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Thread: Ask Malia: Cooking advice

  1. #11
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    Feb 2009


    Quote Originally Posted by spirilis View Post
    Oooh good idea! I usually eat some variation of brown rice w/ stir fried veggies and fish or chicken. Do you have any recipes that make use of fish & brown rice?
    Easy pan sauteed fish and a delicious rice pilaf is my favorite, but there are very good stir fry recipes with fish, rice, and veggies. You can make a fish casserole, too. I can give you a recipe for that if you like. Just let me know.


    Simple, pan sauteed fish (this works for almost any kind of fish you want, but I love the taste of salmon the most, personally)

    2 boneless fish filets
    salt and pepper, to taste
    1/2 - 1 lemon, cut into large wedges (for squeezing over fish)
    olive oil

    Pat boneless filets dry with paper towels. Optionally melt butter in large dish and dip fish in butter (both sides). Salt and pepper both sides of filets, squeeze lemon juice over each side. Set fish aside on plate to await sauteing.

    Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a cast iron, heavy-bottomed aluminum or nonstick skillet on medium-high heat until shimmering but not smoking (>>>if your oil starts to smoke, quickly remove pan from heat for a few minutes and add a tiny bit of room temp. oil to pan. Return to heat and start cooking fish right away).

    Place filets on pan and in about 30 seconds immediately turn heat slightly down, to medium.

    Cook fish about 3-4 minutes on each side, or until cooked throughout but not dry (unless you like it dry!).

    Serve immediately over a bed of rice, and/or with roasted/steamed/stir-fried (your choice) vegetables.

    Easy Basmati Rice

    1/4 cup butter or olive oil (you can reduce this amount if you want to lower the fat content a bit)
    2 cups basmati rice (brown or white - see instructions for the difference in cooking times)
    2 teaspoons salt
    3 1/4 cups boiling chicken/vegetable broth or water*

    British-American seasoning option:
    1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
    1 teaspoon fresh chopped parsley (or scant 1/2 teaspoon dried)

    Indian seasoning option:
    2 teaspoons turmeric
    2 bay leaves
    8 green cardamom pods (or 3/4 teaspoon ground cardamom)
    8 whole cloves
    1 teaspoon whole fennel seed

    Melt butter in a saucepan (or just add and heat the oil).

    Stir in the rice until it is coated in oil/butter.

    Stir in spices and salt.

    Add the boiling broth or water.

    Cover with a tight fitting lid and simmer on the lowest heat for 40 minutes for brown or 15 minutes for white rice (do not stir or open the lid in the meantime).

    Turn off the heat and let rest for 5 minutes.

    Fluff and serve.

    *If it is a dry day, add about 1/4 cup more broth or water. Also, if using broth instead of water, lower the salt to 1 1/4 teaspoons.

    I love eating fish and rice with some roasted potatoes or veggies. Ask if you want instructions for either.

  2. #12
    Senior Membrane Array spirilis's Avatar
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    Jul 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by maliafee View Post
    Easy pan sauteed fish and a delicious rice pilaf is my favorite, but there are very good stir fry recipes with fish, rice, and veggies. You can make a fish casserole, too. I can give you a recipe for that if you like. Just let me know.
    Awesome, thanks! I'd love to see the fish casserole recipe too
    intp | type 9w1 sp/sx/so

  3. #13
    Doesn't Read Your Posts Array Haight's Avatar
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    Apr 2007


    That one gets a little stinky right around Thursday morning.
    "The only time I'm wrong is when I'm questioning myself."

  4. #14
    Was E.laur Array Laurie's Avatar
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    Jan 2009


    I need some healthy "just my four year old and I are home during the day" lunches.

  5. #15
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    Feb 2009

    Default Favorite Casseroles

    Here are some great casseroles. Ask if anything is unclear.

    Greek Chicken Pie
    (you can double this if you want for a big casserole dish, but the regular recipe makes enough for an 8"x8" square pan or an 8" or 9" pie pan)


    4 chicken breasts, poached (see below directions)
    1 carton chicken broth OR 2 cans

    3 T butter
    1 T olive oil
    1/2 small yellow onion, chopped
    1/2 small red onion, chopped
    6-8 mushrooms (button or crimini or any other you like), sliced
    4 cloves garlic, minced

    1/3 cup fresh mint, chopped
    1 teaspoon fresh oregano, chopped
    2 teaspoons lemon zest
    ***optional: 10-15 kalamata olives, pitted and sliced in half
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon pepper

    2 eggs
    3 T milk
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon pepper

    1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
    1/2 cup goat cheese, crumbled
    OR 1 cup feta cheese, only, crumbled
    OR 1 cup goat cheese, only, crumbled

    8 phyllo sheets (just buy a package in the frozen dessert section of the grocery store)
    1/2 cup olive oil or more (pour some in a dish, and use a pastry brush to apply)


    Thaw your package of frozen phyllo dough overnight in the fridge.

    Preheat oven to 350 F.

    Grease your pie pan with nonstick spray or oil.

    Place chicken breasts in a deep-sided pan. Cover with broth, and make sure it's covered completely, but only just. If you need to add some water, that's fine. Cook chicken on medium heat, until you see it start to simmer. Stir once. As soon as the mixture barely begins to boil, turn off heat and cover with a lid. Let chicken sit 45 minutes on the burner but with heat turned off. After that, you can remove chicken, save broth for another recipe, and shred the chicken. Measure 2 cups of shredded chicken for the Greek Chicken Pie recipe.

    In cast iron pan, melt 3 T butter and 1 T olive oil on medium heat. Add onions and mushrooms, and saute until golden. Add garlic and saute briefly. Turn off heat and mix onion mixture with mint, oregano, zest, olives, and 1/4 each salt and pepper. Stir in shredded chicken.

    Beat eggs and milk with a wire whisk or electric mixture until light and fluffy, add salt and pepper and mix a bit more. Add crumbled feta/ goat cheeses and mix once or twice to combine.

    In greased pie pan, layer phyllo sheets one at a time, brushing each sheet entirely with olive oil before adding another sheet. Layer with at least 8 sheets. When the last sheet is brushed with oil, fill pan with onion/chicken mixture. Pour egg/cheese mixture over the top of the onion/chicken base. Fold phyllo edges over to surround pie filling.

    Bake for 45-50 minutes, but check frequently. Pie is done when phyllo is deep golden brown and cheesy topping is golden.


    Sausage Spinach Cheese Pie

    1 pound hot Italian sausage, chopped (TJs makes a really good hot sausage)
    6 eggs
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon pepper
    dash nutmeg
    half a bag of fresh baby spinach (can't remember ounces, but it's the size of a regular salad bag from any grocery store)
    8 oz. (1 cup) mascarpone OR cream cheese
    8 oz. (1 cup) ricotta OR sour cream
    1 cup mozzarella, swiss or cheddar cheese, OR a blend, shredded
    3 Roma tomatoes, or other smallish, low-on-seed variety, sliced thin
    1/2 cup goat cheese, crumbled into large pieces
    1 medium onion, chopped
    1 bell pepper, chopped
    6 cloves garlic, sliced thin
    salt and pepper, to taste
    basil and oregano, to taste
    Pastry for two-crust pie (ask for recipe if needed, or buy pre-baked)

    Preheat oven to 375 F. Prepare pastry for a two-crust pie and line bottom of a pie pan with pastry. Refrigerate until you are ready to use.

    Remove sausage casings, and crumble into large pieces. Brown sausage; drain, and set aside.

    In a food processor or blender, combine cream cheese, sour cream, eggs, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon pepper, and nutmeg. Blend until smooth, and set aside.

    In a medium saute pan, saute onion and bell pepper on medium-high heat until limp and soft. Add a sprinkling of salt and pepper and combine with a wooden spoon. Add garlic and saute for about 1 more minute. Turn off heat and set aside onion mixture.

    Into pie shell, pour 1/3 cheese-egg mixture and then add half the spinach, smoothing evenly on bottom of pie. Layer with half the sausage, half the goat cheese, all of the onion mixture, topping with half the tomato slices. Next, add the rest of the spinach, the rest of the sausage, goat cheese, and tomato slices. Pour the rest of the cheese-egg mixture on top and cover with mozzarella cheese, and oregano and basil, to taste. Close the pie with top crust, making a few slits with a sharp knife for steam to escape during cooking.

    Bake 1 hour and 5-15 minutes.

    Serves 6-8.

    Arroz con Pollo

    aprox. 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken (can be breast or thigh meat or both)

    chicken broth or water, or a mixture, enough to completely cover chicken in a pot by about 1/2-1 inch (3-4 cups) (Optionally, reduce broth or water by about 1 cup and add 1 cup white wine or dry sherry)

    2 cups rice, white or brown
    1 1/2 tablespoons Caldo con Sabor de Pollo (by KNORR)<--(this is a kind of bouillon or stock reduction available in the ethnic aisle or in a Mexican grocery store. If you can't get this, just use chicken bouillon cubes)
    Heinz or other basic brand of tomato sauce (16 oz.)

    2 cups fresh mushrooms, diced
    16 ounces sliced (or chopped) black olives

    1-2 cups mild mexican cheese, to taste

    16 ounces El Pato tomato sauce (this is also available in the ethnic aisle or a Mexican grocery store)

    In a medium kettle, place chicken and cover with broth or water (or mixture with wine/sherry). Make sure liquid covers chicken fully by about 1/2-1 inch.
    Heat on medium-high and just bring to a boil. Right as the water starts to boil, turn off the heat and cover chicken and set timer for 45 minutes.
    After the time is up, chicken should be cooked through and ready to be shredded. Shred chicken and set aside for later casserole assembly.
    (You may discard the broth/water it was cooked in, or save and use for cooking your rice.)

    Cook rice according to package instructions, but additionally add the Caldo con Sabor de Pollo and Heinz tomato sauce.

    Chop mushrooms and drain olives if necessary.

    Grate cheese.

    In a greased 9x13 casserole dish, layer:
    1. chicken 2. rice 3. mushrooms and olives 4. cheese
    Drizzle El Pato sauce over each layer successively, including the cheese layer.

    Bake in a preheated 375 F oven until cheese is browned to preference, about 30 minutes or more.


  6. #16
    in-game Array Gamine's Avatar
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    Nov 2008


    Hey Malia! Great thread idea!!

    I've been given the assignment of a vegetarian dish for the next potluck with my friends. The theme for the night is Old Western Films, but someone already snagged the obvious spaghetti option. Do you have any ideas for a really tasty southwestern vegetarian addition? I'm pretty comfortable using Tofu, but exploring some legumes would be interesting to try.

    "Beware Those Who Are ALWAYS READING BOOKS" - Bukowski

  7. #17
    Senior Member Array Rangler's Avatar
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    Jan 2009


    Do you cook with tofu? I've been experimenting with it for the past couple of weeks.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haight View Post
    That one gets a little stinky right around Thursday morning.
    Good point!

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rangler View Post
    Do you cook with tofu? I've been experimenting with it for the past couple of weeks.
    I do, in fact. I used to be vegan* as well, and so during that year of my life I learned how to use it in many interesting ways. Any recipes you wanna share, or questions?

    *For any vegetarians or vegans, I have some amazing recipes. I have a stuffed pasta recipe that fools ANY non-veg. that it's cheesy as all get out! Also, a great vegan pumpkin pie, amazing "cheese"cake, and really good lasagne. Lots and lots of others. Just tell me the kind of food you haven't been able to eat that maybe you miss and I'll give you the tasty substitution I developed while I was vegan.

  10. #20
    lackluster primate Array Night's Avatar
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    Nov 2007


    Wow -- great ideas, maliafee!

    Quote Originally Posted by maliafee View Post
    *For any vegetarians or vegans, I have some amazing recipes.
    Do tell.

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