Monday, February 25, 2013

Future of Blog

I have decided to end this short lived food blog of mine. It's not that I do not enjoy cooking and posting for others to see, but that I am having to focus on the other parts of my life instead of posting consistently on here. To all those who follow and/or check this blog, thanks for checking me out!

I do still have a facebook food blog page that I will keep posting to, albeit not as detailed for the most part. On facebook, just look up Zestybites and it should pop up with the blog's pig mascot.

Thanks again,
Chef Brian

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Chicken Skewers

Today since it was quite nice outside, I decided upon a simple tasty dish for lunch. I looked in my fridge and found that I had some Chicken that needed to be cooked soon and thought that skewers were something I have not had in quite awhile.

1 lb Chicken Breast, cubed
7-10 sm Bamboo Skewers
1/2 cup Caesar Italian Salad Dressing
1/2 cup Italian Roast Red Pepper Salad Dressing
Olive Oil
2 Scallions, diced

I began by cubing the Chicken. This works a little better when you freeze the chicken, or get it close to frozen, and cut it then. I find it a lot easier to cut then.

I got the two bottles of Salad Dressing.

I poured them in with the cubed Chicken. Mix together. Put in fridge for about 30 minutes. You could probably leave out of the fridge, it's up to you.

Now get your Bamboo Skewers and soak them in water. This tends to make them less likely to burn or splinter during this entire process. You can leave them in water for an hour if you would like, however I only left them in for about 15 minutes.

Now once you are ready around 15 minutes later, use your Skewers to put 3 or 4 pieces of Chicken on each Skewer.

Now using a saucepan put in some Olive Oil and turn the heat to MEDIUM.

My saucepan is a bit deeper than usual saucepans and most likely has a different name but I treat it like a saucepan. Anyways, I put four Skewers in at first.

Once they are done, which I tested by cutting open one as the cooking process went on. I turned them over every few minutes in an attempt at a thorough cooking.

So I took them off once they were cooked properly and plated them. To them I added a diced Scallion. Enjoy.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Chicken Quesadillas

Quesadillas are quite prevalent here in Texas as a staple of everyones food diet. Well, I have not had any in quite a long while and decided to cook some up. Probably a little different flavor than most quesadillas but I like it a little different.

1 lb Chicken Breasts, frozen
Flour Tortillas
Garlic Salt
Mesquite Seasoning
Ground Cumin
Celery Salt
Perfect Pinch - Cajun
Ground Allspice
Italian Seasoning
Ground Cloves
Shredded Italian Style Cheese
Finely Shredded Sharp Cheddar
Fiesta Blend Cheese
Mozzarella & Parmesan Finely Shredded Cheese
Vegetable Oil
Apple Cider Vinegar
Olive Oil

I began by gathering the spices.

I also made sure to have all my cheeses too.

So I mixed my spices together. No real amount, just remember to go light on the Allspice and Cloves. They tend to overpower everything else. I also went light on the Cumin as well. I love, yes love, Garlic Salt so I added a LOT of that.

I have used pre-made marinades before and they always call for vinegar, vegetable oil, and water. So that is what I added to the spice mix. About 1/4 cup Water, 1/4 cup Apple Cider Vinegar, and 1/2 cup Vegetable Oil. Mix together well.

Now I did not take a picture of me freezing and then dicing up the Chicken. It's pretty simple and allows you to cut into smaller pieces due to the Chicken being frozen. Try not to cut yourself. Please. Then add to marinade and mix together.

Hey look! I found a bottle of Tequila! Let's use this in cooking tonight.

I put about 2 shots worth of Tequila into a skillet and turned the heat to MEDIUM. Once the Tequila began to burn off, I added in the marinade and Chicken.

It looks so pretty when it's cooking. This part should only take a minute or two due to the Chicken being diced up so finely.

Strain the Chicken out and put it in a bowl.

Grab a small skillet. Using a small Tortilla, add some Cheese. Then some Chicken. Then some more Cheese. Fold it over and put it in the skillet with some Olive Oil(not too much).

Flip over after about a minute or minute and a half. Take off about a minute later.

Looks tasty I know...let's cut it up. Enjoy.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Lentil Soup x2

Lentil Soup is a very easy and tasty dish to make. I made it two different ways and will have both represented here. Originally I made a simplified version only consisting of Lentils and Onions. The second version has more in it. I will explain Version 1 first and follow it with Version 2.

Version 1:
1 White Onion
1 cup Red/Orange Lentils
1 cup Green Lentils
Italian Seasoning
Celery Salt
Perfect Pinch Cajun
Garlic Salt
6 cups Water
1/4 stick Sun Dried Tomato Basil Butter

I began by getting my spices together.

I then got out my White Onion and proceeded to dice it up.

Oh my, found some tasty Butter to caramelize the Onion in.

Now put Onions in with the melting Butter.

Once Onions are caramelized, add in 2 cups of Lentils.

Pour in your water.

Let it cook, stirring once in awhile, until done. The Lentils will be like little sponges and soak up almost all of the water.

I served this on Wild Rice with some shredded Cheese on top. Enjoy.

Version 2:
1 White Onion
1 cup Red/Orange Lentils
1 cup Green Lentils
Italian Seasoning
Celery Salt
Perfect Pinch Cajun
Garlic Salt
Ground Black Pepper
6 Celery stalks
8 Sm Carrots
1/4 stick Butter
6 cups Water

Alright, this recipe mainly follows Version 1 with a few changes.

First off, like no pictures. Sorry but it's sort of redundant. You begin by dicing up your Onions, Carrots, and Celery stalks.

Then you caramelize the Onions in regular Butter.

Add in the diced up Carrots and Celery when the caramelization begins. Stir together thoroughly.

Add in Lentils once Carrots soften up a bit.

Add in Water at same time. Stir.

Once Lentils are soft enough to eat, turn off heat and serve. Enjoy.

Asian Tequila Lime Shrimp

I began this recipe intending on just doing Tequila Lime Shrimp, however a thought came over me about halfway through cooking the Shrimp. I should change this up a little bit. That's where the Asian inspiration happened. I can't take all the credit for the inspiration though...I was watching Jackie Chan on tv at the time.

1/2 lb Shrimp
2 Limes
1 Lemon
Italian Seasoning
Perfect Pinch Cajun
Teriyaki Sauce
Soy Sauce

Alright, so I began by gathering the spices and Limes. The Lemon was an afterthought.

I then got my Tequila. For cooking purposes, I use Camarena as it is tasty and cheap enough to not break the bank. Take a shot of it to make sure it's still good.

I put the spices in a Ziploc bag. I don't have an exact amount since I just eyeball it. I do believe it was about 2 parts Italian Seasoning to 1 part Cajun. I then sliced the Limes and Lemon up into small pieces. Add in Tequila. Use as much as you want. I used around 1.5 cups worth. Add shrimp. Mix together. Take picture and think how awesomely tasty it looks.

Get a skillet on your stovetop going with the heat set at MEDIUM. Toss in everything in the marinade Ziploc bag. Take another picture...or shot of Tequila. Your choice.

Now I let it cook for a few minutes, pretty much until it was boiling and then changed it up. I poured out everything but the Shrimp. I added in about a 1/2 cup of Soy Sauce and 3/4 cup of Teriyaki Sauce. Sorry about the picture quality, a lot of steam was produced in this part.

Now once they turn pinkish-red the Shrimp is done cooking. Turn off heat and get ready to serve. I used a small plate with some spring salad mix to accent the Shrimp. Enjoy.