South of the Border for Peruvian Chicken

No wood-fired stove here, as we were so fond of seeing during our time in Mexico, where we had some of the tastiest chicken we have ever eaten; however, this is still quite good in the oven.  The chillier days that kept us indoors gave me a good excuse to cook, so as promised, here are a couple of our favorite recipes to whet your appetite.

Peruvian Roast Chicken with Garlic and Lime

Many of my favorite recipes come from Cook’s Illustrated, which is where this recipe can be found.  And because I cannot leave well enough alone, I did modify this just a wee bit, using Serrano chilies with seeds included and chicken thighs only.


  • 1/4 c. fresh mint leaves
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped coarse
  • 3 T. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 T. salt
  • 1 T. pepper
  • 1 T. ground cumin
  • 1 T. sugar
  • 2 t. smoked paprika
  • 2 t. dried oregano
  • 2 t. finely grated lime zest + 1/4 c. lime juice
  • 1 t. minced Habanero chile ( I used Serrano with seeds included)
  • 1 – 3.5-4 pound chicken (I used thighs with skin on)


  • Process all ingredients except chicken in blender.
  • Rub paste over and under skin of cleaned chicken.
  • Marinate chicken in fridge for at least 2 hours (more is better).
  • Roast chicken in 325º oven for ~ 45 minutes, until thigh meat registers 150º.
  • Turn oven temp to 500º and roast until thigh meat registers 175º, another 10-15 minutes.  Skin should be nice and crispy and golden.
  • Enjoy!

A great side dish with this meal is roasted butternut squash.  This is one of our favorites, for its ease and delicious flavors.

Roasted Butternut Squash with Herbes de Provence


If you like butternut squash, and really who doesn’t , I think you are gonna love this!


  • 6 c. (1 1/2″) cubed peeled butternut squash (~ 2 1/2 lbs.)
  • 1 T. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 t. dried herbes de provence
  • 3/4 t. sea salt
  • 1/2 t. ground black pepper
  • 2 medium onions, cut into wedges


  • Preheat oven to 425º.
  • Place above ingredients in shallow roasting pan coated with cooking spray and toss well.
  • Bake at 425º for 30 min or until tender and lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Yields 4 servings of ~ 1 cup each.
  • Prepare for your taste buds to do the happy dance!

Top this off with some sautéed garlicky greens and your favorite cocktail and life is definitely good! 🙂

Healthy Comfort Food for a Chilly Night

Another week down and I am excited for the weekend as it means time to cook some healthy food, a passion of mine.  These are two of our favorite dishes, and with a chill in the air, this is good healthy comfort food.  I give you my version of Shira’s yummy coconut kale chickpea curry (her delicious recipe can be found here) and Naan (Indian flat bread).  Enjoy!

Coconut chickpea curry and naan - sooo yummy!
Coconut chickpea curry and Naan – sooo yummy!

Coconut Kale Chickpea Curry

  • 1/3-1/2 c. coconut oil (or olive oil if you prefer)
  • 1 T. cumin seeds
  • 1.5 c. finely chopped onions (~1 large yellow onion)
  • 1/3 c. sun-dried tomatoes, diced
  • 1-1.5 tsp. salt
  • 4-5 T. finely chopped fresh ginger
  • 2 finely chopped fresh Serrano peppers (I add the seeds for some kick.)
  • 4 c. cooked chickpeas
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1 small bunch scallions, chopped
  • 4 c. curly green kale, chopped fine
  • Heat oil in large pot on medium high for one minute.
  • Add the cumin seeds and cook, stirring frequently, for about 30 seconds (the seeds will start to sizzle and become fragrant).
  • Add the chopped onions and continue to cook on medium high for about 8-10 minutes, until the onions are soft and brown.
  • Add the tomatoes, pepper, ginger and salt, and cook for 8-10 minutes, stirring well.
  • Add the chickpeas and coconut milk and stir well. Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, turn the heat to medium low;  keep the pot covered; and cook for 5-8 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • At the last minute, add the chopped scallions and kale and stir in well. Cook for one to two minutes further until the kale turns bright green.  Serve immediately.

Stove-Top Naan (makes 4-5)

We don’t consume much gluten anymore but this is one dish we just can’t resist.

  • 2+ c. flour  (I used 1.5 cups organic bread flour and 0.5 cups organic sprouted whole wheat flour.)
  • 1.5 tsp. active dry yeast
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. raw sugar (I use Demerara)
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 T. oil (I use coconut oil but you could use olive or a combination of coconut and olive)
  • 3 T. Greek yogurt
  • 3/4 c. lukewarm water

Our topping of choice: black or white sesame seeds or combination

  • Dissolve yeast and sugar in 1/4 cup lukewarm water and let it sit for 10 minutes or until frothy.
  • Combine together flours, salt, and baking powder and mix well.
  • Mix the oil and yogurt into the flour.
  • Add the water/yeast mixture and knead. Add a 1/4 cup water at a time to make into soft dough.
  • Knead for 5-6 minutes until smooth and non-sticky. Place in greased container; spritz top with oil; cover and let rise for 2 hours or until doubled.
  • After rising, knead the dough for a minute; use a little flour to help reduce stickiness; and divide the dough into 5 equal parts.
  • Take each piece of dough, one at a time; sprinkle with sesame seeds; and roll/shape into 8-inch oval shape. Dust lightly with flour to help with the rolling.

Take the remaining Naan along on a picnic, with some good aged cheese and a glass of red…muy delicioso! 🙂