Rustic Rosemary and Thyme Pommes Anna

I’m back in sweltering LA. But it sure does feel good to be home. I always find myself immediately more inspired to cook while I’m here, though I suppose that could change in a month when I start school and realize that I’m up to my eyeballs in 2,000 page textbooks about Chinese Herbs. I’m determined to keep up cooking and lessons and sharing food while in school because it’s all part of a larger vision of Nutritional Education and healing through Acupuncture that I hope to combine in the future.

This recipe is inspired by a meal I had at Quillisascut Farm School a few years ago. I made my own version this past winter and was reminded of it just a few weeks ago when I stopped by the farm for a visit so I revisited my recipe a few days ago. Traditional pommes anna (and the way we ate it at Quilly) is a french dish consisting of slabs of potato cut with a mandolin into very thin slices, layered in a dish with pieces of butter between each and baked. I like to call my version rustic because that’s a nice way of saying “I don’t own a mandolin so my slices aren’t as thin, but if you say “rustic” it sounds better than “on a budget and don’t want to purchase a mandolin”.” I also like to use fingerling potatoes instead of a traditional yukon gold (especially if the fingerling potatoes are multi-colored) because each little round gets quite crispy.

This is definitely a fall dish. And it is definitely not fall yet. But I’m autumn obsessed and impatient, so please bear with me.

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Ingredients:

2 lbs. Organic mixed heirloom fingerling potatoes (or simply a mixture of your favorite potatoes)

6 oz-8 oz (3/4 cup- 1 cup) cold salted Kerrygold butter, (I’m not joking here..you can’t be afraid of butter with this dish. Normally I’m all for buying unsalted butter and thus controlling salt intake yourself, but Kerrygold does suck an awesome job on this butter that I leave it to them in this case)

4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

cracked black pepper

2 tsp. fresh thyme

1 tsp. fresh rosemary

Preheat oven to 400F.

Wash potatoes. I like the skins on because I think they look nice, but you can peel the potatoes if you want. Carefully slice each potato into rounds as thin as you can safely make them with your knife. Once you’ve sliced all potatoes, pat the slices dry with a paper towel. Potatoes hold onto a tremendous amount of moisture and any left on them will make it difficult for them to crisp up.

Sauté garlic in 2 Tbs. butter for about two minutes over medium heat until just golden. Remove from heat and set aside.

Use one end of the stick of butter to grease the bottom of a 8-10 inch round baking dish. Then lay down one layer of potato rounds. Sprinkle garlic evenly around potato layer. Next, cut off small pieces (about 1/2 tsp. size) of butter and arrange them on top of the layer of potatoes. Sprinkle with thyme and rosemary and cracked pepper. Repeat this layering process of a layer of potatoes, garlic, butter and herbs until you run out of potatoes. Make sure to do one last butter layer on the top and extra herbs.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until potatoes on top look golden and crispy.

Tastes delicious with a fried egg on top!

Serves 4.

A Return to Blogging: Simple Citrus and Avocado Salad

Oh my. It has been half a year since I’ve written anything here. I have so much respect for those who keep up with a blog regularly–balancing setting aside the time to write posts and take pictures with the ins and outs of everyday life is no joke. It’s not as if I haven’t been cooking for the past six months: quite the contrary. In fact, I played working mom for a family with three girls. I would go to my desk job as an office assistant to a chiropractor in the mornings and then  go pick up the girls from school, take them to activities, grocery shop and cook their meals each night as well as prepare weekend meals. So I was cooking. A lot. But the focus completely shifted away from thoughts about artfully combining seasonal ingredients and and taking food photos in the best lighting to finding something the girls would eat that perhaps had a hint of a vegetable or quality protein in it and getting it made, on the table and cleaned up as fast as possible. So not only do I appreciate the challenge of carving out time to blog while keeping up a day job, but I also have tremendous respect for all that parents juggle when it comes to maintaining and nurturing creative endeavors, hobbies etc. I did find time to have plenty of dinner parties for friends on the weekends and sometimes remembered to snap a few photos, making a mental note to blog about it later, but my focus was always elsewhere.

All this being said, I am making another shift in my life. I wrapped up my time in Seattle and am moving back to the Los Angeles area to begin a four year Master’s program in Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine. I am looking to ultimately combine nutritional therapy services and acupuncture in a private practice several years down the road. For the past month, I have been traveling around the country in my very old Subaru Outback visiting everyone in my family before I begin this intensive program. Friends had started to ask me before I left Seattle what happened to my blog and, on my trip, my family has been asking me the same thing. I knew I needed to get back to it in my own time as I settled into a new direction and energy in my life, but I am also grateful for the reminders that friends and family were interested in my recipes and my cooking–this has served as ample motivation.

As I’ve been traveling, I’ve made a point of cooking a big dinner for most of my family members I have stayed with (and they have all been generous enough to let me take over their kitchens for a night). It is the way I best know to show my gratitude for their hospitality and not much gives me more joy than knowing I have created something others can enjoy. Just two nights ago, after cooking for my aunt and uncle in Chicago, I felt a wave of momentum to get back to blogging and sharing recipes. I realized that no matter what I am doing to make a living or what direction my path goes, cooking is something I simply cannot escape. Whether I am cooking for family or friends, whether I am cooking professionally or a hobby, my experiences and connections around the dinner table and my simple recipes, informed by my time spent on farms, at cooking schools and as a student and practitioner of nutritional therapy, are something I want to continue to share for years to come.

The following is hardly a recipe, it’s so easy to throw together. But I wanted to re-start with a pretty picture and something fresh and light. This would actually be more of a winter salad in California, since oranges are in season in January, so I’m cheating on the seasonal thing a bit here…But it’s certainly tasty on a warm summer evening.

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Ingredients: 

2 medium navel oranges

2 large, ripe avocados

4-5 cups organic arugula or watercress

1/3 cup toasted pecans or walnuts

2 heaping Tbs. whole grain mustard

2 tsp. honey

1 tsp. lemon juice

1 tsp. balsamic vinegar

salt and pepper to taste

1 Tbs. olive oil

 

Arrange nuts on a baking sheet. Bake at 300F for 10-15 minutes, stirring every 2-3 minutes to toast. You will start to smell them when they are done. And they will smell AMAZING. Remove from oven and let cool. Roughly chop and set aside.

Wash and dry the arugula in a salad spinner. Arrange it on a platter to form a bed for the oranges and avocados.

Cut avocados in half, remove the pit and then use a large spoon to remove each half from the skin, still intact. Then slice thinly as pictured and arrange in rows on top of the arugula.

Cut of the top and bottom of each orange, then cut off or peel off the skin. Cut the oranges in half and then into thin slices. Arrange in alternating rows with the avocados.

To make the mustard dressing, whisk together mustard, honey, lemon juice, balsamic, salt, pepper and olive oil in a bowl. Taste and add more honey if you want it sweeter, more lemon or balsamic if you want it more tangy.

Drizzle dressing over salad.

Top with toasted, chopped nuts.

 

Serves 4

 

 

 

Yam Carrot Latkes

This is one of my favorite recipes to make for the girls I nanny. Everyone loves latkes and I use it as an opportunity to sneak some colored veggies into their food, which isn’t easy. I usually get a “you had to put carrots in them again?” comment, but they are still consumed quickly, so I think it’s working. Plus I love them. They take some time up front, but they last for a week in the fridge and taste good for breakfast with eggs on top or alongside anything you might be having for lunch. I’m a big fan of recipes I can make once and eat all week. Efficiency is key!

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Ingredients:

5 medium yukon gold potatoes, peeled

3 medium yams, peeled

4 large carrots, peeled

1 large onion, finely chopped

1.5 tsp. sea salt

black pepper to taste

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. ginger

dash chili flakes

2 eggs

3 Tbs. flour

1/2 tsp. baking soda

coconut oil for frying

Use a box grater to shred all of the veggies. This will take a good chunk of time, maybe 15 minutes. And your arms might get tired. But I promise it’s worth it. As you collect the shredded veggies from your cutting board, squeeze the liquid out of them before placing them in a large bowl. Once you collect all the shredded veggies in a bowl, add the spices, eggs and flour. Mix together well.

Heat a frying pan over medium high heat. Add 2 tsp. coconut oil for each batch of latkes fried. Form potato mixture into patties, about 3-4 inches in diameter, and fry, about 5 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Once you fry for 5 minutes on the second side, turn the heat down to medium low and put a lid on the frying pan. Continue to cook on medium low for 6-8 minutes until cooked through. Repeat until you have a big ole batch!

Fried Chicken Skin with Garlic and French Bread

This probably sounds like a very strange dish, but I promise it’s delicious! Growing up, I always found it bizarre how much my mom enjoyed eating the skin off of roast or rotisserie chicken. I had a limited palate for chicken and only liked the white meat. As I grew up I discovered the joys of the flavor (and price) of dark meat and finally, realized just how delicious the skin truly is! Only one thing could possibly make the crispy, herby skin of an oven-roasted chicken more delicious. That’s right. Making it more crispy with just a bit more butter in a frying pan. I had a rotisserie chicken in my fridge the other day and woke up craving the skins fried in butter for breakfast, even though it’s not something I’d ever had before. Must be my southern roots coming through, y’all (but I promise I don’t use as much butter and oil as Paula Deen). As I was frying up the chicken, I thought it needed something to round it out. I grabbed a few slices of chewy “tordu” baguette I had picked up at Honoré bakery in Ballard the day before, sliced it into cubes and tossed it in the frying pain along with roughly chopped garlic. I let it get crispy on the outside then topped the whole thing with an egg. And voila! Breakfast, lunch or dinner. You could also top it with fresh baby arugula or sautéed kale.

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Ingredients:

1 Tbs. unsalted butter

2 tsp. olive oil

1 cup cooked chicken skins (from roasted or rotisserie chicken)

3 large cloves chopped garlic

1 cup large cubes of chewy, sourdough bread

salt and pepper

1/2 tsp. oregano

1/4 tsp. red chili flakes

1/2 tsp. rosemary

2 large eggs

Melt butter and olive oil over medium high heat. Add chicken skins and garlic and sauté, stirring frequently, for five minutes. Add bread, oregano, red chili flakes, rosemary and salt and pepper to taste. Continue to fry over medium high until bread is crispy–about 5-7 more minutes. Divide among two plates.

Fry or poach or soft boil eggs and serve on top of chicken skin “hash”.

Serves 2

Roasted Vegetable Platter

Whew!! It’s been a long long time! This time of year always throws me. My to-do list gets longer and longer and my motivation for creative endeavors dwindles as my focus becomes day to day health and wellness and powering through the holiday hangover. Ever since I was very young, I have been especially in tune with the seasons and how they change my outlook on life, even in California when it can feel like summer all year long. I know I’m not alone in this January blues–there is something stagnant about this time of year no matter where you live. A friend and mentor described this beginning of the year, middle of winter phenomenon as “Januaryitis” and I couldn’t agree more. The only way I’ve found to snap out of it is to bite the bullet and begin planning and creating once more, allowing for new ideas to flow. At first, it’s painful to pull myself away from watching Saturday Night Live reruns after a long, rainy day, but eventually I get up and start by doing small things like organizing my bookshelf or getting rid of old clothes. Next, in a window of sunshine, I’ll take a walk, then come home and make a batch of bone broth and chicken soup. And suddenly. Bam! The inspiration is back and I remember how much I love cooking and sharing recipes. So here I am with a very simple guide to my favorite way to prepare veggies. I’ve included roast veggies in posts before, but I wanted to do a comprehensive guide to many kinds.

P. S. I’m working on launching a new website for my work as a Nutritional Therapist. It’s been in the works for about a month now and I’m planning on publishing the most basic form of it by the end of the month. I’m excited for this new endeavor! If you know anyone looking to make changes in diet and lifestyle or address a health or digestive concern, please send them my way. I will post the link on this site once the new site is live.

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Ingredients:

I large head cauliflower

5 large yams or sweet potatoes

5 large yukon gold potatoes

6 medium zucchini

2 large heads broccoli

3 bell peppers of any color

plenty of olive oil

salt and pepper

herbs of your choosing–rosemary, oregano and thyme are great, as well as a dash of chili flakes

Preheat oven to 400 F

For cauliflower: Cut the stem and leaves off the head of cauliflower. Next, set it on its end where the stem joins the florets and cut into slabs as if you are cutting a loaf of bread. Cut each slab into bit sized pieces. Place pieces in a colander and rinse well. Dry with  clean dish cloth or paper towel. Put the cauliflower pieces in a large bowl with 3 Tbs olive oil (yes, that seems like a lot, but this is a lot of cauliflower and enough oil is key here) and toss well. Season with salt and pepper. Pour onto a large, rimmed baking sheet and spread out so that none of the pieces are on top of one another. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes, then flip each piece to brown on the other side. Bake 20 more minutes. Cauliflower should be cripsy and golden brown.

For yams/ sweet potatoes: Scrub well. Leave skins on if using organic. Cut off the end, cut in half lengthwise, then cut each half lengthwise again. Cut into quarter-moon pieces about 1/4 inch think. Toss in a bowl with 2 Tbs. olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast in a large baking dish for 35-45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.

For potatoes: Here’s where the herbs come into play. Scrub potatoes and cut in the same way as the sweet potatoes. Toss in a large bowl with 2 Tbs. olive oil, salt, pepper and herbs of your choosing. Bake for 35-45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.

For zucchini: Wash, dry and cut off ends. Cut in half lengthwise and then into half-moons. Toss with 1 Tbs. olive oil, salt and pepper, pour into a baking dish and roast 25-35 minutes, stirring halfway through.

For broccoli: Rinse and dry, cut off very end, but then cut rest of stem and roast along with florets. Cut head of broccoli into bite-sized florets. Toss with 2 Tbs. olive oil, salt and pepper. Arrange on a rimmed baking sheet in one layer. Roast for 30-35 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.

For peppers: Wash and dry. Cut in half and remove stem and pith. Cut into 1/4-1/3 inch strips. Toss with 1 Tbs olive oil, salt and pepper, Roast on a baking sheet for 20-25 minutes, stirring halfway through.

Arrange all veggies on a platter when done! Serve and enjoy!

Cornbread Stuffing- Tis the Season

Stuffing. Oh stuffing. Easily my favorite part of Thanksgiving dinner. And then I want it all holiday season. Along with all the other carbs that come with this time of year. I’m decidedly trying not to do things like continue to eat holiday food for the month between Thanksgiving and Christmas since I know from past experience it can be a slippery slope– what starts as one piece of persimmon bread for dessert in late November becomes three pieces of persimmon bread, a slice of apple pie, a slice of pumpkin pie and five chocolate chip cookies by the new year. I don’t want that tolerance/numbness to sugar to build up in my body as it has in the past. But. But. I don’t see why that means I can’t share my stuffing recipe with anyone out there who is throwing a dinner party this holiday season, or just happens to want a week-long supply of stuffing because he or she has the proper amount of all-in holiday attitude to be able to handle it. That doesn’t mean I’m condoning gorging on sweets (or stuffing for that matter) on any sort of regular basis. As a nutritional therapist, I know way too much about how our bodies handle sugar to suggest that. But, I am first and foremost of the school of thought that the holidays are made for traditions, that many of those traditions involve food that is sometimes rich and sticks to your ribs, and that it is ok to indulge in the treats that make you the happiest. So here is one of my favorite recipes that has become tradition. I’ve been working on it for a few years and feel I’ve perfected it to the point where it is share-worthy this year. For the cornbread, I base my recipe off the Alber’s cornbread box recipe, but I modify it to use olive oil instead of vegetable oil and I cut the sugar in half, replacing it with maple syrup. I also use more cornmeal and less wheat flour than the original recipe. It’s these little tweaks that allow me to tell myself I can still be a nutritionist and eat my favorite things. At least that’s how I choose to see it.

Indulge and enjoy!! More holiday recipes to come.

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Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups cornmeal

1 1/2 cups flour

1/4 cup raw sugar

1/4 cup  maple syrup

1 Tbs. baking powder

2 tsp. salt

2/3 cup olive oil (or good quality unsalted butter, melted)

2 large eggs

2 cups liquid (you can use milk if you don’t have a problem with it, you can use organic unsweetened soy milk or almond milk or even a combination of milk and water)

1 large onion, diced

3 large celery stalks, diced

3 large carrots, diced

1 large apple, peeled and cubed

1/2 cup dried cranberries or raisins

4 sage leaves, chopped

olive oil for cooking

2 tsp. fresh thyme

salt and pepper to taste

1/2 tsp. honey

2-3 cups chicken broth (or veggie broth)

Grease a 9 x 13 inch rectangular baking dish with butter or oil. Preheat oven to 400. Mix cornmeal, flour, salt, sugar and baking powder with a wooden spoon. In a separate bowl, beat together oil or butter, maple syrup, eggs and milk. Combing wet and dry ingredients. Stir well to combine. Pour into greased baking dish. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until edges are golden and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cornbread cool for 15 minutes, then slice it into cubes and set aside.

Turn oven down to 350. In a large stock pot, heat 1 Tbs. olive oil over medium high heat. Add in onion, celery and carrot. Season with thyme, sage, salt and pepper to taste. Stir well. Sauté 10 minutes, until onions are translucent and start to brown. Add in apples and cranberries or raisins. Cook another 5 minutes. Add in the honey and stir well. Transfer veggies mixture to a bowl and set aside.

Heat 1 Tbs. olive oil in the pot and add in half the cornbread cubes, stirring well to coat. Continue to toast, stirring every few minutes, until cornbread starts to brown. Pour into a bowl and heat another Tbs. olive oil and repeat with the other half of the cornbread cubes. Remove from heat. Pour all the cornbread cubes and the veggie mixture back into the stock pot and still well. Pour in 2-3 cups chicken or veggie broth to add moisture. Pour a little, then stir to see how much the cornbread soaks up. You want to just moisten it, not drown it. It is normal for some of the cornbread to fall apart and become crumbly. This is still delicious.

Transfer mixture to a casserole dish and bake at 350 for 20 minutes with a cover on and 20 minutes without a cover.

Enjoy alone or as a side dish and definitely with gravy!

Serves 10-12

 

Breakfast (or Lunch or Dinner) Kale and Potatoes

My go to meal these days is some sort of potato hash topped with an egg. In it’s most basic form, it can just be potatoes, onions and spices, but jazzed up with extra veggies and perhaps a little bacon (just sayin’…cause, why not?) it becomes a cost-effective, healthy and satisfying meal. And it takes very little time out of your busy life! Plus you can make a big batch on the weekend and eat it for several days. This is a basic recipe with kale and garlic. My favorite variation is to add sweet potatoes, bell pepper, onions and carrots.

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Ingredients:

6 medium organic yukon gold or red potatoes

4 cloves garlic, finely minced

1 Tbs. unsalted butter

1 Tbs. olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

a few shakes of red chili flakes

1/2 tsp. dried oregano

1/2 tsp. dried thyme

1 bunch green kale, de-stemmed and broken into bite-sized pieces

Wash potatoes well. Cut each potato in half, lengthwise, and then in half lengthwise again, so that when you slice it into thin pieces, they look like quarter-moons. if you have small fingerling potatoes, which you can also use, those can be half or full moons :). Heat oil and butter in a large frying pan. Add minced garlic over medium-high heat and sauté until it just barely starts to brown. Add potatoes, spices and salt and pepper, starting with a few pinces of each. Cook, stirring every few minutes, so that the potatoes brown a bit. After 10 minutes, add the kale, turn the heat down to medium low, and cover the pan. Continue to cook for 8- 10 minutes until potatoes and kale are tender. Taste to see if you want to add more salt. You probably will. Potatoes suck up salt like a sponge.

Fry or soft boil or poach an egg, begin sure to leave the yolk nice and runny and pop it on top of a plateful of these. Or serve at dinner alongside a main dish of beef or chicken.

Serves 4 for one meal or just you for many meals!

Chicken Soup for All that Ails You

It’s freezing in Seattle! And I love it! Freezing and clear blue skies. Chicken soup is the ultimate aid in warming you up after a day out and about in this kind of weather. It is so simple and full of good minerals and nutrients (especially if you’ve roasted a chicken and made some broth the day before) and depending on how much chili you put it, I swear it’ll knock a cold right out of you! You can put any vegetables you want in this soup or add in noodles or rice if you’re so inclined. I think it’s plenty satisfying without any grains. Try roasting a chicken on Saturday, eating half and using the rest of the meat for the soup and then making a bone broth. On Sunday, you can make this big batch of soup and eat if for the next few days or freeze for later.

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Ingredients:

Meat from half a 5-6 pound roast chicken, shredded

1 Tbs. unsalted butter

1 Tbs. olive oil

1 medium yellow onion, diced

4 large carrots, peeled and sliced into half moons

4 large yukon gold potatoes, diced

1/2 cup chopped parsley

1 tsp. sea salt

pepper

1/4 tsp. chili flakes

1/2 tsp. oregano

2 bay leaves

2 cups frozen or freshly hulled peas

5-6 cups chicken broth (preferably home made)

Melt the butter and oil together in a large soup pot. Add the diced onions an sauté until translucent. Add salt, pepper, chili flakes, oregano and bay leaves. Add in diced potatoes and carrots. Stir well and let cook down for 5 minutes. Stir in parsley. Pour broth over vegetables. Turn heat down to medium low and let simmer, covered, for about 20 minutes, or until veggies are cooked through. Stir in peas and chicken. Simmer 5 more minutes. Taste to see if you want to add more seasoning. And that’s it!

 

Serves 4-5.

 

 

Spicy Tomatoes and Kale with Fried Eggs

Andddd…it’s officially winter in my book. I don’t care what the calendar says– as long as the clocks have been turned back and it’s getting dark at 4:45 pm, it’s time to hunker down. So I’ll continue with my theme of warm and cozy recipes adding spices that will give your sinuses a jolt of life. At least for a few minutes.

I’ve been eating eggs for breakfast most days while doing the Whole30, so I’ve been eating them all different ways to keep it interesting. The secret to this particular recipe (and any egg recipe really) is to splurge on the best quality eggs you can get. That’s how you get these bright yellow-orange yolks and the flavor difference is very significant. I’ve been buying Vital Farms eggs from Fred Meyer when I can’t get to the farmer’s market. They are best eggs I’ve ever found in a grocery store and from the looks of their website and the little newsletter you get when you buy the eggs, it seems like they are the real deal.

This dish is a simple and delicious answer to a winter breakfast, lunch or dinner.

 

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Ingredients:

2 cloves garlic, chopped

olive oil for cooking

1/2 tsp. oregano

1/4 tsp. red chili flakes

1/4 tsp. cumin

salt and pepper to taste

2 cups chopped organic canned tomatoes and their juice (I say canned because it’s winter, but if you happen to have frozen or jarred tomatoes from summer time, use those!)

4 large leaves of kale (any variety), de-stemmed and chopped

4 eggs, organic and pasture raised if possible

Coat a large frying pan with olive oil and add garlic, heating over medium high. Once garlic just barely begins to brown (after about 3 minutes), add spices, salt and pepper and stir. Add in tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Turn down to medium low and let cook 5 minutes. Taste and add salt and pepper to you taste. Add in chopped kale, stir well, cover, and let cook down 5 minutes. Remove lid and once again taste. You will most likely need to add more salt (both kale and tomatoes can take a lot of salt to flavor) and you might find you want more spice. My spice tolerance is wimpy. Once you’re happy with the flavor, divide the tomato kale mixture among two shallow bowls. Wipe the frying pan clean with a paper towel.

Reheat the frying pan over medium high with olive oil, coconut oil or butter. Fry your eggs, two at a time, to your liking and serve over the stewed tomatoes.

Serves 2.

Cardamom Chicken with Caramelized Onions and Apples

This Whole30 eating experience hasn’t been nearly as difficult as I thought it would be. Well at least so far. I’m only on day four, but I already feel like by pre-planning and prepping meals that are delicious and packed with nutrients, I’ve avoided the anxiety of eliminating certain foods from my diet. Instead of going out to eat, I’ve been inviting friends over (which is my favorite thing to do anyway) and making feasts of veggies, fruit, nuts, seeds and quality meat for everyone to enjoy. I love all the colors an fall flavors I’ve been bringing to the table. This chicken dish is my favorite recipe creation of the month (maybe the last few months) and it is just pure, whole foods of the best quality and packed with fall flavors. The key is cooking it on low heat for a good chunk of time so the flavors really have time to come together. In case it hasn’t been apparent, I have a bit of an obsession with cardamom. I think it makes most things more delicious, especially in the fall and winter when a warming spice is really a welcome addition. That being said, if cardamom isn’t your cup of tea, you can make this recipe with less cardamom pods, or substitute more cinnamon and some fresh ginger. I ate this chicken with a side of baked sweet potatoes and a salad topped with pumpkin seeds to really cover all my bases of fall foods.

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Ingredients:

4 bone-in organic chicken thighs

3 Tbs. coconut oil or olive oil

1 medium yellow onion

2 tsp. balsamic vinegar

1 medium fuji apple, peeled

1 tsp. cinnmon

1 tsp. turmeric

1/4 tsp. ground cardamom

6 cardamom pods

1/2 tsp. red chili flakes

sea salt and pepper to taste

1/2 cup thompson or golden raisins

3/4 cup chicken broth (preferably home made)

Heat 1 tbs. oil in a large soup pot over medium high heat. Thinly slice onion and add to the pot. Stir well. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Turn heat down to medium and let onions cook down for 10 minutes. Thinly slice peeled apple and stir into the onions along with the balsamic vinegar. The vinegar will help the caramelization process. Allow to cook down for another 3-4 minutes. Then remove the apples and onions from the pot. Add the remaining 2 tbs. of oil and brown chicken thighs, 3 minutes on each side. Also season each side of the chicken with salt and pepper. Add the onions and apples back into the pot and stir in the rest of the spices. Stir in the raisins. Add the chicken broth, bring to a simmer and then turn the heat down to medium low, cover the pot and let cook 35-40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes to disperse spices. It’s hard to over cook a chicken thigh because they have a lot of moisture. If it starts to look like the apples and onions are sticking to the bottom of the pot, turn the heat down and add a splash more broth. If you have large pieces of chicken you might need more time. Use a small knife to cut into one of the thighs to make sure no part of the meat is translucent or stick in a meat thermometer to make sure the temperature of the meat is at least 165 F. Taste the apple, onion and raisin mixture surrounding the chicken to see if it needs more salt and season to taste.

Enjoy!

 

Serves 4