Posts Tagged ‘Cookalong’

This month’s Irish Food Bloggers’ Association Cookalong theme was chocolate.

Anyone who follows this blog will know that we don’t do too many desserts but we got the Green and Black’s Chocolate book – Unwrapped – out with enthusiasm anyway. Flicking through the many fabulous looking desserts we came across this Chicken Mole, a savoury South American dish with chocolate sauce.

To be honest we weren’t too sure if we’d like the result and to be really honest we didn’t. I’ve used a square of chocolate in a big pot of chilli before and there is no doubt it can add a bit of character. This recipe uses 75g of dark chocolate and was a bit much we thought.

Having said that all four of us cleared our plates and two even had seconds so it wasn’t that bad, maybe just not quite to our tastes. Interesting nonetheless and we made a cracking guacamole to serve on the side (which we shall blog about later) with some tortilla chips which pleased us more.

Here’s the recipe if you’re feeling brave.

Chicken Mole – to serve 4

  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 2 large onions, sliced
  • 2tsp smoked sweet paprika
  • 8 pieces of chicken on the bone (we used thighs and drumsticks)
  • 400g tin of red kidney beans
  • 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 75g dark chocolate, minimum 60% cocoa solids

Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/Gas mark 2.

Crush the garlic and slice the onions.

Seal the chicken in some olive oil in a big casserole pot that can go in the oven. When the chicken is lightly browned add the onions and garlic.

When the onions are lightly browned, add the tomatoes and kidney beans (including the juice), plus the paprika and 50g of the chocolate.

Bring to simmer and put in the oven for 1 hr 30 minutes.

Skim the surface to remove any chicken fat. Taste and adjust seasoning – you’ll need some salt. Add another 20g of chocolate to taste.

We served this with pilau rice, tortilla chips and guacamole.

Wine suggestion: This went well with a rich Tempranillo/Garnacha blend from Toro in Spain.

Read Full Post »

Proper blog to follow but for all the Irish Foodies doing the Cookalong this evening here is our Winter Warmer – really rich and seriously tasty!

Serve with crusty bread and Man O’War wine.

Last night we took part in our first Irish Foodies cookalong. Check out the Irish Food Bloggers Association website for more information. We only heard about this on Wednesday and didn’t think we could take part as we were determined to cook prawns (as our freezer was full of them). Also the theme was Winter Warmers which to us means pie or stew or pumpkin or chestnuts, but not prawns. Still never ones to turn down a challenge (and not wanting to miss out on all the fun) we set about finding a Winter Warming prawn dish and I think we managed it with our Baked Prawn Casserole (from Vefa’s Kitchen).

We were at a fabulous Lustau Sherry tasting on Thursday night which inspired us to have some nibbles and Sherry to start (see post below) – all very festive.

Baked Prawn Casserole (to feed 6 but there was 4 of us and we managed to finish it)

  • Put 1.5kg peeled prawns into a saucepan, add 4 tablespoons of water, bring to the boil, and cook for 5 minutes. Drain and keep the liquid.
  • Melt 60g butter in a pan and add a large chopped onion, cook for 5 minutes or until soft.
  • Add a sliced carrot and a green pepper cut into thin strips, cook for another 5 minutes.
  • Whizz up a tin of tomatoes until smooth and pour into the pan along with the reserved prawn liquid, season, and simmer for 15-20 minutes, until thickened.
  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200C and brush and ovenproof dish with oil.
  • Take the sauce off the heat and stir in 250g crumbled feta and 4 tablespoons of finely chopped parsley.
  • Spoon the prawns over the base of the prepared dish and pour the sauce over them.
  • Sprinkle with 150g diced Gruyere and a pinch of cayenne pepper and dot the top with butter of drizzle with some olive oil.
  • Bake for around 30 minutes, until the  top is lightly browned.

We served this in bowls with some crusty bread for mopping up all the lovely sauce.

Our guests brought us a bottle of Valhalla Chardonnay 2009 from Waiheke Island, New Zealand (which has just arrived this week in O’Brien’s). The wine worked perfectly as it had the weight to pair with the richness of the dish.

Aren’t we lucky!


Read Full Post »