Tag Archives: garlic

Lebanon…

Sunday, November 24 –

Finally! A dinner and a post on time. Whew!photo 1 (2)

So this one time the President of the United States rolled through our neighborhood on his way to a fundraising dinner. It totally snarled traffic in every direction. It just so happened that WingWoman and LightsOn got caught in it, super near our house. So we stole them for dinner, and this is what we fed them.

I sprayed a glass baking dish with olive oil, then took 5 chicken leg quarters and put them in. Husband got the spices together and we sprinkled some (more than a pinch) on top of the chicken. Then I put the potato rounds on top and stuck it in the oven for 50 minutes. Right before it came out, I put a bunch of garlic in a food processer with salt and lemon juice (I used the pre-cut kind that already had oil on it). Scoops and scoops of it. We like our garlic STRONG.

I took the potatoes off and put them into a bowl, took the potatoes out and put them into a different bowl. Dumped the extra liquid out of the dish. Then put the potatoes back in, with the chicken on top, and dumped the garlic mixture over the whole thing. Then I stuck it back into the oven for about 10 minutes.

It was garlicky, warm, filling, and satisfying on a cold, crazy traffic night. Three cheers for stuck friends over for dinner!

Lebanon
(recipe borrowed from the cooks at: www.mamaslebanesekitchen.com)

Baked Garlic Chicken

  • 4 lbs of chicken legs/quarters/breasts
  • 5 medium potatoes
  • 20 cloves of garlic (or 1.5 heads)
  • 1 cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 4 table spoons of olive oil
  • salt to taste
  • A pinch of Lebanese 7-spices (Equal proportions of: Allspice, Black Pepper, White Pepper, Cinnamon, Ground Cloves, Ground Nutmeg, and Coriander.)
  • Vinegar (optional)

Preparation Method:

1. Soak chicken in vinegar for 2 minutes (to help remove the “chickeny” smell), rinse them well with cold water then dry them with paper towels.
2. Make cuts in chicken in order to allow for garlic sauce to seep deep inside.
3. Rub chicken with a table spoon or two of olive oil, a pinch of salt, and a pinch of Lebanese 7-spices.
4. Peel potatoes then cut them in disks of about 1/2 inch, salt lightly.
5. Place chicken on bottom of baking tray (preferably metal), place potatoes on top, and bake at 400F (medium heat) for about 40-50 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked.
6. Meanwhile place the garlic cloves, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 2-3 table spoons of olive oil in a blender/food processor and spin for 4-5 minutes, add the lemon juice and spin for another 4-5 minutes until you have a nice lemony-garlicky sauce.
7. Once the chicken has baked, take the tray out of the oven and very carefully drain any excess liquids/fat/water that you see on the bottom.
8. Pour the garlic sauce all over it while mixing it well with the potatoes, put back in the oven and broil for another 5-10 minutes until the potatoes turn reddish.
9. Serve warm.
10. Note: You may need to consume an unusually large quantity of toothpaste afterwards. (4 servings)


Kuwait…

Thursday, September 5 – 

So… I got a new job. Hooray! And I got married. Extra, super hooray! But that means that I fell behind on writing my posts… again. Woops!

Kuwait (1)

 

Other than that, here are the photos. That’s all I’ve got for now. You know, since it was over a month ago. So enjoy the photos!I promise this happened. Yes, over a month ago. But it did! Mistress Whiskey and BestieExtraordinarie hosted the dinner. Their housemates helped cook, clean, and host everyone. We even had a birthday party thrown in on top.

Kuwait
(recipe borrowed from the cooks at: www.nestle-family.com)

  • 25 baby zucchini or 2 kg
  • ½ cup basmati rice or 100 g
  • 250 g minced beef
  • 4 tablespoons ghee, melted
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/3 cup fresh parsley or 25 g, chopped
  • 1/3 cup coriander leaves or 25 g, choppedKuwait (2)
  • 1/3 cup fresh dill or 25 g, chopped
  • 1 small onion or 100 g, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, mashed
  • 1 medium tomato or 150 g, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons raisins
  • ¼ teaspoon white ground pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 kg chicken wings
  • 5 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 cubes MAGGI® Chicken BouillonKuwait (4)
  • 12 cups water or 3 liters

Preparation:
Hollow zucchini and wash well. Soak rice in water for half an hour then strain. Mix rice, meat, ghee, salt, parsley, raisins, coriander, dill, chopped onion, garlic, chopped tomatoes, and spices in a mixing bowl. Stuff zucchini with the rice mixture and keep 1cm empty from the top. Heat oil in pot and fry chicken wings for 3 minutes or until they become golden in color. Add tomato paste and MAGGI® Chicken Bouillon cubes then. Remove from heat. Place stuffed zucchini carefully in a pot, side by side. Secure zucchini with a plate on top. Add water and bring to boil then simmer on low heat for 1 hour 30 minutes or until zucchini are well cooked.KuwaitKuwait (5)


Korea…

Friday, August 23 – photo 1

Sooooooooooooooo much good food. This, I’m pretty sure, was one of the best blog dinners ever. My mouth still waters thinking about it, and it happened two weeks ago!

I made Bibim Bap, using the marinade recipe below instead of bottled sauce. I also purchased cabbage kimchi, seaweed salad, and pickled ginger to go on the side. Sir VJ and RubsWithLove made short ribs, pork belly, mushrooms, stuff for lettuce wraps, and a bean sprout salad. They also purchased cucumber kimchi. Sir VJ had a table-top grill that he set up outside on the picnic table and grilled the ribs, pork belly, and mushrooms right in front of us. It was amazing times a million.

I made the marinade and put it into a ziplock bag (I don’t have a juicer, so for the pear I just put it into a food processor and then strained the juice). Then I cut the beef (which was actually a sirloin cut) into thin strips and put them into the marinade. I put that in the fridge while I prepped the veggies and the hot sauce. I cut and sliced and prepped all of the veggies into their own bowls and set them aside. Then I made the hot sauce into a bowl and set that aside. I made the executive decision to use just one pot of boiling water to cook all of the veggies, even though it says not to. How bad could it be? Turns out, it wasn’t bad at all – it worked just fine. I started with the carrots, then the zucchini, then the mushrooms, then the sprouts, and last was the spinach. Once all of the veggies were done, I put the beef and marinade into a hot pan and cooked until *just* done enough. While I was doing that, WingWoman cooked us some fried eggs, leaving the yolk as runny as possible. photo 2

Into the bowl went rice, then some of each of the cooked veggies, then little bits of ripped up seaweed sheets, then sesame seeds, then the meat, then the egg, and then I dumped the cooked sauce over the top of all of the bowls.

We dug into the Bibim Bap (read: devoured) and there was much “mmmmmmmmmmm”ing going on. With the short ribs, pork belly, mushrooms, garlic, and sides, there was so much food I didn’t want to get up from the table. Absolutely epic dinner. Thank you to all of my Korea dinner friends, it was a night I’m going to remember and drool over for a very long time!

Korea
(recipe borrowed from the cooks at: http://recipes.wikia.com and http://koreanfood.about.com)

Bibim Bap

Beef

  • 4 slice bulgogi beef – (⅛ lb)
  • 2 tbsp bottled bulgogi marinade
  • 1 tsp oil

Vegetables

  • 4 x fresh shiitake mushrooms sliced
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 1 tbsp bottled bulgogi marinade
  • 2 x carrots
  • 4 cup spinach
  • 1½ cup soybean sprouts
  • 1 large zucchini

Rice

  • 2 cups short-grain rice

Sauce

  • ¼ cup red pepper paste (kochujang)
  • ½ tsp sesame seeds
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 garlic clove minced

Assembly

  • ½ cup bottled kimchi cut thin strips
  • 1½ tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • ½ sht nori seaweed – (8″ square) sliced into fine, thin strips
  • 1 fried egg

Directions:

Beef:    Place the beef in a bowl, add the bulgogi marinade, cover and refrigerate, 1 hour.    Remove the beef from the marinade and cut into ½-inch slices.    Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.    Add the beef and stir-fry until cooked through, 1 minute.    Note: cook the beef just before assembling the dish.

Vegetables:    Cook the mushrooms in the oil and the marinade in a skillet over high heat until tender, 3 to 4 minutes.    Set aside.    Cut the carrots into very thin, long strips.    The spinach, carrots and soy bean sprouts need to be blanched in separate pots of boiling water.    Blanch the spinach 30 seconds.    Drain and squeeze dry.    Blanch the carrots, 1 minute; the soybean sprouts, 30 seconds.    Cut the zucchini into very thin slices.    Cook the zucchini in boiling water until tender, about 3 minutes.

Rice:    Wash the rice several times in cold water until the water is clear, rubbing the rice well.    Drain.    Place the rice in a heavy pot; add 3 cups of cold water.    Cover and bring to a boil, reduce the heat and steam, covered, until the rice is tender, about 30 minutes.

Sauce: Combine the red pepper paste, sesame seeds, honey, oil and garlic in a small bowl.    Set aside.

Assembly:     Place the hot cooked rice in a large serving bowl.    The vegetables can be at room temperature.    Arrange them on top of the rice in separate groups, along with the kimchi.    Sprinkle with the sesame oil and sesame seeds.    Arrange the beef on top and a small pile of nori strips at one side. Place the egg in the center.Pass the sauce in a separate bowl. Add this to taste and stir it into the mixture, preferably with a long-handled Korean spoon.

Korean Meat Marinade (Bulgogi sauce)

  •     3 Tbsp chopped garlic (about 2 cloves)
  •     3 Tbsp soy sauce
  •     2 Tbsp sugar
  •     1 Tbsp honey
  •     2 Tbsp fresh squeezed juice from an Asian pear
  •     1 Tbsp Japanese rice wine (mirin)*
  •     1 Tbsp sesame oil
  •     3 green onions, finely chopped (including white part)
  •     1 tsp pepper

Preparation:    Mix marinade together until sugar and honey are dissolved/distributed.    Can be stored in refrigerator or freezer for use on beef, pork, and chicken.    (Serves 4)   *If you don’t have access to the rice wine, a splash of dry white wine will also work here.


Kazakhstan…

Thursday, July 18 –

This dinner was just BestestFianceEver and I again, so I had to modify the recipe. I put a chopped up quarter of an onion into a hot pan with a drizzle of oil. I let that cook until it was starting to soften. Then I added some chopped garlic and photo 1(1)ginger, then sprinkled on some paprika, saffron, nutmeg, salt, and pepper. I let that warm up with the onion and fill the house with yummy smells. Then I put two chicken breasts in the middle of the pan and let them brown on both sides. Once they were browned I poured in some chicken broth, covered the pan, and let it simmer for about ten minutes (flipping the breasts once). When they were almost done I took the lid off, added the lemon rind, and let the broth simmer down.

We were really late for dinner to I just chopped up some prunes and dried apricots and added those to packaged steamable rice. When it was done in the microwave I added slivered almonds, stirred the whole thing, and added it to the plates. I know this cut out some of the ingredients, but that was just the hurried decision I made. With salad on the side, dinner was ready.

The chicken was nice and juicy but a little bland. I probably didn’t get enough of the seasoning onto the onion mixture. The rice was a good way to soak up the broth and the veggies. And the salad was a perfect way to start the meal. All in all, it gets a thumbs up.

Kazakhstan
(recipes borrowed from the cooks at: www.cookadvice.com)

Kazakh Lemon Chicken

  • 1 T olive oilphoto 2(1)
  • 2 Whole chickens (3-lbs ea)
  • 2 t Ground ginger
  • 1 t Paprika
  • 3 Cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Large onions, chopped
  • 1⁄4 t saffron
  • 1⁄2 t Nutmeg
  • 2 t Salt
  • 2 T Black pepper Fresh grnd.
  • 2 c chicken stock
  • 1 c Green olives chopped without pimientos
  • 4 T Lemon rinds minced

Cooking Kazakh Lemon Chicken

1. Heat olive oil in a roasting pan and place chickens, breast down in the pan. Combine ginger, paprika, garlic, onion, nutmeg, saffron, salt pepper in a bowl.

2. Rub this mixture onto the chickens and season to taste with Add enough water to cover chickens halfway.

3. Cook on High heat until boiling.

4. Remove pan from heat and place in 400 degree F. oven. Bake, uncovered, for 30 mins.

5. Turn chickens continue baking until tender golden brown, approx.

6. 25 mins.

7. Move chickens to serving platter.

8. Place pan on stove top bring the chicken juices to a boil.

9. Add olives and lemon rind.

10. Reduce heat to Low simmer 5 minutes.

11. Spoon sauce over chickens serve.

Kazakh rice

  • 1 1⁄2 c Rice
  • 1⁄3 c Slivered almonds
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Med. onion chopped
  • 1⁄2 c Chopped dates pitted
  • 1⁄3 c Chopped prunes pitted
  • 3 Dried apricots; chopped
  • 1 T Salt
  • 1 c Lamb finely ground – cooked
  • 1 T Vegetable oil

Cooking Kazakh rice

1. Mix the lamb, almonds, fruits, onion, salt, and garlic in a large bowl.

2. Cook the rice until almost done.

3. Be sure to add the oil to the rice as it cooks.

4. Do not drain! Add the lamb mixture and finish cooking the rice.

5. Serve as a side dish or as main course.

6. This is an easy dish that is a palate pleaser.


Jordan…

Monday, July 15 –

I’m late on this post. I know it. SUPER late, really. To tell you the truth, I lost my mojo for this project somewhere along the last few weeks. I’m trying to get it back, but it’s a struggle. So here’s this one, and I will try my best to get back on photo(25)board with it…

This dinner was just BestestFianceEver and me, but we were hoping to have yummy leftovers for lunch. So we took a pound of ground lamb, one onion finely chopped, some garlic, some spices, an egg, and a grated carrot and mixed it altogether. It ended up being super, extra oniony – but that’s ok because we love onion. I made them into round-ish patties instead of balls because they tend to cook faster and more evenly on the stove. Then I threw them onto a hot pan that had a little coating of oil.

While those were cooking I started on the sauce. And I have to ask – how do you boil two teaspoons of water for several minutes? I have no idea. So I put two teaspoons of water into a coffee mug, put the saffron threads in with it, covered it with plastic wrap and microwaved it for three minutes. That was about as close as I knew how to pull that off. I took the wrap off and put the rest of the ingredients in and ended up doubling the lemon (so one whole lemon, juiced) and extra parsley.

BestestFianceEver made rice and a salad (yes, a salad – it was hot outside and it sounded good). Once the meat was done cooking we were good to go for dinner. The meatballs ended up super crumbly because of the meat-to-onion ratio, but the flavor was good. The sauce was still a little tasteless but it went pretty well with the caraway seeds in the meat. All in all this dinner gets a thumbs up.

Jordan
(recipe borrowed from the cooks at: http://khanapakana.com)

Jordanian Meat Balls

  • Lean Minced Lamb or Mutton 350 gm
  • Small Onion finely chopped 1
  • Garlic 1 clove
  • Fresh Thyme 1 tsp
  • Caraway Seeds 1/2 tsp
  • Paprika 1/2 tsp
  • Egg 1
  • Salt to taste
  • Black Pepper to taste
  • All Spice Powder 1/4 tsp
  • Carrot Grated 1/2
  • Oil as required for grilling

For the sauce:

  • Saffron Threads a few
  • Boiling Water 2 tsp
  • Fresh Parsley 2 tbsp
  • Lemon 1/2
  • Yogurt Unsweetened 1 cup
  • Salt to taste

Cooking Directions:      In a bowl mix the lamb mince, onion, garlic, thyme, caraway seeds, all spice powder, grated carrot, paprika, salt and black pepper along with the egg.    Mix well to combine.    Shape the mixture into approximately 16 balls and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes.    Soak the skewers in cold water.    Carefully thread the meatballs onto the skewers and grill on a well greased grill either charcoal or a grill pan and cook for about 10-15 minutes until meat is cooked through making sure to rotate the skewers whilst cooking.    For the sauce soak the saffron threads in the boiling water for about 10 minutes with a pinch of sugar, stirring occasionally.    Add 2 tbsp chopped parsley and the rind of 1/2 lemon along with the yogurt to the saffron and soaking water.    Transfer it all into a small bowl for serving.    Serve the ready meatballs with the sauce, lemon wedges and sprinkle with some more caraway seeds and fresh parsley.


Israel…

Sunday, May 19 –

Apparently I have some catching up to do! Mistress Whiskey picked this dinner to host, along with Bestie Extraordinaire, for her birthday. So there were so many people there that I can’t even name them all. All I photo(6)can say was there was a pretty darn good spread of food, some shenanigans, and an outrageous game called “butt quarters”. I’m sure you can imagine how hilarious that was!

I made the recipe exactly as it is written below, the only change being that I used chicken thighs instead of a whole chicken. And I simmered it for closer to 30 minutes instead of 75.

It turned out a little soupy instead of like wine-gravy that I thought it would be. I think it might have been even better without the flour in it so that the lemon and wine really got a chance to stand out against the dark meat. But other than that it was a pretty good dish.

Thank you to Mistress Whiskey and Bestie Extraordinaire for hosting, it was a great party!

Israel
(recipe borrowed from the cooks at: www.easyjewishrecipes.com)

Chicken In Leek Garlic Lemon Sauce

  • 1 chicken, cut-up, skin removed
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 1 tsp. pepper
  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 medium leek, cleaned and diced
  • 3 medium carrots, shredded
  • 1 ½ cups white wine (you can substitute chicken stock, water or your favorite juice: ex: pomegranate juice or syrup)
  • ¼ cup lemon juice (freshly squeezed is best)
  • 2 tsp. paprika

Pour half of the oil into a large skillet and leave it nearby. Place flour in a plastic bag together with pepper and mix it up. Place each piece of chicken in bag and shake to coat. Heat oil over medium high and brown each piece of chicken on both sides. Set aside.

With brown bits left in skillet, add a bit more oil then the onions, garlic, leek and carrots. Lower heat to medium and saute vegetables until they are soft. Add the wine, lemon juice and paprika, scraping up any brown bits left on skillet. Stir the sauce and let it cook for 10 minutes – it will reduce and thicken.

Add browned pieces of chicken back into sauce and cover. Simmer on low heat until chicken is fork-tender – about 75 minutes.


Iraq…

Friday, April 26 –

This dinner was almost perfectly made for four people. We had WingWoman, LightsOn, BestestFianceEver, and yours truly.

I started by chopping the prunes and apricots up, putting them in a bowl, covering them with water, and leaving them on the counter for about three hours. Then I took chicken thighs, removed the skin, and fried photo(3)them in hot oil until they were browned on both sides. Then I put the drained prunes and apricots in a glass baking dish and pushed them to the sides. I added the chicken thighs in the middle. Then I fried the onion and garlic in the leftover oil and chicken bits, adding the spices, broth, honey, and cornstarch/lemon juice mixture after the onions were soft and brown. Stirring well to mix in the cornstarch and to scrape off the last chicken bits, I let the liquid boil for a few minutes. After I was sure it was all hot and mixed together I poured the liquid and onions over the top of the chicken, apricots, and prunes. Covered with foil and into a 350* oven for 30 minutes. Sprinkled with sliced almonds and served for dinner.

LightsOn made the filling for a dish that is lamb, onion, and spices cooked until done and then shoved into hand-rolled pockets of rice-dough stuff. Then we fried the rice pockets. It was extremely sticky/messy/hilarious. But the recipe we used didn’t have much flavor to it, so it turned into a way to soak up the sauce from the tagine.

Iraq
(recipe borrowed from the cooks at: www.epicurious.com)

Chicken and Prune Tagine

  • 4 oz Prunes
  • 4 oz Dried apricots
  • 1/2 cup Toasted split almonds
  • 3 tbl Extra virgin olive oil
  • 8 Portions chicken
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 20 Grinds black pepper
  • 1 lrg Onion
  • 2 Cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp Ground turmeric
  • 3 Cardamom pods
  • 1 tsp Ground ginger
  • 2 tsp Ground cinnamon
  • 2 1/2 cup Chicken stock or half stock, half white wine
  • 1 tbl Honey
  • 2 tsp Cornstarch
  • 2 tsp Lemon juice or water

Cooking Instructions:  Several hours in advance or overnight, soak the dried fruit in water to cover. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Fry the almonds in the hot oil over moderate heat until golden brown, then drain on paper towels and reserve. Remove the skin and any visible fat from the chicken portions, thoroughly dry them, then season with the salt and pepper. Fry the chicken in the hot oil until rich brown on all sides, then lift out and drain on paper towels to remove any surplus fat. Lay the pieces side by side in a lidded casserole and surround with the drained fruit. In the same oil gently sauté the finely chopped onion and garlic until they turn a rich golden brown (keep the pan lid on for 5 minutes to soften them in the steam, and then remove it to finish the browning). Add the spices and stock and honey. Stir well to release any crispy bits adhering to the base of the pan, then bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the cornstarch mixed with the lemon juice (or water, if wine has been used). Pour over the chicken. Cover and bake for 1 hour, or until tender when pierced with a sharp knife. Do not overcook as the chicken will soften during the reheating. Garnish the dish with the fried almonds.