Chinese Chili and Scallion Noodles – A Quick and Easy Weeknight Treat

Chinese Chili and Scallion NoodlesNot sure where I found this recipe (I believe it was Milk Street)…it’s so quick and easy, you can throw it together in about 30 minutes using ingredients that you probably already have on hand, and it’s just incredibly delicious. I really like it with udon noodles, but you can also use lo mein or spaghetti if that’s what you have. It’s really hard to mess this one up, but just make sure you keep a close watch on the sesame seeds and red pepper flakes as they cook because they can go from golden brown and tasty to burned and bitter in a matter of seconds. As long as you do that, you’ll have the perfect week-night meal.

This is one dish you’ll go back to again and again!

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Quick & Easy Instant Pot Red Beans and Rice

Instant Pot Red Beans and RiceIf you crave New Orleans food, you love Red Beans and Rice. It was traditionally served on Mondays in Louisiana, which was Wash Day, because a pot of beans could sit on the stove and simmer all day long while the women were busy scrubbing clothes. Now, with the invention of the Instant Pot, this delicious dish can be prepared and served in about an hour or two from start to finish (and most of that time is just waiting for the Instant Pot to do its magic). This authentic, yet simple, New Orleans recipe is great for parties and large gatherings and it actually tastes better the next day.

Soaking beans overnight before cooking is recommended to remove some of the indigestible sugars responsible for beans’ infamous flatulence issues, and it’s also said to reduce cooking times. I found that a quick-soak of the dry red beans in the Instant Pot (see directions below) is just as good as an overnight soaking and allows you whip up a delicious pot of red beans on the spot, without having to remember to start soaking them the night before.

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Quick and Easy Instant Pot Chicken Adobo

Instant Pot Chicken Adobo on RiceEasy, quick and delicious…three things that make me want to make a recipe again and again (especially the delicious part!). This recipe is a very slight variation on one found on thekitchn.com (thank you!). The chicken thighs are fall-off-the-bone tender and taste like they’ve been marinated for hours and cooked low and slow, but through the magic of one of my absolutely favorite new kitchen tools, the Instant Pot, they’re ready in about 30 minutes.

This is a based on Filipino adobo (adobo is derived from the Spanish word adobar, which means “marinade” or “pickling sauce”), which is  a cooking process in Filipino cuisine that involves meat, seafood or vegetables marinated in vinegar, soy sauce, garlic and black peppercorns (I added a little Sriracha because, well, I like to add Sriracha to everything), which is then browned in oil, and simmered in the marinade.  It has sometimes been considered as the unofficial national dish in the Philippines. The Instant Pot has made this dish faster, easier to prepare and much more accessible, without sacrificing any of the flavor.

Like most popular ethnic dishes, there are many differing opinions as the right way to make adobo. In my opinion, as long as the results taste great, any recipe is a great recipe. This is my version, it’s incredibly delicious, and I’m sticking to it.

For the printable recipe, please click…

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Easy Chicken Fajita Foil Packets

chicken fajitas in foil
Ready to be sealed
Hot out of the oven
On a deformed homemade tortilla

These healthy, spicy Chicken Fajita Packets are incredibly easy to prepare and serve…and the clean-up is a breeze! All the ingredients are sealed in a foil packet and cooked together in the oven. Serving can be as easy as plating the packet, opening it up and digging in or go the real fajita route and slice the spicy chicken and top with onions, peppers and black beans in a warm tortilla, and garnish with avocado, sour cream and cilantro. For the printable recipe, just click…

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Sourdough Whole Wheat Pizza Crust

Suasage, Mushroom, Caramelized Onion Pizza ready for oven
Ready for the Oven

There’s nothing better then homemade pizza and this crust is simple and delicious. If you need sourdough starter, check out my bread post from last week, where you’ll find a link to get FREE sourdough starter. I prefer thin crust pizzas (being from the New York area…where we make REAL pizza), but if you prefer a thicker crust, it’s all here in the printable recipe. This is one of those recipes that appears to be a little vague at first, but once you try it and get the feel for how the dough should come together, it’s simple and quick to replicate whenever you get the urge…which for me, seems to happen about 3-4 times a week lately. And since the recipe makes 3 crusts which freeze incredibly well, you actually don’t have it make it that often. Just take one out of the freezer, and in about 3 hours, it’s ready to roll. The crust is also very versatile and can be used in dozens of different ways. Just the other day, I topped one with just caramelized onions, crumbled goat cheese and drizzled some olive oil on it and it was amazing.

For the printable recipe, please click below…

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Extra Large, Cage-Free, and More: How to Shop for Eggs | Serious Eats

What makes a good egg? There are so many things to consider, especially when egg carton vocabulary seems to grow by the day. If you’re in an egg-sistential quandary in the grocery aisle, here’s a cheat sheet on how to decipher egg dozens. A great article from Serious Eats on one of my favorite foods.

Click to read article: Extra Large, Cage-Free, and More: How to Shop for Eggs | Serious Eats

The Official Cookhacker T-Shirt is Here!

Well it’s finally here. Be the envy of all your favorite food lovin’ friends when you wear the official Cookhacker T shirt…now on Amazon. It’s available in five different colors and comes in in Men’s, Women’s and Kid’s sizes.  I guarantee if you wear this shirt when preparing one of the great recipes on Cookhacker.com, like our Sous Vide Teriyaki Pork Tenderloin, the results will be way tastier than if you just wore a generic shirt while cooking. It’s also a really cool shirt to wear when visiting your favorite restaurants and hangouts. Help spread the word…Cookhacker has the recipes, secrets, tips and tricks to help a good home cook become a great home Chef.

 

Sous Vide Teriyaki Pork Tenderloin with the Anova Sous Vide Precision Cooker

My new favorite cooking “toy” is my Anova Sous Vide machine…it’s the ultimate Really Cool Kitchen Tool.  Everything I’ve made so far (steak, chicken and pork) has come out perfectly every time with restaurant quality results…it’s kinda idiot-proof! All you do is just attach the machine to any pot, add water and click start, put whatever you want to cook in a sealed bag (any ziplock-type bag will do), remove the air, drop it in the water and about an hour later it’s done!  You can also use the free wirelessly connected Anova Culinary app on your phone to find your recipe and cooking settings for exactly how you like it done, and just hit the “Start” button and the Anova goes to work.  Shown here is my Sous Vide pork tenderloin. I just marinated it in teriyaki for a few hours, placed it in the Sous Vide bath and after an hour at 136°, I removed it and seared it for 2 minutes in a screaming hot cast iron pan. It was tender, perfectly cooked from end-to-end and incredibly tasty. I know this sounds like a gushing ad, but it’s not…I just love it that much.

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Tip of the Day – Vacuum Seal your Food for (practically) FREE!


If you want to keep your food ultra-fresh, an air-tight seal locks in freshness and helps protect food from spoiling, but you don’t have to invest a couple of hundred bucks on a vacuum sealer and a never-ending supply of expensive proprietary bags. All you need is a regular freezer/storage bag (about 8¢) and a straw (free at any fast food place) and you’re good-to-go. To paraphrase Lauren Bacall in To Have and Have Not, “Just put your lips together and…suck!”

The free straws work really well, but I actually use these clear acrylic straws…they last forever, are washable and don’t collapse or bend while you’re using them…they’re great!