There is no denying that I love to cook but there are times when life gets in the way of my cooking. I'm not complaining - I recognize that there a lot of things that take priority over food. I don't mind letting other activities take precedence but that doesn't mean that we don't need to EAT. My solution - cook more than one meal at a time.
I hardly ever cook a single meal to serve the three of us. At the very least, I make enough food for dinner and for lunches the following day. Most of the time, I double whatever I'm making and save the leftovers for another day. Recently I've started making three times as much food than we need for dinner and putting some in the freezer to send back to school with Ryan. (College kids hardly ever complain about eating leftovers.)
Chicken is one of the easiest things to double without really adding much more work. I can roasted two chickens at once on my big green egg. I served one for dinner and cut the other one to add to chicken soup and make sandwiches the following day.
This herb roasted chicken is an easy and simple way to cook 2 delicious meals at once.
Herb Roast Chicken
1/2 cup fresh parsley
1 Tablespoon fresh thyme
1 1/2 Tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
1 love garlic
salt and pepper
1 Tablespoon olive oil
Rub paste under chicken skin and brush oil/herb mixture over chicken skin. Cover and refrigerate 1 - 24 hours.
Place chicken in a disposable roasting pan on the rack placed over the upside down plate setter on the egg. (Big Green Egg owners will know exactly what I mean by all of that.) Roast chicken at 300 degrees until breast temperature registers 165.
Let chicken rest 10 minutes before carving.
Sunday is the perfect day for roast chicken. I hope that your family enjoys this as much as mine.
I just can't stand it anymore - I can't wait one more day for my girl scout cookies to arrive at my door. Soooo - I took matters into my own hands and whipped up a batch of Samoas for myself. For those of you who have lived under a rock for the last 10 years a Samoa is a buttery shortbread cookie covered in caramel and coconut goodness and drizzled with chocolate. It's no wonder that I've been obsessed with this delicious cookie since I placed my first order for Samoas about 2 weeks ago.
The anticipation of the impending girl scout cookie season has gotten the best of me. What can I say ? I'm weak. These homemade Samoas are the perfect treat to get me through the next couple of weeks until my Samoas arrive.
Home Made Samoas
Dump dough out onto a silpat.
Spread coconut on a silpat mat and bake 10 minutes at 350.
Spoon caramel coconut filling onto caramel topped cookies. (Trust me - there is no easy or meat way to do this.)
Dip bottoms of cookies in chocolate and set on waxed paper to cool. Drizzle tops with additional melted chocolate.
All I have to say is - ridiculous. These cookies are RIDICULOUS!
The snow has just stared to fall here in my little town. Forget the bread and milk - I've got a batch of Samoa cookies and a roaring fire - I'm all set to weather this winter storm. Bring on the snow - I've got plenty of cookies.
It's been a while since I've done done a restaurant review but some dining experiences are just too good NOT to post on the blog.
Ben and I went on a double date last Saturday to a new restaurant in Watkinsville, Georgia. This restaurant came so highly recommended from some of our neighbors that I just knew it would be blog worthy before we even left the house. (Any chef who invites you bring your own recipe so he can prepare it for you on the night when you call to make reservations, has got to be awesome.)
The restaurant is small but quaint - the decor simple. It's the kind of place where you feel like you've entered the chefs home from the very moment you walk through the door.
Girasoles restaurant is more than just a meal - it's an experience. Although we were presented with menus when we were seated at our table, we were quickly informed that the menu was simply a guideline. We were encouraged to ask for "whatever our hearts desired."
The special appetizers for the night were fried alligator and fried oysters. We ordered the oysters for the table and everyone else ordered beer. (I had wine and 1 oyster.)
There were so many things on the menu that sounded good - I couldn't even begin to narrow down my choices. I ended up asking the chef to prepare a grouper dish of his own choosing. The only parameters that I set were --- no capers, grilled fish and no cream sauce.
The guys ordered "Chef Jose's special". Once again - you're putting your dinner in the hands of this very competent chef because when you order this special - you have no idea what is going to be prepared for you.
I could not believe the amount of food that Jose prepared for these TWO meals. There was a salad with hot bacon dressing, crab and shrimp soup, grilled salmon in a blueberry balsamic reduction (my favorite), a yummy chicken dish, steak, grouper, two different kinds of sausage, lamb chops (not pictured), mashed potatoes, cheese grits and roasted vegetables. Safe to say - there was PLENTY of food.
There was nothing that I sampled that I didn't like. I did have my favorites though. The crab soup was Knee buckling good. The salmon in blueberry balsamic reduction sauce was amazing and super creative. I even ate a lot of the grits - and I don't even LIKE grits.
Needless to say - I was STUFFED by the time this dinner was over because I think I sampled EVERYTHING. I had zero intention of ordering dessert but when the waiter described the Chef's creme brulee as "pretty much the best thing I've ever tasted", how could we resist?
Chef Jose did not disappoint. He could be seen circulating the restaurant throughout the dinner service. It's obvious that he prides himself on his special creations. The only thing that could have made this dinner better would be a cup of decaf coffee to finish it off. No decaf coffee offered and couldn't afford to be up all night with a caffeine buzz.
I'm already planning my next trip to Girasoles. The question is, what recipe will I take with me for him to make?
I will say that our neighbors were not wrong in giving this restaurant the highest praise. I would definitely recommend making a trip to Girasoles in Watkinsville, Georgia if you're in the area. You will NOT be disappointed.
It's Sunday night which means .... we had breakfast for dinner. I don't normally blog our meals this quickly but I'm taking full advantage of having an extra day in my weekend and blogging our Sunday dinner instead of packing lunches tonight.
I got some new donut pans for Christmas and tonight was the perfect night to put them to good use. I love these baked cinnamon sugar donuts. They literally take less than 25 minutes (including baking time) from start to finish. They are really delicious and they're much healthier than regular donuts. (Only 2 Tablespoons of butter in 10 donuts!!) Baked donuts are a great way to enjoy the delicious breakfast treat without all the fat and calories.
Baked Cinnamon Sugar Donuts
Remove from pan.
So enjoying my Sunday evening AND the fact that no one has to get up for work or school tomorrow. Ahhhh. Long weekends are the best. (Baked cinnamon sugar donuts make them even sweeter.)
Let's face it - everyone has a favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe. Even my non-baker friends make their way to the kitchen to bake the occasional batch of chocolate chip cookies.
Chocolate chip cookies are as personal and individual as the people who make them. There are thick and thin versions, crispy and chewy cookies, cookies with nuts, coconut, oats and fruit and cookies with dark chocolate and milk chocolate and semi sweet chocolate. I've tried a LOT of different chocolate chip cookie recipes and honestly there hasn't been any that I didn't like. As long as a cookie has chocolate - I'm in.
I tried this new version of chewy chocolate chip cookies out on my family this week. There were no complaints. Just lots of mmmmmm and yummmm.
Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
Combine dry ingredients and add to mixer and beat on low until just blended.
Stir in chocolate chips.
Scoop dough into rounds and place on silpat lined baking sheets. Chill for at least 10 minutes.
Bake 12 minutes or until lightly golden brown.
Cool on pan 2 minutes than transfer to wire rack to cool 5 minutes longer.
Pour a glass of milk and sink your teeth into a warm and gooey chocolate chip cookie.
Friday nights are perfect chocolate chip cookie nights.
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