Category: Nigella Lawson

Vietnamese Chicken Salad with Mango

Vietnamese Chicken Salad with Mango

Most people, when they decide to make salad, just make a salad.  A quick opening of the refrigerator door.  A glance at the counter.  A whisk and a shake of vinegar and oil.  I love almost every salad I make (surely I should be thinner) and Dave does, too.  With a couple of exceptions, I rarely repeat one, though I am crazy about fresh spinach with lime vinaigrette.  And, maybe even more, green beans and mushrooms with tarragon.  Or Caprese with bacon….  Well.

But this Nigella Lawson salad had us hooked from the very first time we ate it.  I saw the recipe somewhere and that was that.  It’s definitely addictive.  To say nothing of healthy.   Unlike most things I make,  this is one I typically make just like the recipe says.  Asian-inspired anything pushes me toward conventional wisdom and written-out recipes, though I do see myself peeking out from around the soy sauce now and again lately.  For instance:  yesterday I ran out of mint (the only herb called for in her version), but had cilantro and basil. I also had a great mango calling, “Alyce, Alyce.”    You can look at the original version here where I blogged it for Dinner Place.  Shrimp,too, instead of chicken, is scrumptious. Wow!  Add some cooked jasmine rice (ok, brown rice if you must) for a larger, more filling meal.

While this meal contains a whole jalapeno pepper and a bit of crushed red pepper (Nigella’s named a Thai bird chile), it is not terribly hot at all. (I don’t like really hot food just like I don’t like really salty food; I only taste hot or salty then.) It’s just flavorful.   Make just a little with the heat and try some if hot peppers are things you don’t eat.

The sad, but beautiful snow dance of the lilacs in my south garden.  Two of them will not survive.

If you’re watching your P’s and Q’s calorie or healthwise, this salad has your name engraved on it.  It’s one that fits both the South Beach and Weight Watcher profiles with smiles all around.   If you aren’t worried about  intake, you should make it anyway.    By the way, I made this for a group of music friends the other day–right after this last heavy Saint Paul snowstorm– and one of them brought cuties mixed with peach yogurt and chopped walnuts as our dessert.  Nice! Try this:

vietnamese chicken salad  with mango
 4+ generous servings    7 Weight Watchers Plus Points

Ingredients:

  • 1 jalapeno, minced very finely (no veins or seeds)
  • 2 large garlic cloves, peeled, minced
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 teaspoons rice vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons Vietnamese or Thai fish sauce (nuoc nam or nam pla)
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 medium red onion, finely sliced
  • Freshly grated black pepper 
  • Pinch crushed red pepper
  • 12 ounces (3/4 pound) white cabbage, shredded
  • 2 medium carrots, shredded, julienned, or grated
  • 1 pound cooked chicken breasts, shredded, or cut into fine strips (can sub cooked shrimp)
  • 1/4 cup each chopped basil and cilantro (plus a little cilantro for garnish)
  • 2 mangos, peeled, seeded, and chopped 
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • 2 scallions sliced very thinly (white and green parts)
  • Salt, to taste

Directions

In a medium, stirring with spoon, combine the chile, garlic, sugar, vinegar, lime juice, fish sauce, oil, onion,  black and red peppers; set aside for 1/2 hour. to a large bowl, add cabbage, carrot, chicken breast,  basil, cilantro and mangoes, tossing with tongs. Pour cabbage mixture over the dressing, tossing with tongs, slowly and patiently so everything is coated. Add salt and black pepper to taste. Serve on a flat plate topped with almonds, scallions, and cilantro for garnish.

Cook’s Notes:  If you’re not going to eat all of this salad at one meal, store the vegetables-fruit and dressing separately; otherwise it can be soggy.

Weight Watchers Notes:  Skip almonds to subtract a point or cut back on chicken portion; do not cut sugar–it’s necessary for the dressing.
… … … … …

DINING OUT FOR LIFE : DINE OUT/FIGHT AIDS

LIST OF RESTAURANTS DONATING PORTION OR ALL OF THEIR INCOME TODAY!

http://www.diningoutforlife.com/minneapolis

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Food Needed:  Cheyenne River Reservation Episcopal Mission–9 congregations in 2 counties

Elderly, Disabled, Grandparents raising children need food. 

Solo Episcopal pastor on the reservation tries to help, but is out of resources.

Please read and help if you can?

Friend them on fb, too!

Sing a new song!  Come, Spring, Come!

Alyce

50 Women Game-Changers in Food – #44- Nigella Lawson – Guinness Gingerbread

50 Women Game-Changers in Food – #44- Nigella Lawson – Guinness Gingerbread

A tender, quite moist gingerbread from Nigella.

Gingerbread is Christmas, right?  Maybe New Year’s Day?  Certainly a cold-weather dessert.  Except that I love it.  I’d eat it in July if I were willing to turn the oven on.  Which I’m not.*  So that’s why it’s April and there’s Nigella Lawson’s gorgeous Guinness Gingerbread on the blog. (Two “n’s” and two “s’s” in Guinness–tells you  alot about how much I know about Guinness.  I did tour the brewery in Dublin once and actually drank a tall one.)  If you’ve been following along on this trip, I’ve joined a group of great food bloggers who are each week cooking, testing, and writing about one of Gourmet Live’s 50 Women Game-Changers.  And, you guessed it, this week (number 44) is Nigella’s week–I’m so grateful.  After all, I needed a reason to make gingerbread in the spring.  Didn’t I? (Cold and nasty in St. Paul today after a great, warm spring.  I was happy to have a warm kitchen.)
   *I have just installed a combination microwave/convection oven above my rangeThis may help with summer baking.  More later!

If you haven’t had the pleasure of watching Nigella on tv or reading one of her books, you just need to do it.  Picture a well-fed, very pretty British woman with a great accent sneaking out of bed in the dark to raid the refrigerator of crispy fried pork fat or snarfing down the last, well-hid piece of flourless chocolate cake.  Not only is she real with a capital R, but she’s fun and brings more than a bit of the seductive into the kitchen, where it surely belongs.  Whatever…it’s great to watch someone enjoy what they do and Nigella does that in spades.  Isn’t that what really draws us to people?  I adore friends who are happy in what they do.

For a biographical sketch that may surprise you, check out Nigella’s Food Network biography page here.  Not only has Nigella been a food tv star for several years and written a variety of best-selling cookbooks, but she was Deputy Literary Critic of the (London) Sunday Times before setting out to follow her own drummer as a free-lancer.  No small apples.

For a list of all of Nigella’s books, lots more info and recipes, check out her website.

But!  If you’re intrigued by the gingerbread:   get out a 9×13 pan and get baking.  Easy as pie (which isn’t easy–who said that?)  you warm up some butter, a cup of Guinness stout and a couple of other things, whisk in a few dry ingredients, pour into a greased pan and bake for 45 minutes.  Cool, cut, and serve with whipped cream, ice cream, or Crème fraîche.  Nothing better.  My own notes are in red.  Enjoy!

Guinness Gingerbread by Nigella Lawson

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 sticks 10 (tablespoons) butter, plus some for greasing
  • 1 cup golden syrup (such as Lyle’s) (I used Organic Corn Syrup plus a little Molasses.)
  • 1 cup (packed) plus 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 cup stout (such as Guinness) (There’s just a taste left for a chef’s snack!)
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • (I added 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper)
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/4 cups sour cream
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 rectangular aluminium foil pan or cake pan, approximately 13 by 9 by 2-inches

Directions

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Line your cake pan with aluminium foil and grease it, or grease your foil tray.

Put the butter, syrup, dark brown sugar, stout, ginger, cinnamon and ground cloves into a pan (2-3qt saucepan)  and melt gently over a low heat.

Organic Corn Syrup with a little molasses poured in…quite pretty.

Dave was so sad that I bought a whole 6-pack.

Take off the heat and whisk in the flour and baking soda. You will need to be patient and whisk thoroughly to get rid of any lumps.

Whisk the sour cream and eggs together in a measuring jug (4c glass measuring cup) and then beat into the gingerbread mixture, whisking again to get a smooth batter.

Pour this into your cake/foil pan, and bake for about 45 minutes; when it’s ready it will be gleamingly risen at the centre, and coming away from the pan at the sides.

Let the gingerbread cool before cutting into slices or squares.

Add sweetened or spiced whipped cream, Crème fraîche,  or a scoop of vanilla ice cream, if desired.  Just a winter dusting of powdered sugar is lovely if you’re into simplicity:

For grin and giggles, watch this Nigella Interview:

If you’d like to read more great recipes, try one of the other blogs on our trip visiting 50 Women Game-Changers in Food:

Val – More Than Burnt Toast, Taryn – Have Kitchen Will Feed, Susan – The Spice Garden
Heather – girlichef, Miranda – Mangoes and Chutney, Amrita – Beetles Kitchen Escapades
Mary – One Perfect Bite, Sue – The View from Great Island, Barbara – Movable Feasts
Linda A – There and Back Again, Nancy – Picadillo, Mireya – My Healthy Eating Habits
Veronica – My Catholic Kitchen, Annie – Most Lovely Things, Jeanette – Healthy Living
Claudia – Journey of an Italian Cook, Alyce – More Time at the Table
Kathy – Bakeaway with Me, Martha – Simple Nourished Living, Jill – Saucy Cooks
Sara – Everything in the Kitchen Sink

Next week we’ll feature Diana Kennedy, the very fine Mexican cookbook author.  Join us!

Sing a new song,
Alyce