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September 30, 2015

Turkey green chile chili {gluten-free}

Turkey green chile chili, quick and easy (and no beans!)

When my friend Candy brought me a container of real New Mexico green chiles (the hot ones!) a few months ago, I didn't know what to do. Well, that's not true. I knew what to do. I just couldn't settle on the perfect recipe to take advantage of all of this spicy goodness in the house, and because I couldn't choose a recipe, I put the container in the freezer last May. There it sat, until today, when I needed a dinner that was fast, filling, and hot (both temperature and spiciness), and I reached back into the archives for this turkey green chile chili that I first shared here in November, 2006, but never photographed. With the gift of nearly a pound of hot Hatch chile peppers, and everything else on hand in the pantry, this bean-free chili was quick and easy, just as I'd remembered. Depending on the type of potato you use, the chunks will remain firm, as mine did here, or they'll disintegrate into the chili and thicken it, with a nudge or two from the back of a wooden spoon. If you don't love chile peppers (and it's okay to use mild instead of hot), either cut the quantity way back, to a quarter pound, or try another recipe. This one's for chile lovers.

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September 23, 2015

Shrimp, bacon and broccoli slaw with ranch dressing {gluten-free}

Shrimp, bacon and store-bought broccoli slaw, with homemade ranch dressing.

As you know, I'm not a big fan of convenience foods. It's just as easy to make most things from scratch, and you know exactly what you're getting. However, when it comes to broccoli slaw, I make an exception. If you look in the bag, you know exactly what you're getting: shredded broccoli stems and carrots and a little bit of red cabbage. Sometimes you can find the mix with cauliflower added, but cauliflower and I still are not friends, so I don't seek it out. You can use the cauliflower-added mix (sometimes called Rainbow Salad) in this recipe, unless you're inviting me for lunch. Broccoli slaw benefits from a few minutes of tenderizing --here, buttermilk does the trick, and in other recipes, mustard would do the same -- so make the dressing, toss it with the slaw, and let that sit while you finish the rest of the recipe.

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September 20, 2015

Slow cooker chipotle beef enchiladas

Slow cooker chipotle beef enchiladas.

Do this (trust me, just do it): get out your slow cooker. Toss in the ingredients for the chipotle beef (this will take ten minutes, at most). Turn on the cooker, and go out and do something. Go to the park, go to work or worship, go visit your grandma, go to a football game. Let the meat do its thing while you do yours. When it's finished, shred it, and refrigerate it, or even freeze it. And then, sometime, tonight, or tomorrow, or later in the week, or next weekend, make a pan of really great chipotle beef enchiladas. So easy. You'll have a lot of the beef left over (and some of the chipotle barbecue sauce, too) and you can use it in sandwiches or quesadillas, or in a rice bowl, wrapped in a lettuce leaf, or tucked into a lunch box. If you follow this recipe, you'll have a very mildly spicy dish (my grandsons loved it, and they don't like spicy food), but of course you can kick it up by adding an additional chipotle chile pepper, or more of the adobo sauce from the can. And you know me... I would never discourage you from doing that. I use flat-cut beef brisket, because I love it, but you can make this with a chuck roast, too. Just do it. You'll thank me later.

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September 9, 2015

Salmon with lemon maple mustard sauce {gluten-free}

Broiled salmon with lemon maple mustard sauce is a 10-minute treat!

During The Downsizing a few months ago, when we moved from country to city, I uncovered a stash of recipes cut out of magazines so long ago that the pages were curled and yellowing. Needless to say, not one of those cuttings bore a note to remind me of the source of the recipe. So, if you recognize this simple recipe for salmon with a lemon maple mustard sauce (I've adapted it from the original), please claim it. One of the reasons salmon is so popular is that it's mild in flavor, yet bold enough to stand up to even bolder sauces. Please consider the proportions for this sauce as a suggestion; depending on the grade of maple syrup you use, you might want more (or maybe less) to balance the mustard and lemon. Go slowly, adding a bit of this and a bit of that, and you will find the right mix for your taste. When you do, slather it on the salmon, cook, and enjoy. The fish is good cold the next day, on sandwiches or green salads, so go ahead and make the full recipe.

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August 30, 2015

Gluten-free flatbread or pizza dough

Gluten-free pizza made on the stovetop, in the oven, or on the grill!

My friend Mary, a long-time reader, cook and gardener who lives in Boston, spent decades living with the effects of undiagnosed gluten- and dairy- intolerance before changing her diet a few years ago. She cooks often from this blog, and when she offered to share her recipe for gluten-free pizza dough, I was thrilled. This is Mary's first guest post for The Perfect Pantry.

Before I went gluten- and dairy-free, I would have told you that my survival food on a desert island would be whole wheat bread, peanut butter and Greek yogurt. I was a lover of all things bread. My husband and I built a large wood-fired bread oven in our back yard, and we always kept a bucket or two of dough in the fridge. Unexpected guests were treated to yummy flatbreads, pizzas and calzones. A handful of this or that, a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of salt and a few fresh herbs, a shave of Parmigiano-Reggiano and maybe an egg or two on top of yeasty crust made a luscious lunch.

Until it didn’t work, and my tummy rebelled.

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  • My name is Lydia Walshin. From my tiny kitchen in Boston's South End, I share recipes that use what we keep in our pantries, the usual and not-so-usual ingredients that spice up our lives. Thanks so much for visiting.

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