Thursday, March 14, 2013

Mojo Chicken, Cilantro Rice, Savory Black Beans

I have been dreaming of mojo chicken since culinary school. One of my chef instructors made it for us, and it was so damn good. But, I can't seem to recreate it the way she made it, nor can I find a recipe/method like hers. It wasn't part of the curriculum, either, so it's not in my (gigantic) recipe binder from that class. 

But, I keep trying. This one I made was not even close, but it was tasty enough. The night I made it, I did not serve it with the rice and beans, but rather just tortillas. I made the rice and beans about a week later to go with bread fish tacos. I found the whole meal from But, I tweeked it work for my family.

For the chicken:
-marinade = 1 cup orange juice, juice of 1 lime, garlic, cilantro, ground cumin, salt and pepper.
-I used chicken legs and thighs, which I removed the bones, skin on
-marinate the chicken for at least  1 hour
-drain the marinade, and sear the chicken, skin side down, in a hot skillet with oil. 
-once the skin is browned, flip over the chicken pieces and pop the pan into a hot (450F) oven, or continue to cook on the stove, turning the burner down to medium, until cooked through.

Cilantro Rice: 
-Long grain rice, lime juice, cilantro, salt and pepper.
-Basically, you cook the rice, then add the remaining ingredients, and stir to combine.

Savory Black Beans: 
-1 can black beans, extra virgin olive oil, diced red onions (or shallots), chopped garlic, smoked paprika, salt and pepper
-in a skillet, heat the olive oil
-add onions and garlic and cook for 1 minute
-add drained, rinse black beans
-season with paprika, salt and pepper
-cook until heated through, about 3-5 minutes


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Recent Meals

I found some food photos recently, and realized that I have not blogged about any of them!! Shame on me. So, here's a quick photo journey of some of the foods I've made in our home for dinner...

(Giant) Rosti- shredded Yukon gold potatoes, seasoned with salt and pepper, and pan fried in duck fat.
Sauteed kale with turkey kielbasa, garlic, and a touch of sherry vinegar.
 Sauteed clams with Chinese sausage and black bean sauce.
 Cabbage salad.
 Chicken Parmesan. My first time making this. It was yummy.
Okay, this one, I didn't make, nor was it in my home. But, it was one of the 5 delicious courses I recently had at Rover's restaurant. This is their seared foie gras with savory profiterole, and brandy gastrique. It was not part of the 4 course tasting menu I ordered, but I just had to add this on. It was pretty incredible. This was one of my best meals in Seattle. Sadly, Rover's will be closing its doors this spring.
Pesto tortellini, turkey kielbasa, and broccoli, tossed in a tomato cream sauce.
This is my brunoise mire poix for bolognese sauce (and a 6-inch chef's knife). Why is this significant? Because, I contemplated chopping my veggies in a food processor, before settling on hand cutting. I had this whole dialog with myself (in my head) about the importance of using my knife skills, and hand chopping vs a food processor, etc. Even though it was all going into a ragu, and will hardly be noticed. Knife skills are one of my few talents I feel really proud and strongly about. These are not perfectly diced vegetables. Not even close. But, I know I can do this, and I know I can do it fairly quickly. And, when I'm done, I only need to clean my knife and cutting board, which neither requires unplugging and disassembling. Just sayin'.
 Whole wheat spaghetti bolognese (with those brunoise veggies).

Tuesday, March 12, 2013


Mind you, I'm just getting my feet wet in this iced cookie obsession. And, I have to stop and take care of two young boys, A LOT.

Last week, I made these. I just picked any cookie cutters I had in my stash. These are actually for making ice cream sammies, which I've only attempted once, and failed miserably. (DO NOT MAKE ICE CREAM SANDWICHES ON A HOT DAY, IN A HOUSE WITH NO A.C. - just sayin')
And, since I had the icings & cookie dough, I made these today. Again, I'm just starting out. I have confidence that in time (maybe 2, 3, 8? years), I'll have a steadier hand, and better designs. These are supposed to be robin eggs, and Easter eggs. Yes, I had a tiny, tiny cutter, too!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Latest Obsession

Iced cookies. I'm obsessed with iced cookies. I've been making them, researching them, watching videos about them. Obsessed. Maybe just to take my mind off of birthing my 3rd boy. Not sure. I'll post pictures of the ones in the works when I get some taken. I forgot to take pictures of my first batch: train cookies for Tyler's birthday.