Archive | January 2013

Thought for the Day

Some days I  just need a little inspiration, a little reminder.  This statement is so simple and yet so true.  I hope it speaks to you, too.

“A day hemmed in prayer is less likely to come unraveled.”

(from my page-a-day calendar)

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Oven-Roasted Chicken

Oven-roasted chicken, mmmmm, those words conjure certain smells and tastes just reading (or typing) them. Until a couple of months ago, I had never roasted a whole chicken. I’ve baked chicken pieces, but not left it whole to cook in the oven for a few hours. It intimidated me. The “eww” factor of handling a whole, raw chicken and what I might find inside made my toes curl. But in talking with a good friend and learning how she uses an entire chicken for many meals and making broth, I decided to get over myself.  It was time to add it to my repertoire.

Roasted Chicken  (from photopin.com see description for info)

Roasted Chicken
(photo credit: madlyinlovewithlife via photopin cc )

Now, how to roast a chicken easily?  I’m not all about prepping an item for 30 minutes with that amount of ingredients or baby-sitting it to baste every 20 minutes.  No thank you.  Enter my Google search and various results.  I found this wonderful web site and its recipe for roast chicken.  I’ve made it three times now, and each one turned out just right. Their explanations are simple with helpful pictures.

http://www.finecooking.com/articles/how-to/roast-chicken-start-to-finish.aspx

I use softened butter and season with:  seasoned salt, a little black pepper, dried rosemary, garlic powder, and some dried minced onion.

The leftovers are great for chicken salad and for creating chicken fried rice for dinner a couple of nights later.

Do you roast chicken?  What seasonings does your family enjoy?

What can you do with a box?

web_tunnel

If you’re my hubby, you make a tunnel for our toddler. Once we showed him how to use it, he’s enjoyed it. The window on the side is an added bonus. And if your truck will move itself, you can send it through the tunnel on its own with your mommy waiting to send it back.
Good times!


web_tunnel enter web_tunnel exit

Such a simple toy

It’s often the simple things that make the best toys. For example, the box that housed the new toy is often more popular than the toy itself.
My 17 month old enjoys taking things apart, stacking, and opening and closing drawers. The other evening I needed something different to occupy him in his high chair for a bit.  So I decided to create something simple: a washed formula can and lids from baby food jars. I cut a hole in the top of the lid that was plenty wide and gave him the container and lids. He promptly removed the lid to the can and enjoyed putting the small lids in the container, pulling them out, and starting over.

It gave me 20 wonderful minutes to work on dinner and wash some dishes. 🙂

BBQ Pork Sandwiches (Slow Cooker)

bbq pork_web

I love simple.  I love yummy.  I love meals without too much preparation.  This one fits the bill with 2 ingredients and little prep time.

Ingredients:

4 pound (ish), boneless pork butt (Bone-in is fine but not as easy to maneuver)

1 bottle of your favorite bbq sauce (We like Williamson Bros.)

Directions:

Put the roast in your crock pot (3.5 or 4 quart size).  Pour the sauce over and around it.  Cover and cook on Low for 8 hours.  About 20 minutes before serving, take the meat out and shred it.  Put the meat back in pot to mingle with the sauce.

Serve on a French roll with cole slaw, chips, cantaloupe, and a pickle on the side.  Make sure to have extra napkins because it’s messy. 🙂

White Chicken Chili

White Chicken Chili

The other night I needed to make dinner, and it needed to be ready quickly. It had been a nutso kind of day (as happens with a toddler), and I hadn’t gotten myself in gear with something in the crock pot. So I opened the cabinet doors, saw some beans, and decided dinner would be White Chicken Chili and cornbread (thank you, Jiffy).
Usually I dump everything together in the crock pot, but with less than 2 hours until dinner, that wasn’t happening.

Here’s the recipe for anyone interested:  (side note, I don’t always measure, so do this “to taste”)

1 can each:

Pinto beans

Garbanzo beans (also called chick peas)

Canellini beans

Great northern beans

1 large can of chicken, pieces separated (I prefer fresh, diced chicken breasts, but time was of the essence, and none were thawed.)

3C Chicken broth (or enough to lightly cover the mixture) – You may add water instead of more broth, if needed.

1-2 Tbsp minced garlic (I used the kind in the glass jar)

1Tbsp dried minced onion

1-2 teas. cumin

a few shakes of paprika

Directions:

Rinse the beans.  Put everything in a large pot.  Cover and cook on Low until heated through.  If using raw chicken, cook on Medium until the chicken is cooked through.  Stir every-so-often.

Serve in bowls and top with shredded cheddar cheese and a dollop of sour cream.

Yum!