Category Archives: Recipe

SMOOTHIE

GADGETS:

Small blender—I have the Nutribullet, but there are others like Hamilton Beach. A large kitchen blender can be used in place of the small one.

Knife and cutting board for cutting fruit

INGREDIENTS:

1 frozen banana, peeled and sliced

2 cups frozen strawberries, raspberries, or cherries

1 cup milk

1/2 cup plain or vanilla yogurt

1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

2 to 3 tablespoons honey or to taste

2 shots Dark RUM (optional)

DIRECTIONS:

Peel and slice banana before freezing it, along with strawberries, raspberries, or cherries. Put all the ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Pour into glasses and serve.

NOTES:  I also use strawberry banana yogurt, ice, and fresh fruit too.

Smoothie (Non Dairy)

I have been making smoothies for Jennifer. She prefers the non-dairy type, but I have made others using yogurt.

GADGETS:

Small blender—I have the NutriBullet, but there are others like Hamilton Beach. A large kitchen blender can also be used in space of a small one.

Knife and cutting board for cutting fruit

INGREDIENTS:

Taste of Summer Smoothie

2 cups watermelon

1-cup pineapple

½-cup blueberries

¼ water

A Trip to the Tropics

2 cups fresh peaches

1 cup frozen pineapple

½-cup blueberries

¼ cup crushed ice

Confectioners’ sugar or honey (optional)

DIRECTIONS:

To freeze fruit like watermelon or pineapple: Cut fruit into large cubes and place in a zip top bag. Lay bag flat with fruit only one layer high. Freeze overnight.

Add fresh fruit, enough to fill a large NutriBullet halfway with a small amount of liquid. This can be water or rum. Blend. Add fruit to almost full (leave room to fit on the top with blades). Blend. Serve.

NOTES:   The fruit can be changed to any combination that does not have icky seeds! If the smoothie turns out too tart say from the blueberries, add a tablespoon of confectioners’ sugar or honey.

© Russ Ahrens and The Magic of a Perfect Pairing, 2021

Zucchini (grilled)

Zucchini (grilled)

Green Squash, Summer Squash, or Zucchini, as it is a more common name in New York, is one of the more if not most common and versatile squash to prepare. Almost the entire thing is edible with the exception of the stem. Even the very flower (male flower) the plant produces can make a delicious appetizer.

INGREDIENTS:

2 to 4 Green or Yellow Squash

¼ tsp. garlic powder

One Pinch of onion powder (1/8 tsp)

2 TBLS Olive oil

Salt and white pepper to taste.

DIRECTIONS:

Wash and cut the squash into quarters and coat with olive oil. Sprinkle with garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Cook on a hot grill, turning over every one to two minutes on all three sides. As you turn the squash over, rotate 90 degrees each time you flip it. Move it to a new spot on the hot grill to get those tasty and beautiful grill marks just like on steak!  

Marinated Skirt Steak

I grilled. Yes, I can hardly believe it myself. It’s been crazy busy lately but I grilled. I made marinated skirt steak and Grilled Zucchini. Did I grill with beer in hand? Yes I did, but I only had enough time for one as this cut of beef cooks quickly!

I put the zucchini on the grill when I turn the temperature down under the steak, but cook the zucchini on high! Try not to overcook it, otherwise you will have yucky mush.

Skirt Steak Recipe

COOKING UTENSILS NEEDED:

INGREDIENTS:

1 pound skirt steak trimmed and cut in half

MARINADE:

½ cup Lawry’s Sesame Teriyaki Marinade

or

Kikkoman’s Teriyaki Marinade

½ tsp Powdered Ginger

½ tsp Garlic power

2 tablespoons Soy sauce

DIRECTIONS:

Peel and trim the skirt steak if your butcher has not removed the silver skin and trimmed it for you. In a Pyrex baking 9×13 baking dish, or better yet, a zip top bag, mix together the marinade. Add the steaks and coat well. Marinate the steaks at least 2 hours but preferably 24 hours (overnight).

Heat your barbeque or prepare the coals for cooking. Start by cooking steaks at a high temperature. Grill approximately one minute on each side. Reduce heat to low and cook until desired doneness. I prefer my skirt steak to be cooked just prior to medium, maybe medium rare, although some people prefer them a little more cooked with no pink.

NOTES this is one of my favorite summer barbeque recipes served with grilled vegetables, corn on the cob or potatoes! This also goes great with beer or a nice old vines red Zinfandel from Sonoma County, like St. Francis.

Be well, eat well, drink well, and be merry!

-The Drunken Chef (Russ)

Click here for the Grilled Zucchini Recipe

Lemon Chicken (Piccata &; Francese)

Lemon Chicken

Sam came home one day from my neighbor’s house talking about this marvelous chicken he ate there. When I saw her the next day, I asked what this wonderful chicken was that he loved so. She told me it was called Lemon Chicken and she served it over angel hair pasta. I had eaten this dish many times at weddings.

            This dish is one of the easiest to make especially if you have ever made chicken cutlets. The making of chicken cutlets is the hardest part.

            Below are the two recipes for Lemon Chicken. Try them both and let me know which one you like best.

Chicken Piccata

INGREDIENTS:

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts

2 eggs

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

1/8 teaspoon paprika

1/4 cup butter

2 cups Chicken Stock (1 box or 2 cans)

Capers (optional)

DIRECTIONS:

In a small bowl, beat the egg together with 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice. Set aside.

In a shallow bowl or dish, mix together the flour, garlic powder, and paprika. Dip the chicken in the egg/lemon mixture, then in the seasoned flour.

In a large skillet, melt butter/margarine and brown the coated chicken pieces.

Dissolve the bouillon in the boiling water, then add the remaining 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Pour liquid into skillet. Cover and let simmer for 20 minutes, turning chicken pieces after 10 minutes until chicken is tender. Garnish as desired and serve.

NOTES I make this dish all the time because it’s so quick and easy. I serve it with Lipton’s rice and sauce or a package of saffron flavored rice or over Pasta.

Chicken Francese

INGREDIENTS:

Sauce:

3 Tbsp. butter

1 shallot minced or ¼ teaspoon onion powder

1 Tbsp. flour

2 cups Chicken Stock (1 box or 2 cans)

½ cup white wine

¼ lemon juice

Salt & pepper to taste

Chicken:

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts

1 egg

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

1/8 teaspoon paprika

1/4 cup butter

2 tbsp. olive oil

DIRECTIONS:

In a small bowl, beat the egg together with 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice. Set aside.

In a shallow bowl or dish, mix together the flour, garlic powder, and paprika. Dip the chicken in the egg/lemon mixture, then in the seasoned flour.

In a large skillet, add olive oil and melt the butter. Brown the coated chicken pieces. When chicken is done, move to a plate.  

Meanwhile, in a small pot dissolve bouillon in the boiling water or heat store bought or homemade broth, and then add the remaining lemon juice and wine.

Make roué in skillet by melting 2 tablespoons butter in the pan and whisking in four. Add shallot or onion powder and continue cooking flour until a pale golden brown. Next, whisk liquid into the flour mixture in the skillet. Return chicken to sauce. Cover and let simmer for 20 minutes, turning chicken pieces after 10 minutes until chicken is tender. Garnish as desired and serve.

NOTE: The wine is what makes this “francese”, should be same as the one you serve. It should be a Pinot Grigio you cooked the chicken. Multiply by four for a full catering tray.

ENJOY.

Until tomorrow, be well, be happy, and be healthy.

The Drunken Chef (Russ)

Lemon Chicken simmering in the pan.

Chicken Cutlets

INGREDIENTS:

4 boneless and skinless chicken breasts (8 thin cutlets)

3 eggs

½ cup flavored bread crumbs

¼ cup vegetable oil or peanut oil

DIRECTIONS:

Slice thick chicken breasts in half so they are thin. Pound all chicken using meat tenderizer/mallet to ½ inch thick. I use parchment t paper or handy wrap on top so the chicken isn’t all over the mallet. Beat three eggs in medium size bowl. Heat large frying pan and oil over medium to medium high heat. Dip one chicken beast at a time into egg mixture. Then, coat with breadcrumbs by pouring ½ a cup of breadcrumbs into a clean dish. Place chicken on top of bread crumbs and cover with more breadcrumbs. Press then bread crumbs firmly onto the chicken using fork or your hand. Flip the chicken over and press chicken into breadcrumbs again. Lightly shake off excess bread crumbs. There should be no egg showing. Place chicken breast onto a plate. Now you can move those chicken breasts into a frying pan. Add the tail end of the chicken into the pan facing away from you so if the oil splashes it splashes AWAY from you and not on you! Cook the chicken until the bread crumbs brown on both sides. Drain cooked chicken on paper towels before serving. You can test the chicken with an instant read thermometer to see if the chicken is done. Chicken is cooked through at 160 degrees. They cook a little more while standing too so be careful not to over cook them. You can place them in a 350 degree oven to finish cooking if your worried and even leave the paper towels underneath or you can place them in the oven to keep warm until they are all done.

Pro Tip: If you find your bread crumbs fall off the chicken, make sure your pressing those bread crumbs into the egg on the chicken during the coating process. I also “stage” newly coated chicken breasts on a separate plate because I can usually coat them in bread crumbs faster then they cook. You may want to bread the entire batch of chicken first. Then cook them afterwards so you can watch them closely and so you don’t burn them while being detracted. I add extra bread crumbs on top between the the layers so they don’t stick together on the plate before they are all cooked! Remember too that you should adjust the heat under the pan as you cook. Just like when we were making pancakes you don’t want to burn the outside of them and have raw chicken in the middle. That means the heats up too high. If they are not browning fast enough then the heat is too low and they will be greasy when done from sitting in the oil too long. Science and this cooking $%#@ isn’t always so easy.

Practice makes perfect and there are lots of recipes to come using chicken cutlets in the future! So cook and practice, cook and practice, cook and eat or drink!

For extra crispy cutlets, use a flour dredged prior to the breadcrumbs.

EXTRA CRISPY CUTLETS:

INGREDIENTS:

4 boneless and skinless chicken breasts (8 thin cutlets)

3 eggs

½ cup flavored bread crumbs

¼ cup vegetable oil

½ cup flour

DIRECTIONS: Slice thick chicken breasts in half so they are thin.  Pound all chicken using meat tenderizer/mallet to ½ inch thick. Beat eggs in medium size bowl.  Heat large frying pan and oil over medium high heat. Dip one chicken beast at a time into egg mixture.  Then onto a plate with the flour. Coat boat sides. Return floured chicken to egg mixture. Don’t worry as some flour will come off into the egg. Then coat with breadcrumbs by pouring ½ a cup of breadcrumbs into a clean dish.  Place chicken onto on top of bread crumbs and press firmly using fork. Flip chicken oven and press chicken into breadcrumbs. Lightly shake off excess bread crumbs. Place chicken breast in frying pan and cook until bread crumbs brown on both sides.  Drain cooked chicken on paper towels before serving.

© Russ Ahrens and The Magic of a Perfect Pairing, 2021

Peppers, Mushrooms and Onions (sautéed)

INGREDIENTS:

1 pound of mushrooms

2 Green Bell Peppers

2 Red Bell Peppers

4 Large yellow onions

2 Tbsp. Butter

1 Tbsp. Olive oil

Italian seasoning (optional)

Salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS:

Prepare peppers by removing the white pit from the center and slice into ¼ inch strips. Prepare the onion by cutting it in half lengthways from bulb end to tip. Remove papery outer skin. Place onion cut side down on chopping board. Using the tip of the knife, cut onion lengthways into even slices, or, at a slight angle, into even wedges until thin strips are left.

Wash mushrooms under cold running water and slice 1/8 to ¼ inch thick.

Heat oil and butter in a large sauté pan. Add peppers and onion and sauté over medium high heat for 2 minutes until pepper just begin to soften. Add mushrooms and cook until peppers and onion are tender but not mushy.

NOTES: Perfect with a steak or chicken as a side dish.

Shrimp (Grilled) Marinated in Garlic and Lime

May 28, 2021

Here is a BONUS recipe I enjoyed last weekend. You may what to try it this weekend!

GADGETS:

Cutting board

Paring knife

Chef knife (optional)

Shrimp Deveiner (optional) 

INGREDIENTS:

Two pounds of Raw Extra Jumbo Shrimp

1 lime

3 cloves garlic

1 or 2 Tablespoons Franks Red Hot Sauce

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon paprika

DIRECTIONS:

Clean and devein two pound of 16–20 size shrimp. Rinse toughly under cold water and place into a zip top bag.  Wash and cut lime in half around the middle, not stem to stern. Squeeze both halves, juicing it over the shrimp in the bag. Toss both halves in the bag now with the shrimp. Slice three cloves of garlic and add into the bag with shrimp and limes. Add 2 tbsp. hot sauce, 2 tbsp. of olive oil, and 1 tsp. paprika. Close bag and turn over a few times, mixing ingredients together. Open the zip top bag smidge and squeeze all the air out of bag. Then reseal it and place in refrigerator to marinate one hour. Turn bag over after thirty minutes. Grill on a grilling mat or skew those suckers up so the shrimp don’t fall through the BBQ grate. It’s almost heartbreaking to lose a beautiful shrimp to the fire goddess, but sometimes sacrifices must be made.

SERVE with steak or on a spinach salad, or BOTH! Just remember, red wine for the steaks and a white wine for the Shrimp. The salad needs a dressing…Hmm  

Well, that’s all for now.

ENJOY!

The Drunken Chef (Russ)

P.S., These shrimp will go great with beer too!

HOMEMADE Hamburgers

Prep time: 15 minutes Cook time: 6 minutes Clean up: 0 minutes

COOKING UTENSILS NEEDED

Hamburger press, BBQ Spatula, Plastic wrap or Wax paper, BBQ Grill

INGREDIENTS:

2 lbs. 80% lean Chop Meat & Sesame Seed Hamburger Buns

Toppings:
Lettuce
Tomato
Raw Onion
Grilled Mushrooms
Grilled Onions
Avocado, Guacamole
Roasted Red Pepper
Ham (thinly sliced) Bacon


Cheese:
Swiss
American
Provolone
Cheddar
Monterey Jack

Condiments:
Ketchup
Mustard
Mayo
BBQ sauce
Buffalo Wing Sauce
Salt & Pepper
Taco Seasoning
Blue cheese dressing

DIRECTIONS

Form the patties in a hamburger press by lining the press fist with plastic wrap. Separate each patty with a piece of wax paper or wrap up in plastic wrap. Unwrap and throw away the plastic wrap when cooking them. Cook on a hot grill on high according to taste (3 to 6 min per side), only flipping once. Add cheese 2 min before the burger is done on the second side.

To make the Buffalo Burger, melt provolone cheese on top before removing the burger from the grill. Add Buffalo Wing Sauce, lettuce, tomato, and blue cheese dressing on top.

The Taco Burger needs to be seasoned with taco seasoning before cooking. I use McCormick Taco Seasoning and sprinkle it on both sides. After cooking one side and flipping it over, melt Monterey jack cheese on top before removing the burger from the grill. Add guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and taco sauce or ranch dressing on top.

The Mushroom-Swiss Burger: Season the hamburger before cooking with salt and pepper. Melt Swiss cheese on the burger while cooking. Add hot sautéed mushrooms on top and ketchup or bbq sauce.

My Take on the Double RR Bar Burger: Melt American cheese or Swiss cheese while the burger is cooking. Add a slice of deli ham, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles and BBQ sauce. Thank you Roy Rogers!

Last is the bacon cheese burger: Melt American cheese on it while the burger is cooking. Add bacon, tomato, BBQ sauce, and ketchup on top.

Buffalo Burger with REAL blue cheese on top. I just added a slice of tomato then YUM.

Buffalo Wing Sauce

INGREDIENTS:

½ cup Frank’s Red Hot Sauce

½ stick of butter

2 tablespoons Sweet Baby Ray’s Barbeque Sauce or Hunt’s original barbeque sauce

8 to ten 10 drops of Cholula Hot Sauce

1 tablespoon honey (optional)

DIRECTIONS:

Melt butter over low heat. Add the Frank’s Hot Sauce, Barbeque Sauce, and Cholula Hot Sauce. Heat to a simmer but do not let it boil. Taste test with a bit of celery. Adjust by adding more hot sauce or barbeque sauce if necessary.

NOTES when making the wings on the barbeque, use Sweet Baby Ray’s Honey Barbeque sauce or add tablespoon of honey to the sauce.

Serving Suggestions: Buffalo Wings, Barbeque Wings, Buffalo Chicken Sandwich, Buffalo Chicken Wrap, Buffalo BBQ Chicken Legs, Buffalo Burger.