Cajun Steak Tips

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These spicy Cajun steak tips remind me so much of New Orleans, full of flavor and oh so delicious. As much as I would love to jump on a plane right now and head to NOLA, I’ll settle for a this simple little spicy reminder and imagine myself there…

Cajun seasoning isn’t too spicy so I added a bit of ground ghost pepper for heat…you can add as little or as much as you want. These Cajun steak tips are also easy to make and can be on your dinner plate in about 10 minutes. I make this with a side of greens like a buttery, garlic spinach or steamed broccoli with butter or bitter broccoli rabe. You can even have these as an appetizer for a few people, just wash it down with ice cold beer! Enjoy!

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Cajun Steak Tips
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 lb Steak Loin
  • 1 tbsp Cajun seasoning
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp salt (optional if Cajun seasoning is low in salt)
  • ¼ ground ghost pepper
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
Instructions
  1. Cut steak into 2 inch cubes and pat dry with paper towels to absorb any excess moisture.
  2. Add Cajun seasoning, pepper, and salt in a small bowl and mix well. Sprinkle over steak and rub in the seasoning making sure all surfaces of the steak are covered.
  3. In a cast iron skillet or heavy bottom skillet heat olive oil on medium heat. When hot, add steak. Cook for a few minutes.
  4. Add butter and turn each piece of steak until all sides are well browned on each side. About 2-3 minutes each side.

 

Tikka Masala Simmering Sauce

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Have you ever tried the Maya Kaimal Indian simmering sauces? I wasn’t sure what to expect when I picked up a jar of the Tikka Masala simmering sauce a few weeks ago but this sauce delivered all the things I love about Indian food. This Tikka Masala is a tomato based sauce made with yogurt, garam masala, cloves for bold and complex sauce that is mild in heat. The sauce is thick and rich in flavors making it great for chicken, fish or tofu.

photo credit: Maya Kaimal

I’m still learning how to cook Indian foods so when I want authentic Indian cuisine I take a drive to little India in Edison, NJ or Newark Ave in Jersey City. This sauce however will make a nice stand-in for those times when I can’t take that drive. All you have to do is cook about a pound of seasoned chicken, fish or tofu and pour the sauce over it and simmer for 15 minutes so all the flavors meld well. I used a little over a pound of chicken breast and found that there was more than enough sauce in this 12 oz jar even if I needed to add more chicken. I was able to get 3-4 servings from from it so not bad for a $6 jar. This sauce is mildly spiced so I added two  Thai chiles during the process for extra heat.

tikka-bowl

Serve it over basmati rice and top with chopped cilantro. In less than 30 minutes you can make it Indian food night this week and serve this delicious bowl with your favorite Indian food accompaniments. I added crispy papad with a dollop of mango chutney and a light and crisp chardonnay. Cheers! Now I have to try the other sauces in this great product line!

{Products I Love} Nonna’s Spicy Red Pesto Review

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I picked up Nonna’s Spicy Red Pesto at the Chile Pepper Festival last Fall and finally getting around to write about it. I’ve only had the traditional basil pesto before so when I saw this version I wasn’t sure what to make of it. I thought, “Is this really pesto?” and “Isn’t pesto’s main ingredient basil?”. Apparently, after looking it up, I learned that pesto is traditionally made with basil throughout Italy but other areas like Sicily use tomato as their main ingredient. Pesto actually means to pound or crush in Italian and was traditionally made using a motar and pestle, which is where the English word “pestle” got its name.  I’m all for this red pesto and happy they spiced this up properly too!

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This spicy red pesto is no lightweight when it comes to heat. There’s a generous amount of habanero peppers to make the spiciness linger for a while. The paste is thick, chunky and great for adding to pastas, spreading on sandwiches and delicious all on its own with plain crackers or pretzels. The flavors are robust, bold, spicy and its strong concentrated tomato based flavor makes it perfect for mixing it into dishes without it losing its punch.

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At first I thought a 4 oz jar was too small to get much use out of it but a little does go a long way. I was pleasantly surprised how it still maintained its flavor even after adding a little heavy cream for my lobster ravioli dish.

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I mixed a tablespoon of the red pesto with about 2-3 tablespoons of heavy cream and poured over the raviolis for a spicy, light and satisfying meal.

lobster-ravioli

Nonna’s spicy red pesto is just one of City Saucery’s products, they also make other tomato sauces using locally sourced ingredients from NY and NJ farms. I love that they started small and have had tremendous growth over the past few years which is a testament to their product. They’re sold online and in various retailers across the US, just check their website for more details. All in all, for $9 a jar, a wonderful product with all natural ingredients and worth every penny.

Ingredient List:  Sun-dried tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil, fresh basil, lemon juice, vinegar, habanero peppers, garlic, sea salt and anchovies.

Spicy Sriracha Kale Chips Recipe

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The Super Bowl is this weekend and if you’re still thinking about what to make you have to try this spicy sriracha kale chips recipe. It’ll go great with beer and won’t make you feel too guilty about eating a whole bowl. They’re crispy, light, tangy, spicy and so inexpensive and easy to make.

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Just mix the ingredients, toss with the kale and bake. No frying, no complicated prepping and its healthy. Yes there a little oil used but kale has so many benefits. Kale is high in fiber, has plenty of cancer fighting antioxidants, and its known as the best “super foods” out there. According to WebMD, “One cup of chopped kale contains 33 calories and 9% of the daily value of calcium, 206% of vitamin A, 134% of vitamin C, and a whopping 684% of vitamin K. It is also a good source of minerals copper, potassium, iron, manganese, and phosphorus.”

raw-kale

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Kale is already peppery and tastes great on its own but the Thai spices make it even more mouth watering. These chips won’t fill you up but will satisfy any salty, spicy and savory cravings. It’s much better than grabbing that bowl of corn chips.

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Spicy Sriracha Kale Chips
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 8 oz kale
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • juice from 1 lime
  • 1 tbsp Sriracha
  • 1-2 tsp fish sauce
  • pinch of salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Wash kale well pat dry with paper towels. Remove stems, cut kale into 2-3 inch pieces and add to bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl mix the rest of the ingredients then add to kale. Toss around until kale is well covered. Let rest for 10 minutes so liquid can drip off.
  3. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and spray with small amount of vegetable oil spray such as Pam.
  4. Spread out kale on lined cookie sheet and bake for 30 minutes. Mid way through turn kale over put back in oven.
  5. When kale is crispy remove from oven and let cool. Carefully add to a bowl.

 

This post is shared at Healthy, Happy, Green & Natural Party Hop

 

Fuel Up Before the Big Game with these Healthy Snacks

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I don’t know about you but I often forget to cook for myself on days I’m prepping dishes for a big event. Do you do that? I usually get up, have my coffee, breakfast maybe, and then just go into overdrive trying to get everything done. With the Super Bowl next week, I’m sure most will spend the week planning, shopping, prepping and cooking to some degree depending on whether you’re hosting or just attending the big game. So do your body good and grab a few healthy, on the go snacks to fuel up before the big game. The goal is to live healthfully no? Having nutritional bars, yogurt, nuts and fruits will usually do because they’re quick and easy so I was very excited when the makers of one of my favorite nutrition bars, KIND, sent me a few samples to try. I was even more thrilled to learn that KIND has a couple of spiced up products like their Dark Chocolate Chili Almond, Cashew & Ginger Spice, and Dark Chocolate Cinnamon Pecan bars.
credit: KIND Snacks
These Nuts & Spices bars aren’t overly spicy but the heat in the Dark Chocolate Chili Almond bar is very pleasing. It’s a warm heat that comes from cascabel, ancho and habanero chiles and builds over time for a satisfying sweet, salty, nutty flavors with a kick. Another great thing about the ingredients is they’re all items you recognize, no funky preservatives or fillers, just natural goodness. I usually have a bar with water but this time tried something a little different for a well rounded meal. Just chop up a bar and sprinkle over yogurt and fresh blackberries or any fruit you like!

chopped-bar

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The Healthy Grains Clusters is another great product from KIND and there are so many ways to enjoy it. You can add a pinch of cayenne pepper to a cup of clusters and mix it in with your pancakes or muffins batter, or oatmeal to get in extra nutrition and give you energy for hours.
credit: KIND Snacks
I love these products for their variety of flavors, their crunchy and chewy textures and because I know I’m putting something healthy in my body.The new Healthy Grains Bars, Clusters and KIND Plus bars include super foods like quinoa, amaranth, chia seeds and a variety of healthy fruits and nuts. Here are just a few things to note about KIND products:
  • All Natural
  • Non-GMO ingredients
  • High Fiber & Protein
  • Low Sugar & Sodium
  • Gluten Free

It’s a no brainer for healthy snacking, just fuel up before things get crazy busy.

Note: This post was in no way a paid or sponsored review. I only share with you products I consume and enjoy.

 

Spicy Chipotle Chili Recipe

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I made this spicy chipotle chili recipe this past weekend and the timing couldn’t have been more perfect. The NFL wildcard games kicked off, my long holiday break was coming to an end and the temperatures dipped into the single digits, YAY! No seriously, this Artic blast we just got yesterday meant serious layering, snuggling with your significant or furry other and settling into the couch with a hot bowl of spicy chili. It is so heart warming and filling that I’ve been eating it for the past few days! I had it over brown rice, in flour tortilla, and all on its own, it’s just that tasty and comforting.

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If you like your chili hot and spicy and with chunks of beef and beans then you have to try this one. I know, there are so many chili recipes out there and picking one can be overwhelming but what makes this one good is the Adobo seasoning, the smoky chipotle and the texture the different types of meat provide. It’s just simply one of my favorites because it’s simple, easy to make and has good flavor so I hope you like it too!

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Enjoy it on its own or make a complete meal by adding brown rice to the bottom of the bowl. It’s certainly a meal that will warm you up during the brutal winter months and keep all football fans happy, even the ones on the losing team!

Spicy Chipotle Chili
Author: 
Recipe type: Soup/Stews
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8
 
Ingredients
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 lb chuck steak, cut into small cubes
  • 2 tsp Goya Adobo seasoning
  • 1 large onion, chopped & divided
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced & divided
  • 1 14.5 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 15 oz can of red kidney beans
  • 1 4 oz can chipotle sauce
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp hot paprika
  • 2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 serrano chile pepper, optional
  • shredded cheese for topping
Instructions
  1. Season both the ground beef and cubed beef with one tsp each of Adobo and brown them separately. As the ground beef and steak is cooking add the onions and garlic to each pan equally. The ground beef will release a lot of grease so be sure to strain it if you don't want greasy chili.
  2. In a large enamel pot on medium heat add both the cooked ground beef, cubed chuck steak and mix well.
  3. Add the tomato sauce, water, chipotle sauce, beans and the remaining ingredients (except cheese), stirring well as you add each one. If you like it extra spicy add a serrano chile pepper to the pot, otherwise omit it.
  4. Cover and cook chili on medium heat for another 30 minutes until the chuck steak is tender.
  5. Serve over rice, in a bread bowl or with cornbread and top with shredded cheese.