Chicken Marbella

Holy Marbella… I didn’t even know Chicken Marbella existed until a few days ago, and it turns out it’s one of my favorite ways to eat chicken! The recipe is originally from The Silver Palate Cookbook from 1982. It’s cooked with capers, Spanish green olives, prunes, garlic, and fresh herbs. It’s packed with flavor and is the perfect mix of sweet and savory. It is also very easy to make! You just need to marinate it all together overnight, then plop it in the oven for about 50 mins the next day. I tweaked the originally recipe slightly by adding persimmons and fresh thyme, then omitting the white wine (because I didn’t have any on hand) and the dried oregano. I will definitely be making this recipe one million times in the future.

Ingredients: (serves 3)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
6 boneless chicken thighs
10 whole prunes, pitted
2 small persimmons, cut into wedges
About 10-12 whole Spanish olives
1/4 cup capers, and some of the juice
3 whole bay leaves
3 large garlic cloves, peeled and grated
1 tablespoon fresh thyme
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped

In a large bowl, toss together the chicken, olive oil, red wine vinegar, prunes, olives, capers and caper brine, persimmons, bay leaves, thyme, garlic, salt and pepper. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge overnight, or longer is OK too, mine was marinating for a full day.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a shallow baking dish, arrange the chicken in a single layer then spoon the marinade evenly over the top. Sprinkle the top of the chicken pieces with the brown sugar. Place in oven for 50 minutes (or until chicken is cooked through) basting frequently with the pan juices. Remove from oven, then with a slotted spoon transfer the chicken and the toppings to a plate, and spoon over top some of the pan juices as well. Sprinkle with fresh parsley and serve immediately. Save the rest of the pan juices and serve on the side for people to add more, if desired. If you want to have a side, rice or polenta would be a nice option. I myself made some smashed fingerling potatoes then topped them with some Parmesan cheese, fresh thyme, and a drizzle of the pan juices from the chicken.

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Flank Steak With Basil Chimichurri & Tomatoes

It’s been a while since I’ve made myself some steak, mostly because I really need to be in the mood for meat in order for me to eat it, which is rare these days. But Whole Foods opened up a new store in Williamsburg, Brooklyn which is fairly close to me, and I was excited to have a market in the neighborhood to buy “non-creepy” meat from! I had a lot of basil on hand, so I made a chimichurri to top the steak with, then added some pretty cherry tomatoes from my CSA. It was a successful dinner! I did have a lot of steak leftover though, so in the morning I made myself steak and eggs with an easy roasted tomato relish. I’ve added that quick recipe below as well!

Ingredients: (serves two)
Flank steak
Olive oil
1 cup fresh basil leaves, packed
1/8 cup red onion
1 small garlic clove
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Pinch red pepper flakes
Fresh cherry tomatoes
Salt and pepper, to taste

Salt and pepper the steak well and set aside until ready to cook.

In a food processor, mix together the basil, red onion, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper to taste.

Heat your pan with some olive oil until nice and hot (I used my cast iron pan) then add the steak. Let cook for about 2-3 minutes on each side, depending on how well-done you like your meat. I like mine medium, so I went with 3 minutes on each side. Remove and place on a cutting board and wrap with aluminum foil, let sit for at least 5 minutes. The reason I like to do this is because the steak continues to cook a little bit, but also if you cut it right away then all the juices pour out. If you let it rest then it gives the meat a little extra time to absorb all that juice! While it’s resting, toss the tomatoes with a tiny bit of olive oil, salt, and pepper.

To serve, slice and plate the steak, then add the chimichurri sauce and fresh tomatoes. Enjoy!

And here is the steak and eggs with a quick tomato relish I made the following morning!

Ingredients: (serves 2)
Flank steak
10 cherry tomatoes
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
Slash red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sriracha
Chives, for topping
2 eggs
Salt and pepper, to taste

In a pan (I used my cast iron again) add the tomatoes and a tiny bit of olive oil. Let cook until they begin to char and burst a little. In a food processor, mix together the cooked tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, sriracha, salt and pepper. Lastly, cook your eggs in the cast iron pan as well. Plate and be grateful for another eggy morning!

 

Summery Shrimp & Mango Kebobs


My friend had a great idea to make some summery kebobs for dinner. I had some peaches and oranges from my CSA this week and we thought the citrus would go great with shrimp. We threw everything onto the skewers and made a simple orange dressing to drizzle over the kebobs when they were done cooking. We both get Bon Appetit magazine every month and had seen this salad which we really wanted to make with the squash blossoms we got at the farmers market the day before. I also used some of zucchini from my CSA for that as well.

Ingredients: Serves 2
10 jumbo shrimp, peeled
1 large peach, cut into medium sized chunks
1 large bell pepper, cut into chunks
1/2 onion, but into chunks
1/2 orange, juiced
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
Small pinch of cumin
Salt and pepper, to taste

Do ahead: if using wooden skewers, place them in water for about an hour before using them. This will help them from burning or catching fire!

Thread the shrimp, peaches, onions, and peppers onto the skewers. Head a little olive oil in a cast iron skillet and cook the kabobs, turning occasionally, for about 10 minutes or until the shrimp is pink and cooked through (and the other items have a some char to them as well) Alternatively, you can cook these on the grill if you’re not working out of a NYC apartment!

While those cook, make the dressing by simply whisking the orange, white wine vinegar, ginger, cumin, salt and pepper. Set aside. Also make the cous cous per the box instructions. I like to add some chopped nuts and fresh herbs to mine.

If you would like to make the Bon Appetite corn, zucchini, and squash blossom salad, you can find the recipe here! It was very simple to make and really delicious.

Artichoke & Spinach Stuffed Shells

Last night was one of those nights when you go through everything you have in the kitchen and try to come up with something creative just so you don’t have to go to the store. I looked around and had an onion, spinach, a can of artichokes, and some leftover pasta shells. Done…stuffed shells it is! This could not have been easier, and it was pretty good for an experimental dinner!

Ingredients: Serves 3
1/2 box jumbo pasta shells
1 cup ricotta cheese
(half) 14oz can whole artichokes, roughly chopped
1 1/2 cups fresh spinach, roughly chopped
1/2 small onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 can tomato sauce (if no herbs, add a big pinch of dried basil, oregano, salt and pepper)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Small handful fresh chopped basil, for serving (optional)
Olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Get a large pot of salted water boiling and cook the pasta shells as directed. Make sure not to overcook them as they will continue to cook in the oven.

Head some olive in a large pan, add the garlic, onion, and a little salt and pepper. Cook for about 1-2 minutes, then toss in the chopped spinach and artichokes and cook for another 4-5 minutes. Let cool slightly. In a large bowl mix together the ricotta, cooked vegetables, and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Pour some of the tomato sauce on the bottom of a baking dish, then fill each pasta shell with some of the filling and place in a single layer. Cover the shells with some more pasta sauce, and top with a sprinkle of grated Parmesan cheese and shredded mozzarella. Cover with aluminum foil and place in the oven for 20-25 minutes. Remove the foil and cook for another 5 minutes. Top with some fresh chopped basil and serve.

Garlic Scape & Dandelion Green Pizza With Sweet Sausage

I know I make a lot of pizzas, but I am forever curious about the different kind of funky ones I can make- and 99% of the time they taste awesome, which is a pretty high percentage in pizza land. This week I got garlic scapes which I have anxiously been waiting, as well as some dandelion greens which happen to be one of my favorite greens lately…they’re so great just simply sautéed. Anyway, I went over to my friend Meghan’s house and cooked us a pizza while we drank a very large bottle of wine. Overall a great night with some great local ingredients!

Ingredients:
1 small bunch dandelion greens, thick stems partially trimmed
3 garlic scapes
1 medium mozzarella ball
1/2 cup fresh ricotta cheese
2 sweet Italian sausage links, casings removed
1 fresh pizza dough
Salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 385 degrees. Start roasting the garlic scapes in the oven with a little olive oil for about 10 minutes or until soft, but be careful not to burn them. While those cook, sauté the dandelion greens in a skillet with some olive oil, salt and pepper. Set all the veggies aside once cooked. Next, brown the sausage and break it up well into crumbles. On a floured surface, roll the dough out into a large circle (or two circles if you have smaller pans like we did) To make the pizza, place the rolled dough on a baking sheet covered in parchment paper. Spread the mozzarella and ricotta all over the bottom, then top with dandelion greens, garlic scapes, and sausage. Cook for 20 minutes or until the bottom is golden and the toppings are melted and bubbling. Top with some fresh cracked pepper and a large bottle of wine!

Minty Pea Orecchiette With Sausage & Artichokes

This was a random weeknight pasta that was created using existing ingredients in my fridge. Sometimes I think the best meals are made that way- by grabbing what you have and experimenting! My mom is really great at opening the fridge and making something out of nothing, so maybe I picked this skill up from her (hi mom!) The whole meal took about 30 minutes and was really great. The pea and mint sauce gave it a fresh Spring taste. I think it would actually be a nice cold pasta salad as well, maybe swapping out the sausage for cherry tomatoes.

Ingredients:
2 cups frozen peas, defrosted
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon fresh mint
6 tablespoons olive oil (or more as needed)
16 box Orecchiette pasta
2 sweet Italian sausage links, removed from casing
1 can artichokes, quartered
Salt and pepper, to taste

Start by making the pea and mint sauce. Add the peas, mint, and Parmesan cheese to a food processor and blend until combined. With the motor running, add the olive oil until smooth. It will be a thicker sauce. Salt and pepper to taste, then set aside. Next, add the pasta to a pot of salted boiling water and cook per the box instructions. At the same time, brown the sausage and artichokes in separate pans. Once the pasta is ready, toss with the pea and mint sauce then add the sausage and artichokes! Top with a little grated cheese.

 

Creamy Lemon Pasta With Mushrooms & Swiss Chard

After a long week of working late every night, I was finally able to cook some dinner! I ordered some local NY pasta from my CSA this week and was really excited to try it out. There’s definitely something special about cooking with local ingredients. You can taste the love and care put into every bite! I was craving a creamy pasta, so I made a nice lemony sauce to toss it in. I also added some pretty mushrooms I found at the corner store nearby and some fresh Swiss chard. The whole meal took about 20 minutes to make and was delicious!

Lemon Cream Sauce:
1 cup half & half
2 tablespoons butter
4-6 tablespoons olive oil
1 lemon, juiced
1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
Salt, to taste

Other:
16 oz pasta of your choice! (I used gnocchi sardi)
6 oz mixed mushrooms
Small bunch Swiss Chard, de-stemmed and roughly chopped
1 cup pasta water (to use as needed)
Salt and pepper, to taste

Bring a pot of water to a boil, and cook pasta as instructed. While the pasta cooks, make the cream sauce.

Add the olive oil and butter to a pan over medium heat. When the butter has melted, add the garlic and cook for a minute or so. Next add the mushrooms and sauté for about 3-5 minutes, toss in the Swiss chard and cook for another 5 minutes or until the greens have cooked down a bit. Lastly, mix in the cream, Parmesan cheese, lemon juice, white pepper, and salt.

Drain the pasta and reserve a cup of the water. Toss the pasta in the lemon cream sauce, coating all the noodles well. If the sauce dries out at all, add small amounts of the pasta water until it has the consistency you want. Taste and salt and pepper as needed. Plate and sprinkle a little extra parmesan cheese and fresh parsley!

 

 

 

Fried Avocado Tacos With A Beet & Orange Salsa

I love tacos, I could eat them every day! I’ve tried a ton of different variations, but was intrigued recently when I saw a recipe with fried avocado and decided to try it out. I made a sweet and tangy beet and orange salsa to go with it- which was pretty damn good if you ask me! I also made a spicy Greek yogurt sauce to top my tacos with, instead of the usual mayo based kind. Aside from the oil, everything else in the taco is pretty healthy! I was going to try frying the avocados with coconut oil but wasn’t sure what it would taste like, so for this first time around I stuck to regular vegetable oil. Overall a nice Wednesday night meal…

Ingredients: (makes 4 tacos)
4 medium sized flour tortillas
1 large avocados
Panko breadcrumbs
1 large egg, whisked
Vegetable oil
2 beets, roasted and finely chopped
1 navel orange, segmented and finely chopped
1/2 red onion, minced
1 tablespoon jalapeno, seeds removed and minced
Small handful fresh cilantro, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
3/4 cup Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon hot sauce
Salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Peel beets and cut into chunks. Place on a baking sheet, drizzle with a little olive oil, and bake for about 30 minutes or until fork tender. Remove from oven and let cool a little before finely chopping. Place in a bowl and toss together with the chopped oranges, onion, jalapeno, cilantro and lime juice. Salt and pepper to taste and set aside.

To fry your avocado slices, start by having your little station ready with a bowl of panko (seasoned with salt and pepper) and a separate bowl for your whisked egg. Heat the vegetable oil in a large frying pan. Dip your avocado slices in egg, toss and coat well with the panko, then place in the frying pan. Cook for 1 minute on each side or until golden brown. Place on a paper towel lined plate until ready to assemble you tacos. Lastly, mix your Greek yogurt in a small bowl with the hot sauce and also set aside.

To assemble your tacos, place a few slices of fried avocado on your tortilla, followed by the beet and orange salsa, then top with some spicy Greek yogurt. Wrap it up and eat! When I’m not being lazy I like to char my tortillas over my gas stove a little as well…it’s easy and definitely adds a nice touch!

 

 

Veggie Sushi With Beet Wasabi Mayo

So it turns out making sushi at home is kind of complicated! Not sure how people roll them up so fast and make everything look so pretty- I had a good amount of sticky rice stuck to my hands, face, and clothes by the time I finished. Plus my roll looked a little wonky, but it was fun and I had a good laugh! I prefer the rice on the outside, but I’m thinking it is much easier to just roll it on the inside. Keeping my hands and knife a little wet when cutting the roll really helped with the stickiness a lot, so that’s a good trick to know. I wanted to do something interesting with the wasabi so I added roasted beets and ginger for some flavor, and of course the gorgeous color. I topped the sushi with mango as well, though for some reason it looks like cheese in the photos! I send my sister a picture and she responded with “and then I added some Kraft singles,” which made me burst out laughing. When all was said and done though, I really liked it! A healthy and fun dinner to make. It might not look like the lunch I get most days from Beyond Sushi, but I’m working on it.

Ingredients:
2 cups sticky rice (I bought pre-cooked to save time)
Seaweed (nori) sheets
3 small red beets, peeled and cubed
2 tablespoons light mayonnaise
1 tablespoon wasabi
1 inch cube fresh ginger
Small avocado, sliced thin
1 Daikon radish, cut into matchsticks
1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks
1 mango, sliced thin for topping
Soy sauce, for serving (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Drizzle the beets with olive oil and cook for about 15-20 minutes, or until fork tender. In the meantime, cut the vegetables. When the beets are done, place into the food processor with mayo, wasabi, and ginger. Blend until smooth. Place a piece of the seaweed onto a sushi rolling mat and gently spread the sticky rice covering the seaweed. At this point you can either flip it over so the rice is facing down, and fill the center so the rice is on the outside when you roll it up (like I did) or you can add your fillings on top of the rice to have the rice on the inside. Once you add the filling, gently roll the sushi mat from the bottom up and tuck the sushi under, creating the rolls shape. Continue using the mat to push the roll until you have a complete piece. With a sharp knife, cut the individual pieced from the roll. Top each piece with mango and beet wasabi mayo. Serve with soy sauce!

Potato and Shiitake Tart With Truffled Goat Cheese

Pretty much anything you put on puff pastry is going to be great- it’s buttery, flaky, and delicious! So when I got some potatoes and mushrooms in my bag I thought I would experiment a little. This tart took about 30 minutes from beginning to end and was delicious. I think next time I will add more mushrooms and use some colorful purple potatoes as well. I actually thought I had purple potatoes because the skin had a purple tint, but they were white when I cut them open so not sure what type they were! Either way they were good. Next time I make this I think I will also roast the sliced potatoes in the oven first so they get a little browned before adding them to the tart. Th potatoes will look prettier that way. In the end I topped it with some fresh miner’s lettuce to add some nice color, but you could use other greens such as arugula.

Ingredients:
1 box puff pastry, thawed
1 egg
1 large potato, thinly sliced
1/2 large shallot, chopped
1 cup shiitake mushrooms, cleaned and cut into chunks
5 ounces truffled goat cheese (I used half)
Salt and Pepper, to taste
Truffle oil, for drizzle (optional)
Handful of pretty greens- such as miner’s lettuce or arugula- for topping

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the thawed dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment. I sprinkled a little flour to help the dough from sticking. With a knife, make a 1/2 inch border around the tart, without going through to the other side. Poke some holes in the center of the tart with a fork to let the heat escape while cooking. Brush with the egg and bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes until golden. You will see that it puffs up a lot when it cooks, but don’t worry! When you remove it from the oven, poke a few additional holes with a sharp knife then while wearing oven mitts, gently press down on the dough to release the air- it will flatten.

In a pot of boiling water, cook the potatoes until fork tender. Careful not overcook them! Alternatively, you could also drizzle with olive oil and bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes until they start to brown- which is what I will try next time. Remove and set aside. Add some olive oil to a pan and cook the shallots for about 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms and continue for another 5 minutes until softened and cooked through. When the dough is ready, top with the potatoes, followed by the mushroom and shallot mixture. Break up the cheese and add as much as you like. Place in oven for 10 minutes. Once removed, drizzle with some truffle oil, fresh ground pepper, and a small handful of greens. Serve warm. Enjoy!