Poultry

Запечённая курица с картофелем, луком и паприкой (Braised Chicken With Potatoes, Peppers And Onions)

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Запечённая курица с картофелем, луком и паприкой (Braised Chicken With Potatoes, Peppers And Onions)

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A few days ago I invited my cleaning lady to join me for lunch, since I just finished preparing lunch and had plenty to spare. When she saw the casserole, she happily proclaimed that this dish looked exactly like her families favorite chicken dish, which she remembers fondly from her childhood when her mother prepared it back at her country of origin, the former Soviet Union.
I then remembered that I had the same dish a few times during the 70´s when I visited the Soviet Union often, namely the cities of Leningrad (Saint Petersburg), Yalta, Odessa, Moscow and a few others. During that time, there were many  “speakeasy”, restaurants, which were actually not official businesses, but clandestine operations were one would ring a bell at what looked like a regular residence, somebody opened the door just a crack and you asked if there was food available. The door person/proprietor then told you what was available that evening.
Mostly, the menu consisted of either poultry or fish, since that was usually the only protein available for ordinary folks (sometimes !!! available I should say).
Furthermore, there was lots of root vegetables and other produce, eggs, sturdy fruits, and other fresh products that can be produced on farms and/or small back yards. Usually, the door person/proprietor just said “Poultry” or “Fish”, since only one of these proteins featured on any given day.
And, as mentioned earlier, chicken or fish prepared like the dish featured on this page today showed up a few times over the years – protein, veggies and potatoes, slowly braised in a casserole until tender and all the flavors had combined into a simple but heavenly dish.
The drinks of choice were always Vodka and /or Krim Sekt, drunk from heavy, tall glasses. The vodka was ordered by the ounce, for about $ 1 per ounce, the Sekt (sparkling wine) by the bottle, for about $ 2.50 per bottle. We usually sold one pair of used blue jeans for $100.00 on the black market (very dangerous at the time), so money was no object during our stay´s. (The other bargain was one pair of jeans for a 250 gr can of the best quality Russian caviar (or $ 35.00 cash), whatever was more easy)
Dealing on the Black Market was very dangerous, so sometimes we went the easier way and jut traded one-way by buying on the Black Market with $.
Anyway, here it goes,  “Запечённая курица с картофелем, луком и паприкой”  (Braised Chicken With Potatoes, Peppers And Onions)
(The Russian name for the dish was provided by Anna, so I assume its the correct spelling 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Chicken  on  ChefsOpinion
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Запечённая курица с картофелем, луком и паприкой (Braised Chicken With Potatoes, Peppers And Onions)

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Запечённая курица с картофелем, луком и паприкой (Braised Chicken With Potatoes, Peppers And Onions)

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Запечённая курица с картофелем, луком и паприкой (Braised Chicken With Potatoes, Peppers And Onions)

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Запечённая курица с картофелем, луком и паприкой (Braised Chicken With Potatoes, Peppers And Onions)

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Запечённая курица с картофелем, луком и паприкой (Braised Chicken With Potatoes, Peppers And Onions)

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Запечённая курица с картофелем, луком и паприкой (Braised Chicken With Potatoes, Peppers And Onions)

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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Ginger And Soy Braised Cornish Hens With Spicy Cucumber Pickles

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Going  shopping at the grocery store involves ever bigger monetary transactions 😦 .
I used to enjoy shopping for food, usually buying way too much food and therefore giving away much of it in order to avoid waste.
Well, those times are nothing but happy memories. Whereas spending $200 a week was usually plenty enough to buy enough perishables, groceries and general household supplies for our family of 3 humans and 3 dogs just a few short years ago, the same amount now hardly covers the basic needs just for myself and Bella.
(Hearing the politicians in power tell the story, America is doing better all the time ???? – I wonder who really still believes this crap ?! )
Real income for the masses has actually decreased during the past decade, while cost of living has increased at an alarming rate, and a large part of the population can’t afford the basics anymore, such as good nutrition, healthcare, proper clothing, proper housing, transport etc. MANY people have to make a choice which essentials they will enjoy and which one’s to forgo, because a combination all of them together is out of their reach.
And now for the good news:
Cornish Hens are still one of the most affordable proteins, at around $ 4.00 a pop in most big city supermarkets 🙂  Even secondary cuts of other proteins usually cost at least the same or more. In this context it is great that most folks are not so familiar with cornish hens, which results in less demand and therefore keeps the price at an affordable level.
So, there you have it: A great quality protein at an affordable price 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Cornish Hen  on  ChefsOpinion
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Ginger And Soy Braised Cornish Hens With Cucumber Pickles

Ginger And Soy Braised Cornish Hens With Spicy Cucumber Pickles

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Ginger And Soy Braised Cornish Hens With Cucumber Pickles

Ginger And Soy Braised Cornish Hens With Spicy Cucumber Pickles

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Shrimp Lo Mein ( 撈麵 )

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Of  all the Chinese, Asian and Chinese/Asian-inspired dishes I prepare at home, the fast and easy to prepare Lo Mein is the one I cook most often. I usually vary the main ingredients according to what’s in my fridge and/or cupboard, but the basis are always Chinese wheat noodles, seasoned with oyster sauce, soy sauce, lemon juice, grated ginger, garlic paste and chili paste. Sometimes I augment the seasoning with hoi sin sauce. As for the other main ingredients, I use vegetables, pork, beef, seafood, poultry or mushrooms, sometimes just one of them, sometimes more than one and sometimes all of them together. In all the years I prepared this dish, I never had one I did not love and I never get tired of it, no matter how often it flies in through my kitchen window 🙂
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

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Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

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Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Hoisin Grilled Chicken Leg’s

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Many  a cook tries desperately and forever to find a great seasoning for a simple grilled chicken when the answer to the search is so simple:
Lime juice, sea salt, soy sauce, sriracha, granulated garlic and hoisin sauce. It really does not get much better and easier than that. If you’ve never tried it, go ahead and do and you will have arrived 🙂

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !

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hoi sin grilled chicken leg's with simple salad in white balsamic vinaigrette

hoisin grilled chicken leg’s with simple salad in white balsamic vinaigrette

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grilling chicken

grilling chicken

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hoi sin grilled chicken leg's

hoisin grilled chicken leg’s

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hoi sin grilled chicken leg's

hoisin grilled chicken leg’s

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simple salad in white balsamic vinaigrette

simple salad in white balsamic vinaigrette

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(You don’t have to watch it, just click once)   Thank you 🙂
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Duck & Glass Vermicelli Soup – Leftover’s Made Into A Feast

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Whenever  I steam meats, seafood or vegetables, I never discard the broth but transform it into a delicious soup or sauce.
When I steamed a duck for “Crispy Fried Duck With Dirty Rice Sticks” a few weeks back, I strained the stock and saved the trimmings from the duck to use for this great soup on the following day.
Below is the result:
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Duck & Glass Vermicelli Soup

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simmer seasoned duck stock with whole chilies for 15 minutes. Add sesame oil. Check/adjust seasoning. Cover glass vermicelli in boiling ware, let steep for 10 minutes, strain

simmer seasoned duck stock with whole chilies for 15 minutes. Add sesame oil. Check/adjust seasoning. Cover glass vermicelli in boiling water, let steep for 10 minutes, strain

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add chopped cabbage, simmer for two minutes

add chopped cabbage, simmer for two minutes

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add vermicelli, diced leftover duck, cilantro and diced red peppers to soup. Bring back to a simmer, remove from heat at once. To serve, sprinkle with more cilantro

add vermicelli, diced leftover duck, cilantro and diced red peppers to soup. Bring back to a simmer, remove from heat at once. To serve, sprinkle with more cilantro

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Duck & Glass Vermicelli Soup

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Duck & Glass Vermicelli Soup

Duck & Glass Vermicelli Soup

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(You don’t have to watch it, just click once)   Thank you 🙂
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Chicken Noodle Soup & Egg

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This  is a remnant from a time when a chicken noodle soup was a remedy for just about anything – a bit of a cold, a bit of a sad day, a bit of exhaustion, not much Mom couldn’t fix with a bowl of chicken noodle soup with egg 🙂
To this day, it is still a dish which, in most of it’s infinite incarnations, will make me feel better, richer, healthier and just all around more alive. Here is one of my many different variations, this one with bone-in chicken, buccatini rice noodles, peppers, shiitake mushrooms, soft boiled eggs and lots of chopped cilantro, all swimming in a freshly made, extra strong chicken soup.

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Chicken Noodle Soup & Egg

Chicken Noodle Soup & Egg

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rice buccatini

rice buccatini underneath all the other goodies

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Chicken Noodle Soup & Egg

Chicken Noodle Soup & Egg

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Chicken Noodle Soup & Egg

Chicken Noodle Soup & Egg

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Chicken Noodle Soup & Egg

Chicken Noodle Soup & Egg

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(You don’t have to watch it, just click once)   Thank you 🙂
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There Is A Monster On My Plate !!!

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My  friend Peter was supposed to be here at 4.00pm for a late end of week lunch.
He had “ordered” (nicely requested) chicken cordon bleu and I was happy to oblige.
As soon as I got home, I took care of Bella, took a shower and started with my food prep.
Ten minutes later Peter cancelled. Rather than being upset about the late cancelation,
I welcomed the chance to make a real monster of a cordon bleu out of the ingredients I had prepared for two regular portions. Of course, I omitted the side dishes (fries and salad) after I had a good look of the size of this baby.  Bella and I finished the whole thing and we were happy for it. Seems to me after all these year’s I finally figured out the proper size of a cordon bleu 🙂

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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Serve with Lime Or Lemon Wedges

Chicken Cordon Bleu

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Arroz Con Pollo

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Arroz con Pollo
In my opinion this is one of the most widly and often prepared dishes in the whole world.
“Hans, have you gone nuts?”, you probably think when you read this statement.
But what I am talking about is the actual Concoction, not the dish named “Arroz con Pollo”.
“Arroz con Pollo” simply translates into “Rice with Chicken”. Now, it is my firm believe that anywhere in the world where you have rice, and where you also have chicken, sooner or later folks threw the two, plus another bunch of stuff, together and made it a one dish meal, calling it “Rice and Chicken” or, surprise surprise, “Chicken and Rice”.

I would like to ask my readers to please give us the name of your country’s or region’s dish containing chicken and rice and other stuff   🙂
Also, any other dish containing these ingredients, be it from your own country or region or any other you might be aware of. Descriptions or pictures even more welcome.
I am looking forward to your input in the comment section. Thank’s.
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Arroz Con Pollo

Arroz Con Pollo

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Ingredient’s :

Chicken,   preferably dark meat
Rice,   rinsed repeatedly to get rid of all excess starch
Chorizo,   sliced
Peppers,   diced
Chilis,   diced, use your preferred heat level
Onions,   diced
Garlic,   paste
Saffran,   or substitute with turmeric (I used both for a brighter color and taste)
Oregano,   freeze dried or fresh
White wine,   substitute with beer if preferred
Chicken stock,    substitute with vegetable stock if preferred
Kosher salt,
Cayenne pepper,
Olive oil,   to saute

Method :

Saute chicken until golden, add onions and chorizo, saute until onions are translucent. Add garlic, peppers and chilis and saute until garlic is fragrant. Remove chicken, set aside. Remove 1/4 of the vegetables to use as brightly colored garnish. Add rice and saute until each corn of rice is covered with olive oil. Add wine (or beer, or both) and stock, season with salt and pepper. Return chicken, bake at 385F in center of oven until moisture has been absorbed by rice and rice is done. Sprinkle with reserved vegetables and chopped cilantro.
My meal yesterday had also a nice glass of chilled chardonnay (same as which went into the dish) and what I call “avocado cream” . (mashed avocado, seasoned with lime juice, cayenne pepper, kosher salt, roasted garlic paste and cilantro). Not quite guacamole, but even less prep and equally good  🙂
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Note : Some folks like their arroz con pollo very moist, others less so. If you like it more moist, simply add more liquid while cooking until the rice is done, giving you more of the texture of an “Asopao”.
Note : Some folks like their arroz con pollo more “heavy “, some like it more “light and fluffy”. This will depend on the amount of fat used in the dish.
I usually like my arroz con pollo dry but heavy, so I use less liquid and a bit more fat 🙂
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ASOPAO

“Asopao”
Image Source : http://www.cynical-c.com

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 Buen Provecho !   Life is Good !

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Chicken / Noodle Soup

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Tonight  we have lousy weather here in Miami, rainy, cold, windy. What better way to feel cozy and warm at home than to enjoy a good, rich, flavorful  chicken noodle soup ! Chicken legs, gizzards, cabbage, bok choy, ginger, garlic, jalapenos, peppers, onions, carrots, celery, maggi and chinese  egg noodles. Afterwards a good glass of merlot and early to bed – Bliss !
Tomorrow will be a good day  🙂
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” Chicken / Noodle Soup “

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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !

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Poached Chicken, Arugula, Strawberry & Pomegranate

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This  dish was a bit unusual for me to prepare for myself, (fru fru ?  🙂  , but I had this craving for poached  chicken  with a twist. I really enjoyed the combination of chicken with: spicy  (chili oil, green peppercorn), sweet  (strawberries, pomegranate), slightly bitter ( arugula) and acidic  (lime juice). All in all, a successful dish which I will surely prepare again  🙂
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Poach the chicken in seasoned water until just done, still very juicy but cooked through.   ( Remove from simmering liquid at 162F. Cover loosely and let chicken rest  for 10 minutes. The carry-over heat will take it to a safe 165F without giving it a chance to dry out ).  Drizzle with chili oil mixed with a bit of soy sauce and lime and sprinkle with sauteed green peppercorn. Serve with salad and fruit of your choice .

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !

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