Usually I’m very disappointed with celebrity cookbooks as the recipes are just the same old stuff and the quality of the recipe and book are usually so-so. Well, that’s not the case with Made With Love: The Meals On Wheels Family Cookbook! The recipes are unique, modern and interesting, and the photographs are beautiful. Even better, the profits from each sale help the Meals On Wheels Association of America.
Recipes in Made With Love come from celebrity chefs like Mario Batalli, TV food personalities Paula Deen and Martha Stewart, and movie stars galore like Helen Mirren and Judi Dench. The cookbook even features recipes from politicians like Senator Al Franken, whose Wild Rice & Turkey Hot Dish is something he makes for his family every Thanksgiving. Another politician whose recipe I admired was Alabama Governor Steven L. Beshear’s Spoon Cornbread. It’s a family recipe that’s been made for generations and is served at family functions at the Governor’s Mansion.
Other recipes to check out include Adam West’s Sawtooth Mountain Pot Roast, which is shown on the cover, and Maya Angelou’s Jollof Rice. (Yeah, Batman and poets can sure cook!) Both are on my “To Make” list! For more information on Made With Love be sure to check out the book trailer, Twitter, and Facebook pages.
Robert Egger’s recipe for Posole
Made With Love also features recipes from Meals on Wheels volunteers and others who help feed the needy, like Robert Egger. Robert is the president of DC Central Kitchen, which provides meals for thousands of at-risk individuals. DC Central Kitchen also helps train once-homeless adults in the culinary field. This recipe was created in honor of his wife’s stepdad, Grant, who was from New Mexico.
Grant’s Green Chile Posole
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 pounds chicken tenders, or boneless, skinless breasts, cut into strips
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 (15-ounce) cans hominy, drained
- 3 (32-ounce) containers chicken broth
- 4 (2-ounce) cans chopped green chilies
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
- Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
- Flour tortillas, warmed and buttered, to serve
- In a large pot over medium-high heat, warm oil. Add chicken and cook until it begins to brown, about 5 minutes. Add onion and garlic, and continue cooking until onions soften, about 2 minutes.
- Add hominy, broth, chilies, and oregano and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes. Remove from heat, and season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Ladle into bowls, and serve with tortillas.
- Serving size: 1/6 of recipe
Disclosure: I was provided with a copy of Made With Love to facilitate this review. All opinions and experiences are my own. Amazon links are affiliate links. A commission may be earned from a referred sale to their website.
As a community leader for Udi’s Gluten Free, I’m always on the lookout for new cookbooks written for people who are gluten free. That’s why I’m excited to share with you Cybele Pascal’s new cookbook, Allergy-Free and Easy Cooking: 30-Minute Meals Without Gluten, Wheat, Dairy, Eggs, Soy, Peanuts, Tree Nuts, Fish, Shellfish, and Sesame. As you can tell by the title, it’s also for people with food allergies and food sensitivities, and is a follow up to her book The Allergen-Free Baker’s Handbook.
I met Cybele at a blogger event in Los Angeles over a year ago. She knows all about dealing with food allergies having cooked that way since 2001 after her son, Lennon, was as diagnosed with severe dairy and soy allergies. She obviously knows her stuff, which is why she’s an Ambassador Who Cares for Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network. You can find more about her on her website cybelepascal.com.
Allergy-Free and Easy Cooking: 30-Minute Meals Without Gluten, Wheat, Dairy, Eggs, Soy, Peanuts, Tree Nuts, Fish, Shellfish, and Sesame
Cybele also has great taste and style, which is why I fell in love with her new cookbook and love dipping into it to find ideas for what to make for dinner. I’ve already made her Garam Masala Lamb Chops with Cumin Quinoa, which was fantastic and a huge hit with my family. To quote my daughter, Lucie, “I really don’t like quinoa, Mom. But this is so good!” She even got her brother to eat it!
The recipes in Allergy-Free and Easy Cooking are similar to the way I like to cook – healthy, delicious and can quickly be put together on a weekday night. Cybele’s recipes aren’t complicated and fussy, and don’t contain a zillion hard-to-find ingredients. Like me, she loves ethnic foods, such as Sopa de Lima, as well as classic family favorites like Chicken Noodle Casserole. In addition, she has a lot of great tips for those new to allergy-free cooking, like how to stock your pantry and what kitchen equipment you’ll need. It’s a great book for beginners as well as seasoned cooks who need to eliminate allergens in their kitchens.
Chicken and Sausage Paella
- 1 cup long grain basmati rice
- 2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 pound chicken tenders, cut crosswise into 1-inch pieces
- 3/8 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup chopped yellow onion
- 8 ounces chorizo, andouille, linguica, or kielbasa, cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
- 1/4 teaspoon saffron, crushed
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes
- 3/4 cup frozen peas
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley, plus more for garnish
- Combine the rice with 1 1/4 cups of the chicken broth in a microwave-safe container. Cover and microwave for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, sprinkle the chicken tenders with the paprika and some salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large heavy pan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat until starting to shimmer. Add the chicken and cook for 2 minutes per side, until lightly browned. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
- Add the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil to the pan. Add the onion and sausage and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often. Add the bell pepper, garlic, saffron, oregano, and 1/4 teaspoon of salt and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes more. Add the remaining 1 cup chicken broth, bring to a boil, and deglaze the pan by scraping up any browned bits along the bottom, 1 minute or so. Stir in the tomatoes, partly cooked rice, and chicken, bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to medium, and cook, loosely covered, for 8 minutes more or until the liquid is absorbed. Add the peas and heat through for 2 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste, toss with the parsley, and serve hot, sprinkled with a little more parsley
- Serving size: 1/6 of recipe
Disclosure: I was provided with a sample copy of Allergy-Free and Easy Cooking: 30-Minute Meals Without Gluten, Wheat, Dairy, Eggs, Soy, Peanuts, Tree Nuts, Fish, Shellfish, and Sesame to facilitate this review. All opinions and experiences are my own.
As an Udi's Gluten Free Community Leader I'm compensated for my time and efforts on their behalf. Amazon links are affiliate links. A commission may be earned from a referred sale to their website.
I’m not much for roller coasters after getting sick many years ago at both Knott’s Berry Farm and Disneyland. (Never again!) So while the Brandcation gals were riding the Wild Eagle (and being filmed by the Discovery Channel), I was busy nerding out over the food at Dollywood as well as the folk art and crafts.
There’s a section of Dollywood called Craftsman's Valley that’s perfect for anyone who isn’t into the rides, has time between music shows to take a stroll, and has already visited the Chasing Rainbows Museum, or the Southern Gospel Museum and Hall of Fame. (I did all the above and had a great time.)
My foodie favorite was the Grist Mill where they grind meal and flour for sale. I also enjoyed watching the woodcarvers, blacksmiths, glass blowers and more practice their trade before the Brandcation group met for lunch at Granny Ogle’s Ham N Beans. There we dined on Southern favorites like greens, corn bread and shredded pork. Yum!
However, the cool discovery I made – even the PR person hadn’t seen it yet – was the sorghum making demonstration in The Village. Sorghum syrup is a sweetener made from pressing sorghum cane. The old fashion way is to feed the cane into a mill that is powered by a horse. The day I was there, they had a four-month-old colt tied up to the mama horse. This way mama could teach her baby how to run the mill. It was fascinating and the baby was darling.
The sorghum cane juice is then boiled into a thick syrup that tastes like a cross between honey and molasses. I bought a small container of it at one of the Dollywood stores and wish I bought more because it’s delicious! I hope I can find some here in Georgia, but if not, I may just have to drive back up to Pigeon Forge and buy a gallon or two!
Cooking with sorghum – Apple, Sausage and Sauerkraut Slow Cooker Stew
You can use sorghum in any recipe that calls for agave, honey, molasses or maple syrup. It’s very thick, so you may have to make adjustments by adding a little water or juice to your recipe. I used it in a slow cooker recipe I used to make all the time. I’ve since lost the clipping from the Denver Post, but found a recipe that’s close but without the potatoes. I healthed it up by using chicken apple sausage and using half veggie broth and half apple juice. I also tried to use organic ingredients since I didn’t peel the apples and potatoes.
This was a big hit with my son Nathan who adores sauerkraut and thinks chicken sausage – unlike other forms of chicken – is yummy. My daughter Lucie just ate the sausage, which is odd because she loves pickles. Darn kids!
Apple, Sausage and Sauerkraut Slow Cooker Stew
- 1 (32 ounce) jar sauerkraut (Claussen is our favorite brand)
- 24 ounces (2 packages) sweet apple chicken sausage, sliced into 1’’ pieces
- 4 small organic granny smith apples, cored and cut into 1” pieces
- 1 pound baby potatoes (leave whole)
- 1/4 cup sorghum syrup
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- 1 cup apple juice
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- Pour sauerkraut – juice and all – into your 6 quart or larger slow cooker or Crock-Pot.
- Add the cut up sausage, apples and whole baby potatoes to the crock.
- Add the sorghum, salt, pepper, juice and broth.
- Cover and cook on high 4 hours, or low 6-7 hours.
- Stir before serving.
- Serving size: 1/4 to 1/6 of recipe
Disclosure: The Brandcation bloggers received special discounts and passes to many of the attractions we visited. All experiences and opinions expressed here are my own.
This time of year is hectic for many families – it certainly is at my house! Many of us are in back-to-school mode, trying to figure out new schedules and homework. On top of that, if we’re gardeners, we’re inundated with all that zucchini from our garden. Or for the non-gardeners, all the wonderful eggplant and zucchini we find at the grocery store or farmer’s market!
This one-pot meal for Moroccan Chicken with Eggplant-Zucchini Ragout is an answer to both problems. It’ll use up some of those garden goodies, and it’s a simple dish to make on a school night. While it cooks, you can help the kids with homework, organize backpacks, and unload the dishwasher.
This recipe is courtesy of the National Chicken Council. Check out their website at eatchicken.com for more chicken recipes and chicken resources. You can also connect with them on Facebook at For the Love of Chicken.
Moroccan Chicken with Eggplant-Zucchini Ragout
- 1 1/2 to 2 pounds chicken leg quarters
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 teaspoon salt, divided
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
- 1 small eggplant, cut into ½-inch dice
- 1 medium zucchini, cut into ½-inch dice
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 14 cup white wine or water
- 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes with juices
- 1/4 cup pimento-stuffed green olives, roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons capers, rinsed
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 tablespoons parsley, minced
- In large skillet over medium high-heat, warm 2 tablespoons olive oil. Season leg quarters with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Add leg quarters to pan, skin-side down. Brown chicken, turning once, 8 to 10 minutes per side. Remove chicken to plate and drain off all but 2 tablespoons oil.
- Add eggplant to hot pan and cook, stirring, 5 minutes. Add remaining tablespoon olive oil, along with zucchini, onion and garlic. Cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Raise heat to high and add white wine to pan, stirring to scrape up any browned bits. Add all other ingredients, except parsley, and place chicken legs in mixture. Bring to boil, reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 35 to 40 minutes or until cooked through or until an instant read thermometer reads 170 degrees F.
- To serve, place some of the eggplant ragout onto plates, top with a leg quarter and sprinkle with parsley.
- 370 calories
- 20 g fat
- 4 g saturated fat
- 900 mg sodium
- 17 g carbohydrate
- 6 g fiber
- 8 g sugars
- 28 g protein
Recipe and picture used with permission from the National Chicken Council.
As promised, here’s another pomegranate recipe from the folks at POM Wonderful. This one’s a little involved, so save it for a special occasion or weekend meal. Overall, this is a very healthy dish. You can make it even healthier by substituting stevia for sugar. If you have a nut allergy, use pine nuts (which are seeds) instead of walnuts.
POMegranate Grilled Chicken Mohammara by Chef Jose Andres
Time to Table: 20 Minutes Prep, 4 Hours Marinating, 1 Hours 45 Minutes Cooking
Servings: 2 to 4
- Juice from 8–12 large POM Wonderful Pomegranate*, or 4 cups POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice, or the equivalent amount of POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice Concentrate, reconstituted.**
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 2 tablespoons POM Molasses (directions below)
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 clove garlic
- zest from 1 lemon
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1/2-oz. pieces
- 1/3 cup arils from 1 large POM Wonderful Pomegranate or POM POMS fresh pomegranate arils
- 1-1/2 tablespoons POM Molasses (directions below)
- 3 red bell peppers
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 cup minced shallots
- 2/3 cup chopped walnuts, lightly toasted
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1/2 teaspoon ground long pepper (also known as Java pepper) or red pepper flakes
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
- Prepare fresh pomegranate juice.*
- Combine the pomegranate juice, sugar and lime juice in a saucepan over medium heat and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook until the liquid has reduced to 1 cup, about an hour. It should be dark in color, and the consistency of thick syrup that coats the spoon. Set aside to cool. Store pomegranate molasses in refrigerator in a clean jar with a tight-fitting lid.
- Combine the bell pepper, 2 tablespoons POM Molasses, paprika, bay leaf, garlic and lemon zest in a food processor; puree into a paste. Coat the chicken pieces with the marinade, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours (or overnight for best results).
- Score 1 fresh pomegranate and place in a bowl of water. Break open the pomegranate under water to free the arils (seed sacs). The arils will sink to the bottom of the bowl and the membrane will float to the top. Sieve and put the arils in a separate bowl. Reserve 1/3 cup of the arils from fruit and set aside. (Refrigerate or freeze remaining arils for another use.)
- Place the bell peppers on a foil-lined baking sheet. Brush peppers all over with olive oil and roast in the oven under the broiler for about 10 minutes, turning frequently to prevent burning, until the skins are blistered and blackened on all sides. Remove peppers from the oven and lay a clean kitchen towel over them until cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes. This will make the skins easier to remove.
- Peel off the skins, and then remove the stems and seeds, and slice into strips.
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a sauté pan over medium-high heat, and cook the garlic and shallots, stirring often, until light golden, about 7 to 10 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add half of the walnuts, all of the cardamom, long pepper, cinnamon, 1/3 cup POM Molasses and vinegar. Stir until well combined and cook for another 15 minutes. Add the roasted peppers and cook for 5 more minutes. Season to taste with salt and set aside to cool.
- Transfer mixture to a food processor and blend until well combined.
- Remove chicken from marinade and slide pieces onto four long metal skewers. Discard remaining marinade.
- Grill chicken pieces over medium-high heat until cooked through, about 8 minutes on each side. Set aside to rest slightly.
- To serve, spoon some Mohammara sauce onto each plate, and carefully slide chicken pieces off skewer onto the plate, keeping the pieces together in a row. Garnish with fresh pomegranate arils, the remaining toasted walnuts and parsley.
* For 4 cups of juice, cut 8–12 large POM Wonderful Pomegranates in half and juice them with a citrus reamer or juicer. Pour the mixture through a cheesecloth-lined strainer or sieve. Set the juice aside.
**0.5 fl oz of concentrate = 1 tablespoon To make pomegranate juice, mix 1 part concentrate with 4 parts water.
***José’s tip: Serve any remaining Mohammara sauce with toasted pitas.
Recipe and photo courtesy of POM Wonderful and used with permission.
This is one Recipe Rehab episode where I’m totally in disagreement with the Holden family. Chef Jet uses too many processed foods like canned soup, prepared rice and canned fried onions for my comfort in his Chicken and Rice Casserole recipe. On the other hand, Chef Daniel prepares an elegant, one pot dish that takes about 30 minutes to cook from wholesome ingredients – chicken, rice, lemons, chicken broth, and rosemary. I also like that he says his 10-year-old daughter loves his version of Chicken & Rice – a big endorsement if you’re cooking for kids.
Recipe Rehab episodes air every Friday at 1 ET on the Everyday Health YouTube .
Amount Per Serving
Total Fat: 19.90g
Total Carbs: 44.76g
Dietary Fiber: 1.87g
Amount Per Serving
Total Fat: 9.45g
Total Carbs: 87.27g
Dietary Fiber: 5.74g
Amount Per Serving
Total Fat: 9.79g
Total Carbs: 39.87g
Dietary Fiber: 3.98g
Original Chicken and Rice Recipe
- Used 1 cup white rice
- Uses ¼ cup (1/2 stick) butter
- Used 1 cup whole milk
- Uses full fat canned soups: cream of chicken, cream of celery, & onion soup
- Uses 2 pounds chicken breast
- The casserole bakes for 2 ½ hours!!!
Chef Daniel’s recipe
- Replaced white rice with long grain brown for fiber
- Eliminated butter
- Used only 1 tablespoon butter
- Eliminated milk
- Only used low-sodium chicken broth and not canned soup
- Cut amount of chicken breasts down to 1 pound
- Added fragrant lemon, garlic, and rosemary (all without fat or calories)
- Cooked in a pot on the stove for only 30 minutes
Chef Jet’s recipe
- Used rice pilaf for added fiber
- Eliminated butter
- Used nonstick cooking spray and only 2 teaspoons olive oil
- Replaced whole milk with low fat and reduced to ¾ cup
- Used only 1 can of fat free cream of mushroom soup
- Reduced the chicken breast down to only 2 cups
- Added vegetables: green beans, mushrooms, onion, and pepper
- Topped with fried onions for a little crunch
- The casserole bakes for only 20 minutes
Which version of the Chicken and Rice Casserole did you like – Chef Jet’s or Chef Daniel’s?
Picture, video and nutritional information courtesy of Everyday Health.
Recipe: Rachael Ray’s Greek Grilled Chicken & Vegetable Salad with Pita Bread
Recipe prepared by: Anne-Marie Nichols, Photo taken by: Anne-Marie Nichols
Have you had a chance to check out Rachael Ray’s FreshOver Recipe Guide on the Ziploc Facebook page? You can “like” the Ziploc Brand’s page and download Rachael’s exclusive FreshOver Recipe Guide. With every download, up to a maximum of 50,000 downloads, between 1/1/12 and 12/31/13, Ziploc® Brand will make a $1 donation to the organization on the fans behalf, for up to a maximum $50,000 donation. To further support Yum-O!, Rachael Ray and Ziploc will donate an additional $200,000 during the same time period, no matter how many guides are downloaded.
I’ve been enjoying Ziploc and Rachael’s “freshed over” recipes for several reasons – they’re healthy and nutritious, easy to prepare, and delicious. I was especially excited to try the Greek Grilled Chicken & Vegetable Salad on my family. We all love Greek flavors like olives and feta. Plus, I knew the kids would love it because the chicken and salad is served in pita bread. It’s a really fun way to get your kids to eat healthy salad and vegetables. Plus, if you can find whole wheat pitas and reduced fat feta, even better!
Ziploc Brand Containers make recipe prep easy
With school and afterschool activities, sometimes we don’t get home until dinner time. While this recipe doesn’t take much time to put together once your prep is done, the prep itself is a bit extensive – lots of chopping and measuring. So I got everything ready the day before by making the dressing and chopping the vegetables and herbs, and storing them in Ziploc Brand Twist ’n Loc Containers. These containers also came in handy to bring leftovers to school and work.
You can save additional time by buying already chopped lettuce and crumbled feta cheese, instead of block feta cheese.
Recipe: Rachael Ray’s Greek Grilled Chicken & Vegetable Salad with Pita Bread Recipe prepared by: Anne-Marie Nichols, Photo taken by: Anne-Marie Nichols
Rachael Ray’s Greek Grilled Chicken & Vegetable Salad with Warm Pita Bread for Wrapping
Yield 4 servings - Level Easy
Prep 15 minutes - Cook 10 minutes
Total 25 minutes
- 1 1/3 to 1 1/2 pounds chicken breast tenders
- Salt and pepper
- 8 pita breads
- 1 ripe lemon, zested and juiced
- 3 tablespoon red wine vinegar, eyeball it
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, eyeball it
- 2 tablespoons fresh chopped oregano, 4 stems, stripped of leaves and chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
- 2 hearts Romaine lettuce, chopped
- 8 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
- 2 vine ripe tomatoes, seeded and diced
- 1/3 seedless or English cucumber, diced
- 1/2 red onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup flat leaf parsley leaves, chopped
- Preheat grill pan over high heat. Place chicken in shallow dish and season with salt and pepper.
- Preheat oven to 275 degrees F. Wrap pita breads in foil. Place in warm oven and heat until dinner is served.
- Combine lemon zest, juice and vinegar in a bowl and whisk in oil. Add oregano, garlic and whisk again to combine into dressing. Pour half the dressing over chicken tenders. Turn tenders in dressing to coat.
- Combine remaining salad ingredients in a bowl. Pour remaining dressing over salad and toss well. The salad should be very lightly dressed. Season salad with salt and pepper and transfer to a large serving platter.
- Grill tenders 4 to 5 minutes on each side. Transfer hot tenders to the salad lined serving platter. Remove pitas from oven and unwrap. Cut pitas in half and arrange around the edge of platter.
- To serve, each person can pile grilled chicken and veggies into pita halves, wrap up on either side and enjoy!
Win a Ziploc Brand Prize Pack!
This prize pack includes kitchen gadgets, accessories for trips to a farmer’s market or an eating fresh gift pack with Rachael Ray’s Look + Cook cookbook, worth about $120.
Giveaway closed. Congrats to Julie H.!
How to enter to win:
- In the comments below, tell me which recipe you want to try out from Rachael and Ziploc’s Recipe Guide.
- Sign up for This Mama Cooks! Review’s RSS feed for ONE additional entry.
- Sign up for my e-newsletter for ONE additional entry.
- Spread the word about this giveaway by submitting a link to this post on Twitter for ONE additional entry. You must leave a link to your tweet in your comment so I can check.
- Follow @amnichols on Twitter for ONE additional entry.
If you have done any of these additional activities you MUST come back here and leave a comment telling me what you did. I will be checking!
The giveaway begins on February 3, 2012 at 12:00 a.m. PST and ends on February 8, 2012 at 5 p.m. PST.
Disclosure: I have partnered with Ziploc® and am being compensated for my posts. However, my opinions on the product are my own.