Ain’t no Beefin’

In the Poconos, recently my friends and I were on a wine tour doing tastings of the area vineyards and as we all know when drinking copious amounts of booze causes most people to binge eat. Luckily, there was a cook-off contest going on nearby so we stumbled over and tried all the eats the locals had made. There was a plethora of good food like sausage and peppers, mushroom risotto, etc. but this beef dish just knocked my socks off! I asked for the recipe because I wanted to recreate it for the blog, but more importantly, I wanted to try it sober to see if I even liked it (who knows when your inebriated, errythang tastes good under the influence). My God. I was NOT disappointed! It was just as yum, so I hope you enjoy this as well.

  • 2 lbs. flank steak
  • 1 cup cranberry juice
  • 1/2 crushed pineapple or puree
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 cup cranberries(recipe calls for fresh but all I had was dried so do you)
  • 1/2 cup diced candied ginger
  • 1/4 cup minced garlic or 4 cloves chopped
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce

In a medium saucepan cook soy sauce, honey, pineapple, cranberry juice into a marinade. Add cranberries and candied ginger cook for a bit more before turning off stove to cool.

In the meantime, coat steak with the ginger and garlic, then pour cooled marinade over steak. Marinade for 1-2 hrs then remove steak from marinade and cook for 7-10 minutes on each side. Take the marinade and recook to turn into a glaze for the steak. After letting meat rest slice on grain.  Drizzle remaining cooked marinade then serve w bean sprouts and chopped cilantro.

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Happy Eating, XO

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Pollo (Chicken)

The mother of invention is necessity. My parents were in town and for many Indian dishes you serve a side of plain yogurt. It’s a cooling agent to all the Indian spices. Well, after they left I had a bunch of yogurt leftover so I decided to make a marinade for my chicken from the leftover yogurt. There was a need to finish it, so why not repurpose it? I rummaged around my pantry and found this amazing latin paste I had grabbed from my recent trip to Costa Rica and started whipping up this tasty delight. Hope you enjoy my latin inspired pollo!

  • 1 tbsp of achiote paste (blend of red spices from Mexico, available i grocery stores that sell Goya brand products or you can order any brand from amazon)
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1 tbsp of crushed garlic or 4 cloves
  • 1 fistful or bunch of cilantro leaves
  • 4-5 green onions (both white ends and green portions)
  • 1/2 container or 1 lb. of plain yogurt
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1.5 lbs or 5 drumsticks of chicken (bone-in chicken thighs would be good too)

Combine in blender or food processor and coat the mixture over a dish of drumsticks. Marinade for 24 hrs and then bake in oven at 425 degrees for 30 minutes. To keep moist while cooking, baste with melted butter (or lemon juice if you want to be waist line friendly). Serve hot.

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Happy Eating, XO.

Homemade Hummus

Listen, I’m a huge fan of store bought, however my mom made me a convert the last time she was visiting me in Philly. She blended up a batch of her home made hummus for me to dip with carrots and then a few other flavors for me to use with the kebabs she brought. My oh my, trust me when I say, its WAY better. Silver lining is, its almost as easy/quick as opening the store bought container.

  • Tahini (see it wasn’t JUST for that shaved brussels sprout recipe, you silly non-believers)
  • Garbanzo beans/chick peas (canned stuff kids)
  • 1 Lemon
  • Garlic (as much as you want really, 1-3 cloves)

Optional Flavor I: Roasted red peppers
Optional Flavor II: Cilantro & Jalapeño
Optional Flavor III: Black Olives
Optional Flavor IV: Avocado
Optional Flavor V: Jess’ Basil

So yea you get the point, there are multiple flavors, but even the original or base flavor is so yum! It’s also a nice way to use up anything you may have going bad. I always have cilantro leftover from my chimichurri sauce recipe or who doesn’t always seem to have an avocado that went from firm to ripe too fast? So throw it in the hummus and get to snacking! As you know hummus is also a good/healthy sub for mayo in wraps and sandwiches. Plus, recently, I ate a hummus stuffed omelet at this French/Lebanese brunch spot (shout out to Cafe La Maude) that rocked my world. So yeah, make some, you won’t be disappointed.

Happy Eating, XO.

Herbaceous Cod

I came across this recipe in search for a cheaper white fish for me to eat on weeknights. I love salmon, don’t get me wrong, but it’s literally the only fish I make. I don’t like tilapia, halibut, or catfish and Chilean sea bass is way too much for the wallet, so someone had suggested trying cod and swordfish. So that is when I took to finding a quick way to prep it and eat on a summer evening. This is real good because the fish stands up to the strength of the fresh herbs but isn’t too fishy/meaty either. I am going to work on some swordfish or mahi mahi next so stay tuned and start following the blog for updates!

  • 2 lbs. cod fillets
  • 1/3 cup real mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigianno Regianno cheese {no pre-grated cheese, please!}
  • 2 tablespoons each chopped fresh parsley and basil
  • 1 medium clove garlic, grated
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In a small bowl, stir mayonnaise together with cheese, fresh herbs, garlic, salt and pepper until combined. Spread evenly over the top of the fillets. Bake 10-12 minutes or until fish starts looking opaque and will flake. Switch oven to broiler and brown the tops of the fish until lightly golden.

cod

Happy Eating, XO.

Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa

Last year we gave you fish tacos (which we’re still dreaming about). So this year, we’re bringing you shrimp tacos! Btw, can we talk about how an entire year has already gone by?! Anyway…here is your unofficial official “summer taco”.

*Makes 4 tacos.

Tacos

  • 16 pieces of small shrimp, peeled
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin (If you need a reason to keep cumin stocked, we have you covered.)
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 4 corn tortillas

Mango salsa

  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp cilantro, chopped
  • 1 mango, pitted and diced
  • 1 avocado, pitted and diced
  • 1 small tomato, diced

*For a more “island” taste, toss in 1 tbsp of coconut milk.

In a bowl, toss together your chopped and diced ingredients for the salsa – onion, cilantro, mango, and avocado. Set aside. Whisk together the spices for the tacos – chili powder, cayenne pepper, cumin and sea salt. Toss the shrimp in the spicy mixture until fully covered. Throw the shrimp on the grill for approximately 4 minutes (2 minutes per side) until cooked and slightly charred. Just before the shrimp is done cooking, heat the tortillas on the grill. Layer the shrimp on the tortilla, and top with the mango salsa. Enjoy with our ginger beer and tequila cocktail!

Shrimp Tacos

Happy Eating, XO.