Posts Tagged cilantro

3 Year Blogiversary!

Crispy Salmon Tacos | Gorging George

I may have neglected the blog over the the past 6 months, but you can bet I wouldn’t forget it’s 3 year anniversary! Compared to last year, there hasn’t been as many noteworthy blog-happenings. However, there were some really delicious and popular posts from the past year, such as this Red & White Sangria to celebrate Canada Day, the zesty Tequila Lime Bison Tacos, and some tasty Cranberry, Almond & Date Power Bars. Of course the biggest thing to happen for Kyle and I was the birth of our daughter in October; not exactly blog related, but being busy with her has definitely been the main reason the blogging has slowed down. The past six months with her have been so amazing … and the little bean has started to eat real food, so you can imagine how exciting that is for someone as food crazed as I! I’m sure we’ll be sharing lots of fun foods that we make with her as she grows up. Thanks again for another great year – and for sticking around even after the reduction in posts!

Crispy Salmon Tacos | Gorging George

Crispy Salmon Tacos | Gorging George

Crispy Salmon Tacos | Gorging George

To celebrate this year, I figured why not cook up a good ‘ol Gorging George favourite? Tacos! Always my back up for those busy, “I-Haven’t-a-Clue-What-to-Cook” kind of days (I even have a pork shoulder currently braising away to pile onto some tortillas for tonight’s dinner). I’ve had beef, pork, bison, some vegetarian tacos and even enchiladas on the blog, but I have yet to share a fish taco. So I’m finally posting a recipe for some salmon tacos that I made a few months ago. They are crispy and spicy, and topped with a mound of freshly limed cabbage & jalapenos, some pickled red onions, creamy avocado, salty feta and a sour cream that has a slight kick to it. A great treat for a celebration or even a weeknight meal. If you don’t have dinner plans this long weekend, I suggest you get yourself to the grocery store ASAP to grab all the ingredients to make these – they will not disappoint. Here’s to another year of sharing my favourite recipes with you!

Crispy Salmon Tacos | Gorging George

Crispy Salmon Tacos | Gorging George

Crispy Chipotle Salmon Tacos

Note – I just listed “kosher salt” as an ingredient, omitting the quantity, as it’s used often throughout the recipe to season everything. I am assuming that you have at least 1 Tbsp of salt kicking around. If you don’t have any kosher salt and have to use Table Salt, please reduce the amount slightly as the smaller granules would make everything rather salty if used in the same quantity.

1/2 small red onion, sliced
red wine vinegar
kosher salt
8 flour tortillas
1 lb  centre-cut salmon filet
1 1/2 – 2 tsp chipotle chili powder, divided
pepper
2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
2 eggs
1 cup panko
3 cups green cabbage, thinly sliced
1 jalapeno, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
1 juicy lime (or 2 if they are not juicy)
1 cup sour cream
1 avocado, pitted & sliced
1/2 cup feta, diced

Fill a mason jar or small container with the sliced red onion. Fill it up halfway with red wine vinegar. Add 1 tsp of salt and fill the rest of the jar with water. Allow to “pickle” while you make the tacos.

Heat your tortillas according to package instructions. Keep warm.

Heat 1 Tbsp of the olive oil over medium heat in a large non-stick pan. Slice the salmon into 8 equal strips (they should be around 3/4″ wide each). Sprinkle all the salmon pieces evenly with 1 tsp of the chipotle chili powder and 1/4 tsp salt and pepper to taste. Whisk the 2 eggs together in a medium dish and pour the panko into another medium dish; season both with salt and pepper.

Working with one piece of fish at a time, first dip the fish in the eggs then into the panko mixture, pressing all the sides gently to ensure they are evenly covered. Place the fish gently into the hot pan. Repeat with remaining fish pieces. You don’t want to crowd the pan, so if yours is not large enough, work in 2 batches. Cook for about 8 minutes, flipping once after 4 minutes to ensure both sides get golden brown. (If you like, you can quickly fry the two outer edges to crisp them up) Remove the cooked fish to a paper towel lined plate.

Meanwhile, combine the cabbage, jalapenos, cilantro, juice of 1 lime, 1 Tbsp olive oil and 1 tsp salt in a medium bowl, mixing thoroughly; set aside. In a small bowl stir together the sour cream and remaining chipotle chili powder – use 1/2 tsp to keep it mild, or a full tsp if you like a lot of heat!

Construct the tacos: smear each tortilla with some of the sour cream mixture, then top with a piece of salmon, some of the cabbage mix, pickled onions, avocado and feta. Devour.

Makes 8 tacos.

 

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Anniversary Tacos

It’s been a month since Kyle and I celebrated 3 wonderful years of marriage to one another. Which is another example of how long it takes me to get the recipes from our dinner table to the blog. But they get here, so I’m glad that no one is really complaining. Thanks for your patience friends!

For anniversary dinners we could spend a fortune on a fancy-plated feast and an overpriced bottle of wine at a crowded restaurant, or even spend a day of roasting and braising and sauteing and all sorts of kitchen techniques to get a 5-star menu dish on our own table. But that’s not us. Yes, we enjoy that food immensely – when we’re in the mood, but for anniversaries, why not eat the food that reflects who are? If you have perused this site often, you’ve likely deciphered that tacos are a favourite of ours, and for good reason. They could easily describe our relationship: easy (but requiring a little elbow grease to be really good); spicy; sometimes soft (like gentle embraces), sometimes hard-shelled (like we both can be when we’re both right…); full of contrasting and complimentary ingredients; and never boring.

Now, of course I wasn’t thinking about all those things when I decided to make Braised Beef Tacos for our anniversary dinner. I was thinking: “Hey, it’s a weekday, so I want something quick and requiring little thought; but I want something good and that we love.” So a large hunk of beef rib roast was purchased and coddled into submission in my slowcooker. After many hours of braising away in a smokey chipotle sauce, I shredded the beef and returned it to sop up all the flavourful juices. Then I opened a bottle of our favourite red to let it breathe while I awaited Kyle’s late-night return from from a week-long trip for work (great way to build up anticipation for an anniversary eh?!?).

Braised Beef Tacos

For the Beef
1 sweet onion, sliced
3 lb beef rib roast
kosher salt & pepper
1-2 Tbsp vegetable oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
3-4 chipotle chilis (canned), chopped
1 cup beef broth (gluten free)
19 oz can diced tomatoes
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp worchestershire sauce (gluten free)
1 Tbsp chili powder
1/2 Tbsp cumin powder
1 tsp dried oregano

For the Tacos
10-12 6″ corn tortillas
1/2 cup purple cabbage, thinly sliced
1/4 cup red onion, thinly sliced
1 avocado, sliced
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
jar of tomatillo (green) salsa
1/2 lime, cut into wedges

Line the bottom of a slow cooker with the sliced onions.

Heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed saute pan over medium-high heat. Generously season the beef with salt and pepper. Add the beef roast to the pan and brown, turning once (no need to brown all sides – but go to town if you’d like to). This should take about 8-10 minutes total, as you want to get a good crust on the meat. Remove the meat to the slow cooker, placing on top of the sliced onions.

In a medium bowl, combine the remaining ingredients (garlic through oregano). Pour this mixture over the beef rib roast. Place lid on slow cooker and turn onto LOW. Cook for 8-10 hours, until the beef roast pulls apart easily with a fork (Alternatively, you can cook this for 5-6 hours on HIGH if you’re in a rush).

Remove the beef from the slow cooker to a large cutting board or platter. Allow to cool slightly. Meanwhile, strain the juices from the slow cooker into a saucepan. Strain as much of the fat from the top of the juices as you can (if you have a gravy separator, use it here to drain the fat). Bring the juices to a boil, then reduce the heat and allow to simmer for about 10 minutes to reduce the sauce slightly. While the sauce is reducing, shred the beef using two forks. Return the beef and sauce to the slow cooker and place on WARM until ready to eat. You can add some of the strained tomatoes and onions if you like as well. *You can also skip the step of straining the juices and reducing the sauce and simply add the shredded beef back into the slow cooker if you please.

To serve: prepare corn tortillas according to directions. Top tortillas with some of the shredded beef and some juices, and top with any toppings you desire – I suggested some above (cabbage through cilantro), but feel free to add what you like.

Makes 10-12 tacos.

You may have some beef leftover; so throw it in some chili or enchiladas; or eat it with some eggs in the morning – whatever your little heart desires.

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Spicy Black Bean & Cheese Enchiladas

Kyle has been away again, and I thought that would mean I’d be on here posting up a storm; trying to keep myself busy. But this is the first post since he left – and he’s back tomorrow, so I guess those promises to myself didn’t quite pan out. Oh well. Instead I enjoyed some time spent with my family, as my aunt and uncle were in town from Sherwood Park, AB to help out with packing up my grandmother’s apartment for her upcoming move. It was a great week spent catching up.

It can be so hard to pack up your life for a move, and especially when family is involved. So I give kudos to my grandmother for being a trooper through the entire process. She looked exhausted every night; after a long days of people asking her what she was would give away and what she would be keeping to bring into her new, smaller digs. Luckily, her emotionally hard work was rewarded each night by a home-cooked meal and some quality time spent with family. And the bonus is that the rest of us got to enjoy the family time and great food as well!

But I suppose this has nothing to do with today’s recipe. On to the enchiladas! A tasty dish of filled and rolled corn tortillas, smothered in sauce and cheese. These were devoured by Kyle and I with frosty Mexican beers on a night that was just cool enough to crank up the heat on the oven. So we took full advantage of it to prepare this comforting meal. My easy interpretation involves zero meat (sorry carnivores), a prepared tomato sauce, some beans and chiles, and lots of cheesiness. Because we all need some cheesiness in our lives. Although I can’t wait for you to try this, part of me secretly hopes it’ll be a while still before the mercury dips back down – I’m digging the heat!

Spicy Black Bean & Cheese Enchiladas

Be careful not to walk away while you’re frying the corn tortillas; otherwise you will end up with a few crunchy ones – which aren’t as easy to roll. All you’re looking for is for the tortilla to cook and soften up – you don’t want taco chips. Is this step necessary? I would say yes. Corn tortillas need to be softened in order to curl them up around a filling, and the best way to accomplish this is by giving them a nice oil batch. Feel free to share your “healthier” methods if you prepare your tortillas in a different way. And please no flour tortillas. To make this a super simple dish to prepare, we cheated and used a canned enchilada sauce, but of course you can go ahead and make your own. 

1 Tbsp vegetable oil
10 – 12 6″ corn tortillas (whatever amount is in the pack you buy)
2 1/2 cups cheese, shredded (I used mix of cheddar and monterey jack cheese) – divided
1 cup cooked black beans, rinsed and drained if from a can
1/2 cup white onion, shredded
1/2 cup sour cream (full fat to ensure it’s gluten-free)
1 4 oz can of green chilis
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp chipotle chili powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chili flakes
1/8 tsp pepper
1/2 cup red enchilada sauce
juice of 1/2 a lime
2 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
1 red chili, sliced

Preheat oven to 400ºF. Spray a baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.

Heat the vegetable oil over medium heat in a non-stick pan. Cook one tortilla at a time in the oil for about 20-30 seconds per side or until softened. Drain on paper towel-lined plate.

Meanwhile, combine 2 cups of the cheese, plus the next 10 ingredients (black beans through pepper) in  large bowl – mix well. Spoon out about 1/4 cup of the black bean mixture onto each corn tortilla and roll up. Line the prepared baking dish with the rolled corn tortillas. If there is any left over black bean and cheese mixture, spread it out over the tortillas. Once all the tortillas are filled and rolled, pour over the enchilada sauce then top with the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese.

Bake the enchiladas for 15 minutes in the prepared oven. Remove from oven, and sprinkle over the lime juice; let sit for 5 minutes. Top with the cilantro and sliced chili pepper. Serve hot.

Serves 3-4.

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Fiery Noodle Salad

Before Christmas I got hooked on Jamie Oliver’s new show – Jamie’s Meals in Minutes. I’m sure by now it’s no secret that I have a wee crush on Jamie Oliver. I think Kyle’s okay with this since it transforms into awesome meals that he gets to enjoy. I’ve never been disappointed by any dish I’ve made based on Jamie Oliver’s recipes, but I was even more excited about the premise of the show: a full course dinner (main and sides), plus usually a dessert, all on the table in about 30 minutes; from start to finish. And no “pre-made” crap goes into this, it’s all real good food. He explains that with  some organization and planning ahead of time, you can bang out home-cooked meals every night.

So, after watching nearly every episode by mid-November, I was pining over the cookbook. I tried a number of the meals that were on the show from memory, but I knew there were going to be lots of other delicious meals in the book. Luckily I got it as a gift from Kyle’s dad, step-mom & sister (thanks guys!), and ever since we’ve been cooking up fantastic meals fairly quickly. (Jamie reminds people in the introduction that the first time cooking a meal may take a bit longer than 30 minutes while you get the hang of it and are reading the recipe, but after cooking something once or twice the meals should be on the table in no time)

This book is so good, that I stopped “tagging” the recipes I wanted to try (as I usually do as I read through cookbooks) because I was tagging every single page. Which means I’ve resolved to just make everything in the book – I’m not complaining. This Fiery Noodle Salad is a quick dish that I made for a couple friends and Kyle back in the fall – it’s simple enough that I didn’t need a recipe to remind myself what’s in it. I also served it with the Chicken Satay skewers that he made along with it on his show (also very tasty and easy). This salad is great for leftovers since you can pack some away for lunch – maybe add some more leftover or rotisserie chicken or black beans for some protein.

Fiery Noodle Salad

Adapted from Jamie Oliver’s Meals in Minutes by Jamie Oliver

227 grams (8oz) steamed Chinese egg noodles (found in refrigerated section of grocery store)
1/2 cup unsalted cashews
1/2 small red onion, small diced
2 fresh chiles, mince 1 and slice the remaining chile
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
3 scallions, sliced
juice from 1-2 limes
1 Tbsp light soy sauce (like Kikkoman)
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp fish sauce
1 tsp honey

Boil the noodles as per directions (about 2-3 minutes), drain and rinse under cold water; place noodles into a large serving bowl. Add the red onion, the minced chiles, cilantro and scallions to the noodles. Lightly toss to combine.

Drizzle the soy sauce, olive oil, sesame oil, fish sauce and honey over the noodles. Toss everything together making sure all the noodles are coated with the “dressing” – I find this is much easier to do with your hands. (Alternately you can mix all the dressing ingredients together in a small bowl first, then pour the mixed dressing over the noodles…but this just creates more mess, so I skip this step)

Meanwhile, toast the cashews over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until you can start to smell them and they start to get some colour; shaking the pan a few times while they toast. If you like, you can either roughly chop the cashews or leave them whole.

Top the salad with the cashews and chile slices. Serve at room temperature or cold.

Serve 4-6.

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