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Archive for the ‘Grilling’ Category

This is one of those recipes I’ve gone past several times…always drawn to the quantity of fresh herbs used.  Rummaging through my fridge recently I discovered I had all the herbs required to make that “Thai Chicken” recipe.  Fortunately I also had some green curry paste and was inspired to add some more flavour to the dish.

Happy to report this recipe got 4 thumbs up…the family loved it.  The kidlets did not complain about the herbs at all even commenting on how much they enjoyed it.  Fresh Tasting & Flavourful.

For this recipe I pulled out of the freezer both bone-in chicken thighs and boneless chicken breasts as they needed to be used up.  I threw them all into the marinade noting the different cooking times for the chicken.  Each morsel tasted equally divine.

Adapted from ATCO Blue Flame

Thai Inspired Chicken

1/4 – 1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped fine
1/4 – 1/2 cup fresh mint, chopped fine
1/4 – 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped fine
2 tbsp grated fresh ginger
2 tbsp soy sauce
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp green curry paste
1/4 cup oil (canola or olive)
splash of your favourite hot pepper sauce
4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts OR bone in, skin on chicken thighs

Combine all ingredients except chicken in ziplock bag. Squishy it to mix flavours. If you find it a little on the dry side add some more oil. Add chicken, squeezing to ensure marinade permeates chicken.

Let stand 30 minutes at room temp or longer in fridge to develop flavours. Remove chicken from marinade and discard.

For boneless chicken breasts grill over medium heat approx 12-15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

For bone-in chicken thighs grill over medium low heat for approximately 20-25 minutes or until cooked through.

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One of my girlfriend’s came to visit me last weekend.  She lives in Northern BC and we’ve been friends for over 25 years.

I asked her what she wanted for supper on her first night here and to make a long story short we ended up having grilled steak.  No shortage of steak lovers in this family.  I grew up having steak occasionally, although it would always be the same cut of steak with the same BBQ sauce cooked the same way. I swear this is part of the reason I scream for flavour and diversity in my cooking.

Chimichurri sauce originates from Argentina & South America. It is a lovely & tasty accompaniment to any grilled meat. We’ve enjoyed this recipe before and so it was time to enjoy it again.

We grilled some asparagus & mushrooms as a side.

Adapted from ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen

Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

2 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp coriander
2 lbs steak (whatever you enjoy, striploin, sirloin, filet, etc.)
salt & pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a plastic ziplock back and squishy to ensure steak is covered. Let marinate on counter for 30 minutes or longer in the fridge.

Remove steak from bag and grill over medium heat to preferred doneness. Serve with Chimichurri sauce.

Chimichurri Sauce
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves
2 tbsp lemon juice, fresh
2 tbsp fresh oregano
5 cloves garlic, peeled
1/2 tsp each salt & pepper

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Serve immediately.

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I’ve tried many different versions of chicken fajita’s and always found the flavours are rather bland.  This recipe had the flavours blending nicely and everyone loving this dish.  In fact my dd asked for it for lunch the next day at school (now that is unusual).

Fajita’s for our family are a quick & easy supper on an activity night.  These are truly yummy.

Chicken Fajitas

4 chicken breasts, boneless & skinless
1 tbsp chili powder
2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp cumin
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp lime juice, fresh
oil (canola or olive oil)
1/2 cup spanish onion, sliced
1 cup pepper (red, green, orange, yellow), sliced
whole wheat flour tortillas 

Fixins
shredded lettuce
diced tomato
salsa
guacamole
sour cream
hot peppers (banana or jalapeno)
shredded cheese
I also used pico de gallo & chopped cilantro

In a ziplock bag combine chili powder, oregano, salt, cumin, garlic, lime juice and a little oil.  Seal bag and smoosh to combine flavours. Add your chicken and smoosh a little more.  Refrigerate for a minimum 15 minutes or longer if you have time.

Put your onions and peppers in a bowl.  Pour on a little oil and season with salt, pepper and a little cumin.

Take chicken out of marinade and drain.  Put on greased BBQ and grill approximately 6-7  minutes per side on med-high until cooked through and juices run clear.  Remove from heat and let rest under cover.

Meanwhile on a pre heated BBQ grill topper or stove top grill pan add some oil and your onion/pepper mix.  Give it a little more s&p and saute for about 4-5 minutes or under veggies tender crisp. Set aside in a bowl.

Get all your fixin’s ready, heat up your flour tortillas (10 seconds in microwave), slice your chicken, grab some peppers/onions and you are ready to assemble your chicken fajita.

My family loves them!

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This pizza recipe brings back memories from my days living in Vancouver.  I made it quite a few times since it was easy and I like easy. Fresh seasonal fruit, with a tasty cream cheese icing on a shortbread base makes for a perfect summer dessert.

Little hands can easily help with this recipe.

 

Fruit Pizza

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp cinnamon
1/4 cup icing sugar
1 cup butter, softened

Icing
12 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla

Glaze
1/3 cup Apricot Jam
1 tbsp water

Fresh fruit

Preheat oven to 350F.

Mix first 5 ingredients together in a bowl until it comes together and you can form a ball. Press onto bottom of pizza pan. If you lay parchment down first it will allow you to remove pizza easily to a cake platter.

Bake for approx 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely.

Tip: On a hot summer day you can cook the crust on your BBQ instead of turning your oven on.

To make icing beat together cream cheese, sugar and vanilla. Spread evenly over pizza crust.

Arrange your fruit on top.

Mix together apricot jam & water. If you wish you can run it through a sieve to remove chunks of apricot. I left the apricot pieces in this time.

Pour glaze over fruit and serve.

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With activities taking up several evenings during the week I am always on the look out for a quick, affordable and nutritious meal.  Pork Chops can be fried, grilled or broiled quickly and a lean protein our family enjoys.

Adapted from Atco Blue Flame

Maple Soy Pork Chops

2 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp oil
1-2 tsp ginger, freshly grated
3 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
3 cloves garlic, crushed
4 boneless pork chops

Add all ingredients except pork chops into a ziplock style bag. Mush it up to combine. Add your pork chops, seal bag and squishy bag to ensure chops are coated evenly.

Marinate for a minimum 30 minutes. Longer is better.

Remove pork chops from bag and grill over low heat on BBQ until done, about 30 minutes for thicker chops.

In the photo I paired my pork chop with balsamic & basil grilled veggies. Will post that recipe soon.

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I thought yesterday’s pizza creation was pretty tasty and since today is pizza day for lunch, the inspiration carried over and I wanted to create another yummy pizza.

I always use pita pockets to make pizzas for lunch for the kids.  They are the perfect size for little hands/people and hold the ingredients well.   Looking around my kitchen for inspiration I discovered some uncooked squash that needed to be used up.  Not enough time to grill it, I steamed it instead.  Being a lover of all things squash but never having had it on pizza I was up for the challenge.  I looked through the fridge and fished out some basil and goat cheese.  A new recipe was born.

Note: If you like goat cheese but do not care for a lot of pepper buy a plain or perhaps herb goat cheese and omit the additional cracked pepper I added at the end.

I can honestly say I had a Clinton Kelly moment when I took my first bite.  (If you ever watch The Chew….love that show…whenever Clinton tastes something he adores he becomes incoherent).  Yes I felt that way, this pizza rocked my socks off.  Trying to figure out what to call this pizza was my biggest challenge. 

If you are up for a new pizza and like the ingredients…try it, you will not be disappointed.  I didn’t calore count this one but I’m pretty sure since there are fewer ingredients it is well under 500 calories.

Squash & Goat Cheese Pita Pizza

1 Byblos Garlic Greek Pita Pocket
1-2 tbsp Soft Unripened Peppercorn Goat Cheese, broken up
Olive Oil
2-3 sprigs Fresh Basil, chiffonade
1/2 cup cooked butternut squash (grill or steam), chopped into smaller pieces
1-2 tbsp Asiago Cheese, shredded
Cracked Black Pepper

Drizzle a little olive oil onto your pita. Spread with a pastry brush.

Next add your cut, cooked butternut squash and your goat cheese. Sprinkle on your basil and some Asiago cheese.

Broil on pizza stone for 2-3 minutes or until Asiago cheese melts a little and edges of pita brown. Remove from oven and let sit a few minutes.  If you do not have a pizza stone a pizza pan or cookie sheet works just as well.

Just before serving (to myself) I added additional Asiago & basil on top and some fresh cracked black pepper.

For me this taste combination was a winner…one the next time the family wants pizza for supper…I will happily oblige.

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Another recipe on the radar for awhile…..I love anything with coconut.  I finally pulled the chicken out of the freezer and got them into the marinade.  Then after a long day and with an activity night ahead of us, I decided against grilling the chicken and opted for quick sandwiches instead.  It was just one of those days.

The chicken ended up getting grilled the next night and as such marinating for 24 hours.  Uh, yum.  The coconut did it’s job and the chicken was delicious but did not have an overpowering coconut flavour.

Adapted from ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen

Coconut Chicken Thighs

1 cup canned coconut milk, stir well
1-2 tbsp fresh lime juice
2 tsp lime peel, grated
1 tbsp fish sauce
2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 clove garlic
10 bone-in, skin on chicken thighs

Combine all ingredients in ziplock bag, except chicken. Swishy the bag to incorporate and mix up ingredients. Remove 1/2 cup of the marinade, cover and refrigerate.

Add chicken to the bag, close bag and move around to marry it with the marinade. Marinate for a minimum 30 minutes up to several hours if you have the time.

When ready to grill remove chicken from the marinade. Grill over medium heat for approximate 15 – 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Keep an eye on them as flare ups may occur and the skin will get quite charred.

Serve with reserved marinade and coconut rice.

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I’ve made these skewers too many times to count over the years.  Oddly enough I have never posted the recipe to the blog.   

The photo is not the best and taken just after the kabobs came off the grill.  (Husband skewered them which is why they appear unevenly skewered.) Sometimes when you have guests waiting and smelling the food, trying to get the perfect shot doesn’t always work.  And sometimes husband grabs the camera and starts taking pictures without thinking about the end result (keener to get a better shot than me).  Will try and take a better photo next time.

This mushroom kabob is a delicious accompaniment to any grilled meat.

 

Adapted from ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen

Mushroom & Green Onion Skewers
 

1/3 cup soy sauce (your favourite kind)
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp white wine, dry
2 tbsp brown sugar, packed
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 tsp dried ginger (fresh works if you have it)
1 1/2 tsp cornstarch
1/4 tsp hot pepper sauce
6 green onions
20 large fresh mushrooms

small bamboo skewers

Soak bamboo skewers in water for minimum 30 minutes.

Combine soy sauce thru hot pepper sauce in a small pot. Place over medium heat and bring to a boil. Stir regularly until mixture thickens slightly. Remove from heat and set aside. This is your sauce.

Cut your green onions into 1-1/2 inch pieces. Clean your mushrooms.

Thread mushrooms onto skewer, stem end first followed by a piece of green onion placed crosswise. Do not overcrowd mushrooms but continue until you have filled your skewers.

Brush mushrooms/onions with sauce.  Grill over medium heat, basting regularly with sauce until golden brown, approximately 5 minutes.

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Several years ago one of my girlfriends brought me back a jar of jerk marinade from her honey moon trip to Jamaica.  It was hot, spicy and all things good.  The sauce didn’t last long and oddly enough we haven’t taken the time to make our own jerk seasoning sauce….until yesterday.

I had everything in the fridge needed to whip up a marinade and so the plan was set in motion and the marinade prepared.  I ended up keeping 2/8 chicken thighs separate, marinating with olive oil and light seasonings since we did not know what to expect heat (spicy) wise.  I marinated the chicken for about 5 hours.  I only had half a jalapeno left from a previous recipe with a few ribs/seeds intact…so this is what I used. The end result, a flavourful, tasty, mild jerk chicken (hint of heat) that 3 of us loved.  The 4th preferred the chicken without green on it (lol).

Adapted from Everyday Food

Jerk Chicken

1 bunch green onions, trimmed and chopped
3 garlic cloves, rough chop
1 jalapeno chile, chopped (if you like it spicy use the whole thing, seeds & ribs intact, when I made it I only used half and it was mild)
2 tbsp lime juice, fresh squeezed
2-3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp brown sugar
1-2 tsp allspice
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2-3 tbsp water
8 chicken thighs, bone in/skin on

IN a blender combine green onions, garlic, jalapeno, lime juice, olive oil, brown sugar, allspice, thyme, cinnamon, salt, pepper and water. Blend until mixture smooth. Reserve 1/4 cup for grilling.

Place chicken in a ziplock bag. Sprinkle additional salt & pepper on your chicken. Add your marinade squishing your bag to ensure chicken coated well. Close bag and refrigerate/marinate for a minimum 2 hours. Turn bag occasionally.

Remove chicken from marinade and place on a heated & oiled BBQ. Close cover and grill at medium-high heat turning occasionally until chicken is dark brown or blackened if you prefer, about 10 minutes.

Move chicken to cooler part of BBQ and brush with reserved marinade. Cover again and continue to cook chicken another 15 minutes or until juices run clear.

I served it with some yellow potatoes I cubed and slow cooked (30 minutes) in a sauce pan with butter/olive oil, salt/pepper and some fresh veggies.

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We love burgers. Having smaller hands I like to be able to hold onto my burger, easily, and it not be so big that it’s all meat.  It’s all about the fixin’s for me.  A couple years back (wow 5 already!) we started a quest to try & test as many different burger recipes as we could in one summer which came to be known as our Bakers Burger Blast. It became so successful it continues on to this day.

On the menu this time is a chipotle infused burger with a Tex Mex flair. Liking all things spicy (even though I pay for it later) I saw the recipe and immediately added it to last weeks weekly meal plan.

If you do not have a BBQ or do not like to BBQ don’t be intimidated.  Remember burgers can be cooked in a grill/fry pan on your stove.  Before we get started I have a quick tip for you.

Tip: 2 tbsp of chipotle makes the burger a wee bit spicy – the kids noticed. But they still ate them. If you prefer less spicy use only 1 tbsp chipotle/adobe sauce instead. Take leftover pureed chipotle in adobe sauce and freeze in 1 tbsp portions. Ice cube trays work great for this. Once frozen place in ziplocks and it’s ready to go the next time you want to use it.

Adapted from Rachael Ray

Tex Mex Style Burgers

1 lb lean ground beef
2 tbsp grated onion or 1 tbsp dried onion flakes
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 tbsp pureed chipotle/adobe sauce
2 tbsp worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp each salt & pepper

Fixin’s (all optional)
bacon strips (your favourite brand cooked)
monterey jack cheese with spicy peppers
diced tomatoes
pickled jalapeno peppers
banana peppers
diced spanish onion
cilantro, chopped
tortilla chips (any variety)
tex mex style cheese sauce (make your own or by one in a jar)

Your favourite buns (mine are ciabatta)

In a bowl mix together your ground beef, onion, garlic, pureed chipotle in adobe sauce, worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper. Form into patties and set aside. We usually end up getting 5 sometimes 6 patties from 1lb ground beef.

Cook approximately 5 minutes per side on medium high heat (both on stove and/or BBQ).

Put your grilled burgers on a bun and add your favourite fixin’s. My son and I added the tortilla chips right on the burger…added a nice crunch.

Wouldn’t you know it we got so busy eating the burgers, we forgot to capture a photo! These were so yummy they will be made again soon, so photos next time!

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