African Style Rice

I know what you must be thinking (maybe), ‘why is Dax posting about an African style rice recipe when it is so close to Cinco de Mayo! Shouldn’t he be posting about some Mexican recipe instead!?’.  I thought the same thing, for only a second, but this recipe is too good not to post. Of course I will be knocking out some sort of Mexican torta in a couple of days, but in the meantime, the focus is on an African style rice dish that is loaded with awesome spices.

This recipe was inspired by a couple of different thoughts. One being the chicken suqaar sandwich and some flavors of Indian food that I recently had. When the two came together, it was a match made in heaven. This is a recipe that is a one pot meal, and one that you could eat throughout the day, or week. It makes plenty and has you questioning the spice blend.

African Style Rice Recipe
African Style Rice Recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of basmati rice, soaked in water
  • 1 whole onion, diced
  • 2 roma tomatoes, diced
  • 6 cardamom pods, seeds only
  • 3 star anise
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/2 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 tbsp turmeric powder
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 3 tbsp canola oil
  • 2 chicken breasts, diced (or substitute boneless/skinless thighs)
  • 2 cups of chicken stock

Start by adding the rice to a bowl, and cover with cold water. Set this to the side as you prepare the rest of your dish.

Heat a large skillet (enough to hold all of the chicken, vegetables, and rice), on medium heat and add in the canola oil. Let the oil heat up for a minute or so, then add in the diced onions. Cook these for about 7 minutes, or until they just begin to caramelize.

Now add in the garlic, ginger, cardamom seeds, cinnamon, star anise, cumin, black pepper, and turmeric powder. Give these a good stir, and cook for about a minute so they release their oils. Give this a good smell. Don’t you love it?

Toss in the tomatoes and chicken, and give a good stir.

African Style Rice Recipe
African Style Rice Recipe

Strain the rice, then add the rice to the mixture. Give this another good stir, then add in the chicken stock. Stir again, bring to a simmer, then cover and cook for about 20 minutes, or until the rice and chicken has fully cooked.

Remove the lid, stir, and give it a taste. If the rice is cooked, great, if not, cook a bit longer. Season with any additional salt.

I served mine as a main course, alongside some Indian mixed pickles to bring a nice accent to the dish.

This African style rice was pretty darn awesome, and pretty to boot due to the turmeric. Hope you enjoy.

African Style Rice
Author: 
Cuisine: African
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups of basmati rice, soaked in water
  • 1 whole onion, diced
  • 2 roma tomatoes, diced
  • 6 cardamom pods, seeds only
  • 3 star anise
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • ½ tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp cracked black pepper
  • ½ tbsp turmeric powder
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 3 tbsp canola oil
  • 2 chicken breasts, diced (or substitute boneless/skinless thighs)
  • 2 cups of chicken stock
Instructions
  1. Start by adding the rice to a bowl, and cover with cold water. Set this to the side as you prepare the rest of your dish.
  2. Heat a large skillet (enough to hold all of the chicken, vegetables, and rice), on medium heat and add in the canola oil. Let the oil heat up for a minute or so, then add in the diced onions. Cook these for about 7 minutes, or until they just begin to caramelize.
  3. Now add in the garlic, cardamom seeds, cinnamon, star anise, cumin, black pepper, and turmeric powder. Give these a good stir, and cook for about a minute so they release their oils. Give this a good smell. Don’t you love it?
  4. Toss in the tomatoes and chicken, and give a good stir.
  5. Strain the rice, then add the rice to the mixture. Give this another good stir, then add in the chicken stock. Stir again, bring to a simmer, then cover and cook for about 20 minutes, or until the rice and chicken has fully cooked.
  6. Remove the lid, stir, and give it a taste. If the rice is cooked, great, if not, cook a bit longer. Season with any additional salt.
  7. I served mine as a main course, alongside some Indian mixed pickles to bring a nice accent to the dish.

 

Korean Gochujang Marinated Chicken

For some time now, gochujang has been one of my favorite condiments. There is something about it, whether that combination of sweet, spicy, or savory, but whatever it is gochujang has got it going on. I have used gochujang in a couple of different recipes including Korean style zucchini as well as some Korean style quick pickles, both of which were delicious, but not it was time to try to incorporate the gochujang into a chicken marinade and see how it would turn out. Actually, I knew how it was going to turn out, and I was right, it turned out pretty awesome.

Korean Gochujang Marinated Chicken Recipe
Korean Gochujang Marinated Chicken Recipe

Let’s get started.

  • 8 chicken thighs, fat trimmed
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 heaping tablespoon of gochujang paste
  • 1/4 cup of soy sauce
  • 1 dash of fish sauce
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 3 tbsp water
  • cooked rice, optional
  • sliced scallions, optional

Start by making your marinade. Combine everything but the chicken, rice, and scallions in a mixing bowl. Whisk until everything is smooth.

Add the chicken thighs to a large plastic sealable bag, and pour in the marinade. Seal, and place into the refrigerator overnight.

The following day, about an hour before you are ready to begin cooking, remove the chicken from the refrigerator and let it sit on the counter to take off the chill.

Gochujang Chicken
Gochujang Chicken

Strain the marinade, reserving it into a bowl. Pat the chicken dry and place on a wired rimmed baking sheet.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

Add the chicken thighs, skin side down to the baking sheet.

Place into the oven and cook for about 25 minutes. Remove, then flip the chicken so it is skin side up, and cook an additional 10 minutes or so, or until the skin is nice and crispy.

During this time, add the reserved marinade to a sauce pan. Cook on medium heat until the sauce has reduced. This will act as your glaze with the chicken is ready.

Now it is time to serve.

Remove the chicken from the oven, and carefully add them to a large serving dish. With a cooking brush, or spoon for that matter, begin brushing the chicken thighs with the reduced marinade.

Serve and with rice. My kids totally loved these. They are typically not fans of thighs like I am, but that told me something, and that something was most likely that awesome gochujang marinade. Hope you enjoy!

Korean Gochujang Marinated Chicken
Author: 
Recipe type: Chicken
Cuisine: Korean Style
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
Ingredients
  • 8 chicken thighs, fat trimmed
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 heaping tablespoon of gochujang paste
  • ¼ cup of soy sauce
  • 1 dash of fish sauce
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 3 tbsp water
  • cooked rice, optional
  • sliced scallions, optional
Instructions
  1. Start by making your marinade. Combine everything but the chicken, rice, and scallions in a mixing bowl. Whisk until everything is smooth.
  2. Add the chicken thighs to a large plastic sealable bag, and pour in the marinade. Seal, and place into the refrigerator overnight.
  3. The following day, about an hour before you are ready to begin cooking, remove the chicken from the refrigerator and let it sit on the counter to take off the chill.
  4. Strain the marinade, reserving it into a bowl. Pat the chicken dry and place on a wired rimmed baking sheet.
  5. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  6. Add the chicken thighs, skin side down to the baking sheet.
  7. Place into the oven and cook for about 25 minutes. Remove, then flip the chicken so it is skin side up, and cook an additional 10 minutes or so, or until the skin is nice and crispy.
  8. During this time, add the reserved marinade to a sauce pan. Cook on medium heat until the sauce has reduced. This will act as your glaze with the chicken is ready.
  9. Now it is time to serve.
  10. Remove the chicken from the oven, and carefully add them to a large serving dish. With a cooking brush, or spoon for that matter, begin brushing the chicken thighs with the reduced marinade.
  11. Serve and with rice.

 

Crispy Chicken Feet

Years ago when living in Dallas, I would often go and eat dim sum on the weekends, something that is definitely missing in Milwaukee. One of those dim sum items was soft and tender chicken feet. Yep, I tried them (what’s not to try), and I can’t say that I was a big fan on the texture of them. Somewhat gelatinous with too many bones. OK, I was not a fan. But on a recent outing to one of our local ethnic grocery stores, I saw a package of them and decided to make them, only this time crispy. See my oldest is a huge fan of crispy chicken wings, and as these chicken feet with super cheap, I decided I would see if I could crisp them up and not only try them, but to also see if my oldest would eat them, or like them. Indeed he did!

Crispy Chicken Feet Recipe
Crispy Chicken Feet Recipe

Let’s get started.

  • 1 lb of chicken feet, nails removed
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 generous pinch of salt
  • 2 cloves of garlic, smashed
  • 4 cups of water, or enough to cover the chicken feet
  • 1 cup of canola oil
  • Your favorite BBQ seasoning
  • parchment paper

Start by clipping the nails off of the feet. I did this by using my kitchen shears and clipping at the knuckle joint. Discard.

To a large bowl, add the feet, and rinse them thoroughly in cold water.

Next, add the feet to a medium sized pot, add the soy sauce, garlic, salt, and cover them with water.

Bring the pot to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and cook for about 2 1/2 hours. Remove the feet to another bowl, let cool, and place in the refrigerator overnight.

Crispy Chicken Feet
Crispy Chicken Feet

The following day, remove the feet, and pour out any excess water.

To a medium sized pot, on low heat, add in the oil. Then after a few minutes add in the chicken feet. At first I was going to deep fry these, but there is so much skin that I knew oil would be popping everywhere, and I did not want that. I simply wanted to slow cook them for about 15 minutes on low heat to continue to cook them. After about 15 minutes, remove them with a slotted spoon or spider, to a paper towel lined sheet pan to let any excess oil drain off.

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.

To a sheet pan, add the parchment paper to cover. Add the chicken feet and sprinkle your favorite barbecue seasoning all over the feet. Stir around so that all of the chicken feet are covered with seasoning.

Place them into the oven, and slow roast until they are nice and crispy, about 45 minutes to a hour. Every oven is a bit different so keep an eye on them until they are nice and dark golden brown and crispy.

Remove from the oven, place them in a bowl, and dig in.

Were these good? Yeah, they were pretty darn good. My oldest loved them and was eating them all to the base of the feet, and my middle guy was suspicious and tried one and it kind of freaked him out, as they probably might to most Americans. But I will admit that these are common snacks in Asian countries, and if you are looking for something unique to serve up, give these a try. They are cheap, and pretty darn tasty. Hope you enjoy!

Shan Noodles

I don’t know about you but there are so many times I wake up in the morning and I crave soup. I’m talking about a few in particular, and they are all Asian based soups. Soups like Khao Soi, Pho, or even Khao Poon. These are all noodle based soups, soaked in great curry based broths and they do nothing more than bring awesome comfort to your soul. I love them, and this soup in particular is right up with them. It’s called Shan Noodles, and is a riff on all of the soups mentioned above, and typically in that same region, just north of Thailand and Laos, in the Myanmar region, a hodge podge of various cultures, and when that happens, you know you are going to have some pretty awesome food. This is one of them.

Shan Noodles Recipe
Shan Noodles Recipe

This soup is basic but loaded with tons of flavor, plus it is way too simple to make. You can make this with ground pork or chicken as well, but I choose pork. Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 4 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 1/2 pound of ground pork
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 5 roma tomatoes, grated
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp Spanish paprika
  • 1 tbsp turmeric powder
  • 4 cups of chicken stock
  • 1 cup of water
  • 2 tbsp roasted peanuts, lightly crushed
  • 1 tbsp fried garlic, optional
  • 1 tbsp fresh cilantro
  • 1 small baby bok choy, chopped
  • salt to taste
  • Rice noodles, cooked al dente
  • 1 green onion, thinly sliced, optional

Start by heating a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add the canola oil, and let it come to a quick simmer. Add in the ground pork, and using a wooden spoon, continue to break up the pork (or ground chicken), and cook until browned.

Next, add in the diced onion and garlic, and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring along the way.

Next, add in the paprika, soy sauce, fish sauce, and turmeric, and stir. Cook for about a minute, then add in the grated tomato. Give this a good stir, and cook for another minute or two. Now add in the water, stir, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook for about 15 minutes.

How to make Shan Noodles
How to make Shan Noodles

During this time, heat up the chicken stock on the stove on medium heat. Add in the bok choy and let it cook until tender.

Boil water, enough to cover the amount of your rice noodles, and cook until they are al dente, about 5 minutes.

Now you are ready to serve.

Add your cooked rice noodles to your soup bowl. Generously ladle the pork mixture onto the noodles, then add broth to cover the noodles. Add the bok choy, chopped peanuts, fried garlic,and fresh cilantro. Shower with the green onions. Taste, and season with salt.

Dig in. Again, this is like most of those great Asian soups, but something about this one is really special. Sure, it could be the pork mixture, but when everything is brought together it is really, really yummy. Hope you enjoy!

Shan Noodles
Author: 
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Asian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • 4 tbsp canola oil
  • 1½ pound of ground pork
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 5 roma tomatoes, grated
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp Spanish paprika
  • 1 tbsp turmeric powder
  • 4 cups of chicken stock
  • 1 cup of water
  • 2 tbsp roasted peanuts, lightly crushed
  • 1 tbsp fried garlic, optional
  • 1 tbsp fresh cilantro
  • 1 small baby bok choy, chopped
  • salt to taste
  • Rice noodles, cooked al dente
  • 1 green onion, thinly sliced, optional
Instructions
  1. Start by heating a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add the canola oil, and let it come to a quick simmer. Add in the ground pork, and using a wooden spoon, continue to break up the pork (or ground chicken), and cook until browned.
  2. Next, add in the diced onion and garlic, and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring along the way.
  3. Next, add in the paprika, soy sauce, fish sauce, and turmeric, and stir. Cook for about a minute, then add in the grated tomato. Give this a good stir, and cook for another minute or two. Now add in the water, stir, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook for about 15 minutes.
  4. Boil water, enough to cover the amount of your rice noodles, and cook until they are al dente, about 5 minutes.
  5. Now you are ready to serve.
  6. Add your cooked rice noodles to your soup bowl. Generously ladle the pork mixture onto the noodles, then add broth to cover the noodles. Add the bok choy, chopped peanuts, fried garlic,and fresh cilantro. Shower with the green onions. Taste, and season with salt.