STICKY MAPLE-GLAZED CHICKEN DRUMSTICKS

 

As a food blogger, I’m constantly concerned that something big might escape my notice, and that I’m going to walk into a café and ask very naïvely for those “tiny red cakes with the white icing”. How could I have not heard about red-velvet cupcakes? You get my rather dramatic drift..

(Un)fortunately for me though, I get a regular influx of email updates (mostly against my will) from numerous food magazines and blogs that assure me that there are new ingredients and recipe ideas popping into the market at an alarming rate, and that it’s impossible to be fully up-to-date with the nuances of this dynamic industry. Reassuring yes, but you ought to know about the red-velvets though!

Speaking of ideas popping up, using maple syrup instead of honey in this recipe came as a bit of a revelation to me. Basically you want the chicken drumsticks to caramelize in the heat, and the sugars in the syrup do just that for you. Also, sugar tends to caramelize at a higher temperature than maple syrup, so that only means more crunchy, charred bits on your chicken. It also lends its subtle woody taste to the smokiness of the paprika, which is a combination to die for. Kitchen alchemy at its finest. Continue reading

LEMON CURD PARFAITS

This is more of a good idea than it is a recipe. Honestly, it happens to be no more than an assembly job, really. Not having to pull out heavy machinery in order to make a sweet something is always a good sign in my book, and I’d jump at every opportunity to get the ingredients for it from a jar (lemon curd is the case in point here).

OK, let me clarify : I try to avoid tinned/canned foods as much as possible and despise those sneaky ginger-garlic paste tubs that squeeze their way into most homes. Completely frowned upon. But organic lemon curd from a local store is tolerable, non? Or so I’d like to think. I’m not one to preach about food habits, but like the saying goes, we are what we eat. That there provides plenty of food for thought!

This dessert is fresh, tart, sweet and crunchy all in one bite. Everything you want it to be. Also, if you want to add a layer of whipped cream or cream cheese, you’re smart..go for it!

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PAN-SEARED STEAK WITH HERB BUTTER

We all know that a good steak is a tried and tested classic that is simple to cook, as it is delicious to eat. For a slightly different take on it, I like to serve it with this gorgeous rosemary-garlic butter. Inspired by the French version of Steak frites – steak and fries – it is often served with some variation of herby butter generously dolloped over melting morsels of meat.

This meal feels so overly indulgent yet so quick to rustle up, that I feel like I have my steak-routine down pat  : I know exactly how long the steaks have to cook for, to attain my desired level of doneness and even how long it takes for the butter to soften, which mostly I have to admit is all quite a last-minute frenzy with me beating the hell out of it. Maybe I shouldn’t have started with how I had the routine down. But notwithstanding a bit of kitchen chaos, this dish still delivers every time. Total win.

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CRÈME CARAMEL WITH A HINT OF RUM

I go through these phases. For instance, when I discovered the joys of herby mushrooms on toast, I remember eating it almost everyday for more than 2 weeks straight! An addictive personality or an obsession, I can’t seem to figure out.

You have those dishes that come into your life with a bang and most often than not, leave with as big an impact (I got so sick of even looking at mushrooms for a long time after my fungi-obsession), and then there are those classics that you never tire of. This recipe I’m pleased to announce, falls under the latter category.

The voluptuous texture of the custard pairs wonderfully with the oh-so-slight booziness of the rum and the caramel topping. As clichéd as it may sound, it really is melt-in-the-mouth good! I personally love the addition of rum and feel like it really highlights the other flavours, but just a bit of vanilla would suffice nicely too. I made 6 ramekins’ worth for 3 of us and devoured half of those myself. When it tastes this good, who needs an excuse? Rhetorical question. Continue reading