Monday, January 16, 2012

dishing up comfort food on cold days

Something I enjoy doing when I have time - mainly on non-work days - is to cook and bake. We had this garlic chicken recipe for dinner tonight and let me tell you ~ it was delicious. Next time I make this, I'm going to try serving it over mashed potatoes. I can imagine the creamy potatoes soaking up all that garlicky gravy...drool.


SLOW COOKER GARLIC CHICKEN

(Source: recipegirl.com - adapted from Everyday Food)
3-4 lbs. bone-in chicken pieces (breasts, thighs, drumsticks)
Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 T. extra-virgin olive oil
1 med. sweet onion, sliced
8 large garlic cloves, halved
Several springs fresh thyme (note: I used dried thyme)
1 c. dry white wine
1/3 c. flour
Season the chicken with salt & pepper. In a large skillet, heat oil over med-high heat.
Cook the chicken, skin-side down, until the skin turns golden brown (about 4 min.).
Combine the onion, garlic & thyme in a slow cooker & season with salt & pepper.
Top with chicken, skin-side up. In a small bowl, whisk together the wine & flour until
smooth & pour it over the chicken & into the slow cooker. Cover & cook until the chicken
is tender - 3-1/2 hours on high or 7 hours on low.
Serve chicken topped with sauce. Serve over rice, couscous, spaghetti, polenta, or potatoes.
Yield: 4 serv.
 

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Apple pie muffins are wonderful with a cup of tea or coffee, especially when they're warm. I found this recipe on a blog, but I don't remember which one. I would love to give credit where credit is due, so if anyone knows what blog these are from, please let me know.


APPLE PIE MUFFINS
2 - 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 egg
1 c. half and half (low-fat is fine)
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
3 c. diced apples
Topping:
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
1/3 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
4 T. melted butter

Preheat oven to 375F. Mix dry ingredients in large mixing bowl. Mix wet ingredients (egg - apples) in a medium-sized bowl. Add the wet ingredients to dry mixture and stir just until mixed. Mix topping ingredients in small bowl. Grease a 12-cup muffin pan or line with muffin liners (grease those, if using). Scoop batter into each cup, filling 3/4 full. Sprinkle topping mixture over batter. Bake 25 min. Let cool on wire rack.

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There's nothing coming home to a bowl of hot, nutritious soup on a cold winter night. 
Warms you to the bones!


MINESTRONE SOUP
1 lg. onion, diced
2 T. olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 ribs celery, diced (1/2 c.)
1 lg. carrot, peeled & diced
1 med. zucchini, diced
1 tsp. EACH dried oregano, basil, and salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
6 c. low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth (48 oz.)
1 28-oz. can no-salt added diced tomatoes
1 14-oz. can no-salt added crushed tomatoes
1 15-oz. can low-sodium cannellini beans, drained & rinsed
1/2 c. whole grain elbow pasta (note: I used ditalini pasta)
1/3 c. finely shredded Parmesan cheese
2 T. chopped fresh parsley leaves

In a large soup pot over med-high heat cook and stir onion in hot oil for 4 min. or until translucent. Add garlic; cook for 30 seconds. Add celery and carrot. Cook and stir 5 min., until veggies begin to soften. Add zucchini, oregano, basil, salt, and pepper. Cook for 2 min., stirring frequently. Add the broth and the diced and crushed tomatoes. Bring to boiling. Reduce heat to med-low. Simmer uncovered for 10 min. Add the beans and pasta. Cook 10-15 min. more or until pasta and vegetables are tender. Top servings with cheese and parsley. Makes 6 serv.

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And what's a bowl of soup without some homemade bread? This recipe is easy-peasy because it starts in the bread machine. It's a recipe from Laine at www.lainesletters.com.

WHOLE WHEAT BREAD
1 c. warm water
2 T. olive or canola oil
3 T. brown sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 c. whole wheat flour
2 c. bread flour
2 - 1/2 tsp. yeast

Hit the dough cycle. When it has risen in the machine, take it out and shape into a smooth, round loaf. Put this to rise again in a greased round cake pan or pie tin, covered. Let double again. Bake at 375F. for 30 minutes. Dust loaf with some flour for an old world look.

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Shredded chicken taco bowls make an easy dinner that everyone loves, as they can add their toppings of choice. It also makes great use of leftover chicken. I simply layered brown rice, shredded leftover chicken, black beans, salsa, sour cream, and fresh cilantro.
Yum!


What dishes have you been cooking up lately?


7 comments:

  1. These all look yummy!! I especially like the sound of the garlic chicken (not sure my husband would care for it though)... Today I actually have a chicken going in my crockpot - along with carrots, and celery (usually there is onion too). Will serve it with some brown rice. Last night's Sunday dinner was a mac and cheese/hamburger (with spaghetti sauce) casserole (along with tons more mozzarella cheese on top)! I don't care for hamburger much, but with all the other junk added in, it was very tasty!

    Linda in VA

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  2. Melanie, these all look delicious!! I love the homey and comforting smell of soup simmering away on the stovetop, or something yummy cooking slowly in the crockpot all day long.
    Oh I used to forget where I got recipes from all the time. But now I'm on pinterest, so now I can find the source with just a click. (It's a great organizational tool!) Let me know if you want an invite.

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  3. Oh yes you are! I didn't notice it earlier. I just started to follow some of your boards!

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  4. Thanks for the recipes! That chicken dish looks really good and I love slow cooker recipes!

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  5. Cooking and baking are two reasons I love being a housewife!!! These recipes all look so good and I would like to try them. Have you ever seen the Tessa Kiros cookbooks Apples for Jam and Falling Cloudberries? So far, everything I have tried in Apples for Jam has been excellent. I am trying another recipe from the book this weekend.

    Hugs from Holland ~
    Heidi

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    Replies
    1. No, I haven't seen those cookbooks, Heidi. Love the names! Will check them out on amazon. Thanks!

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  6. Melanie, everything looks delicious and perfect comfort food. We've been soaking the beans and tonight I'm making chili and cornbread.Smooches and Hugs and wishes for a beautiful day

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I read and appreciate every comment!