Grilled Spiced Chicken Sandwich

Grilled Spiced Chicken Sandwich. Happy Friday, everyone! Now if you have my cookbook “The Seasoned Life,” you have probably made one of my favorite recipes called “Grilled Spiced Chicken.” I take chicken breast and coat them in a dry rub mixture before grilling them indoors or outdoors. The chicken gets all caramelized on the grill and is just so juicy and flavorful. Here I slice it up for a sourdough sandwich with a sweet and peppery arugula salad for crunch and flavor. You can also pair it with a little mayo and your favorite cheese. This sandwich is going to be your next backyard hit. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy!

Xo- Ayesha

Grilled Spiced Chicken Sandwich

Grilled Spiced Chicken Sandwich

Four boneless, skinless chicken breasts.
Two tablespoons olive oil
Two tablespoons paprika
One teaspoon cinnamon
Kosher salt, to taste.
Fresh ground black pepper, to taste.
Eight slices lightly toasted sourdough bread (Or bread of your choosing.)
Sliced cheese, for serving. (I used fontina)
Mayonnaise, for serving.
Arugula salad, for serving. (recipe below)

Preheat grill at medium-high heat.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine seasonings and thoroughly mix. Coat chicken breast one at a time into the spice mixture and set aside onto a plate.

Grill the chicken until cooked through and juices run clear — about 4-6 minutes per side.

Slice chicken breast diagonally and assemble sandwiches to your liking. Enjoy!

 

Arugula Salad:

2 cups packed arugula
One tablespoon balsamic vinegar
One tablespoon dark brown sugar
One tablespoon olive oil

In a small bowl, add vinegar, sugar, and oil and whisk together.

Add in arugula and toss to coat.

Serve immediately.

Cucumber And Tomato Salad

Cucumber And Tomato Salad. In my cookbook, “The Seasoned Life,” I  have a recipe for “Cucumber Salad.” Here I added in some fresh tomatoes from my garden. I also used Thai chili powder in place of red pepper flakes. It’s perfect in this chilled salad. If you can get ahold of it and enjoy a little heat, give it a try! Such a quick and straightforward way to use produce that you have on hand or can get ahold of at your local market or farmers market. This dish is sweet, vinegary and has a touch of heat — the perfect complement to your next summer cookout.

Enjoy,

Xo- Ayesha

 

Cucumber And Tomato Salad

Cucumber And Tomato Salad

1 Cucumber peeled and sliced
1-pint baby cherry or heirloom tomatoes
Two tablespoons red wine vinegar
Two tablespoons minced red onion
Two teaspoons light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

In a small bowl mix vinegar, onion, sugar, salt, and chili flakes. mIx well.

In a large bowl add cucumber slice and tomatoes. Add in dressing and toss to coat. Allow to sit for atlas 5 minutes before serving or refrigerate and serve chilled.

Tip* I personally think it tastes better the longer it sits. So if you have time to make beforehand and refrigerate I would suggest it.

Cherry Pulled Pork

Cherry Pulled Pork. This is going to be one of those go-to recipes you can use when you’re short on time. Now I’m a huge fan of my electric pressure cooker. You can literally throw frozen meat into it and have tender meat in thirty minutes. Or in this case 45 minutes. I decided to use some tart cherries in this recipe. I feel like cherries are the perfect complement for this dish. We also have some garlic, ginger and whole bunch of other goodies. Your house is going to smell like you’ve been slaving over the stove all day. Name your favorite way to use cherries in the comments below.

Enjoy,

Xo- Ayesha

 

Cherry Pulled Pork

 

Cherry Pulled Pork

4-5 pound pork shoulder roast
2 cups frozen cherries
1 cup beef broth
1/2 cup cherry juice
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup ketchup
Two tablespoons dark brown sugar
1-inch fresh ginger, peeled.
3-4 whole garlic cloves
One small shallot, diced.
One teaspoon dry mustard
Two teaspoons black pepper
Salt and to taste.

Cut roast into sections so that it will be covered with the cooking liquid. Then season with salt, pepper, and mustard and place into the pressure cooker along with cherries, garlic, ginger, and shallot. In a bowl mix sugar, ketchup, vinegar, broth, and cherry juice.

Pour over the top of the roast.

Cook for about forty-five minutes in your electric pressure cooker. Please follow the directions on your pressure cooker for complete instructions.

Remove from pot and use two forks to shred the meat. Pour as much or as little of the cherry sauce over the top of the shredded pork. I served it in a bun with a quick slaw. Its also delicious poured over a bowl of rice and steamed veggies. Yum!

Warm Green Bean Salad

Warm Green bean salad. There is nothing I love more than a no-fuss recipe. Now everyone knows how much I love to garden and use fresh produce as much as I can. Fresh green beans in the spring are a must. They are loaded with nutrients and fiber. Also, my kids favorite vegetable to prep with me. What kid wouldn’t love snapping off the ends of green beans for you?! When shopping for green beans remember that they should snap when they are fresh not bend. Pancetta, shallot, brown sugar, dijon, vinegar, and other goodies give these tender green beans a slightly sweet and spicy flavor — the perfect side for a weeknight dinner or your upcoming Easter meal. You can even make the sauce and brown the pancetta and shallot the night before to save some time. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Xo- Ayesha

 

Warm Green bean salad

Warm Green bean salad

One pound fresh green beans, trimmed.
4 ounces pancetta
One shallot, finely minced.
Two tablespoons brown sugar
One tablespoon dijon mustard
Two tablespoons red wine vinegar (You could substitute apple cider vinegar.)
Two teaspoons soy sauce

Pinch black pepper

Pinch red pepper flakes, optional.

In a small bowl, whisk together brown sugar, vinegar, dijon, soy, and seasonings. Mix well and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Quickly blanch green beans in boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Or longer if you prefer a more tender green bean.

Cook diced pancetta in a skillet over medium heat until crispy. Remove from the skillet and set aside. Cook shallot in the rendered fat and saute for about 1 minute.

Add drained green beans, pancetta and sauce mixture into the skillet. Toss and coat thoroughly before cooking for 1-2 minutes more and remove from heat. Serve immediately.

Marinated Grilled Chicken Thighs

Marinated grilled chicken thighs. Fire up the grill or grill pan and get ready to make this delicious chicken recipe. Now I love to use chicken thighs as they are quick to cook, juicy and inexpensive. And how amazing is it that you don’t need a grill to cook out these days. Checkout my grill pan from my new “Ayesha Curry Home Collection” available at retailers nationwide and get your “grill on” from the comfort of your kitchen. This dish is perfect sliced along the top of a salad or paired with your favorite sides. Whats your favorite protein to grill? Share in the comments below.

Enjoy!

Xo- Ayesha

Marinated Grilled chicken thighs

1lb boneless skinless chicken thighs
3/4 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic (Or one if you’re not a garlic lover)
1 tablespoon parsley, finely chopped.
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Two tablespoons Dijon
Two tablespoons lemon juice
Black pepper to taste. (I used about 1/2 teaspoon)

In a large bowl combine oil, garlic, soy, vinegar, lemon, parsley, Dijon, brown sugar, and pepper.

Mix well and remove1/4 cup of marinade.

Place in the chicken thighs and coat well with marinade. Allow marinating for at least 30 minutes. It can marinate for a few hours but I wouldn’t let it marinate overnight as the vinegar and lemon will begin to cook the meat and change the texture.

Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat.

Grill chicken thighs for 4-5 minutes per side or until cooked through. Brushing with remaining marinade while cooking.

Allow resting for 5 minutes before serving.

Tip- Add one tablespoon of liquid smoke to the marinade if you’re missing that smoky taste you get grilling outdoors.

Simple Macerated Strawberries

Simple Macerated Strawberries. Who doesn’t love strawberries? My family certainly does. This recipe is a super simple go-to when I want to elevate my berries! Perfect for topping your family’s pancakes, waffles, and yummy desserts! Macerated is a technique that releases the juices from your fruit. And you can either do this with a simple syrup or simple syrup with alcohol. I opted for the simple syrup without alcohol for a more kid-friendly recipe. You can also change this up and add in whatever fresh herbs you have on hand. So easy and tasty! Share your favorite way to eat strawberries in the comments below.

Enjoy

Xo- Ayesha

Simple Macerated Strawberries

1-pint strawberries, hulled and sliced.
1/2 cup brown sugar (or white)
One tablespoon honey
Two tablespoon lemon juice (You could substitute with Grand Marnier)
One teaspoon mint, finely chopped (optional)
Pinch sea salt

Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix gently.

Allow sitting room temperature for 20-30 minutes.

Serve as a topping for your pancakes, waffles, ice cream sundaes, cakes, and more! I could eat a small bowl just on its own.

Morning Roasted Pear Oatmeal

Morning Roasted Pear Oatmeal

Now I am always looking for ways to spruce up our household favorites. So I wanted to share with you a quick and flavorful take on an oatmeal recipe that the adults and kids will like this coming weekend. I pair Irish cut steel oats with a little cream and brown sugar and roasted pears. The house will smell like the holidays all over again as you roast your pears away! For the kids, I sometimes just take the roasted pear and just pour the yummy oatmeal over top. It’s like a pear bowl. The kids will love it. It truly amazes me all the things you can add and mix in to truly transform a plain old bowl of oatmeal. I hope that this becomes a new household favorite.

Xo- Ayesha

Morning Roasted Pear Oatmeal

3 cups water
1 cup steel cut oats
1⁄4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup heavy cream
One tablespoon brown sugar
Pinch sea salt

Add cinnamon and oats into a pot and bring water to a boil. Stir well and cover. Adjust heat to low and simmer for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Do not overcook! Remove from heat and add butter, sugar, cream, and pinch of salt. Top with roasted pears and a drizzle of pear juice from the pan. Serve immediately.

Roasted Pears

Three pears, cut into halves.
Two tablespoons butter, melted.
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Quarter and core the pears. (Use a melon scooper or small spoon.)

Place pear halves in baking dish. Brush pears liberally with melted butter. Sprinkle brown sugar and cinnamon mixture on top evenly.

Bake for 10-15 minutes.

Allow to cool and transfer to a cutting board. (Reserving sauce in pan)

With or without skin on chop into cubes.

Serve over top of oatmeal.

Enjoy!

Jojoba & Coffee Body Scrub

Spring has finally arrived for us on the west coast, and if you’re like me from California, you may have realized we’ve gone straight to summer. These past few months bundled up in the “cold” and cloudy weather has left my skin dry and dusty pale. As the sunny and 75 degree days have started to transition into our busy lives so has my beauty routine, and to help give it a boost I love using my easy homemade Coffee and Jojoba Body Scrub! The ingredients give this scrub so many benefits; coffee helps eliminate cellulite while the brown sugar exfoliates and the natural oils moisturize the skin. Aloe vera helps any new sun damage and the lemon helps even out skin tone. There are so many great and gentle ingredients I’m tempted to use it every time I shower!

1 cup of ground coffee

½ cup of brown sugar

1 ½ tbsp of Jojoba Oil

1 tbsp of Sunflower Seed Oil

1 tbsp of Aloe Vera

Few squeezes of lemon (add in the lemon zest too!)

I bought all my ingredients at the local Whole Foods market, and the lemons are from my garden. Jojoba is worth the money and has many different beneficial uses! I use it as my facial moisturizer in the morning (Jojoba Facial Moisturizer) and its in my hair spray for after the shower. There’s also alternatives and add-ins for the wet ingredients in the recipe. Sometimes I use honey or olive oil if I don’t have something available.

Step 1

Mix together your brown sugar and coffee, stir until well combined. Make sure theres no clumps of straight sugar or straight coffee.

Step 2

Mix together all of your wet ingredients. I started with the oils but it really doesn’t matter which order you add them in. I zested a whole lemon and sprinkled it in for smell and color! If you want to substitute or add in honey its easy to mix in if you heat it in the microwave for a few seconds to make it a better consistency.

Step 3

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix. The mixture should look a little darker from what the dry ingredients looked like because of the now added moisture. If you like your scrubs dryer- only add 1 tbsp of Jojoba. If you like it a little more moist and/or for those with dry skin, add in another squeeze of aloe vera.

Step 4

Pack the scrub into a container that you can leave in the shower, glass jars are always my go-to. I add a lemon slice on the top until I open it!  Scrub in circular motions and remember- a little goes a long way. This recipe gives me about 5 full-body uses. If I have time I like to leave it on my skin to dry for a few minutes. I’ve noticed this helps get away all the dry and dead skin as well as improve circulation. Be prepared it gets a little dirty in the shower but it smells great and it’s fun to use! Enjoy!

Xoxo, Olivia Vigo

Oven Roasted Brown Sugar Chicken

This is a recipe  I would ALWAYS ask my mom to make for me as a child. It’s hearty, delicious and is easy to make. I make double when I make this chicken dish as it tastes even more flavorful the 2nd day (and the third). Try it and let me know what you think! Enjoy!

*** I paired this dish with sautéed broccolini and thai jasmine rice that I made with organic light coconut milk instead of water. I try and use fresh organic ingredients as often as I can.***

Ingredients

4 Chicken Quarters

salt and pepper to taste

2 tbsp butter

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp chopped shallots

3 cloves chopped garlic

3/4 cup chicken stock/broth

1 cup low sodium soy

2 cups brown sugar

1 heaping tbsp freshly chopped ginger

Directions  

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat a dutch pot on med high to high heat with your butter and olive oil. Generously salt and pepper your chicken quarters. Brown the skin of your chicken in the pot for about 2 mins on each side until it’s crisp and golden brown. Remove the chicken quarters and reduce the heat to medium. Add in the shallots and garlic. Deglaze the pot with the chicken stock. Scrape down all of the sides to make sure you get all of the delicious seasonings and flavors into the broth (I’m hungry already!). Add in the soy sauce, brown sugar and ginger. Simmer the sauce for about 5-10 mins. Add the chicken quarters back into the pot, place the lid on and bake for 45min to an hour. The chicken will be flavorful and falling off the bone. Mmm mmm mmmm!

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My “Better Than Bacon” Bacon

I am always looking for ways to spruce up our household favorites.This addictive to the bacon sends its over the top. I could eat an entire pan by myself! Try it and let me know what you think! Here’s the recipe… (comment below)

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.

Align your bacon on a baking sheet

sprinkle with black pepper (1 tsp for entire pan)  and brown sugar( 1 tbs for the entire pan)

Bake for about 10 mins

VOILA!

This simple and delicious recipe will change your world when it comes to bacon. Baking it in the oven also reduces the splatter when cooking it! Yummy!

Enjoy!

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