Thursday, October 29, 2015

Savory Beef Stew

This is a recipe I entered into a recipe contest several years ago. I did not win the grand prize, although this recipe made it as one of the finalists. I won a subscription to Food Network magazine for this entry.

finished dish served with homemade
 whole-grain crescent rolls

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Shredding Fresh Coconut

I have not been able to find unsweetened shredded coconut for sale in my local store, and the options I saw online were quite expensive. I could purchase a whole fresh coconut for under $2, so I decided to see if I could shred my own. 

I thought the process was very easy, so I am sharing my results!

Step 1 - Remove the coconut milk

Removing the coconut milk is relatively easy. Pierce the softest eye on the end of the coconut, and drain the liquid out. I used a phillips screwdriver and a hammer to pierce the coconut, and there are many more suggestions for ways to do this online. You can toss the liquid or save it. Since I try to recycle/use everything, I saved the liquid from my coconut. I plan to use it in a smoothie, or in place of water in the next sweet treat or bread that I make. If I do not use it within the next few days, I will freeze it until I need it.

Step 2 - Crack the coconut

Again, there are many ideas for how to crack the coconut online. Some suggest baking it for 20 minutes, which I have never done. Another post I read, said to just throw it against the wall or cement without draining the juice first, as that is how the monkeys do it! I think the easiest way to crack a coconut is to take it outside to some concrete and whack it with a hammer. After you have cracked the shell, some of the pieces of shell should fall off, and you will probably have a few cracks in the remaining shell. 

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Crockpot Tomato Chicken

Super easy, moist, and delicious chicken recipe!


½ cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon tomato paste
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
¼ teaspoon salt 
¼ teaspoon pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 to 2 parsnips, peeled and cut into large chunks - I did not have any parsnips, so I added about 1 cup of fresh cauliflower pieces instead
1 sprig rosemary
½ medium onion chopped
¼ cup large pitted green olives, chopped
2 bay leaves
12 oz. can diced tomatoes
¾ to 1 lb. boneless chicken breast
1 tablespoon whole-wheat flour
4 to 8 oz. mushrooms, sliced - a 4 oz. can would be plenty; I had plenty of fresh mushrooms on hand, so I used more
¼ cup brown rice or barley, optional