Saturday, October 3, 2015

Weekend Round-Up

Some of the Week's Best Autumn Side Dishes
Cook's notes: After the recent Buttermilk Brownie splurge need to get back on track with some healthier recipes. This side dish has bold flavors and textures and serves 4-6.
Recipe adapted from and  
Orange Glazed Brussels Sprouts with Butternut Squash and Cranberries

  • 1 lb. Brussels sprouts, rinsed
  • 3 cups cubed butternut squash 
  • Juice of 1 large orange about 1/4 cup
  • 2 tsp. orange zest 
  • 2 TB. olive oil or Blood orange Olive Oil
  • 2 tsp. honey or agave (agave for vegan recipe)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 3/4 cup pecans 
  • salt and ground pepper
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 
  • Cut off the brown ends of the Brussels sprouts and remove any discolored leaves. Cut the sprouts in half if they are large sprouts. If you have small sprouts you can leave them whole.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together fresh orange juice, orange zest, olive oil, and honey. Add the Brussels sprouts and butternut squash to the bowl. Toss until they are well coated. Pour them on a baking pan. Arrange sprouts cut side down. 
  • Season with salt and black pepper. Roast for 35 minutes until crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. Shake the pan from time to time to brown the sprouts evenly. Last 5 minutes of cooking time add in cranberries and sprinkle with pecans. 
Sausage, Red Pepper  and Mushroom Risotto
Cook's notes: This sausage, pepper and mushroom risotto is a hearty meal - just add some Italian bread and a big salad! A time saver is making the sausage earlier in the day, crumbling it in a food processor and placing in a plastic bag. Chop onion, mushrooms and peppers and place in a plastic bag. Refrigerate all items until needed. Recipes serves 4-6 and was adapted from Giada DeLaurentiis 
  • 5 cups chicken broth-low sodium
  • 1-1/2 TB. butter
  • 2 cups cooked Italian sausage, crumbled
  • 1 cup sweet onion, diced
  • 1 cup red and green mini bell sweet peppers, diced 
  • 1 cup white button mushrooms, coarsely chopped
  • ½ tsp.salt
  • ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1½ cups Arborio rice, dry
  • ¾ cup dry white wine
  • 3/4 -1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 TB. chopped Italian parsley 
  • Add the broth to a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cover and reduce the heat to low. Set aside but keep warm.
  • In a large heavy saucepan or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat. Saute the onions, peppers and mushrooms stirring occasionally and scraping up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add in cooked crumbled sausage.
  • Add the rice and stir to coat. Add the wine and simmer until the wine has almost completely evaporated, about 1 minute. 
  • Add ½ cup of the simmering broth and stir until almost completely absorbed, about 2 minutes. Continue cooking the rice, adding the broth ½ cup at a time, stirring constantly and allowing each addition of broth to absorb before adding the next, until the rice is tender and the mixture is creamy, about 25 to 30 minutes total. Remove from the heat and stir in the Parmesan cheese. 
  • Transfer the risotto to a serving bowl and sprinkle with the parsley. Serve immediately with additional Parmesan cheese to pass at the table. 

Cranberry -Apple Chutney
Cook's notes: Serve this versatile sweet and tangy condiment as a relish with slices of pork or turkey or use as an appetizer spooned over brie or cream cheese. Showcase the chutney in your best glass dish. Recipe from Mary Ellen Gilbert, NH
  • 1-1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 package fresh (12 oz.) or frozen cranberries
  • 2 large tart apples, peeled and finely chopped (2 cups)
  • 1 medium onion, diced (1cup)
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  •  1/2 cup brown sugar
  •  1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 TB. orange juice
  • 1 tsp. ground Saigon/Vietnamese cinnamon or 3/4 tsp. regular cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. allspice 
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup walnuts

  • In a large saucepan over medium heat bring granulated sugar and water to a boil. Reduce heat simmer uncovered for 3 minutes. Stir in cranberries, apples, onions, raisins, brown sugar, vinegar, orange juice, salt and spices.
  • Return to a boil, reduce heat and simmer uncovered 20-25 minutes or until desired thickness, stirring occasionally.
  • Just before serving add in walnuts. Serve warm or cold.  
Follow this link to some amazing Weight Watchers Dinners 

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