GREAT GRANS CHICKEN & GRAVY ~ BLOG 366.165

GREAT GRANS CHICKEN & GRAVY

1 tablespoon avocado oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 medium Vidalia onion, FINELY chopped
1 box grape tomatoes, halved
1 1/2 – 2 cups of carrots, small diced
1-2 tablespoon FRESH lemon thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika (see note)
FRESH ground sea salt and pepper, to taste
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 cups homemade chicken broth
1-2 pounds chicken breasts or tenders, cut into small bite size chunks

  • In a large skillet melt oil and butter together.
  • Add onions, tomatoes and carrots, cooking for 2-3 minutes until onions are translucent. 
  • Add in the garlic, thyme, paprika, salt and pepper.
  • Add chicken pieces and 1 cup of chicken broth.
  • Turn the heat to medium and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. Keep checking to make sure nothing is sticking to the pan, adding broth as necessary to keep it moist and make the gravy.
  • When chicken is cooked through check to make sure thicken gravy as necessary with corn starch.
  • In a small bowl whisk together a few tablespoons of the pan gravy with a tablespoon or 2 of cornstarch.
  • Mix well, then pour slowly into the pan, stirring constantly until the gravy thickens up and heats through.

NOTES:

  • Paprika comes sweet or smokey. Choose accordingly as it will alter your flavor a bit.
  • If I have some in the fridge I’ll add about 1/2 cup chopped marinated artichokes.
  • You can substitute rotisserie chicken pieces, but if you do, don’t add the chicken pieces until after the veggies have simmered 10-15 minutes and are crisp tender.

Great gran served this over homemade noodles and never used rotisserie chicken. Her chicken was farm fresh and simmered to make the broth fresh. Grams amped up the carbs by serving it with noodles in it and serving it over homemade mashed potatoes, but it’s great without either of those.

SWEET & SOUR GREEN BEANS ~ BLOG 366.163

SWEET & SOUR GREEN BEANS
2 pounds green beans, trimmed
3/4 pound bacon, diced
2 LARGE shallots, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 heaping tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 cup chicken bone broth
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

  • Blanch the beans in boiling water for 5-7 minutes until crisp tender.
  • Drain and rinse in cold water. Set aside to drain.
  • In a large skillet add bacon pieces, sauteing until crisp tender. Using slotted spoon remove bacon to drain on paper toweling. Drain off all but 1 tablespoon of bacon grease.
  • Add shallots and garlic, sauteing 3-5 minutes until tender.
  • Whisk together broth, vinegar, brown sugar, cornstarch, salt and pepper until smooth.
  • Add green beans to skillet.
  • Add bacon pieces
  • Pour sauce over beans and stir to coat well.
  • Heat through and serve hot.

HAPPY HOMEMAKER MONDAY & RECIPE LINKS week 24 of 2024 ~ BLOG 366.162

Be sure to join us for Happy Homemaker Monday and link up with our host, Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom

GOOD MORNING dear friends. Summer is quickly approaching and I still have so much I want to do for spring! The weather has FINALLY turned nice here on a consistent basis and I have FINALLY packed away the flannels and jackets. Though I do have a sweatshirt in the car for those places that are now cranking the air conditioning so high it’s like a meat locker.

Highs in the mid 70’s with lows in the mid 40’s – my FAVORITE combination of temperatures! So today will be my most comfy levis, a plaid blouse and flip flops.

I’m adapting a new attitude and trying extremely hard to NOT to let the idiots, blowhards and the like affect me. The “changing of the guard” is going to be hard for me to adapt to at the Eagles. Those few “in charge” as of June are either repeats from the past with serious egos and attitudes that aren’t good leaders or they tend to drink too much and spout off orders and rude comments to people or they have zero idea what it’s all about. Worse yet are the ones who were talked into filling a vacancy so we can keep the doors open, yet they aren’t either qualified to fill the slot, too easy to be pushed around by the blowhards or they don’t know how much work it will be and here we sit waiting for it to all fall apart, because it has before with these same people in charge. I am prepared to turn in my duties and find new avenues to donate my time. A couple friends and I had “bets” on when the first would fall. I wish we’d actually bet money. My bet was for 1 week and the first of the five resigned last night. 🙁 Sad, but true.

THIS WEEK’S TO DO LIST, PROJECTS & APPOINTMENTS
  • LAUNDRY & CLEANING I have a load of sheets to do and a pile of ironing
  • GROCERIES & ERRANDS / PAPERWORK, PHONE CALLS Taco Tuesday, Eagles Bar and Kitchen Shopping
  • PROJECTS & TRAVELS Drinks and pizza at a favorite winery with a friend on Friday, find a matching fabric for some quilted place mats I’m working on, buy a birthday present for a close friend. Make reservations for the day before and after a trip we were recently gifted at the end of the month.
  • RECIPE RESEARCH & MENU PLANNING I’m working on a summer menu plan for some lighter dishes.

WHAT’S ON THE DVR/TV
  • AMAZON PRIME ~ Time Changer, From Time to Time, Miss Willoughby and the Haunted Bookshop
  • CABLE ~ Cooking shows ~ Summer Baking Championship, Girl Meets Farm, Mary Makes It Easy, Best Bite in Town

I went from not reading at all to having 3 books at once going. I’m reading Marie Force’s State of Suspense, Jana DeLeon’s Baskets and Beignets as well as Philippa Nefri Clark’s The House at Angel’s Beach.

BREAKFAST is always a work in progress for me – it will generally be hot water and a fruit yogurt 😀

MONDAY
TUESDAY
WEDNESDAY
THURSDAY
FRIDAY
SATURDAY
SUNDAY
DINNER
 CHICKEN CAESAR PASTA SALAD
 PERUVIAN CHICKEN with SALT & VINEGAR POTATO SALAD
 GRILLED CHICKEN PEACH SALAD
 CORN/YOYO CLEAN OUT REFRIGERATOR or YOU’RE ON YOUR OWN
 OUT
 STRAWBERRY JALAPENO CHICKEN with SALAD
BRUSCHETTA GRILLED CHICKEN and SALAD
DESSERT
 
 
 
PECAN BARS

PAN FRIED PORK CHOPS with BACON SOUR CREAM SAUCE ~ BLOG 366.159

PAN FRIED PORK CHOPS with BACON SOUR CREAM SAUCE
4 slices bacon, diced
4 boneless pork tenderloin chops
1/2 cup AP flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon paprika
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
1 shallot, diced
2 green onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon avocado oil
1 tablespoon butter

  • Saute bacon until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon to drain on paper toweling.
  • Season flour and cornstarch with paprika, FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Add butter and avocado oil to the skillet.
  • Add onions, sauteing 2-3 minutes.
  • Add garlic, sauteing another minute.
  • Arrange onions and garlic around the edge of the pan.
  • Dredge pork chops in flour mixture, shaking off excess.
  • Add pork chops to pan, frying on each side 4-5 minutes (based on chop thickness) until cooked through.

SAUCE
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup chicken bone broth
1 teaspoon FRESH lemon thyme leaves

  • Plate chops and keep warm.
  • Add broth and thyme leaves to skillet, heating through.
  • Whisk in cornstarch, simmering until sauce begins to thicken.
  • Turn off heat and whisk in sour cream.
  • Fold in bacon pieces.
  • Serve cream over chops.

EARTHQUAKE CAKE ~ BLOG 366.158

I found this recipe on Facebook originally and it looked so intriguing I just HAD to try it and am so glad I did! You won’t be disappointed either. The original recipe called for strawberries, but we LOVE it with peaches too. The picture on facebook is quite deceptive also – they evidently added a great looking glaze that isn’t included in their recipe. I will be adding the glaze below from now on.

EARTHQUAKE CAKE

1 white cake mix prepared per box directions
1 cup fruit pieces, chopped
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
1/2 cup sweetened and toasted coconut flakes
1/2 cup white chocolate chips, chopped

  • Preheat your oven to 350°
  • Grease a 9 X 13 baking dish.
  • Fold the chopped strawberries into the prepared cake mix.
  • Pour batter into the greased baking dish.
  • In another medium bowl, beat together the softened cream cheese, melted butter, powdered sugar and vanilla extract until smooth.
  • Drop spoonfuls of the cream cheese mixture over the cake batter in the baking dish.
  • Sprinkle coconut flakes and white chocolate pieces evenly over the top of the batter.
  • Bake 40-45 minutes until the cake is set and the edges have turned golden brown.
  • Allow the cake to cool COMPLETELY before serving. As it cools you’ll notice a beautiful cracked, earthquake cracked effect on the top, with delicious pockets of cream cheese and strawberry throughout. Top with additional chopped fruit if desired.

NOTE: Change up the fruit flavor as desired, peaches, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries or cherries work well also.

GLAZE (optional)
2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract

  • Whisk together the powdered sugar, lemon juice and vanilla.
  • Drizzle over cooled cake and let glaze harden 10 minutes or so before serving.
  • Transfer to serving platter and serve with FRESH blueberries or berry of choice 😀

This is what it looked like on facebook.

BBQ BEEF PATTIES & ASPARAGUS RICE ~ BLOG 366.156

I found both of these recipes in one of the several old recipe boxes I found during a recent antique store expedition. They were quite good, after bringing them forward 50 years or so 😀

BBQ BEEF PATTIES

BEEF PATTIES
1 cup bread crumbs
1 1/2 cup whole milk
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
3/4 pound LEAN ground beef
1/4 pound QUALITY ground pork

  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • In a large bowl pour milk over bread crumbs and let set 5 minutes.
  • Add garlic, onion, beef, pork and Worcestershire, minimally mixing until well blended.
  • Shape into 6 patties and place in large baking dish.
  • Pour sauce AROUND the patties.
  • Bake uncovered 45 minutes.

SAUCE
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup jalapeño ketchup
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup chopped green onion

  • Combine all the ingredients in a small sauce pan, stirring to blend.
  • Heat until sugar is dissolved and sauce is heated through, but do NOT boil.

ASPARAGUS RICE PILAF

1 1/2 cups uncooked rice
3 1/4 cups homemade chicken broth
3/4 pound asparagus, trimmed
2 tablespoons butter
3-4 LARGE green onions, minced
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1/2 cup FRESHLY grated Parmesan cheese
FRESH thyme leaves

  • Blanch asparagus in boiling water for 2 minutes.
  • Drain and rinse in cold water until cool.
  • Cut spears into small bite size pieces.
  • Melt butter over medium heat in sauté pan.
  • Add onion, sautéing until softened.
  • Add rice, thyme leaves, FRESH ground salt and pepper. Bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat to low, cover and cook 15-20 minutes until rice is tender and moisture is completely absorbed.
  • Remove from heat and fold in asparagus and Parmesan cheese.
  • Serve immediately.

HAPPY HOMEMAKER MONDAY & RECIPE LINKS week 23 of 2024 ~ BLOG 366.155

Be sure to join us for Happy Homemaker Monday and link up with our host, Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom

GOOD MORNING! Can you believe we are in June already? This year is zooming by! There is so much I had hope to have already accomplished by this time, yet here we are almost to summer and I haven’t. For me, it was our lack of a real spring this year and the “extended” wintertime that seems to be holding me back. 😂 At least that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.🤣 I do have the garden beds planted FINALLY! and yesterday’s rain seems to be helping them settle in quite nicely.

We had quite a bit of rain yesterday and a much cooler temperature. Today is supposed cooler still (than normal), but at least sunny and then we should be getting much warmer by the end of the week. Spring temperatures are FINALLY here. I’m still carrying a light sweatshirt in the car at all times because it takes all day to get to the warmer temperatures 😂

THIS WEEK’S TO DO LIST, PROJECTS & APPOINTMENTS
  • LAUNDRY & CLEANING Laundry and cleaning are up to date 😀
  • GROCERIES & ERRANDS I have no pending errands or appointments this week that can’t wait. I do need to get the tires rotated on my car and address a brake squeal that shouldn’t be happening because they are pretty new brakes 😀
  • PAPERWORK, PHONE CALLS, PROJECTS & TRAVELS Because I don’t have many actual errands, I’m hoping to get a bunch of paperwork handled.
  • RECIPE RESEARCH & MENU PLANNING I found some OLD, really OLD taste of home magazines in an antique store and will be going through them  in hopes of finding some new and fun recipes.

WHAT’S ON THE DVR/TV
  • AMAZON PRIME We’ve been re-watching WAREHOUSE 13 ~ it’s been so long that it feels new again, but with characters that feel like family 😀
  • CABLE We ran across an old Hitchcock movie that starred Jimmy Stewart called ROPE which was kind of fun on a rainy Sunday morning.

After a couple of weeks of audio books I’m having a tough time getting back into reading 🙁

BREAKFAST is always a work in progress for me – it will generally be hot water and a fruit yogurt 😀

MONDAY
TUESDAY
WEDNESDAY
THURSDAY
FRIDAY
SATURDAY
SUNDAY
DINNER
 BBQ BEEF PATTIES & ASPARAGUS RICE
 SOUR CREAM PORK CHOPS & CORN TAMALITOS with GREEN BEANS
ORANGE TERIYAKI CHICKEN
 HONEY THYME PORK TENDERLOIN
 YOYO CORN your’re on your own or clean out refrigerator night
 BALSAMIC HERB CHICKEN and PARMESAN MASHED POTATOES
JAMBALAYA & SALAD
DESSERT
 
 
PECAN BARS
 

We took a walk around the pond the other day and I found that the blackberries are starting to bloom. Hopefully they’ll be on time this year for the festival in August.

There is a neighbor who spearheaded a grant program to “build up” the pond. Unfortunately, most of us don’t share his vision. There are tons of construction changes (paving walkways where there used to be a well used path, tearing out the trees that lined the south side of the pond, adding pavilions and tons of concrete…) and upgrades going on that are disrupting the local neighborhood peace. Many of the animals aren’t happy either. The 9-10 swans that were living on the island are gone, literally just vanished, many of the birds are no where to be seen, we haven’t heard the frogs this year, the beavers that built this dam have lost most of their trees and vegetation in the area…