Category Archives: Uncategorized

Sexy and Sassy Shrimp for Valentines Day – Fra Diavolo

Happy Valentines Day to Everyone! Here’s a great recipe to help you celebrate at home.

Cooking with Candi

photo (3)photo (5)photo (2)OK it’s Valentines Day and that’s the reason for the sexy, and the reason it’s sassy is because this shrimp packs some heat known as Fra Diavolo sauce. What a perfect meal for Valentines Day and it’s red!!! this was so delicious and light. I highly recommend it and it really was an easy dish to make. I would say it’s downright easy to make. This 1 lb. of shrimp should feed 4. I made it with Bucatini pasta, which is a thick ropey spaghetti, you can use whatever type of spaghetti you prefer or none at all. I would say that this whole dish start to finish took 1/2 hour. That’s so perfect. Buy your shrimp peeled and deveined which will save you time. Happy Valentines Day!

*don’t leave out the fresh herbs, they kick it up a notch

Ingredients:

1 lb. large shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 teaspoon of kosher salt…

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Red Lentil Soup–Vegan –Meatless Monday

This soup comes together very quickly and easily. Even a beginner can master this one and look like a pro. While I am not a Vegan occasionally I will write up a recipe and change some ingredients to make it Vegan for all of you Vegetarians and Vegans out there. Mostly Pantry ingredients involved here but if not it’s time to stock the pantry with these items. I believe this soup should yield 4 very large servings or 6 moderate sized appetizer portions. Prep your ingredients and get cooking. Why not a red soup for Valentines Day?

Please follow me on Instagram @cookingwithcandi thanks and Happy Valentines Day to all.

Ingredients:

1/4 cup extra virgin Olive Oil

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

2 carrots, peeled and chopped

4 garlic cloves, minced

2 Teaspoons Ground Cumin

1 Teaspoon Curry Powder

1/2 Teaspoon dried Thyme

1 large can 28 oz. diced tomatoes–I didn’t drain

1 cup Red Lentils–you may want to pick over the lentils and rinse

4 cups Vegetable Broth

2 cups Water

1 – 3 Teaspoons Kosher Salt as needed to taste. Start out with 1

*Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes– this is optional and if you do like as I do you may want to add at beginning and at end

Freshly Ground Black Pepper

*also optional and I didn’t add because I didn’t have in the house but would add next time–some chopped fresh Kale or Collard Greens– remove any and all tough stems and ribs. You can buy baby Kale that’s been washed and use right out of the container

1 to 2 Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice-1/2 to 1 whole Lemon–this added a delicious layer of flavor and I wouldn’t skip it

Directions:

Heat the 1/4 cup Olive Oil in a Large Dutch Oven Pot over medium heat.

Once the oil is shimmering, add the chopped onions and carrots and cook, stirring often, until the onion has softened and is translucent. At least 5 minutes. Don’t Burn

Add the Garlic, Cumin, Curry Powder and Thyme. Cook until fragrant while stirring constantly for about 1/2 minute till everything is incorporated. Pour in the can of Diced Tomatoes and their juices and continue cooking for a few more minutes, stirring often .

Pour in the lentils, broth and the 2 cups Water. Add 1 Tablespoon Kosher Salt and if you like a pinch of red pepper flakes and sprinkle generously with Freshly Ground Black Pepper ( a few good turns on the grinder) Raise the heat and bring the mixture to a boil, then partially cover the pot and reduce the heat to a low simmer. Cook for at least 45 minutes , or until the lentils are tender. I cooked for about an hour.

Transfer 2 cups of the soup to a blender , secure the lid, and be careful with hot soup (steam can burn) and puree the 2 cups until smooth. Pour the pureed soup back into the pot. If no blender take out the 2 cups place in another pot and use an immersion blender.

Add the chopped greens if you like now and cook for 5 more minutes or until the greens wilt. Stir in the Fresh Lemon Juice. Taste and Season with more salt, pepper and/or Lemon Juice to your liking. I definitely added more Kosher Salt about 1 1/2 Tablespoons. If you like it spicy add more Red Pepper Flakes as well.

Serve while hot.

Leftovers will keep well for 4 days in the refrigerator. Can be frozen for several months!!!!

Happy Valentines Day Brownies – Chocolatey and Fudgey

Thinking ahead to Valentines Day! Delicious Easy Brownie Recipe!

Cooking with Candi

This is a delicious easy to make Chocolate Fudgy Brownie. Perfect for Valentines Day , as it is such a Chocolatey Holiday. I have always had a  rather large sweet tooth and  Valentines Day always meant candy, chocolate, dessert of one kind or another and it was always up there with my other favorite , Halloween for pretty much the same reasons. How can you not like a holiday that has so much sweetness?  Make this brownie  anytime and  top with ice cream and chocolate sauce for an incredibly killer dessert. I personally cut them up into small pieces and don’t feel as guilty when I eat them. I came in today from being out all day and saw them on the cake stand and because I had cut them up so small, I indulged in two pieces and it just hit the spot!!! Make no mistake these are the real deal, and I never…

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Easy Chicken Soup with Orzo and Lemon

Here’s a shortcut Chicken Soup that you can make with no muss and no fuss. Made in 1 hour! Enjoy!

Cooking with Candi

photo 4 (24)photo 5 (27)photo 2 (33)I literally started this soup at 5 p.m. and app. one hour later I was eating it.  Now that’s always a good thing in my book. Usually I slow cook my broth etc. and it takes hours ( Homemade Chicken Soup ) but this time there was no time, I wasn’t feeling like cooking my soup for hours and wanted that homemade flavor without all the work . You can certainly cook your own chicken if it works out for you time wise. This would also be perfect with leftover chicken. I bought a rotisserie chicken and this is what I did. For those of you who saw it on Instagram and Facebook–this one’s for you. One more little thing, the fresh dill is the secret ingredient and gives it that wonderful layer of flavor, don’t skip it. I also squeezed fresh lemon into each bowl of soup , this added yet another wonderful layer…

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White Bean Chili

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Originally posted on Cooking with Candi:
Original post was back in the winter of ’13. For those of you who are new to the blog or missed it, I am re-posting the recipe. It is delicious and the inspiration comes…

Seven Layer Dip

Here you go for a last minute idea for Super Bowl Sunday! Easy Peasy to put together.

Cooking with Candi

Winter cont'd 021Seven Layer Dip 005This is a super easy and beautiful dish to entertain with. Since Super Bowl is tomorrow this would be most perfect! It’s great in a glass bowl where you can see all of the layers. I prefer to make this without meat but if you would like make one of the layers ground beef or ground turkey. Just drain the meat before adding and make sure that the meat has cooled before adding all the other ingredients. Feel free to play around with ingredients, whatever works for you. This recipe is best served at room temperature, I’ll usually make it earlier in the day and take it out of refrigerator an hour or so before serving. Another thing I would suggest is to go to a local Mexican restaurant that you like and buy your refried beans, guacamole and salsa there. It’s usually the best. Sometimes I will make my…

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Beef Barley and Veggie Soup–Rich and Hearty

In the Winter I love a good hearty soup with good crusty bread some delicious hard cheese and a green salad. It makes a wonderful dinner that is prepared in one pot. This is a very hearty soup and I say rich because of the beef cubes which add a delicious layer of flavor and make this soup more than a soup more like a meal. As Rachael Ray says a”stoup”. It is thicker than a soup and mine is almost as thick as a stew. You can freeze this soup since it makes so much and you’ll have it for a snowy day when you can’t get to the market for these ingredients.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 lbs. Beef Chuck Cubes — the butcher section usually has this pre-cut if not just ask your butcher to cut into cubes for stew

Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Kosher Salt

2 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil

1 whole onion chopped ( yellow)

1 large stalk celery– thinly sliced

3 garlic cloves–roughly chopped

1 1/2 Tbsp. Tomato Paste

3/4 cup Red Wine– any dry red wine will do –I used a Malbec

8 cups Beef Broth–you can use low-sodium if you’d like

1 1/2 cups Water– you’ll need more as you finish but use this to start–at least for the first 2 hours

2 Bay Leaves

1/2 Tsp.dried thyme or fresh –1 Tbsp.

1 1/2 Tbsp. Sugar

3/4 cup Pearl Barley such as Quaker Medium Pearled Barley if you can find if not use whatever you can find

3 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 ” round slices

Directions:

Dry off the beef cubes with a paper towel then season them generously with Salt and Pepper.

In a large Dutch Oven (Le Crueset) type soup pot, heat 1 Tablespoon of the Vegetable Oil over medium high heat. Add 1/2 the beef and sear it without turning it, until browned on one side–app. 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate and add another Tablespoon of Vegetable Oil and continue searing the other 1/2 of the Beef. A little note– you can really sear the beef on one side and transfer it to a plate because it will fully cook in soup. You just want to get a good crust on at least one side of the meat. Remove the meat to a plate and start to prepare the soup.

Lower the heat in pan to medium-low and add the onions, celery and garlic. Cook , stirring frequently and scraping up the brown bits off the bottom of the pan (from the beef) You’ll want to cook until the veggies are soft and onion is translucent, probably another 5 minutes. Don’t burn veggies. You have to keep an eye on them. Lower the heat to a simmer if necessary.

Stir in the tomato paste. Add the beef along with any juices. Add the wine, broth, water , bay leaves, thyme, sugar and a little more salt and pepper and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to low . Cover and Simmer for 2 hours.

After 2 hours. Remove and discard the bay leaves. Add the barley and carrots and simmer, covered until the carrots and barley are cooked and the beef is tender. I cooked for another hour and it can simmer for even longer. Taste and adjust the seasonings. If you like a thicker soup ( and I do) simmer uncovered until your desired consistency is reached. For a thinner soup, add a little more water at a time until your desired consistency is reached. It’s not an exact science. I definitely added more water at the end stage.

*Just a little note –this soup will seem very brothy during the beginning stages but once you add the barley it will quickly soak up the broth so be careful not to reduce too quickly. You can always add water or more broth if this happens. Look at photos of the finished product.

Ladle into bowls and serve!

Soup will keep in fridge for 3 days and frozen for 3 months. 3 months is my limit for frozen . When you re-heat it add some water to bring it back to life and you’ll probably need to add a little salt and pepper as well.

Beef Barley and Veggie Soup

Brussels a la Caesar

I combined two of my favorites Caesar Salad Dressing and raw brussels . I bought the bag of Shaved Brussels which took all the work out of having to cut them up and I made my salad dressing which is detailed below. I used shaved Parmagiano Reggiano Cheese to add some flavor and let it all marinate together for about an hour before serving. I like it a little wilted but of course it tasted kind of delicious right away. It is nice to be able to make salad a bit ahead of the meal without worrying about how wilted it will be. The Brussels are tough enough to stand up to anything and sit out for a while dressed. This is always perfect while you’re preparing the rest of your dinner.

I used a Food Processor -mini or regular. You can do it in a blender as well.

If you love Caesar Salad and you love Brussels Sprouts this one’s for you.

Please follow me on Instagram@cookingwithcandi

Brussels Caesar Salad

Ingredients:

Caesar Salad : with Brussels

1 bag of shaved brussels sprouts — app. 1 lb.

2 cloves of garlic

1 egg yolk — if you don’t like the raw egg you can coddle it but I always just use a raw egg yolk

1 Tablespoon Dion Mustard- heaping

freshly ground black pepper

5 anchovies

2 Tablespoons Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice

3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1/2 Teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce

Shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano

Directions:

I use a food processor to make my salad dressing , you can use a mini or a regular sized one. I put the 2 cloves of whole garlic into the processor and chop them, then I add the 5 anchovies and mix all together.

Then add lemon juice, mustard, Worcestershire Sauce and egg yolk. I mix all together and then slowly add the olive oil in from the top stream the oil in. Add freshly ground black pepper after everything else is incorporated. I don’t add salt because anchovies are very salty.

Pour dressing on the Brussels and mix well. Let it sit for an hour or so if you have the time. Add the cheese and mix well.

*this salad can easily be doubled or Just make double the salad dressing and you’ll have it if you need more dressing depending on how dressed you like the salad. Dressing can stay in fridge for a few days ( raw egg) .

  • Brussels Caesar Salad
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Cauliflower Pizza

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Originally posted on Cooking with Candi:
this is how I am doing my crust now in a small rectangular pan!!! finished product This is one of my most favorite recipes ever. I almost always have the ingredients and all I…

–Set it and Forget it Chicken Taco Chili

Set it and Forget it Chicken Taco Chili for Golden Globes Watching this evening.

Cooking with Candi

This is a very easy recipe and will cook in the slow cooker on high in 6 hours! So set it and forget it. This is a re-blog from last October so if you missed it you get another shot at it and if you already made this recipe here you go again.

It’s the Golden Globes Awards this evening and I intend on eating this in front of the TV Screen. No muss No Fuss come tonite, all the heavy lifting will be done by noon. My kind of cooking.

Slow cookers make for perfect cooking all year round. Nothing better than setting it and forgetting it! Making life easier and less clean up after dinner. I happened to have a package of Taco Seasoning Mix in the house so I used it along with cumin and chili powder. I used dark meat and white meat chicken, you can…

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