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Saturday, February 7, 2009

Pan Seared Chicken with Spicy-Crispy Onions and Tokay Shallot Mustard Sauce

Tammy was craving a chicken dish I made last year and could never re-create...for some reason, I just forgot what I did. I figured a better dish would smooth things over. My starting point was knowing I wanted a pan seared chicken. I sometimes like to use those "tenders"...the small pieces of breast that maintain moisture a bit better than a full breast. They're also very versatile across many recipes.

I built up from there.

We both love onions, but didn't feel like caramelized or raw. I also just wanted an onion as an accent item, not as a full component.

Then the sauce...I'm big on sauces and I love to incorporate different liquors. Since the last sauce I made had rum or wine, I think, I pulled out a Tokay. I know it's on the sweet side, and knowing I'd be using onions, I decided I needed some spice to sway the sweetness...a tokay mustard sauce. But tokay and mustard alone lack that earthy component, so I decided to incorporate shallots.

Here it does, yo:

Pan Seared Chicken:

4 ckicken breast tenders
dried basil
dried garlic
1 egg white
corn starch

use the first 5 ingredients to form a nice coating. Let them sit on the chicken for a few minutes, then dredge in the egg white, the roll in corn starch to cover.

Heat up 2 TSP oil and fry both sides until golden brown...maybe 2-3 minutes per side.

Spicy-Crispy Onions:

1 onion
corn starch
baking soda
1 TSP crushed red pepper

Slice onions and put them in a bowl. Salt and pepper, then add red pepper. Add about 1 TSP corn starch, and a sprinkle of baking soda. Add 1 tsp egg white and stir it all well.

Fry with 1 TSP oil on medium-high heat until crispy. Remove and set aside for later use.

Shallot Tokay Mustard Sauce:

1/4 C Tokay
1/4 C whipping cream
1 large shallot, sliced
1 tsp deli mustard

Fry up shallots in 1 TSP oil for about 2 minutes. Add Tokay and let boil about 30 seconds. Add whipping cream and let boil about 30 more seconds. Drop in mustard, salt, and pepper, stirring constantly, until thickened.

Lay out your chicken, top with some crispy onions, then spoon some sauce over the top.

Rock and roll, baby!

~ Brock

Friday, February 6, 2009

Spicy Garlic Linguine with Artichoke Hearts and Spinach

You know, I'm on the fence when it comes to pasta. On the one hand, it irritates me that it's one of those things that people love to talk about. They brag, and I hate to hear bragging. On the other hand, it's versatile, you can make so many dishes with so many types of pasta, and it's generally pretty damn good. The other thing is that pasta dishes are usually pretty quick to make, and that's important. So, here's a quick one for you. Feels light, not too many ingredients necessary, and pops with flavor.

Enough linguine for two people, cook according to instructions. Meanwhile...

6 cloves of garlic, minced
1 large or 2 small shallots, minced
1 tsp crushed red pepper
1 handful of fresh spinach, washed
6 artichoke hearts from the can, drained and sliced
1/4 olive oil

Heat olive oil to medium-hot. Add shallots and garlic. Cook a minute or two, then add crushed red pepper, for about 1 minute. Add artichoke hearts for 1 minute, then add drained cooked pasta, and toss in spinach. Flip up heat to high and toss well. Split between your bowls and enjoy.

~ Brock

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Tropical Feast

I really regret not having my camera handy on this one, because if a picture speaks a thousand words, I wouldn't need to say much. But, I'm out of luck, so here goes...

It all started with a detour to 99 Ranch Market to pick up some groceries. I saw Golden Kiwis and the mental feast was instantly born. It had to center around fruit and steak...those were my rules. I also wanted it just sounded better in my head that way. I'm gonna throw down the recipes, then lay out the use.

Grilled Pineapple Steak:

1 lb skirt or flank steak
2 handfuls of crushed pineapple, with juices (don't use canned- cut off some slices from a pineapple and squeeze them in your hand over the steak)
5 cloves of minced garlic
2 glogs of olive oil

Rub the oil into the steak. Salt and pepper generously. Sprinkle the garlic over both sides and work it in with your fingers. Work in the crushed pineapple and juices. Let it stand for about 1 hour outside of the fridge.

Throw on a hot grill for 3 minutes per side. Let it sit for 10 minutes after you cook it, then slice it against the grain into 1 inch x 1/4 inch strips. Set aside.

Golden Kiwi Spiced Dip:

6 golden kiwis- skinned and minced
2 Tsb minced red onion
1 Tsp sliced red pepper (hot, not bell)
juice of 1/2 lemon
salt pepper.

Mix everything and store in the fridge for at least 1 hour. Stir occasionally.

Papaya Salsa:

1 Hawaiian papaya, chopped (yes, you skin and seed it first)
1 vine ripe tomato, diced
1 avocado, diced
juice of 1/2 lemon

Mix well and store in the fridge at least 1 hour. Stir occasionally.

Fried Banana Rolls:

1 package egg roll wrappers
6 or 7 large bananas, chopped
4 Tsp sugar, mixed with 1 Tsp cinnamon

lay out an egg roll wrapper, fill it with bananas, then top with your sugar mixture. Roll according to the pictures on the back of the package (that's for you rule followers). Set aside.

Heat about 1/2 inch of vegetable oil to medium-hot. Fry the rolls until golden brown on all sides, set aside.


1 head of red leaf lettuce, washed and whole leaves ready to use

1 large pineapple, cut into spears. Grill or eat cold


Make a lettuce wrap with the lettuce, some steak, and some of the kiwi dip and some of the papaya salsa. Dip your banana rolls in the kiwi dip. Stack some steak on a pineapple spear. You can even drop your face in a big bowl of's your call.


~ Brock