Monday, November 28, 2016

Crockpot Chicken and Noodles

It's no secret Oklahoma has some moody weather. Will Rogers once said, "If you don't like the weather in Oklahoma, wait a minute and it'll change."  That's the truth.  It's the end of November and we've still had some 80 and 90 degree days.  Which is great if you're a golfer like my husband.  Not so great when you want to make cozy, hearty comfort food for dinner.  Yesterday Mr. Devilish Dish had a golf tournament and sadly for him it was cold and drizzly all day.  I texted him and asked if it was cancelled or delayed by rain and he answered, "No, we are playing in it."  My reply was, "Hang in there, supper will warm you up."  This is one of my favorite go-to recipes for the Crockpot.  Not only is it just a few ingredients, it's so good.  And so easy for this hectic time of year.  It's literally 5 ingredients, but it tastes like Cracker Barrel and your grandma cooked all day.
So warm and hearty
This will fill you up.
5 ingredients, one pot. 
Perfect for a chilly day.
The ideal comfort food.

Crockpot Chicken & Noodles

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 (15 ounce) cans chicken broth
2 (10 ounce) cans Cream of Chicken Soup
1 stick unsalted butter
1 package frozen egg noodles (I use Reames)

Place the chicken breasts in the Crockpot.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add the chicken broth, cream of chicken soup and butter.  Cook approximately 4 hours, or until chicken is done.  (I do this on low, but slow cookers vary.)  Remove chicken and shred.  Return shredded chicken to crock and add the frozen noodles.  Cook two hours more.  It will thicken up nicely when the noodles are done cooking. 

Prep Time:  Approximately 5 minutes          Cook Time:  Approximately 6 hours

Monday, November 21, 2016

Leftover Turkey Noodle Soup Mix in a Jar

Thanksgiving is upon is and it's that time of year again when we have a fridge chock full of leftovers.  Now some folks really like the Turkey Day meal, and don't mind eating leftovers for days.  And some folks get really creative and make Cranberry Sauce Bread Pudding.  I'm one of those people that lobbies for the Thanksgiving meal to be enchiladas.  I know! "The Horror!" right?  A food blogger that doesn't want a traditional Thanksgiving meal.  Turkey just isn't my favorite.  To me it's dry and needs something on it.  But cranberry sauce isn't the answer.  And leftover turkey is too thick for a sandwich.  And mayo isn't the answer either.  What is the answer is this super simple, one pot soup.  It's the perfect answer to the leftover turkey debacle.  And who doesn't love a big pot of comforting soup simmering away on the stove.  AND, it's a great way to stretch the leftover turkey if you've still got a house full of guests to feed.  AND, if you are not the Thanksgiving host, then the mix in a jar makes an adorable hostess gift.  Trust me, it will be much appreciated.  I've included the tag for you to print out if you'd like to make one as a gift.  It's a great little treat, a great way to use up the leftover turkey, AND a great meal to have over the weekend while you untangle the Christmas lights and get ready for the next holiday!

What a cute hostess gift!
Like Fall in a Jar
Add the tag with the simple instructions...
Just a few ingredients for a delicious
pot of soup.
Click on the image to enlarge.
Right click and save to your computer.
Open with the software of your choice
and print onto cardstock.These images are my exclusive artwork.
Please be courteous when using these printables
and remember they are for personal use only.
All read for the post-Thanksgiving meal.

Leftover Turkey Noodle Soup Mix


For the Mix:

1 cup uncooked fine egg noodles
1 1/2 tablespoons dry chicken bouillon
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried whole thyme
1/8 teaspoon celery seeds
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1 whole bay leaf

Combine ingredients in a small bowl, store in an airtight container

For the Soup:

1 jar Turkey Noodle Soup Mix
8 cups water
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1/4 cup finely minced onion
3 cups cooked, diced turkey

Combine the Turkey Noodle Soup Mix and the water in a large stock pot.  Add the carrot, celery and onion, bring to a boil.  Cover the soup and reduce the heat to a simmer.  Simmer for 15 minutes.  Discard the bay leaf.  Stir in the turkey and simmer an additional 5 minutes.  This is a great way to use leftover turkey.






Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Homemade Chicken & Dumplings

Chicken & Dumplings is the quintessential comfort food.  At least in Oklahoma and the Southern states it is.  Every year I cannot wait for fall and cooler weather to get here so I can make a big pot for Sunday supper.  It's so cozy to have a pot on the stove simmering a whole chicken with lots of yummy veggies and spices. I usually start my Chicken & Dumplings the same way I start my Chicken Noodle Soup, a big pot of flavorful broth slow simmering all afternoon.  We've enjoyed Chicken & Dumplings in our family as long as I can remember.  My Grandmother Mary (famous for Sunday Suppers and Strawberry Cake) made this often.  My cousin Lindsey, Mom, Attorney, Writer and Blogger extraordinaire makes Grandmother Mary's version.  You know I can rarely follow a recipe, so my version has evolved from the family original over the years.  Lindsey loves to make this right before Thanksgiving so the family can get together and relax before the hectic holiday season starts.  It's a simple process with just a few steps, but the end result is wonderful.  We eat the leftovers for days.  Enjoy!
The perfect comfort food.
Cooked chicken and tender dumplings
in a flavorful broth.
So cozy...
Grab a spoon and dig in!

Homemade Chicken & Dumplings

1 whole chicken (about 3-5 pounds)
kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper
2 large yellow onions, chopped
4-6 large carrots (I leave a couple whole--leaves and all and peel and finely dice the rest)
4-6 large stalks celery (I leave a couple whole--leaves and all and peel and finely dice the rest)
1-2 fresh whole jalapenos, roughly chopped (seed or use less if you want mild C&D)
6 whole cloves garlic, peeled
4 bay leaves
3-4 sprigs fresh thyme
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup shortening
2 cups milk
1/4 cup heavy cream

Rinse the chicken inside and out under cold water, and remove any innards.  Pat dry with paper towels and season generously with kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper.  Place in a large stock pot over medium high heat.  Add the onions, carrots, celery, jalapenos, garlic, bay leaves and thyme sprigs.  Add enough water to cover the hen with about 3 inches over.  Re-season with salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to simmer and cook until the meat begins to fall off of the bones.  This will take approximately 2 hours.  Remove the pot from the heat and let it cool slightly.  Strain the broth through a fine mesh sieve into another pot or container.  Reserve 1 cup of the cooked diced vegetables and set aside.  Remove the meat from the chicken, discarding the skin and bones.  Chop into smaller pieces.  Return the strained broth to the pot and add in the chicken pieces.  In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt.  Cut in the shortening with a fork or pastry blender until the mixture resembles course crumbs.  Mash the reserved 1 cup of cooked vegetables with a fork and add to the flour mixture.  Add the milk to the flour mixture, stirring well.  Dough will be sticky.  Set aside.  Heat the broth and chicken over medium heat until you have a gentle boil.  Add the 1/4 cup heavy cream.  Gently drop the dumplings into the broth.  ( I use my small cookie scoop, but two spoons work great also.)  Cook 30 minutes until the dumplings are cooked through, stirring very gently, occasionally.

Prep Time:  Approximately 20 minutes     Cook Time:  Approximately 3 hours

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Rest-Relax-Revive Gift

Recently we celebrated my sister-in-law's birthday.  She's a huge country music fan and attends a lot of concerts  I almost always give her chunky turquoise jewelry or boot socks or some other kind of concert-worthy fashion statement.  She just had a new granddaughter, so she's been helping out with the new baby as well as watching her three-year old grandson.  This time I thought I'd make her a little treat so she could relax after the grand babies go home.  I found a beautiful cobalt blue mug and the gift came together around that.  I tried to think of the things I like when I'm enjoying some time to myself.  A comforting drink, a magazine.  Some nice hand lotion (because you have to wash your hands around new babies a million times a day) and of course:  Chocolate!  This is the perfect gift for anyone in need of a pick me up.  Birthdays, Get-well Soon, Administrative Assistant's Day, New Moms....Everyone deserves to enjoy a moment to themselves now and then.  A much appreciated gift for any occasion.
The ideal treat for anyone who needs a little quiet time...
Rest. Relax. Revive.  With chocolate of course!
Just add a little card encouraging some down time!
This works for all ages and any occasion...
Just adapt the beverage and magazine to suit their taste.
Add a lip gloss or nail polish too!
The possibilities are endless...

Monday, October 10, 2016

Apple Butter Cupcakes {with Browned Butter Cinnamon Frosting}

You know we are big college football fans around here.  If it's a home game, we tailgate and if we don't go to the away games there are usually watch parties to attend.  Occasionally we have no plans and Mr. Devilish Dish and I like to use that opportunity to try out new recipe ideas for future game days.  The annual OU/Texas Game (aka The Red River Rivalry) is a big deal.  It's played in the Cotton Bowl at the Texas State Fair.  Almost the perfect mid point between Norman, OK and Austin, TX.  Normally we make the trip down to Dallas but this year we decided to watch from the comfort of our couch.  The game is almost always at 11:00 am, so all week I imagined a "tailgate brunch menu."  When I saw these Apple Butter Muffins from Dan and Scott over at Platter Talk: Food, Wine and Friends, I just knew the would be the ideal fall treat for our football menu.  My husband loves apple butter, and when we lived in Nebraska, we used to pick our own apples at a nearby orchard and I would can my own apple butter as holiday gifts.  Then Mr. Devilish gave my brunch idea the ax because quote, "I don't want to graze on breakfast food all day."  So what do you do when you already have the apple butter to make Apple Butter Muffins?  You add a butter cream frosting and call them Apple Butter Cupcakes.  These are perfectly marvelous, packed full of fall flavor.  The muffins are sprinkled with a streusel topping before baking.  I saved my streusel for garnish.  These are some of the prettiest and tastiest cupcakes I've made in a long time, and I'm really happy with the way they turned out.  Thank you Dan and Scott for the fabulous inspiration!

A Taste of Fall...
These are divine!
Oodles of Browned Butter Cinnamon Frosting
and a streusel topping...
You can't beat Apple Butter as a
flavor for an Autumn Cupcake.

Apple Butter Cupcakes with Browned Butter Cinnamon Frosting

inspired by: Platter Talk: Food, Wine and FriendsFor the Cupcakes:

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons cinnamon (I always use a Vietnamese Cinnamon, so much flavor!)
1 teaspoon cloves
1/2 cup milk
3/4 cup apple butter

For the Frosting:


1 stick unsalted butter
2 cups (or more) powdered sugar
2 tablespoons apple butter
2 tablespoons cinnamon (or to taste)
1-3 tablespoons milk

For the Streusel Topping:

1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup whole oats
1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 tablespoons cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Line a 12-cup standard muffin tin with paper liners and set aside.  In a bowl combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and cloves and set aside.  With an electric mixer cream together the unsalted butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar until smooth.  Add the eggs and vanilla.  Alternately add the flour mixture and the milk a little at a time, beginning and ending with flour.  Stir in the apple butter.  Place the batter in the lined muffin tin.  (I filled these pretty full, actually more full than I do a regular cupcake.  They rose up beautifully, but not too high to frost.)  Bake in a preheated oven for approximately 25-30 minutes or until a cake tester inserted in the middle of the cupcake comes out clean.  Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.

While the cupcakes are cooking, in a small pot over medium-low heat, melt the butter.  Once the butter is melted, continue to cook until the butter starts to brown.  The butter will turn a golden brown color and develop a nutty aroma.  Watch carefully so it does not burn.  Stir up any browned bits and pour into a bowl.  Place in the refrigerator and allow the butter to set back up.  After the butter is solid again, with an electric mixture whip it until soft and fluffy.  Add in the powdered sugar a little bit at a time.  It's okay if it appears dry and crumbly, it will become more frosting-like in texture when you add the wet ingredients.  My jar of apple butter was approximately 10 ounces, so there was just a small amount left.  I added it to the frosting for extra flavor, but still needed some milk to further moisten the mixture.  Add in the cinnamon.  And beat until fluffy.  At this point it's really a matter of taste and the consistency of frosting you desire.  I don't have any set measurements, when I make frosting, I just keep adding powdered sugar or milk until I get the consistency I need to put in a piping bag.  That part is up to you!

Combine the ingredients for the streusel topping in a small bowl.  Use a pastry cutter (or even better: your fingers) to combine the mixture until it is crumbly and grainy.  Since I did not use the streusel on the actual batter before baking, and only for garnish I had quite a bit left.  You can either cut back on the amount you make, sprinkle some on top of the batter before baking or save the remaining streusel topping for another use.  (Mine is in the refrigerator, I'm planning on making a coffee cake or something this week.)

When the cupcakes have cooled completely, frost them with the Browned Butter Cinnamon Frosting and garnish with the streusel topping.  Enjoy a taste of fall!

Makes 12 standard-sized cupcakes

Prep Time:  Approximately 1 hour total                Cook Time:  Approximately 30 minutes

Monday, October 3, 2016

Cilantro Chicken Curry

We love curry dishes around here.  Anything with a lot of spice and flavor.  I make Butter Chicken a lot, and I've been experimenting with some Korma dishes using the sous vide technique.  I'm not a huge fan of coconut milk, or curries with a sweeter flavor so I tend to lean more toward Indian cuisine rather than Indonesian or Thai recipes (although Mr. DD and the Little Devil LOVE Thai food!)  I saw this recipe for Cilantro Chicken on Divya's Culinary Journey and I knew right away it was a recipe the entire family could agree on.  Divya shares recipes from a variety of cuisines on her blog, but my favorite are the ones with authentic Indian flavor.  Of course when I started making this recipe I realized I was out of a couple of the ingredients, so as usual I just started adapting things my way.  My result may not be truly authentic but the flavor was amazing.  Shout out to Divya for the inspiration!
Cilantro Chicken Curry
Very easy and so much flavor.
Serve over Basmati Rice, with fresh cooked Naan Bread
and garnish with yogurt and fresh cilantro.

Cilantro Chicken Curry


Inspired by Divya's Culinary Journey

1 pound chicken breasts, cubed
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon chili powder, divided
1 teaspoon cumin powder, divided
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 large onion, chopped and divided
1 large tomato, diced
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger (or the kind in the squeeze bottle is soooo handy!)

In a small food processor combine the cilantro, 1/4 cup of the chopped onion, 1/2 teaspoon chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder, garlic and ginger.  Process until you have a fragrant paste.  Set aside.

In a pan over medium-high heat add the vegetable oil and let it get hot.  Saute the remaining chopped onion until it is translucent.  Season with 1/2 teaspoon chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder, 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper and 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder and add the chopped tomato.  Cook for 2-3 minutes.  Add in the cilantro paste and cook, stirring constantly until the raw smell is gone. It will be very fragrant and smell delicious at this point.  Season the chicken cubes generously with salt and pepper and add to the pan.  Let simmer approximately 15-20 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.  Serve over Basmati Rice with freshly toasted Naan Bread and garnish with fresh yogurt and cilantro if desired.

Prep Time:  Approximately 10 minutes     Cook Time:  Approximately 25 minutes

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

California Chicken and Rice

My dad and his twin brother came from a family of ten children.  Little country boys in rural Oklahoma born in the late 1930's.  As you can imagine, they didn't have a lot of money growing up and big sacks of rice go a long way to feed 10 hungry kids.  They had rice for lots of meals.  As adults they did not care for it.  We rarely had rice when I was growing up.  My aunt used to make chicken and rice for lunch and it was one of my favorite meals.  It was always a treat because it was something that was never on our menu.  Thankfully, everyone at my house is okay with rice.  We enjoy chicken and rice now and then, but I've found something we like even better.  California Chicken and Rice is a sophisticated twist on an ordinary favorite.  With the addition of mushrooms, artichokes and white wine, everyone will love this dish.
An elegant upgrade to a family favorite.
Serve over rice, with crusty bread and
a glass of white wine.
Here's those sweet little country boys
I was telling you about...
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