Archive for June, 2014


Lemon Chicken Rice Pilaf

Does this photo look blah…bland…boring??? Well…I hate to report that the taste is blah…bland…boring!!! Thought it would turn out great but…it didn’t!!! So…maybe the addition of some gravy??? I can taste the chicken and the lemon but not much more. Back to the drawing board for this meal!!!

Lemon Chicken Rice Pilaf

Took half the chicken broth/stock and am making rice pilaf with it. Thanks, Rachael Ray, for this great double recipe…one for the poached chicken and one for the rice pilaf. Now that I’m supposed to be on a cardiac diet, I’m finding a lot of recipes that include poaching as compared to sautéing or frying the meat. There’s not really many ingredients in this recipe, either. Here it is and I will take a photo before I eat my portion, if I remember.

Lemon Chicken Rice Pilaf

2 T. butter
1/2 c. broken linguini
2 leeks, sliced thin in rounds
Salt and Pepper to taste
1/2 c. white wine
1 1/4 c. white rice
3 c. chicken stock
1 lemon, zested and juiced
3 c. cooked chicken, cut up in bite-size pieces
1/2 c. parsley chopped or 1 T. dry parsley

Heat butter in a skillet. Add pasta and toast until golden. Add leeks and sauté until soft. Season with salt & pepper. Add the wine, rice, chicken stock and lemon juice and zest. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 15 minutes until tender. Add chicken and parsley. Cover and let stand 5-10 minutes. Serve warm.

Hot day…hot soup???

Hot day...hot soup???

What a great idea!!! Nice hot day and I’m making nice hot soup. Actually, I’m cooking the chicken for a Rachel Ray recipe…Lemon Chicken and Leek Rice Pilaf. You are instructed to poach the chicken first, remove the meat from the bones then strain and reserve all of the cooking liquid (now is that a broth or stock)??? OK…so far…it’s only about 88 degrees outside. I don’t think I’d place any bets on my finishing this recipe today!!!

Broth – thin soup that has been boiled with meat, fish or veg.
Stock – a broth of meat or fish.

Poaching liquid for chicken:
In the bottom of a Dutch oven, put 2-3 bay leaves, 2 carrots, chopped, 2 garlic cloves crushed, 1 lemon (with skin) sliced, 1 onion (peeled) quartered, few stalks celery chopped, few pieces parsley chopped, salt and peppercorns. Place chicken on this and add 8-12 c. water. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Heat to boiling and gently simmer for 1 hour. Remove from heat. Cool in pan. Remove chicken for recipe and strain the liquid for use later on something else.

Pick a color…any color…and I’m sure you’ll enjoy this lettuce. Fresh today from the farm…organic…who could ask for more??? Mix in a few just-picked carrots and radishes and you have the makings of a swell salad. I picked a little dill too…just for me to dry and store. Saw a deer run across the road while on my way and a few slugs and toads in the garden. Their presence was obvious from the nibble marks on my product!!! So, come and get it or…don’t complain to me that the supermarket prices are high and the produce looks like you know what!!!

Baking Success

Baking Success

Well, at least I had luck with the Morning Glory Muffins. Took the recipe right out of Cook’s Country and these muffins are great!!! (Thanks, Cook’s Country, by the way). Lots of product though so be ready to spend some money. I took the picture with the muffin on my scale so you could see how heavy they are.

Morning Glory Muffins

3/4 c. coconut, toasted
1/2 c. walnuts, toasted
2 1/4 c. flour
3/4 c. sugar
1 1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. baking powder
1 t. ground cinnamon
3/4 t. salt
1 can crushed pineapple (8 oz.)
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and shredded
8 T. butter, melted
3 eggs
1 t. vanilla
1 1/2 c. shredded carrots
1 c. raisins (I used brown…they suggest Golden…no big deal)

Oven temp 350 degrees F
12 cup muffin tin sprayed with vegetable oil spray

First, toast the coconut and walnuts. Then, place in food processor and process until finely ground. Add flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Process until combined and place in a large bowl.
Next, put pineapple and apple in a strainer and press until dry. Bring this juice to a boil and reduce to 1/4 c. I really didn’t have to reduce because there was only about 1/4 c. so I just boiled it for a minute. Set aside to cool.
Whisk butter, juice, eggs and vanilla in another bowl. Stir wet into dry then add fruit (pineapple-apple mixture, carrots and raisins).
Divide evenly into the 12-cup muffin tin. Bake 24-28 minutes (I only needed 22 minutes). Allow to cool 10 minutes then remove from pan. These muffins don’t need a thing more. They are so tasty!!!

I couldn’t believe how much dough this made. Really thought it would make more than 12 but muffin tin was filled to the top and baking was successful.

Orange Coconut Cake

Thanks, My Favourite Pastime, for this great recipe. It is loaded with coconut. Thanks to my granddaughter, it is loaded with orange zest, too. We made our own self rising flour and used the tube pan instead of a loaf. On second thought, we should have used the loaf because…we couldn’t get it out of this pan without a disaster!!! However…taste was wonderful…and we had to change our minds about the ganache. Instead…chocolate chips melted on top served the same purpose. I think we might have to change the name of our version though to, “Coconut Crumble” to be more descriptive. Yes…crumbly but tasty!!!

Orange Coconut Cake
Heat oven to 325 degrees F. Prepare a loaf or tube pan. You may have better luck than I by lining with parchment.
2 c. coconut
1 c. milk
Combine above and set aside.
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. butter
zest from one orange
Cream above in stand-up mixer.
2 eggs
Add to butter mixture and blend until smooth.
2 1/4 c. self-rising flour (I made my own. There are many instructions for this on the internet).
Add flour alternately with coconut mixture to the sugar/butter mixture. Blend until smooth. Pour into greased loaf or tube pan and bake approximately one hour. Cool on a rack. You can make a nice icing of confectioners sugar and orange juice or…do like I did and just melt chocolate chips on top of the warm cake. Either way, it tastes great!!!

No stack here!!!

No Stack Here!!!

But…the odds are stacked in your direction if you make these pancakes because they are GOOD!!! Thanks, Kary Osmond of Best Recipes Ever, for this great recipe. It contains buttermilk and that gives me something to use up my leftover buttermilk in!!! (Sorry to end that sentence with a preposition). They are light, fluffy and chewy (you know how I love chewy). Only wish I could get them perfectly round. I do have metal crumpet forms but don’t have the energy to go to that much trouble. Maybe next time.

Buttermilk Pancakes

1 1/2 c. flour
3 T. sugar
1 1/2 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
2 c. buttermilk
2 T. melted butter or you can use vegetable oil like I did
1 egg slightly beaten
dash salt

Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, soda and salt in a bowl. In a separate bowl, mix buttermilk, butter and egg. Pour into flour mixture and stir only until blended.
Drop by about 1/4 c. onto greased skillet. Bake until bubbles form on one side. Flip and bake until bubbles form on the other. Now all that’s left is to enjoy them.

Speaking of ending sentences with prepositions…there is a lot of debate about that. Check the internet.

The Macaroon Debacle

Guess what I made yesterday…macaroons!!! My granddaughter has moved back from Texas and now the cooking, sewing, looming, baking and other fun crafts begin. No…I didn’t take a picture for you!!! My mistake. They were pink and filled with vanilla frosting. Yes…terribly sweet and rich. We were very unsuccessful in getting them right…we even watched a video on the internet but…no success here!!! I thought I remembered someone posting macaroons and I thought I had made them but can’t find any recipe. If that was you…please let me know. We will try those again. My granddaughter wanted to fill them with ganache but I said “no” since I hate to waste product on something that didn’t turn out perfectly!!! And, many thanks to all of you who still follow my blog…I had a heart attack in April and have not gotten back to being myself…and…yes…I don’t feel that I was old enough to have one!!! Now starts cardiac rehab so maybe that will give me the energy to be more productive and creative.

Peace, solitude, serenity...just what I need!!!

I know a place where I can go to give me a bit of calm, a time away, some beautiful quiet…and it’s right in my backyard!!! We had the most lovely day here with blue skies and warm breezes. Just the most wonderful day for doing nothing…though mine consisted of watching the chipmunks, birds, squirrels and, of course, watching the Detroit Grand Prix. My favorite, Helio Castroneves, won the race!!! The two days of races were very successful and there were no injuries. Who could ask for more???