kosher salt

Hans’ Pork Goulash With Peppers & Pasta Pearls

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Hans’ Pork Goulash With Peppers & Pasta Pearls

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Goulash is my favorite meat stew, no matter which protein is used – beef, veal, pork, poultry or game. The texture, color, and flavor have great appeal to me.
While there are of course different ways of preparing goulash, as well as different recipes, the main mark of a good goulash is to use the same amount of onions as protein, a great amount of sweet paprika powder for color and texture (sometimes hot paprika is added), as well as a special season mix of 1/3 thyme, 1/3 caraway seeds, and 1/3  lemon peel (yellow part only), all finely chopped and added to the meat while sauteing, to impart a rich, un-mistaking goulash-flavor. Of course, salt and pepper is a must.
Naturally, as with most dishes that have been around that long, there are dozens of variations,- you can add (or not) garlic, rosemary, bell peppers, potatoes, marjoram, red wine, bell peppers (zigeuner goulash) and even sauerkraut (Szegediner goulash). Also very popular is goulashsuppe (goulash soup). The big difference between preparing goulash and a regular stew is that for goulash, the onions are sautéed first until broken down and lightly colored, THEN the meat is added, and sautéed until all liquid has evaporated.
Because of the collagen in the meat, as well as the large amount of onions and ground paprika, no flour is needed to thicken the sauce.
Best enjoyed with pasta, goulash can also be served with rice, bread dumplings or potato dumplings, mashed potatoes, croquette potatoes, roast potatoes or just plain rustic bread.
Myself, I enjoy any type and version of goulash, paired with any good side dish that’s available 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here to read all about “Original Hungarian Goulash”,
as well as its History and Evolution through the Centuries.

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Click here for  Hungarian Beef Goulash  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for   Goulash Soup  on  ChefsOpinion
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Hans’ Pork Goulash With Peppers & Pasta Pearls

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Hans’ Pork Goulash With Peppers & Pasta Pearls

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Hans’ Pork Goulash With Peppers & Pasta Pearls

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Hans’ Pork Goulash With Peppers & Pasta Pearls

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Preparation :
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Chicken Tandoori/Naan Sandwich

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Chicken Tandoori/Naan Sandwich

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This tandoori chicken sandwich needed no simple or fancy condiment to elevate it. The chicken was very juicy, very tender and VERY tasty. Usually, I would serve this with raita, sliced onions, sliced tomato, sliced cucumber, a few spritz of fresh lime, plain yogurt, finely sliced cabbage slaw, or any other addition to moisten the sandwich, elevate the texture or the flavor. But on this sandwich, that would have been a wasted effort, since it was perfect, in every aspect, the way it was.
(If I would serve this in a restaurant, I would of course “improve” the presentation to make it seem fancier and justify a higher selling price, but since this was at “Chez Bella” (our home), I did not deem this a requirement. 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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P.S.
I prefer to cook the chicken bone-in and tear the meat from the bones at the table. For a less messy way, you can, of course, use boneless thighs and knife and fork 😦
P.P.S.
Because I am a huge Stones fan, for obvious reasons I almost called this sandwich “Sticky Fingers”, but then something (good sense?) advised me against it.  🙂
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Garam Masala Recipe:
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You will need :
Coriander seeds, black cardamom pods, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, bay leaves, peppercorn, a small amount of cinnamon bark. Dry roast in a pan on low heat until fragrant, about one minute. Put in spice blender until powder-fine. Remove to a jar, cover airtight.
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Click here for  Naan Recipe  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for more  Tandoori  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for more  Sandwich  on  ChefsOpinion
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Chicken Tandoori/Naan Sandwich

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Chicken Tandoori/Naan Sandwich

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Chicken Tandoori/Naan Sandwich

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Preparation :
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Torta De Milanesa De Res – A Dainty Little Sandwich ( NOT ! )

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Torta De Milanesa De Res – A Dainty Sandwich ( NOT ! )

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And  here we go – another beautiful, tasty example of what a sandwich can be if you love food and take it serious 🙂
(If you wonder about the name “Torta”, click the link below to learn all there is to know about this great Mexican sandwich 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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P.S.
Because I used a double layer of beef, I did not use standard breading (flour, egg, and breadcrumbs) for the beef, instead, I just dipped the beef slices in a mixture of 50/50 flour and panko. However, if you use a single layer of beef, I suggest you employ the traditional breading method.
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Click here to read all about  Mexican Torta  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here to see more  Original Sandwiches  on  ChefsOpinion
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Torta De Milanesa De Res – A Dainty Sandwich ( NOT ! )

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Torta De Milanesa De Res – A Dainty Sandwich ( NOT ! )

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Torta De Milanesa De Res – A Dainty Sandwich ( NOT ! )

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avocado, radish, and cucumber salad

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Preparation :
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Cantonese Soy Sauce Chicken ( See Yao Gai ) ( 酱油鸡 )

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Cantonese Soy Sauce Chicken ( See Yao Gai ) ( 酱油鸡 )

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If roast chicken is your favorite chicken dish, it’s probably because you never had the opportunity to taste this marvel of Chinese cuisine. Even if you did taste it, you most likely thought that this is way too complicated and difficult to prepare at home.
Well, here comes ChefsOpinion to the rescue 🙂
I am happy to give you all the info you’ll need to prepare this wonderful, actually simple to prepare, flavor-bomb at home.
Once you see the easy step by step instructions and how few ingredients are required, you will surely ask yourself why you’ve never tried your hands at this before. Enjoy ! 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Chicken  on  ChefsOpinion
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Cantonese Soy Sauce Chicken ( See Yao Gai ) ( 酱油鸡 )

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Cantonese Soy Sauce Chicken ( See Yao Gai ) ( 酱油鸡 )

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Cantonese Soy Sauce Chicken ( See Yao Gai ) ( 酱油鸡 )

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Cantonese Soy Sauce Chicken ( See Yao Gai ) ( 酱油鸡 )

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note the juiciness of the chicken breast ……..

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Preparation :
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Here is what I did the next day with the leftover chicken and sauce :
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Leftover Soy Chicken

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Sautéed Hake, Shrimp & Potato

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Sautéed Hake, Shrimp & Potato

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Comfort Food ! 🙂
We usually associate this moniker with hearty, deft, heavy home-cooking, and rightfully so, because that’s what’s comes to mind most often – long-simmering meat stews, vegetable-studded chicken soup, pasta with rich sauces, hearty sausages, crusty bread, long basted poultry, slowly roasted mountains of beef, pork, lamb, game, etc, etc.
This featured dish is much different, but in its final stage, it represents comfort food just as well as the aforementioned dishes. Although its main ingredients consist of delicate fish filet and juicy shrimp, the generous use of butter and the comforting method of sauteeing all to a golden crisp will make this without a doubt a worthy contender of comfort food at it’s finest 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Sautéed Hake, Shrimp & Potato

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Sautéed Hake, Shrimp & Potato

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Sautéed Hake, Shrimp & Potato

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Preparation :
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Snails And Gnocchi In White Wine, Pernod & Mustard Cream

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Snails And Gnocchi In White Wine, Pernod & Mustard Cream

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Snails and Gnocchi, what a wonderful combination.
Add Pernod Ricard, wine, and whole grain mustard, and you have a heavenly dish that is super easy to prepare, looks like a million and tastes like 2 million 🙂
I have created this dish decades ago, and have served it in many restaurants around the World since.
Good, simple food never get’s old 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Gnocchi Recipe:
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Ingredients:
1 lb Russet potatoes,   cooked, peeled, mashed
A/P flour,   sifted – as needed
2 Eggs,  whole, whisked
Kosher salt, to taste
Cayenne pepper, to taste
1 0z Butter
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Method:
Add eggs, seasoning and flour to potatoes, mix lightly until smooth.
Shape into gnocchi.
Make light indentations with a fork.
Cook a sample in simmering salted water. If too soft, add flour. If too dense, add egg.
Cook gnocchi in simmering water until gnocchi float. Remove with slotted spoon into a strainer. Saute in melted butter.
Serves four.
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Click here for more  Gnocchi  on  ChefsOpinion
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P.S.
If you are squirmish about snails, replace them with large scallops. This will give you a different, but equally wonderful dish 🙂
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Snails And Gnocchi In White Wine, Pernod & Mustard Cream

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Snails And Gnocchi In White Wine, Pernod & Mustard Cream

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Snails And Gnocchi In White Wine, Pernod & Mustard Cream

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
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Hoisin Chicken With Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta And Cherry Bomb Peppers

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Hoisin Chicken With Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta And Cherry Bomb Peppers

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First of all – calm down, don’t be scared, hold your horses, don’t panic !
Despite their vicious name, “cherry bomb peppers” (sometimes just called “cherry peppers”), are not very hot at all, registering at just 2500 to 5000 Scoville heat units (SHU). (Think jalapeno). They can be red, yellow or green and, depending on the pickling marinade, the original heat-level is sometimes brought down to a mild, tasteful flavor which adds a welcome light kick (the kick of a lady, not the kick of a mule) to some otherwise overly sweet and/or mild dishes, without burning your mouth to a crisp.
And of course, as I have mentioned many times, pls adjust the recipe according to the preference of the folks you serve your food to, so if you do not enjoy chilies, just omit them 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Chicken  on  ChefsOpinion
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Hoisin Chicken With Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta And Cherry Bomb Peppers

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Hoisin Chicken With Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta And Cherry Bomb Peppers

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Hoisin Chicken With Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta And Cherry Bomb Peppers

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Hoisin Chicken With Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta And Cherry Bomb Peppers

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Hoisin Chicken With Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta And Cherry Bomb Peppers

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
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Fried Camembert With Avocado Salad, Salsa Verde, And Crisp Romaine Leaves

Fried Camembert With Avocado Salad, Salsa Verde, And Crisp Romaine Leaves

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Seems like everybody loves fried camembert, yet few folks actually prepare it at home. Which is a mystery to me, since it is really quick and easy to prepare and it is versatile – it can be served as an appetizer, a main course or as a snack. Best of all, it is very economical. (After all, I am a poor retiree 😦  ).
In olden times, we used just one coat of simple breading. However, nowadays I like to use panko crumbs, which requires double breading. The texture is of course very different so you might want to experiment which one of the two versions you prefer. They are both great, it’s just a matter of personal preference.
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Salad  on  ChefsOpinion
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Fried Camembert With Avocado Salad, Salsa Verde, And Crisp Romaine Leaves

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Fried Camembert With Avocado Salad, Salsa Verde, And Crisp Romaine Leaves

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Fried Camembert With Avocado Salad, Salsa Verde, And Crisp Romaine Leaves

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Fried Camembert With Avocado Salad, Salsa Verde, And Crisp Romaine Leaves

 

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Fried Camembert With Avocado Salad, Salsa Verde, And Crisp Romaine Leaves

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Plasas & Foo Foo (West African Chicken, Spinach, Tomato and Peanut Stew With Cassava)

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Plasas & Foo Foo (West African Chicken, Spinach, Tomato and Peanut Stew With Cassava)

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There is not much one can say about Plasas – essentially, it is a simple chicken stew. On the other hand, it is without a doubt one of the most delicious chicken dishes anywhere.
Plasas will go well with any starch, but in my opinion, it goes especially well with this version of foo foo, which is my absolute favorite:
Pounded or riced cassava, cayenne, salt, garlic and a sinful amount of butter (no liquid added here)
This fat /calorie bomb is of course not the most healthy dish if consumed in large quantities or if consumed often, but once in a while, a moderate quantity of foo foo will surely make you strong and pretty ………… 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here to read all about  Foo Foo
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Click here to read all about  Plasas
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Click here to read all about the many names, cooking methods and recipes for Cassava, also called Yam, Maniok, TarulTapioka, Ube, Chupri Alu, and many others, ( but NOT the American kind called “Yam”, which is a sweet potato, unrelated to Cassava)
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Plasas & Foo Foo (West African Chicken, Spinach, Tomato and Peanut Stew With Cassava)

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Plasas & Foo Foo (West African Chicken, Spinach, Tomato and Peanut Stew With Cassava)

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Foo Foo

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Plasas & Foo Foo (West African Chicken, Spinach, Tomato and Peanut Stew With Cassava)

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Plasas & Foo Foo (West African Chicken, Spinach, Tomato and Peanut Stew With Cassava)

 

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
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Vol Au Vent Aux Blancs De Poulet

Vol Au Vent Aux Blancs De Poulet

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About a week ago I read in a “respected” magazine that one should NEVER eat Sauce Hollandaise or one of its derivatives in a restaurant because hollandaise is NEVER made fresh to order, but rather before the service and then kept warm during the whole service.
What a load of crap !!! 😦
Admittedly, some restaurants may do this, but many restaurants who have one or two dishes with hollandaise on the menu will not waste the ingredients if there is no order for a particular service. It takes a professional cook or chef maybe 1 or 2 minutes to produce 2 portions of fresh hollandaise, so to do it “a la minute” (to order) is no problem at all.
When I was an apprentice and later as a young cook, we ALWAYS made hollandaise a la minute during a la carte service.
– The moral of this? always double-check before you take a story/advise for granted. 🙂
– Also, hollandaise is one of the easiest and quickest sauces to prepare.
– Have I mentioned that Sauce Hollandaise is one of the French mother sauces?
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When I prepare a whole roasted whole chicken for Bella and myself, I usually eat both tights and all the scraps from the bones, including the neck, wings, and back, while Madam enjoys the two breasts (one per day). However, yesterday she kept begging for food while the chicken was still a while before being done, so I gave her a full portion of her own food (usually she gets only half that amount because she’ll eat some of my food later).
After I ate my usual part of the chicken, I removed all the skin and bones from the breasts, submerged it in salted water and kept it in the fridge until today, when I used it to prepare this Vol Au Vent Aux Blancs De Poulet.
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P.S.
Please note that both mushrooms and sauce hollandaise are optional in this classic dish.
P.P.S.
Nowadays, in most commercial venues, because of safety issues, hollandaise is made from powder or ready-made from a can, which eliminates the danger of eggs served at unsafe temperatures.
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Vol Au Vent Aux Blancs De Poulet

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Vol Au Vent Aux Blancs De Poulet

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Vol Au Vent Aux Blancs De Poulet

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Preparation :
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