Saturday, December 31, 2011

Cheers to 2011! You treated me well and now for 2012....

Happy New Years Eve people!

It's New Year's Eve and so I'm going to keep this post short and sweet since my good friend Ashley from Calgary is due to visit any time. We've got a quiet night in planned of catching up, some drinks (non-alcoholic for me sadly what with being preggo) and making a meal from Quinoa 365 - The Everyday Superfood which she gave me as a Christmas present this year. Thanks Ashley! Anyway, I'm super excited to give the cashew chicken and broccoli on quinoa from my new cookbook a try tonight to get the new year off to a healthy start.  Post to follow....

On another note, I thought I'd share this yummy roasted chicken, chickpea and tomato dish which I've madeTWICE in the past few weeks since it's so quick and tastes like it came from a gourmet restaurant. So good. Enjoy!

Roast Chicken with Chickpeas, Tomatoes and Paprika (serves 4)
from Bon Appetit, May 2008 via Epicurious

Total cooking time: 35 minutes

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 garlic cloves, pressed
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 cup plain yoghurt
4 chicken breast halves
1 15 ounce can of drained chickpeas
 1 12 ounce contained cherry tomatoes
1 cup chopped fresh cilantro divided

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Mix first 5 ingredients in a bowl. Pour one teaspoon of this mixture into a bowl and mix with yoghurt and set aside for sauce. Place chicken on a large baking tray and rub chicken with 2 tablespoons of the oil mixture.

Add beans, tomatoes and 1/2 cup cilantro to remaining spice/oil mix and toss to coat. Pour bean mixture around chicken and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.

Roast until chicken is cooked through, about 20 minutes. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup cilantro and serve with yoghurt sauce.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

A Fry To Remember....

I confess that I'm a fry junkie..what's more indulgent than a big ol' basket of hot, salty, greasy fries with a nice cold drink? Even better served with a juicy burger or a tasty sandwich of some sort. So when I stumbled upon this incredible recipe for chickpea fries from the Rouxbe Cooking School website, I knew I had to try them. The fact that they have chickpeas in them makes me think they must be pretty healthy...right?

We actually made these last saturday night as part of our saturday night feast that we decided to make since we had no other plans. We also made incredible Po'Boy sandwiches with deep fried breaded oysters, see picture below, which was also incredible but I'll save that to blog about another day. Needless to say it was an incredible meal to remember which also prompted me to head straight to a yoga class the next day. But oh SO worth it.

Chickpea Fries with Romesco Sauce
by Dawn T at Rouxbe Recipes

1 clove of garlic
zest of 1 lemon
2 Tbsp fresh italian parsley
1tsp fresh rosemary
1 1/4 cups chickpea flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
31/2 cups cold water
1 Tbsp kosher salt
olive oil for frying
parmesan (optional)
lemon wedges for serving (optional)
Romeso sauce for dipping (optional)

Line a 13" x 9" -inch baking tray with non-stick aluminium foil (or use a good non-stick tray) and set aside.

Next, finely grate the garlic and zest the lemon. Next, finely chop the parsley and rosemary and set aside for later.

In a large pot over high heat, combine the chickpea flour, cornmeal, water, garlic and salt. Whisk gently to prevent the ingredients from sticking to the bottom of the pot.

Once the mixture begins to thicken and bubble, reduce the heat to medium and switch to a rubber spatula. Stir constantly and scrape the bottom of the pot to prevent scorching. Next, add the parsley, rosemary and lemon zest and continue to cook for about 6-8 minutes.

Once done, pour the batter onto the prepared baking tray and quickly spread the mixture out evenly. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 4 hours or until completely chilled and set.

To prepare the fries, first gently flip the tray over onto a cutting board. Cut the mixture lengthwise into equal sections and then cut across into pieces approximately 3" -inches long.

Next, slowly heat approximately 1/2" -inch of olive oil in a large non-stick fry pan over medium heat. Once the oil reaches about 375˚F you are ready to start frying.

Fry the chickpea fries until they are golden brown on all sides, about 2 minutes each side. Once done, remove them from the oil and set onto a cooling rack lined with paper towel. Sprinkle with kosher salt and or/freshly grated parmesan cheese to taste.

The fries before they got fried

Frying the fries

Here is the Oyster Po' Boy sandwich we ate with the fries, recipe to come another time...

another shot of these lovely fries...

and even this guy liked the fries..Success!