08 April 2013

comfort food.

I wanted to call this post "processed food without the processing", but I didn't think it sounded very appetizing to have the word "processing" in a recipe post. Plus, that is not specifically what this post is about. My brother Peter stayed here over the weekend, & we went full-out old school comfort food. Sometimes eating like a kid is kind of fun, but I definitely don't want to eat the actual foods I used to as they contain way too many chemicals, & weird after-tastes. Here are two easy recipes that recall childhood favorites, without the childhood additives, deep-fries, pre-frozens, & all that junk. Only good, tasty stuff here.

homemade chicken nuggets.
serves 2-4

1lb organic chicken breast, diced into chunks
1 organic egg
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 cup gluten-free bread crumbs
2 tsp herbs de Provence
olive oil
sea salt & cracked pepper

  1. Preheat the oven 450 degrees & lightly oil a large baking pan. In a shallow bowl, mix together bread crumbs, herbs & a pinch of seasoning. 
  2. Put the chicken, egg, garlic & a pinch of sea salt & cracked pepper in a food processor & blitz until completely smooth. The mixture will be a bit wet, but that's good. 
  3. With damp or oiled hands, form the meat into little balls. Roll through crumb mixture, tap off the excess, & place on the baking sheet & press slightly flat. Repeat until the mixture is gone.
  4. Bake for 10 minutes. Turn on the broiler, move to the top shelf & cook for 2 more minutes. 
  5. Serve with organic ketchup or homemade hoisin sauce

baked macaroni & cheese with broccoli.
serves 4

for the bechamel sauce:
2 TBL butter
1/4 cup corn starch
2 cup organic or local whole milk, warmed
1 bay leaf
a pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
2 packed cups sharp cheese, grated (I used Red Leicester to get that old school look)
sea salt & cracked pepper

for the pasta:
1lb. gluten-free macaroni, rigatoni, or penne (I like Bionaturae)
1 head of broccoli, diced
4 cherry tomatoes, roughly chopped
sea salt & cracked pepper
1 TBL butter

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a large stock pot or a dutch oven melt the butter over medium heat. Add the cornstarch, whisk constantly for about 2 minutes, until it is thoroughly combined & starting to bubble. Slowly add the warmed milk & bay leaf whisking frequently for about 4 minutes. 
  2. Turn heat down low & add cheese & nutmeg. Stir until melted & turn off heat. 
  3. Meanwhile, cook the pasta al dente in salted water according to the package directions. In the last minute or two before the pasta is done, add the broccoli. Drain. 
  4. Add the pasta into the sauce, & mix to combine. Add tomatoes on top with 1 TBL of butter dolloped over the top. Season. Bake for 20 minutes. Let it the pasta bake stand for 10 minutes before serving. 
happy eatings & cheers!
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