Monthly Archives: February 2021

pineapple chicken fried rice


I will say it is pretty nice that my daughter has been making a couple of dinners a week for the last few weeks. I love cooking but getting a little break here and there is pretty cool. I mean even if I didn’t write a weekly food blog and feel obligated to come up with something new for dinner. Making dinner 7 or say  6 nights a week; we try to go out to dinner or get take out at least once a week. So 6 nights is 312 dinners a year that’s a lot of meals to come up with. I will admit we have had a few unconventional meals at our house. Cereal is a thing, breakfast for dinner is a fav and an occasional hot fudge sundae for dinner has happened.

So I have made and blogged about pineapple fried rice, I have even ordered it out before. This one I am going to share is a little different and not just because of the chicken that was added. It had a little heat to it and the pineapple was great at balancing the heat with the cooling. Which is saying something we as a family I would say tolerate pineapple, we like it a little but it is not a go to for any of us.

The recipe comes together within an hour which is nice for a weeknight meal. Though I have been known to make a roaster chicken during the week on occasion, which is what we had for dinner Friday night actually. My daughter got the recipe from an Ayesha Curry cookbook The Full Plate.

The rice is best cooked the day before if possible and if you have ever made fried rice before or even a stir fry you need to have all your stuff prepped before you start cooking. You can use a store made roaster chicken or roast a couple of pieces in your oven before hand.  You could even use a different protein, steak or pork would be great. Also it is a great way to use up some other veggies hanging out in your fridge. Make it your own.

pineapple chicken fried rice

dclarkabal
Course Main Course

Ingredients
  

  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/2 medium onion diced
  • 1 red bell pepper cored, seeded, diced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper cored, seeded, diced
  • 1 cup canned, fresh pineapple chunks cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 large eggs beaten
  • 3 cups jasmine rice day old best
  • 2 cups chicken breast cooked, shredded
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon sambal oelek
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 green onion finely diced
  • fresh cilantro leaves for garnish optional

Instructions
 

  • heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and bell peppers, cook stirring until they start to soften, 3-4 minutes. Add the pineapple and peas cook until the peas have begun to thaw, 2-3 minutes longer. Add the garlic, cook for another minute.
  • Push the veggies off to the side of the pan and add the beaten eggs to the opposite side. Stir the eggs with a rubber spatula until they are scrambled. Then transfer everything to a bowl and set aside.
  • Add the last tablespoon of oil to the pan and return to medium-high heat. Add the rice, chicken, raisins, soy sauce, curry powder, sambal, salt and cook, stirring until all of the ingredients are incorporated and the rice starts to brown slightly on the bottom, about 4 minutes. Return the veggie mixture to the pan and cook stirring, until rewarmed and incorporated into the rice. about 2 minutes.
  • Transfer to a large platter and garnish with sliced green onions and cilantro leaves if using. Serve hot.
Keyword pineapple chicken fried rice

Stewed pork butternut squash and walnut gremolata


Now this is a recipe my daughter made a couple of weeks ago; a recipe she got from a cookbook called cook beautiful. Pork shoulder does not spring to mind beautiful. We usually end up shredding it and dousing it in BBQ sauce; which makes for a fantastic sandwich don’t get me wrong but beautiful I don’t think so. I do suppose beauty is in the eye of the beholder.


I am sharing this recipe because it was delicious and yes beautiful. She made this in a couple of steps only because she made it during the week. But today is Sunday and this would make for a fantastic Sunday dinner. I for one am making a roaster chicken for Sunday dinner.  How many of you make a sit down with family Sunday dinner? I fear it is a lost tradition but one I have kept going for all my adult life and have no plans of stopping; not only that we all (living in the house) sit down for dinner most every single night.

Stewed Pork with Butternut Squash & Walnut Gremolata

dclarkabal
Great Sunday dinner to share with the family
Course Main Course
Servings 6

Ingredients
  

Pork

  • 2 tablespoon canola oil
  • 4 pound boneless pork shoulder
  • 4 cloves garlic diced
  • 2 onions diced
  • 4 carrots peeled, diced
  • 4 stalks celery diced
  • 2/3 cup dry sherry
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 head garlic halved
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 bunch fresh sage save 1-2 sprigs for garnish

Butternut Squash

  • 1 medium butternut squash peeled, seeded and cubed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil plus more for drizzling
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 small habanero minced
  • kosher salt and black pepper

Gremolata

  • 3/4 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 3/4 cup walnuts toasted and chopped
  • 1/3 cup fresh parsley chopped
  • 3 tablespoon fresh chives chopped
  • 3 tablespoon shallots finely diced
  • 1 orange zested, plus 3 tablespoon juice
  • Kosher salt and black pepper

Instructions
 

Butternut squash

  • Preheat the oven to 425'F. Place the squash on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and honey. Sprinkle the squash with 1 teaspoon habanero, season with salt and pepper. Toss to evenly coat the squash. spread out into a single layer. Roast, tossing halfway through, until golden and crispy, about 30 minutes. Remove once done to your liking and let sit at room temperature until ready to use. Lower heat to 325'F

Pork shoulder

  • Heat the canola oil in a dutch oven or equally heavy pot over medium-high heat .Trim any excess fat from the pork, pat it dry, and season it generously with salt and pepper. Sear each side until browned. 20-25 minutes. Transfer the pork to a plate.
  • Lower the heat and add 1 tablespoon olive oil, chopped onions, 1 teaspoon habanero sauté for 3 minutes, add the chopped garlic, sauté for 2 more minutes. Add the carrots, celery and sauté until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the sherry and deglaze the pan, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the bay leaves, sage, and the halved garlic head. Add the stock and bring it to a simmer. Return the pork to the pot. Crumble and wet a piece of parchment paper and place directly on top of the braise. Cover the pot with a tight fitting lid and place in the oven. Cook until the pork is tender, about 4 hours.

Gremolata

  • Toss all the ingredients in a small bowl, toss to combine well. season with salt and pepper

Pork - once finished

  • Remove and discard the parchment paper. Transfer the pork to a large plate. Remove and discard the sprigs of sage, nay leaves and halved garlic. Return the pot to the stove top and simmer the cooking liquid for 5 minutes. Add the vinegar and summer until the liquid has thickened slightly, about 5 more minutes. Remove from the heat, cover and keep warm.
  • Break the pork into large pieces. discarding any large pieces of fat. Return the pork to the pot, Add the roasted squash and toss gently to combine. Taste for seasoning and adjust.
  • serve the braised pork with a generous spoonful of the gremolata and a pinch of chopped sage.

pickle-brined fried chicken sandwich

Current situation – me sitting at the island typing, dog chewing a nylabone; very loudly for some reason, husband washing the round me and daughter still upstairs probably reading something on her phone or possibly still sleeping who knows!

I used a whole jar of my own bread and butter pickles

 

Thought I would share just another day in paradise here in New England. It was supposed to be snowing all day here; which I was actually looking forward to. I planned to write my blog, make a large pot of chili for us and to share; read a magazine or two that have been sitting around and do some laundry all while it snowing outside. Guess I have to do all those things without living in a snow globe for now.

Happy Valentines Day! We are doing our usual VDay routine which is having a nice dinner at home. I picked up some gorgeous ribeye steaks from The Flying Butcher (https://www.theflyingbutcher.com/) yesterday. I am contemplating grilling outside or cast iron cooking inside. It will probably be the latter. Still figuring out the sides.

Back to the recipe I want to share with you all today. I had a fried chicken sandwich at one of our not so local haunts. MT’s local Kitchen and Wine Bar (https://www.mtslocal.com/) I was on the fence only because pickles on fried chicken just sounds weird to me. I have seen the combination dozens of times but it just didn’t appeal to me. Well I am all in now; so much so that I decided we were going to have it during the super bowl half-time show last weekend. There were 7 of us and even though we ate pretty much 10 pounds of wings and a couple of dips before the game even started. Everyone cleaned their plates so here is what I did and will be doing again!

pickle-brined fried chicken sandwich

a crispy very moist chicken sandwich worth making and eating

Ingredients
  

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs about 4 ounces each
  • 24 bread and butter pickle coins dill work too
  • 1/2 cup pickle brine
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 4 teaspoon capers drained and chopped
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 4-6 cups canola oil for frying
  • 1 1/3 cup green cabbage thinly sliced
  • 1 small red onion thinly sliced, optional for serving
  • 4 buns brioche sliced, butter and grilled
  • hot sauce optional for serving

Instructions
 

  • add the chicken thighs and 1/2 cup pickle brine to a resealable bag and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours. turning the bag occasionally to marinate evenly
  • make the pickle mayonnaise while the chicken is marinating and set aside. Finely chop the pickle coins and the capers. In a medium both together and the mayo. Season with salt and pepper and set aside
  • when you are ready to fry, heat 2 inches of the oil to 325' F in a large dutch oven or heavy bottom skillet you can fry in. In a couple of shallow dishes pour the buttermilk into one. the other with flour, corn starch and the onion powder season the flour mixture with salt and pepper.
  • remove the chicken from the brine one at a time. place in the buttermilk, allow the excess to drip off and then into the flour, repeat with all pieces. making sure to coat each piece, remove excess and place on a plate.
  • working in batches as needed. add the chicken to the hot oil and cook, turning every 1 to 2 minutes, until the crust is deep golden brown and the chicken is cooked through; inner temp should be 165'F. transfer to a paper-lined plate or onto a cooling rack over a rimmed cookie sheet to cool. season with salt and pepper.
  • butter and grill your bread of choice.
  • Make the coleslaw by tossing the cabbage with half the pickle mayonnaise and season with salt and pepper. Slather the remaining pickle mayo on the bottom of each bun; top with a piece of fried chicken, coleslaw and red onion. Hot sauce if using.

 

chicken parmesan sliders

What are your plans for the big game later today? Being from New England and a Patriots fan my whole life I could be bitter that Tom Brady left us or I can be on board with rooting for him since he is without a doubt one of the best quarterbacks of all time. Though I recall seeing a young Mahomes play a couple of years ago and be quite impressed. So much so I have it in writing that he is someone to watch. Now look they are playing each other in the super bowl I personally won’t be too disappointed in whoever wins. IMG_5432

The kids and I were sitting around yesterday morning and discussed what we would wanted for game day. We came up with way too many ideas for just a few of us. It will be hard to eliminate any of them but it’s way too much food.

IMG_5424

Do you make a ton of snacks or something more substantial? I generally do a little of both. My husband is all about the wings. I am more of a dip kind of gal. My son wanted us to make pretzels; which we have never done but it made the list anyway. I usually make a soup/stew or chili of some sort but we decided not this time around. I mentioned meatball grinders and ended at fried chicken sandwich which is what I am making.

IMG_5425


IMG_5428
IMG_5430

Chicken Parmesan Sliders

dclarkabal
Prep Time 18 mins
Cook Time 12 mins
Course Appetizer
Servings 4 people
Calories 204 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup diced onions
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon fresh parsley
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 pound ground chicken breast
  • 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese grated
  • 1 cup marinara sauce
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • a few sprinkles crushed red pepper flakes
  • 8 slices mozzarella cheese
  • fresh basil leaves
  • 8 small slider buns or whatever you have on hand

Instructions
 

  • Heat a medium skillet over medium high heat. Add oil swirling to coat add the chopped onions, oregano, and garlic; saute 3-4 minutes until softened. Place onion mixture in a large bowl; let it cool slightly. Add the ground chicken, parmesan, ½ cup marinara, salt and peppers to the onion mixture. Mix well with a wooden spoon or your hands and shape into 8 ½ inch thick patties.  Refrigerate for 10 minutes.
  • Pre-heat your broiler along with a grill pan on medium-high heat.
  • Coat pan with some cooking spray. Add the patties and cook about 10 minutes or until done, turning once
  • Toast your buns if you wish; arrange bottom halves of the buns on a baking sheet. Place 1 patty on each roll. Top with 1 tablespoon marinara and a slice of mozzarella cheese. Broil until the cheese melts. Top with basil and the top halve of the buns.


IMG_5431