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Itchy Ears

23 Mar

“I’m allergic to attitude.”  Megan Boone

Maybe that’s my problem, which started about 5 years ago when my ears began to itch.  Ringing ears means that someone is talking about you, or so my mother told me.  Itchy ears can be a sign of an allergy.  Google this puppy and all sorts of words like “fungus” pop up.  Good grief.

Well my itchy ears blossomed outside of my ears and caused the sides of my head to rot.  Actually, it’s more like red and flaky.  A dear friend suggested I might have leprosy and said I might think of living a little more biblically.  He said all I’d need would be a bell and the ability to shout, “Unclean!”  Love my amusing friends.

I finally ended up at a holistic practitioner who assured me that there was something amiss.  That bit of info costs thirty-five dollars.  I think I missed my calling.  Her solution was an elimination diet.  It’s a diet that’s so strict that you wish someone would eliminate you.  Just kidding.

Actually, on an elimination diet a person eats only things that could not possibly have any additives that might cause a reaction, such as itchy ears.  My diet now consists of three identically structured meals.  That would be 3 ounces of organic, grass-fed meat and a plethora of organic veggies.  Note well:  potatoes, corn and peas are not included in the list of acceptable veggies.  Seeds, grains, nuts also not included.  Coffee is also a no-no as is any other caffeinated beverage.  How much mint tea can one person consume in a day?  Inquiring minds could care less.

I was warned to keep chicken to a minimum of two meals per week.  I think this woman belongs to “Save the Chickens”.  Bad news.  It’s difficult to find organic, grass-fed fish.  (Joke)  Good news.  There is such a thing as organic, grass-fed bacon!  (No Joke!)

I only need follow this eating plan for 4 to 6 weeks.  I’m also taking pro-biotics.  Now this post is getting boring.   

Loveya – The Grandma

Winslow Arizona

11 Apr

“What we speak becomes the house we live in.”  Hafiz

Went to see LaPosada, an incredible hotel in Winslow Arizona.  Not to be missed.  Google it if you’re that interested to see if it’s really that great or if I’m just blowing smoke.  Old ladies do that sometime.

IMG_1122

A garden in Eden in the middle of the dessert.  And then there was the food.  Decided to have a salad because I’ve been eating so much on this trip.  Ordered the Spicy Chicken Chili which came with a bunch of black beans and a corn husk filled with a sweet corn polenta.  OMG.  Happiness prevailed.

But before that brought the main course they brought out an appetizer of cornbread drenched in butter and topped with a honey glaze.

crnBr

Yes, a few bites were consumed before I remembered the pic.  Worth it!  And then the main course arrived.

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The chicken is to the far left nestled against the tortillas.  Polenta in the center and black beans to the right.  Two of us consumed the black beans.  We think it’s going to be an interesting night at the motel!

Loveya – The Grandma

Santa Fe Ribs

9 Apr

“Now that all your worry has proved such an unlucrative business, why not find a better job.”  Anon

So here we are in Santa Fe without any idea of where anything is.  Circled through suburban areas while we voted where to find the incredible shops that we knew were waiting for us.  “Turn left here!”  “Should I turn right?”  

After 45 minutes of such scintillating conversation we stopped to ask directions.  We asked a mail person who was emptying a mail box.  If he didn’t know where things were, who would.

Forty-five minutes later we found motels-a-plenty.  Comfortably tucked into a Comfort Inn we got directions to a restaurant that would have our long desired ribs.  Ta da!

Bldg

Enter The Ranch House.  A cozy table in the bar where we could watch TV and hear the 1000th report of old news, indicating that it’s been a slow news day.

But then the food began to arrive.  Ribs and half a chicken with sides of Golden Potato Salad and Slaw.  Words cannot describe my joy or the number of napkins needed to keep myself looking presentable in public.  I recommend the spicy sauce!

Mt

OK.  So I forget to take the picture until I’m half way through my meal.  Cornbread on the plate with the ribs and chicken and salads behind in generous sized cups.  Thank you Jesus!

Of course, we needed to finish with dessert, which were all homemade.  We chose the bourbon creme brûlée to share.  There was a luscious  strawberry on top.  

BRU

Yes!  I forgot to take a picture before we attacked the dessert!  Get over it!

Now remember that last night a gentleman bought our dinners for us.  So we were joking how we had to find someone to buy our rib dinners.  Just then the waitress came up and said because we were first time customers they were buying our dessert for us.  Because my heart is pure!

Loveya – The Grandma

Day #1 Kansas City

7 Apr

“I’m having fun, not chicken.”  Anon

The above quote is not exactly anonymous, but my friend said that if I put her name to it she’s brain me.  It happened at the restaurant in Kansas City, or somewhere near there.  When you keep getting lost you’re not always sure of you exact location.  But we did find the exact location of a restaurant thanks to the recommendation of the young clerk at the Super 8.

Sign

OK.  We weren’t sure if it was chain restaurant or not and it was getting nigh to 8:00.  And even though the ribs were the special we’re on our way to Texas so I decided to save BBQ eating until then.  The logic of three hungry geriatric women is amazing!

After much deliberation I chose the beef and chicken fajitas. And started with a Guinness.  I ordered the small Guinness.

Guin

 When the fajitas arrived they were sizzling, and obviously way too huge to consume in one sitting.   Right!  But I must degrees.  

One in our group ordered a chicken something with a baked potato on the side.  Don’t you like that in-depth description of the chicken dish.  Unfortunately, the chicken was overcooked and difficult to cut and challenging to chew.  The waitress was informed.  The manager was informed.  My friend was offered another entree and chose the chicken fajitas.  Meanwhile my fajitas arrived.

 

guac Beef

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Luscious, tender complete.  Who could ask for anything more.  Of course, by the time my friend’s fajitas arrived I was 3/4 of the way through my mound of food and didn’t want to make her feel she was eating alone.  Are you buying this?  Needless to say I ate every morsel and am now back at the Super 8 reminiscing about my past pregnancies when my stomach was this distended.

But the upshot of our whole dining experience happened when the waitress brought my friend her check.  They merely charged her for her glass of wine.  No charge for the uneaten chicken something and no charge for the delicious, replacement chicken fajitas.  And all this service with a smile.

If you’re ever in the vicinity of Kansas City and can find this particular restaurant, give them a try.  Great service!  Great fajitas!

Loveya – The Grandma

Mexican Chicken and Pepper Soup

28 Jan

“Self delusion is pulling in your stomach when you step on the scale.”  Paul Sweeney

The following recipe will make it unnecessary for you to pull in your stomach when you step onto the scale.  That’s because it follows the guidelines of Paleo eating.  Following these guidelines will make you svelte and irresistible to your heart’s desire.  I promise.  Have I ever lied to you?

I found this recipe, which sounded delicious, and of course I didn’t have the proper ingredients on hand so I improvised.  Didn’t have red and yellow peppers to cut into thin strips but I did have a bag of frozen red, yellow, and green pepper.  Didn’t have chicken chests so I used chicken thighs.  We all lived happily ever after.

INGREDIENTS – MY VERSION:

1 T olive oil

1 onion, thinly sliced

1/4 t chili flakes

1 t oregano

3 cloves garlic, pressed or minced

1/2 bag frozen pepper strips

1/2 large can diced tomatoes

3 skinless, boneless chicken thighs

Parsley and lime wedge to serve

DESTRUCTIONS:  Saute the onion, garlic and chili in the oil until fragrant.  I started this whole thing in a large skillet.  Easier  for me to control.

ONSpSoup

This is what was going on in the skillet with the first four ingredients.  The original recipe called for a teaspoon of chili flakes.  Even cutting the amount to 1/4 teaspoon gave this soup enough kick for this spice-loving lady.  More or less to suit your personal taste would be a good idea.

Soup2

Next add the stock, tomatoes, and oregano and bring to a boil.  Lovely aromas will begin to waft through your kitchen!  Next, add a half bag of frozen peppers.  Easy and no sliced fingers!

Soup3

Frozen peppers just waiting to join the fun!

At this point in the original recipe you’re supposed to add chicken breast and simmer about 5 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.  However, I did not have chicken breasts so I added diced chicken thighs (cut with a scissors into diced-sized pieces) and put everything into my trusty crock pot on low for about two hours.

The results were delicious and picture perfect!

Soup4

The squeeze of lime cut some of the heat.  A lovely, light soup that’s simple to prepare.  Can life get much better?  Yes!  I discovered a way to make my own, delicious, chili powder.  Stay tuned.

Loveya – The Grandma

Another Roast Chicken – Sans Roaster

9 Dec

“Food is an important part of a balanced diet.”  Fran Lebowitz

It behoves me to share this with you.  Shortly after sharing my “Deli Chicken, Sans Deli” recipe, I found an easier way to accomplish almost the same results with a lot less time and work.  A roast chicken roasted in a crockpot.

On caveat, however.  The recipe had a spice rub that turned out to be, in my opinion, too spicy for the general public.  Therefore, I would encourage you to use the spice rub from the “Deli Chicken, Sans Deli” chicken recipe, published on December 5th. 

INGREDIENTS FOR SPICE RUB FROM DECEMBER 5 RECIPE:

4 t salt

2 t paprika

1/2 t cayenne pepper

1 t onion powder

1 t garlic powder

1 t thyme

1 t white pepper

1/2 t black pepper

DISTRUCTIONS:  Mix all ingredients for the spice rub together.  Rinse and dry the inside and outside of the chicken.  Paper towels work well for the drying process.  Massage the spice mixture into the inside and outside of the chicken.

Slice a large onion and place it into the bottom of your crockpot.  Place the chicken on top of the sliced onion.  Cover the pot.  Cook the chicken for 5 to 6 hours on low.

CP Chix

This is not a picture of my granddaughter

The recipe suggested a 5 to 6 pound chicken.  The largest chicken I could find was just under 5 pounds.  It took 5 hours to finish cooking through, at which time the chicken’s arms fell off.  They were lovingly placed next to the chicken for the photo shoot.

The entire chicken was tender and juicy.  Ask me how I know.  The bottom of the crockpot had a few inches of luscious chicken broth with onion.  The onions would be great on top of the chicken in a sandwich.

Loveya – The Grandma 

 

Deli Chicken, Sans Deli

5 Dec

“Tastes like chicken.”  Anonymous

Don’t you just love those whole, cooked chickens that they sell in the deli?  Their skin gleams a golden brown and they all look so happy just riding around in that little glass oven.

The problem I’ve found with those little darlings is that they present a challenge to anyone trying to pass him or herself off  as a culinary wizard.  First, you have to sneak the fully cooked chicken into the house and get it to the table, all the while convincing your family that you cooked it.  This is quite an achievement in light of the cold oven and the lack of a dirty pan.

But no more!  Here is a roast chicken recipe that will give you a perfectly browned, whole chicken and a dirty pan to clean.  Best yet, this thing takes five hours to bake so your home will fill with an aroma that will have your family begging for dinner.

Suggestion – make this on a Saturday or Sunday when you’re home to deal with the five-hour oven stint.  You even have to be there to baste the bird, but it’s worth every minute that you invest.

Rose

Did not have a picture of a chicken so I inserted a picture of my granddaughter, Rose.

She’s cuter than a chicken!

INGREDIENTS:

1 large roasting chicken, the bigger the better

4 t salt

2 t paprika

1 t cayenne pepper

1 t onion powder

1 t garlic powder

1 t thyme (remember to rub it through the palms of your hands*)

1 t white pepper

1/2 t black pepper

1.5 cups chopped onion

DISTRUCTIONS: Did I mention that you have to season the chicken overnight?  However, you don’t have to get up in the middle of the night to see how it’s doing or to see if it’s thirsty.  So much easier than raising children.

To begin, mix all the spices together. That’s everything except the chicken and the onions.  Next, remove the giblets and rinse the chicken inside and out.  Dry the chicken with paper towels.

Rub the entire chicken, inside and out, with the spice mixture.  Get the spice mixture distributed as evenly as you can.  Place the chicken into a large plastic bag and refrigerate overnight.

When you’re ready to roast the bird, which should be about 5 hours before you’re ready to eat the bird, pre-heat the oven to 250 degrees.  Stuff the chopped onions into the chicken and set it into a shallow roasting pan.  I’m assuming that you removed the chicken from the plastic bag, but remembering my cousin, Mavis the chicken laminator, I will take nothing for granted.

Remove the chicken from the plastic bag, stuff the chicken with the chopped onions, and set it into a shallow roasting pan.  If you already did this you get to rest for a few seconds while the Mavis wanna-bes catch up.

After the chicken spends one hour in the oven, baste it with the pan juices.  You will notice that there are almost no pan juices at this point so fake it.  After that, baste it every half hour.  Juices will appear, the chicken will turn golden brown, drippings will weld themselves to the bottom of the pan, and the aroma of roast chicken will waft through your home.

As with a lot of meats that have been in the oven, (no, Virginia Vegetarian, chicken is not a vegetable) let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before you carve.  Actually, this little darling is just going to fall apart from the sheer joy of being so beautiful.  You know how we beauties tend to fall apart!

When you have the chicken arranged on one of your finest platters, perhaps surrounded by a plethora of roasted vegetables, take your creation to the dinner table and give your family the bird!

Serve with: family and friends.

Loveya – The Grandma

* Rubbing this herb through your palms will give you a little more thyme on your hands!  I couldn’t resist.