April 19, 2012 § 2 Comments
My wife still has friends from elementary school, friends she keeps in regular touch with. Like, we just had dinner with a few of them last week so one of them could spring on us a grainy photo of what looked like a peanut growing in her belly. I don’t even understand it (how she’s maintained these friendships for so long, not pregnancy, though I often fail to understand pregnancy, too.).
These friends of hers, they were a trifecta, and they had names for each other: Boof, Chow, and Wong, respectively. My wife was Boof.
This is a huge digression. I wanted to talk about peanuts. Not the kind that grows in bellies, because there are laws against cooking those. At least, I think there are. I hope there are.
Peanut sauce was one of the greatest inventions of Thai-kind. You can put the stuff on next-to-anything and it’ll be immediately better than it was before. It’s like ketchup, but better, which is weird. In this recipe, I cheat. I’ll admit it. I use a pre-made sauce, all Sandra Lee style, and I hate that bish as much as you do (except my friend L who for some reason loves her Halloween specials), but when I’m just trying to get down with the get down and put something in my face, a sauce in a bottle works just fine. But if you insist on being bougie about it, fine. This peanut sauce recipe looks pretty legit.
So let’s get it on.
|What You’ll Need||How Much|
|Udon noodles||8 oz|
|Asian stir fry oil||2 T|
|boneless, skinless chicken breast, chopped into thin strips||1 breast|
|red bell pepper, chopped||1 c|
|Crimini mushrooms||1 c|
|carrot, julienned||1/2 c|
|broccoli, chopped||1 c|
|onion, chopped or diced (optional)||1/2 onion|
|peanut sauce (bottled is fine, haters gonna hate)||1/4-1/2c|
What You’ll Do
1) Mise en place. Seriously. Do it. This is a stir fry. Get your shit together. This includes boiling the udon noodles according to the instructions on the package.
2) Heat a wok over medium-high. Add the Asian stir fry oil. Take a second to nurse the aroma boner you get when that infused gingery smell hits your nose.
3) Add the chicken. Stir like a mad (wo)man until the very surface of the chicken has begun to looked cooked.
4) Add the red pepper, broccoli, mushrooms, carrots, and onion.
5) Stir, stir, stir. Seriously, if you let those things sit on that heat for longer than a few seconds without stirring, I will smack your mouth. Stir fry for 3-5 minutes, or until chicken is just done. You’ll probably be 2nd-guessing whether you’ll get salmonella, but you won’t (I’m legally obligated here to say that you assume all risk of eating undercooked meat, and don’t ride a bike without a helmet).
6) Turn the heat down to medium, and add the cooked udon noodles and the peanut sauce. Stir to coat all that goodness with peanut sauce.
7) Serve it piping hot into your favorite noodle bowl, and put it in your face.
Should feed 2-3 faces.
(Please forgive these photos; they’re actually pretty old, from before I really started trying to learn food photography.)
January 29, 2012 § 2 Comments
My wife, God bless her, has somehow managed to stay sane over the past 2+ years of our marriage. She deals with my jackassery and poety-moodswings and even rewards me sometimes by cooking me something awesome, like this chicken crock pot pie she made a few weeks ago.
* * *
What a Crock (Chicken) Pot Pie
By: Brittany “The Wife” Newgent
I brought in the mail last week and was excited our magazines had come. Christopher could soon tell me about particles being teleported even farther and dream of ways we could develop human teleportation and put airlines completely out of business. I could soon teach him how to make five pieces of clothing in to twenty different outfits, which would of course mean I needed to go buy five new pieces of clothing.
I handed Christopher Popular Science. He spent maybe five minutes skimming the contents before he picked up Real Simple and proceeded to read every recipe it contained (with a kid in a candy shop smile). I started a grocery list as he was drooling over images of food like they were centerfolds. When I asked what to add to the list he said the following:
|What You’ll Need||How Much|
|crimini mushrooms, quartered||8 oz|
|carrots, cut into 1″ pieces||4|
|medium onion, chopped||1|
|fresh thyme||2 sprigs|
|bay leaf||1 leaf|
|boneless, skinless chicken breasts||1 1/2 lbs.|
|salt & fresh cracked pepper||to taste|
|puff pastry or biscuits||1 sheet or tube|
|frozen peas||1 c|
|fresh green beans||1 c|
|heavy cream||1/2 c|
When he informed me it was a crock pot meal I was eager to try it, as we have 2 crock pots and have used each once since we’ve had the same last name.
1. If you want to throw this in a pot before you leave your home, prep everything the night before, or be prepared to be about 30 minutes late to wherever you’re going.
2. If you are awesome and love the taste of fresh, crisp green beans, use fresh rather than frozen. However, the green beans go in the pot for a short amount of time toward the end of the process along with the peas and cream. I chose to cut fresh green beans into 1-inch pieces and put them in the freezer while the rest of the ingredients cooked.
3. Add your favorite herbs and spices (such as rosemary and garlic) to give this dish a bit more of a kick. (Ed. note: we did think the recipe as prepared to Real Simple standards was a bit bland, and suggest giving this dish a rightful kick to the face with a spice boot.)
What You’ll Do
1. In a 4-6 quart slow cooker, mix together the mushrooms, carrots, onion, flour, thyme, bay leaf, and 1/2 cup water. Place the chicken boobs on top and season with salt and pepper.
2. Cover and cook until the vegetables look like a delicious mush and the chicken easily breaks apart. I set the cooker on low for about 7 hours. If you can’t wait all day, set it on high and cook for about 4 hours.
3. About 30 minutes before you plan to put this in your face, begin to make the biscuits or pastries.
4. Once the chicken is tender (about 10 minutes before you put this in your face) break the chicken into small pieces with a fork. Add the peas, green beans, and cream, and mix it well. Add more salt and pepper if desired. Cover and let cook for about 10 minutes.
5. Place the chicken and mush in/on your favorite dish (it deserves at least that) along with as many biscuits as you damn well please.
6. Put it in your face!
December 28, 2011 § Leave a comment
My pal Carrie Murphy writes a food blog called Plums In the Icebox. I recently made a version of her chicken enchiladas and told her I’d post about them on my personal blog, and then thought, “Well, fuck it all, how about a new blog?! A.. FOOD BLOG!”
Because there aren’t enough of those, right?
So here. I’m going to tell you about what I’m putting in my face, and suggesting that you put it in yours, too. Okay? Okay. Go.
Chicken & Spinach Enchiladas
|What You’ll Need||How Much|
|baby spinach||2-3 c|
|yellow onion, diced||1/2 c|
|boneless, skinless chicken breasts||2|
|cajun seasoning||to taste|
|shredded cheese (Mexican blend, duh, but really, whatever you want)||1 c|
|olive oil||to coat|
|hot sauce of your choice, optional||to taste|
|dried thyme||1 t|
|garlic, minced||1 T|
|chili powder||2 t|
What You’ll Do
1) A half-hour before roasting, remove chicken breasts from your refrigerator and put in well-oiled roasting dish. Season with cajun seasoning, to taste obviously, but seriously though, don’t be a pussy about it.
2) Make the enchilada sauce: Basically, get yourself a good blender or food processor, and put all that shit from the ingredients list under “For enchilada sauce” into it at the same time, and go until it’s all pureed to Hell.
3) Preheat the oven to 425F.
4) Roast chicken breasts for approx 15 minutes depending on thickness, or until the internal temperature is 155F (USDA says 165F, I know, but they just don’t want to get sued, so they tell you to overcook everything). Remove and let stand for 5-10 minutes, then shred that shit up. I probably should’ve taken a picture of this for reference, but you’ve probably eaten at a Mexican joint before, and know what shredded chicken looks like. Make it look like that.
5) Reduce the heat of the oven to 350F.
6) In a saute pan over medium-low heat, heat a tablespoon of olive oil, and add onions. Saute for 3-5 minutes, or until onions start to become translucent, then add spinach. Saute another 2-3 minutes until spinach wilts just slightly.
7) Microwave the corn tortillas for 20-30 seconds so they’re easy to work with.
8) In a 9″x13″ baking dish, pour about 1/4c of enchilada sauce into the bottom.
9) Put a line of the spinach/onion mixture and shredded chicken down the center of a corn tortilla. (Again, probably should’ve taken a photo, but you know how much chicken and veggies you have, and you know how many corn tortillas you gotta fill, so make it last.) Wrap it up, and place it seam side down into the enchilada sauce. Repeat this for the remaining tortillas.
10) Pour the rest of the enchilada sauce over the top of the enchis. Sprinkle the shredded cheese over this goodness. Bake in oven for 10-15 minutes, or until cheese has completely melted. They should look like that picture way up there.
11) Put a couple enchis on a plate. If you want, add some hot sauce for some kick. The enchiladas themselves don’t actually have a lot of kick to them, because my wife isn’t so into being kicked. So I dumped some chipotle hot sauce on mine because I dig the smoke.
12) Finally. Put it in your face!
Should feed 3-4 faces.