Monday, 26 June 2017

Apricot Chicken on Mash with Broccoli and Almonds

This is one recipe that I never got a chance yet to try as I was away on a work dinner with a large client and BB was returning home from London. Instead of waiting for BB to take the little one for dinner, she decided to cook for her beloved Uncle D and tried another new recipe.

From what I've been told by her, it's. pretty simple recipe.

This picture was taken by BB of my little one cooking a storm in the kitchen whilst Yuli was keeping an eye on her; making sure my little one didn't burn down the kitchen. LOL!!!

 

INGREDIENTS:

2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 chopped onions
2 cloves garlic, chopped
4-6 pieces of chicken thighs or ribs, skins removed
3 tbsps tomato paste
1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
1 tsp mixed dried herbs
1x400g can crushed tomatoes
1x400g can apricots in juice
1 cup chicken stock
Salt and pepper to taste 


MASH:
800g potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 knob of butter
1/2 cup milk

BROCCOLI:
1 broccoli cut into florets
1/4 cup roasted chopped almonds

PREP:

1. Heat olive oil in a frypan and sauté garlic and onion for 2-3 minutes.
2. Add chicken, tomato paste, sweet chilli sauce, dried herbs, crushed tomatoes, sliced apricots including its juice and chicken stock. Stir, cover and simmer on medium heat for 10 minutes. Remove lid and simmer further for another 10 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Make sure you stir throughout to prevent the sauce fro, sticking to the bottom.
3. Season with salt and pepper.
4. To make mash, bring a pot of salted water to boil. Cook potatoes in boiling water until tender, about 10-15 minutes. Drain and mash the potatoes with butter, milk and salt and pepper till creamy.
5. Steam broccoli till bright green. Make sure it's not too long.
6. To serve, spoon so,e mashed potato onto plate and top with 2 chicken thighs or ribs, some broccoli and scatter some almonds.

 

From what I've been told, the chicken was cooked properly and it was thoroughly yummy and everyone had second helpings. Well, it sure looked yummilicious!!!

I'm indeed a very proud mummy......

Tomato, Broccoli, Chicken Pasta with Pine Nuts and Parmesan

Truth told, I've been an utter bum when it comes to trying new recipes lately. Firstly, I've been busy as hell and secondly, Caitlin and I have been cutting back dinners with less carbo kind of meals. Long weekends have been far and few lately but my little munchkin has now given cooking a try or two. 

This recipe was from one of those free sample cookbooks that I've received recently and truth told, it looks simple enough for her to try and so, she's given it a shot. The only thing I've prohibited her from right now is to use a knife. We've got plenty of time for that.

So, here's a simple dish which I suggested she used steamed shredded chicken as I'm not a fan of pure vegetarian pastas.

 

INGREDIENTS:

300-400g fettuccine blanched
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 chopped onions
3 cloves garlic, chopped2x400g cans crushed/chopped tomatoes

1/2 cup tomato paste
1 1/2 tsp sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
1 bunch of broccoli, blanched
1 handful of fresh basil leaves
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
4 tbsps toasted pine nuts
2 cups of steamed, shredded chicken
2 tbsps extra virgin olive oil

PREP:

1. In a large pot, boil salted water and add pasta. Cook (stirring frequently) until al dente.
2. Two minutes before pasta is cooked, add broccoli to boiling water to cook with pasta. Drain and set aside pasta.
3. Reserve 1/4 cup of pasta cooking water
4. To make tomato sauce, heat olive oil in a large frying pan on medium heat and sauté onion and garlic until soft for about 10 minutes.
5. Add crushed tomatoes, tomato paste and sugar; and simmer for 10-15 minutes until sauce has reduced and thicker.
6. Stir through extra virgin olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
7. Toss pasta and broccoli with tomato sauce, reserved pasta water and basil leaves. Divide between bowls and top with more basil, Parmesan cheese and pine nuts.

The verdict??? My little girl can bloody cook!!!! The taste was just right with the right amount of tomato tanginess without it been overtly sour and the pine nuts was a nice touch to the taste.

I can soon relinquish her with the cooking duties. LOL!!!!

Thursday, 14 July 2016

Lemon Garlic Shrimp Pasta

Ok, it's been ages since my cooking experiment of new dishes. Why??? I've been such a busy bee in all aspects of my life. Some busy was good and some no good at all. Well, am I any freer? Nope but I came across this recipe and found it easy enough and true enough, it was super easy to prepare and easy to cook.

 


INGREDIENTS:

8 oz linguine
2 Tbsp. olive oil
8 Tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp crushed red pepper
1¼ lbs large shrimp
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp dried oregano
4 cups baby spinach
¼ cup Parmesan
2 Tbsp. parsley, chopped
1 Tbsp. lemon juice

PREP:

1. In a large pot, boil water and add pasta. Cook (stirring frequently) until al dente.
2. Drain and set aside pasta.
3. In the same pan, heat olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter. Add garlic and crushed red pepper, cook until fragrant.
4. Toss in shrimp, salt and pepper to taste, and stir until shrimp start to turn pink, but are not fully cooked.
5. Add oregano and spinach, cook until wilted. 
6. Return cooked pasta to the pot, add remaining butter, parmesan, and parsley. Stir until well mixed and the butter is melted.
7. When the shrimp are cooked, add lemon juice, mix once more, then serve while hot. 

And most importantly, I got a thumbs up from my baby girl. She loved it and that smile on her face was priceless!!! 

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Easy Chicken Pie

Hmmmmm......nothing like some yummy chicken pie. Something I've always loved and so does my little girl. So, as usual I try to hunt for some Chicken Pie recipe and make sure it's an easy one. So, I found this Pillsbury one. Simple and easy though I need to practice a bit more in laying the crust which in my opinion is not an easy feat.


Ingredients:-

- 1/3
cup butter or margarine
1/3
cup chopped onion 
1/3
cup all-purpose flour
1/2
teaspoon salt
1/4
teaspoon pepper
1 3/4
cups chicken broth (from 32-oz carton) 
1/2
cup milk
2 1/2
cups shredded cooked chicken
2
cups diced celery, carrot and potatoes 

1. Heat oven to 220°C. Make pie crusts as directed on box for Two-Crust Pie using 9-inch glass pie pan or any pie pan.

2. In 2-quart saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion, carrots, celery and potato; cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until tender. Stir in flour, salt and pepper until well blended. Gradually stir in broth and milk, cooking and stirring until bubbly and thickened.

3. Stir in chicken. Remove from heat. Spoon chicken mixture into crust-lined pan. Top with second crust; seal edge and flute. Cut slits in several places in top crust.

4. Bake 30 to 40 minutes or until crust is golden brown. During last 15 to 20 minutes of baking, cover crust edge with strips of foil to prevent excessive browning. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.


A very easy recipe unless you are going to make unless you're going to make your own pastries which is never my forte but do keep an eye on the oven and watch the crust from been burned. One thing I like about home cooked pies is that one can add as much chicken or vegetables as one likes unlike restaurants whereby ingredients are at a minimal only and sometimes, I can't even taste the chicken and using frozen peas as vegetables is an absolute Yuck!!!!

Saturday, 24 October 2015

Orange Chicken Over Quinoa

I tried this recipe many weeks ago or maybe at least 2 months back but totally overlooked to post this recipe until I saw the picture I took still hovering in my photo album in my iPhone. Well, I was super busy and have been since the little girls have been preparing for the ballet and modern exams and me been me, teaching them on Sundays to get them ready at the same time sending my little one back and forth to classes while working in a manic organization and still trying to run a household. 

How do I manage many would ask me? Honestly??? I don't know. I just do.....

So here's to another yummilicious recipe and a healthy one. Do give it a shot. It's simple and it is practically fuss free. Take it from a busy mummy like myself who still strives for healthy eating aside from the occasional sweet tooth cravings that both my little girl and I have.


Ingredients:-

- 500 to 1kg chicken breasts, cut into chunks

- 2 tbsps olive oil

- cooked quinoa (follow packet instructions)

- zest of one orange 

- salt and pepper, to taste

- a handful chopped spring onions, to garnish

- handful of sesame seeds, to garnish


Orange Chicken Sauce:-

- 3 cloves garlic, minced

- 1/2 cup orange juice

- 1/2 cup honey

- 1/3 cup soy sauce

- 1/4 cup rice vinegar 

- 3 tbsps cornstarch 

- 1/2 tsp ground ginger 

- 1/2 tsp white pepper


1. Heat oil over medium heat. Add chicken and sauté for 4-6 minutes until nearly cooked and browned.

2. Whisk all orange chicken sauce, pour over chicken and stir to combine. Cook about a minute till sauce thickens. You may add salt and pepper to taste but I didn't do so.

3. Remove and serve over quinoa or rice

4. Garnish with sesame seeds, spring onions and some additional orange zest


Verdict? Yum!!!! 

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Beef Stew

I believe everyone would have at least once in their lives have a beef stew and it is always meant to be eaten hot with bread chunks or rice. But me been me, I need to have something healthy and what do I do? Whip it up with quinoa and trust me, it was equally as yummy just as it was healthy.

Go whip it up.....

Here's my stew happily boiling. Looks yum, huh?



Ingredients:-

- 500g beef chunks
- 1/2 a bottle of Master Food Red Wine and Garlic Marinade
- potatoes, cut into chunky cubes
- carrots, cut into chunky cubes
- celery, cut into cubes
- 1 cup stock (beef or vegetable)
- 1 cup water
- salt and pepper 
- cooked quinoa

1. Heat oil and fry the beef till it is semi cooked
2. Add the potatoes and carrots to the beef and fry a while
3. Add the marinade and mix well
4. Add stock and simmer
5. If too thick, add some water, cover and continue to simmer until the carrots and potatoes are soft. 
6. Stir every now and then and then add the celery and cook for another 5 minutes.
7. Serve over cooked quinoa.

And here's the yummy dish served over quinoa. All healthy, all yummy....a quick meal for the home.





Maple Crusted Chicken Over Quinoa & Asparagus

I have been trying to cook some healthier meals at home with lesser of a carbo because as Asians, we tend to have lots of rice as rice is our staple food and trust me, it ain't good for the hips and all the cardio in the gym ain't gonna be enough unless I'm prepared to cardio every single day which I'm not. Lol....

And as the saying goes, it is not just about the exercise but also what we eat. So, I started us on quinoa as a rice replacement but maybe twice a week because quinoa here in KL is expensive.



So here is another yummy recipe which is truly tried and tested.

Ingredients:-

- 1 boneless, skinless chicken breast

- 1 tbsp olive oil

- 1 clove garlic, minced

- 1 tbsp maple syrup

- 1/4 tsp crushed red or chili pepper

- 1/4 tsp thyme 

- 1/4 tsp oregano

- 1/4 tsp paprika

- 1 cup cooked quinoa

- 6-8 asparagus spears, chopped 

- 1/2 cup steamed corn


*the above ingredients to put into ziplock bag is for one chicken breast and if you're cooking more chicken breasts like 3-4, repeat into 3-4 different ziplock bags*


1. In a ziplock bag, mix the olive oil, maple syrup, garlic, chili flakes, thyme, oregano, paprika with some salt and pepper together. Put one piece of chicken breast into bag and shake it around to evenly coat the chicken. Repeat the same for the other chicken breasts in other ziplock backs, following the same ingredients used.

2. Sauté your asparagus in olive oil, with some salt and pepper for taste. Cook for a few minutes.

3. Using the same pan, cook the chicken till its done.

4. Meanwhile, after the quinoa is cooked, toss it with the steam corn and cooked asparagus.

5. Scoop some quinoa onto a plate and serve a slice of cooked chicken breast on it.


See??? Such an easy recipe which is protein packed to the brim and good for the hips. Do give a shot and feel free to drop me a line on how it turns out to be.


Bon appetite......

Sunday, 23 August 2015

Sweet And Spicy Mango Shrimp

And ooooooo......my daughter loves prawns and loves mangoes, too. So here was a cool recipe for my little one. Trust me, she polished her dinner in 5 minutes and walked into the kitchen with an empty plate in her hands and a smirk on her face. Lol!!!! All I did was gape at her. I had barely sat down when she polished off her dinner right after I cooked and served her.

Her second helping was more prawns and mangoes but no rice. Too much carbs at night.


So, here's another new recipe to try......

Ingredients:-

- 2 tbsps coconut oil
- 1/2 large red onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, diced
- 2 tbsps soy sauce
- 2 tbsps lime juice
- 2 tbsps Sweet Thai chili sauce
- 1/4 water
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 500g of deveined prawns, large ones
- 1 mango, chopped
- unsweetened shredded coconut for garnish 
- chopped long green onions for garnishing
- lime for garnish


1. Hear coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
2. Add red onion until soft
3. Add garlic, soy sauce, lime juice, Thai chili sauce, red pepper and shrimp. Toss well and cook till prawns turn pink.
4. Add water after all well mixed
5. Add mango, stir to mix and quickly warm through
6. Pour mixed prawns over warm rice for 1 serving. Garnish with coconut and green onions and lime.

Yum!!! Yum!!! Yum!!! That's all I can say and till my next tested recipe.

Ta ta as my little one always says.

Cilantro Lime Tilapia

I absolutely loved this dish and I learned about new ingredients like quinoa which is packed with protein and great for dinners if you want to keep the carbs down. That's the thing with Asians, we are always having our dinners with rice or noodles and quinoa is a great replacement. Only thing is that in Asia, it's expensive and thus far can only be found in the Organic section.

Well, I'll need to start digging for more quinoa recipes after this one.

Give a try. Easy to prepare and just easy to cook.


Ingredients:-

- 1 cup Uncooked quinoa

- 2 cup water

- 4 tilapia fillets

- smoked paprika

- 1 1/2 cup of corn kernel, steamed 

- 4 tbsps Lime juice

- 1 tsp Garlic powder

- 1 tsp Onion powder

- 1/2 cup cilantro, roughly chopped

- salt/pepper to taste (I didn't use any and it was still good)



1. In a large pot, bring water to boil over high heat.

2. Once boiling, stir in quinoa, cover and reduce heat to low. Cook until all water is absorbed.

3. While quinoa is cooking, spray a large pan with oil and hear over medium/high fire

4. Sprinkle each side of tilapia with paprika powder generously and cook till white and flaky. 

5. Once quinoa is ready and fluffed, mix cooked corn, cilantro, garlic powder, onion powder and lime well.

6. Divide the mixed quinoa into 4 servings equally and put a fish each on top of the quinoa mix.

7. Serve immediately.


Super yum. Super high protein. A must try recipe.


My daughter is the judge to all my cooking and she was Oh Yum!!!!

Saturday, 22 August 2015

BBQ Beef Pie Pockets

You know, whenever it comes to pies. I always get nervous. Thinking that it's gonna be super difficult and chances I'm going to screw it all up and hence, I've always stayed away from pie looking stuff. If I wanna have a good pie, I'll just go out and have it. With an exception with Cottage Pies which I can pretty much whip up a decent one but anything else that requires pastries????? Uh....no thank you, then.

I guess after my divorce, I've gotten bolder in many aspects of my life. I've begun to....how shall I put it??? Reclaim myself? I'm still in search of me and while I'm doing that, I'm cooking and exploring into new dimensions of cooking which I didn't dare venture in the past.

So, here is to a more daring me.

A much simpler recipe and I was watching my oven like a hawk. Lol!!! 



Ingredients:-

- 500g mince beef
- 1/2 cup BBQ sauce or a little more to ensure all the beef is well covered 
- 1 cup shredded cheese (cheddar, Colby Jack or Monterey - your choice)
- 1 cup water + 1 1/2 cup water (separated)
- 4 large squares of pie crust or pastries sheets (normally sold in a large box but can be used for others)
- Preheat oven at 220 Celsius


1. In a large skillet, cook the beef till it turns brown and juice absorbed.
2. Pour BBQ sauce and stir until beef is well coated.
3. Place each sheet and have it cut into 4 of equal sides. I cut 2 large sheets hence I had 8 squares.
4. On a flat cookie baking pan, place cookie paper on it and place 3-4 cut squares on pan.
5. Spoon cooked beef onto the cut squares placed on the pan.
6. Add cheese on top of the beef. 
7. Place other cut square pastries on top of each beef and cheese filled pastry and pinch pastry together to seal.
8. Cut 2 small slits on top of the pastries so that the pies can breathe.
9. Bake between 15-20 mins. (Depends how old your oven is so, best to keep an eye on it)

Serve with some salad. 

My daughter absolutely loved it and had 2 helpings. My maid loved it.

And of course, I loved it. LOL!!!!