Archive for poultry
With Valentine’s Day around the corner it’s time to gear up for that special day. Start with some firm, amazing and delicious breasts, like the fresh duck breasts we got from our friends at Maple Leaf Farms. Get them in the mood with a night (or at least four hours in the fridge) marinating with salt (as in brine), tequila, lime juice, Doc’s Chili Powder, cilantro, onion and garlic. Remove, dry and rub them all over with spices to introduce a little heat then cook them low and slow with some good hardwoods until succulently sultry and smokey. For the final touches introduce some zesty home made fire roasted corn salsa and tangy roasted poblano tomatillo salsa verde to the party. Then drop them all onto a fresh from scratch tortilla and…? If you have properly followed this prescription for deliciousness you have created the ducked up, Doc’d up taco; or as we like to call them, Docos!
Want to know how to make this delectable duck dish? Tune in for the live simulcast 30 January 2013 on The Health and Wellness Channel live web feed, 2-4 pm (Eastern). A one hour presentation on food and obesity will be followed by a cooking demo of this piece of poultry perfection. We will also feature a live twitter chat following the presentation, during the Q&A session. If we use your question live, you will win an autographed copy of Eating Well, Living Better: A Grassroots Gourmet Guide to Good Health and Great Food!
We all survived the Mayan apocalypse. Now, it is a time for new beginings and celebrations. So start this New Year by getting good and ducked up. If you have not enjoyed a good duck recently (or ever!) pick some up. Here, we marinated fresh duck breast in Asian inspired spices and pan seared it.; served it over a crispy yellow squash pancake and wilted Chinese cabbage and spinach. A drizzle of citrus infused sweet and spicy pan sauce made this, quite simply, a duck to remember! Now, go duck yourself-and enjoy!
Fall brings a variety of familiar flavors. It also brings some regional curiosities. Here in Florida, it brings locally grown dragonfruit to the shelves. Hylocerus undatus, or the white-fleshed pitahaya is a red-skinned fruit with white flesh. This is the most commonly seen variety of dragon fruit.
It is a mildly sweet, tropically flavored fruit that is a great source of vitamin C, fiber, calcium, phosphorus and anti-oxidants.
It also combines wonderfully with fresh duck. A fresh duck breast was seared to perfection.
The dragonfruit was made into a tangy sweet gastrique. The sliced breast was then served over a truffled root mash with sauteed chard for a regionally, freshly, autumn flavored taste treat. Food to Fall for!
This is an inspired post. Inspired because my good friend, Chef Luca Paris (http://lucaparis.com/) posted a picture of his amazing duck confit appetizer. After cleaning up the drool, and being several hundred miles from his restaurant; I was forced to go about creating my own version. Adding a little seasonality, I placed the duck confit atop a savory roasted corn buckwheat cake that was topped with some pumpkin butter and crisp, fresh watercress. The confit was finished with some lightly spicy pickled beets, green onion and some fresh pomegranate for a breath of autumn sweetness. Simple, delicious tastes I think even Luca would approve!
It was a food taste-over. It was a necessity because unfortuantely, mass production, inferior product and so many artificial ingredients that even the artificial ingredients had artificfial ingredients, was the readily available version. When done proper, a simply smoked meat has an incredibly juicy, earthy sweet primal flavor. Deli or store bought smoked turkey breast has none of these. So often today, the breasts you see are not authentic. For me, no matter how pretty the package, it that is ultimately unsatisfying. Therefore a free-rakge organic turkey breast was brined, lightly seasoned then smoked with hickory and maple. Succulent, smokey and sweet, the bird was topped with some freshly toasted mustard seed, ground and combined with culantro and drizzled over top as an oil. A Central American and Caribbean herb, culantro is also known as fitweed; a name derived from its supposedly anti-convulsant properties. Which was a preventive thing as the bird was so good it would make you slap-your-momma-silly. It has a similar cilantro-like flavor, but more pungent . Rich in calcium, iron, carotene, and riboflavin culantro has also shown some promise in the prevention and treatment of diabetes. Here it sits lightly drizzled and covers a smokin’ tasty teat. Don’t be fooled by the packaging and adverts lads, nothing beats an all natural breast you handle yourself; one bird or breast in the hand as the saying goes….
Chickens, bladder infections and superbugs. What do they have in common? Unfortunately according to recent data cooborated by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the answer is E. coli. Women suffering from antibiotic resistant bladder infections have been found to have a specific genotype of E. coli. This type of bug is also what is found in chicken raised on an antibiotic regimen. The constant exposure to antibiotics pushes the bacteria into a kind of Darwinian hyperdrive so that antibiotic resistant bacteria are the ones selected out. And these are ones that people consuming chicken (particularly if it is undercooked) can become exposed to. While the relationship is not cause and effect, but corollary; it is damning and concerning in its own right. It is a reason I have recommended, especially when it comes to selecting proteins, to buy organic and cage-free or free range options. For an in-depth analysis, check out the book. It’s all there!
Here’s a dandy idea for the grill and especially with mother’s Day around the corner. Some fresh Cornish game hens were covered with some lemon infused herbs and grilled to perfection. Here the birds received lemon juice and zest, thyme, rosemary, oregano some herbs de Provence. Served with some roasted heirloom tomatoes and asparagus all on a bed of stone ground white grits with a bit of melted brie. Tasty, delicious and remarkably nutritious-that’s the Grassroots Gourmet Way! Feel free to use chickens and your favorite herb combinations.
Taurine is an organic acid found in dark meat poultry, beef, lamb, eggs, dairy and some seafood such as white fish like cod, mussels and clams. It is not found in any substantial amount in plant products. It is a requirement for some carnivores like felines because, unlike humans, they cannot synthesize it. Feline deficiencies can result in blindness, heart disease and a host of inflammatory conditions. A small study from NYU was recently published in the European Journal of Nutrition. Researchers examined blood samples and diet information from 223 womenages 34 to 65 between 1985 and 1991 who developed heart disease or died from it during the study follow-up from 1986 to 2006 compared to an equal number who did not. For those women with baseline total cholesterol over 250 mg/dL who were in the highest tertile of taurine consumption, there was a 60% reduction in coronary heart disease. The exact mechanism is unclear, although taurine does have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It also appears to effect blood pressure regulation. While the association is correlative, not causative it is intriguing. The current study is small and involves only women but provides interesting food for thought for women (and possibly men) with high cholesterol levels.
Still got leftover turket frozen in the freezer someplace, awaiting rediscovery like Tutankhamun? With the cool weather it’s perfect time for a bowl of hot, spicy turkey chili, made with Doc’s homemade chili powder. Since the turkey was smoked this batch had a deep rich smokey flavor, when it’s chili it can be heavenly!