Showing posts with label chicken. Show all posts
Showing posts with label chicken. Show all posts

Friday, July 10, 2020

Butter chicken

Frango ensopado à moda indiana / Butter chicken

For years now I have been reducing the amount of beef and chicken we eat and we are very fine with it: I use vegetables in many different ways, and they always taste amazing. However, sometimes both Joao and I feel like eating chicken – maybe every 10 days or so? – but my precious little husband does not like chicken cooked in sauces, or “wet chicken” as he says. :S

I, on the other hand, love me some “wet chicken”, so I decided to make butter chicken – first time ever – and just told him I would bake some meatballs for him. When I was making lunch and he smelled the food he changed his mind and told me he would eat the chicken. Not only that happened, but he asked me to make this chicken again twice more. He was surprised of how tender and flavorful the chicken was, and the sauce was thick and delicious, not watery at all – the power of yogurt and spices… :)

Butter chicken
slightly adapted from Good Food magazine

For marinating the chicken:
½ cup (130g) natural yogurt – I was once short on yogurt and used part yogurt, part homemade buttermilk (whole milk + lime juice)
juice of ½ lime
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
salt and freshly ground black pepper
350g skinless boneless chicken breast, in bite-sized pieces

For the curry:
1 tablespoons vegetable oil – I use canola
½ large onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
2 teaspoons garam masala*
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup (240ml) boiling water
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
2 tablespoons flaked almonds, toasted

In a medium bowl, mix the yogurt, lime juice, spices, salt and pepper and mix well. Add the chicken, mix to combine, cover and chill in the fridge for 1 hour or overnight – I have made this recipe three times and marinated the chicken for 3 hours.

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic and ginger and cook for 5-6 minutes or until soft.
Add the spices with the tomato purée, cook for a further 2 minutes, then add the water, the bay leaf and the chicken, with the marinade. Cook over low heat for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until chicken is cooked through and sauce is thickened. Stir through the cilantro.
Serve immediately sprinkled with the almonds.

* instead of garam masala, I used a mix of spices called “vindaloo” that has cinnamon, cardamom, cilantro, cumin, cloves, turmeric, fenugreek, ginger, mustard seeds, black pepper and red pepper flakes. If you want to follow the original recipe, use 1 teaspoon garam masala + 1 teaspoon fenugreek

Serves 2

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Mayo marinated roast chicken

Mayo marinated roast chicken / Frango assado marinado em maionese

I have told you that I am a very visual person and that beautiful food photos get my attention instantly, and a while ago I found out that my husband is just like that too. :)
Now, every time I see something delicious on a magazine or cookbook I immediately show him the picture – that has made my life so much easier! :)

I was reading Bon Appétit the other day and saw this insanely golden chicken – it caught my eye right away. When I read it was marinated in mayonnaise I was even more curious about the recipe, so I lifted the IPad and told him (I might have screamed, I am not so sure): “LOOK at this chicken!” to what he replied: “please make it for lunch next weekend?” :D

So in a matter of minutes the menu was decided and I got to learn that marinating chicken with mayo makes it really, really tender and beautifully golden – and all those spices combined with the onion and garlic added a wonderful flavor to it.

Mayo marinated roast chicken
adapted from Bon Appétit magazine

1 large onion, peeled and quartered
3 garlic cloves
finely grated zest and juice of 1 lime
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
½ teaspoon ground cumin
pinch of cayenne pepper
salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup mayonnaise
4 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs (about 1½ pounds total)
1 ½ tablespoons olive oil

Make the marinade: in a food processor, process onions, garlic, lime zest and juice, paprika, cumin and cayenne pepper until a rough purée forms. Transfer to a large baking dish and stir in salt, black pepper and mayonnaise. Add the chicken and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours (overnight is even better).

Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F. Line a large and shallow baking dish with a double layer of foil and brush it with olive oil. Remove the chicken pieces from the marinade and scrape off the excess marinade. Place chicken onto the foil, skin side up, drizzle with the olive oil and roast for 60-70 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.

Serve immediately – I served it with watercress salad, like it was on the magazine, and it was delicious

Serves 2

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Chicken fajitas with homemade tortillas

Chicken fajitas with homemade tortillas / Fajitas de frango com tortillas caseiras

I always think about how much my understanding of food has changed over the last decade or so – I feel grateful for how much I have learned after I started writing this blog, back in 2006.

Back then, I had already been cooking for seventeen years, for at the age of 11 I was already cooking dinner for 5 people every night. But after the blog I have come to learn dishes I had never heard of before, new ingredients, amazing flavors, and all of that has improved my cooking immensely.

I first heard of fajitas a long time ago, and I don’t even remember where I first saw it. After that, I ate them a few times in a Tex-Mex restaurant, but I can tell you that nothing, nothing beat homemade fajitas, especially if they are served with homemade tortillas – it is a whole new thing completely.

These tortillas are so delicious that I make them quite often, even to be served with guacamole only – after he tried these for the first time, my husband told me he would never eat store bought tortillas again. :)

Chicken fajitas with homemade tortillas
own creation, inspired by lots of sources

3 tablespoons olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
a few drops of Tabasco
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
a few drops of Worcestershire sauce
1 large clove of garlic, minced
2 bay leaves
2 chicken fillets (about 250g in total), cut into strips
1 small yellow bell pepper (about 150g), sliced
1 small red onion, sliced in half moons
1 tablespoon water

2/3 cup (94g) all purpose flour
1/3 cup (46g) whole wheat flour
¼ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon table salt
2 tablespoons canola oil
1/3 cup (80ml) warm water

Start by marinating the chicken: in a shallow medium bowl, mix together 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, salt, pepper, Tabasco, cumin, paprika, Worcestershire sauce and garlic. Add the bay leaves and the chicken and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, 2 hours if possible.

Now, the tortillas: in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook, mix well the flours, baking powder and salt. Add the oil and water and mix on medium speed until a smooth and elastic dough forms, about 5 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Divide dough into 6 equal portions – each should be about 40g. On a lightly floured surface, roll each piece of dough until you get a thin circle, 20-22cm (8-9in) in diameter. Heat a large nonstick frying pan over high heat. Grill each disc of dough for 1-2 minutes each side, or until a few brown spots appear on the surface – if you want soft tortillas, immediately transfer them to the plate and cover with a clean kitchen towel; if you want crispy tortillas, let them cool on a wire rack, without overlapping them. Repeat the process with all the remaining dough.

Cook the chicken: on a large nonstick frying pan over high heat, heat the remaining olive oil. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until tender. Add the chicken and cook, stirring a few times, until chicken is golden and cooked through, 8-10 minutes. Stir in the water, scrape the bottom of the pan to remove the delicious burnt bits and then serve immediately with the tortillas and guacamole, if desired.

Serves 2

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Marjoram orange roast chicken

Marjoram orange roast chicken / Frango assado com manjerona e laranja

I was thinking the other day about how drastically I have decreased my cookbook purchase addiction – maybe because of how much bigger my workload is compared to years ago, maybe because the food magazines I subscribe fill that need for inspiration and new recipes, maybe because some books were such disappointments (I am speaking to you, Ms. Lawson)…

My last purchase, as far as I recall, was on Oct 20 last year – this is definitely a new world record or something. :)
However, when I saw that Diana Henry had a new book coming out, I could not wait until I had it in my hands, for I am a huge fan of her beautiful work, plus she is a total dear and have spoken to me on Twitter a few times, even saying “obrigada” in Portuguese once.
The book is stunning and the recipes look delicious – and are simple, like the name of the book says. I love that. I decided to start with a chicken recipe and used Diana’s as inspiration, however I made it even simpler than hers. It was indeed delicious and the chicken meat was falling off the bones after a night spent in the fridge swimming in the flavorsome marinade.

Maybe I am cured from my cookbook addiction? I don’t know. What I know is that next time Diana publishes a new cookbook I will have it on my Ipad on the very same day. ;)

Marjoram orange roast chicken
adapted from the beautiful Simple

handful of fresh marjoram leaves, chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed then finely chopped
2 oranges
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 skin-on bone-in chicken thighs

In a bowl, mix the marjoram leaves, the garlic, finely grated zest and juice of 1 of the oranges, the olive oil, salt and pepper. Add the chicken and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours (overnight is great).

Preheat the oven to 200°C. Line a medium roasting tray with a double layer of foil and coat the foil with olive oil. Slice the remaining orange and arrange the slices on top of the foil. Arrange the chicken over the orange slices and pour over the marinade. Roast for about 60-80 minutes or until golden and cooked through – time might vary depending on how golden you like your chicken.

Serves 2

Friday, August 8, 2014

Garlicky cashew chicken and curiosity

Garlicky cashew chicken / Frango assado com alho, castanha de caju e coentro

My love for roast chicken is so notorious that when I tell my husband I have no idea what to cook on the weekend he always says “how about roast chicken?” :D

If I’m not feeling very inspired, I just make Donna Hay’s chicken with chorizo because I know it’s delicious and my husband and I love it, but most of the times I like to vary because there are several great recipes out there just waiting to be prepared (and devoured).

When I saw that Amanda Hessler’s recipe for barbecued chicken included a marinade made with cashew nuts I got immediately curious, especially because I could not imagine how it would turn out – some recipes feel familiar to me, and with others I try to imagine how they would taste even if I hadn’t tried them before, but not this one: I kept wondering how the nuts would flavor the chicken, and how they would behave combined with the cilantro and the soy sauce.

The only way to find that out was cooking the recipe, and that’s what I did.

(if someone tells you that Scorpios are curious, believe them). :)

The cashew nuts make the marinade very creamy and also make the chicken moist and golden without the need of too much oil. The cilantro and soy sauce add great flavor (don’t go overboard with the salt because both the soy sauce and the nuts are already salty). Would I make this chicken again? Yes, it tasted delicious, but I would add a bit more garlic next time – despite the name, it was not garlicky enough for me.

My husband still prefers Donna Hay’s chicken, though. :)

Garlicky cashew chicken
slightly adapted from the wonderful The Essential New York Times Cookbook: Classic Recipes for a New Century

1/3 cup roasted, salted cashew nuts
handful fresh cilantro leaves + a bit extra for serving
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
½ tablespoon soy sauce
½ teaspoon brown sugar, packed
juice of 1 large lime
salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 chicken pieces – use your favorites

In a blender or food processor, combine nuts, cilantro, oil, garlic, soy sauce, sugar and lime juice. Blend until smooth, scraping down sides as necessary. Taste and season with salt and pepper if desired.
Smear the chicken generously with the marinade. Cover with plastic and refrigerate for at least 3 hours (overnight is best).

Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°C. Line a roasting pan with a double layer of foil and brush it lightly with oil. Place the chicken onto the foil and drizzle with the remaining marinade.
Roast for about 1 hour or until cooked to your liking.
Serve sprinkled with fresh cilantro leaves.

Serves 2

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Sticky chicken wings and comfort zones

Sticky chicken wings / Asinhas de frango grudentinhas e deliciosas

I admire people who step out of their comfort zone: it’s not an easy thing to do, not everyone’s ready for it, so kudos to those who do it. But at the same time I wonder that if you’re doing something really well, why not l keep doing it?

Life is about balance, I suppose.

That came to mind when I saw the poster for Cronenberg’s Maps to the Stars – there he is again, working with Robert Pattinson (the guy who made it impossible for me to watch more than 30 minutes of Cosmopolis). Oh, David, enough already – it’s fine to change things every now and then, I admire you for that, but cut the crap and go back to working with Viggo, please. Go back to that talented comfort zone, I beg of you.

When I want something good for lunch and don’t have time to search around I stay in my foodie comfort zone and turn to the usual suspects: Nigella, Martha, Jamie – they rarely disappoint. Bill Granger is part of that list, too, with his always easy and delicious recipes, like these chicken wings that are dead simple to make and will have you licking your fingers as you eat them.

Sticky chicken wings
slightly adapted from the delicious Holiday

4 ½ tablespoons mirin
4 ½ tablespoons soy sauce
3 teaspoons granulated or caster sugar
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon ground cumin
juice of 1 lime
freshly ground black pepper
16 chicken wings, tips removed and halved at the joints
thinly sliced spring onions, to serve

Combine mirin, soy sauce, sugar, garlic, ginger, cumin, lime juice and black pepper in a shallow, non-metallic dish. Coat the chicken pieces with the marinade, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours (or up to overnight).

Preheat oven to 200°C/400°F. Line a large baking sheet with a double layer of foil and brush the foil lightly with canola oil. Lift the chicken pieces from the marinade and place them onto the prepared sheet, without overlapping. Roast for 30 minutes, turning once.
Meanwhile, pour the marinade into a small saucepan and simmer until reduced by half. Pour it over the chicken and roast for 10-15 minutes longer or until chicken is sticky and deep golden brown. Sprinkle with the spring onions and serve at once.

Serves 4

Friday, April 4, 2014

Roast curry chicken, something strong and something milder

Roast curry chicken / Frango assado com pasta de curry vermelha

As I started reading the news about the books bound in human flesh discovered in Harvard I immediately thought of Sam Raimi and The Evil Dead, only to discover at the end of the piece that the writer had thought of them, too. :)

Movies are a matter of taste, just as food is: this über simple roast chicken, tenderized by the buttermilk and spiced by the red curry paste, is a nice idea even for busier days, since the oven does all the work – you just need time to let the marinade do its thing while the chicken rests in the refrigerator. However, not everyone likes super spicy food, and since curry pastes vary in heat, strength and intensity of flavor taste the one you have at hand before adding it to the marinade: it might be super strong as the 1981 movie, or a lot milder like the 2013 version. ;)

Roast curry chicken
adapted from the delicious and stunning Feed Me Now!

3 tablespoons whole milk
juice of 3 large limes
3 tablespoons red-curry paste*
2 garlic cloves, pound to a paste
salt and freshly ground black pepper
8 chicken pieces – use the ones you like the most

In a large shallow bowl, combine the milk and lime juice and set aside for 10 minutes (you’ll get buttermilk). Add the curry paste, garlic, salt and pepper and mix to combine. Add the chicken pieces, turn to coat, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or up to overnight.

Preheat the oven to 190°/375°F. Line a large roasting pan (large enough to hold the chicken pieces without overlapping) with a triple layer of foil and brush it lightly with oil. Arrange the chicken pieces side by side on top of the foil and pour over the marinade. Bake for about 60-70 minutes or until deep golden brown (cook it to your liking).
Serve immediately.

*curry pastes vary in heat, strength and intensity of flavor, so taste it before using it and adjust the amount accordingly – I used this one

Serves 4

Monday, October 28, 2013

Spiced roast chicken

Spiced roast chicken / Frango assado com especiarias

As much as I love cooking and baking there are times I want to be somewhere else besides the kitchen –for those times, the oven is my best friend: with a bit of planning food can be cooked without the need of me being around it, which can be very helpful. Roast chicken is a staple at my house because both the husband and I love it and while it cooks in the oven I can do many other things (or nothing at all). :D

This recipe comes from a cookbook I acquired recently and it’s originally made with quails – the pungent flavor of the spices work beautifully with chicken, too, and the paprika gives the meat a golden, nice color.

Spiced roast chicken
slightly adapted from the delicious Do-Ahead Dinners: How to Feed Friends and Family Without the Frenzy

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons ground coriander/cilantro
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon hot smoked paprika
4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed to a paste
1 tablespoon honey
juice of 1 lemon
salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 chicken pieces

Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium heat, then add the spices and cook for a minute or so, stirring continuously. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute, then remove from the heat and add the honey, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Leave until completely cool. Place the chicken pieces in a ziplock bag, add the marinade, close and then massage the bag to make sure all the chicken pieces are covered by the marinade. Cover and chill overnight.
Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F. Line a 20x30cm roasting pan with a double layer of foil, then brush it lightly with oil. Arrange the chicken pieces on top of the foil with a little space between them. Spoon over any extra marinade left. Bake for about 45 minutes or until cooked to your liking.

Serves 2

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Sticky chicken with lemon and honey

Sticky chicken with lemon and honey / Frango assado com limão siciliano e mel

Those of you with picky eaters at home will probably agree with me: it’s not easy and sometimes not pleasant at all to cook for them. :/ For that reason, when my husband requests something in particular for lunch or dinner I feel relieved – I know I won’t need to spend hours (and brain cells) thinking of the menu.

While watching Nigel Slater's Simple Suppers a couple of weeks ago we saw Nigel making golden and caramelized chicken pieces when Joao said: “how about that for lunch?” – I immediately agreed since we’re both crazy for roasted chicken. Nigel’s chicken is dead easy to make – the refrigerator and the oven do all the work – and turned out delicious, crunchy and sticky on the outside and absolutely tender and juicy on the inside, falling off the bone. It was so good that my husband placed it on the #1 spot with Donna Hay’s chicken baked with chorizo, which up to that day had been his favorite way of eating chicken.

Sticky chicken with lemon and honey
slightly adapted from the always wonderful Nigel Slater

4 large chicken pieces, bone in and skin on – use your favorite cuts
juice of 2 lemons
1 tablespoon runny honey
½ tablespoon Dijon mustard
3 garlic cloves, crushed into a paste
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
soft butter, for preparing the baking dish

Place the chicken in a medium bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together with a fork the lemon juice, honey, mustard, garlic, salt and pepper. Pour over the chicken, mix to coat all the pieces and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight or at least for 4 hours.
Preheat the oven at 200°C/400°F. Line a baking dish with a double layer of foil and brush the foil with the butter.
Transfer the chicken to the prepared dish and pour over any left marinade. Bake for about 45 minutes, or until cooked to your liking – we like our chicken very golden brown, as you can see on the photo, so I baked it for 1 ½ hours.
Serve immediately.

Serves 2

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Chicken, chorizo and lemon bake

Chicken, chorizo and lemon bake / Frango assado com limão siciliano e chorizo

When I was little, roast chicken was the Sunday lunch staple: the side dishes would change sometimes - potatoes, pasta, rice, salad - but the chicken was the king of the most important Sunday meal. My mom loved it, my granny loved and I did, too - still do.

After my mom got sick my father would bring a rotisserie chicken for lunch, but it was good anyway. Those days were happy days - I miss them. And when I'm feeling nostalgic I usually make things my mom used to cook, and roast chicken is one of them.

I like to use different recipes now and then and this one, from Donna Hay mag, was elected by the hubby as the most delicious roast chicken I've ever made, and he went crazy with the crunchy chorizo bits and the sweet and mellow roast garlic. We like our chicken very golden and crisp on the outside - hence the long oven time - but you can play around the recipe accordingly to your taste.

Chicken, chorizo and lemon bake
slightly adapted from the always delicious and foolproof Donna Hay Magazine

4 large pieces of chicken – I used 2 thighs and 2 drumsticks

For marinating the chicken:
2 garlic cloves, bashed in a mortar and pestle until puréed
juice of 1 large lemon
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper

For roasting the chicken:
1 lemon, sliced in 6 pieces lengthwise
1 chorizo, sliced
6 cloves of garlic, unpeeled
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
6-8 sprigs fresh thyme
1/3 cup black olives

Place the chicken pieces in a plastic bag or in a shallow bowl. Add the garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper and mix to coat the chicken pieces. Close the bag (or cover the bowl with plastic wrap) and marinate in the fridge for 3 hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 200°C/400°F. Remove the chicken from the marinade and place it in a shallow heatproof dish (if you line the dish with a double layer of foil washing up will be easier). Drizzle with some of the marinate and roast for about 40 minutes. Remove from the oven, add lemon, chorizo, garlic and thyme, drizzle with the butter and roast for another 40-50 minutes or until chicken is deeply golden brown and cooked through – in the final 10 minutes, add the olives.

Serves 2

Friday, October 28, 2011

Chicken pad thai with lime and peanuts

Chicken pad thai with lime and peanuts / Pad thai de frango com limão e amendoim

I pulled an Oliver Stone the other day while making lunch: much like he completely ruined "Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps" in the end I almost did the same to my pad thai by adding chilli to it – it was hot as hell and sort of difficult to eat. But we managed. So I’m keeping the chilli out of the recipe below, for your own safety. ;)

I just hope that using udon instead of rice noodles is not a capital sin: I wasn’t in the mood for grocery shopping and at the end what I had in my pantry worked just fine.

Chicken pad thai with lime and peanuts
adapted from the always gorgeous Donna Hay Magazine

200g udon
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
200g chicken breast, thinly sliced
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, grated
1 cup bean sprouts
½ cup cilantro leaves, chopped - I used parsley
2 tablespoons chopped roasted unsalted peanuts

Lime sauce:
¼ cup (60ml) lime juice
1 tablespoon brown sugar, packed
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons fish sauce

Make the lime sauce: place the lime juice, sugar, soy sauce and fish sauce in a small bowl and stir to combine. Set aside.
Cook the udon according to the package instructions. Drain and keep warm. meanwhile, heat a large wok or frying pan over high heat. Add the vegetable oil and chicken and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add the onion and cook for a further 2 minutes. Add the carrot, udon and lime sauce and stir-fry for another 2 minutes or until the carrots are tender and the noodles are coated. Stir through the bean sprouts and cilantro (or parsley). Divide between plates and top with the peanuts. Serve immediately.

Serves 2

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Saffron scented chicken pilaf

Saffron scented chicken pilaf / Arroz com frango e açafrão

Like a good Brazilian, I love rice – not only the good old plain rice that is usually paired with beans here, but all sorts of dishes with this ingredient. And, of course, rice pudding. ;)
That is why I could not take my mind off this recipe after watching Nigella make it: my beloved rice combined with chicken and nuts in a one-pot-wonder. Delicious, easy to make and economical as far as dish washing is concerned: win/win recipe. :D

Saffron scented chicken pilaf
from Nigella Fresh

500g chicken breast, cut into 2cm pieces
¾ cup (195g) plain yogurt
juice of ½ lemon
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ teaspoon saffron thread
4 cups (960ml) vegetable stock
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2-3 tablespoons neutral vegetable oil
500g basmati rice
juice and zest of 1 lemon
50g cashew nuts
50g flaked almonds
25g pine nuts
small bunch fresh parsley, chopped

Marinate the chicken pieces in the yogurt, lemon, cinnamon, salt and pepper for about an hour. Soak the saffron threads in the vegetable stock.
Over medium heat, in a large pan with a lid, melt the butter along with 1 tablespoon of the oil and add the rice, stirring it to coat until glossy. Pour in the saffron and stock (still hot), add the lemon juice and zest and bring the pan to the boil, then cover and turn the heat down to very low. Cook like this for about 10-15 minutes, by which time the rice should have absorbed the liquid and be cooked through.
While the rice is cooking, shake the excess yoghurt marinade off the chicken using a sieve the fry the meat in a hot pan with the remaining spoonful or so of oil, and do this in batches so that the chicken colors rather than stews.
When the rice is cooked, take it off the heat and fork through the golden and cooked chicken pieces. Toast all the nuts in dry frying-pan over a medium heat until they are lightly golden and fragrant, and then add them to the pilaf along with the chopped parsley. Check the salt and serve immediately.

Serves 6

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Chicken teriyaki

Chicken teriyaki / Frango teriyaki

I’ve been cooking for as long as I can remember and in certain periods of my life I did not have much time to spend in the kitchen – I needed delicious yet quick meals for weeknights.
On my days as a single lady I used to make lots of pasta – both my dad and my sister are crazy for it and dinner would be on the table in less than half an hour.

Recently I’ve been trying my hand at Asian recipes and some of them are absolutely delicious – and equally fast. This chicken teriyaki is a great example: it has instantly become a favorite of my husband’s – a.k.a. "the picky eater" – and it took me moments to put it together.

Let me tell you something: if my husband liked it, picky people everywhere will probably like it, too. :D

Chicken teriyaki
slightly adapted from the wonderful Nigella Kitchen

2 tablespoons sake
¼ cup mirin (sweet Japanese Rice wine)
¼ cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
4 spring onions, white part only, sliced
splash of sesame oil
800g (1¾ pounds) chicken thigh fillets (no skin or bones), cut into bite-sized pieces
½ tablespoon neutral vegetable oil
freshly ground black pepper
handful of parsley leaves, chopped
rice, to serve

In a bowl large enough to hold all the chicken pieces, mix together the sake, mirin, soy sauce, sugar, ginger, spring onions and sesame oil. Add the chicken pieces and turn to coat each one of them in the sauce. Leave for 15-20 minutes.
Heat the oil in a large, shallow frying pan (with a lid) and, using a perforated spoon, transfer the chicken pieces to the pan and sauté until they look cooked on the outside.
Pour the marinade over the chicken, bring to a boil, then cover and turn down the heat, cooking for 5-10 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and sauce is thick.
Stir in with freshly ground black pepper and the parsley. Serve immediately with rice.

Serves 4-6 – I halved the recipe above and Joao and I ate every little bit of it. :)

Friday, November 27, 2009

Teriyaki chicken noodle salad

Teriyaki chicken noodle salad / Salada de macarrão oriental com frango teriyaki

Having a little sister is a lot of fun but it also brings upon you a strong sense of responsibility.
One day, when she was 3, we were at McDonald’s – the horror, the horror – because she wanted a burger. While I was ordering the food, she told the clerk she wanted her burger without the beef! I’d recently stopped eating meat but did not even know she knew about it – until then, I’d never thought that I could actually influence someone else. And that’s why I try really hard to be a good role model for her.

I must confess I was never interested in Asian food – out of sheer ignorance – but that changed after spending time with my lovely friend Valentina; we had such delicious meals that I came home decided to add an Asian spin to my cooking. This salad was my first attempt – a wonderful influence by you, Tina. :)

Teriyaki chicken noodle salad / Salada de macarrão oriental com frango teriyaki

Teriyaki chicken noodle salad
from Donna Hay magazine

1/3 cup (80ml) soy sauce
¼ cup (44g) brown sugar
½ cup (120ml) dry white wine
6 chicken thigh fillets, trimmed – I used breast
270g soba noodles, cooked and drained
2 Japanese cucumbers, thinly sliced
2 spring onions (scallions), sliced
1 cup coriander leaves
¼ cup (60ml) rice vinegar

Place the soy sauce, sugar and wine in a non-metallic bowl and stir until sugar is dissolved. Add the chicken and toss to coat.*
Heat a non-stick frying pan over high heat. Cook the chicken, reserving the marinade, for 1-2 minutes each side. Add the marinade to the pan and cook for a further 3-4 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and sticky – add a little water, if necessary. Slice and set aside.
Place the noodles, cucumber, onion, coriander, vinegar and salt in a bowl and toss until well combined. Divide the noodle salad between bowls and top with the sliced chicken to serve.

* I recommend marinating the chicken for longer – 30 minutes or so – for a deeper flavor

Serves 4

Friday, May 8, 2009

Lemon and chilli marinated chicken

Lemon and chilli marinated chicken / Frango marinado com limão siciliano e pimenta calabresa

Some dishes take me way back to my childhood days - roasted chicken is one of them. My mom loved it and used to make it deliciously well: nicely golden and crisp on the outside and tender on the inside, the meat almost falling off the bones. So good! I can almost taste it as I write this. :D

I immediately thought of mom when I saw the “simple chicken classics” spread on the latest DH magazine. Since I had some marvelous lemons around, this is the recipe I chose.

Oh, and before I forget, I have added an ingredient measure list to the blog that might be useful to some of you.

Lemon and chilli marinated chicken / Frango marinado com limão siciliano e pimenta calabresa

Lemon and chilli marinated chicken
slightly adapted from Donna Hay magazine

1 x 1.5g whole chicken, butterflied – or use your favorite chicken parts
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
juice of 2 lemons
1 tablespoon chilli flakes*
1/3 cup (80ml) olive oil – I used garlic infused olive oil

Place the chicken on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Place the garlic, salt, paprika, lemon zest and juice, chilli flakes and oil in a bowl and whisk to combine. Pour over the chicken and marinate in the fridge for 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 200ºC/390ºF. Roast the chicken for 35-40 minutes or until cooked through – I roasted mine for 1 ½ hours to get it really golden.

* the chicken turned out spicy and I loved it but my husband thought it was a bit too hot; therefore, adjust the chilli flakes amount according to your taste.

Serves 4-6

Lemon and chilli marinated chicken / Frango marinado com limão siciliano e pimenta calabresa

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Baked pesto chicken

Baked pesto chicken

Some things sound wonderful but don't turn out so fine...

Take “Arrested Development”, for instance. Such a great show – perfect writing, sharp cast. To think that the poor boy’s name is George Michael makes me laugh already; nothing against the name - to be clear about it, in case there’s a George Michael reading me right now – but for someone my age it’s impossible to read that name and NOT think of him.

So, back to the show. I love everything about it. It even gave me hope about Ron Howard – I don’t like the guy, but he’s the voice behind the episodes (though I’ll never forget he made this). It should be the #1 comedy and all that. But it got cancelled. And that makes me sad.

What also made me sad was this recipe. I got it from an ad in Bon Appetit magazine a few months ago and I knew it would be delicious. Well, it was OK. But not I-want-to-make-this-200-times delicious.

I should have learned my lesson about not marinating chicken before cooking it, but apparently I have not. The idea of chicken with pesto blinded me.

So don’t be like me and marinate the chicken before making this recipe. And please, let me know how it turned out.

The original recipe is here – I changed it a little by browning the chicken before baking it.

Baked pesto chicken

Baked pesto chicken

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves, chopped
4 (about 680g/1 ¼ pounds total) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup pesto sauce – I used this recipe
¾ cup (3 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 200ºC/400ºF. Line baking sheet with heavy-duty foil.

In a large frying pan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat; add garlic and cook until it starts to brown. Add the chicken, season with salt and pepper and cook until nicely browned in both sides. Remove from the pan and place it in a medium bowl. Add the pesto and toss to coat. Place chicken on prepared baking sheet and drizzle any remaining pesto sauce over it.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in center. Remove from oven; top with the mozzarella. Bake for an additional 3 to 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Serves 4

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Roast chicken tray bake with tomatoes and potatoes

Roast chicken tray bake with tomatoes and potatoes

A couple of weeks ago I watched "Jamie at Home” for the first time – it was an episode about potatoes. I love potatoes – who doesn’t? – and all the recipes were mouthwatering. Joao must have thought so too, because he asked me to make this chicken for lunch on the following day – and he is a beef guy. BEEF.

I didn’t have a pen at the moment to take notes, and I don’t really remember him giving exact ingredient amounts, so this is my version of his roast chicken tray bake with tomatoes and potatoes.

The food was really good and I like the idea of using fresh oregano – a nice herb change to a basil addict like me.


This is my entry for the Weekend Herb Blogging, this time hosted by Erin, from The Skinny Gourmet.

Roast chicken tray bake with tomatoes and potatoes

Roast chicken tray bake with tomatoes and potatoes
from Jamie at Home

8 chicken pieces – I used thighs, wings and drumsticks
1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
freshly ground black pepper
juice of ½ lime
400g new potatoes
100g cherry tomatoes
¼ cup (60ml) olive oil
1 large handful fresh oregano leaves + 2 extra sprigs

Preheat the oven to 200ºC/400ºF.
In a large pan over medium-high heat, heat the 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil. Add the chicken, garlic, season with salt and pepper and cook until nicely browned.
Meanwhile, boil some water in a large saucepan and rapidly cook the potatoes – drain and set aside. If there are potatoes much bigger than others, cut in half.
Squeeze the lime juice over the chicken, mix well and remove from heat.
Place the handful of oregano leaves in a mortar or food processor – Jamie used his crazy shaker - and lightly smash/process. Add the olive oil, salt and pepper and smash/process again, until you get some delicious green oil.
Place the chicken, potatoes and tomatoes in a baking dish, drizzle with the green oil, add the oregano sprigs and mix.
Bake for 25-30 minutes and serve immediately.

Served very well the hungry couple on a Sunday lunch. :)

Monday, August 6, 2007

Parmesan-stuffed chicken breasts

Parmesan-stuffed chicken breasts

Ever since I bought this book I’ve been meaning to make every single recipe from it – the food looks delicious!

These chicken breasts were good, but not what I expected - I truly believe that marinating the chicken for a couple of hours - instead of seasoning it right before baking it - would do wonders in the flavor department. Not sure I’d give this a go again, though.

I reduced a little balsamic vinegar just to decorate the plate.

Parmesan-stuffed chicken breasts
from Everyday Food: Great Food Fast

1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
¼ cup plain dried breadcrumbs
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
grated zest of 1 lemon - about 1 tablespoon
coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
4 bone-in chicken breast halves - about 1,350g/3 pounds (the ones I bought were much too large, I guess the chicken was a mutant or something)

Preheat the oven to 230ºC/450ºF. In a small bowl, mix the parsley, breadcrumbs, parmesan, and zest. Season the mixture with ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper.
Divide the parsley mixture into 4 mounds. Carefully loosen the chicken skin with fingers, tuck the parsley mixture under the skin – I needed to use a couple of toothpicks to secure the stuffing inside. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Place in a greased 22x33cm (9x13in) roasting pan.
Bake until the skin is crispy, the chicken s cooked through and an instant-red thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the meat register 73ºC/165ºF, about 30 minutes – I baked mine for 1 hour.

Serves 4

Monday, May 14, 2007

Chicken with rosemary and lime

Chicken with rosemary and lime

I usually cook 2 different types of food for Sunday lunches: one beef-based dish for João and pasta or salad for myself. A friend of mine told me once that I was “brave” to do that. :)

The idea of making chicken that day was João’s, so I searched for a chicken recipe that would please us both.
This is a very simple recipe that I adapted from a Brazilian cookbook and it turned out very good. I served it with rice and arugula and onion salad.

If you (like me) love chicken but hate those white/pale pieces that look like Styrofoam then this recipe is for you.

Chicken with rosemary and lime

1 chicken (1.8kg) in pieces and with the skin on – I used only whole legs
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary
3 garlic cloves, chopped
freshly ground black pepper
80ml (1/3 cup) dry white wine
2 tablespoons lime juice
grated zest of 1 small lime

Rinse the chicken pieces and pat dry.
Heat oil and butter in a large pan over medium heat. Place the chicken pieces without overlapping them.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook until golden. Turn the pieces, sprinkle again with salt and pepper and cook until golden – both sides should be nicely browned.
Add the rosemary, garlic and wine. Cook until tender – if it gets too dry, add a little water (I didn’t have to).
When it’s cooked through, add the lime zest and juice. Cook for another minute and serve right away.

Serves 4

Monday, January 15, 2007

Parmesan chicken

Parmesan chicken

I printed this recipe the minute my dear friend Valentina posted it - but it took me a good 4 months to make it. I shouldn’t have waited that long – this dish is delicious!

I love to try new chicken recipes and this one won my heart when I saw it called for Parmesan cheese.

The crust is very crunchy and I like the idea of baking instead of deep-frying.

Valentina doesn’t mention how she seasoned the chicken, so I marinated it in lime juice, smashed garlic and salt. You can season it as you prefer.

The sauce is delicious and Joao (a.k.a. “picky eater”) loved it – I made tenderloin medallions for him and served with the same sauce. The only change was adding chilli pepper to the sauce – my husband’s idea.

Parmesan chicken

1 tablespoon flour
2 eggs, lightly beaten
80g breadcrumbs
20g grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
4 chicken breasts
pinch of salt

12g basil leaves or parsley – I used basil
120ml olive oil
60ml lime juice
1 clove garlic
80g black olives, pitted
1 large red chilli pepper - optional

Cover the chicken breasts with plastic wrap and gently flat them with a mallet, then slice them into 3 or 4 large strips – I asked my butcher to prepare the fillets for me, so I skipped this part. Season the chicken accordingly to your taste.

Preheat the oven to 220ºC (430ºF). Brush a baking dish with olive oil and set aside.

In a bowl, combine the eggs and flour. In another bowl mix breadcrumbs, Parmesan, parsley and salt. Dip the chicken fillets into the egg mixture then into crumb mixture to coat – I pressed it hard to get a thick crust.

Place the chicken pieces in the prepared baking dish. Do not overlap the pieces – they should remain separated. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown – turn the pieces upside down in half the time. Do it carefully not to tear the crumb.

For the sauce, combine all the ingredients in a food processor and blend well.

Serves 4

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