Asian Night

I don’t know about you, but when I go out for Asian food, I want VARIETY! I want the noodles, rice, a few different dishes, the whole megillah. Oh man, if my daughter-in-law is reading this, she just said, “HUH?”. She thinks I speak in some strange foreign language half the time.

OK Angela, “the whole megillah” means having it all, “the whole nine yards”, “the whole ball of wax”, “the whole shootin’ match”, “the whole shebang”. It has nothing to do with the cartoon character Magilla Gorilla, although he was pretty big. And you probably have no idea who Magilla Gorilla is anyway do you? Ah, that darn Generation Gap.

Anyway “megillah” is the Hebrew word for scroll. Reading from those scrolls on holy days was long and tedious. The “whole megilla”started out meaning a long, tedious, or complicated story. Then it also started being used to just mean the whole darn thing.

Now where was I? Oh yeah, Asian dinners. Anyway, last night the kids were coming for dinner so I thought I’d give it a shot. I managed three dishes, Broccoli Beef in Oyster Sauce, Chicken Lettuce Wraps, and Sumi Salad, with a side of steamed rice courtesy of the rice cooker.

Actual cooking is easy, it’s the prep work that sucks. But I got all my ducks in a row earlier in the day, and with Angela’s help we got dinner cooked in short order.

The rice cooker took care of the rice, so I didn’t have to think about that. Angela manned one skillet, fixing the chicken dish. I had broccoli beef going in another skillet. Or, I could have made the chicken and kept it warm in a crock pot, just stirring in the green onion before serving. That works too. You could even hold the broccoli beef warm for a while if you want to get real crazy and make another dish, like some pot stickers. But I wasn’t that ambitious. Maybe another day.

Did Somebody Say Panda Express?

NO time to cook today. I haven’t even had time to eat. I’ve had a banana, a no wheat zero sugar mug muffin, and I’m sending Mr. Man to Panda Express to pick up dinner. Either that or he can shove the dog aside and muzzle down in the dog dish. There are just days like this and there’s no way around it.

I did cook some teriyaki chicken skewers last night with tamari instead of soy sauce and a little stevia in place of the brown sugar. Side of brown rice and carrots, because I’m doing the eating healthy thing for the next eight weeks on Livestrong’s Whole Life Challenge. But I’ll give you the tasty version I usually make because no need for us all to suffer.

teriyaki chicken

Roast Your Veggies!

Mr. Man is not a member of the “Clean Plate Club” when it comes to veggies, unless I roast them. Then its true love. The veggies, not me. Although I’m sure he has visions of me slowly roasting over an open fire from time to time.

Pretty much every veggie just seems to get better if you roast it to sweet carmelized goodness. Last night I made a Roasted Veggie Medley of what I had in the fridge: carrots, zucchini, onions & added some potatoes. There are no rules. You can leave out the potatoes, or use sweet potatoes, or add some bell pepper, or cauliflower, whatever floats your boat.

With some Baked Breaded Chicken, it was mighty tasty. Some prep time, but then nothing to do but wait while it cooks. Yummmmm.

baked chicken and veggies

Honey/Soy Glazed Chicken

I have a lot of work this week and don’t have time to cook. All I care about is filling an empty place with something that will pretty much cook itself. I make the typical teriyaki chicken, marinated in sauce that takes a bunch of ingredients. But truthfully, it doesn’t taste much better than this quick, three ingredient glaze: equal parts soy sauce, honey, and barbeque sauce. That’s all there is to it. No fuss, no muss, no magic. Except what it tastes like when it’s finished.

I’m using boneless, skinless chicken thighs because that’s what I have on hand. I’ve used chicken pieces, just chicken legs, and it makes an awesome appetizer using chicken wings or just the drummies. The little drummies will keep warm for hours in a crock pot while your party rages on.

So tonight Mom’s cooking Honey/Soy Glazed Chicken. It’s sweet and pretty potent, so just some plain white rice & a side of broccoli goes well. No sweat for me and Mr. Man will be doing his happy dance.

honey soy glazed chicken

Chicken Pot Pie

chicken pot pie

OK, I’m almost ashamed to say this is what we’re having for dinner. I’ve been trying to cook healthier, less fattening things. But there’s leftover rotisserie chicken from last night’s dinner, and I’ll be taking part in the next Whole Life Challenge starting in May (more on that later), so I figure I’ll just go for it. When I pass a mirror, I’ll just tell myself “Eyes up here. Don’t look down”. Ignorance is bliss and denial is a way of life.

Guilt aside, this chicken pie is glorious and easy! The recipe makes three nice sized pies, so with a side salad of greens or fruit, you’ll be porked to the gills. Or on occasion, full disclosure, since there are only two of us at home anymore, sometimes I just divide this up into two giant pies and we eat ourselves into a coma while we listen to the sound of our arteries slamming shut. My “Chicken Pot Pie” recipe is listed with Chicken dishes.

 

In Praise of the Rotisserie Oven!

I had to work today and just didn’t have time to fuss with dinner. If it was up to me, I’d just have a salad or scrounge some leftovers. Unfortunately, yesterday my great hunter went foraging at the grocery story. He bagged a chicken, antibiotic free, air chilled, probably massaged by nuns. Threw it in the cart, drug it home, and proudly presented it to me with hopes for an awesome dinner tonight. Well gee, when he worked so hard bringing home the bacon as it were, the least I could do it make all his dreams come true. Not.

So tonight I relied on my awesome Ron Popeil, Showtime Rositterie, “Set it and forget it” oven. Admittedly I’m queen of the unitaskers, but this little oven really works as advertised. I just rubbed the chicken down with my favorite rub (which I’ll give you the recipe for), trussed it up like a prisoner of war, and left it in the oven to do it’s thing while I did my thing.

Now, if you don’t have a magic oven, this rub is awesome for beer can chicken. If you don’t have a grill you could try cooking a beer can chicken in the oven, or maybe try just baking your chicken on a raised rack set above a drip pan. I’ve never tried it, but don’t see why it wouldn’t work.

To go with the chicken, I made fry-baker potatoes and corn on the cob, all easy peasy and pretty healthy. Unless you’re vegan, in which case you’re making a cross with your fingers and hissing at me. But I can live with that. I had yummy dinner cooking itself while I worked!

And here you have it. Mr Man was totally thrilled with his dinner.rosisserie chicken, fry bakers, corn

You’ll find “My Favorite Rub” recipe in the Condiments section of the menu. We’ll be using this rub for other things in the future! You’ll find instructions to “Beer Can Chicken” in the Chicken section, and “Fry-Baker Potatoes” can be found under Sides.