Friday, April 30, 2010

Food for Thought March 2

Continued from Wednesday

#186 30-Minute Chicken Under a Brick Here are a few warnings that should come boldly noted at the top of the recipe:

The pan used on top of the chicken (aka the brick) is going to be hot. Very. Very. Hot.

Grease the bottom of the pan you're going to use as the brick otherwise the chicken will stick

No really, that pan is going to be hot!

Now that we have those warnings out of the way, here's how I didn't follow the directions.  Believe it or not I couldn't find bone-in-skin-on chicken at my local grocery store (sometimes I feel like that place is equal to grocery shopping in a developing country- you never know what you're going to get) so I used boneless, skinless breast- better for you that way anyway right?  I forgot the bay leaf mainly because I thought it said basil, so I bought basil.  I omitted the sage, because I don't like sage.  I used citrus grilling seasoning on instead of the Montreal Steak Seasoning she calls for- this was an amazing substitution.  Yum!  I subbed out the radicchio and used endive because I've yet to find radicchio in any of the stores where I shop. And for the "fresh herbs" she calls for, I used parsley and thyme because that's what I had on hand.  And I forgot to serve the crusty bread with it.  And despite the fact that I don't know if I can honestly say that what I made still resembles the original recipe Rachel intended- it was really, really yummy.

#279 Everything-Crusted Chicken Rolls Stuffed with Scallion Cream Cheese I'm going to call this recipe "muscle food" not because it's healthy but because good arm muscles are what you need to make this puppy.  I mean I think I got tennis elbow from pounding the bread crumbs (I used leftover bread pieces I dried in the oven), pounding out the chicken, and beating the cream cheese mixture.  Remember to stretch and have a cool down period when making this- injury prevention is important.  So on this only used 2 TBSP onion flakes, only used 1/2 tsp garlic powder (because that's all I had) and threw in 2 tsp mustard seeds because it seemed like good idea at the time.  This was very good (I tried it both hot and cold), but make sure you don't have any important meeting to go to after eating this because your breath will rat out what you had for lunch.

(mainly because of the lack-o-health factor)

#284 For Neil Diamond: Tangy Cherry Chicken With a name like that, how could I not want to try it!  Yes, it's true, I am a big Neil Diamond fan.  Not in the Saving Silverman sort of way, but in the way that I own a cd (or four) I've seen the Jazz Singer more than once, and LK took me to a Neil Diamond concert back in the early years of marriage (good times!).  So to get myself in the mood to cook #284, I turned up the music and danced around my kitchen while working through the recipe.  My across-the-street-neighbor who likes to stare into my kitchen while he sits on his front porch and smokes (yes, I see you stinky, smokey man) appreciated the entertainment that night I'm sure (I need curtains).  If I was cooking this for LK I would have only used 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes, but he was out of town and I was pretty sure the kids wouldn't eat it (in fact, I found out that night that Geo doesn't like cooked fruit of any kind), so I made it as I wished.  I did forget to add the butter in the last step which I bet would have made it even yummier, but it was still good.  And I bet it would have been really good with rice.

#302 Wingless Buffalo Chicken Rolls with Blue Cheese Dip I made this the night my friend Karyn and her two girls came over for dinner while LK was out of town.  I didn't realize the chicken was suppose to be store-bought ground chicken and I don't know any place that actually sells ground chicken if I had read it right, so I hastefully tried to ground my own from the boneless-skinless breasts I had on hand.  All but blowing the motor on my blender while trying to ground the chicken breasts was yet another reminder that I need a food processor.  Nothing says welcome to my house like the smell of a blown out motor!  Oh and in case you're wondering, ground chicken is possibly the most digusting thing I've seen- and I have boys so I speak as one who knows.  I only used 1 TBSP of hot sauce for the chicken mixture because I was serving it to the kids too and I knew the adults could always add more as they wished.  I also couldn't find the phyllo dough so I used ready-made refrigerator pie crust which was pretty good.  I also added 1/8 tsp pepper and 1/4 tsp of sea salt to the dipping sauce because it seemed a little tasteless.  Overall, if you have a Jersey Mike's in your area, their buffalo chicken wrap beats the recipe by far.  If you don't, this isn't a bad substitute.

#324 Pork Loin Chops with Golden Delicious Apples and Onions on Polenta with Honey
I used rum extract instead of brandy but I don't think the extract added anything amazing to the recipe so the next time I'd probably leave it out.  The polenta was really good but not good reheated.  But fresh- man! I could eat that stuff all day!

Happy eating,


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