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Posts from the ‘Main Dish’ category

Compound Butters

I decided to make some different flavors of compound butters. It was extremely easy and delicious and was fun to come up with accompanying food to go with them.
The 8 flavors I made are:
1. Lemon rosemary thyme butter
(1/2 cup butter, zest 1/2 lemon, 3 large sprigs rosemary, 2 small sprigs thyme)
2. Moroccan spice butter
(1/2 cup butter, 1/2 tsp cumin seeds, 1/2 tbs grated ginger, and 1/2 tsp grated turmeric heat in a pan with a small amount of oil, 1/4 tsp ground cumin, 1/4 tsp ground coriander, 1/4 tsp cinnamon, 1/8 tsp cayenne, zest 1/2 lemon, 2 tbs chopped cilantro)
3. Red wine shallot butter
(1/2 cup butter, 1 small shallot, minced cooked in 3 tbs red wine till the shallots absorb the wine, 2 tbs parsley)
4. Maple cardamom butter
(1/2 cup butter, 1/4 cup maple syrup, 1 tsp ground cardamom, 1 tsp whole cardamom seeds)
5. Fig butter
(1/2 cup butter, 3 tbs fig preserves)
6. Herb butter
(1/2 cup butter, handful of basil leaves, 2 sprigs oregano, ~6 chives)
7. Vanilla cinnamon honey butter
(1/2 cup butter, 1/4 cup honey, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp vanilla)
8. Cranberry butter
(1/2 cup butter, 1/4 cup fresh cranberries, sweeten with honey or sugar to desired sweetness)
I used salted butter so if you use unsalted I would add some salt to the recipes above. The exact amounts of the additions don’t have to be accurate. Keep adding things till the butter is to your taste.
I placed 1/2 cup (1 stick) softened butter into a small food processor and mixed with all the add-ins till they were evenly distributed. Then I scooped the butter onto a piece of plastic wrap and wrapped it into a log shape. For add ins that are heat up first (like the red wine shallot butter), let cool completely before mixing in.

Grilled bone-in rib-eye with red wine shallot butter

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Biscuits with vanilla honey cinnamon butter and maple cardamom butter


Cheddar zucchini pancakes with herb butter

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2 cups grated zucchini
1 cup grated cheese
2 eggs
1 cup bisquick or other biscuit making mix
vegetable oil as needed
Mix all ingredients until well combined
Heat vegetable on a griddle or frying pan over medium heat. Scoop 1/4 cup batter into pan and flatten. Cook until browned, 3-4 minutes per side.

Orange scones with cranberry butter

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2 cups all-purpose flour
1/8 cup  sugar
1 tbs baking powder
2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tbs grated orange zest
1 1/2 sticks butter (3/4 cup), diced
2 large eggs
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 egg beaten with water or milk for egg wash
Preheat the oven to 400 F
Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and orange zest. Add cold butter and cut into mixture until butter pieces are about pea-sized.
Combine eggs and heavy cream. With a mixer on low speed, add in the flour and butter mixture. Mix until just blended.
Knead the dough into a ball.
Separate dough into 8 pieces. Form into 2-3 inch discs. Place onto a baking pan lined with parchment paper. Brush the tops with egg wash and bake for 20-25 minutes until the tops are browned.

Arugula cheddar grilled cheese sandwich with fig butter


Butter inside pieces of bread with fig butter. Add cheese and arugula between slices. Use a frying pan or sandwich press to heat sandwich and melt cheese.

Baked potato with Moroccan spice butter

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Preheat oven to 350 F
Rub potato with a small amount of oil and salt the outside. Pierce a few times with a fork.
Place directly on top rack of oven (with a pan or something underneath to catch any drips).
Bake for 1 hour or until soft when pierced with a fork and the skin is crispy.

Pork chops with lemon rosemary thyme butter

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Cranberry Beef Stew


More cranberries! This was a unique stew that turned out pretty tasty.

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  • 2 lbs stew beef pieces (or cubed chuck roast)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tbs oil
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 12oz guinness or other stout beer
  • 10 oz pearl onions
  • 8 oz mushrooms, sliced or quartered
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tbs flour
  • 2 cups cranberries
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • chopped fresh thyme


  • Salt and pepper the beef pieces. Heat oil in a dutch over over medium high heat. Add the beef and brown on all sides.
  • Add the chopped onion, broth, bay leaves, and stout. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 2 hours or until beef is tender, stirring occasionally. With 30 min remaining, add have of the cranberries to the pot (1 cup)
  • While the beef is stewing, add the orange juice, sugar, and the remaining 1 cup of cranberries to a small saucepan. Cook until the cranberries pop and form a thick sauce.
  • Stir in the pearl onions and mushrooms to the pot, cook for 15 minutes.
  • Add 2 tbs flour to 1/4 cup water in a small bowl and stir to combine. Add this mixture and the cranberry suace to the pot and cook 5 minutes. You can add more flour/water mixture to the pot if you want to further thicken the stew.
  • Discard the bay leaves and serve alone or over noodles. Garnish with fresh thyme.

Asparagus-Spinach Pesto Pasta


This asparagus spinach pesto (not sure if you can call it that without basil, but I can’t think of a better term) made for a delicious meal. I topped the dish with some blackened chicken, but you could eat it alone or mix in any meat as desired to add some protein. I would definitely make this again!




  • 1 lb. (16 oz.) dried pasta
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1 bunch asparagus spears (about 1 lb), ends trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 4 cups spinach leaves
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil


  • Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water al dente according to package instructions.
  • Fill a separate medium saucepan or stockpot with water, and bring to a boil over high heat. Add the asparagus spears and cook for 2-3 minutes, until the spears are bright green and barely tender. Remove the asparagus with a slotted spoon and transfer to a bowl filled with ice water to stop the cooking.
  • Add the asparagus, spinach, garlic, Parmesan, 1/4 cup pine nuts, lemon juice and salt to the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Process until combined. Then, with the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil until it is incorporated. If the pesto seems too thick, add in a bit of water to thin it out.
  • Add the pesto to the pasta, and toss until evenly coated, adding in a bit of the reserved pasta water if needed to thin the pasta. Then stir in the pine nuts and serve immediately sprinkled with some extra Parmesan cheese

Adapted from GimmeSomeOven

Cherry Chipotle Steak Tacos

Cherry Chipotle Salsa Steak Tacos

Cherry Chipotle Salsa Steak Tacos

I had some frozen cherries leftover in the freezer and these seemed like a fun recipe to try out with them. The sauce is quite good. It made a ton extra so I used it on some chicken later in the week. I would maybe make an effort to slice my steak even thinner next time because it was pretty chewy. These were great!



Steak and marinade

  • 1 lb flank steak
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbs worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/4 red chili pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper

Chipotle Chery Salsa

  • 1/2 cup fresh basil
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 1 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 2 cups cherries, (fresh-pitted/de-stemmed or frozen-thawed)
  • salt and pepper

Rest of tacos

  • Corn tortillas
  • red cabbage, sliced thin
  • shredded monterrey jack cheese
  • parsley


  • Prepare steak marinade in a bowl and. Season steak on both sides with salt and pepper and place into a ziplock bag with the marinade. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour (4 hours or more is better if possible)
  • For cherry chipotle salsa: in a food processor, combine all other ingredients with half the cherries (1 cup). Process until smooth. Add remaining cherries and pulse until chunky. Leftover salsa can be stored in refrigerator.
  • Prepare the steak by grilling over high heat for 3-4 minutes (or cook on the stovetop if you don’t have a grill). Let rest for 5 minutes before slicing into thin strips.
  • Assemble tacos: place steak onto corn tortillas, followed by salsa, sliced cabbage, shredded cheese, and chopped parsley

Adapted from Iowa Girl Eats

Coconut Lime Chicken with Sweet Coconut Rice


I’ve been meaning to make this chicken for a while and it did not disappoint (great sauce) but the highlight of this meal was actually the rice! This rice is so full of coconut flavor and is sweet and delicious with a great texture too. I don’t cook rice too often but I will definitely be making this again frequently!

Coconut Rice


  • 2 cups white or Jasmine rice
  • 1 can unsweetened coconut milk
  • 2 cups water
  • 1.5 tsp Kosher salt
  • Splash of white vinegar
  • 3 tsp white sugar
  • Handful of chopped green onions for garnish
  • Black pepper to taste
  • Combine rice, coconut milk, water, salt, vinegar, and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil
  • Turn heat to low and cover for 20 minutes or until most of the liquid is absorbed. Allow to stand 5 minutes.
  • Add green onions, black pepper (if desired), and additional salt if necessary.

Coconut Lime Chicken


  • 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cut flat or pounded flat or cut into thin strips)
  • 3 tbsp oil
  • zest of 1 lime
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • pinch cayenne
  • 1 small fresh hot chili, such as Thai or Serrano, minced (optional)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Fresh limes, cut into wedges


  • Mix all ingredients except chicken, fresh cilantro, and limes to create marinade.
  • Add chicken and marinade to a large bowl or ziploc bag and chill in the refrigerator for up to two hours.
  • Once you are ready to cook the chicken, remove each breast from the marinade.
  • Pour the marinade into a small saucepan and bring to a rolling boil. Boil continuously for at least 2 minutes, stirring occasionally so it doesn’t burn.
  • In a heavy skillet or grill pan, heat a splash of oil over high heat.
  • Place the breasts in the hot pan and cook without turning for a couple minutes
  • Flip the breasts over and cook until the other side is golden, it shouldn’t take long depending on the thickness of your chicken.
  • Sprinkle with fresh lime juice and cilantro. Optional: cut into strips or chunks and serve over rice with sauce on the side.

Salmon Roll Sandwiches


I saw a picture of these somewhere and I thought they would taste pretty good, after all I like similar things like tuna salad. These made for a great dinner! Potato rolls are always delicious in my opinion. I think these would taste good either warm or cold. I only made enough for the 2 of us so we didn’t have any leftovers.



for 2 sandwiches

  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1 bunch parsley (~a few tablespoons leaves chopped)
  • zest from 1 lemon
  • juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
  • 2 salmon fillets
  • salt/pepper
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup mayonnise
  • 2 potato rolls


  • Season the salmon with salt and pepper on both sides. In a nonstick pan, heat 2 tsp of olive oil on medium-high heat. Add the salmon and cook (skin side down first), loosely covering the pan with aluminum foil, for 3-5 minutes per side. When the salmon is cool enough to handle, remove the skin and flake the cooked salmon into large pieces.
  • To the bowl with the salmon, add the green onions, parsley, lemon zest, lemon juice, shallot, celery, and mayonnaise. Season with salt and pepper and stir to combine.
  • Optional: toast the potato roll buns before adding the salmon mixture.

Pork Chops with Thai Peanut Sauce


We had some pork chops ready to cook in the fridge and Mark claimed that he wanted something with peanut sauce for dinner. I thought it might taste strange but these were definitely delicious! I added some peppers on top to give it a bit more color. I like this peanut sauce as a topping for pasta or to put on chicken or as a dipping sauce as well. We usually make extra peanut sauce to have a bit leftover. You can cook the chops any way you like but I’ll type my preferred method below.


Pork Chops

  • 2-4 pork chops
  • oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • garlic powder
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • parsley, roughly chopped
  • green onions, chopped

Thai Peanut Sauce

  • one 13.5 oz can of full-fat, unsweetened coconut milk
  • 2 oz (approximately ¼ cup) of Thai red curry paste
  • ¾ cup creamy peanut butter
  • ½ tablespoon salt
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup water



Pork chops

  • Preheat the oven to 400 F
  • Heat a bit of oil in a cast iron pan over high heat
  • Season both sides of the pork chops liberally with salt, pepper, and garlic powder
  • Insert an oven thermometer (the kind where the cord goes into the oven and the meter sits outside) into the side of one of the chops
  • Put the pork chops in the hot pan and sear for 3 minutes.
  • Flip the pork chops over and place the whole pan directly in the oven. Cook until the meat thermometer reads 145 F
  • Take the pork chops out and place on a plate to rest for 5 min.
  • Drizzle with Peanut sauce, parsley, green onions, and chopped red bell pepper

Thai Peanut Sauce

  • Put everything into a medium heavy-bottomed pot and bring to a very gentle boil over medium heat, whisking constantly.
  • Let the mixture simmer for 3-5 minutes over low heat; be careful not to let the mixture scorch at the bottom of the pot.
  • Take the pot off the heat, let the sauce cool down to room temperature (or slightly warmer).
  • You can store leftovers in the fridge for later.

Peanut sauce recipe from She Simmers

Chicken Avocado Salad


Growing up in Arizona and California I grew to love avocados. There are entirely too few things with avocados on them here in Boston. They should be an ingredient at every sandwich and burger shop in my opinion 🙂

This dish was very simple but it tasted amazing! You can really taste each flavor. There were definitely no leftovers. I think I would double this recipe next time. Give this a try, it’s so good!


  • 2 cups cooked chicken, shredded into large pieces
  • 1 or 2 medium avocados, diced
  • 2 tbs lime juice
  • 1/2 tbs salt, to taste
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced green onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tbs mayonnaise


  • Shred the chicken into fairly large chunks.
  • Dice the avocados into medium-sized pieces, mix with 1 tbs of the lime juice, and season avocado with salt to taste.
  • Mix mayo and 1 tb s lime juice to make the dressing
  • In a bowl, mix the chicken with the sliced green onions, cilantro, and dressing and toss until all the chicken is coated with dressing.
  • Add the avocado and any lime juice in the bottom of the bowl and gently combine with the chicken. Serve right away or chill for a while before serving.
Recipe from Yummly

Cabbage Rolls


I’ve had these cabbage rolls on my list to make for a long time. They were originally a slow cooker recipe, but I was using my slow cooker for something else at the time and baked these in the oven instead. I think the key to recipes like this (cabbage rolls, or stuffed peppers, or the like) is to make sure there’s enough salt in the seasoning so that the filling doesn’t taste bland. This recipe turned out great! These tasted even better than I expected and made for excellent lunch leftovers. They actually weren’t even terribly time consuming either. I blended the meat with the rest of the filling ingredients in my food processor before adding to the cabbage leaves.





  • 10 cabbage leaves
  • ½ cup uncooked rice
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ¼ cup milk
  • ¼ cup minced onion
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. pepper
  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • Sauce (If you like lots of sauce, feel free to double this, I’ve done it both ways)
  • 1 24 oz can tomato sauce
  • 3 Tbs. brown sugar
  • 1 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 2 Tbs. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
  • Preheat oven to 300
  • Boil some salted water and add your rice to simmer for ~5 min (not until soft). Remove and set aside
  • Boil a large pot of water and add head of cabbage, cook for 2 minutes and drain. (You can freeze cabbage then thaw and skip the boiling part. Either method helps soften the leaves so they’re easier to roll)
  • Combine rice, egg, milk, onion, garlic, beef, salt, and seasonings in large bowl. Place ¼ cup meat mixture in center of leaf and roll, tucking ends. Place seam side down in slow cooker.
  • Mix all sauce ingredients together and pour over rolls. Cover tightly with tin foil.
  • Bake for 1.5 hours in the oven. When serving, pour extra sauce from the pan over the rolls

Recipe adapted from Melissa K Norris

Chicken Pot Pie


I absolutely love chicken pot pie! I’ll often try to make 2 pies with this recipe so I can have extra because these are awesome leftovers! This time I made 1 regular size pie and a couple mini pies. There are all kinds of chicken pot pie recipes out there but this is my go to and absolute favorite. It’s easy to add or take out different veggies as desired. Sometimes I make my own pie crusts, but for this recipe I usually just buy a pre-made crust. You can cook them in regular pie dishes or deeper dish pans as well.




  • ›1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves – cubed ›
  • 1 cup sliced carrots
  • ›1 cup frozen green peas ›
  • 2  medium potatoes, small cubes
  • ›1/2 cup sliced celery
  • ›1/3 cup butter
  • ›1/3 cup chopped onion
  • ›1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • ›1/2 teaspoon salt
  • ›1/4 teaspoon black pepper ›
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery seed ›
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • ›1 1/3 cup milk ›
  • 4 (9 inch) unbaked pie crusts (the recipe often makes enough for 2 pies)


  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C.)
  • In a saucepan, combine chicken, carrots, peas, and celery. Add water to cover and boil for 15 minutes. Remove from heat, drain and set aside. If the potatoes are cubed small enough then boil them along with the chicken and other veggies, if not, boil them in a separate pan until they are soft enough to stick a fork in them (but not too mushy)
  • In the saucepan over medium heat, cook onions in butter until soft and translucent. Stir in flour, salt, pepper, and celery seed. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Simmer over medium-low heat until thick. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Place the chicken mixture in bottom pie crust. Pour hot liquid mixture over. Cover with top crust, seal edges, and cut away excess dough. Make several small slits in the top to allow steam to escape.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until pastry is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.



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