Lately I have been very mishkabibbled. It is a word my husband uses and roughly translated it means out of sorts, anxious, discombobulated and uncertain. Whether this is an actual word or a word he has made up I am not 100% sure. It appears to be a corruption of ishkabibble which also has a complicated history but a different meaning altogether. Anyway, he swears this was used in Montreal when he was growing up – I think he has coined a new word.
Either way this word, real or made up, perfectly encapsulates my state of being. I am currently at home doing bits of freelance work and also working on recipes and blogposts. This sounds great until you add a little background information. Every day there’s 2-5 builders drilling, hammering, tearing down walls and tracking mud in and out of the house as they work on the kitchen. The incessant noise and mess make my head hurt literally and figuratively. I feel as if I can’t hear myself think, my train of thought constantly interrupted.
But as Robert Frost said ‘the best way out is always through’ which, in this case, means I just have to ride the chaos and disruption until we have a lovely new kitchen in place. And in the meantime muddle through and stop being mishkabibbled!
Publishing a new post always makes me feel like I have achieved something and this recipe for Peruvian Aguadito caught my eye in a book I was sent to review, Tori Haschka’s Cut the Carbs: 100 Recipes to Help You Ditch White Carbs and Feel Great. What I really liked about this book is that Tori doesn’t demonise carbs but instead explains why she had stop relying on them (following an illness) and provides varied and accessible recipes that exclude the big four whites (bread, potatoes, rice and pasta).
While I feel that the book is slightly let down by the photography or, possibly, the printing, there’s lots of recipes that look and sound appetising without making you feel deprived – Peach pulled pork with dirty quinoa, White bean colcannon with sticky braised beef even several dessert options that aren’t entirely fruit-based. If you are looking to cut carbs or realign your eating habits this book has some great ideas.
Peruvian aguadito – quinoa, chicken & coriander soup
Tori has tweaked the recipe to make it carb-free adding quinoa which is not traditionally used. You really have to like coriander (cilantro) to like this soup but if you do this is really lovely, very easy to make and quite filling. I used leftover roast chicken but take a look at the notes for an alternative.
1 large bunch coriander (cilantro)
2 banana shallots or 1 medium white onion, roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled
3-5 tbsp virgin olive oil, more to drizzle
1 litre | 4 cups hot chicken stock (I used Knorr stock pot)
100g | 3.5oz quinoa
150g | 5.3oz frozen peas
350g | 12.3oz shredded cooked chicken (or 2 raw skinless chicken breasts)
1 tsp salt
1 green chilli, deseeded and finely chopped (optional)
lime wedges to serve
Pepper to season
- Rinse the coriander then put half in a food processor together with with the shallots, garlic and half the olive oil. Blitz to a paste.
- Fry the paste in a saucepan over medium heat for 3-4 minutes.
- Add the chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Add the quinoa.
- Simmer for 15 minutes or until the quinoa is cooked through.
- Add the chicken and frozen peas and cook until piping hot (4-5 minutes).
- Pulse the remaining coriander and salt in a food processor with 1-2 tbsp olive oil (or thin with a little water) until you have a paste.
- Divide the soup into bowls and stir in the coriander paste and chopped chilli (if using). Check the seasoning. Serve with wedges of lime and small drizzle of olive oil.
Notes: Instead of cooked chicken you can add 2 raw chicken breasts in with the quinoa (step 4) and simmer until cooked. Remove, shred and add back into the soup before serving.