Chicken Peanut Sauce Burrito

Chicken Peanute Sauce Burrito

I got some peanut butter from Harvest Share last month and discovered that it actually is pretty good on celery. When the jar was close to empty, I thought it might be interesting to toss some rice vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, lime juice, and dried red pepper flakes, shake it up so the peanut butter sticking to the sides of the jar did not go to waste. I tried it on some lettuce and it was delicious. So this is the peanut dressing I made.

  • 2 TBSP peanut butter
  • 2 TSBP seasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 TBSP soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 lg. clove of garlic, crushed and macerated with salt
  • Juice from 1 lime, squeezed.

I thought it might be good with some chicken. So I sauteed a chicken breast with just some salt and pepper in olive oil. While it was cooking, I chopped 2 TBSP of yellow onion,   thawed out 2 TBSP of frozen peas by running them in cold water, toasted 6 pecans in a dry pan and chopped them up.

I removed the chicken breast and let it rest for about 5 minutes. Then I heated up my burner and with the air vent on high, charred two flour tortillas against the coils of the stove. If I had a gas stove, I would grill, but this is my “electric grilling.” Just lay them on the medium-high coil with half hanging off the edge so you can grab them.  Flip with your fingers as soon as it begins to char, I generally “grill” on each side a few times to grill the whole tortilla. You cannot be doing anything else when you do this because you don’t want to start the tortillas on fire.  It adds a really great flavor and makes delicious tortillas.

Chicken Peanute Sauce Burrito

I compiled my dish with a small handful of lettuce, the sliced chicken breast, onions, pecans and thawed peas. I then added the peanut dressing and rolled them up.

This is delicious. Chicken is such a mild ingredient that it embraces nearly anything you do. I liked the peas (And yes, fresh would be better, but needs must,) They added a bit of texture and freshness. It all went together so well. It’s zingy and spicy from the lime and red peppers and then the peanut adds this kind of hearty sweetness.

 

Advertisements

Salad with Chicken, Grapes and Pear with Tarragon Pear Vinaigrette

Pear & Chicken Salad

I made the vinaigrette while chopping the ingredients for the salad.

In a small sauce pan, I added 2 tbsp of olive oil and 1/2 of a medium yellow onion, diced. I let the onions sauté until they were tender. Meanwhile, I cleaned and chopped 4 leaves of romaine lettuce, 1 small stalk of celery, a handful of green grapes (1/2 or so) and about 1/2 cup of cooked chicken (removed from a roast I made earlier in the week).

I also chopped up a Bosc pear. It had ripened unevenly, so only a portion was ripe and the rest was not. This happened to inspire the dish. I had planned to just chop the pear up on the salad and add some oil and balsamic vinegar. But now I needed to do something with the stubbornly unripened part of the pear. I put the ripe chunks of pear on the salad. The rest I reserved for the salad dressing. I added a bit of pepper and finished up the vinaigrette.

So now my onions are nice and soft. I added the stripped off leaves from two tarragon stems. Then I added the chopped up pieces of pear. I let them sauté for a bit before adding the fresh-squeezed juice from 1 lemon and a bit of salt. I continued to let them simmer until tender and then mashed the pears up with my fork. I thought about pureeing the mix, but was too hungry to get my Magic Bullet out and puree. So, i just mashed a bit with a fork and added 2 TBSP of white wine vinegar – I went by taste more than volume, adding until it was light and fresh. Then, just for a bit of color and earthiness, i added about 1 tsp of finely chopped fresh parsley.

This is a subtly flavored vinaigrette. The pear adds a mellow sweetness, the onion a bit of heat, the lemon brightens it up and the tarragon is just heaven brought down to earth and infuse in a plant. The white wine vinegar just marries all those flavors into a wonderfully light vinaigrette. This made enough for 4 large salads, so i dressed the salad I made and stored the remaining vinaigrette for some more lovely salads.

 

 

Chicken Vegetable Soup

DSCN5468

I saved the bones from the roast chicken and used them to make a rich chicken broth. I have a pasta cooking kettle, one of those huge kettles with an insert full of holes for straining water. I never make enough pasta to use it, but I do like it for making soup and in particular, for making broth. I just put all the bones, herb and mire poix i there and when the broth is done, I can lift it out and have beautifully clear broth. Since I have explained how to make broth before, I will go forward from there.

I put about 1 TBSP olive oil in the bottom of a sauce pan. I added 1/2 of a leek (chopped), 4 mushrooms (cleaned and chopped), 1 stalk of celery (chopped), some celery seed, thyme, salt and pepper and sautéed until done. Then I added 3 cups of broth, 1 chopped carrot. After 10 minutes, I added 1 chopped yellow squash, 10 brussels sprouts cleaned and cut in quarters. After about 5 minutes I added about 1/2 cup of chopped fresh parsley.

This was a rich flavorful soup with a lot of chicken flavor. Very hearty and thick with vegetables in every spoonful. It made 4 large bowls of soup – each one delicious.

 

 

 

 

Lemon & Garlic Roasted Chicken

Roast Chicken

This is an easy, delicious Roast Chicken recipe I use. After the chicken is roasted, I removed the meat and skin and use the carcass and the onions in the bottom to make a chicken broth for soup.  The roasting primes to bones so that the broth is tasty and rich.

To start, preheat your onion to 425° Fahrenheit.

Take one big yellow onion (or two small) and slice onions about 1/4 inch thick and cover the bottom of your roasting pan with the onions.

Wash the chicken with cold running water. Remove giblets and neck bone from the inside and set aside to use for your broth. Pat dry and lay on top of the onions. They will soak up the drippings as the chicken roasts and be rich in flavor.

Take 4 garlic cloves, peel them and crush them using the side of a knife. Cut a lemon in half and shove two cloves in each half of the lemon.

Normally I take a TBSP of butter, mix it with some thyme, salt and pepper and rub it all over the skin, but I am short on butter, so I used 1 TBSP of bacon fat I had saved instead. In actually added a real Wow! bit of flavor to the roasted chicken’s skin.

Roast in the oven about 1.5 hours or until the inner temperature is 160°.

The lemon and garlic infuse the meat with a delicate flavor. And frankly, after using saved bacon fat to grease the outside of the skin this once, I know I will use it again. It adds a rich, deep flavor. The onions are so delicious it will be hard to save them for the broth, but it’s worth it. Still, you should sneak one slice of onion just because.

This makes multiple servings, not only of roast chicken, but leftover chicken for salads and casseroles. Additionally the carcass will produce 2 -3 quarts of chicken broth.

 

 

 

 

 

Chicken Noodle Soup from Leftover Roast Chicken

Chicken Noodle Soup

I seldom roast chicken because I love soup and hate losing all the broth I can get from boiling a chicken for soup. However, I got this brainstorm the other day, wondering what would happen if I saved all the bones from my roast chicken and boiled them for broth. I tried it and it worked. Now, the broth was not a rich in chicken flavor as one that has had the skin and meat cooking away with the bones, but it was flavorful and delicious anyway.

To start, I sautéd an onion in 1/2 tbsp of olive oil. I added 2 cloves of garlic, salt, pepper and 1 tsp of dry mustard. Then I tossed in the carcass and all the remains from the roast chicken. I added water enough to cover the bones, put a lid on and brought it to a simmer. I added a bay leaf and let it simmer away for about an hour. I strained the broth to be sure I got all the bits of bone and cartilage out and tossed them away. Now I was left with a tasty broth. I added 2 carrots and 8 mushrooms, in 1/2 pieces or so, and let them cook until tender. I then added 1 cup of frozen green beans and 1 cup of dry packaged egg noodles. The noodles took about 10 minutes to cook until tender and by then everything was done. I added some salt and pepper and 1/2 tsp of mustard to boost the flavor a bit.

Chicken Apple Salad with Tuscan Kale Salad

Chicken Apple Salad & Tuscan Kale Salad

First I made the Tuscan Kale Salad. I used three leaves of kale, stripping the leaves off the ribs. I chopped up the kale, added 1 clove of garlic, and massaged with 1/2 TBSP of olive oil and a bit of salt. Adding the juice of 1/2 a lemon and then rubbed them altogether to soften the kale. I spread it on a plate leaving it empty in the center.

Then I made the Chicken Apple Salad. I chopped up about 4 ounces of white chicken left over from some soup I made. I sliced a celery stalk lengthwise into 4 long strips and then chopped them into small pieces. I chopped about 2 TBSP of red onion and 1 apple and added to the salad. I added 1 tsp of celery seed and 1 tsp of mustard, salt and pepper and just enough mayo to dress the salad.

I put the chicken salad in the middle of the kale salad. They work well together because they are so completely opposite in texture and flavor. The chicken salad is slightly sweet and creamy while the kale salad is garlicky and juicy from the lemon. They contrast so well and taste delicious separate or together.

Cleaning Out the Fridge Salad

8309192013_67ea9772a8_z

Before I went grocery shopping, I made up a salad designed to use up some stuff and free up some room in fridge. Generally you can make a salad using a pretty crazy assortment of  foods if you use a classic oil and vinegar (or balsamic vinegar) dressing For this one, I use the last of the romaine, 1 Jazz apple, 5 pickled pimentos. some black olives from a can I has opened earlier in the month and thin slices of parmesan. I also had a couple chicken breasts in the freezer that were at the point where ice was beginning to form inside the freezer bag – meaning that the moisture was about to be sucked out of them rendering them dry, tasteless and not worth cooking.

I thawed the breasts in the microwave and sauteed them lightly in olive oil. I made a real effort not to overcook them because being frozen, they risk being dried out already. I cored the apple and cut the slices in half. I sliced up the pickled pimentos. I tossed everything together in a pie plate, added some salt and pepper, some balsamic and olive oil and enjoyed a tasty salad. The pickled peppers add such a sweet and tart bite, that any salad featuring them feels special. I ended up with a huge salad, but I was super hungry, so it ended up being a single serving, though most times, it would be two.

 

Dinner Salad with Chicken Tenderloin

Dinner Salad with Chicken

This is a simple salad that you can chop and mix up while frying a chicken tenderloin to cut up and add on top of the salad. Now, to make breading, normally you use an egg with a bit of water and beat it. However, that makes enough breading for a a dozen tenderloins, not just one. If I were making a big batch, I would probably use an egg, but I am not, so I used a teaspoon of plain yogurt that a rubbed onto the tenderloin before dredging it in a mix of 1 TBSP bread crumbs, 1/2 TBSP of grated parmesan cheese, salt, pepper and paprika. I used a small skillet with just enough olive oil to cover the bottom and sauteed at medium high for about 3 minutes on each side. You will still get a nice, flavorful crust, though it won’t be as thick as one made with eggs.

While the chicken sauteed, I cut up 5 leaves from the heart of the romaine. I chopped up 1 small pink lady apple and 1/4 of a red bell pepper. In a bowl, I mixed the lettuce, the apple and bell pepper and added a small handful of sliced black olives. I sprinkled about 1 TSBP of balsamic vinegar and 1 TBSP of olive oil on top and tossed lightly to mix the dressing oil and vinegar with the salad ingredients. Then I added some salt and pepper and laid the salad on a plate.

By then the chicken tenderloin was finished, so I sliced it into about 8 or 9 slices and spread them on top. I really like the fresh hot chicken with the cold salad, the contrast in texture and heat is lovely. The chicken adds a nice crispiness that’s a different quality than the crispy apples and red peppers. The apples and vinegar add brightness and the olives add depth while the chicken gives it that substance that makes a salad into a meal.

Chicken & Rice Soup

Chicken and Rice Soup

A small soup made with reserved broth and chicken from a whole fryer. For this, I added some rice that I had made separately. Use your favorite rice-making method. My preferred way to make rice is to rinse 1 cup of rice and put it in a kettle with 1.5 cups of water and a half teaspoon of salt. Make sure it has a tight lid. As soon as the water is at a heavy boil, I remove from the heat, leaving it covered to cook in its steam for 15 minutes. This makes a relatively dryer rice than some people like, so if you like softer, moister rice, use two cups.

In a kettle, saute 2 TBSP of yellow onion in 1 TBSP of olive oil. Add 1 clove of garlic and some fresh thyme. Stir in 1/2 cup of chopped chicken and 2 mushrooms sliced. Add 1 tomato, diced and 1 very small zucchini, sliced. Pour in 3 cups of chicken broth and 1/2 cup of rice. Salt and Pepper to taste. Let cook until the vegetables are done. This still makes 2 servings, but for a soup, that’s a pretty small batch.

Apple Chicken Salad

Chicken Salad

This is a quick and easy salad using some of the chicken reserved from the soup I made. I chopped up about 1 cup of chicken with 1 chopped Pink Lady Apple and 1 stalk of celery. I added about 1/4 of a yellow onion, diced and one sliced radish. I made a dressing of 1 TBSP mayonnaise, some freshly squeezed lemon juice and just a drop of soy sauce. A little salt and pepper to taste and served on the outer leaves of romaine. It could be too mild flavored if not for the onions and radish that gave it just enough bite to counter the mild flavors of chicken and apple.