Thursday, June 27, 2013

Barbeque Boneless Chicken Thighs--Quick and Easy on the Grill

   You can have delicious, tender barbeque chicken in a hurry! Just choose boneless, skinless chicken thighs and cook them up on the grill. I have always thought I needed to cook chicken low and slow after a long marinade or brining. But I wanted to make these up quickly so I tried this and it turned out fantastic!!
Do trim excess fat, skin off and make sure the pieces are uniform-ish in thickness. My favorite store bought sauce is Sweet Ray's honey BBQ.
                             Barbeque Boneless Chicken thighs
                                   quick and easy on the grill

Boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed
Generous  sprinkle of Salt, pepper, smoked paprika, onion powder, smoky BBQ spice blend
Drizzle of olive oil
Favorite BBQ sauce

Rub spice mixture onto chicken.

Lightly drizzle with oil.

Heat grill to medium high.

Place chicken thighs onto grill and reduce heat to medium.

Grill chicken for 5 -7 minutes or so, until chicken starts to brown and get grill marks. Flip and cook a few more minutes until almost done but not quite cooked through.

 Place in a bowl or dish and add favorite bottled or home-made barbeque sauce and coat each piece. Return to grill for about 4 or 5 minutes to caramelize sauce lightly and internal temp reaches 165 degrees

Let chicken rest a few minutes or place in a 200 degree oven to hold until everything is ready.


Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Lemonade in a Juicer

I do love lemonade in the summer!! I had a few lemons and I wanted to try to make a healthier version so I pulled out my big juicer and threw in some other ingredients. I added extra nutrition and needed a lot less sugar. If you like tart, you can even skip the sugar altogether since  juicing grapes and apples means there is a lot of natural fructose in this refreshing beverage.  Pull out your juicer and try your own version! I think this could be good with some cucumber or carrots, too!

Lemonade in the juicer

1-2 lemons , zest removed*

About 2 ½ to 3 cup green grapes, washed ( just used a bunch, with stems. I did not measure)

1-2 apples, semi-peeled, chunked ( I used green granny smiths)

1” fresh ginger root,peeled,  optional

1 orange, zest removed, optional

3/4 cup kale, optional

Simple syrup- ¼ cup sugar , ¼  cup water, OR Agave optional

Juice everything except simple syrup.

Make simple syrup and cool. You may find your lemonade is sweet enough so do taste before adding. If you find it is still not sweet enough you can add more. Or sweeten with agave.

Serve over ice immediately for best flavor and nutrition.

*I used large lemons but the amount is really up to you. Try one lemon then add the other if needed. My juicer says to remove outer colored part of peel, as it is too sour and a bit bitter, but you could try leaving some on if you like extra flavor.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Baked French Toast

Breakfast for dinner is a favorite here. Perhaps that is because I love cooking up tasty breakfast food but I am not partial to early mornings. Here is a breakfast recipe which even I could use because it can be made the night before, refrigerated overnight and baked in the morning!

I had a package of King’s Hawaiian Sweet rolls in the freezer that I wanted to use up so I decided to make baked French toast. I wanted it to be rich so I tried for something between bread pudding and strata. This is pretty decadent, more like a dessert. But I topped ours with BlueberrySauce to make it more nutritious J

While this was made with Hawaiian sweet rolls you could use challah, brioche, French bread etc. Choose your baking dish wisely, it needs to be deep or wide but you don’t want this to be spread too thin in too big of a pan. I used a 9 by 9 pan that was over 3 inches deep. A little still spilled over so do put some foil below your pan.I think a 10 by 10 or larger would be better.

Baked French toast

One 12 oz. package of 12 Kings Hawaiian sweet rolls, or challah bread or brioche *

6 eggs

1 1/2 cups milk(whole or 2% )

1/2 cup half and half

½ cup brown sugar

3 TBSP maple syrup

2-3 tsp vanilla extract

Topping- ½ cup brown sugar, ¼ cup flour, 1 tsp cinnamon, ¼ cup butter, softened slightly  (2/3 cup chopped pecans, optional)

*Bread is best a little stale- I had a frozen package of hawaiian rolls  which I let sit out for a few hours.
Prep an extra deep square pan of at least 9 “ or 10”  by 3 “ deep or deep round baking dish of 11 inches or more by greasing generously with butter.

If using hawaiian sweet rolls, remove from package but do not separate into pieces, Slice rectangle of rolls or loaf into ½ inch slices. They could also be torn into ½ - 1 inch pieces.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, half and half, sugar, syrup and vanilla.

Pour just a bit of mixture into bottom of pan. Arrange a layer of slices or chunks of bread and pour on a bit more of the egg, milk mixture. Add another layer of bread and then egg and then another if needed. Pour the last bit of egg over the top and then push bread into egg/milk mixture.

Let this sit in the refrigerator for about 30-40 minutes or up to 7 or 8 hours at most.  Press it down once more.

Cut together the topping ingredients (except nuts).   Sprinkle this mixture and nuts, if using, over the top.

Preheat oven to 350. Place a foil lined sheet or piece of foil on the rack below to catch any spills. Put the  baking dish in the oven. This does puff up quite a bit; it will deflate after removed from oven.

 Bake for 55 to 65 minutes, until it is set, a knife or toothpick comes out clean and it is crispy on top.

Topping- My favorite thing to top this with is Blueberrysauce but other good choices are maple syrup or Ginger syrup .


Monday, June 17, 2013

Awesome Peanut Butter Cookies that happen to be Gluten and Dairy Free!

Peanut Butter Cookies –Gluten and Dairy free!

         These cookies are so delicious with a tender yet slightly chewy texture, that is just what I look for in a peanut butter cookie.  They are so quick and easy to make with just four ingredients. If all that is not enough, these delicious cookies are gluten free and Dairy free!
     It is great to have a gluten and dairy free snack for my friends with food sensitivities and especially one that tastes great and that does not require any special, unusual ingredients! But these cookies are so much more than just a GF/DF option; they are one of the best peanut butter cookies ever!!

We tasted these delightful cookies at the Green Palm Inn in Savannah, Georgia. The innkeeper, Diane McCray, baked these cookies during our stay and we enjoyed them so much! She graciously gave me the recipe so I could make them at home.

Peanut Butter Cookies –Gluten and Dairy free!

1 cup peanut butter*
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. Baking soda

Preheat oven to 350
* The peanut butter that people have chosen as the best for this is Skippy Natural Creamy with Honey.

Blend peanut butter and sugar with mixer.
Add egg, slightly beaten and baking soda and mix thoroughly.  You may wish to chill it a bit.
Roll into balls. Place on heavy cookie sheet and flatten or crisscross with a fork.  
Bake for about 10 minutes or until just barely golden brown.   Remove sheet pan from oven and cool cookies on the sheet for a few minutes until they are set and hold together then carefully remove to cooling rack.

I think these are best eaten in a couple days however we have never had any last more than a few days J Delish!