I never use recipes.
That may be confusing since that’s what I do here… post recipes.
I should rephrase… I have thousands of recipes that I want to make and I will probably never even come close to scratching the surface. In addition to being food-blog crazy and mildly obsessed with Foodgawker I have 20+ cookbooks, and 80% of the television I watch involves a stove. I love going to the grocery store and a majority of the day revolves around thinking about food. (Thank you, NYC, for forcing me to walk at least 10 miles a week.)
|My collection is bigger.|
Yet with the immense compilation of bookmarks and magazine clippings, I am a crappy combination of being remarkably indecisive (though I prefer to think of it as being open minded to a vast array of choices) and excessively frugal.
As much as I adore living in Manhattan, it’s also a giant, expensive pain in the ass. So I wait until Fresh Direct offers free delivery, shop the weekly circulars, and occasionally lug a bag filled with [costly] Kashi cereal and sushi rice back from a weekend in Connecticut. Most people have neither the time nor patience for these shopping methods, but I’m not the type to watch money disappear when I could be saving it for a rainy day ordering in! My point being, if a recipe calls for garam masala (crazy Indian blend of spices), chances are very likely I will never use it again, therefore making it difficult for me to justify buying something I think I’ll be wasting.
When I finally find a recipe that’s appealing with both reasonable ingredients and ease of preparing for [generally] one, I get very excited. I found the recipe for caramelized chicken with jalapeno cream in January and have been dying to try it out all year. Armed with lots of jalapenos, condensed milk, and plenty of motivation, all I needed was an accompanying side. I was even more enthusiastic when after perusing my recipe collection I found both a beverage and side to accompany perfectly.
This was seriously the best dinner I’ve made in a long time
Frozen Blackberry Mojito
(Adapted from Tyler Florence’s Mojito Slushy)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 15-20 blackberries
- ½ cup fresh lime juice, about 4 to 6 limes
- ¼ cup fresh mint leaves, firmly packed
- 2 limes, zested
- ½ cup light rum
- 8 cups crushed ice
- Mint sprigs and lime wedges, for garnish
In a saucepan over medium heat, add the sugar and water. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring often, until the sugar is dissolved and the syrup is clear. Set aside to cool.
Put the sugar syrup, blackberries, lime juice, mint leaves, lime zest, and rum into a blender and blend until smooth. Add the ice and blend until slushy. Spoon into glasses; garnish with additional blackberries, a sprig of mint and a lime slice.
Caramelized Chicken with Jalapeno Cream
(Adapted from How Sweet Eats)
· 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
· 1 tsp salt
· 1 tsp pepper
· 2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
· 4 jalapenos, seeded and chopped
· ¼ onion, sliced
· 3 garlic cloves, minced
· 2 tablespoons butter
· 1 tablespoon flour
· ¼ cup milk
· 1- 12-oz. can evaporated milk
· 2 tablespoons finely grated parmesan cheese
Add chopped jalapenos, shallots and garlic to a food processor and pulse until very finely chopped (not pureed). Set aside.
Tenderize chicken breasts if desired and pat completely dry with paper towels. Season on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add oil. Once the oil is hot, add chicken breasts (make sure they are COMPLETELY DRY) and cook for about 8-10 minutes per side, until each side is caramelized and golden.
While the chicken is cooking, heat a small saucepan over medium heat and add butter. Once sizzling, add in the chopped jalapeno mixture, stirring to coat, and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Whisk in flour and stir continuously to create a roux. Cook mixture for 1-2 minutes, then add in both milks, reducing the heat to medium-low. Continue to stir [almost] continuously until mixture begins to thicken, adding in parmesan cheese and reducing the heat again. (Sauce may thicken even more while sitting – and you can add additional milk to thin it out if needed). Taste and season as desired, and spoon a hell of a lot on your chicken.
Cheesy Corn Bake
(I torn this recipe out of something at some time).
- 3 eggs, well beaten
- 1- 16oz. can creamed corn
- ¾ cup unseasoned breadcrumbs
- ¾ cup (3oz.) shredded cheddar cheese
- ½ medium bell pepper chopped (pick whatever color you like... I like red)
- ½ cup hot milk (or half & half)
- ½ medium sweet onion, chopped
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- ¼ tsp paprika
In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Pour into greased 2-qt. casserole dish. Bake for 1 hour at 350F. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.
Let's face it... these recipes only served two...