Chicken Curry with Sweet Potato and Chickpeas

On May 8, 2015, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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I haven’t been writing much lately because I have been busy with a new job I started almost three weeks ago. The new job is a bit longer of a commute which led me to look for some slow cooker (crockpot) recipes since I get home a little later than I used to and well I’m still the personal home chef.

One find, I already had on my Pinterest board (you can follow me on Pinterest here), was a chicken curry dish that looked pretty amazing and simple. I really liked the use of sweet potato in this particular recipe.  You can of course substitute carrots, if you don’t have any sweet potatoes around.

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I prepared the dish before leaving this morning and when I walked through the door when I came home tonight, it smelled amazing!  Plus everything was pretty much ready to go after I quickly steamed some rice.

The dish turned out great and it is a bit spicy with the 2 tablespoons of curry powder the recipe calls for. You can add or increase. If you want something a little more mild with a hint of heat, go with 1 tablespoon.  Really hot, I’d use 3 tablespoons.

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Have some fun experimenting with this dish. You really can’t mess it up. I’m sure it would be great with lamb instead of chicken.  You could also use cauliflower or potatoes too.  It’s full-proof, so enjoy and play around with this recipe.  I’m sure I will as I continue to bring out my slower cooker more often now that I’m arriving a bit later.

Enjoy!

Full Recipe: [Slow Cooker Chicken Curry]

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Vegan Tacos with Mashed Sweet Potato

On April 6, 2014, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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Vegan Tacos with Mashed Sweet Potato
Serves 6

18 corn tortillas
canola oil for frying

1 large Japanese sweet potato, peeled and cubed
1/4 cup almond milk
1 can black beans
2 carrots, cubed
1 green pepper, diced into small chunks
1 teaspoon cumin
salt and pepper
cilantro, finely chopped
green onion, cut into 2-inch long pieces

hot sauce, optional

Heat water to a boil and add cubed sweet potato and cook for about eight minutes until soft.  Remove from heat and drain. Add almond milk, salt and pepper to mash to a creamy consistency. Add more almond milk if necessary.

Meanwhile, heat the black beans in a small sauce pan on low heat.  In a separate saute pan on high heat add canola oil using enough oil to barely cover a tortilla.  When hot, add one tortilla at a time for just about 5 seconds turning once using tongs and then placing on paper towel to pat dry of any excess grease. Repeat until all tortillas are softened in oil.

In a small pan, add some olive oil and the cut carrots and green pepper. Add some salt, pepper and the cumin. Mix and heat over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes to soften and let flavors combine. Remove from heat when done.

When everything is done cooking turn off the heat of all burners and assemble tacos.  Serve placing carrot and green onion mixture and then add the black beans.  Place a spoon full of the sweet potato on top and then sprinkle with chopped cilantro and add a couple pieces of green onion on top.  Add your favorite hot sauce if desired.

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Pork Tenderloin with Calvados Cream Sauce

On September 23, 2012, in Featured, Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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This week’s #SundaySupper is all about apples as we celebrate the beginning of Fall with an Autumn Apple Party. Immersing ourselves into the apple theme we decided to spend Saturday at a couple apple orchards near San Bernadino about a hour and 20 minutes east of Pasadena.  Our first stop was Snow-Line Orchard where the boys watched donuts being made and tried about 15 different types of apples at the sampling table.

We stopped there to do u-pick raspberries since they didn’t do u-pick apples.  Sadly, by 1pm they had ran out of raspberries to pick so we enjoyed some donuts and drove down the road to Riley’s Los Rios Ranch. Riley’s was a lot of fun. The boys loved roaming around the rows of apple trees finding all kinds of varieties to pick.  We mostly ended up with some beautiful red delicious and granny smiths.

We brought home 5 pounds of apples, a pint of apple cider, and homemade caramel dip. Yes it’s a good weekend.

After a fun afternoon of apple picking, it was time to start cooking. I stopped by a store for some Calvados (Apple Brandy) and picked up an organic pork tenderloin at the market. I had some collard greens, sweet potato, and bunch of freshly picked apples to begin the night’s feast.

I paired this dish with a couple sides.  The first was some sauted collard greens.  Just chop some greens and slice half of an onion into thin half-moon.  Add some olive oil to a saute pan cooking the onions for a couple minutes then adding the greens and cooking them down for about 5-8 minutes. Toss a few times during cooking to mix the onions and greens together. You’re done.

For the second side, I chopped up two sweet potatoes and one apple into small cubes.  Tossed them with a handful of raisins, olive oil and salt and pepper .  Bake this in an oven proof casserole dish at 450 degrees for 30 minutes while you make the main the course.

 

Pork Tenderloin with Calvados Cream Sauce
Serves 4

1 1/2 lbs pork tenderloin, cut into 1″ “steaks”
1 apple, thinly sliced
1 shallot, finely diced
2-3 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup Calvados (apple brandy)
1/2 cup heavy cream
salt and pepper

Heat olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter in medium heat pan. Add the shallots and cook for two minutes.  While cooking pound the pork tenderloin “steaks” using a meat tenderizer, salt and pepper the pork and add to the pan.

Cook about 3 minutes on each side where the sides of the pork brown just a bit.  Don’t crowd the pan and set aside some of the tenderloin in a bowl.

With some pork tenderloins in the pan, add the apple brandy to the pan and if you feel daring ignite the brandy with a match after it heats in the pan for a second.  The flames will surge so be careful. Let it cook for a moment with the flames then carefully cover the pan to put out the flames. Cook the brandy on medium-high heat letting it reduce by half.

Once the brandy is reduced by half add the heavy cream and cut up apples.  Let this cook stirring together bring it to a boil then reduce the heat and let it cook for about 3 minutes to let the sauce thicken.

Serve the pork with the sauce and sides.


For more Sunday Supper Autumn Apple recipes checkout the following:

Soups, Salads, Starters and Breads

Main Meals

Sides

Desserts

Beverages

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Corn Chowder

On August 26, 2012, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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It’s been awhile since I’ve spent some time on one of my favorite blogs: Emily Levenson. Perhaps it has a lot to do with all the change around here after leaving AT&T and Texas then getting our family settled here in Southern California, not that we are quite settled yet. I write this as we are about to get ready to go the beach instead of unpacking.

We did do some unpacking yesterday. It also gave me some time to do some cooking.

I love chowder, especially corn chowder, so when I saw Emily had a recipe for it that received some great comments.

Plus I had some sweet white corn and japanese sweet potatoes from the farmers market.

My version here looks less orange due to the white corn and lightly inside of the Japanese sweet potatoes. The flavor was really sweet and flavorful. I think next time though I’ll use a more traditional sweet potato which is not as sugary as the type I went with this time.

For the Full Recipe: Corn Chowder.

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Mexican Sweet Potato Quinoa

On May 13, 2012, in Featured, Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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Quinoa is a versatile “grain” many have come to love.  Oddly, quinoa is not technically a grain it is what’s known as a pseudocereal and is related to the family beets, spinach and tumbleweeds belong to.

This dish takes a rather unique take on the ingredient by combining a few vegetables with some Mexican spices. I coupled it with some homemade guacamole and tortilla chips.

It also makes for excellent leftovers.

For the Recipe: Mexican Sweet Potato Quinoa

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Sweet Potato & Apple Rice Bake

On February 20, 2012, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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If I was a vegetarian this would be my main dish for Thanksgiving. Add some green bean casserole and mashed potatoes and I’d be perfectly happy with a turkey free day.

The flavors in this dish are so beautifully combined that every bite puts a smile on your face.  I adapted this recipe from a Butternut Squash & Apple Rice Bake recipe from the blog Running to the Kitchen. I swapped out the butternut squash for sweet potatoes, switched the cannellini beans with navy beans, and used dried cranberries instead of dried cherries. I’m sure keeping everything as the recipe says is amazing too; it’s just that I went with what I had in my kitchen.

So feel free to make some modifications just be sure to keep the integrity of the dish by using similar flavors.

Enjoy!

Click here for the full recipe: Butternut Squash & Apple Rice Bake.

Sweet Potato Wontons

On January 18, 2012, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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Some recipes are meant for the weekend, not after work. This recipe is one of those. I had planned on making the filling the night before so I could save some time after work. Doing so would’ve made this a good weekday after work recipe, but that never happened and I ended up spending a couple hours making the filling, wontons, dipping sauce and rice.

Pan frying the sweet potato and butternut squash takes some time.  I would recommend steaming the sweet potato and squash for 10 minutes prior to pan frying. Using a food steamer will soften the vegetables before adding to the pan.  This should quicken the cooking at this step.

After the mixture is cooked, place everything into a bowl and roughly mash to combine ingredients and make it easier to use as filling for the wontons. You’ll only need a teaspoon sized scoop of the filling to place in the wonton wrapper.

Prepare as many wontons as you can with the filling. It makes somewhere between 20 to 30 pieces.

Full Recipe: Sweet Potato Wontons with Soy Garlic Dipping Sauce.

Here is a quick video I did showing how to wrap a wonton:

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Vegetable Potpie

On January 16, 2012, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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I now have to favorite must go places while in New York City. The first is Mario Batali’s Babbos. The second must stop is Candle Cafe, a vegan restaurant that is well-known in vegan and vegetarian circles.

My wife asked me what I wanted for Christmas and one of the top cookbooks was The Candle Cafe Cookbook (I already own Babbos’ cookbook.)

Tonight I made my first recipe, but made some modifications that took it from vegan to vegetarian, plus had to change out some vegetables. I also took a short cut that I’m sure led to a lesser potpie and went with a store bought Immaculate Baking Company pie crust.

I highly recommend you  buy The Candle Cafe Cookbook as it includes how to make this vegan and also includes a recipe for herbed pie crust that I’ll have to try when I have more time.

Vegetable Potpie

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 sweet potato, peeled and diced
1 medium red potato, peeled and diced
2 small celery stalks, finely diced
2 carrots, finely diced
1/4 cup frozen sweet peas
1/4 cup frozen corn
1/2 cup white wine
1 cup whole milk
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon dried tarragon
1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
1 bay leaf
1 rosemary sprig (or 1 tsp dried)
1 thyme sprig (or 1 tsp dried)
Salt and pepper to taste

Pie Crust, store bought or your favorite homemade recipe

Preheat oven at 325 degrees.  Lightly butter a pie plate.

Prepare the pie filling by heating the olive oil at medium heat and adding all of the vegetables and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes to soften, stirring often so vegetables do not stick to pan.  Add the wine, milk, butter, spices, salt and pepper and reduce heat to medium-low heat.  In a separate small cup put in 2 tablespoons of flour with just a little water and stir so there are no clumps of flour. Add flour water mixture to pan.  Let the filling cook for 20 minutes. Remove bay leaf when done.

Roll out pie crust and put into pie plate. Add the filling and cover with sheet of pie crust making sure to add a few slits to top.

Heat pie in oven for 30-40 minutes until top is golden brown.


 

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Parsnip and Sweet Potato Latkes

On November 22, 2011, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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I love latkes and with a refrigerator full of sweet potatoes I needed to find something new to do so I went to my favorite food blog – {Custom Made} Life. I had everything I needed, minus a parsnip to make the latkes recipe.

The only time consuming part here is shredding the sweet potatoes and parsnip. I reduced the recipe by half but found that I still needed the same amount of wheat flour, baking powder, salt, pepper and egg to have enough consistency to get the shredded vegetables to form a pancake.  I used half an onion, 2 sweet potatoes and 1 parsnip. This made 5 large latkes, plenty for Stephanie and me leaving some for lunch the following day.  The boys would probably eat this but they were already fed and tired when I arrived late from work.

You can serve this as a vegetarian meal with a bed of arugula salad and a light balsamic dressing with a couple latkes per person.  Tonight I went with some grass-fed steaks and fresh green beans.

Full Recipe: Parsnip + Sweet Potato Latkes

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Sweet Potato and Chickpea Tagine

On November 20, 2011, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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I missed the past couple weeks of going to the Farmer’s Market, but fortunately White Rock’s market was open last Saturday.  There was a great selection of vegetables available. I walked away with sweet potatoes, kale, arugula, red potatoes, green beans, tomatoes, and the most beautiful yellow zucchini I’ve seen this year.

With only a few days this week to cook, I probably over bought. Fortunately, I found some new options after doing a few Google searches on zucchini and sweet potatoes.  One of the finds is this Sweet Potato and Chickpea Tagine.

A Tagine is a clay dish that slowly cooks and insulates with steam rising out the top. I don’t have a Tagine so I just used my stock pot and it was fine. I’m not sure the flavor would’ve changed that much, but maybe the Tagine fans can prove me wrong.

Full Recipe at: Le Delicieux – Sweet Potato and Chickpea Tagine


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