Thursday, February 27, 2014

Chicken and Rice

If you're anything like me, there is always rice and frozen chicken hanging around. I always make it in a pinch or if I just feel like making something quickly. I really wanted to change it up so I found this recipe where else... I really enjoyed this and Brian tried saffron for the first time. 


  • 3 1/2 pounds chicken-cut into pieces
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 spanish onion-roughly chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper-roughly chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste (i used a sofrito mix by goya)
  • 2 1/2 cups rice
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 pinch saffron
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 1/4 cup chopped green olives 
  • fresh chopped parsley to garnish
  • fresh chopped cilantro to garnish
Jalapeno Aioli
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 jalapeno-finely minced
  • 1 clove garlic-finely minced
  • 1 lime-juiced and zested
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Heat a dutch oven over medium high with a few tbsp of olive oil. Season the chicken liberally with salt and pepper on all sides. Cook until golden on all sides, about 10 min. Remove from pan to a plate.
  • Combine the onion, pepper, and garlic in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add to the pan with more oil as needed. Season with salt. Cook for about 3-4 minutes until soft and slightly caramelized. Season with the paprika.
  • Add the tomato paste and allow to cook until darkened. Once tomato paste is dark plum colored, add the rice and toast for 2 minutes
  • Deglaze pan with white wine then pour in chicken stock. Stir in the saffron, bay leaf and olives and top with chicken. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook for 15-20 minutes until rice is cooked. 
  • For the aioli-whisk together the egg yolks, jalapeno, garlic, a pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper. Whisk in olive oil until emulsified.
  • Serve the chicken and rice with parsley, cilantro and aioli.

Friday, February 21, 2014

4 Years

Four years ago yesterday I married my best friend. The time has flown by incredibly fast which is kind of scary. I honestly can't believe that we started dating almost 9 years ago! Wow. Marrying Brian has undoubtedly been one of the best decisions I have ever made and I can't wait to see what the future holds. Now, sorry in advance for the multitude of pictures I am posting. I had fun taking a trip down memory lane.

Right after Brian proposed we took a trip to Big Bear


Goofy 3D glasses

Palm Springs


Christmas Family Photo

Bumbershoot Music Festival

One evening at Dargans 

Matrimony! Unfortunately all my wedding photos are on a different computer so this is as good as it's gonna get for tonight.

Friday, February 14, 2014


This morning I read something that has really stuck with me. It stated rather than saying "marriage is hard work" say "marriage is effort" or "an investment." Hard work generally implies back breaking work that may or may not bring a reward in the end. Effort and investment brings an expectation that there will in fact be a pile of gold at the end of the rainbow. Just like everything that is worth while it doesn't come easy and we all need to know the work we put forth will not be forsaken. Is that the right wording? And I love that this applies to any relationship, not just marriage. Anyways, I'm sure this could be written more eloquently but I really liked this and thought I would share. Tell someone you love them today! 

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

I'm Back!

It's been almost a month of dead silence on this end. Whoops! To my defense I have had a lot on my plate and everything is finally settling down again. Slowly returning back to normal. Almost. 
Since I've moved to "suburbia" (we get a kick out of saying that) it has taken a few days to get the kitchen set up but let me tell you, that was the first part of the house I really wanted unpacked and ready to go. For four years now all my kitchens have been smaller than my current. Everything was always within an arm's length which suited me well. It was always cozy to cook and even more alluring, faster to clean. But, now that I do have a bit more space to move around in and store all my stuff I certainly appreciate it.  
Unfortunately my dear husband is on round 3 of sickness this winter. So he's been home with me for the past few days trying to get better and my care taking duties have been upped. When Brian gets sick he really likes to have a meat and potatoes kind of dish so I decided to give chicken pot pie a go. I have never made one before, nor am I a huge fan, but because he LOVES it I thought it might make him feel better. Well, to be honest and not to toot my own horn but I actually really liked it. In fact, it's the first pot pie that I have ever liked! I'm sure Brian will be happy to know I will make this down the road. 


  • 3 lbs ground chicken (I chopped mine into chunks)
  • olive oil
  • salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • 5 medium carrots, peeled & finely chopped
  • 6 celery ribs, finely chopped
  • 1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 6 fresh sage leaves, chopped
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • peas
  • pie crust (I bought the store bought fridge kind)
  • In a large dutch oven, heat a few tbsp of olive oil over medium. Add the chicken and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the meat is dark brown, about 10-15 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove meat to a plate.
  • Saute the carrots, celery and onions in the same pot and season with salt. Cook until softened, about 5 minutes and stir in the garlic for about 30 seconds or just until fragrant.
  • Return the chicken to the pot along with any drippings on the plate. Sprinkle the flour and stir to coat the veggies and meat. Cook for about 3 minutes before stirring in the chicken stock. Add the herbs and peas and adjust seasoning to taste. Bring the mixture to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 10-15 minutes or until mixture has reduced and thickened. (Almost all of the liquid should be cooked off)
  • Stir in the cream and remove from heat. 
  • Top with the pie crust
  • Bake in oven on low broil or high heat to brown the crust on top. 
From now on I will try to take pictures. I always kick myself for not taking the time.