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Irish Soda Bread

March 15, 2020

3 cups all purpose
¼ cup evaporated cane juice (sugar)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup mixture of raisins, cranberries and currants, chopped
2 tablespoons orange zest
1 tablespoon fennel seeds, crushed or powdered
4 tablespoons super cold butter, cut into little pieces
1 ¼ cups buttermilk
1 egg, beaten

Preheat oven to 400.
Grease a large cast iron skillet or a 10 inch cake pan.

Transfer the flour, sugar, salt and baking soda in a mixing bowl, whisk together. Add the butter and mix briefly with fingers, incorporating the butter. Add the raisins mixture, zest and fennel seeds and mix well. Mix the buttermilk and egg together in a small bowl and whisk well and refrigerate until needed (the key is to have this liquid as cold as possible) Add the liquid slowly to the dry mixture while mixing it with a fork. Once all the liquid is incorporated, gently mix everything with your fingers and form an 8 inch round loaf and transfer to the cast iron skillet or cake pan. Mark the top with an ‘X’ with a knife about ½ inch deep.
Bake for 20 minutes in the oven and check if the top is getting too brown. If it is, then top with aluminum foil and bake for another 20 to 25 minutes. Take out of oven and keep the foil on till it cools off.

White Chili with Shredded Chicken

January 28, 2020

It’s that time of year… yummy chili with a beautiful glass of red wine..

  • 4 chicken thighs, skin off with bones
  • Drizzle of olive oil
  • Salt
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle powder

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Transfer chicken thighs to a lined cookie sheet.

Drizzle olive oil on both sides of the chicken thighs. Sprinkle salt, smoked paprika and chipotle powder and rub all over the thighs. Roast in the hot oven for 30 to 35 minutes or till the chicken is cooked through. Keep aside and let cool. Shred the chicken with the fork and keep aside.

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • ½ green pepper, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 fresh jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 4 ounce can roasted green chilies
  • 1½ cups roasted frozen corn
  • 1 can cannellini beans
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • Salt
  • Grated cheese for garnish

Heat a heavy saucepan with the olive oil. Add the onion, celery, green pepper, garlic and jalapeno. Saute on medium heat for 5 to 6 minutes. Add the flour and cook for 2 to 3 minutes on low heat, stirring constantly. Add the canned green chilies, corn, beans, cooked chicken and chicken broth. Bring to a boil and simmer and cook for about 20 minutes with lid on. Take the lid off, check for seasonings and serve with a garnish of grated cheese.

 

 

 

Chili Verde

January 27, 2020

Great recipe for the big game!

  • 4 to 5 medium tomatillos, cleaned and cut in half
  • 2 ancho chilies, cut in half and deseeded
  • 3 garlic cloves, with skin on
  • Drizzle of olive oil
  • Salt
  • 1 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 4 to 5 green onions, chopped

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Place all the ingredients onto a lined cookie sheet. Drizzle the olive oil and bit of salt. Roast for about 30 to 40 minutes till the vegetables are soft. Let cool and slide the skin off the ancho chilies. Place in a blender with cilantro and green onions and blend till smooth. Keep aside.

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
  • 1 pound dark meat ground turkey
  • 1 can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 to 2 cups chicken broth
  • Salt
  • ½ cup cilantro, chopped
  • Squeeze of lime

Heat a large saucepan with the oil. Add the chili powder and oregano. Saute for 30 seconds over medium heat. Add the ground meat and sauté over high heat, separating the meat with a wooden spoon. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes, until the meat is golden brown. Add the beans, tomatillo sauce and 1 cup broth. Bring to a boil, add some salt and simmer on a medium heat covered for 20 minutes. Take the lid off and continue cooking on simmer for another 15 minutes. Add more broth if needed. Check for seasonings and garnish with cilantro and lime. Serve with corn bread.

 

Mushroom and Bean Chili with Mushroom Quinoa

January 26, 2020
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 10 ounces cremini mushrooms, cut into quarters
  • 1 5 ounces shiitaki mushrooms, cut into quarters
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro stems, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons dill stems, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 medium red pepper, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon roasted cumin seeds, crushed
  • 1 cup tomato sauce, homemade or store bought
  • 1 can red beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups mushroom broth
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Heat a saucepan with 2 tablespoons butter and 1 tablespoon oil. Add the mushrooms and sauté on medium high heat for 4 to 5 minutes or till the mushrooms are golden brown. Take out with a slotted spoon and keep aside. Reheat the pan and add the remaining tablespoon of oil. Add the cilantro stems, dill stems, onion, garlic, red pepper, cumin seeds and chili powder. Saute on medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the tomato sauce and sauté for another 5 minutes on medium heat. Add the beans, mushroom broth and salt. Simmer covered for 20 minutes. Take the lid off and add the mushrooms. Take for seasonings and garnish with cilantro and dill. Serve with mushroom quinoa.

Mushroom Quinoa

  • 1 cup white quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups mushroom broth
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Heat a small saucepan with the oil and add the rinsed quinoa. Saute on medium high heat for 2 minutes. Add the mushroom broth and salt. Bring to a boil and simmer till the moisture has evaporated on the surface. Cover with lid and lower the heat and cook for another 10 to 15 minutes or till the quinoa is cooked through.

 

Sauteed Tofu with Hoisin Sauce

January 21, 2020

1 pack extra firm tofu, drained of excess liquid

¼ cup hoisin sauce

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 teaspoon honey

1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger

3 garlic cloves, grated

1 teaspoon sesame oil

Salt

½ teaspoon red pepper flakes

4 tablespoons peanut oil

1 teaspoon black sesame seeds

1 teaspoon white sesame seeds

¼ cup green onions, chopped

 

Place the drained tofu on a plate lined with several paper towels. Cover tofu with several more paper towels and top with a heavy pan or something heavy. Let sit for 30 minutes to drain excess liquid.

Mix the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, honey, ginger, garlic, oil, 1 teaspoon salt and red pepper flakes in a large bowl and keep aside.

Cut tofu into bit sized squares and toss in the bowl with the sauce. Marinate for 30 minutes.

Heat a heavy pan with peanut oil. Once really hot, add tofu and sear on all sides- about 3 to 4 minutes on each side.

Remove from heat and sprinkle sesame seeds and green onion. Serve with rice.

 

 

 

Roasted Cauliflower Soup with Spiced Almonds

January 20, 2020

1 medium head of cauliflower (cut into florets)

1 medium onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, with skin

2 tablespoons olive oil

Salt

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

 

Transfer the cauliflower, onion and garlic onto a cookie sheet. Drizzle the olive oil and sprinkle salt. Roast for about 30 to 40 minutes until the cauliflower is golden brown. Keep aside.

2 tablespoons butter

¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon ground cardamom seeds

¼ teaspoon ground cumin

¼ ground coriander

¼ teaspoon ginger

¼ teaspoon paprika

½ teaspoon salt

¾ cup sliced almonds

Melt butter in a medium skillet. Add the spices, salt and almonds and toast on medium heat, stirring constantly for 3 to 4 minutes. Let cool and keep aside. This can be done a day before and kept in the fridge.

1 medium red skin potato, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes

1 cup half and half (substitute with coconut milk for vegan)

5 cups chicken or vegetable stock

Salt

Harissa for garnish

In a large pot, bring the stock to a boil. Add the potatoes, cauliflower, onion and garlic and boil for 10 minutes till the potatoes are tender. Blend the soup with an immersion blender or in a blender till smooth. Transfer back to the large pot and bring to a boil, cook for 10 to 15 minutes on a medium heat. Check for seasonings and add more stock if needed. Strain the soup (it is optional but I prefer the smooth consistency). Serve with a sprinkle of almonds and a small dollop of harissa.

 

Roasted Cauliflower and Potatoes with Harissa

January 19, 2020

1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets

4 to 5 medium to small potatoes, peeled and cut into 2 inch pieces

Oil to drizzle and cook with

Salt

Pepper

5 to 6 green onions, whites and greens separated and chopped

2 inch fresh ginger, grated

2 tablespoons harissa

1 teaspoon ground coriander

½ cup chopped cilantro

 

 

Preheat broiler to high.

Transfer the cauliflower florets and cut up potatoes to a lined cookie sheet. Drizzle with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Mix to make sure all the veggies are coated well with oil. Place the veggies under a hot broiler and roast them for 5 to 10 minutes or till they are golden brown. Take them out and keep aside.

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a heavy saucepan. Add the white parts of the green onions and ginger. Saute on medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the harissa and saute for another 2 to 3 minutes. Add the roasted veggies and mix well. Add 1 teaspoon salt and ground coriander, mix well, lower the heat and cover with lid. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes or till the potatoes are cooked through. Take the lid off, check for seasonings. Garnish with cilantro and the green parts of the green onion.