Monday, September 19, 2005

Bad Dave

Sorry, I've been neglecting my blog. Bad Dave. Coming soon, for another post, my new kitchen toys.. a huge new pot and my new bread knife. But tonight, to get back into gear, I'm going to describe my dinner. I forgot to take something out of the freezer to cook (current contents: random chicken, sausage, and bacon), so I was really tempted to just grab a chicken sandwich after volleyball. But I held out. I had a small yogurt when I got home (and desanded myself), and really haven't been too hungry until now.
First I grabbed a hand full of Italian flat green beans and yellow wax beans and tossed them in my steamer and steamed them for ~12 minutes.
I splurged at the farmer's market this weekend and bought way too much. The heirloom carrots looked interesting and I picked up some onions and potatoes. I had some garlic, so I chopped it all up, tossed it together with some olive oil in a roasting pan, and added some cajun spices. Its all in the oven currently at ~400 degrees for about 30 minutes.
Finally this weekend I bought a Zwiebelbrot bread round at the bakery. Its a wheat bread with toasted onions. Unusual, but yummy! You just need a slice of it plus some luncheon meat, no other condiments. Again, yum.
So that's my dinner. Hope that gives you some ideas. Tomorrow there will more green beans, some heirloom tomatoes from the farmer's market, and some meat.. I don't know what yet. Depends if I remember to take something out of the freezer.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Chicken - simple

Ack, I've been neglecting my blog. Sorry. It always takes me a couple of days to get back into cooking after a vacation. Last night I made a quick dinner. Thursday night I bought a big batch of chicken leg quarters (6) at the grocery store. I took four of them and placed them into a zip top freezer bag, squeezed the air out, and froze. I cooked the remaining chicken quarters with a simple seasoning and steamed some baby bok choy. Yum! Frozen chicken should be thawed in the fridge (depending on how massive the bag is, it could take over a day to fully thaw). Also you can place the bag (still closed) in a bowl and run cold (yes cold) water over it for a while to rapidly thaw. Raw chicken should be handled with care. Always wash your hands, any utensils, any cutting boards, and anything else which contacts raw chicken and is not being thrown away with hot soapy water. Make sure not to contaminate other foods. I use clorox wipes to wipe down my counters periodically just in case.

Simple Chicken
2-3 Chicken leg quarters, skin on
Any other spices

Preheat your oven to ~400 degrees. Place a large pan (frying or saute, in my case frying) on the stove top with a little olive oil over medium heat. Watch this, you don't want the oil to start burning. Sprinkle the chicken liberally with salt, pepper, and some cajun spices. With the pan warm (toss a few drops of water in, they should immediately sizzle), place the chicken skin side down. Cook until the skin starts to brown and crisp, ~5 minutes. Flip the chicken and place the pan into the oven. Cook for 25-30 minutes, or until done. I'll cover doneness more in a future post, but basically you can either take your finger or a utensil and press on the chicken. When meat is done it is tougher, it puts up more resistance when pressed. Remove the chicken from the oven and let it cool/rest for a couple of minutes. Cooked chicken stores well in the fridge and can be reheated (~1 minute in the microwave) or shredded and used on top of a salad or in sandwiches.