Monday, April 16, 2012

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

What is that from...I say it all the time and I don't know where I got it...

I've been "pinning my way through dinner" for several weeks now.  I'd say my luck as been about 50-50.  I don't want to call out the "bad" recipes so I'll just tell you about a few that we enjoyed.  I will also warn you that I am in no way a great cook OR a food photographer.  We can just pretend that this is just a blog about the way food REALLY looks for normal people who cook while multi-tasking, and who use a point and shoot camera. ;)  I didn't ask permission to post the actual recipes here, so I will just give you the links and let you go there yourself.  :)

#1 Chicken Broccoli Supreme
When I saw the title I knew I had to taste this.  We eat a lot of chicken and a lot of broccoli, so why not combine them!  If I tell my husband we're having a casserole he already "knows" he doesn't like it, so I appreciate the term "Supreme" and now incorporate it into other dishes for that reason...shhh!  The recipe is on the Get off your butt and...Bake blog.

The sauce was easy to make, don't get overwhelmed looking at directions.  If I can do it, anyone can.  I don't recommend trying to watch your toddler at the same time though, the sauce does take constant attention.  I left the poppyseeds out of the crumb mixture, although I'm not sure why...probably because I forgot about them while I was trying to watch my daughter at the same time.  I like dinners that bake in the oven for 30 mins+ because it gives me time to prep anything else (ie. side dish, dessert, or a toddler bath) This is how ours turned out:

Delicious!  I will make it again for sure!  Would be a great dish for potlucks, family gatherings, or taking to someone in need of a meal.  The leftovers the next day were still delicious.

#2 Easy Chicken Cordon Bleu
I really recommend that you check out The Girl Who Ate Everything.  She has some amazing recipes.  Now that I've learned my lesson on Pinterest recipes, I think I'll go through her blog for the next few weeks of dinners.  This Cordon Bleu truly was so easy, however I cheated through a few steps.
1. I didn't slice my chicken breasts, I just bought smaller ones.
2. I used store bought bread crumbs since I had them in my pantry and I don't have a food processor (gasp!) to quickly make them.
3. I used sprinkle Kraft parmesean cheese (double gasp!) because I don't use parmesean cheese enough to buy a block of it, and I was doing this recipe from pantry ingredients rather than a shopping list of items.
4. And lastly I used deli cut ham rather than sliced.  It is thicker and tastes more like ham in my opinion.  It was also harder to cut through that thinly sliced ham would've been so you choose which you prefer.

Ohhhh, that sauce was so scrumcious that I poured it on the plates as if it were a side dish!  The pink you see is the ham...see what I mean about thicker slices verses the version on the blog?

#3 Maple Mustard Chicken
I found a recipe on Pinterest with the plan to follow the directions and see how it turned out.  However, I read through all the comments on the blog post and on my "repin" and decided to take matters into my own hands.  Remember how I said that I prefer cooking to baking because I can throw in more or less of different ingredients without following directions?  This was a great example of that.  So I will try to give measurements to what I actually did.

4 small Chicken breasts
1/2 cup Sweet and Honey Dijon mustard
1/2 cup Maple syrup (Log Cabin brand, I didn't have an real syrup handy)
1/2 cup Honey BBQ sauce
1 tbsp Rice wine vinegar (optional)

I have yet to determine what Rice Wine Vinegar does.  Everytime I add it to something I wish I hadn't.  I don't care for vinegar on any level so I'll skip it next time.  But if you like that tanginess, go for it.  Mix your mustard, syrup, BBQ sauce, and vinegar in a bowl.  Pour a straight line of sauce in the middle of the dish, lay your chicken along the line and wiggle them a little to spread the sauce.  Pour remaining sauce over chicken.  Bake at 400 for 30 minutes, flipping the chicken breasts half way through.  Mine turned out looking nothing like the Pinterest picture which seemed to be the general consensus on the comments I read.  The sauce bubbled up to the top of the dish and fortunately did not spill over, but you may want to put a cookie sheet on the rack below to catch any spills.  I served this with broccoli and sweet potato slices (a Pinterest recipe gone wrong so we'll pretend it didn't happen).

I'm off to have a Maple Mustard chicken salad sandwich for lunch!  I just recently figured out that chicken of almost any flavor can be cut up, add some mayo and pickle relish and you have gourmet (and I use that word lightly) CHICKEN SALAD!  Yum!

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