Contrary to popular opinion, I don’t have a starched apron and a Betty-Crocker-esque test kitchen in which I regularly churn out new recipes. What I do instead is to mine the infinite resources of the internet and the myriad of cookbooks I own when I need inspiration. I have many favorites. At the top of the list is Mark Bittman’s Kitchen Express (available here). This cookbook is not overwhelmingly large, is divided into seasons of the year, and contains simple recipes that almost always taste worthy of a four-star restaurant. Mark cooks like I do: he tosses in a bit of this and a dash of that. His recipes read like a paragraph. For example, the Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce on page 187 begins this way:
I’ve recommended Mark’s book to a number of people. It usually goes over well; there was an exception: One of my clients was not comfortable enough with cooking to go without the usual ingredient list with exact measurements. So we found her another book.
The recipe continues:
“Meanwhile, whisk together a half a cup of peanut butter, a couple of tablespoons of freshly squeezed lime juice, a splash of soy sauce, a pinch or two of red chile flakes, a teaspoon of brown sugar, and enough chicken broth or water to make a smooth sauce; adjust the seasoning.”
And what the heck does he mean by “adjust the seasoning?” Take a taste of the sauce. See if you like it. Add a bit more soy sauce or lime. Or not. (I added about a tablespoon of soy sauce to mine and a little extra lime. Yum!)
Chicken Satay is a dish that is universally loved. Kids love that peanut butter is in the main dish, and adults love the surprisingly sophisticated flavor of the the blend of peanut butter and other ingredients. So I’m sure you want to know the rest of the recipe:
“Set aside most of the sauce for dipping and smear the rest on the chicken pieces with a little salt and pepper; thread onto skewers and grill for two minutes on each side or until cooked through. Serve with the reserved peanut sauce and lime wedges.”
Remember that having a coach can make all the difference between success and failure in reaching your health goals. I currently have openings for new private clients, and I will be beginning a group coaching program at AlmaDiem in the near future. Contact me for your free health strategy session and learn how to take back your health. –Camille Watson, Holistic Health Coach and Owner of Essential Kitchen