Guacamole Black Bean Pasta

Guacamole & Black Bean Pasta - Bake, Braise & Broil

AVOCADOS! Even if avocados didn't boast such magical properties (HEALTHY FAT! YAH! WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN? ...WHO CARES!), I'd still put them in everything because they're nature's tastiest fruit. This dish is so easy and can be made in no time - as long as your avocados are ripe. Yeah, that's the thing. Unripe avocados are the worst. Even worse than making eye contact with someone through the crack in the bathroom stall door. But that's a discussion for another time. Onto the cooking!

guacamole-black-bean-pasta-beans

First, fry up some onions and garlic until they're browned and delicious, then add some black beans. Spice them up however you want. I suggest cumin, paprika, salt, cayenne, love. Not necessarily in that order.

guacamole-black-bean-pasta-avocados

Then, blend up some guacamole...don't forget to squeeze in a ton of lime cause those suckers need some love and affection. I'm assuming limes love our hands bear-hugging them, otherwise why else would they be so difficult to extract liquid from?

guacamole-black-bean-pasta-tomatoes

Chop up some tomatoes and cilantro, then sprinkle some salt over it (for some reason "sprinkling salt" makes me think of this.)

guacamole-black-bean-pasta-plate

Mix your pasta and avocado sauce together, then pile everything else on top. Splash on some olive oil if you're into that (I'm into that). Dig in, and enjoy the fact that you're being healthyfat!

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Easy, One-Pot Persian Chicken

Easy, One-pot Persian Chicken - Bake, Braise & Broil

Doesn't that look amazzzzzzing?! It tastes amazing too. I've tweaked this over the years after finding the original recipe (here.) The middle eastern inspired spices contribute a flavour punch that's hard to beat and pomegranate and onion add a sweetness that rounds it out.

Making this recipe particularly great? It's damn easy and feeds a crowd.  It frequents my impress-but-don't-stress recipe rotation.  This recipe is my go-to when I want an easy supper thats high on flavour and low on effort. That said, this does have a long cook time - over three hours. And while that produces succulent, fall-off-the-bone chicken, it does require you to prep ahead.  I don't own a slow cooker (one day, hopefully!) but I would imagine this would be perfectly suited for it. The star of this show: chicken thighs.

Easy, One-Pot Persian Chicken

If you can, use bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs. This cut produces the most flavour - that skin crisps up and the bones contribute to a rich stock underneath. For those looking for a healthier alternative, skinless, boneless chicken thighs are perfectly suited. However, I would caution anyone from using chicken breast. The long cook time requires a fattier piece of meat and chicken breast would likely dry out and become quite tough. Go for the thigh! 

This recipe does require one specialty ingredient (sorry! I do my best to avoid these): Pomegranate Molasses.  I recognize that many of you won't have this at home. I certainly didn't.  But I hope I can persuade you to buy it - it's should be available at any middle eastern grocer. It's now a staple in my pantry - sticky and sweet, it is awesome for salad dressing, marinades, you name it - and it can't be mimicked. If you absolutely can't find it - substitute a fruit chutney or fruit syrup in its place.  

Easy, One-Pot Persian Chicken

Up next: walnuts. It may seem odd, but I assure you with the spices it tastes fantastic. 

Easy, One-pot Persian Chicken

After a quick browning of the chicken, and throwing most everything else into the pot, you're left with this.  I keep the chicken about 1/2 submerged to preserve that crispy skin. 

Easy, One-pot Persian Chicken

And after a quick roast in the oven (ok... not so quick... 3 hours) you're left with a delectable, fall-off-the-bone chicken that is packed with flavour. Garnished with some fresh pomegranate adds a punch of fruit flavour and freshness. 

Easy, One-pot Persian Chicken
Easy, One-pot Persian Chicken

 

Served over fresh jasmine rice, this dish is super satisfying. AND, if any of you try this in a slow cooker, please let me know! I'd love to hear how it turns out.

Until next week....

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