Sorry for the delay in this week’s post. We’ve had quite the busy weekend and week. We had a lot of fun celebrating my hubby’s birthday, plus some fun church activities. I’ll tell you more about his birthday treat another day. For this post, we’re focusing on chicken. (As if you hadn’t already figured that out!) The reason for the poultry pointed post is our most recent installment of the movie and recipe series: Chicken Run. In this claymation movie, a group of chickens on an egg farm are attempting to liberate themselves through various escape plans (think Hogan’s Heroes). Just when they’ve run out of ideas, a “flying” rooster falls into their enclosure and reluctantly agrees to teach them to fly. Many shenanigans ensue with lots of jokes and slapstick. You can see a trailer here. Here are several of my favorite lines: “Is she on holiday, too?”, “It’s all in me head.”, “They’re gonna kill themselves. Wanna watch?”, “They didn’t give me this medal for…”, “All of me life flashed before me eyes! It was really borin’.”, “I don’t want to be a pie! I don’t like gravy.”, and my most favorite “In the quite likely event of an emergency, put your head between your knees and…” “Kiss your bum goodbye.” Now the obvious thing would be to make a chicken pot pie, but I didn’t want to be that obvious. Instead, I decided that I’d share a couple of my favorite chicken recipes.
This first recipe is one that I’ve had for years, but I hadn’t made it in quite a while. I had some extra poached chicken recently, so I treated myself to a little of this delicious chicken salad. We first had this several years ago, when some friends of our had extra and sent us home with it. They served it on some flaky croissants, and it was just amazing. They got theirs from Costco, but I found a copycat recipe from Whole Foods that tasted just like it. It’s got some nice textures and a slightly sweet flavor that tastes better than it might sound. This is great for a family picnic or light spring lunch.
Sonoma Chicken Salad (from WholeFoods.com)
1 c. mayo
4 tsp. apple cider vinegar
5 tsp. honey
2 tsp. poppy seeds
2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3/4 c. toasted, chopped pecans
2 c. red seedless grapes (We prefer craisins to grapes.)
3 stalks thinly sliced celery
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Place the chicken breasts in a single layer in a baking dish with 1/2 c. water. Cover the dish with foil and bake the chicken for 25 minutes or til completely cooked through. Remove the cooked chicken from the pan, cool it 10 minutes, cover, and refrigerate.
2. When the chicken is completely chilled (at least 2 hours), dice it into bite-size pieces and transfer to a large bowl. In a small bowl, mix together the mayo, vinegar, honey, and poppy seeds. Add the dressing, pecans, grapes (or craisins), and celery to the bowl with the chicken and stir til well combined.
This next recipe is a more recent find, but I’ve still been dying to try it ever since I first saw it. There’s a little bit of prep involved, but it’s definitely worth it. And it’s a little surprising that the small amount of rice turns into such a large amount of food. (I halved the recipe, but we probably could have eaten a quarter of it and still been full.) If you make the full recipe, it could easily feed 8-10 people. The chipotle imparts some nice heat and smoky flavor, but you could use plain chili powder if that’s all you have. (We’re big chipotle lovers at my house!) Besides the great flavor, this dish is all-encompassing. Sure, you could serve it with more veggies on the side or a salad, but the main parts of your meal (grain, beans, dairy, meat) are all in this one dish. By the way, if you’re not following Yammie’s Noshery (or her alternate site, Yammie’s GlutenFreedom), you should be. She is always delivering up mouth-watering treats with a side of laughs.
Cheesy Chipotle Chicken and Rice (from Yammie’s Noshery)
1 c. rice
2 1/4 c. chicken stock
1 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. chipotle powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. cumin
4 tbsp. butter
1 15 oz. can rinsed, drained black beans
1 3/4 c. corn
1 2/3 c. cooked, shredded chicken
2 cloves minced garlic
1/2 chopped onion
1/2 chopped red bell pepper
1 c. Mexican cheese blend or colby jack
1/2 c. sour cream
1. In a large pot, (Larger than you think you’ll need. Once you add all the other ingredients, it will be a heap of food.) combine the rice, stock, paprika, chipotle powder, garlic powder, cumin, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1 tbsp. butter. Bring to a simmer and reduce the heat to low. Cover and cook 20 minutes. Note: I actually started with some butter, the rice, and the garlic and onions. I wasn’t sure that the way she has you cook it would soften it to my preferences, since I like a really cooked onion. This way worked out fine for me.
2. Add 3 tbsp. butter, beans, corn, chicken, garlic, onion (unless you cooked them previously like me), and bell pepper and turn to medium-high heat. Stir constantly til the onions are tender. Either stir in or top with the sour cream and cheese.
Of course, these are just a couple of my favorites. There are so many delicious chicken recipes out there, it can be hard to choose. What kind of chicken recipe is your favorite?
Before I go, I thought I’d share a few more photos from my daily photo challenge.