DSC00884

Potato gratin is a comfort dish everyone loves all year long. Potatoes, garlic, ham, and cheese…what is not to love about this ham and cheese potato gratin? You will be surprised how easy it is to prepare. Most of the time it is baking in the oven. The hardest part is waiting for it to be done!

First, you need to cook the garlic and shallots until tender. Then, to make a creamy sauce, add cream, salt, pepper and thyme and blend together in your Magic Bullet. Layer the thinly sliced potatoes with ham and sauce, bake, and at the end top with the cheeses and bake until melted and slightly browned.

To get the potatoes nice and thin, use a mandolin slicer. If you don’t have on, just take your time and slice them as thin as you can with a sharp knife.

DSC00870

Ham and Cheese Potato Gratin Recipe

Ingredients

  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 cups cream
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground pepper
  • 2 tsp thyme
  • 2 potatoes, thinly sliced
  • 1 package sliced deli ham
  • 1/2 cup shredded Gruyére
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan

 

DSC00872

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.
  3. Melt the butter in a skillet and add the garlic, shallot, cream, salt, pepper and thyme. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Cool and then add to a Magic Bullet cup and blend until smooth.
  5. Layer the potatoes, followed by the ham and cream sauce. Repeat.
  6. Bake in the oven covered with foil for 50 minutes, then top with cheese and bake for 10 more minutes uncovered.

DSC00888

Makes 1 9 x 13-inch pan

 

email

IMG_7967

Here’s a question I get pretty often: if you cook dinner after work, when do you actually eat? And the answer is: usually, not that late! The key is developing straightforward “go to’s” that can be on the table quickly. And in my opinion, if a dish is going to be a weeknight regular, it should be healthy, too.

In that spirit, I present to you sheet-pan chicken fajitas. This dish is almost too good to be true: the sizzle and delicious flavor of fajitas with minimal work and more vegetables (and much less grease) than you would get at a restaurant. Instead of doing a stir-fry situation, the trusty sheet-pan and the broiler allows you to get crusty char with minimal oil and cleanup. The only downside is…. OK there isn’t any downside. I like to serve these with a can of refried beans, just heated up in the microwave, some tortillas, a little sour cream, and maybe some fresh lime wedges.

The Magic Bullet comes through to produce an entirely homemade, extra-flavorful blend.

IMG_7930

Sheet-pan Chicken Fajita Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 lb boneless chicken thighs or breast meat, cut into strips
  • 1 large onion, thick sliced, or to taste
  • 1 green bell pepper, core removed and thick sliced, or to taste
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, sliced, or to taste
  • Vegetable oil
  • 1 tbl corn starch
  • 1 tbl chili powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp whole cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • Tortillas, warmed in the microwave, for serving
  • Sour cream for serving
  • Lime wedges for serving (optional)
  • Refried beans, heated up in the microwave, for serving (optional)

IMG_7941

Instructions

  1. Blend cumin seeds in the Magic Bullet, then add the other spices and the corn starch and blend.
  2. Preheat the broiler. Toss chicken, onions, and peppers with a big dash of oil and the spice mixture. Spread over a sheet pan
  3. Put the sheet pan under the broiler and cook until everything is crispy and just beginning to char, stirring once or twice during cooking.
  4. Serve, passing tortillas and toppings.

 

Mar
29
0

Honey Butter

DSC04295

I discovered honey butter about a year ago while I was on vacation. I had just taken a seat at a family-owned American restaurant in North Lake Tahoe, CA, and a few moments later I was greeted with a large plate of homemade cornbread and a side of freshly whipped honey butter. The honey butter tasted so good! Now whenever I make cornbread, I always whip up a side of honey butter in my Magic Bullet to go along with it. I have also used this honey butter as a topping for pancakes and scones. The trick to making the most perfect honey butter is ensuring the butter is at room temperature. It has to be nice and soft before using it.

What would you like to try honey butter with?


DSC04286

Honey Butter Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tbsp honey

DSC04288

Instructions

  1. Once the butter is very soft, add it to a small Magic Bullet cup along with the honey.
  2. Pulse a few times until the honey and butter are evenly whipped together.

DSC04291

Makes 1/4 cup

 

Mar
27
0

Chicken Saltimbocca

DSC00676

This chicken dish is incredibly flavorful, thanks to a slice of prosciutto, spinach and goat cheese wrapped up inside. As the chicken cooks in broth, the flavor of the prosciutto coats each chicken breast. After cooking, the broth you use to cook the chicken in the skillet can be used as a flavorful lemon sauce. You can add a little flour to thicken it up, or leave it alone. Serve the chicken rolls with a side of rice or couscous and a side salad to make a complete, healthy dinner.

DSC00663

Chicken Saltimbocca Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cup frozen chopped spinach, thawed
  • 1/3 cup crumbled goat cheese
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 3 thin sliced chicken breasts
  • 3 slices prosciutto
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

DSC00665

Instructions

  1. Wash and dry the chicken breasts, and set on a piece of parchment paper.
  2. Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper.
  3. Add the spinach, goat cheese and nutmeg to a Magic Bullet cup and blend until creamy.
  4. Add a slice of prosciutto on top of each chicken breast, then spread 1/3 of the spinach mixture on each.
  5. Roll up each chicken breast and secure with 2-3 toothpicks.
  6. Heat the oil in a skillet and brown each side of the chicken, about 2 minutes per side.
  7. Add the broth and lemon juice and bring to a boil.
  8. Cook the chicken for 12 minutes, turning over halfway, until the breasts are cooked through.

DSC00667

Makes 3 chicken rolls

 

IMG_8274

If you’re anything like me, you’re always on the look-out for healthy, delicious, vegetable-based side dishes that come together quickly and can be on hand for almost any meal. Ta da! Here’s a recipe that doesn’t even involve any cooking, just some pantry ingredients (well, they’re in my pantry — you might need to buy them, but then you’ll have them) mixed up in the Magic Bullet for a delicious, and indeed authentically Chinese, side dish. The use of Chinese black (Chinkiang) vinegar here gives a distinctive, vaguely smoky tang, and you can mix up as many or as few other Chinese ingredients to provide as simple or more complex a dish as you like. My version is spicy with sweetness from sugar, depth of flavor from sesame oil and soy, and a good bit of bite from fresh garlic.

Plus, if you have a flair for the dramatic, you can smash these cucumbers with a side of a cleaver (the smashing apparently helps them soak up the dressing) to really impress your friends. Or you can just smoosh them down on the cutting board, like I did. Up to you, really.

IMG_8230

Smashed Cucumbers with Chinese Black Vinegar Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cucumber, peeled if you like, smashed on the counter then cut roughly into 1 inch cubes
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 tbl Chinese black (Chinkiang) vinegar
  • 1 tbl roasted peanuts
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp hot chili oil (optional)

IMG_8247

Instructions

  1. Blend peanuts in the Magic Bullet until roughly chopped. Remove to bowl.
  2. Blend garlic in the Magic Bullet. Add vinegar, oils, sugar, and soy sauce and blend just slightly.
  3. Toss cucumbers with vinegar blend in a big bowl. Serve, garnishing with peanuts.

IMG_8255

 

SPPasta3

Years ago, before I had children, I went through a vegan phase. Still to this day, I love my vegan and vegetarian dishes even though I don’t fully eat that way any more. I remember often craving creamy pasta dishes made with heavy cream and loads of parmesan cheese! This was a dish I’ve made for years to satisfy that craving. I’ve made it for many non-vegans as well, and they have all loved it! You won’t even notice there isn’t a drop of heavy cream! You can add parmesan cheese if you would like and even switch up the vegetable from sweet potato to butternut squash. Whichever way you make this, I guarantee you will love it!

Creamy Sweet Potato Pasta Sauce Recipe

Ingredients

  • 3 cup penne pasta
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and steamed
  • 2 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 tb. butter, or olive oil
  • ½ onion diced
  • 3-4 garlic cloves
  • 1 tb. fresh sage, plus more for topping
  • Lots of pepper, to taste
  • Salt to taste
  • ¼ tsp. nutmeg
  • Optional, ½ c. fresh parmesan cheese

SPPasta1

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook pasta according to package directions. In the larger Magic Bullet Blender, add the sweet potato and vegetable broth. Puree until creamy and fully blended. Set aside.
  2. In a pan on low/medium heat add the butter and melt. Next add in the onions and garlic. Stir and cook until translucent, about 4-5 minutes. Next add in the sage and toss for 1 minutes.
  3. Pour in the blended sweet potato. Stir and then sprinkle in the spices. Adjust until desired taste has been reached. Top with extra chopped fresh sage and fresh parmesan.

SPPasta2

 

Mar
15
0

Chickpea Burrito

 Chickpea-Burrito-1

Chickpeas are often overlooked as a salad topping or smaller component of a larger dish… but they’re so much more versatile than that! This recipe combines a can of chickpeas with household spices to blend up a hearty vegetarian-friendly burrito that you’ll find yourself making over and over again.

Chickpea-Burrito-2

Chickpea Burrito Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 can of chickpeas, not drained
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbsp. lime juice
  • Small amount of salt & pepper
  • Soft tortillas

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients in Magic Bullet and blend.
  2. Add to heated skillet, stirring occasionally. The mixture will begin to thicken as the liquid burns off. Cook and stir it as you would scrambled eggs, until the mixture has the consistency of mashed potatoes.

Chickpea-Burrito-8

Top it with some avocado slices and dried cilantro, and you’ve got yourself a happy little burrito!

 

Mar
13
0

Mapo Tofu

IMG_7869

Do you know mapo tofu? This classic Chinese meal uses an unusual (to the American palette) combo of ground beef and tofu for an incredibly interesting effect. The combination of the meaty beef and the silken tofu creates a fascinating textural contrast, and the beef combined with fermented ingredients creates an incredibly savory mouthfeel. Plus, the famous Sichuan peppercorns are used to generate a distinctive, spicy-but-vaguely-numbing effect.

This recipe requires a few unusual ingredients that you may need to go online to purchase, but once you do it’s totally worth it: my version comes together in a matter of minutes for an incredibly flavorful, unusual weeknight dinner. You can even add some hearty greens for what is truly a one-pot meal.

IMG_7781

 

Mapo Tofu Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 lb silken tofu
  • ¼ lb ground pork or beef
  • 4 scallions, sliced
  • 2 tbl preserved Chinese vegetable or fermented black beans
  • 1 bunch hearty greens, sliced (optional)
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 2-inch piece ginger, peeled
  • ¼ cup chicken broth
  • 2 tbl Sichuan peppercorns (half ground, half not)
  • 2 dried red chilis
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 2 tsp water
  • 4 tsp fermented Chinese bean paste
  • 4 tsp Chinese rice wine
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 4 tsp chili oil
  • 1 tbl brown sugar

Instructions

  1. Blend the garlic, ginger and preserved vegetable (or black beans) in the Magic Bullet.
  2. Add vegetable oil, chilis and whole Sichuan peppercorns to pan over medium-high heat. Cook two minutes until sizzling, maybe beginning to brown. Drain peppercorns and discard.
  3. Raise heat to high until oil lightly smokes. Add ground meat and cook, stirring, for one minute.
  4. Add garlic, ginger, scallion whites, and yucai and cook until fragrant.
  5. Add chili-bean paste, wine, soy sauce, brown sugar, and chicken stock and bring to a boil. Lower heat to medium. If using the hearty greens, add them and cook until wilted, about four minutes.
  6. Combine cornstarch and cold water in a small bowl and mix with a fork until homogenous. Pour in cornstarch mixture and cook for 30 seconds until thickened.
  7. Lower heat to medium, add tofu and carefully fold in, being careful not to break it up too much. Let tofu get hot for a few minutes.
  8. Stir in chili oil, scallion greens, and ground peppercorns and serve.

IMG_7774

 

Mar
10
0

Fennel Bean Soup

 

soup

Fennel is one of my favorite vegetables to cook with, because it is incredibly flavorful. It also adds wonderful flavor to soups. In this soup recipe, I combine chopped fennel with onion, tomatoes, broccoli, kale and white beans. By blending half of the soup and adding it back in, you create a nice, creamy texture. Chop off the fronds and add on top of the soup for an elegant presentation!

Fennel Bean Soup Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 fennel bulb, chopped
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 can white beans, drained
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 1 cup chopped kale
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1/4 tsp pepper

DSC07064

Instructions

  1. Add the oil to a large pot over medium heat, then add the onion and fennel.
  2. Cook for 10 minutes, then add the broth, beans, tomatoes, broccoli, kale, thyme and pepper.
  3. Bring to a boil and cook for 25 minutes.
  4. Cool to room temperature and transfer half of the soup to a Magic Bullet pitcher and blend.
  5. Add back into the soup, stir and reheat before serving.

DSC07082

Makes 4 servings

 

Mar
6
0

Sichuan Green Beans

IMG_8169

Okay, my love for Sichuan Chinese food may be getting a little out of control, but here’s a recipe for a healthy, delicious side dish that packs a TON of flavor and is extremely easy to make. You will need Chinese preserved vegetables, which can be bought online very easily or from any decent Asian grocery store. (Once you pop open the can, the vegetable will keep for months in the fridge.) For deep fermented flavor with truly minimal effort, it’s worth a little shopping. A touch of sugar and the classics of ginger and garlic add layers of flavor and sweetness, and a handful of dried red peppers (available in the “Latino” section of most supermarkets) add heat and a hint of smoke.

With the Magic Bullet this dish all comes together in no time at all. Sichuan peppercorns get blended up into that distinctive, vaguely anise-like, mouth-tingling powder. The fermented vegetable goes in as big pieces and comes out perfectly sized for cooking. Finally, I use my “best green beans ever” technique for perfectly al dente green beans in no time flat.

IMG_8087

Sichuan Green Bean Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 lb green beans, ends trimmed, cut into three inch pieces if necessary
  • 1 tsp Sichuan peppercorns
  • 1 piece of preserved Sichuan vegetable (about two tablespoons when diced)
  • Handful of dried red peppers, or to taste
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled.
  • 1 two-inch piece of ginger, peeled
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 3 scallions, sliced
  • Vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. Add peppercorns to Magic Bullet and blend. Remove to small bowl. Add vegetable to Magic Bullet and blend. Remove to bowl. Add the garlic to the Magic Bullet, blend, and move to bowl. Add the ginger to the Magic Bullet, blend, and move to bowl.
  2. Add green beans to skillet on high heat with dash of vegetable oil. Cook for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until green beans are thoroughly browned.
  3. Add ¼ cup water. Cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Allow green beans to steam for 2 minutes, until cooked through but still a touch al dente.
  4. Raise heat to high. Add blended mixture, the scallions, and the red peppers to the pan. Cook until garlic is mellowed and flavors meld, another two to three minutes. Add the sugar, stir everything up, and serve.

IMG_8183