Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Guest Bloggage - Kristen Muir

Guest Bloggage with Kristen Muir - This installment of Guest Bloggage is taking a slightly different turn. But I guess when your first two guest posts are about Chris Isaak's contributions to adolescent males and the power of networking then anything in between is a different turn. Kristen is the wife of Scott. Wow, that sounds really possessive (sorry Kristen). I went to college with Scott where he played D1 soccer, so needless to say we spent some time together in the gym and amongst our circle of friends. About six months ago the two of them moved to New Jersey and Scott and I reconnected and we all have been hanging out ever since. I would like to say that we equally reciprocate our dinner parties, however I would definitely be lying. Kristen is a culinary champ and future Giada/Sandra Lee/Rachel Ray (she's a beauty and she can cook), so naturally Heidi and I find ourselves indulging at their casa more than we find ourselves hosting. Kristen also works for a wine distributor and knows more about wine than most of my friends know about beer. I asked her to write a guest post for BadskiBlog about food and wine and I must say I am a little disappointed that no wine references were made. However, I now have leverage to make her write another post about wine. I hope you enjoy her advice and recipe, and keep her name on your radar screen so when she hits the Food Network with her own show you can be like a tenth grade emo kid who brags about how they were My Chemical Romance fans before they got big and sold out.

Many steer clear of the kitchen and claim "I'm not a good cook" but in reality anyone has the power to be a master chef. The most important factor in my opinion is loving food and loving all of it. I used to hate bacon. My narrow-minded view of this salty and savory meat only recognized it as a fatty breakfast side. Once I opened my eyes, I realized bacon was one of the greatest ingredients of all time. Bacon wrapped fillet mignon, chopped and crispy pancetta over a salad, crispy bacon mixed in to good old mac'n'cheese...the list goes on and on. If you are a vegetarian, vegan, don't eat pork because its the dirty meat kinda person...sorry you'll never be a well rounded cook.

I think people are just intimidated by all of the ingredients and styles that can be combined to create one simple meal. Should I learn to cook Italian, French, Mexican, Southern Comfort...where do I begin and what will I be good at?

Start with the basics. Watch the Food Network. You don't know how to properly cook pasta... Rachel Ray goes over the basics ALL the time. Watch and learn how to chop an onion and all vegetables for that matter. Learn about cooking meats...always best to only flip it once and let that meat rest for a bit after your done cooking to let the juices set.

Learn this simple rule... garlic, onions/shallots, olive oil/butter(yes butter), salt & pepper are essential in the majority of food that is made. I don't even attempt to make a meal without these.

When you become brave enough to start making different types of food (Mexican, Italian, etc.) learn what the key spices are.

Know this...delicious meals do not have to be unhealthy if the right amount of spice and fresh ingredients are combined together.

The recipe below is a perfect example of spice, freshness, and simplicity. Grab and apron and enjoy... the food and the cooking!

Teriyaki Chicken with Pineapple and Coconut Rice

Chicken Glaze
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 shallot minced
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tbsp dry chardonnay ( reserve the rest for drinking with the meal)
- 3 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 1 1/2 tsp sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp honey

Saute garlic and shallot. Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to boil. Simmer for 10 minutes and let cool. Marinate chicken in this glaze or favorite teriyaki sauce for 24 hours. Best if grilled. Pair with grilled pineapple skewers and garnish with chopped green onion and cilantro.

Coconut Rice
- Medium grain rice - desired amount
- 1 can coconut milk - desired amount
- 1 lime
- chopped cilantro

Cook rice. Add lime zest, juice, and desired amount of coconut milk. Add cilantro right before serving.

1 comment:

Heidi said...

Yeah Kristen! Love the post, you are the BEST chef I know!