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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Don't Buy Stuff

Funny SNL Skit - crazy but I bet we all know people like this couple!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Easy African Chicken Stew

I am not sure how authentic it is but we sure liked it. Most African Chicken Stews have peanuts or peanut butter in it but I didn't want that flavor tonight.  This is a bit sweet, but savory also. It got 2 thumbs up all around. No one was crazy about the chickpeas except me but I liked the texture.

African Chicken Stew

2 large or 3 smallish boneless skinless chicken breast - from happy free range chickens if possible Or thighs or a combination -
1TBS coconut oil
1 large onion diced (largish chunks are ok)
3 whole carrots peeled and sliced
3 or 4 cloves of garlic minced
1 large can fire roasted tomatoes or home canned tomatoes
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp tumeric
2 tsp honey (I just squirted some in the pan)
1 cup sliced zucchini or summer squash
1 cup sliced bell peppers - green, red and orange if you have it.
1 cup chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
1/2 cup golden raisins

In a large stew pot saute' onions and carrots in the oil over medium heat.. Slice the chicken into strips and then into smaller pieces - I slice my chicken horizontally first so you get 2 thin-ish pieces. Turn up the heat to medium high and add chicken and minced garlic stirring to combine. Put lid on and cook for about 2 minutes. Uncover and stir well. Add in your tomatoes, cinnamon, cumin, tumeric, pepper, honey, zucchini and bell peppers. Stir again and cover - boil for 10-15 minutes (you want your carrots soft) uncovering to stir occasionally. Add chickpeas and raisins, stir and cook a couple minutes more to heat through.

I served this over rice but it would be great with couscous.

I am linking this to Monday Mania @ The Healthy Home Economist, and I am excited to also be linking it to the Hearth and Soul Hop! Plus The Homemaking Link Up @ Raising Homemakers

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Greens and Mustardy Cheesy Shells

Sometimes I take a great picture and sometimes you get blurry cheesy-ness. This is a blurry cheesy day. Don't let my lack of photographic talent keep you from trying this. It is a lovely side dish and would make a delicious light vegetarian meal.
This gets a thumbs up from all my kids who were here to try it - 6 in all. I liked it and my husband tried it (he doesn't like noodles - weird, I know) and ate his portion without negative comment - that is a thumbs up from him!

Greens with Mustardy Cheesy Shells
12 oz medium shells (regular or g/f)
2 TBS butter
2 TBS flour (use cornstarch to make this g/f)
1 1/4 cups whole milk
1 TBS Dijon mustard (I didn't have any so I used a grainy one - made it pretty mustardy!)
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
a pinch of cayenne pepper
1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
2 cubes frozen greens or 1 small bunch spinach thick stems discarded, leaves roughly chopped

1. Cook pasta according to package direction - I always put a big pinch of salt in my pot for flavor
2. Thaw your cubes of frozen greens - I just put them in a zip top bag and set in a bowl of water to speed up the process - don't microwave please.
3. If you don't want to clean another pan than after your noodles are cooked and you have drained them make your cheese sauce in the same pan. Melt the butter, add the flour cook for 2 minutes to loose the raw flour taste. Slowly whisk in your milk. Cook, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes - you want it slightly thickened.
4. Whisk in the mustard, nutmeg, cayenne pepper, 1 cup of the cheese, 1/2 tsp of salt and a 1/4 tsp pepper. Add your greens and stir around then the noodles stirring to combine.
5. Heat your broiler and then transfer the noodly goodness to an ovenproof baking dish, top with remaining cheese. I didn't, but this would be good with a bread crumb topping. Broil until golden brown - watch closely because from golden brown to burnt is one distraction away from each other.

This was really good with a baked ham that I had glazed with a honey mustard sauce. (Pitch that bag of instant glaze that comes with many hams - full of nasty stuff - and make your own.)