By now you have probably realised that the different Asian countries have different styles of curries and the Japanese are no exception. The thing that sets Japanese curry apart from our Trinidadian curry, is that it is sweet. It is typically sweetened with honey or fruit. In my case, I used a fresh gala apple, which I pureed.
And yes, I know, the pic I took isn’t the best looking. In retrospect, I should have used a smaller piece of parsley to garnish, or maybe no parsley at all since there is none in the dish. A real chef would tell you that you never garnish with anything that is not a part of the dish, but since I am not a real chef, I don’t need to play by their rules. 😛 And speaking of rules, you typically serve this up with jasmine rice, but I served it up with some delicious Mexican rice and it was amazing.
- 2 Chicken Breasts – washed and cut in 2 inch cubes
- Canola oil
- 2 tablespoons Madras Curry (yes the one you have in your pantry)
- 1 teaspoon Garam Masala (optional)
- 1 medium onion finely diced
- ¼ cup white wine (optional)
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 clove garlic grated
- ½ cup green peas
- 1 small carrot cut into 1 inch rounds
- 1 apple peeled and pureed
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 can chicken stock
- 1 teaspoon finely sliced Chandon Beni/Culantro or Cilantro
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Season your chicken with a pinch of salt.
- Place a large skillet over high heat, add about a tablespoon of oil, allow it to heat up, then add the chicken and brown for about a minute.
- Turn off the stove and transfer the chicken to a plate.
- Once the pan has significantly cooled, add a tablespoon of oil it. (Do not wash the pan. Leave the chicken bits at the bottom as this will add some flavor to the dish.)
- Turn the heat on low and add some onions to the pan.
- Cook the onions for about two minutes and then add the wine.
- Cook for about 5 more minutes, until the onions are sweet and tender and most of the wine is cooked off.
- Add your garlic, curry and tomato paste. And cook for 2 minutes.
- Add your chicken, potatoes and carrots and cook for 2 minutes.
- Add your apple puree and cilantro and cook for 30 seconds.
- Add your stock.
- Turn up the heat bring to a boil, then turn the heat to low, cover your pot, and allow to simmer for 25 minutes.
- In in separate pot add your flour and butter, and whisk on low heat until you have a brown roux, similar to the colour of a Werther’s original candy. I don’t know what else to put here to explain lol.
- Add the roux mixture and the green peas to your curry. If it becomes too thick, add some water.
- Taste for seasons, cook for one more minute and turn off the heat.
- Go eat, you look hungry!
If you have been following my blog, you will know by now that if I have a chance to make something the easy way, I totally take it. This recipe is pretty easy and no fail. It serves about 4 people Now, I could have given you a pretty pic above, but realistically I was dusting corn flour all over the thing so it wouldn’t stick together, and I figured since I am just a makeshift chef I could probably get away with it. My method requires a food processor but you can also make the recipe by hand if you so choose.
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups flour (Because most of us do not have semolina just lying about the house)
- Additional flour for kneading afterward (Don’t worry, this part is easy)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1/8 cup water
- corn flour for dusting the pasta after it is rolled out/cut up- so that it doesn’t stick together.
- Crack the eggs, put them into a bowl and beat them – I promise they won’t feel a thing.
- Get out your food processor, add the flour, the egg mixture, salt and your olive oil and pulse.
- Once it is well combined, add your water.
- Pulse again until a dough is formed.
- Remove the dough. It should be sticky at this point.
- Put the dough on a floured surface and knead until the dough is pliable but firm enough, that it springs back to the touch.
- Roll out the dough to your desired thickness and cut into whatever shape you desire.
- You’re done! Told you it was easy peasy!
Ah give him bread and ham, together with a pastelle. Oh hello! Welcome back to my blog. It is Christmas time again. Fun, times! Gifts are wrapped…somewhere…under someone’s tree. Alright corny joke, but this pastelle isn’t THAT corny…unless you count the cornmeal in it. I know, I know, I should have stayed on hiatus with those jokes.
Alright I will spare you any further attempts at a joke and give you my recipe. Now I forwent the traditional chicken/beef/soya pastelle and tried some shrimp pastelle intead, after I saw Samantha J.J.R.’s Instagram videos of her shrimp pastelle in the making. They looked super yummy. I also made a few turkey ones after I ran out of shrimp. Don’t worry. I put enough shrimp in my recipe so you wont run out. Learn from my mistakes. I added pics of both types for your perusal. The one above is shrimp, the below is turkey. Also if that bow in the first pic is giving you OCD problems, you’re in good company. 😛
Firstly, you need banana leaves and foil paper. You can also use banana leaves and string if you wish…kinda like brown paper packages tied up with string, but no one has time for that. So go bug the neighbour for some banana leaves in exchange for 2 of your pastelles and let’s get started.
For the filling:
- 3.5 pounds Shrimp peeled, deveined and minced
- 1/4 cup Capers
- 1/4 cup Raisins – chopped
- 1/4 cup olives – chopped
- 1/4 cup Craisins (Cranberry Raisins) – chopped
- 1/4 cup diced onions
- 1/8 cup diced pimientos
- Fine thyme…an entire tree! I love thyme so I added lots but maybe about a tablespoon might work for you.
- 1 tablespoon Chadon Beni/Culantro/ Cilantro – finely chopped
- 5 cloves garlic – minced
- 1 teaspoon grated ginger
- 1 tablespoon ketchup
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce << I am pretty sure I misspelt that while typing it but I will have it corrected before I publish and before you read it!
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon bouillon powder
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 teaspoon butter.
- Season your shrimp with ginger and a pinch of salt and set aside.
- Add the butter, garlic, onions, and pimientos to a large skillet and sauté for 2 minutes on low heat.
- Add the olives, capers, craisins, raisins and thyme and sauté for another minute.
- Add the rest of your ingredients (except for the shrimp) and adjust your seasonings. If you need to add some water, do so.
- Once you are happy with the flavour, turn off the heat, wait three minutes and then add your shrimp. I have always reiterated that there is nothing worse than rubbery shrimp, and since your pastelle still has to steam after this, the shrimp will finish cooking then.
For the dough:
- 3 cups corn meal
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon bouillon powder
- black pepper
- 6 tablespoons butter.
- hot water to bind only (the dough should be able to form a ball) In other words, add your water sparingly and do not pour like you are going crazy.
- Combine all ingredients then add water to bind the dough so that it forms a ball. You are now going to make about 2.5 inch round balls until your dough is used up.
Making the pastelle:
- Take the banana leaf and heat it over the stove so that it gets bendy. You need to do this because your pastelle is essentially a package waiting to be wrapped in the leaf.
- Once this is done, cut off the middle of the leaf and discard, keeping the leafy portion only.
- Cut into squares – abt 9 inches. Cut your foil into the same size.
- Take one of the dough balls and place on your leaf.
- Spread out the dough until it is about a 1/8 inch thick circle, using a rolling pin and some saran wrap between the dough and the rolling pin. Some people use oil so that the dough would not stick to the banana leaf. I used zero oil and mine however and it did not stick at all, so I am not sure how necessary the oil is.
- Add your filling.
- Using the banana leaf fold over the dough until a cornmeal package is formed around filling.
- After this, wrap up the cornmeal package, using the same piece of banana leaf. Now you’ve got a corn meal package, inside a banana leaf package.
- Then wrap the banana leaf in foil. Now you have a package inside a package, inside a package on your hands…packageception. I am sure I added one too many packages to that description, but you get the point.
- Finish all of them using this method.
- Steam for 30 minutes.
The recipe for this quintessential Trinidadian staple has been long overdue on this blog. Pelau is the perfect analogy to describe Trinidad. It is a mix of ingredients to make a one pot dish. Similarly, Trinis are a blend of races all living on our beautiful tropical isle. It is the caribbean version of Jambalaya except that I like pelau much, much better. It is a dish that starts off with caramelised sugar as its base and ends up as a savoury concoction instead, believe it or not.
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- 5 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 pounds chicken cut into pieces and seasoned with 1 tablespoon Green Seasoning, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon finely grated ginger
- 2 cups rice – washed
- 1 cup carrots – diced
- 1 cup canned OR fresh pre-boiled pigeon peas
- 4 pimiento peppers – sliced
- 1 medium onion – sliced
- 1 tablespoon fresh chopped chadon beni/culantro/cilantro
- 3 cloves garlic – finely chopped
- 1/4 cup water
- 40 grams coconut milk powder (optional)
- 5 to 6 cups water
- salt to taste
- In a big pot, add 3 tablespoons canola oil.
- Turn on your stove to medium-high heat.
- Wait for about 2 minutes or until the oil is hot and add 5 tablespoons brown sugar.
- Allow your sugar to caramelise and become a shade 0r 2 darker than golden brown. Stir your sugar throughout this process to ensure an even distribution of heat so that your sugar doesn’t burn.
- It should look like this when ready:
- Carefully add your chicken at this stage and stir.
- Turn your heat down to medium low and allow your chicken to stew in its own juices for about 10 minutes or so.
- After about 10 minutes, add your rice and stir. Cook for about a minute.
- Add your peas, carrots, onions, pimientos, chadon beni and garlic, stir and cook for another minute.
- Add a 1/4 cup water and 40 grams coconut milk powder and stir.
- Cook until the water has evaporated so that the flavour is better infused into your dish.
- Add 5 to 6 cups of water and cook until your rice is tender and the liquid has evaporated.
- Adjust seasonings.
Dhal is a Trinidadian household staple. Everyone in my house loves this stuff…everyone except for yours truly that is. I am not gonna lie to you, I am not a fan. I do eat it from time to time, I just do not love it. However, since the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the one…and yes I did quote Spock, who seemed to have lived by utilitarian principles, go figure…I will give you the recipe.
Dhal is a split peas soup of sorts…that is if you like bite sized pieces of cumin in your soup. It is mainly used as a side dish, in the same manner you would use peas with your rice or roti or whatever. I personally love it with fried caraille (bitter gourd) and rice. Yes I can see you cringing your face from behind your screen but I loveee caraille.
Btw, before I forget, The Makeshift Chef is now on Instagram so feel free to follow me there!
- 1 cup split peas (washed)
- 6 cups water
- 1 medium sized onion – sliced
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 3 cloves garlic (whole)
- 2 cloves garlic (sliced)
- 1 teaspoon whole cumin (geera)
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- 3 pimiento peppers (sliced)
- Hot pepper to taste (optional)
- Salt to taste
- In a pot add your split peas, hot pepper, onion, pimientos, water, 3 cloves of whole garlic and about a teaspoon of salt. (At this stage you can’t taste anything so you can always adjust your salt content later on.)
- Bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to medium low and boil for about an hour or until the split peas grains are tender.
- Turn off the stove.
- Using an immersion blender, pulverise your dhal concoction. When you are finished, it should be a smooth soup-like consistency…like a thin-medium thickness soup i.e. not too thin where it is watery or not too thick where it is like porridge. If it is too thick, add some water, turn on the stove, bring to a boil and turn the stove back off.
- You can also adjust your salt at this stage.
- In a very small pot, add your canola oil, whole cumin and 2 cloves sliced garlic.
- Heat on medium heat until the garlic is golden brown and your cumin is fragrant.
- Here comes the tricky part so be careful. You have the add the hot oil, garlic and cumin to the pot of dhal.
- Get a pot lid. This is going to act as your shield. Just pretend you’re playing Legend of Zelda or something. Using one hand, hover the lid about a foot over the pot with the dhal.
- With your free hand, hold the pot with the hot oil and pour it SLOWLY into the dhal mixture using your “shield” to protect you. Don’t you feel like a hero!
- Mix well.
- Enjoy while I go make something I actually want to eat. 😛
Until next time,
TIP: When working with chocolate, make sure all of your utensils/hands/anything that is going to come into contact with the chocolate, are bone dry.
This reason for this is because if your chocolate comes into contact with water, it is going to make the chocolate seize up. So in order to avoid tears, frustration, time wastage and chocolate wastage, please follow my one tip, even if you listen to nothing else I say.
So this particular cake is one of my mom’s favourites. Her birthday is coming up…which is not the reason I made it lol. A few days ago there was a slice of super yummy looking chocolate mousse chocolate cake in the fridge, which no one (not naming names) thought about sharing with me. Anyway, by the time I went to sneak some out of the refrigerator, it was all gone. All of it! 😥 I have been craving it ever since.
This cake is made up of 2 layers, a cake layer and a mousse layer. It is super easy to make as long as you follow the instructions. Oh and you are talking to the girl who once made brownies with the texture of chewing gum. I also once tried to make red velvet cake and I had no clue that you were supposed to cream butter and sugar. I just dumped all the ingredients in and stirred. I never lived that one down. But enough of my shenanigans and mishaps, to the cake:
For the chocolate layer (the first layer)
This is the heavier layer so it goes to the bottom of the pan:
- 7 ounces OR .44 pounds OR 198.45 grams semi-sweet or bitter sweet chocolate chips. I used Hersheys in mine because they were the only ones in grocery.
- 6 tablespoons OR 85 grams butter
- 1.5 teaspoons vanilla essence/extract
- 4 eggs separated into whites and yolks
- 1 pinch cream of tatar (optional)
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- Combine your chocolate and butter in a DRY microwavable bowl.
- Set your microwave at 50% power level.
- Microwave in one minute intervals until the chocolate/butter combo has melted into a very thick but liquid consistency. You are going to stir the mixture with a DRY spatula after each one minute interval. The entire process takes like 2 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- When it has been cooled, add your egg yolks and vanilla to it and combine well and set aside.
- Now for the egg whites. You want soft peaks as your final product, however, because you have to combine it with the sugar there is a process…an easy peasy one however so don’t worry.
- Beat your egg whites and when they have started to become frothy, add half the sugar and the cream of tatar. Beat for about 45 seconds or so again and then add the remaining sugar. As I mentioned before, you want soft peaks so your mixture should look like this:
- It should be firm enough to coat your whisk but soft enough that the peak flips over when you hold the whisk up. If the mixture is any way runny, that means you haven’t beaten it enough so go back and whisk until you achieve the look of the one in the pic.
- Take 1/3 of your egg white/sugar combo and fold (not mix) it into the chocolate mixture. If you mix it all the air comes out and you defeat the purpose of the previous step.
- Once you have folded that in, add the rest of your egg whites and fold it until everything is combined.
- Add the mixture into a 9 inch greased baking pan and bake for 20 to 25 minutes on 325 degrees F.
- Allow the cake to cool completely. I stuck mine in the freezer and went and had dinner.
The mousse layer
Once your cake is sufficiently cooled it is ready for the mousse layer.
- 1.5 cups whipping cream. I used to be a stickler for the Elle y Vire brand until I realised the Emborg brand (which annoyed me at first) does a better job of holding up, but you use whatever brand your little heart desires and don’t mind me.
- Btw, once my first layer was done, I washed my whisk and bowl and dried them off and stuck them in the freezer together with my whipping cream to get even better end results.
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 7 ounces OR .44 pounds OR 198.45 grams semi-sweet or bitter sweet chocolate chips.
- 5 tablespoons hot water
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1 heaping pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- Put your chocolate into a DRY microwavable bowl.
- Set your microwave at 50% power level.
- Microwave for one minute intervals until the chocolate has melted into a very thick but liquid consistency. You are going to stir the mixture with a DRY spatula after each one minute interval. The entire process takes like 2 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- Mix your hot water and hot chocolate together and allow it to cool.
- Take your whipping cream, your bowl and your whisk out of the freezer.
- Add your whipping cream, sugar and salt to your frozen bowl and whisk until you have peaks that are in between soft and stiff peaks…kinda like the look for the egg white ones only slightly less soft.
- Add your cocoa powder and water mixture to your chocolate and combine. If it starts to look a little coagulated, relax, you haven’t done anything wrong, it is supposed to look that way as water is supposed to make chocolate seize up.
- Take 1/3 of your whip cream/sugar/salt combo and fold (not mix) it into the chocolate mixture. If you mix it all the air comes out and you defeat the purpose of the previous step.
- Once you have folded that in, add the rest of your whipped cream mixture and fold it until everything is combined.
- Layer the whipped cream mixture onto your baked layer. Make sure you do it nice and evenly and level it off at the top. No one wants an ugly cake.
- Chill for a few hours until set.
Until next time.
Above : All the steps from beginning to end.
Above: Dough before and after boiling.
Above: Dough shaped into equal sized balls and funfetti cream cheese.
Hey folks. This blog entry was only ever meant to be an Instagram post hence the IG look. I tried my hand at making rainbow bagels and funfetti cream cheese. As you may or may not be aware #rainbowbagels are the new craze…well not that new but you get where I am coming from. Anyway, so naturally I have been wanting to try to make these since I discovered them. They turned out soooo pretty!
- 6 and 2/3 cups all purpose flour
- 2 1/4 to 2 1/2 cups warm water
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- 1 teaspoon white sugar
- 4 teaspoons (1 packet) of instant yeast
- Food Colour Gels (any amount of colours you wish. I used 6 colours in mine.)
To boil the Bagels
- A whole lot of water (at least 6 cups)
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- Sift the flour into a bowl.
- Add salt, sugar and yeast. Avoiding putting the salt near the yeast as salt tends to counteract the effect of yeast.
- Add 2 1/4 cups water.
- Mix together for about 4 to 5 minutes. You want a dough that is not sticky to the touch but not too dry. If you need more water, please feel free to add it.
- Remove from the bowl.
- Divide into 6 EQUAL pieces. (Or equal pieces per colour, depending on how many colours you used)
- Cover any dough that you are not using with a damp paper towel.
- Take one piece of dough and add a few drops of food colour gel.
- Knead the gel food colouring into the dough. This is going to require some patience as it is the most time consuming step. Don’t worry though, it is like working with play dough…though I am not too sure if that might be your thing.
- You want to knead in the colouring until the dough is a solid colour, void of any streaks from the colouring agent.
- Place the dough in a warm area, under a damp napkin and repeat steps 8 to 11 until all your colours are dunzo.
- When the dough has doubled in size, take your first colour and pound the crap out of it. This is so that you get rid of all the air bubbles.
- Using a rolling pin, form a rectangle that is approximately 12 inches in length and 5 inches in width.
- Repeat for all the colours, stacking them evenly on top of each other, spritzing each layer with water before you place your new layer on top. Tip – If you do not own a spray bottle, use a clean, damp paper towel.
You want to end up with a stack that looks like this:
In the meantime:
Preheat the oven to 375F.
- Use a sharp knife to cut a 2 inch (lengthwise) strip off the stacked dough.
- Twist the strip you have just cut off to make the colours look all twisty and pretty.
- Cut the strip in half.
- Wrap the dough around your hand to make a bagel shape and seal the edges by rolling it on the counter top.
- Repeat steps 1 to 4 until all your dough is used up.
- This makes about 8 bagels.
- Place your 6 cups of water and 2 teaspoons of salt in a pan and boil, then turn down to a simmer.
- Boil your bagels for 30 seconds on each side.
- Place onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
- Bake for 20 minutes.
Funfetti Cream Cheese
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/4 cup icing sugar
- All the sprinkles your heart desires
- Food colour gel (optional)
Mix together with a mixer, spread on your rainbow bagel and enjoy!
Salmon en Croute is salmon that is baked inside pastry dough. This is something that I wanted to try for a while now but never really got around to it, mostly because I suck at baking and this recipe involves pastry dough. Baking is such a precise art form and I am more of a – throw ingredients together haphazardly and hope they turn out right– type of gal. In other words, baking and I are polar opposites.
So if you can find store bought puff pastry dough, I SO RECOMMEND THAT YOU USE IT! If not my young padawan, fear not because this lazy girl made the pastry dough from scratch. That’s right, you read correctly! Now it is not puff pastry dough by a long shot, because that has far too much butter for my taste, but it came out pretty decently anyway.
For the dough
- 3 to 3.5 cups flour
- 180 grams butter (Grated. Yes you read right. Whip out that cheese grater and work those muscles.)
- 1 cup cold water
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 egg beaten
For the salmon:
- 4 pieces boneless salmon – approximately 4 inches x 3 inches – Washed.
- 1/2 teaspoon salt.
- 1 teaspoon grated garlic
- 8 oz cream cheese.
- 1/2 teaspoon lime zest
- 1/4 cup dill – finely chopped.
For the Salmon
- Season the salmon with garlic and salt and set aside before making the dough.
For the Dough
- Combine flour, salt and butter together. Mix until the butter is properly integrated into the flour.
- Add the water and knead into a dough. The dough must be firm, but not tough. If it is too tough, add more water. Conversely, if it is too sticky, add more flour.
- Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
- After 20 minutes, remove from the fridge and, using a rolling pin, roll it out on a floured surface.
- Roll out until you have formed a rectangle approximately 15 inches x 13 inches, or the entire dough is about 1/8 of an inch in thickness.
- Now this is where my explanation skills are going to come in handy because the dough needs to be folded.
- Step 1 – Fold one side of the rectangle to meet the middle of the dough. Now do the same thing to the other side.
- Step 2 – Fold your folded dough over in half. Oh boy!
- Step 3 – See diagram.
- Refrigerate for another 20 minutes.
- After 20 minutes, on a floured surface, roll out the dough to 1/8 of an inch thick rectangle.
- Cut into four equal pieces.
Combining all ingredients
- Mix the cream cheese, lime zest and dill together.
- Paste 1.5 tablespoons of the mixture onto one side of the salmon.
- Put the side with the cream cheese face down onto one piece of the dough you have just cut out.
- Fold one end of the pastry over the exposed side of salmon, then bring the other end over to completely enclose the salmon.
- Fold both remaining pastry ends over as neatly as you can. Think of it as gift wrapping.
- Repeat for the other 3 pieces.
- Place on a greased baking sheet seam side down.
- Brush the top of the pastry with the beaten egg.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Bake for approximately 20 to 25 minutes or until your crust is golden brown.
Corn soup is a hearty soup, beloved by the locals and sought after by those who come to visit our twin islands. This triple threat is filling, good for you and tastes amazing too!
Confession time! I had not made this soup for a long, long time prior to this, so I basically tossed the ingredients together without measuring a thing. While I had a pretty good average of most of the ingredients, the measurement of water for this dish escapes me. I did my best to put in an average amount for you, so please bear with me. Thanks much! Xoxo!
For the soup
- 3/4 cup split peas/dhal
- 1 medium carrot peeled and sliced into 1/2 inch pieces
- 2 ears of corn on the cob sliced into 2 inch pieces
- 3/4 cup whole kernel corn
- 1 medium onion diced
- 1 stalk celery – diced (This is the kind that you get with your buffalo wings.)
- 3 pimiento peppers – diced
- 3/4 cup pumpkin – diced
- 1 whole garlic clove
- 3 cloves garlic – grated
- 1 teaspoon ginger – grated
- 1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 tablespoon bouillon powder
- 1 tablespoon chadon beni or cilantro- finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon chives – finely chopped
- 3 sprigs of thyme
- salt to taste
- black pepper to taste
- 10 cups water (approximately)
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
For the dumplings
- 1/2 cup corn meal
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1 heaping teaspoon baking powder
- 1/3 cup water
- In a separate pot, add 3 cups of water, split peas, turmeric, a teaspoon of salt and one clove of garlic and bring to a boil.
- Cover the pot and boil the split peas on medium heat for roughly 40 minutes or so, adding more water if necessary.
- After your split peas has been cooking for 35 minutes, in another pot, on low heat, add 1 tablespoon canola oil, 3 tablespoons garlic, 1 teaspoon of ginger and sauté for 1 minute.
- Add the onions and sauté for an additional minute.
- Add the carrots, pumpkin, pimientos, whole kernel corn, celery, chadon beni, chives and thyme and sauté for 2 more minutes.
- Add the pre-boiled split peas.
- Add the 6 cups of water, bouillon powder, and coconut milk.
- Turn up the heat and bring to a boil.
- Turn the heat to low once it comes to a boil, and allow the ingredients to simmer.
- After about 25 minutes, add the sliced corn on the cob and allow the soup to simmer for about 20 more minutes. Add more water if necessary.
- In the meantime, mix together your dumpling mixture to form a soft dough by combining the water, baking powder, flour and corn meal. Set aside.
- Fish out the corn cobs and the thyme sprigs after the 20 minutes of cooking. Set the corn aside and discard the thyme.
- Blend the remaining liquid and ingredients with an immersion blender until you have achieved a puree.
- Using a spoon, drop 1 inch pieces of the dumpling mixture into the soup.
- Simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add the corn, salt and pepper to taste.
- Simmer for 5 more minutes.
Coq Au Vin is a French recipe that translates to cock in wine. And since I did not exactly have a cock lying around handy for this dish lol, I used chicken thighs instead. It is a pretty easy dish to make. Tried this for the first time and the sauce was amazing! I think next time I will try it on the stove top instead of the oven, as I find that the flavours did not infuse in the chicken itself as much I would have like it to. Anyway, here is the recipe:
- 7 chicken thighs – with the bones and skin intact.
- 1 cup flour (for lightly coating the chicken)
- 6 strips bacon
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- 5 sprigs of thyme
- 1 cup red wine of your choice – I used merlot for this recipe but the next time I think I will try a Port. A dry red wine is usually recommended for this dish but I say screw it! Use any red wine you would like to drink. You are the one who has to eat it after all.
- 1 cup to 1. 5 cups chicken stock
- 2 teaspoons butter
- 1 teaspoons flour
- 1 clove garlic
- Salt to taste
- Black pepper to taste
- 1 medium onion – diced
- 1.5 cups fresh mushroom cut in halves
- Wash chicken, pat dry and season with salt and black pepper.
- Dice your bacon strips.
- In a large oven-safe pan, add your bacon and olive oil. Turn on the heat on medium, and sauté until the bacon is crisp.
- Remove the bacon and set aside, retaining the bacon fat in the skillet.
- Turning your heat up to high, lightly dust your chicken in the flour and add it to the pot, skin side down.
- You are pan searing the chicken, not cooking it, so leave it about two minutes per side, or until the skin is brown/crisp.
- Remove the chicken and set aside.
- Turn your heat to low (do not wash the pot). Add your mushrooms and onions.
- Add a pinch of salt and allow both ingredients to cook until brown.
- Once the both ingredients are cooked, add the butter and 1 teaspoon flour. Stir and cook for 2 more minutes to allow the flour to cook.
- Add your wine and cook for about 3 more minutes.
- Add your chicken stock, thyme, garlic and bacon to the pot and cook for 2 minutes or until the liquid is simmering.
- Add your chicken to the pot.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.
- Place your skillet in the oven.
- Bake for 45 minutes.
- Have fun eating.