March 12, 2008

Dinner Strategy

For several weeks in the spring and fall, evening-chore-time is the same time as making-dinner-time. Now that we've changed the clocks to Daylight Savings Time, I'm no longer in that crunch, but it poses some challenges for me while it lasts.

One solution is to do as much prep as I can early in the day. This might mean making a pan of lasagna or enchiladas, then store it in the refrigerater, to be put in the oven before we go outside to feed the animals. Another is to use my crockpot. And a third strategy is easy, quick-fix meals, such as a stir-fry - in this case I would chop all the veggies in the morning, measure all the added ingredients, and throw it all in the pan when I come inside.

We recently tried a new crockpot recipe, Chicken Paprika. The original recipe is here. I did cut it in half as there are only three of us, and the recipe made seven servings. Also, this was as much as would fit in my crockpot.

4 boneless chicken breasts
3 potatoes, peeled and sliced thin
1 onion, sliced thin
paprika, salt, pepper
1/2 cup chicken broth

(By the way, the potato peels were then fed to the chickens. The onion peels went into the freezer to be used in a future stock/broth, and the carrot peels (below) were given to the goats.)

I put the veggies in first, then topped with the chicken pieces and sprinkled with paprika, salt and pepper, and added homemade chicken stock. I let it cook on high for an hour and then on low for the rest of the day.

Since I also have a little crockpot, I made Glazed Carrots, using a new recipe. I cooked the carrot slices in the crockpot with water and salt for several hours, then drained the pot and added a Tbsp of butter, a Tbsp of brown sugar, and 2 Tbsp of apricot jam. If I'd had orange marmalade I would have used that instead, but it was good anyway. Cover and cook on high for an additional 30 minutes.
Actually, I think that this dish was a waste of energy. Next time I'll cook the carrots on the stove early in the day and store in the refrigerater, then when I come inside, I'll add the additional ingredients to the saucepan and warm it up.

As usual, I forgot to take a picture of the food after it was cooked and ready to eat... we were hungry. ~smile~

Till next time...

1 comment:

  1. The chicken dish sounds like something I would like to try.


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