Tupperware Tuesday: Spicy Thai Basil Chicken

Tupperware Tuesday, a real look at the food I make each week. No fancy cameras, no lightbox contraption, no perfect angles. Just what’s for lunch.


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Adapted from Cooking Light, January 2013.

I found this recipe in the January 2013 issue and I’ve already made it a several times! A couple times as lettuce wraps (using Boston Bibb) and a couple times, as pictured above, mixed with quinoa. Both lettuce and quinoa provide a nice contrast in texture and a balance to the flavorful ground chicken and bell peppers. And while lettuce is great when I want to go low carb, I seriously love me some quinoa. I really don’t understand why Henry doesn’t like it. Quinoa is the best thing ever! I think I appreciate it more because it’s not as heavy as say, brown rice, and more importantly, doesn’t give me heartburn.

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I make: Mapo Tofu

When I found this recipe in Cooking Light Magazine, I welcomed the change since the only other Asian recipe we make involving ground pork is our Ground Pork with Green Beans. Is it weird that we don’t make a lot of Asian food?? Anyway, this recipe is traditionally made with soft tofu, but my preference is medium-firm because it holds up nicely while cooking and is soft enough when eaten. Also, though I love eating spicy foods, my stomach can’t handle that much heat anymore so the recipe, as is, might be too tame for some people (you can tell by the picture below since the sauce isn’t BRIGHT RED).

Adapted from Cooking Light Magazine (April 2010)

(yields ~6 servings)
Ingredients:

Meat
1 lb ground pork
1/2 tsp sugar
1 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp dried sweet basil
1 tsp less-sodium soy sauce

1 tbsp canola oil
1 tbsp minced garlic
1/2 tbsp minced ginger
1 (14 oz) package medium firm tofu, drained

Sauce
2 tbsp Sriracha (increase as desired)
1 1/2 tbsp mirin
1 tbsp black bean garlic sauce
2 tsp sugar
2 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
2 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp less-sodium soy sauce
2 tsp chili oil (increase as desired)

White rice
Scallions for garnish

Directions:
1. Place tofu on paper towel; cover with paper towel. Top with heavy skillet and let stand 30 minutes. (One reason why medium firm tofu works better vs. soft tofu, plus I just prefer firmer tofu anyway). Cut tofu in 1 inch cubes.
2. Season meat: Combine all ingredients under “Meat” section. Let rest for 10 minutes.
3. Sauce: Combine Sriracha through sugar in one bowl. Combine chicken broth through chili oil in another bowl; whisk until smooth.
4. Heat canola oil in a large skillet (or wok) over medium heat.
5. Add garlic and ginger; stir-fry for about 2 minutes.
6. Add pork; stir-fry for 5 minutes or until almost cooked through.
7. Add Sriracha mixture; combine thoroughly and cook for 1 minute.
8. Add broth mixture; bring to a boil and cook until sauce thickens.
9. Stir in tofu.
10. Serve over white rice and garnish with green onions.

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No beauty shot this time – just straight out of the wok, but you get the point 🙂

Note: I changed the ratio of tofu to ground pork because Henry specifically requested less tofu.

Bon appetit!

I Make: Jerk Chicken Drumsticks

Yes, you read correctly. Drumsticks. As in dark meat. As in the kind of meat I said I didn’t like.

Why did I do it? I wanted to save money. I didn’t want to pay $3.99 for chicken breast, so I caved. $0.99 a pound for chicken thighs and drumsticks? Alright, I’m in.

(yields ~3-4 servings)
Ingredients:
10 thin scallions, coarsely chopped
1 habanero chile, seeded and coarsely chopped (DO NOT SUBSTITUTE)
2 tbs. distilled white wine vinegar
1 tbs. fresh thyme leaves
3 medium garlic cloves, chopped
1 1/4 tsp. ground allspice
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
10 chicken drumsticks (~3.5 lbs)
Cooking spray

Directions:
1. Add scallions, habanero, vinegar, thyme, garlic, allspice, pinch of salt and pepper into food processor. Pulse to a thick paste.
2. Transfer paste into large ziplock bag and add drumsticks. Toss to coat and let stand for about 15 to 20 minutes.
3. Make sure rack is in the center of the oven and turn the broiler on high.
4. You can use a broiler pan to ensure crispiness, but I used a regular baking pan and the drumsticks turned out fine. Foil the pan and coat generously with cooking spray.
5. Season both sides of the drumstick with salt and pepper. Arrange on the baking pan, skin side down.
6. Broil chicken for 10 minutes, turn over, and continue to broil until nicely browned in spots (from the paste) ~ 20 minutes total.

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If you have a ginormous food processor like me, then cleaning might be a pain in the ass, but trust me, this recipe is totally worth it! You can make these babies for parties, bbqs, tail-gating, etc. The heat is not as intense as you would think since the habanero is seeded, but if you want more heat, just coarsely chop the habanero with seeds and add to the food processor.

Bon Appetit!