Monday, July 28, 2008

You say Avocado, I say Aquacate...

"Ensalada de Aquacate"

(the "old Cuban" version)

While papa is the HEAD CHEF around this house, I seem to be the salad maker and baker. Since papa's been so busy, I've been forced to use my limited culinary skills lately. Here is another one of those very quick and easy salads that is as colorful and as healthy as you can get. Avocados is the main food in this cool, refreshing side dish!

The salad pictured has an extra ingridient and you are welcomed to try it, but papa wasn't too impressed with the surprise. Not that he didn't like it, he just said he much rather the "old Cuban" version. And it is, the old stand-by with the extra surprise ingridient at the end....

The ingridients and directions
(it's THAT easy!)

1 medium ripe (to your liking) avocado
1 medium yellow onion
salt and pepper to taste
olive oil and vinegar to taste

Stir and serve chilled

The extra ingridient
(it was worth the try!)

1/2 small green bell pepper

Optional ingridients

chopped romaine lettuce
sliced tomatoe

Chicken is not always chicken..

Especially when it's in this tasty rice dish. This turned out so yummy all I can tell you is get ready to roll your R's..and say it out loud....

Arroz con Pollo, porfavor!
(Chicken and Rice, please!)

The Ingridients

4 large chicken skinless, boneless, chicken breast (of pieces of your choice)

2 yellow medium onions

1/2 green bell pepper

4 to 5 large garlic gloves

2 to 3 dry bay leaves

1- 8 oz can of tomatoe sauce

5 chicken boullion cubes

Adobo Completo

1/2 teaspoon bijol

1- 12 oz. beer at room temperature (brand of your choice)

1/4 cup olive oil (brand of your choice)

2 tablespoons cooking oil (brand of your choice)

2 cups long grain white rice (rinsed)


Begin by coarsely chopping the onions, bell pepper and garlic. Toss in deep pan, add palm full of ADOBO COMPLETO, bay leaves and 1/8 cup of olive oil, saving 1/8 cup for later.
Turn heat on high and begin to fry. Once the raw ingridients are semi soft, add in the entire can of tomato sauce and continue to stir over medium high heat another minute or so. Add in chicken pieces, 4 of the chicken boullions, bijol and enough water to cover chicken. Cover with tight lid and continue to cook over medium high heat for approximately 30 to 40 minutes stirring occassionally and drizzling in the remaining olive oil half way through.
After 30 to 40 minutes, add the beer followed by the rice immediately. Add an additional 2 tablespoons of cooking oil, 2 cups of water, the 5th boullions and bring to a boil. Boil for one minute then lower the heat to LOW, cover tightly and continue to cook for another 20 minutes UNDISTURBED.
Here are the steps in pictures. I hope the visuals help!
And as always, please let us know how this recipe transalated into something tasty or not. We'd love to know!
20 minutes later, open and stir. At this point this recipe should look done but on the *wet side. Serve with the avocado salad (see "Ensalada de Aguacate") and crackers as I did or with such Cuban favorites like cuban toast, platanitos or tostones!
You can also add some color and veggies to this dish by simply opening a can of green peas and stirring in once cooked and right before serving. DELICIOUS and PRETTY!!!!!! Great party dish!
*If you would prefer dryer rice, subtract 1/2 of the water in the last step or cook a little longer. Also note this recipe can be made using your choice of chicken pieces (i.e. 2 chicken breast and 4 drumsticks, etc.)

Cuban Anti-Pasto....

Salad will never be the same....

Papa's been busier than ever and the cooking has been left up to me these here is some of my cooking. I think it's as good as papa's...well...maybe not....but it is tasty enough to pass along!
Add some color to your table with this healthy salad that is as versatile and available as the ingridents in your fridge! Easy to make in just a matter of minutes. Use it as a main salad or as an appetizer served alone or with crackers. The best part of this dish is that there are only 5 basic ingridents needed! EVERY THING else is up to you! I've gone ahead and posted the ingridients in the pictured salad as it was made. You can subtract and add any of the ingridients I used here and substitue with the additional ingridents I have listed. Mixing, matching and maybe even adding some of your own favorite ingridients makes this salad easy, quick and versatile enough to never bore of eating or serving it! Also makes a great party salad.
The basic ingridients
2 large tomatoes
1 very large or 2 small green bell peppers
2 medium yellow onions
1/2 cup fresh grated romano or parmesean cheese
1/2 bottle of oz House Italian Dressing (vinegarette style, not creamy!)
The everything else ....
The pictured salad also contains
6 to 8 slices of genoa salami
2 chorizos
1 medium yellow bell pepper
1/2 cup bacon bits
Slice all ingridents into large bite sizes, mix, add in cheese and Italian salad dressing, mix well. Serve immediately or chill and serve later. Serves 8 to 10.
Additional items you can use...
Green olives
Red Bell Peppers
Shredded Carrots or Carrot Sticks
Minced Garlic
And then some!!!
Enjoy and please let us know if you like it! Did it taste good? Did you make it your own? What did you add or subtract??