Let’s take a moment to appreciate and thank our firefighters who will be on call during the holidays to keep our communities hazard-free. With that said, firefighters need to eat too – and they eat A LOT! Honor these heroes this holiday season by cooking up a blazing storm and bringing it over to the local fire station. Here are a few recipes your firefighters are sure to devour!
Buffalo Chicken Quinoa Salad With Broccoli (Serves 2 – 4, multiply as needed)
Cook Time: 25 minutes
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
3/4 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into bite size pieces
1 cup broccoli florets
3/4 cup shredded carrots
3/4 cup shredded cabbage
1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles, plus more for garnish
4 green onions chopped, save half for garnish
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup hot sauce (I recommend Franks)
- 1 teaspoon seasoned salt
In a fine-mesh strainer, rinse quinoa well and drain. In a medium pot, combine quinoa and water. Bring to a boil, then cover and turn heat to low. Cook until all the water is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat, fluff the quinoa with a fork.
While the quinoa is cooking, make the buffalo sauce dressing and cook the chicken and broccoli. In a measuring cup or small bowl combine the olive oil, hot sauce, and seasoned salt. Whisk to combine. Set aside.
Heat a medium size skillet over medium high heat. Add a tablespoon of olive oil and saute the broccoli for about 5 minutes. You want it to just start to soften, but still be crisp. Remove from the pan and set aside. Add the chicken to the same pan and cook the chicken for about 5 minutes or until cooked through. Add 1/4 cup or so of the buffalo sauce and cook until the chicken absorbs the sauce.
When the quinoa is ready add the chicken, broccoli, carrots, shredded cabbage and as much of the dressing as desired. Toss well. Add the blue cheese and half of the green onions. Toss again and serve warm with extra blue cheese crumbles and green onions.
-By Half Baked Harvest
Homemade Spaghetti Sauce (Serves many)
- 1 to 2 lbs lean ground beef
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 – 14 oz can tomato sauce (plain, no spices)
- 1 – 19 oz can diced tomatoes (plain, no spices)
- 1 – 5.5 oz can tomato paste
- ½ cup red wine (or beef broth if you don’t want to use wine)
- 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp basil
- salt & fresh ground pepper to taste
- For extra nutrition, see below in Notes.
In a large frying pan, brown the beef with the onions and garlic. When the beef is cooked through, drain it, then return to the pan.
Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, wine, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, oregano, basil and salt & pepper.
Simmer for about 1 hour, covered.
For extra nutrition you can add any chopped up vegetable to the sauce that you like: bell peppers, zucchini, mushrooms. Just fry them up first in a frying pan until they’re cooked yet still crisp. Then add them to the sauce and cook as directed.
Or you can add pureed yam or pumpkin.
If you don’t want to use ground beef, any ground meat works well in this recipe (especially ground chicken or turkey).
-By A Pretty Life
Slow Cooker Pulled Pork (Serves 6)
Cook Time: 30 mins, plus 6 to 10 hrs cooking time
- 2 medium yellow onions, thinly sliced
- 4 medium garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1 cup chicken stock or low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon packed dark brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 (4-1/2- to 5-pound) boneless or bone-in pork shoulder (also known as pork butt), twine or netting removed
- 2 cups barbecue sauce (optional)
Place the onions and garlic in an even layer in the slow cooker and pour in the stock or broth. Combine the sugar, chili powder, measured salt, cumin, and cinnamon in a small bowl. Pat the pork dry with paper towels. Rub the spice mixture all over the pork and place the meat on top of the onions and garlic. Cover and cook until the pork is fork tender, about 6 to 8 hours on high or 8 to 10 hours on low.
Turn off the slow cooker and remove the pork to a cutting board. Set a fine-mesh strainer over a medium heatproof bowl. Pour the onion mixture from the slow cooker through the strainer and return the solids to the slow cooker. Set the strained liquid aside.
If the pork has a bone, remove and discard it. Using 2 forks, shred the meat into bite-sized pieces, discarding any large pieces of fat. Return the shredded meat to the slow cooker, add the barbecue sauce, if using, and mix to combine. If you’re not using barbecue sauce, use a spoon to skim and discard the fat from the surface of the strained cooking liquid, and then add 1/4 cup of the liquid at a time to the slow cooker until the pork is just moistened. Taste and season with salt as needed.