Sous Vide Fried Chicken and Waffles!

The consistancy of using a Sous Vide machine will result in perfectly fried chicken everytime!

We all want that bite. You know the one….that succulent, juicy tender center with that traditional crunch- golden crispy and perfectly brown everytime! Sometimes it’s hard for home cooks to achive the same results getting the interior of the chicken properly cooked while the outside may over cook.

This recipe allows the cook to achive a perfected piece of fried chicken, inside and out, every- single time!

You’ll Need:

For the Chicken

6-8 pieces of chicken, wings, legs or thighs or breasts

Salt and pepper

1/4-1/2 teaspoon ground Italian seasoning

5 cups good quality, high smoke point vegetable or peanut oil for frying

For the Flour Mixture:

3-4 cups self-rising flour

2 teaspoons Kosher salt

1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper

1/2 teaspoon white pepper

1 tablespoon dry Italian seasoning

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon onion powder

1/4-1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

For the Egg Mixture

4 eggs, beaten 

Fresh ground pepper

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1/2 teaspoon ground Italian herbs

For the Waffles:

2 large eggs

1 3/4 cups buttermilk

1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled to room temperature

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup pecan or your favorite nut meal ( optional ) 

2 tablespoons palm or granulated sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

Here’s How: 

The Waffles

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, beat together the eggs, buttermilk, melted butter, and vanilla.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.

Combine the wet and dry ingredients, stirring just until nearly smooth; a few small lumps may remain.

Spray your waffle iron with a non-stick cooking spray before preheating it. Cook waffles according to the waffle irons manufacturer’s directions. For an 8″ round waffle iron, use about 1/3 cup batter; cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until the iron stops steaming. 

Serve hot, or cool and crisp in the toaster before serving. Top with room temperature butter.

The Chicken:

Set your SV Precision Cooker to 155’F Degrees / 68.3’C.

Season the raw chicken with salt, pepper and a light dusting of Italian seasoning. Place into a resealable freezer or vacuum bag. Seal airtight.

Place the sealed bag of chicken into the water bath and circulate for 2 hours. 

Prepare the waffle batter and set aside. 

When the chicken is almost done, preheat the oven to 200’F degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and a baking rack. Set aside.

Once cooked, remove the bag from the water bath. Prepare a dredging station with two casserole dishes side by side-one containing beaten seasoned egg mixture, and the other with the seasoned flour. Set aside.  

Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed fry pan or Dutch oven to exactly 350’F degrees. While the oil is heating, remove the chicken from the bag and begin dredging by gently patting the cooked chicken dry and then running the chicken pieces one-at-a-time through the egg mixture, then through the seasoned flour mixture. 

Only when the oil reaches the proper temperature, carefully lower each piece of dredged chicken into the pan. Working in batches, with tongs, turn the chicken parts after a few minutes to achieve a crisp golden-brown crust on all sides. 

Once the chicken is completely golden brown on all sides, remove from the oil, pat off any excess the oil with a paper towel, sprinkle with kosher salt. Set on the rack-lined baking sheet and place it in a 200’F degree oven until ready to serve. 

Make the waffles while chicken stays warm and crispy in the oven. Be sure to serve hot with warm maple syrup or honey!

Chef’s Note: 

Do not allow the temperature of the oil to go below 350’F degrees to achieve the optimal crunch and have oil return to the pan.

No Buttermilk? No Problem!

Combine 1 Tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice mixed into 1 cup of whole milk. Let the milk stand for 10 to 15 minutes until it thickens very slightly and curdles- boom- you have buttermilk!

10 Minutes to Creamy! Chocolate Avocado Mousse! 

Chocolate Mousse has never been healthier …or faster! When choosing Avocados use Haas variety- they tend to have a rich creamy finish. 

You’ll Need: 

4 ripe avocados

3 Tablespoons honey, maple syrup or optional liquid sweetener. ( do not use granulated sugar) 

3/4 cup good quality cocoa powder

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Small pinch of Himalayan or your favorite salt

4-5 Tablespoons cow or nut milk

1 cup washed berries for garnish 

Cocoa for dusting 

Here’s How:
Split the avocados in half lengthwise and remove the pits.

Using a spoon, scoop out the meat and place into your food processor. Add honey, cocoa, vanilla, salt, and milk.

Blend until very smooth. About 1 minute. Taste and adjust sweetness. Add additional milk to adjust consistency. 

Place mixture into serving bowls or glassware, and chill until ready to serve. 

Top with fresh raspberries and a sprinkle of cocoa. 

Makes Approximately 4-6 servings   

Eat it all up! 

High Protein, Low Carb Almond Crepes- Have your Crepe, & Eat it too! 

If you are watching your macros, and counting carbs while increasing fats – this is definitely the crepe recipe for you! These are so yummy! I usually double the recipe. 

Ingredients:

4 ounces cream cheese, softened at room temperature 

4 large eggs

3/4 cup almond flour

2 tbsp granulated coconut sugar or sugar substitute 

1/4 -1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk

1 Tablespoon melted coconut oil or butter 

Few drops of almond or vanilla extract or your favorite essential oil 

Pinch Hymalayan salt

Grape seed oil cooking spray or butter for the pan

Method:

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. 

In a a stand mixer, food processor, or standing blender – combine the cream cheese, the eggs, almond flour, sweetener, nut milk, oil, salt, and extract. Puree or mix until smooth and well combined. Should have the  consistency of a  melted milkshake. Add more nut milk if necessary. If lumpy, strain thru a seive. 

Set a 10-inch non stick skillet over medium-low heat. Add just enough oil or butter to lightly coat the pan. 

Once hot, add a ping-pong ball size ladle of batter to the pan and swirl or spread into a thin layer that reaches the edges, carefully not to roll up on the sides on the pan. 

Cook until edges are browning and the crepe is non stick to the shaking of the pan. Loosened with a spatula. Loosen all the way around and then lift one edge gently and work spatula underneath and flip it. Or, if you are brave, flip it in the air. Trust me – it’s fun and easy. Might take a few practice runs, but it’s worth it. Give it a go! 

Flip and cook on the other side until lightly browned. Remove and lay on prepared baking sheet, then continue with remaining batter. 

Continue to layer on top of the previous  crepe or on an additional piece of parchment on top of the first set of crepes as more come off the pan.

Fill with you favorite nut butters and homemade jams –top with fresh fruit. 
Whooo hoooo! Eat em’ up! 

Makes approximately 8 to 10 crepes. Each crepe has 3.06g of carbs and 1.16g of fiber. Total NET CARBS = 1.90grams per Crepe. 6.30 grams of protein!!!! 160 calories each. 13 grams of delicious fat. 
Photo credit: Julia from, Julia’s kitchen 

Ropa Vieja Stew, Non-Traditional 

( ROH-pah VYAY-hah) translates something like, “old clothes”  in Spanish, but don’t be fooled. This traditional warm weather dish will wrap around you like a nice cozy brand new shawl. You’ll even wanna eat this on a spring or summer evening when the night breeze picks up.

I serve my Ropa over a sweet potato–which is completely sacreligious. Shhhh! 

Ingredients:

4 strips nitrate free bacon cut into 1 in chunks 

8 pounds of flank steak cut into 6 to 8 pieces

2 large yellow onions, chopped medium dice

3 poblano chilies, chopped  

4 cloves of garlic, minced

3 Tablespoons of tomato paste

1/3 cup masa harina 

1 bottle good brown stout beer

2 cups low sodium beef stock 

1 can black beans, drained & rinsed

1/2 cups green Spanish olives ( stuffed w pimento) 

1 Tablespoon fresh oregano, minced

2 Tablespoon ground cumin

1 Tablespoon ground white pepper 

1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper

Kosher Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste 

1 bunch of scallions, chopped for garnish

1 sweet potato, per person, baked

Method:

Preheat oven to 375’F

In a large 8 quart Dutch oven or heavy bottomed stock pot, cook the bacon until crisp. With a slotted spoon remove bacon and transfer to a paper towel. Set aside.

Turn the heat to medium. Season the beef with salt and pepper. Sear the beef in the bacon drippings until brown and caramelized on both sides. About 3-5 minutes each side. Remove and set-aside.

Lower heat, and sauté the onions and chilies for five minutes until they begin to brown.  

Stir in garlic and the tomato paste. Cook an additional two minutes.

Add the masa harina & cook an additional minute.

Add beer, and simmer until evaporated- scraping any bits from the bottom ( chefs call this deglazing the pan).

Add the beef stock. Bring to a boil. Return the beef to the pot and cover.

Place the pot in the preheated over and braise until fork tender, about an hour.

Remove from the oven. Uncover and remove the steak from pot. Place the meat on a clean cutting board and using two forks, shred the meat into strings. Once all the meat is shredded, return to the pot. Add the cooked bacon, the black beans, the olives and all the spices.

Simmer for additional 5-8 minutes and re-adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.

To serve

With an ice cream scoop- portion one or two scoops of the spicy sweet potato mash into each individual serving bowl. Top with stew, sprinkle with chopped scallions. Serve piping hot with warm tortillas.

YUMMY! 

Variations that are usually not used with this dish.  

Add grilled corn.
Top with shredded cheese and melt under the broiler before serving.
Serve piping hot with cool avocado and sour cream on the side. 
Top with Pico de Gallo.
Serve with rice or egg noddles instead of root vegetables.
Makes approximately 10-12 servings 

Cloud Eggs – An Eventful Mothers Day Breakfast Even a Kid Could Make! 

Cloud Eggs- A culinary staple in egg cookery but are all the rage right now. So fun to make, and eat! Perfect for a surprise breakfast treat! 

Ingredients:

4 large eggs

Pink Himalayan or Kosher salt

Fresh ground black pepper

1/2 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese.( Fine grate )

3 tbsp. finely chopped fresh chives, for garnish

Method:

Preheat oven to 450° and line a large high sided baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. 

Separate egg whites and egg yolks, placing the egg whites in a large bowl and the yolks in a small bowl. Careful not to break the yolk. Set yolks aside. 

Season the egg whites with salt and pepper. 

Using a whisk or a hand mixer, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. 

Gently fold in Parmesan, and chives. 

Create 4 mounds of egg whites on the prepared baking sheet and indent the centers of each to look like nests. Bake until slightly golden, about 3 minutes.

After three minutes, and whites are sturdy-carefully add an egg yolk to the center of each egg white cloud. 

Season yolk with salt and pepper. Bake until the yolks are just set, about 3 additional minutes.
Enjoy!

Variations

Add chopped cooked pancetta, crumbled bacon, diced ham, small chipped red bell peppers , scallions–or any of your favorite breakfast foods to the egg whites after they have stiff peaks. Be extra careful not to deflate the whites when folding in. Serve with a classic Bloody Mary. On or off toast. 

30 Minutes to Fancy! Halibut, En Paupiette! 

In the culinary arts, the term en papillote refers to a moist-heat cooking method where the food is enclosed in a packet of parchment paper or foil – and then cooked in the oven. Seriously though- cooking anything in a pouch will create a delicious infused meal. In this case, the white fish and veggies stays so juicy and moist. They are all benefitting while being bathed in olive oil, and citrus lusciousness. 

All in 30 minutes or less! 

Ingredients:

2-4 medium Yukon potatos, sliced into very thin rounds about 1/16th-inch thick

10-12 Asian pea pods, cleaned

1 bulb fresh fennel cleaned and sliced thin

2 green scallions, cleaned cut in halve. Vertical .

4 -6 Tablespoons good quality olive oil, divided

Himalayan salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

2 white fish filets, about 6 ounces each

1 orange, zested and juiced

1 Meyer lemon, zested and juiced 

2 sprigs of fresh thyme 

2 Tablespoons fresh parsley chopped, for garnish 

1 bunch of fresh chives for garnish 

Method

Preheat oven to 400’F. 

Cut a 2 / 12-14 inch long sheets of kitchen parchment. Fold each piece in 1/2 and make a crease. Open back up revealing crease. Spray with your favorite non-stick cooking spray. Set aside on a high sided baking sheet.

Slice the potato, fennel very thin, about 1/16th of an inch. Add half the potato slices in the center of the parchment working only on one side of the crease ( as the parchment will be folded over later) fan the vegetables in a circle slightly overlapping the previous vegetables in a pattern. Potatoes, fennel then pea pods. Making sure to distribute the vegetables evenly among the pieces of parchment. 

Gently drizzle the potatoes, fennel and pea pods with about 1 tablespoon of olive oil, season with salt and pepper. Repeat this process with other sheet of parchment, and the remaining potato, fennel and pea pods

Top each portion of vegetables with 1 filet. Top each filet with a scallion. 

Evenly drizzle each filet with about 1-2 more Tablespoons of good quality olive oil and again season with salt and pepper. 

Zest the citrus, and set aside. 

Cut the orange and lemon in 1/2 and squeeze half the juice of the lemon over one filet, and half the juice over the other filet. Repeat with the additional citrus. Discard remaining rines. Add additional citrus slices to packet if you wish for a more intense citrus flavor. 

Top each with a sprig of fresh thyme. Fold foil over at crease and begin sealing packets, by crimping parchment in one inch increments drawing to a close in a 1/2 moon shape. Make sure to tightly crimp from one end to the other – consistently folding each seam so the olive oil and citrus juices will not leak out. 

Carefully place high sided baking sheet in the oven and bake for about 20-25 minutes. 

Remove from the oven and carefully open one packet by crimping back the ending of the crimps. Do not tear open just in case you need additional steam time. 

Check for doneness of both packets and and if necessary, return to the oven for an additional 5 minutes, or until done. 

Remove from oven and place the whole packet on a serving dish and top cut open with scissors-  pulling cut parchment back to reveal the meal-in-the-pouch. Garnish with remaining citrus zest, chopped parsley and chives. 
Serves two – want more just make more pouches.

Yum! 

Chefs Notes

Before serving, tie pouch ends with butchers twine for a more rustic look.

Top off with a little white wine in each pouch before cooking, for additional flavor. 

Spicy Turkey Zucchini Boats! Like a Taco without a Shell. Whatever Floats Your Boat, Right? 

Ingredients:

8 medium zucchini

1 cup chicken stick

1 pound ground turkey, chicken, beef or Italian sausage 

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, peeled and chopped small dice 

1 cup mushrooms, quartered ( optional) 

2-3 cloves garlic, minced fine

3 cups pasta sauce

1 Tablespoon oregano, minced fine

1 Tablespoon fresh marjoram, minced fine 

1/2 Tablespoon fresh rosemary, minced fine  

¼ teaspoon Himalayan or Kosher salt

¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper, or to taste

1/2 -1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground ancho Chili

1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper

1/2 cup finely shredded mozzarella cheese 

1/4 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese

2 Tablespoons Italian style panko bread crumbs

1/4 bunch of flat leaf Italian parsley for garnish 

Method

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Measure out 1 cup of the pasta sauce and set aside.
Set aside a 13×9 glass baking dish 
Trim ends from zucchini and slice in half, lengthwise. With the tip of your knife score crosshatches on the inside of the zucchini flesh. Use the tip of a small spoon to scrape out the flesh. Chop the zucchini flesh into medium dice and set aside. 

Place the scooped out zucchini boats into a 13″ x 9″ baking dish and add about one cup of chicken or vegetable stock. Season with salt and pepper.

Cover with foil and bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, until just slightly fork-tender. Remove from oven, and set aside to cool slightly.

While the boats are baking, add olive oil to a large high sided skillet and place over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and sauté until tender and browning about 4-5 minutes. Add onions, and sauté until translucent an additional 2-3 minutes. 

Add the fresh garlic, cook for an additional 1 minute. 
Add the meat and begin constantly stirring to break up the ground meat as it cooks. Continue to cook and stir until meat is thoroughly cooked and veggies have softened. Drain off as much oil if any and return the pan to the heat.

Add the chopped zucchini flesh, 2 cups of the pasta sauce, parsley, fresh herbs, salt, fresh ground black pepper, crushed red pepper and remaining spices. Stir well to combine. Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat and allow to simmer over low heat for about 15 minutes. 

While sauce is simmering remove partially cooked zucchini from baking dish and pour off any liquid remaining. 

Pour the 1 cup of reserved pasta sauce into the empty baking dish and place zucchini boats on top of the sauce.

Divide the warm filling between the zucchini boats. If you have extra filling, spoon it into the dish around the zucchini boats. Cover the dish with foil, and bake for 20 minutes, or until zucchini is fork tender. 

Remove from oven . Remove the foil and set the oven to broil.

Sprinkle the zucchini boats with Mozzarella, Parmesan and the Panko bread crumbs. Place dish back in the oven, watching closely, and cook for just a couple of minutes until cheese has melted and bread crumbs are golden brown. 

Top with fresh chopped parsley. Serve hot.

Variations

Add 1/2 cup cooked black forbidden rice 

Add Quinoa 

Add red or green bell peppers.

Add mini tomatoes 

Use left over cooked chicken

Top with fresh pesto or rough chopped basil 

10 Minute Umami Fried Rice 

final-fried-rice-ft2

During the week families need meals that are fast, cheap and easy.

If I make rice I ALWAYS make additional and set some aside just for this recipe. My family loves this fried rice and I do too because it is practically a meal-in-itself.  Add sautéed shrimp or grilled chicken to the dish, and there you have it…. dinner. Using day old rice is not only to speed the preparation process, it’s important because fresh cooked rice  can continue steaming itself to mush during the stir fry process. Still good, but even better if the rice sits in the fridge overnight.

If you can’t get your hands on Japanese rice, feel free to substitute with other types of short grain rice. You can also use Jasmine or Basmati. To save additional time, I often use my mini food processor to chop the onion, garlic and the carrot.

Ingredients:

6 Tablespoons butter or butter substitute

1 large yellow onion, very finely diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 large carrots, peeled and diced very small

6 cups day old short-grain Japanese rice, room temperature

2 eggs, beaten

½ teaspoon garlic salt

1/8-1/4 cup soy sauce

1 cup frozen green peas, cooked and held warm (optional)

3-4 green onions, sliced in 1/4 inch diagonal slices

Sesame seeds for garnish

 

Method: 

In a large stove top wok or 12-14 inch large sauté pan, heat the butter. Add the onions and carrots. Sauté until the carrots and onions begin to brown and the natural sugars start to caramelize. About 4-5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook an additional 1 minute.

Add the day old cooked rice and stir until the carrot, onion and garlic are incorporated well. Add the beaten eggs and toss  the rice quickly to cook through —stir well. After everything is incorporated turn up the heat to high and allow the rice to begin browning string constantly. About an additional 3-4 minutes.

Season to taste with the soy sauce and add fresh cracked black pepper if desired. Remove from the heat, add the cooked peas, and scallions – toss to fluff the rice up and serve immediately. Garnish with sesame seeds.

To enhance the umami flavors ( our fifth taste sensation ) use Dashi broth instead of water when making rice!

Makes approximately 6 to 8 servings.