Archive for the ‘Chicken’ Category

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Pizza

July 18, 2010


Crust and Crumb is an amazing book. I love it, I love bread so that’s probably why. Having said that the major problem is of course my intolerance of one of the most important ingredients. Yeast and I are not friends and yet I will not stop eating it!

I am slowly making my way through the different recipes, and today I started quite a bit today. I have made the Banana Bread, the French Bread II (with Pate Fermentee) and the White Sandwich Loaf. And have enjoyed every mouthful of all of them. I decided though that I wanted to make some bagels. So, I had to make some poolish style pre-ferment. This is a sponge made by combining yeast with a small amount of flour and a large amount of water. Due to the lack of resistance of dough, the yeast ferments and multiplies more quickly.

Like the recipe says due to the small amount of yeast that is already in this dish it makes it difficult to reduce the amount of fermentee you create. There is a suggestion of perhaps cutting the ingredients in half and using 1/8 t of yeast, but you can freeze the sponge if you want. Or you can just make the full batch and then make a lot of things! If you do decide to freeze the poolish you need to do so just before or after refrigerating it on the first night, otherwise it’s less reliable and take it out at least 24hours before you want to use it.

One of the many things I made with this pre-ferment is pizza dough.

Now the Husband makes a really good non-yeasted pizza dough that I love and actually prefer over this dough now that I’ve tried it. However, due to the fact that I had all this leftover poolish I wanted to give it a go. It is a nice flavoured dough but just didn’t have the same flavour that the Husband’s does. I would make it again if I had leftover poolish so it’s not a bad thing is it? There is 2 dough’s though so I could always try the other one as well.

The quantity of this was 3 pizza’s as I was catering for the parent’s-in-laws who came over to help the Husband mount our dryer so I could reclaim some space in my laundry, I needed to be mindful of tastes. So I went with a classic Hawaiian
a BBQ chicken
and pepperoni.

Poolish Style Pre-ferment


4 cups unbleached bread flour
4 cups cool water
1/4t instant yeast

Combine all the ingredients in a mixing bowl large enough to hold the batter after it has doubled in volume. Beat or whisk for about 1 minute, until the batter is well mixed and quite smooth. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave it at room temperature for 3-5hours or till foamy and bubbly. Refrigerate the poolish, well covered, and overnight.
Makes just over 3 pounds

Pizza Dough I


3.5 cups unbleached bread flour
2t salt
¼ t instant yeast
2T honey
½ cup olive oil
¾ cup plus 1T cool water
1 ¼ cup poolish

Combine all the ingredient in the bowl of an electric mixer with a paddle attachment (not dough) or a mixing bowl. Mix on a low speed for 1 minute and then increase to a medium speed and mix for about 12 minutes until the dough is smooth and creamy. It will be very thick and like pancake batter. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise at room temperature for about 3 hours, till bubbly. Refrigerate overnight; it will thicken as it cools. Turn the dough out onto a heavily floured work surface and divide into 3 pieces. Toss the pieces one at a time in flour, gently round into a bowl and mist the tops of the dough with cooking spray and cover with a plastic bag. Let the dough rise for at least 30 minutes before proceeding. Preheat the oven to 290C (or as high as your oven will go) prepare the oven for heath baking. Line an inverted sheet pan with parchment and mist. Spread out the dough and make it as thin as possible without tearing. Dress the pizza with the sauce and toppings you want. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden brown and cheese is bubbly. Remove from the oven and serve.

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Chicken Pie

July 17, 2010


Continuing with my desire to make pastry I decided I’d make my husband a chicken pie. Originally I wanted to make a Chicken & Leek Pie. However, I had no leeks, and actually I only had one onion. Terrible isn’t it? What’s a girl to do then? Improvise of course! That is of course what cooking is about isn’t it?

I used the recipe as a bit of a guide. A starting point so to speak. My improvisation consisted of a cabbage instead of leek. Bit of another way for me to get the Husband to eat more vegetables, which is very important to me. I also used some baby red capsicums that I had as well, they had been sitting in my fridge for awhile so into the food processor they went. The taste was surprisingly great! And it was sneaky enough that the Husband enjoyed it without any complaints and a healthy appetite.

I struggled a touch with the pastry as usual. I have a bit of pastry problem! I didn’t think about it completely, when assembling my pie. I followed the instructions, but obviously not properly. I put my lid on….after folding the edges down! Arg, these are simple things, but I don’t think of them until it’s all over red rover! So it didn’t look great, but it did taste good. So I guess perhaps I should focus on that? failures in looks aren’t really failures are they? The pastry was from How to be a Domestic Goddess

Chicken Pie

2 chicken breasts
¼ cabbage
3 baby red capsicum
1 bottle of dry white wine
1 can evaporated milk
70g feta – cubed
2 cloves garlic
1T dried onion (yes I know the horror)

Pastry
250g plain flour
125g cold butter – cubed
2 egg yolks
2T cold water
1t salt
1T caster sugar

Slice chicken breast up. Put cabbage and capsicum in food processor and chop up. Pour wine into a saucepan and place all ingredients but the evaporated milk and feta in. Boil away until the wine is reduced. Once reduced, add the evaporated milk and feta, and reduce this. Allow to cool.
Whilst cooling make the pastry by putting the flour and butter in a dish and put the dish in the freezer for 10 minutes. Stir together the yolks, water and salt in a cup and put this cup in the fridge.
Then when the time is up tip the flour and butter into the food processor, add the sugar and pulse to combine – until it looks like something similar to sand. Bind with the egg yolks water and salt, and when it looks like its on the verge of coming together, tip the pastry out and work it together with your hands. Divide into 2 discs, one a little bigger than the other. Wrap in cling wrap and chill in the fridge for awhile.
Preheat the oven to 200C and butter a 22cm, springform tin. Roll out the large of the discs and place in the tin with an overhang. Sprinkle the bottom of this with some breadcrumbs and fill with the cold pie filling. Roll out the other piece of pastry and lay over the top, then fold the overhang and press down.
Glaze the pie with milk and egg and stab here and there. Cook for 10 minutes on the 200C before dropping it down to 180C for 45minutes.
Allow to sit for 10 minutes prior to serving.

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Green Chile & Grilled Chicken Enchilada

May 14, 2010

Our hosts this month, Barbara of Barbara Bakes and Bunnee of Anna+Food have chosen a delicious Stacked Green Chile & Grilled Chicken Enchilada recipe in celebration of Cinco de Mayo! The recipe, featuring a homemade enchilada sauce was found on http://www.finecooking.com and written by Robb Walsh.

I must admit I was both excited and saddened by this challenge. I love Mexican food, though my love affair with Italian cuisine is well documented, so the thought of giving this a go was exciting. I have a burrito mix that we use fairly regularly and is enjoyed by the Husband immensely so was certainly excited to give this a go. But, then, we face the reality that is my inability to locate some of the ingredients! Locating tomatillos would just be a joke! I could manage a bunch of the other ingredients but those would prove my downfall. Of course we were adviced of some variations thanks to Audax – and I could get my hands on some green gooseberries!

I loved roasting the green Chiles, the flavour of them really pops after you do. I didn’t make my own tortilla I must admit. Went with a store purchased variety, but, all in all I think that it worked out really well. The Husband loved it, only thing is I wished it was a bit of a deeper shade of green! I have seen some variations since creating mine, with people going an all vege option which I think would be great, or using pork which I think the Husband would love. But, I did stick to the original – chicken!

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Satay Chicken

January 14, 2010


The January 2010 DC challenge was hosted by Cuppy of Cuppylicious and she chose a delicious Thai-inspired recipe for Pork Satay from the book 1000 Recipes by Martha Day.

And let me tell you it was delicious! It was highly amusing for me to see this be the challenge for the month. Because the day before it was revealed my family went and purchased some local takeaway and that takeaway included a beef satay. Which they felt whilst nice, was not “right” it didn’t hit the spot and they requested that I find a recipe to find that right spot! So I had in essence already been set a challenge by my family. So cue the next day and I log on eagerly to see what the Daring Kitchen had in store for me. And voila! How fortuitous!

Now I waited patiently to actually try it out on them, I wasn’t going to start it straight away, not with all the indulging they were to do in a few days, I thought it was worthwhile making them wait until after Christmas and they’d settled back into “normal” foods and make this a little treat.

I did a chicken version instead of a pork, because I was also feeding my grandma who (if you’ve read previous posts) is a ‘vegetarian’ and whilst I considered a tofu option, the Husband would’ve protested and I didn’t fancy doing multiple this time around so I just went with chicken.

I did the long version and marinated the chicken for about 9 hours and did add a bit of chilli and fish sauce but not too much chilli because whilst I wanted a little bit of a kick, I didn’t want it to knock out the grandma who has a sensitive palate!

I also – did not put them on skewers, I know the recipe called for this, but if there is one cooking thing I’m bad with, it’s skewers. I never use them, I can’t do it – I find it frustrating to threat on meat to a stick, just to have people pull it off. I know it looks “cool” but I can present on a plate nicely without them (or at least I think so!)
Verdict? It was perfect! They said it hit that spot and the flavour depth and quality was just the right amount of nuttiness. I also served it with a soba noodle with vegetable mix because of the grandmother’s dietary requirements.

The only thing that the family said to me upon eat it, was that they wished there was a bit more of the sauce to go about. I think that is just a bit of a habitual thing for this family, being used to copious amounts of sauce on things that have a sauce. Rather than a true reflection of the cuisine. Having said that though, part of what I love and enjoy about cooking is the opportunities to take a cuisine and adapt it to suit the tastes of my family as well – so I guess I would be being true to my passion by giving them that extra sauce?

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Chicken Pho Ga

October 14, 2009

I opted for both the chicken version and the long version of this my first ever Daring Kitchen challenge. The challenge was bought to us by Jaden of Steamy Kitchen and the recipe can be found Here

I did not work hard enough to skim though and ended up with a slightly greasier pho ga then I had hoped. But still quite delicious, it was very much worth the “extra” effort of going with the long version.

Overall, for a first go I felt I did pretty ok. I did learn not to leave it to the last minute though!!

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Chicken Breyani

October 8, 2009

This recipe is the first attempt of cooking for Flavour of the Month, out of Traditional South African Cooking
It had a rather daunting amount of ingredients which did give me pause at the beginning when leafing through the pages to decide what I would create. However, the description provided was enough to make me look more in depth at this list of ingredients and the instructions, only to discover that it actually wasn’t too bad. Who can resist “tender morsels of chicken in a creamy, spicy blend” This dish was introduced into South Africa by the Indians.

Original recipe called for hard-boiled eggs and rice as well. I skipped these things for the Husband, after his 18 months on rice and his still mild allergy to eggs I figured it was probably the best bet. Also, the original recipe was enough serve 10! Since there was only 2 of us I figured it was probably best to cut back on the recipe a little. I cut it into thirds (keeping lentil amount up to balance out the no rice) and ended up still having enough to serve 4.

The result? Delicious! Something I’ll definitely be making again – one time I will even go the rice and see if the Husband can enjoy it still.

Chicken Breyani

60mL Sunflower Oil
4 medium onions, finely chopped
4 potatoes, cubed
250mL lentils, soaked and drained
Pinch of salt
700g chicken, cut into portions
5mL ground coriander
3mL turmeric
1 stick of cinnamon
1 bay leaf
½ T ground cardamom
2mL cumin seeds
1 chilli finely chopped
1 ripe tomato, chopped
40mL lemon juice
3 cloves of garlic
170mL natural yoghurt
1 piece of root ginger crushed

Heat a little oil in a frying pan and sauté the onions for about 5 minutes. Remove and set aside.
Add the rest of the oil and the potatoes to a pan and sauté for about 8 minutes. Remove, drain and set aside.
Boil the lentils in salted water for about 5 minutes and then drain.
Combine the lentils with ¼ of the onions.
Rub salt into the chicken pieces and place them in a large mixing bowl. Combine the remainder of the ingredients and pour over the chicken and leave for about 30 minutes (I left mine in for about 2 hours).
Arrange the ingredients in a large saucepan in the following order: half the potatoes, chicken and marinade, lentils and remainder of the potatoes.
Close the saucepan tightly and simmer, without stirring for 1.5 hours.

The suggestion is made that it be served with sambals, but I had been cooking up a storm on Sunday (posts to follow) and by the time everything was done….it got served with green beans. Next time though?