Crispy Castiron Chicken

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , ,


Crispy castiron chicken. Say that 5 times fast!  I hadn’t tried this before but now that I did, I’m probably going to replace all of my fried chicken recipes with this. Probably. The thing is, it is so easy to execute that crispy skin while keeping a really juicy interior. And it’s done in 30-35 mins.  And it isn’t fried which makes it healthier. So yea, no brainer.

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Time: 35 mins

Ingredients:

  • 6 bone in, skin on chicken thighs
  • 1 tablespoon safflower oil (or any high heat oil)
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)

Recipe:

  1. Get your castiron nice and hot on high heat. Yes, you need to use a castiron skillet for this process.
  2. Add the safflower oil & give it 1 min to get hot.
  3. Sprinkle salt & pepper on the chicken.
  4. Use tongs to place the chicken skin-side down into the castiron.
  5. Let it brown for 2-3 mins then turn the heat to medium. Leave it about 8 minutes.
  6. While the chicken is cooking on the stove, preheat your oven to 475.
  7. When the oven is preheated & the chicken is finished from the stove, place it into the oven. Leave the chicken skin-side down.
  8. Bake for 10 minutes then take the castiron out and use the tongs to flip each piece over so the skin is on top. It should be nice and golden brown.
  9. Place it back in the oven for another 3-4 minutes. This is just to ensure the other side is cooked through.
  10. Remove & serve! At this time you can sprinkle on that cayenne pepper if you want it to be spicy. 

It is really tasty with a mixture of white vinegar, chili pepper (we used wiri wiri) and a little fresh ginger sprinkled on top. 

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Butter Chicken Masala

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , ,


All I want when it’s cold outside is creamy, hearty, warm meals! I got sick of eating soup variations so I tried a recipe for Butter Chicken. It’s a little spicy, really creamy, packed with flavor, and I can have it with cauliflower rice which has been my new thing. Here’s my take! 

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Time: 30 mins plus time for the chicken to marinate  

Ingredients:  

  • 1 cup plain yogurt (I used Greek)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons freshly sliced ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 skinless chicken thighs, chopped into bite-sized cubes
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chili pepper, I used jalapeño
  • 2 teaspoons hot paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup tomato sauce, unseasoned
  • 1 cup half & half (can use heavy cream)
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 teaspoons corn starch (optional) 
  • cilantro for garnish (optional)  

Recipe:  

  1. Cut the chicken into cubes, removing any fat or skin, then add it to a large freezer / zip loc bag.
  2. Add the yogurt, lemon juice, 2 teaspoons of the cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, black pepper, fresh ginger and salt. 
  3. Close the bag removing any air, and use your hands outside of the bag to move the chicken around the mixture so it coats evenly. Refrigerate overnight.
  4. When you’re ready to cook the chicken, take it out of the bag with as little of the marinade as possible. Put it in a bowl & set it aside.
  5. In a pressure cooker, add the butter, garlic and jalapeno. Let it sauté for a bit so the butter melts & the garlic cooks. 
  6. In a small bowl, add 2 teaspoons cumin, paprika, salt, tomato sauce and heavy cream. Stir to combine.
  7. Pour the sauce over the chicken in the pressure cooker and cook for 5 mins. Let it release steam naturally for another 10 minutes before removing the lid. Hint: if you don’t have a pressure cooker, you can slow cook the mixture for 4 hours. 
  8. If using cornstarch to thicken the sauce, stir it into one tablespoon of water and add the mixture to the pressure cooker.
  9. Stir to combine.
  10. Garnish with cilantro and serve!
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Potato Leek Soup

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , ,


Oh the subtle onion taste of leeks! You never disappoint! I haven't made this soup before but I'm really excited with how it came out. It's super easy and super impressive. Check out my take, below!

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Time: 30 mins 

Ingredients:

  • 2 large russet potatoes
  • 2 leeks, trimmed & cleaned
  • 5 cloves of garlic 
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 4 cups chicken bone broth
  • Salt to taste
  • 8 tablespoons butter

Recipe:

  1. Melt the butter in a large pot 
  2. Wash the leeks thoroughly, removing any sand. Then, chop them into smaller pieces & add them to the pot.
  3. Smash the garlic cloves & add them in with the leeks.
  4. Peel & dice the potatoes into small pieces, add them to the pot.
  5. Add the thyme, salt & bone broth. Stir to combine, then cover the pot. 
  6. Let the soup boil until the potatoes are tender, about 20 mins.
  7. Use an immersion blender to smoothen the soup.  Test for salt, then serve!  
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Vegetable Raclette

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , , ,


What's better than sautéed squash, mushrooms & carrots coated in melted gruyere? Not much. This vegetable raclette is wholesome, filling, and a little spicy. In other words, it's perfection. 

Time:  1 hour 

Ingredients

  • 2 large zuchini  
  • 2 summer squash  
  • 1 pack portobello mushrooms
  • 1 serrano pepper  
  • 1 cup shredded carrots (or diced) 
  • 1/2 cup shredded gruyere cheese  
  • salt & pepper to taste  
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil  

Recipe

  1. Dice the zuchini & summer squash, roughly chop the mushrooms. 
  2. Slice the serrano pepper & set it aside. 
  3. Sauté the vegetables (including the carrots) in a bit of olive oil so they will cook through. I did mine one by one so that everything cooked evenly & didn't get too soggy. You want them crunchy. 
  4. Pour the cooked vegetables into an oven-safe Pyrex, add the serrano slices & season with salt & pepper. 
  5. Sprinkle the shredded gruyere on top of the vegetables & broil for 2-3 minutes or until the cheese is melted & bubbly.   

Enjoy as a main, side, or in tacos!  

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Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , ,


Homemade ice cream can officially be crossed off my list of fears. Hahah I'm almost kidding! I don't have an ice cream maker so this was pretty intimidating for me. I made this recipe eggless, surprisingly not all ice cream is, so it's great for me on fasting days when I don't eat meat, fish, poultry, or eggs. After trying it, and being excited with what it tasted like, I'm here to tell you that you can put those fears to bed. Get em out of your house alltogether. I'm serious, it was so easy! I want to explore all the flavors now!!  

Here's my Mint Chocolate Chip:

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Time: 6.5 hours  

Ingredients:  

  • 2 cans coconut milk (full fat) 
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk  
  • 1.5 teaspoons peppermint extract  
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract  
  • green food coloring (optional) 
  • 1 tablespoon coconut nectar (as a sweetener) 
  • dark chocolate chunks  

Recipe:  

  1. In a medium-sized pot, combine the coconut milk & condensed milk.  
  2. Mix in the food coloring, a couple drops at a time until you get the desired green.  
  3. Let the mixture come to a boil then drop in the extracts and turn off the heat.
  4. Allow the mixture to cool completely before mixing in the chocolate chunks. I chopped my chunks smaller so you get a bit of chocolate in every bite.  
  5. Pour the ice cream into a freezer safe container & press clear wrap over the top. Then, freeze for at least 6 hours.  

Enjoy with a warm fudge brownie for an extra sweet treat! 

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Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , ,


Fasting for Navratri has never been easier! We had guests this past weekend, my cousins from Orlando [heart emoji] and they love football. So you can imagine the desire for wings & football food. I was determined to make a bunch of snacks that would satisfy the wings cravings but be meatless, eggless, and somewhat healthy. Challenge accepted.  

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Time: 30 mins  

Ingredients:  

  • 1 head cauliflower cut into florets
  • 1/2 cup Franks red hot sauce  
  • 3 tablespoons butter (we used a butter substitute)
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour  (can use rice flour for a glutenfree version) 
  • 1/2 cup water  
  • salt & pepper to taste 

Recipe:

  1. In a large basin, mix the flour & water together, seasoning with salt and pepper.  You want it to be a batter, so add more flour or water as needed. 
  2. Dip the raw cauliflower into the batter & place it on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.  
  3. Bake the battered cauliflower on 450 for 10 mins.  
  4. While the cauliflower is baking, mix the hot sauce & butter together.  
  5. Remove the pan from the oven, then liberally brush the buffalo sauce on each one using a pastry brush. 
  6. Place the cauliflower back into the oven for another 20 minutes.  

Enjoy at room temperature, they're not as good when super hot.  These are great with ranch dip! 

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Calabacitas

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , ,


Here you are, folks! Another Meatless Monday miracle. I first tried calabacitas in Colorado last week, from this awesome restaurant, Kachina. They offer it as a side dish. It's really spicy so adjust the recipe to your taste!  Here's my take.

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Time: 20 mins 

Ingredients:

  • 1 zucchini 
  • 1 summer squash
  • 1 small onion
  • 2 red chilis
  • 1/4 cup corn (I used frozen)
  • 1 tablespoon shredded Romano cheese (or whatever you have on hand that will melt well)
  • 1 whole tomato
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • salt & black pepper to taste

Recipe:

  1. Dice the zucchini, squash, tomatoes & onion.  
  2. In a medium skillet, heat the butter. Chop the chili peppers into little slices.
  3. Then add the onion when the butter is slightly melted.
  4. Sauté the onion for 1 min before adding in the chilis.
  5. Once the onion is slightly golden, add in the corn, tomatoes, squash & zuchini. Sprinkle with salt & pepper.
  6. Stir to combine then cover the pan, leaving the heat on low. You should check on it & stir every so often so nothing sticks to the bottom of the pan. 
  7. After about 10 mins, remove the cover & turn off the heat (the squash & zucchini should be cooked but not mushy). 
  8. With the heat off, sprinkle some cheese & stir it in while it melts. This will help offset the spiciness of the chilis & also give the calabacitas a creamy taste. 

Serve as a side dish or in tacos as a veggie filling!

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Chocolate Chip Cookies

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , ,


Soft, chewy, melt in your mouth goodness that are both eggless & glutenfree!! 😱 Yes, we did. Check it out below. 

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Time: 1 hour  

Ingredients

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 6 tablespoons sweet cream (salted) or butter. You can use a butter substitute if you want these to be vegan. 
  • 1 tablespoon Lactaid
  • 2 tablespoons apple sauce  
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar  
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder  
  • 2 teaspoons corn starch
  • 1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips (or vegan chocolate chips if you want this to be vegan)
  • coarse sea salt (optional) 

Recipe

  1. Melt the butter & apple sauce together in the microwave for 30 seconds or until melted. 
  2. Add in the lactaid & the vanilla extract. Stir in the brown sugar, let it dissolve, and then set the mixture aside. 
  3. Using a food processor, grind the oats into a flour. Pour it in a large bowl.  
  4. Add the corn starch and baking powder, using a spatula to combine. 
  5. Pour in the wet ingredients mixture & stir until incorporated. The dough will be wet, that's what we want.  
  6. Add in the chocolate chips.  
  7. Cover with plastic wrap & refrigerate for 20-30 minutes. This helps your cookies turn out chewy. 
  8. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  
  9. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment or foil wrap & spray with cooking spray.  
  10. Form 2" balls of the dough and press them into flatter cookies, then lay them 3" apart on the cookie sheet. 
  11. Sprinkle with sea salt.  
  12. Bake for ONLY 10 minutes.  They will continue to cook on the cookie sheet as they cool and you don't want them to be too dry.  
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Methi Thepla

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , , , ,


Theplas became one of my favorite Gujarati snacks when I started college & met my BFF. She is Guju & her mom would make her these divine, paper thin, loaded with flavor, incredibly complex tasting snacks. I learned that they are called theplas & they are not so complex to make!  The cooler thing is that they are pretty healthy because of the fenugreek (methi) leaves. Fenugreek is known to help lower blood sugar, so it's great for diabetics. 

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Heres my take, don't be afraid to try it at home!  

Time: 1.5 hours, yields 30 theplas

Ingredients:  

  •  2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup besan (gram flour) 
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh methi (fenugreek)  without the stems
  • 2 green chilis, sliced 
  • 1.5 teaspoons ground jeera (cumin)
  • 1.5 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander  
  • 1.5 teaspoons haldi (turmeric)
  • ghee or butter for cooking 
  • 1 cup half & half (can use dahi / plain yogurt, or simply water) 
  • water for kneading  

Recipe

  1.  In a large bowl, add the dry ingredients & the methi leaves, mix to combine. 
  2. Add in the half & half slowly, kneading a bit at a time.  
  3. Add in the yogurt & knead until all of the dry ingredients are incorporated into the dough.  
  4. Wrap in plastic wrap & refrigerate for 15 mins.  
  5. Form golf ball sized pieces out of the dough, this mixture should give you about 30.  
  6. Roll out each piece with a rolling pin on a lightly floured surface. Sprinkle whole wheat flour down first to ensure the dough doesn't stick.  
  7. On a shallow pan or taawa, heat 1 teaspoon of butter or ghee. Use medium-low heat.  
  8. Place the round, flat thepla on the pan or taawa & butter the top side.  
  9. When you see a bunch of bubbles forming, flip the thepla over using tongs or a spatula. Let it brown slightly on the other side. 
  10. Put the cooked thepla in a container lined with paper towel to soak up the excess butter.  

Enjoy with achaar or spiced yogurt & chai!  

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Baked Tofu

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , ,


Tofu is so versatile that it can stop you in your tracks when trying to think of what to do with it. The possibilities are endless! I usually leave it raw & cube it up for a dish. Or grind it down in the food processor to make veggie patties. But I tried baking those cubes this time & I was pleasantly surprised! Here's my Asian spiced baked Tofu, you can go ahead and choose whatever seasonings you like.  

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Time: 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 1 pack extra firm Tofu
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce  
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1.5 teaspoons crushed red pepper  
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic  

Recipe

  1. Drain the Tofu well before transferring it to a small hand towel.  
  2. Cut it into cubes and place another hand towel over the cubes, press down to drain further. Use a can of vegetables or tomato sauce or something heavy to weigh it down. Leave the can on top of the towel for 10 mins to 30 mins (30 is better if you have the time!). This will help the moisture leave the Tofu.  
  3. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  4. While the Tofu is drying, get a medium mixing bowl & add the other ingredients to it. Stir to combine, allowing the honey to distribute.  
  5. When the Tofu is dry, add a few cubes to the mixture & toss with your hands to coat every side of each cube. Using your hands helps the Tofu to remain in a cube & not break apart like it would with a fork or spoon.
  6. Place the coated Tofu on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper so it doesn't stick to the pan.  
  7. Repeat for all the remaining cubes, then bake for 25-30 mins.  

Enjoy with your favorite noodle or rice dish!  

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Tabouleh

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , , ,


Gotta have a fresh side dish (or main!) for your summer outdoor table? Look no further! Tabouleh is light, fresh, refreshing, yet filling at the same time. It bursts of flavor leaving you wanting more & more.  Here's my take, enjoy!

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Time:  10 mins

Ingredients

  • 2 handfuls flat leaf parsley
  • 1 handful fresh mint leaves
  • 1 handful spinach  
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 slice red onion  
  • 1 small cucumber
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon  
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil  

Recipe

  1. Carefully remove the stems then roughly chop the mint, parsley & spinach. 
  2. Cut the tomato, cucumber & the slice of red onion into small dices. Add it to the greens. 
  3. Drizzle on the lemon juice & olive oil.  
  4. At this point you can add in couscous or any other grain if you like. Toss to combine, refrigerate for 10-15 mins if you like it chilled.
  5. Enjoy!  

Baked Clams

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , ,


An amazingly fancy appetizer that is sure to impress your guests! Baked clams has been a favorite of mine since I was a little girl. I remember my mom making them for special occasions / family parties. I'm excited to have my own recipe to share with you all! 

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Time: 1 hour  

Ingredients

  • 1 dozen cherry stone clams (can use little necks) 
  • 1 cup panko
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter  
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder  
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley  
  • salt & pepper to taste  
  • 1/2 cup white wine  
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon  

Recipe:  

  1. Scrub the clams under cold water to remove any sand. 
  2. In a large pan, bring the wine to a boil, then add the clams & cover the pan. Reduce the heat to a simmer.  
  3. Allow the clams to cook just enough to open up, about 7 minutes.  
  4. Remove the clams from the heat, remove the meat from the shells, and set the shells aside.  
  5. Use a knife to chop the meat into smaller chunks. 
  6. Peheat oven to 450. 
  7. Transfer the meat to a mixing bowl & add in all the other ingredients above. Mix to combine. Tip: use whatever you feel like using to spice this up! I added chopped Jalapeño slices for a little kick.
  8. Fill the half shells with the mixture, then place them on a cookie sheet & bake for 10 mins or until the filling is golden brown. Voila! 
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Ratatouille

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , ,


One of my favorite movies ever!! Ratatouille is incredibly beautiful, healthy, & delicious! Contrary to how it looks, it's actually not difficult to make! Just takes a little patience, and a mandolin slicer.  Here's my take on it.

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Time: 1 hour, 15 mins  

Ingredients:  

  • 1 zucchini 
  • 1 yellow summer squash
  • 1 Italian eggplant
  • 3 almost ripe Roma tomatoes  
  • 1 cup tomato sauce  
  • 5 basil leaves (fresh)  
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme  
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil  
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped  
  • salt & pepper to taste

Recipe:  

  1. In an oven safe pan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil & the diced onions for about 30 seconds-1 minute. Use medium-low heat so it doesnt burn. Then, add the garlic. 
  2. Wait 30 seconds before pouring in the tomato sauce. Cook for another 2 minutes then tear up the basil leaves & drop them in.  
  3. Use a mandolin to slice the zucchini, squash, eggplant & tomatoes very thin.  
  4. Arrange them around the pan that the sauce is in, so that the slices alternate between each vegetable. Continue all the way around the pan, until you run out of slices.  
  5. Drizzle the last tablespoon of olive oil over the top. Sprinkle the oregano, thyme, salt & black pepper on top. 
  6. Cover with parchment paper & bake on 375 for 45 minutes.  
  7. Remove the parchment & bake for another 10 minutes. Enjoy!  
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Chana Masala (with Dosa!)

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , ,


Classic flavors, easy to make, and really inexpensive too! My kinda meal! Tried making this for Meatless Monday & I'm really excited to have it be a regular on our list. Here's my take on it.  

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Time: 40 mins  

Ingredients:  

Chana Masala: 

  • 1 can chickpeas 
  • 1 red onion  
  • 2 tomatoes (medium sized or 2 Roma tomatoes will work) 
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander  
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder  
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric  
  • 1 teaspoon Garam masala
  • 1 tablespoon dried methi leaves (fenugreek leaves)
  • 1 teaspoon ginger paste  
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced  
  • salt & pepper to taste  
  • 1 medium potato, diced into bite-sized pieces  
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil  

Dosa: 

Tip: Indian grocery stores sell the batter already mixed in the refrigerator section. Easy peesy!  I've had it before and it's not bad!

  • 2 cups dry long grain rice (I used basmati) 
  • 1 cup dhal / split peas 
  • 1 tablespoon fenugreek seeds  
  • 1 teaspoon salt  

Recipe:  

  1.  Cut the red onion & tomatoes in halves, then add them to a small pot & fill with enough water to cover everything. Add about 1 teaspoon of salt. Cover & bring to a boil. 
  2. Strain the chickpeas & toss with turmeric, then set them aside.  
  3. After 20 minutes, pour the onion, tomatoes & boiling liquid into a food processor & pulse until smooth.  
  4. Using about 2 tablespoon of vegetable oil, lightly fry the cumin seeds for a few seconds at the bottom of the pot. Careful not to put the heat too high or they will burn. Add in the other spices as well, stirring to combine. Just allow them to fry for 10-15 seconds. 
  5. Pour the mixture back into the pot, stirring it to combine with the spices & oil. Add in the fenugreek leaves, garlic & ginger paste as well. 
  6. After about 2 minutes, add the chickpeas & potatoes. Cover & let boil for another 15 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked through. 
  7. Serve with rice, naan or dosa!  

To make the dosa:

  1. Soak all of the ingredients except the salt in 4 cups water for at least 6 hours (preferably overnight). Then, pulse the mixture with the soaking liquid (add in the salt as well) in a food processor until slightly grainy but mostly smooth. The mixture should be fairly thick.
  2. Next, pour 1/2 cup of the batter in the middle of a non-stick pan. You can pour a little vegetable oil down before to ensure it won't stick.  
  3. Wait about 5 seconds before using the bottom of a ladle or large spoon to spread the batter around, in a circular motion. Careful not to press too hard or you'll break the dosa.  
  4. After about 30 seconds, you'll notice it start to crisp slightly around the edges. You can add about 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil on it & spread it around with a spatula. Do not flip it. 
  5. Add the chana masala in the middle of the dosa, then gently lift up one side over the mixture, then roll it over to completely close the dosa, sealing it with the other side. Use the spatula to lift it off the pan & transfer to a serving dish or plate.

Enjoy! We used a delicious tamarind & date chutney to go with ours.  

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Succotash

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , ,


Weird to try making something you never ate before! What can I say, I'm adventerous! And I'm glad I tried it. Succotash just might be the perfect side dish for Spring (if it ever shows up!) 

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 Time: 40 mins 

Ingredients

  • 1 can lima beans 
  • 2 cups corn kernels (I used frozen)
  • 1/2 white onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme  
  • 1/3 red onion, diced
  • 2 cups grape tomatoes 
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil  
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar  
  • Salt & pepper to taste  

Recipe:  

  1. Pour the lima beans, 1/2 onion, garlic cloves & some salt and pepper into a medium sized pot. Cover with water. 
  2. Bring the water to a boil then cover the pot & lower the heat to a simmer. Let simmer for 20 mins.
  3. Once the 20 minutes are over, reserve about 1 cup of the liquid, then strain the rest. Remove the garlic cloves & half onion. 
  4. In a large skillet, add the olive oil & the red onion. Sauté for 1 min on medium heat.  
  5. Add the tomatoes, thyme & the corn to the skillet.  
  6. After about 3 minutes, add the lima beans, red wine vinegar & reserved liquid to the skillet.  Add salt & pepper now as well. 
  7. Toss the mixture to combine, then remove it from heat & serve! 

Paella

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , , ,


A gorgeous Spanish dish! Paella seems so intimidating. I tried making it for the first time yesterday and I have to say... it's really not that hard! If you have good quality ingredients & a good paella pan, you're golden. my take on it is a little spicy & packed with incredible flavor. 

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Time: 45 mins, serves 2

Ingredients

  • 2-3 cups jumbo shrimp, peeled & deviened, tail on
  • 2-3 cups cooked mussels  (can use uncooked but it's a pain to wash & takes longer to cook) 
  • 1 cup paella rice (can substitute any short grain rice) 
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can Rotel diced tomatoes & green chilies  (this is where the spice comes in, if you don't want it spicy you can use plain canned diced tomatoes) 
  • 1 cup fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon saffron threads
  • 1/2 cup sweet green peas  
  • 3 cups chicken stock (can use 1 chicken boullion cube with 3 cups of water)  
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika  
  • salt & pepper to taste  
  • 1.5 tablespoons safflower oil (or any high-heat oil)  
  • 1/2 lemon  

Recipe:

Tip: The best way to do this is to get a Paella pan. To serve 2 people, I bought a 13.5 inch paella pan from Amazon. Worked wonders!   

  1. Heat the oil & onion in the paella pan on medium heat. After 30 seconds, add the garlic, then give it another 30 seconds before adding the tomatoes. 
  2. Pour in the paella rice & toss to combine.   
  3. Sprinkle on the smoked paprika & the saffron, then add the chicken stock. Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover. I used my pizza stone to cover the paella pan because I don't have a large enough pan cover. Reduce the heat to let the mixture simmer while it's covered. 
  4. After about 20 minutes, uncover the pan & use a spatula to stir. You may notice some rice sticking to the bottom of the pan, that's okay. Paella should have a nice crust at the bottom. Not a thick crust, but a nice crunchy layer. 
  5. Add in the seafood and green peas then cover to allow it to cook for 5 more minutes. Keep the heat on medium.  
  6. Once the seafood is cooked, add in the parsley & lemon wedges & serve!   Squeezing the lemon juice over the paella before eating it gives it a wonderful fresh taste! 
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Mango Habanero Wing Sauce

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , ,


An incredibly easy wing sauce that will make you never default to Buffalo again!  Most of the work is done in the food processor (don't you just love those kinds of recipes?) and then slow simmered in a sauce pan. Enjoy!

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Time: 30 mins

Ingredients:

  • 2 green mangoes, chopped
  • 1 Habanero pepper, sliced with seeds removed
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar

Recipe:

  1. Place the mango, Habanero & garlic cloves in a food processor & pulse until finely ground 
  2. Pour the mixture in a small sauce pan on low heat, stirring to avoid burning.
  3. After about 1 minute, add the brown sugar.
  4. Once the brown sugar melts, keep stirring the mixture occasionally for 10 minutes so the garlic cooks.
  5. Add the apple cider vinegar & salt. Let the sauce simmer for another 10 minutes, stir if needed. 
  6. Toss hot wings in the sauce using a large bowl, enjoy!

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Eggless Cauliflower Pizza

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , , ,


First time trying cauliflower pizza & I'm making it eggless. I know, I know "over achiever". But on Mondays, I go veggie, including giving up eggs. So this will have to work.  Actually, it did. 

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Time:  1.5 hours

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower 
  • 1 can chickpeas 
  • 1/4 cup flour (I used all purpose but you can use a gluten free flour of your choice
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano  
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • salt & pepper to taste  
  • toppings of your choice  

Recipe

  1. Preheat oven to 425, put your pizza stone in there to heat up. 
  2. Strain & rinse the can of chickpeas.  
  3. Put the cauliflower florets into a large food processor, pulse until fine grains form.  
  4. Boil the cauliflower then strain it. Once it's cool enough to touch, pour it into a kitchen towel or cheese cloth, and squeeze the excess water out. Then return the cauliflower to the food processor.  
  5. Add the chickpeas, olive oil, basil, oregano, salt & pepper to the food processor. Pulse to combine & grind the chickpeas. 
  6. After the mixture is formed, add your dry flour to bind it all together. Pulse to combine.  
  7. Remove your hot pizza stone from the oven & spray cooking spray all over it. Pour the cauliflower mixture in the middle of it. Spread it out with a spatula (or just use your hands, be careful not to touch the hot pizza stone directly). Spread it to about 1/2 inch thick. 
  8. Place the crust in the oven & bake for 20 minutes.  
  9. Optional step for a crispier crust: remove the crust, brush it with 1 tablespoon of an oil of your choice. You can use olive oil, or an infused oil such as garlic or truffle.  
  10. Place it back in the oven for another 10-15 minutes before removing it to add toppings. Crust should be golden. 
  11. Once your toppings are on, bake the pizza for another 10 mins or until the cheese is melted. Enjoy!
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Hasselback Potatoes

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , ,


A classy, sophisticated side dish that is so easy to make! Here's my take on it. 

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Time: 1 hour  

Ingredients

  • 4 rustic potatoes  
  • 5 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs  
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika  
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • Cooking oil spray for the pan

Recipe : 

  1. Preheat oven to 425. Cover a glass Pyrex dish with foil & spray to coat with cooking oil.
  2. Put the garlic cloves inside the butter so they begin to infuse. 
  3. Wash & dry potatoes, then take them one by one to cut on a cutting board. You're going to want to lay 2 chopsticks on either side of the potato to avoid cutting straight through the bottom (so the potatoes fan out like the picture above).  
  4. Cut about 1/4 inch thick slices through the entire potato (until your knife hits the chopsticks). Do the same for all 4 potatoes. 
  5. Place the potatoes into a bowl of cold water as they are finished being cut. This will wash out some of the starch from inside the potato before you bake it. Make sure they are dry before baking, though. 
  6. Arrange the potatoes in the Pyrex dish & fan them out slightly with your hands. Sprinkle salt & black pepper as desired.  
  7. Brush the garlic butter mixture on top of each potato. Cover with aluminum foil & bake for 35 mins. 
  8. Take the potatoes out of the oven, uncover them, then brush more of the butter mixture on them. 
  9. Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture on top of each potato, trying to get some inside the little slits.  
  10. Brush with more butter & bake again UNCOVERED for another 10-15 minutes or until the potatoes are golden, cooked through.  

Enjoy as a side dish or a meal!  

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Pancit Bihon

by Cindy Yanasha Angulo in , , , , , , , , , ,


Vegetarian pancit bihon! Loaded with crunchy, filling veggies, these noodles are an amazing match for veggie dumplings on meatless Monday!

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 Time: 30 mins  

Ingredients

  • 1 pack pancit bihon noodles
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 large white onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup hot water  
  • veggies of your choice (I used chopped bok choy, carrots, & purple cabbage)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil  

Recipe:  

  1. Heat the onion in the vegetable oil until translucent (I used a wok, about 1 min on medium heat) 
  2. Add the garlic, sauté for 30 seconds then add in the carrots & bok choy.  
  3. Allow the mixture to simmer for about 1 minute before adding the soy sauce.  
  4. Add the hot water & bring it to a boil, then pour in the noodles.  
  5. Cover the wok so the steam captures the noodles for about 3-4 minutes.
  6. Add the cabbage & stir to combine all of the ingredients.   If the noodles seem stiff still, add more hot water & cover again to steam.