Recipe: Lavender Chicken and Rice

Tonight I actually made two skillets of chicken.  The larger was one of my normal batches of onions, garlic, sliced/chopped chicken breasts sauteed in olive oil with diced tomatoes and a little (mostly) fresh basil.  I made this the larger because the smaller skillet was an experiment.  I really like the Lavender Metheglin from Hill Top Berry Farm and Winery.  Lavender Metheglin is mead (fermented honey) infused with one percent lavender flowers.  It smells and tastes wonderful.  While I frequently cook with wine, liquor, and beer, I hadn’t tried cooking with mead.  I figured it would work, but the Lavender Metheglin also has a unique flavor that I wasn’t sure the rest of the family (the children, mostly) would enjoy.  It turned out wonderfully and the kids and wife also liked it.  Next time, I’ll make the whole skillet with it.
The Ingredients
1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped onion (my standard is Vidalia)
about a half pound of boneless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
a little salt
coconut oil
about 1 cup Lavender Metheglin
Prep and Cooking
1.  Get the rice going in a rice cooker (or via the old fashioned way on the stove)
2.  Saute the onions with a pinch of salt  in the coconut oil
3.  Add the chicken (already cut) and brown/cook it a bit
4.  Add the Lavender Metheglin.  In my small skillet, the chicken was completely covered so I kept the flame up a little higher than normal to reduce the mead a bit, making sure there’s enough sauce to mix into the rice.
5.  Serve over the rice
**Even though I had to use two skillets tonight, it still fits into my ‘Lazy Dinner’ category.
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Recipe: Brown Sugar & Cinnamon Apple Chicken

Brown Sugar & Cinnamon Apple ChickenThis was inspired by some recipe my wife saw on Pinterest.  I never looked at the recipe, but based on what she described, I gave this a go.  It was like having dessert for dinner.

The Ingredients
1 8oz bag Brown Sugar
1 – 2 Tbs Ground Cinnamon
3 Apples, sliced (I used gala)
1 to 1.5 lbs. boneless, skinless Chicken breasts
2 to 3 shots Rum  (Appleton Estate is my preferred brand)
about 1/2 stick Butter
Prep and Cooking
1.  Turn the crock pot on to low and mix the brown sugar, rum, cinnamon, and butter together into a nice mixture.
2.  Slice the chicken into strips about an inch and a half to two inches wide and put into the mixture.
3.  Add the apple slices.
4.  Stir in just enough water to almost cover the apples and chicken with the mixture.
5.  Cook in the crock pot all day (mine cooked on low for about seven and a half hours before getting turned down to ‘keep warm’).
6.  Enjoy.
Note:  I made white rice to go with it, but you could probably make any side that you like to eat with sweet foods.
**This another of my lazy dinners.  Only two items require slicing the apples and chicken, it is all cooked in the crock pot, and it doesn’t require much cleanup.

Recipe: Sour Creamy Chicken over Noodles

Sour Creamy Chicken over NoodlesOn the way home tonight, I was trying to decide what I was going to do with the chicken that was waiting on me at home.  The clouds looked like they could decide to open up and rain so I didn’t want to use the grill.  What could I do with the chicken and what would I have with it?  Hmmm.  Cheesy chicken in the skillet was the first thing to pop into my head, but what would go with that?  Also, that would be a big sticky mess in the skillet.  Oh, I could add sour cream –it would add flavor and melt along with the cheesy to become a creamy mixture with chicken in it…and I could serve it over egg noodles.  Conveniently, I had to stop by the store for more powdered Coffee Mate so I grabbed the few ingredients I needed to make this and then got to work on it when I got home.
The Ingredients
1 package boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 medium onion (chopped)
16 oz. package of egg noodles
16 oz. sour cream
4 oz. shredded cheese (I used sharp cheddar)
1/2 of a small tub of crumbled goat cheese
smoked paprika
onion powder
garlic powder
paprika
curry
pepper
Prep and Cooking
1. Put the water on for the noodles
2. Cube the chicken and saute in a skillet with a little olive oil, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and curry
3. As the chicken is getting near done, add the chopped onion
4. The water should be boiling and ready for the noodles
5. While the noodles cook, add the shredded cheese, goat cheese, sour cream, paprika, and a little more pepper to the chicken and stir
6. The skillet mixture should be completely melted by the time the noodles are done
7. Serve the chicken mixture over the noodles
**Note: I probably could have used a little more cheese and then, maybe, a little milk to thin the sauce a bit –it had a very strong sour cream flavor. My wife and I didn’t mind it, but our girls weren’t very fond of it.

Recipe: Ginger-Curried Pineapple Chicken

Ginger Curried Pineapple Chicken on StoveMy wife called and told me that she had read that she should eat more curry and ginger and pineapple and less beef… Voilà, I have a new recipe. (photo at left is the main dish cooking)
The Ingredients
1 bag of chicken tenderloins, trimmed
Fresh Ginger (about a ping pong ball sized piece before trimming)
Garlic Powder (was out of fresh – enough to cover the meat in the skillet with a light layer)
Curry Powder (same amount Garlic, but a slightly thicker layer)
dash of Cayenne Pepper
1 tbsp of brown sugar
dash of salt
dash of black pepper
1 small can of Pineapple Chunks
Prep and Cooking
1. Very finely julienne the ginger, then mince about a third of it to go in the rice. Put the julienned ginger in a large skillet with a little Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2. Use the minced ginger and get the rice going (I recommend a rice cooker)
3. Cube the chicken, put it in the skillet, and spread it into an even layer
4. Sprinkle with Garlic powder to create a light layer across the chicken and stir to cover the chicken with the garlic
5. Repeat step 3 with Curry powder, but make the layer of curry thicker
Ginger Curried Pineapple Chicken Over Rice6. Stir in the Cayenne Pepper, Brown Sugar, black pepper and salt
7. Add the can of Pineapple Chunks, stir, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally
8. When the rice is done, the chicken should also be ready
**Note: I served this over rice, as I do many things. An afterthought was sprinkling paprika over the meal to give it a touch of color. I think the flavor came out well with the cayenne pepper balancing the sweetness of the pineapple, but be careful not to add too much pepper as the curry has a bit of spice itself.
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