Friday, October 25, 2019

Chicken Pho

OK, here is a recipe I got from my daughter, who is not technically a farmer.  It comes from a Vietnamese chef, who could have been a farmer.  It is a recipe for chicken, called Quick Chicken Pho. It would be best, of course with Gilcrest chickens--see Amy Foster.

Quick Chicken Pho Recipe
·         Prep time: 10 minutes
·         Cook time: 30 minutes
·         Yield: Serves 2
The keys to this streamlined approach include toasting spices and dry sautéing the ginger and green onion, which help to extract flavor fast. Poaching the chicken in the broth adds savory depth. You’ll practice some fundamental pho techniques that you can apply elsewhere, too. Choose a broth that tastes like chicken, such as Swanson brand, which is less fussed up and easy to manipulate. You need two 14.5-ounce (411 g) cans or one 32-ounce (907 ml) carton."
Reprinted with permission from The Pho Cookbook: Easy to Adventurous Recipes for Vietnam’s Favorite Soup and Noodles by Andrea Nguyen, copyright © 2017. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.

·         3/4-inch (2 cm) section ginger
·         2 medium-large green onions
·         1 very small (.5 oz | 15 g) bunch cilantro sprigs
·         1 1/2 teaspoons coriander seeds
·         1 whole clove
·         3 1/2 to 4 cups (840 ml to 1 l) low-sodium chicken broth
·         2 cups (480 ml) water
·         6 to 8 ounces (180 to 225 g) boneless, skinless chicken breast or thighs
·         About 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
·         5 ounces (150 g) dried narrow flat rice noodles
·         2 to 3 teaspoons fish sauce
·         About 1/2 teaspoon organic sugar, or 1 teaspoon maple syrup (optional)
·         Pepper (optional)
·         Optional extras: Bean sprouts, mint sprigs, Thai basil, cilantro leaves, lime wedges, thinly-sliced chili peppers

1 Prepare the broth ingredients: Peel then slice the ginger into 4 or 5 coins. Smack with the flat side of a knife or meat mallet; set aside. Thinly slice the green parts of the green onion to yield 2 to 3 tablespoons; set aside for garnish. Cut the leftover sections into pinkie-finger lengths, bruise, then add to the ginger.
Coarsely chop the leafy tops of the cilantro to yield 2 tablespoons; set aside for garnish. Set the remaining cilantro sprigs aside.
2 Toast the broth ingredients: In a 3- to 4-quart (3 to 4 l) pot, toast the coriander seeds and clove over medium heat until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the ginger and green onion sections. Stir for about 30 seconds, until aromatic.
3 Add the broth and bring to a simmer: Slide the pot off heat, wait 15 seconds or so to briefly cool, then pour in the broth.
Return the pot to the burner, then add the water, cilantro sprigs, chicken, and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, then lower the heat to gently simmer.
4 Remove the chicken from the broth once cooked: After 5 to 10 minutes of simmering, the chicken should be firm and cooked through (press on it and it should slightly yield).
5 Continue to simmer the broth without the chicken for another 15 to 20 minutes (for a total of 30 minutes simmering time).
6 Shred the chicken: Transfer the chicken to a bowl, flush with cold water to arrest the cooking, then drain. Let cool, then cut or shred into bite-size pieces. Cover loosely to prevent drying.
Note: If the chicken isn't quite cooked through when you begin to shred it, just split it into a few pieces and put it back in the broth for another few minutes until cooked through. The split pieces will quickly cook through.]
7 Soak the rice noodles in hot water until pliable and opaque. Drain, rinse, and set aside.
8 Strain the broth: When the broth is done, pour it through a fine-mesh strainer positioned over a 2-quart (2-liter) pot; line the strainer with muslin for superclear broth. Discard the solids. You should have about 4 cups.
Season with fish sauce and sugar (or maple syrup), if needed, to create a strong savory-sweet note.
9 Finish the pho: Bring the strained broth to a boil over high heat. Put the noodles in a noodle strainer or mesh sieve and dunk in the hot broth to heat and soften, 5 to 60 seconds. Lift the noodles from the pot and divide between the 2 bowls. [Note: it may not be necessary to soften my noodles any further. They can just be added to the bowls and poured the hot broth over top. However, dunking them in the broth would make them more flavorful!]
Lower the heat to keep the broth hot while you arrange the chicken on top of the noodles and garnish with the chopped green onion, cilantro, and a sprinkling of pepper. Taste and adjust the broth’s saltiness one last time. Return the broth to a boil and ladle into the bowls. Enjoy with any extras, if you like.

Monday, October 14, 2019

Crockpot Beef a L'Orange

This recipe is a variation of a theme by Amy Foster of Gilcrest Farms.

1 lb. Gilcrest stir fry beef
1/2 cup teriyaki sauce (or 1/4 cup of tamari + 1/4 cup brown sugar + 1/4 cup rice vinegar)
1/2 cup orange marmalade
1 teaspoon each of minced garlic and fresh ginger
1 red pepper, cut into 2 inch thick strips
6 ounces snow peas, strings removed
4 scallions, thinly sliced

In the heart of the crockpot, whisk together teriyaki sauce, marmelade, garlic and ginger. Place your sliced beef in the liquid and toss to coat. Turn crockpot on low and cook for four hours. After 4 hours, remove about 4 TBL of liquid from the crockpot and whisk in some corn starch. Return to the crock pot  and stir to mix well. Add snow peas and peppers on top and cook on low for an additional 30 minutes to thicken the sauce and steam the vegetables. Serve over hot rice and top with scallions and maybe a few orange slices. Enjoy!

Saturday, August 3, 2019

Shrimp/Scallops with Goat Cheese

Blue Goat Dairy at Davidson Market

We buy some wonderful goat cheese at a stand called the Blue Goat Dairy at the Davidson Farm Market.  The young lady there gave me some recipes she uses with some of her goat cheese flavors—we buy garlic and chives, but she has many flavors.  Here is one of several recipes she uses with a couple of her goat cheese medleys.

Samba Scallops over Pasta
1 pound large fresh scallops
2 TBL butter
½ TSP minced garlic
1 pound Farfalle or bowtie pasta
½ pint jar of Blue Goat Dairy Samba (goat cheese medley with capers and sundried tomatoes

To cook:
1. Melt butter in saute’ pan over medium heat, add garlic and mix well with butter. 
2. Add scallops into garlic butter and brown each side. Appearance should be white (not translucent) with a golden light brown finish on both sides. 
3. Add ¼ cup of Samba and stir gently together for one minute, turning scallops once.
4. Cook pasta until tender yet firm, drain and immediately add ¼ to ½ cup of Samba to pasta in pot stirring pasta until well coated.
5. Dish pasta into bowls and top with scallops dotted with sauce. Serve hot.

Variation on a theme:
Using the above recipe, substitute shrimp for the scallops. Prepare everything the same way, but add Tango goat cheese medley (Tango is made with goat cheese, pesto, garlic peppers, and olives).

This dish can be served with a spinach salad, topped with micro greens, toasted pine nuts, balsamic oil dressing and Blue Goat plain salad crumbles.

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Kickin' Chicken

Another Amy Foster recipe from Gilcrest Farms
It's called Kickin' Chicken Drumsticks

8 Gilcrest chicken drumsticks
2 cloves minced garlic
3/4 cup bottled BBQ sauce
1/4 cup orange juice
2 TBL maple syrup
Salt and Pepper
2 TSP cooking oil
1/4 cup catsup
2 TBL molasses
Hot sauce to taste

Lightly coat a 15 x 10 x 1 inch baking pan with cooking spray. Skin chicken, if desired. Arrange chicken in prepared baking pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake in a 375 degree oven for 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, for sauce, in a medium saucepan, cook garlic in hot oil over medium heat for 30 seconds. Stir in BBQ sauce, catsup, orange juice, molasses, and, if desired, hot pepper sauce. Heat through.

Carefully brush chicken with sauce. Turn chicken and brush with additional sauce. Bake for 20-25 minutes more or until chicken is no longer pink (180 degree oven). Reheat any remaining sauce; drizzle some of the sauce over chicken; pass remaining sauce. Makes 8 servings.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Firecracker Chicken Thighs

Firecracker Chicken Thighs

This recipe was brought to us by Amy Foster of Gilcrest Farms. Amy brings us most of our great recipes.

PREP TIME:5 minutes
COOKING TIME:35 minutes


For the sauce:

  • 1/2 cup hot sauce, such as Frank’s RedHot
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

For the chicken:

  • pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (4 to 6 thighs)
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper


Make the sauce:

  1. Place all the ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat. The sauce will thicken slightly as it cools. Meanwhile, arrange a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 400°F.

Make the chicken:

  1. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels, then season all over with salt and pepper. Heat a 10-inch or larger cast iron or oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Add the chicken skin-side down (work in batches if needed to not overcrowd the pan) and cook until the fat is rendered and the skin is crisp and golden-brown, 6 to 8 minutes.
  2. Using tongs, flip the chicken. Pour about 1/2 of the sauce evenly over the chicken. Place the skillet in the oven and roast for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and spoon the sauce from the bottom of the skillet over the chicken. Pour the remaining reserved sauce over the top. Return to the oven and roast until chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F, 5 to 7 minutes more. Serve the chicken with the sauce.


Make ahead: The sauce can be made up to a day in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Heat over low heat before preparing the chicken.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Chicken and Summer Squash

Chicken and Summer Squash

A recipe by KMSmokey, but Amy Foster at Gilcrest supplied the recipe at the Davidson Market.

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
¾ pound yellow squash, sliced
¾ pound zucchinis, seeded and chopped
1 medium tomato, peeled, seeded and chopped

To Do:

1. In a large, nonstick skillet, melt butter in the oil over medium high heat. Season chicken with half of the salt and half of the pepper, and add to skillet. Cook until lightly brown, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to large plate or platter, and cover to keep warm.

       2. Pour off fat from skillet, and add squash, zucchini, and tomato. Season with remaining salt and pepper. Cook and stir over medium high heat, and return chicken to skillet. Cover partially. Cook until squash is soft and chicken is white throughout but still juicy, about 5 minutes longer.

 3. Transfer chicken to platter, and cover with foil to keep warm. Raise heat to high. Cook vegetable mixture, stirring often, until almost all of the liquid has evaporated, about 2 minutes. Arrange vegetables around chicken, and serve.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Chicken Recipes from Amy at Gilcrest

As is often the case, when Amy Foster at Gilcrest isn't busily herding her critters and getting them to work for us,  she remains active creating new recipes for all of us to share and prepare. Here are two new ones from Amy, our most prolific menu deviser:

Rustic Roasted Chicken
1. 4 chicken leg quarters, trimmed
2. 3 TBL vegetable oil
3. 1 TSP paprika
4. 1 TSP seasoning salt
5. 1/4 TSP dried thyme
6. 1/4 TSP garlic powder
7. Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Pat chicken dry with paper towels. Season with salt and pepper. In a small bowl, whisk together oil, paprika, seasoning salt, thyme, and garlic powder. Lay chicken on a rack in a large roasting pan. Baste liberally with marinade. Bake for 60-75 minutes, until juices run clear. Halfway during cooking time, spoon some pan drippings over the chicken, and then again right before serving.

Gilcrest Hunter's Stew

1. 3 TBL olive oil, divided
2. 1/2 cup of flour
3. Salt and Pepper
4. 4 leg quarters, separate leg and thigh if you wish
5. 2 medium onions, chopped
6. 2 cloves garlic, minced
7. 4 Roma tomatoes, chopped
8. 1 LB mushrooms, button or baby bella, sliced or quartered
9. 2 bay leaves
10. 2 cups chicken stock
11.  1 cup white wine
12. 2 TSP chopped fresh rosemary
13. 2 TSP thinly sliced, fresh basil

Dish will serve 4-8 servings/ Serve with rice, polenta, or egg noodles.

1.  Heat 2 of the tablespoons of olive oil in a Dutch oven and cook onions until soft, add garlic, and cook another minute. If you have a pan that can be used on trhe stove, and in the oven, this is ideal. If not, have a roaster pan handy.

2. While onion is cooking, combine flour and salt and pepper (to taste) and dredge chicken in tehe flour. Cook the chicken in the Dutch oven once the onions and garlic are removed until the chicken is browned on both sides -- 3-4 minutes per side. Add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil as needed.

3. Deglaze the pan with the wine, scraping up those yummy brown bits. Stir in the mushrooms, tomatoes, broth, rosemary and bay leaves and return to simmer. Add the chicken and onions back into the pan. If you can put your pan into the oven all ingredients will go back into the Dutch oven. If you are using a roaster, put the chicken and onions in the pan and pour the broth and vegetabvles over the chicken.

4. Cover the pan and bake for one hour at 325 degrees. The chicken will be very tender and delicious. Enjoy.