Monday, July 9, 2012

Chicken Sanchez

Like most Man-Food, this is designed to be tasty, filling, quick and have a reasonably long shelf life (2-3 days).

Here is what you will need:

4 large chicken breasts (no bones or skin)
4-6 sausages (not breakfast sausage but the big Brat-type)
1 cup of Pace Picante sause
2 cups of brown rice
Optional: Shredded cheese and Sour cream
1-2 cans of beans (black, kidney or pinto)
1 large bag of tortilla chips

First, start the rice as it will take about 45 minutes to cook.  As will all rice, I use a 2:1 ratio of water to rice. So, if you are using 2 cups of rice, you will be adding that to 4 cups of boiling water.  I find with rice that it is often helpful to add about half a teaspoon of salt and one teaspoon of butter per cup of uncooked rice.

Add the rice after the water is boiling.  Reduce heat to simmer for 20 minutes and then turn off the heat for another 20.  Be sure to taste rice before adding it as sometimes my timing may be off by a bit.  If the rice is not soft, leave it in the hot water longer.

Cut the chicken into sugar-cube sized bites.  Cook until it is done all the way through.  Feel free to add some Monterey Steak Seasoning (I add this to everything).  Once it is cooked, put the chicken into a large pot.

Chop up the sausage (1/4 inch thick slices) and cook for about 10 minutes in a frying pan.  Add cooked sausage to the pot of chicken.

Add the cans of beans to the pot.

Add the Pace Picante sause to the pot.

When the rice is done, add it to the pot.

Crunch up a few handfuls of tortilla chips and add them to the pot.

Stir the contents of the pot together and then serve in bowls.

As desired, top will shredded cheese or sour cream.  I use both.

Eat and enjoy.


Friday, April 20, 2012

Grease Enhanced Chicken and Rice

Sometimes I like to roast an entire chicken.  Typically, I do this when I'm (a) hungry and (b) have an hour's worth of something else to do while the chicken is cooking.

The problem is always that I can't seem to eat an entire chicken so there is always something left over.  Now, since I typically eat all of the good parts while I'm still hungry, I end up with about a third of a chicken that basically doesn't look entirely edible.

So I came up with another way to cook it.

Here is what you need.

1 big chicken
2 cups of brown rice
3 onions

Spray a big glass cooking pan in PAM (unless  you want to spend a lot of time cleaning up later)

Slice up the onions and line the bottom of the cooking pan with the slices.

Wash the chicken then put it onto the onions.  If you have some, sprinkle some Costco Steak seasoning on the chicken.

Put the chicken in the oven and cook at 350 for about an hour and a half.

Now for the rice.  Boil 4 cups of water (with a tablespoon of butter).  Add the rice, cover and simmer for 45 minutes.

Set  a timer for the rice.  When I don't do that, there is about a 60-40 chance that my brown rice will end up black and stuck to the bottom of yet another pot I need to throw away.

When the chicken is done, remove it from the pan and let it cool.  Take off the skin and feed it to the dog.  My wife disagrees with this, but since you are single, this shouldn't be a problem.

When the chicken has cooled, pull off the meat, cut it into bite-size bits and toss it back into the pan with the onions.  Note, the onion should be sitting in about half an inch of chicken grease from when you cooked the chicken.  Add the rice.

Stir and enjoy.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Mushroom Stew - without the mushrooms

My wife bought me a cookbook for my slow cooker.  This cookbook came with lots of pictures which I find to be a tremendous help.  I can't look at a bunch of raw ingredients and tell what I'm going to end up with.  But a picture...that's another story.

I found myself drawn to a picture of a delicious looking stew.  I'd already decided to make it before I noticed it was called Mushroom Stew.

I am not a mushroom guy.  I can eat food that has "mushroom essence" but no actual mushrooms.  I consider direct contact with an actual mushroom to be little more than a prelude to a stomach pump.

So, I came up with a stew that looks just like the picture in the cookbook, without actually following the cookbook's recipe.  And...there are definitely no mushrooms involved.

Here is what you need:

9 cups of chicken broth
1 pound bag of barley
1-2 pounds of chicken
1/4 cup of chopped parsley
1 can of peas
1 can of corn
1 onion
3 carrots
3 celery stalks
8 ounces of tomato paste
2 table spoons of Thyme (don't ask me what that is)
Salt and Pepper

1 large crockpot or slow cooker.  If you only have a small one, try using the below recipe but smaller portions of everything.

Peel the onion and chop it into small pieces.

Peel the carrots and chop them into little pieces.

Chop the celery into little pieces.

Chop the chicken into little pieces.

Throw everything on the above list into your slow cooker.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Set it on high and wait for 6-8 hours.

Eat and enjoy.

This makes what looks to be about 50 pounds of stew.  This is because the barley swells up after a few hours.

When you eat it, I suggest adding a little sour cream.

Eat and enjoy.

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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Vegetable Catch-Up

Kids don't like vegetables because they don't taste good.  By that I mean, they don't come with frosting on top.

Men don't like vegetables for three reasons:

  1. The don't keep well and we often don't discover this until they have begun to ferment. 
  2. We don't know how to cook them.
  3. They don't come with frosting on top.

Here is a way to periodically catch up on all of the vegetables you've been missing.  It tastes great, uses vegetables from a can and costs almost nothing.

What you need:

A large bowl
A can of corn
A can of peas
A can of diced tomatoes
A can of olives
1/2 cup of PACE Picante sauce or the equivalent

After draining the excess fluid from each of the cans, mix this all together in the giant bowl.

Heat on "high" in the microwave for a couple of minutes.

Eat and enjoy.


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Sunday, July 10, 2011

Orgasmic Fruit Salad

Okay, this may not be completely "orgasmic" but I know which words catch a guy's attention.

This is an easy and healthy breakfast - if you have the ingredients on hand.

That is a big IF since fruit salad depends on your having fresh fruit in the house.

Here is what you need to make a single serving:

1/2 cup of strawberries
1/2 cup of chopped pineapple
1 sliced up banana
1 single serving of blueberry yogurt

Take all of these ingredients and mix them together in a bowl.  I suppose you could blend them together but why bother.

Eat and enjoy.


Thursday, June 30, 2011

Chicken Breast Dress Up

I am not a fan of white meat.

When it comes to chicken, I'll take a leg, wing or thigh anytime over the breast.

So this brings up the question: What should I do when I thaw out what I thought was a chicken thigh(s) only to find out it was a breast?

Here is what I did and it actually turned out pretty good.

What you need:

A chicken breast, skinned with no bone
A frying pan
Some cooking oil
A hand full of flour (at most)
Salt and Pepper
A hand full of shredded swiss cheese
A hammer

Clean off your hammer and then use it to smash your chicken breast flat.  This should take at least a minute.  The flatter the better.

Poor some cooking oil (2-5 tablespoons) into the frying pan and set it on high.

While the oil is heating up, smear mustard on both sides of the breast.

Add some salt and pepper.

Spread the flour on a cutting board or something similar and then plop the chicken on top of it.  Turn the chicken over a couple of times to ensure the flour covers everything.

Toss the chicken into the frying pan.  Now, "toss" does not mean to try and throw it in from the far side of the kitchen.  "Toss" is more of a masculine way of saying, "Put the chicken into the oil, being careful not to splash the oil over the side of the pan where it will catch fire and turn this whole thing into a bar-b-que event."

Cook on each side for about 5 minutes.  The thicker the chicken is, the longer you must cook it on each side.

Lift the chicken up and drop the swiss cheese into the pan.  Try to make a "swiss cheese pattern" that is similar in size and shape to your chicken breast.

Set the chicken back down onto the cheese.

This is going to look really messy at first.  Don't worry, the cheese will harden after a few minutes. (I'm sure there is a technical term for this but I don't have any idea what that could be).

Use a spatula to test the cheese every now and then.  When it looks like it has hardened under the chicken, take the whole thing out.

What you will end up with is a mustard sort of flavored, breaded chicken breast with hardened swiss cheese stuck to one side.

Eat and enjoy.


Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Slow Cooker Solution

I was walking through the meat isle at the store yesterday.  I'm just sort of browsing; like a person at a bookstore.  I don't know what I want but if I see it, I'm ready to make my move.

I came across a 5 pound package of meat that was going for the low, low price of $.99 per pound.  I didn't know what it was but it ended up in my shopping cart just the same.

As I was putting the groceries away, I noticed the meat.  "Pork Shoulder" is what the label said.  I could tell by the bone and chunks of fat that this was going to be a challenge to make edible.

Then I remembered by old standby.  The Slow Cooker.

Here is what I did.

I put the meat into the slow cooker and then added a package of "pot roast" seasoning.  I know this is pork and not beef, but it was all I had in the cupboard.  I also added a cup of water.  I set it on high and went about my day for 4 hours or so.

I then chopped up three potatoes, three carrots, two onion, one stalk of celery, one red bell pepper (all of this chopped up) and 1 heaping tablespoon of my secret ingredient - Costo Monterey Steak Seasoning.

I let this go for another 4 hours or so.

I had to pick out two large bones and a few lumps of fat. (My dog starts his diet tomorrow.)

I just finished my second bowl of this stuff.

This was really, really good.

Try it, Eat and Enjoy...


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