Monday, August 27, 2007

So-Simple Oven-Fried Chicken

Here's our standby baked chicken method (I almost hesitate to call it a recipe because it's so simple). This amount of coating mixture will cover 10 to 16 thighs or 5-7 lbs. Just double or halve the amounts as needed for the quantity of chicken you're baking.

This is really easy--just pop it in the oven and ignore it for about an hour. It's pretty forgiving if you leave it in the oven, too, as long as you leave the skins on the chicken.

You can use the same recipe for boneless skinless chicken, but you'll need to reduce the baking time and watch carefully to make sure it's not getting too dry.

  • Raw (thawed) bone-in chicken pieces with the skin on.

  • 1/2 cup flour, any kind (I've used rice, whole wheat, or a combination of various alternative flours)

  • 1 teaspoon RealSalt Organic Season Salt or 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of your favorite seasoning mix.

  • One or more large baking dish(es)

Preheat oven to 425° F.

Mix together flour with salt. Put flour mixture in a shallow dish wide enough to roll a piece of chicken. This should be enough for 10-16 pieces of chicken, or 5 to 7 lbs.

Take raw (thawed) chicken pieces (I use thighs) and rinse with cool water if desired. Let any excess water drip off and roll the chicken pieces in the flour mixture to coat.

Lay the pieces into a baking dish. (Use a rack or a broiler pan if you want to minimize fat content, but I usually just use a plain glass baking dish). Bake at 425° F for 40-60 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 180° F.

You might want to cut the meat off the bones and save the bones in the freezer to make bone broth later. I'll be posting a recipe for bone broth soon!

Chicken cooked this way is good chilled, or can be frozen and reheated. I usually bake up a huge batch and freeze some for later.

Monday, August 20, 2007

French Onion Steak

Take some cube steak, or any other meat requiring long, slow, moist cooking. Put it into a baking dish. Add enough French onion soup to almost cover the meat, or about a cup of soup plus enough water to cover it. Put a lid on the dish or cover it with aluminum foil. Bake at 350(F) for about one hour or until tender.

Serve over rice, noodles, potatoes, squash or a stir-fry.

Don't be intimidated by the French Onion soup . . . all you need is an onion and some beef broth, and it can be made in about the time it takes to thaw steaks in the microwave. Or just throw onions, beef broth and a bit of salt in the pan with the meat. It won't taste quite as good, but it will work.

I used one package of French Onion soup that I'd made previously and frozen in serving-sized portions. I just laid the two big steaks out in a big glass baking dish, dumped in the thawed soup and some water, covered it and stuck it in the oven. So simple, but delicious!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Rye Pancakes

This recipe is low in sugars, which means that it has no added sugars and uses selected ingredients that are very low in fructose, sucrose and lactose. This is helpful if you are sugar-intolerant or on a yeast-restricting diet. Rye is lower in fructose/fructan content than wheat. If you are dairy allergic, just substitute non-dairy options (vegetable oil or lard, rice milk or water) for the dairy ingredients.

Rye Pancakes

Beat in a medium bowl:

1 egg
3/4 cup rice milk or other liquid (I use Rice Dream Original Unenriched)
1/4 cup active live yogurt (I used homemade yogurt made with organic pasture-fed whole milk, cultured for almost 24 hours. Such a long culturing time makes for lower lactose and higher probiotic content.)
2 Tablespoons melted butter, ghee, lard or oil.

Mix together dry ingredients:

1 cup rye flour (I use organic whole-grain flour)
1/4 tsp unrefined sea salt
1 Tablespoon safe baking powder [If you can't use baking powder, try 1 to 1 and 1/2 tsp baking soda]

Preheat the frying pan over medium-low heat (I set mine slightly under 5 on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being hottest).

Whisk the dry ingredients into the egg mixture and beat until smooth, but don't overmix. The mixture may look slightly thick and sticky. Try making a test pancake, and then if needed add more liquid to get it to your desired thickness.

I like to use a small ladle to pour pancake batter on the griddle. Quickly spoon approximately 3-4 inch circles of batter into your non-stick or oiled frying pan. Cook on one side until bubbles in the center pop and do not refill. The bottoms should be light to medium brown at this point. Flip over and cook until the pancakes are medium-brown on the other side and solid in the middle.

Eat plain or serve with your favorite topping.