Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Paella de Mateo

This is Matt's creation after quite a bit of research of different recipes online and his own palette preferences.

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound Spanish chorizo sliced (or substitute linguiça or andouille)
1/2 large onion, diced
1 large red pepper, 1/2 slices
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound chicken breast, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 cup crushed tomatoes
2 cups (500 grams dried) Bomba rice (or substitute Calasparra)
6 cups chicken stock
1 pound (about 16 to 20 count) extra-large shrimp, peeled and deveined, tail on

For spice mixture:
3/4 cup dry white wine
3 tablespoons cumin
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
2 teaspoons half sharp paprika
1 large pinch saffron threads

  1. Build a medium-hot fire in grill (when ready, you can hold your hand about 6 inches above the grill for only 2 or 3 seconds) or use two burners on gas stovetop. 
  2. Put 1/4 cup olive oil in a paella pan or 20-inch camp skillet. Heat until hot but not smoking. Add the chorizo and begin brown lightly on both sides, about 3 to 5 minutes. 
  3. Add the onions and red pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until onions are soft, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and chicken and cook, stirring, until chicken is no longer pink on the outside.
  4. Prepare spice mixture.
  5. Add the tomatoes and 2 to 3 cups stock, bring to simmer, then add the rice and the spice mixture. Stir well to combine, then smooth it out to an even layer (you should have just a layer of liquid between 1/4 and 1/2 inch on top) and allow to come back to a low, slow simmer. 
  6. Push the shrimp down into the simmering mixture so they are covered by the liquid, being careful not to stir the mixture. Move the pan just enough to the side of the fire so the liquid continues to simmer slowly; if using cooktop, rotate pan periodically. 
  7. Add liquid as needed to maintain that very thin visible layer for 20 minutes, but do not move the rice around. After 20 minutes check rice and continue to cook, adding stock, until all visible liquid is absorbed and rice is tender but not mushy, from 5 to 15 minutes. Serve and enjoy.

8 servings


Monday, August 15, 2016

Warm Chicken Curry Dip

Social gatherings usually involve drinks and food for us. They also help us discover some new fav recipes from our friends. This one's always a top request for our girls' weekends!

1/4 cup chopped green onion
1 cup shredded cooked chicken
8 oz softened cream cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1/4 cup golden raisins
1 clove garlic pressed
1/2 tsp curry
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1/4 cup apricot jam

Combine first eight ingredients (through salt). Spread mixture into a small pan and bake for 18-20 minutes at 400˚. Meanwhile, combine coconut and almonds in a microwave safe bowl for cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring every 20 seconds until ingredients are evenly toasted. Remove mixture from the oven and spread apricot jam over top of hot dip. Next, sprinkle the warm coconut/almond mixture over top of the jam. Serve with apple wedges and celery.

6-8 servings


Grilled Shrimp with Honey-Ginger Barbecue Sauce

Grilled Shrimp with Honey-Ginger Barbecue Sauce

3/4 cups apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup mild honey
1/4 cup ketchup
3/4 Tbsp hot sauce, such as Tabasco
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp minced peeled ginger
1/2 tsp salt

2 pounds jumbo (21-25 per pound) or extra-large (26-30 per pound) shrimp in shell, peeled, leaving tail and adjoining shell segment intact, and deveined
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt

Stir together all sauce ingredients in a heavy saucepan and briskly simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until thickened and reduced to about 2/3 cups, 25 to 30 minutes. (Stir frequently toward end of cooking to prevent sticking.)

If necessary, pat shrimp dry, then thread about 6 shrimp (through top and tail, leaving shrimp curled), onto each skewer, without leaving space between shrimp.

Prepare grill for direct-heat cooking over medium-hot charcoal (medium-high for gas); see Grilling Procedure.

Meanwhile, brush shrimp with vegetable oil and sprinkle evenly with salt.

Lightly oil grill rack. Grill shrimp, covered only if using a gas grill, turning over once, 2 minutes. Brush shrimp with some sauce from the saucepan, then turn. Brush shrimp with additional sauce then grill until just cooked through, 1 to 2 minutes. Serve with reserved sauce.

Serve with Coconut Rice.

4 servings


cooks' notes
  • Sauce can be made 3 days ahead and refrigerated once cooled. Reheat before proceeding.
  • In terms of shrimp size, go by the count per pound versus the descriptive terms such as jumbo and extra-large. If the count is not displayed, ask.
  • Sauce can be made 3 days ahead and refrigerated once cooled. Reheat before proceeding.
  • Shrimp can be threaded onto skewers and refrigerated on a tray, loosely covered with plastic wrap, 2 hours before grilling.

Coconut Rice

Coconut Rice

2 cups jasmine rice
1 cup coconut cream
1-1/2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp kosher salt

Rinse rice in a large bowl with cool water until water runs clear. Drain rice.

Combine rice, coconut cream, sugar, salt, and 2 cups water in a medium saucepan. Bring just to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar, then cover and reduce heat to low. (Alternatively, cook rice in an electric rice steamer.) Cook until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed, 40-45 minutes. Fluff rice with a fork; cover and let sit for 20 minutes.

6 servings


Spaghetti alla Puttanesca

Matt had the privilege to meet Frank Pellegrino and get a signed copy of his restaurant's cookbook while dining at Rao's in Las Vegas.

1/3-1/2 cup fine-quality olive oil
1 cup finely diced onion
3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
6 anchovy fillets, chopped
1/4 cup dry white wine
4 cups hand-crushed, canned, imported San Marzano Italian plum tomatoes, with juice
1 cup Gaeta olives (or other brine-cured black olives), pitted and sliced
2 Tbsp salted-packed capers, well rinsed
Dried red pepper flakes to taste, optional
Salt and pepper to taste
1 lb spaghetti
10 fresh basil leaves, torn
Pinch dried oregano
2 Tbsp chopped Italian parsley

  1. Place oil, onion and garlic in a large sauté pan over medium-low heat. Sauté for about 5 minutes or until onions are translucent but not brown. Stir in anchovies and sauté until anchovies have dissolved into the oil.
  2. Raise heat and add wine. Bring to a boil, then stir in tomatoes, olives, capers, and, if using, red-pepper flakes. Return to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper and simmer for 10 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, cook spaghetti in a large, deep pot in rapidly boiling salted water until al dente.
  4. Just before serving, stir basil and oregano into the sauce.
  5. Drain spaghetti. Return drained spaghetti to the pot. Over medium-high heat, stir in 1/2 cup sauce. Using a wooden spoon, toss together for 1 minute. Remove from heat and pour into a large serving platter or bowl. Spoon remaining sauce over the top. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.

4 servings

Rao's Cookbook