Monday, January 4, 2010

Follow Up!

In my last posting I left you all with some hints as to what I have been up to this holiday season. I was truly spoiled rotten by the wonderful food that my grandmas, aunt, parents, and other relatives made, the gifts that I received, and the free time I got to spend with everyone. Here is my summary of the wonderful winter break I had! (Okay, okay, so my semester hasn't technically started, but I am back to work)This guy is my gem! He is my sweet Wrangler! Whenever I get a chance to go visit my parents in the country I get to see my pup (he was a pup when I first got he is 4 years old!). He is a ball of energy, and loves to play and run outside. When I was packing my car to head back to the cities he tried to hop in!My very very sweet friend Ann Yin at Local D'Lish in Minneapolis gave this knife to me for Christmas (check out her website that she just recently updated)! It is on of my new favorite kitchen partners! I didn't even know what I was missing until she put this into my hands. It cuts like butta. =)This one of my other new kitchen companions, given to me by my brother, Brandon! My only bread knife went missing in September, and my brother came swooping in to my rescue. You should have seen me struggle with my dull, non-serrated knifes while I feebly wrestled pieces off of baguettes. It was an embarrassment; lets not talk about it.
Dan and I got together with a small group of friends and played darts to chime in the new year. On the 2nd of January it was my sweetie's birthday! This is Jenna (Hi Jenna). She turned 22 and Dan and I made her this red velvet cake. Red velvet is her favorite! I will post the recipe for it soon (tomorrow maybe).
And finally, last night Dan and I made this Basil Chicken in Coconut Curry Sauce from Simply Recipes (I didn't get any pictures then because my camera was on the fritz. This pic is leftovers! =o Don't tell!). I only used a few minor changes:

Basil Chicken in Coconut Curry Sauce
Adopted from Simply Recipes

1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom (didn't have this)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon Cayenne powder
1 lb skinless, boneless chicken thighs (we used 4 small chicken breasts)
1 medium red onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced
2 Tbsp olive oil or grapeseed oil
1 14-oz can coconut milk
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
3 Tbsp fresh basil leaves, chopped (we only had dried so we did about 1 tablespoon)
1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh ginger

1. Mix together spices through cayenne pepper. Set aside. 2. Rinse chicken, pat dry. Cut into bite size pieces. Put into a bowl and sprinkle the spice mix over all the pieces. Coat and let sit for 30 minutes at room temperature or in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours. 3. In a large skillet heat 1 Tbsp oil on medium high heat. Add the onions and jalapeƱos and cook for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Remove the onions, peppers and garlic from the pan and put into a medium sized bowl. Set aside. Use the same pan for the next step. 4. Add 1 Tbsp oil to the skillet and heat on medium high heat. Add one half of the chicken pieces, spreading them out on the pan so they are not crowded. Brown for a few minutes on each side. When the chicken pieces are cooked through, and no pink remains, remove from pan, add to the bowl with the onions. Cook the second batch of chicken pieces the same way. Remove from pan, add to bowl with onions. 5. Add the coconut milk, minus a couple tablespoons, to the skillet. In a small bowl, mix the remaining coconut with the corn starch to dissolve the corn starch. Add the corn starch mixture back to the skillet with the coconut milk. Cook on medium heat and stir till thick and bubbly. Mix in the Worcestershire sauce. Add chicken mixture, basil, and ginger. Cook 2 minutes more to cook through. Tada!

The recipe recommended to pour this over rice or pasta. We used angel hair pasta, and we both decided that we would make it a little different for each. For the pasta, we decided it would taste better to get the spices in the sauce and not just on the chicken. Blend it more throughout the entire dish. For rice, we thought that it would be perfect as stated above to keep the rice creamy and keep the chicken holding the majority of the flavor. Try it out for yourself!

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