Thursday, August 30, 2012

Spanish Chicken Pot (slow cooker)

This is a favorite of my friend Mary Beth. She made it for us and it is delicious. If you like crockpot recipes, you'll love this.

Serves 6-8
Cooking time - 8-10 hours

2tbsp olive oil
6 chicken thighs, skinned if liked
6 chicken drumsticks, skinned if liked
1 large onion, sliced
2-3 garlic cloves, chopped
3tbsp plain flour
2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
5oz piece of chorizo sausage, diced
1 1/2lb baby new potatoes, scrubbed and halved or quartered depending on size
3/4 pint chicken stock, hot
2 1/2oz pitted black olives
few rosemary sprigs or a pinch of dried
salt and pepper
basil or extra rosemary sprigs to garnish
crusty bread to serve

Preheat the slow cooker.  Heat the oil in a large frying pan and fry the chicken in batches until browned on all sides.  Drain and transfer to a large plate.
Add the onion to the pan and fry for 5 mins until pale and golden.  Stir in the garlic then the flour.  Add the canned tomatoes and chorizo and season with salt and pepper.  Bring to the boil.
Transfer the chicken and potatoes to the slow cooker pot, pour in the tomato mixture then add the hot stock, olives and rosemary.  Cover with the lid and cook on low for 8-10 hours.
Spoon into shallow dishes, sprinkle with fresh rosemary or basil and serve with plenty of warm crusty bread.  

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Red Rice (Arroz Rojo)

Red rice is red from the achiote in recado rojo.  It's a classic Yucatecan flavoring that is readily available in Mexican food stores.  You can also dissolve it in vinegar and use it as a seasoning rub for grilled chicken or pork.

1-2 tbl olive oil
1 cup rice
1/2 purple onion, chopped
1 tsp recado rojo (available in Mexican food stores)
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
salt and pepper to taste (if your chicken stock has salt in it, don't add a lot of salt)

Heat the oil in a saucepan and add the onion. Add a sprinkle of salt and saute.  Add the recado rojo and saute, breaking up the flavor cube. Add a tablespoon of water to dissolve the recado and cook til the water evaporates.  Add the rice and saute, stirring.  Add the chicken stock, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes.  Remove from heat, Taste and correct seasonings.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Shrimp Etouffee Recipe from ?New New Orleans Cooking?, by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch

This is the second time I've made this. It's really delicious and easy to make if you already
have the Emeril's Essence and the shrimp stock made.  If you don't have shrimp stock, you can substitute clam juice or chicken stock. I reduced the amount of shrimp stock because the first time I made this, the shrimp stock diluted the base too much. I've also added some lemon juice and hot sauce.


  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups chopped onions
  • 2 cups chopped green bell peppers
  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Essence, recipe follows
  • 2 cups shrimp stock
  • 3 pounds medium shrimp (21 to 25 count per pound), peeled and deveined
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley leaves
  • Steamed white rice, for serving
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onion tops, for garnish
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 tbl Tabasco or Louisiana Hot Sauce


Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven set over medium heat. Add the flour and stir continuously to make a roux. Stir the roux over medium heat until the color of peanut butter, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the onions, bell peppers, celery, and garlic to the roux, and cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes to the pot and season with the bay leaves, salt, cayenne, and 1 tablespoon of the Essence. Cook the tomatoes for 2 to 3 minutes and then whisk in the shrimp stock.
Bring the mixture to a boil, and reduce to a simmer. Cook the etouffee, stirring occasionally, for 45 minutes. Season the shrimp with the remaining tablespoon of Essence and add them to the pot, stirring to evenly distribute. Cook the shrimp for 5 to 7 minutes, or until they are cooked through. Add the chopped parsley, lemon juice, and hot sauce to the pot and stir to combine.
Serve immediately over steamed white rice and garnish with sliced green onion tops.

Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried thyme
Combine all ingredients thoroughly.

Shrimp Stock:
1 pound (about 1 quart) shrimp shells and heads
1 cup coarsely chopped yellow onions
1/2 cup coarsely chopped celery
1/2 cup coarsely chopped carrots
3 smashed garlic cloves
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 teaspoons salt
Place the shrimp shells and heads in a large colander and rinse under cold running water for several minutes.
Combine the shrimp shells and remaining ingredients in a heavy 6-quart stockpot, add 4 quarts water, and bring to a boil over high heat. Skim to remove any foam that rises to the surface. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 45 minutes, skimming occasionally.
Remove the stock from the heat and strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean container; let cool completely. Refrigerate the stock for up to 3 days or freeze in airtight containers for up to 2 months.

Grilled Pork Tenderloin a la Rodriguez with Guava Glaze and Orange-Habanero Mojo Recipe courtesy Bobby Flay

  • My sister originally posted this recipe, and I don't know what happened to the post.  She says this recipe is FANTASTIC.  She loves the glaze on Cornish
  • 'game hens too.  She served this with black beans and rice, and everybody loved it!
  • Ingredients

  • 2 pork tenderloins (about 1 1/2 pounds each)
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Guava Glaze, recipe follows
  • Orange-Habanero Mojo, recipe follows


Preheat a grill to high.
Brush pork with oil, and then season it with salt and pepper. Set aside a few tablespoons of the Guava Glaze for brushing the cooked pork. Grill for 4 to 5 minutes per side, brushing frequently with the Guava Glaze. Remove from the grill, brush again with glaze and let rest for 10 minutes. Slice into 1/2-inch thick slices, drizzle with the Orange-Habanero Mojo, and serve immediately.

Guava Glaze:

  • 1 cup guava jelly, or apricot jam
  • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
Whisk jelly, mustard, and orange juice together in a small bowl. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.

Orange-Habanero Mojo:

  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
  • 3 cups freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1/2 habanero chile, seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add lime juice, orange juice, and habanero chile and bring to a boil. Cook until reduced by half. Whisk in the cilantro and cumin and season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Drizzle over pork.

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Brined and grilled pork chops

I think that it's very difficult to grill pork chops these days.  The pork is so lean that if you overcook them the teensiest bit, they are dry and inedible. You can solve this problem with brining and you will always have a juicy chop.  You can also change the herbs and seasonings in the brine in order to flavor the meat how ever you want.

1/2 cup boiling water
1/2 cup ice
1 tbl salt
1 tbl sugar
herbs and spices to taste*
2 1" thick pork loin chops

Dissolve salt and sugar in boiling water.  Add herbs and spices.  Add ice to quickly cool down brine.  Add chops and let stand in fridge for 1-1 1/2 hours.  Remove from brine, pat dry, and grill about 4 minutes on one side. When juices start to come up on the top side, turn, and grill about 3-4 more minutes or until medium (just a little pink inside).

* Mexican - add 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp chipotle chile powder, lime
   Mexican tomato sauce- heat a 1/2 cup Goya sofrito with a tbl of chicken stock and season with a little cumin and chipotle chile.  When hot, squeeze in a little lime juice and add some chopped cilantro if desired.
* Italian - add rosemary, garlic, lemon
* American - bay leaf and thyme