Chrissy’s Chicken Satay

I made this recipe on a whim. It was a what can I make that doesn’t require the grocery store recipe. Turns out I did have to run to the store for the pepper sauce ingredients, sigh…but this dish was totally worth dragging three children to the store. I definitely suggest you make all three recipes because all together it’s phenomenal. It has the makings of a really good salad. We have to talk about the peanut sauce real quick. I have made hundreds of different versions from using coconut milk, to heating all the ingredients. This one is the best I have ever made, and it’s so easy.

This paired well with a rosé and a soccer match. Kids optional

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Ingredients for Chicken Marinade

1 pound chicken boneless and skinless chicken thighs cut into good size pieces

8 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons brown sugar

4 teaspoons kosher salt

1 tablespoon ground turmeric

1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger

14 oz. canned coconut milk

Ingredients for the Peanut Sauce

½ cup creamy peanut butter

5 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger

3 tablespoons Soy sauce

1½ tablespoons Sriracha

1 tablespoon rice vinegar

 

Ingredient for the Sweet Hot Pepper Sauce

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon distilled vinegar

1 Shallot finely chopped

1 Fresh Thai Chile, minced

Kosher Salt to taste

Directions:

Marinade the chicken: In a bowl, combine the coconut milk, garlic, cilantro, brown sugar, salt, turmeric, and ginger in a bowl. Add the chicken and cover, and marinate for at least 2 hours and up to 12 hours in the refrigerator. *Soak wood skewers for at least 30 minutes before grilling.

Make the peanut sauce: In a bowl (or I used my bullet blender so I didn’t have to mince garlic) combine the peanut butter, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, Sriracha, vinegar, and 1⁄4 cup water, thinning with additional water if you prefer a thinner sauce.

Make the sweet hot pepper sauce: In a bowl, combine the sugar, 1⁄2 cup water, the vinegar, cucumber, shallot, and chile. Season to taste with salt.

Heat grill to medium high heat.

Thread chicken onto the skewers and grill until cooked through. About 5-6 minutes for side.

Serve with the peanut sauce and hot pepper sauce. Make sure you eat all three together and then  be prepared swoon. SO GOOD!

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Flat Hand-Pulled Noodles with Chili Oil Vinaigrette

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This recipe hails from American Test Kitchen, my most beloved cooking show. Their post for Biang Biang Mian came across my Instagram feed and I’m pretty sure I drooled on my phone. I’ve had hand-pulled noodles and I’ve seen them being made but I have never attempted them myself. And I won’t lie, making fresh pasta isn’t something I do. But recently Shawna has been making it, no tools but her own hands and it’s so delicious. I think there is a time and place for the fresh noodles and this is definitely the time.
The Chili oil has a number of ingredients but I promise the end result is worth it. Something you would order in the Sichuan province of China. Spicy and best paired with a Tsingtao or another light beer. I beg you to try it.

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Recipe from America’s Test Kitchen

Ingredients for Dough

2⅓ cups  bread flour

¾ teaspoon salt

1 cup  water

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Ingredients for Chili Vinaigrette

10 to 20 bird chiles, ground fine

½ cup vegetable oil

2 garlic cloves, sliced thin

1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced thin

1 tablespoon Sichuan peppercorns

½ cinnamon stick

1 star anise pod

2 tablespoons soy sauce

2 tablespoons black vinegar

1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

1 teaspoon sugar

4 quarts water

1 tablespoon salt

12 fresh cilantro sprigs, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces

6 scallions, sliced thin on bias

 Directions For the Dough

Whisk flour and salt together in bowl of stand mixer. Add water and oil. Fit stand mixer with dough hook and mix on low speed until all flour is moistened, 1 to 2 minutes. Increase speed to medium and knead until dough is smooth and satiny, 10 to 12 minutes. (Alternatively, mix dough in food processor, following instructions above.) Transfer dough to counter, knead for 30 seconds, and shape into 9-inch log. Wrap log in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 12 hours or up to 48 hours.

Directions For the Chili Vinaigrette: Place chiles in large heatproof bowl. Place fine-mesh strainer over bowl and set aside. Combine vegetable oil, garlic, ginger, peppercorns, cinnamon, and star anise pod in small saucepan and heat over medium-high heat until sizzling. Reduce heat to low and gently simmer until garlic and ginger are slightly browned, 10 to 12 minutes. Pour through strainer into bowl with chiles; discard solids in strainer. Stir chili oil to combine and let cool for 5 minutes. Stir in soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil, and sugar until combined; set aside.

Unwrap dough, transfer to lightly oiled counter, and, using bench scraper or knife, divide into 6 equal pieces (each 1½ inches wide). Cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, bring water and salt to boil in large pot; reduce heat to low and cover to keep hot. Working with 1 piece at a time, oil both sides of dough and flatten into 7 by 3-inch rectangle, with long side parallel to edge of counter. With both hands, gently grasp short ends of dough. Stretch dough and slap against counter until noodle is 32 to 36 inches long (noodle will be between 1/16 and 1/8-inch-thick). (If dough is hard to stretch to this length or is snapping back significantly, set aside on counter and let rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, continue stretching remaining portions of dough.) Place noodle on counter. Pinch center of noodle with forefingers and thumbs of both hands and pull apart with even pressure in both directions to rip seam in middle of noodle and create 1 continuous loop. Cut loop to create 2 equal-length noodles. Set noodles aside on lightly oiled counter (do not let noodles touch) and cover with plastic wrap. Repeat stretching and cutting with remaining pieces of dough.

Return water to boil over high heat. Add half of noodles to water and cook, stirring occasionally, until noodles float and turn chewy-tender, 45 to 60 seconds. Using wire skimmer, transfer noodles to bowl with chili vinaigrette; toss to combine. Return water to boil and repeat with remaining noodles. Divide noodles among individual bowls, top with cilantro and scallions, and serve.

Thai BBQ Ribs

I was watching the news the other morning and the segment was about a local whiskey, a peanut butter whiskey actually. Apparently Dave Grohl gave them a shoutout at a concert this summer and now sales are booming. They were chatting about all the different drinks they make but their chef was also busy whipping up dishes featuring the libation. When the segment ended the camera panned to a plate of ribs and that got me thinking about dinner. My mind went straight to Satay with a peanut sauce, which I love, and how I have never thought to pair that with ribs. Luckily I keep my Asian pantry staples plentiful so that left me with a very short shopping list. I knew what ingredients I wanted but I wasn’t sure how I wanted to execute the cooking. After some recipe searching I landed on this one here, and I was not disappointed.

*note* I did not have a lime juice for this so I substituted lemon juice + Rice vinegar

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Recipe adapted from *Half baked Harvest

Ingredients for Ribs

3-5 pounds baby back ribs

1 1/2 cups sweet Thai chili sauce

3/4 cup soy sauce

2 tablespoons Red Curry Paste

2 teaspoons fish sauce

2 tablespoons fresh ginger grated

2 cloves garlic minced or grated

crushed red pepper to taste

Ingredients for BBQ Peanut Sauce

1/2 cup soy sauce

1/2 cup ketchup

1/3 cup creamy peanut butter warmed/melted

1/4 cup sweet Thai chili sauce

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

1 tablespoon Mirin

2 teaspoons Thai red curry paste

1 tablespoon Chinese 5 spice

1 lime juice

1/4 cup cilantro chopped

Directions

Place the ribs in a large baking dish or roasting pan.
In a large 4 cup glass measuring cup or bowl combine the sweet chili sauce, soy sauce, red curry paste, fish sauce, ginger, garlic and pepper. Whisk to combine and then pour the marinade over the ribs. Place the ribs in the fridge for at least 4 hours to as long as overnight, turning then once or twice if possible to make sure they get fully covered in the marinade.
Cover the baking dish tightly with foil and bake for 3-6 hours (if you go the full six hours bake them at 275 degrees F.) or until very tender. Try to baste the ribs once or twice during cooking.
Meanwhile make the BBQ sauce.
In a large glass measuring cup or bowl whisk together the soy sauce, ketchup, warm peanut butter, sweet chili sauce, rice vinegar, Mirin, red curry paste, Chinese 5 spice, lime juice and cilantro. If the sauce is not mixing place it in the microwave or over the stove and warm until everything is melted together. Add water to thin if needed.
When the ribs are done cooking preheat the grill to medium high heat and grease the grates. Remove the ribs from the baking dish. Slather the ribs in the Peanut BBQ sauce and grill 3-5 minutes per side or until lightly charred. Be careful flipping the ribs as the will be very tender.
Serve with chopped peanuts and cilantro, with extra sauce on the side. Enjoy.

Seared Scallops with Ajo Blanco

Rummaging through my freezer, desperately needing to make some sense of the mess it had become, I found the leftover Ajo Blanco I made. I decided to freeze what I had left of it for a rainy and day that day had arrived, although it wasn’t actually raining.

The first time I had Ajo Blanco it was with charred octopus so I thought it could also serve as a nice blanket for sea scallops to sit on.

*If you are using a frozen soup or sauce of any kind, once it’s defrosted pop it back into a blender or food processor to bring it back to it’s original consistency.

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Ingredients (Serves 2)

Ajo Blanco 

10 Sea scallops

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Kosher salt

Season both sides of the scallops with salt. Heat a medium skillet over medium-high heat until nearly smoking, 1½ to 2 minutes. Add  2 teaspoons of olive oil and the scallops and cook until golden brown, about 3½ minutes. Turn the scallops over and cook on the other side until golden brown, about 3½ minutes longer. Turn off the heat and set the pan aside.

Spoon 4 tablespoons of the ajo blanco in two shallow bowls or plates. top with  scallops, drizzle with olive oil and serve.

 

 

 

Tzatziki

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When I was younger, Trader Joe’s Tzatziki was a staple in my refrigerator. As I have gotten older and really learned my way around the kitchen, I found it’s much more delicious homemade. As most things are.

A creamy greek yogurt sauce with garlic and cucumber, its a great partner to a lot of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern dishes. Or to just dunk a warm piece of pita bread in.

I used this as a topping to some chicken shawarma pitas. Easy to make there is really no excuse to buy it, sorry Trader Joe’s.

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INGREDIENTS

3/4 English cucumber, peeled and grated

4 to 5 garlic cloves, peeled, finely minced

1 tbs lemon juice

2 tbs chopped fresh dill

1 tbs GOOD Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 cups Greek yogurt

Kosher salt and pepper to taste

Directions

After the cucumber is grated allow to sit in a fine mesh strainer, sprinkle with a dusting of kosher salt and let sit, this will bring out the moisture in the cucumber.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the yogurt,  garlic, lemon juice and dill. Season with salt and pepper. Chill.

Squeeze as much liquid out of the cucumber as you can using cheese cloth, dish towel or aheavy duty paper towel. Add to the yogurt mixture and combine well. Chill until ready . Drizzle with olive oil before serving.

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Jamaican Jerk Shrimp with Mango Salsa

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Fun fact, did you know that mango skin is related to poison Ivy? I found out the hard way years ago after I developed a rash on my hands and face from devouring a case of mangoes. Maybe that isn’t such a fun fact.

It’s hard to beat a perfectly ripe and juicy mango. Delicious on their own but they are also perfect partners for seafood. Mango salsa cools the palate from the spice in this recipe. Save a batch of seasoning for a super easy weeknight meal and don’t be afraid to venture into another type of seafood, this would be good on salmon or a meaty white fish.

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*recipe adapted from MyRecipes

INGREDIENTS

1-2 mangos, peeled and chopped

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1/2 red onion, diced

salt to taste (garlic salt is even better)

2 lbs large raw shrimp

2 tablespoon olive oil

3 tablespoon Jamaican Jerk spice mixture **recipe below**

1 tablespoon coconut oil

Combine the first 5 ingredients together and set aside.

Toss shrimp (tails on or off it’s your meal) with olive oil and spice mixture, mix to coat. Heat large skillet or grill pan over medium high heat. Add coconut oil, when hot add your shrimp. Cook 3 minutes per side or just until shrimp turn pink.

Serve on a bed of mango salsa. Coconut rice would be a wonderful team player.

**JAMAICAN JERK SPICE MIXTURE

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1/3 cup paprika

2 tablespoons ground allspice

4 teaspoons sugar

1 tablespoon dried thyme

1 tablespoon salt

2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well, store in an air tight container.

 

 

 

Ajo Blanco

 

IMG_2919To say it’s been warm here in sunny San Diego is an understatement. In the words of my four year old, it’s been a “fiery furnace” outside. As the weather cooled down to a nice 78 degrees I flashed back to a memory of sitting along the ocean eating charred octopus. The octopus, perfectly cooked was sitting on a silky bed of Ajo Blanco. It was delicious, lick the plate delicious.

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Ajo Blanco, a popular cold Spanish soup is made with a base of bread, grapes, garlic, almonds and olive oil. Perfect for a hot summer day, beachside or not.

*Recipe from Bon Appetit

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 green apple, peeled, cored, chopped
  • 1 large garlic clove, chopped
  • 3 cups crustless day old white bread, cubed
  • 1 cup seedless green grapes, halved
  • ½ cup blanched almonds
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • Kosher salt
  • ¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil plus more for serving
  • 3 tablespoon red wine vinegar plus more for serving
  •  black pepper
  • ½ cup sliced almonds, toasted

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Combine apple, garlic, bread, grapes, blanched almonds, milk, and 2 cups water in a medium bowl; season with salt. Cover and chill for at least 6 hours and up to 1 day.

Transfer soup base to a blender and purée, adding water by tablespoonfuls if too thick, until smooth. With motor running, gradually add ¾ cup oil and 3 Tbsp. vinegar and blend until soup is smooth. Season with salt, pepper, and more vinegar, if desired. Strain soup through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl; cover and chill until very cold, about 2 hours.

Toast your sliced almonds in the oven or stovetop until golden brown, let cool.

Divide soup among bowls or bowl, drizzle olive oil and toasted almonds. Enjoy