Virginia Willis Blog

How to Cook Leeks: Sautéed Leeks and Celery

How to Cook Leeks: Sauteed Leeks and Celery on www.virginiawillis.com

 How to Cook Leeks

Yikes! Take a look at that muddy mess of leeks! Soil or grit in food is the culinary equivalent to nails scratching a chalkboard. Yet buried beneath that dirt and soil are real kitchen treasures. Leeks are used as a base for soups, stews, stocks, and sauces. They can be poached, chilled, and served as a sophisticated salad or sautéed and served as a warm vegetable. Leeks are a great addition to your kitchen repertoire as we transition from winter to spring. This week, I’ve paired them with celery for a delicious, yet decidedly simple and inexpensive side dish, Sautéed Leeks and Celery. (more…)

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Pork with Apples and Onions: Weeknight Supper

 

 

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Pork Anatomy

Pork with Apples and Onions is an easy dish for a weeknight supper. First, you have to know what to buy. All four-legged animals have a muscle, called the loin, that runs along either side of the backbone. In a steer, this muscle represents itself as a rib-eye in the rib section and with a pig, it’s center cut pork chop, around the waist of a pig — if a pig had a waist. The loin muscle doesn’t get much exercise and therefore it is fairly tender and appropriate for shorter cooking times. Think steaks and chops. The legs get much more exercise, are less tender, and are best prepared with low and slow, longer cooking times. Think pot roast and stews. (more…)

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Baked Broccoli Risotto: Modern Comfort

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Broccoli Rice Casserole

Somewhere along the way when women were “liberated” from the kitchen, processed and convenience foods became Standard Operating Procedure. One-pot casseroles became the go-to for many busy moms and families. An all-time favorite is Broccoli Rice Casserole. What’s not to love? Tender, creamy rice topped with cheese. Broccoli Rice Casserole is serious comfort food. What about modern comfort? How about Baked Broccoli Risotto? (more…)

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Valentine’s Day: No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Bites

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Chocolate 

Chocolate and Valentine’s Day go together like, well, chocolate and peanut butter. To help celebrate Valentine’s Day I thought I’d share these Chocolate Peanut Butter Bites. They are super simple to prepare. You probably have the ingredients in your pantry and can whip these up tonight!  (more…)

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Hunter’s Chicken with Mushrooms

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Chicken Recipes

You know the story. “Chicken Recipes” are the number one recipe-related search item on the internet. Well, not really. According to Google that worthy topic actually comes in at Number Four. (Who knew Pumpkin Seeds were so popular?!) Nonetheless, chicken is easy, quick, and inexpensive.  One of my all-time favorite recipes is the classic dish Hunter’s Chicken with Mushrooms. (more…)

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