Baked chicken fajitas

Eat chicken? Most of us here in Canada do. In fact, the average Canadian eats over 30 kg of chicken per year according to recent statistics. That being said, there are countless chicken recipes to try.
This one is simple and you likely have all the ingredients available in your fridge and freezer.
This recipe requires one bake pan which doubles as your serving dish. Prep and cooking time takes less than one hour.
Try it tonight!

INGREDIENTS:

5 boneless skinless organic or naturally raised chicken breasts sliced into 1″ strips
2 red peppers sliced lengthwise 1″ thick strips
1 green pepper same as red
1 1/2 large red onion sliced 1/2″
4-5 cloves garlic chopped
2 tbsp oregano
1 1/2 tbsp chilli powder
1-2 tsp cumin
1/2-1 tsp hot chilli flakes ( depending on your taste)
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3+tbsp organic olive oil or melted virgin coconut oil

PREPARATION:

Pre-heat oven to 400′

African chicken almond stew

It’s time to stew. This little gem came to me by way of Hunter Angler Gardener Cook. The original recipe was a peanut stew so I replaced peanuts with almonds, a little less almond butter, a bit more heat from cayenne and boneless chicken leg pieces to speed up the cooking time. Serve with my curried cauliflower rice and it is a perfect cold weather warm you up meal. Here we go!

INGREDIENTS:

3 lbs. boneless chicken legs and or thighs
3 tbsp olive oil or virgin coconut oil
1 large onion chopped
A 4 inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced
8 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
3 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
1-15 oz can crushed tomatoes
4 cups organic chicken stock or broth
1/2 c + 3 tbsp almond butter
1/3 cup toasted almonds*see note below
1 tbsp ground coriander
11/2-2 tsp cayenne pepper or to taste
Sea salt and black pepper to taste

PREPARATION:

* note: toast your 1/3 cup almonds in a frying pan over medium heat about 4 minutes and set aside.
Heat a large cast iron pot or heavy bottom pot over medium heat,and add the olive oil. Pat the chicken pieces dry and season both sides with salt.
Brown them in batches, making sure not to crowd the pot. Look for a nice brown sear on the chicken. Set aside in a large plate.
Sauté the onions in the same pot for 3-4 minutes scraping down the brown bits from the bottom of the pot. Add the garlic and ginger and sauté another 1-2 minutes, then add the sweet potatoes stirring well to combine.
Add the chicken, chicken broth,crushed tomatoes, almond butter, toasted almonds, ground coriander, cayenne and stir well to combine.
Bring to a simmer, uncovered and taste for salt.
Cover the pot and simmer gently for 60 minutes.
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Plate over cauliflower rice, sprinkle with chopped cilantro or parsley and sliced almonds. Enjoy 🙂

Serves 6-8

Gone camping!

Here’s a great make ahead recipe I picked up at a food demonstration in Quebec.
The chef, sEB of sEB L’Artisan Culinaire does a weekly recipe demo and tasting Saturdays at a local farmers market, so I had a taste. Although, he intended this as a campfire or picnic recipe you can try it at home. He suggests you marinate the chicken for 3 days and up to a week. Seems easy enough.

PORTUGUESE Inspired campfire chicken for 4

INGREDIENTS:

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts halved lengthwise( for even cooking throughout)
8 cloves garlic peeled
2 tbsp fresh ginger
1 bunch of cilantro leaves and stems washed
1/2 cup of water
1 pint of brown ale ( he used Newcastle)
1/2 cup fine olive oil
2-4tsp coarse sea salt ( like Malden)* found in specialty grocery stores
3-4 tbsp jerk seasoning in a jar ( not the dry spice seasoning)( very spicy stuff so add according to how spicy you like your food)

PREPARATION:

In a mini food processor, add garlic,ginger, cilantro and chop. Using a zip lock bag placed over a large bowl, add the chicken, beer, water, olive oil,garlic, ginger,cilantro,2 tsp sea salt and jerk seasoning.
Remove as much air as possible, seal and mash around so the seasoning covers the breasts.
Place the ziplock bag flat on a tray in the fridge for 3 days and up to 5.
When you’re ready to grill use indirect heat if using coals otherwise the chicken will burn. Sprinkle a bit more sea salt on the breasts during the cooking process.
Total cooking time should be 10-12 minutes per breast. Simply fold over one end of the breast and if it breaks apart easily it’s usually done. Otherwise, just cut into one to be sure 🙂

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Pumpkin seed pesto

Here’s a variation on the traditional pesto. Substitute cilantro for basil and roasted pumpkin seeds for pine nuts or walnuts. This one is dairy free as well.
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INGREDIENTS:

1 cup plus 1/3 cup or more as needed organic olive oil
4 cups packed fresh cilantro leaves*(see note below)
1 1/4 cup roasted pumpkin seeds
4 cloves peeled garlic
1/2 tsp sea salt
Freshly ground pepper
Grated lemon zest( optional)

PREPARATION:

Preheat oven to 325′ and place pumpkin seeds on a tray. Roast no more than 10-15 minutes and remove from oven placing them in a clean bowl.
In a food processor, place washed and dried cilantro leaves ( use a bit of the green stem as well)
1 cup olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Process until the mixture forms a coarse paste. Add the extra olive oil as needed. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
Store in the fridge in an airtight container for a few weeks, remembering to add a bit more olive oil on the top of the pesto. Or fill ice cube trays 3/4 full with pesto, freeze and then store in zip locks bags for future use.

USES:

Base for dips, marinating chicken meat or fish, great on pasta and spread on toast points.

20130725-103440.jpg* see my earlier post on basil walnut pesto for tips on how to wash cilantro or basil

Asian inspired slaw

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Cool down with this Asian slaw. No cooking required, make this ahead, keep refrigerated for a few days. Add some protein, keep it simple and quick. When I’m rushed for time I add leftover shredded chicken or store-bought shredded roasted chicken right to this slaw. It pairs well with shrimp and lobster too.
To save time purchase pre-shredded mixed cabbage or slaw and just add the dressing.
Use 4 cups of slaw.
If you have a food processor follow the instructions below.

INGREDIENTS:
1/4 head each of red and green cabbage, finely shredded in food processor~ 3 cups total
1/2 cup store-bought broccoli slaw
1/4 cup store-bought match stick carrots
2 green onions chopped
1 tbsp grated ginger(optional)*
1 1/2 -2 tbsp raw honey
2 tbsp cider vinegar
1 tbsp lime juice
Pinch of salt and pepper
Sesame seeds for garnish

PREPARATION:
Microwave honey for 10 seconds, then add vinegar,lime juice, salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
In a large bowl add the cabbage, broccoli slaw, carrots and green onions. Pour in the dressing and mix. Refrigerate at least an hour.
Garnish with sesame seeds.

Happy Canada Day!

Spice up your day with these Chipotle chicken burgers!

A chipotle pepper is a red Jalapeño chile, ripened, dried, and smoked through a special process. Tomatoes, vinegar, ancho chiles and spices are added to make the adobo sauce.

INGREDIENTS:

3 lbs organic chicken leg meat ground ( or 1/2 breast and 1/2 leg meat)
1/4 cup adobo sauce + 1-2 tbsp chopped chipotle pepper
3/4 cup chopped red onion
1 garlic clove pressed or finely grated
1/3 cup finely chopped red pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
3 tsp sea salt
1 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper

PREPARATION:

Combine all ingredients. Form 10 – 6 oz patties. Place on a baking sheet and refrigerate 30 minutes.
BBQ burgers turning every 3-4 minutes. * leg meat is much denser and will require longer cooking time~ 15 minutes.

Serve over lettuce (as your bun) with sliced avocado
Add your own favourite toppings
Maple glazed bacon works well with these burgers too (preheat oven to 400′, place bacon on a baking sheet, brush with maple syrup, bake 10 minutes per side)

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Garlic marinated grilled chicken

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Here is another one of my favourite chicken recipes. It’s super easy. You can make it tonight or marinate and grill tomorrow. I recommend marinating at least 2 hours.

INGREDIENTS:

3-4 lbs skinless boneless chicken thighs ( or breasts)
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (4-5 lemons)
1 cup olive oil
6-7 large cloves of garlic
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp sweet smoked paprika
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
tbsp. Lemon thyme ( optional)

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PREPARATION:

Using a mortar and pestle smash the garlic cloves, salt and lemon thyme ( optional) until a thick paste forms.

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Add the paste to the lemon juice, olive oil, paprika, pepper and lemon thyme and stir to combine.
Using a large ziplock bag, add the chicken and marinade, seal and mash around so to evenly distribute the marinade.
Lay the bag flat in another tray and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnite.

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Heat your grill ( BBQ) and grill until clear juices appear. 20 minutes or longer for thighs depending in thickness and a little less for boneless breasts.
KEEP YOUR BBQ LID OFF DURING THE COOKING PROCESS. ENJOY!

Basil walnut pesto

The finished product
There are so many versions of pesto out there. This one is my go to.

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup fresh basil leaves
1 cup walnut halves
1 large garlic clove
1 ounce grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
pinch of sea salt
cracked pepper
ground chili peppers(optional) (to taste)

PREPARATION:

Start by filling a container or pitcher with cold water. Plunge the basil leaves into the water several times, then drain the water and repeat. This is the best way to get all the dirt and sand off the basil leaves.
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Then lay the basil on a tea towel or paper towel to dry.
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Once dry, snip the leaves from the stems, measure and place in a food processor. Add the remaining ingredients and process until it forms a coarse paste. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Refrigerate for up to a week or freeze in ice cub trays then store in zip lock bags. Use as a marinade for grilling chicken, fish and seafood, in tomato sauce to enhance the flavor or as a sauce on its own.
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Chopped chicken in lettuce cups

Another one of my favorites. This dish is light and flavorful. Try it hot or cold. Either way, it’s sure to please.
Chopped chicken in lettuce cups

INGREDIENTS:

6 -boneless skinless chicken breasts(4 oz cooked)
2 tbsp virgin coconut oil
1 large red onion, chopped
4 tbsp grated fresh ginger
3 small red chillies, deseeded and chopped
1 handful of cilantro, chopped
2 heads of iceberg lettuce, split in half and separated into leaves

DRESSING:

1/4 cup or more fresh lime juice
1/2 cup or more fresh lemon juice
4 tbsp Thai fish sauce
2 tbsp raw honey, melted
salt to taste ( sea salt or Himalayan natural crystal salt)

PREPARATION:

Roughly chop chicken breasts then place in a food processor and pulse until chopped.
Heat coconut oil in a wok or large skillet. Cook chicken about 5 minutes until it turns white, breaking it apart so it cooks evenly. Make sure to drain off any excess liquid that comes out of the chicken.
Transfer chicken to a large bowl and add the onion, grated ginger, chillies and chopped cilantro.

In a small bowl combine the dressing ingredients. Toss the chicken with the dressing then season to taste.
To make the lettuce cups, separate the halved iceberg lettuce into leaves.
Place a few on top of each other to create individual bowls.
Spoon the chicken salad into the ” bowls” and serve.

Inspired by Diva Cooking (salads)

Breakfast Sausage Patties

Here’s another one of my favorite recipes. It’s quick and easy and only requires a handful of ingredients.
This recipe is from Cuisine at Home, however, I have omitted brown sugar because we are sweet enough 😉

INGREDIENTS:

1 lb ground chicken (or turkey)
1 grated apple (skin on)
1/2 c minced or grated onion
1 tbsp minced fresh parsley
1 tsp each kosher salt and pepper
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp coconut oil (or olive oil)
eggs (one for each patty)
parsley or thyme to garnish (optional)

PREPARATION:

Combine the first 6 ingredients in a bowl. Careful not to overmix. Heat oil in a skillet and using an ice cream scoop place the rounds in the skillet.IMG_6037

Then gently flatten the patties down leaving a small well in the centre for the egg. Cook until browned or about 5 minutes, then flip them and cook another few minutes. ( if you decide NOT to add the egg then continue cooking and remove from heat).* see note below
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If you are adding the extra protein (egg) you will gently crack the egg into the well of each patty, cover the pan and continue cooking over med-low heat for about 7 minutes ensuring the whites are set and the yolks have begun to thicken. Add chopped parsley or thyme to garnish.

* another option is to prepare the patties ahead without the egg and store for another meal, then cook your egg separately and simply place your cooked egg over your re-heated patty.
Serve these up with a large spinach salad and 1/2 an avocado for lunch or dinner as well.