Friday, October 16, 2009

Heartburn Free "Fried" Chicken

I love fried chicken. And I know it isn't good for me to have the "real thing" -- too much fat, which means a big case of heartburn

For quite a while I've been fiddling around with different things to try and find something that satisfies that fried chicken taste without the pain

Last night was the latest attempt, and the results were great

So, here's what I did.

1 medium chicken, cut into pieces (you could use pre-cut pieces all of one kind, say drumsticks or thighs or whatever you like)
12 soda crackers
1 tsp paprika


Ahead of time, wash the chicken pieces, trim the extra visable fat off with kitchen shears or a sharp knife

Bring a small amount of water (about 1 to 1 1/2 inches deep) to a boil in a pan large enough for either your steamer basket or a small collandar to fit in.

Put the chicken pieces in the steamer over the water (chicken should not touch the water level). Reduce the heat to medium and steam for 10 minutes.

Drain the chicken on a rack

NOTE: If it's going to be longer than about 15 minutes before you move to the next step, put the chicken pieces in the refrigerator until you are ready to cook them. The steaming could actually be done the night before or the morning off before you head off to work if that fits your schedule.

At cooking time, heat the oven to 375 degrees

Line your pan (I used a jelly roll pan, but a large cookie sheet would work) with parchment paper and set a rack on top of the parchment

In a zip top bag, crush the crackers until there are no big pieces (you're looking for the texture of cornmeal). Add the paprika and mix well.

Dip each piece of cooled chicken in water then put into the bag and shake, coating completely.

Place chicken on rack so the pieces don't touch each other.

Bake for 25 minutes, turn each piece over, bake for an additional 25 minutes or until the chicken is totally cooked.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Crunch top apple pie

I love pie.

Mostly, however, pies at our house are either made by the DH, or they are made in a "pre-fab" crust.

This one was made by me, crust and all, and it was actually edible!

So in honor of my making a good pie crust, I decided to share the recipe with you all (and yes, you too can make this pie crust!)

Crust Ingredients:
1 1/2 cup flour
3/4 tsp salt
2 tbls sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
2 tbls very cold water

2 cups cooked apples

1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup old fashioned oatmeal
1/3 cup chopped pecans
1 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup butter

How to:
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • In an ungreased glass pie pan, stir together the dry crust ingredients (I used a fork).
  • Add the oil and water to the dry ingredients and continue mixing with the fork until there are no dry spots.
  • Using your fingers, press the mixture into the edges and bottom of the pie plate, make sure there are no holes, and that the top edge rises above the pan.
  • Use the fork to prick holes over the bottom of the crust (this is called "docking")
  • Put the crust into the oven and bake for 5 to 8 minutes (blind baking), just until the crust firms up so any liquids in the filling have less chance of making the bottom crust soggy.
  • Remove the pan from the oven and spread cooked apples evenly in the crust.
  • Using a pastry cutter or two case knives, cut together the topping ingredients until they look like coarse meal. Spread topping over the top of the apples.
  • Bake for an additional 20 to 25 minutes, until topping is bubbly and the bottom crust is done.
  • Cool and eat.

I'm thinking you could use canned pie cherries in this instead and substitute almonds for the pecans. It would also be good with peaches (home canned?) and this topping.