Good Ol’ American Classics: New World, New Narrative
Before the mainstream media roped in the rustic cowboys, the Steve McCartneys and the Marlboro man into the popular consciousness as the icons of everything true-blue America, there was a richer land full of settlers who arrived at the shores of the New World; dreams in eyes, bags in hand, recipes of their mothers and grandmother learnt by heart! Full of their unique colours, cultures and cuisines. And this curious tryst with Lady Liberty resulted in one of the most underrated gastronomical amalgamation that has somehow been brushed under the carpet in lieu of the deadbeat commercial junk-food and fast-food juggernaut. It’s time to take a look at the multifaceted platter that has been the true testament to America and everything American. So, move over Cheese Burgers!
Crashing through a dinner rush? This 5-ingredient, one-pot miracle is just what you need to zip zap zoom to a delightful main. Sweet, savoury, hot, tangy…. You got yourself a carnival on a plate.
1/2 cup Mexican-style hot sauce (like Valentina)
1 Tbsp paprika
1 Tbsp cayenne pepper
1 Tbsp brown sugar, or more to taste
4 Chicken thighs (Shop here)
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
2. Keep a small baking tray greased.
3. Mix together the hot sauce, paprika, ground cayenne pepper, and brown sugar in a bowl.
4. Stir until well combined.
5. Place the chicken thighs in the baking dish, and coat them with a layer of sauce.
6. Cover the dish with foil.
7. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.
8. Remove the foil, and bake until the chicken has cooked through, and the sauce has thickened and started to brown, about 20 more minutes.
Take your raw fish adventure beyond Sushi. This Peruvian Ceviche is light and acidic and just the perfect go to with chips and fries and corn (if you want to be authentic about it).
1 Pound Basa Fillet (Shop here)
1 Cup lime juice fresh squeezed
2 Tbsp. orange juice fresh squeezed
1 Tsp. Kosher salt
1 Tsp. lime zest
1/4 Tsp. sugar
1 Jalapeno cored, seeded and diced
1 Red onion sliced very thinly into half-moons
2 Tbsp. chopped cilantro
1. Cut the fish into small pieces: You can dice it or leave it in pieces up to 1/2 inch square, but remember that the larger the pieces the longer it will take to be ready.
2. Salt the fish, then cover with the citrus juice in a glass container with a lid.
3. Add the sliced onions, jalapenos, lime zest and sugar.
4. Chill in the fridge for about 4 hours.
5. Take it out of the fridge and add the cilantro and stir.
6. The citric acid will “cook” the fish to a nice consistency.
7. To serve: place ceviche in a glass bowl and scoop using a plastic serving spoon. DO NOT use a metal spoon because the acid will react with the metal.
8. Serve with potatoes, either sweet or white.
Easy Grilled Squid
The ever-loved Calamari gets a charred make-over. Try this tricky but fabulous recipe for a great starter option to the party.
1 Pound fresh squid rings (Shop here)
1/4 Cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice (1 small lemon)
1/2 Tsp coarse salt
1 Clove garlic, thinly sliced
2 Sprigs fresh oregano
Freshly ground black pepper
1. In a serving bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, and salt. Stir in the garlic and whole oregano sprigs.
2. Heat a grill pan over the high heat. (Alternatively, you can cook the squid on the grill.) When very hot, add the squid and char each side for 1 minute.
3. Remove from the pan and slice crosswise into 1/4-inch rings, including the tendrils.
4. Add the squid to the lemon sauce.
5. Crack freshly ground pepper over and serve immediately.