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Spicy Miso Soup with Roasted Shitake Mushrooms & Green Beans

Spicy Miso Soup with Roasted Shitake Mushrooms & Green Beans

I recently had the opportunity to get to work with Reynolds to help create recipes for their Endless Table Program on Instagram. If you aren’t familiar with the program, it is basically a bird’s eye view of a table featuring countless dishes that are all connected. It’s really cool, definitely check it out on Instagram, and visit the website for all the recipes.

Spicy Miso Soup

Reynolds sent me some parchment paper and foil in order to help me create some of the meals for the table. I pretty much use the parchment paper whenever I am roasting anything in the oven. Literally nothing will stick to it and it also makes cleaning up super quick.

Roasted mushrooms

For my first recipe, I created a vegetarian miso soup with roasted shitake mushrooms and green beans.   Although summer is around the corner, I love to make these Asian inspired soups all year long. They are so simple to make and there are countless ways you can change them up.

This soup makes a great lunch but is also perfect for a light dinner. I usually like to add a bit of extra heat to the soup with some sriricha right before I eat it.

Miso Soup

Spicy Miso Soup with Roasted Shitake Mushrooms & Green Beans

Ingredients

  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 3-4 tablespoons yellow miso paste
  • 2 tablespoons hot water
  • 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 Thai chili, scored
  • 1 package (8 oz) rice noodle
  • 6-8 ounces shitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 6-8 ounces green beans, cut into thirds
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoon sea salt

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with Reynolds® Parchment Paper. Place mushrooms on baking sheet and drizzle with half the olive oil and half the salt. Set aside momentarily
  2. Centre green beans on a sheet of Reynolds Wrap® Aluminum Foil and drizzle with remaining olive oil and salt. Fold over edges of foil to create a packet. Ensure it is tightly sealed
  3. Place the mushrooms and the foil pack green beans in the oven and roast for 10 minutes, stirring the mushrooms halfway through.
  4. Heat vegetable broth to a low simmer in a medium pot. Pour in the soy sauce, sesame oil, and rice vinegar. Add the whole Thai chili to simmering broth (this will be removed later)
  5. Whisk the miso paste with hot water in small bowl until smooth then add to the broth. Continue to simmer for an additional 10 minutes.
  6. Cook noodles according to package directions while the broth is simmering. When the noodles are done, evenly divide them into two serving bowls.
  7. Bring a small pot of water to a boil and carefully drop in the egg to cook for 6 minutes. Remove from water and peel.
  8. Divide the mushrooms and green beans between the two bowls and then pour the broth evenly between the bowls.
  9. Slice the egg in half and place 1 half in each soup. Garnish with sliced green onion.

 

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Easy Homemade Margherita Pizza

Easy Homemade Margherita Pizza 

Making pizza from scratch is a lot easier than you think.  If you’ve never done it before, you should definitely give it a try.  This recipe is for a Margherita pizza made with a simple tomato sauce, mozzarella, and a bit of fresh basil.  But you could use any toppings you like and change it up.  Working with the dough takes a bit of practice, so don’t worry if you’re pizzas don’t come out perfectly round, mine usually don’t.

Pizzas

This pizza is all about simplicity.  The sauce is pretty much just one ingredient: a blended can of San Marzano tomatoes.  It seems a little too simple, but trust me, it’s all you need.  Same thing goes for toppings.  All you need is a little bit of mozzarella and some fresh basil to garnish with.  The flavours all go so well together and each one really speaks for itself.

Margherita Pizza

Ingredients

For the dough

  • 3 cups all purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 cup warm water (about 110° F)
  • 1 packet active dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil, plus more for greasing bowl
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar

Toppings

  • 1 ball of fresh mozzarella, torn into small pieces
  • Handful of basil leaves
  • 1 can (14 oz) San Marzano tomatoes
  • Big pinch of dried oregano
  • Kosher salt
  • Olive oil for drizzling

Method

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the warm water, yeast, and sugar.  Allow 10 minutes for yeast to start bubbling.  With the mixer running on low (with dough hook attachment), add the salt and olive oil.  Slowly add the flour in several additions until the dough starts to form.  If it’s too sticky, add a bit of flour, if it’s too dry, add a splash of water.  Continue to mix on low for about 5 minutes.
  2. Dump the dough onto a floured surface and knead with your hands for an additional minute or two.  Form into a ball and place in a large greased bowl and cover with a damp kitchen towel or saran wrap.  Place the dough somewhere warm to rise for 2 hours or until about doubled in size.
  3. To make the sauce, blend the whole can of tomatoes with a pinch of oregano and season to taste with salt.
  4. Preheat oven (and pizza stone if you have one) to 500°F
  5. When the dough has risen, punch it down and dump it out onto a floured surface.  Divide it into 3-5 pieces (depending on the size of pizza you want and form them into round disks.  Cover each disk for 15-20 minutes for another quick rise.  Now to form the dough into it’s final shape, roll out each piece of dough into a thin round circle.  If you feel confident, you could stretch it out with your hands instead.
  6. To make the pizzas, drizzle the dough with a bit of olive oil and spread on a thin layer of tomato sauce.  You don’t need a lot.  this is a situation where less is more.  Place on some torn mozzarella and then transfer to pizza stone.  Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the crust is golden and the cheese is bubbly.
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The Best Homemade Hot Chicken Sandwich

The Best Homemade Hot Chicken Sandwich 

This sandwich is about as close to perfect as a chicken sandwich can be. There isn’t too much going on in it, but this is one of those times where keeping it simple is the way to go.

Hot chicken sandwich

The chicken is double dipped in flour that’s seasoned with cayenne and paprika, which creates a perfectly crisp and spicy crust. It’s then topped with some hot sauce and a few pickles.  I went with bread-and-butter pickles for this sandwich. They have a nice sweet and tangy crunch that complements the spicy chicken quite well.

Fried Chicken

Now, this would be great simply between two slices of bread, but putting it on a freshly baked buttermilk biscuit takes it to the next level. Not just any biscuit, a jalapeño-cheddar biscuit. They’re flaky, buttery, spicy, and cheesy all at the same time. The Jalapeño seeds are removed so they aren’t too spicy, but they have a subtle heat that you’ll definitely notice.  If you don’t feel like making the biscuit, feel free to use any bread you want.

Ff you want to see me assembling the sandwich, check out the video I made with my friend friends at Unbuttoned Media on my Instagram.

Hot Chicken Sandwich

Hot Chicken Sandwich 

Ingredients

  • 1lb chicken breasts
  • 1½ cups flour
  • 1½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1½ tsp paprika
  • 1½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tbsp hot sauce

If you want to make the biscuits, the recipe can be found here: Jalapeño Cheddar Biscuits

Method

  1. The night before you plan to make this, pound out the chicken breasts to an even thickness and cut them in half cross-wise. Place them in a bowl and pour in the buttermilk and hot sauce. Cover and refrigerate. (If you can’t do this the night before, try to do it at least a few hours in advance to allow the chicken to marinate)
  2. Get the chicken ready for frying – start by heating the oil to 350°F/177°C. Whisk together the flour, cayenne, paprika and salt in a large bowl and place it next to the bowl with the chicken. Working one at a time, coat chicken in flour, then dip back into the buttermilk, and then coat in an additional layer of flour. Lay the chicken on a parchment paper lined sheet until ready to fry. Fry the chicken, a few pieces at a time for 7-8 minutes or until an internal temperature of 165°F/74°C is reached.
  3. To build the sandwiches, slice biscuits (or other bread  in half and then fill with chicken, some hot sauce, and a few pickles.
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Easy Homemade French Onion Soup

Easy Homemade French Onion Soup

French onion soup is one of my all time favorite soups.  The bread and cheese make it so satisfying and it’s perfect for a light lunch or makes a great appetizer before a nice steak.  It’s something I used to typically just get in restaurants but homemade french onion soup isn’t actually that hard to make.  It takes a while to caramelize the onions, but other than that there’s not much to it.

Homemade French Onion Soup

When it comes to the onions, it doesn’t really matter which type you use.  I usually use a mix of Spanish and red, but just use whatever you have on hand.  I also typically use a mandolin to slice the onions so they all are the exact same size and cook evenly.  Definitely not necessary though.   Same goes for the wine.  I’ve used both red or a dry white and they both work well.  Use whatever you have on hand or prefer.

A lot of places that serve french onion soup broil it at the end with the baguette already inside of it.  I actually prefer to toast the baguette separately and then place it in the soup.  This way, it still maintains a bit of crispness and isn’t a soggy mess.  That means you also don’t need any special bowls for this soup.  I still like to serve it in an oven safe bowl but that’s just preference.  Pictured are these mini Cocottes from Staub.

French Onion Soup

Easy Homemade French Onion Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs of onions, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup butter, unsalted
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tsp flour
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 3/4 cup wine
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 black pepper
  • 1/2 cup gruyere, shredded
  • 1/4 cup parmesan
  • Baguette, sliced 1/2″ thick

Method

  1. In a large pot over medium heat, melt in butter and add in the onions, garlic, thyme, bay, leaf, salt, and pepper.  Cook till golden brown and cartelized stirring frequently.  This will take anywhere from 25-45 minutes depending on the heat and size of the onions.  Add in the flour and stir for another minute or two and then pour in the wine and bring it to a simmer for a few minutes until most of the liquid is gone.  Add in the beef broth and bring to a light simmer.  Season the broth to taste with salt and pepper.  Remove the thyme and the bay leaf.
  2. Top sliced baguettes with gruyere and parmesan and toast until the cheese is golden and bubbly
  3. Ladle soup into bowls and top with 2-3 baguettes, depending on the size of your bowl
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Quick and Easy Ginger-Lemongrass Soup

I love to make soups like this.  They are so easy but so satisfying.  They also don’t really require a “recipe”; you can throw in whatever you feel like depending on your current mood.  The soup comes together pretty quickly, you basically just need simmer the broth for a little while. I like to prep a bunch of different garnishes while the broth is cooking so that when it’s done, I’m ready to eat.

lemon grass soup

The same goes for proteins; for this soup, I used a sliced up steak and a poached egg.  But you could easily use chicken or go for tofu if you wanted to keep it vegetarian.  Use this recipe as a base and twist it up according to your liking.

Ginger-Lemongrass noodle soup

Ingredients

For the Soup

  • 4 cups chicken broth (vegetable is a fine substitute)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 Lemongrass stalks, smashed and roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp rice vinegar
  • 1″ piece of ginger
  • Green onion (white part)
  • 1 thai chili, scored
  • 1 package of noodles

Garnishes

  • Green onions, sliced
  • bean sprouts
  • enoki mushrooms
  • thai basil, torn
  • lime

Method

  1. Bring all of the soup ingredients (except the noodle) to a boil then reduce to a simmer.  Cover pot and continue to simmer for 30 minutes to an hour depending on how much time you have.  Feel free to remove the chili early to keep the heat down, or even skip it entirely.
  2. While the broth is simmering away, prep all of the garnishes to get that out of the way.  Cook noodles according to package directions and divide between your bowls.
  3. Get any other proteins ready while the broth is simmering also. I used a sliced up leftover steak and poached egg.  You could also put a chicken breast in the simmering broth for 20-30 minutes and then shred it and divide it between the bowls as well.
  4. When the broth is done, put it through a strainer and then ladle it over the noodles.  Garnish soup with desired toppings and enjoy.

Lemongrass ginger soup

 

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Homemade Candied Bacon Butter

Bacon

That’s right. Candied. Bacon. Butter.  Doesn’t get much better than that.  Use it on steaks, pancakes, waffles, toast, bagels, wherever.  You really can’t go wrong.  Once its wrapped up, just keep it in the freezer and slice it off as needed.

Candied Bacon Butter

Candied Bacon Butter

Ingredients

  • 1 stick of butter (room temperature)
  • 3 slices of bacon
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp black pepper

It’s pretty simple to make, start off by preheating your oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper and a wire rack (optional). Lay down the bacon and evenly coat in the brown sugar and crack on the black pepper. Cook for 25-30 minutes or until crisp. Remove bacon from oven, allow it to cool, then finely chop it. Add the butter and chopped bacon to small bowl. Using a wooden spoon, mix it together until evenly combined.

To roll it up, tear a square piece of parchment paper and place the butter on roughly in a log shape. Fold one end of parchment paper over the butter and using a straight edge (ruler or baking sheet) tuck the parchment paper under the butter and form into cylinder. Continue to roll and then twist the ends shut. Put it in the freezer to firm up.

Steak with Candied Bacon Butter

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Jalapeño-Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuits

Jalapeño-Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuits 

These biscuits are the real deal.  Every time I make them, they somehow get better and better.  I love to use them for breakfast sandwiches and fried chicken sandwiches but they are also great on their own.  They’re so easy to make as well.  You don’t need a mixer or any special tools and you can have them ready in about 20 minutes from start to finish.  Doesn’t get much better than that.

Jalapeño Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuit

These biscuits are light and buttery on the inside with a slightly crisp golden brown exterior.  I like the addition of jalapeño and cheddar but you can definitely skip them and keep the rest of the recipe the same if you want them plain.  Feel free to add more also if you want.  They come out relatively mild but have a subtle kick from the jalapeños and a nice cheesiness from the cheddar.

 Biscuit stack

 

These will seriously step up your brunch game.  Gotta risk it for the biscuit, right?

Jalapeño-Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuits 

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 6 tablespoons butter, cold
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1-2 jalapeños, seeds removed and finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Method

  1. Pre-heat oven to 450°F. In a mixing bowl, add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, jalapeño, and cheddar.  Mix everything together and try to distribute the cheese and jalapeño as evenly as possible.  Cut the butter into small pieces (I actually like to use a cheese grater and grate the butter in) and combine into the flour mixture until it resembles course meal.
  2. Add in the buttermilk and mix until everything is combined.  you can use a spoon but it’s easiest to just use your hands.  Dump the dough onto a lightly floured surface and press it down using your hands until it is about 1/2″ thick.  Fold the dough and flatten out again.  Repeat this 4 times and finish with it at about 3/4″ thick.
  3. Using a cookie cutter or glass (about 2 1/2″) cut out the biscuits.  I usually get 6-7 out of the first round of cuts, and then use the extra pieces to get another 2-3 biscuits.  Be careful not to twist as you cut them out, go straight down.
  4. Place the biscuits on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and cook for 12-15 minutes or until lightly golden brown on top.

Buttermilk Biscuits