Friday, October 26, 2012

What's for dinner?

I am sitting here racking through my poor, pitiful brain trying to decide what's for dinner.  I asked my sweet husband to go on a mission to the grocery store and check what's on sale.  I have a feeling it's going to be chicken.   We eat a lot of chicken because it's usually less expensive than red meat.  We have to live on a budget, so unfortunately, my taste buds may want Prime Rib au Jus, but they get hamburgers (or chicken).  Sometimes I feel like I eat so much chicken, I'm gonna start clucking.  I have learned how to make excellent BBQ chicken though (of course, it only takes 1 ingredient - BBQ sauce).   I don't particularly like to cook things that require 25 ingredients.  I'm not saying those recipes are not wonderful, I just haven't worked my way up to that level yet.  (Much too many places to mess up, and I don't need any help in that area).  I honestly don't know if I ever will make it to that level of cooking.  Some cooks/chefs have reached the level of PhD in their cooking expertise, I'm more of a high school drop-out.  In high school, I actually took  a Home Economics class taught by a wonderful teacher by the name of Mrs. Hubbard.  We had to learn to balance a home budget, sew a blouse and cook.  Well, I balanced the budget (we got to go grocery shopping at the store, and boy can I shop) so I passed that with flying colors!  Next, we had to sew a blouse starting with a pattern.  My first problem came with cutting the pattern (I didn't know you were SUPPOSED to leave those stupid little triangles on the pattern so you could match the pieces of fabric).  Needless to say, I did not get an A on my blouse, although my sweet teacher took pity on me and gave me a B for effort, not because it resembled anything close to a blouse.  It looked more like......, well, let's just say it looked more like a thing.  Then, we get to the cooking phase of the course.  We started off with pudding (instant pudding)!  Success!!!  I got an A!  I was off to a great start and was excited to take on something much more difficult, like a scrambled egg.  Unfortunately, my teacher thought that we should try something a little more difficult in order to expand our cooking horizons.  We had to make a Lemon Meringue pie and you guessed it, that didn't go so well.  Everybody else in my class had these perfectly beautiful meringue peaks that were just slightly browned, mine looked like a bunch of goo.  I think I forgot to add in the cream of tartar, but that was so long ago, I don't quite remember.  Anyway, my meringue was flat and the filling was salty.  I put salt instead of sugar into the filling.  Everybody else took their pie to share with their friends, mine conveniently fell into the garbage can when I accidentally knocked it there.  So, there you have it, the story of my first cooking blunders.  Thankfully, I do cook better now than I did back in high school, although I still have my blunders as evidenced by my first blog (The bread brick).  Thank goodness my husband doesn't grade me on my cooking like my poor teacher had to.

P.S.  I was right, it's chicken for dinner.  Decided to do Baked Chicken with Garlic and Rosemary.  Easy and Delicious.

Garlic Rosemary Chicken
3-4 chicken breasts (skin on and bone in)
1/2 teaspoon Garlic Salt
1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil
1 teaspoon of crushed dried Rosemary
1/8 teaspoon crushed Red Pepper Flakes

Directions:  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Brush chicken with olive oil, mix dry spices together and sprinkle on top of chicken.  Bake chicken for about 45 minutes - 55 minutes (until juices run clear).  *Note:  time will vary depending on the size of the chicken breasts.   Let rest for about 10 minutes before serving.

Garlic Dill Potatoes
3 Tablespoons of butter or margarine
2 lbs. new potatoes
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon dried dill (fresh is amazing, but dried works just fine)

Directions:  Wash potatoes and cut into 1/4 inch slices.  Put slices into boiler with cold water.  Add approximately 1 teaspoon of salt to water and heat to boiling.  Let boil for about 15 minutes until tender.  Drain and toss with butter.  Sprinkle with dry ingredients and toss to coat.  Serve immediately.

Until next time, I hope you enjoy the beauties around you and laugh at the life's blunders, life is so much more enjoyable that way!