Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Cooking is my Other Craft.

Well..... I'm a new blogger!  Years after learning about the social networking scene, and fully immersing myself in said sub-culture, here I am with my very own blog.  My girls keep me fairly busy, but I like to share news and ideas with my fellow mommies through email, facebook, and yes, even in person.  So here I feel I can share new recipes, kidcare ideas, and crafts with anyone who is interested.
Now, I'm not gonna lie, there are nights I just want a PBJ and a glass of wine, but for the most part I really do enjoy cooking for my family.  I enjoy the challenges of finding something unique, affordable, and easy that both my husband and my 2-yr old will eat, that also did not come out of a box.  Not that there's anything wrong with Hamburger Helper. 
I also like to read, and collect books, so cookbooks are a great resource for me, but lately I've really been enjoying Rachael Ray's magazine.  I don't have time during the day to read an entire magazine, so after the kids go to bed, I skim through it, tear out the recipes whose titles sound appetizing, and put them away to go through later before recycling the rest of the magazine.  When I feel like cooking something new, I dig them out and read them in detail.  Then I make a menu for the following week or two, make a grocery list based on that menu, and head to my neighborhood Publix.
I did this on Sunday but didn't make it to the store until Tuesday, which was just as well because Monday is wing night anyway.  So my first of seven new recipes this week, courtesy of Rachael Ray Magazine, was Coconut Crusted Chicken with Mango Salsa.  I cooked it last night; Tuesday night, before my scrapbooking meetup with the ladies.

1 1/2 cups chopped mango
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1 tbsp rice vinegar
cilantro to taste
4 chicken cutlets
1 egg
coconut flakes
vegetable oil

It was quick and easy, and pretty cheap, the hardest and most time-consuming part being the chopping of the salsa ingredients.  My husband particularly enjoys helping me with chopping, but he was not home this time.  Mangoes are slippery little things and can be tricky to dice, so watch your thumbs.  Also in the salsa was red bell pepper, red onion, rice vinegar, and cilantro.
The chicken cutlets were dipped in a beaten egg and then pressed in coconut flakes.  I couldn't find unsweetened, so I used sweetened coconut and we liked it.  The chicken is browned in an oven-proof skillet and transferred to a hot oven to bake through.  I serve the chicken on a bed of white rice with the salsa on top. 
It was quite yummy, I would go as far as to say "restaurant-quality," and will be a great way to impress company without going too far overboard.  And, since the chicken cooks mostly in the oven and the salsa can be done a few hours ahead of time, you have time to chase around your kid who won't keep her underwear on.  She did eat some of this, but she didn't care for the salsa.  You could set aside some of the mango, without the onions and peppers, to put on top of a child's chicken and rice if you think they won't like those flavors.
And then it was off to scrapbooking!  I worked on my June and July layouts with my Cricut machine and spent FOREVER cutting and gluing little tiny cowgirls.  Pictures to follow.
Tonight it's Sweet-Potato-Topped Shepherd's Pie, also from Rachael Ray.  A twist on a classic; we'll see how it goes :)

Happy Parenting!  Try not to pull your hair out........

No comments:

Post a Comment