Fried Chicken#4(Epazote Fried Chicken)/Pollo Frito#4(Pollo Frito Con Sabor Epazote)

Hello all! As you may well know, I try to use ingredients different to both myself and you, my followers.. This time I’ve been looking for the best way to use unusual herbs and spices.. This time I went to Mexico for inspiration, by using Epazote. Epazote is a herb used in bean dishes and some meat and fish dishes, to add flavour and take the flatulence problem away from eating beans. Click here for more information on Epazote

I decided that after some research, that I would buy some and use it-I bought some dried online. I also decided that due to the flavour of the herb, I would try to use it on chicken. I first tried it stewed, and the flavour was subtle, and was a cross between dill and mint, and slight floral accents. Then I decided that I would try the next chicken recipe in a batch of fried chicken, making this my FOURTH fried chicken recipe for Mariposaoro! Who can resist the lure of crispy chicken!! In this recipe I also decided to make a change from the regular cornmeal flour or even using wheat flour, using CASSAVA FLOUR (Or GARI to my West African Followers) instead. This has resulted in the most crispy, non oily, and tasty gluten free coating that I’ve used in any of my fried chicken recipes!

INGREDIENTS

500 grams of Chicken wings, or other  chicken pieces, cleaned in salt water and drained.

Add a teaspoon or to, taste of each:

Cracked Black Pepper, Pimento(Allspice Berries), Garlic Powder

 

Hickory Smoke Powder, Sea Salt, Bay leaves and Epazote
Cassava Flour, Salt, and Cooking Oil
Cassava Flour, Sea Salt, and Cooking Oil

1-2 Whisked Eggs

METHOD

Grind the seasonings and season the chicken. This is best done overnight for all the flavours to soak into the meat.

Chicken Wings Marinated with Spices incl Epazote, Close Up
Chicken Wings Marinated with Spices incl Epazote, Close Up
Marinated Chicken Wings Aerial View

 After allowing the meat to be at room temperature, set up your ‘flour’, egg, and meat stations. You can lightly add salt to the cassava.. Although you could just leave it as it is, due to the meat already being seasoned, especially for those on a limited sodium diet.

Chicken, Egg and Cassava Flour Stations
Chicken, Egg and Cassava Flour Stations

 Meanwhile, heat some oil in a shallow frying pan or skillet-The trick is not to deep fry here, only to seal the coating onto the meat (If you’re frying, cook on medium heat for at least fifteen minutes, until cooked through.). Alternately, you can minimize the fat content, by simply placing in the oven to cook with spray oil. It will taste the same! When the oil has heated add at least four pieces at a time, frying on a high heat for 4 minutes in total. Or at least until the meat has become golden and crispy like this:

Chicken frying in a pan-Remember this is only to seal the coating!
Chicken frying in a pan-Remember this is only to seal the coating!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whilst doing this preheat the oven, to at least 200 degrees. place the meat on a baking tray:

Fried chicken done!
Fried chicken done!

 

 

 

 

Cook for at least 20 minutes, or until cooked through and the juices run clear. Serve with beans and rice, salad/salsa, and tortillas. Disfrutalo!!

Onion Chicken-Pollo Encebollado

This is a quick recipe for those of us who have half a chicken or a few pieces of chicken!

INGREDIENTS

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Half to a whole 1kg Chicken of choice, with skin(Cornfed, Free Range,Organic or Grade A)

Half a cup or to taste of Crispy Fried Onions

Spice mix:
Fenugreek, Chilli Flakes,Rosemary,Annatto, and Salt, up to 1/2 teaspoon each, ground in a coffee/spice grinder. Add half a teaspoon extra for the whole chicken, particularly where the fenugreek and chilli are concerned. Omit the chilli if desired.
Oil

METHOD

Firstly, wash and drain the chicken,sprinkle the ground spices and rub onto the meat. Set aside, and preheat the oven. Place bird in a roasting tray.

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Pour the onions into a bowl, and stuff the meat under the skin, with the onions.

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When you have finished, sprinkle some onions onto the skin. Sprinkle a little oil too.

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Cook in an oven for 200 degrees for about 15 minutes, then turn down to 180 degrees, cooking for another 30 minutes. Or until juices run clear and the meat is tender with crispy skin.

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Serve hot with side dishes of choice. Disfrutalo!

Mixed Meat Stirfry-Stirfry De Carnes Mezclados

This is quick and easy and you can use any assortment of meats or vegetables… I used things in my fridge that I mixed together and ended up with this. Have fun cooking!

INGREDIENTS

4 Pieces of Chicken Legs and Thighs stripped of the meat with a sharp knife.
1 Kielbasa Sausage(Smoked Polish Sausage),sliced
Matchbox Sized Piece of Ginger,peeled and sliced into small matchsticks.

2 Spring Onions,sliced
2-3 Cloves of Garlic
Sesame Oil to taste
Dark and Light Soy Sauce to taste
1-2 Teaspoons of Chilli Flakes or to taste(I made mine very spicy!)
Half a Cup of Cloud Mushrooms/Black Fungus-Rehydrate in hot water,and rinse at least twice to get rid of grit. Slice into bitesized pieces.
1/4 of Savoy Cabbage
1 Tablespoon of Cornflour

METHOD

Firstly,remove the meat from the bone. You do this by making an incision into the leg and then making downward strokes away from you until the meat comes away from the bone. Repeat as necessary,and slice the meat into bite sized pieces. Chop,wash and drain the cabbage.

Chop the spring onions,and scrape the skin away the thin skin on the ginger,and chop into little sticks. Crush the garlic and chop the sausage. Heat some oil in a wok or pot,and add the spring onions,then the ginger and garlic. Fry for 3 minutes,and then add the meats; The chicken first,and then the sausage and cabbage. Fry for a further 5 minutes. Add the cornflour,and soy sauces to taste, and then add about a cup and a half of water. Leave on a moderate heat,for around 15 minutes,or until the chicken is tender,turn up the pan if the sauce is not the right consistency for you. Serve with sticky rice,kimchi,or pak choi. Enjoy!

Dinie’s Mustard Chicken-Pollo Con Mostaza Por Dinie

This is a simple and tasty way to season chicken, and makes a great dish to serve for Sunday Dinner!!

INGREDIENTS

1 Whole Medium-Large Roasting Chicken
3 Tablespoons of  French Mustard
1 Tablespoon of Dried Thyme
A little Salt and Black Pepper(The mustard can contain salt, so if on a low salt diet, lightly season..Add more black pepper rather than salt!)
3 Crushed Cloves of Garlic
Handful of Basil, chopped
A Tablespoon of oil
 

METHOD

Mix all the seasonings and oil together, and set aside. Clean and gut the chicken(The best way to do this is by using a teaspoon to scoop the innards from the bird.), washing it in lemon juice and water. Leave to drain, and when this is done, massage the seasoning over the bird and also in the inner cavity, and under the breast and pour some so that it can reach the thigh meat. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees, and then after 10 minutes, and on a baking tray place the chicken inside. Roast for 15 minutes and then turn down to 180 degrees, and leave to cook for around 35 minutes. Turn the bird halfway through cooking time, leaving it breast side down, and then turn on the other side. Serve with roast potatoes, mixed vegetables, chicharrones(Roasted Pork Fat), and gravy(See recipes in Seasonings and Sauces).

 

Spicy Mexican Chicken Lasagne

This is another take on a lasagne, using a spicy tex-mex seasoning and chicken.. Spicy Mexican Chicken Lasagne(With Spinach Salad)

INGREDIENTS

5 Chicken Breasts sliced or more if needed
Zest of 1 Lime
1 Tablespoon of Pimenton Dulce(Sweet Smoked Paprika)
1 Teaspoon of Chilli Powder
1 1/2 Teaspoons of Cumin Powder
A Small Bunch of Coriander chopped
About 750 mls of Bechamel Sauce *See Tex-Mex Lasagne Recipe for milk and milk free bechamel sauce
1 Tin of Tomatoes
1 Onion sliced
1 Bell Pepper Sliced
2 Cloves of Crushed Garlic
A Shot of Tequila(Optional)
8-10 Sheets of Lasagne, or more if needed
200 grams of Cheese, or more to taste
Salt and Black Pepper to taste

METHOD

Fry the onions, pepper, garlic and meat in a pan. Add the paprika, and other seasonings, except coriander. Fry for 10 minutes, and add the tinned tomatoes, and a splash(150 mls) of water and tequila, if using. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Make the bechamel sauce and grate the cheese.

Turn off the chicken mixture, and stir some chopped coriander and the lime zest. Leave to stand. Pour a layer of white sauce into a pyrex dish, pasta and meat mixture. Layer until the meat mixture and white sauce are used. Sprinkle with cheese, and bake in an oven for 30 minutes or more on a low heat, when it should be golden brown and the pasta sheets should be tender.

Mushroom Noodle Soup/Sopa De Hongos Con Fideos

A simple soup recipe, for when you dont have time to cook or want a comforting  meal..

INGREDIENTS

1 Turnip chopped
1 Bell Pepper
1 Packet Of Enoki Mushrooms
1 Packet Of Preserved Vegetables(Radish)
3 Stalks of Celery chopped
3 Spring Onions chopped

A Few Cloves

Ginger chopped-The size of 1 small matchbox

2 Carrots diced
2 Cloves of Garlic
Salt to taste
Black Pepper to taste
Half a Packet of Egg Noodles-If making a big portion, add a whole packet

A Small Handful of Shitake Mushrooms, soaked, rinsed and sliced

500mls of Vegetable Stock
METHOD

Chop, wash and prepare the vegetables. Fry the vegetables, on a moderate heat for 10 minutes,salt and black pepper, and any other seasonings. Add the stock and some water, and let the pot boil for 20 minutes. Check on the pot occasionally, to avoid spillage.Turn down the pot after this time and leave to simmer for one hour.

After 10 minutes, when every thing is becoming tender,add the mushrooms and add the preserved vegetables. Then, after 15 minutes, add the noodles. Add 1 block per person.Leave to cook for around 5 minutes. Serve the soup hot. This can serve 4-6 people. Enjoy!

Chicken Chow Mein

I love noodles,and this is a take on the most popular Chinese dish taken to the west.

INGREDIENTS

500 grams Of Chicken Breasts/Legs/Thigh
*To remove the meat from the bone, make an incision into the top part of the leg/thigh and move the knife all the way down, cutting until you reach the tendons. Continue the method until all the meat is cut from the bone. Cut the meat away, and cut the flesh into chunks. Continue this with the other pieces of meat.

A piece of Ginger-Around the size of a matchbox
3 Small Spring Onions chopped
2 Cloves of Crushed Garlic
A Tablespoon each of Light and Dark Soy Sauce-You may need more to taste.
1 Packet of Preserved Vegetables(Needle Mushrooms)-These can be bought from a Chinese Store.
1 Packet of Bean Sprouts
1 Packet of Thin Egg Noodles
A Few Dashes of Sesame Oil
Cooking Oil

METHOD

Chop the chicken into chunks, and wash both the spring onions and meat. Drain them, and add grated
ginger and the two soy sauces. With two hands, mix the seasonings and chicken together.

Leave to marinade for a few hours or even better, overnight for the flavours to develop.

Heat a wok, and some cooking oil. Fry the chicken, and then after 10 minutes on a medium heat, add a splash of water, and leave to simmer for a few minutes.

Meanwhile, boil the noodles according to packet instructions, and wash the beansprouts.
Add the beansprouts to the wok and turn up the heat. Add the sesame oil and a little more cooking oil. The noodles should have been cooked, so drain and add to the wok, turning and frying the noodles. Add seasoning as necessary, and cook for 3 minutes. Serve hot, with this dish as a side dish, with other dishes like, Egg Fried Rice, Spare Ribs with sauce, Salt and Pepper Squid, and Char Siu Steamed Buns. Enjoy!

Chicken Noodle Soup/Sopa De Pollo Con Fideos

A simple soup recipe, for when you dont have time to cook or want a comforting  meal.. 

INGREDIENTS

Chicken Wings-Either half a packet or 1 whole packet(1 kg-This can serve 6-8 servings)

1 Turnip chopped
2 Carrots chopped
3 Stalks of Celery chopped
3 Spring Onions chopped

A Few Cloves

Ginger chopped-The size of 1 small matchbox

2 Fennel Bulbs sliced
1 Cinnamon Stick
2 Cloves of Garlic
Salt to taste
Black Pepper to taste
Half a Packet of Egg Noodles-If making a big portion, add a whole packet

A Small Handful of Shitake Mushrooms, soaked, rinsed and sliced

500mls of Chicken stock
METHOD

Chop, wash and prepare the vegetables and meat. Fry the vegetables and meat, on a moderate heat for 10 minutes, adding the cinnamon and salt and black pepper, and any other seasonings. Add the stock and some water, and let the pot boil for 20 minutes. Check on the pot occasionally, to avoid spillage.
Turn down the pot after this time and leave to simmer for one hour.

After an hour, when every thing is tender,firstly, add the mushrooms. Then, after 15 minutes, add the noodles. Add 1 block per person.Leave to cook for around 8-10 minutes. Serve the soup hot. This can serve 4-6 people. Enjoy!

Roast Chicken/Pollo Asado

A classic Roast Chicken recipe..

INGREDIENTS

1 Large Chicken, with giblets removed and cavity cleaned.
Wash in vinegar and water.

Seasoning
Juice of half a Lemon
2 Teaspoons of Dried Rosemary OR 3 Sprigs of Rosemary, with leaves taken from the stalks and chopped

Dried OR Fresh Thyme- Repeat method for fresh rosemary

3 Bay Leaves-To put inside the cavity and under the breasts
2 Teaspoons of Salt or to taste
Black Pepper to taste
2 Cloves of Crushed Garlic OR 1 Teaspoon of Garlic Powder
Around 1 1/2 Tablespoons of Vegetable Oil

METHOD

Clean and wash the chicken and make sure the water is drained from the chicken, and set aside while you make the special basting/seasoning. For the baste, combine all of the ingredients, except the bay leaves, and whisk until you obtain a slightly thick seasoned oil.

Pour little at a time of this over the chicken, making sure the seasoning is in the cavity and that the breasts and thighs are seasoned by pouring and rubbing some under the skin.

Put one bay leaf in the cavity, and two under the skin surrounding the breast meat. Put in an oven, on 200 degrees for 10-15 minutes, in order for it to gain a little colour. After this, lower the heat to 170 degrees and leave to cook for 45-60 minutes, depending on size of the chicken.

Make sure to leave the chicken roasting it breast side down, to keep the breasts succulent. Turn the bird, after around half an hour, and if cooking well, turn up the heat to 180 degrees, and baste regularly. When cooked, making sure there are no pink juices, serve with roast potatoes and vegetables.

Chicken Stock/Caldo De Pollo

A stock is the basis of any meal and should be use to bring out the flavour of the meat/vegetable being used.

INGREDIENTS

1 Packet Chicken Necks/or any bony part of Chicken, such as side breast with a little meat on it
1 Teaspoon of Turmeric(May be known as the name Haldi in South Asian stores.)
3 Carrots chopped
3 Stalks of Celery chopped
1 Onion chopped
2 Teaspoons of Sage, Thyme, and Marjoram
2 Cloves of Garlic
2 Bay Leaves
Salt to taste
Black Pepper to taste
Vegetable Oil
1 Litre of water
METHOD

Chop, wash and prepare the vegetables and meat on the bone. Fry the meat and vegetables, on a moderate heat for 10 minutes, adding the herbs and spice to the pot and salt and black pepper. Add the water and let the pot boil for 20 minutes. Check on the pot occasionally, to avoid spillage.
Turn down the pot after this time and leave to simmer for one hour.

After an hour, and when the stock has reduced by half; Check for seasoning, add as neccesary, and strain the liquid into a container/bowl. Skim any excess fat and allow to cool. Use as and when needed.

* You can use this stock as an instant gravy.. Simply add cornflour dissolved in a little water and add to hot stock, whisking the liquid until the sauce has thickened.