I am seriously wanting this for dinner tonight, but I'm already too tired to go to the grocery store. And especially not the grocery store that carries the chibata bread. Sooooooo I guess it will have to go in the saved recipe file to languish until I rediscover it another day... BUT I WANT IT SO MUCH NOW!!! Maybe I could steal some of my coworkers coffee to get the energy to go. Huummm.... nope not even coffee will help at this point. I miss you yummy chicken ranch chibata sandwich... I miss you soooo much!!!!
My boyfriend has been working very, very hard this last week. In addition to that he had to work this last weekend 12 hour days at a trade show. So I wanted something yummy that he loves to come home to. There is nothing that he loves more on this earth than mashed potatoes and gravy... well of course besides me. Now, I am well versed in making my mothers mashed potatoes and gravy at Thanksgiving and Christmas. That of course involves hours in the kitchen and billions of calories in heavy cream and butter. I was hoping to do much better than that, and that's where KeefCooks youtube channel comes in. I've been a subscriber of his for awhile. Keef is a Brit, and that's why I love his videos so much because he cooks a lot of traditional English meals. I had and English Grandmother, and my boyfriend is from Manchester so British cooking is usually lurking at the back of my brain. Recently he came out with just the videos I needed. The base of the recipes below were inspired by his videos, but I changed them up quite a bit to fit in with our tastes.
2 Yellow Potatoes
a couple slices of light butter
a few splashes of milk
Garlic Powder (Keef uses a country grain mustard and I do want to try that in the future)
- Put a pot of water on to boil with sea salt in it
- Peel and cut up potatoes into evenly sized cubes so they cook at the same rate
(if they are around 1 inch the the potatoes will cook up in around 10 min)
- Cook potatoes in boiling water till tender
- Drain off water, and into the pot throw in butter, spices, and a little milk (keep adding a little at a time as needed).
- Mix together with a potato masher. It doesn't take much mashing. Keep a wary eye on them because they can turn to glue quickly.
1 medium white onion
1 beef stock (bouillon) cubes
2 tbsp corn starch
- Chop up the onion and fry in vegetable oil over medium heat for about 15 minutes.
- Dissolve the stock cubes in the boiling water.
- When the onions are caramelized, sprinkle in the corn starch.
- Stir until well mixed mixed in, repeat until you have a thickish misture.
- Then pour in the stock and stir well. Bring to the boil.
- Add the pepper and some salt if needed.
With the shredded crock pot chicken I made earlier in the week I made these yummy. Hungry Girl Cheesy Chicken Enchiladas Of course I changed them up a bit. But these will absolutely be on the list to make again.
2 Shredded chicken breasts already cooked
1/2 chopped white onion
Mexican Shredded Cheese
Red Enchilada Sauce Mild (can use green enchilada sauce instead)
I think my ridiculously long quest to find an easy way to cook enough chicken for several meals during the week is finally at an end. I ran across this great post on dashingdish.com on how to make shredded chicken in the crockpot. I am not a huge crockpot cooker because I really hate waiting for food, but if I can cook up 4 chicken breast on Sunday that will feed me for the rest of the week then I am one happy lady.
I used Trader Joes frozen chicken that you get in the big bag (that is super inexpensive). Now, I've read Trader Joe's does something special with their freezing process so you don't have to thaw it before you cook it. And seeing that I have such a problem with raw chicken I just threw the frozen chicken in the pot to see how it would do. I also read that if you use frozen chicken in a crock pot you have to cook it on high not low.
So I just placed chicken in the crock pot with enough broth and water to almost cover the chicken. I think I threw in a little Tejin salt, pepper, seasoning for added flavor, but garlic powder would do just as well. Cover and let cook for 4 hours on high (it did come out a little dry after 4 hours, probably because it was frozen so I will cut down on the cooking time next time I make it) . After cooking shred chicken with 2 forks. I ended up making chicken enchiladas, shredded chicken tacos, and chicken salad sandwiches with it. All were very different dishes because of the different spices I added to it, but all were SUPER easy because the chicken was already made. Now if I can just remember to cook the chicken on Sundays to have it prepared for the week to come I would feel like an unbelievably productive person. The odds of me remembering that are low, but I am extremely happy that I have the option none the less.
Here is my new quick weeknight dinner standby when I have absolutely no idea what I want to eat. And it even makes enough for some left overs for lunch the next day. I dearly love the Trader Joe's Masala simmer sauce. Seriously, you could put that on anything and I would eat it. So I just pop some Trader Joe's frozen brown rice into the microwave. Cut up some of your favorite veggies. Mine are red bell pepper, and broccoli. Roast (425 degrees for 15minutes), or stem them. Top with a little Masala sauce and you have a super healthy, filling meal. And if you want to add meat to it just fry up some chicken, or get the Trader Joe's meat balls. It really doesn't get easier than that.
burnt out on meat too, and legumes I waffle on liking then not liking. So I finally did it a week ago. I bought the frozen tilapia and stuck it in my freezer, then forced myself kicking and screaming to make it last night. I procrastinated on it so long I actually made it at 11 pm. But it was soooooo easy, and turned out sooooo amazing that this is going to be one of my new go to lunches. The reason why you see pickles next to it is I'm serving it cold, and those are sweet pickles so it gives you the feel of tuna salad without the mayo.
So all I did was throw the defrosted fish (take out of the freezer and stick in the fridge for a day don't rush the defrost you will thank me in the end), on a baking sheet with foil under it. Squeeze lime on one side, then shake some of Trader Joes 21 Seasoning Salute on it. Turn it over and do the same to the other side. Then stick another sheet of foil on top, and put it in the oven at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. At ten minutes I turn the fish over. Super easy, and super yummy!!!
I have a deep love for Chimichanga's. When I was in grade school every May the students would help the Nun's make Chimichanga's to sell at the May festival. This was an arduous process because every thing in it was made from scratch including the flour tortilla. The insides were a lovely mixture of shredded beef, onions, green bell peppers, and spices. This was all deep fried in it's lovely homemade tortilla jacket to make your mouth water all year long just waiting for May to come around again. Of course I have been tiring to find a similar recipe since then with no luck. I gave up awhile ago, but now the hunt is on again. But I do want an alternative to the whole frying thing so I found this recipe, and wanted to see if baking could be an alternative to the yummy fried one. Of course this recipe is nothing to the Chimichanga's I have been use to, but the recipe sounded good, and I'm doing it as more an experiment. I was very happy with this recipe, but of course I changed it up a bit to cut some calories and fat where I could. Click here for the original recipe.
8 ounces low fat cream cheese
8 ounces Monterrey jack pepper cheese, shredded
1 1/2 tablespoons taco seasoning
1 lb cooked chicken, shredded
8 flour tortillas
a couple sprinkles of shredded cheddar cheese
- Stir together cream cheese, pepper jack cheese and taco seasoning.
- Fold in chicken.
- Divide among tortillas.
- Tuck in sides and roll up each tortilla.
- Lay seam side down in a sprayed baking dish.
- Spray tops of tortillas with cooking spray.
- Bake @ 350 for 15 minutes.
- Turn Chimi's over and bake an additional 15 minutes.
- Serve with cheddar cheese, green onions, sour cream and salsa.
I have a new favorite recipe!!!! But I'm not quite sure what to call it. It started out as an easy way to make enchiladas, but then I incorporated my favorite thing about fajitas, (Stir fried onion, zucchini, and red bell pepper). So it's sort of a hybrid between the two. AND I used my new favorite way to cook chicken breast. Brine-ing is the only way to go with chicken. Take the chicken breast. salt both sides with sea salt. Then stick it into a bowl of water in the fridge for an hour to two hours. Then just cook it in the oven as you normally would. For me it's on a baking sheet with a little bit of cooking spray on it at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. There are all kinds of different recipes for the brine to add flavor to the chicken. The one I gave is the really basic one I use when I want to cook up a whole bunch of chicken to have it on hand from meals during the week. You can add some Italian seasoning to the water if the chicken will be used in an Italian dish, or lemon if you want something bright tasting, etc etc. I was really surprised at just how moist the chicken was after cooking with just that little change. Well once that was done I was off to making my Enchilada-Fajitas. And let me tell you they were SUPER good, and even better the next day.
1 already cooked chicken breast 1 10 oz. cans enchilada sauce
1 can refried beans 1 zuchinni
1 to 2 cups Mexican cheese blend 1 red bell pepper
4 large tortillas ½ white onion
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Chop up half the onion, and start to brown in a skillet with a little bit of olive oil. Chop the rest of the veggies and add to the onion. You can add whichever veggies you like. This dish is great at hiding veggies your family might not otherwise eat (I know I got at least a couple of them into my boyfriend before he noticed). Season with sea salt and cook until a little bit soft. While this is cooking shred the already cooked chicken breast. Once veggies are done cooking start layering. Take a tortilla and spread some refried beans on it. Add a layer of veggies, some chicken, a little cheese, and drizzle on some enchilada sauce. Roll that up and place in a baking dish that has been greased, and has a little pool of enchilada sauce on the bottom. Repeat for the rest of the tortillas. I use an 8x8 dish and that fits four. Roll up however many you need to accomidate your family. Then drizzle more enchilada sauce on top and sprinkle with more cheese. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove foil bake additional 10 minutes or until bubbly.
So what happens when I work a ridiculous amount of hours a few days in a row, but crave something warm and home cooked. I'll tell you what happens... Baked Potato night!!! Filling, warm, easy! Buy 'em, Scrub 'em, Grease 'em, Sea Salt 'em, Poke 'em and throw them in an oven for 45 min at 400 degrees (well at least in my oven, your's might be quicker at that temp). And thank you Target so, so very much for having all the ingredients I need in one place. Because I tell you I just couldn't have bore to go to a grocery store as well. Then once they are all happy in the oven you have a nice chunk of time to take a bath and wash the day off of you. When you get out you have dinner waiting for you. All you need to do is pull out the light sour cream from the fridge, sliced black olives, chives, bacon bits, pepper (or whatever your little taste buds desire), and you have one happy tummy.
My other half and I found ourselves walking around target aimlessly the other night. "So what are we having for dinner?" I asked. "I don't know what do you want for dinner?" he replied. "I don't know what do you want for dinner?" I rebutted. And then my man was struck with divine inspiration... "what about teriyaki turkey burgers?" My mind reeled with where the hell did that come from, but my lips said "That's BRILLIANT!" and thus it was that we had a yummy Teriyaki Turkey Burger night!
He grilled up teriyaki turkey burgers with melted provolone cheese. While grilling pineapple rings on the side of the grill. They were served on hamburger buns with lite mayo, and a little sriracha sauce to give it some kick. And I have to admit it was the best dinner EVER thanks to the best boyfriend EVER!
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