Thursday, January 23, 2014

Chicken Twice, Chicken Twice.....

Chicken served two different ways in one day, life is good.....

First we had the Chicken Soup, when the soup was cool, I skimmed all the fat off.   We took  the chicken thighs out, then pulled all the meat off the bones, sorted it(for us and some for Chico, Buddy, & Luna), I cut up fresh carrots and celery, then put them in the soup, then cooked them through.

I made brown rice, gnocchi, and cut spaghetti.  Andrew made his special blend of cheese and soon everything was right in this world.

Andrew made his "Four Cheese Blend" to put in the soup, well we put it on everything.  Cheese makes everything better.  Nobody makes a better cheese blend.  I don't know how much of each cheese he puts in, cause he tells me that is his secret.  That is perfectly fine with me cause accidents might happen if I start grating the cheese, and I like to keep all my skin on my body.  I will use the cheese plane, but only on cheese that I am very, very familiar with.  Usually just Jarlsburg or this cheese that I bought when I went to Fairway Market, I can't find my phone right now, so I don't know the name of it.

Earlier in the day, I started the second of the two chicken dishes.  I made Peach & Honey Whiskey Chicken.  I saw the Pioneer Woman make this, and I have wanted to make it ever since.  She used regular Jack.  We saw the Honey Jack and thought it would taste better, next time I think I will use peach whiskey that I read about online.  We also used Dinosaur Honey Garlic BBQ sauce.
Wow, no really, WOW it was fantastic!!!!

It wasn't difficult at all, it was a one pot meal, well maybe two, you need a side.....I washed, dried, and seasoned chicken thighs with salt and pepper.  Then I browned them on both sides in olive oil and butter, making sure to season the second side before I turned.  Once the thighs were the most beautiful brown, I removed them, took out half of the oil, then sauteed two medium shallots, I like their flavor much better than onions,  added about 6 cloves of chopped garlic, and cooked til they were translucent.   I added the whiskey and scraped all the deliciousness off the bottom of the pan, then added peach preserves, frozen peaches and BBQ sauce.  I put the chicken back in and then put the whole pot, lid-on into the oven at 350 degrees for about 1.5 hours.

We had toasted polenta slices with it, but I have to agree with the Pioneer Woman and make smashed potatoes.

All I can say is that it was really, really good.

This is Chicken Twice, Chicken Twice......

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

There was a lot of cooking going on DeVoe.....

First the soup.....Chicken soup

Snow and all good things.....

I am here thinking of all the good things.  It snowed here yesterday and now it all has to be cleaned up, dug out, sorted, and moved.  At the end of our labors, we will get to have the chicken soup.  I will go skim it, strain, and debone the meat, add fresh veggies cook them through, then to each we can either rice, gnocchi or cut spaghetti.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Got the bologna and milk...

Yesterday, yes it was way enjoyable, while we were out and about, my Mom rang me on the phone to have a quick chat, they told us that we were in for some foul weather, where were we that we did not know this?????  This is what cleaning cupboards does, you don't know what is going on outside your door, especially if you spend the better part of two days cleaning and listening to Sat radio.  Needless to say. there was bologna and milk to buy.  The snow is coming, and we are supposed to get slammed.

Last night, I realized it was Monday night, duh.....I made the quick decision to gather the stuff for the Swedish Meatballs.  We mixed 2.5 pounds each of ground pork, ground beef, 5 eggs, bread crumbs, and various spices to make the meatballs. baked them, then put them in the gravy that I made the other day.  Cooked it all for a bit, now they are cooled down, so I can divide it up and put in the freezer.

When the time comes, I will take them out of the freezer for dinner, all I will have to make either potatoes, rice, or noodles.....I have say I can't wait.

Kathy said that I am ruining it for other I guess I'm going to have to feed her.......again


Sunday, January 19, 2014

Tomorrow is another day

I am so very happy that tomorrow is a holiday.  There was truly no cooking on DeVoe with the exception of turning on the oven to heat the pizza that we had last night for dinner.

I can say, yes we need door and drawers, but what we do have is cleaned, straightened, and inventoried.  We can survive a month without really going to the grocery.  The only things that must be purchased is fresh veggies, fruits, milk, dairy and bread.  We are good on rice, pasta, jams, jellies, and all that other happy stuff.  We have all the staples.

Andrew organized all of the spices, herbs, oils, vinegars, marinades, and rubs.  He knows exactly what we have. 

We had a great weekend together, and we get the holiday tomorrow, another glorious day.  Then back to work on Tuesday.  Here is what we did.

We both made room, and got rid of the stuff we did not want or need.  We can drop off the stuff at the grocery store food bank.

I don't know what we are going to have tomorrow, but I want us to make something outstanding.

So for now it is off to bed......

Twelve Herbs, Eleven Oils, Ten Extracts, Nine Salts........

I think that I could write a song about the "cabinet".  Maybe an album. 

It was time, past time, way past time to put some order in the cabinets, again.

The rubs had to be put with the rubs, all in one place.  Maybe the marinades should be put next to them.  What about the brines, should they put with them too?  What about the salt?  Should the sea salt go with the kosher?  Is that kosher?  All of this is making my head hurt.... 

Some of the spices are not in my cooking base, but in Andrew's.  My herbs and spices are there mingling with his, Mitty & Andrew, Andrew & Mitty, him and her,  ours, cohabitation of different things, yet the same purpose, to add to our life.....I love this life, it is my life and his life, our life....

We need to keep a list on our phones, so we know what we have.  Maybe some pictures to remind us of what we have, all that we have.  Andrew tackled the lazy susans, and the upper, upper shelves to the right of the stove, while I did the lower cabinets right of the dishwasher.  I weeded the dishtowels and potholders.  Zippy bags, wax, parchment and freezer paper, clear wrap, and foils were all set to rights.  I have an empty shelf and I'm going to move the Knor stuff there.  Andrew did a most excellent job, now the rest has to be sorted and put away.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Pork......too Assertive????


I'm thinking..........NO

I keep quite a few kinds of stock in our pantry.  Whenever we go to a store, specialty store, butcher, ethnic grocery market, and even farmers market I look for pork stock.  I have found powdered or concentrate but never just plain pork stock.  It has become just a fact that I have to make it myself.  Believe me, I am not complaining, I would just like to have a container or two, just in case.  I posted how I make the broth on Monday.

I have been reading that here in the states people don't really want it.  They would prefer to use the others like chicken, veggie, beef or fish.   I also read that they feel pork has too much of an assertive flavor.  Isn't that what you want, a pronounced flavor, I'm thinking that is what I want.  So I guess it will be up to me to always have stock in the freezer, just in case I need it.  We all really enjoy pork chops, cutlets, pork roasts and there is nothing that beats gravy.  Pork, we love pork.  Life is good with pork.  I cannot say it enough.  I will say they have breed the fat out of the pig.  Pork is so very lean, but it is still fab.  My favorite meal has always been pork chops.  I love bacon.  Christmas time has always been pork.  Both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day has been full of pork.  I love bacon.  Everything is better with bacon.

Yesterday, I made pork gravy to go along with the pork cutlets we were going to have for dinner.  I also made Mrs. Gallo's Potatoes, I did not eat any on Christmas, and I have been jonesing for them ever since.   They are not hard to make, not even time consuming, but the end result is pretty amazing. 

I started the gravy using the usual suspects:  butter and flour.   After the flour cooks for a few minutes, I then start to add the broth.  As is cooks, I add more broth.  I keep adding the broth, cooking til I know it is ready.  It has to have the correct consistency and color.  You know when it is ready.
Staub 12" Sapphire Blue 
It all starts with the butter

 I thought I had the bacon in the meat drawer in the fridge, I remembered I put it in the freezer.  I need the bacon for the potatoes, so I had to use the "Broad Sword" to chop the frozen bacon into small slices.  It is really heavy and so it was breeze.  It is just a shame that I did not take any pictures of it.  Oh, well next time.  The shallots and garlic were diced into small pieces and put into my largest prep bowl.  I used three different kinds of potatoes; small baby reds, dutch babies, and small yukons.   They were a good mix. 

Andrew said to me last night that the 15" lodge cast iron skillet was one of the best things we ever purchased.  I had asked him like five times, how many cutlets there were, he did not know, I breaded them, and put them on the racks to dry, then stacked them on the wax paper.  Andrew then cooked them in the skillet to absolute perfection.  I still don't know how many there were, I forgot to count them.  The marinade permeated the meat and added to the overall flavor.  They were worth the wait.

We had to feed Kathy, two plates, she was hungry.....Mike nibbled....he said he was watching, doctors suggestion....hehehehe (he had 3 helpings of potatoes, and 3 helpings of cutlets).  But did not have any corn cause he was counting calories.....

I think we all enjoyed the food, I think that it all turned out pretty delicious.

Lucky Andrew and Mike, they got to have a sandwich for lunch, a double decker.