Chimichurri Sauce

A spicy Argentinian parsley-based green sauce for …anything; soups, eggs, salad dressing, pasties, chicken, steak, or fish.

 

In a blender, add

1 1/2 cups olive oil
1/2  cup red wine vinegar
pinch or two red chili flakes
pinch or two of  salt
couple shakes of pepper
3 – 4 cloves fresh garlic
1/2 – 3/4 tsp. cumin powder
2 bunches fresh flat-leaf parsley – most of the stems trimmed
1 bunch fresh cilantro – most of the stems trimmed

Pulse on high or ‘ice chop; setting – more olive oil if needed – until just blended (rustic).

Taste and adjust spices as desired.

Other Variations:

red onions
fresh oregano
lime or lime juice
sherry or balsamic vinegar (instead of red wine vinegar)
basil

For a creamy version, add:

avocado
sour cream or
mayonnaise

Resources:

Skirt Steak, Chimichurri & Veggies | Feli & Jamie Oliver (herb brush seasoning)

Argentinian-Style Fresh Herb Salsa and Marinade

Creamy Chimichurri Dip

Traditional Chimichurri

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Boiled & Spiced Citrus Chicken (or Pork)

It takes time and patience to prepare chicken this way, but it is so worth it!

6 bone-in, skin on chicken thighs OR about a 4 lb bone-in pork shoulder – chunked into quarters

Rinse, pat dry and place meat into a large food-safe plastic bag

Add to the bag;

1 tblsp. cumin powder
1 tblsp. sea salt
1 tblsp. garlic powder
1 tblsp. oregano
1 tblsp. cayenne pepper (reduce to half or less if you don’t like spicy food)

1/2 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup lime juice

If you remember Shake-n-Bake …do that. If that reference is meaningless, then shake everything inside the bag until the chicken is evenly coated with the spices.

Place the spiced chicken and citrus juice in a pot. Fill it with water – just until the chicken is covered. On the stovetop (uncovered), cook on high until the chicken begins to boil, reduce heat, but still keep it bubbling.

This where the patience comes in. Keep an eye on the pot as the liquid boils. This can take anywhere between 2 and 3 hours. Once the liquid is almost gone, let the meat brown – turn it so it cooks evenly – but not so much that it burns.

Liquid almost all-the-way boiled down.

 

The chicken meat can be shredded, chunked or eaten off the bone. Use it in salads, soups, on tostadas or in tacos…and the list could go on and on!

Next time I make it, I will double this recipe so that leftovers will linger longer.

boiled and spicked chicken

 

Christmas Salad

christmas salad

Fresh persimmons in a salad?  Are you kidding?!

Opening one’s mind and taste buds to new thoughts, ideas and flavors is what keeps life interesting. The idea of including fresh persimmons in a salad presented itself when I attended a supper club meal at Polly’s Paladar. This creation was made with bitter greens, pomegranates, and candied pecans. It was topped with hot pork chunks and served with a vinegrette dressing.

Here is my modified version.  I named it ‘Christmas Salad’ because I first made it right after Thanksgiving – using turkey left-overs – and everyone exclaimed that the colors (spinach, pomegranties, persimmons and mandarines)…looked just like Christmas.

 

Candied Pecans

Coat as many pecans as you plan to use with maple syrup. Spread them out flat on a baking pan and cook at 200 degrees until nuts are lightly toasted (and dry) …..approx. 30 minutes.

IMG_6211wb

Fresh spinach

Fresh persimmon(s) – soft…almost squishy…peeled and seeded – chopped into bite-sized bits

Mandarines – peeled

Pomegranate seeds

Top wth your favorite protein

Cilantro Lime Salad Dressing

 

pomegranate-1076657_640

 

 

Poached Eggs on Cheese Bread

Delicious day old bread uses.

2 cups chicken broth

2 tblsp. cilantro sauce

day old bread slices

Kerrygold Dubliner cheese – shredded

IMG_1468a

Use a little bit of the chicken broth to poach the eggs in.

Slice and toast day old bread.

Place the toast into a baking pan.

Top each piece with shredded cheese.

To the remaining chicken broth, add cilantro sauce.

Pour chicken broth/cilantro sauce over bread then microwave for 30-45 seconds to melt cheese.
Let this sit until the bread has soaked up enough liquid to make it soft.

Remove cheese bread from pan, put on plate then top with poached eggs.

IMG_1472a

Click here for more uses for hard bread.

Lime Cilantro Salad Dressing

A versatile sauce / salad dressing bursting with flavor.

2 bunches fresh cilantrocilanatro sauce

juice and zest from 4-5 limes

Place all in a blender or food processor.

Blend till smooth.

Add water to reach desired consistency.

*For a creamy sauce, add plain yogurt.

Salsa

Base:salsa web

2 tblsp. olive oil in saute pan
4 cloves garlic – chopped
1 habanero chili (or 3 Thai chilis…or any type / combination of hot peppers that you like) – finely chopped

Saute garlic and peppers in oil just long enough that you start to smell the aromas
(garlic should be slightly browned …turn off heat before it burns).  Remove from heat.

to the sauted oil, garlic & peppers add

1 can tomato sauce – set aside to cool

Chop:
4 stalks celery
1 large yellow or white onion
1 carrot
3 or 4 bell peppers
6 or more large fresh tomatoes
2 bunches fresh cilantro
juice and zest from 5 limes
salt & pepper to taste
1 tblsp. cumin seeds

Pour sauce base over chopped vegetables and mix.

Great freshly made…but even better after sitting over night!

Lisa’s notes:  Salsa…. I have been known to eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  I love mexican food and can tell in the first few moments if a restaurant is good by their salsa; if it is awesome, then the rest of the food usually is too.

My favorite salsa of all time is Casa Lupe’s.  My parents first took me to a restaurant that was in Gridley, CA when I was a child. Since then I have eaten mexican food all over and have yet to discover a salsa that’s better.  ….I have often contemplated applying for a job there so I could learn their salsa secrets!  This recipe is the culmination of many years of experimentation in attempts to match Casa Lupe’s awesome salsa.

Grandma’s Lime Jello Dessert

1 lg. pkg. lime jelloIMG_0533

1 lg. carton small curd cottage cheese

1 can crushed pineapple – drained to use juice later

2 tblsp juice

1 lg.  carton Cool Whip

Mix the lime jello, juice & cool whip till blended, gently, add cottage cheese & pineapple, add chopped nuts if desired.

Put in a pretty bowl.  Refrigerate.

Fancy Jello & Sherbet Dessert – Uncle George & Aunt Mary

2 large pkgs.  of  jello – dissolved –  hot water only  

1 or 2 pkgs of 8 oz. Cream Cheese

1/2 gallon of sherbet (that matches jello flavor)

4 cans of mandarin oranges – drained

Nuts if desired.

Dissolve jello (in HOT WATER ONLY).

With blender, blend (room temperature) cream cheese with hot jello.

In a large bowl, chop up sherbet into small chunks.

Pour jello / cream cheese mixture over ice cream and blend till smooth.

Refrigerate till mixture begins to jell,  add fruit and nuts.  Refrigerate again.

 

Match the jello with the sherbet and the fruit.

Raspberry jello, raspberry sherbet – raspberries

Orange jello with orange sherbet – mandarin, oranges

Lime jello, lime sherbet – pineapple

 

Lisa’s successful experiment.  After visiting my mom, to get her secrets to making this recipe, I made a version of my own and tested it out a few more ideas. Would regular ice cream and coconut milk work?

My ingredients:bryers vanilla

2 lg. pkgs. lime jellojello cream cheese coconut milk

2 pkgs. cream cheese

1 can coconut milk

3 heaping tablespoons coconut oil

1 qt. vanilla ice cream

I was pleasantly surprised to discover that this version set up great. Vanilla ice cream instead of sherbet didn’t have the amount of zesty flavor that I’ve come to expect. I also added 4-6 drops each of Lemon & Lime food-grade essential oils, but it still needed something more. The addition of the fruit made all the difference.

Further musings: Could you go into chocolate realms with this?  Chocolate or coffee flavored ice cream and unflavored gelatin?

 

This recipe entered came to the family through Aunt Mary – wife to Uncle George. George was a younger brother to my Grandfather, Harry.

 

Ray’s (second son, child #3) Remembrance:
The picture of Uncle George in the grass skirt is from Hawaii.  I think he and Dad were there just before the atom bomb was dropped that ended the war.  They were part of the Military group that was preparing for the invasion of Japan.

uncle george 1Young Uncle George in Wisconsin probably in the 1930’s

 

uncle george 2

george mary

uncle georgeuncle george aunt mary

Preserved Citrus

citrus fruit

2 tablespoons salt per fruit

sterilized wide mouth glass containerorange with salt

Thoroughly wash and dry each fruit to be used

Cut in half then partially cut each half into (almost 1/4’ths)

Add a tablespoon of salt  for each section of fruit, then put it in the glass container face down squishing it as you go.

You’ll want the liquid fruit juice + salt to cover the pile of fruit once you are finished.

(This keeps the unwanted bacteria out).

Give the container a good shake then let it sit in on a dark shelf (does not need to be refrigerated!).

Let it sit for at least two weeks to a month – until the rinds are soft- shaking them whenever you remember.lime with salt

The batch in the photos cured for 2 months (unrefrigerated).

Using this same technique, I experimented with preserving tengelos and limes.  It worked!  The tangelos processed similarly to the lemons, but the limes discolored.  At the end of the two months  – they came out limey and wonderful. The rinds, although softer than in their original fresh state, were firmer than the lemon and tangelo rinds.

limes

The finished product.

finished meyer lemons 2

Fruit & salt liquid turns syrupy.

lemon drips

Check out this website for 5 ways to use preserved lemons.

How do you use preserved lemons?  How would you use preserved limes / tangelos?

Making the Most of Produce – Oranges, Lemons & Limes

Use these simple techniques to improve getting every use possible out of fresh produce.

 Oranges & Lemons

When oranges and lemons are in season and abundant, 

peel them and set the peelings out to dry

store in a cool open place and check frequently to make sure they have plenty of air circulation (and are not growing mold!)

once peeling are dry, tear them into quarter or dime sized pieces and store them in a glass jar

use them to make tea, grate into dishes, or put into a coffee grinder to make powder

juice the insides and freeze the juice in ice cube molds

****I froze the lemon pulp that was the waste product from the juicer… thinking it would make a great cleaning product – but have yet to figure out how to get it from point A to point B.  Any ideas?

 

Limes

Zest them  – set the zest out to dry

Place dried zest in clean baby food jars for storage

Freeze the juice in ice cube molds.