Taco Fried Rice

Do you dream of tacos? I know I do, and when you have a really great taco, it’s hard not to dream of them. One of my favorites in this city, and I know everyone has their own, is at El Rey Supermercado. I love their tacos al pastor, or carne asado, loaded up on corn tortillas drizzled with their salsa verde. This recipe inspired me, not only due to my love of tacos, but of fried rice as well. I wanted to create a fried rice that was inspired by taco ingredients, and this one hit the mark.

Taco Fried Rice Recipe
Taco Fried Rice Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb ground chuck, cooked and drained of any fat
  • 2 whole jalapeno peppers, roasted, seeds removed, chopped
  • 1 whole poblano pepper, roasted, skin and seeds removed, chopped
  • 1 whole small onion, diced
  • 12 oz can of black beans, rinsed
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tbsp garlic chili salt
  • salt, to taste
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 4 cups of cooked jasmine rice, cold and preferably 1 day old
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 whole egg, beaten
  • Crushed up tortilla chips
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • canned black sliced olives, optional
  • Your favorite hot sauce, optional
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped, optional

Make the rice ahead of time, and make sure it is cold. Preferably leftover rice, as I think it works better for fried rice.

Make your meat mixture. To a large skillet, cook your ground chuck, then place a lid over it and drain off any excess fat. Place back on the burner on medium heat, then toss in the onion, peppers, black beans, and seasonings. Give this a good stir, cooking the seasonings, then reduce the heat to low. Add in the water, cover, and keep on very low heat to make the ground chuck and beans nice and tender.  Cook until the water has evaporated, then remove from the heat. Place the meat mixture into a bowl, and then wipe out the skillet.

Taco Fried Rice Ingredients
Taco Fried Rice Ingredients

Now onto the fried rice. Return the large skillet back to the stove, and heat to a medium heat.

Add in the butter, and let it come to a bubble, swirling it along the way.

Add in the cold rice, breaking it up with a wooden spoon. Once it starts to warm up, start flattening it down, building a nice light golden crust on the rice. Once that crust begins to form, add in the beaten egg, stir, and then add in the meat mixture, and stir, flattening it along the way, getting a nice crust in the process. Cook for about 7 minutes or so, then get ready to serve.

Add the taco fried rice to a bowl. Crush some taco chips on the top for more texture, then top with shredded cheddar cheese, black olives, fresh cilantro, and dashes of your favorite hot sauce, or salsa. If you want add a small dollop of sour cream, or heck, any of your other favorite taco toppings.

Taco Fried Rice Recipe
Taco Fried Rice Recipe

After serving this, my wife and daughter really fell in love with it. It’s everything you may expect in a classic taco, but mashed into everything you love about a fried rice. Even my oldest, who may sometimes be my pickiest of eaters, stuffed this mixture into a warm tortilla and made a burrito out of it! What’s not to love about that! Hope you enjoy!

Taco Fried Rice
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10
 
Ingredients
  • ½ lb ground chuck, cooked and drained of any fat
  • 2 whole jalapeno peppers, roasted, seeds removed, chopped
  • 1 whole poblano pepper, roasted, skin and seeds removed, chopped
  • 1 whole small onion, diced
  • 12 oz can of black beans, rinsed
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • ½ tbsp garlic chili salt
  • salt, to taste
  • ½ cup water
  • 4 cups of cooked jasmine rice, cold and preferably 1 day old
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 whole egg, beaten
  • Crushed up tortilla chips
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • canned black sliced olives, optional
  • Your favorite hot sauce, optional
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped, optional
Instructions
  1. Make the rice ahead of time, and make sure it is cold. Preferably leftover rice, as I think it works better for fried rice.
  2. Make your meat mixture. To a large skillet, cook your ground chuck, then place a lid over it and drain off any excess fat. Place back on the burner on medium heat, then toss in the onion, peppers, black beans, and seasonings. Give this a good stir, cooking the seasonings, then reduce the heat to low. Add in the water, cover, and keep on very low heat to make the ground chuck and beans nice and tender. Cook until the water has evaporated, then remove from the heat. Place the meat mixture into a bowl, and then wipe out the skillet.
  3. Now onto the fried rice. Return the large skillet back to the stove, and heat to a medium heat.
  4. Add in the butter, and let it come to a bubble, swirling it along the way.
  5. Add in the cold rice, breaking it up with a wooden spoon. Once it starts to warm up, start flattening it down, building a nice light golden crust on the rice. Once that crust begins to form, add in the beaten egg, stir, and then add in the meat mixture, and stir, flattening it along the way, getting a nice crust in the process. Cook for about 7 minutes or so, then get ready to serve.
  6. Add the taco fried rice to a bowl. Crush some taco chips on the top for more texture, then top with shredded cheddar cheese, black olives, fresh cilantro, and dashes of your favorite hot sauce, or salsa. If you want add a small dollop of sour cream, or heck, any of your other favorite taco toppings.

 

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Fried Buffalo Chicken Sandwich

What a great holiday season it has been. I love this time of year when we can simply relax as a family, watch the kids open their presents, and enjoy my wife’s birthday, only to say the least. As we went through a busy Christmas day, and Eve at that, my wife’s birthday is always just right around the corner.  I decided that morning that the kids and I were going to surprise her and take her out to lunch, then to watch Star Wars, and then to take her and her parents out for dinner. My wife has been talking about this burger place that she recently enjoyed (Milwaukee Burger Company), and as we have not had a good burger lately, I figured what the heck. To say the least, we were stuffed (I actually did not even finish my food), and as we wobbled out of there, I thought for sure I would have fallen asleep at the movie. You know, comfy reclining chair, and dark theatre, plus way too full of a belly? Yeah, I was struggling, and in dangerous thoughts that I would have to eat again, only in a matter of hours. Yes, I was that full.

Regardless of the matter, I did stay awake during the movie, and a great one at that, and as I kind of got a second wind, we decided to head over to a local supper club, Diamond Jim’s. As they brought out bread and relish trays, I could not even fathom eating bread, although I watched my oldest boy probably take down two bread trays, and after I watched him inhale his bacon burger and fries at lunch, I only thought how is this even possible? By the way he also took down a rack of ribs and three huge shrimp, plus more fries after this bread contest! As much as I did not even want to order anything, as I was that full from lunch, I decided that I would try their fried chicken. I know, fried chicken in a steak house supper club, right? Anyway, I probably only had a few bites, good bites at that, and decided I would take it home to make for lunch the following day. This is when I decided I would make a fried chicken buffalo sandwich.

Fried Chicken Buffalo Sandwich Recipe
Fried Chicken Buffalo Sandwich Recipe

Now you are either fan of buffalo chicken, or not. My wife is not, and as a matter of fact I do not even think I have seen her use buffalo chicken sauce, ever. Me? I’m a huge fan, and I have even just poured stuff on a spoon before only just to have the sauce. This sandwich was a perfect use of leftover fried chicken and breaking it down into a sandwich was even better.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • Leftover fried chicken (I used have a breast, and a thick), warmed in the oven
  • 1 whole bolillo roll
  • 2 tbsp ranch, or blue dressing
  • 1/2 cup of your favorite buffalo sauce
  • 1 rib of celery, diced
  • 1/2 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees.

Next, break up your chicken and remove the meat from the bone. Place onto a baking sheet, and place into the oven, cooking for about 10 minutes.

During this time, slice the roll. To the bottom, slather on the ranch or blue cheese dressing, then top both sides with mozzarella cheese. Place the bun, into the oven to not only warm the bread, but also to melt the cheese.

How to make a fried buffalo chicken sandwich
How to make a fried buffalo chicken sandwich

When the cheese is slightly melted, remove both the chicken and the bread from the oven.

To the bottom of the bread, cover with the diced celery.

Add the chicken to a bowl, pour over the buffalo sauce, and give a good mix to ensure the chicken is coated.

Now place the chicken onto the roll, fold and gently press down. Now dig in.

This sandwich was awesome. Great texture from the fried chicken and celery, along with the perfect tanginess from the sauce, really made this a great use of leftovers, and the great memories from the previous day. Next time however, I will only have a light snack before heading out on a great birthday for my wife. Hope you enjoy and Happy New Year!

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Spicy Michelada

I will admit that I like a good bloody mary. It’s one of those drinks that I typically will only drink during the brunch time of the day, and in particular on a Sunday. I have no idea why, but I’m sure you could probably twist my arm and get me to drink one on a Saturday as well. My wife on the other hand is not a fan of a bloody mary, probably due to the tomato juice, but for me I love everything about it, even though I am not a huge fan of tomato juice. It’s the spice that I love! Now there is a simple twist to a bloody mary, and instead of using vodka as the booze of choice, you use a simple lager. It’s called the michelada, and it takes a strong first against a bloody mary.

Spicy Michelada Recipe
Spicy Michelada Recipe

The michelada is basically a tomato and beer mix that is loaded with an array of spices, and they say they a cure for a hangover. Who knows about that, but whatever the case the premix is the key, in my opinion, in making a great michelada.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp maggi sauce
  • 1 tbsp Tabasco
  • 1 tbsp Worchestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp fish sauce
  • 1/2 tsp Tajin seasoning
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • Few drops of habanero sauce
  • 5 oz tomato juice
  • 6 oz pilsner beer
  • ice cubes

You will want to make the premix the day, or night ahead to let all of the flavors form. Trust me, it’s a knock out mix of flavors.

Start by adding the maggi, Tabasco, Worchestershire, fish sauce, Tajin, lime juice, lemon juice, and habanero sauce to a small container. Stir well, cover, and place in the refrigerator over night.

How to make a michelada
How to make a michelada

The following day, fill a glass with ice cubes. If you want, you can rim the glass with Tajin seasoning. I prefer not to as there is so much flavor already in the premix.

Pour the premix into the glass, then the tomato juice. Give this a good stir, then top with the beer. Sip and enjoy. This premix is so robust it will possibly have you second guessing that bloody mary. Enjoy!

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Franklin’s Smoked Turkey Breast

I don’t know about you, but I am pretty exhausted from the Thanksgiving holiday. As normal, I spent hours in the kitchen cooking up the feast which included a green bean casserole, creamed corn, gravy, a dry brined turkey, mashed potatoes, dressing/stuffing, and this thing of beauty; Franklin’s smoked turkey breast. My colleague turned me onto this recipe and he swore by it. Whenever someone who cooks gets that excited about something, I figured it was worth a shot, and boy was this one ever delicious. As a matter of fact, many said it was probably their favorite, along with my Thanksgiving sausage stuffing.

This turned out awesome, and as I cannot compare as I’ve never had the honor to get to Austin, Texas to try Franklin’s BBQ, I can tell you that this was fall apart tender with just the right amount of smoke.

Franklin's Smoked Turkey Breast Recipe
Franklin’s Smoked Turkey Breast Recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 3.5 lb turkey breast
  • 2 whole sticks of butter, unsalted
  • 3 tbsp course cracked black pepper
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • heavy duty aluminum foil
  • your favorite wood chips for smoking (I used cherry)

Start by mixing the salt and pepper in a bowl. remove the skin from the turkey breast and discard it.

Rub the turkey breast with the black pepper and salt, all over all of the sides. Now get your smoker ready. I’ve been using the Smokenator 1000 for some time now, but you could use your grill if you desire. Once the smoker comes to temperature (I shoot for about 250 degrees), add the turkey breast, cover, and let it slowly smoke for about 2.5 hours. Once the turkey is slightly browned, carefully remove it and place it on a plate.

Pull 2 big sheets of aluminum foil off, enough to easily wrap the turkey breast, and top the breast with the two sticks of butter. Cover with the foil, and return back to the smoker, butter side down. Make sure the breast is completely covered and to not have butter dripping down into your smoker! 

How to make Franklin's BBQ smoked turkey breast
How to make Franklin’s BBQ smoked turkey breast

Continue cooking for another 1-2 hours, or until the center of the breast registers around 160 degrees.

When you are ready to serve, carefully remove the foil from the turkey breast, and pull apart with a couple of forks.

This smoked turkey breast was so tender and juicy from cooking in that butter, and it was perfectly seasoned. I served mine on a couple of toasted buns, along with some barbecue sauce and pickles. I will definitely be making this again and again, plus it is perfect to serve during any holiday season. Hope you enjoy!

Franklin's Smoked Turkey Breast
Author: 
Recipe type: Turkey
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
Ingredients
  • 3.5 lb turkey breast
  • 2 whole sticks of butter, unsalted
  • 3 tbsp course cracked black pepper
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • heavy duty aluminum foil
  • your favorite wood chips for smoking (I used cherry)
Instructions
  1. Start by mixing the salt and pepper in a bowl. remove the skin from the turkey breast and discard it.
  2. Rub the turkey breast with the black pepper and salt, all over all of the sides. Now get your smoker ready. I’ve been using the Smokenator 1000 for some time now, but you could use your grill if you desire. Once the smoker comes to temperature (I shoot for about 250 degrees), add the turkey breast, cover, and let it slowly smoke for about 2.5 hours. Once the turkey is slightly browned, carefully remove it and place it on a plate.
  3. Pull 2 big sheets of aluminum foil off, enough to easily wrap the turkey breast, and top the breast with the two sticks of butter. Cover with the foil, and return back to the smoker, butter side down. Make sure the breast is completely covered and to not have butter dripping down into your smoker!
  4. Continue cooking for another 1-2 hours, or until the center of the breast registers around 160 degrees.
  5. When you are ready to serve, carefully remove the foil from the turkey breast, and pull apart with a couple of forks.

 

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