Cooking is something my brother and I learned at a very young age. There were days where we had very little food, and we had to be creative with what we had in our cupboard. My brother Pete was much more of a risk taker when it came to food. We had various dishes that we invented, but never thought about the memories these dishes would create years later yet alone, how they would “impact generations” says my niece. Taco shells with peanut butter and jelly, hamburger helper with ham or sausage, maybe left-over meat when we didn’t have ground beef. Corn tortillas with cheese and ham rolled up and cooked on a cast iron grill. Oh emm gee! Oh my and the goulash that he invented. Goulash for us was taking everything that tasted good and put in all in one big pot, added whatever spices we had to create one amazing meal for him and me. We are big foodie’s, and our love for food has become a reinvention of our childhood moments into a lifetime of creativity in the kitchen. I don’t use recipes because the kitchen is my canvas. Just like when we were two goofy kids who reinvented every store bought food item and made it our own. So here goes: My first dish that I will share with you. Keep in mind that although there is no structure to my cooking or writing madness, it can be your time to love on your family through a world of creativity that produces smiles and joy once it’s enjoyed.
I call it Aunt Marie’s Spanish Curry
I started by looking in the pantry, looked in the fridge, freezer and made an evaluation of what I had at hand.
I added olive oil to a large skillet and sautéed boneless chicken thighs for about 20 minutes, and then I added my fresh cut herbs.
- Take a half stock of kale, watercress, parsley, spinach, all found in your produce section and chop up and add to your olive oil and chicken thighs. Cut up a tomato, and add to your pan as well. Cut up half a small shallot, 4 green onions all the way to right before the stem ends.
- I seasoned with Uncle Chris’s steak seasoning which I keep in cupboard stock because it goes well with everything.
- I added three basil leaves.
- Add 1 can of tomato sauce unsalted.
- Add a little saffron.
- Here’s the crazy goulash part that makes this dish wild. Ok wait for it………….wait for it…..
- I found a package of brown gravy so I added half of the bag to the pan as well. Stir, and let cook for 45 minutes at a low to medium temperature.
- Now you add cooked black beans from a can. I added a couple tablespoons of light butter. –Added Morton’s lite salt. Paprika and a little red pepper flakes.
- Simmer for 15 minutes to marry all the flavors together. Make sure to cover your pan. Really helps the matrimony of this dish.
- While that is simmering, add smoked basmati rice to boiling water. Add saffron. Add olive oil to your water. Should take 10-15 minutes.
- A little butter to the rice.
- Serve my saucy dish and chicken over a bed of rice. Dress with basil if you’d like. My niece chopped it all up into her dish.
- Enjoy! I hope I didn’t forget anything.
The most important thing is to cook with love and create your own inspired meals. Love Aunt Marie!