Posts Tagged ‘thyme’

by Sarah Steimer

I love, love, love tomato season. Lots of the vendors at my farmer's market offer heirloom tomatoes in a variety of colors, and this was the perfect way to showcase them. This might have been the best thing I've made this summer!

I love, love, love tomato season. Lots of the vendors at my farmer’s market offer heirloom tomatoes in a variety of colors, and this was the perfect way to showcase them. This might have been the best thing I’ve made this summer!


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by Caitlin Saniga

Balsamic chicken and mushrooms

For a romantic meal for two, serve the chicken over rice (There should be plenty of sauce!), add a salad of mixed greens with balsamic vinaigrette, and sip some white wine.

  • 2 skinless, boneless, thin-sliced chicken breast filets
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound white mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced
  • 1/4 cup dark balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon butter, chopped into pieces
  • thyme sprigs, for garnish

Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Place the flour in a bowl and season with more salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken breasts in the flour mixture.

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and saute until nicely browned on one side, about 3 minutes. Turn the chicken breasts. Scatter the garlic and mushrooms over top. Continue frying, shaking the skillet and stirring the mushrooms. Cook for about 3 minutes, then add the vinegar, broth, bay leaf and thyme. Cover tightly and simmer over medium-low heat for 10 minutes, turning occasionally.

Transfer the chicken to a warm serving platter, and cover with foil. Set aside. Continue simmering the sauce, uncovered, over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Swirl in the butter and discard the bay leaf. Pour the mushrooms and sauce over the chicken, garnish with thyme sprigs, and serve.

Makes 2 servings.

Recipe adapted from: a recipe that appeared in The Roanoke Times from Elizabeth Merian

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We LOVE popcorn. The snack was a staple in our apartment when we lived together, and we would often eat it while we watched movies with our favorite toppings (hot sauce for Sarah and Italian dressing for Caitlin). Caitlin and her sister Holly came up with a great way to test popcorn pairings: They pour various condiments and other refrigerator goodies into mini muffin tins so they can sample multiple combinations. Sarah’s dad taught her how to make popcorn over the stove before she moved into her first college apartment (see the video below for the how-to). She has it down to a near science now and often pops a big bowl right as company arrives.

We’re offering two new recipes to try this Popcorn Day, but also be sure to check out our previous popcorn recipes:


Asiago and thyme popcorn

Like cheese popcorn but hate the powdered stuff? This is a great, classy alternative

Do you like cheese popcorn but hate the powdered stuff? This is a great, classy alternative

by Sarah Steimer

Make about 6-8 cups popcorn. While the popcorn is still warm, spray or drizzle with olive or vegetable oil to lightly coat. Finely grate about 1/2 cup Asiago cheese. Add the cheese and about 2-3 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves to the popcorn. Add a pinch of salt. Gently toss and serve.


Brown butter, rosemary and lemon popcorn

I loved the way the butter crackled and bubbled in the pan when I removed it from the heat and tossed in the rosemary. That step made for super-crispy flecks of rosemary. Don't be tempted to add the lemon zest to the butter. It's much more delicate and could burn.

I loved the way the butter crackled and bubbled in the pan when I tossed in the rosemary. That step made for super-crispy flecks of rosemary. Don’t be tempted to add the lemon zest to the butter. It’s much more delicate and could burn.

by Caitlin Saniga

Pop about 6 cups of popcorn. Place 3 tablespoons butter in a small pan and cook over medium heat until it turn light brown, about 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the stove and add 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary. Pour the butter over the popcorn. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon lemon zest (from 1 lemon) over top and finish with a few grinds of salt and pepper. Toss to coat and serve.

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by Sarah Steimer

If you don't think you'll finish all of this dish in one sitting, do not combine the Brussels with everything else. This way you can roast the Brussels for a second time as leftovers without having to roast the entire dish (likely drying it out).

If you don’t think you’ll finish all of this dish in one sitting, do not combine the Brussels with everything else. This way you can reheat the sprouts in the oven by themselves without drying out the other ingredients.

  • 15 medium-large Brussels sprouts
  • olive oil
  • sea salt or kosher salt
  • 1 – 1 1/2 cups cooked cannellini beans (about 1 can)
  • 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled or cubed
  • leaves from 2-3 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • pepper

Rinse the Brussels sprouts in a colander. Trim the ends of the Brussels and cut in half, length-wise. Remove the outer leaves and discard (these leaves will usually fall right off after cutting the sprouts in half).

In a glass or tin baking dish, toss the Brussels in a few teaspoons of olive oil and a few pinches of salt. Roast at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes. Toss the sprouts and roast for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until browned and slightly crisped.

While the sprouts are cooking, combine the beans, feta, tomatoes and thyme — tossing carefully so as not to break up the cheese too much.

Add the warm Brussels sprouts to the bean mixture and gently combine. Drizzle with a little extra olive oil and a sprinkle of fresh pepper before serving.

Makes about 4 servings as a side dish.

Recipe adapted from: in pursuit of more.

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by Caitlin Saniga

Shallots, thyme and lemon zest help to dress up these super easy roasted mushrooms.

  • 1 pound baby bella mushrooms, wiped clean and stems trimmed
  • olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • pepper
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 large shallot, finely diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment. In a medium bowl, toss the mushrooms with enough of the olive oil to coat generously, the salt, and a few grinds of pepper.

Turn the mushrooms onto the baking sheet and arrange them stem side down. If the mushrooms cover the baking sheet sparsely, arrange them toward the edges of the baking sheet for the best browning. Roast the mushrooms until brown on the bottom, 15 to 20 minutes. Flip and continue to roast until browned on the top, about 5 more minutes.

Place the mushrooms in a serving bowl.

To make the shallot butter, heat the butter in a small pan over medium heat. Once it’s completely melted, add the shallots and cook, stirring frequently, until they’ve browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from the heat, and stir in the thyme and zest. Pour the shallot butter over the mushrooms, tossing to coat. Serve warm.

Makes 4 side-dish servings.

Recipe adapted from: Fine Cooking

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by Caitlin Saniga

Has a slightly sweet flavor

This lentil soup has a slightly sweet taste, thanks, in part, to the tomatoes, carrots and paprika.

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced finely
  • 4-5 sprigs of thyme, leaves removed and roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, peeled, trimmed and minced
  • 2 medium carrots, diced finely
  • 1 large stalk celery, diced finely
  • 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 1 1/3 cups french lentils, picked over, rinsed and drained
  • 6 cups vegetable stock
  • salt and pepper
  • thyme sprigs, chopped parsley or snipped chives for garnish.

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-low heat. Add the onions and saute for at least 10 minutes, stirring them frequently. When the onions are quite soft, add the herbs and paprika and saute for another 5 minutes, stirring all the while. Add the garlic and stir until very fragrant, about 1 minute longer. Add the carrots and celery and cook for another 5-10 minutes, until all vegetables are soft.

Add the can of tomatoes and stir to coat the vegetables. Cook out the tomatoes for about 5 minutes. Add the drained lentils and stir to coat in the vegetables, oil and tomatoes. Add a splash of the stock and scrape any browned bits on the bottom of the pot. Add the remaining stock, give the whole mix a good stir and bring to a boil. Once boiling, return the pot to a simmer, cover with a heavy lid and allow to cook for 25-30 minutes or until the lentils are soft. Check in on the pot once in a while and give it a stir. Season to your liking. Garnish with sprigs of thyme, parsley or chives, if desired.

Makes 6 servings.

Recipe adapted from: The First Mess

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by Sarah Steimer

These are to die for. The onions are sweet, yet savory. The au jus is definitely optional. It’s good with or without.

  • 1 large sweet onions, cut into quarters then sliced thin
  • 1/2 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil (neither this nor the butter need to be exact)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • leaves from 3-4 springs thyme (or about 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme)
  • 1 small dried bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 cup beef OR vegetable broth (if you want to go legitimately vegetarian)
  • 1/4 cup finely shredded mozzarella cheese

    If you want to make these ahead, you can freeze them after you fold and seal them. Just place them on a baking sheet (not touching) until they freeze. Then place them in a well-sealed bag or other container and place them back in the freezer. When you’re ready to cook them, you don’t even have to worry about letting them thaw.

  • 10-12 wonton wrappers

Heat a medium-to-large sauté pan. When warm, add the butter and oil. Let the butter melt before adding the onions. Stir the onions so they are coated in the butter and oil, then add the Worcestershire sauce, thyme, bay leaf (be careful not to crush the bay leaf, you do not want pieces of it in your food), sugar and broth.

Turn the heat up to high to bring the liquid to a boil. Bring the heat back down to medium and let the liquid cook off and the onions caramelize — about 20 minutes.

Remove the onions from the heat and discard the bay leaf. Let the onions mostly cool before tossing the onions in the mozzarella.

Lay out the wonton wrappers. Working one at a time, wet the edges of the wrappers with water and spoon about a tablespoon’s worth of the onion-cheese mixture in each. Fold over to make a triangle and seal the edges well.

Continue until all the wontons are made.

Heat more olive oil in a pan, just enough to cover the bottom. Add the wontons to the pan so they are sitting up on the folded edge, with one corner straight up in the air — not laying on their side. Let the bottoms brown. Add enough water to cover about 1/3 of the wontons and cover the pan. Let the wontons steam for about 2-3 minutes.

Remove the lid and let the water cook out while the wontons crisp back up a bit on the bottom. Remove the wontons with a spatula (they may stick a little, but I didn’t have much trouble).

For the au jus:

  • 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 clove garlic, minced

Combine all ingredients and heat in the microwave for about 30 seconds. Serve with the warm wontons.

Makes 10-12 wontons.

Recipe adapted from: Iowa Girl Eats

* Want One? is our October guide that pays homage to the wonton, a traditionally steamed, fried, baked or boiled dumpling that can be filled with an array of goodies. We’ll feature meatless, meat-full and dessert renditions.

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by Sarah Steimer

This is a gorgeous, gorgeous meal that takes so little effort. What could be better? Totally a show-off meal for a date, your parents or any other person in your life you feel like impressing the socks off. Your pets do count, I suppose.

  • 2 salmon fillets, skin removed (optional if you don’t mind it)
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 4 sprigs of thyme, leaves removed
  • 2 medium-sized parsnips, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 1 small sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup milk (I used skim)
  • 2 teaspoons horseradish
  • 8-12 Brussels sprouts (depending on their size), stems removed and cut in half
  • 1-2 teaspoons chili powder

    I’m still pretty much a newbie when it comes to fish. The biggest thing to remember about cooking fish is to be gentle — you’re not working with steak here.

Place the salmon fillets in a glass baking dish. Drizzle with olive oil and season with the salt, pepper, thyme and garlic, being sure to cover

both sides of the fish. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and let rest in the refrigerator for a half hour to two hours.

Put the cubed parsnips and sweet potatoes in a small sauce pan. Add the butter, milk, 1 teaspoon of the horseradish and salt and pepper. Simmer on low until the cubes are soft enough to mash. You may need to add a few more tablespoons of milk if it all evaporates. Puree the parsnips and sweet potato in a blender or food processor. Mix in the last teaspoon of horseradish.

In the meantime, place the Brussels sprouts halves on a baking sheet or glass dish. Toss with the salt, pepper, chili powder and a few drizzles of olive oil.

In a 350 degree oven, bake both the Brussels sprouts and fish on the same rack (if

Prep ahead! Get your chopping done in advance so all you have to do is throw things in the oven or let them simmer on the stove.

you can, if not try to keep the racks close and place the Brussels higher). Bake for about 20 minutes, turning the pan once but not flipping the fish. The salmon will be ready when it is opaque and flakes easily.

Layer the puree, Brussels sprouts and fish on two plates. Garnish with additional thyme.

Makes two servings.

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by Caitlin Saniga

This salad is best when served immediately, but if you plan to serve leftovers at some point, hold back on mixing in the bacon and almonds. They’ll get soft the longer they sit with the salad.

  • 5 slices bacon
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 small red onion, diced small
  • 3/4 cup red wine
  • 1 small red cabbage, cut into  slender strips
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • 1/2 cup chopped almonds, toasted and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries
  • salt
  • pepper

Cook the bacon over medium heat until crispy. Set aside to drain and cool. Drain off all bacon fat except for 1 tablespoon.

Add the garlic and onion to the pan and saute over medium heat for about 3 minutes. Add the wine and cook until reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Add the cabbage and cook until wilted but still crunchy, about another minute. Remove the pan from heat.

Transfer the cabbage mixture to a salad bowl and toss with the wine vinegar, olive oil, thyme, almonds, cherries and crumbled bacon. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve warm.

Makes 8 side-dish servings.

Recipe adapted from: Just Best Recipes

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by Sarah Steimer

There isn’t much physical work involved in this (cutting, blending), but it’s best to start your prep work early. My vegetables needed to be in the oven for quite a while longer than I expected. But it makes the house (or in my case, apartment) smell awesome in the meantime.

  • 4-5 cups fresh tomatoes, cut in half or quarters (about 4 regular tomatoes)
  • 4-5 medium-large carrots, peeled
  • 1/2 medium onion, sliced into large wedges
  • 5-6 medium or large cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 6 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed from stems
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoon paprika (hot or sweet)
  • 2 slices of hearty bread
  • 2 slices fresh mozzarella

Arrange the tomatoes, carrots, onion and garlic in a baking dish or pan (I prefer a baking dish for the higher sides). Drizzle the vegetables with olive oil and season with salt, pepper and most — but not all — of the thyme. Toss to coat the vegetables, keeping them in a single layer.

Roast the vegetables at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes, or until a fork can be easily inserted into the carrots (my vegetables took closer to an hour for whatever reason — have patience!).

Remove the vegetables from the oven and let sit while you bring the stock to a simmer in a medium pot or dutch oven. When ready, add the vegetables and the pan juices to the stock. Simmer for about 10 minutes.

In the meantime, sprinkle the bread with olive oil and top with the mozzarella slices.  Place the bread on a metal pan or right on the your oven rack under the broiler. Allow the bread to toast under the broiler for about 2 minutes — always keeping an eye on it as it will toast quickly. Remove and sprinkle with the remaining thyme.

Once the vegetables have simmered, add the contents of the pot to a blender and puree until smooth. Return the soup to the pot and stir in the paprika. Season again with salt and pepper if necessary.

Serve the soup with the mozzarella and thyme toasts.

Makes two-three servings.

Recipe adapted from: The Gouda Life

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