Roasted Chicken with Lemon and Herbs

 

 

 

I recently read that the test of a good cook is if she/he could roast a chicken. I have tried multiple recipes and had many failures. However, this is the one recipe that produced a tender and juicy roasted chicken every time. I originally started with Julia Child’s recipe and improvised to make it easier. This is my take on a roasted chicken.

Ingredients:

  • One 3 1/2- to 4-pound chicken
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Butter
  • Fresh herbs (dried as an alternative)
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Onions
  • 2 lemons
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup chicken stock or broth

Directions:

  • Preheat the oven to 425
  • Wash the chicken rapidly inside and out with hot water and pat thoroughly dry. Salt and pepper the cavity and place vegetables and fresh herbs inside the cavity; whatever you have in the pantry work (carrots, celery, onion, and lemon). Massage the chicken all over with 1 tablespoon of the butter
  • Choose a flameproof roasting pan that is about 1 inch larger than the chicken. Salt the chicken all over and set it breast up on a rack in the pan. (Thoroughly wash all surfaces and utensils that have been in contact with the raw chicken)
  • Roast the chicken in the oven for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, as follows: At 15 minutes Brush the chicken with the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of butter. Scatter the onion and carrot all around the pan. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°. At 45 minutes Brush the lemon juice over the chicken. If necessary, add 1/2 cup of water to the vegetables to prevent burning. At 60 minutes Baste with the pan juices. Test to see if done: The drumsticks should move easily in their sockets; their flesh should feel somewhat soft. If not, continue roasting, basting and testing every 7 to 8 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer registers 165°
  • Spear the chicken through the shoulders; lift to drain; if the last of the juices run clear yellow, the chicken is done. Let rest on a carving board for 15 minutes; discard the string
  • Spoon all but 1 tablespoon of fat from the juices in the pan. Add the stock and boil until lightly syrupy, 5 minutes. Strain and serve with chicken.
  • Alternatively; you can boil the giblets in water with salt, pepper and bay leaves and make a gravy out of the drippings

Thai Coconut Chicken

 

I spent my first 6 months working as a paramedic in San Francisco. Because I didn’t spend much time working in SF, I didn’t get to know the SF Fire Department men and woman very well. What I do know, is that dinner is very important to firefighters at the fire house. I spent 6 years with my ambulance housed at the station I now work at, and 2 years housed coast side. Some of my best meals were at the firehouse. With that being said, I found this recipe from a book titled Firehouse Food: Cooking with San Francisco’s Firefighters. I made it for my daughter and I this weekend and we both loved it. I may tweak it a bit next time to add more heat and acid.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups jasmine rice
  • 5 TBS vegetable oil (I used olive oil)
  • 1 medium white onion, halved and cut into 1/4 inch slices
  • 1 TBS minced garlic
  • 1 TBS minced ginger
  • 1 jalapeno Chile, stemmed, halved, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 4 boneless, skinless, chicken breast halves (I suggest trying boneless, skinless thighs as they are more tender) 2 pounds total
  • 1 can (13.5 oz) coconut milk ( I used unsweetened)
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 3 TBS rice vinegar
  • 1 bunch basil, leaves thinly sliced

Directions:

cook rice, set aside. Heat oil, add onion, garlic, ginger Chile, stir fry until the onion is softened (3-4 mins). Set aside. Heat more oil and add chicken until opaque (5 mins). Return the onion mixture to chicken, add coconut milk, soy sauce, vinegar, bring to a boil and cook until reduced by 1/2 (8 mins). Stir in the basil, and serve.

Suggestions: add Thai chili paste for more heat, juice of lime for acid, cilantro in place of basil and crushed peanuts to garnish.

 

 

 

 

Jamaican Jerk Chicken from Smokey Joe’s

 

 

I found this recipe while craving the flavor of jerk chicken and have made it several times. I’ve never been to Smokey Joe’s on Negril Beach in Aruba, but its on the bucket list. Photo is from my first visit to Hawaii. This chicken dish is full of flavor and spice. Recipe found on: http://relish.com/

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch green onions, cut into 2 inch lengths
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 (2 inch) piece peeled fresh ginger, cut into 1/2 inch discs
  • 1 TBS heaping fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • 1 whole cinnamon stick, broken into several pieces
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 to 3 Scotch bonnet or habanero chile peppers, stems and seeds removed (jalapenos for less heat)
  • 2 TBS dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 4 limes, juice equaling 6 TBS
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 4 skin-on, bone-in chicken leg quarters or 1 (3 pnd) chicken cut into quarters

Directions:

Place all ingredients, except oil and chicken, into blender or food processor. With the blender still running, slowly add a thin stream of the oil until the mixture becomes thick. Save 1/2 cup for basting while cooking.

Marinade chicken for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Remove from marinade once grill is prepped. Place chicken on grill, direct heat, searing the first side for 3-5 minutes. Turn, baste with reserved marinade and grill another 5 minutes. Move chicken to indirect heat and cook until internal temp reached 165 degrees.

 

Lem’s Bar-B-Q House BBQ Sauce

americas-best-bbq

Hello to my fellow blogosphere friends.  I have been away awhile while completing my degree but, never fail, I will continue to post and post all my favorite recipes.  This is the best homemade BBQ sauce I have ever made.  I have doubled, tripled, quadrupled, the recipe as needed.  It is really good and, like all recipes, can be tweaked to your liking.  I found this recipe in the book America’s Best BBQ by Davis and Kirk.  Lem’s BBQ House is located in Chicago, Illinois at 311 E. 75th St., if you’re ever in the area.

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 TBS granulated sugar
  • 2 TBS apple cider vinegar
  • 1 TBS chili powder
  • 1 tsp. dry mustard
  • 2 TBS Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. finely ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. ground celery salt

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring to dissolve all sugars, stirring occasionally for 30 minutes, cool to room temperature.

Lemon Chicken

IMG_9501

Really good wine pairing for this dish pictured above

This is another recipe from my new cookbook I recently purchased called Cooking My Way Back Home.  The original recipe calls for olives and feta which I will include but I did omit because I did not think my children would like it.

Ingredients:

  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, each cut on the diagonal into 3 pieces
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 4 TBS unsalted butter
  • 8 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 TBS dried oregano
  • 1 TBS sugar
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 TBS fresh flat-leaf parsley

Garnish:

  • 1 cup nicoise olives, pitted and quartered
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 2 TBS chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Directions:

Season the chicken with salt and pepper, put the flour in a shallow dish and dredge each chicken piece in it.  Heat the oil and add the chicken pieces, cooking for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until golden.  Transfer to a plate and set aside.  Lower the heat and add 2 TBS butter to pan scraping up any bits, then add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.  Add the oregano, sugar, wine and lemon juice, raise the heat and simmer for 2 minutes.  Add stock and cook 4 more minutes.  Turn the heat to medium-low and add the chicken with the remaining 2 TBS butter, stir to coat each chicken piece and cook 2 more minutes or until chicken is cooked through, add the parsley and season with salt and pepper.  To serve place chicken on plate, cover with sauce and garnish with olives, feta and parsley.

Hot Fried Chicken Sandwich with Biscuits and Coffee-Laced Gravy

 

This is the first of many recipes I will be posting from my favorite new cookbook Cooking My Way Back Home by Mitchell Rosenthal.  In this recipe the coffee-laced gravy is the star.  You can make the gravy and just serve it over biscuits if you like but I wanted to post the recipe in its entirety in case you want to try it  the way its suppose to taste.

Coffee-laced Gravy

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp canola oil
  • 3 slices thick-cut bacon, cubed
  • 3 ounces breakfast pork sausage links, casings removed
  • 1/2 yellow onion, sliced
  • 2 TBS unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 TBS brewed espresso or other strong coffee
  • 3 cups Chicken Stock, warmed
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh sage
  • 6 Country Biscuits (recipe follows)
  • 6 fried chicken breasts (recipe follows)

Directions:

In a frying pan, heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 3 minutes, or until some of the fat is rendered.  Add the pork sausage meat and cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon or spatula, for 3 minutes more, or until it starts to brown.  Add the onion.  Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes, or until the onion is soft.

Add the butter and stir until melted.  Lower the heat to medium-low.  Stir in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes to cook away the raw flour taste.  Pour in the espresso and stock and stir well, making sure to scrape the bottom of the pan to dislodge and browned bits.  Raise the heat to medium and simmer for about 10 minutes, or until reduced by half.

Add the cream and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes, or until the mixture has a nice gravy consistency.  Finally, stir in the sage, then taste and correct the seasoning.

Split each biscuit in half horizontally and lay the halves, cut side up and side by side, on a plate.  Top with a hot fried chicken breast, ladle the hot sauce on top, and serve immediately.

Country Biscuits:

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 TBS baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 TBS sugar
  • 1 TBS salt
  • 1/2 pound, plus 1/2 stick butter, frozen, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 cup buttermilk

Directions:

Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.  Scatter the butter on top, on low speed with mixer beat until the butter is about the size of peas, combine all bits with buttermilk until it forms into a dough. Turn the dough out into a lightly floured work surface. Fold and pat until soft and cohesive. Roll out to 1 inch thick and transfer to a sheet pan. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to a day.

Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Re-roll the dough into a round 1 inch piece onto lightly floured work surface. Cut as many biscuits as possible into 2 inch rounds. Place the biscuits on prepared pan and place in refrigerator for 15 minutes. Preheat oven to 400 F. Bake the biscuits for 25 minutes or until lightly browned on top.

Hot Fried Chicken

Ingredients:

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup buttermilk
Canola oil, for deep frying
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup Town Hall Spice Mixture (recipe follows)
1 tsp salt

Directions:

Place the chicken breasts between 2 sheets of parchment paper or plastic wrap and beat with a mallet until 1/2 inch thick. Season with salt and pepper. Add the chicken and buttermilk into a bowl and coat. Let soak for 15 minutes. Heat the oil in a deep fryer or heavy bottomed frying pan to 375 F. In a bowl stir together flour, spice mixture and 1 tsp salt. Toss the chicken into the flour mixture and out of the buttermilk and cook in hot oil for 4-5 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

Town Hall Spice Mixture

Ingredients:

2 TBS cayenne pepper
1 1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp salt
1 tsp white pepper
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp dry mustard
1/8 tsp celery salt

Directions: Mix all ingredients together. Store in airtight container in cool cupboard. Keeps for up to 6 months.

Chicken Kebabs with Avocado Dip

I’m back to college and trying to juggle studying, children, and work with my personal life. That means less time to share recipes but I haven’t stopped cooking. Cooking gives me a break from studying and relaxes me. This is a rather simple recipe I found in Jamie Oliver’s book titled Jamie does Spain, Italy, Morocco, France, etc. etc. Love his recipes and books and this one is simple and delicious.

Ingredients;
4 boneless chicken breasts
4 pitas or flatbreads (Olga bread works well)
1 lemon

For the marinade;
Fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated, thumb size piece
1 TBS hot paprika
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp coriander
3 TBS olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground pepper

For the avocado dip;
2 ripe avocados
1 tsp ground cumin
2 cloves garlic, peeled and very finely chopped
1 fresh green or red chile, de-seeded and finely chopped
2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon

Directions;

Cut chicken into pieces for kebabs and mix marinade ingredients together, combine with chicken and cover with plastic wrap, place in fridge for 30 minutes or overnight. Make avocado dip and set aside. Place chicken pieces on skewers, grill for 5-7 minutes on each side and serve with bread and avocado dip.

Charlie’s Chicken

One of my best friend’s made this dish at her Christmas party this year and my children and I loved it so I copied it down and gave it a try. I haven’t perfected it yet but I will keep trying. Charlie is her father in-law and this is his recipe.

Ingredients;

1/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 tsp. salt
Dash thyme
3 to 4 lbs chicken tenders
1/4 to 1 cup olive oil and butter combined
4 green onions sliced
1/2 cup mushrooms sliced
2 TB lemon juice
1 tsp. sugar
1/3 cup apple juice

Directions;

Mix flour, 1 tsp. salt, pepper, and thyme in plastic bag, add chicken and shake to coat well. Brown chicken in oil/butter and remove to casserole dish.
Add onions and mushrooms to sauté pan that you used to cook chicken and simmer for 3 minutes, add vegetables to casserole dish. Mix lemon juice, sugar, 1 tsp. salt, and apple juice together and pour over chicken.
Bake at 325 degrees covered with foil for 60 minutes.

Roy Choi’s Stir-Fried Chicken Henhouse Bowl

 

I bought this wonderful cookbook titled Secrets Of The Best Chefs by Adam Roberts. The selling point of the entire book is the inclusion of this delicious recipe by Roy Choi. Ever since the first time I made this a month or so ago I’ve been craving it; it’s time to make it again tonight. But first, lets share it with anyone out in internet land that wants to try it and have their flavor senses thank them. To start, you must make his sweet chili sauce, it is an integral part of the dish and cannot be omitted.

Sweet Chili Sauce

This very spicy, slightly sweet sauce can be used on all types of protein or just plain rice. You can omit some ingredients, as I did, because I was unable to find everything and I needed it a little less spicy for the children, but don’t skip the key ingredients. Key to this sauce is the chili sauce, citrus, herbs, onion, garlic, and ginger.

Ingredients;

1 (10-ounce) bottle Mae Ploy sweet chili sauce
2/3 cup loosely packed Thai basil leaves
2/3 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves
1/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (1 med orange)
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (5 med limes)
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
8 medium cloves garlic, peeled and slightly chopped (to get them started, the blender will do the rest)
3 TBS sriracha hot sauce
2 TBS Korean crushed red pepper
2 TBS toasted sesame seeds
2-inch piece of ginger, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 dried Anaheim chili, stemmed and coarsely chopped (optional)
1 Serrano chili, stemmed and coarsely chopped (optional)
4 tsp. kosher salt
4 tsp. Korean chili paste
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

Add all of the ingredients to a blender. Blend for 1 minute, until you have a smooth puree. Taste to adjust for citrus, heat, and salt. Use immediately or refrigerate in a jar for later use. The sauce will last for about 1 week in the refrigerator.

Henhouse Bowl

Ingredients;

Canola oil
1/2 yellow onion, peeled and thinly sliced
1 cup cooked chicken, diced
1/2 cup cleaned and sliced Chinese broccoli or whole spinach leaves or a combination
2 cups cooked rice
1/2 cup Sweet Chili Sauce, plus more to taste
A big handful of cilantro leaves, plus more for later
A big handful of Thai basil leaves, plus more for later
1 or 2 red fresno chilies, thinly sliced
A few TBS of toasted sesame seeds
A three-finger pinch of fried shallots
2 fried eggs (optional)

Directions:

Set a wok on high heat. Swirl 3 TBS canola oil until it’s hot, add the onions. Lower heat and let the onions cook. When they start to brown, remove to bowl and set aside. Add more oil, add chicken, warm chicken and remove to onion bowl. Add more oil, increase heat, add the greens, stir until wilted, add to onion and chicken bowl. Oil again, add rice, flatten like a pancake. Allow to sit for a bit, lower heat, sizzle a minute, start moving it around. You don’t want a film on the bottom; you want the rice to be in direct contact with the heat. Slowly cook and warm rice without adding color. Add onions, chicken, and greens to wok and stir. Add the chili sauce. Stir and taste. Add cilantro, basil, sesame seeds, and fried shallots and top with the same and a fried egg.

If you want to use fresh chicken and not leftover or a cooked rotisserie marinate for 30 minutes in the refrigerator with;

1/2 cup lime juice
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
1 med Asian pear (grated)
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper

Pat very dry and cook the chicken in the 1st step instead of the 2nd step, before cooking the onions.

Fried Shallots

You want the shallots and oil to come up in temperature together. So add sliced shallots to a pan of cold canola oil. Slowly bring up the heat and cook, until the shallots are deep golden brown.