Sunday, January 22, 2012

Brief Goodbye...and Black Bean Tacos

Remember when I mentioned that we are moving again? Yep! We are moving into our new house later this week, and seriously looking forward to experiencing all the joys (and horrors) of home ownership once more. And, I'm excited about a more spacious kitchen. Don't get me wrong, I've enjoyed this apartment and it's closet-sized but nicely-outfitted tidy kitchen. However, I will NOT miss the over-sensitive smoke alarm that has caused our blood pressure to rise on many occasions. Still, this has been a terrific adventure so far, and we are so excited to move into our new home.

With the upcoming move, we have been making an effort to empty out the fridge and pantry of half-finished jars and bags of this and that. One very fruitful result of the purge was these wonderful Black Bean and Fish Tacos that we enjoyed for dinner last night. And they were so yummy! And so simple, you don't even need a you can see for yourself :)

Black Bean and Fish Tacos

When you see me next I will be in my new kitchen. So, a brief goodbye, until next time!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Harissa Marinated Chicken

Easy weeknight Chicken recipe...Tender chicken breasts marinated in harissa, yogurt, and olive oil. Does a chicken dinner get much easier or more delicious?  I think not!

Harissa, if you're not familiar with it, is a North African chile paste. You can find jars of it in the ethnic food aisle of many grocery stores.  Harissa is milder compared to some of the asian chile pastes, and its thick sauce-like consistency lends itself especially well to marinating. One or two tablespoons goes a long way! It is amazingly versatile and I love it! Marinating chicken in it, like below, is a great way to incorporate its unique flavor into your meal. And, the added yogurt ensures that the chicken stays very juicy. Enjoy the recipe!

Harissa Marinated Chicken

Serves four.

You will need:

4 boneless skinless chicken breast tenderloins
2 tablespoons harissa
3 tablespoons plain yogurt
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt to taste

Whisk harissa, yogurt, olive oil (and salt if used) together, and pour over chicken. Seal in a baggie and let marinate in the refrigerator for at least one hour. Heat a nonstick skillet to medium-high, put in the chicken (discard any remaining marinade). Cook on both sides until chicken is cooked through. Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012


We had some friends over the other night. They were kind enough to help us stack boxes to get ready for the upcoming move. (And, yes, we are moving again - but more on that later.) The evening's other activities included a rousing time of dance central - so much fun - and a healthy veggie-packed dinner (it seemed like a good idea, beyond just the fact that it is still early in the new year and none of us are bored with our resolutions. Yet :)  For dinner, I decided to attempt Bibimbap with a veggie/vegan spin.

In case you are wondering, Bibimbap is not just a funny word, it is a wonderful Korean dish that involves sautéed veggies and/or beef served over rice, usually accompanied by a fried egg on top. I have eaten it at restaurants, but hadn't yet attempted to make it at home. Also, in case you are wondering, it is pronounced "bee-bim-bahp" Korean this means "leftovers" or "mixed with rice" as Wikipedia so helpfully informed me.

What I love best about this dish is that you can use any vegetables you have on hand! I started with this very easy recipe from Serious Eats, and modified it to exclude the zucchini and daikon radish since I had neither on hand. I made the rice pancake as directed, but for the veggies I used only spinach, bean sprouts, carrots, and sliced shitake mushrooms. I sautéed the spinach and sprouts separately in sesame oil and red pepper flakes, then the carrots in sesame oil and a little honey, and then the mushrooms in sesame oil and soy sauce. Sprinkle sesame seeds on top if you wish.


It turned out pretty well! We ate ours with a little soy sauce and sriracha. Yum! I like veering from the authentic versions to skip the meat. But next time I will definitely add a fried egg on top. That would make it a bit more authentic. And, let's be honest, I will eat just about anything with a fried egg on top. Enjoy!