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Spicy Peanut Chicken
6 green onions, diced (white parts plus 2 inches of green)
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
3 tablespoons soy sauce
5 heaping tablespoons peanut butter
1 cup water
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 1/2 pounds thinly sliced boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
6 cups cooked rice or noodles
3/4 cup chopped peanuts
To prepare sauce, in bowl combine green onions, ginger, soy sauce, peanut butter, water, red pepper flakes and brown sugar. Whisk until smooth.
In large non-stick saucepan, heat sesame oil over medium-high heat and saute chicken breasts until golden, about 4 minutes per side, then remove from pan.
Add sauce to pan and cook until it begins to simmer. Turn heat down slightly and continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, for another 5 minutes, until sauce begins to thicken.
Return chicken to pan and cook about 2 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.
Serve over rice or noodles and sprinkle with chopped peanuts. Makes 4 to 6 servings.
Lucia's Killer Sangria
This is a refreshingly zippy drink for the cocktail hour, especially during the summer. Use any kind of tea you like; fruit-flavored ones are particularly tasty. Watch Chef Cyn reel at the sight of all those orange slices...
6 cups water
4 Lemon Zinger tea bags
2 tablespoons sugar (or to taste)
2 cups dry red wine
1 green apple, cored and thinly sliced lengthwise
1 orange, thinly sliced
1 lemon, thinly sliced
1 lime, thinly sliced
Bring water to boil in medium saucepan. Remove from heat. Add tea bags; steep 2-3 minutes. Remove tea bags; pour tea into pitcher. Add sugar to taste and stir until sugar dissolves. Cool. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.) Mix fruit in bowl. Add wine. Fill glasses with ice cubes and serve. Yield: 2 quarts.
Katherine's Bananas Foster
Rumor has it that this is the secret weapon of debutantes in the Bayou. Just don't tell your beau about all the storebought ice-cream (tres gauche, but darlin', who's got the time?) and testing the rum is not just acceptable -- it's required.
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into pieces (make sure it's unsalted!)
1 cup pureed bananas
2 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
2 1/2 cups dark brown sugar, firmly packed
7 1/2 tsp. dark rum
7 1/2 tsp. banana liqueur
5 bananas, peeled and cut into 3/4" rounds
2 quarts butter pecan or vanilla ice cream
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Sift flour, baking powder and salt. Cut in butter pieces until mixtures resembles coarse pebbles. Lightly stir in banana puree to make a damp dough. Turn mixture out onto a floured surface.Roll or pat to a 1" thickness. Cut into 2 1/2 - 3" rounds with floured biscuit cutter (or rim of juice glass).
Place on ungreased cookie sheet.Bake until golden brown, a/b 30 minutes.Combine cream and brown sugar in large saucepan. Cook over moderate heat, stir constantly until slightly thickened, a/b 10-12 minutes. Allow to cool 10 minutes. Stir rum, liqueur and sliced bananas into warm sauce. Split shortcakes and place on plates. Scoop ice cream onto bottom halves of shortcakes. Top with sauce and add the top halves of the shortcakes.
From the Trade Paperback edition.