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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Skillet Spanish Chicken

I am always sourcing the internet, magazines, cook books, etc for recipe inspiration. A while back I bookmarked the recipe here with plans to make it eventually. Well last night was the night. I am never one to follow a recipe exactly so I changed it up a bit. It turned out delicious and was super easy for a weeknight meal. The best part? I only used one pan! I served it up with some Spanish rice and it was a perfect hearty meal for a cold and rainy night like yesterday.

Spanish Skillet Chicken
Serves 2-4
  •  4 skin on, bone in chicken thighs
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/4 tsp. sweet paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. smoked paprika
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup Sherry
  • 1 small can cherry tomatoes, excess liquid drained (you can also use 1 pint of fresh cherry tomatoes, but I like the saucy consistency the canned ones add to the dish)
  • 1 roasted sweet bell pepper, sliced (I roasted mine myself but to save time you can use jarred)
  • 1 roasted piquillo pepper, sliced (same as above)
  • 1/2 large sweet onion, sliced
  • 1/4 lb. cured chorizo sausage, sliced
  • 5 cloves of garlic,  roughly chopped
  • small handful parsley, chopped
  • kosher salt to taste
  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. In a mixing bowl combine the chicken with the 1 Tbsp. of the olive oil, thyme, both paprika, cayenne pepper and a pinch of salt. Toss until the chicken is coated.
  3. Heat a medium sized skillet over high heat. Once hot add the remaining olive oil. Sear each piece of chicken until the skin is crispy, about two minutes per side. Remove the chicken to a plate, keeping the skillet on the heat.
  4. Lower the heat to low and pour in the sherry, using a wooden spoon scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan and then let the sherry reduce by half. Once reduced take the pan of the heat.
  5. Add the tomatoes, peppers, onion, chorizo, garlic and a sprinkling of salt to the pan lightly stir to combine and then place the chicken pieces on top. Place the skillet into the oven and roast until chicken is cooked through, about 30 minutes.
  6. Carefully remove from the oven, sprinkle with the parsley and serve with Spanish rice. 

    Tuesday, November 29, 2011

    Monkeying Around

    Check out these cupcakes I made for my nephews 1st birthday this past weekend!

    I got the idea from here but altered it a little bit. I used half of a vanilla wafer for each of the ears instead of a whole one and instead of piping on the face and eyes with icing I used a black food marker.

    How cute are they? (sorry it is not the best pic, I took it with my phone)

    Saturday, November 26, 2011

    Weeknight Thanksgiving Feast!

    I may be Canadian but this past week every time I turned on the television someone was talking about or making Thanksgiving dinner. The thoughts of turkey and stuffing were filling my head so the other night I caved and made a full out thanksgiving dinner just for Jordan and I!!! You must think I am crazy but it was actually a lot easier than you think. I obviously didn't go and make a 30 lb. turkey but instead bought just a turkey breast. I used some stale hamburger buns to make the stuffing, made a quick pan gravy, microwaved some frozen peas and mashed up some taters and in just over an hour Jordan and I were eating like we were American!!!!

    Butter Basted Turkey Breast
    Serves 2
    • 1 boneless, skin-on turkey breast
    • 1/4 cup butter, softened
    • 1 Tbsp. parsley, chopped
    • 1 clove of garlic, minced
    • salt and pepper to taste
    1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. 
    2. Place the turkey breast on a cooling rack placed on top of a baking sheet.
    3. In a small bowl combine the butter with the parsley, garlic, salt and pepper.
    4. Using your hands spread the butter all over the turkey breast, including under the skin.
    5. Place the turkey in the oven and roast until cooked through (internal temperature should be 165 degrees C), about 30-40 minutes. 
    6. Remove from oven and let rest before slicing.

      Skillet Stuffing
      Serves 2-4
      •  1 Tbsp. vegetable or olive oil
      • 1/2 Spanish onion, chopped
      • 2 ribs of celery, chopped
      • 1 clove of garlic, chopped
      • 2 tsp. mixed herbs, chopped (you can use whatever you have on hand, parsley, thyme, rosemary)
      • salt and pepper to taste
      • 4 cups stale bread, cubed
      • 1 cup chicken stock (or more if necessary)
      1. Once the turkey is in the oven, start preparing the stuffing.
      2. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot add the oil and the onions. Saute until softened and starting to brown then add the celery and garlic, continue to cook until celery is starting to soften, about 5 minutes then stir in the bread cubes.
      3. Stir in the herbs and season with salt and pepper. 
      4. Pour over the stock until the bread is just wet, stirring to combine. Place the skillet in the oven and let bake along with the turkey. Remove when the turkey is done, the stuffing should be nice and crispy on the outside but still soft on the inside.

      Quick Pan Gravy
      • 1 Tbsp. butter
      • 1 Tbsp. flour
      • 2-3 cups chicken stock
      • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
      • drippings from turkey
      • salt and pepper to taste
      1. Heat a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the butter and let melt. Once melted stir in the flour to form a roux (a paste).
      2. Cook the roux while stirring for one minute then whisk in 2 cups of the stock. Bring to a boil and let thicken then stir in the Worcestershire sauce. Take off the heat until the turkey is done cooking.
      3. Once the turkey is done and resting, place the gravy over low heat and stir in the turkey drippings. Adjust the consistency with some more stock if necessary then season with salt and pepper to taste.
      4. Serve with the rest of your meal.

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