Friday, October 2, 2009

Left Over Chicken and Rice

Leftover chicken & riceIn order to make life more sane I like to always cook some extra meat for dinner so that I have leftovers for lunches. The problem is that sometimes the fridge gets full of leftovers. Rather than eating the same thing for dinner (heaven forbid :)) or giving the leftovers to the dog (better than throwing them out), I like to dress the leftovers up a bit. I used leftover BBQ chicken thighs for this version but you could use add just about any leftover savoury meat to this rice.

The Recipe: Left Over Chicken and Rice

1 cup of brown rice
1 onion diced
2 cloves of garlic minced
1 tbsp of turmeric
1 tbsp of paprika
3 tbsp butter
1 tsp sea salt
2 cups of chicken stock
left over chicken (I used 2 large chicken thighs)
1/4 cup of roughly chopped salted pistachios

Heat a medium sauce pan to medium high heat and add the butter and onions. Saute the onions for about 3 minutes, stirring frequently, add the garlic and continue stirring for another 2 minutes. Add the paprika and turmeric and stir for another minute. Add the rice and cook for another minute stirring. Add salt, chicken stock and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 35 minutes. Roughly chop the leftover chicken in 1/2 inch pieces and add to the rice. Cover and continue cooking until rice is done (liquid has all been absorbed). Plate and top with the pistachios. Enjoy!
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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Roasted Fall Vegetables

Roasted Fall VegetablesFall is here and nothing says fall like hearty roast vegetables. I love this combination of vegetables and yes culinarily speaking squash is a vegetable. Botanically it is not, but I am not a botanist, so I don't have to worry about that. The secret to the recipe is adding the veggies at the right time as they all take a different amount of time to cook.

The Recipe: Fall Roasted Vegetables

4 peeled and cubed beets (1/2 cubes)
1 butternut squash peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes(you could also use pumpkin)
3 medium sized sweet potatoes peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 large onions diced
3 cloves of minced garlic
1/2 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp of cloves
1/2 tsp cinnamon
4 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp brown sugar

Boil the beets in water on the stove top for about 20-30 minutes. Add the boiled beets, butternut squash, onions, garlic, spices, butter, oil and salt to a large casserole dish. Lightly toss the mixture and place is a 375 degree oven. Remove after 10 minutes and stir ensuring the vegetables are coated in oil. Continue cooking for another 20 minutes, stirring once more. Remove from oven and add the sweet potatoes and brown sugar, toss and place back in the oven for 25 minutes, stirring once more after 10 minutes. Enjoy!
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Sunday, September 27, 2009

Recipe: Peach and Spinach Salad with Candied Almonds

Spinach Salad with Peachs & Candied AlmondsAnother beautiful salad based on what is a available in the fridge. I have to admit that in general I usually lean to a sweeter salad hence I am usually adding fresh fruit and / or a sweet vinaigrette. With great free stone peaches in season I try to keep using them in different ways before they leave us for another year. The peaches combined with the candied almonds are killer, just try not to eat them all before adding to the salad.
The Recipe: Peach and Spinach Salad with Candied Almonds

Serves 2 people who love salad
2 tbsp orange juice
1 tbsp olive oil
pinch of sea salt
1 tsp of apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp of honey

Candied Almonds:
1/2 cup of almonds (make extra if you want a treat)
pinch of sea salt
1 1/2 tbsp of butter
2 tbsp of honey

4 oz of baby spinach
1 peach sliced and cut into half inch cubes
1 oz of roughly broken up mozzarella cheese (feta would also work great, but I am searching for a new producer since my local producer stop making organic feta)

Combine all ingredients for the the vinaigrette in a bowl and whisk until well incorporated. Place the almonds in an oven safe pan (I use my cast iron) and heat with butter, salt and honey until the honey is melted and all the almonds are coated. Place the pan in a 375 degree oven and cook for about 5 minutes, checking periodically to ensure the honey is not burning. Remove the almonds and place on plate to cool. Separate the almonds every couple minutes to avoid having to break them apart once they have hardened and cooled. The cooling process will take about 5-10 minutes.

Combine the spinach and the vinaigrette in a large bowl and toss. Do not add all the vinaigrette to start as you do not want to add to much. After the spinach is thoroughly covered add the almonds, peach, cheese and lightly toss so that all the toppings do not end up on the bottom of the bowl. Serve immediately and enjoy!
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