Monday, February 22, 2010

Sticky Chicken

This a good, roasted chicken that is good to put in the oven and slowly let it cook. It takes anywhere from 3-5 hours, depending on the size of your chicken. If you would like to do more than one, then double the recipe. Look for whole chicken on sale, because it is a lot cheaper then buying store prepared rotisserie chickens. Enjoy!

2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoons paprika
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4-1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (depending on taste)
1 onions, quartered
1 (4 pound) whole chicken

In a small bowl, mix together salt, paprika, onion powder, thyme, white pepper, black pepper, cayenne pepper, and garlic powder. Remove and discard giblets from chicken. Rinse chicken cavity, and pat dry with paper towel. Rub chicken inside and out with spice mixture. Put the onion into the cavity of the chicken. Place chicken in a resealable bag or double wrap with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight, or at least 4 to 6 hours.
Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
Place chicken in a roasting pan. Bake uncovered for 5 hours, to a minimum internal temperature of 180 degrees. Let the chicken stand for 10 minutes before carving.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Zucchini Parmesan

After talking with the girls at our Superbowl gathering, I found out that their children LOVE zucchini, amazingly enough. This recipe came to mind because it really is divine. I got it from another fellow blogger's site: It is amazing what a little tomato sauce and zucchini can do for each other. Also, check out her Spaghetti with Zucchini, it is just as wonderful and kid friendly :)Hope you all enjoy!

one shallot or one quarter of an onion, finely minced
one clove of garlic finely minced
one small can or half a large can of really good crushed tomatoes (San Marzano if you can)
a couple glugs of heavy cream (maybe three tablespoons)
two zucchini, sliced fairly thin
extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup of grated Parmesan (this is NOT the place for the green can, people)
1/3 cup of grated mozzarella (maybe get a slab of the good stuff from your deli counter and grate it yourself)

In a small saucepan, gently saute the chopped shallots or onions over low heat in a good tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt for about two minutes. (If you're worried about finely chopping onions and garlic, you can pulse them in a food processor for this job. Just don't do it so much they become juicy... that's bad for business in the breath department.)
Next, add the garlic for another minute and maybe a pinch of red pepper flake if you like your sauce a little spicy. Stir in the tomatoes, and season with a couple of pinches of salt and a crack of black pepper. After the tomatoes simmer for a minute or two, pour in a bit of heavy cream until the sauce becomes a rich pink color. Taste it, season a little more if you need to, take it off the heat, and set it aside.

While the sauce is cooking, you can slice the zucchini. Just use a sharp knife and take your time. Or if you have a mandolin or a food processor with a slicing attachment, feel free to use those, too.
Now you just layer. In individual baking dishes (or just one small casserole if that's what you have), start with a little oil just so nothing sticks to the bottom. Then layer zucchini (drizzled with olive oil, sparingly, and sprinkled with salt and pepper on each layer), sauce, and Parmesan cheese.
Keep going until you hit the top of the dish or you're out of food - zucchini, oil, salt, pepper, sauce, Parmesan. Then sprinkle the top with some mozzarella to get a gooey top. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for about twenty minutes until it's nice and bubbly.

Note: I didn't use as much salt, b/c we are pretty sensitive to salty foods so you can cut it back and be just fine. Also, if you bake it in one big casserole, you will have to double the cook time. However, if you want to decrease the cook time then steam the zucchini in the microwave for a few minutes to start the cooking process.