Devilled Chicken

A food blog without an Italian recipe? Well… here it is 🙂

The only Italian recipe I’ve ever tried is pasta. Not sure if the dishes I made were authentic Italian….probably it was a fusion one… haha… The other day my husband decided to cook pasta. So  this seemed to be a good chance to try some authentic Italian dish to go along with it.

To tell the truth, I was scared to try cooking an authentic Italian dish. I was under the impression that it’s very tough.  I always thought it’s a very exotic cuisine and the way the Italian chefs emphasized on the precision of the ingredients and the exact method of cooking them, it made me nervous at the thought of cooking it. But after I tried out this dish, I realized it’s not rocket science. I followed the same method as I did for cooking any other cuisine. After going through the ingredients, I start imagining what would the dish taste like with all the ingredients and whether I could add or subtract anything to alter the taste. And this has always worked for me 🙂

After browsing through several options I decided to make this one because it seemed simple and had a hint of spice which is my preference.

Try it out in your kitchen and let me know if you like it 🙂

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Preparation Time: 25 minutes

Cooking Time: 25 to 30 minutes (excluding marinating time)

Ingredients:

Chicken – 600 g, cut into large pieces

Olive oil – 2 tablespoons

Lemon Zest – Zest of 2 lemons

Lemon Juice – Juice of 1 large lemon

Butter – 1 to 1.5 tablespoons

Garlic – 2 cloves, crushed

Chili – 2 dried red chilis, seeded and finely chopped

Parsley – handful, finely chopped

Salt – to taste

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Step 1: Mix the Olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, chili and garlic in a bowl.

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Step 2: Place the chicken in an oven proof dish. Add the mixture of Step 1 to the chicken along with salt and mix it well so that it has evenly spread on all sides. Cover the dish and keep it in the fridge for 30 to 40 minutes.

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Step 3: Preheat oven to 175 degrees Celsius for 10 minutes. After chicken has been marinated for around 40 minutes, place it in the oven and grill for around 15 to 20 minutes or until fully cooked.

Step 4: Transfer the chicken on to a serving dish and place them side by side in a row. Mix the butter and parsley together and place them evenly on the chicken towards the center. Serve hot either with pasta or bread.

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Chicken Fajitas

I can’t remember the time I tried Mexican food for the first time… maybe when I was in Bangalore (India). But after coming to Singapore, I did try the food at quite a few Mexican restaurants here. One thing I like about this cuisine is they use a lot of herbs and spices and colorful vegetables which makes it interesting.

So the first Mexican recipe I decided to try in my kitchen is Chicken Fajitas, my style. Why this one? Well.. it’s an easy one to start with, doesn’t require too many ingredients and the dish is colorful. It’s a perfect dish when you’ve had a long day and yet want to pamper your taste buds. It’s also a great option for a potluck parties or watching movies at home with family or friends and goes well with cola or fries.

Buen apetito! 🙂

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Preparation Time: 20 minutes

Cooking Time: 15 to 20 minutes

Ingredients:

Chicken breast – 400 gm, cut into 1 inch long pieces

Whole meal Wrap – 4 wraps

Olive oil – 2 tablespoons

Onion – 1 big, sliced

Red Pepper – 1/2, cut into thin long pieces

Yellow Pepper – 1/2, cut into thin long pieces

Red Chili Pepper – 1, cut into rings

Tomato – 1 medium, chopped into small cubes

Cumin powder – 1 teaspooon

Cajun spice – 1 teaspoon

Paprika – 2 teaspoons

Lemon juice – 2 tablespoons

Salt – to taste

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For the wraps (optional):

Honey – 2 teaspoons (for 2 wraps)

Cinnamon – 1 teaspoons (for 2 wraps)

Step 1: Add the cumin powder, Cajun spice, paprika and half of the lemon juice to the chicken and mix well. Keep aside.

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Step 2: Heat oil in a pan. Add the chicken, onion, red pepper and yellow pepper. Cook for around 2-3 minutes.

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Step 3: Add the tomato and red chili pepper and cook for another 5 minutes or until the chicken in cooked. Add the rest of the lemon juice and toss well. Add salt to taste. Transfer the chicken from the pan to a serving dish.

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Step 4: Mix the honey and cinnamon in a small bowl.

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Step 5: Brush one side of the wrap with the honey and cinnamon mixture. Place the wrap on a heated flat pan with the the side of the mixture facing upwards. Heat for a minute or so on medium flame and transfer on to a plate.

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Step 6: Cut the wraps into halves after it has cooled down. Place the cooked chicken and fold the wrap into a triangular shape or as desired. Serve with shredded cheese, salsa, guacamole or lettuce.

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A few tips:

  • If you find it difficult to find Cajun spice, you can replace it with a mixture of cumin, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder and black pepper.
  • Though normally the dish is served with tacos, but I used the convenient approach of using ready made wraps. So feel free to use the breads of your choice.
  • Instead of honey and cinnamon, you could brush the wraps with cheese or other spreads of your choice.

 

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Chick Pea Salad

We’re all familiar with the phrase “short and sweet”. This is what I was thinking of one afternoon as I was feeling very hungry. I wanted to have something prepared at home, which takes only a few minutes to prepare and at the same time tasty…. exactly like the phrase “short and sweet”. I already had chick peas boiled and kept in my fridge. So this salad was just the right recipe!

After visiting Turkey, I’m really fascinated by middle eastern food. And it’s not only Turkish food, each country in the middle east have their own flavors with a subtle difference in taste. I tried a few of them in Turkey as well and Moroccan turned out to be another favorite. So I decided to try a Moroccan style salad. The olive oil gives a nice oily base, the lemon, paprika and onion….  all together makes it a savory snack.

It took me hardly 10 minutes to prepare and I enjoyed it with my afternoon tea 🙂

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Serves: 4

Preparation Time: 10 minutes (excluding time to boil the chick peas)

Ingredients:

Dried chickpeas – 225 gm, soaked in water overnight

Olive Oil – 2-3 tablespoons

Red Onion – 1 medium, sliced

Lemon – 1, freshly squeezed

Garlic – 4 medium cloves, chopped

Ground cumin – 1 teaspoon

Paprika – 1 to 2 teaspoons (make sure you get the good quality paprika to get enhanced flavor)

Coriander or Parsley or both – 1 small bunch, chopped

Ground Pepper – 2 teaspoons

Salt or sea salt to taste

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Step 1: Drain the water from the soaked chick peas and boil them so that they are soft but not mushy. Drain the water and remove any loose skins. Place the chickpeas in a bowl.

Step 2: Add the olive oil, onion, paprika, lemon juice and garlic, and mix well.

Step 3: Add salt and pepper and mix 3/4th of the coriander/parsley leaves. Sprinkle rest of the leaves and serve in small bowls.

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A few tips:

  • Boil chick peas and keep it in stock so that you can make this whenever needed.
  • You can add shredded cheese as per your taste.

Fish in Turkish style (Pilaki)

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Turkey has been one of the most fascinating countries I have visited till date. Starting from the people to the food! Yes, I loved the food and even 10 days at a stretch seemed too less a period!

Hence, after my return, I wanted to try my hand at Turkish food. I tried out some of the mezze appetizers and it turned out to be quite good! We’ll come to that later.

I’m sure fish is a favorite to many of you and Pomfret…. yummm! ‘Pilaki’ in Turkish refers to a dish cooked in a sauce made out of onion, garlic, carrot, potato, tomato or tomato paste, sugar and olive oil. Fish Pilaki is quite a popular dish there and I chose Pomfret for this one. I’ve tweaked the recipe a little bit to suit my style.

As for the taste of this dish, this is definitely yummmmm! So just go for it!

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Serves: 2 – 3

Preparation Time: 10-12 minutes

Cooking Time: 30-35 minutes

Ingredients:

Olive Oil – 3 tablespoons

Pomfret – 2, big sized. You can use smaller ones as well depending on the size of your oven dish. 

Potato – 1 big or 1-2 medium, diced

Carrot – 1 big, chopped

Red or Yellow pepper – 1, cut into small square like pieces

Onion – 2, chopped

Tomato – 2 large, chopped / Tomato juice

Garlic cloves – 3 to 4 cloves finely chopped

Green Chilli – 2, seeded and chopped

Lemon – 1 to 2, juiced

Bay leaves – 2-3

Sugar – 1 teaspoon

Ground black pepper

Parsley/Coriander leaves – to garnish

Salt – to taste

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Step 1: Cut the fish on the top and bottom carefully without cutting the backbone.

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Step 2: Heat oil in a pan. Put the onions, garlic and chilli and cook until soft. Meanwhile, pre-heat the oven to 170C/ 3250 F for 5-7 minutes.

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Step 3: Add the carrots and potatoes and cook for another 3-4 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, sugar and bay leaves.

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Step 4: Add around 2 cups of water and bring to boil. Lower the heat and cover the pan, let cook for 5-10 minutes, until the vegetables are soft. Make sure you don’t cook for too long, else the vegetables may become mushy. Add salt and pepper according to taste.

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Step 5: Place the vegetables at the bottom of an oven proof dish and place the fish on the top. Cover the fish with rest of the vegetables over them. Pour in the lemon juice on top making sure it covers the fish properly. Put a few parsley/coriander leaves on top.

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Step 6: Place the dish in the oven for around 20 minutes or until the fish is cooked. Remove from the oven and allow it to cool. Garnish with parsley/coriander and serve hot with bread or rice.

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Tips to adapt:

  • You can use other fish like Mackerel, Shellfish, mussels etc as per your taste, instead of Pomfret.
  • If you don’t have olive oil, you can use vegetable oil as well.
  • For a vegetarian option of this dish, replace fish with beans.