Saturday, July 26, 2014

Shooting StarMosa

I can't think of a better way to start the day than with a cold, frothy mimosa (preferably served in bed).  Lately, I've tried a few variations of mimosas and this is one that works perfectly for a sun-filled summer morning.  Christian turned me on to this version which is inspired by a fresh-squeezed, vitamin boosting juice served at Northstar Cafe in Columbus.  The Shooting StarMosa is a light, subtle and sparkling twist on the classic brunch boisson.

Shooting StarMosa

1 Part Orange Juice
2 Parts Carrot Juice
Topped off with Champaign

In a glass, mix the orange and carrot juices.  Top with Champaign and swirl to combine.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Chicken Panang

I'm a sucker for good Asian food.  Chinese, Japanese, Thai and everything in between.  I love it all.  A few years ago, I tried curry for the first time.  It was an acquired taste for me, but once I discovered Panang, I knew I'd hit a home run.  It's spicy, a little sweet, and luscious, with a peanut butter finish.  Great with any meat or veggie (or whatever the hell you have in the fridge), this is a must-keep recipe to add to your repertoire for those often craved exotic evenings.  

Panang Curry 

Chicken Boobs
2 T. Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper
3/4 Onion, diced
1 1/2 C. Carrots, chopped into small rings
1/2 Zucchini, chopped
3 T. Panang Curry (found in a pouch or a can in Asian grocery stores)
1 Heaping T. of Peanut Butter
1 14 oz. can of Lite Coconut Milk
1 T. Fish Sauce
1 T. Brown Sugar
Basil, nuts and lime juice, to garnish

Sprinkle your chicken with salt & pepper.

Heat the olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat until it glistens.  Add the chicken and cook for 4 minutes per side or until you get a nice, golden brown edge.  Make sure the chicken is cooked through.  Remove from the skillet and set aside.  When the chicken has had a chance to rest for 5 minutes, slice into pieces about 1" thick.

Add the onions to the skillet.  Cook until they are soft but not browned, about 6 minutes.  Add the carrots and zucchini and cook for another 3 minutes.  Stir in the panang curry and peanut butter, allowing it to coat the veggies.  Pour in the coconut milk and stir to thoroughly combine.  Stir in the fish sauce and sugar.  Taste and add more sugar, peanut butter or fish sauce as needed.  Add the chicken back and stir gently to cover it in the sauce.

Serve over rice and garnish with fresh basil, nuts of your choice and a squeeze of fresh lime juice.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Shish Kebabs

There is not much in this world as satisfying as grilling meat on a stick over flames.  Maybe it's my id, a yearning for simpler times, or gee whiz, maybe it's that fahwesome taste of char and caramelized sugars all over my food that only fire can lend.   In any case, I encourage you to unleash your inner cave man, break out the grill and start cooking like summer intended.  This weekend, my new obsession Christian and I grilled some shish kebabs using my dad's infamous recipe.  These shish kebabs are tender, juicy & fresh, and packed with sweet, teriyaki flavors.  

Shish Kebabs

1/2 lb. of Beef Tips (or your favorite protein), cut in large chunks
Salt & Pepper
Olive Oil
1 Red Pepper, cut in large chunks
1 Pint of Button Mushrooms, with stems on
1 Onion, cut in large chunks
1 Can of Whole Potatoes
1/2 C. Teriyaki Sauce (we used San-J gluten-free)
1 C. Pineapple, cut in large chunks (optional)
Wooden Skewers, soaked in water

Preheat your grill to nice and hot.  Season the beef with salt & pepper.  

Start to assemble the kebabs by starting with a piece of red pepper or onion.  This will secure the pieces so they don't slide off the end of the skewer.  Continue by adding the other ingredients.  Finish the skewer with another red pepper or onion chunk and set the kebabs in a shallow baking dish.  Repeat this until you've used all the ingredients.  

Drizzle your teriyaki sauce over the kebabs, making sure that each piece gets nicely coated.  Drizzle with a smidge of olive oil.  This helps prevent sticking on the grill and helps your food to get an extra crunch.  

When the grill is hot, carefully add the kebabs, perpendicular to the metal grates.  Cook for 5-6 minutes, until you get a good char.  Turn and cook for another 5 minutes on the other side.  Make sure your meat is cooked to a safe temperature.  Remove from the grill.  Drizzle with fresh sauce if you desire (NOT the sauce that collected at the bottom of your baking dish).   Serve with quinoa, couscous and something green.