Sunday, September 29, 2013

Crockpot Applesauce

Yesterday, in true fall fashion, KK and I went apple picking at Melick's Town Farm for Jess' birthday.  We wandered the rows and rows of apple trees, trying to decide which types of apples to bring home - Jonagold, Macoun, Cortland, Empire... the list of options goes on and on! KK was a little disappointed that the corn stand wasn't open, but we survived on fresh apple cider and apple cider doughnuts instead.  When we got home, I quickly put KK to work, helping me core, peel and slice apples for Freezer Apple Pie Filling.  We made this filling last year, but never had a chance to make a pie with it because we lost everything in our freezer after Hurricane Sandy.  After preparing the pie filling, KK and I met the Swikers who were visiting from Philadelphia! We had a "pig roast" (a.k.a. BBQ takeout from Legal Beans), then headed to Mills Tavern and Four L's for a Stevens Lacrosse alumni event.  We had a great time catching up with old friends, and are definitely going to do our best to make a trip down to Philly soon!

With more apples from Saturday's haul, I put KK to work again on Sunday morning.  Since we have enough pie filling, we started on applesauce.  Season with as much or as little spices as you choose.  To avoid over-seasoning, I recommend adding spices in small quantities, then tasting one of the apple slices to see if you're happy with the taste.  I used 11 apples (some were small), and ended up with 5 cups of applesauce.  We split the applesauce into two portions: one to eat this week, and one to freeze/thaw that we can eat in a few weeks!

Crockpot Applesauce
Adapted from (never)homemaker
Time: 3 hours
Serves: 5

10 apples
1/4 c lemon juice or apple cider
Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, ground cloves, to taste

1. Peel, core, and cut apples into large pieces.  Place apples directly into the bowl of a 6-quart crockpot.

2. Toss apples with lemon or apple juice.  Add spices in dashes until satisfied with the taste.

3. Cook in crockpot on high for 2-3 hours.

4.  Smash apples with potato masher.  Use an immersion blender if smoother applesauce is preferred.  Serve warm, or refrigerate/freeze for later use.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Pecan Chicken

My coworkers and I participated in a 9/11 Day of Service and Remembrance Volunteer Event at the Lexington Armory.  Corporate volunteers and members of the USO joined together and assembled 400 bicycles which will be donated to children of active United States military families and wounded veterans.  Although we struggled getting the front wheel onto our first bike (don't worry - we laughed about it later), we manged to assemble 5 bikes in just a couple of hours.  The bikes were loaded onto trucks, and they will be transported to various military bases along the east coast.  Most notably, some of the bikes will go to children whose parents serve on the USS New York, a ship made of 6.8 tons of steel salvaged from the World Trade Center.  It was an incredibly rewarding morning, and I think we all wished it was a full day event.  If anything, this has inspired my coworkers and I to get more involved in community service events as a team!

This recipe is one of the strange ones that I was surprised to see in my recipe box – I must’ve been intrigued by the dish’s name, but did not read the list of ingredients.  Since I usually steer clear of mustard (I’m personally more of a ketchup fan), I probably wouldn’t have saved the recipe if I’d seen the Dijon mustard listed as an ingredient.  Nevertheless, KK convinced me to try this recipe last year and it was surprisingly delicious! It was so good, in fact, that this is the second or third time I’ve made it.  To lighten it up a little, I used evaporated milk (and a tad of skim milk because I ran out of the evaporated milk) instead of whipping cream.  Feel free to add more pecans if you want more crunch in your sauce.  I honestly didn’t measure the pecans this time around because I simply finished the open bag I had on hand.  I served this with a side salad and Rice-a-Roni; mixing some of the pecan sauce into the rice to makes it extra tasty!

Pecan Chicken
Adapted from Plain Chicken
Time: 30 minutes
Serves: 2

1 lb. boneless chicken breast
Salt & pepper, to taste
¾ cup chopped pecans
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 ½ cups evaporated milk
2 Tbsp orange marmalade
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

1. Pound chicken to an even thickness, about ½-inch thick; season both sides with salt and pepper.

2. To toast the pecans, heat oven or toaster oven to 325° and spread pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet.  Cook for 5-10 minutes, stirring the pecans once or twice, until fragrant.  Watch closely to ensure pecans don't burn.

3. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high.  Cook chicken 3-4 minutes per side.  Chicken will not be cooked through; remove from skillet and set aside.

4. Reduce heat to medium, add evaporated milk,  marmalade, and mustard to the skillet and stir to combine.  Return chicken to skillet, cover with pecans, and cook 8-10 minutes until sauce thickens and chicken is cooked through.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Sausage & Grape Pasta Skillet

Yesterday, KK and I celebrated Germany, despite the fact that neither one of us is German (I do work at a German bank though!).  We went to the 56th German -American Steuben Parade in NYC, and then met up with KK's cousin and a few friends at Oktoberfest in Central Park.  We weren't quick enough to snag a seat under the main Oktoberfest tent, but we had an excellent view of the festivities from the Central Park Summer Stage bleachers.  A number of people demonstrated their German pride by donning traditional Lederhosen outfits.  We enjoyed pitchers of German beer while watching the 5th annual Masskrugstemmen National Championship.  According to Today.com:
Masskrugstemmen is a Bavarian feat of strength and endurance where contestants hold a 1-liter stein of beer (which weighs about 5 pounds) out in front of them at shoulder level for as long as they can. No beer can be spilled, no elbows can be bent, and extended arms must be kept parallel to the ground. The winner is the person who can keep their stein aloft the longest.
KK and I think Erik Totman of Las Vegas won the competition.  Unfortunately, the competition results aren't yet posted anywhere online! Nevertheless, we had a great time and I recommend anyone in the area get tickets for this great event next year (but watch out because it sells out quickly!).  Prost! 

This meal, prepared last week, is a repeat recipe for Apt. 3D, but the first time I've prepared it since starting the blog. As I’ve mentioned before (here with peaches and here with apricots), I really like the combination of sweet fruit in a savory dish.  Maybe it specifically appeals to me because I have such a sweet tooth, but the dinner recipes I've cooked with fruit tend to top my list of favorites – this dish included! Make sure to get seedless grapes.  It would be rather unfortunate if you had to remove the seeds from 2 cups of grapes as you sliced them.  I used four-cheese chicken sausage, but feel free to swap that for spicy sausage or any other variety, but I suggest steering clear of smoked sausage because the flavor combination would not mesh well.  Strangely, the purple/red color of the grapes fades when they’re cooked, so it’s difficult to distinguish the grapes from the sausage in the picture below, but try to use your imagination.  The remaining steps in this recipe are simple and straightforward, just like many of Iowa Girl Eats’ dishes – no wonder she’s probably my favorite food blogger out there! Which food bloggers are your favorites? Who should I add to my Reader?

Sausage & Grape Pasta Skillet
Adapted from Iowa Girl Eats
Time: 25 minutes
Serves: 4

8 oz. pasta, such as gemelli or orecchiette
Cooking spray
7 oz. spicy Italian chicken sausage links
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt & pepper, to taste
2 cups seedless red grapes, halved
1 ¼ cups chicken broth
¼ tsp red pepper flakes
3 Tbsp grated Parmesan

1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

2. Meanwhile, spray a large skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium.  Cook sausage links for 4 minutes, 1 minute per side.  Sausage will not be cooked through.  Remove from skillet and cut into ¼ inch slices.

3. Using the same skillet, heat olive oil over medium.  Add onions and garlic, season with salt and pepper, then sauté about 3 minutes, until onions are tender.  Add sausages, grapes, chicken broth, and red pepper flakes to the skillet; raise heat to high and simmer 8-10 minutes, or until sauce is slightly thickened.

4. Add cooked pasta and Parmesan cheese to the skillet.  Toss to combine and let mixture rest 5 minutes before serving to allow excess sauce to be absorbed by the pasta.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Lazy Chicken

Yesterday, I had an appointment in the city after work so KK decided to turn it into date night.  He'd snagged a Groupon for S'MAC.  How is it possible that I've never been to S'MAC or any of the mac & cheese joints in the city? I absolutely love mac & cheese, so it was a no brainer when KK suggested S'MAC.  The Groupon was $19 for 2 Major Munch (medium) servings and beer or wine for each of us.  KK, the coupon cutter in our marriage, calculated our savings to be $14.50.  KK had previously tried the Alpine (Gruyere cheese and bacon), so he opted to try something new - The Cajun, made of cheddar and pepper jack cheese, andouille sausage, veggies, garlic, and Cajun seasoning.  I ordered La Mancha - Manchego cheese, fennel, and onions.  Both were delicious and, because the Major Munch was so big, we have leftovers to enjoy for lunch today! The best part about both varieties was the crunchy breadcrumb topping! Without a Groupon, you can still get a few bucks off by checking in on Four Square, so I suggest you check out S'MAC at their Murray Hill or East Village locations... preferably soon!

Despite my love of one-pot meals, I was a little skeptical of this recipe at first because it didn’t have suggested cook times.  Nevertheless, KK and I decided to wing it, and it turned out to be a fantastic meal (we both had a second helping, and KK had a third!) on Tuesday night.  As the potatoes cook, you can hear them sizzling.  I waited about 5 minutes before checking on them, careful not to disturb the layers within the pot.   Some of the potatoes had browned, so I decided it was time to add the zucchini, chicken and tomatoes.  The potatoes ended up less crispy than I expected they would be, but it was nice to have some starch mixed in with all the veggies and chicken.  The key to this dish is having the potatoes and vegetables cut evenly and thin so they cook consistently throughout the pot.  Enter the mandoline.  I have an Oxo hand-held mandoline, with three thickness options; I opted to use the thickest setting to slice the ingredients this time.  If you don’t have a mandoline, I strongly suggest you buy one, but in the meantime – take care to slice the ingredients evenly.  I had difficulty capturing a picture of this meal, so you’ll have to use your imagination to envision the layered looked of this dish.  It should be no surprise to hear that both KK and I topped our servings with crushed red pepper!

Lazy Chicken
Adapted from Tablespoon
Time: 30  minutes
Serves 3-4

Cooking spray
1 lb. chicken breast, cut into one-inch cubes
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 red potatoes
1 small onion
1 small zucchini
2 tsp steak seasoning, divided
½ cup chicken broth
14.5-oz. can diced tomatoes
1 ½ tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
½ cup shredded mozzarella

1. Spray Dutch oven with cooking spray and heat over medium high.  Season chicken with salt and pepper, and brown for 4 minutes.  Chicken will not be cooked through; remove from pan and set aside.

2. Meanwhile, thinly slice potatoes, onion, and zucchini using a mandoline.  Do not mix vegetables.

3. Add olive oil to the Dutch oven over medium high heat.  Evenly layer sliced potatoes on the bottom of the pan, then top with an even layer of onions.  Sprinkle top with 1 teaspoon steak seasoning.  Cook until potatoes sear and begin to brown, about 5 minutes.  If possible, avoid stirring.

4. Pour chicken broth into pan, and layer zucchini on top.  Top with remaining 1 teaspoon steak seasoning.  Spread chicken on top of zucchini, then spread the diced tomatoes.  Sprinkle top with basil and oregano; cover and cook until chicken and vegetables are fully cooked, 5-10 minutes.

5. Remove cover and sprinkle mozzarella on top.  Re-cover and cook for 1 minute, or until cheese melts.  Serve immediately.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Chicken Chili Tacos

Who’s getting excited for fall TV shows to premiere?? Although I’ll be sad to see some of the summer shows like Graceland, Suits, and The Bridge come to an end, KK and I spent Friday night clearing out the DVR in anticipation of the premieres starting to air over the next two weeks.  I finished watching In Time Saturday morning, dropped my bike off for a tune up, and then KK and I headed to PA for his cousin’s kid’s 1st birthday party.  KK’s cousin lives in an apartment complex that has a clubhouse available for private parties, so the main event was hosted there.  The party was circus themed – complete with cotton candy, popcorn, animal crackers (in lieu of actual animals), games, and a big top tent.  Ayden, the birthday boy, was dressed to the nines in a sharp suit vest! Sadly, the goodie bags were only for the children guests, but KK’s cousin did send our car home with a few extra cupcakes for the road :)

My crockpot hasn't seen the light of day for several months because summer isn't exactly the time to have the slow cooker going all day.  Given that the slow cooker was one of my favorite gifts received at my bridal shower, I was excited when KK told me we were trying a new slow cooker recipe Friday night.  This meal did not disappoint and it will feed an entire army.  After 9.5 hours on low, my chicken was so tender that it began to shred as I stirred the crockpot mixture.  If your chicken doesn't shred as easily, remove it from the crockpot and shred it on a plate or cutting board using two forks.  The chili looked watery well so I added 4 oz. cream cheese to thicken the mixture up a bit.  Based on comments from the original recipe, I also cranked up the heat to high and cooked the chili uncovered for the last 30 minutes.  The chili was still too liquid-y after 10 hours of cooking, but KK and I were hungry, so we forged on.  Despite being quite messy, the tacos were still delicious.  I'm looking forward to the leftovers I brought into work for lunch today.  Instead of dealing with taco shells at work, I plan on warming the chili and having it over lettuce as a chicken chili salad! The instructions below represent a decreased amount of liquid ingredients in the chili.  One final comment - I heated the taco shells in the oven for 7 minutes at 325 degrees to get them extra crispy!

Chicken Chili Tacos
Adapted from Katherine in the Kitchen
Time: 10 minutes + 6-10 hours crockpot cooking
Serves: 8

1 medium onion, chopped 
16-oz can black beans, drained
16-oz can kidney beans, drained
2 8-oz cans tomato sauce
2 14.5-oz cans diced tomatoes, drained
4-oz. can diced green chiles, drained (optional)
10-oz package frozen corn
1 packet taco seasoning 
1 Tbsp cumin 
1 Tbsp chili powder
1.5 lb. frozen boneless skinless chicken breasts 
1 package hard taco shells
Shredded cheese, sour cream and guacamole, for topping (optional)

1. Combine onion, beans, tomato sauce, drained diced tomatoes, green chilies (optional), corn, taco seasoning, cumin, and chili powder in a large slow cooker.  Place chicken on top and cover.  Cook on low for 10 hours, or high for 6 hours.

2. 30 minutes prior to serving, shred chicken using two forks.  Return chicken to slow cooker, stir to combine, cover, and cook for 30 additional minutes.

3. Serve in taco shells.  If desired, top with Mexican blend cheese, sour cream, and/or guacamole.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Udon Noodles with Peanut Sauce

I’m feeling a bit run down from last weekend, and the bizarre weather (75° Monday and an expected high of 92° today) isn't helping, but KK and I still managed to have a busy Tuesday night.  We went to the Hoboken Volunteers general interest meeting, and we’re hoping to volunteer at their 5th Annual Chili Cook-Off/Craft Beer Competition in February.  The organization is geared towards giving back to the local community, which is something I've had a compelling feeling to do since Hurricane Sandy wracked havoc on Hoboken last October.  After the volunteer meeting, we met up with the Budnicks and some of their Hoboken friends for a competitive game of trivia and $5 All-You-Can-Eat Ribs (none for me, thanks) at McSwiggans.  This is our second time playing together as a team, and it was our second time winning!! I’m not going to lie – I’m not the strongest player on the team, but I was able to contribute to our win with a few random answers.  We used our winnings (a McSwiggans gift card) to pay part of last night’s tab, and now we need to plan another trivia outing to make use of our new winnings (another gift card)!

This is yet another "add whatever veggies you have on hand" recipe.  Despite what I just said, we wanted some greens in the dish, so KK and I stopped at the local bodega to pick up a pack of snow peas at the tail end of our run when we cooked this last week.  In case you were wondering - KK is a former cross country runner, and running is very near to torture for me.  Anyway... I'm always worried about sauce-to-noodle/veggie ratios, but this recipe was spot on.  If you're short on time or feeling a tad bit lazy, you can use jarred peanut sauce.  If you're going that route, I'd start with ½ cup of sauce, and then add more if the dish is still looking dry.  As you can see, I topped my serving with additional Sriracha sauce, but you can always omit the chili flavoring all together if you choose to do so.

Udon Noodles with Peanut Sauce
Adapted from Recipe Girl
Time: 25 minutes
Serves: 2-3

8 oz. udon noodles or spaghetti
¼ cup + 2 Tbsp water
¼ cup peanut butter
2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
2 Tbsp rice vinegar
1 ½ tsp fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1 ½ tsp sesame oil
½ tsp cornstarch
½ tsp chili sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups chopped or shredded carrots
8 oz. snow peas, halved crosswise
5-oz. can water chestnuts, sliced

1. Cook noodles or pasta according to package directions.

2. Meanwhile, combine water, peanut butter, brown sugar, soy sauce, rice vinegar, ginger, sesame oil, cornstarch, chili sauce, and garlic in a small saucepan; whisk until blended.  Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat to medium and stir constantly for 1 minute.  Set aside.

3.  In a wok, cook chopped carrots over medium-high heat for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add snow peas and water chestnuts, and continue to cook for an additional 5-7 minutes, until vegetables are tender and some have started to blacken.

4. Remove wok from heat.  Add noodles and peanut sauce to the wok.  Toss well to coat, and serve hot.  If desired, top with additional chili sauce.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Pesto Chicken Skewers

Jess & Ben’s wedding weekend was perfect! We spent Friday arranging  flowers and setting up decorations at the Mountain Lakes House, then Ben’s parents hosted everyone for a rehearsal BBQ at their house.  The couple participated in the German wedding tradition of Baumstamm Sägen.  Traditionally done the day of the wedding, the couple saws a log in half which symbolizes their teamwork and ability to work through any tough task together.  Jess and Ben went through their log in record time, so they’re bound to have a blissful marriage! The main event was Saturday afternoon, so us girls were up early primping.  The entire day ran without a hitch (except for Jess and Ben getting hitched!) – the weather was perfect, we played lawn games, snapped pictures in the DIY photo booth, devoured treats from the homemade dessert table, danced our socks off, and ended the night with sparklers and champagne! The couple is off to Playa del Carmen for their honeymoon with some much-deserved sun and relaxation.  Congrats to two of my dearest friends – wishing you all the best and cannot wait for future adventures with you both!

Recovering from the previous night’s lack of sleep and preoccupied by the first Sunday of the NFL season, these skewers were the perfect low-effort meal for last night’s dinner.  I marinated the chicken for about 2 hours prior to dinner, threaded the skewers, and cooked them up without delay.  I was worried the skewers would be lacking without sauce – I had the amazing cream sauce from my Chipotle Chicken Kabobs on my mind – but the tomatoes added juiciness to the chicken.  If you have metal skewers, you can skip the skewer soaking step because there’s no risk of metal skewers burning! I got 10 skewers from the pound of chicken, but I have to trim the skewers to fit into the grill pan, so you might get a few less if you’re using a full length skewer.  Thanks to Jess sharing her leftovers, I served the skewers with some orzo from the wedding.  Delicious!

Pesto Chicken Skewers
Adapted from Skinny Taste
Time: 20 minutes + marinating time
Servings: 3-4

1 lb. chicken breast, cut into 1-inch cubes
¼ cup pesto
1 pint cherry tomatoes
8-10 wooden skewers
Cooking spray

1. Combine chicken and pesto in a Ziploc bag, and marinate in the refrigerator for a few hours.  Soak wooden skewers 20-30 minutes prior to cook time.

2. Beginning and ending with chicken, thread chicken and tomatoes onto skewers.

3. Heat grill pan over medium heat, and lightly coat with cooking spray.  Place skewers onto the grill and cook 3-4 minutes; flip and cook an additional 3-4 minutes, until chicken is cooked through.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Chicken & White Bean Enchiladas

With just two more days until Jess & Ben's wedding, the anticipation and excitement in Apt. 3D is through the roof! I've also been baking like a crazy woman today: Firecracker Cookies (bride's pick) for the rehearsal dinner, and my mom's famous Lemon Squares (groom's pick) for the wedding's dessert table. With baking now complete, I've got a few hours of real work to get through before heading out for mani-pedis with the bridesmaids and bride! We'll head down to Princeton bright and early tomorrow morning for venue setup, check into the hotel, and then head to the rehearsal/BBQ at the groom's parents' house.  Hopefully we're able to get some beauty sleep tomorrow night so we're rested up for Saturday's wedding festivities.  Check back Sunday for a wedding recap!

Some might call it lazy, but I call it resourceful – I opted to use store-bought salsa verde instead of making my own for this recipe.  We had just enough salsa verde leftover from the Corn & Goat Cheese Quesadillas, and it just had to be used! After cooking my chicken, I threw it into a bowl, let it cool a little, and then used my hand mixer to shred the chicken.  The hand mixer method is quick and easy, and I don’t think it adds too much time to cleanup, but you’d have to ask KK for verification.  Better yet – this recipe would be perfect for any leftover cooked chicken you have sitting in the fridge! Either bring your leftover chicken to room temperature naturally or nuke it in the microwave for a minute so you don’t end up with cold enchilada filling once they’re cooked! KK thought it would take me awhile to roll each enchilada, but it only took a few minutes.  I eyeballed the filling quantities instead of measuring the filling for each, and ended up with 7 enchiladas.  Since we were out of salsa verde, KK topped his enchiladas with sour cream while I chose to top mine with traditional red salsa.

Chicken & White Bean Enchiladas
Adapted from Skinny Taste
Time: 50 minutes
Serves: 4

1 Tsp + 1 tsp olive oil
½ lb. chicken breast
1 small onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
4.5-oz can chopped green chiles
15.5-oz can cannellini beans
1 chicken bouillon cube
1 tsp cumin
1 cup salsa verde
½ cup light sour cream
¾ cup Mexican blend cheese
6-8 medium-sized tortillas
Additional sour cream, salsa verde or red salsa for topping

1. Heat 1 Tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Cut chicken into large chunks, and cook in the skillet until no longer pink inside.  Set aside to cool in a medium bowl.  When chicken has cooled, shred using two forks.

2. Meanwhile, heat 1 teaspoon olive oil on low in a medium saucepan.  Add onions and garlic; sauté 2-3 minutes or until soft.  Stir in green chiles, beans and their juices, bouillon cube, and cumin.  Cover and simmer on low for 15 minutes.  Remove cover, add shredded chicken and cook an additional 5 minutes, or until liquid boils down.

3. Preheat oven to 375°.

4. In a small bowl, combine salsa verde and sour cream.

5. Using ¼ cup salsa mixture, coat the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish.  Fill each tortilla with ~⅓ cup chicken filling, roll tortilla into an enchilada shape, and place seam-side down in the prepared baking dish.  Continue until all filling is used.

6. Spread remaining salsa mix on top of the enchiladas.  Top with cheese.  Cover with aluminum foil and bake 25 minutes, until cheese has melted and edges begin to crisp.  Serve hot, topped with additional salsa and/or sour cream.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Chicken Tikka Masala Pizza

Woohoo!!! I'm an aunt!! My sister-in-law had her twins last Wednesday! Before driving down to Delaware to meet them, KK and I celebrated his high school friend's wedding.  Congrats to Phil and Jillian! The rehearsal on Friday was followed by a family-style Italian dinner at Mario's Tutto Bene.  The wedding was at the groom's family church, and the reception was at the gorgeous Wilshire Grand Hotel; the bride looked simply stunning.  My favorite part of the evening was the Viennese dessert room with every treat one could possibly imagine - Funfetti wedding cake, chocolate cake, Sundae bar, tiramisu, pudding parfaits, s'mores pie, cheesecake, Mississippi Mud pie, a chocolate fountain with fresh fruit and marshmallows for dipping, cannolis, and I'm sure the list goes on and on.

Back to the newest additions to the family... A&A! They were born on Wednesday and, with the twins and my sister-in-law all healthy, they were discharged from the hospital on Saturday.  KK and I arrived Sunday, and I was instantaneously wooed by them.  A&A are both happy, sweet babies and they're even letting their mom and dad sleep for decent stretches throughout the night.  Their tiny yawns, sneezes and hiccups are the most adorable things I've ever seen! We probably won't see them for another month or two, so I can only imagine how much bigger they'll be by then.  All I can say is - thank goodness for FaceTime!

In my opinion, there's no sense in making traditional margarita pizza at home because there are so many incredible pizzerias in Hoboken.  I'm not sure which I prefer - this Indian twist on pizza or KK's tried-and-true favorite - Corn, Pesto, and Tomato Pizza.  Try them both and let me know which is your favorite!

Reflected in the directions below, I decided to cook the onions with the garlic and jalapeno because I was worried about them tasting raw.  KK doesn't like raw onions and I didn’t want the pizza to be ruined (for him) because of the onion slices.  I mistakenly (a.k.a. didn’t read the directions thoroughly or wait for KK’s help) diced ¼ of the jalapeno and threw it into the sauce.  I think that took the pizza spiciness to the next level, so I don’t recommend doing that unless you can really handle the heat! The pizza crust KK picked up was on the thin-side and we have a pizza pan with holes on the bottom, so it crisped in 8 minutes.  If you have a thicker crust or a pan without holes, your pizza will probably cook for 10-12 minutes.  You can also quickly turn this into a vegetarian dish by using tofu instead of chicken.  As always, when dealing with jalapenos – be careful! Don’t touch anything after handling one, especially your face/eyes, before thoroughly washing your hands and under your fingernails! Served with a side salad, we still devoured this pizza and there are sadly no leftovers.

Chicken Tikka Masala Pizza
Adapted from Rasa Malaysia
Time: 1 hour and 30 minutes (includes marination time)
Serves: 2-3

Marinade Ingredients
½ tsp cumin
½ tsp cayenne pepper
½ tsp garam masala
½ tsp minced fresh ginger
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground black pepper

2 Tbsp plain yogurt
1 Tbsp lemon juice
Pinch of cinnamon

Other Ingredients
10 oz chicken breast, cut into ½-inch cubes
1 Tbsp olive oil + brushing
1 Tbsp butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ jalapeno, seeds removed
¼ onion, thinly sliced
½ tsp cumin
½ tsp paprika
½ tsp garam masala

4 oz tomato sauce
2 Tbsp plain yogurt
2 Tbsp evaporated milk

Salt and pepper, to taste
12-inch pizza crust
1 cup mozzarella cheese

1. Combine marinate ingredients in a medium bowl.  Add chicken and marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour. 

2. When ready to cook, preheat oven to 450.

3.  Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  When oil is hot, cook chicken until no longer pink inside, about 5-10 minutes.  Remove chicken from skillet, plate, and tent with tin foil.

4. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small sauce pan over medium heat.  Add garlic, jalapeno, and onions; stirring frequently, saute until aromatic, about 3 minutes.  Stir in cumin, paprika, and garam masala, and continue to saute for 2 minutes.  Remove jalapeno and discard.

5. Stir in tomato sauce, yogurt, and evaporated milk; season with salt and pepper.  Simmer until sauce thickens, about 2-3 minutes.  Turn off heat, add chicken, and stir to coat.

6.  Place pizza crust on pizza pan, and brush lightly with olive oil.  Spread sauce/chicken mixture on the pizza, leaving ½-inch around the edge as crust.  Sprinkle top of pizza with cheese.  Bake pizza for 8-10 minutes, or according to pizza crust package directions.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...