Wednesday Recipes

Any idea what day it is? Why, it's Hump Day, of course (otherwise known as Wednesday). Here are six yummy recipes to help you through the day, and those hump day blues, including Lasagna Roll Ups and Beef Stroganoff. Enjoy!

BLUEBERRY MUFFINS

This is from American Heart Association, and begins, “These no-added-sugar muffins make for an easy snack on the go. Soccer practice? Walk in the park? Whatever has you on the move, simply wrap a piece of waxed paper around a muffin and take it with you.”

To view this online, go to https://recipes.heart.org/en/recipes/blueberry-muffins

Ingredients

Cooking spray

2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon stevia sweetener

OR

2 stevia sweetener packets

1/2 cup corn oil

OR

1/2 cup canola oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 large egg

1 cup fat-free, plain yogurt

1 cup blueberries (fresh, or, frozen)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly spray a 12-cup muffin pan with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, and salt.

In a separate large bowl, whisk together the stevia sweetener, oil, vanilla, egg, and yogurt. Add the dry ingredients. Stir together until the mixture is just moistened but no flour is visible. Gently fold in the blueberries, reserving 24 to 36 blueberries to garnish the tops.

Spoon the batter into the muffin cups. Using the reserved blueberries, sprinkle 2 or 3 berries on top of each muffin.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Transfer the pan to a cooling rack. Let cool completely.

SLOW-COOKER CUBAN BLACK BEAN SOUP

This comes from Betty Crocker, and begins, "This all-day slow-cooker recipe isn’t your average bean soup—it’s wildly flavorful and extra hearty, and we’d bet it’ll become your favorite on the first try. The secret is in cooking the beans with a bone-in ham shank that infuses flavor into every bite. The key to getting the perfect consistency, mashing the beans, is a can’t-skip step that’s super easy. Finish your bowl with the toppings of your choice, like pico de gallo, sour cream, avocado or a squeeze of lime juice, and prepare to be impressed!"

Prep Time: 15 minutes; Total Time: 6 hours 15 minutes; Makes 8 servings

To view this online, click here.

Ingredients

Soup

1 carton (32 oz) Progresso™ chicken broth

1 ham shank (about 1 1/2 lb)

3 cans (15 oz each) Progresso™ black beans, drained, rinsed

1 can (14.5 oz) Muir Glen™ organic fire roasted diced tomatoes, undrained

1 medium onion, chopped

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

Toppings

Fresh pico de gallo, sour cream, sliced avocado, lime slices, if desired

Directions

In 5-quart slow cooker, mix all Soup ingredients except lime juice. Cover; cook on Low heat setting 6 to 8 hours or until ham easily pulls away from bone.

Remove ham shank from slow cooker. Pull ham away from bone; chop, discarding the bone. With potato masher, carefully mash black beans inside slow cooker insert. Stir in 1 cup of the ham and the lime juice. Serve soup with Toppings.

Expert Tips

Ham shanks vary in size, and some may have more meat than others. Save any remaining ham for another use.

To add more spicy heat, stir in an additional 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or top with a medium or hot fresh pico de gallo.

BEEF STROGANOFF

This is from Sam Sifton in The New York Times cooking e-newsletter. Sam wrote, "Forget what you think you remember about this putatively Russian dish, which saw its zenith in American kitchens during the 1950s and its nadir in school cafeterias two decades later. Beef stroganoff makes for an outstanding dinner: a vat of tender sautéed meat in a silken gravy studded with caramelized mushrooms, alongside a huge tangle of buttered noodles. Be careful when adding the cream at the end: Sour cream easily curdles in the heat, while crème fraîche or heavy cream offer smoother results."

Yield: 4 servings; Time: 1 hour

This was featured in "How Cooking Dinner Can Change Your Life," and can be viewed online at https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1020862-beef-stroganoff.

Ingredients

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 pounds sirloin roast, or beef tenderloin, if you’re feeling fancy

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons hot paprika

1 tablespoon neutral oil, such as canola or grapeseed

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/2 pound button mushrooms, cleaned and cut into quarters

2 small shallots, thinly sliced

12 ounces wide egg noodles

1/4 cup dry white wine

1 cup heavy cream or crème fraîche

1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish

Preparation

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

Cut the beef against the grain into 1/2-inch slices, pound lightly, then cut those slices into 1-inch-wide strips.

Add the flour, paprika, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper to a large shallow bowl and toss to combine. Dredge the strips of meat in the flour mixture, shake them to remove excess flour, then transfer them to a rimmed baking sheet.

Place a large skillet over high heat and swirl in the oil. When the oil begins to shimmer, sauté the beef slices, in two batches, until they are well browned on both sides but rare inside, 3 to 4 minutes per batch. Transfer the seared meat to the baking sheet. Turn the heat down slightly.

Add 1 tablespoon of the butter to the pan. When it has melted and started to foam, add the mushrooms, toss to coat them with the fat, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until the mushrooms have released their moisture and are a deep, dark brown, 12 to 15 minutes. About halfway into the process, add the sliced shallots and 1 tablespoon butter and stir to combine.

While the mushrooms cook, add the noodles to the boiling water, and cook until just done, about 10 minutes. Drain the noodles, and toss with the remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Set aside.

When the mushrooms and shallots are soft and caramelized, deglaze the pan with the wine, scraping at all the stuck-on bits on the pan’s surface. When the wine has reduced by about half, slowly stir in the cream, followed by the Worcestershire and mustard. Add the meat, along with any accumulated juices, and stir to combine. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the dish is hot and the beef is medium-rare, 2 to 3 minutes. Taste, and adjust the seasonings.

Serve the noodles under or alongside the stroganoff; sprinkle stroganoff with parsley.

LASAGNA

This comes from Regina Schrambling on The New York Times cooking e-newsletter. The recipe begins, "In 2001, Regina Schrambling went on a week long odyssey in search of the ultimate lasagna recipe. She tested several, and finally found her ideal in a mash-up of recipes from Giuliano Bugialli and Elodia Rigante, both Italian cookbook authors.

"'If there were central casting for casseroles, this one deserved the leading role. But its beauty was more than cheese deep. This was the best lasagna I had ever eaten. The sauce was intensely flavored, the cheeses melted into creaminess as if they were bechamel, the meat was just chunky enough, and the noodles put up no resistance to the fork. Most important, the balance of pasta and sauce was positively Italian. At last I could understand why my neighbor Geoff had told me, as I dragged home more bags in our elevator, that all-day lasagna is the only kind worth making.'"

Yield: 8 to 10 servings; Time: 4 hours

This was featured in "The Noodle and I: A Face-Off at the Oven", and can be viewed online at https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/9530-lasagna.

Ingredients

For the sauce:

1 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 medium red onions, finely diced

2 large cloves minced garlic

8 ounces pancetta, diced

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 cups good red wine, preferably Italian

2 28-ounce cans Italian plum tomatoes

3 tablespoons tomato paste

3/4 pound ground sirloin

1/4 cup freshly grated pecorino Romano

2 eggs

10 sprigs fresh parsley, leaves only, washed and dried

2 large whole cloves garlic

1/2 cup flour

1 pound Italian sausage, a mix of hot and sweet

For the lasagna:

1 15-ounce container ricotta cheese

2 extra-large eggs

2 cups freshly grated pecorino Romano

1/2 cup chopped parsley

1 pound mozzarella, grated

16 sheets fresh lasagna noodles, preferably Antica Pasteria

Preparation

For the sauce, heat 1/2 cup oil in a large heavy Dutch oven or kettle over low heat. Add the onions, minced garlic and pancetta, and cook, stirring, for 10 minutes, until the onions are wilted. Season liberally with salt and pepper. Raise heat slightly, add the wine and cook until it is mostly reduced, about 20 minutes. Crush the tomatoes into the pan, and add their juice. Add the tomato paste and 2 cups lukewarm water. Simmer for 1 hour.

Combine the sirloin, cheese and eggs in a large bowl. Chop the parsley with the whole garlic until fine, then stir into the beef mixture. Season lavishly with salt and pepper. Using your hands, mix until all the ingredients are well blended. Shape into meatballs and set aside.

Heat the remaining oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Dust the meatballs lightly with flour, shaking off excess, and lay into the hot oil. Brown the meatballs on all sides (do not cook through) and transfer to the sauce.

In a clean skillet, brown the sausages over medium-high heat. Transfer to the sauce. Simmer 1 1/2 hours.

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the ricotta, eggs, pecorino Romano, parsley and all but 1 cup of the mozzarella. Season well with salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly.

Remove the meatballs and sausage from the sauce, and set aside to cool slightly, then chop coarsely. Spoon a thick layer of sauce into the bottom of a 9-by-12-inch lasagna pan. Cover with a layer of noodles. Spoon more sauce on top, then add a third of the meat and a third of the cheese mixture. Repeat for 2 more layers, using all the meat and cheese. Top with a layer of noodles, and cover with the remaining sauce. Sprinkle reserved mozzarella evenly over the top. Bake 30 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

MAANGCHI'S CHEESE BULDAK (FIRE CHICKEN)

This is from Maangchi and adapted by Sam Sifton at The New York Times cooking e-newsletter. Sam wrote, "Cheese buldak is a Korean dish that is incredibly easy to prepare: a marinade of red-pepper paste and red-pepper flakes that becomes a fiery sauce for braised chicken, which is then served beneath a cloak of broiler-melted mozzarella. A child could do it, or an adult who often acts like one. Mine is an adaptation of a recipe that owes its deepest debt to Emily Kim, the Korean web star known as Maangchi, whose video for cheese buldak has been viewed on YouTube more than seven million times. (Omit the rice cakes if you can’t find them easily!) Thanks to subtitling by her fans, the video can be read in 24 languages. There are thousands and thousands of comments below it, mostly positive. One reads, 'Can you be my mom?'"

Yield: 4 servings; Time: 30 minutes

This was featured in "Melt Away the Pain of This Korean Fire Chicken With Cheese", and can be viewed online at https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1020366-maangchis-cheese-buldak-fire-chicken.

Ingredients

1/4 cup gochugaru (Korean red-pepper flakes)

2 tablespoons gochujang (Korean red-pepper paste)

3 tablespoons light brown sugar

3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced (about 2 tablespoons)

1 (1-inch) piece ginger, minced (about 1 tablespoon)

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 3/4-inch cubes

2 tablespoons neutral oil, such as canola or peanut

4 ounces sliced Korean rice cakes (optional)

6 to 8 ounces low-moisture mozzarella, thinly sliced

2 scallions, sliced, for garnish

Preparation

Combine the gochugaru, gochujang, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, soy sauce and black pepper in a medium bowl and mix well. Add the chicken and stir until it is well coated.

If you’re using the rice cakes, swirl the oil into a large, oven-safe skillet set over medium-high heat and wait for it to shimmer. Add the rice cakes and cook, turning the cakes often, until they are a little crisp, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer the rice cakes to a small bowl and set aside. If you’re not using rice cakes, simply swirl the oil into the pan and move along to the next step.

Add the chicken mixture to the pan along with 1/4 cup water. Cover and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes, adding the rice cakes halfway through, if using. Meanwhile, heat the broiler in your oven.Remove the chicken from the heat. Cover the pan with the sliced mozzarella, then slide the pan under the broiler. Cook until the cheese has melted and browned in spots, about 2 minutes. Remove from the oven, and sprinkle with scallions. Serve immediately, with rice.

LASAGNA ROLL UPS

This comes from GNelson at Allrecipes. The recipe begins, "Thick and hearty rolls filled with ricotta, Parmesan, and a beefy tomato sauce. A fun spin on a family favorite!"

Prep Time: 30 minutes; Cook Time: 50 minutes; Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes; Yield: 9 servings

View this online at https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/228649/lasagna-roll-ups-ii/.

Ingredients

1 pound ground beef

1/4 white onion, chopped

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1 (26 ounce) jar chunky tomato sauce (such as Ragu®)

3 tablespoons white sugar

18 lasagna noodles

1 (15 ounce) container ricotta cheese

1 egg, beaten

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 (12 ounce) package shredded mozzarella cheese, or as needed

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

Cook and stir ground beef, onion, garlic powder, and oregano in a large skillet over medium heat until onion is tender and beef is browned, about 10 minutes. Add tomato sauce and sugar; simmer until sauce is heated through, about 10 minutes.

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna in the boiling water, stirring occasionally until cooked through but firm to the bite, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease a 9x13-inch casserole dish.

Mix ricotta cheese, egg, parsley, and 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese together in a bowl.

Place a lasagna noodle on a work surface. Spoon one layer of ricotta cheese mixture, one layer meat sauce, and one layer mozzarella cheese atop the lasagna noodle; top with another lasagna noodle. Roll up the stuffed lasagna noodles in the jelly-roll style; place in the prepared casserole dish. Repeat with remaining lasagna noodles, ricotta cheese mixture, meat sauce, and mozzarella cheese. Spread a spoonful of meat sauce atop each lasagna roll; top with remaining mozzarella cheese and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese.

Bake in the preheated oven until cheese is melted and bubbling, 30 to 35 minutes.