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 Last night, Javi and I had two of my favorite peeps over for dinner.


Dave   –  I used to work with Dave at SMG .  He is one of the most hilarious, creative  people I have ever met.   He likes to write and sing songs about man boobs.

Neva –  Neva is Dave’s pretty girlfriend.  She is an amazing person who always seems genuinely interested in what you have to say.  I love people like that. 

Dave lived in Korea and has been raving nonstop about a Korean dish called Bibimbap (Korean pronunciation: [pibimpap]).  The word literally means “mixed rice.” Being that we live in Boise, ID, there are not too many Korean restaurants and Dave insisted that it is the best hangover food ever.  Please feel free to correct me if I am wrong about the Korean restaurants in Boise. 

Dave sold me a camera lens and I was a jerk and didn’t write the check for enough $.  He told me not to rewrite the check, but I would need to repay him with Bibimbap.  I agreed to take on the challenge. 

This is the description of Bibimbap from Wikipedia: “Bibimbap is served as a bowl of warm white rice topped with namul (sautéed and seasoned vegetables) and gochujang (chili pepper paste). A raw or fried egg and sliced meat (usually beef) are common additions. The ingredients are stirred together thoroughly just before eating.[2] It can be served either cold or hot. 

After a little bit of research, I decided on a recipe from a Bobby Flay episode. The recipe was written by his friend Jenn Lee.  Which you can find here.

The reviews looked good and the recipe seemed simple enough.  The one ingredient not commonly found at the grocery store is Gochuchang.  This is a spicy paste made from red peppers and bunch of other ingredients.  Don’t even try to make Bibimbap without this.  It is essential and amazing!  Who is that dashing young man holding the Gochuchang?

Neva was able to find the Gochuchang at the Orient Market on Emerald St. in Boise.  She looked up a picture of it on the internet first because she was too embarrassed to ask for it at the market.  I thought that was cute.  She also picked up another Korean condiment – Black Bean Paste.  I thought this stuff was kind of weird tasting. 

So anyways, I started out the night before by marinating the steak cut into thin strips.  I used flank steak instead of ribeye.  Everyone felt the steak was the best part.  The marinade was incredibly good and in the future I will use it to marinade everyday steak.  The best part is that it uses 7-up!

Then about an hour before we wanted to eat, I put the rice in the rice cooker

I grilled the meat about 7-8 minutes on low. 

Then sautéed the spinach, carrots and Shiitake mushrooms in some sesame oil and salt. 

Then I fried some eggs (over easy) and made the Gochuchang paste.  When mixed up, the yolk from the eggs coats the other ingredients and makes it soooooooo good!!

Here is the finished bowl all stacked up. 

 I left the Gochuchang paste on the side for people to add their own since it is super spicy.  We had a large mixing bowl at the table where everyone mixed up their own dish and preferred level of Gochuchang. 

I would HIGHLY recommend this recipe.  It was really simple with great flavor.  Dave even said it tasted authentic!  I blushed.

I also made some Oi Moochim (seasoned marinated cucumbers) from the same episode.  You can find the recipe here.   Equally as good! 

Dave brought PLENTY of Miller Lite tall boys to accompany the meal.  Not to mention the 3 bottles of wine we drank.  It was a night filled with lively conversation and debauchery.

Thanks Dave for introducing me to some fabulous cuisine!  I will definitely be making this often.




Merry Christmas to everyone!  The holiday season is my favorite time of year and Christmas Eve happens to be my favorite part.  My family has a tradition of hosting a fondue party every Christmas eve.  Lots of dipping, eating and having fun.

And any Frei family holiday would be complete without a lot of red wine spilling.  This year was no exception:


 Fondue? Don’t mind if I do!  I love fondue – I think it might be because I am a sauce person. I am obsessed with sauces.  Fondue is the only meal I can think of where you dip every course and every bite.  In the words of Lustopher Hardy – “A little bit of heaven”. 

We generally setup the fondue around my parent’s kitchen island, which promotes lots of socializing.

Even Mavie (who has severe IBS (not joking) and is not allowed people food) tried to get a piece of yumminess. 


For those of you not familiar with fondue, we have three courses for the party:

The Cheese

The Meat

The Chocolate

Easy to remember since it is the three basic food groups :).

I am sure some of you will be able to relate to this, but all of our family’s Christmas recipes have been around for so many years that they are stored in this little messy handwritten card holder my mom keeps.

 I love looking through all these recipes every year.  I even found a couple of Tomato Aspics (sick).   We don’t make that anymore. My favorite was this recipe written on a Goodyear Tire notepad. Hehe.


 Here are the fondue recipes.

 Don’t worry, I retyped them :).

The Cheese Course

As previously mentioned, the night begins with the cheese fondue.  I really could just have this course and be fine for the rest of the night.  It is sooo freaking good. I have seen people make cheese fondue with many different types of cheeses and ingredients.  We never stray from the traditional.  Why fix what ain’t broken? 

Important note: When eating the cheese you must be careful.  It has been said that if you drop your piece of bread or fruit into the cheese you must kiss the person next to you.  Generally, this gets a little strange because I am usually eating fondue with my family.

Traditional Cheese Fondue (Adapted from handwritten recipe circa 1972 by Pam Frei)

½ Pound freshly grated Emmentaler Swiss Cheese

½ Pound freshly grated Le Gruyere Cheese (Do not use processed Gruyere.  The year we tried the processed is the same year we tried the chocolate fountain.  It will forever be known as the year of the fondue failure and subsequently the year without a Santa Claus)

1.5 Cups Dry White Wine

1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice

1.5 Teaspoons Cornstarch

1 Garlic clove halved

½ Teaspoon Nutmeg

Salt and White Pepper to taste

3 Tablespoons Kirsch Cherry Liquor


Loaf of French bread cubed

2 Apples cubed

Roasted potatoes for dipping (optional)

Rub garlic on inside of large pot with two forks.

 Remove garlic solids.  Add white wine and lemon juice and heat over medium heat.  Heat till air bubbles rise but to not boil.  Whisk in cornstarch so there are no lumps.  Reduce heat to low.  Add a handful of cheese. 

 When cheese is melted add another handful.  Do not boil.  Add in nutmeg, salt and pepper and Kirsch.  The Kirsch adds great flavor.  At this point, we add the cheese mixture to a crockpot on high, so it doesn’t burn.  Use fondue sticks to dip.

 The Meat Course

The meat course is a little different because the eater is actually cooking their own meat. 

There are fondue pots (we have 3-4) of heated beef bouillon and red wine (one year we experimented with peanut oil) and over the years we have tried the different combinations of the following:

Shrimp (peeled and deveined)

Steak (cut into chunks)

Chicken (cut into chunks and generally marinated)

Salmon (cut into chunks)



 Heat the following over a stove until boiling and add to fondue pot.

2 Cups of Beef Broth

1 Cup Red Wine

We like to use Sterno, not tealights, as a heat source.  Otherwise, it doesn’t get hot very fast.

Now for the dipping sauces – I try to make these the day prior to the party:

Sweet and Sour (my personal favorite)

½ cup Apricot Preserves

¼ cup Catsup (this cracks me up!  Anyone know the difference between catsup and ketchup?)

2 Tablespoons honey

2 Tablespoons white vinegar

2 Tablespoons Major Grey’s Chutney

Heat all ingredients until it reaches a simmering stage.

Mustard Sauce

1/2 Cup sour cream

1/3 Cup mayonnaise

1.5 Tablespoons prepared mustard (the French’s kind. Not the Dijon)

1 Tablespoon sugar

1 Teaspoon horseradish

Combine all ingredients and mix well

Blue Cheese Dressing Sauce

This can easily be used as salad dressing to.

¾ Cup sour cream

½ Teaspoon dry mustard

½ Teaspoon salt

½ Garlic clove minced

1 Teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

½ Cup mayonnaise

3 Oz. Crumbled blue cheese

Combine all ingredients with the exception of blue cheese in a large bowl.  Mix for 2 minutes on low speed.  Slowly add blue cheese and blend 4 more minutes.  Refrigerate 24 hours prior to serving.

Teriyaki Sauce
We take a shortcut and use Yoshida!

  The Chocolate Course

I am usually so stuffed at this point that I can barely walk, but I always make room for just a bit more since the chocolate is so good.  Our recipe is super simple but really yummy!

Chocolate Fondue

2 Large bars of Symphony Chocolate with Toffee Bits – This stuff is the best and adds a little extra crunch

½ Cup Whipping Cream

2 ounces of Bailey’s Irish Cream (optional)

Heat chocolate and whipping cream over double boiler over low heat.  Stir until melted.  Transfer to chocolate fondue pot.  

We have this super cute hot fudge warmer thing we use:


Use any combination of the following:

Bananas sliced

Mandarin Oranges




Pound Cake (bite size)

Cheesecake (bite size)

Leftover holiday cookies

At this point in the party I am generally ready to pass out since I am so full. 

I hope you have all have a wonderful Christmas!  I would love to hear about your Christmas traditions.  Please post them in the comment section. 

Be safe, be merry and eat & drink with reckless abandon!  You can work it off later!



PS.  I wish Mr. Barrera could have been here!  Hope you are having fun in b-town!


For the past 15 years my parents have lived next door to a family named the Newton’s.  When I was 15 we moved to Wenatchee from Seattle and our families have been great friends ever since. The mom of the house, Barb, is definitely the hostess with the mostest, Martha Stewart without the jail time.  She is also the sweetest most caring woman you will ever meet. 

 Here she is with her husband Dick (who is also very nice and makes a mean grilled salmon).  I stole the picture from her Facebook.

 Growing up, Barb always cooked the most wonderful meals and it seemed like she was constantly feeding the entire town.  My parents still eat dinner at their house all of the time. Probably 3-4 times a week. 🙂  I would too if I lived there.  Her food is amazing. I asked Barb to contribute a recipe for the blog. Her pork roast is my favorite and she very graciously agreed to give up her trade secrets.   This recipe is remarkable and simple!  Great for entertaining a crowd and practically impossible to screw up.  But don’t blame me if you do.   


I could eat the sauce/gravy with a spoon.   It is so good.  Go make this now.  I mean it.

I served mine with some carrots roasted with butter and garlic and mashed potatoes.  Mmmmmm.

Barb’s Pork Loin Roast with Mustard Sauce


Serves 6

1 3lb pork loin (de-boned)

 Garlic – Lots, about a whole head chopped

½ Cup Olive Oil

½ Jar (4oz) Grey Poupon Dijon Mustard

1 Teaspoon Rosemary chopped

Salt and Pepper

1 Cup Heavy Cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together, ½ of the garlic; and all the oil, mustard, rosemary, salt and pepper.

Make an incision in the meat in the middle only about 2 inches down.  Spread rest of garlic in this cavity and half of the mustard sauce.  Roll and tie with kitchen twine.


Spread the rest of mustard sauce on the outside of the roast.  Bake 1 hour and 20 minutes or until it registers 145 degrees in the center.


Remove roast from pan.  Either add drippings to another stock pan or use the roasting pan for the sauce. 

Add cream to drippings and reduce by cooking over medium heat for about 15 minutes while stirring constantly. 

Salt and pepper to taste. Sauce will become a rich, light caramel color. 

Slice and pour the sauce over pork.

Roasted Garlic Carrots


12 Carrots

¼ cup melted butter

2 chopped cloves garlic

½ teaspoon sugar

1 Tablespoon parsley chopped

Salt and Pepper

Rub garlic into butter.  Pour over carrots in roasting pan.  Sprinkle with sugar,parsley and salt and pepper. 

 Roast on 350 degrees for 1 hour until tender.




Sherried Mushroom and Apple Chicken Pot Pie

Mmmmmmm…Nothing like a warm hearty chicken stew covered in flakey puff pastry on a cold-ass freezing day.  Since it was 1 whole degree here outside last night, I figured we needed some warm comfort food.  Mavie was so cold!

 We had some apples and mushrooms on hand and I remembered a dish served at Campbell’s Resort on Lake Chelan, Washington.  Campbell’s has been on the shores of Lake Chelan since 1901 and is the quintessential vacation spot for Seattle peeps to visit throughout the summer. Growing up, we would always visit a few weeks during the summer and eat in the main dining room for a special occasion. 

I never failed to order the Country Chicken – Our famous breast of chicken dusted with seasoned flour, sautéed with golden delicious apples, shallots & mushrooms, simmered in sherry and cream. (description from their website).  It is sooooooooo freakin good!!!   If you are ever anywhere near Campbell’s, please try this dish.  Then order an extra plate and bring it to me in Boise.  Thanks for your cooperation in advance of this matter.

I thought this combination of flavors would be great as a pot pie.  It certainly was!  The leftover filling could even be eaten as a very rich and creamy soup – unquestionably not low-fat/calorie, but worth it! 

Sherried Mushroom and Apple Chicken Pot Pie

Serves 8 plus lots of leftover filling


What you’ll need:

6 Cups Chicken Stock

2 Teaspoons Chicken Base or 2 Cubes Bouillon

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1 Onion Chopped

1 Shallot Chopped

5 Carrots Chopped

4 Celery Stalks Chopped

2 Cups Sliced Crimini Mushrooms (any kind will do)

¾ Cup Dry Sherry

2 Apples Chopped (I used Golden Delicious)

4 Sprigs of Lemon Thyme Chopped

½ Chopped Parsley

½ Cup Butter

½ Cup Flour

2.5 Cups Cubed Herb Roasted Chicken (I used a store-bought (the horror!) roasted chicken)

¾ Cup Heavy Cream

Salt and Pepper

2 Packages Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Sheets (Thawed. Must be Thawed.  I tried to do it frozen.  Trust me, it doesn’t work.)


Heat oven to 375 degrees after prepping veggies etc.

In a medium saucepan heat chicken stock and chicken base until boiling.  Once boiling turn down to simmer.    

Over medium heat in a large skillet sauté onion, shallot, carrots, mushrooms and celery in olive oil.

 Once onions are translucent add sherry, apples, thyme and parsley.  Season to taste. Sauté for one minute more.  Set aside.

In a large stockpot, melt butter over medium heat then whisk in a flour to make a rue.  Constantly whisk for 2-3 minutes until flour cooks. The flour might clump up but that is ok.  Do not let burn. 

 Slowly add chicken stock whisking constantly until there are no flour lumps.  Add in chicken and sautéed vegetable/apple/sherry mix.  Stir.  Add in heavy cream.  Stir Salt and Pepper to taste.

Use 8 oven-safe ramekins. Fill ¾ of the way full.

 I made the mistake of filling up too far and the oven was a mess! Take thawed (very important) puff pastry sheets and cut roughly into squares with a knife into squares just larger than your ramekins.  Cover each ramekin with a square. Trim and crimp edges. I am bad at this part as evidenced by the photos. You will most likely have leftover filling!

Bake for 25-30 minutes until pastry is puffed, flakey and brownish. 




Cancer Fighting Chopped Salad with Blueberry Balsamic Vinaigrette

My mom and I have recently researching cancer fighting foods to help aid my dad in his battle.  I am not a doctor, but I personally believe a combination of traditional medicine, diet and supplements is the best way to treat cancer. Since cancer is an epidemic in this country, it is important to not only eat well after you are diagnosed with cancer, it is also imperative to eat well for preventative measures.  Based on secondary research, I came up with a chopped salad that incorporates many ingredients that may prevent and smash cancer – It is also yumtastic too!

Cancer Fighting Chopped Salad with Blueberry Balsamic Vinaigrette

Serves 2-3


What you’ll need:

2 Skinless Boneless Chicken Breast (If possible, organic and free range)

1 Tablespoon Turmeric – Studies have show this spice slows the growth of some cancer cells

Salt and Pepper


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Rub chicken with turmeric and salt and pepper and add to small baking dish.  Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until cooked through and golden.  Set aside to cool.  Once cool chop up chicken into small pieces.

Chopped Salad

What you’ll need:

Cooked roasted chicken from above

5 Cups Romaine Lettuce Chopped – Like other dark leafy greens, romaine lettuce is believed to fight cancer.

2 Apples Chopped – Apples have a lot of  phytochemicals and because they are inexpensive and available all year long, it’s easy to add them to a cancer fighting diet.

1 Avocado Chopped – Not just for heart health! Plus my 85-year-old grandma swears she is healthy due to eating ½ Avocado a day for the last 20 years.

½ Cup Dried Craisins – Studies show this superstar fruit battles cancer.

1 Tomato Chopped – Lycopene, which is naturally occurring in tomatoes, has long shown to lower risk of some cancers.

¼ Cup of Feta or Blue Cheese Crumbles

1 Recipe of Blueberry Balsamic Vinaigrette (see below)


Toss all ingredients together in a large bowl. Enjoy!

Blueberry Balsamic Vinaigrette

¼ Cup Blueberries (I used thawed frozen) – Blueberries are high in antioxidants which act as a tonic for your cells.

¼ Cup Balsamic Vinegar – Since good Balsamic is made from grape pressings it is also high in antioxidants.

1 Tablespoon Garlic Chopped – Garlic contains allium compounds, which have been found to prevent several different types of cancer.

1 Teaspoon Dijon Mustard

½ Cup Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper to taste


Blend up all ingredients in the blender. 

Pour over salad.

Hope this recipe helps add to your cancer arsenal!



Top of the afternoon to ya! I am currently visiting my fam in the lovely town of East Wenatchee, Washington. Please do not get the “East Wenatchee” confused with just Wenatchee. Wenatchee is on the wrong side of the tracks :). Anyone who is from the Eastside will tell you this. This is the view from my parent’s house.

My dad is in the hospital, so I came home to help out my mom etc. He hasn’t had much of an appetite and I can’t really blame him considering how gross the hospital food is. How do they expect people to get well eating that crap? Since coming home on Saturday I have been making him most of his meals. Yesterday, he thought barbequed pulled pork sounded great and since it slow cooks for hours it would definitely be soft enough for him to eat. Poor guy has a sore mouth.

My friend Crissie makes a delicious root beer slow cooked tenderloin, so I thought I would take the same idea and make a pork shoulder.

I woke up early this morning to make sure the pork had enough time to fully cook in the slow cooker. While I prepared the pork, my niece and nephew wanted to finish decorating the tree. They each showed me their favorite ornament

Finished tree.

I love the holidays! This recipe turned out great and is super easy! The root beer flavor is not overpowering, but you can still catch a hint of it. Everyone who tried it seemed to love it – Even Maverick who is now very sick with a tummy ache or maybe it is from wearing that Santa costume?

 Homemade BBQ sauce is my absolute favorite and incredible easy to make. I am going to bring my dad the dinner tonight with extra sauce – He has been known to eat sauce alone with just a spoon. I will let you know how it goes!

Root Beer Slow Cooker Pulled Pork with Root Beer BBQ Sauce

 Serves roughly 10 hungry peeps

Pulled Pork

What you’ll need:
(Seems like a strange combo but I promise it will come out spectacularly moist with excellent flavor)
1 4-5 lb. Pork Shoulder – Bone-In
5 Cloves Garlic Chopped
¼ Cup Dijon Mustard
¼ Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
2 Cups Root Beer
1 Tablespoon Salt Pepper
10 hamburger buns
3-4 Tablespoons butter

Put pork shoulder in slow cooker on low heat.

 Mix rest of ingredients in a small bowl. Pour over pork shoulder into slow cooker.

Cook on low for 8 hours until tender and falling off the bone. Mine practically shredded in the slow cooker.

 Shred pork with two forks removing fatty pieces and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Add back to slow cooker with ¾ of the Root Beer sauce from below. Cook on low for 1 more hour.

Heat butter on medium in a griddle pan. Lightly toasted buns and top with finished pork and as much sauce as you like. Some top theirs with coleslaw. Do as you wish.

Root Beer BBQ sauce

You might want to double the recipe if you like a lot of sauce!

What you’ll need:
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
½ Onion Minced
1 Clove Garlic Minced
1 Cup Root Beer
1 Cup Ketchup
¼ Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
2 Tablespoons Mustard
¼ Cup Fresh Lemon Juice
¼ Cup Maple Syrup (Substitute brown sugar if you don’t have any)
2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
½ Tablespoon Chili Powder
Dash of Tabasco (optional) S
alt and Pepper to taste

Directions: Heat oil over medium heat in medium saucepan. Add onion and garlic and sauté until translucent.

Add remaining ingredients and simmer 20 minutes until thick enough for your liking.


Love, Lindzee

On Saturday, we had a small impromptu dinner party with some close friends.  Katie, Javi, Crissie, Nick, Cortnay, Idoia, Michelle and Reagan all agreed to come for a night of fun and A LOT of red wine drinking.  By the end of the night everyone had purple teeth and a full stomach.

Here is Michelle and Cortnay.  They are pretty.

This is me pretending to look like I know what I am doing.  But accidently serving the whole group ridiculously raw meat.  More on that later.

 Here is Javi, never too far away from a computer. Lots of wine on the table.

Javi and I went to Costco earlier that day and spotted some amazing U-15 Mexican Shrimp at a great price.  I imagine most people know this, but U-15 is the amount of shrimp per pound or in this case “under 15 or less”.  

We also spotted some ridiculously good looking Fletcher’s thick cut bacon.  I always make my specialty garlic grilled shrimp, but thought I would try some bacon-wrapped shrimpies too.  The garlic shrimp is cooked with the shell on because it adds more flavor and keeps the meat moist.  But it would be a pain in arse to peel a shrimp wrapped in bacon, so I peeled and deveined half of them first. Here is a little cheesey demonstration on how to peel and devein shrimp. Not sure if this is the RIGHT way to do it, but it works well for me:

BTW, I never mind the veins and don’t understand why people get grossed out by them.

Both of these shrimp recipes turned out spectacularly!! We also had some Flank Steak and Quinoa Stuffed Peppers, but those recipes are coming in later posts.

Lots of Garlic in these shrimpies!

Grilled Peel ‘n Eat Garlic Shrimp

1 Pound raw large shrimp shell-on head-off

5 Garlic cloves chopped

1/2 Cup olive oil

1 Teaspoon Sea Salt

Rinse shrimp off with cold water and drain well. 

 In small bowl pour sea salt over garlic and rub with a fork to make a paste. 

Whisk in olive oil. 

Reserve 1/4 of olive oil mixture for the bacon-wrapped shrimp and pour the rest over the shell-on shrimp in a ziplock bag.  Marinate in fridge 12-24 hours.  Remove from bag and place 4-5 shrimp each on wooden skewers that have been soaked in water. 

 Grill on medium until opaque.  Don’t overcook. I mean it.  Peel ‘n eat.  Don’t make this on a first date – it gets messy.

Grilled Bacon Wrapped Shrimp

1 Pound large shrimp peeled with tail-on

Olive Oil and garlic mixture left from above recipe

1 Teaspoon Dijon mustard

2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 Tablespoon brown sugar

1 Teaspoon Cajun seasoning

8-9 pieces of thick-cut bacon reserving 1 or 2 pieces to eat while cooking 🙂

Whisk together olive oil mixture, Dijon, lemon juice, brown sugar and Cajun seasoning. 

 Pour over peeled shrimp.  Marinate for 30-45 minutes.  Don’t marinate longer or you will cook the shrimp.  The lemon acts as a cooking agent – This is how ceviche is made. 

Meanwhile, pan fry the bacon for 4-6 minutes. 

It should be somewhat cooked but not crisp as you need to wrap it around the shrimp.  Cut each piece of bacon in half and wrap one half piece around the middle of each marinated shrimp.  Secure with toothpick. 

I made the mistake of using colored toothpicks which turn your shrimp the color of the toothpick J.   Grill on medium until shrimp is opaque.  Please do not overcook these either. 

Thank you for your cooperation in advance of this matter.



A few weeks back, my parents came to Boise for a quick visit and to grab my dog Mavie for an extended vacation. My dad LOVES mavie. I think he may even like him better than the grandkids, but that is another story for another time. Here is a picture of them ‘nugglin:


Anyways, my dad has recently been going through cancer treatment and doesn’t always have the biggest appetite. I figured it would best to make something delicious, but also high in cancer-smashing antioxidants. I had some frozen blueberries (extreme antioxidantness) on hand and decided to search for a savory recipe that included them. I found a similar version to this recipe online and added some Cordon Pink flair to it. This recipe was a smashing success! My dad had two servings and everyone else had rave reviews. Jav said it tasted like pancake chicken, whatever that means. Even veggie girl Katie had a bite and said it was yummy even if it was meat! It may seem like an odd combo of ingredients but GO NOW and make this. I really mean it. Trust me, you will not be disappointed.

Antioxidant-Fest Maple Blueberry Chicken

Blueberry Wine Mustard Maple Chutney (thank you for the name Hollan)

2 cups frozen blueberries
1 cup red wine (I used merlot)
1 cup pure maple syrup (must use real maple syrup. This is not the time or place for the Mrs. Buttersworth)
1/4 cup stone ground Dijon mustard
Salt and Pepper to taste

Combine blueberries, red wine, maple syrup, mustard and bring to a boil in a saucepan. Let boil for 2 minutes and reduce to a simmer for about an hour. The mixture should be reduced by a third.

Roasted Chicken

6 6-7oz skinless boneless chicken breasts
4 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (parsley, sage, thyme)
1 tablespoon paprika
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt & freshly ground black pepper

Directions Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Crush herbs, paprika, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl with the back of a fork. Rub mixture on the chicken breasts and place in a roasting pan. Roast the chicken for 25 minutes. Remove the chicken from the oven and spread with the chutney. Return to the oven and cook for 10 minutes longer until cooked. Enjoy!!!

A few months ago, my friend Crissie and I visited our good friend Cindy and her husband Aaron in Seattle.  Well, technically they just moved into a brand new house in Kent which is outside of Seattle.  Their house is super charming and we had a fantastic time!  Cindy is pregnant and about the cutest thing you have ever seen. Crissie is a talented photog and arranged a little photo shoot…


Aaron was a wonderful host and cooked for us the whole weekend.  He made us some very delicious steak tacos with chimichurri sauce and jalapeno pickled onions for dinner one night.  I wish I would have taken a photo of those.  Before dinner the group decided to have a few glasses of red wine (minus Cindy).   I, being the huge klutz that I am, dropped my glass of wine in their brand new living room and broke Cindy’s brand new wine glass.  Yes, I felt awesome.  They didn’t seem to mind too much, but I think they were just being nice. 

On our last day, we went down to Alki Beach and had lunch at Cactus.  Cactus is a cute little Mexican/Southwest restaurant that overlooks the beach.  The food was spicy but our waiter was H-O-T.  Crissie and I could barely look him in the eye. Serious movie star caliber good looks.   I asked if I could take a picture (the pic does not do him justice).  Aaron was disgusted and mortified.


Anyways, I ordered some amazing Butternut Squash Enchiladas at Cactus and have been dreaming about them (and the waiter) ever since.  I decided to try and make them since it is the perfect time of year for gourds. Let me give you a little warning.: This recipe was not quick in any sense of the word, but truly is worth it.  The Manchamanteles Mole took the longest and was unlike anything I have ever made.  If you want to take a few shortcuts, I would make a tomatillo sauce or buy some Mole, but the real stuff was yummers!

Roasted Butternut Squash Enchiladas with Goat Cheese and Mole


Manchamanteles Mole

I found the recipe for the mole here.  As I mentioned, quite the time consuming process, but it made a ton of sauce that I can keep for another recipe.  The flavor is very nutty and spicy.

6 Dried Guajillo Chiles
1 Dried Ancho chile
4 c Boiling water
1.5 Cans of 14.5oz  chopped tomatoes
Olive Oil
1/2 c Toasted Sesame Seeds
1 White onion; roughly chopped
1/4 c Whole raw almonds
1/4 c Raw pecans
1/4 c Raisins
4 Garlic cloves; halved
2 Whole cloves(or 2 pinches ground cloves)
2 Black peppercorns
1 Whole Allspice
1 Cinnamon stick -; (2″ long) (or 1 tbspn ground cinnamon)
2 Fresh oregano sprigs (or 1/2 tspn dried oregano)
 1 c Chicken stock ( I used store bought, but you could make your own)
1 16oz Can of pineapple sliced (drained)
1 1/2 Tablespoon Sugar

Remove stems, seeds and veins from both kinds of chiles ( I wore gloves).  Toast chiles in skillet or on griddle over low heat until slightly fragrant and beginning to blister. Be careful not to burn chiles. Put chiles in bowl and pour boiling water over them. Let soak 20 to 30 minutes (the longer they soak, the less hot they become).

While waiting, Cook tomatoes in dry skillet over medium heat until dry, about 20 minutes.  Blend well in blender. Transfer to bowl. Grind the toasted sesame seeds in a spice grinder or with mortar and pestle. Once chiles are done soaking transfer chiles from bowl to blender with slotted spoon and puree, adding some of soaking water if needed to blend well. Pass pureed chiles through sieve or food mill and set aside.

Return skillet to medium heat, add 2 tablespoons oil and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft and transparent, about 10 minutes. Add almonds, pecans, raisins, garlic, cloves, peppercorns, allspice, cinnamon and oregano and saute, stirring constantly, until brown and fragrant, about 10 minutes.
Transfer to blender and add 1 cup chicken stock and pineapple. Blend until smooth.

Put 2 tablespoons oil in large pot and heat over medium heat until slight haze forms over oil. Add chile puree and fry, stirring constantly, until dry, about 20 minutes. Mixture will splatter, so carefully partially cover pot with towel. Add tomatoes, sesame seeds and onion mixture and cook, stirring constantly, 10 minutes. Add chicken stock to make fairly loose mixture, 4 to 6 cups, and continue cooking, adding more stock as necessary.   Set aside or if you make it the night before you can put it in the fridge.  It should keep for about a week.

Mole recipe is heavily adapted from the Los Angeles Times – 04-28-1999 Recipe from Billy Cross, founder of the Napa Valleys Great Chefs of France Cooking School

Now that part is finally done, we can start on the actual enchiladas!

 Butternut Squash

 2 Large butternut squash peeled and chopped into 1”cubes (remove any seeds)
½ Cup olive oil
1 Tablespoon chipotle chili powder
2 Teaspoons cumin Powder
2 Teaspoons garlic Powder
2 Sprigs thyme chopped
2 Sprigs oregano chopped
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
Salt and Pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Mix olive oil, chili powder, cumin, garlic, thyme, oregano, sugar, and salt and pepper to taste in a small bowl.  Put squash in a large roasting pan and cover with olive oil mixture.  Bake for 40-50 minutes until soft and brownish. Once you remove them from the oven smash them up a bit with a fork.  Not too much as there still should be chunks.


Meanwhile, you can start carmelizing some onions. 

1 Tablespoon Butter
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1-2 Red Onions sliced ¼ inch thick.

Add butter and olive oil to a medium skillet pan on medium heat until butter is melted.  Add the onions and stir to coat with oil/butter mixture. Spread the onions out evenly over the pan and let cook, stirring occasionally.


After about 15 minutes add a dash of salt.  Keep stirring every few minutes for about 30 minutes total.  You can lower the heat if they start to burn.  You want them just slightly brown.

 While the onions are carmelizing, you try and sauté some spinach if you are good at multi-tasking.  However, if you have problems with this, then just wait until the onions are done.

 Sauteed Spinach

½ Bag of fresh spinach (2 or 3 cups)
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 Cloves of garlic minced (Do not use the jarred stuff.  It is disgusting.  Just sayin)

Add olive oil to a medium skillet pan on medium heat until oil shimmers.  Add garlic and sauté for a minute or so until fragrant.  Add the spinach and sauté until wilted. 

 Finally time for assembly!!!

8 Burrito Size White Corn Tortillas  ( lightly fry each one in small amount of oil for aboutt 30 seconds each)
Manchamanteles Mole
Roasted Butternut Squash
Sautéed Spinach
Carmelized onions
2 small rolls of Goat Cheese
2 cups of Shredded Monterrey Jack Cheese
Pico de Gallo and Sour Cream for serving

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 9 x 13 glass baking dish with cooking spray.  Cover the bottom of the dish with about a cup of the mole sauce.  Next setup an assembly line with all of the ingredients.  Dip 1 tortilla in the mole and cover completely.  Add about a ½ cup to 1 cup (depending how big you want the burrites) of the squash.  Add a spoonful of the onions and spinach each to the tortilla.  Spread out evenly.  Add a few Tablespoons of goat cheese.  Roll it up with the edges tucked in.  Continue this process for all 8 burritos adding each one to the pan when completed.  Cover with Jack cheese and bake for 30 minutes until cheese is bubbly and browned in spots. 

Serve garnished with Pico de Gallo and sour cream. 


Yay! Eat up!  My kitchen is now destroyed.




I’m Lindzee. I love to cook and entertain. I’m currently in my very late twenties living in Boise, Id. I enjoy experimenting with new ingredients and trying to copy restaurant dishes. The kind souls that eat my experimental dishes sometimes ask for recipes and this is an easy way to pass them along. Hope you enjoy!

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