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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Slow Cooked Southern Style Green Beans

2015-06-11 09.57.02

French style green beans, better known as Haricots Verts, are a very thin variety and the perfect choice for my Slow Cooked Southern Style Green Beans. I’ve made green beans with tomatoes many times and over the years, adding this and leaving out that, but now I’ve tweaked this recipe and it’s perfect. I think it’s my choice of spices and aromatics that puts a unique twist on these Slow Cooked Southern Style Green Beans and gives it complexity and depth of flavor.

I love cumin because of its grassy and earthy flavor so I decided to add this spice to my recipe. It made a HUGE difference!

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
Equipment: 5-quart saucepot, 2 large mixing bowls, spider

Ingredients:
2 pounds of French-style green beans (*Haricots Verts)
2 tablespoons of grapeseed oil (substitute any neutral oil)
1 sweet onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 15-ounce can of diced fire-roasted tomatoes and their juice
1 1/2 cups of water
1 tablespoon of ground cumin
1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon of dried oregano
1 tablespoon of dried rosemary
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper

Directions:
Start by going through the beans and cutting off the root ends. In a pot of boiling salted water *blanch the beans for 1 to 2 minutes, then immediately transfer to an ice bath. This sets the beautiful green color. Transfer the green beans to a plate lined with a paper towel to drain any excess water. Pat dry with a kitchen towel and place into a large bowl.

In a saucepot over medium heat add grapeseed oil. To that, add ground cumin allowing the spice to melt into the oil. This will give the cumin a chance to *bloom. Once you can smell the aroma from the cumin add the diced onions and the cayenne pepper. Cook and stir for 2 to 3 minutes until onions have softened and become translucent. Next, add the diced bell green peppers, Kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper, continue stirring and cooking for another 3 to 5 minutes. Next, into the pot, add the dried oregano and rosemary. Rub these spices through your fingers to release its flavor as you drop them into the pot, stir through. Finally, add the minced garlic and continue stirring.

Add the *blanched green beans, can of diced fire-roasted tomatoes along with the juice, and water. Stir all the ingredients together while bringing the green beans up to a boil. Turn down to a simmer cooking uncovered for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and cover until ready to serve. Enjoy my Slow Cooked Southern Style Green Beans with your next meal.

Serve hot.

*Haricots Verts: Usually known as French beans are a thinner and shorter variety.

*To Blanch: Blanching is a cooking process wherein a food, usually fruit or vegetable, is scalded in boiling water. Removed after a brief, timed interval and finally plunged into iced water (shocking or refreshing) to halt the cooking process.

*Bloom: The process of gently frying spices in oil. It’s a quick way to deepen their flavor. Cook just until the spices smell nice and toasty; any longer and you risk burning them.

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Chicken Milanese

 

2014-07-01 17.14.06

My Chicken Milanese recipe is so easy and versatile you can make it using pork or turkey as well. You want to ask your butcher to slice the meat, “scaloppine-style”, which is a very thinly sliced cutlet.

2014-07-01 15.31.51

Flat Leaf Italian Parsley

Oregano

 

Thyme

2014-07-01 16.46.23

2014-07-01 17.04.40

Brown rice with fresh herbs

2014-07-01 17.14.06

 

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Total Time: 53 minutes
Yields: 4 servings
Equipment: 2 large mixing bowls, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, 12-inch sauté pan

Ingredients:
2 boneless skinless chicken breast, sliced scaloppini-style (yields 10 thin cutlets)
1/4 cup of grapeseed oil (substitute a neutral oil, ex. Canola oil)
6 large eggs
1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon of garlic powder
1 teaspoon of dried rosemary
5 cups of store-bought Italian-style breadcrumbs
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon of fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons of fresh oregano leaves, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon of fresh thyme leaves, roughly chopped

Tip: If you going to use dried herbs use half the amount of fresh.

Directions:
To start you want to marinate the chicken. In a large bowl, add eggs, Kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, garlic powder, dried rosemary, and freshly chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley. Whisk to combine.

Add the chicken cutlets into the bowl with the marinade, toss making sure all the cutlets are well coated. Cover with plastic wrap, transfer to the frig for a minimum of 30 minutes.

In the meantime, prepare the breading for the chicken. In another large bowl add the store-bought Italian style bread crumbs, freshly chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley, fresh oregano, and fresh thyme leaves. Mix to combine.

In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, add the grapeseed oil. Allow a few minutes for the oil to come up to temperature. It’s important to shallow fry the chicken in batches, (maybe 3 cutlets at a time) do not overcrowd the pan.

Preheat oven to 250-degrees F.
This process goes really quickly, about 2 to 3 minutes per side, depending on the thickness of the chicken fillets.  hat I like to do is, as they come out of the pan, place them on a rimmed baking sheet pan fitted with a wire rack and keep them warm in the oven while the remaining batches of chicken finish cooking. That’s all there is to it.

I serve my Chicken Milanese with a simple herbed brown rice and Sauteéd Haricots Verts With Toasted Almonds.

 

Sautéed Haricots Verts With Toasted Almonds

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Baked Cavatappi

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I think everyone loves a baked pasta dish. Maybe it’s because it brings us back to a childhood memory, a special event where everybody gathers together to celebrate something special. Whenever I mention the words”taste the love”, it really shows how much love went into the making of my Baked Cavattapi.

Now, there are a few different components to this recipe that doesn’t mean it’s hard to do. You’ll see what I’m saying moving forward. The great news is that this dish can be made in advance, or even frozen when stored properly.

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Are you feeling this? The whole house is smelling like my grandmother’s kitchen.

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Flat Leaf Italian Parsley

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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 50 minutes
Yields: 8 to 10 servings
Equipment: 9 x 13 baking dish, deep-sided 12-inch frying pan, 6-quart Dutch oven with lid, large mixing bowl, mini food processor, 6-quart stockpot

Ingredients For The Meat:
2 pounds ground pork
1 pound (5 links) sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon whole fennel seeds
2 tablespoons garlic, minced
2 tablespoons dried oregano
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes

Ingredients For the Tomato Sauce:
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 12-ounce jar roasted red peppers, puréed
1 28-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes
1-28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 red onion, finely diced
2 tablespoon garlic, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1tablespoon light brown sugar
1/2 cup chicken broth, unsalted
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Ingredients For Pasta:
1 1/2 pounds of Cavatappi (1 1/2 boxes)
1 8-ounce container mascarpone cheese, room temperature
2 15-ounce containers Ricotta cheese, room temperature
1 1/2 cups Mozzarella, freshly grated, reserve 1/2 cup
1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, freshly grated, reserve 1/4 cup
4 tablespoons of Italian flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped, reserve 2 tablespoons for the top
1 stick of unsalted butter, reserve half to *dot the top and half to grease the baking dish

Directions For Meat-Filled Tomato Sauce:
Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
In a 12-inch deep sautépan, on medium-high heat, add of olive oil and whole fennel seeds cook until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. To the pan add both the ground pork and sweet Italian sausage. Using a wooden spoon break up all the meat. Add the minced garlic, dried oregano, Kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper and dried parsley flakes.

Sauté until the meat is completely browned, around 10 minutes Using a slotted spoon to strain off any excess grease, transfer the browned meat from the pan to a large mixing bowl, set aside.

In a mini food processor, add roasted red peppers, in batches if need be, process until all the peppers are puréed and have a crushed tomato-like consistency. Transfer the processed peppers to a small bowl and set aside.

Preheat a  Dutch oven, on medium heat, add the olive oil. Next, add the diced red onions, Kosher salt, black pepper, crushed red pepper flakes, minced garlic, dried oregano, dried rosemary, tomato paste, and light brown sugar. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Stir until onions are soft and translucent and spices are fragrant. Add the chicken broth. Simmer to reduce the broth by half. Finally, add both cans of tomatoes, breaking up the San Marzano whole tomatoes with the back of a wooden spoon.

Simmer the sauce on low heat for around 25 minutes. Add the browned meat to the sauce and allow to cook together for 1 hour more.

While the sauce is simmering start the pasta.

Note: Undercook the pasta by 3 minutes according to the directions on the box. Pasta will continue to cook in the oven.

In a large stockpot of boiling salted water add the pasta, stirring occasionally. Undercook the pasta by 3 minutes, then drain. Using the same pot add back in the drained cooked pasta, Mascarpone cheese, Ricotta cheese, Mozzarella cheese, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, 1 1/2 ladles of the meat sauce, and chopped Italian parsley. Mix to combine.

First, butter the baking dish. To assemble, add 1 ladle of the meat sauce to the bottom of the baking dish. Move the sauce around so it covers the bottom of the dish. Add a layer using half the pasta mixture. Top with half of the reserved Mozzarella and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheeses. Next, add half the meat sauce mixture spreading the sauce evenly over the top of the pasta. Repeat the process ending with the meat sauce on top.

For the top of the dish, sprinkle the remaining Mozzarella and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheeses evenly all over the top. *Dot the top of the dish with small pieces of unsalted butter.

Tip: Before covering the dish, spray the underside of the foil with non-stick cooking spray so the aluminum cover will release without taking your cheese with it.

Bake covered for 40 minutes, then uncover and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes.

Let rest for 20 minutes before cutting. Serve hot.

*Dot: to scatter bits of butter over food. Refer to the picture above.

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