Category Archives: Chicken

My (Sticky) Date with Dates

Every month Bon Appetit does an At the Market section highlighting a particular piece of produce or food item, in this case dates, that are at the peak of its season. One recipe that jumped off the page was the Braised Chicken with Dates and Moroccan Spices. Isn’t she a beaut?

Braised Chicken with Dates and Moroccan Spices (Photograph by Kiyoshi Togashi)

LOVE is the first word that comes to mind when I think about this dish. Holy smokes, I’m like Celine Dion pounding my chest saying “lurrrrvvee” loud and proud. This was quite simple to put together and the spices, oh my the spices, made this sauce absolutely incredible. The chicken was fall off the bone perfection. I loved the shallots, dates, cilantro and crunchy almonds. This was my first time actually cooking with dates and let me tell you those are sticky little suckers when I was pitting and cutting them but well worth it because it was an awesome addition to the dish.

I served this with mashed sweet potatoes and shazam, dinner was served. For the lurve people do not pass go, do not collect $200 just go to the store, get the ingredients and get home ASAP to make this. Hands down one of my favorites I’ve made on this blog.

Braised Chicken and Red Potatoes in Tarragon Broth

Talk about an Emily favorite. I have made this soup since it’s debut three years ago in the September 2007 issue of Cooking Light. To me, this is a bowl of comfort that I’ve turned to year after year say when I’ve got a cold, it’s gloomy and gross outside or your favorite team ever (rhymes with Fonghorns) gets dismantled again. Bleeb to the blarb.

The flavors of this soup with the tender braised chicken, soft red potatoes, shallots, and white wine are a perfect combo and the tarragon broth provides the perfect balance to make a beautiful soup. Ahhh, the smell of the broth hooks you before you even begin to eat. Plus it has a short ingredient list and is undeniably easy to make…see why I love it so?

I just ate this for lunch and now I’m all comfy and cozy at my desk.  Now if only I could be in my pajamas with my slippers I would be set…and then I would probably get fired…then I would just have to make more soup to comfort myself. Enjoy this y’all, it’s a good one.

Braised Chicken and Red Potatoes in Tarragon Broth (Photo by Lee Harrelson)

Coq Fight!

(Insert your best ring announcer voice here) In the blue corner we have the Quick Coq Au Vin  AKA “Quick Talons” from Bon Appetit weighing in at 371 calories per serving and a nine ingredient list, and in the red corner we have Easy Coq Au Vin  AKA “The Easy Breezy” from Cooking Light weighing in at 319 calories per serving with an 18 ingredient list.

Quick Coq Au Vin (Photograph by Jose Picayo)

The Easy Breezy comes out swinging with succulent chicken thighs that knocks Quick Talons’ use of chicken breast to the ropes but Quick Talons throws a powerful jab with its better use of bacon and less ingredients. Easy Breezy does a right hook with less calories and more veggie power. Quick Talons stumbles for just a moment and then comes roaring back with its great depth of flavor in the sauce. The jabs keep coming and it looks like folks we are going to a judges decision…who will win?

The judges take a look at both dishes flavor profiles and wish the fighters could combine The Easy Breezy’s chicken thighs with Quick Talons’ sauce but finally decide that…

The Easy Breezy is the winner in this highly contested fight! The crowd goes wild!

Check out Apron Adventure’s review of the same two dishes and see what she thought…great minds huh?

Ma Vie en Vin!

Ahhh, picture it poodles. The Madeleine Peyroux Pandora station playing through the house over the Sonos. A bottle of French wine. Flickering candles. Sunset over Zilker park on a lazy, gentle Sunday evening.  Coq Au Vin. Potatoes Gratin. Could you ask for a better set-up for a FANTASTIQUE French meal? Non!

My bestie, Apron Adventures, mentioned making the Coq Au Vin from Bon Appetit, but I thought she said she made the one from Cooking Light. She raved and raved and I decided to give the Cooking Light version a try…trust me, I’ll try the Bon App one next for sure. If Apron loves it, I know I will.  Zut alors lambs this was absolutely amazing and has definitely made my list as one of my favorites. I don’t think I’ve “mmmmmed” and “ahhhhhhed” over a meal in quite sometime.

Easy Coq Au Vin (Photo by: Johnny Valiant)

This was so earthy, delicious and had that je ne sais quoi-ness to it. Plus the chicken just fell off the bone and there’s bacon. We all know how I feel about glorious bacon – see my food categories to the right of this post if you need further confirmation.  I couldn’t find pearl onions but we did just fine without them. I served this with these awesome Muffin-Pan Potato Gratins from Everyday Food. I followed the recipe pretty much to the letter except decided to add freshly chopped rosemary every time I seasoned with salt and pepper and since there are only two of us, I served in greased ramekins for easier clean-up. This is such a simple and delicious side, you have no excuse not to give them a try.

There you have it mes amis, a beautiful, easy dinner that I’m for sure going to make for a dinner party when the time is right. C’est si bon!

Twice-Glazed Asian Barbecued Chicken

I’m still on the Food and Wine magazine’s Best New Chefs of 2010 train and last night didn’t disappoint. I’m trying to eat a little healthier these days so when I came across this Twice-Glazed Asian Barbecue recipe from Chef Mike Sheerin of Chicago’s very own Blackbird (I will go there someday as my cat is my witness!), I thought it looked like a perfect, simple and healthy weeknight meal.

The barbecue sauce is quite different with its Asian spices of oyster and soy sauces but you know what, it still came out spicy and barbecue-ish all the same. I went rogue on y’all last night however. I couldn’t find skin-on boneless chicken breasts so instead chose bone-in, skin-on. Also, a mother of a storm rolled through Austin last night so instead

of the suggested grilling, I salt and peppered the three chicken breasts on a pan and roasted at 400 degree for 20 minutes. I then glazed the first side of the chicken with the sauce and cooked for five minutes. I then flipped the chickens over and glazed the other side and cooked for five more minutes. I repeated two more times until I was out of sauce and then let the chicken rest for 10 minutes. These were huge honking chicken breasts so if you plan to follow my method just make sure you check the chicken until the juices run clear and let it rest accordingly.

David and I had The Lex over last night for dinner and the three of us loved this! The chicken was very moist and the sauce was excellent. I could see this sauce working even on an Asian-inspired turkey burger…yeah I’m so going to try that. We also made the suggested accompanying salad of a Cucumber-Cherry Salad but instead I made with cherry tomatoes and it was still delicious. The Lex also made some bombtastic bok choy that was wok-seared with garlic, red pepper, soy sauce, sriracha and sweet chili sauce. Perfect little plate of food if I do say so myself.Up next poodles I made a coconut jam with padan leaves…intrigued? So was I. More to come. :)

Dark Meatlove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Dark Meat

I’ll admit it. I have avoided dark meat. Like that pile of laundry you continue to walk by and starts to overflow out of the basket, you finally throw your hands in the air and say “OK, I’ll do it!” Magazines have been giving these cuts of meat a new life recently and well, if you think about it, it makes sense. Dark meat can require long-cooking times in the oven – perfect for fall – and are wallet friendly – perfect for the economy – so it’s a win/win folks. Plus, if you avoid the skin of dark meat you are actually consuming almost the same amount of calories and fat but could be getting more nutritional benefits, like zinc and iron, than their white meat counterparts. I’m serious! See here and here.

Now all of this is coming to you from a person who claimed to not like dark meat because I had heard the fat rumors and I don’t know, something about it just didn’t appeal to me. Well, it just goes to show that as usual, I was wrong lambs. I just made two dark meat dishes back-to-back for dinner this weekend and am currently swooning over the flavors. The Apple-Braised Turkey Thighs recipe from Everyday Food and Chicken Smothered in Gravy recipe from Food & Wine are two prime and lip-smacking examples of dark meat goodness.

Give these two a try, although if I had to choose just one give the turkey thighs a chance. Of course I would choose the one that doesn’t have a Web link.
Also, I just noticed that this is my 98th post, wow how time flies. I want to do something special for my 100th post. What should I do, what should I do?!
Everyday Food
Apple-Braised Turkey Thighs
Serves 4
Prep Time: 30 MIN
Total time 2 1/2 HR
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 turkey thighs (about 2 pounds total)
coarse salt and ground pepper
2 large shallots, thinly sliced
4 Cortland or Granny Smith apples, peeled, quartered, and cored
2 cups of apple cider
14.5 ounces low-sodium chicken broth
2 teaspoons cider vinegar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat oil over medium-high. Season turkey on both sides with salt and pepper and add to pot, skin side down. Cook until skin is golden and crisp, about 8 minutes. Transfer turkey to a plate and add shallots to pot. Cook until shallots soften, about 5 minutes. Add apples and cook until slightly softened, about five minutes.

2. Return turkey, skin side up, to pot; add cider and broth. Bring to a boil, cover, then place pot in oven. Cook 1 1/2 hours. Uncover, cook 30 minutes more.
3. Remove pot from oven and transfer turkey to plate. Skim fat from cooking liquid and stir in vinegar. Slice meat off bones (discard bones) and server turkey with apples and pan sauce.

Pan Fried Chicken and Peonies!

I love fresh flowers but my budget does not allow them too often. My local H-E-B had these beautiful Peonies on sale and had to share them with you…Ok, now to my perfect little Sunday dinner. First up was Pan Fried Chicken from Cooking Light. I have tried many a fried chicken recipes from Cooking Light including an oven-fried version that just didn’t get the crispy, crunchy skin you find when pan frying. With this recipe they nailed it. Simply combining all-purpose and whole wheat flours with ground cinnamon, nutmeg, paprika and ginger, this skin turned out perfectly and the chicken was deliciously juicy. I served with a little bit of honey because I love the combination of honey and fried chicken. If you are concerned that the ground spices might overpower the chicken, don’t be, the flavors were subtle but fantastic.

I served this with some grilled zucchini, red bell peppers and red onion with a delicious Creamy Feta Vinaigrette from Food & Wine. It was so easy to make and the vinaigrette was creamy and yummy.

I finished my meal with some simple strawberries with fresh basil and balsamic vinaigrette. What a great Sunday meal!

1 Grocery Bag, 5 Weekday Meals

Intrigued? I know I was when I saw this on the cover of the new Everyday Food. Having to be on a pretty strict food budget I jumped at the chance to give this a try. They even give you a handy, dandy shopping list right where this section starts in the magazine and I simply just took it with me and crossed items off as I went.
This is going to be different than my other posts since I usually only cover what I like, but since the focus is here is on a short weekly shopping list, I’m going to post my reviews of all the recipes (regardless of how they taste) to really see how this nets out.
The recipe recommendation is as follows – Monday, Grilled Steak with Tomatoes and Scallions; Tuesday, Pasta Salad with Goat Cheese and Arugula; Wednesday, Tomato-Pepper Soup with Ham and Arugula Wraps; Thursday, Grilled Pork Chops with Cucumber-Dill Salad; Friday; Asian Noodle Salad with Chicken and Cilantro (sorry, can’t find some of these on the Web site and I will post here later).
I tweaked this schedule to work within my week and started with the Asian Noodle Salad with Chicken and Cilantro. On the recipe page they mention the sauce is Vietnamese-style and features fresh ginger, garlic and jalapeno combined with brown sugar and rice vinegar in a saucepan. I have to say the sauce really made this dish, but it was also a great combination of the cool, crisp cucumber, savory chicken and cilantro and noodles. I really liked this dish and how quick it was to get on the table.
Up next, ham and arugula wraps with tomato-pepper soup. Hope it’s good!

Me Oh My, Tortilla Pie and the Best Salsa You’ve Ever Tasted

I came across this super simple Tortilla Pie with Chicken in the new Everyday Food and for some reason I love trying versions of this dish because it’s usually so easy to make and full of flavor. This recipe was easy to assemble and I, of course, love the short ingredient list.

I decided to not use one of the salsa recipes they recommended and instead use my favorite salsa recipe in the world. Thanks to the gentle souls over at We Heart Food they have the delicious recipe from the restaurant Luna de Noche in Dallas posted on their blog. Note to those who do not like cilantro: this sucker contains five bunches of cilantro, yes five bunches, so if you are one of those people who think cilantro taste like soap then this may not be for you. For everyone else, you will find that whenever a recipe ever calls for salsa you can whip this up in no time and have a delicious tasting salsa for your dish and the rest of the week.
To round out the meal I made a simple salad of fresh mango and pineapple with red onions, a little olive oil and distilled white vinegar with cracked black pepper. It was a fresh complement to the tortilla pie and the two gallons of salsa I consumed.


Luck O’The Stir-Fry

So I got home late on St. Patrick’s Day, no not because I was out drinking green beer, I was just working late. So you can imagine my glee when I got home and realized I had serendipitously chosen the Spicy Chicken Stir-Fry with Peanuts recipe that mentioned it would be on my table in minutes. “Yeaaaaah right” I thought. Well, they were right it turns out and I was happy to be wrong for once (I believe I hear everyone I’ve ever known laughing out loud). This dish came flying out of the kitchen and it tasted great.

I substituted snow peas for snap peas because, well, I just like them better and added some diced red bell pepper for good measure. The recipe calls for jalapenos or serrano chile. I chose the serrano because I like spice but this was definitely heat manageable for anyone I would think. The basil and peanuts added a nice depth of flavor and I was really surprised at how great this tasted with so few ingredients. The simpler the better, I love it!

What a lucky St. Patty’s Day for me eh?