Category: Chicken


General Tso Chicken

Still on my Asian kick. Tonight’s super easy dinner was also yummy!  Boneless chicken breast baked in General Tso sauce while veggies cooked on the stovetop and rice cooked in the rice cooker.

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For the sauce (most jarred sauce have tomatoes so are a no-no for me):

2 Tbsp. oil

6 Tbsp. minced garlic

1/4 c. minced ginger

1 c. sugar

3/4 c. soy sauce

1/2 c. rice wine vinegar

1/2 chicken stock

Cook garlic and ginger until fragrant.  Add in remaining ingredients and simmer over low heat until slightly thickened.  Pour over boneless chicken breasts and refrigerate up to 24 hours.

Bake 350F 40- 45 minutes meanwhile cooking rice and sauteeing stir fry vegetables.  I used chop salad, my go to for stir fry.

When chicken is done, cut into bite size pieces and toss in sauce.  Add rice to sauteed stir fry.  Serve chicken over rice.

 

 

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I ran across a killer sale on some Asian sauces and chicken at Target.  Jackpot!  Super easy dinner in no time.  My grandsons got a kick out of eating the chicken off the skewers.

I marinated the chicken in store bought sauce and then baked in a jelly roll pan while rice cooked in the rice cooker.  Since the rice takes about 45 minutes,  I cooked the chicken at 300F and turned it off after 30 minutes.

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I am crazy about Asian food.  Last night we had Korean Barbecue Chicken and a Rice Melange.  It was delish!

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3 large boneless skinless chicken breasts marinated in Korean BBQ sauce

Sauce:

1 C. soy sauce

3/4 c. brown sugar

2 Tbsp. minced garlic

1 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar

1 tsp. each ginger and sesame oil

1 Tbsp. each water and corn starch (in a slurry to thicken)

Bring to a boil in a small saucepan.  Add slurry and turn down to low.  Slowly simmer till it thickens.  Pour over chicken in 13 x 9 baking dish sprayed with coconut oil.  (I have bought a bottled Korean BBQ Sauce (Kalbi Bulgogi) from a company called Ajumma Republic and it is really good).  You can marinade the chicken overnight or even freeze it in the sauce for future use.  Once defrosted, bake for 35-40 minutes.  Chop into bite-size pieces with kitchen shears, stir around in sauce, and bake for another 5 – 10 minutes.

Rice Melange:

1 box Near East rosemary garlic brown rice and quinoa (I have found that one packet of seasoning from these boxed rice mixes goes a long way, so no additional seasoning was added to the rice)

1 c. Lundberg Wild Blend Rice

1 c. brown rice

3 c. broth (I used unsalted chicken)

2 1/2 c. water

3 Tbsp. butter

Place in rice cooker.  The rice cooker knows its done when it runs out of liquid, so unplug and remove from heat as soon as the rice cooker clicks over to warm.  Add into the cooked veggies to serve.

Veggies for Rice Melange:

Heat oil of choice in large pot with a little butter.

Saute veggies of choice over low heat.  I used what I had on hand:

1 bag riced cauliflower

1 carrot, chopped

2 stalks celery, chopped

1 yellow squash, diced finely.

1 can Cannelloni beans, low sodium

1 tsp. seasoning blend of choice.  I used an Asian inspired one to stay on theme.

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After about 25-30 minutes over low heat, add in one can of beans.  I added Cannelloni because they are our favorite and I always have them on hand.  This way, anyone wanting to stay vegetarian (if you use veggie broth instead of chicken) can eat the rice melange.

 

My cousin and her father were coming over for dinner tonight, and she wanted to contribute some frozen shrimp, butternut squash, and sugar snap peas, so I trolled all my favorite sources for recipes and came up with a recipe for Ginataang Sitaw Kalabasa, a Filipino stew that called for green beans instead of the sugar snap peas.  Since it contains no nightshades, it was perfect! I had some boneless skinless chicken thighs on hand, so I adapted the recipe.  It was a huge success!

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1 lb. frozen shrimp, thawed

5 boneless skinless chicken thighs cut into strips

1 large butternut squash, roasted

1 package sugar snap peas

1 medium onion, chopped

1 Tbsp. grated fresh ginger

2 Tbsp. minced garlic

2 Tbsp. oil (I used a sunflower avocado blend)

1 can coconut milk (14 oz)

2 Tbsp. eel sauce (or fish sauce)

1 Tbsp. red chili paste (okay, this is not nightshade free, but I grabbed the wrong jar! I meant to get curry paste)

1 C. chicken broth

1/2 C. chopped carrots

1/2 C. sliced celery

Saute onions, celery and carrots in oil.  Add in ginger, garlic, and chili paste, and stir a few minutes until fragrant.

Add in chicken.  Brown.

Stir in coconut milk, eel sauce, and chicken broth.  Simmer to reduce.  Add in sugar snap peas and cover until they are crisp tender.  Stir in shrimp and cook a few minutes until pink.

Thicken with bread crumbs, if necessary.  Gently fold in butternut squash, and heat through.

Serve over rice.  I used quinoa, brown rice, pineapple, and coconut with thai curry broth in the rice cooker.

The flavors of this dish were amazing.  Loved it!

 

I’ve been fighting a cold, and with Thanksgiving coming up, don’t want to wear myself down with meals requiring a lot of prep.  This meal definitely fits the bill of a meal that practically makes itself!

I was watching the television show Sunday Morning yesterday, and there happened to be an interview with the daughter of the man who invented the crock pot!  He was named Irving Naxon and he invented it in 1936, perfecting it to a “Beanery” by 1940, for the purpose of cooking a Jewish bean stew called cholent.   In the days before Naxon’s invention, they would heat the oven and place a dutch oven in it, so that they could turn off the oven during the Sabbath and have a meal ready to go that had cooked in the residual heat of the oven.  Rival bought the rights to his invention in the early 70’s.  Thank you Irving Naxon for making our lives easier!

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8 Skinless bone in chicken thighs

1/2 bottle Italian dressing (I used Drew’s – lower sodium and less sugar than most)

1 can low sodium Cannelloni Beans, drained and rinsed

1 Package frozen Swiss chard (I used Cascadian Farms)

1/2 c. seasoned Panko bread crumbs

Rice cooked in the rice cooker.

I pour the dressing over the chicken as soon as I get it from the market.  Sometimes I refrigerate it.  Sometimes I freeze it and then thaw it in the refrigerator (which takes longer than you think, depending on how you pack it in the tupperware).  This batch was laid out in a single layer, so it took about a day and a half to defrost in the fridge.  This way the marinade really flavors it well.

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Put chicken in the crock pot on low for 7-8 hours, until it’s literally falling off the bones.  Remove the bones using tongs, being sure to pick out those pesky knuckles too.  Shredding up the meat as you go along.  It’s a good idea to have a count on how many pieces there are, so you don’t miss any of the bones.

At this point, put on the rice cooker with rice of choice.  I had some yellow rice on hand, so I used it, and it was delicious with this.

Back to the crock pot – add in beans, and chard.  cook on high for about 10 minutes.  Add in bread crumbs to thicken, and place a paper towel under the crock pot lit to help absorb some of the moisture from the frozen chard, and cook until rice is done.

When the rice was done, not everyone was ready to eat, so I pulled the chicken aside in my crock and put the rice in with it, and set it to warm.  That way everyone could decide on their own rice/chicken ratio and eat at their own leisure.

Obviously, the variations are as voluminous as there are bottled dressings on the shelf!  Also, black beans and garbanzos work well.  Kale in the place of chard?  Add ins of onion, mushrooms, carrots, squash, etc.  You get the idea!  Great use of leftovers.  Eat it over noodles or quinoa instead of rice.  The list of what can be made this way is endless.

I’m thinking of trying a ginger miso inspired version of this and stir fry veggies for an Asian flair!

 

Tonight we had the burgers I prepared the night we had the Mediterranean Naan Pizza.  All that fresh spinach, feta, and black olives inspired me!  I bake my burgers, since I’m always cooking for a crowd.  It definitely beats standing over a hot stove.

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3 lb. ground chicken (makes 8 large burgers)

1 egg

1/2 can pitted black olives, chopped

1/3 c. crumbled feta

1/2 c. chopped fresh spinach

1/3 c. (or more, if it’s still too wet and sticky) Italian seasoned panko bread crumbs

Combine all ingredients and refrigerate 30 minutes or overnight.

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Approximately 45 minutes before you want to serve these, prepare a baking sheet by covering with foil and spraying it with coconut oil.  Preheat oven to 375F

Form meat mixture into patties.

Bake for 30 minutes.  Turn heat up to 450, and cook 5 minutes more to brown the burgers.

I’ve made a lot of burgers in my day, and these just might be my favorite!

I can’t remember the last time we had acorn squash.  It was on sale the other day, and I decided to give it a try.  I simply roasted it in the oven with a little oil, salt, and pepper (ceramic dishes are reportedly better than metal).  We loved it so much, the kids want to have some for Thanksgiving.  I will try mashing it with some garlic.  It’s so sweet, even though many of the recipes I found called for adding sugar, it doesn’t need it one bit!  I can’t wait to try it lots of different ways.  My new favorite squash!  It reminded us of sweet potatoes, but creamy and nutty.  Really yummy!

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10 boneless skinless chicken thighs

1/2 c. sesame ginger dressing (I used Olde Cape Cod – makes a wicked marinade alone)

1/2 c. kimchi (I used wildbrine – I love this stuff)

1 large acorn squash

Oil for tossing acorn squash (I used grapeseed sunflower blend)

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine dressing and kimchi, and marinade chicken thighs at least 30 minutes (mine marinated overnight)

Cut acorn squash into wedges or slices and toss with oil, salt and pepper.

Place chicken in 13 x 9 baking dish.

Place squash in 13 x 9 baking dish.

Bake at 375F for 45 minutes.

I made some Minute multi-grain medley on the stovetop while the chicken and squash cooked in the oven.

 

Tonight’s dinner was a hit.  Easy as can be too.  Using the sauce the chicken was cooked in to flavor the rice noodles and spinach was yummy, and the addition of Kimchi gave it a nice kick!  I can’t wait to try variations on this – adding in green onions and other veggies.  This would be good with shrimp or tofu too.  There are as many possibilities as there are Asian sauces!  Topping it with a soft yolk egg would be good too!

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8 boneless skinless chicken thighs (marinated in Asian sauce – I used McCormick Sesame Chicken Skillet Stir Fry Sauce)

2 packs Thai Kitchen thin rice noodles – we love these and will buy them again!

1 bag fresh spinach

Kimchi for topping – we love Wild Brine brand!

Bake chicken at 350F for 45 minutes.

Meanwhile, make rice noodles according to package directions, adding in spinach with noodles.

Cut chicken into bite size pieces and toss with cooked noodles and spinach.

Top with Kimchi.

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I confess!  In the interest of saving money, I’ve been shopping at Lucky’s and other stores promising good quality organic boneless chicken at lower prices than Fresh Market.  This Little Big Meal offer called out to me, so I decided to splurge.  Guess what?  There really is a difference in the taste and texture.  I will start shopping the Tuesday sale again religiously in the interest of better tasting chicken!  This meal was super easy.  The website said to fry the chicken up in a skillet with a little oil.  Besides the fact that the thought of standing over a hot stove frying chicken didn’t appeal to me, it also sounded a bit greasy.  I opted for a baked method and the results were amazing.  I am on board every time they run this Little Big Meal deal.

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1 Little Big Meal – which includes:

4 large butterflied chicken breasts with light breading

1 jar sauce (the LBM deal was for a brand called Lucini, but they were out – I chose Cucina Artica fresh spinach cooking sauce – very good straight from the jar, but I always taste and doctor it up)

1 pack Fresh Market shredded Mozzarella cheese

My add ins:  sherry, butter, and jarred pesto sauce for sauce, bread, butter, oil, and pesto sauce mix for the garlic bread, and shredded 6 Italian cheese for on top.

1 box DeCecco pasta (I chose cavatappi)  FYI DeCecco won the blind taste test on America’s Test Kitchen as best tasting pasta.

1 package chop salad (again they were out of what it was supposed to be, so I got baby lettuce to make myself lunches for salad this week)

I also made some garlic bread from wonderful sourdough rolls I picked up at their bakery.

  1.  Line baking sheet with foil and brush with oil (I use a grapeseed sunflower blend).
  2. Place chicken pieces on sheet and drizzle with oil.  By the way, the picture is 1/2 of one of the chicken pieces, so it’s a lot of chicken.
  3. Bake at 400 F, setting the timer for 10 minutes to rotate pan and check for even cooking.
  4. Meanwhile, boil water for pasta and heat sauce in pan.  I doctored the sauce with a couple splashes of sherry.
  5. Chicken will be golden around the edges after about 25-30 minutes total cooking time.  Remove from oven and spoon sauce over the pieces, reserving the remaining sauce to mix with the cooked pasta.  After adding the pasta to the sauce, I added in 2 Tbsp. butter and 2 Tbsp. pesto.
  6. Top chicken pieces with shredded cheese.  I had a little 6 cheese Italian on hand, so I used that and some of the Mozzarella.
  7. Return to oven and allow cheese to melt.
  8. For the garlic bread, I mixed melted butter, oil, and Knorr creamy pesto mix and dipped the pieces of bread in it, and baked them first on the lower rack, and then switching out with the chicken towards the end.

The Little Big Meal sells for $20.00 and is supposed to feed four.  We have some leftovers, so the kids are happy!  It’s a lot of food.  I also opted not to make a salad to go with, opting to use it for my lunches instead.  I did purchase the rolls to make the garlic bread for an additional $4.00 investment in the meal.

All in all a success and a great reminder of why the Fresh Market chicken is worth spending a little more!

 

 

Waste not, want not.  Leftover boneless chicken breast (cooked in a delicious white wine, lemon, garlic sauce) was in danger of going to waste.  I chopped it down to small bite size pieces and tossed it with some grape tomatoes, celery, and leftover farro and some Kimchi, great northern beans, a little mayonnaise and viola a yummy new type of chicken salad is born.

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4 C. leftover chicken, chopped into bite size pieces

2 celery stalks, cubed

1 pint grape tomatoes

2 Tbsp. Kimchi

5 Tbsp. mayonnaise

2 C. cooked farro

1 can great northern beans, drained and rinsed.

Combine and refrigerate for 30 minutes.  Enjoy!

 

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