Dilled Chicken and Potato Salad

I’ve had this recipe marked to make for a long time.  It has chicken, potatoes, and dill.  What could go wrong?

Ingredient List with pre-poached chicken
DCPS_Ingredients

I poached the chicken ahead of time.  I still ended up chopping it a little smaller

Next, you mix the oil and vinegar while the potatoes are boiling.  I took a picture because it was a cool color 🙂
DCPS_OilVinegar

Next, put the potatoes in the mix.  This is where I think the recipe goes wrong.  I think all of the seasoning should go in with the oil and vinegar so the hot potatoes can soak all of them up
DCPS_Potatoes

After it soaks for a bit, you add the dill, salt, pepper, and chicken.  I put some paprika on top because I’m cool like that!
DCPS_Finished

I had it for lunch today.  It was a few days after making it, but it was very underwhelming.  It was almost bland.  That’s why I make the note up top with the seasonings.  Now, the problem is how to doctor up the rest of the servings so I can actually eat it.  Do I add mayo?  Do I heat it up?  Shit, I don’t even know what to serve it with.  I still think the recipe has potential, though.  I am definitely going to revisit this one.

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Day of Travel Food

Today was the day I flew to my Parent’s house.  I usually take food with me, but with the Christmas bonus lining my pocket, I threw caution to the wind and decided to buy my breakfast.  I actually could’ve gone to Five Guys, but I stuck to breakfast food at Jason’s Deli

20121222_Breakfast

The above cost 14 dollars 😮  I know, I know.  It was mostly because of the two drinks in the back.  I didn’t want a fountain drink and needed some water for the plane.  The sandwich was 5.75.  Seems expensive, until you see this:
20121222_CloseupSand

Oh yea.  Bacon, smoked turkey and cheddar on an everything bagel.  It was really, really good.  It was very filling, too.  Thankfully, because my brother picked me up hungover, so that meant that he had to go buy 35 dollars worth of food from Sheetz and deliver to his friends (facepalm), so it took 1.5 hours to get to my parent’s house.

My mom went out and bought a crapload of lunch meat.  I didn’t take any pictures of it, but I was about to chew off my arm.
20121222_Lunch

One baloney sandwich and one brunschweiger sandwich.  Both with brick cheese and mayo with a side of lightly salted chips.  The bread was pumpernickel from a local place called the Breadworks.  At least, I think they are local.  Yep, they are, I googled it 🙂  It was so good and tender.  Such a filling lunch at 3PM (thanks bro).  You can see that I couldn’t wait to start before I remembered a picture 😉

I decided to make dinner for my parents.  They had some breaded chicken breasts, pasta, sauce and cheese……I think you know where I am going with this 🙂
20121222_Dinner

Chicken parm with a side of garlic bread.  The bread is from the same place as the pumpernickel.  Again, it was great.  Fresh and even smelled wonderful when I cut the three slices for the garlic bread.

Not too bad for a day of traveling, don’t you think?

Eating the same thing…..I’m ok this time

This is the second chicken salad I have made for this blog and this one comes from the exact same cookbook as the first. I definitely enjoyed this one, but I think there is something missing from it. I must like it because I am having it for Lunch today, Dinner tonight and lunch again tomorrow 😀

Ingredients – minus the chicken. This time, it was intentional. Do you know how hard it is to get a good photo of chicken breast in a bag? It looks a little creepy. I didn’t end up using the canola oil, but I will get to that

Dressing – Yes, it is almost the EXACT color of my dishes *SIGH*

This is where I was contemplating adding more onion, but did not. I will see how it is today to form a solid opinion and mark up the cookbook (I LOVE doing that!!)

This is where I decided the recipe writers were insane. The original recipe calls for 1/8 cup canola oil and 1/3 cup of Cajun seasoning…..1/3 CUP???? The oil isn’t really that much, but I couldn’t get over the amount of seasoning that they wanted you to use! Well, since I was using this handy thing:

I completely cut out all the oil. I still covered the chicken in seasoning, but it wasn’t even close to half of 1/3 cup (did I mention I was making a half recipe?) I think I still managed to get enough on there. I also pounded out the chicken so it was the same thickness. This helped in only having to cook this for about 4 minutes. I think this is the biggest problem with people complaining about dry chicken. They really don’t realize how little time it takes to cook them – especially if they are the same thickness.

All done! Making you droll isn’t it? 😉

Messy all mixed up picture. I had to move it to another container to mix and back again – hence the messy. Still keep in mind this is a HALF recipe. I made it into 4 servings at about 6 ounces each. according to the recipe, this is supposed to be 3 servings at over 7.5 ounces each!! I think I am good with this 🙂

Here’s part of my dinner. I paired it with corn topped with butter and pepper……the pepper might have been a mistake.

It was really good. Different, but good. I want to eat my lunch now even – lol. The bread was iffy, I don’t think it had what it takes to hold chicken salad of that caliber. I probably will add more onions next time. I think the whole thing is missing something sweet. Not overwhelmingly, but just a burst every once in a while. I love corn…..I wonder if corn would work in it. Or even dried cranberries. Something that would not clash with the mustard in the dressing.

Is it lunch time yet? 😉

 

Noodle substitution gone bad

I was going to show you the Vegetable Lo Mein recipe that I had pictured in a resurrection post.  I was going to be happy and eat my noodley goodness.  I was going to be soooo smart and substitute the rice noodles in the fridge instead of working harder to find some soba noodles.  If you couldn’t tell, it was a complete failure.  I don’t know if I didn’t cook them enough or too much or if they are just not made for warm dishes, but I ended up with some veggies and mush.  I am trying to have it for lunch tomorrow, but I have a bad feeling that the other two servings will go the way of the dodo.  (Edit to add – yep.  Crap.  Tossing) I be not happy and I be not sharing those pictures.

Slightly related, anyone have any recipes for napa cabbage?  I got over a half a head to use up.

I can however, show you the experiment with the split chicken breasts I bought.  I am not a fan of bone on chicken.  I am a bit squeamish when it comes to that stuff.  Why did I buy them?  Cause I needed chicken and look at this deal:

I cut the rib part off the chicken, why?  Because the interwebs told me to, that’s why.  If any of you are squeamish – there is a definite *HURK* factor here.  I also trimmed some of the excess fat on *HURK*.  I took some oil and garlic and basted them a little with it and even tried to get some under the skin *DOUBLE HURK* and got them ready for the oven:

Put them in for 40 minutes at 350.  When I took them out, the temperature was just below 165.  I put them back in for another 15 minutes, but 5-10 would probably be enough.

Closeup

There is just something about pulling the chicken off the bone.  I don’t like the texture of the chicken that is closest to the bone.  I don’t have this much issue with fried chicken.  I don’t know if I am cooking it wrong or what.  I might try it in the skillet next time and see what it is like.  For my next recipe, I will be using the good old boneless/skinless chicken breast.

Beef Pie (aka Apology Pie)

I stumbled on this recipe years ago.  I love it’s simplicity and wonderful taste.  Sadly, it looks as though the author of the blog has not kept up with her blog.  I have tried it with chicken and my advices is….don’t.  It wasn’t as tender or moist.  Just not as good at all.  I also recommend making the recipe with chunks of potatoes instead of slices.  That’s just a personal preference for me though.  It may be because the slices I used were ultra thin.  I just liked the chunks better.

Ingredients:

Missing the crust and obviously there are a few other adjustments from the original recipe.  I didn’t use zucchini because I am not a big fan.  I replaced it with a carrot.  The original recipe calls for an entire onions, but this is all I had.  Because of budgetary reasons (not getting paid until Monday 😕 ).  I also didn’t have the required 2 cups of broth.  I added some water and some some of the vegetable seasoning and base you see in the picture.

The recipe said to brown the meat after coating with the flour.  No fat or anything made it difficult as you can see:

I tried to add some fat, but it was too little too late.  Next time I will add butter before browning.  Maybe if I had a non-stick pan, it would be easier.  I am not sure how I did it before.  Being as patience is not a virtue I hold, I decided to forge ahead and throw the broth in to cook the meat.

I was originally going to add only one potato, but it didn’t look like enough and I added another half potato.  Cut up the carrot and threw them in.

Honestly, you could just eat it here after it simmers for a bit.  It basically tastes like stew right now.  I love stew.  Beef and gravy and I am happy.  But seeing as I am making a pie, I put it in the crust like so:

And baked until it looked like this

Up close and personal.

It was more runny than I remember.  Maybe I only added a can of broth previously?  I was going to let it sit for a bit so it would, um, not sure of the right word to use here.  Congeal sounds gross.  Harden sounds unappetizing.  Be not so runny?  Why is this word eluding me?  Maybe I need a nap.  Regardless, I was too hungry and impatient to wait and therefore, I didn’t get a picture of it plated.  THICKEN!  That’s the word I was looking for.  Wait for it to thicken – whew!  🙂

I enjoyed it regardless of the runniness.  I think I always will.  It is basically stew in a pie crust.  I love pie crust and I love stew.  I just used Pillsbury ready made pie crust.  It is tasty and I am lazy – lol.  Seriously, quick, comfort food like this, who wants to spend time making crust from scratch.  This and a good chicken pastry recipe and I am in heaven.  Maybe that should be a requirement for a husband check list.  Must be able to make chicken pastry 😛

Chicken Fajitas

I wanted a quick dinner tonight and I always wanted to try making fajitas.  I dived in head first without a recipe.  Since I have never made it before, the biggest concern is the seasonings.  Other than that, fajitas are just peppers, onions and fixins, right?

Simple Ingredients:

See that taco seasoning in the picture?  Ignore it.  I didn’t use it.  I actually used this instead:

I wouldn’t recommend it.  Oddly enough, I felt like I was eating Indian flavored fajitas.  Next time, I will stick to my trusty Taco Seasoning.  In the picture, there are 2 chicken breasts.  I cleaned them, cut them into strips, covered them with 1 tsp of oil and seasoning to my heart’s desire.  That basically means shaking, mixing, shaking some more until I come out with this:

I put another tsp of olive oil in my non-stick wok.  I cooked the chicken until it was done one one side and flipped it over:

Turned up the heat to compensate for the frozen veggies, then threw them in, too.

More cooking:

The frozen veggies did add a lot of extra water that I was trying to cook off.  Next time, I will buy fresh and cook them lightly so they are still crispy.  Not to say that these were bad – just a little….floppy – lol

All done:

This is what was left in the pan after I made my dinner.  I added the cheese before I realized that you probably wanted to see what it looked like when it was all done.  I added these ingredients to make my dinner (like the collage :D)

And voila – dinner

It was good, but the chicken was somewhat bland.  I think all the extra water from the vegetables had something to do with that.  Next time – if I use frozen veggies, I will cook them separately.  Regardless, I think this was a success.  The cilantro and chive yogurt dip is proving very resourceful.  I have a potato patties recipe that I want to try it with.  This will make a wonderful lunch tomorrow for only 400 calories!

Yes, salmon patties can be good

I don’t know about you, but I grew up with my mom making huge patties of canned salmon.  They were like a half inch think and gross.  I liked them at one point, but eventually stopped eating them.  Recently, I found a recipe for these that actually looked pretty good.  I bought the salmon and it sat there for a while until I got up the nerve – lol.  I only made a half a recipe (as usual) so I didn’t have to worry about eating 4 servings if I didn’t like it.

Ingredients – minus the celery salt because I forgot.  I was going to replace it with the seasoning in the front, but I ended up just leaving it out.

I mixed it all up and tried to take a picture, but no matter what I did, it kept looking like cat food.  I tried different settings, different positions and every time – cat food.  Instead, here they are shaped and frying

I had some problems with the patties.  They fell apart slightly and they were a bit sticky when I was making them.

Look at the crust on these things.  If you don’t have a non-stick pan, the olive oil in the recipe is essential.

I added some corn and Rice Orzo Pilaf from Trader Joe’s to make a complete dinner.  Instead of the mayo from the original post, I added this stuff as a condiment.

I can’t believe how much I like it.  It was a spur of the moment purchase and I am glad I did.  I have used it in so many ways since buying it.

Dinner!  I couldn’t decide which picture I liked better, so here’s both of them 🙂

I really enjoyed the patties.  Much more than I ever thought I would.  I really wanted to go back and eat the other serving, but I restrained myself.  Once I gave it time, this was a really filling dinner.

I completely forgot to add the garlic until I was writing the recipe in my own little cookbook.  I think it would definitely add another dimension.  I also tried to grate the onion so there weren’t big onion chunks to bite into, but that kind of failed.  I can’t wait to make these again.  With ALL of the original ingredients – lol.  Even the issues with forming the patties won’t stop me!!

(Edited to correct the link – sorry!!)