Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Panko Crusted Trout

Since I've been a kid, my mom has always made trout this way (but instead of panko bread crumbs she used regular bread crumbs). My family used to go up to the mountains every summer, where our dinner was often whatever we caught that day. The lake we fished in was stocked with rainbow trout, so even us kids who didn't know what we were doing were able to reel in dinner. My mom started cooking the trout this way and we all agreed it was pretty tasty. Trout is usually sold whole, so when I make this recipe these days, it looks and tastes just like my mom's (with the extra crunch added by the panko breadcrumbs).

This is a really basic, easy recipe. You can have dinner ready in 30 minutes, and that includes time for a side dish or salad. If you can't find panko breadcrumbs, you can use the normal variety. Season the breadcrumbs to your liking. My family enjoys a spicy kick in our food, so we add the crushed red pepper flakes. If you want all the fish to be cooked at the same time as opposed to cooking in batches, use 2 large skillets at once. I serve this fish with a wedge of lemon, but it would also be good with a tartar sauce.

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Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Green Chile and Chicken Enchiladas

Last time I visited my parents, my mom made this recipe and I was shocked at how quickly this meal comes together. This is a great dish to make when you don't have much time or energy for cooking. It takes longer to bake than it does to prepare the enchiladas. I sometimes like to add a little extra cheese on top of the enchiladas since I am slightly obsessed with cheese.

What is also great is that you can play around with the types of peppers you use in the dish. Last time my mom made this she was out of poblano peppers, so she added some chipotle peppers in adobo sauce and a jalapeno. If you prefer your food spicy, I suggest adding a jalapeno to the recipe anyway. I usually make this with a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store, but you can also use up leftover roast chicken.

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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Chocolate Cake with Cream and Berries

With Valentine's Day coming up, chocolate season is in full swing. This recipe makes one of the best chocolates cakes I've ever made. The cake itself is so moist and light that I can never just eat a normal portion (there's a 2 slice minimum with this cake). For that reason, I also like to top the cake with whipped cream and berries. I am sure the chocolate frosting from the original recipe is delicious, but I like to keep the cake a little lighter.

With the addition of berries, you can make the the ultimate Valentines' Day dessert. Add lots of berries or just a few for a splash of color, that part doesn't matter too much. Use whatever berries you can find. I had raspberries and blackberries on hand, so that's what I used. You can also add as much of as little cream to the cake as you'd like. I am really impatient when it comes to frosting cakes, so if I can avoid frosting the whole thing, I will. If you feel like covering the entire cake in freshly whipped cream, do so, just make sure the cream is beaten until stiff.

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Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Strawberry Oatmeal Bars

When it comes to baking in Switzerland, my kitchen supplies are pretty limited (which is partly why I love baking when I visit my family). I have an abundance of cookie sheets, one cake form, and 2 different sized baking dishes. I have to say that I miss making muffins and cupcakes, but on the plus side, I've actually started making more cookies and bars. I actually really love bars, whether they're lemon bars, hello dollies, or pecan bars. After craving sweets (again) and being unable to find the ingredients I really wanted (again), I opted to make these simple bars. The recipe is extremely forgiving and easy to adjust to your liking. I loved the gooey bites full of strawberry jam and was very happy with this end result. They also tasted great 2 days later (I wouldn't know anything beyond that since that's when the last square was eaten).

Make this recipe with whatever jam you like or have at home. I had a huge jar of strawberry jam at home, so that's what I used. Anything from apricot to raspberry jam would be excellent in this. You can also add whatever spices you like to the dough base if you want to switch it up a bit. I'm sure you could substitute some whole wheat flour for the all purpose flour as well if you want a slightly healthier variation.

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