Sunday, August 14, 2011

Quick Chicken Soup, v2

John was feeling poorly and the leeks were on their last legs - time for chicken soup! Sauteeing the aromatics in a couple of tablespoons of butter gave the broth some richness, but not enough to roil an upset tummy. A squeeze of lemon juice at the end made for a nice contrasting sharpness. While this was pretty tasty for something made without broth and cooked so quickly, I'll be looking for ways to make it more flavorful without adding cooking time.

  • 2 T butter
  • 4 c leeks, chopped
  • 1-1/2 c carrots, chopped
  • 1-1/2 c celery, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 2.5 lbs. chicken thighs
  • bouquet garni (several sprigs of parsley, several sprigs of thyme, 2 t black peppercorns tied in cheesecloth)
  • 6 c water
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 6 oz. baby spinach
  • scallions, chopped, for garnished
  • lemon wedges

Saute the leeks, garlic, carrots and celery in the butter over medium heat till vegetables are softening, about 3-5 minutes. Add the chicken and brown it briefly on both sides, 5-6 minutes. Add some salt and pepper.

Add the water and bouquet garni. Bring to a boil, then simmer, covered, till chicken is done, 20-30 minutes.

Add baby spinach to pot. Remove from heat, re-cover and let sit for five minutes.

Adjust seasoning if necessary. Garnish with scallions and serve with lemon wedges.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Chicken Adobo 5: The Saga Continues

It's been quite a while since I've made adobo for myself. But now that my tweaking of the spicy souse soup recipe is almost complete (need to post the modded version soon), I'm taking a break from pig's ears (much to John's relief) and moving on to a childhood favorite: chicken gizzards. Though I found some promising recipes that involve two hours of simmering and optional deep-frying, I decided to start with the classic: adobo. Since I actually have Filipino cane vinegar and soy sauce at my disposal, I decided to tweak this recipe, skipping the sugar and salt and more than doubling the garlic. It's one of the more delicate takes on the dish, but still satisfying. Next time I'll add some pork and make a few other tweaks for extra oomph.

  • 2.5 lb. chicken thighs, skin-on (about 6 thighs)
  • 1/2 lb. chicken livers
  • 1/2 lb. chicken gizzards
  • 2/3 c water
  • 2/3 c cane vinegar
  • 4 T soy sauce
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6-7 cloves garlic, minced (about 3 T)
  • 2 t black peppercorns

Combine all the ingredients in a pot and let sit for at least half an hour.

Bring the pot to a boil; simmer till the chicken's done (about 20-30 minutes).

Optional steps: Remove the chicken and reserve it. Bring the sauce back to a boil and reduce till it's thick enough to coat with a spoon. Brown the chicken in a tbsp. of oil (or stick it under the broiler for a bit), then return to pot.

Serve over white rice.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Slow-Cooker Pot Roast

Lunch - 01 August 2011, originally uploaded by essgee51.
We've mostly been repeating recipes, so I haven't been posting variations. This weekend, we once again turned to the trusty Slow Cooker Revolution, halving some parts of the recipe and using a blade roast instead of the asked-for boneless pork picnic shoulder roast (see below).

Turned out really well - richer and meatier for the inclusion of the bone. This one will definitely become a regular.
  • 1 T vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 T tomato paste
  • 2 t fresh thyme, minced
  • 1/8 c all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 c white wine
  • 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 lb. carrots, peeled and cut into 1 in. chunks
  • 1 lb. parsnips, peeled and cut into 1 in. chunks
  • 1 blade roast, trimmed
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 t white wine vinegar
Put oil in a skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add onions, garlic, tomato paste, and thyme. Cook till onions are softened and browning, 8-10 minutes. Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute. Whisk in wine, scraping up any browned bits, till smooth. Transfer mixture to slow cooker.

Put tomatoes, carrots and parsnips into slow cooker. Season roast with salt and pepper; add to slow cooker. Cover and cook till pork is tender (five hours on high worked fine for me; the book recommends 9-11 hours on low or 5-7 on high).

Transfer roast to cutting board, tent with aluminum foil and rest for 20 minutes.

Let braising liquid settle, then remove fat, if you like (we skipped this). Stir in vinegar and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Slice roast, spoon sauce over the slices, and serve.