International


This week GFGF celebrates Ukraine. Considering the situation that is going on now with Russia we wanted to support Ukraine in a way we could. By cooking some of their national dishes.

The thing one has to understand is that Ukraine used to be part of the USSR and so many of their dishes are part Russian, part Ukrainian, part Eastern Europe in general. So I tried to find some recipes that were typically Ukrainian. Still hard to separate them out from so many similar dishes from across eastern Europe.

I made Chicken Kyev first..

I’d heard of this dish for years but had yet to try it out. Turns out it was quite simple. Simply pound a chicken breast ’til thin. Stuff it with a delicious compound butter. Roll it up. Then dip in egg/milk, flour, and bread crumbs. Easy peasy! Fry and then bake. You can find the recipe I used here.

I also tried Ukrainian Syrniki which are pancakes made from Farmer’s Cheese. These didn’t turn out so well. I never could get them to cook right. I tried three times. All I ended up with was a mess. It was like I had never made pancakes before. I did taste them. Not a fan.

Usually they are served with fresh fruit or preserves.

My last foray into Ukrainian cuisine was to try Paska. This is a Ukrainian Easter bread. It is not just a bread. It is a braid that contains lemon and orange zest. This type of bread is enjoyed all through Eastern Europe. There is just a wee bit of difference from country to country.

This was a wonderfully citrusy, rich sweet bread. Often times it is also drizzled with a sweet glaze. Similar to brioche. Or Challah. Definitely a keeper for special occasions.

I know Ulrike made some Ukrainian dishes (there are three links here). As did Kayte.

A whole new year as begun. 2022. Fingers crossed it is a good year for everyone.

And it is time to start eating healthy again. I have been neglectful since Thanksgiving. Too long to neglect my health. I am going back to KETO which has been my friend off and on for the last year to so. It is easy to stick to and the food is often delicious. Especially since it is all made at home with fresh ingredients and NO sugar. No processed food. No starch, etc.

So, this week I decided to start the year off right with Ellie’s Autumn Vegetable Curry. Delicious!!

  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 1 1/2-inch length fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 2 tablespoons yellow curry powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, plus more to taste
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 cup light coconut milk
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
  • 1/2 head cauliflower, broken into 1½-inch-wide florets (about 3 cups)
  • 2 cups broccoli florets
  • 1 pound medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch rounds
  • 2 tomatoes, cored and chopped
  • Grated zest of 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 15-ounce can no-salt-added chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 5 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 3 cups cooked brown rice, for serving, optional

Directions

Place the onion, garlic, ginger, curry powder, and cayenne pepper in a food processor and
process to combine. Add the oil and process until a smooth puree is formed. Transfer the
curry puree to a large pot and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes.
Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture begins to darken,
about 5 minutes more.

Add the vegetable broth, coconut milk, cinnamon stick and ¼ teaspoon black pepper and
bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower, sweet
potatoes, carrots, and tomatoes, season with salt and pepper, and return to a boil. Reduce
the heat to medium low, cover, and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 25
minutes. Remove the cinnamon stick. Stir in the lime zest and juice, chickpeas, and spinach
and cook until the spinach is wilted, about 5 minutes. Season with up to ¾ teaspoon salt.

Garnish with cilantro and serve with rice.

Cook time is about 30 minutes.

You can see that I left out some ingredients. Some of them simply because they aren’t keto friendly. I did leave in the sweet potato but decreased the amount. A little of it was needed for the taste of the stew. I also increased the amount of broth to use it more as a soup rather than a stew. It was just spicy enough to warm you up on a winters day.

The recipe is HERE if you want to see it in the original form and in Ellie’s comfort food fix (page 208).

Check with

Kayte, Peggy, and Gaye or their first Eating with Ellie post for 2022.

If you would like to join in, just leave a link to your post in any of the comment sections of the participants and we will come and see what you made.

My choice this month and I chose Winter Squash. That would include butternut, pumpkin, acorn, delicata, hubbard, and spaghetti squash (to name a few). I love butternut so that is what I worked with.

IF you have read my blog in the past you know I love ethnic cuisine – Indian, Asian, Latin American – and I love to cook it. Using the butternut I made Thai butternut and chicken curry.

My cookbook collection includes everyday asian which is where I found the recipe but it is also available on The Williams Sonoma website. The recipe is here. It calls for pumpkin or butternut.

It was OKAY. I liked it but I didn’t LOVE it. I think the butternut was too sweet for a curry. But that’s just my humble opinion. I don’t think I’ll make it again.

More winter squash recipes from:

Kayte

Ulrike

Peggy

Next veggie: Any fresh produce for November 5th

We’d love to have more members in Good Friends Good Food so if you want to join in just let one of us know.

This week Good Food Good Friends is using zucchini. Zucchini is one veggie that is available year round here in the deep south. We grew some this summer in the garden but they didn’t do well because it was so HOT!!! Luckily can find it in all the stores. And this week I was fortunate enough to get two nice sized zucchini in my Misfits Market box. They were just the right size for spirilizing.

I knew immediately how I was going to use the zucchini – PHO GA!

For those of you who aren’t familiar with PHO (pronounced phu) it is an Vietnamese broth soup with beef (PHO TAI) and sometimes chicken and lots of veggies and spices. It is comforting and warming on a cold day.

Ingredients

1/2 large onion, diced

1 bunch green onions white and green chopped and separated.

4 cloves garlic, finely diced

1/2 cup bean sprouts

2 Tbl fresh ginger, sliced thin

1 cup (or more) fresh mushrooms, sliced thin

1.5 baby bok choy

2 Tbl soy sauce ( I used Tamari for KETO)

1 chicken breast, cooked an shredded

2 tsp 5 spice (or to taste)

8 cups chicken broth

2 Tbl fish sauce (I added a little more)

2 tbl sesame oil

1 large zucchini, spiralized (or if not KETO use about 6 oz rice noodles) or if on KETO you could also use the yakatori noodles.

Add oil to hot Instapot (if you don’t have one a medium stockpot will do). When oil is hot add in the diced onions and sautee until onions are translucent (about 4-5 minutes on medium heat).

Add the white of the green onions, minced garlic, and ginger. Cook, stirring periodically until the ginger and garlic is aromatic.

Add in the chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Add the soy sauce(or Tamarin) and 5 spice. Cover and simmer about 10 minutes.

Add the sliced ‘shrooms and bok choy to the pot. Cook for 5-8 minutes until bok choy is tender. If using the rice noodles or yakatori add them now.

Add in the cooked shredded chicken and simmer to give all the ingredients time to enjoy each other.

Place raw zucchini spirals in the bowls and cover with the broth. The hot broth will cook the zucchini until it is just tender.

Garnish with green onion tops.

Recipe makes 4 nice servings.

NOTES:

I used a mixture of cremini and mixed mushrooms which came in the Misfits Market Box. You can use any you choose.

This recipe is completely KETO friendly if you don’t use the rice noodles.

This is my own recipe. Mostly because I had to use what I had in my pantry as far as spices went. It is definitely a keeper.

Want more Zucchini recipes? Visit the other Good Friends:

Nancy

Ulrike

Donna

Peggy

Kayte

Ellen

Two weeks from now (November 6) we are using Pumpkin in our recipes.

I don’t think Kayte’s idea was Shakespeare when she chose As You Like It as our theme this week. But it was the first thing I thought of.  If it was, I would have fixed something very British for today’s Eating with Ellie.  But, no!  I went with something I really like – as I like it – CURRY!!

Specifically Ellie’s Chicken Curry with Green Beans.

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I only made used two thighs rather than 8 but I made the regular amount of sauce.  I always make extra sauce.  Especially when the sauce is CURRY!!!

Ellie listed boneless, skinless thighs for the meat cooked in an onion, garlic, ginger, coconut sauce with lots of mild curry powder.

This was absolutely delicious AND….AND it is Whole30 compliant.  I could eat this every day.

Win/Win!!

The recipe is on page 187 of Ellie’s You Have it Made. 

Want more? -> As You Like It

Tomorrow is May 5th.  To most of us that doesn’t mean anything but in Mexico it commemorates the Mexican army’s unlikely victory over the French forces of Napoleon III on May 5, 1862, at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War (1861-1867). Mexico had trouble paying back war debts to European countries, and France had come to Mexico to collect that debt.

For us in the US it is a time to enjoy Mexican food and drink.  And if you are a fan of Ellie Krieger then celebrating in a healthy way is easy.

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I made these in 2015 and they were good so I decided to make them again. Also making them again because we have been cooking with Ellie for so long that some themes are getting low on recipes.

Lots of flavor, lots of veggies, lots of meats and totally Whole30 compliant.  Yes, I’m still eating that way as much as possible which meant no tortillas and no cheese, and no sour cream.  I can live with that.  But if you want them with all that….

fajita 2

The recipe is on page 98 of Ellie’s Weeknight Wonders.

More Cinco de Mayo -> Eating with Ellie.

 

This week’s theme for Eating with Ellie was  Italian Night – Gaye’s choice for the first Thursday in March.

For some reason when I hear Italian food I think of meatballs.  I don’t know why because Italian food is so so much more than simple meatballs.  But since I can’t have pasta in any form or rice {on the Whole30 program} I decided meatballs was my safest route.  

p1100330

Tapas-style Meatballs

Everything in the recipe – lean ground beef, onions, garlic, eggs, parsley and various other spices – are all Whole 30 compliant. Except for the bread crumbs.  THOSE I left out.  That made the meatballs a little harder to work with but it didn’t change the taste.

I also didn’t use Ellie’s sauce for the meatballs. I just wasn’t sure if the tomato sauce would be compliant so I made a Whole30 sauce instead.  Either way the meal was just right.  Meatballs in sauce.  How can you go wrong with that?

The recipe is from Ellie’s You Have it Made (page 144) but you can also find the recipe on line HERE.

For more Italian food visit Italian Night on Eating with Ellie.

Want to join the fun.  Just cook any recipe from Ellie Krieger that fits the themes, blog and leave your link under comments.  We prefer not to include the recipe.  Buy Ellie’s books instead.  You will be glad you did!

One last recipe from my cookbook choice for Cookbook Countdown for February – Eat to Beat High Blood Pressure.

If you have read my past posts you know how much I love Asian and Indian cuisine.  I guess they are my favorites over all.  Sure, I like Italian and American and Mexican but the flavors of the “Orient” just draw me in.

You also know I am on the Whole 30 Program so finding recipes that are compliant are not easy.  But many are easy to adapt.  Like this Veggie dish.

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Lots of wonderful spices mixed and sauteed with some fresh okra and potatoes. Tumeric, coriander, cumin, cilantro.  All blended together to soak into the potatoes and come out with lots of flavor.  {I have to say the flavors weren’t as strong as I would have liked but it was still good.}  And it was fairly easy.  16 minutes of prep and 40 minutes of cooking.    

To make this compliant I left out the raisins and used coconut oil rather than canola or sunflower.  Everything else was good to go.

I found the recipe HERE!

I’m linking this post with Cookbook Countdown 14 hosted by Kitchen Flavours and Emily’s Cooking (Makan2).

This week we are visiting the Orient.  At least their cuisine.  The Orient includes many different countries with many different cuisines.  We had our choice of The Middle East, India, China,Indonesia, Japan, Vietnam just to name a few.  So our choices were wide open. I went with a Thai dish.

p1100323

Shrimp with Thai Coconut Curry Sauce

Lots of flavor in this dish. Red/yellow/orange bell peppers,  Onions,  Green Thai Curry paste, coconut milk all coming together for a delicious spicy dish.

I just started cooking with  coconut oil and I love it  It has kind of a nutty fragrance with a clean fresh taste in your dishes.  I may never go back to canola oil again.

Since this is from Ellie’s You Have it Made this is a dish where the sauce can be made ahead of time and either freeze the sauce or chill it for up to two days.  That’s a good thing because I am the only one who will eat it and didn’t want it to go to waste.  I made the whole recipe but only used about a fourth of the sauce for lunch. The rest I will p0rtion out and freeze.  Nice to have a meal almost made in the freezer.

Ellie suggests serving over jasmine rice but since I started Whole 30 I cannot do that.  I just used a little of the sauce with some shrimp. And if you don’t want the rice use a spoon to eat this because you won’t want to waste a drop of the sauce!

What dishes did the other EwE members make -> Travel to the Orient with us.

And if you would like to cook along with us just visit Eating with Ellie and join in the fun.  Themes are on the right. We don’t include the recipes because we want you to enjoy lots of Ellie Krieger by purchasing her cookbooks.

For this week’s Eating with Ellie Gaye sent us to Mexico. Mexican Food!  Spicy! Flavorful! One of my faves!  And this time – healthy!  It is an Ellie Krieger recipe after all.

I chose Ellie’s Mexican  Chicken and Hominy Stew.  POSOLE!

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Posole is a soupy stew usually made with pork and lots of seasoning – cumin, oregano – sometimes with beans.  Sometimes cheese.  Ellie’s is pretty ‘clean’ when it comes to ingredients.  No cheese.  No beans.  No cumin,  Made with chicken.  But, while many posoles take some time, this one is quick and easy because you use a roasted chicken – already cooked.  So you end up having to just throw the ingredients together – sorta – and let the flavors blend together.

This was pretty good, but I missed the cumin.  It would have added a lot without upping the calories, cholesterol, etc.  I was surprised Ellie left it out.  I look forward to making this again, with cumin.

The recipe is from Ellie’s newest book – You Have it Made – page 196.

For more Mexican flavors -> Eating with Ellie

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