Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Pioneer Woman's Crash Hot Potatoes

These potatoes are sooooo incredibly good!  The crazy thing is they are sooooo incredibly EASY!  I got this recipe from the one and only Pioneer Woman and they have proven to be one of my families favorite side dishes!  I like to use the yukon gold potatoes because they are sweet and already have a buttery consistency, but you could use any small sized potato you like.

Crash Hot Potatoes { recipe by The Pioneer Woman }
  • 12 new potatoes {or other small round potatoes}
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • kosher salt to taste
  • ground black pepper to taste
  • fresh rosemary, or other herbs of your choice, to taste
  Bring a large pot of water to boil.  Add as many potatoes as you'd like to make and cook until fork-tender; about 15-20 minutes.
On a sheet pan, generously drizzle olive oil.  Place potatoes on the cookie sheet leaving plenty of room between each potato.
With a potato masher, gently press down on each potato until it slightly mashes, rotate the potato masher 90 degrees and mash again.  Brush the tops of each crushed potato generously with more olive oil.
Sprinkle potatoes with kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, and fresh chopped rosemary.
Bake in a 425 degree oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.
serve potatoes with any sort of chicken or beef dish...I served them with this chicken and some delicata squash.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Chicken Cutlets with Bacon, Rosemary and Lemon

I've been trying to be creative with my cooking lately, but I'm failing!  Life has gotten in the way of my motivation and my time to devote to meals.  Maybe it's just a season, but I really am missing my meal-planning and my once a week grocery shopping has turned into daily, running in to pick up a few things, kind of shopping.  I usually can't stand that, but it's surprisingly not bugging me!
I did however, manage to steal an hour at the grocery store the other and stocked up on some meat and staples for my pantry.  Then of course, I had to come up with a plan of what to cook! HA!
Well, I found this recipe, tried it on my family last week, and it was a winner!  It has a few steps, but if you prep everything before you start cooking, then it won't seem bad at all.  Another disclaimer is that there is plenty of garlic in this dish...be prepared!  We love garlic...a lot of garlic, so this didn't phase my family one bit.  Give it a try if you're looking for something new to do with chicken!

Chicken Cutlets with Bacon, Rosemary and Lemon {adapted recipe from Ezra Pound Cake}

INGREDIENTS {serves 4}
  • 5 slices bacon, chopped
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 4 thin sliced boneless skinless chicken breasts {If you can't find thin-sliced, then just pound the chicken to 1/4 in. thickness between two sheets of plastic wrap}
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced thin
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1/8 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • juice of one lemon
Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees.
  Fry bacon in a large skillet until crisp, about 5 minutes.  Transfer bacon with slotted spoon to plate lined with paper towels. Spoon off all but 2 Tbsp. bacon fat.
Meanwhile, place flour in a shallow dish.  Pat chicken dry with paper towels and season chicken with salt and pepper.  Dredge in flour, and shake to remove excess.  Add butter to reserved bacon fat in skillet and heat over medium-high heat to melt butter.  Cook chicken until browned on both sides, about 4-5 minutes per side.  Transfer chicken to plate {reserving fat in skillet} and cover loosely with foil.
Reduce heat to medium-low and add garlic, rosemary and pepper flakes.  Cook until garlic is browned and crisp, about 2 minutes.  Add broth and lemon juice, scrape up browned bits from bottom of skillet with wooden spoon and simmer until slightly thickened, about 4 minutes.  
Return chicken and bacon to pan and simmer in pre-heated 200 degree oven about 5-10 minutes.  Sauce will become nice and thick and this is a good way to keep chicken nice and warm and crispy until you need to serve it.  
Serve with these potatoes...YUM!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Black-eyed Pea Salad

My best friend turned me on to this salad!  She made it for me a couple of years ago on the 4th of July and it's been a big hit since!  I usually only make it in the summer...it's a great appetizer at a BBQ or could even be served as an accompaniment to grilled chicken or steak.  You can even play with the flavors to make it a little spicier if you like!

Black-Eyed Pea Salad  

  •  2 C. cooked black-eyed peas
  •  1 C. whole kernel corn
  •  1 stalk celery, chopped
  •  1-2 serrano chiles, seeded and diced {depending on how much of a kick you like}
  •  1/4 cup red onion, chopped {I used a little less than 1/4 cup...I don't like a lot of onion}
  •  1 small tomato, chopped
  •  1 avocado, chopped

  •  1/2 cup vinegar {I used 1/4 cup white vinegar & 1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar}
  •  3/4 cup olive oil
  •  1-2 Tbsp. fresh basil
  •  1 garlic clove, minced
  •  1 Tbsp. sugar
  •  pinch {or two} of red chili flakes
  •  juice of 1 lime
  •  salt to taste

 *Mix first 8 ingredients together.  In a separate bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients and pour over salad.  Can be made night before or fresh.  
*Serve with tortilla chips

Friday, September 2, 2011

Where have 10 years gone?

Jaden's birthday is today.  It's a milestone for him and for me.  He's 10.  Yes, 10.  In some ways I feel like I'm way too young to have a 10 year old, I mean, that's a big number!  But in other ways, I feel like I've grown these past 10 years just as Jaden has...yes, I have more wrinkles, but I've also grown in my life, my marriage, and as a mommy.  I couldn't wait to be a mommy, had dreamed of it my whole life, and was honestly overjoyed to hold my 7lb. 14oz. baby boy {who we didn't know was a boy}. Tears streamed down my husband and my face, tears of joy, not realizing that we would be in for a ride...
Jaden is our strong-willed child, he is the oldest, he is determined, brave, thoughtful, inquisitive, fearless, and yes, your typical boy!  He had his first trip to the ER at 18 months old after climbing, falling, and splitting his head open.  I held him as he got stitches.
 He loves adventure, loves being with his daddy, and still loves to know that I'm watching him ride his bike, ride his skateboard, swing a bat, climb a tree, etc.   He still calls me mommy.  I'm his biggest fan and always will be!

I'm a little anxious about what the next 10 years will bring, but at the same time, I know that I can't control his life, I know have to pull back and allow him to make choices {good or bad}, not to butt in every time he does something different than the way I would, to encourage him, and most importantly to love on him every second I can.
I want him to know how incredibly proud I am of how he's grown the past 10 years and I want him to know I'm right by his side for the next 10 years...and on!

Happy Birthday my son!


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