Garlic Butter Roasted Chicken

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Guess what? It’s fall! That means I’m back! I’m alive I can use the oven, I cook and bake again and it won’t be over 100 degrees in my apartment! That’s okay I had a lot going on for this summer.

Weddings, seeing family that came back from Africa, new job, concerts, make new friends and reconnecting with old ones.

Realizing why I liked what I liked in my youth and bringing it back it into my life, it was a lot of personal growth and figuring out who I was this season. With that being said let’s start this season off with good things this includes this chicken!

I made this chicken last Sunday My friend came over and I made dinner, let me tell you I didn’t make this for me and the Cat that’s a whole other story.  This recipe is from my new favorite cookbook Seriously Delish by Jessica Merchant

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Aren’t raw chickens weird? But when it’s cooked it’s just pretty and delicious.

This chicken is very easy to make. It’s butter softened and minced garlic  mixed together you put in un the skin of the chicken you give chicken a massage. do not put the garlic butter on the outside of the chicken because the garlic will burn and that’s gross and no one wants that.

you coat the outside with olive oil

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GET IN MY MOUTH!

GARLIC BUTTER ROASTED CHICKEN

1 whole chicken

1/2 stick of butter softened

3 cloves of garlic minced

3-4 tsp olive oil

salt

pepper

Preheat the oven to 425, take out the bag of chicken gizzards, cut off extra fat and feathers, (Yes that happens) rinse off the chicken and pat it dry with paper towels. Take your softened butter and minced garlic and mix them together til well mixed together. Now stick you hands under the chickens skins to create surface area, Start taking globs of the garlic butter and rubbing under the skin of the chicken. once you’re finished coat the chicken with olive oil and the salt and pepper to taste, I cook chicken breast side down so the juice drips into it. Tuck the wings underneath and cook til juices run clear about 80 minutes.

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Cream of crab soup

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I learned how to drink alcohol between the ages of 21 and 25… yeah lets just stick with that, 21 to 25.

Learning how to drink is an exercise in irony.  It’s like you have to learn how not to drink in order to learn how to properly drink.

The lessons learned are often far too numerous and embarrassing to acknowledge.

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Stay away from that dark rum.     You didn’t need to drink whatever was in the paper bag.     Any booze made in a bathtub is really really really not a good idea.     A shot on the way home from the bar is 100% foolish.     Every drink in Vegas will somehow multiply itself by WAY TOO MANY!    Tequila… ugh.     Cheap gin is downright criminal.     Dropping a shot into any other drink and consuming it quickly should be reserved for sushi karaoke bars, or better yet… NEVER-ish.    Don’t Jagermeister anything.    You are not Tyra Banks in Coyote Ugly before she went to law school.      Vodka is not spicy water. (guilty as charged for everything on this list and still sometimes do it. shhh)

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The lessons really are too many  to chronicle.  I mean…

I found my drink by figuring out what wasn’t my drink, a feat I hope you all approach gingerly. My drink order:  A Maker’s Mark Manhattan, up, with two cherries.  Gah… just to think of 21-year-old me ordering that drink makes me roll my eyes.  I was going for sophistication, poise, edge, knowledge, with a touch of sweetness.  Also… gag me with a spoon.  Right?  I think mostly I was trying to seem cool enough not to get carded.

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These days, anyone that cards me is an angel sent from heaven.  Literally?  My drink of choice currently: an Old Fashioned, no cherry, extra twist and what kind of Rye Whiskey do you like best, bartender?  It’s simple and classic and admits defeat when it comes to proper rye whiskey knowledge.  I think it might also betray my Mad Men fan girl tendencies but I’m ok with that.

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Easy Cream of Crab Soup

1 lb. crab claw meat
1 pint half and half
1 pint milk
1 c water or chicken broth
1/2 stick butter
1/2 c flour
1 T Old Bay (and more to add to own bowls when serving)
1 T parsley

Make a light roux with the butter and flour.  Melt butter, add flour and stir continuously in a large heavy pot on low heat, until smooth. (about 5 minutes). Slowly add water/broth and stir until thickened, and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in half and half and milk. Add crab meat, parsley, Old Bay and cook on low heat until thoroughly heated through, but do not boil. Simmer until soup is desired thickness. Sprinkle extra Old Bay on top if desired.


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Mango Avocado Salad

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So on the east coast it’s technically spring!

In the last week we have been getting a mixture of 40 degree weather, a sorry excuse for snow, rain and 60 degree weather!

I’m just ready for warm weather, so why not get in the mood with tropical-esq fruit?

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Instead of drinking booze, I went the healthy route…

Mango, avocado, I made a vinaigrette dressing with coconut oil, and a touch of honey.

it makes you feel fancy or feel that that you can afford a nice fancy trip…

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The sweetness from the mango, and the creaminess from the avocado makes this a very enjoyable salad…

I would have just posted me eating an avocado, and the 8 billions ways you could eat the dang on thing but no would be interested in that post, well I don’t think so…

I mean I could just tell you how I’m watching Will and Grace but what’s the fun in that?

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Mango Avocado Salad with Coconut Honey Vinaigrette 

Makes 1 big salad or 2 side salads (easily can be multiplied)

2 yellow mangoes (they run smaller than regular mangoes you can use those to, just 1  of those)

1 medium avocado

season with salt and pepper on top

Add extras if you want…

1 banana

roasted pistachios unsalted

(I added these 5 minutes after I started eating it)

Coconut Honey Vinaigrette

1/8 cup coconut oil melted

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1-2 teaspoons honey

Slice and pit mangoes and avocado, if adding the banana peel and slice as well. Arrange fruit on plate, set aside. Melt down your coconut oil I put mine in the microwave for 30 seconds let cool for a few seconds, add the vinegar and honey whisk until well combined. Drizzle over fruit, Now add the salt and pepper and pistachios if you are… I always toss a salad around on my plate before I start eating it so that is why those go last.

Spinach Lasagna

eggnog pumpkin pie 004I like extra sauce… I’m a freak. You might like dry pasta but I don’t

One time in college I was real low on sauce and had ranch dressing so I added it on top of my pasta and tomato sauce, gross I know right? It really wasn’t bad. I would be lying if I said I never did that again. When you’re poor and in college you do what you can do… My roommates thought I was gross, my buddy Dane kinda just laughed at me and shook his head, I think he saw it as cry for help, lets just say I didn’t live that down for a long time

eggnog pumpkin pie 005CHEESE!

Who doesn’t like cheese? I use 3 cheeses in this for the filling shredded mozzarella, Cottage Cheese and Ricotta!

I could never be a vegan.. I just love cheese way to much, vegetarian sure whatever but i can’t replace tofu for cheese. or quinoa for a cookie flavor but that’s different story. people think they’re bakers sometimes… they don’t have that sparkle for it so like don’t try to spark it now.

eggnog pumpkin pie 002yes I know the noodles are touching and are uncooked.

I have a magic trick, I bought no boil lasagna  noodles they grow while they bake it’s kinda awesome considering I can get extra lazy when it comes to just to actual cooking… make me a hot dog whatever.

eggnog pumpkin pie 007it’s packed with spinach, spinach is one of my favorite vegetables it just tastes so earthy and you need that to break up the cheesy goodness that’s going on in this lasagna.

eggnog pumpkin pie 008Can I mention lasagna is awesome to have on a holiday dinner table. A nice vegetarian option… hey there is vegetables in it it’s sorta healthy isn’t?

Spinach Lasagna

9 -12 no boil lasagna noodles

2 jars of your favorite sauce

2 cups of low-fat ricotta cheese

2 cups low-fat cottage cheese

1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese

1 clove garlic chopped

2 eggs

1 frozen package of spinach thawed and drained

salt and pepper to taste

Preheat your oven to 375 in a medium-sized bowl mix 1/2 cup of mozzarella, all of the ricotta and cottage cheese, garlic, eggs, spinach, salt and pepper. Mix and fold till well combined sit the bowl aside. now pour a little bit of sauce in the bottom in a 9×13″ pan just make sure its well coated place 3 noodles in the pan 2 on the side and on in the center don’t worry they spread and touch each other while baking in the oven. next pour more sauce on top enough to coat. Next add the cheese filling well spread out then top with noodle, then sauce, then cheese filling again. do this for 3 to 4 layers. the top should be sauce and then take the 1 cup of mozzarella cheese and sprinkle it on top. Cover with foil. Place it in the oven and bake it for 25 minutes. Take off the foil and bake it for 5 minutes or till the cheese gets a little brown and bubbly.

It can hold in the fridge for 2 to 4 days after baking.

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Pizza Stuffed Potatoes

smores bars 014Can I tell you, I love pizza…

It’s not like I love lamp, or puppies

It seriously must be my favorite thing. I’ll types and flavors.

If I were to die and could have a last meal It would be pizza.

Brick oven, hmmm thin crust, for both. Crushed tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, spinach, roasted tomatoes, Portobello mushrooms.

The second would be whole wheat crust, garlic olive oil sauce, fresh mozzarella, peaches, black berries, and grilled chicken.

enough about me. What would you want for your last meal?

Do you think vegans would want a steak? I mean who’s counting you’re dying right?

If I couldn’t have gluten i would probably eat 10 baguettes and 20 doughnuts or something.

smores bars 010Lets be honest. I’m single and on a budget. Potatoes are cheap.

I had everything else in my pantry.

and I always have cheese. Honestly If I can make it taste like pizza I will.

nice thing about this is they are gluten-free.

smores bars 012Also since I’m single and typically cook for myself I can eat this in 4 sittings.

This was a two-pound potato people!

I mean that’s bonkers huge.

But you can totally turn this into a dinner for two. Also you can get normal sized potatoes.

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Pizza Stuffed Potatoes

4 medium russet or Idaho potatoes

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1/2 cup very finely chopped green peppers (optional)

1/2 cup very finely chopped mushrooms (optional

a handful of pepperoni slices, sliced thin and then chopped (optional)

1/2 cup pizza sauce (or more, depending on your preference)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Poke holes in potatoes with a fork and bake for about 40-45 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool.

Once cool, slice around the inside of the potato and scoop out the flesh, be careful not to poke holes in the bottom (it’s okay if you do – it happens!). Put scooped potatoes in a bowl and mix with 1/2 cup mozzarella and 2 tablespoons each of peppers, mushrooms and pepperoni. Mix well. Scoop mixture back into potatoes and spoon pizza sauce over top. Add more toppings and cheese. Bake for 10-15 more minutes.

Other pizza flavors you could use: buffalo chicken, bbq chicken, margherita, pierogi, and of course – an array of toppings!

Dorito Taco Nacho (Copy Cat of Taco Bell Dortio Tacos)

peach bicuits, crumble, taco night, shirley 018I like to drink rum and coke out of mason jars, with two hands, sitting alone at a bar.

I like to eat avocados standing in the kitchen, staring at the wall, with extra salt and too much lime.

I like to eat summer corn raw, in clusters.  I like to binge on cherry tomatoes.  I like to eat tacos in excess… extra spiced.

Please never let the summer be over.  Please and thank you.

(I’m kinda lying here…)

T-minus five days (give or take) before I make some sort of taco grilled cheese sandwich concoction.  I’m sorry/totally NOT sorry.

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Grab a spoon that you love!  Any spoon.  Any size.  The bigger the spoon, the more the taco seasoning… obviously.

Here’s what’s rad about making your own taco seasoning:

you totally have all of these spices in your cupboard, you can kick up the spice and chill on the salt, and (most importantly) you’re the boss of you!

Get things going with chili powder, cumin, and paprika.  We’re also going to add dried oregano, onion, garlic, salt and spice.

Like a boss.

peach bicuits, crumble, taco night, shirley 017So I got the idea from taco bell I’ve never had the tacos but I like cheese Doritos and  I like nachos.

My friends had a wedding cake tasting/ dinner at my house a few weeks ago I made Greg take home mare then half home I shouldn’t be left alone with that many nachos/ Doritos in my house.

Lets just say they are too good!

peach bicuits, crumble, taco night, shirley 019Now… after you make your spices, you’re going to need something to sprinkle it on, right?  Nachos would be a great idea.  Steak would me totally major.  Shrimp… I think you should.

Some one should make me some surf and turf tacos thank you!

Doritos Taco Nachos

serves 4-8

Taco seasoning

(Notes this makes a small batch you season the meat to your liking but you can save it for later use you can also buy a taco packet too if you prefer.)

Grab a teaspoon or tablespoon and let’s get this seasoning party going!

2 spoonfuls chili powder

1 spoonful ground cumin

1 spoonful paprika

1 spoonful dried oregano

1 spoonful garlic powder

1 spoonful onion powder

half a spoonful coriander

half a spoonful salt

half a spoonful crushed red pepper flakes

Toss together.  Store in a jar.  Apply liberally to most everything.

Nachos

1/2 – 1 LB of meat (Ground turkey, beef, pork or chicken. Steak, shrimp, chicken) Your choice I used ground beef

Taco seasoning to your liking

1/2 bag of Doritos (you can use any I prefer original cheese)

1/3 – 1/2 head of lettuce

1/2 pint of cherry of grape tomatoes halved

1 1/2 cups chihuahua cheese shredded

1/2 avocado sliced

Salsa and Sour cream for serving on the side

First slice and chop lettuce and tomatoes and meat if you need too. then grate your cheese. No in a frying pan cook your meat till its cooked all the way through drain out fat juice from the pan save a little bit to help the seasoning stick. add the taco seasoning to your liking. once done. Place the Doritos on a pan or tray or plate then dress the nachos. I did the lettuce and tomatoes first then cheese then the meat I didn’t want the chips to get soggy But you can dress them how ever you like your nachos. I did the avocado on top then served sour cream and mango salsa on the side.

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BLT Chopped Salad

blt salad 013Sooo If you invite a boy over for lunch you can’t just have doughnuts and milk and cereal. I sadly found this out  the hard way.

even If they are your friend since 6th grade and a ginger. It just doesn’t work out.

And they typically don’t want just a salad some plain old salad.

So I spruced it up with BACON yes bacon and what would be even better with its buddies L AND T

Also some added friends like corn and cheese and avocado.

May I say I had to yell at him to not eat the little bit I saved for my lunch tomorrow at work.

blt salad 007Bacon and corn are new friends and love each other did you get that email?

You didn’t?

Well here is the news. No news paper needed.

blt salad 008Mmm… Sorry I just had to!

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BLT Chopped Salad

Yield: serves 2

Total Time: 25 minutes

2 cups Romaine lettuce, chopped

2 cups mixed greens, chopped

1 – 2 tomatoes, chopped

4 slices thick-cut bacon, fried and crumbled

1 cup sweet corn

1 avocado, chopped

4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled

1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

1 lime, juiced

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

As a note, to chop my lettuce I like to lay it out on a big cutting board and just continuously run my knife through it (in all different directions) until it’s chopped as much as I like.

In a large bowl, combine lettuce, tomatoes, corn and avocado. Add in salt, pepper, olive oil and lime juice then toss well to coat. Fold in bacon and cheese then divide evenly amount 2 plates. Serve!

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