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Recipe: Spicy Chicken Chili

Spicy Chicken Chili

Spicy Chicken Chili

Cold temps may be on the way out (fingers crossed), but there’s still time to make chili. Using chicken thighs, I made this Spicy Chicken Chili.

This is a very simple dish to make that’s full of healthy ingredients. I used dark meat, but if you want it even healthier, you can use white mean. But I actually prefer dark meat for the flavor in slow-cooked dishes.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 lb. of boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 6), cut into strips
  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • Spicy Chicken Chili and Jalapeno-Cheddar Cornbread

    Serve Spicy Chicken Chili with Jalape&ntidle;o-Cheddar Cornbread

  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 TBSP white pepper
  • 2 TBSP black pepper
  • 3 TBSP chili powder
  • 1 TBSP ground cumin
  • 2 TBSP kosher salt
  • 3 jalapeños (seed removed), chopped
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes with their juice
  • 1 can black beans, drained
  • 1 can pinto beans, drained
  • 1 can red kidney beans, drained
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro (optional)
  • Sour cream (optional)
  • Shredded cheese (optional)

Directions:

  1. In a large pot or saucepan, heat the oil over medium-low heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 3 minutes, or until they soften.
  2. Increase the heat to medium and add the chicken. Cook about two minutes until the strips are no longer pink.
  3. Stir in the salt, white pepper, chili powder and cumin.
  4. Add the jalapeños and the tomatoes with their juice.
  5. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
  6. Uncover and stir in the beans and black pepper. Simmer until the chili has thickened (about 15 minutes longer).
  7. Spoon chili into bowls and garnish with cilantro, sour cream and shredded cheese (if desired)

If the chili seems to spicy for you, remove a tablespoon of chili powder and take out a jalapeño or two. Also, if your chili is a little too thick, cut it with some chicken broth (or water if you don’t have chicken broth).

I served my Spicy Chicken Chili with Jalapeño and Cheddar Cornbread (cornbread I don’t share the recipe for). You can also sub in different kind of beans as you see fit. Chili is a really versatile dish so use your culinary imagination.

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Posted by on March 13, 2013 in Cookin', Entrees, One-Pot Wonders, Recipes

 

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Recipe: Fried Brussels Sprouts with Pepper Jelly

Fried Brussels Sprouts with Pepper Jelly

Fried Brussels Sprouts with Pepper Jelly

Not a fan of Brussels sprouts? Then here’s the perfect gateway drug into liking these abhorred veggies. Trust me, they’re good and I’ve been able to turn Brussels sprouts haters into at least likers, if not lovers.

They have to be good, right? They’re fried. I would recommend serving Fried Brussels Sprouts with Pepper Jelly with a nice pork dish or chicken dish.

Fried Brussels Sprouts with Pepper Jelly

Fry the Brussels sprouts in sunflower oil until they are nice and crispy.


Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb. of fresh Brussels sprouts, halved
  • 3 TBSP pepper jelly
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 TBSP salt
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 3 cups oil for frying (I used sunflower)

Directions:

  1. Rinse the halved Brussels sprouts in a colander. Dry with a paper towel, then toss with paprika, white pepper, black pepper and salt in a medium bowl.
  2. Heat oil in large pot or Dutch oven until temp reaches at least 400F (the temp will drop when you add the Brussels sprouts). NOTE: 425F is the smoke temp for sunflower so be sure not to exceed 425F. If using a different oil, be sure to check the smoke temp for your oil.
  3. Once oil is heated, set Brussels sprouts and 1/2 TBSP of pepper jelly in the oil. Flipping often to cook on all sides. You may have to work in batches.
  4. Using a slotted spoon, remove Brussels sprouts from oil and drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
  5. Once all Brussels sprouts have been fried, toss with remaining pepper jelly in a medium bowl then serve while still warm.

I highly recommend using sunflower oil for this recipe. It’s rich in polyunsaturated fat so not as unhealthy as other oils available.

Fried Brussels Sprouts with Pepper Jelly is a very simple recipe with minimal ingredients. The pepper jelly does a lot of the work when it comes to flavor since it’s sweet, acidic and spicy. Try this recipe on someone who claims not to like Brussels sprouts and turn them into a believer.

 
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Posted by on March 12, 2013 in Cookin', Recipes, Sides

 

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Recipe: Sweet Potato and Andouille Soup

Sweet Potato and Andouille Soup

Sweet Potato and Andouille Soup


Down in Louisiana (and in the South, really) we love our pork products. So when my boss brought me some fresh andouille sausage and I picked up some Louisiana sweet potatoes from Hollygrove Market, I knew I had to make Sweet Potato and Andouille Soup.

The smokiness of the andouille pairs very nicely with the sweetness of the sweet potatoes. Add quite a bit of hot sauce and you’ve got yourself a great soup.

Ingredients:

  • 3 sweet potatoes
  • 1/4 pound andouille sausage (plus more for garnish)
  • 2 sticks of unsalted butter
  • 3 TBSP sweet potato-habañero hot sauce (or your favorite hot sauce)
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely diced
  • 1 white onion, finely diced
  • 4 celery stalks, finely diced
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 6 cups scalded 2% milk
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Pepitas (toasted pumpkin seeds), for garnish

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. Boil sweet potatoes 10-15 minutes.
  3. While potatoes are boiling, pulse andouille in food processor to a nice crumble.
  4. Transfer sweet potatoes to oven and place directly on rack. Roast for an additional 10-15 minutes, let cool then peel and puree in food processor.
  5. Sweet Potato and Andouille Soup

    Impress your holiday guests with this recipe for Sweet Potato and Andouille Soup.

  6. In a large stock pot, saute celery, red bell pepper and onion in butter until vegetables are tender.
  7. Add flour and heat for 2 to 3 minutes, but do not brown.
  8. Add pureed sweet potatoes, hot sauce and diced andouille (saving some for garnish). Stir to mix.
  9. Add heavy cream, stirring to incorporate.
  10. Gradually add scalded milk, stirring constantly to desired richness.
  11. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  12. Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with cracked black pepper, crumbled andouille and pepitas.

Sweet Potato and Andouille Soup takes about 45 minutes from start to finish if your scald your milk in advance. I was skeptical that using scalded milk would improve the soup, but I have to say it does so skip that part at your own risk.

For the sweet potato-habañero hot sauce, I used the variety from Butcher here in New Orleans. It’s hands down one of my favorite hot sauces out there. You can by some here.

 
6 Comments

Posted by on November 26, 2012 in Cookin', Recipes, Soups/Stews

 

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Recipe: Banana Soufflés

Banana Souffle

Banana Soufflé


When life gives you bananas, make soufflés, right? I think that’s how the saying goes. Oh well, either way. These Banana Soufflés are light and fluffy (and require good timing).

The hardest part is whisking the egg whites until they get some nice, soft peaks. You can do it though, just throw some extra elbow grease into it.

Ingredients:

  • 2 firm, ripe bananas (mashed)
  • 1 TBSP unsalted butter, melted
  • 5 TBSP sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3 egg whites
  • Juice of 1/2 a lime
  • Pinch of salt

Banana Souffle

Caution! Serve immediately or these soufflés will shrivel quickly.


Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°.
  2. Brush four 1-cup ramekins with melted butter. Add 2 tablespoons of the sugar to one of the ramekins and rotate it to coat with sugar. Tap the excess sugar into another ramekin. Repeat until all the ramekins are coated with sugar.
  3. In a food processor, puree the bananas with lime juice, egg yolk and 2 tablespoons of the sugar until smooth. Scrape the mixture into a large bowl.
  4. In a medium bowl, beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until soft peaks form. (This is the hardest part!)
  5. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar and beat until firm and glossy. Using a rubber spatula, beat one-fourth of the beaten whites into the banana mixture, then gently fold in the remaining whites.
  6. Spoon the soufflé mixture into the prepared ramekins and tap them lightly on a countertop.
  7. Transfer the soufflés to a baking sheet and bake in the center of the oven for about 15 minutes, or until golden brown and risen. Do not open the oven until they are finished!

Once you pull these Banana Soufflés from the oven, they will start to shrivel up pretty quickly. Mine rose a little more than indicated in the pictures.

These Banana Soufflés are actually fairly healthy. Each only contains about 1 TBSP of sugar so you could do a lot worse. If you get it right, the soufflés should be light, airy and fluffy.

 
4 Comments

Posted by on November 13, 2012 in Cookin', Desserts, Recipes

 

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Recipe: Chickpea, Piquillo Pepper and Chicken Soup

Chickpea, Piquillo Pepper and Chicken Soup

Chickpea, Piquillo Pepper and Chicken Soup


Need a quick recipe for a busy weeknight? This recipe for Chickpea, Piquillo Pepper and Chicken Soup takes no time at all. The secret is using ingredients with lots of flavor, like hummus and piquillo peppers.

Chickpea, Piquillo Pepper and Chicken Soup

A perfect, creamy soup for Fall weather.

You’ll save a ton of time without sacrificing flavor. And it’s perfect for the upcoming (or already arrived) cold weather.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup drained piquillo peppers, 1/4 cup cut into thin strips
  • 2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup shredded rotisserie chicken
  • 1/2 cup cooked rice (white or brown)
  • 3/4 cups hummus
  • 2 TBSP cilantro
  • 1 tsp hot sauce
  • Olive oil, for serving
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. In a food processor, puree the whole piquillo peppers, hummus and chicken stock until smooth.
  2. Chickpea, Piquillo Pepper and Chicken Soup

    This recipe uses very few ingredients.

  3. Transfer the soup to a Dutch oven.
  4. Add the chicken, rice and hot sauce, season with salt and pepper, then bring to a boil.
  5. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with olive oil, cilantro, sliced piquillo peppers and more hot sauce (if desired).

Four pretty simple steps, right? It’s not a backbreaking recipe by any means and the flavors are awesome for such a quick recipe.

I had no problem finding jarred piquillo peppers at my local grocery store, but if you can’t find them, roasted red peppers are a suitable substitution.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on November 12, 2012 in Cookin', One-Pot Wonders, Recipes, Soups/Stews

 

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Recipe: Caramel Apple Hand Pies

Caramel Apple Hand Pies

Caramel Apple Hand Pies


Hand pies are a New Orleans tradition thanks to local business Hubig’s. Unfortunately, with Hubig’s currently not in operation due to a devastating fire (they promise to rebuild), I had to make my own hand pies to get my fix. But, all in all, I’m proud of how these Caramel Apple Hand Pies turned out.

I’m a huge fan of caramel apples so I whipped up some caramel and mixed it with the apples to create the caramel apple filling.

Ingredients:

For the Caramel:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 6 TBSP unsalted butter, cut into cubes
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup water

Caramel Apple Hand Pies

Caramel Apple Hand Pies encompass wonderful Fall flavors.


For the rest:

  • 4 pre-made pie crusts
  • 2 Granny Smith apples, finely chopped
  • 2 Honeycrisp apples, finely chopped
  • 2 TBSP cinnamon
  • 1 TBSP sugar
  • 2 egg yolks

Directions:

For the Caramel:

  1. Heat sugar and water in a 3-quart saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. When sugar comes to a boil, stop stirring.
  2. Boil until the liquid sugar turns a dark amber color then add all the butter. The mixture will foam up and thicken.
  3. Whisk until the butter has melted. Once butter has melted, remove pan from the heat.
  4. Add the cream (the mixture will foam up again) and whisk to incorporate cream and until mixture is smooth.
  5. Set aside caramel to cool.

For the Hand Pies:

  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Caramel Apple Hand Pies

    Making the caramel from scratch is worth the effort.

  3. Roll out pre-made pie crust dough and use a 4-inch circular pastry cutter to cut circles out of the dough. Repeat with each dough remains.
  4. Set dough circles aside on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  5. Toss apples with cinnamon and remaining sugar.
  6. Once caramel has cooled, add apples to the caramel and stir to incorporate.
  7. Assemble hand pies by place a TBSP of caramel apple filling on a dough circle then placing a dough circle on top. Press edges with fork to seal. (Don’t worry if some filling spills out, keep pressing until sealed.)
  8. Using a knife, score an X into the top of each pie so filling can vent its heat out while baking.
  9. Once all pies are assembled (you may need to work in batches if you have one baking sheet), whisk egg yolks in a small bowl. Using a pastry brush, brush each hand pie with the egg wash. Sprinkle each pie with additional sugar, if desired.
  10. Bake hand pies for 12-15 minutes or until crust turns golden brown.
  11. Place on a wire rack to cool.

While my recipe is for hand pies, you can also go the traditional route and just make a caramel apple pie using two pie crusts. Either way, the filling in this recipe is a star.

Making the caramel from scratch really makes a difference. These Caramel Apple Hand Pies are perfect for Fall and Winter parties while apples are in season. Plus, they’re easier to eat. And I guarantee you will have very few left over when all is said and done.

 
2 Comments

Posted by on November 8, 2012 in Cookin', Desserts, Recipes

 

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Recipe: Sour Orange Pulled Pork

Sour Orange Pulled Pork

Sour Orange Pulled Pork


With the election out of the way, forget about going red or blue and go orange with this recipe for Sour Orange Pulled Pork. The country may be divided on candidates, but (barring religious regions) we can all agree on the deliciousness that is pulled pork.

The sourness of the Sour Orange Pulled Pork goes great over a bed of mashed sweet potatoes. It’s a sour, sweet, salty, fatty combo that’s a great treat.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 12 garlic cloves, mashed into a paste
  • 1 4-lb. bone-in pork shoulder
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 3 cups orange juice
  • 1 cup lime juice
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 TBSP honey
  • 3 large sweet potatoes
  • 3 TBSP butter
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Fresh cilantro, for garnish

Directions:

    Sour Orange Pulled Pork

    Sour Orange Pulled Pork is slow cooked in a mixture of orange and lime juice.

  1. Whisk together 1/2 cup olive oil and garlic paste in a large roasting pan. Add the pork and turn to coat. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours and up to 24 hours. Remove from refrigerate 30 minutes before ready to cook.
  2. Preheat oven to 300F.
  3. Season the pork all over with salt and pepper. Add the chicken stock and cover.
  4. While pork is cooking, put the orange and lime juices and honey in a large saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil and reduce to 2 cups (it will be a syrup consistency). Let cool to room temperature.
  5. Also while pork is cooking, cut sweet potatoes into 1-inch cubes and boil in a large pot for 15-20 minutes or until soft. Once cooked, mash sweet potatoes to desired consistency.
  6. Heat the butter in a large cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and mased sweet potatoes and press into the skillet with spatula. Cook, scraping and turning as the bottom browns, until hot.
  7. Once pork has cooked, shred the pork using 2 forks or your hands.
  8. In a medium saucepan, toss the shredded pork with the sour orange honey glaze and reheat over medium heat.
  9. Serve the pork on top of prepared sweet potatoes (reheated if necessary). Garnish with cilantro leaves.

There are several components to Sour Orange Pulled Pork, but none of them are difficult. The hardest part will be leaving with the wonderful smell of slow-cooking pork in the oven. Exercise some patience!

You can also add some cilantro to the sweet potatoes while cooking if desired. And if you really want to go hog wild (couldn’t resist!) you also add some bacon. The more pork the merrier.

 
8 Comments

Posted by on November 7, 2012 in Cookin', Entrees, Recipes

 

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