My Favorite Family Recipes

Chicken Curry

Lately, for some reason that I am not exactly sure, I have craved this recipe!  It’s all I can think about and when I sample a delectable spoonful while my husband whips it together my mouth waters and it’s all I can do to keep myself from spooning in heaps of it at a time!

3 lbs boneless chicken thighs (dark meat is my favorite)

1 large onion

1 carton of shitake mushrooms

1/3 cup of white wine

1/2 cup of chicken stock

3 tbs curry

Thyme (we use Giant’s Fresh Thyme, about 21g)

1/3 cup of Heavy Cream

Salt and Pepper to taste

1.  Sautee onions and mushrooms in a tablespoon of butter and a tablespoon of evoo.  Sautee until soft and fragrant.  Remove from heat and set aside when done.

2.  Add a little more oil and then brown your chicken and cook until fully cooked.

3.  Add wine, broth, curry, thyme, salt and pepper.

4.  Add cream when you are ready to serve so it doesn’t clump and the mixture has cooled slightly.

5. Serve over steamed rice. I usually begin cooking the rice first and when you have about 20 minutes left on it then begin cooking the curry.  Adding chicken stock to the rice gives it even more flavor.

Enjoy!

Wine Pairing:

We paired our meal with a Rene Barbier Mediterranean White.  White wine Catalunya.  It was not too dry and not too sweet but very light and it complimented the curry delightfully.

Lamb Curry

The ultimate Napotnik favorite, in my opinion, is Lamb Curry.  Yum, yum, delicious, yum.  I found myself craving this dish tonight but alas could only look forward to a future cooking session since I didn’t have all the ingredients needed to prepare and serve it.

To begin, saute a whole diced onion in about two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil.  Now I recently heard that using olive oil on direct hot heat is actually counterproductive because the intense heat of the burner denatures the oil.  To clarify, because olive oil can be a bit expensive, olive oil will denature at ‘smoke point.’  The smoke point is simply the degree of heat in which the oil begins to smoke and thus begins to break down or denature.  So warm up your oil gently!

Once the onion is sauteed brown your lamb.  At this point I like to season the meat with salt, pepper, thyme, and of course…curry!  When the lamb is browned remove from heat.  Then, fry some bacon and don’t forget to enjoy the smell while doing so.  I LOVE the smell of bacon.  When the bacon is fully cooked to your liking crumble it in to 1 inch pieces and add the onion and lamb back in to the skillet.

Next, add 1 and a half cups of water and bring to a boil.  When water is boiling add one tsp of chicken bouillon, two tablespoons of curry (less or more depending on how spicy you like it…i like it really spicy so I add more), a pinch of thyme, one cup of raisins and one cup of basmatii rice.  Bring the water to a boil once again and then cover and bring to a soft simmer and let it do so for about 25 minutes.

You will know it is done because the rice will be fluffy and the water fully absorbed.  I’ve known other women to cook the rice separately and sometimes I do.  If you feel more comfortable using a rice cooker by all means use a rice cooker.  Personally, I think it tastes better to let it simmer with all the juicy flavors of the lamb and bacon and sauteed onion.

Let cool for about ten minutes and then serve and enjoy.  To top it off just sprinkle peanuts on top!!  Truly a delectable dish!

Pumpkin Muffins

So I’ve got the baking urge yet again and why not make a mess since our house is already a mess? Just over the past few days August and I have been rearranging furniture and since he is currently working it remains a mess. I don’t organize his things because if I do, neither of us will ever see them again. So while I wait for him to put books on shelves and boxes back in closets I decided to bake something…perhaps to warm our bellies since it’s absolutely freezing outside and who wouldn’t enjoy a warm pumpkin muffin while organizing?

I found this recipe on pickycook.com.  First of all, since we are watching our budget, we do not stock our fridge with heavy cream and most recipes I found use this ingredient.  Pickycook.com uses everything I already have.  I’m not much a fan of random trips to the grocery store to indulge random cravings so this recipe is perfect.

Step number one is to bake my pumpkin.  I didn’t want to assume it was still o.k to eat since we’ve had them since Halloween, but I found that you can tell if it’s bad by poking it and it’s mushy.  Ours is not.  So, I will cut our very large, rotund orange ball of goodness in half and plop in on a cookie sheet with a little water and bake it in the oven for two hours; or until the pulp is soft.

Once the pumpkin is done you’ll need to puree the pulp. That’s your golden ticket and the most important ingredient in this recipe!

Here is the recipe:

-to create some super serious and delicious pumpkin muffins with honey and spelt:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (we use spelt flour)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup canned solid-pack pumpkin (from a 15 ounce can)
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pumpkin-pie spice
2 teaspoon cinnamon – divided
pinch nutmeg
1 1/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon sugar (or honey)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

“Whisk together pumpkin, oil, eggs, pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 1/4 cups sugar, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl until smooth, then whisk in flour mixture until just combined.

Stir together 1 teaspoon cinnamon and remaining 1 tablespoon sugar in another bowl.

Divide batter among muffin cups (each should be about three-fourths full), then sprinkle tops with cinnamon-sugar mixture.

Bake until puffed and golden brown and wooden pick or skewer inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes.

Cool in pan on a rack five minutes, then transfer muffins from pan to rack and cool to warm or room temperature.”

I also read that pumpkin goes very well with warm spices such as curry.  We are eating Chicken curry this evening and I figured it would be a great compliment on our ever so salivating tongues.  Good food is worth working for in my opinion!

Cheers and Enjoy!

Thai Chicken Curry

I found this recipe in a Family Circle magazine a year ago and have loved it and re-loved it several times.  With fresh and simple ingredients and of  course that easy to love Thai flavor, I couldn’t help but want to give it a try.  This recipe easily became a Napotnik family favorite in our household.  It is so good that my mother-in-law, who is a GREAT cook, began preparing it for themselves after sampling a plate I had prepared.  I felt proud only because it wasn’t until I married a Napotnik that I really learned to cook.  If they like it then you know it’s good!

So back to the recipe.  Here’s what you’ll need.  Quick!  Scamper over to your desk and grab a piece of paper and a pen…trust me, you’re going to want to write this one down.

  • 1   can (14oz) coconut milk
  • 1 T green curry paste
  • 1 T fish sauce
  • 1 T sugar
  • 2 t’s of cornstarch
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1.5 1lbs boneless chicken breasts thinly sliced.
  • 1 package (16oz) frozen stir fry vegetables.  Personally I love the one with brocolli, baby carrots, water chesnuts, baby corn and sugar snap peas (who can resist?).
  • 3 cups Jasmine rice
  1. To begin, place one cup of the coconut milk in a large skillet and stir in the green curry paste (which is so fresh and spicy).  Bring to a simmer and cook one minute.
  2. Add remaining coconut milk,  fish sauce and sugar.
  3. Stir cornstarch into the chicken broth and add to skillet.
  4. Bring contents of skillet to a simmer (oh the glorious simmer which mixes all those wonderful Thai flavors).
  5. Add the thinly sliced chicken and cook for five minutes or until cooked through.
  6. Add thawed veggies and heat through.
  7. Serve curry over Jasmine rice.

Wow.  Yum. Delicious!  Yum!

This is a mouth watering dish and because it’s so easy and quick to make it beats going out to eat hands down…and there’s no added MSG!  Sorry, just had to put that one in there.

French Style Chicken Soup

This soup is truly delicious.  So far I’ve probably said that about every recipe on this page, but really this chicken soup beats Cambell’s hands down.  After you’ve tasted this soup de jour I’m pretty sure you will also come to the conclusion that anything ‘but’ is severly lacking in taste, volume, and nutrition.

What you’ll  need:

  • One organic chicken with no hormones added and one that is fed a feed with no pesticides.  (You are what you eat)
  • 1 lb bag of organic carrots
  • 1 lb of organic celery stalks
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 bushel of fresh organic parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:

To begin, rinse your bird in the sink.  Pull out the giblets and rinse those as well.  Then, set in a 10 quart stock pot and cover with water.  Leave about an inch of the back of the bird uncovered.  Place giblets in with the bird in the stock pot.  They add extra flavor to the broth and you take them out (if you don’t want them) later.

Bring contents of pot to a boil then reduce to med/high heat, cover, and let it gently simmer/boil for about 45-50 minutes or until the meat is tender and readily falls off the bone.   Chop and slice veggies now and set them aside for later use.

When bird is done, remove and let cool.

Add sliced celery, chopped parsley, chopped carrots, and diced onions to broth and boil for 20 minutes or until tender.  I usually add 2 tablespoons of sea salt here to add more flavor.

As veggies are simmering, pick the meat of the bone of the bird and add to the soup.  Discard any fat, skin and bones.

Season with sea salt and pepper to your liking.

Let cool for about 10 minutes, serve and enjoy this super yummy and healthy soup.  If you want extra boost in spice and immune support, add a whole bulb of diced garlic when you add the chopped veggies.


The A & K style Napotnik Spaghetti Sauce

It’s been quite a while since I’ve added a recipe to this blog. Our family life, in every single one of us Napotniks, is surrounded by good food. All natural, organic, well put together and thought out..tastes so good…especially with this wine kind of food.

So A and K style. That’s our branch of the Napotnik line. Married to the oldest of five boys that would be me…the K. August loves cooking and I admire his childhood stories of how he would watch his sweet and admirable mother while she cooked. He’s the A.

Without further adieu, here is the recipe:

1 pound of ground lamb.
1 large yellow onion
Smoked paprika to taste
1 26 oz jar of Nature’s Promsie, Organic Vodka Cream Pasta Sauce.
Salt and pepper to taste.

Directions:

Step 1. Brown the lamb. Season with smoked paprika, salt and pepper. Take out. Leave the grease.
Step 2. Chop the onions and sauté in lamb fat. Add a pinch more smoked paprika. When onions are soft and fragrant remove from heat. Add the lamb back into the sautéed onions. Add your vodka sauce.
Step 3. Simmer until all flavors blend together nicely. Pour over your choice of noodles.

Have you ever tried adding paprika to your spaghetti sauce? It’s amazing.
Super simple yet really good.

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