Celebrating Ten Years

Over the past ten years, the writers and contributors to Seasoned Cooking have helped to build an online archive of well over 2,000 recipes. While there's no way we can showcase them all (your best bet for that is to browse our recipe index), I wanted to take a little time to revisit ten recipes of different flavors, types and origins to give you but a whisper of what this site holds in store for you. And now, without further introduction, here is a sampling of the last ten years of Seasoned Cooking:

Thai-Inspired Noodles with Broth

The broth in this spicy soup gets its kick from a combination of ginger, garlic and Thai red curry paste. It is chock full of delicious vegetables, tender chicken and soft noodles.
  • 3 c. chicken broth
  • 1 T. minced ginger
  • 1 T. minced garlic
  • 1/8 tsp. Thai red curry paste
  • 5 oz. thin spaghetti
  • Cooking spray
  • 4 oz. sliced mushrooms
  • 1/2 red pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 sweet onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 c. snap peas
  • 1 c. cooked chicken, sliced into strips
  • 2 T. sliced green onions
  • 2 tsp. black sesame seeds
  • Lemon juice

Combine the chicken broth, ginger, garlic and curry paste in a large saucepan over high heat. When the mixture begins to boil, cook the spaghetti in the broth until tender.

Meanwhile, in a wok, heat the cooking spray over high heat. Add the mushrooms, pepper, onion and snap peas and cook for 2 minutes. Add 1 ounce of the broth and the cooked chicken to the wok, cover and remove from the heat. Allow to sit for about 3 minutes or until the vegetables are crisp-tender.

To serve, spoon the noodles evenly between two bowls. Top the noodles with the vegetable-chicken mixture and ladle the broth over it all. Garnish with the green onions and sesame seeds and squeeze a little fresh lemon juice over each bowl before serving.

  • Yields: 2 servings
  • Preparation Time: 20 minutes
  • Brownie Pizza

    Boxes of chocolate and chocolate roses are nice, but you might want to think outside the box with a creative “pizza” that features a brownie crust and toppings that include two types of chocolate, coconut and pecans. Oh, how sweet it is!
    • 1 package of your favorite brownie mix
    • 2 teaspoons instant coffee crystals or flavored coffee mix (like General Mills International Coffees)
    • 1/4 cup coffee liqueur (optional)
    • 1/3 cup coconut
    • 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips (milk chocolate, if you prefer)
    • 1/4 cup white chocolate chips
    • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans

    Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Depending on how thick you want your "crust", spray nonstick coating on the bottom of a round pie or pizza pan (10-14 inches in diameter). Prepare the brownie mix as indicated on the package. Add coffee crystals and coffee liqueur, if desired, to the mix and blend well. Turn into your prepared pan, spreading the batter until level and to approximately 1/2 inch from the rim. Mix together the coconut, chips, and pecans in a separate bowl. Sprinkle evenly over the brownie mixture. Bake on the center rack of your oven about 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool, then cut into "pizza" wedges.

  • Yields: 8 servings
  • Preparation Time: 1 hour
  • 30-Minute Crab Cakes

    A bright, fresh meal of sumptuous crab cakes over a bed of spring’s newest greens is a wonderful way to welcome friends and family to your table!
    • 1 egg
    • 1/4 c. mayonnaise
    • 1/2 tsp. ground chipotle pepper
    • 1 tsp. grainy mustard
    • 1 tsp. Old Bay seasoning -- or your favorite seafood seasoning
    • 3/4 c. fine saltine crumbs, divided
    • 9 oz. shredded crabmeat
    • 1/4 c. finely sliced green onion
    • 2 T. vegetable oil
    • 1 T. butter

    Whisk the first five ingredients (egg through Old Bay seasoning) together in a medium bowl. Add 1/4 cup of the saltine crumbs, the crabmeat and green onions; mix to combine. Using an ice cream disher, form six patties with the mixture.

    Dredge each of the patties in the remaining saltine crumbs to form a uniform coating on each of the crab cakes.

    Heat the oil and butter over medium-high heat in a large skillet. When the butter is melted, swirl the pan to evenly distribute the oil and butter. Fry the prepared crab cakes, turning once, until they are golden brown ... about 2-3 minutes per side. Serve the crab cakes over a green salad, if desired.

  • Yields: 2-3 servings
  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes
  • Pork Chops with Cherry-Wine Sauce

    Why not surprise your friends and family with an elegant meal of sautéed pork chops with a richly-flavored sauce that spotlights your favorite red wine and tart cherries? It is sure to be the star of the feast!
    • 1 T. olive oil
    • 4 center cut, boneless pork chops
    • 2/3 c. dry red wine
    • 1/3 c. beef broth
    • 3 T. honey
    • 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
    • 1/4 tsp. salt
    • 1/4 tsp. dry mustard
    • 2 tsp. cornstarch
    • 2 T. balsamic vinegar
    • 1 (16 oz.) can pitted dark cherries

    Add the oil to a large sauté pan. Brown the chops on both sides; reduce the heat and continue cooking until no pink remains and the meat is well cooked. Remove to a platter and keep warm.

    Combine the wine, broth, honey, thyme, salt and mustard in the sauté pan and bring the mixture to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes. Combine the cornstarch and vinegar and add it to the wine mixture. Bring to a boil and boil for one minute. Stir in the cherries.

    Return the chops to the pan and heat through before serving.

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes
  • Eggs Bruschetta

    Breakfast in bed should be savored. Make this romantic tradition even brighter with a creative meal that hides a perfectly cooked egg in a piece of crunchy toast and tops it all with an Italian-inspired tomato relish. For the topping:
    • 1 large, ripe tomato
    • 1 T. finely chopped red onion -- optional
    • 1 T. extra virgin olive oil
    • 2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
    • 1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
    • Pinch kosher salt
    For the toast:
    • 2 slices multi-grain bread, cut 1/2" thick
    • 2 T. margarine or butter
    • 2 large eggs

    To make the topping, coarsely chop the tomato, place in a bowl, and mix the remaining topping ingredients in. Allow the mixture to rest and the flavors to blend while you prepare the toast.

    To prepare the toast, cut a 2-inch diameter hole into the center of each slice of bread. Spread both sides of the bread with margarine or butter and place in a nonstick skillet heated over medium-high heat.

    Carefully crack an egg into the hole in each of the slices of bread and reduce the heat to medium. Allow the egg and bread to cook for about 2 minutes and then carefully flip the bread-egg combination over and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes. Remove the toast from the skillet and place each piece on a serving plate. Spoon the tomato topping over the toast and serve immediately.

  • Yields: 2 servings
  • Preparation Time: 15 minutes
  • Asian-Grilled Beef Tenderloin

    Join the ranks of the grill-masters with this intensely-flavored dish. The secret is in the special marinade that combines unlikely ingredients like maple syrup and lime juice to create a blend of flavors that will have you looking for more opportunities to fire up the grill!
    • 1/2 c. rice vinegar
    • 1/4 c. red wine vinegar
    • 1/3 c. lime juice
    • 1/3 c. soy sauce
    • 2/3 c. ketchup
    • 6 T. garlic-ginger paste
    • 3 T. maple syrup
    • 1/4 c. hoisin sauce
    • 2 T. toasted sesame oil
    • 3 T. brown sugar
    • 2 T. dried parsley
    • 1 T. crushed red pepper flakes
    • 2 lb. whole beef tenderloin (approximately)

    In a medium bowl, combine the vinegars, lime juice, soy sauce, ketchup, ginger-garlic paste, maple syrup and hoisin sauce. Using a wire whisk, stir it briskly to blend evenly. Add the toasted sesame oil, brown sugar, dried parsley and crushed red pepper flakes and whisk again until the sugar is dissolved and the dried parsley and crushed red pepper flakes are evenly distributed throughout the sauce. This recipe will make about 3 cups of sauce. Pour about 2 cups of the sauce into a resealable glass jar to refrigerate. This leftover sauce can be used on everything from ribs to chicken.

    Place the beef tenderloin into a large resealable plastic bag and pour the remaining sauce (there will be about 1 cup) over the tenderloin. Seal the bag and turn to evenly coat the meat. Refrigerate 6 hours or overnight, making sure that you turn the bag once.

    Prepare a medium-high heated grill. Remove the tenderloin from the bag and grill it directly on the grill for about 20-25 minutes, turning once, or until the center of the meat registers 140 degrees on an instant-read thermometer. You can cook the meat to a higher end temperature, although I recommend avoiding anything higher than 155 degrees. Remove the meat from the grill and place it on a serving plate covered with aluminum foil. Allow the meat to rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing and serving.

    If desired, the marinade can be saved and poured into a saucepan and heated to at least 140 degrees and then used as a dipping sauce for the meat. Do not save the marinade unless you first cook it to destroy any harmful bacteria!

  • Yields: 4-6 servings
  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes, plus marinating time
  • Seared Tuna Salad

    This fantastic salad has something for everyone with its great blend of vegetables, hard-boiled eggs, seared tuna and a tangy dressing made with everything from sweet chili pepper to grainy mustard. Add to that the fact that it's beautiful to look at and tasty to eat and you'll be making it again and again.
    • 2 small russet potatoes
    • 8 oz. green beans
    • 3 c. mixed greens
    • 1 ripe tomato
    • 1/2 English cucumber
    • 8 baby carrots
    • 2 hard-boiled eggs
    • 1/2 c. kalamata olives -- optional
    • 1 T. finely diced red onion
    • 1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 T. red wine vinegar
    • 1 T. grainy mustard
    • 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
    • 1/2 tsp. ground sweet chili pepper
    • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
    • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
    • 1/4 tsp. ground hot red pepper
    • 6-8 oz. sushi-grade tuna steak
    • 1 T. peanut oil

    Clean the potatoes with a stiff brush and water and dice into small chunks. Place the potatoes into a medium-sized microwavable bowl, cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap, and cook on HIGH for 10 minutes.

    Meanwhile, clean the green beans and snip them into 1-inch pieces. When the potatoes are done microwaving, add the green beans to the bowl, mix the vegetables briefly, and replace the plastic wrap. Allow the vegetables to sit in the covered bowl for 10 minutes.

    Arrange the mix greens evenly among two serving plates. Cut the tomato into eight wedges, the cucumber into bite-sized chunks, and the carrots into matchsticks. Peel the hard-boiled eggs and slice each into two pieces, lengthwise. Arrange these vegetables and the olives on the greens.

    In a small resealable jar, combine the red onion, extra virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar, mustard, salt and black pepper. Shake vigorously to combine and pour the contents of the jar onto the potatoes and green beans. Stir the mixture to combine and add a generous scoop to each serving plate.

    Combine the ground sweet chili pepper, garlic powder, ground ginger, and ground hot red pepper and rub the spice mixture into the tuna steak.

    Heat the peanut oil over high heat in a small skillet and sear the tuna for one minute on each side. Remove the tuna to a cutting board and slice it thinly across the grain. Arrange the slices of seared tuna on the serving plates and serve immediately.

  • Yields: 2 servings
  • Preparation Time: 45 minutes
  • Chicken Biriyani

    Formerly relegated to a special occasion dish because of its long preparation time, a rice cooker makes fast work of this lovely Indian favorite. The blend of spices used to make the dish will have your family wandering to the kitchen to enjoy the aroma before they get to dig in at the table!
    • 1 T. vegetable oil
    • 2 T. garam masala -- look for this in the ethnic section with the spices
    • 2 T. minced ginger
    • 1 T. minced garlic
    • 1 finely diced onion
    • 3 tomatoes, chopped
    • 2 tsp. red chile powder
    • 2 tsp. tumeric
    • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into pieces
    • 1 c. fat-free plain yogurt
    • 2 c. basmati rice
    • 5 c. water
    • 2 cinnamon sticks
    • 6 green cardamom pods

    Pour the oil into a rice cooker turned on the HIGH setting. Add the spices (garam masala through garlic) and the onion. Sauté until the onion is golden and the spices are fragrant.

    Add the tomatoes, chile powder and turmeric; cook until the tomatoes are soft, about 5 minutes.

    Add the chicken and yogurt; cook for an additional 5 minutes.

    Add the rice, water, cinnamon sticks (break them into two pieces each) and cardamom pods. Stir, cover and cook until the rice cooker switches itself to the WARM (or OFF on some models) position.

    Serve hot and garnish with cilantro, mint and golden raisins.

    • Yields: 6 servings
    • Preparation Time: 20 minutes plus steaming time -- approximately 45 minutes total

    Pumpkin-Chocolate Chip Muffins

    Muffins are a great way to showcase seasonal flavors. Here, pumpkin and chocolate come together to make a moist, delicious muffin that’s equally at home on the breakfast table or as a coffee break snack at the office.
    • 2 eggs
    • 1 cup skim milk
    • 1 cup pureed pumpkin
    • ½ cup canola oil
    • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
    • 1½ cups whole wheat flour
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 1 T. baking powder
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • 1 tsp. cinnamon
    • 1 tsp. nutmeg
    • 12 oz. semisweet miniature chocolate chips (1 bag)

    Heat the oven to 400 °F.

    Beat the egg slightly. Stir in the milk, pumpkin, and oil. Stir in the dry ingredients. Fold in the chocolate chips.

    Fill muffin cups that are lined with paper cups and bake them for 20 minutes.

  • Yields: 24 muffins
  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes
  • Baked Sweet Potatoes and Apples

    The natural sweetness in both apples and sweet potatoes are intensified when baked. In this recipe, they come together to make a side dish that will impress everyone gathered together for dinner. No marshmallows are needed for this truly stellar offering.
    • 4 large sweet potatoes
    • 2 tablespoons whipped natural canola margarine, melted
    • 1/2 cup maple syrup
    • 2 large apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
    • Cinnamon
    • Ground cloves
    • 1/2 cup apple juice

    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

    Bake or microwave the sweet potatoes until done but still firm. When cool enough to handle, cut them into 1/2-inch-thick slices.

    Oil a deep, 1 1/2 quart baking casserole. Arrange half of the sweet potato slices on the bottom. Drizzle with half of the butter, then half of the maple syrup. Top with the apple slices. Sprinkle lightly with the cinnamon and cloves. Repeat the layers, then pour the apple juice over the top. Bake for 30 minutes, covered, then for another 10 minutes, uncovered. Serve at once or cover and keep warm until needed.

  • Yields: 6 servings
  • Preparation Time: 1 hour
  • Here's to a seasoned lifestyle!