Butter Chicken with Chicken Skin Fried Rice

IMG_3437 IMG_3461IMG_3470Chicken skin is supposed to be crispy. It’s not a food I can bring myself to cook via boiling. Instead, I fried it in my skillet and cooked the rice in the extra fat and the result was damn good. The chicken meat itself in this recipe is so tender and flavorful. It cooks perfectly at a low simmer in the creamy spiced tomato sauce. The fried rice is simple, but it added flavor and complexity with the crisped shredded skin and crunchy sweet peppers. Combining the butter chicken and fried rice brings everything together; so you have a bite of tender chicken, paired with crisped skin and fresh cilantro. Each bite tastes better than the last and this is an easy dish to throw together for dinner.

Butter Chicken with Chicken Skin Fried Rice
Prep: 10 minutes  Cook: 30 minutes  Serves: 4

3 organic, free range, pastured, etc. chicken breasts, skin on
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp salt
1 tsp garam masala

Sauce:
olive oil & butter
1 large white onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons garam masala
2 teaspoons paprika
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon clove
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
3 cups diced tomatoes, canned or fresh
3/4 cup fresh heavy cream
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp butter

Fried Rice:
1 cup brown rice, cooked
1/2 red pepper, diced
3 chicken skins
Butter
Salt & pepper
Cilantro

1. Mix the chicken with the lemon juice, garlic, salt and garam masala. Marinate for a few hours or overnight.
2. Drizzle a tablespoon of oil into a dutch oven over medium heat and add the onions. Saute until translucent, about 20 minutes, but do not burn or crisp. During this time, peel the skin off the chicken and reserve in marinade for later. Cut the chicken into about 2 inch pieces, but do not remove the bones.
3. Add the garlic to the onions and saute about 2 minutes, then add the garam masala, paprika, cinnamon, clove and cayenne. Stir well, and cook another 2 minutes.
4. Pour in the tomatoes, cook for a few minutes, then add the cream. Bring to a simmer, and then add the chicken. Cook the chicken for about 10 minutes over a low simmer. If you cook the chicken too hot, it won’t come out as tender. When the chicken is cooked, add the lemon juice and butter. Taste and add salt and pepper if needed.
5. While the chicken cooks, make the fried rice. First, add 1 tbsp of butter to a hot skillet. Place the reserved chicken skins in the pan and fry until browned on each side. Remove the skins from the pan. Turn down the heat and add the peppers to the skillet. After a few minutes, add the rice to the skillet/ Cook the rice until slightly browned, about 5-10 minutes, adjusting the heat as needed. Tear the skin into small pieces and add them back to the rice, stirring to combine. Add a handful of cilantro and stir it into the rice. Season with salt and pepper.
6. Serve the butter chicken with the fried rice and big handfuls of cilantro.

Cilantro Lime Coconut Curry with Chanterelles, Fresh Ginger + Avocado

IMG_2289 IMG_2270-001 S IMG_2274This soup made my house smell like fresh ginger and cilantro and lime in such a gentle and refreshing and rather uplifting way. And this was good, because the onion I used, bought from the farmer’s market a few days ago, it made me basically weep. I’ve had the occasional onion make my eyes watery, but this one forced tears to stream down my face. I had to walk away and compose myself. My suggestion is to use a gentler onion, like a white one, or a shallot, but I guess I was starting to think I’m immune to oniony induced emotion and this one put me in my place. This recipe can easily be doubled to feed a crowd, and you could add chicken or pork belly if you have it on hand. The avocado is essential as it balances out a pretty citrusy soup and adds depth, but the rice is optional as well. It is also quite good topped with those rice sticks you find at health food stores and a good grind of fresh black pepper. Oh and I did also just happen to have chanterelles on hand, which is something that has never really happened to me before, as lovely as they are I would happily use shitake or maitake mushrooms in their place.

Cilantro Lime Coconut Curry with Chanterelles, Fresh Ginger + Avocado
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
2 inches peeled fresh ginger, chopped
4 baby sweet peppers, or 1 big red pepper,  seeds removed + sliced
1 zucchini, halved and diced
1 handful chanterelles, sliced
1/2 jalapeno, seeds removed, chopped
2 long pieces lemongrass, chopped
1 tablespoon yellow curry paste
1 lime, juiced
1 can full fat coconut milk + 1 can amount of water
1/4 cup brown or wild rice
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped + extra for garnish
Butter + olive oil
Salt + pepper
Avocado

Add a tbsp of butter to a deep saucepan over medium heat, add the onions and cook about 15 minutes, or until translucent.
Next add the ginger, peppers, carrots, zucchini, mushrooms, jalapeno and lemongrass. Stir and drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Cover and allow to cook for about 5 minutes, then add the curry paste, stirring again.
Add the lime juice and pour in the full can of coconut milk plus a can sized amount of water. Turn heat to medium, add the rice to the soup, cover and allow to simmer for about 20 minutes.
Stir in the cilantro, and taste for seasoning, adding olive oil, salt and pepper if needed. Test to make sure the rice is fully cooked, and serve with sliced avocado, cilantro, a grind of pepper and drizzle of olive oil.

 

 

 

Enchiladas with Charred Green Onion, Jack and Goat Cheese

IMG_9877-001

These enchiladas might not really resemble enchiladas, but they were incredibly tasty. It really all came down to the fact that the tortillas were homemade. I get lazy sometimes to make my own tortillas, even though it takes just a few minutes, and taste way better. I’m reminded with dishes like these enchiladas that a simple recipe is always so much better when you make all the components.

Enchiladas with Charred Green Onion, Jack and Goat Cheese
8 homemade tortillas (you’ll need masa harina and a tortilla press)
1 large red onion, chopped
1 yellow squash, diced
1 zucchini, diced
1 ear of corn removed from cob
1 handful green beans, chopped
¾ cup sliced grass-fed beef
Green onion, diced
Jack cheese
Goat cheese
Gruyere
Cilantro
Olive oil
Salt & pepper
Whole-milk plain yogurt, sour cream, or crème fraiche

 Method:

Oven: 435. I use Bob’s Red Mill masa harina, just follow the instructions on the bag. Sauté the onion, squash, zucchini, corn and green beans on medium-high heat in olive oil. Season with salt & pepper, when some of the vegetables are slightly browned, remove them from the skillet. Next add the beef, I used a stir-fry cut, and cook until just seared on the outside. Mix the meat with the vegetables.

Cook the tortillas lightly first and then fill with the vegetable-meat mix. Spoon on big scoops of the salsa so that it coats the enchiladas and then top the salsa with sliced jack, a few dobs of goat cheese and a few slices of gruyere. Place the green onions on top and grind on a little salt & pepper

Bake in the oven for about 10-15 minutes, and then broil until the cheese is browned. Top with cilantro and yogurt.

Salsa
1 heirloom tomato
1 small spicy colorful pepper
1 small onion
Several handfuls of cilantro
Salt & pepper
Lemon juice

Method:

Roughly chop the ingredients and then pulse them together in a food processor until uniform in size. If you’re without a processor, chop all of the ingredients nicely to make pico de gallo.

Crackers with Goat, Gruyere and Cilantro-lime Dressing

IMG_9374-001For my birthday my mom roasted two whole goat legs. I’ve been living off the left over meat for the last few days, enjoying it with my eggs in the morning, baked in the cast iron with cheese and bread for lunch, in goat enchiladas and as a quick snack. The legs are currently simmering on the stove in water with carrots, onion, celery, salt and pepper, on their way to becoming a rich stock for future soups. These crackers are a quick snack. My roommate made the cilantro-lime dressing, and it’s good on everything, especially these crackers as it adds a bit of tanginess to the uber-rich goat meat.

Crackers with Goat, Gruyere and Cilantro-lime Dressing

Crackers, I used Ak Mak
Goat meat, sliced
Gruyere
Cilantro-lime dressing (recipe below)
Cilantro garnish
Olive oil
Salt & pepper

Cook, or warm up, the meat in a skillet over high heat. Place the meat on the crackers, spread the cheese out over the meat and then drizzle the dressing on top followed by some pieces of cilantro. Season with salt & pepper.

Wallis’ Cilantro-lime Dressing

1/4 cup olive oil
Juice from 3 whole limes
1 tbsp balsamic, or apple cider vinegar
1 bunch of cilantro
t tsp salt

Puree in a blender or food processor until smooth. Enjoy on salads, meat, crackers and other snacks.