Tag Archives: chicken

Baked Chicken And A Dog Named Vishnu

Baked whole chickens are just about the simplest thing you can make with limited time and resources and still come out with a creation that would merit the reaction “Wow!” I made it first in high school under the direction of a teacher who also taught me how to make lasagna.

Doesn’t it look amazing? So easy!

Many years later while broke and jobless in a house in Quezon City, Philippines, we gathered our resources to buy a whole jumbo chicken which I marinated and baked. We ate it for Christmas dinner and proceeded to cocktails and guitar playing. And then our dog named Vishnu quietly reached up onto the dining table and grabbed the rest of the chicken, prompting our screams as she ran out the door. Vicoy, an uncle figure in that household, chased after Vishnu and pulled the bird out of her mouth and brought it back inside. We then asked what he planned on doing with a carcass that had already been inside a dog’s mouth and on the ground. Disgusted, he threw it back out for Vishnu to feast on for her best and last Christmas. (Poor dog died the folowing year shortly after nursing her only litter.) But again, I digress.

This gravy is so simple but so rich with the flavors of rosemary, oregano and garlic.

Serving a whole roasted bird with shiny brown crispy skin could be just as rewarding as serving a labored-over lasagna. But the difference in prep time and the versability of a baked chicken is hard to beat. I hope you enjoy one of my favorite dishes to make and I hope you also get the WOW you deserve. Continue reading

Oil-Free Chicken Fajita

Being forced to cook without oil makes one realize that it is often unnecessary. This is a hard habit to break simply because sauteing seems to be how most dishes are started, no matter if it’s a soup or a casserole or a stew that’s simmered for 3 hours. Garlic, onions and vegetables are always inevitably sauteed in oil before anything else is done. Especially in Asian cuisine, stir-fried dishes seem to be a staple, as is the use of oil.

We made this fajita without frying and without adding any oil or flavoring other than that provided by its ingredients.

Chicken fajita topped with salsa, cilantro, black beans, avocado on a tomato wrap.

Chicken, peppers and onions on a cast iron skillet

We found that more often than not, the sauteing ingredients (commonly onions, peppers, garlic) produce their own flavored liquid which adds to the complexity of the sauce or stew. Continue reading

Chicken and Sausage Stew

Some days I just decide to make a “refrigerator stew,” which only means I’ll dump all the leftover stragglers in the fridge into a pot and cook them on low heat, and with consistently good results. I had some chicken and andouille sausage in the freezer, and a handful of uneaten olives from a party. With my handy tube of tomato paste, I was all set.

Chicken and andouille sausage stew, side of garlic snap peas.

Continue reading

Chimichurri Chicken

The secret is the marinade. Chicken pieces are rubbed with salt and chimichurri herbs, and allowed to marinate in the fridge for 1-2 days. The result is a relatively dry skin that becomes crispy while keeping the insides moist and flavorful.
Chimichurri chicken and candied kumquat served over red quinoa, arugula, edamame and bunshimeji mushrooms; kale salad with feta, uglifruit and avocado.

Baked Chicken over Red Quinoa and Asparagus, Dandelion and Fennel Salad

I’ve turned into a quinoa lover and I might as well grow my armpit hair. Did I just say that? :o)

Nothing against armpit hair but I have everything against not discovering quinoa, its tiny pearls that release a nutty and grainy flavor to the bite. They are versatile and may be used as a substitute for rice. Its low glycemic index even allows unlimited consumption in some diets. To top it all off, it’s an excellent source of vegan protein, lysine, calcium, phosphorus, and iron. That is hard to beat in a grain.

Red quinoa (keen-wah) has South American origins, the Incans considering it ‘the mother of all grains’ and regarding it highly enough that it threatened European colonizers who prohibited its cultivation and ordered the Incans to grow wheat instead. Seriously. (More quinoa info here).

Red Quinoa and Asparagus
1/2 cup red quinoa
1 cup water
1/2 cup asparagus stems cut into 1/4 inch rounds
1 teaspoon olive oil
Salt to taste

Prepare quinoa by boiling 1 cup water then adding the quinoa. Turn the heat down for 15 minutes, adding asparagus in the last 3.Quinoa is cooked when it turns slightly transparent and the tails become visible. Season with salt and olive oil.

Baked Chicken

4 lean chicken pieces (I like Murray’s Organic, the pieces are small and tasty)
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt and Pepper

Marinate chicken in lemon juice, salt and pepper overnight. Pat dry and arrange in a greased baking dish and bake in a pre-heated oven at 400C for 45 minutes, then brown in broiler for 3-5 minutes.

Dandelion Leaves and Fennel Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

1/2 medium fennel bulb, slivered
1 bunch dandelion leaves, cut into salad pieces
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
Ground pepper

Whisk together lemon juice, olive oil, sugar, sald and pepper to make lemon vinaigrette. Toss with fennel and dandelion and serve promptly.

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