Thursday, October 13, 2011

Sometimes Simple is Soooo Satisfying!

A few funny things happened in high school Home Ec class...

1.  I was the only person to get injured, it happened on pie day...there was blood.

2.  Our final projects were assigned to us based on what was assessed to be our (then) current culinary aptitude.  A boy named John had to roast a turkey.  I was asked to bake muffins from a box.

3.  Each student had to contribute a "family favorite recipe" to the class for discussion.  I believe mine started with "open a can of..."  My best friend's got published in a local cookbook.

Now, this recipe that "got published," I should warn you would likely not meet Martha Stewart's standards for a gourmet meal, but in my book it's a weeknight wow!  Kylee's mom used to make this all the time, and I always loved it.  It really couldn't be easier.   It's a great starter recipe for anyone who's learning their way around the kitchen, and it tastes so much better than it sounds.  Below is the original recipe, (from Kylee's mom) and I couldn't help myself...the last time I made it, I tweaked it a bit to cut back on the salt, sugar, and preservatives.  I made my own "Catalina" dressing and "Lipton" onion soup mix.  My version is listed under the original.  Try either, or both and see what you think!  I love this dish with rice or mashed potatoes and a vegetable of course.  I made it last week with roasted cauliflower (recipe also below) and some sautéed kale.  Best of all, either recipe takes no time at all, hardly dirties any dishes, and it's colorful and seasonally appropriate!

Kylee's Mom's Cranberry Chicken:

1 package boneless skinless chicken breasts (don't worry about how many lbs, just go by how many you are cooking for, and what fits in your pan!)
1 can (16oz.) whole berry cranberry sauce
1 bottle (8oz.) Catalina dressing
1 envelope Lipton onion soup mix

What to do...
Heat oven to 350.
Place chicken in a baking dish.
Mix all other ingredients in a bowl.
Pour over chicken.
Bake for 1 hour.

Really...that's it!  My recipe isn't even that much more complicated...In fact the directions are exactly the same...EXACTLY.  But there are different ingredients.  Check it out.

Jen's Cranberry Chicken:

1 package boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
1/2 cup catsup
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup grated onion
1 tsp paprika
1tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbsp minced dried onion
1/4 tsp celery salt
black pepper to taste.

You be the judge!

Roasted Cauliflower:

1 head of cauliflower, trimmed (you know, flourets cut off...stems thrown away or composted)
About 2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp Italian herb mix
S&P to taste

What to do...

Preheat the oven to 450.  Toss the cauliflower with the other ingredients in a roasting pan.  Roast 35 - 40 minutes, or until the cauliflower starts to brown.  By the way, you can roast this at a lower 350, for longer...about 50 minutes to 1 hour, if you want to cook it at the same time as the chicken in the recipe mentioned above!  Just keep an eye on it, and stir it from time to time.  It's done when the it starts to turn a bit brown.

1 comment :

  1. That roasted cauliflower looks yumeeee. Perhaps it will make a guest appearance at Thanksgiving?