Tag Archives: chicken

Soup, Soup, Soup… Chicken and split peas soup

Guyanese Chicken and split peas soup

When it gets cold, all I can think of making  is a nice pot of warm and delicious soup. Soup is so comforting to me. One member of a Guyanese group I follow on Facebook, asked if anyone else had soup for dinner on Sundays while growing up in Guyana. The response was overwhelmingly “yes” and apparently soup on Sundays was/is a Guyanese culinary tradition. The similarities in the types of soup and the side dishes served with the soup were just heart warming. We have a strong food culture and it was still alive in some of the stories members of the group shared. I don’t reserve soup for Sunday night dinners. Actually, since it is football season Sunday nights are more chicken wings and pizza night! I have soup anytime I feel like it and this soup is a good base for many soup concoctions. To mix it up a bit, I just switch up some of the vegetables, add or take away dumplings (Guyanese style or Asian style), add some root vegetables and change the type of bread I serve it with. I swear, every time I make it, it’s a completely different soup. The ingredients are simple and so is the method, but it does take some time, to simmer it down into a thick mouth watering broth!

Now for the recipe…

Add 1 cup of yellow split peas, 1 tsp salt and 8 cups water to a large stock pot.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer. Cook until split peas is tender.

Add 1 cup of yellow split peas, 1 tsp salt and 8 cups water to a large stock pot.
Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer. Cook until split peas are tender.

Chop 1 lb of chicken thighs (skinless, bone-in) into 2 inch pieces. Dice 3 carrots, 2 sticks of celery hearts and red potatoes into 1 inch pieces.  Chop 1 onion and 6 cloves of garlic. Remove about 1/4 cup of fresh thyme leaves from the stems and reserve 1 whole wiri wiri pepper, or other spicy pepper (like scotch bonnet).  Add  all of the ingredients to the cooked split peas along with  3 chicken bouillon cubes and 8 cups of water (2 quarts).  Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer. Let cook until potato and carrots are tender and a thick broth is formed.  Remove from heat and serve hot!

Chop 1 lb of chicken thighs (skinless, bone-in) into 2 inch pieces.
Dice 3 carrots, 2 sticks of celery hearts and red potatoes into 1 inch pieces.
Chop 1 onion and 6 cloves of garlic. Remove about 1/4 cup of fresh thyme leaves from the stems and reserve 1 whole wiri wiri pepper, or other spicy pepper (like scotch bonnet).
Add all of the ingredients to the cooked split peas along with 3 chicken bouillon cubes and 8 cups of water (2 quarts).

Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer. Let cook until potato and carrots are tender and a thick broth is formed. Remove from heat and serve hot!

Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer.
Let cook until potato and carrots are tender and a thick broth is formed.
Remove from heat and serve hot!

Serve with your favorite bread!

Serve with your favorite bread!


Chicken and Split Peas Soup (4 generous servings)

Ingredients:
1 cup of yellow split peas and about 8 cups water for cooking
2 lbs chicken thighs (skinless, bone-in)
1 lb potatoes
3 carrots
3 sticks of celery hearts, diced.
1 onion, diced
6 cloves garlic,finely chopped
1/4 cup of fresh thyme (stems removed)
1 wiri wiri pepper
3 chicken bouillon cubes
1 tsp salt
8 additional cups of water for the broth.

Directions:
In a large stock pot combine split peas with 8 cups of water and 1 tsp salt. Bring to a boil on high heat, then reduce heat to medium and continue to cook until split peas is really tender (crushes easily with the back of a spoon). Cut chicken thighs into 2 inch chunks. Peel and dice potatoes and carrots into 1 inch pieces. Once the split peas are tender, add chicken thighs, potatoes, carrots, celery, onion, garlic, thyme, pepper and bouillon cubes. Then, add about 8 cups of water. Stir until all the ingredients are combined. Bring to a boil on high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low and let simmer until potatoes and carrots are tender and a thick broth forms (about 30 to 45 minutes). Remove from heat and serve hot.

Tips and Ramblings:
1. This is like a chicken and vegetable soup with a split peas base or in a split peas broth. Maybe that’s what I should have titled this post, sounds more fancy actually!
2. You could add noodles instead of potatoes to this soup.
3. You could add plantains, cassava and sweet potatoes for a more hearty soup, and even a dumpling or two.
4. I sometimes let this soup cook down, until the potatoes have melted away for a really thick broth. It’s so yummy.
5. I cook the soup with the pepper whole, because it gives lots of flavor without the heat. I serve my husband the pepper, which he cuts open for a really spicy version of this soup!

Happy Cooking!

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Chicken Stew… Brown Stew Chicken

Chicken Stew

It feels like it’s been ages since I promised you this recipe… I took a little unintended break from the blog. Life just got a bit hectic and at night when I had a few minutes to spare all I wanted to do was sleep.

A few weeks ago, we took a little impromptu trip to visit my folks in New York and I was in complete relax mode while there, since my mom was doing everything for my 10 month old (love that woman). When we got back my little pumpkin got a nasty bug and was sick for a few days which was exhausting. He then gave the bug to my hubby, who gave it to me, and sadly I gave it back to my pumpkin. We are all much better now, thank God.  So, I am playing catch up. Hope you guys can forgive me ;-). Thanks to all of you who reached out in email or on instagram to ask, what’s up with the blog!? It really made my day.

Now for this chicken stew recipe. Almost every Guyanese person I know, knows how to make chicken stew or stew chicken, however you choose to say it. So why am I posting a recipe for chicken stew you ask? Well, this one has a delicious twist, plus there might be a non-Guyanese person interested in the deliciousness that is a great Guyanese chicken stew :-).

Let’s get to it…

You'll need about 2lbs of chicken. I am using bone in, skinless thighs.  I chopped the thighs into halves and seasoned with a dry rub over night.  The dry rub included: 1 tbsp dried onions, 1 tbsp granulated garlic, 1 tbsp dried thyme, 1 tsp dried oregano, 1 tbsp brown sugar, 2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper.

You’ll need about 2lbs of chicken.
I am using bone in, skinless thighs.
I chopped the thighs into halves and seasoned with a dry rub over night. You can leave your chicken things whole if you prefer.
The dry rub included: 1 tbsp dried onions, 1 tbsp granulated garlic, 1 tbsp dried thyme, 1 tsp dried oregano, 1 tbsp brown sugar, 2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper and 2 tsp salt.

About 15 minutes before I was ready to start making the stew, I added 1 tbsp cassareep and 1 tsp spicy brown mustard to the seasoned chicken.

About 15 minutes before I was ready to start making the stew, I added 1 tbsp cassareep and 1 tsp spicy brown mustard to the seasoned chicken.

Now to start the cooking…

In a large pot, sautee 1 large onion (chopped) and 6 cloves of garlic (chopped), in about 2 tbsp oil on medium heat.  When onions become soft and slightly brown, add 1 cup of diced tomatoes (I am using canned tomatoes for this dish).

In a large pot, sautee 1 large onion (chopped) and 6 cloves of garlic (chopped), in about 2 tbsp oil on medium heat.
When onions become soft and slightly brown, add 1 cup of diced tomatoes (I am using canned tomatoes for this dish).

Add seasoned chicken to the cooked onions, garlic and tomatoes.

Add seasoned chicken to the cooked onions, garlic and tomatoes.

Let chicken and seasoning cook together for about 5 minutes, then add two potatoes, peeled and diced.

Let chicken and seasoning cook together for about 5 minutes, then add two potatoes, peeled and diced.

Pour yourself a glass of white wine... you deserve it.

Pour yourself a glass of white wine… you deserve it.

Pour that wine (about 1 cup) into the stew. Then add 1 tbsp tomato paste. Mix together and let simmer on low heat, until meat and potatoes are fully cooked and tender.

Pour that wine (about 1 cup) into the stew :-).
Then add 1 tbsp tomato paste.
Mix together and let simmer on low heat, until meat and potatoes are fully cooked and tender.

And there you have it lovely, brown chicken stew…

Chicken Stew

Guyanese Style Chicken Stew (Makes 6 generous servings)

Ingredients
2 lbs bone-in, skinless chicken thighs
1 lb potatoes (peeled and cut into quarters)
1 tbsp dried onions
1 tbsp granulated garlic
1 tbsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tbsp cassareep
1 tsp spicy brown mustard
1 large onions (diced)
6 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
1 cup of diced tomatoes (about 2 large tomatoes)
About 2 to 3 tsp salt
1 tbsp of tomato paste
2 tbsp oil
1 cup of sweet white wine
about 2 cups of water (if needed)

Directions:
Make a dry rub by combining: dried onions, granulated garlic, thyme, oregano, brown sugar, cayenne pepper and salt. Season chicken overnight with dry rub and place in the refrigerator. Before cooking let chicken sit at room temperature for at least 1/2 hour. Add cassareep and mustard to mixture and let sit for at least 15 minutes before cooking. In a large pot on medium heat, saute diced onions and garlic in hot oil. Let cook until onions become soft and brown. Add tomatoes and continue to cook for about 3 minutes or until tomatoes are soft. Add seasoned chicken and saute to 5 to 10 minutes, turning occasionally to ensure even browning of chicken. Add diced potatoes, reduce heat, cover and let cook for about 3 additional minutes. The chicken and potatoes should “spring” their own liquids/juices at this point, if this doesn’t happen you may add 1/2 cup of water to prevent burning. Add wine and tomato paste. Cover pot and continue to cook on low heat for about 30 minutes, or until potatoes and chicken are completely cooked and tender. In some cases you may need to add a cup or two of water or chicken stock, to prevent the stew from become too thick. Once the chicken and potatoes are cooked and the stew simmers to a semi thick consistency, remove from heat and enjoy with some rice or bread.

Tips and ramblings:
1. You may want to start off with 2 tsp of salt and add a bit more if need, as you go along.
2. If the chicken and potatoes finish cooking but the stew is not as thick as you would like, increase the heat and let the gravy cook down.
3. Sometimes potatoes take a long time to cook, in tomato paste, so I let the potatoes cook, then add the tomato paste towards the end.

Happy Cooking!

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Dinner in 30… Strip Chicken Fried Rice

Guyanese Style strip chicken fried rice

If you’ve got 30 minutes, then you’ve got dinner!

A few nights ago, I roasted a whole chicken for dinner. My hubby had the leg and thighs for dinner and then lunch the next day and I had the wings. So now, I’m left with the two breast. Usually when this happens, I make chicken salad or cut the breasts into cubes and freeze for chicken noodle soup. This time I had a craving for some Guyanese style strip chicken fried rice. Simple, quick and easy deliciousness. Since the chicken breasts are already cooked, this dish came together in no time. I used the pan drippings from the roasted chicken as the stock to cook the rice with. I usually use this for gravies and soup, but thought that it would probably bring a lot of flavor to the rice, and it did!

So here’s my recipe…

To cook the rice I used the pan drippings from when I roasted the chicken the night before (but you can use store bought chicken stock).My stock has: White wine, onions, garlic, celery, old fashion whole grain mustard, honey, salt, pepper, oregano, carrots, thyme (that I seasoned the chicken with).I added the stock, then 2 cups rice, then 4 cups water. Bring water to a boil on medium heat, then reduce to simmer until rice cooks.

To cook the rice I used the pan drippings from when I roasted the chicken the night before (but you can use store bought chicken stock).
My stock has: White wine, onions, garlic, celery, old fashion whole grain mustard, honey, salt, pepper, oregano, carrots, thyme (that I seasoned the chicken).
Add the stock to a large saucepan, then 2 cups rice, then 4 cups water.
Bring water to a boil on medium heat, then reduce to simmer until rice cooks.

Prepare the other ingredients while the rice cooks…

I am using the two chicken breasts from last night's dinner, about 1 cup of frozen mixed bell peppers and 1 1/2 frozen mixed vegetables.Since the broth used to cook the rice is so flavorful I am only using garlic, salt and pepper to season these ingredients and a bit of soy sauce.

I am using the two chicken breasts from dinner a few nights ago (shredded into small pieces), about 1 cup of frozen mixed bell peppers and 1 1/2 frozen mixed vegetables.
Since the broth used to cook the rice is so flavorful I am only using garlic, ginger, salt and pepper to season these ingredients and a bit of soy sauce.

Cooking the remaining ingredients…

First, I sauteed the chopped garlic in about 2 tbsp oil on medium heat. Then, I added the frozen peppers and the frozen veggies. Followed by about 1 tsp salt, and a pinch of black pepper. Once the veggies and peppers cooked, I added about 1/4 cup of soy sauce and continued to saute on high heat. Finally, I added the shredded chicken breasts and tossed together.

First, saute the chopped garlic in about 2 tbsp oil on medium heat.
Then, add the frozen peppers and the frozen veggies. Followed by about 1 tsp salt, a pinch of black pepper and 1 tsp of fresh ginger finely chopped.
Once the veggies and peppers cooked, add about 1/4 cup of soy sauce and continued to saute on high heat.
Finally, add the shredded chicken breasts and toss together.

Bringing it together…

Saute the chicken and veggies for an additional 5 minutes to bring the flavors together. When the rice is fully cooked, increase the heat to high.

Saute the chicken and veggies for an additional 5 minutes to bring the flavors together.
When the rice is fully cooked, increase the heat to high.

Then add the chicken and veggies to the rice. Continue to saute, stirring until all the rice, veggies and chicken are completely mixed together.

Then add the chicken and veggies to the rice.
Continue to saute, stirring until all the rice, veggies and chicken are completely mixed together.

And there you have it… strip chicken fried rice.

Guyanese Style Strip chicken fried rice

Guyanese Style Strip chicken fried rice


Strip Chicken Fried Rice
(Makes 4 Generous servings)

Ingredients:
2 large precooked and shredded chicken breasts
4 cups of chicken stock
2 cups rice
2 tbsp oil
1 1/2 cups frozen mixed vegetables
1 cup frozen mixed bell peppers
5 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1/4 cup lite soy sauce
1 tbsp old fashion whole grain mustard
1 tsp honey
salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp fresh ginger, finely chopped.

Directions:
Add chicken stock, rice, mustard and honey to a large stock pot, on high heat. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer until rice is fully cooked. While rice is cooking prepare the other ingredients. Heat oil in a saute pan on medium heat. Saute onions and garlic. When onions are brown and soft, add frozen peppers followed by frozen mixed vegetables. Season with salt and pepper to taste. When peppers and vegetables have cooked, add shredded chicken breasts and soy sauce. Mix together and saute for about 5 minutes to bring the flavors together. When rice is fully cooked increase heat to high. Add cooked veggies and chicken to the rice. Continue to saute on high heat while completely mixing together. Remove from the heat and enjoy!

Tips and Ramblings:
1. If you don’t have precooked chicken breasts you can roast your own, in a saute pan. You will need bone in, skin on, chicken breast. Just season the chicken breast with salt and pepper. Add a little bit of oil to a saute pan, then the chicken and roast on high heat. It will take about 5 minutes on each side. Or you can stick in the oven at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.
2. I used to cook this type of fried rice in a wok and “fry up” small batches at a time. I can’t use my wok anymore because now I have an electric range, but if you have a wok, feel free to use it.
3. I sometimes add the soy sauce to the rice, and “fry it up.” It makes for a more intense fried flavor.
4. You can use fresh bell peppers and veggies if you like.

Happy Cooking!

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Shepherd’s Pie… with chicken and mixed potatoes.

Chicken Shepherd's pie

Today is St. Patrick’s day and though I didn’t really plan this, I’m sharing a shepherd’s pie recipe.I made shepherd’s pie for dinner one night this week because the purple potatoes I had bought from the Asian market had started to grow roots. I know, I know. I completely forgot them at the bottom of the pantry. So staring at them, I thought… what could I make with these, that’s quick and I could share on the blog, cause you know purple potatoes are fancy and interesting.

Then, I remembered that I had promised a subscriber that I would do my take on shepherd’s pie and well, this is how this whole chicken shepherd’s pie came about. I made the filling similar to how chicken pot pie is made, so you will see some similarities there. For anyone who is thinking how is this Guyanese? It’s not, but being a former British colony we do have a lot of English and some Irish influence. Okay, enough rambling on with the recipe.

Disclaimer: This is a chicken shepherd’s pie with loads of veggies, purple potatoes and taro root. It’s the snob of shepherd’s pie, if you think about it. I posted this disclaimer because when I told my hubby that I was making shepherd’s pie for dinner he must have envisioned the traditional shepherd’s pie with lamb or minced beef and potatoes. He did admit that this was way better (he’d better), but had a brief look of disappointment when I cut him his first slice of the pie and the chicken and vegetables tumbled onto his plate. For my vegetarian followers you can easily make this vegetarian, by leaving out the chicken and swapping the chicken stock for vegetable stock. You could also had soy chunks or fried tofu to the sauce.

Let’s start by prepping the chicken…

I am using 2 large chicken breasts, about 1.5 lbs.Cut chicken breasts into 1 inch cubes.Then, season with 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp smoked paprika, 1 tsp dried oregano and a pinch of cayenne powder.

I am using 2 large chicken breasts, about 1.5 lbs.
Cut chicken breasts into 1 inch cubes.
Then, season with 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp smoked paprika, 1 tsp dried oregano and a pinch of cayenne powder.

While the chicken is marinating we’ll get the potatoes on the stove…

For the mash potatoes, you will need 1lb purple potatoes, 1lb taro root, 1lb white potatoes.Peel the purple potatoes and cut into small chunks (for quick boiling).

For the mash potatoes, you will need 1lb purple potatoes, 1lb taro root, 1lb white potatoes.
Peel the purple potatoes and cut into small chunks (for quick boiling).

Peel the taro root and white potatoes (not pictured) and cut into small cubes.

Peel the taro root and white potatoes (not pictured) and cut into small cubes.

Add potatoes and taro root to a small pot with water. The water should cover the potatoes. Cover pot and bring to a boil on high heat.Cook until all the potatoes are tender.

Add potatoes and taro root to a small pot with water and 1 tsp salt.
The water should cover the potatoes. Cover pot and bring to a boil on high heat.
Cook until all the potatoes are tender.

Now that we’ve taken care of that, let’s start making the “filling…”

Saute chicken in a saute pan on high heat with 2 tbsp olive oil, for 5 minutes, or until chicken is slightly brown, but not cooked. This will seal in the juices and add a layer of flavor to the dish.

Saute chicken in a saute pan on high heat with 2 tbsp olive oil, for 5 minutes, or until chicken is slightly brown, but not cooked.
This will seal in the juices and add a layer of flavor to the dish.

In the same saute pan you used for the chicken, cook onions (1 diced) and bell peppers (2 diced). Once onions and peppers are soft, slowly stir in 1/3 cup of flour. Let flour cook for about 2 minutes.Then, stir in 2 cups of chicken broth.Cook on low heat until sauce become thick. This may happen immediately.

In the same saute pan you used for the chicken, cook onions (1 diced) and bell peppers (2 diced).
Once onions and peppers are soft, slowly stir in 1/3 cup of flour. Let flour cook for about 2 minutes.
Then, stir in 1/2 cup of sweet white wine and 2 cups of chicken broth.
Cook on low heat until sauce become thick. This may happen immediately.

Add 2 cups frozen vegetables (defrosted) Cook for about 5 minutes, then remove from heat. If sauce becomes too thick after adding chicken and vegetables, feel free to add more chicken stock.

Add 2 cups frozen vegetables (defrosted) Cook for about 5 minutes, then remove from heat.
If sauce becomes too thick after adding chicken and vegetables, feel free to add more chicken stock. Remove from heat and set aside.

And now for the creamed potatoes…

Once all of the potatoes are tender and can be easily crushed with a fork, remove from heat and drain excess water, reserving some of the water for mashing the potatoes. Using a fork or potato masher, crush potatoes, then add 1/4 cup of butter, 1/4 cup of Kraft mixed Italian cheese, 1/4 cup of milk. Mix together until potatoes are nice and creamy.

Once all of the potatoes are tender and can be easily crushed with a fork, remove from heat and drain excess water, reserving some of the water for mashing the potatoes.
Using a fork or potato masher, crush potatoes, then add 1/4 cup of butter, 1/4 cup of Kraft mixed Italian cheese, 1/4 cup of milk.
Mix together until potatoes are nice and creamy.

Bring the dish together…

Grease a deep baking dish with oil or cooking spray. Then add chicken and vegetables to the baking dish. Followed by the creamed potatoes.Use a fork to press the potatoes tightly down and also make a nice pattern for baking.Sprinkle with smoked paprika (not pictured).Bake for 30 minutes at 350 F. Remove from oven with top is golden brown.

Grease a deep baking dish with oil or cooking spray.
Then add chicken and vegetables to the baking dish. Followed by the creamed potatoes.
Use a fork to press the potatoes tightly down and also make a nice pattern for baking.
Sprinkle with smoked paprika (not pictured).
Bake for 30 minutes at 350 F.
Remove from oven when top is golden brown.

Chicken Shepherd’s pie

Ingredients:
2 large chicken breasts (about 1.5 lbs)
1 lb purple potatoes
1 lb taro root
1 lb white potatoes
1 large onion (diced)
1 green bell pepper (diced)
1 red bell pepper (diced)
4 cloves garlic (minced)
2 cups frozen mixed vegetables (defrosted)
1/2 cup sweet white wine
2 cups chicken broth
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup butter or butter substitute
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup mixed Italian cheeses (I’m using the Kraft brand made with 2% milk)
1/4 cup butter or butter substitute
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp smoked paprika (for seasoning the chicken)
About 1 tbsp smoked paprika (used as a garnish for baking)
2 tsp salt
pinch of cayenne powder
2 tbsp oil for sauteing chicken
1 tbsp oil or cooking spray for greasing baking dish

Directions:
Season the chicken and put the potatoes to boil:
Cut chicken breasts into 1 inch chunks and season with salt, cayenne pepper,oregano, garlic and 1 tsp smoked paprika. Let marinate for 15 to 30 minutes. Peel potatoes (purple, white and taro roots) and cut into small chunks for quick boiling. Add potatoes and 1 tsp salt to a small pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil on medium to high heat. Let boil until all the potatoes are tender and can be easily crushed with a fork.

Making the sauce for the chicken and vegetables:
While potatoes are boiling saute seasoned chicken breast in a sauce/saute pan on high heat, using about 2 tbsp oil. When chicken becomes slightly brown but is not fully cooked, remove from heat and set aside. In the same sauce/saute pan used to cook the chicken add 1/3 cup butter. When butter melts, cook onions and and bell peppers until onions are soft. Then, slowly stir in flour. Let flour cook for 2 to 3 minutes then add 1/2 cup wine and 2 cups chicken stock. Cook until sauce becomes thick, but not too thick. Add mixed vegetables, followed by the sauteed chicken to the sauce and cook for about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Bringing it together:
Preheat Oven to 350 F.

Once the potatoes are all soft, remove from heat and drain, reserving some of the excess water for mashing. Place potatoes in a large mixing bowl and crush using a fork or a potato masher. Add cheese, milk, 1/4 cup butter and 1/4 cup of the reserved water to the potatoes and mix until potatoes are smooth and creamy.

Grease a deep baking dish (large to medium size).
Add chicken and vegetables to the dish, then top with the creamed potatoes. Use a fork to press down the potatoes so that they are tightly packed. Sprinkle top with smoked paprika and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from over with top is golden brown.

Tips and Ramblings:
1. Although it was easy to make this dish, it took me forever to put together this recipe. Must be the wine I’m drinking.
2. You could substitute chicken breast for boneless chicken thighs if you are a dark meat type of person.
3. I defrost my frozen vegetables by running them under some hot water.
4. I always cook with butter substitute, when ever you see butter listed. I use smart balance with flax.
5. Purple potatoes and taro root taste a lot like eddoes for my friends in Guyana, so I would just use eddoes instead of any of the potatoes I’ve used. Wish I had eddoes.
6. You don’t want to over cook the chicken breast before baking or it will become dry and taste like cardboard.
7. My pie wouldn’t get the golden color I wanted so after it cooked for 30 minutes. I put it in the broiler for 3 minutes and viola, it was nice and brown.

Happy Cooking!

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30 Minute meal… Chicken Chowmein

ChowmeinToday’s post will include a short history lesson or should it be Social Studies? I’m not quite sure. Well here goes. I’m featuring Chowmein. How is this Guyanese you ask? Well, Guyana is a fusion of six cultures. Chinese is one of them. Indian is another (you might have guessed this from the Indian dishes I posted before).

Chowmein is definitely one of my favorite dishes to cook and eat. It’s one of those dishes that most Guyanese make on special occasions (Birthday parties etc) or for lunch on Sundays. But in my house, it’s an “any day you don’t feel like cooking too much but want something delicious kind of meal” to prepare. So we have it often! It’s quick and perfect for my lazy days.

Okay, enough of that. Let’s get to the cooking…

Cut chicken thighs into 1 inch chunks

You will need 1 1/2 lbs boneless chicken thighs (See my Bunjal chicken recipe for how to debone chicken thighs). Cut Chicken thighs into 1 inch chunks.

We will use the following ingredients to season the chicken:1 small onion thinly sliced, 4 cloves garlic (chopped), 1 tbsp. dried thyme

For this dish we will use the following seasoning:
1 small onion thinly sliced, 4 cloves garlic (chopped), 1 tbsp. dried thyme, 1tbsp. cassareep or soy sauce, 1 tsp. brown sugar, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. mustard and  1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

Add all of the seasoning (pictured above) to the chicken. Mix together and let marinade.

Set aside the onions. Then add all of the remaining seasoning (pictured above), to the chicken. Mix together and let marinade for 5 minutes.

While the chicken marinades, let’s prep the vegetables…

Cut 1 1/2 mixed bell peppers into thin strips. I'm using frozen vegetables, but you can use, carrots (julienne or diced), petite green beans (halved), and broccoli and cauliflower (if you like).  I'm also adding 1/3 green cabbage thinly sliced.

Cut 1 1/2 mixed bell peppers into thin strips. Then prepare your vegetables, if you are using fresh veggies. I’m using frozen vegetables, but you can use, carrots (julienne or diced), petite green beans (halved), and broccoli and cauliflower (if you like). I’m also adding 1/3 green cabbage thinly sliced.

1. Using 3 tbs oil, saute onions in a skillet or saute on medium heat, until onions are soft and brown. (I am using a large stock pot).2. When onions are cooked, add marinaded chicken and cook for 15 minutes, turning once or twice. 3. Once chicken has cooked for 15 minutes add vegetables and cook for 10 to 15 minutes or until vegetables are cook to your liking. 5.6.

1. Using 3 tbsp. oil, saute onions in a skillet or saute pan on medium heat, until onions are soft and brown. (I am using a large stock pot).
2. Then, add marinaded chicken and cook for 15 minutes, turning once or twice.
3. Once chicken has cooked for 15 minutes add vegetables and cook for 5 to 10 minutes or until vegetables are cooked to your liking. I like my vegetables al dente (a little crisp) so I usually cook them for 5 minutes. In this instance I am using frozen steamers, so I add them when the chicken has been cooking for 5 minutes. This way they will steam with the chicken and be very flavorful.
5. Add the peppers to the cooked chicken and vegetables. Cook for about 3 minutes. The peppers should be a bit crunchy.
6. Finally, add the cabbage just before you add the noodles. You do not need to cook the cabbage.

Follow the instruction on the packet to cook the noodles. I cook my like to cook my noodles while the vegetables and meat are cooking, so that they finish cooking, just when they need to be added to the other ingredients.

Follow the instructions on the packet to cook the noodles. I like to cook my noodles while the vegetables and meat are cooking, so that they finish cooking, just when they need to be added to the other ingredients. This way the noodles don’t get clammy/pasty.

Bringing it together…

Add the noodles to cooked chicken and vegetables and mix together. Add chopped green onions (shallot, scallions) for some added crunchiness. Remove from the heat and enjoy!

Add the noodles to cooked chicken and vegetables and toss together. Add chopped green onions (shallot, scallions) for some added crunchiness. Remove from the heat and enjoy!

Guyanese Chicken Chowmein

Ingredients:

1 pk dried Chowmein noodles
1 1/2 lbs. boneless chicken thighs
1 small onion (thinly sliced)
3 tbsp. oil
1 1/2 mixed (red, green, yellow) bell peppers (thinly sliced)
2 cups frozen mixed vegetables or
1 carrot (julienne)
1 cup petite green beans (cut into 2 inch pieces)
1 cup fresh or canned sweet corn
1/2 head of broccoli (speared)
1/2 head of cauliflower (speared)
1/3 green cabbage (thinly shredded)
5 heads of green onions (shallot, scallions) finely chopped

To Season the chicken:
1 tbsp. dried thyme
1 tbsp. cassareep or soy sauce
3 cloves of garlic (chopped)
1 tsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. mustard
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
You can also add 1 tbsp. ketchup (if you like)

Directions:

Follow the instructions on the packet to cook the noodles. Chop chicken into 1 inch chunks. Then season with thyme, cassareep or soy sauce, garlic, brown sugar, salt, mustard, black pepper and ketchup (if you’re using that). Set aside and let marinade for about 5 minutes. Prepare the vegetables. Then in a skillet large enough for the noodles, warm oil on medium heat. Add onions and cook until onions are brown and soft. Then increase heat to high. Add seasoned chicken and cook for about 10 minutes, or until chicken is fully cooked. Add vegetables and cook for another 5 minutes, constantly turning for even cooking. Add the peppers and cook for 3 minutes. Peppers should be crunchy after cooking. Then add the cabbage and the noodles. Toss together then add chopped scallions. Remove from heat and enjoy.

Tips and Ramblings:
1. The key to good chowmein is to have a bit of sauce in the cooked meat and vegetables, so that once you add the noodles, it soaks all that goodness up.
2. You could substitute the protein in this dish for any protein of choice or eliminate it all together.
3. It takes about 30 minutes to cook this dish if you have cook time management. Chop chicken first, season and set aside, put noodles on, while noodles are cooking prep veggies. Etc.
4. After writing this post, I wanted to go make some more chowmein. I seriously love this stuff.
5. CASSAREEP is a Guyanese dark sauce (similar to soy sauce) made from cassava/yuca juice. It’s traditionally made by the indigenous peoples (Amerindians) of Guyana and makes stews and almost any dish you would add soy sauce too, taste amazing.
6. You can also cook this dish in a wok. Once upon a time, I had a wok. It was amazing. We had so much fun. I made lots of delicious stir Fries. Then we moved and got an electric stove. The wok doesn’t work the same with an electric stove. The wok was laid to rest. The end.

Happy Cooking!

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