Valrhona: Hot Chocolate Festival

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Last night the hubby and I, along with my dear friend (and talented pastry chef) Kimberly Barrett, attended the Valrhona Hot Chocolate Festival in Dumbo, Brooklyn.

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The event was hosted at L’École Valrhona Du Grand Chocolat located on Water Street in the super trendy Brooklyn neighborhood at the base of the Brooklyn Bridge, and just 5 minutes from Manhattan. The facility boasted state of the art equipment, and a very modern, clean, and polished aesthetic. The school offers a place where the public can take basic classes such as Intro to Chocolate and professional chefs can brush up on their Plated Desserts and Chocoart.

The event was full of chefs, media, and chocolate fanatics. There were seven booths set up for each company to showcase their product.

Marie Belle NY had a sweet and salty caramel hot chocolate. It was the first one I tried. It had a really nice flavor, and the kick of salt helped it from being overly sweet.

One of my all time favorite chocolatiers and brands is FIKA. FIKA is a chocolate brand from Sweden with bold flavors and some of the most delicious truffles I have ever had the pleasure to eat. At the showcase, FIKA made a hot chocolate with ancho chile and served a truffle with chile powder and lingonberry. It was beyond delicious and just the right amount of spice and sweetness.

Ladurée was there in full force. Armed with delicate patisserie and a luscious orange scented hot chocolate. Their offering was by far my favorite of the night. Delicate, complex, yet luscious – they transcended me right back to Ladurée in Paris. Je t’aime Ladurèe.

The best part of the event was catching up with my dear friend and talented Chef, Diane Stopford and drinking way too much decadent hot chocolate and sharing laughs with my husband and friend Kim.

To learn more about Valrhona’s new products and initiatives head over to Valrhona-chocolate.com and be sure to check out L’École Valrhona Du Grand Chocolat to be in the know about the latest happenings in the chocolate world.

Cheers

Chef Sean Patrick Gallagher

Chefseanparickgallagher.com

Taste of Paris: Miznon

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11695902_844701115977_8803345370097266460_n.jpgThis past Summer I spent two months cooking for a private family abroad in France. It was my first time to France, and I arrived not speaking a word of the language and completely unaware of how life changing the experience was going to be for me.

About a month into my stay in France, I journeyed to Paris for five days. I took a beautiful train ride that cut from the coast of La Baule to the city of Paris.

When I arrived, a car took me to Ile Saint Louis, where I stayed in a stunning chateau. It had floor to ceiling windows that opened out to a large courtyard below and the quiet, quaint streets of the island.

I ventured out into the maze-like streets of Paris. I refused to buy a map, but discover the city of my dreams on my own. I memorized landmarks and navigated my way through the city.

My first day was overwhelming. Starving, I decided to walk through le Marais and find an authentic dining experience in Paris.

Everywhere I looked was filled with tourists. I walked through seemingly endless side streets and alleys until I came across a tiny storefront of a restaurant with patrons spilling out the windows and entryway. I knew I had to eat here. 11836827_844700831547_9000377625054051336_n.jpg

The smell coming through the door of the restaurant was amazing! It smelled of slowly cooked meat, char, and smoke. I pushed through the door and saw a room with fresh produce on wood shelves, big bowls of lemons and heads of cauliflower. The menu was scribbled on a chalkboard wall in bright colored chalk. The kitchen was completely open, and the cooks prepared the food right in front of you as you ordered. There was minimal seating, and the crowd was loud and joyous. It felt like I had entered someones home, like everyone there was family. 11796379_844701135937_8055135375021145522_n.jpg

I stood awkwardly- waiting for someone to wait on me, or take an order – it never happened. I felt so embarrassed, I almost left. Then I decided to step out of my comfort zone, and I plunged myself down at the counter bar, and sat next to a beautiful pregnant woman.

I sat a few minutes, and then pushed myself to talk with her. I nervously asked her if she spoke English, (which she did, thankfully), and then proceeded to ask her how to order. I then explained I was a NYC chef visiting Paris, and wanted to taste the best food the city had to offer. She explained to me that her husband owned the restaurant and that I was indeed in the right place for good food.

She brought her husband over, and the three of us spoke about middle eastern food, restaurants, New York, and Paris. It was one of those experiences you don’t forget, and then the Chef decided to order for me. 11846732_844700891427_8813675508574140144_n.jpg

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The man working the counter was a combination host, maître d, and comedian. He poured me some warm red wine on this balmy  95 degree day. The restaurant was open to the street, and the heat everywhere. My clothes clung tight and wet to my body. A runner brought over some fresh made pita with side dish of tahini with tomato water and spiced olive oil. I dipped the hot fresh pita into the cool spread, and it refreshed me. 11846620_844701190827_7939526496194403906_n.jpg

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11836825_844700991227_537711851019361455_n.jpgNext came out a fresh pita pocket stuffed with thinly sliced steak, fresh parsley, red onion, and tahini sauce. It was served with roasted green chiles on the side for spice. (They’re very spicy!)

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Next came out the most incredible boeuf bourguignon stuffed pita. The combination of french and Israeli flavors are absolutely delicious, and was the singularly most delicious and memorable thing I ate in all of France. At the same time, they brought out a whole roasted head of cauliflower. It was perfectly tender, roasted nicely with salt and oil. You cut off sections as you ate it, and it made for a perfect accompaniment to the meal.

11825810_844701016177_7969641697193079440_n.jpg11013217_844701056097_1822053214430203279_n.jpg11825795_844701066077_1189422550208118183_n.jpgI drank a few more glasses of wine, ate way too much food, and chatted with the owners. Before I left, I was treated to one last indulgence. Apple Tarte Tatin, stuffed in a pita. A classic french dessert, with an Israeli twist. It was so delicious, I’m not sure how it hasn’t blown up into a huge trend around the world. (Maybe it will now!) 🙂

11855844_844701210787_2959316317263413118_n.jpgIf you’re in Paris, and venture into le Marais, you must check out Miznon.

Miznon
Restaurant: Israeli-French Fusion
Address: 22 Rue des Ecouffes, 75004 Paris, France
 

Bon Appetit!
Sean Patrick Gallagher

Simple-Beautiful Food

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Celebrating the simple beauty of food with some images from the last few months.

Fresh mozzarella shingled with ripe beefsteak tomatoes and basil

Fresh mozzarella shingled with ripe beefsteak tomatoes and basil

A brunch favorite, brioche french toast with Vermont maple syrup and macerated blueberries

A brunch favorite, brioche french toast with Vermont maple syrup and macerated blueberries

Gorgeous roasted eggplant slices topped with tomato sauce and feta

     Gorgeous roasted eggplant slices topped with tomato sauce and feta

Roasted root vegetables with shards of parmesan

                                  Roasted root vegetables with shards of Parmesan

Beautiful Jersey fresh Strawberries, sliced and shingled of Fage greek yogurt mixed with a bit of honey

Beautiful Jersey fresh Strawberries, sliced and shingled of Fage greek yogurt mixed with a bit of honey

 

Happy Eating

 

– Chef Sean Patrick Gallagher

Orange and Marjoram Roast Chicken, Homemade Tagliatelle, Herb Butter Roasted Asparagus

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Beautiful meal to entertain

Beautiful meal to entertain

 

I’ve had a roasting chicken in my freezer for a few weeks and decided, since there is literally nothing better than roast chicken, to defrost, brine, and roast off the little bird.

When roasting chicken I like to make sure the skin is completely dry. Dry skin, with pats of butter underneath will lead to deliciously crisp chicken skin. Cooking the chicken at a high temperature to start off the browning, and then lowering it for the rest of the cooking period will make a perfectly crisp and tender-juicy bird.

 

Orange and Marjoram Roast Chicken

3 pound whole chicken, brined (recipe below)

1 bunch carrots (with tops if you prefer)

2 shallots, quartered

4 cloves garlic

1 Orange, cut in quarters

Herb butter

Herb butter smeared all over the chicken - stuffed with garlic and oranges

Herb butter smeared all over the chicken – stuffed with garlic and oranges

 

  • Remove chicken from brine, dry completely.
  • Place carrots, garlic, shallots into a roasting pan, place roasting rack on top. I like to do this so that the juices and fat from the chicken drip down and cook and season the vegetables.
  • On top of the roasting rack place the chicken. I put two cloves garlic and 2 quarters of oranges into the cavity of the chicken. The other two quarters of the orange I roasted alongside the chicken, and let the juices inside concentrate to squeeze over the chicken when eating.
  • Using your fingers, lift the skin off the breast of the chicken, not tearing or removing, but lifting from the meat.
  • Use one hand to hold skin open, and the other to stuff herb butter down under the skin onto the breast meat of the chicken.
  • Stuff as much butter under the skin as you can, and anywhere else under the skin of the chicken you desire.
  • Pat the skin back down, season the chicken with kosher salt and ground black pepper. Drizzle with a little olive oil and place into the oven at 425 degrees for 20 minutes.
  • Turn the oven back down and cook at 350 for 1 hour.
  • Check the chicken, if blood is pooling at the back cavity of the bird, then it needs to cook further. If the juices are running clear then it is done.
  • Remove the chicken and let it rest for 15-20 minutes to produce an extremely juicy piece of meat.
Perfectly roasted chicken

Perfectly roasted chicken

Herb Butter

1 stick butter, softened

1 T finely chopped fresh marjoram (Oregano is a fine substitute as well)

2 T finely chopped fresh flat leaf parsley

1 T finely chopped fresh thyme

1 T orange zest

1/2 t kosher salt

freshly ground black pepper

Brine

8 cups water

1/4 cup kosher salt

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 T herbs de provence

2 T Mustard seeds

1 Orange, juiced and peel

  • Start with 4 cups hot water, add in sugar, salt, orange juice and peel, and seasonings. Stir until sugar is dissolved.
  • Add remaining 4 cups of cold water. Submerge your chicken into the brine and leave for 2-6 hours.
  • Remove Chicken from brine, dry off completely and let sit for an hour to let the water content of the chicken equalize.

Herb Butter Roasted Asparagus

1 bu Asparagus

2 T herb butter

Sprinkle salt

Dash ground black pepper

Asparagus smothered in herb butter

Asparagus smothered in herb butter

  • Cut your asparagus to size, removing the woodsy bottom part.
  • Lay them flat on a tray, and drop pats of softened herb butter on them.
  • Using your hands, smear the butter evenly oven all of the asparagus.
  • Sprinkle a small amount of salt and pepper (because the butter is heavily seasoned)
  • Roast at 400 for 7-10 minutes. Do not over cook, they will turn to mush. 🙂

 

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Homemade Tagliatelle Pasta

3 whole large eggs

2 cups durum flour (If you can’t find specialty flours I’ve made it with AP flour at its just delish)

2 T olive oil

1 pinch kosher salt

  • Place two cups of flour and salt into a bowl and make a well.
  • Beat the eggs in a another bowl with the oil.
  • Pour egg mix into the well off the flour.
  • Using a fork, start to combine the egg and flour by mixing in a little in from the sides at a time.
  • Do this until all the liquid is combined. A dough will start to form.
  • Remove this newly formed dough to a lightly floured work surface – a butcher block wood or stainless steel top will work best.
  • Using your hands, knead the dough ball until is forms a smooth surface.
  • The technique for pasta is a little different than bread dough. You want to roll with your palms, to make even motions to create a smooth surface.
  • Kneading the pasta dough onto itself for 6-10 minutes will provide you with a smooth, elastic dough.
  • Wrap the ball of dough in plastic and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
  • Remove the dough from the refrigerator and cut in half.
  • Using your pasta machine, start on the lowest setting 0. Feed the dough through the machine until you have an even thickness.
  • Keep doing this, folding the dough over onto itself to get an even rectangle.
  • Do this over and over for each setting until you get to 6 or 7 on your pasta machine.
  • It will become thinner with each setting, and you will need to dust the sheet of pasta with flour to prevent it from sticking together.
  • When the pasta is thin enough that you can almost see through it. Pass it through the cutter on your machine or cut by hand.
  • When the pasta is cut, dust with flour to prevent the strands from sticking together.Pasta ready to be cooked
  • Place the pasta onto a lightly floured sheet pan until ready to cook.
  • Cook in rapidly boiling, salted water for 3-5 minutes. When the pasta is fully cooked it will be floating and have a lighter color.

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*At this point I had taken all the juices from the chicken and scraped the bottom of the roasting pan for all the flavor. Add this to a sauté pan and started to reduce.

 

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As the hot pasta came out of the pot, I added it to the reducing chicken juices. The result was a deliciously flavorful pasta. At the end before serving I added 2 T of leftover herb butter to pan and mixed it together. The flavor of the chicken jus with the pasta and herb butter was incredible and I recommend if you make this dish to do it the same way.

Plated meal, sliced breast meat, tagliatelle, asparagus

Plated meal, sliced breast meat, tagliatelle, asparagus

This meal is a little more involved than the recipes I normally post, but I guarantee that the reward is worth the effort. Delish!

 

Enjoy!

Enjoy!

Try it out!

 

Cheers

 

Sean Patrick Gallagher

Lemon Risotto Stuffed Swiss Chard

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Hello all! I had a delightful time doing a cooking demonstration at William-Sonoma this past Wednesday. It was a great turnout, and I really enjoyed speaking with the public. I prepared one of my favorite finger foods! Bite sized, lemon risotto stuffed swiss chard. This is a simple preparation, taking a standard risotto, stemming and blanching swiss chard leaves, rolling them up, pan sautéing them in butter, and deglazing with lemon.

Below is the recipe I have come to love! Enjoy!

Lemon Risotto Stuffed Swiss Chard  

2 cups Arborio rice

2 lemons, zested

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 sprigThyme, whole

1 shallot, minced

6-8 cups chicken stock

1 cup white wine

1 cup Currants

1/2 cup shaved pecorino

2 Tbsp freshly chopped parsley

1 stick butter

2 bunches swiss chard, cleaned

1 Tbsp olive oil

salt to taste

black pepper to taste

1) In a large pot with a lid, add 1/4 stick of butter and 1 T olive oil.

2) In a separate pot, heat your chicken stock.

3) Over medium heat, sweat your shallots and garlic, add your sprig of thyme to the pan.

4) Once your shallots are translucent, add your rice and toast it in the oil and butter.

5) Toast the rice over medium heat, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes.

6) Add your wine, and let it cook out for about 2 minutes.

7) Add one ladle of stock to the rice. Stir to combine.

8) Once the stock is absorbed into the rice, add another ladle.

9) Continue until the rice is cooked al dente – or still having a bite to it, remove thyme stem.

10) Remove from heat, add pecorino, currants, and 1/4 stick of butter. Stir to combine.

11) Taste the rice for seasoning, adjust as needed. Cool the risotto in an even layer in a baking dish, stir in chopped parsley as cooling.

12) Clean the swiss chard, using a knife remove the leaf from the stem.

13) Blanch stemmed swiss chard leaves in boiling water for 1 minute. Shock in ice water to stop cooking.

14) Cut leaves into 4×4 in squares.

15) Spoon two tablespoons of risotto into the leave, fold the sides in, and roll to close.

16) Keep rolling until you are out of filling. Should produce around 30 each.

17) When ready to serve, melt 1/2 a stick of butter in a large sauté pan. Place each stuffed swiss chard in the pan.

18) Lightly brown on both sides, squeeze the juice of a fresh lemon into the pan to create pan sauce.

19) Serve hot, and enjoy!

Cheers!

 

Sean Patrick Gallagher

 

 

 

Farm to Table: Quality vs. Convenience

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In my profession, I have the luxury of seeing into the lives of others. I get to sip the champagne, shine the silver, and line the tables with the finest linens and china. Although it isn’t every little boys dream, it has always been mine. I recently had the pleasure of spending the day on a client’s farm, picking, preparing, and serving some of the most beautiful vegetables I have ever had the pleasure to work with. There is something about walking through rows lined with bright-rainbow chard, picture perfect onions, and tiffany blue berries that makes my heart flutter.

This affair took place on the farmstead estate of my clients. A grand property with rolling hills along the Connecticut countryside. We strolled through the garden together pulling onions, garlic, and beets by their roots from the ground. We snipped chard, romaine, merlot greens, parsley, tarragon, and nasturtiums.  With a cart filled, we rolled into the pristine white kitchen and made a mess. Cleaning greens and filling the porcelain farm sinks with mud.

An hour later all the vegetables were prepped, and my delightful client left me to my own devices in the kitchen. For a Chef… I don’t know if it gets any better than this. Cutting onions that I handpicked only moments later. Peeling a russian breed of garlic; cloves the size of golfballs! Embracing the farm to table style, I crafted a menu around fresh-seasonal vegetables.

Over the next 5 hours I rushed around and prepared a fantastic feast. Here’s what I served:

Farm Dinner

Cheese Board

Hor d’ourves

Citrus marinated shrimp with herbed creme fraiche

Avocado chicken salad on corn tortilla rounds

 

Farm greens

 Fresh peas, merlot greens, roasted beets, feta, pancetta crisp, lemon dill dressing

Grilled Beef

New York Strip, au jus, roast fingerlings, zucchini gratin, smothered chard

 

Banana Tarte Tatin

Caramelized banana, pastry, vanilla gelato, cashew

 Banana Tarte Tatin

2 sheets frozen puff pastry

1 bunch bananas

1 cup dark brown sugar

1 cup white sugar

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup dark rum

1 stick butter

1/8 t vanilla extract

1/8 t ground cinnamon

1: In a small saucepan, add sugars and water. Bring to a boil, and cook until dark amber color stirring constantly.

2: Add butter in small pats, whisking in to combine.

3: Add rum, cinnamon, and vanilla.

4. Peel all bananas, slice in half longways. In a large rectangle baking dish, lay bananas down.

5: Pour caramel over the bananas evenly.

6: Place sheets of puff pastry over the top and press down tightly.

7: Bake in a 375º oven for 30 minutes, or until golden brown.

8: Let cool for 20 minutes, invert the pan so the bananas are on top.

10: Serve warm with whipped cream or ice cream.

This dessert is so simple, and absolutely delicious.

All in all it was a beautiful experience and definitely a life lesson for me. Living in New York City has taught me to sometimes choose a more convenient option, but there are far more quality options out there.. just takes a little more time to achieve. In the end, it is worth it.

Cheers!

Sean

Braised Pork with roasted mushrooms, roasted potatoes, watercress, lemon dill dressing

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Heres a different way to use a pork roast. Searing, slicing, and then braising the pork adds a ton of flavor and makes this a quick cooking dish. Flavors of fire roasted tomatoes, roasted mushrooms, dill, watercress, and citrus make this a beautiful summer dish.

 

Braised Pork with roasted mushrooms, roasted potatoes, watercress, lemon dill dressing

2 pound pork roast, boneless

1/2 bu dill, chopped

1/2 bu parsley, chopped

2 cups veg stock

1 large can fire roasted tomatoes, crushed

10 cloves garlic, minced/sliced

2 pounds small yellow potatoes

2 lemons, juiced

1 bu watercress, cleaned and chopped

1 portobello, sliced

4 shitake, stemmed and sliced

1 ct crimini mushrooms, quarted

1 cup crumbled feta

2 T capers, drained

 

 

1: Sear pork in 2 T olive oil on medium high heat, rotating once so both sides are caramelized.

2: Remove from heat and let cool. In the same pan, add you mushrooms, and 1 clove garlic minced. Cook over high heat to caramelize mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper.

3: Remove mushrooms and add sliced onion and 2 cloves minced garlic.

4: Cook over medium heat until onion is cooked. Add vegetable stock, cook down for 5 minutes on high. Add tomatoes, crushing them in your hands as you add them to the pot, turn down heat and cook for 5 more minutes.

5: Slice your pork into 8 equal portions by cutting it in half, then fourths, then 8ths.

6: Lay pork into the sauce so they fit snug.

7: Add capers, top with mushrooms, and half the feta.

8: Place in a 500 degree oven for 15 minutes.

10: When pork comes out, make sure it is cooked through, top with more feta and chopped parsley.

Roasted potatoes with watercress and lemon dill dressing 

1: Half potatoes, toss in olive oil with salt and pepper and 1 clove sliced garlic

2: Roast at 400 for 15 – 20 minutes until brown and crisp

3: Clean and cut watercress, place in bowl to side

4: In a container place 1 clove garlic, 1/2 bu dill, 1/2 bu parsley, and juice of one lemon.

5: Add 1/4 cup olive oil and 2 T water. Puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.

6: When potatoes are hot out of the oven, toss in with watercress and dressing.

Serve hot or room temperature.

 

This recipe is delicious, healthy, and very flavorful. Try it out!

 

Cheers,
Sean Patrick Gallagher

Effortless Sticky Buns

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I am not a baker, that is for sure. I do however love to have guests over, and to entertain. This last weekend we had some friends visiting us in Philadelphia from New York City and I wanted them to have a sweet treat in the morning. Not sure what to make, and I scoured the fridge and freezer. I like to keep a package of puff pastry in the freezer, I use it for all types of appetizers and entrees, and desserts as well. I decided to make a breakfast treat with puff pastry.

Sticky buns are traditionally made with a yeast dough, and take a good amount of time to prepare. Using puff pastry, I get a very similar effect with about a fourth of the work.

Try this recipe out, its super simple and satisfying!

Effortless Sticky Buns

Makes 8

1 package of puff pastry

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup white sugar

splash vanilla

1 stick butter

2 T cinnamon

sprinkle salt

1 cup toasted cashews finely chopped

1: In a small bowl mix together the two sugars. Take half the sugar mixture and mix with one stick softened butter. Add the vanilla, and 1 T cinnamon.

2: Take the other half of the sugar mixture and add the other T of cinnamon.

3: In a small baking dish, smear the butter mixture evenly across the bottom.

4: Take your finely chopped cashews and distribute them evenly over the butter mixture, patting them in.

5: Now unwrap your puff pastry, there ill be two sheets. Place them on a flat surface, and place one down and then the other sheet overlapping the edge by half an inch. Press firmly on the edge to make one long sheet of pastry.

6: Sprinkle the entire amount of sugar and cinnamon mixture across the pastry dough, covering it entirely.

7: Gently start rolling the bottom of the dough; roll very tightly to keep all the sugar in and get the classic cinnamon bun look.

8: Keep rolling until the whole sheet is rolled tightly into a cylinder.

9: Cut the cylinder into 8 equal portions.

10: Place the rolls into the baking dish, spaced 1 1/2 inches apart.

11: Gently press them down into the butter mixture.

12: Place into a 375° oven for about 45 -50 minutes, you want to check after 30 minutes to make sure that they are browning evenly, rotate them if need be.

13: Make sure that the dough is completely cooked through, if still doughy cook for an additional 10 minutes.

14: Let cool for 20 minutes, and then turn the dish over to reveal the chewy caramel on the other side of the buns.

This recipe is delicious and can be make in advance or morning of. They are great for breakfast or as a dessert.

Thank you for reading, I hope you try these out!

Cheers,
Sean Patrick Gallagher

Two Dishes, One Chicken

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Roasted Chicken has got to be my all time favorite meal. It is so simple and yet, so complex. I have roasted a chicken many different ways; with truffle butter under the skin, stuffed with sausage, or simply dressed with herbs. There are a ton of ways to roast a chicken, but this is how I do it.

1: Clean your bird in cold water, check the skin for any leftover feathers or abnormalities and remove them.

2: Remove the innards of the bird; you can keep them and roast them along side the bird or toss them.

3: Dry your bird completely dry. Moisture on the skin of the bird will prevent a nice crisp finished product.

4: Using your fingers, gently slide underneath the skin of the breast of the bird and loosen it, creating a cavity between the breast and the skin. Here you can place butter, herbs, any kind of flavorings you wish to impart on the chicken.

5: Cover the bird in freshly ground black pepper, a liberal amount of kosher salt, and drizzle olive oil all over it. Massage the seasoning into the bird.

6: Place the bird on a roasting rack or sheet pan. I like to make a bed of aromatics; carrots, onions, garlic, celery, thyme.. and place the chicken on top so the chicken is not directly touching the metal and the aromatics cook along with it.

7: Place the bird in a 400° oven for 20 minutes.

8: After 20 minutes, rotate the pan, lower the heat to 375°, and place the time for 1 hour. (This will be perfect for a 3 pound chicken, add an additional 20 minutes per pound for large birds)

9: Remove the chicken and let it rest for 10 minutes.

10: I like to remove the breasts and slice them, then cut the chicken into pieces: thighs, legs, and wings.

11: Use the drippings from the chicken to create a flavorful sauce.

With this roast chicken, I caramelized one onion, a few sliced mushrooms, and chopped up the aromatics that roasted with the chicken. I then adds the drippings from the roast chicken to create a sauce. Served over a bed of whole wheat couscous and some delicious fresh pea shoots, this is a fantastic, healthy, easy, and delicious meal.

 

Every time you roast a chicken there is leftovers. With that leftover chicken I usually make soup or shred the chicken for many different dishes.. salads, enchiladas, tacos.. and so on.

In NYC I once ate a chicken salad that used avocado instead of mayonnaise, which for me was heaven because nothing in the world disturbs me more than that god-forsaken product! Here is a quick and delicious recipe to utilize left over chicken.

Avocado Chicken Salad

2 cups leftover roasted chicken, shredded or chopped

2 large avocados

1 lime juiced

2 T chopped fresh cilantro

2 T sour cream

1 t kosher salt

fresh ground black pepper

Corn or wheat tortillas

dash of hot sauce

1: Shred your leftover chicken, make sure there is no cartilage or bones. If you want to make this and don’t have leftover roasted chicken you can use a rotisserie chicken from the grocery, or roast chicken thighs and pull the meat.

2: Mash the avocados separately with lime juice, sour cream, and cilantro. Season with salt and pepper and mix well. Mix in chicken and stir well to combine.

3: Toast whole wheat tortillas, serve the chicken salad cold on the tortillas with a squeeze of fresh lime and a dash of hot sauce.

This dish couldn’t be easier and is delicious, a much healthier alternative to traditional chicken salad.

Cheers,

Sean Patrick Gallagher

Albóndigas

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Whenever I have ground beef around, I challenge myself to make something different. I stuff peppers, fill tortillas, or  make hearty bolognese. Scouring through our fridge in Philly, I decided that I would make a style of meatball named Albóndigas, a spanish style meatball dish.

For this recipe I wanted to use what I had lying around and in the fridge, so you could substitute many of the items I use with what you have in your fridge.

Albóndigas – Serves 4-6 (Depending on how hungry you are!)

2 pounds ground beef

1/4 cup cracker crumbs

1/4 cup milk

1 egg

2 T chopped cilantro

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon  ground oregano

1/2 cup crumbled feta

1 T ground cumin

1/8 t hot pepper flake

1/2 large white onion, small diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

Sauce:

1 can san marzano tomatoes, pureed

2 small carrots, peeled and shredded

1/2 large white onion, minced

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 T kosher salt

1 T white sugar

1 T vinegar

Mix together all items except the onion and garlic. Do not over mix or you can make the beef tough.

Separately, Cook onion until soft in 1 T olive oil, Add garlic and cook for 2 minutes

Let cool, mix into meat mixture.

In the same pan you cooked the onion add enough olive oil to fill pan 1/2 inch.

Roll the meatballs into golf ball size.  Once the oil is hot, add meatballs to brown, brown on both sides. remove from heat and add 1/2 white onion minced, 4 cloves garlic minced, 2 carrots shredded.

Once the onion and carrot are soft, add tomato puree. Add 1 T kosher salt and 1 T sugar, cook for 20 minutes over medium heat covered. Add meatballs back in and cook for 1 hour on medium low heat. Stirring every 20 minutes to prevent scorching on the bottom of the pan. Taste the sauce for seasoning and finish with a splash of good vinegar to balance sauce.

Finish with a drizzle of good oil and chopped fresh cilantro and feta.

Try this recipe out! Super easy and delicious.

Cheers,
Sean Patrick Gallagher