Olive Oil

Guacamole night!

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I was a ridiculously happy person yesterday. No, I did not win the lottery (that would have probably killed me from a heart attack… a joyous one, though!), not yet. What happened was that I went to my local Redner’s and there they were. Looking at me, all ripe, plump and shiny. Staring into my soul like a connection from a previous life: a bunch of hass avocados. And not only that, my friends. They were on sale!

Well, what can I say? I am a simple person: small things make me happy. Also, I am a really broke person, so I basically can’t buy a lot of food unless it is on sale. Avocados are one of those foods. And I happen to be someone that used to eat them for breakfast, so being away from them makes me kinda sad.

Long story short, I won’t tell you about all the flirting and dirty talking between the avocados and me, because it would take a while and would probably make you kind of uncomfortable. I also refuse to go on and on about how funny it is that the word “avocado” comes from nahuatl “āhuacatl” and means “testicle”. I’ll just cut it short and say that I went back home with them, introduced them to my husband, and made a really nice guacamole for dinner.

Wanna see?

Ingredients

  • 2 small hass avocados
  • 1/4 cup onion
  • 3 small garlic cloves
  • 1/2 a fresh, ripe tomato
  • 1 lime (lemon works wonderfully too)
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • cilantro (optional: I don’t use it)

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Start by cutting your avocados in half, peel and pit them. If they are ripe enough, you should be able to just peel skin away, but a lot of people prefer to empty them with a spoon. Your choice, it doesn’t make a big difference for me, honestly.

Next, mash those beauties up with a fork. The size of the chunks depends, again, on your own preferences: I know people that like a chunky guac, and some that prefer to just use a food processor for a smoother dip. Your choice, my love.

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Now, mince the garlic very finely (I would totally use a garlic crusher, but I don’t own one).

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Do the same with the onion. I used about 1/4 cup. You can add more if you like onion, but keep in mind that fresh onion will mask the flavor of the avocado very quickly if you use too much. I just warned you because I adore onion and I’ve been there, eating homemade avocado-less guacamole with more sadness than pride.

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Next, cut the fresh tomato into small pieces.

 

Add the freshly cut garlic, onion and tomato to the mashed avocado. It’s time to season now!

Squeeze the lime and pour the juice into the mixture. Add the limey yumminess to the guacamole, along with the olive oil, salt and pepper. This would also be the time to add the cilantro but (don’t kill me!) I never do because neither my husband nor I really like it.

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And here you go! A super easy, healthy dip that goes well with a ton of things, and is full of vitamins, healthy fats, antioxidants and minerals. If sodium is a problem for you, you can just alter the recipe and not use salt on it. I always do it like that and to me, it tastes just as yummy!

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I hope you enjoy it!

 

 

Spinach and & Shroom Vegan Crunchy Salad

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Salad night! :3

I love fresh spinach, and I love mushrooms. And basically everything that has a crunch to it when you bite it. Also, it so happens that my husband isn’t really into either of those two main ingredients, so when I buy them, IT’S ALL FOR ME!

I know, I know. Marriage is all about love and sharing. But I can’t help it, ok? Sometimes a girl just wants a handful of mushrooms all to herself. The heart wants what the heart wants.

The lemony vinaigrette also makes me love this salad biiiig time. Not to mention that it’s full of vitamins and minerals, flavor, and is so damn crunchy and pretty.

Also: POPEYE’S SPINACH AND MARIO’S MUSHROOMS, PEOPLE. You just cannot say no to that combination, and you freaking know it.

Let’s proceed :3

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Baby Bella mushrooms
  • 1 cup fresh spinach
  • 1/4 cup Iceberg lettuce
  • 1/4 cup finely shredded cabbage
  • carrots
  • radishes
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper to taste

 

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Start by slicing those beauties.

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Add just a drizzle of olive oil in a heated pan.

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Next, cut the spinach. Make it small so you can mix all the ingredients together later.

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Cook your Mario mushrooms until they turn golden and the smell makes you wanna cry tears of joy. Tears of joy are a vital part of good cooking, just try not to get them in your dish, you probably don’t want the extra salt.

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Mise en place of our beautiful salad! I forgot to take a picture of the cutting of carrots and radishes. I am sorry, people. I know it would have been a really sexy picture.

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Now you just have to mix everything in your favorite bowl of plate, and enjoy the extreme yumminess of it. You’ll have to excuse me now, I have a crispy chicken salad to serve my husband, and this lovely salad for myself. I decorated mine with a couple of cherry tomatoes and some hemp and poppy seeds, just because.

 

 

Basic Southern Style Marinated Chicken

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There are a lot of ways to marinate chicken. Chicken meat has a great capacity to absorb flavors, and responds very well to tenderizing agents (lemon, milk, vinegar…).

This specific marinade is one that I use for my husband’s salads. It is slightly spicy, very aromatic, and SO FULL OF COLOR. I just love it. It also works great served with some fries or mashed potatoes, and some roasted corn.

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Also, marinating chicken is a very easy and convenient way of flavoring. You can just leave it to marinate in a tupper or a ziploc bag. You can also freeze meat that you are marinating, so when you want to use it you just have to thaw it and cook it.

Ingredients

– 2 chicken thighs, cut
-6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
-1 tbsp paprika
-1 tbsp southern style seasoning (I used Mr Dash)
-1/2 tbsp garlic powder
-Juice of one lemon/3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
-Salt and pepper to taste

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Start by cutting the chicken into small pieces. The smaller the pieces, the more flavor it will absorb, and the less time you will need to cook it.

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IMPORTANT NOTE: Do NOT use a metal tray to make your marinade. Metals react to the acids in the marinade and will change the flavor. Glass or plastic are fine, just keep in mind that plastic is harder to clean.

Here I used a plastic tupper to store it. I have a thing for danger.

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Start by juicing your lemon. “But Lali!”, you must be thinking, “you are using a lime! How dare you lie to me in such a shameless fashion!?” Well, my friend, I was just too broke to pay 40 cents for a lemon.

Just don’t tell my husband I had to use lime, please. He kinda hates it. He doesn’t need to know.

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Next, add the olive oil, salt and pepper. Bask in the glory of the olive oil. Or don’t if you don’t fancy it, I just need those minutes of sacred contemplation myself.

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Add the rest of spices and mix well, so the oil and lime  lemon can absorb the flavors.

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Starting to look pretty, huh?

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Now the final, crucial, most difficult step of them all. Just mix it all together in the container of your choosing. I use small tupperwares because I like keeping them in the fridge and occasionally stirring them a little bit. I also may not have the funds for ziploc bags.

And I honestly just love opening the tupper and smelling the goodness. I know I’m weird. I have learned how to live with that.

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Refrigerate for up to two days (the longer it sits, the more flavor it absorbs), or freeze your ready-to-use marinade for up to six months. Don’t be afraid of experimenting with the spices and proportions, marinades can be adapted to your preferences in flavor with just a little more of this or a little less of that.

BONUS TRACK> You don’t need to use all the marinade when you are cooking the chicken: save most of it and combine with some sugar or honey for a ridiculously awesome salad dressing.

I hope you enjoy it!