Tag Archives: chicken

Baked chicken legs

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Chicken legs.

Lately, cooking lunch consisted of a choice between chicken legs and a whole chicken. I usually bake them in the oven – all I need to prepare is the marinade. This one uses mustard and thyme.

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Chicken thigh skewers

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Chicken skewers with red onion, bell pepper and tomatoes.

First thing to know about this recipe: you can (almost) never go wrong with it. Second, it takes 10 minutes to prep everything and 45 minutes to cook. Third: it is really good!

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How to cook liver and love it: Chicken liver loaf

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Chicken liver loaf, cut into cubes.

Chicken liver is not a favorite item on the menu in Calgary. Maybe it’s because people feel internal organs – such as liver, heart, kidney – are somewhat disgusting. Well, I disagree – some can be very tasty, and although you may not want to make them a permanent staple in your diet (high in cholesterol), you may still want to enjoy them every now and then to diversify your menu.
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The meat lover’s paradise: Gaucho Brazilian Barbeque

Gaucho Menu

Gaucho Brazilian Barbeque has recently moved to a new location, across from Chinook Mall (5920 Macleod Trail SW, Calgary). If you’ve been to the old place, you’ll appreciate the new design: urban and chic. They’ve also updated the menu, so you now have more of a choice (although it’s quite debatable whether you actually needed more choice in this restaurant…).

For those who have no idea what Gaucho is, then get ready for the ultimate meat experience. For $35/ person, you get to eat as much meat and salad as you want and can eat (limit of 2 hours).

But Gaucho is more than simply meat: it is a meat experience. All the meats – and you’ll sample beef, pork, lamb and chicken – are freshly BBQ-ed. The staff comes with huge meat skewers at your table, and cuts a little bit of everything for you.

I wouldn’t know what to recommend first: the beef or the chicken wrapped in bacon? The pork or the tender lamb? The only thing I found too heavy for my taste was a type of sausage. Otherwise, the salads were great, the polenta and fries treats they brought at our table were really tasty, and the drinks menu seemed to please everyone.

For two people, the dinner bill came at $110 with a half bottle of wine, one sambuca and a soft drink. If you didn’t go to Gaucho’s before, it’s really worth trying it out!

Gaucho Brazilian Barbecue on Urbanspoon

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Moussaka

For me, this dish has two main advantages: it’s easy and you can make a huge pot and refrigerate it for a week. You can also add more veggies – for instance, you can replace the potatoes (or one of the potato layers) with eggplants.  For the basic version, you’ll need: 400 gr minced meat (I use a mixture of pork and beef, but if you want the healthy option, go for chicken or turkey), 6 large potatoes, 1 onion, 4 garlic cloves, 3-4 tomatoes and 1 small can of tomato sauce, 2 carrots (grated), cooking wine, oil, salt, pepper, basil, parsley (plus any other spices you like with your meat).

Instructions

  • Prepare the meat: saute chopped onion and garlic. You can either put the meat in the frying pan, add spices and cooking wine and sear for 2-3 minutes, or simply mix in a bowl the meat with the onion, garlic, spices and cooking wine. Add grated carrots for extra taste. Set aside.
  • Peel potatoes and slice them (big, round slices). In a big oven proof dish, arrange potatoes into one layer.
  • Spoon one layer of meat over the potatoes.
  • Slice tomatoes and layer them on top of the meat.
  • Finish with a second layer of potatoes.
  • Add tomato sauce. If needed, use some more water (you want the whole dish to have enough liquid, otherwise it will dry up in the oven).
  • Put in the oven for 45 minutes to one hour (or until potatoes are tender). My advice is to keep the lid on, otherwise the top layer will get really dry.
  • Serve warm with cold sour cream or yogurt on top.

Beef Potato Moussaka on Foodista

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Stuffed Peppers and Tomatoes

Three pepper by chefranden

Stuffed peppers and tomatoes are more easier to make than it may sound. You’ll need: 3 bell peppers, 3 large tomatoes, 3 Roma tomatoes, 1 onion, 2-3 garlic cloves, 300-400 gr. ground meat (I prefer a mixture of pork and beef, but it works well with any meat or, if vegetarian, with rice and mushrooms), basil, thyme, oregano, parsley, salt, pepper, oil and chicken/ vegetable stock (if you don’t have stock, just dissolve 1 maggie cube in water or use vegeta).

Instructions:

  1. Prepare the bell peppers and the large tomatoes: remove tops, then discard seeds (with the tomatoes, use a teaspoon and spoon out the contents). Put aside.
  2. Prepare the meat: finely cut onion and fry it for 1-2 minutes in a large pan with a bit of oil. Add the garlic, finely chopped or crushed, then add the meat and stir for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Remove from oven and put in a large bowl. Add all the spices (basil, oregano, thyme, parsley) and salt and pepper and mix well.
  4. Spoon meat mixture into hollow peppers and tomatoes (if using a mixture of rice and mushrooms, follow exactly the same steps, but do not fill your peppers and tomatoes completely, because rice will expand a bit). Place them in a cooking pot.
  5. Remove skin from the remaining Roma tomatoes (put them in boiling water for 1-2 minutes), then cut and add to the pot.
  6. Add stock to cover the peppers.
  7. Cook on stove for 30 minutes, medium heat. After it has boiled, move to oven (350F) for some 30 minutes.
  8. Serve hot with sour cream on top.
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Meat Shops in Calgary

Organic, free range, naturally raised… New categories for consumers concerned with genetically modified foods, growth hormones and antibiotics in their meat. I confess to getting a bit lost here. So, here’s a list of meat stores in Calgary and the labels they claim for their meat. It’s a list in progress, so feel free to suggest stores I’ve missed and to check it again and again over time…

  • Second to None Meats – three stores available on 4th St SW (#3-2100 4th St SW), Macleod Trail South (7400 Macleod Trail South) and Bowness (4612 Bowness Road NW). Sells Alberta beef from the Canadian Celtic Cattle Company which is labeled ‘naturally grown’ – according to producers, this means no hormones, no steroids, no antibiotics used in the finishing period (what does that mean???). The pork is available from Broek Pork Acres and is labeled no antibiotics, no growth hormones, no animal by-products. The chicken is brought from Maple Hill farms in BC and is labeled free range, no animal by-products, no medication. The eggs are certified organic free-range. You can also find a range of home-cooked meals (I was told the meat pies and the cabbage rolls are absolutely delicious).
  • Spragg’s Meat Shop at Calgary Farmers’ Market – Sells pork labeled free range – according to producers, this means raised outside, no hormones and no antibiotics in the feed (does it mean they can be injected though?). Delicious sausages and wide variety of pork meats.
  • Grazin Acres at Calgary Farmers’ Market – Sells pork, chicken, turkey, duck, lamb and eggs. All labeled organic, no hormones, no growth hormones. In my opinion, cheapest organic eggs (4.99 the extra large 12 eggs pack). A small leaflet from the producers clarifies the following terms: certified organic (no growth hormones, medication, free run, fed certified organic grains), natural (no hormones and medication), free range/ run (animals raised able to walk around).
  • Sun Works Farm at Calgary Farmers’ Market – Sells chicken, turkey, pork, beef, and bison. The meats are certified organic, and the eggs are organic and free range. I love the ground bison – a small pack is around $5 and it’s enough to prepare 4 servings of the meatballs I was talking about here. They also sell bones for stock, which I find useful.
  • Hoven Farms at Calgary Farmers’ Market – Sells Alberta beef, certified organic – according to producers, this means no antibiotics, no artificial hormones (see comment below from producer), fed with chemicals-free grass. You can also get the beef bones for stock.
  • Regina’s Fine Meats at Crossroads Market – Sells Alberta pork, chicken and a good selection of smoked meats and sausages. A poster at the shop indicates that the meat was not medicated, but doesn’t clarify what this means. The website says that the sausages have no msg, no nitrates, no binders or fillers.
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Chicken Rolls with Red Onion, Balsamic Vinegar and Thyme

A recipe I got from Lucullian delights. Tried it yesterday, using boneless chicken thighs. It is quite easy to make,  and you don’t need too many ingredients: 1 red onion, oil and balsamic vinegar, and thyme. A very nice taste (a bit sweet from the onion, with a nice thyme flavor) – quite a good alternative if you are bored with your usual way of cooking chicken.

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