If you’ve been following me on Instagram @DaphneOP, you may notice that I’m trying to cook real food in my kitchen. I’ve been getting a lot of requests for recipes, but I’ve never had the guts to actually share my creations. Reason being, I am totally new at this. I’ve never been the domestic type, believe it or not. All my adult life I’ve either depended on other people to cook for me or ate out a lot. But since I built my dream kitchen last year, I promised myself and Patrick that I will learn to love cooking, not just for my family but also for my own pleasure. Happy to announce that I am finally at that point.
Before I go on and share my cooking adventures and misadventures, I must state the reasons why I am so inspired to cook.
1. I love my kitchen space. I designed it to have every thing I love in it. Including a beautiful sink, stunning hardwood floors, great lighting, a Samsung digital inverter air conditioner (yes, I am spoiled and I deserve it, haha). The video of my kitchen renovation is at the bottom of this post.
2. My Samsung digital inverter refrigerator. Disclaimer, I am Samsung Home Appliances’ brand ambassador. But really, in all honesty and transparency, my refrigerator rocks!! It’s huge, yes. But wow, my produce stays fresh a week longer than normal. I can organize my freezer so well. The kids have access to a freezer that’s all for them only, hence they serve themselves to ice cream in the afternoons. There’s enough space for our bottles of wine and cold cuts. Basically it has allowed me to plan meals in advance. I really, really love it.
3. I’ve discovered the pleasure of cooking for my family. The kids and Patrick react with “yummmm”, “so good”, “you’re the best Mommy ever!” And that just makes my heart overflow.
4. My kitchen isn’t enclosed and isolated from the rest of the house. Cooking becomes a social activity. The kids hang out at counter while I cook.
5. And most importantly, I value eating and feeding my family organic vegetables, free-range chicken and healthy chuchus like that. We are not vegetarians. But I love that I can control every ingredient that goes into our food. I am on this long path of trying to feed my family healthy choices. So I hope you allow me to share this journey with you. And please feel free to give me pointers, tips, and links.
Last week, Gwyneth Paltrow posted a story on Goop about how to cook a whole chicken and end up with three meals. Here is the link — One bird, three meals. I used the first recipe, which was a simple roast. I followed everything except I didn’t have sweet potatoes so I substituted it with whatever I could find in my fridge — zucchini, carrots, red peppers, green peppers.
Here is my tweaked recipe of Goop’s Flash Roasted Chicken
1 whole chicken cut up into parts (see Goop’s instructions on how to cut a whole chicken)
2 tablespoons Herbs de Provence (I didn’t have these herbs so I used a Greek herb rub I bought in Toronto. You can use anything aromatic.)
4 sprigs of fresh thyme (My thyme plant just died on me, so I used fresh tarragon instead.)
juice of 2 lemons
3 large organic carrots
1 red onion, diced (also organic)
other veggies (zucchini, red and green peppers)
4 garlic cloves (local from a Philippine farm)
salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Place the vegetables in a large roasting pan and season with salt and pepper. Season the chicken parts with salt, pepper, and herbs and nestle them into the roasting pan with the carrots. Add the lemon juice and about three tablespoons of olive oil. Mix the oil to coat the carrots and rub the oil into the chicken legs with your hands. Arrange the tarragon evenly around the veggies and chicken.
2. Place in the oven and roast uncovered for about 30 to 35 minutes. The skin should be crispy and golden brown and the juices from the leg should run clear. This is new to me — transfer chicken parts from the pan to a serving platter and cover with tin foil. Gently toss the carrots, red onions and other vegetables back in the oven to roast for about 10 minutes more, or until browned and cooked through, while the meat rests.
Here is what the chicken looked like. It was very good. I didn’t use just the legs as Goop suggested because I had to feed my whole family. So I used the entire chicken and left the carcass for the second meal which was chicken stock.
And here is the chicken stock I made while the parts were in the oven roasting. I saved this stock for chicken noodle soup that I plan to make tomorrow. GOOP used it for chicken rice pilaf. Recipe is on the same Goop link above.
While waiting for the chicken in the oven, I had time to go for a 30 minute bike ride with Patrick. It was too perfect. Haha. Then when I got back, I juiced some of my green vegetables. I’ve been juicing since February.
I throw in greens like spinach, kale, cucumber, celery, malunggay or lettuce then add carrots, apples or oranges. I can make about 3-4 glasses of pure juice. I keep them in an airtight lid in the fridge. This is how I’ve been starting my mornings. I take green juice first thing in the morning, wait 15-20 minutes and then I have regular breakfasts. I do not crave for that jolt of caffeine anymore. Green juice totally wakes me up. I only take coffee now for the pleasure and taste, not as a caffeine habit. There a lot of benefits to green juicing. Is this a topic you’d like me to write about? I don’t want to bore you… haha.
Almost forgot to mention… the fibres from the vegetables all went to our new compost “bin” (aka a clay pot with soil.) OMG, who am I?
Just in case you missed my video about my kitchen last year, here it is.