What a Year

hk skyline

2013 was a big year for me. Last night, as I flipped back the pages in my mind before the clock strikes twelve, some memories formed into paintings of joy and laughter while others displayed a sense of melancholy.  It was the year where I decide to make a drastic change in my life with a precious opportunity which I am actually not quite prepared for.

Leaving home to work in a foreign country for the first time, the move to Hong Kong itself was already an experience. Besides getting to know the ways of living in this new city, my taste buds are also being challenged to recipes, flavors and textures that I am not accustomed to.

While the new may be interesting, it is often the familiar that kept me settled.  I’m so glad that my tiny kitchen is now stocked with extra virgin olive oil, Italian canned tomatoes, balsamic and my favorite spices.

Here’s a simple recipe to share. Happy New Year my friends!

Drumsticks Baked with Balsamic Vinegar

baked chicken with balsamic

Drumsticks

Olive oil

Balsamic vinegar

Crushed black pepper

Dried rosemary (fresh ones are too costly over here)

Sea salt

Paprika

Lemon juice

Marinate drumsticks with all other ingredients overnight. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 200C for 45 minutes or until it looks good to the eye. Squeeze a wedge of lemon juice over before serving with your favorite greens or baked vegetables.

BAKED YOGURT CHICKEN

This is a recipe that was missing in action for quite a while but never been forgotten. Last weekend, I decided to take a break from Italian cooking and prepare this dish for a friend who came over for lunch.

Ingredients

Chicken pieces

Shallots

Garlic

Cumin

Young ginger

Plain yogurt

Paprika

Turmeric powder

Black pepper

Sea salt

Olive oil

Wash chicken, pad dry and put into a plastic bag. Blend all other ingredients and mix it thoroughly with yogurt. Marinate chicken with mixture. Tie up plastic bag and leave overnight in the fridge.

Preheat oven to 428F/220C. Bake chicken for 25 minutes and turn to grill for another 10 minutes.

This meal goes well with plain stem rice and perhaps a glass of ice lemongrass drink.

CHICKEN FILLET WITH PESTO SAUCE

 

I’m so glad to have explored making fresh pesto sauce (Click here for the recipe). Once you have it in your fridge, you can create any dish you can come up with. This time, I blend it with pan fried chicken fillet.

Chicken fillet, cut into bite size

Pesto paste

Cherry tomatoes

Olive oil

Sea salt

Black pepper

Prepare pesto paste by adding extra virgin olive oil to create a smooth sauce.

Here’s a tip when using stainless steel pan for frying. After heating up pan with olive oil, sprinkle some salt before putting in chicken fillet. This will help to avoid meat sticking onto pan while frying. Fry fillet for three minutes on each side and add black pepper.

Off heat and stir in pesto sauce. Garnish with chopped cherry tomatoes and serve immediately.