If you’re looking for a new way to make chicken here is a nice change of pace. It’s made with a wonderful Asian ingredient called Shio-Koji. Shio-Koji is a Japanese traditional condiment made from malted rice and salt. Its salty flavor can be a great substitute for salt, by lowering the overall salt content to less than 50%. Shio-Koji is a live food that is rich in enzymes. It brings out the umami in foods. Shio-Koji imparts a rich savory flavor making any dish delicious. It is excellent to use when marinating fish or meat and can be found in most Asian grocery stores.
2 Tablespoons Miso
1 Tablespoon Shio-Koji
1 Pound Chicken Thighs
4 Tablespoons Plain Yogurt
3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
In a medium size bowl combine the yogurt, miso and Shio-Koji. Mix well to combine. Place the chicken thighs in a large ziplock bag and pour the Shio-Koji mixture in the bag to cover the chicken. Zip up the bag and give a good shake to ensure that all of the chicken is nicely covered. Place in the fridge and let sit for at least 2 hours. Place a large size sauté pan on the stove and pour in the olive oil. Turn the heat to medium-high and place the chicken thighs into the sauté pan. Cook one side for 3 minutes and then turn over. Cook the other side for another 3 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and transfer to a serving plate. Serves 2
Add some green to your Red, White & Blue! This July 4th kick up the classics and put a little green in your Red White & Blue with fresh avocado.
1 Pound Ground Beef
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
1 Pound Thick Cut Bacon (About 8 Slices)
1 Chopped Tomato
1/4 Cup Chopped Cilantro
1/2 Cup Salsa
1/2 Lemon or Lime
1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
1/2 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Pepper
Lettuce for Garnish
1 Tomato for Garnish
Pickles for Garnish
Start by cooking the bacon, in a large size skillet over a medium heat, on the stove until you have your desired crispiness. While the bacon is cooking put the ground beef into a large size bowl. Add the Worcestershire sauce and the egg. Mix together. With your hands separate the meat mixture into 4 equal balls. Have one of the meat balls in one hand and with the other hand press down with your palm to make a patty. Repeat this process until you have finished with all four. Place onto a plate and set aside. After the bacon is cooked place onto paper towels to drain. With the same pan that you used to cook the bacon place the beef patties. Obviously, this is definitely a calorie splurge, but it really does add a lot of flavor to the burgers. Cook the patties for 6 to 8 minutes per side. If you have a meat thermometer then the temperature goal is 160º F on the inside of the burger.
While the burgers are cooking make the guacamole. Cut up one of the tomatoes into small cubes and put into a medium size bowl. Add the 2 avocados. The avocados should be ripe so that they are easy to mash plus tastes much better. Add the cilantro, salsa, lemon or lime juice, kosher salt and pepper. Mash together with a potato masher, but leave somewhat chunky. This is really easy to do and super delicious! Now that the burgers are done cooking and you’ve made the guacamole take 4 buns and place the patties on the buns. Top with guacamole, bacon and add the toppings of your choice: Mustard, mayonnaise, ketchup, lettuce, tomatoes and pickles and enjoy! Make 4
If you like Nutella then you will like this pound cake recipe. It’s easy to make and can be eaten for breakfast or as a dessert.
1/2 Cup Softened Butter
3 Room Temperature Eggs
1/2 Cup Whipping Cream
1 1/2 Cups Unbleached Flour
1/4 Teaspoon Baking Powder
1/8 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
1 Cup Sugar
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 Cup Nutella
Preheat your oven to 325º F. Allow the butter and eggs to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Line a 9x5x3 inch loaf pan with parchment paper. Set aside. In a medium size bowl stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and kosher salt. Set aside. In a large size bowl beat the butter on a medium speed for 30 seconds. Gradually add the sugar and beat for 30 seconds until light and fluffy. Beat in the vanilla. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating 1 minute after each addition. Scrape the bowl frequently. Alternately add the flour mixture and whipping cream to the butter mixture. Beat on low after each addition just until combined. Pour half of the batter into the parchment paper lined loaf pan. Place 1/2 cup Nutella on top of the batter and swirl with a knife. Pour the rest of the batter and place the remaining 1/2 cup Nutella on top of the batter. Swirl the Nutella with a knife. Place into the oven and bake for 60 to 75 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Remember that ovens heat differently so check at 60 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove from the pan (by pulling out by the parchment paper) and cool thoroughly on the rack. Makes 1 Nutella Pound Cake.
Everyone needs a few easy weekend night meals to pull out of their hat. Here is a wonderful Classic Black Beans & Rice recipe that is truly a faithful friend. If you want to add meat then either add chicken or fish. Shrimp is a good choice for a homespun Cajun night.
3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
3/4 Cup Finely Chopped Onion
1/2 Cup Chopped Green or Red Bell Pepper
3 Minced Garlic Cloves
2 Cups Cooked Black Beans (Undrained)
3/4 Cup Water
1 Teaspoon Oregano
2 Teaspoons Chili Powder
1 Tablespoon Vinegar
In a medium size saucepan heat the oil over a medium heat. Add the onions, peppers and garlic. Cook for 8 minutes until they are nice and tender. Stir in the beans, water, oregano, chili powder and vinegar. Bring to a boil and then turn the heat down to low. Simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and transfer to a serving bowl. Serve over hot white or brown rice. Serves 4
I’ve really been in a Mexican food mood as of late. Since getting back from Tucson a couple of months ago I have really been yearning for good South of the Border cuisine. Keeping in line with easy weeknight meals here is a quick and easy family dinner.
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 Pound Chicken Breast Strips
1 Cup Salsa
3 Tablespoons Fresh Lime Juice
1 Teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
1 Bell Pepper (Cut into Thin Strips)
1 Medium Onion (Cut into Thin Strips)
10 Flour Tortillas for Fajitas or Soft Tacos
In a medium size skillet add the olive oil and chicken strips. Cook over a medium-high heat for 4 minutes. Add the salsa, lime juice and Worcestershire sauce. Add the peppers and onions. Give a good stir. Cook for 5 minutes until the vegetables are crisp-tender. Remove from the heat and spoon the filling into tortillas. Add additional salsa as a topping if you like. Roll these babies up and serve. Makes 10 fajitas.
Tip: Feel free to add shredded cheese, sliced mushrooms, tomatoes or anything your heart desires.
Victoria and Camille have been cooking together almost from the moment Camille was born. Camille’s tiny hands broke eggs for cakes, stirred frosting and of course licked the beaters. Victoria couldn’t keep Camille out of the kitchen so she purchased a little lightweight stool for her to stand on in order to reach the counters. Because Camille has been cooking for over 20 years she has become an expert in coming up with her own recipes and cooking ideas. She loves to cook for family and friends alike and I must admit her Banana Bread is out of this world. Here is Camille’s Smoked Salmon Frittata that she concocted last night. It was delicious and naturally there are no leftovers. Give her frittata a try for dinner, lunch or breakfast. It’s nice having a multi-meal dish at your fingertips.
1 Diced Medium Onion
1 Tablespoon Butter
12 Fresh Eggs
1 Cup Milk
1/2 Cup Feta Cheese
1/2 Cup Cheddar Cheese
1/4 Cup Sliced Mushrooms
1 Cup Spinach
3/4 Cup Smoked Salmon
1 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Pepper
Preheat your oven to 350º F. In a medium size ovenproof skillet sauté the onions and butter for about 5 minutes over a medium heat. You will want the onions to be translucent. Turn off the heat and let the onions rest. In a large size bowl add all of the eggs. Whisk until well combined. Add the milk, cheese, mushrooms, spinach, salmon and pepper. If you want to add salt you can, but I chose not to because the salmon is already salty. Mix everything together in the bowl and then pour everything over the onions that have been resting in the pan. Place in the oven and bake for 50 minutes until lightly browned and a knife comes out clean. Remove from the oven. Serve directly from the skillet and enjoy. If you’re serving this dish for dinner you could top with sliced avocado. Serves 8
Summer is here and I tend to want to eat a bit lighter during these warm months. Here is a good side salad. If you want to make it a main meal then add sautéed chicken, shrimp or tofu.
1 Garlic Clove
1 Diced Large Shallot
1 Seeded and Diced Jalapeno Pepper
4 Tablespoons Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice
1/2 Cup Olive Oil
1 Large Seeded and Diced Red Pepper
1 Large Peeled and Diced Cucumber
1/2 Cup Chopped Cilantro
3 Sliced Ripe Avocados
1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
Pound the garlic clove to a smooth paste. Place the garlic, shallot, jalapeno, kosher salt and lime juice into a small size bowl. Let sit for 10 minutes. Add 1/2 cup olive oil and stir to combine. Place the red pepper, cucumber and chopped cilantro into a medium size bowl. Pour half of the garlic vinaigrette into the bowl of red pepper mixture. Stir to combine well. Arrange the sliced avocado on a serving platter and pour the remaining garlic vinaigrette evenly over the top of the avocado. Spoon the red pepper mixture on and around the avocado. Serve immediately. Serves 4 as a side salad or 2 as a main dish.
Tip: When seeding a jalapeno, lay the pepper on its side on a cutting board. Use a sharp knife and cut just to the right of the stem and along one side of the pepper. Remove just the flesh and not the seeds. Rotate the pepper a quarter turn and then slice again. Continue to turn and slice until you have four seedless slices. Throw away the seeds and core.
I love peas and this dish is a favorite of mine. Featuring cipollini onions it makes a beautiful presentation.
1 Cup Peeled Cipollini Onions (8 Ounces)
1/2 Cup Butter
1/4 Cup Water
1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
2 Teaspoons Chopped Basil
2 Teaspoons Chopped Cilantro
1/4 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Pepper
2 Packages Organic Frozen Peas (10 Ounces Each) Thawed
2 Cups Shredded Cabbage
In a medium size pot bring 6 cups of water to a boil. Add the peeled cipollini onions and cook for only 3 minutes. Drain and rinse in cold water. Set aside. In the same pot melt the butter over a low heat. Add the cipollini onions, water, kosher salt, basil, cilantro and pepper. Stir and cook for 2 minutes. Add the thawed peas and the shredded cabbage. Give a good stir and cook for 10 minutes over a medium heat. Remove from the heat and transfer to a serving bowl. Serve warm. Serves 6
Hint: I sometimes like to cheat and buy pre-peeled cipollini onions. Sometimes a gal just gets a bit lazy!