slow cooker chicken and garbanzo bean tagine

I was looking for an easy slow cooker recipe for a hot weeknight and I found this recipe for chicken and chickpea tagine.

chicken and chickpea tagineI ignored all of the instructions about browning in the skillet first. I simply threw everything into the crock pot, using all the spices specified in the recipe: freshly ground black pepper, minced onion,  fresh garlic, cumin, coriander, paprika, turmeric, ginger, and crushed red pepper. The recipe called for chicken broth, but I thought there would be enough liquid with the canned garbanzo beans, and that turned out to be the case. I used boneless leg meat rather than bone-in chicken thighs. I cooked the mixture for seven hours, half of that time on high.

The result was quite delicious, with a distinctly Middle Eastern taste.

apricot glazed grilled chicken

apricot-glazed grilled chickenThis recipe for apricot-glazed grilled chicken is incredibly simple and very, very tasty.

The recipe calls for a glaze of apricot preserves, olive oil, red wine vinegar, and garlic. It says to coat the chicken with salt and pepper. I believe I forgot the garlic and I added the pepper to the glaze. No salt.

The recipe specified bone-in thighs and drumsticks. I used tenders because I had them on hand.

It turned out really, really well.

slow cooker sweet-and-sour chicken

I really liked the looks of this recipe when I saw it in the August 2018 Cooking Light, so I tried it as soon as I had the opportunity,

sweet-and-sour chickenIt includes bell pepper, carrot, soy sauce, worcestershire sauce, ketchup, and sambal olek, which the recipe says is ground fresh chili paste. I used sriracha, which I think was close enough. At the end you mix pineapple juice and cornstarch and add that.

It tasted quite good. The dish had a sauce rather than a glaze (this is a slow cooker recipe, after all), but it was very close to what you would expect with sweet-and-sour chicken. The recipe said to sprinkle it with sesame seeds. I totally forgot that, but will make a point of doing so next time.

reducing clutter

baking pansWhen we were in Gilroy I did a lot of baking using the convection oven I loved so much. That included hamburger and hot dogs buns, as well as the occasional shortcake. So I had pans for all of those, which we stored in our vertical cabinet along with our sheet pans and cutting boards.

When we moved here to Hemet I put them all in a similar vertical cabinet in our new kitchen. The fit was tight, and I often struggled with the cutting board and the large sheet pan. The thing is, I haven’t baked since we’ve been here. It was only recently that it occurred to me that the hamburger, hot dog, and shortcake pans did not have to stay there. They could go into a cabinet in the garage.

Much simpler and easier. It amazes me how often the obvious eludes me for so long.

Cuban lentil chorizo stew

I ought to make more use of my pressure cooker in the summer months. It keeps more heat inside the appliance rather than dissipating it into the kitchen as with the stovetop or oven.

Cuban lentil chorizo stew is an old classic. Developed by Ray, owner of Pressure Cooker Recipes on Yahoo Groups, I do my own take.

Cuban Lentil Chorizo StewThis time I diced two Yukon gold potatoes, sliced a carrot and chopped a yellow bell pepper. I added a cup of lentils. I had a nearly full carton of vegetable broth which I emptied into the pressure cooker.

The chorizo part was a one-off. In the freezer I had a quarter tube of Trader Joe’s soy chorizo and a quarter pound of pork chorizo from the grocery store meat department. (The butcher had given me chorizo instead of mild Italian sausage and I didn’t catch it.) I put both in. The Trader Joe’s alone would have been plenty, but the pork added some nice additional flavor. (I have learned that any more than a quarter package of the Trader Joe’s overwhelms any dish.)

I set my Cuisinart CPC-600 to 10 minutes on high and allowed 15 minutes when the time was up before releasing the pressure.

This one turned out spicy, tasty, and filling.

Grilled Tandoori Chicken

Tandoori ChickenI stumble across some excellent recipes while surfing the various public broadcasting outlets. That’s how I found this recipe for Grilled Tandoori Chicken on Simply Ming. The recipe is by chef Tiffani Faison (not to be confused with B-list celebrity and Cooking Channel host Tiffani Thiessen).

The recipe calls for a whole chicken. I used boneless leg meat. I followed the seasonings as specified: mustard seed, fennel seed, cumin, coriander, paprika, cayenne, turmeric, garlic, and ginger. I mixed the seasonings in yogurt and marinated the leg meat for twenty-four hours.

I grilled the chicken on the outdoor gas grill. Between the yogurt and the dark meat the chicken was moist and tender.

It was a really nice Sunday night meal.

apricot shrimp skewers

apricot shrimp skewersI was looking for a shrimp recipe to grill outside on an unseasonably hot Saturday. I found this apricot shrimp skewers recipe that seemed to fill the bill.

It did.

Terry did all the work. The shrimp is wrapped in prosciutto and put on skewers alternating with apricot pieces. A mixture of apricot jam, ginger, orange juice, lemon juice, garlic, and soy sauce doubles as a glaze basted on the grill and as a dipping sauce at the table.

It was a lot of work on Terry’s part. And it was well worth it, we both agreed.

A five-star dinner on a hot Saturday night.