As much as I think I love to barbecue, I think what I really love is conjuring up new barbecue sauces. I'm going through a fruit phase; maybe it’s an extension of how fruit has permeated my salads and salad dressings but I've found them to be so complementary to the seasonings that make up sauces for the grill.
This recipe required both a rub for the chicken and then a sauce that is put on that same chicken later in the game… by the time all is said and done, the flavor that was imparted to this smoked chicken was amazing.
Ras el hanout is a popular spice mix from North Africa. It is typically rubbed onto fish, meats, and vegetables. The spice blend serves a similar purpose as garam masala in India, and can also be stirred into rice dishes for flavor. The spices are often blended by hand, and include cardamom, cinnamon, clove, cumin, nutmeg, mace, allspice, ginger, tumeric, chile powder, and fenugreek.Here the spice mixture is rubbed onto bone-in chicken legs before being browned in duck fat and butter, and braised in chicken stock and wine.This recipe is by Alex Xu of Baoism is shared courtesy of the SideChef app.
Farro's nutty flavor is accentuated when toasted lightly in olive oil, and it is the perfect match for the earthy, delicate flavors of chanterelle mushrooms in this elegant yet easy main dish. Serve with a simple arugula salad dressed with lemon juice and extra-virgin olive oil to start.
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Deep-frying is a method I prefer to avoid for everyday cooking, but this is one of the dishes for which I make an exception. When served, it tends to provoke that moment of rapt, intense silence at the dinner table that is one of the tokens of true appreciation. Slices of chicken thigh meat are first deep-fried in a light batter, then tossed in a sophisticated sweet-sour sauce laced with chile. General Tso's chicken is supposedly a Hunanese dish, but it's virtually unknown in Hunan Province. It was actually invented by Peng Chang-Kuei, a Hunanese exile chef in Taiwan, and cooked by him in his one-time New York restaurant. It has since been taken so much to the heart of Americans living in the northeast that it is now known as the very essence and emblem of Hunanese cuisine. This version of the dish is based on the recipe I learned in Peng Chang-Kuei's kitchen in Taipei.
The dish is usually made with boned chicken leg meat, although you can use breast if you prefer. Do make sure your wok is stable before using it for deep-frying: it's important to use a wok stand with a round-bottomed wok.
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The best part about this recipe is that it requires you to drink half of the beer before you even start cooking. But in all seriousness, we like how it adds aromatics like cloves and an orange rind to the beer inside the beer can, so that when the chicken cooks on the grill, it becomes succulent and tender from the beer, and flavorful from the seasonings inside the can.
Here’s my twist on chicken enchiladas. Red sauce is great and all, but sometimes you just need a change. I topped my enchiladas with a cilantro-pepita dressing and pico de gallo, but you can definitely turn up the heat level with some serrano or habanero peppers. Pepitas are green pumpkin seeds often used in Mexican cooking and can be found in the specialty foods aisle of the grocery store (try asking for pine nuts, and they should be nearby).
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