Monday, February 24, 2014

Kung Pao Chicken

We love this dish!  I am not sure where I found it.

1 lb boneless, skinless chicken cut into 1" pieces
1 T. cornstarch
2 tsp sesame oil
3 T. green onions, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp ground ginger
2 T. rice wine vinegar
2 T. soy sauce
2 tsp. sugar
1/3 cup dry roasted peanuts

Combine chicken and cornstarch in a small bowl and toss to coat.  Heat sesame oil in wok (or large deep-dish skillet) over medium heat.  Add chicken and stir fry 5-7 minutes or until no longer pink inside.  Remove chicken from wok.

Add green onions, garlic, red pepper flakes and ginger to the wok and stir fry for 15 seconds.  Combine vinegar, soy sauce, and sugar in small bowl.  Mix well and add the sauce to the wok.  Return chicken to the work and coat with sauce.  Stir in roasted peanuts.  Heat thoroughly.  Top with additional green onions if desired and serve over rice.

Chopped Cobb Salad

I found this recipe in a cookbook at the library titled, Bubby's Brunch Cookbook by Ron Silver.  I tried this chopped Cobb salad and my family loved it.  There were no leftovers!

1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp dry mustard
1 small garlic clove, finely minced
1/4 cup olive oil
3/4 cup canola oil

To make the dressing combine 1/4 cup water, the vinegar, sugar, lemon juice, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, mustard and garlic in large bowl.  Stir until combined.  Then slowly pour in olive and canola oil.  (Or if you are like me....just throw it in the blender and mix it at once!)

As far as the salad goes, you can do it however you would like.  The recipe suggests using 1 head romaine, 1 bunch watercress, 2 heads Beligian endive, and 1 bunch of argula.  I used spinach, red leaf and romaine lettuce.  I tossed the greens together and arranged it in the middle of a platter with the other ingredients in individual piles around the greens.

The other ingredients (besides salad greens) may include:
grilled chicken breasts in slices,
4 large boiled eggs, sliced
6 slices of bacon, chopped
2 ripe avacados, diced
2 medium tomatoes, diced
(or add and subtract whatever you like)

You can serve the dressing on the side or drizzle it over the salad.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Sauteed Yucca

Another Brazilian food.  My husband loves this.  Ate it all the time on his mission.

1 lb yucca root, skin removed and sliced in to 2 - 3 inch cylinders
salt and pepper to taste
3 TBS unsalted butter

1.  Place yucca into a saucepan and cover completely with water.
2.  Bring to a boil over high heat then reduce to medium heat and simmer just until fork tender.
3.  Drain water and then when cool enough to handle, split cylinders and removed fibrous root in the center of the yucca root.
4.  Heat and saute pan over medium heat.  Add butter to melt and saute cooked yucca just until golden.  Season with salt to taste and pepper if desired.

Cilantro Lime Rice (authentic)

I made this in my Brazilian cooking class.  It has a different taste than the other Cilantro Lime Rice recipe on this blog...but still very yummy!  This method of cooking makes the rice makes it PERFECT every time!

1 cup long grain rice
2 TBS canola or vegetable oil
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups water
2 TBS fresh lime juice
1 TBS lime zest
3 TBS fresh cilantro, chopped

1.  Rinse rice, drain and reserve.
2.  Heat oil in pan over medium-high heat.  When oil is hot add well drained rice and coat evenly with oil.  Saute for 2-3 minutes.
3.  Add water and salt to pot and bring to a boil over high heat.  Allow water to evaporate to level of rice.  As soon as you see air pockets on the top, place tight lid on pot, reduce heat to lowest setting and cook for 18 minutes.
4.  Fluff with fork and gently fold in lime juice, zest and cilantro.

- For better results of releasing juice from lime, roll in on a hard surface under your palm putting pressure on it.
-For a tight seal on the lid, put a piece of tinfoil over the pot and then the lid on top pressing down.

Brazilian Cheese Rolls

I took a Brazilian cooking class and learned to make these.  My husband says they taste authentic!

1 large egg
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup canola oil
1 cup tapioca flour (NO SUBSTITUTES!)
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2.  Place egg, milk, oil, tapioca flour, and salt in food processor or blender and blend until smooth.  Add cheeses (reserve a little Parmesan to sprinkle on top) and pulse 2 times.  Immediately pour batter into a nonstick mini muffin filling each 3/4 full.  Sprinkle a bit of Parmesan cheese on top.
3.  Bake for 15-20 minutes util puffed and golden.  Remove from oven and cool for a few minutes before removing rolls from pan.  Serve warm.

**TIP - I was told that it is BEST if the cooking ingredients are at room temperature.