Morrocan Inspiration: A Spiced Chicken Stew With Carrots

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Morrocan Chicken

This slow cooker recipe just made an incredibly busy week, easy. Here’s how easy: five minutes of prep, you walk away, and four hours later (with no stirring or checking it), you are eating this.

Your trusty (and probably dusty) slow cooker needs to be brought back into your life. For those of you that hate cooking, just head on over to Amazon, spend $45 bucks, and it will be worth the investment. This aromatic and healthy meal will be repeated in your kitchen.

You can use just about any meat. I would highly recommend using turkey, a meat that needs a little help in the flavor department. The carrots act as a layer of protection for the meat, so they won’t get burned.

Enjoy!

Spiced Chicken Stew With Carrots

Adapted from MarthaStewart.com

  • 1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 8 chicken legs or thighs, skin on
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup parsley leaves
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds

Cover carrots in slow cooker, and use as base of stew. Place chicken, garlic, cinnamon, cumin, cayenne, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a bowl and combine meat with fingers. Place on top of carrots in slow cooker. Cover, and cook on high for 4 hours (or on low for 8 hours). Set your timer, then add raisins 15 minutes before cooking time is complete.

Take the cinnamon stick out first, then use a slotted spoon to transfer chicken and carrots to a dish. Top with parsley and almonds. Season cooking liquid with salt and pepper; spoon over chicken. 

OVEN METHOD: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In step 1, use a 5-quart Dutch oven or ovenproof pot with a tight-fitting lid, adding 1 cup water. Cover, and bake until chicken is tender, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Proceed with step 2.

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RECIPE: A Boozy, Luscious Cranberry Sauce

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Ditch that canned cranberry sauce NOW! Unless you love it. But I can’t imagine you’ll go back to it after trying this recipe. There are six total ingredients, and if you make it a few days in advance, the flavors kick in something fierce. Let me know how yours turns out.

cranberry sauce

A Boozy Cranberry Sauce

  • a 12-ounces bag of fresh cranberries, rinsed
  • 1/2 cup sugar or Stevia
  • 1/3 cup vodka
  • 3 tablespoons orange-flavored liqueur, such as Grand Marnier or Triple Sec
  • 1/2 teaspoon of orange zest
  • 1/4 cup water

Use a heavy medium saucepan and a low-medium heat while adding the cranberries, sugar, and 1/4 cup water. Bring to boil, stirring often to dissolve sugar, then reduce heat as low as you can low and keep stirring until about 20 minutes. Add the vodka and orange liqueur (I used triple sec), then the orange zest. Let the alcohol cook for about 5 minutes, remove from heat and transfer to a glass storage container. Refrigerate and allow it to set for 2 hours, and you are GOOD.

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RECIPE: Garlic-Infused Greens Over Creamy Polenta

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Garlicky Greens Polenta“It tastes amazing. Greens and corn, but better. Healthier. Man, this is fucking good.”

This was one of the comments about my Garlic-Infused Greens Over Creamy Polenta, when serving this at a dinner party a few months back. Could I have made another more recognized dish when thinking of an Italian theme? Perhaps. I wanted something unexpected, and (considering I was making four dishes with a different national theme), easy. This is it. I put little pieces of sweet corn in the polenta after it was done, just for a little added texture and sweetness.

Continue reading

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Lamb Chops Garlic, Rosemary & Sea Salt

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I’ve eaten this recipe twice in the last week. It has five ingredients and takes nine minutes to prep/cook. And sometimes you just have to let the pictures speak. 

Garlic, Rosemary & salt

Chop ingredients Continue reading

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Posted in Dinner | 2 Comments

MEN! Here’s How You Do It: Romance, Texting & Food

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Beach Sunset

I know what you’re doing right now. Rushing to check your email/Facebook/Twitter or text message on your way to work/bar/home/gym/school. I am right there with you, editing this blog post while cooking lunch. I’m not suggesting that you slow down, when there’s so much to do everyday. This is merely a reminder to put in the time for your loved ones, and how you can make technology work in your favor.

With some specifics on how to do it.

My friend is in love. He is so far gone, that he doesn’t know which end is up. He raves about her, and I often catch him in a smile while glancing into nothingness. You know that look: when the infatuated person recalls an intimate moment, and it’s vivid. But his romantic prowess was apparent when he showed me a text inviting her to dinner.

Here’s the plan. Let me pick you up at work around 8:15. I get to see where you spend most of your time. We go to your place, and I will buy some groceries if you have to tidy up (if necessary). I cook something for us, and we continue the conversation from yesterday. Sounds good?

He gets serious props for his approach. It was bold and confident. Want to know her response?

So, what are you cooking? :)

Continue reading

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Posted in CTGL Tip, Dinner, Go Out...Get Laid | Tagged | 1 Comment

Eat as much “ice cream” as you want!

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Guilt-free "ice cream" with an amazing cacao "chocolate" sauce is where it's at!!! Photo by Sarah via FitnHealthy Blog

Guilt-free “ice cream” with an amazing cacao “chocolate” sauce is where it’s at! Photo by Sara from the FitnHealthy blog.

Tell me what you see when looking at this picture. 

It looks like a creamy, cool bowl of ice cream with a velvety chocolate sauce, right? Wrong.

This entire dish is made out of bananas, almond butter, pure maple syrup, cacao powder and nuts. No processed sugar, no dairy, no chemicals and nothing but heaven in your mouth.

What I adore most about eating this on a 100 degree day, is that I can have one bowl. And then another. And one more if it suits the moment.  Continue reading

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Posted in Breakfast, Dessert, Gluten-free, Late Night Snack | Tagged | Leave a comment

Mimosas: saying goodbye to an old friend, and hello to a new one

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A mimosa alternative, with grapefruit juice and orange zest.

The Canadian (aka husband) drinks a mimosa alternative, with grapefruit juice and orange zest.

We’ve been friends, close ones for many years. We have shared so many moments together. And its not as if this is an unhealthy relationship. This just isn’t working anymore. You’re uninteresting. A relic of the 80s and 90s. And it’s time for us to end things.

I remember when we met. I was 22-years-old, working at a restaurant where bottomless mimosas had people coming in and drinking you up like you were the best thing on earth, but were you mimosa?

I got used to you. I didn’t hate you, but I didn’t like you very much either. I would take a sip and say, “You’re alright.” But never anything above that. I liken my relationship with you to a blind, bubbly acceptance, because everyone else loved you too. Or pretended to. Throughout the years, I sipped an endless stream of pale orange liquid from champagne flutes. 

And then I started to realize that that you equalled complacency.  You weren’t bad with me, and I didn’t abuse you either. I became aware of those relationships my girlfriends had, where they couldn’t pinpoint a single problem, but they were simply bored to death. I’m just not into you anymore. I never was.

So now I ask each of you join me in bidding farewell to mimosas. It’s time to let this stale staple go.  Continue reading

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Posted in Breakfast, Cocktails, CTGL Tip, Drinks | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Where to find your next girlfriend, or the perfect date for your wife/girlfriend

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cookingclass

A cooking class is the following: a place for you to meet a person with outside interests. OR a fantastic idea for those wanting to take your beloved to someplace new: a cooking class. Please don’t hate on the idea, so stay with me while I plead my case. Every time I recommend this to someone, a deeper conversation reveals that they have a preconceived notion of what a cooking class is and isn’t. They are not your typical kitchen or classroom. A cooking class is an experience. Consider it an amplified dinner party. 

There’s another element to think about. Even if she’s not remotely interested in cooking, there’s something enticing about a woman watching her man get his hands messy in the kitchen. I have the actual proof, as I watched five other couples do this a few weeks ago in Chef Eric’s Culinary Classroom.

My enthusiasm about Chef Eric’s class was also shared with a male friend who immediately rolled his eyes and replied, “I have other things I need to do.”

Nothing makes me more frustrated than seeing someone overlook an opportunity. This guy has been out on numerous and expensive dates, all unsuccessful. And since he came to me for advice, I didn’t hesitate by saying, “This is the perfect place for you to meet women, or take your girlfriend or wife. If you had one.”

Said guy hasn’t asked me for advice in awhile. I’m also working on my delivery skills. Continue reading

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Posted in Appetizers, CTGL Tip, Dessert, Dinner | Tagged , | 3 Comments

RECIPE: Sun-dried Tomato, Feta, Basil & Black Olive Pasta Salad

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A cold pasta salad with sundried tomatoes, olives, feta and basil. Gimme a plate, NOW.

A cold pasta salad with sun-dried tomatoes, olives, feta and basil. Gimme a plate, NOW.

It’s summer. Folks like me come up with reasons to get together and eat. And sometimes the food obsessed will ask you to bring something. Don’t go into a panic, and please don’t go to the largely uninteresting prepared food aisle of your grocery store. So here’s a go to recipe that takes only 20 minutes to complete, from start to finish. 

Here in LA, we have the Cinespia film screenings in a cemetery. That’s right, a cemetery. They play the best of old movies on a massive (unused) lawn just after sundown. But it’s all part of the the charm and fun. Provided you’re not too creeped out by dead bodies.  So we devoured this pasta salad while watching, “Coming To America” with a vocal and fun audience. And when it was time to leave the grounds, we happened to walked past the graves of Johnny Ramone, Jayne Mansfield and Rudolph Valentino with full bellies.

Cinespia summertime movie screenings. Reuse photo provided by Rachel aka https://www.flickr.com/photos/chickpokipsie/

Cinespia summertime movie screenings. Reuse photo provided by Rachel Jackson via Flickr

Meals aren’t supposed to be complicated. I believe that you add elements to a recipe in order to make it beautiful and delicious. So I’ll keep this blog post in that same theme: easy and good.

Sun-dried Tomato, Feta, Basil & Olive Pasta Salad
Serves 4
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Prep Time
7 min
Cook Time
12 min
Prep Time
7 min
Cook Time
12 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 16 ounce package of rice pasta, preferably fusilli or spiral pasta (Trader Joe's has it)
  2. 1/2 cup of sun-dried tomato (or more if you love them like I do)
  3. 3/4 cup of good quality feta (my favorite is the Israeli sheep's milk feta from Trader Joe's)
  4. 1 handful of fresh basil, chopped
  5. 1 cup of pitted and sliced black olives
  6. Salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Get your pasta water going, and fill a large pot full of water, then place on a high heat.
  2. While waiting for your water to boil, start prepping your ingredients. Remove the sun-dried tomatoes from their oil and let them drain in a sieve.
  3. Start pitting and slicing your olives. Or just buy them already diced and pitted.
  4. Chop the basil after cleaning and removing the stems.
  5. Once the water boils, add your pasta and follow directions on pack. All gluten-free pastas do not cook the same, so please pay attention to the instructions.
  6. Test the pasta. Taste it! When it's your favorite consistency, remove it and place under cold water.
  7. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. If your feta cheese is in a large block, use a fork to separate it.
  8. It is likely that you won't need any salt, as the feta has enough of it's own.
  9. Love it like we do!
Cook This...Get Laid http://cookthisgetlaid.com/wordpress/

 

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Wonder if he/she likes you? Read on…

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When I first started dating my then boyfriend, now husband, I played initiated a game. The, “I’m not gonna call him so much or be available,” game. After two days of ‘playing it cool,’ he called me up and said, “Are you okay?” My reply was as lame as my approach, and he read right through it with this reply, “Listen, I like you. I like hearing from you. We don’t need to do that thing. You know, that thing where we barely acknowledge that we like each other, play games and make it harder than it has to be. So if you want to do this, let’s DO this.”

And we’ve been doing it ever since. I was reminded of this when reading this article in Elite Daily about why we need a new game: HONESTY.

http://elitedaily.com/life/culture/call-end-games-like-like-lets-stop-bullsht/653260/

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