Saturday, July 31, 2010

Summer Fiesta

Mark has been dying to use his new Weber charcoal grill, so I bought 3 chicken breasts and marinaded them over night.  Mark is the king of the grill, he says the key to being a great grill master is, "When you think it's done, take it off and to trust your instincts".  Easier said than done, (I think) that is why I leave the grilling to him.  He is all about keeping the flavor and keeping the meat moist!  There is nothing worse than a dried up piece of chicken!!!  Please don't boil your chicken before you grill it, it completely dries the meat out.

Balsamic Chicken Marinade 

3 chicken breast
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper

Wash and place the chicken in a large storage bag, and put all the ingredients in.  Make sure all the air is out of the bag, and move the chicken around.  Let it marinate overnight, playing with  it a few times the next day.

Place the chicken breast over a piping hot charcoal grill, 10 minutes on one side 6 on the other (or there abouts).

To me, a large chicken breast is pretty overwhelming, so I had Mark thinly slice the chicken into 1/4 inch slices.  If you don't have a good sharp knife set, I would definitely recommend  Calphalon!  It is one of our staple cooking utensils!

We then drizzled Stonewall Kitchen's, Balsamic Fig Dressing on the chicken.  I use to work at Stonewall Kitchen when we lived in Portland, Me and it was the BEST job!!  It truly was a dream job, if you like food.

Corn Relish (Marks mom's recipe)

8 ears of farm fresh corn
1 1/2 red bell pepper
1 1/2 green bell pepper
1 med. red onion
2/3 cup sugar
3/4 cup vinegar (I used apple cider)
1/3 cup canola oil
salt and pepper to taste

Fill a large pot with 2 cups or so of water, and cook the corn for 10 minutes (lid on). Dissolve sugar in a bowl with the vinegar and canola oil.  In a separate bowl dice up peppers, and onion into small pieces.  Using a sharp knife, cut down the sides of the corn and place all the kernels into the bowl with the peppers and onion.  Add the wet ingredients to the veggies, and season with salt and pepper.

I made this recipe early in the morning, so it had time to marinate.  It will keep in your refrigerator for well over a week (if it lasts that long).
I love this recipe because it has so many favors, sweet, sour,  and savory.  It is a perfect complement to any BBQ.  And it is also ascetically pleasing.

If you don't have fresh ears of corn, I'm sure frozen can work, but it won't be nearly as good.

The other side

2 avocados 
15 fresh cherry sized fresh mozzarella
fresh lemon juice

Cut the avocado in half (remove pit by taking a knife and slamming it into the center and twist the knife, be careful removing pit from knife.  I just place knife along by sink and drag the pit off...if that makes sense).  Cut slices into the avocado and carefully remove slices with a large spoon.  Sprinkle with lemon juice so it doesn't brown.  Cut the mozzarella in half, and serve together with avocado.  I also drizzled Stonewall Kitchen's Balsamic Fig Dressing on this.

This meal was a fiesta in your mouth.  It was good eating things separately or getting a bit of everything and putting it all in your mouth.  The texture of the "other side" together was soft and paired with the dressing was delicious.  The chicken was so moist, and when it is cut so thinly you can really taste the flavor and juices.  The corn relish went really well with everything.  It added a fresh crunch that was an added treat.  Mark and I both enjoyed eating and making this meal!!!!  A+


Mary Proulx

Friday, July 30, 2010

Grilled Fish and Grilled Veggies

Summer is definitely the time of year to experiment on the grill.  In years past I have even made pizza on the grill, I will share that with you another time.  So last night I was craving a good steamed fish, with farm fresh veggies!  If you are fortunate enough to live in a place to get farm fresh veggies, do it!!  You can't beat the quality, taste, or price!  Plus, you are helping local people, in which I am a HUGE fan of supporting local business.   And as the saying goes: "It's Keene to shop locally"!

Steamed pocketed Haddock

1 3/4 lbs. Haddock (2-3 haddock fillets)- I bought ones with skins on for more flavor.
2 lemons (zest one)
bunch of fresh dill
Aluminum foil

Place one haddock fillet on 2 ft. or so of aluminum foil, sprinkle 2 tsps or so of lemon zest on fillet.  Rip 2-3 tbs of fresh dill and sporadically place along the fillet. Cut up half the lemon and squeeze then place them on the fish.  Fold up the aluminum foil so it pouch like (and no juices can leak out).  Place on a preheated gas grill for 12 minutes.  The fillet should be juicy and flaky!!

*This is a super fresh meal, and the lemon and dill together are truly a dynamic duo!!!  You can use any white fish when using this recipe.  It is super easy, cheap and delicious!  It would be really fun to make these at a dinner party with your friends, because it an easy clean-up and you can look like a professional when you use this cooking technique.

Grilled summer squash

2 or more medium summer squashes
olive oil (enough to coat)
salt +pepper

Cut the summer squash in half, then cut each half into four long strips (thick enough to be put directly on the grill) In a 13x9 inch pan place the cut up summer squashes, drizzle the olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Flip with tongs to get coated well.  Place on the grill and flip once.  Grill both sides for 4 minute each (or until golden).

*You can't beat fresh veggies on the grill, and by adding only olive oil and salt and pepper you really keep the purity of the veggies.  The summer squash has a (light) smokey flavor and it simply melts in your mouth!!!

Buon appetito,

Mary Proulx

Ps.  A special thanks to Mark who does the grilling part!!!!

Happy Birthday Eko

So yesterday was my babes birthday, not Mark, Mr. Eko!  I should explain to those of you that don't know him just how his name came to be.  Mark and I are HUGE fans of LOST.  And Mr. Eko was an enormous Nigerian drug lord, who's character on LOST had a surprisingly faithful heart.  We thought it was pretty comical that Eko is a 13 lb. Lhasa Apso.  He has been the highlight to my everyday!  So this was my day to spoil him, even more than I already do!!!!  I did some research on dog friendly foods that I could put into a cake, that both he and we could enjoy.

Eko's Birthday Cake

2 cups of water                          3 cups whole wheat flour (or unbleached white)
2 ripe bananas                            1/2 tsp baking powder
1 carrot                                       1/2 cup carob powder
1/4 cup peanut butter (organic)
1 egg
1/8 tsp vanilla
3 tbs honey

Preheat oven to 350.  Mix bananas, honey, peanut butter, and carrots together in blender.  Slowly add water and the rest of the wet ingredients.  In a separate bowl add dry and mix well, slowly add 1/2 cup of dry mix at a time until incorporated.  Grease 9X13 inch pan.  It took me 45 min to bake, but it may take bit longer.  Use a toothpick in the center to check to see if it is done.

When I took it out, it looked very dry.  It was not your typical birthday cake.


1/2 cup peanut butter (organic)
4 ounces of room temp. cream cheese
4 tbl honey
1/4 cup carob powder
* white chocolate chips to decorate

* Mark thought I could sell the recipe to Powerbar.  It is definitely a healthy tasting treat...a bit too bland for me (would need to add something), but carob is an acquired taste.  I have a huge thing of carob powder, so I will be using it in later recipes to use it up.

*Also, I made Eko a special dinner.  He LOVES red peppers, so I made a red pepper omelette!

Thursday, July 29, 2010


          Hello Friends, and for those who don't know me my name is Mary Proulx.  Ever since I can remember (my memory isn't that great) I have always LOVED FOOD (well most things)!  Thankfully as I've gotten older, my palate has changed.  Growing up I was a picky eater, and I was always the last person at the table.  The worst was when we had spinach. Once it was cold there was a chance that I would be there till past my bed time.  I went so far as to put fish in my napkin and then put the napkin in my pocket, oh those were the days.  Now at 29 I have a passion for food!  There is not one thing that I have tried that I wouldn't eat again.  Now there are things that I don't really care for, and may not make, or maybe it's that I haven't perfected making it???
          In this blog I will share with you foods that I make throughout the week. My goal with this blog is to come up with as many fun, fresh, new and cost effective recipes to share with all of you and my husband (Mark Miller).  Mark and I are both athletes, so we eat A LOT!  So I won't be putting down serving sizes (I will leave that up to you).  Most recipes I've either made up, have been past down through my family, or are inspirations from recipes I see in magazines, cookbooks, TV, or that I've tried in a restaurant.
        One of my favorite things to do is try to figure out what was in a recipe.  For instance the other day I was blueberry picking and they have the cutest little tea place next door, so of course I have to go in and order something. I had a chocolate croissant and a freshly brewed black/green iced tea.  I bought two chocolate croissants for dessert, which I heated up and put maple syrup, a scoop of chocolate ice cream, and some fresh whipped cream!!!!  TO DIE FOR!  So I wrote to my friend Meg, and told her about it and said that I was now going to figure out how to make it!  So you will have to stay tuned to see how it goes.  Also, if you are in the Keene NH area you have to check out  Monadnock Blueberries (in Troy NH...15 min from Keene).  There are acres of blueberry and raspberry bushes, and the view of Mt. Monadnock is breathtaking!!!   I took my friend Meg there the other day, and she is going to move back to the Keene area because of its beauty.
           I also have to mention that I am not a professional cook, so I do make mistakes.  When figuring out a recipe it can take a few tries (but that is the fun part), and I don't have any complaints from Mark!  Like I said, I like to "perfect" the recipe!
           Now for some brief thank you's before I get cooking!  First of all to Mark for inspiring me to do this.  He is so grateful for my cooking, and he has always been my biggest cooking supporter.  My dad who has always inspired me!  He never uses a cookbook and he never remembers what goes into his recipes (he wings things) but it is always amazing.  He has a good sense of what goes well together.  My friend Mrs. Matthews ( my third mom), who always has my back!  She is constantly coming up with ideas for me to share my cooking. Sell lunches to school teachers, sell cupcakes to local stores, etc.... And lastly my two brothers Eli, and John (who both use to cook for restaurants growing up) for making me the luckiest little sister!  You two inspire me with your passion for food and life!  I love you all!!

Buona giornata!

Mary Proulx

(Also, some people may think I use exclamation points too much but it is only because I am a really excited person!!  wink, wink)

Ps.  I would love for you all to leave any comments, or questions.  Also, please any of your favorite recipes.