Monthly Archives: June 2021

Spam Fried Rice

current situation, we are out on the porch with our morning tea and coffee. The birds are chirping the wind chime is chiming, and for some strange reason I have a very mean humming bird who doesn’t like to share. I do have only one feeder but many flowers around so I am sure there is plenty of nectar to share but this little bugger sits in the tree and chases everyone else off. He/she needs a time out! Update – a few minutes ago there were 2 hummingbirds on the feeder, they are trying to make a liar out of me now hmmmmm

So I am sure that this recipe will be cool with some and some won’t even read the recipe; let alone make it all because of the word Spam. Technically it is a terrible name, if you google it the first definition is an irrelevant or inappropriate messages sent on the internet to a large number of recipients. the second definition is a canned meat product made mainly from ham. No wonder people now a days are not a fan. When I was growing up I distinctly remember my mother grinding it up for ham salad finger sandwiches and I remember my dad using it in westerns and frying it up for a sandwich.

So those of you courageous enough to pick up a can, or dare I say two of this terribly named meat; you should check this recipe out, even the leftovers are quite delicious with a little Thai chili sweet chili sauce.

Spam Fried Rice

dclarkabal
another great way to use up some leftover white rice and also clean out the fridge

Ingredients
  

  • 3 cups day old white rice room temperature
  • 1 table sesame oil
  • canola oil for frying
  • 1 can 12 ounce Spam sliced into ⅛ x 1-inch matchsticks - we used light Spam
  • 1 cup carrots about 1½ finely diced
  • 1 cup onion about ½ we used Vidalia
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 cup chopped green onions, green and white parts about 4
  • 1 teaspoon garlic finely grated/minced
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 large eggs lightly beaten
  • 4-6 eggs for frying/serving (optional)

Instructions
 

  • in a large bowl combine the rice with the sesame oil, toss to coat and set aside
  • Using a wok or large pan, set it over medium heat and coat the bottom with 1-2 tablespoons of canola or similar oil. Fry the Spam for a minute or so on each side, or until they are browned and a little crispy. Transfer Spam to a small bowl and set aside.
  • Turn the heat to medium-low and coat with 1-2 tablespoons oil. Once the oil is shimmering and hot, add the carrots and onion. using a wooden spoon or spatula stir-fry until the onion is translucent, about 4-5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper before increasing the heat to medium. Add ½ cup of the green onions and cook for another minute to soften them. Add the rice, garlic, soy, oyster and Worcestershire along with the Spam. Breaking up the rice as needed with the wooden spoon. Stir-fry until the rice is hot and has absorbed all of the liquids, about 4-5 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning to your liking.
  • Create a well in the middle of the rice and pour the beaten eggs. Let sit for 30 seconds before scrambling them. using the wooden spoon let them set another 30 seconds before scrambling them again. This last time bring the rice together with the scrambled eggs. Stir-fry for another minute or so until the eggs are cooked through, Turn off the heat, sprinkle with the remaining green onion and let it sit until you are ready to serve.
  • Make your fried and If you are serving one on top, I am not sure why you wouldn't but you do you!

recipe adapted from cookbook Aloha Kitchen

Pomegranate and Sumac Chicken

I know I have mentioned the spice Sumac seasoning before; I really think you should check it out. If you have a fabulous spice market of some sort near you; you should be fine. I do not so we buy ours online. Why do you want to check this spice out besides the the zip and color it will bring to your dishes especially but not limited to meat, veggies, dip and dressings. It does have some health benefits which might interest you. It is a powerful Antioxidant It ranks very high as an anti-inflammatory spice and again it adds and brings out flavor, similar power that salt does.

So apparently we didn’t take a picture when the chicken came out of the oven. One of my; and I know there are many flaws is that we are eating the food I write about in this blog. So I have a very short window to take pictures of the finished dish before we sit down and eat it. Apparently this one didn’t even get taken. I do apologize, we will make it again and update the pictures.

Another bonus is you can make this simple chicken dish. See what I did there, you buy the spice and now you need something to make with it; I got you! Chicken thighs are a fantastic choice here; seriously they are usually always a great choice. Bone-in skin-on are pretty forgivable when it comes to cooking and not drying out too much. No I don’t suggest you try to overcook them to prove me wrong but try cooking chicken breast 10 minutes longer than you should have.

Those little pods are the Aleppo pepper spice my daughter got from Occo.  https://www.eatocco.com/
She is not here at the moment so I cannot confirm but she has backed several kickstarters and I believe this might be one of them. They come pre-measured in cute little pods, stay fresher longer. You should check them out!

I am giving you a heads up that you need to marinade the chicken for at least 3 hours. I honestly hate grabbing a recipe, make sure I have everything, get it all on the counter and it has to marinate overnight or I should have started 3 days ago; not cool! So make the marinade in the morning, when you want dinner take it out to come to room temperature and pre-heat your oven and you are golden. I would serve rice along side this and maybe your favorite summer squash. Keep it simple and delicious.

Pomegranate and Sumac Chicken

dclarkabal
a flavorful easy way to prepare chicken that everyone will love
Course dinner
Cuisine Mediterranean
Servings 4 people

Ingredients
  

  • 8 large bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

for the marinade

  • 3 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground all-spice
  • 2 teaspoons Aleppo pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sumac
  • 2 large garlic cloves crushed
  • Kosher salt and black pepper

Instructions
 

  • In a large bowl add all the marinade ingredients and mix together with 1½ teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Place the chicken in the bowl with the marinade and massage the chicken into the marinade making sure to cover the chicken with it. Cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for at least 3 hours.
  • When you are to bake the chicken. Take the bowl out of the fridge and set it on the counter to come to room temperature, roughly 20 minutes. Pre-heat the oven to 400°F
  • Place the chicken, skin side up on a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with the olive oil. Place sheet pan in the oven and bake for about 35 minutes or until the chicken juices run clear.

Recipe adapted from cookbook Ripe Figs – Yasmin Kahn

Loco Moco

I am sure by the name of this dish you all know this one comes from my daughter Abbi and one of her cookbook recipes from Aloha Kitchen.  According to the cookbook this is a Hawaii dish and on the main island there is a dispute to who invented it. I am sure a dish; albeit a recipe HAS to start somewhere.

I personally had never heard of it; she had no only heard of it but has had it several times hmmmmm. Technically I have only ever lived in one town my entire life; don’t judge; I have traveled all over the East Coast of the US the Caribbean and been to Greece, Paris and Italy. My daughter has lived a few different places. She spent a semester abroad in the Netherlands and traveled all over Europe while there. And she lived 2 years in Japan. She was in Japan when she had this dish; go figure but this dish is known there as hambāgu. Which I will point out they say this is a great hangover food – just saying!

She made this a week or so ago and it is crazy good and very easy to make. By adding a fried  egg on top this would be a great meal anytime of the day and yes if you need a little pick-me-up from a little too much indulgence the night before no judgements here!

Loco Moco

dclarkabal
a simple dish for any meal anytime of day
Servings 4 people

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound ground beef 80/20 or similar
  • 3 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 medium yellow onion 1/4 of it chopped, 3/4 sliced into 1/2 inch wedges
  • 2 garlic cloves peeled and finely grated
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 8 ounces cremini mushrooms or white button, Portobello, shitake
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 4 cups white rice steamed, cook the rice your way
  • 4 large eggs fried sunny-side up or over easy
  • 2 green onions chopped, green part only. for garnish
  • kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper season to taste as you go

Instructions
 

  • in a bowl combine the ground beef 1 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, 1½ teaspoons of the Worcestershire sauce, onion and garlic. Gently mix with your hands or a wooden spoon just till combined, do not over mix it. Form into four equal-sized patties about 1/2 inch thick; ours were more like an inch. Set aside on a plate, wrap in plastic and place in the fridge for 20 minutes to rest.
  • In a large skillet add 1 tablespoon of oil and set over medium heat. When the oil is hot (shiny and shimmering), add the onion wedges and saute until translucent, 5-7 minutes. Turn the heat to low and continue cooking for 10 more minutes, stirring often. Cook until they are soft and caramelized. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  • In the same pan add 1 tablespoon of oil and set it over medium heat. When the oil is hot, swirl the oil around the pan to make sure the surface is covered. Gently place place the patties in the pan, leaving room around each one. Cook until browned, around 4 minutes each side. Using a spatula place the patties on a plate and set aside to rest.
  • add the remaining ½ tablespoon oil to the pan over medium heat until hot. Add the mushrooms and saute until tender, about 10 minutes. Season the mushrooms with salt and pepper, then add the reserved caramelized onions. Add the beef broth, soy sauce and the remaining Worcestershire sauce and bring it to a simmer. Turn the heat to medium-low, scoop out a tablespoon of the broth from the skillet, and whisk it with the cornstarch in a small bowl until smooth. Whisk the cornstarch slurry into the skillet and simmer until the sauce has thickened, 5-7 minutes.
  • place 1 cup of steamed rice on each plate and top, in order. 1 beef patty, some gravy, 1 fried egg, and chopped green onions before serving.

 

Pan-Seared Fish with Herbed Brown Butter

Gonna be a scorcher today – we went to a BBQ pool party yesterday. We haven’t been to one since before kids; over 30 years ago. That’s kinda sad. I grew up with a pool in the back yard and LOVED it. I have been asking for a pool ever since we bought our house and asked again when we built the one we are living in now. I keep getting the same response. We can’t have one – insert sad face here!

Technically we do live in a swamp, it’s a beautiful spot don’t get me wrong it’s just that we are surrounded by water; no we can’t see it but the water table is too high and if we tried to put an in ground pool my husband said it would float. Maybe he has been just telling me that hmmm maybe I will investigate more. After leaving the party he said he loved their pool and what they did with their back yard – so I asked yet again so can we get a pool??? Insert another sad face here!

When it is super hot out light dinners are the way to go in my opinion. Something that comes together quickly and is not too heavy but it still needs to have a lot of flavor. This flaky white fish in a browned herb butter is just the ticket. My daughter mentioned that my readers would be getting sick of me sharing another Chrissy Teigen inspired recipe. Good food is good food plain in simple in my book. We made white rice with ours and I had some broccoli on hand so I roasted some for the side plus I thought the dish needed some color.

Pan-seared fish with a herbed brown butter

dclarkabal
comes together quickly with so much flavor
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 1 stick butter at room temperature
  • 4 tablespoons fresh cilantro finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic finely minced
  • 2 small shallots finely minced
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 tablespoon canola oil
  • 4 thick white fish fillets cod, halibut or snapper 6-8 ounces each

Instructions
 

  • in a small bowl, combine the butter, cilantro, garlic, shallot, 1/4 teaspoon pepper and salt to taste. Using whatever tool you use to zest citrus; zest the lemons into the butter. Stir and set aside. You can cut the lemon into wedges to serve with the fish.
  • Heat a dry medium skillet over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Pat the fish dry with some paper towel, then season generously with salt and pepper. swirl the oil into the hot pan and let it get shimmery hot. Add the fish (if your fish has skin, place it skin side down first). Leaving the fish alone until it releases itself, if you move it before it has a chance to sear and make a crust, it will stick and tear. It will still taste fine but not be as pretty.
  • Cook until the bottom side is golden and caramelized, 3-4 minutes. Using a thin spatula, being gentle. flip the fish, add the herbed butter to the pan, and cook until the fish is thoroughly cooked thru maybe 3 minutes.
  • During the final minute or so, using a spoon baste, or drizzle the butter mixture over the fish. Place the fish on your plates, drizzle with some of the pan sauce. Season to taste with salt and pepper, garnish with some cilantro and serves with the lemon wedges.