Thursday, March 28, 2013

Coconut Rice Pudding

Coconut Rice Pudding
Yield: 6 cups, 6-8 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes

     Classic rice pudding is rich and creamy but can easily become boring. This rice pudding is made with an Arborio rice which is usually used to make risotto and because of the high starch content of the rice our recipe doesn't require eggs. The rice is infused with coconut flavor which is enhanced further by a fresh squeeze of lime juice and chunks of juicy mango. After you try ours you will never go back to leftover rice with nutmeg and raisins.

2 cups risotto rice
1 can coconut milk
2 cans coconut water
1 can coco lopez cream of coconut
1 cup diced ripe mango
1/4 cup chiffonade mint
2 Tbsp lime juice

1. In a large pot combine the risotto rice, coconut milk and coconut water. Cook this over low heat stirring constantly with a wooden spoon.
2. When the liquid is mostly absorbed add the cream of coconut and continue cooking until the rice is tender and cooked through. (If the rice becomes too thick but is still hard add another cup of water and continue cooking)
3. Once cooked, pour the rice onto a cookie sheet or baking pan sprayed with cooking spray. Chill in the fridge until rice is completely cooled.
4.  At this point the rice pudding can be served warm, and trust us you won't be able to resist, but to truly finish the dish allow it to cool. Then pour the rice into a bowl and mix it with the lime juice and a touch of water if too thick. Serve topped with the mint and  diced mango.

Chef's Note
       Coco lopez is a brand of cream of coconut which is a sweetened blend of coconut flesh,coconut water, and sugar. You can use whatever brand you find at the local grocery store but this is our favorite.
       The rice pudding can be kept in the fridge for up to a week as long as it hasn't been mixed with the lime juice and up to one month in the freezer.

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Sunday, March 24, 2013

Mediterranean Pasta Salad

Mediterranean Pasta Salad
Yield: 6-8 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes

       Recently we were emailed asking for a cold pasta dish idea and immediately one of our chefs thought of a dish she has been serving at picnics and as an opener to big Italian dinners for years. Too many pasta salads are drowning in mayonnaise and have no additional flavoring agents. Our salad is studded with rich sun dried tomatoes, fresh bright basil, and texture from toasted pine nuts. It will also stand up better because instead of binding with mayo we use a blend of Caesar dressing. Now go enjoy a nice lunch and forget about pre-made deli pasta salads.

1 lb box bowtie pasta
1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
3/4 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes
1/4 cup fresh chopped basil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup onion, minced
1/4 cup creamy Caesar dressing
1/2 cup oil based Caesar dressing
1 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp salt
8 oz feta cheese

1. To begin this recipe fill a large pot, about 4 quarts, with water and add a good handful of salt. Turn the stove to high and bring this water to a boil.
2. While you are waiting for the water to boil prepare the rest of the ingredients. Heat a small saute pan over medium heat and add the pine nuts. Toast these for 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally until a golden brown color develops. Then julienne the sun dried tomatoes, roughly chop the basil, and mince the garlic and onion.
3. At this point the water should be boiling and you can cook your pasta according to the boxes directions, as always aim for al dente.
4. Now in a large bowl combine the pine nuts, sun dried tomatoes, basil, garlic, onion, dressings, and seasonings.
5. Once the pasta is cooked drain it into a colander and rinse under cold water to chill it quickly.
6. Now toss the pasta in the bowl with the dressing mixture and add the feta cheese. Taste for seasoning and enjoy.

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Friday, March 22, 2013

Cranberry Chicken Salad

Cranberry Chicken Salad
Yield: 1 pint
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes

      Spring is upon us and with that comes the desire for light and fresh tasting dishes. We were emailed by Kelsey P. looking for a quick and easy lunch option that she could bring with her to the office. This chicken salad uses up leftovers and takes no more than five minutes to prepare. The crunch from the almonds and tart sweetness of the cranberries keep the salad interesting and it lasts in the fridge for about a week so it can be made in a large batch ahead of time.

1 lb cooked and shredded chicken
1 Tbsp almonds, chopped
2 Tbsp dried cranberries
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup celery, diced
1/4 cup red onion, diced
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground pepper

1. First prepare all your ingredients by chopping the almonds, and cutting the onion and celery into a small dice.
2. In a bowl mix all the ingredients together until well combined, taste for seasoning and add more salt if necessary.
3. You can serve your salad as a cold sandwich or hot panini ,on top of mixed greens, or as a dip with crackers.

Chef's Note
This recipe is a perfect way to use leftovers because the shredded chicken can come from a whole roasted chicken, grilled thighs, or even baked breasts.

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Monday, March 18, 2013

Chef's Tip of the Week

Chicken Breast Tips

       One of the most used and promoted cuts of meat in the supermarket is boneless, skinless Chicken Breast. And why not? It's easy to use, versatile and very nutritious. The problem with this product is that you are losing all the other useful parts of the chicken by buying it separately. It is also more expensive because the butcher has had to process it more.
       At Repair My Recipe we know that not everybody has hours of time set aside in their day just to cook a meal. With that in mind instead of suggesting for you to break down a whole chicken we recommend using a Split Chicken Breast. This is a chicken breast that has the rib bones still intact and the skin on. This cut of meat is less expensive than buying skinless-boneless and it offers you more options of preparation. With the skin and bones on it creates a more flavorful and fatty piece of meat that can be used for braising. The rib bones can be removed, then cook the breast in a cast iron skillet leaving you with a beautiful crispy skin. Whatever preparation you decide on, using a split breast leaves you with chicken bones that can be saved and then used to make a homemade chicken stock.
     It only takes a few simple steps to turn this split chicken breast into a skinless-boneless one.

1. First remove the skin from the breast by simple pulling it off with your hands.

2. Once the skin is removed, flip the breasts to expose the rib bones. Using either a chef's knife or a boning knife, start at the large meaty side of the bone and slide your knife underneath it. Lifting the bone as you go make small cuts following the curve of the bone, trying to cut as little of the flesh off as possible.


3. Once the bones are removed, trim the small pieces of fat on the breast and what you are left with a skinless-boneless chicken breast and some bones.

     With these bones you can make one of the most simplistic and useful ingredients in your pantry,  homemade chicken stock. Every time you butcher some chicken at home save the bones in the freezer until you have accumulated 10 lbs. Now you are ready to make stock.

Chicken Stock
Yield: 1 gallon
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 3 hours

10 lbs chicken bones
1 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced celery
1/2 cup diced carrots
1/2 cup diced leeks
5 garlic cloves
1/2 cup parsley, stems and leaves
1 Tbsp peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1 1/2 gallons water
4 cups ice cubes

1. To first prepare for the stock, rinse the bones under cold water to remove any excess blood or fat that is still attached. 
2. Place the rinsed bones in a large stock pot, between 3 and 5 gallons, cover that with the water and ice cubes and bring to a simmer over medium heat. It is very important to begin with cold water, which is why you use the ice cubes. Bringing the stock up in temperature very slowly from ice cold to simmer will allow the impurities to rise and will leave you with a clearer stock. 
3. Once this mixture comes to a simmer use a ladle to gently skim off all of the impurities (white foam, fat, and particles) from the top. 
4. After skimming add all the vegetables and herbs to the pot and simmer for three hours. Continue to skim the top of the stock about every hour.
5. Now strain the stock through a mesh basket and immediately chill. Once cooled the stock should be rather thick and gelatinous, don't worry this is a good thing, it will become a liquid again once heated.  

        This stock will keep in the refrigerator for two weeks and can be frozen for three months. Having chicken stock on hand or any stock for that matter is an essential part of a restaurant kitchen. It can be used for the base of soups, sauces, braising liquids, and reduced to become a jus. It is a far more flavorful liquid to use in recipes that call for water  and once you begin using homemade you will never go back to boxed or canned.

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Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Pork Belly Confit

Simple Confit Pork Belly
Yield: 2 lbs
Prep time: one day
Cook time: three hours

2 bay leaf, crushed
1 tsp chopped thyme
1 tsp chopped rosemary
1 tsp ground black pepper
1 Tbsp sugar
1/4 cup kosher salt
3 lb piece pork belly
1 small onion, sliced
4 garlic cloves
4 sprigs thyme
1 sprig rosemary
Olive or Canola oil

1.In a bowl mix the first six ingredients until combined. In a shallow baking dish rub the salt and herb mix on all sides of the pork belly until well coated. Cover the dish with plastic and refrigerate over night.
2. Once the pork has had its overnight cure, wash it well with cold water to remove the salt and herbs, and pat dry with paper towels.
3.Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. In a large pot such as a cast iron dutch oven, place the onions, garlic, and herbs. On top of the vegetables lay the dry pork belly and pour in enough oil to cover it by one inch. Cover the pork with either a lid or aluminum foil and roast for two to three hours or until fork tender.
4. Once the pork is cooked, remove it from the oil to cool. Strain the oil into a bowl and discard the solids. Let the oil separate from the juices released from the pork and then save the oil.

Chef's Notes
At this stage the pork can be used in many different applications It can be sliced and pan seared to be served on asian steam buns with cilantro, radish, and sesame sauce. It is a feature component of the classic french white bean cassoulet.  You can cut it into square portions of any size, score the skin and render a beautifully crisp piece of belly on top of braised greens or with a fruit sauce. Or it can be diced into half inch cubes and fried to create pork croutons that will elevate any salad.

If you are not immediately using the pork, place it in shallow container and completely cover with the confit oil. This will keep the pork for up to one month.

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Chefs Caesar Salad

Caesar Salad
Yield: 4 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes

5 anchovy filets
5 garlic cloves, chopped
¾ cup olive oil
1 egg yolk
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp salt
1 Tbsp pepper
2 heads frisee lettuce

1.Roughly chop the garlic coves and anchovy fillets (remember looks don't matter it will be blended later). In a small sauté pan add the olive oil and turn the heat to medium.
2.Add the anchovy and garlic to the oil and sauté for 2 minutes, until the garlic turns golden brown. Strain the oil from the solids reserving both. Place the oil in the refrigerator to quickly chill it.
3.Once the oil is cool you can begin to build the dressing.  In a blender add the egg yolk, lemon juice, cooked garlic and anchovy, and cheese. Blend on high until it becomes a smooth paste.
4.With the blender on low slowly pour in the cooled oil to emulsify the fat and thicken the dressing. Once half is drizzled in you can pick up the speed with the rest. Season with the salt and pepper and refrigerate until ready to use.

To serve the salad trim and wash the frisee, toss with the Caesar dressing, and garnish with croutons. To give more flare to this salad use our confit pork belly as croutons instead of traditional bread.

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Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Cream of Mushroom Soup

Cream of Mushroom Soup
Yield: 2 quarts
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour

We are nearing the end of winter and with a possible snow storm coming, Repair my Recipe received many emails asking about a hearty soup that differs from the traditional stew. Our cream of mushroom soup is heavy on flavor but light on the wallet. This soup is also perfect to bring out if you cook vegetarian because the chicken stock can easily be changed out for vegetable stock. This simple yet sophisticated soup will keep you warm and leave your dining room feeling more like a restaurant.


6 cups Crimini mushrooms
1 cup diced shallot
1 Tbsp chopped garlic
½ cup sherry
1 quart chicken stock
1 Tbsp thyme
2 cups heavy cream
1 package (1 oz) dried porcini mushrooms
1 Tbsp salt
1 Tbsp pepper


  1. First prepare the mushrooms by de-stemming all of them, save the stems, and then dividing the mushrooms into two groups, one measuring 4 cups and the other 2 cups.
  2. Prepare all of the vegetables and aromatics by chopping the large group of mushrooms, shallots, and garlic. (don’t worry about the size of the cuts because it will be pureed later)

  3. In a large pot heat a few tablespoons of vegetable oil and sauté the mushrooms, garlic, and shallots over medium heat. Cook for five minutes until the vegetables gain a little color and soften up.
  4. Deglaze the pot by pouring in the sherry and stir to make sure you release all the browned vegetable stuck to the bottom. Then add the chicken stock, salt and pepper, and chopped thyme leaves. Lower the heat and simmer  for half an hour.
  5. In a separate small sauce pot add the heavy cream, mushroom stems, dried porcinis, and leftover thyme stems.  Simmer this mixture over low heat for half an hour.
  6. Once the mushroom stems and dried mushrooms have steeped in the cream strain the cream into the stock. Combine the cream and stock mixture and then use either a counter blender or hand blender to puree the soup.  (If transferring the mixture to a counter top blender use a large ladle instead of trying to pour it from the pot.) Blend the soup until it has a very smooth consistency.
  7. Transfer the pureed soup back into the large pot and continue to simmer over low heat for ten minutes.
  8. While the soup is simmering slice the remaining group of mushrooms and sauté over high heat in a separate pan. (Make sure to season the mushrooms with salt and pepper.)
  9. Now add the sautéed mushrooms to the soup and serve

The soup can be served with fresh bread or crostini, and the earthiness works well with a blue cheese such as Gorgonzola.

Chef’s note:
This soup is best made with a higher quality mushroom but if you cannot find Crimini substitute them with a mixture of white button mushrooms and Portobello.

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Monday, March 4, 2013

Chocolate Sauce

Chocolate Sauce

Yield: 2 cups 
Prep time: 10 minutes 
Cook time: 10 minutes


8 oz bittersweet chocolate
1 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup light corn syrup
1 tsp cinnamon


1.Using a serrated knife cut your block of chocolate into small pieces, if using bittersweet chips then just place into a glass bowl.

2. In a small saucepan combine the cream and corn syrup and heat gently over low heat until it begins to simmer. Once hot pour the cream mixture over the chocolate and gently stir with a wooden spoon or spatula.

3.At first it will seem like there is too much liquid don’t be concerned, continue to stir and the cream will be incorporated into the melting chocolate. Once the sauce is smooth add the cinnamon and stir to combine.

Chef's note
This sauce will hold in the refrigerator for a few weeks, don't worry when it becomes hard. When you want to serve the sauce simply scoop some into a dish and reheat in the microwave for thirty seconds until it is warm and has a sauce consistency.

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Sour Cherry Sauce

Sour Cherry Sauce 
Yield: 1 cup
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes

1 cup dried tart cherries                                        
¾ cup port
¾ cup dry red wine
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp lemon zest


Combine all the ingredients, except the lemon zest, in a small sauce pot over medium heat. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to low and simmer the cherries in the liquid until they have absorbed some of the wine and plumped up. This should take around a half an hour and the liquid should be reduced almost completely to a syrup consistency. Once the sauce has reached this point pour into a heat proof bowl and stir in the lemon zest, then chill and serve.

Dried tart cherries are available in most commercial grocery stores or specialty food markets. They are more sour than normal dried cherries so if you cannot find these then use regular dried cherries but eliminate the addition of 1/4 cup sugar. This sauce is not overly sweet and has a slightly bright sour bite so it can be used to balance many rich dessert dishes. 

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Zeppole Recipe


Yield: 25 dough balls
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes

Last week Repair my Recipe received an email from Kathy M. She wanted to make doughnuts similar to the ones she made with her grandmother as a child, but had lost the recipe. We sent her our version of a doughnut which is a zeppole, this is much lighter than a traditional doughnut and has a fluffier interior. While zeppole look more like doughnut holes than regular doughnuts soon these will become your new favorite fried treats. 

Zeppole (Italian donuts)

1 lb ricotta cheese
6 whole eggs
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp vanilla extract
9 oz (1 cup + 2 tbsp) flour
1/3 cups sugar
1 ½ tsp salt
1 Tbsp baking powder


1. In a bowl mix together the ricotta and eggs.
2. In a separate bowl combine the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder.

3. Using a whisk slowly pour the dry ingredients into the wet and stir to combine.

4. Fill a sauce pot with enough canola or vegetable  oil to come two inches high up on the side. Heat over medium until a thermometer reads 350 degrees F. Using an ice cream scoop, drop about a tablespoon of dough into the oil, fry in small batches so the pot is not over crowded. The zeppole will naturally flip over when one side is cooked but you can spin them yourself to help even coloring.

 5. Once golden brown on all sides and doubled in size remove with either tongs or a spider and immediately drop into a bowl with sugar and cinnamon.( 1 cup sugar + 2 Tbsp ground cinnamon)  Toss the zeppole so it is coated with the cinnamon sugar then let rest on a cooling rack.

Serve warm with chocolate sauce, sour cherry compote, or lemon curd.

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