Jalapeno Lime Fried Chicken

I found this gem of a recipe years and years ago on a really nice food blog called Ceramic Canvas, which sadly no longer exists. I didn’t have the recipe memorized, and couldn’t find it online anywhere, so I thought it was gone forever. This made me very sad because it is by far one of the most successful recipes I’ve ever made–people inhale it. The other day I was going through some old notebooks, and I came across the ingredients scribbled on a spare piece of paper. Jackpot!

I always serve the chicken along with guacamole. It’s flavorful and delicious by itself, but when paired with guacamole, it is impossible not to eat all of it in a single sitting.

Ingredient list: 2 lbs of chicken breast trimmed and cut into long, thin strips, canola oil, salt/pepper, sesame oil, corn starch, Chinese 5 spice, red pepper flakes, oregano, limes, jalapenos and 2 egg whites.

Mix up the egg whites, sesame oil, corn starch, spices and a dash of salt/pepper until it forms a brownish liquid. Pour it over the raw chicken, and mix it up until each strip of chicken is evenly covered. It doesn’t look like much right now, but just wait.

If you don’t have a deep fryer, a wok will do. When the canola oil is extremely hot, add in the chicken strips in batches using tongs, about 5 at a time. Keep moving them around so they don’t stick to the bottom or each other. When the chicken turns a light golden brown, after about 3-5 minutes, take it out of the oil and set on paper towels. It will turn a slightly darker color a minute or so after you take it out.

Add the cooked chicken, a cut up jalapeno and a lime cut into eighths into a large bowl and toss for a couple minutes, until the outside of the chicken has absorbed the lime and jalapeno flavor. If you aren’t a fan of spice, remove the jalapeno seeds before this step.

Prepare the guacamole, to be used as a dipping sauce. Click here for my guacamole recipe.

Jalapeno Lime Fried Chicken
Serves 3-4, cook time half hour

  • 2 lbs chicken breasts, trimmed and cut into long, thin strips
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1.5 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1.5 teaspoons Chinese 5 spice
  • 1.5 teaspoons oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch
  • Salt & pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups canola oil
  • 2 limes, 1 cut into eighths, 1 for garnish
  • 2 jalapenos, 1 cut into eighths, 1 for garnish
  • Guacamole¬†for dipping
  1. Combine the egg whites, sesame oil, Chinese 5 spice, oregano, red pepper flakes, corn starch and a dash of salt and pepper in a medium bowl until it turns into a brown liquid.
  2. Add in the raw chicken strips and stir until each piece of chicken is evenly covered in the brown mixture.
  3. Pour 2 cups of canola oil into a wok, and turn the burner on high heat. Once the oil is ready for frying, add the chicken in batches (about 5 at a time). Make sure to keep moving them around to keep them from sticking to the bottom or each other. When they turn a light brown color, remove them from the oil and set them on paper towels.
  4. When all the chicken has been fried, pour them in a large bowl, along with the cut up jalapeno and lime. Toss the contents for 2-3 minutes, until the chicken has absorbed the lime and jalapeno flavors.
  5. Serve with lime slices and guacamole.


Crab Cakes with Sriracha Remoulade

Crab cakes are one of those things that seem fancy and impressive, when in reality, they can be thrown together in under 15 minutes (if you’re quick) with non-perishable items you likely have in your cupboard. After realizing how easy and inexpensive it is to get near-restaurant-quality crab cakes at home, I now scoff at the $13 appetizer offered at your local fancy restaurant. Thanks, but I think I’ll just bring my own crab cakes from now on.


My recipe for the crab cakes is inspired by this food blogger, who uses fresh crab, and a lot of it. Maybe for special occasions I’ll bust out the fresh crab, but on days like today, I’m opting for the canned lump variety. Crab cakes always need a sauce to go with it. And no, I don’t think tartar sauce makes the cut. I whipped up a simple Sriracha remoulade inspired by this recipe. Since Sriracha may soon be hard to come by, it was difficult to part with even a few drops of what I consider to be the world’s single best hot sauce. On a side note, the city of Irwindale, California needs to suck it up. Burning eyes and headaches are a small price to pay for living in such close range to a Sriracha factory.

Ingredient list: Sriracha hot sauce, olive oil, panko bread crumbs, mayonnaise, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, a lemon, an egg, salt and pepper, red pepper flakes, parsley, chopped celery and canned lump crab. If you want bigger chunks of crab, go ahead and use 2 cans.

To make the remoulade, mix together mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, lemon juice, salt/pepper, and enough Sriracha until the desired spice level and color are reached.

Mix together the egg, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt, red pepper flakes, celery and parsley.

Then, gently fold the crab meat and panko into the mixture, taking care not to break up the crab lumps. Nobody likes a crab cake without crab lumps.

Divide the mixture up into 6 even parts, about 1/4 cup each. Roll them into balls, and then shape into a patty. If the mixture is too runny, add some panko. Too dry, add more mayo.

In a medium non-stick pan, heat olive oil to med-high heat, and add in the crab cakes. Cook on both sides until golden brown, about 5 minutes each side.

Top with the remoulade and serve with slices of lemon.

Crab Cakes with Sriracha Remoulade
Yields 6, cook time 20 minutes

  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1-2 tablespoons Sriracha hot sauce
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • Salt/pepper to taste
  • 1 large egg
  • 2.5 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1.5 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stalk finely diced celery
  • Dash of red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons parsley
  • 2 cans lump crab meat
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • Olive oil
  • Lemon slices for serving
  1. Make the remoulade by mixing together the mayonnaise, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Add in Sriracha a little at a time until desired spice level has been reached. Set aside.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine egg, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire, salt, red pepper flakes, celery and parsley.
  3. Gently fold in panko break crumbs and lump crab meat. Make sure crab is fully drained of liquids.
  4. Divide evenly into 6 patties by rolling into a dense ball and then forming into flat-topped shape.
  5. In a medium non-stick pan, heat olive oil. Once hot, add in the crab cake patties and cook over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes. Once golden brown, flip patties and cook another 5 minutes. Transfer the crab cakes to a paper towel to remove excess oil.
  6. Top with the Sriracha remoulade and serve hot with lemon slices.


Holy Guacamole!


For my very first post, I figure I’d start out with something simple. This guacamole recipe has been honed to suit my specific tastes, and I encourage you to play around with the ingredients until it’s perfect for you. I’ve been known to add cilantro, paprika, red pepper flakes, or a jalapeno pepper. However – in the name of all that is good in this world – do not…do not add mayonnaise. I don’t have enough space on this webpage to list all the reasons why guacamole should never contain mayo.

That said, there is one thing you must do when making guacamole – use perfectly ripe avocados. This can be tricky. An avocado not quite ripe or a little over ripe is unusable. When you’re at the grocery store, give each avocado a light squeeze. If it’s soft yet firm, toss it in the cart. If the avocado is hard (and usually green), it needs a couple days. If it’s mushy, the insides will be brown and slimy.

Guacamole 003
Ingredient list, left to right: salt, pepper, sweet onion, serrano pepper, lemon, lime, tomatoes, avocados, garlic.

I find the best way to prepare the avocado is to slice it in half, remove the pit with your knife, and slice it into cubes, like so. Scoop it out with a spoon.

Next, mince everything as finely as you can. Nobody likes a big chunk of raw garlic or pepper.

Guacamole 024
Throw all the ingredients in a bowl, leaving out the serrano. Use a fork to mix and mash. Then, slowly add the hot pepper a little at a time, and taste test as you go. I’ve found that hotness varies by pepper, and you never can tell how strong it will be.

Voila! Fresh, delicious guacamole. Serve with tortilla chips, as a side to any Mexican dish, or slathered on a burger. As any coworker of mine will tell you, this is my go-to recipe for potlucks, and people love it.

Fresh Guacamole
Serves 2-3, cook time 15 min

  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 3-4 tablespoons sweet onion, finely diced
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 2-3 tablespoons tomato, finely diced
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • Juice of 1/2 a lime
  • 1/2-1 serrano pepper, finely minced
  • Lots of salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Halve each avocado. Remove the pit by sticking the side of your knife into the middle (as if to chop), and turn. Run your knife horizontally + vertically through the avocado half, to make a grid pattern (pictured above). Scoop the avocado into a medium bowl.
  2. Finely mince or dice the sweet onion, tomato, garlic + serrano pepper. Add onion, tomato, garlic, lime juice + lemon juice to the bowl. Add a generous amount of salt + pepper. This really helps to bring the other flavors out, so don’t be afraid to add more than what seems normal.
  3. Add the seranno pepper a little at a time. Taste test each time until your desired spice level is reached. Using a fork, mix and mash until the consistency is creamy, but there are still avocado chunks left. That’s it! Enjoy.