cheap booze. Print it out and save it.  These are excellent, affordable recommendations to stock your home bar with. So, based on Mr. Wondrich’s expertise, we used Paul Masson Grande Amber VSOP brandy. It’s about $13 for a bottle but it way better than that price would indicate, and makes a perfect base spirit.

On the proportions: The one adjustment that this recipe needs is to bump up the brandy.  I like my cocktails strong, much stronger than G tends to. It’s not uncommon for me to make a new drink that I really like, and have her choke/cough after her sample sip and say, through watered eyes “tastes like burning.” (If you know G, you know that’s a Simpsons reference). That being said, even she preferred this toddy with 1 1/2 tablespoons of brandy (that would be 3/4 cup if you’re making the 8-serving), instead of the 1 tablespoon it calls for, which was a little weak. I preferred it at 2 tablespoons per mug, though few are likely to be as far at the end of the spectrum as me on this one.

On the technique: here’s a pro tip. Don’t worry about trying to get the honey off the measuring spoon. Just measure your honey last, and leave the measuring spoon in the drink when you pour in your hot water. Then use the measuring spoon to stir the drink, and the honey will dissolve from the heat as you mix. Plus, no swizzle stick to wash.

I really urge you to try this recipe. It’s the cocktail equivalent of an enthusiastic hug from a slightly overweight grandmother: comforting, warming, wonderful.

And yes, we both had seconds. You can’t have just one hug from grandma.

Pear Snacks!

Ok, I warned you there were a lot of pear recipes in this issue.  Here is a rundown of the “snack” recipes.  They are all so quick and simple they don’t really have recipes and therefore I have nothing to link to, but I’ll give you a good description.  If you have October 2003, issue 6, you can find the details on page 30.

These pears are getting playful with some honey and toasted almonds.

These pears are getting playful with some honey and toasted almonds.

I have a bit of a thing for honey.  I use it daily in my tea and like to include it in recipes whenever possible.  I also want to keep bees someday (as soon as I have a yard really).  Anyway, this recipe basically consists of slicing up some pear and drizzling it with some honey and toasted almonds.  To toast the almonds just toss them in a dry pan over a medium to low heat and toss them around for a few minutes until you really start to smell the oils warming up.  You can also do this in the oven but I like to be able to see/smell nuts as they are toasting to make sure they don’t burn.  This was very simple and very tasty.

Pears and blue cheese should be besties...

Pears and blue cheese should be besties…

Here’s another super tasty and super easy “snack”.  Slice up some pears, pile them on top of some mixed greens along with some blue cheese and some more almonds for good measure.  We ate it with a nice light red wine vinaigrette.  Super yummy and refreshing!

I had this snack waiting for the Bear when he got home from work one day.

I had this snack waiting for the Bear when he got home from work one day.

This “recipe” is even easier.  Just wrap some prosciutto around pear quarters.  It is really tasty although I was a bit disappointed by the deli prosciutto.  It wasn’t sliced thinly enough for one.  It also had some sort of curing salt/sugar mix still on the outside of it.  (Wegman’s would never stand for this!)

There was one other pear snack that I failed to photograph.  You take some store bought caramel sauce and drizzle or dip your pear slices into that.  It’s an interesting alternative to the autumnal treat of apples in caramel sauce.

And there you have it.  Try one, try all.  I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.