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Garlic Thyme Chicken on Browned Butter Tater Mash

Like I promised last week, here is the recipe for the thyme garlic chicken I made last week. Obviously, I took the chance to cook it again and this time I also added my beloved browned butter potato mash to combine it all into this succulent mixture of the sweet garlic and the flavour of the thyme topped off with the slight acid of the white wine.

(2-3 servings)

Ingredients

Chicken

4 to 6 chicken thighs, I prefer to leave the skin on for the crisp
1-2 tablespoons of peanut oil or olive oil
3 heads of garlic, peeled
1 cup / 250 ml of extra dry white wine
3-4 sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves only
1 cup of chicken or vegetable stock
20-30 grams of ice cold butter in cubes
2 tablespoons of all purpose flour
ovenproof skillet with a lid or a Dutch oven

Tater Mash

400g of floury potatoes
1 bay leaf
1 glove of garlic, peeled and halved
milk (about 100ml)
salt
20 g of butter
1 spring onion, cleaned and cut into rings including the green
1 tablespoon of browned butter as detailed here http://goo.gl/xxdxAa
medium size cooking pot
small skillet for the milk

Mise en Place

- peel potatoes, cut into uniform size pieces, store in medium sized
  pot covered in salty water.
- pre-heat oven to about 200 C (about 400 F)
- dry the chicken pieces thoroughly from both sides using paper
  towels
- peel the garlic. The easiest way to do this, is to remove the cloves
  from the head, then place all of them in a metal bowl, cover that
  bowl with a second bowl of matching size and shake it all
  vigorously. You will find that the friction and the impacts against
  each other, removes the papery skin from the garlic cloves. Fast
  and easy.
 -heat the cooking oil in the skillet on your stove to medium high
  heat.

Preparation

Salt the chicken from both sides, cook place the chicken skin side down into the skillet. Let if brown there for about 4-5 minutes, letting the fat render out and give the skin a nice golden brown colour. Flip the chicken, brown the other sides. Overall about 8 minutes. Remove and place the chicken on a clean plate.

Do this until all the chicken pieces have been browned. Reduce the heat to medium. If the browning of the chicken, has left too much oil from the rendering of the skin in your skillet. Remove some of the excess oil until you have about 2 tablespoon of fat left in the skillet.

Now add the garlic, keep stirring until you catch the first delicious smell of cooking garlic and the garlic is lightly browned. Now dust it with the flour, stir until all is well combined. Turn off the stove. Place the chicken pieces on top of the garlic and cover it tightly with the lid. Place the skillet in the oven and cook for about 15 minutes.

During that time, bring the water for the potatoes to a boil, add the bay leave and the two halves of garlic. Cover and cook until soft. Depending on how thick you cut the pieces of potato, this should take no more than 10 to 15 minutes.

Pour the milk into the small skillet, add the slices of scallion. Salt until lightly salty, heat until it lightly simmers for a minute or two. Turn heat off and cover.

Strain the potatoes, put the potatoes back into the pot, do not cover and let it steam off without putting it back on the heat. Remove the bay leave, you can leave the garlic in it will mash in nicely. Using a potato masher, roughly mash potatoes, add the browned butter and the hot milk to the potatoes. Use a wooden spoon to combine it just sow. Season to taste but it should be salty enough. Do not overmix or it will take on an unpleasant texture. Cover and keep warm.

After the 15 minutes, turn off the oven. Remove the skillet and take the chicken pieces out again, place them on a plate and keep them warm in the oven. Pour the white wine over the garlic and flour mix, bring it to a simmer for about a minute. Add the thyme leaves. Add the stock/broth and bring to a simmer, keep stirring from time to time and let the liquid reduce to about half. It will lightly thicken, once that happens add the ice cold pieces of butter and stir them in. Do not let it cook again. You will get that shiny finish we all like in our sauces and gravies. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Turn on the broiler in your oven, crisp the skin side of the chicken again, make sure not to burn it. Place the chicken on the garlic thyme sauce and serve on the browned butter tater mash. The drink of choice for this is a lively white wine, I like it extra dry. The rich in taste yet light combination of savoury, acidity , herbs and sweet garlic on the nutty tater mash is a perfect mix of flavours.


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Creamy Corn Chowder with Bacon and Jalapenos

This is going to be a quick one. I know I have been slacking in my food posts, again. I will finish a few I have prepared and post those soon.

Now, this  recipe is a keeper and perfect for those first cool days at the end of Summer or Autumn. I was inspired by a recipe mentioned by +Kristina Crowley, a simple yet delicious looking corn chowder. Considering how many of you liked the mere mention of a spicy corn on cob, this should be right up your alley.

Ingredients

4 corn on the cob (equivalent of frozen corn if you cannot get fresh one)
4 tablespoons of masa (cornmeal)
250ml / 1 cup of cold water
about 60g of cubed streaky bacon (1 cup)
1 large red onion
1 heaped teaspoon of chipotle powder
1 litre / 4 cups of low sodium chicken stock/broth
1 red & 1 green jalapeño, diced
1 can of unsweetened coconut milk
1 Tablespoon of unsalted butter

Mise en Place

Peel the onion, dice it
Clean the jalapeños, remove the seeds and dice
Shuck the corn, cut it from the cobs using a large knife, set aside
Thoroughly shake the can of coconut milk, open the can and set aside. 

Preparation

Heat a medium sized pot to medium heat, render the bacon for a few minutes and then add the onions.
Stir and cook until the onions are soft, but not brown.
Add the jalapeños and the corn. Stir for a few minutes.
Now add the chipotle powder, stir again and pour in the chicken stock. Pour in the coconut milk.
Mix about 1 cup of cold water with the masa and stir until dissolved. Pour into the chowder. This will not only add a lovely taste of corn, but it will also thicken the chowder as I am foregoing the usual addition of potatoes. 

Bring to a boil, cover and let it simmer for about 20 minutes. Season to taste. 

You might want to go slow on the jalapeños if you are afraid of the heat, but mine had the just the right amount of heat and smoky flavour from the bacon and the chipotle powder from the start. 

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Creamy lemon risotto with scallops and chorizo

A while ago, I saw a risotto dish mentioned in an online menu of a restaurant, Risotto with scallops and chorizo. As I like to do, I wanted to try my own take on this. So I ended up with a creamy risotto, with a subtle and bright lemon flavour, spicy chorizo sausage and the nutty flavour of scallops, combined into a delicious dish.It certainly was a wonderful way, to end my Saturday. 

I hope you will enjoy this as much as I did. This recipe already contains the few changes I wanted to include the next time I will cook this dish.

(3 servings)

Ingredients

250g / 1 1/4 cup of Arborio or Carnaroli rice
1 medium sized onion, finely minced
1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
150 ml / 1/2 cups of dry white wine
40g / 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
50g / 1/2 cup of freshly grated parmesan
1 bunch of flat leaf parsley, washed and dried
2 Bay leaves
200g / 7 ounces Spanish chorizo, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 organic lemon
fresh ground black pepper
1-1,5 l / 4 - 6 cups of simmering vegetable stock (or chicken)
4 scallops per person, fresh or frozen. If frozen let gently thaw in the fridge. Rinse off well and dry carefully.

Mise en Place

- peel the onion, mince it finely
- peel the clove of garlic, mince it finely
- in a medium saucepan bring the stock to a boil and reduce it to a
  simmer, covered
- wash and gently dry the parsley, pull of the leaves and chop, set
   aside
- grate the parmesan, set aside
- wash the lemon with very hot water, dry and using a micro plane,
  zest the entire lemon
- wash the scallops

Preparation

In a large pot, heat the oil over moderately low heat. Add the diced chorizo and cook evenly for about two minutes per side, remove from the pot and set aside.

Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes.

Add the rice and stir continuously until the rice is well coated with oil, stir for one to two minutes, add the wine and keep stirring until most of the wine has been absorbed.

Now add a large ladle of the simmering broth and let the risotto simmer gently, stirring often until it has been absorbed. Now add the lemon zest and the bay leaves and keep adding broth and stirring. This should take about 20 minutes, but you can and should simply taste the rice to find your perfect doneness. it is supposed to be soft on the outside and still have some bite in the middle all the while already being creamy.It is okay if there is broth left over.

Once the rice is perfect, turn off the heat and add the parmesan and butter, stir thoroughly and remove it from the heat covered with the lid. Let the rice sit while you prepare the scallops.

Add about 1 tablespoon of olive oil to large pan and place over high heat. When the oil is hot, carefully place the scallops and make sure they do not touch. You may have to do this in more than one pan depending on the size. Sear until they form a golden crust which should be no more than 1 minute per side. Remove and place on a plate.

Now add most of the chorizo and parsley to the risotto, stir and season with fresh pepper and salt (this should not be required because of the broth, but always season to your taste).

Arrange on pre-heated plates or bowls, garnish with the remaining chorizo and parsley, and place the scallops on top. Serve with a dry, chilled white wine for example a Pinot pigio or a Sauvignon blanc.

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My perfect sauteed potatoes with poached eggs

Yes, I know. I have not been posting food posts in the last month I am feel really bad about that. I even realised, that I have not made a post about my Christmas dinner yet! What? It has only been half a year.. <_<

That said, to not utterly disappoint you all, here is something you can make without much effort, but that will hopefully revive an old classic; sauteed potatoes. This is my version, using fresh sage, parsley , garlic, breadcrumbs and poached eggs. The potatoes are crispy on the outside, fluffy on the inside, the herbs and garlic give a beautiful flavour and the roasted bread crumbs add even more crunch to it. The golden yolk of beautiful poached eggs tops this off with a smooth texture and gives you the perfect texture on your taste buds. 

Ingredients

1 serving

3-4 medium sized waxy potatoes, whole parboiled best the day before
handful of fresh sage leaves
handful of flat-leaf parsley
olive oil
2 gloves of garlic
2 table spoons of bread crumbs
fresh ground black pepper
salt
2 medium sized eggs, as fresh as possible and of course free-range 
a large frying pan, I prefer stainless steel instead of non-stick

Mise en Place

1. Put the potato, unpeeled, in a pan of well-salted cold water and bring to the boil. Simmer for about 15 minutes (depending on size) until just tender. To test this, insert a small thin knife into the potato, it should slide in easily but you still should feel resistance. 

Drain well, and return to the hot pan to steam for a couple of minutes. Then peel the potatoes and leave them to cool off completely. To me, the potatoes are best when cooked the day before, but you of course simply make them right before, just let them cool down until you can handle them. 

Slice into thick slices, about 1 to 1,5 cm thick slices. You want enough surface area to have a noticeable difference between the soft inner and the crisp outer side of the potato. 

2. Heat olive oil in your frying pan to medium high temperature. You should use enough olive oil to cause anyone walking into your kitchen to ask "Isn't that a bit too much?" No, it is not, trust me on this. The potatoes will not be soggy and soaked with oil. 

3. Salt the potato slices on one side. 

4. Chop the parsley and the sage finely. 

5. Cut into the garlic gloves, you can leave the skin on if you want. 

Preparation

After the oil has reached the desired temperature. Gently place the potato slices with the salted side down into the oil. They should not overlap at all, use more than one pan if you have to. Now comes the important part, do not touch them. Do not flip them around. Leave them frying slowly to a perfect golden crisp for about 10-15 minutes, depending on your temperature. 

Now season the other side of the slices with salt, then gently turn the around and begin to saute the other side for about 10 minutes. If you want to, you can now remove a bit of the olive oil, but leave about 2-3 tablespoons in there. I simply spooned a bit on a piece of paper kitchen towel. 

Now turn off the heat and add the herbs, garlic and breadcrumbs between the slices. Season generously with black pepper and a bit of salt. Now you can toss it all around, making sure to cover it all nicely. 

Pull the pan of the heat and let it settle for a bit. 

Now, poach the egg. As there are a huge number of ways to do this, I steam mine for example, I will refer to the master, Alton Brown http://goo.gl/Xkfgxd 

Please note that you should practice poaching eggs, it is simple once you have the hang of it and one of the most delicious ways of preparing an egg. 

Arrange the potatoes on a pre-warmed plate, sprinkle with more fresh herbs and gently place the poached eggs on top. It is perfectly fine, if the potatoes are not hot any more. In fact, this is how I prefer them, no scalding of your tongue for example. 

Sit down, gently cut into the poached egg and watch the yolk slowly envelope the potatoes, adding its perfect texture to the crisp dish. 

There you go, simple potatoes, perfectly done. 

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Boar Stifado and Taters

If you only here for the pictures and still want to know what I have to say, I made a short recording of the text of the post. Maybe I will do that in the future as well, let us just say it is a trial.

https://audioboo.fm/boos/1789896-stifado

I am back, I took a hiatus from food posts for about half a year for various reasons. I will pick it up again starting this December. The frequency will of course depend on what else goes in my life but I missed it and I missed all of you, frolicking on my posts and joining in our shared passion for great food.

First of, I debated using the title "going greek" until I checked the Urban Dictionary, thank you Internet.

So, what is the dish of the day? It is a greek classic, Stifado, which is basically a very rustic onion stew with a large number of possible ingredients. Meat, poultry, seafood, game, or another vegetable as the central ingredient, with onions, wine or vinegar, tomato, and a selection of spices (often including cinnamon) creating a flavorful base. For this one I went with wild boar, lemon, cinnamon, bay, lots of onions, garlic and allspice. The smells alone will make your mouth water and make you want to dip your crispy slice of potato into the steamy, delicious, fragrant and thick stew to have all those flavours combined in your mouth.

Let's start, shall we?

Serves 4

Ingredients

Stifado
6 large onions
3 cloves of garlic
1 organic lemon
1 1/2 teaspoon of ground allspice
2 pieces of length of cinnamon stick
4 bay leaves
1 tablespoon of all purpose flour
1⁄2 l / 2 cups of  dry white wine (I chose a German pinot gris from the Rhineland)
1/4 l / 1 cup of water
400 g / .90 lbs of full flavoured tomatoes
1 kg / 2lb / 3.25 oz of boar cut into cubes
5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

700 g / 1.5lb of potatoes
a few dashes of lemon juice

a Doufeu or a Dutch Oven (suitable for your stove)

Mise en Place

Dry the meat off carefully. Peel the onions and garlic, chop the onions and finely dice the garlic. Wash the lemon with hot water, dry if off. Then remove the zest of the the lemon, cut it in half and juice it, set aside. Wash the tomatoes and chop them.

(50 minutes before the Stifado is done)

Potatoes
Pre-heat the oven to about 200C / 390F.Peel and wash the potatoes, cut into thick slices. Drizzle with 3 tablespoons of olive oil and a few dashes of lemon juice and season with about 1/2 teaspoon of salt, mix well to cover the potatoes all over.

Lay them close to each other on a piece of baking paper on a baking tray and bake for about 30 minutes. Season with fresh pepper when they are done.

Preparation

Heat about 3 tablespoons of olive oil in the Dutch Oven, brown the meat in 3 portions, making sure not to cook it. Keep it in a separate bowl and season with salt and black pepper.

Add the onions, garlic and lemon zest and cook for about 5 minutes, then add the meat and the tomatoes. Season again with salt, pepper, the allspice and add the cinnamon and bay leaves.

Dust it all lightly with the flour and sweat it shortly. Deglaze with the white wine and water, bring to a boil and let it simmer covered at medium heat for about two hours. 50 minutes before it is done, prepare the taters.

Season the Stifado to taste with pepper, salt, allspice and lemon juice.

Arrange with the taters on pre-heated plates and serve with a full bodied red wine, I chose a 2010 Les Granges des Domaines Edmond de Rothschild, not perfect but it did go very well with the flavours in this dish.

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Arroz en Paella

A long time ago, +Annie Yim  asked me to make a Paella. Now that I have finally bought a proper paella pan, here you go, my take on paella.

 The things that distinguish a paella and make it unique, is the mix use of the right rice (Bomba), saffron and the use of the right pan, with the aim to create a not mushy, slightly dry yet delicious rice flavoured with the other ingredients and at the bottom, the  socarrat; a beautifully caramelized layer of rice that is not burned but golden and delicious.

Feel free to change whatever you want, use chickpeas, other vegetables, only seafood or poultry. I opted for a mix because I still had some wonderful frozen tiger prawns and  mussel meat. The result was flavourful, but not overpoweringly so, savoury and fresh. A true treat. Mind that the main part of the dish is the rice and not the other ingredients. 

Serves 3-4

Ingredients

extra virgin olive oil
4 chicken
drumsticks
6 tiger prawns, without head and cleaned, back split
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
100 ml / 0.5 cups dry sherry
1 large red chili, seeds removed, diced
200 g / 7 oz chorizo sausage sliced
2 cloves garlic, diced
1 large red onion
salt and black pepper
1 red capsicum - roasted
1 red capsicum raw
250 g / 9 oz  bomba rice
1 l / 4 cups low salt chicken stock
1 cup / 120g of mussel meat
handful of frozen peas
handful flat leaf parsley
lemons, cut into wedges
a few threads of saffron

Mise en Place

Wash all ingredients, dry off carefully. Peel the onions and garlic, dice finely.
Wash the chili, remove all seeds and dice finely.
Wash and dry off the parsley. Peel the chorizo and cut into slices.
defrost the prawns (if frozen), dry off carefully. Heat the chicken stock, with about half of the saffron threads inside to have it impart flavour and colour to the stock.

Preparation

Make sure to use a burner that will heat the entire pan, not just parts. Heat some olive oil and saute the chicken parts until nicely browned. If you are using whole drumsticks, cook them for about 20 minutes. Then add the prawns, season with salt and cook for about 2 minutes from each side. Deglaze with sherry, let that reduce for about 1 minute and remove from the heat. Pour the remaining liquid into the paella pan if you used a second pan for the meat and prawns. 

Add some oil, bring to medium heat heat and add the onions, chili,  garlic and half the smoked paprika. Saute gently for about 5 minutes while stirring.  Then add the capsicum and the rice. Cook while stirring for about 3 minutes. Then add the hot stock, the remaining smoked paprika and saffron threads, combine well. Place the chicken, prawns and pre-cooked mussel meat on top and let it all simmer uncovered for about 20 minutes without stirring. 

When the rice still has bit of bite, but is not mushy, the liquid should be all but gone. Remove from the heat, cover with a lid and let it sit for about 5 minutes. 

Chop the parsley and mix it under. Cut the lemon into wedges and serve hot with lemon wedge. 

Bon Appétit

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Coffee Kahlua Brownie Ice Cream

There is one definitive book for ice cream recipes for me, it is David Lebovitz‘s The Perfect Scoop. I craved coffee ice cream and I have made it before, using candied bacon and maple syrup. This time, I went for David's recipe and while similar to my precious recipe, there are some differences. I like this one quite a bit, however, it does use an amazing number of pots and containers. Now, how do I change this one up to make it a bit more interesting.? Luckily, a friend was just making brownies. Well then, that certainly sounds like a good idea. Why not combine them? Here you go, coffee and brownie ice cream with a dash of Kahlua. Please note that I did change some ingredients and used less sugar.

About 0.5 litres or one US quart

Ingredients

375 ml / 1 1/2 cups whole milk 100g / 1/2 cup caster sugar
125 g / 1 1/2 cups whole coffee beans
Pinch of salt
375 ml / 1 1/2 cups heavy cream 5 large egg yolks
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon instant espresso powder (If you like it a bit stronger)
1 to two pieces of brownies cut into 1 inch cubes
A generous dash of Kahlua

Mise en Place

Gently heat the milk, add the sugar, whole coffee beans, salt, and 1/2 cup / 120 ml of the cream in a medium pot until it is warm, but not cooking. Cover, remove from the heat and let steep for 1 hour.

Take a medium sized metal bowl that will transfer heat and cold well, pour in the remaining cream and place it within a second bowl filled with ice or cooling packs to cool the bowl and the cream down. Set a mesh strainer on top, set aside.

After 1 hour, gently heat the milk and coffee mix until again hot, do not let come to a boil.

In yet another bowl, whisk the egg yolks. Slowly pour the warm milk and coffee mix into the egg yolks while whisking continuously. This will heat the yolks gently but not cook them, you do not want scrambled eggs. Pour all of it back into the pot.

Keep stirring the mix using a spatula and scrape over the bottom of the pot. After about 10+ minutes, you will notice, that the mix begins to thicken. If you can pull out the spatula and scrape over it with a finger, without the custard running into the scraped off part. The custard is ready. Do not forget to stir when testing! Add the instant espresso powder.

Pour the custard into the strainer, and keep on scraping over the beans in the strainer, until all ended up nicely in the chilled cream. Throw away the beans and now add the vanilla extract and keep stirring over ice until is it is cool. Place the mix in the fridge and let it settle and cool for at least one hour,even better overnight.

Then you can proceed to process it in your ice cream maker of choice.

When almost done, remove from the ice cream maker, pour a layer into a container and gently fold in the brownie cubes, add the the rest of the ice cream and place it in your freezer for at least two hours.

Bon Appétit

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Jalapeño Cheese Bread with Bacon and Maple-Chipotle-Butter

Who doesn't love cheese and Jalapeños ? This is pure comfort food, simple, easy and the combination of hot Jalapeños combined with smoky bacon and wonderfully gooey cheese topped with a small dash of sweet-smoky cold butter, will blow your mind and tickle your tastebuds.

This is a different take on the bread I made last year, foregoing the mediterranean flavours. Again, this can be easily adapted to your preferences, even as a vegetarian dish by leaving out the bacon. I had a similar butter in a restaurant I was a while ago but they did not tell me exactly what was in their version. So I made my own. 

Ingredients:

Bread
500 g white bread flour (type 550)
300 ml / 1.5 cups lukewarm water
1,5 packages of instant dry yeast
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon sea salt
150 g / 1 cup of grated cheddar or any other sharp cheese with a high fat content
Bacon cubes (about two tablespoons)
1-2 large Jalapeños diced

Butter
1 Stick / 100g of soft butter
1 teaspoon of Chipotle Powder
3 tablespoons of maple syrup

Mise en Place

Phase 1

Use a large mixing bowl (large enough to contain a risen wad of dough) or a clean kitchen counter.

Sift the flour into the bowl, make a well in the middle, pour half of the water on and add salt and sugar to the water, add all of the instant dry yeast and gently stir with a fork to add more flour to the mixture in the middle by slowly scraping the flour from the sides into the mixture . Once all of the flour and the rest of the water, have been combined into a dough, dust your hands with flour and start kneading for about 10 minutes, fold the dough, knead until dough is smooth and elastic.

Dust with flour, place in a bowl, cover with Saran wrap and in a warm and draft free place, wait for about 1 hour until the dough has at least doubled its volume.

Phase two

Gently remove the Saran wrap, dust the kitchen counter heavily with flour and take the risen wad of dough out of the bowl and punch it down several times, fold it again and again. Roll out the dough until you've created a rectangle roughly 9 inches / 25 cm wide and about 1 cm / 0.4 inches thick.

Sprinkle half of the Jalapeños on your counter, place the dough on top and then add the remaining Jalapeños, the bacon and the cheese on top of the rectangle. Smoothen out and roll up vom the short side, pinch the ends and fold under. Place it on a baking tray and cover with a clean kitchen towel or in a bread baking form of your liking. Let rise again for another hour.

During the rise of the bread, take the soft butter, mix in the spice and maple syrup and using a kitchen machine, mix thoroughly. Season with salt to taste if you want (I skipped this), spread the soft butter into a container of your choice and refrigerate.

Preparation

About 15 minutes before the second rise is completed, preheat the oven to 180 C / 365 F.

Line the tray with baking paper and place the bread on top. Baste the top of the bread lightly with a neutral oil. Bake the bread for about 20 minutes, then cover the bread with aluminum foil (It should be nicely golden now), and bake for another 20-30 minutes depending on your oven. Remove from the oven and let it cool for a short while on a cooling rack. Cut into thick slices carefully and enjoy this delicious moist bread with a beer of your choice.

Bon Appétit

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Moroccan Chicken on red Couscous with Pomegranate and Cilantro

I bought organic chicken breast yesterday and also a bunch of beautiful pomegranates. So here you go, a culinary trip to North Africa, sort of. This is extremely simple and quick to cook since you can prepare most in advance and just need to cook it when the time is right. Join me in tasting the delightful combination of tender chicken seasoned with Moroccan spices, earthy and fruity notes, combined with slight tartness of pomegranates and the fresh and citrus like cilantro.

Serves 2-3

Ingredients

Chicken

2 organic chicken breasts
1 1/2 teaspoons of Ras el Hanout
1 teaspoon of salt
fresh black pepper
1 tablespoon of honey
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons of soy sauce

Beet-apple couscous

250 g / 8,5.oz of pre-cooked couscous
250 ml / 1 C of stock of your choice (or used water salted with about 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt and 1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 Pomegranate
2 - 3 flakes of butter
1/2 bunch of cilantro
1 large beet,  cooked and cubed
1 sweet apple, peeled and cubed
Apple juice

Mise en Place

At least two hours before cooking (I did this in the morning)

Cut the chicken against the grain into inch sized cubes, set aside. In a bowl, mix the Ras el hanout, salt, honey, olive oil and soy sauce until well mixed. Add the chicken and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least two hours, longer is better.

Right before cooking

Peel the apple and the beet, cut into cubes. Add into a container and using an emulsion blender, while adding a bit of apple juice, blend well. It can be thick and should not be too liquid.

Wash and chop the coriander. Remove the seeds from the pomegranate, set aside. Keep the juice.

Preparation

Heat a frying pan with a bit of neutral oil to medium-high heat. Add the chicken, do not overcrowd the pan. Fry gently until the chicken changes colour (about 2 minutes per side) remove from the pan and let it rest. Cook the rest and set it aside.

In the meantime, bring the water / stock, mixed with the beet/apples to a boil. Remove from the heat, slowly add the couscous, stir. Cover and let sit for about 2 minutes. Add the butter, stir again. Put it on low heat for about 3 minutes to let if finish., keep stirring using a fork Add the pomegranate seeds and leftover parsley. Cover and set aside.

Mix in the cilantro, arrange on a pre-heated place and add the chicken on top. Season with fresh pepper and some more coriander.

Bon Appétit

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30 May 2013
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Gruyere Gratinated Mushroom and Ham pane filone a la Betragne

Tonight called for a quick dish, something fresh, savoury and delicious. I had some mushrooms left, onions and lean bacon. After a quick shopping trip, this is what I came up with. Enjoy the slight tartness of lemon marinated mushrooms, combined with the savoury yet smooth taste of the Gruyere and topped with the rich taste of creme fraiche with ham and garlic. 

Serves 1-2

Ingredients

1 pane filone (you can use a French baguette but I find these are too narrow)
4-5 large swiss brown mushrooms, cut into slices
2-3 tablespoons of lean smoked ham / bacon, finely cubed
1/2 medium sized onion, finely minced
5 tablespoons of creme fraiche, seasoned with salt and pepper and mixed with herbs
3-4 slices of savoury cheese, Gruyere 
1 medium sized lemon, juiced
1-2 medium cloves of garlic, finely minced
1 handful of fresh, flat leaf parsley 

Mise en Place

Clean and cut the mushroom, put into a medium sized bowl.
Peel and finely dice the onion and the garlic and add to the mushroom.
Wash and chop the parsley, add to the onion and garlic.
Juice the lemon, add juice to the bowl, season with salt and pepper and stir, making sure the ingredients are well covered with lemon juice.
Pre-heat oven to 180 C / 350 C. 
Let the mix marinade for about 15 minutes. 

Preparation

Halve the bread horizontally, spread the creme fraiche on top, season again with salt and pepper to taste. 

Spread the ham / bacon on top, add the mushroom mix on top and cover with the Gruyere

Cook in the oven for about 20 minutes; the cheese will be bubbly and a wonderful smell of cooked garlic and onions will fill your kitchen. Remove from the oven, let cool for a short while and serve while warm with a nice glass of dry white wine of your choice. 

Bon Appétit

Would you like to be notified about food posts? Let me know in the comments. If you would like to see my other recipes, check out the about part of my profile:http://goo.gl/bzgOa

Search for  *DReulWorthyRecipes* and you'll get all my recipes in a stream, including pictures.

#foodporn   
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24 May 2013
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