Quick & Easy Potsticker Dipping Sauce

I love ordering the steamed dumplings at our local Chinese takeout. I’d say it’s 50% because I love the dumplings and 50% because I love the dipping sauce. True story. So tonight when I made homemade pot stickers for dinner, I needed a quick sauce to go with it. I had too many things going on the stove, so I didn’t want to add another thing. I have no idea if this is authentic, but it was good!! If you want it spicy, go nuts with the sriracha . I just used a small squeeze so my kids would eat it!


Zesty Chipotle Sauce

One day last week, my boss was in frantic mode. We were on the phone discussing a project while I was on my way back to the office from the dentist and he mentioned he hadn’t eaten lunch yet. I offered to pick him up something and he immediately requested Subway. Like any loyal Subway diner, he immediately spouted off his order, which, to my surprise, included chipotle sauce. Whenever I’m at Subway, I get the same thing – every.single.time. (If you’re keeping score, that would be – Turkey, Swiss, spicy mustard, lettuce, tomato, olives, pickle, jalapenos on wheat.) I never think about the other sauces they serve there, but this particular lunch order got me curious.

Keeping with my “I should be able to make that” mode, I set out to figure out what exactly was in that delicious chipotle sauce of theirs. I experimented with several versions until I arrived here. I served this on fish tacos (which I will post later this week!) and you could also use it as a spread on a sandwich.

Warning – it’s SPICY. If you don’t like heat, definitely cut the chipotle part in half. It will still be tasty, just not quite as hot!!

Zesty Chipotle Sauce

1/4 cup light mayonnaise
1/4 cup light sour cream
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 chipotle in adobo (from a can), finely diced
1/2 tsp sauce from the chipotle in adobo can
1/4 tsp kosher salt

1) Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Refrigerate 30 minutes. Keeps well for 5 days in the refrigerator.

Yield: about 8 servings (1 Tbsp each)

(56) Gratin Au Chou

One of my favorite memories from elementary school was taking French classes. We went to a private school and we did French every week. It was mostly puppets and flash cards and LOTS of singing. One of the songs we sang was “Savez-vous planter les chous?” (that means “Do you know how to plant the cabbages?”) and was meant to help you learn body parts. The French also refer to chou as sweetheart (Ma petite chou literally means “my little cabbage”, but figuratively means “my sweetie”). All that to say, I love chou – it has a special place in my heart!! I love cabbage, but chou is even better 🙂

I was trying to come up with what to do with my cabbages from the CSA box and since I can’t really chew much right now, this was the perfect fit! The original recipe kind of stunk and I ended up having to really improvise as I went along, but I wrote it all down and will hopefully not lead you astray!! The flavor of the sauce is what really wins this dish. Mixing it all up after it goes on your plate = HEAVEN! Oh and the original recipe said serves 6, but I can only assume that’s as a main dish. I say 8-10 as a side. Great with roasted chicken!

Gratin Au Chou

Yield: 8-10 servings (as a side)
Source: Adapted from an online recipe

1 medium Savoy cabbage (or a small Savoy and a small green cabbage is what I did…)
2 onions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons cooking oil
1 1/2 cups white rice
1 pound very ripe tomatoes, chopped
2 cups water
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons flour
2 cups milk (I used skim, but use whatever pleases you!)
1/2 pound grated cheese (Gruyère or Swiss)
salt and pepper

Cut the cabbage in quarters, wash well, and cut out the hard inner core. Chop the leaves and cook the cabbage for 10 minutes in a large pot of boiling water. You want it to be soft but not dead. Drain and set aside.

Heat the oil in a frying pan and add the onions and garlic. Cook for five minutes. Add the rice and cook for two minutes, stirring. Add the chopped tomatoes and 1 cup of water. Cook for 10 minutes or until the rice is just tender, adding up to 1 cup more water as needed. You want your rice to be soft but not soupy…

Meanwhile make a bechamel sauce by melting the butter in a saucepan and stirring in the flour. Cook the roux for two minutes and than slowly whisk in milk. Heat on medium heat until nearly boiling and thickened, then gradually add half of the cheese while stirring. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper (I used 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper). Oh and if you’re like me and can’t read directions properly and you just added ALL of the cheese, no worries. It will still be yummy!

To construct casserole, butter a large baking dish. Beginning with the cabbage, layer the cabbage and the rice mixture. Aim to get three even layers of each. Pour the bechamel sauce evenly over the top. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese and bake at 350° F for 30 minutes. Serve the cabbage casserole hot.

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(102) Sirloin Steak with Dijon-Port Sauce

This was an easy, delicious weeknight meal!! I think next time I would double the sauce as mine reduced down really quickly and a bit too much for me! I also think the sauce needed a little salt, but do so at your own taste!!

Sirloin Steak with Dijon-Port Sauce

Source: Cooking Light, October 2004
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: about 3 ounces steak, 2 tablespoons sauce, and 1 cup noodles)

The port and mustard create a rich, sweet, and spicy sauce. Serve the steak and sauce over noodles to soak up every last drop.

3 cups uncooked medium egg noodles
1 pound trimmed sirloin (about 1 inch thick)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Cooking spray
1/2 cup port or other sweet red wine
1/4 cup minced shallots
1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
1/2 cup less-sodium beef broth
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

Cook noodles according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain; keep warm.

While noodles cook, heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle both sides of steak with salt and pepper. Lightly coat steak with cooking spray. Add steak to pan; cook 4 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Transfer meat to a platter; keep warm.

Add port to pan, scraping to loosen browned bits. Stir in shallots and garlic; cook 45 seconds, stirring frequently. Add beef broth; bring to a boil. Cook 20 seconds; remove from heat. Add mustard and thyme, stirring with a whisk.

Cut steak diagonally across grain into thin slices. Serve steak and sauce with the pasta.

Calories 344 (29% from fat); Fat 11g (sat 4.1g,mono 4.6g,poly 0.8g); Iron 4.3mg; Cholesterol 97mg; Calcium 36mg; Carbohydrate 23.6g; Sodium 501mg; Protein 28.5g; Fiber 1g

(84) Garlic Aioli

Garlic Aioli

This goes with the Beer-Battered Asparagus recipe, but honestly this has so many uses. It would be great over some grilled fish or as a dip for vegetables.

Source: Guy’s Big Bite (foodtv.com)
Yield: 1 cup

1 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 lemon, zested
4 tablespoons finely minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced fresh tarragon leaves
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

In a food processor, combine all ingredients well. Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.

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