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Image.ChickenStirFry

Chicken & Veggie Stir-Fry

In Poultry On June 18, 2016 0 Comments

I don’t know about you, but I enjoy fresh meals every day. I usually start with a protein selection and then add lots of vegetables.

This chicken and vegetable dish is simple and fast! In a matter of minutes, you can serve an impressive meal to all. And yes- the quality of this dish is higher than that of a restaurant!

Inactive Prep time: 1 hour (marinate chicken)
Active Prep time: 35 minutes
Serves: 4 to 6

Ingredients:
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs
2 tablespoons organic Tamari sauce (this is organic soy sauce)
3 to 8 tablespoons sunflower or canola oil
2 medium yellow or white onions, peeled and finely sliced
1 red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and finely sliced
5 celery stalks, peeled and finely sliced into 2-inch pieces
1-1/2 cups sugar snap peas
4 green onions, roots cut and discarded and onions cut into 3-inch pieces

Directions:
1. Using shears, cut chicken thighs into 2-inch pieces and set in a glass or porcelain bowl.

2. Add the Tamari sauce and mix well; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 hour.

3. Meanwhile, prepare the vegetables (peeling and slicing).

4. After the chicken has marinated 1 hour, heat 3 tablespoons oil in a stove-top wok or 12-inch skillet.

5. When oil is hot but not smoking, add all vegetables to the skillet except for the sugar snap peas and green onions.

6. Stir-fry the vegetables over medium-high heat until they look crunchy-tender.

7. When vegetables are crunchy-tender, transfer them to a glass or porcelain bowl; set aside.

8. Heat the remaining oil in the same skillet. When oil is hot but not smoking, stir-fry the marinated chicken pieces.

9. Cook and stir-fry for 5 to 8 minutes or until chicken is thoroughly cooked through (taste a piece to be sure).

10. When chicken is cooked, add the stir-fried vegetables to the skillet and toss.

11. Stir-fry chicken and vegetables for 3 minutes.

12. After 3 minutes, add the sugar snap peas and green onions; cook and stir-fry for an additional 2 to 3 minutes.

13. Add salt and ground black pepper, to taste.

14. Serve Chicken & Veggie Stir-Fry immediately, accompanied by steamed white or brown rice.
Text & Photograph ©2016 Nancy DeLucia Real

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Chicken in Tomatillo Sauce

In Poultry On September 25, 2015 0 Comments

This chicken recipe is from Mexico. It seems impossible to find this dish in a local Mexican (Los Angeles). My friend, Lina, introduced the recipe to my husband, Victor. Yes – you guessed it – he’s the one who makes this dish and I get to sit and enjoy it.

And so, I decided to try my hand at this recipe and it turned out delicious. You should try it, too!

Prep time: 35 to 45 minutes (includes 15-minutes for tomatillos to cool)
Serves: 4 to 6

For the Tomatillo Sauce:

2 pounds tomatillos (12 to 14 count), husks discarded
1 jalapeño or red chili pepper, stem and seeds discarded
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1 teaspoon salt

Directions:

1. Wash the tomatillos and place them in a 4-quart sauce pot.

2. Bring the tomatillos and the jalapeño or red chili to a boil.

3. Boil the tomatillos and chili for 5 to 8 minutes or until they are soft.

4. Carefully drain the tomatillos, taking care not to let them burst; set aside to cool for 15 minutes.

5. After 15 minutes, transfer the cooked tomatillos to a blender.

6. Remove stem from chili and add the flesh to the tomatillos in blender.

7. Add the garlic and salt to tomatillo-chili mixture in blender; puree the mixture until it is smooth.

8. Taste the tomatillo sauce and adjust salt level; set aside. Meanwhile, prepare the chicken:

For the Chicken:

1/4 cup vegetable oil (safflower or sunflower oil preferred)
2/3 cup chopped white or brown onion
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 2 pounds), cut into 2 to 3-inch chunks
Salt, to taste

Directions:
1. In a 12-inch skillet, heat the oil.

2. When oil is hot but smokeless, add the chicken chunks; stir fry on medium-high heat for 4 to 5 minutes or until the chicken turns white.

3. Stir in the onion and sauté for 2 minutes or until it becomes translucent.

4. When onion is translucent, pour the reserved tomatillo sauce over the chicken mixture in skillet.

5. Simmer the chicken on medium-low heat for about 25 to 30 minutes or until it is cooked through.

6. Taste and add, if needed, add salt.

7. Serve Chicken in Tomatillo Sauce immediately with steamed white or brown rice.
Text and Photograph ©2015 Nancy DeLucia Real

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Basic Chicken and Vegetable Soup

In Soups and Stews On January 31, 2014 0 Comments

Make this Basic Chicken and Vegetable Soup in no time. It’s so easy and also tastes better than any readymade soup from a restaurant. All you need is one chicken, carrots, zucchini, potatoes and seasonings. When the soup is done, you won’t have to cook for the next three days.

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes to 1 hour
Makes: 6 to 8 servings

Ingredients:

1 whole chicken (about 2-1/2 to 3 pounds), skin removed
3 bay leaves
1 brown or white onion, peeled and halved
4 zucchini, tips discarded
4 medium carrots, peeled with tips discarded
4 medium potatoes (any variety)
1 chicken bouillon cube
Salt (to taste)

1. Place chicken, bay leaves and onion in an 8-quart saucepot. Cover chicken completely with cold water.

2. Set sauce pot with chicken and water, covered, on a stove burner and bring to boil.

3. Meanwhile, cut the zucchini into 1-inch circles and transfer them to a 6-quart bowl filled with cold water.

4. Cut the carrots into 1-inch pieces and transfer them to the bowl with zucchini.

5. Peel the potatoes and cut them into 1-inch chunks. Transfer potatoes to the bowl with zucchini and carrots; set aside.

6. When chicken soup boils, remove cover and add bouillon cube.

7. Cook on medium-high for about 45 minutes to one hour or until chicken is done.

8. After 45 minutes, test doneness of chicken by cutting into the thickest part of the breast meat with a fork and knife.

9. If the meat is completely white, it is done. If it is still pink, cook chicken 10 to 15 minutes longer.

10. When chicken is done, using thongs and an extra large fork or spoon, transfer the chicken to a large glass or porcelain bowl or platter. Set aside to cool.

11. Meanwhile, strain the broth into an 8-quart bowl. Return the broth to the sauce pot.

12. Bring the broth to a boil. When broth boils, add the zucchini, carrot and potato chunks.

13. Boil for about 5 minutes or until vegetables are crunchy-tender (test by inserting a fork in potato). If needed, cook for an additional 3 to 4 minutes.

14. Meanwhile, as soon as the chicken is cool enough to handle, remove the meat from the bones. Discard the bones.

15. Tear the chicken into bite-size pieces.

16. Add the chicken pieces to the soup and heat through.

17. Taste the soup and, if needed, adjust the salt level. Serve immediately with fresh bread.

Text and Photograph ©2014 Nancy DeLucia Real

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Chicken Tagine with Apricots & Cranberries

In Poultry, Soups and Stews On November 29, 2013 1 Comment

Enough with turkey now. Why not make a delicious chicken tagine which brings to mind all those luscious flavors of Morocco? Tagines are slow-cooked meat stews with dried fruit and/or almonds and lots of exotic spices. Here’s a great recipe. And yes – you can substitute the chicken with turkey breast and thigh pieces.

Accompany this chicken tagine with a side of Couscous with Zucchini, Yellow Squash & Red Chili Peppers (previously published on this website).

Prep time: 20 minutes (to prepare ingredients)
Cook time: 1-1/2 to 2 hours
Serves 4 to 6

Ingredients:
1/3 cup olive oil
2-1/2 to 3 pounds chicken breasts (about 3 half-breasts), skinned and cut in half (to make 6 pieces)
1 large yellow or white onion, finely chopped
1/4 green bell pepper, finely chopped
1/4 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1/2-inch piece fresh ginger root, peeled and finely minced
1 cup pureed fresh tomatoes
4 to 5 cups chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon red chili pepper flakes
1 teaspoon freshly ground ginger root
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 cup dried apricots, halved
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt

1. In an 8 to 10-quart stockpot or Dutch oven, heat the oil.

2. Add the chicken breast pieces. Fry the chicken pieces on medium-high heat until they are browned all over, about 6 to 8 minutes.

3. After the chicken pieces are browned, stir in the onion, bell peppers and ginger root.

4. Cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, about 2 minutes.

5. After 2 minutes, stir in the tomatoes and 1-1/2 cups of the broth.

6. Bring the chicken and liquid to a high simmer and cook on medium-high heat for 15 minutes.

7. After 15 minutes, stir in cinnamon, cumin, paprika, chili pepper flakes, ginger, the sugar with 1 cup of the broth.

8. Cook the chicken on medium-high heat for an additional hour or so, stirring occasionally. As the tagine becomes dense, stir in 1/2 to 1 cup broth every 10 to 15 minutes.

9. After one hour, taste the tagine. If the flavors are too concentrated, add 1 cup water and continue cooking, stirring occasionally.

10. During the last 5 minutes of cooking, stir in the apricots and cranberries.

11. After 5 minutes, taste the tagine. If needed, add salt.

12. Serve Chicken Tagine with Apricots and Cranberries and a side of Couscous with Zucchini, Yellow Squash & Red Chili Peppers.

Note: To substitute the chicken with turkey, cook the turkey tagine. for at least one more hour. Add one additional quart of broth in 1-cup increments, every 10 to 15 minutes.

Text and Photograph ©2013 Nancy DeLucia Real

Baja Chicken Tostadas

Baja Chicken Tostadas

In Appetizers / Starters, Fun Foods, Poultry On August 12, 2010 2 Comments

On a recent trip to Baja California, Mexico, my husband and I stayed in a condominium resort on the coast. Whenever I want fast food in Baja, I can quickly find a “pollo rostizado” (rotisserie chicken), some tomatoes, lettuce, onions, cilantro and chiles. I then emulate the locals by making a tostada out of whatever ingredients I have found.

Prep time: 15 minutes
Serves: 4 to 6

Ingredients:
8 to 12 corn tostada shells
4 to 5 cups precooked rotisserie chicken, skin and bones discarded and meat diced
5 to 6 cups shredded lettuce
1 carrot, peeled and finely shredded
1/2 cup finely shredded purple cabbage
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
One Salsa and … Whatever recipe (found in our Recipes, under “Salad Dressings, Salsas & Savory Sauces)
2/3 cup grated Cotija, Manchego or Pecorino Romano cheese

1. Place tostada shells on a serving platter and the chicken in a serving bowl in center of dining table.

2. In a separate serving bowl, combine the lettuce, carrot, cabbage and cilantro.

3. Arrange a bowl of the salsa and a bowl of grated cheese next to other bowls.

4. Ask each guest to assemble their own tostadas: add some chicken to tostada shell, followed by lettuce mixture, some salsa and a sprinkle of grated cheese.

5. Enjoy with chilled white wine, beer or a shot of Tequila.

Keep in mind that the fun part is trying to eat the tostada while it breaks and falls apart with every bite.

Buen Provecho!

Text and Photographs ©2010 Nancy DeLucia Real