4th Sunday Dinner
March 27, 2011, 1:02 pm
Filed under: Easy but not quick, Poultry

It’s Sunday Potluck Lunch time, and today I’m taking crockpot chicken and rice. It doesn’t get much easier than this!

4 cups chicken broth
2 cups brown rice
1 large can cream of mushroom soup
1 can evaporated mild
5 boneless chicken breasts (smallish ones)
1 teaspoon each dried basil, garlic powder, onion powder

The night before your potluck lunch, or early the morning, if it’s an evening dinner:
Mix together the cream of mushroom soup and the evaporated milk in a bowl.
Then in this order, put everything in a large crock pot:
broth, rice, soup&milk, chicken breasts, seasonings.
Put the lid on it and set it on low.

The next morning, shred up the chicken with a couple of forks, right there on top of everything else. Then serve.
how easy is that?

The evaporated milk is optional, I like the creaminess it gives to it all.



Millet Casserole
March 23, 2011, 9:37 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I love grains. In fact, I’ve never met a grain I didn’t simply fall in love with completely and have to fix up in a delicious way for my family. Even birdseed millet. Millet falls into that category of foods my father refused to eat because of associations with his childhood growing up on a ranch in West Texas. I, however, am far enough removed from that childhood that I am willing to explore options, and that included feeding my family birdseed millet.

Homemade chicken broth, bring it to a boil

It started out with a delightful Spring daytrip to Brighter Day in Savannah, a lovely 50 minute drive down Hwy 80, underneath live oak trees and warm breezes to a fragrant emporium filled with all sorts of organic goodies and smelling of the bulk spices at the back of the store. To the right as you come in is a wall filled with every manner of bulk grain, bean, pea, grainy type thingy you might want to buy by the pound. I have to restrain myself to stay within a budget, but Oh My…the lovely lovely grains. Millet, amaranth, any kind of rice, wheat, barley, quinoa…and on.

Birdsee...I mean...Millet


*an aside*When Terry rebuilt my kitchen, he made this lovely hutch and thenstocked it with gallon, half-gallon, and quart glass jars all so I could store these beautiful grains and be able to see exactly what was on hand instead of them disappearing to the back of the pantry to go stale and be forgotten.
*end aside*

So with this trip to Brighter Day, Terry suggested I get some stuff I’d never made before…whatever I wanted. I saw the millet and amaranth, and had heard of them before, as birdseed, and figured why not. I still haven’t done anything with the amaranth, but I found a recipe for amaranth tabouleh, and will try that when it’s predictably warm. The millet, however, has been used and received very well by The Heathens, who often poo-poo anything more exotic than macaroni and cheese. To their credit, if I can get it in them before they ask what it is, they’ll eat it even after they know what it is, and birdseed millet casserole is no exception.

Chop up an onion and sautee it in a little oil


Of course, this casserole is essentially cream and cheese, with birdseed millet. it is stunningly similar to macaroni and cheese, only with eggs, or maybe some kind of souffle, only it doesn’t puff up…but whatever, it’s tasty tasty, warm and filling, and held up beautifully for leftovers the next day.

eggs, half&half, spices, mixum all up


MILLET CASSEROLE

4 c. cooked millet
1/2 c. finely chopped onion, sauteed in a bit of olive oil until translucent
2 teaspoons minced garlic, sauteed with the onion
1/2 tsp. Mrs Dash Table Blend
2 cups half and half
4 eggs, well beaten
1 1/2 c. grated sharp cheddar cheese

To well beaten eggs, add cream, chopped vegetables, seasoning and 1 cup cheese.

Let Lily clean up what you enthusiatically slopped out of the bowl


Stir well into millet, pour into casserole and sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup cheese and paprika. Dot with butter and bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes or until firm.

pour it into a greased casserole and top with a bit of paprika

To cook millet:

4 c. boiling chicken broth (homemade preferably)
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 c. millet

Turn on low heat and cook about 20 minutes.

oops almost missed a picture of the finished stuff. Whoosh and it was gone



Budget stuff!
March 5, 2011, 8:09 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

The fact is, meat is expensive,relatively speaking. It’s also not necessarily the best thing for you, nutritionally speaking. Yes to the protien and all,but really? We kind of probably most likely eat more than we need. I’m on a “bring down the food cost” kick at the moment. We spend about $150 a week to feed 4 of us,and that includes the leftovers Terry, CJ and Eli take for lunch the next day.

So I am looking hard at grains. There are many out there beyond the standard rice you can get a the local grocery store. Millet and amaranth are way high in protien, as is quinoa. They’re also YUMMY! You can use them like you would couscous, as a bed for shreds of chicken or pork, or tossed up with grilled veggies for a hot salad sort of thing. Rice comes in all sorts of colors, shapes and sizes. The granola-head hippy co-opplace I love carries this rice blend that’s got wild, red,brown,black, and blue rices in it and is DELICIOUS and not too expensive. $2 worth of rice will feed all 4 of us with leftovers, and add a single shredded up chicken breast and a salad picked from the garden, you’ve got a delicious, nutritionally balanced and filling meal for less than $5.

So it’s grains this Spring. I’m collecting and trying out recipes. The household menfolk aren’t balking as long as there is a bit of meat included, and with the Spring comes wonderful fresh veggies and greenery and a chance to bring that food budget back under control.