Tag Archives: Carrot

Stretching your pesos: Fat Dude’s Mexican Fiesta, Part 7—Shrimp fried Mexican rice

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This is the last post of my “Stretching your pesos” series, which I essentially wrote because I made too much chicken for Nadia’s cousins and I had to figure out what to do with it.

On a small scale, the series taught me to use my leftovers to their full extent. And that’s important to do, considering people in this world are starving while Americans waste 33 million tons of food annually, according to NPR.

I only had a few shrimp, some Mexican rice and pickled red onion in the fridge by the end of this experiment, and I wanted to mix it up a bit, so I took inspiration from Orange County’s Dos Chinos food truck which fuses Asian and Mexican cuisines.

Enter: Shrimp fried Mexican rice.

I found the blueprint at Epicurious:

  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 bunch scallions, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup leftover pork, chicken, or beef, diced
  • 1 cup frozen peas and carrots, thawed (plus any leftover vegetables you have on hand)
  • 4 cups cold cooked white or brown rice (In this case Mexican rice, recipe here)
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste

The recipe makes four servings, but here’s a couple of ways to make it a little healthier if you aren’t using leftovers like I was: Use 2-3 cups of rice, so each person has less than 1 cup, with 1/2 cup per person being the target–and go brown rice; use low-sodium soy sauce. You can also reduce the oil, but this rice does need to crisp and you’re at less than 1 T per person. Try using 2 T, and add a tablespoon if necessary.

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Follow the link above for the full step by step, but the method is fairly simple and the result far less greasy than any box of takeout I’ve ever brought home.

You start by cooking the egg and the scallions with some of the oil. Then the meat and veggies get tossed in the pan and scrambled around. The rest of the oil goes in to crisp up the rice and you wrap it up by adding a mixture of soy sauce and water to flavor the rice.

Garnish with fresh cilantro and lime, and dig in.

Game Day Grub: Baked chicken wings and homemade ranch

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NFL playoffs are in full swing so it’s been hard to avoid a nonstop run of commercials with all the best-worst foods like burgers, pizza and chicken wings.

Of all the cookbooks I’ve read, the best resource for bar-food made healthy is Men’s Health series of “Cook This, Not That” books.

So instead of going out for these greasy goodies I turned to the handy little guides for burgers and Buffalo wings.

I’ll put up the burger later this week, but I’m more excited for the wings. The sauce is equal parts hot sauce and butter, plus a fair amount of fresh lemon juice for an acidic zip. Tip: If you run out of fresh lemon, as I did when I used this recipe again on chicken legs, throw in half the amount of white vinegar instead.

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They pair it a Greek yogurt-based blue cheese dip, but we went with a healthy homemade ranch dressing (equal parts olive-oil mayo and Greek yogurt with onion powder, garlic powder and fresh parsley and chive). That recipe is also from the books, but a different one than the wings recipe is in.

Click here for the Cook This, Not That Buffalo chicken wings recipe.

Week 33, Juice 2: Beet-fennel-O.J.

I’ve seen beets with oranges plenty of times on the menu, so it’s not much of a stretch to throw beets and oranges into the juicer together. The additions of zippy anise, earthy spinach and sweet carrots make this the most vegetal juice on our menu–kind of like V8 but better … more like V12.

Keep reading for the recipe. Continue reading Week 33, Juice 2: Beet-fennel-O.J.

Week 33, Juice 1: The Green-Apple

This was my first official “juice” so first, a few thoughts: I don’t know if it’s odd or not, but one of my favorite things to do in the kitchen is cut fruits and vegetables. It’s calming to me, so, upfront, I really enjoy this aspect of making juice. Also, it’s pretty crazy to see how much stuff goes into the machine compared to how much comes out the other side, but it’s a good thing when you think about it: how else could I get this many fruits and veggies in one sitting?

And I picked a good juice from the menu to start with. I was apprehensive of this whole ginger-in-my-juice thing, but there’s so much pineapple in here that the end result of this mix is a sweet start with just a hint of all the great green stuff hiding within.

Keep reading for the recipe. Continue reading Week 33, Juice 1: The Green-Apple

Week 32, Meal 2: Sweet and sour chicken

Chef Brian’s pretty awesome at “magic tricks,” or at least that’s what I call them. Every once in a while, he’ll introduce a new technique to me that blows my mind. Some of my favorite tricks of his include corn pudding and salsa verde broth; Week 32, Meal 2: Italian Sweet and Sour chicken over sauteed kale with balsamic raisins and toasted pine nuts adds a new one to the repertorie: reconstituted raisins, plumped up fat and juicy with acidic balsamic vinegar.

Paired with a sticky glaze on skinless chicken thighs, the tart raisins provide perfect contrast in this sweet, sour and nutty dish.

Continue reading Week 32, Meal 2: Sweet and sour chicken

Week 32: Killer kale

Off the top of my head, I can come up with a shortlist of foods we should all have regularly: blueberries, almonds, green tea, dark chocolate, salmon and … kale. I hardly ever ate it before, but the leafy green has been used a few times here on Fat Dude.

Full of vitamins and minerals, kale is a neutral green that goes well in a variety of dishes. That’s why Chef Brian decided to spotlight kale with our Week 32 menu:

Week 32, Meal 1: Honey-sherry marinated chicken over roasted butternut squash, kale and ciopolini onion

Week 32, Meal 2: Italian Sweet and Sour chicken over sauteed kale with balsamic raisins and toasted pine nuts

Week 32, Meal 3: Citrus and Adobo Marinated Tuna over roasted fingerlings, kale, and tomatoes with garlic-chile oil and adobo citrus sour cream

Each recipe makes two portions. Keep reading for the full shopping list.

Continue reading Week 32: Killer kale

Week 30, Meal 2: Super fly stir fry

I complained to Chef Brian when he sent me the vegetarian menu because I’m just the worst when it comes to stir fry. I’ve burned the bottom out of two woks and anything I make in one turns into soy-flavored charcoal.

I borrowed a good wok from my buddy Kevin, all the stars aligned, and I knocked this one out of the park (thanks to a stellar recipe, for sure). The sauce is the star here–tangy, spicy, sweet–and the tofu, slightly crisp from a flash fry in the wok, soaks all of it up.

Here’s Week 30, Meal 2: Veggie-tofu stir fry with umeboshi plum vinegar soy sauce.

Continue reading Week 30, Meal 2: Super fly stir fry

Menu 30: Veggin’ out

I’m back in the kitchen this week after a long time away from Chef Brian’s menus, and while I have been cooking blog repeats and simple meals at home, I’m definitely glad to be back in the Fat Dude kitchen.

Chef Brian wrote this menu some time ago, meant as a way to get me back into healthy eating after I let my waistline go to hell for the last couple of months of 2011.

But, as it turns out, I don’t need a kick start because I’ve been hitting the gym since the beginning of the year. And now that I have an exercise routine down, it’s time to get the knives out once again. Here’s what’s cooking for Menu 30: Veggin’ out:

Week 30, Meal 1: Black bean and spinach enchiladas verde

Week 30, Meal 2: Veggie-tofu stir fry with umeboshi plum vinegar soy sauce

Week 30, Meal 3: Vegetarian paella

As always, each recipe makes 2 servings, though you might have some leftovers with these recipes. But when has that ever been a bad thing? Follow the link the shopping list. Continue reading Menu 30: Veggin’ out

Week 27, Meal 3: No salt. No pepper. All flavor!

Ever since I started cooking, I’ve been told that salt and pepper are the building blocks of flavor. This is especially true for me, considering much of the food is simply seasoned with just salt and pepper, and then thrown on the grill.

But for the first time all blog long, we’re doing a recipe that has no salt (soy and fish sauces yes, but no added salt) and no pepper.  It may sound naive, but I was really surprised at how much flavor can be built without those two ingredients.

This also marks the first time we’re using catfish on the blog, and it’s definitely the first time I’ve had catfish that wasn’t battered and fried. On the whole, it’s a pretty delicious, mild fish.

A delicious fish, with a Thai twist. Here’s Week 27, Meal 3: Grilled catfish with Thai tamarind-chile sauce over cabbage slaw. Continue reading Week 27, Meal 3: No salt. No pepper. All flavor!

Week 27: Thai-m for Thai

Chef Brian’s put out quite a few ethnic menus in the past–Italian, Mexican and Vietnamese dishes come to mind most–but one country he’s left alone until now  is Thailand.

“It kinda surprises me that I haven’t done any Thai menus considering I love it so much, but now is as good a time as any,” he wrote to me.

True, this blog was born at a Thai restaurant–in many people’s opinions one of the best, if not the best in the country–yet we’ve failed to bring some of  those flavors into the Fat Dude kitchen.

No longer. Here’s what’s cooking:

Week 27, Meal 1: Shrimp green curry

Week 27, Meal 2: Tom Kha Gai

Week 27, Meal 3: Grilled catfish with Thai tamarind-chile sauce over cabbage slaw

The seafood recipes make two portions and the Tom Kha Gai soup recipe makes four portions. Follow the jump for the shopping list. Continue reading Week 27: Thai-m for Thai

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