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Sometimes I get into a rut and make the same chicken dishes time and time again. I had chicken thighs in the fridge and I wanted to make a different preparation for a change. Nothing was coming to mind until I was flipping through a William Sonoma catalog. They were featuring a tagine and had a recipe for a chicken cooked in the contraption. I noticed the recipe included olives and apricots- I had both in the fridge- so I started cooking.
I sprinkled salt and pepper on chicken thighs- my favorite part of the chicken. Thighs are great to use in such dishes- they can be cooked for a long time and not get tough on you, plus they have great flavor. I made a simple spice mix with cinnamon and coated the chicken. I then browned the pieces and sauteed them with garlic and onions. I decided to add some grated carrots- to add some veggies- no one was able to detect anything healthy!
The olives and apricots really gave the chicken an incredible flavor and texture. I love the two ingredients together… The sweetness and chewiness of the apricots complimented the saltiness of the olives really well. I went to a few local stores to find preserved lemons (often used in Moroccan dishes) but was not able to. The olives I had were marinated with lemons- so that is what I used. It worked really well but I am sure using the actual preserved lemons would have been delicous too.
The dish was yum- I made cumin couscous with it. My daughter until recently didn’t care of couscous, but once I told her it is pasta in another form- she was a little more receptive. I made a green salad with our dinner and opened a bottle of red wine. Delicious!
This condiment is my new favorite thing to eat. It’s my friend Nancy’s secret hummus recipe. She has been making it for years now. I remember eating it in her house and thinking it’s delicious but somehow was never curious enough to make it myself. When Eden Gourmet- a specialty food store- opened in our area, Nancy mentioned that all the ingredients for this spicy hummus are available there. She mentioned a Moroccan hot pepper mixture (schug) that makes this hummus special. I went to the store to find the secret ingredient and didn’t have any luck- that was a few months ago.
Last week we went to Nancy’s house for dinner and she brought out the yummy hummus with bread, crackers, olives and cheese. Of course everyone remarked how delicious the dip was- and so she proceeded to make me something she calls ‘heaven’. She took a slice of crusty bread, toasted it and proceeded to spread a thick layer of hummus. She then, added a grilled spicy serrano pepper (serrano peppers are grilled till charred and then cooked in olive oil and lots of fresh garlic). Well, it was delicious- definitely ‘heaven’. The crusty bread was perfect with the creamy, spicy hummus- and the small punch of the serrano chili was amazing on top. It’s definitely not for people who can’t handle spicy foods- my husband for example- did not even try it- the pepper was too intimidating.
I decided to visit Eden Gourmet the next day and made this yummy concoction. It’s very easy to put together since everything is store bought. I processed the hummus till it was smooth and delicious. I added two teaspoons of the hot schug, but you can adjust according to the spice level you can handle. The sundried tomatoes give the dish a tangy creamy texture.
I love having this spicy dip in my fridge- I have been putting it on everything, including my naked finger… thanks for the recipe, Nancy!
I am surrounded with ice cream lovers at home. Both my daughter and husband love it! I, on the other hand like ice cream but don’t love it. Somehow thinking about the ingredients – cream, eggs and sugar- deters me from eating it too much so somehow I have convinced myself that I don’t like it too much. Place a slice of pound cake in front of me and the ingredients don’t matter at all- I devour it!
I do enjoy a scoop or two of gelato- my first time eating it was about 10 years ago in Rome. I still have a vivid memory of a gelateria right next to our hotel. The first day there, we checked in, showered and walked out and noticed the place. We went right in and ordered a cone with two flavors- I can’t remember what I had but can picure the dollop of cream that was placed on the scoops of gelato. Oh, my God- it was amazing! I still think about it.
Years later, gelato is available all over the US. Somehow it doesn’t taste the same- not sure why that is. I still eat it every chance I get but it is quite expensive to buy. So, when I came across a recipe by David Lebovitz that used corn starch to thicken the milk- I was instantly excited. I looked at a few more recipes on line and came up with this one. I used whole milk and corn starch with great cocoa powder and turbinado sugar. It’s all healthy and there isn’t that much sugar in it. I added cinnamon and almond extract to it- the flavor was unbelievable…
It was absolutely delicious! I took it for a dinner party and it was a big hit. I have been experimenting with a few different flavors now- will be posting soon. I am thrilled to be making gelato that is healthy and delicious. My daughter love it!
My parents are visiting from India- and that means a lot less cooking for me. I get to sit back and eat my Mom’s yummy food. This time is a bit different, I am doing more cooking than I normally would- because of the blog- but I got a break for this dish- my Mom cooked and I took the picture and wrote the recipe.
I made a trip to Edison where I buy a lot of my vegetables- especially the ones I use to make Indian dishes. I did a huge grocery run- I bought a yellow pumpkin (I don’t know what it is called in English- it is in the pumpkin family), okra, cauliflower and fenugreek greens. I knew I had to pick up a Cauliflower- it’s my husbands all time favorite vegetable. As I have mentioned before he can have it in any shape or form- 3 times a day; 7 days a week.
My Mom was busy making all the vegetables I bought- they were mostly the ones I never buy and cook for myself. She finally got to the cauliflower and cooked it with peas. The traditional way to serve this vegetable is with potatoes but when you have someone in your family who is crazy about it, you find a way to cook it in many way- hence the peas…
This particular concoction was quite easy. My Mom started with ginger, onions and green chilies. She added the cumin seeds and then the cauliflower and cilantro. She added some spices and finished it off with some peas and more cilantro. It was simple and delicious- just the way I like it. Somehow the very simple dishes taste extremely yummy! My husband of course was in heaven…
I love sausage and pepper sandwiches. I love the savory sausage with the sweet peppers and onions. Typically green pepper are served with the dish- I prefer sausage and pepper sandwiches made out of the red and orange peppers. I usually start with the sausages and then add either crushed tomatoes or tomato sauce. I then proceed with the onions and peppers- lots of oregano and basil later- a great dish is done! I toast a crusty baguette and rub the insides with a fresh garlic clove. The sausage and peppers are then topped with either a sharp provolone cheese or fresh mozzarella. It’s a great sandwich, especially with a great glass of cabernet.
In the summer, I do a variation of the sandwich. I am in no mood to spend a lot of time in front of the stove. We like to grill as much as possible- especially on the weekends. I always have chicken sausages in the fridge/freezer. This time I bought aged cheddar and spinach ones from Costco- they are delicious! Anyway, I grilled them and slices of a large baguette drizzled with olive oil and rubbed with garlic. I cooked the peppers and onions quickly on the stove with lots of fresh basil and brought it outside. We had all the components of a sausage and pepper sandwich separately- and they all tasted really well together. It was a yummy and simple meal- perfect for a Sunday evening or a weeknight.