May the Odds be EVER in your Favor!… 1st April recipe test with Anna!

“What must it be like, I wonder, to live in a world where food appears at the press of a button?” -Suzanne Collins, The Hunger Games

This is the most rushed and un-planned for recipe test yet, but still tasty! On April 1st Anna and I had our first test at my apartment for the month with the theme of both “The Hunger Games” which we went to see with Danielle that afternoon, (awesome movie by the way)- and Easter, since we wanted to also decorate eggs. Strange combo by the way.

For the Hunger Games theme we made a beef soup and a goat cheese and apple pastry. I was nervous about the soup since my idea of soup is either plain tomato or chicken noodle soup- both of which remind me of being sick. One of the goals of these monthly tests though is to make new things so I went for it. It turned out great! I’m not saying I’m a soup person now- I definitely made sure to not even add the lima beans or celery- but it’s a step in the right direction.

Beef Soup: In District 12 of the Hunger Games meat of any kind- squirrel included- is considered a luxury and our main character Katniss is a whiz at hunting. I decided to swap out squirrel for a less ‘exotic’ type of meat- so instead of using chicken like the recipe calls for we used beef.

The Cast of Characters:

Anna doing a bang-up job of cutting up the red pepper:

Smelling good!:

Cooking the soup and hard boiling the eggs:

Goat Cheese and Apple Pastry: Prim, Katniss’ little sister, helped the family survive thanks to the milk from her pet goat. Apples were a natural addition and an illegal find for wandering outside of the District’s (sometimes) electrocuted fences. 😉

The Cast of Characters:

Me putting together the pastries. I would be a very good apprentice in Petta’s family’s bakery I think 🙂 :

Dinner is served!:



I had an awesome and busy weekend- The Princess Bride at Liberty Hall with Anna and our moms (plus Bob’s Smokehouse- thanks Mom!) Then a wonderful day Saturday talking with Lindsey, the Plaza/Barnes and Noble + last minute grocery shopping before the Ohio State game where KU advanced to the championship game! Then Sunday we got Panera’s for breakfast, went to the 9:00 church service at Redeemer Fellowship, Another Plaza drive through, Old Navy for a flip-flop run, our recipe test lunch, The Hunger Games with Danielle, and finally Easter Egg decorating. An awesome and long weekend!

(And Sunday was a great day for a walk!)

The Easter egg pictures are soon to come in a follow-up post.

Update: Read the Easter Egg blog here.


Brunswick Stew

Brunswick stew is a classic Southern dish featuring meat, chopped bell pepper, lima beans, and corn in a tomato base. Developed in 19th-century Virginia, this stew originally included squirrel meat (we opt here for chicken). This version uses flour to give the stew body and features garlic bread on the side. Garnish with fresh thyme sprigs.

Yield: 6 servings (serving size: 1 cup stew and 1 slice bread)

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving

  • Calories: 319
  • Calories from fat: 26%
  • Fat: 9.2g
  • Saturated fat: 2.2g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 3.5g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 2.6g
  • Protein: 22.4g
  • Carbohydrate: 38g
  • Fiber: 5.8g
  • Cholesterol: 50mg
  • Iron: 3.2mg
  • Sodium: 596mg
  • Calcium: 58mg


  • Cooking spray
  • 1 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 3/4 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons no-salt-added tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (such as Tabasco)
  • 1 (10-ounce) package frozen whole-kernel corn, thawed
  • 1 (10-ounce) package frozen baby lima beans, thawed
  • 6 (1-ounce) slices Italian bread, toasted
  • 2 garlic cloves, halved


  1. Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add bell pepper, onion, and celery to pan; cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add oil to pan. Combine flour and chicken in a medium bowl, tossing to coat. Add chicken to pan; cook 2 minutes or until lightly browned. Gradually stir in broth; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute or until slightly thick, stirring constantly. Add tomato paste and next 5 ingredients (through lima beans) to pan. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes.
  2. Rub bread slices with cut sides of garlic; discard garlic. Serve bread with stew.


Apple-Goat Cheese Tarts

            6 oz goat cheese
  • 1 box (package of 2) puff pastry, thawed as package directs
  • 3 medium Granny Smith apples
  • 2 Tb apple jelly, at room temperature
  • 1 Tb sugar


  • Heat oven to 400°F. Have a large baking sheet ready. Place goat cheese in freezer 10 to 20 minutes to make it crumblemore easily. (I stayed at 350 degrees- my oven would burn them at such a high temp for so long).
  • Unfold pastry; roll out on a lightly flouredsurface with a floured rolling pin into a 12-in. square. Cut in half lengthwise, then each half in thirds crosswise. Place 1 in. apart on ungreased baking sheet. Prick each piece with a fork several times to within ½ in. of edges.
  • Divide goat cheese in 6 portions. Crumble 1 portion on each pastry to within ½ in. of edges. Refrigeratewhile preparing apples.
  • Peel, halve and core apples. Slice each half crosswise in 1/4-in.-thick slices (don’t separate slices; keep each group together).
  • Remove tartsfrom refrigerator; fan 1 group of apple slices in a row, overlapping as needed, on top of cheese on each tart. Stir apple jelly until smooth; brush on apples; sprinkle with sugar.
  • Bake 30 minutes or until pastry is golden, and apples are tender and start to brown at edges. Serve warm or at room temperature with caramel sauce to drizzle on tarts. (I only needed 23 minutes cooking time)
  • Good with: warmed caramel sauce (Didn’t use it)

3 responses to “May the Odds be EVER in your Favor!… 1st April recipe test with Anna!

  1. Pingback: Happy Easter!…1st April Recipe Test part 2 | thegreentreeischirping

  2. Pingback: Let’s catch up homies | thegreentreeischirping

  3. Pingback: 2012 Manifesto End of Year Wrap up! | thegreentreeischirping

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