Lemon & Herb Chicken


I love lemons and I love chicken so I’ve combined the two together in this chicken dish. Unfortunately, it was too tangy for my husband (who doesn’t eat any sauce besides gravy and soya sauce) but for me, I added more lemon juice as I was eating to give it more tang! So I’ll leave it with you to adjust to your own tastes. Play around until you get a combination of flavours you like. I’ll be trying this marinade in the summertime on the BBQ with chicken wings.

Ingredients:

4 chicken thighs bone-in & skin on
2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup lemon juice
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon Italian herbs or thyme, rosemary (whatever desired)
Kosher salt, coarse sea salt or pink salt to taste
Ground black pepper (or lemon pepper) to taste

Directions: 

  1. In a bowl large enough to fit chicken, whisk together lemon juice, garlic powder, herbs, salt, black pepper (approx. 1 teaspoon) and olive oil
  2. Put in chicken and coat it with marinade
  3. If desired, cover and refrigerate chicken over night (I was in a rush and just left it at room temperature for 30 minutes, turing 2-3 times), then preheat broiler
  4. Place on foil lined pan and place chicken in, and spoon some marinade over but saving some for basting
  5. Broil for 30 minutes or until almost cooked, baste and switch oven to bake until golden & done (or fry in non-stick pan on medium until chicken has some colour or done – 160F)
  6. If wanting to use leftover marinade as sauce, either simmer for 5-7 minutes in a small saucepan or add to pan while frying on stove top)
  7. Sprinkle with more salt, pepper and/or lemon juice before serving if desired
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When it Rain, it Pours

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Raining cats and dogs on my way home from work today. Got completely soaked from the knees down, an umbrella was no help…..bad day to not have rubber boots.

Living in Vancouver, I’m used to the rain, it’s just miserable when I’ve got a cold 😦 I’ve been banned from the kitchen in fear of spreading my germs…hopefully I’ll be back at it on Monday.

Good night to stay in doors. Hope you’re warm and cozy this evening!

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Happy Valentine’s Day!


I wanted to make cupcakes for people at work because I found these really cute cupcake cups. They’re supposed sturdy enough that muffin tins are necessary so you can just set them on a cookie sheet and bake them all at once.

The only thing was, I tried to squeeze too many on to one cookie sheet and when they expanded in the oven, some of them got squished and turned out triangular…..oh well.

I didn’t have a recipe for chocolate cupcakes so followed this one from Williams Sonoma’s website and topped it off with a basic frosting. It’s actually my first time baking cupcakes, turns out frosting them nicely was harder than anticipated. Hmmm….maybe I’ll just  stick to muffins…..

http://www.williams-sonoma.com/recipe/chocolate-cupcakes.html

 
Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

Vietnamese Crab Cake Noodle Soup (Bún Riêu)

After having that delicious bowl of Bún Riêu for in Oakland, it’s been on my mind. After talking to my husband about locating a good restaurant for it, I decided to make my own. He said I’d find most ingredients I’d need at this Vietnamese grocery store in an area of town recently designated as Little Saigon.

Prior to heading there, I Googled some recipes to get an idea on what ingredients would be required. I wandered the aisles a bit and got confused. I asked one of the guys stocking the shelves for some help and he started to put things into my basket. When he was done, I was armed with various jars and bags. He said all I needed now was the meats and eggs. So in the evening, I went to get the meats.

So using the instructions from the guy at the store and a couple of recipes online, I started to put everything together. Instead of making my soup base from scratch out of pork bones, I used a box of chicken broth, I’m not sure if it makes a huge difference but it saves a lot of work. A food processor with also save you some time but hand-chopping works too.

Ingredients

Soup:
6 cups chicken broth
3 cups water
4 teaspoons spicy crab paste
1 tablespoon dried shrimp, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon tomato paste
4-6 Roma tomatoes, washed & cut into quarters
1 pack of fried tofu cubes

Crab cake:
1/2 pound ground pork (I used lean)
1/2 pound prawns (fresh)
3 tablespoon dried shrimp, minced
1 cup of crab meat, drained 
(crab can be frozen, canned or fresh. I used 2 cans of 120g)
1 can of mince crab in spices
1 shallot, minced
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon shrimp paste
1/2 teaspoon sugar
few splashes of fish sauce
1-2 eggs

Directions
1. Peel prawns and save tails and heads. Mince the meat or grind in food processor
2. In a large pot, bring water and chicken broth to a simmer and add in prawn tails and heads, simmer low
3. Combine crab meat mixture together, add in 1 egg to start if you find the mixture too dry and not sticking together, add an extra, cover and refrigerate mixture
4. Scoop out heads and tails from broth
5. Using a bit of the broth in a small bowl, combine spicy crab paste and tomato paste until dissolved. Pour into broth
6. Put chopped dried shrimp into broth and bring to a boil
7. Take meat mixture out and slowly slide burger patty sized “cakes” into soup. Try not to stir the soup too much after this point or your cake will crumble
8. Add in tomatoes, tofu and a few splashes of fish sauce
9.  Make noodles according to the packaging (boil appox. 5-10 mins) rinse with cold water to stop them from cooking
10. When the cake floats, it’s almost done, you can break the cake up a bit to check – you can break of the cake a bit in the soup is fine
11. Serve with herbs. (This is what I was told to serve the noodles with but I’m not sure what kind of greens these are…)

 

 

 

 

 

 

You have to look kind of close but you cans see one of my crab cakes starting to float at the top

I prefer the thicker, round rice vermicelli (first photo and the green packaging), but my husband prefers the thinner rice stick vermicelli noodles (red packaging)

Breaded Chicken

I know this chicken looks kind of like Shake ‘n Bake but it’s not! I tend to make this when I don’t want to do too much prepping and have bread nearing expiry. You can customize it by adding your favourite herbs and spices to the bread crumbs.

I thought the chicken breasts I bought were quite thick so I sliced them in half and they cooked a lot faster. You can also do chicken thighs or pork chops, it’s up to you, I just find drumsticks too annoying to cook evenly.

 There are a lot of breaded chicken recipes online, but then again there’s a lot of everything online so I’m going to post how I made this anyways  🙂 

Ingredients
2 pieces of chicken breast
3-4 slices bread, toasted & crushed into crumbs or  approx.1 cup of bread crumbs
Herbs, spices, salt, pepper as desired
Milk

Directions
1. (Optional) slice each chicken breast in half horizontally and then pound slightly with rubber mallet
2. Mix in desired herbs/spices into crumbs (this time I used 1 teaspoon lemon pepper and ½ teaspoon salt)
3. Heat non-stick pan on low-medium heat and add in oil
4. Put a bit of milk into a dish and put in a piece of chicken (don’t use too much milk because it can’t be reused
5. Remove from milk and dredge into bread crumbs, press crumbs into meat
6. Place on pan to fry, flip when bottom is golden brown. It’s done when the internal temperature is 165F.

 *You’ll want enough oil to keep the breading from burning, for my 12” pan I used approx. 2 tablespoons. Add more oil if required, stay on low-medium heat.

**You can choose to bake the chicken instead if concerned about oil. The cook time and temperature will depend on your meat size. Typically, chicken is 350F for 20-30 minutes, uncovered.

Enjoy with veggies and your favourite dipping sauce, but the herbs and breading provides a nice flavour as-is.