Friday, August 19, 2022

Creamy Hatch Chili Pepper Spinach Chicken

Truly, the title "creamy Hatch chili pepper spinach chicken" says it all: Tender breasts in a spicy, succulent sauce! Serve over rice or pasta to complete the meal. 

Food Lust People Love: Truly, the title "creamy Hatch chili pepper spinach chicken" says it all: Tender breasts in a spicy, succulent sauce! Serve over rice or pasta to complete the meal.

Years ago, when we lived in Brazil (circa 1993-1999) one of my closest friend’s husband was from New Mexico. They made it a point to travel home during Hatch chili pepper season (or would enlist relatives to make their purchases) and they would return to our small town of Macáe with bags and bags of frozen roasted peppers to use all year. I had never heard of Hatch peppers but being a lover of all things chili pepper, I was quickly hooked.

The name Hatch chili actually refers to the area in which they are grown - the Hatch Valley - but generally they are a long green pepper with a mild heat but lots of flavor.  

We moved to Houston in 1999 and I hoped for New Mexican peppers, but Hatch peppers hadn’t made it there yet. It took another few years but eventually, Hatch season became a thing, even that far east due to Central Market, the upscale purveyor of gourmet food owned by the parent company of Texas grocery store H-E-B. 

Central Market brought in the peppers by the truckload and the immense roasters (think huge turning cages like you'd put raffle tickets in!) and roasted them fresh outside of their stores. Since then, other area supermarkets have gotten in on the action and the Houston air on the weekends right now is filled with aroma of charred peppers.

Make note: If you are lucky enough to be able to travel to New Mexico, the Hatch Chile Festival takes place every year on Labor Day weekend in Hatch, NM. This year they celebrate their 50th anniversary so it should be a lot of fun. 

Creamy Hatch Chili Pepper Spinach Chicken

Yep, it’s Hatch chili pepper season again and, as promised, here’s my first recipe using that wonderful pepper. It’s quite easy to make but the flavor is out of this world wonderful! Because I lack freezer space, I like to roast my own in the oven but you can use the already roasted ones, if you can get your hands on them. 

Ingredients - to serve six
For the creamy hatch chili pepper sauce:
4 fresh hatch chili peppers
juice from half a lime
2 cloves garlic
1 cup or 240ml heavy cream
Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

For the chicken:
3 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 8oz or 225g each)
1 tablespoon white vinegar
Fine sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil

For optional garnish: chopped cilantro or parsley

Method
Broil the peppers on a baking sheet until they’re charred and black all over on both sides. 


Put them in a plastic bag for about five minutes to loosen the peels. Open the bag and let the peppers cool until you can handle them with bare hands. Rub or pull the peels off. Cut the stem end off and discard. If you like things spicy, leave the seeds. If not, remove the seeds and discard. 


Chop the garlic cloves roughly. 

Place the peppers in a food processor with the garlic, lime juice and sour cream. 


Blend until combined and smooth. Add a good pinch or two of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. 


Refrigerate until you are ready to cook the chicken. The earlier ahead you make this, the better it is! 

Cut the chicken breasts in half lengthwise. 


Sprinkle them with the vinegar on both sides then sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. 


Drizzle your pan with olive oil and then pan fry the chicken breasts over a high heat until golden both sides. You may need to do this in two batches, depending on the size of your pan.


In that case, remove the browned breasts to a plate then pan-fry the second batch. The chicken does not need to be cooked completely through at this point. It will finish cooking, simmering in the creamy hatch sauce.


When all the chicken is browned and on the plate, add the baby spinach leaves to the pan and cover for a few minutes, until the spinach starts to wilt. 


Remove the lid and cook for a few more minutes until the spinach liquid evaporates.


Add the creamy hatch sauce back to the pan. Stir to combine and heat gently to warm. 


Tuck the browned chicken pieces into the sauce. 


Spoon it over to cover. Simmer till chicken is cooked through.


Sprinkle with a little chopped cilantro or parsley to garnish, if desired. 

Food Lust People Love: Truly, the title "creamy Hatch chili pepper spinach chicken" says it all: Tender breasts in a spicy, succulent sauce! Serve over rice or pasta to complete the meal.

Serve over rice or pasta. 

Food Lust People Love: Truly, the title "creamy Hatch chili pepper spinach chicken" says it all: Tender breasts in a spicy, succulent sauce! Serve over rice or pasta to complete the meal.

Enjoy! 

Do you get Hatch chili peppers where you live? For more information about these great peppers and possible substitutes, Chili Pepper Madness is a great source. 



Pin this Creamy Hatch Chili Pepper
Spinach Chicken!

Food Lust People Love: Truly, the title "creamy Hatch chili pepper spinach chicken" says it all: Tender breasts in a spicy, succulent sauce! Serve over rice or pasta to complete the meal.

 .



Wednesday, August 17, 2022

German Applesauce Cake #BundtBakers

The tender crumb on this German Applesauce Cake reminds me of a buttery pound cake, but with raisins and pecans, making it perfect with a cup of tea. 

Food Lust People Love: The tender crumb on this German Applesauce Cake reminds me of a buttery pound cake, but with raisins and pecans, making it perfect with a cup of tea.

Whenever I see jars of applesauce on the grocery store shelves, I must confess that I wonder who is buying it. After all, applesauce has got to be the easy thing in the world to make. Just peel the apples, core, chop and cook down with a splash of lemon juice or water. Literally, that is the whole recipe and it doesn’t even take very long. 

The chopped apples turn to sauce in a matter of about 10 minutes or so. You can speed up the process by mashing them with a potato masher once they soften, if you are really in a hurry.  

Applesauce is a family favorite with roast pork at our house and sometimes even pork chops. The tart but naturally sweet applesauce complements the savory pork wonderful. If you haven’t tried that combination, please do! When we are in the UK, I use Bramley apples which are great for baking and cooking. If I am elsewhere, I use Granny Smiths.  

German Applesauce Cake

I made this cake using Simple Truth Organic Plant Based Egg Replacer. It’s a powder made from chia seeds and chickpeas aka garbanzo beans, specifically for recipes when eggs are a binding agent, for instance, baked goods and quick breads like pancakes or waffles. It's available from Kroger or online, if you are in the States. This recipe is adapted from one on My Patchwork Quilt

Ingredients
For the cake batter:
3/4 cup or 150g sugar 
1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon or 78g shortening plus extra for the pan
2 medium eggs (or equivalent amount egg replacer)
1 1/8 cups or 290g homemade or store-bought applesauce
3/4 cup or 110g raisins
1/2 cup or 60g chopped pecans
1 1/2 cups or 187g flour, plus extra for the pan and raisins
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda dissolved in 1 tablespoon water

For the cinnamon glaze:
1/3 cup or 41g powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 – 1  1/2 teaspoons water

Method 
Preheat oven to 350°F or 180°C. Grease and flour a 10-cup Bundt pan.

With electric beaters or in the bowl of your stand mixer, cream shortening and sugar together until light and fluffy.


Add the eggs (or egg replacement) and beat until light.


In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon and salt.


Add applesauce and dissolved baking soda alternately with dry ingredients.


Toss the raisins with a sprinkle of flour then fold in the raisins and chopped pecans.


Spoon batter into your prepared pan.


Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until golden and a wooden skewer comes out clean. If it starts browning too much before it's baked through, you can cover the top lightly with foil. 


Cool in pan on wire rack for 10 minutes then turn the cake out to cool completely before glazing. 


To make the glaze, mix the powdered sugar and cinnamon. Add water gradually till you reach drizzling consistency. 

Drizzle the cake with the cinnamon glaze. I also gave mine an extra pinch of cinnamon sprinkled on top. Because apples and cinnamon are best friends. 

Food Lust People Love: The tender crumb on this German Applesauce Cake reminds me of a buttery pound cake, but with raisins and pecans, making it perfect with a cup of tea.

Slice to serve.

Food Lust People Love: The tender crumb on this German Applesauce Cake reminds me of a buttery pound cake, but with raisins and pecans, making it perfect with a cup of tea.

Enjoy!

Amazingly, it’s already the third Thursday of the month – this summer is zipping by! – so it’s time for my Bundt Baker friends to share their recipes. Today’s theme is applesauce! Many thanks to Sneha of Sneha’s Recipe for the theme and our host, Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm for her behind the scenes work. Check out the recipes links below.


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#BundtBakers is a group of Bundt loving bakers who get together once a month to bake Bundts with a common ingredient or theme. You can see all of our lovely Bundts by following our Pinterest board. We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient. Updated links for all of our past events and more information about BundtBakers, can be found on our home page.



Pin this German Applesauce Cake!

Food Lust People Love: The tender crumb on this German Applesauce Cake reminds me of a buttery pound cake, but with raisins and pecans, making it perfect with a cup of tea.

 .

Saturday, August 13, 2022

Marinated Tofu Zucchini Soft Tacos

These marinated tofu zucchini soft tacos are a tasty, easy meal the whole family will enjoy with just the right hint of smokiness and spice. 

Food Lust People Love: These marinated tofu zucchini soft tacos are a tasty, easy meal the whole family will enjoy with just the right hint of smokiness and spice.

These soft tacos make a wonderful dish for company because everyone can assemble their own, for a convivial meal around a big table. Everything can be made ahead and kept warm in a low oven so you won’t spend time cooking once your guests arrive.

A word about tofu: If you have only tried it in its natural state and are not a fan of the texture, give it another chance when pan-fried and crunchy. That was a game changer for me. Now I love it. 

Marinated Tofu Zucchini Soft Tacos

This recipe was inspired by one in the New York Times cooking section for grilled marinated tofu. Smoked paprika and cumin add the right flavors to make this the perfect vegetarian taco filling. 

For the tacos:
1 block (14 oz or 398g) extra firm tofu 
1 medium onion
2 medium zucchini
fine sea salt
12 corn tortillas
canola or other light oil for pan-frying

For the tofu marinade:
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 small jalapeño seeded, finely diced
1/2 teaspoon Kitchen Bouquet
1/4 cup or 60ml lime juice, freshly squeezed
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
2 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin

Optional to serve:
Guacamole
Salsa
Sour cream
Refried beans
Sliced jalapeños
Chopped cilantro

Method
Drain and press the tofu for 1 hour.

Peel the onion and cut it into thick slices.


Cut the stems off the zucchini then cut them in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to scoop out the fluffy part with the seeds. Cut the zucchini into batons. 


Lightly salt the batons and set them in a colander to sweat and drain.

Combine the lime juice, minced garlic and jalapeño, Kitchen Bouquet, salt and set aside for a few minutes while you cut the tofu. 


Slice the tofu into pieces about 1/4 inch or 1/2cm. Place tofu pieces snugly in a deep dish. Spoon 3/4 of the marinade over the tofu, reserving 1/4 for the zucchini after it’s cooked. 


Refrigerate the tofu at least one hour or longer, turning it occasionally so it marinates evenly.

Heat a large non-stick frying skillet over medium-high heat. Drizzle with a little oil. 

Scrape the garlic and jalapeño off of the tofu and back into the marinating pan and reserve. 

Add the tofu to the hot skillet and cook, turning frequently, until it is evenly browned and crisp on all sides. You may have to do this in batches, depending on the size of your skillet. 


Transfer the tofu to an oven-proof pan.

In the same skillet, add 2 teaspoons each of paprika and cumin and the scraped off jalapeño and garlic. Drizzle a little oil in the pan to moisten the mixture and cook it for just a few minutes, until the jalapeño has softened. 


Spoon this over the tofu and put it in a very low oven to keep warm. 


Add the final 1/2 teaspoons each cumin and smoked paprika to the marinade you saved for the zucchini. 

Dry the zucchini batons on a paper towel then add them to the skillet and fry over a high heat until slightly charred. 


Turn the fire off and add the reserved marinade. Toss to combine, remove to a plate or bowl. 

Add the onion slices to the pan, cook until just soft and a little toasted, about 8 minutes. 


If desired, toast the tortillas on a griddle. 

Serve the marinated tofu zucchini soft tacos with guacamole, salsa, sour cream, refried beans, sliced jalapeños and/or chopped cilantro or your favorite taco toppings.

Let everyone assemble their own soft tacos. We really loved the flavor and smokiness of the tofu, as well as the crunch. 

Food Lust People Love: These marinated tofu zucchini soft tacos are a tasty, easy meal the whole family will enjoy with just the right hint of smokiness and spice.

Enjoy! 

It’s Sunday FunDay and our host Amy of Amy’s Cooking Adventures reminded us that August is all about a glut of fresh zucchini and everyone can use some creative recipes to use it up. Check out all the zucchini dishes we are sharing below. 

  • Couscous with Spiced Zucchini from Cook with Renu
  • Garlic Butter Sautéed Zucchini from Amy’s Cooking Adventures
  • Keto Zucchini Balls In Creamy Tomato Gravy from Sneha’s Recipe
  • Marinated Tofu Zucchini Soft Tacos from Food Lust People Love
  • Minestrone Casserole from Palatable Pastime
  • Moong and Zucchini Pancakes from Mayuri’s Jikoni
  • Zucchini Agrodolce from Pandemonium Noshery
  • Zucchini Casserole from A Day in the Life on the Farm

  • We are a group of food bloggers who believe that Sunday should be a family fun day, so every Sunday we share recipes that will help you to enjoy your day. If you're a blogger interested in joining us, just visit our Facebook group and request to join.


    Pin these Tofu Zucchini Soft Tacos!

    Food Lust People Love: These marinated tofu zucchini soft tacos are a tasty, easy meal the whole family will enjoy with just the right hint of smokiness and spice.

     .