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Creative cooking blog that shows how to prepare food for family and friends. ecipes and ideas that inspire you to enjoy cooking.

Summer Kale Favotites

posted by Kim

Kale is one of my favorite leafy greens. It can be served many ways.  One of my favorite ways this summer is to enjoy a quick Kale salad with a simple dressing. Above I have thrown in a handful of roasted pine nuts, diced castelvetrano olives, cannellini beans, thinly sliced soppressata, homemade croutons and of course tossed with a CW2C's Vinaigrette. Kale travels well as it does not get soggy. The leaves stay crisp and firm, soaking in the flavor of the dressing allowing the other ingredients to marry together for that perfect taste.

Here are some past recipes to some of the many ways we have used Kale.  

                                                                                                     Kale Bruschetta 

                                                                                                       Gallucci Salad

                                                                                                      Summer Salad 2         

How do you like to prepare Kale? We would love to hear from you.

Bone Broth

posted by Kim

 

I have recently learned of the many benefits to adding bone broth to your weekly diet. It promotes healthy digestiona strong immune system, reduces joint pain, reduces inflammation, promotes strong healthy bones, promotes healthy hair, nail growth and glowing skin. With so many benefits to drinking this full bodied broth why wouldn't you enjoy a cup a day. 

To begin, roast a whole chicken at 350 degrees, (20 mins per pound). Remove from oven and slightly cool so that you are able to handle the chicken to remove all the meat. Put the bones back in the oven at 400 degrees for 1-2 hours until they are caramelized. In a large stock pot add a bunch of carrots, the tops of 6 celery, 1 large onion with skin on, a handful of cherry tomatoes, a handful of sugar snap peas, 1 bunch of parsley and 3  bay leaf. Cover with iceOnce the bones are roasted add them to  stock pot and cover with more ice.  Cook over medium hight heat and bring to a boil. Cook 8 hrs over low to medium heat. Skimming off top patriotically.  Strain and cool quickly. To cool quickly I was given this neat tip. Add 3-4 frozen water bottles to broth and in no time your broth is cooled and ready for the refrigerator or freezer. This broth will keep up to 5 days in the refrigerator or up to 6 months in the freezer.

Enjoy the many benefits of this bone broth!

Add Some Color to Your Weekend

posted by Kim

Spring brings many tasty and vibrant vegetables.  This spring salad is the perfect light lunch and can be made in minutes. I used a variety of vegetables that I found during a recent visit to the West Side Market.  The combination of roasted asparagus, thinly sliced radishes, shaved carrots, mini  yellow tomatoes, fresh mint and fresh cilantro compliments each other to give this dish a clean crisp taste that is so enjoyable. As an added bonus I topped this salad with a few homemade croutons and a beautiful Mycella Blue Cheese. The creaminess of the blue cheese took this simple salad to the next level.  To complete the salad, drizzle a little of CW2C Lemon Herb Vinaigrette on top. You will be amazed how with each bite you experience a different texture and a whole new flavor.  This spring salad will be one you will definitely want to share with your family and friends this month.

Another Slovenian Tradition

posted by Kim

As I promised you before Easter I would be sharing with you another Slovenian recipe our family likes to enjoy around the Easter holiday. A favorite sweet treat of ours that is perfect with your morning coffee/tea or can be the simple ending to your main meal is called PoticaPotica is a traditional Slovenian bread (similar to a nut roll) with a sweet nutty filling. My recipe for this goes back several generations and is something the family looks forward to at least once a year.

Start by dissolving 1 packet of dry yeast in 1/4 cup of lukewarm water and set aside.  Melt 2 sicks of unsalted butter in a small sauce pan.  Once slightly cooled add 4 egg yokes and 1 can of evaporated milk. Mix well. Add yeast and mix again.  Add to mixture 4 cups of flour and combine until a workable dough is formed. Divide the dough into 4 balls and refrigerate over night. Remove the dough 1/2 hr prior to using.  To make the filling mix together 1 pound of ground walnuts, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 tablespoon vanilla and 2 cups sugar. Sprinkle a little flour over your working surface and roll out a dough ball and sprinkle with the filling.

Roll the dough by turning in both ends. Place on a greased cookie sheet and repeat with the remaining dough balls. Cover rolled dough with a clean dish towel and let rise for 2 hours at room temperature. Brush with an egg white and bake for 30 minutes at a 350 degree oven. Cool on a wire rack with the clean dish towel covering them for another 30 minutes. Your kitchen will smell amazing and you will be tempted to cut into one of the baked potica's.  Be patient, let the filling rest.  I assure you it will be worth the wait.

Last but certainly not least, click here for the Krofee recipe that I made right before Easter.

CW2C Crêpes

posted by Kim & Carlinne

A visit to Le Petit Triangle Cafe inspired us to make crêpes in our own kitchen. Neither of us had much experience making or even eating crêpes prior to our visit to Le Petit Triangle Cafe. We absolutely loved the crêpes and knew we would have to give them a try ourselves. The simple, savory taste and lightness of the crêpe intrigued us as we imagined all the different ways we could use them. A crêpe is a very thin pancake that is filled with a variety of fillings and then rolled or folded. A crêpe can be served anytime of the day. From sweet to savory, crêpes can be served as breakfast, lunch, snack or dinner.

We sautéed a beautiful bunch of Swiss chard in a big glug of olive oil. Don't forget to season your greens with a big pinch of kosher salt.

For a change of pace we decided to slice the garlic and roast it until golden and crunchy. Be careful; garlic can go from golden to burnt in no time!

As a second filling, we heated canned black beans in olive oil and seasoned them with Trader Joe's Everyday Seasoning and smoked paprika

In a blender, combine 1cup flour, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1 1/2 cup  milk, 4 eggs, and 3 tablespoons unsalted butter. Puree until mixture is smooth (about 30 seconds). Let batter sit at least 15 minutes at room temperature. Heat a 12 inch nonstick skillet over medium heat. Lightly coat with butter. Add 1/3 cup batter and swirl to completely cover the bottom of skillet. Cook until underside of crepe is golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Loosen edge of crepe with a rubber spatula, then with your fingertips, quickly flip. Cook 1 minute more. Slide crepe out of skillet and repeat with remaining batter. Carefully add your filings and fold to create the perfect CW2C Crêpe.

Crêpes are really very simple and delicious. Pick your favorite ingredients for the filling, your favorite person, your favorite bottle of French wine, and pretend you are in a little cafe in Paris. One of our favorite French wines is from Joseph Drouhin , a smooth Bourgogne Chardonnay that we conveniently found at Heinen's. Do you have a favorite wine you would like to share with us? We would love to hear from you. Cheers!

Easter Tradition: Slovenian Style

posted by Kim

During this week of Holy Week many things take place in preparation for Easter. How do you make your Holy Week meaningful? Some of you may offer up your works and sufferings for someone in need, attend an extra mass this week or take part in stations of the cross. Whatever you do to make this week meaningful, make it a tradition.   

This week was an extremely full week for me and I worried I would not find time to continue making some of my favorite Easter recipes. This is a tradition that I have enjoyed every year for as long as I can remember. I grew up making many Slovenian recipes especially around the holidays. I can remember going over to my aunts house on Holy Saturday and having a full day of baking. Now the baking is done the week before Easter with my sister Kristen and the kids. Above is one of my favorite Slovenian recipes. Krofee is a Slovenian donut. There is a little preperation in making these donuts so make sure you set aside a full morning or afternoon to get the job done. There are a few other Slovenian recipes that I will also enjoy this Easter that I will share with you soon along with the Krofee recipe. Although my family enjoys Krofee every year at Easter they can be the perfect donut for anytime of the year. 

Cook with 2 Chicks wishes you and your family a wonderful Easter! Enjoy your family and the traditions you will make. 

Around Town: Le Petit Triangle Cafe

posted by Kim & Carlinne

Tis the occasion for us to share with you our next Around Town. Although we never need a specific occasion to enjoy good food and eachothers company we can always count on each others birthdays to celebrate! Le Petit Triangle Cafe was the perfect birthday lunch. We had both been wanting to dine at this quaint french cafe for sometime. Our visit exceeded our expectations and was just the most wonderful afternoon. We were both very pleased with the menu, the atmosphere, the food, the wine and of course the company!  

One of the menu selections that caught our eye was the crepes. Neither of us being very familiar with crepes, we thought this would be the perfect place to experience one. A crepe is a type of very thin pancake, usually made from wheat flour or buckwheat flour. The word is of French origin.  Crepes are filled with a variety of fillings. The most popular being sweet or savory.  Today we enjoyed a savory crepe filled with a tangy french roquefort and sautéed mushrooms. It simply melted in our mouth with each bite. Along with a wide variety of crepes, Le Petit Triangle Cafe has many other menu selections to choose from that will be sure to please you. Whatever your occasion may be, make Le Petit Triangle Cafe a place to enjoy fine food, fine wine and fine company!  

Bon Appétit

Steak to Perfection!

posted by Kim

For those of you who appreciate a superb steak, this is a recipe you must try. Thanks to Curtis Stone and his wonderfully written cookbook the recipe is right at your fingertips. The gorgonzola butter and roasted tomato vinaigrette takes this simple steak to the next level. Both can be made ahead of time and once your steak is grilled to perfection spoon the butter and vinaigrette on top, serve and savor!

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If you are as pleased as I am with this recipe you will love many of the other recipes found in this beautiful cookbook, Whats For Dinner?  This cookbook is definitely one of my go to cookbooks, make it one of yours!                                                                                                                                                                                        

Do you have a favorite cookbook?

We would love to hear yours. Both Carlinne and I enjoy reading and discovering new cookbooks!

Zucchini Onion Quiche

posted by Kim

Looking for a meatless meal to share with your family during Lent? This quiche goes back many decades in my family. My grandma, aunts, and mom have all made this dish many times while I was growing up. It's a meal that can be prepared earlier in the day, then baked before you are ready to eat dinner. It also serves as the perfect lunch the next day, served at room temperature or warmed up. 
Zucchini Onion Quiche is very simple to make. Start by sautéing 3 zucchinis, diced, and 2 small sweet onions, diced, in a big swirl of olive oil for about 5 minutes over medium heat. Stir often. Turn off heat and allow to cool. While the sautéed mixture cools, whisk 6 large eggs, 1 cup bisquick, 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese, 1/4 cup of olive oil, 1 teaspoon  of kosher salt, and a few grinds of black pepper

Mix all ingredients together and pour into a greased 9 inch pie plate. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes and serve. 

From my family to yours. Enjoy!