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Friday, September 17, 2010

Food Friday: Yogurt Chicken

What? Chicken? I know, try not to fall over from shock. I realize that most of my cooking adventures involve baked goodies, but even I prepare a real meal every now and again. Although for the sake of fairness, this was baked too. It just didn't involve sugar or cinnamon or fresh fruit. Oh man, anyone else hungry for dessert?

Ahem.

We eat a lot of chicken around here, and frankly it can get pretty damn boring. I needed something beyond my typical repertoire, and I was sick to death of frying. (Dear Hubby takes major offense to the methods of boil/broil/bake, alas.) Surely there has to be some way to bake some skinless breasts without drying them out.

I found the recipe for Yogurt Chicken on SparkRecipes, although you really should go view the original post and tutorial at the site of the author, Ree Drummond (of PioneerWoman fame). Her visual and verbal storytelling make me giddy with delight. No, really. They do.

My version of the same:

First I prepared the yogurt. Garlic, check. Parsley, go. Lemon? Oh damn. No lemons. Oh well, that leaves room for extra garlic, right? Plus I was using homemade yogurt from local raw milk so I surely get some self-righteous points there, to balance out my incomplete ingredient list.

Garlic yogurt. Actually, quite *yum*.
Next, I had to contend with my pantry's lack of Panko breadcrumbs. Enter modification #2. For lack of a better name, we'll call these "Leftover bread heels pulverized in the blender". Sounds appetizing, no??

Crummy.
Then, the assembly! And here is why, although I cook several meals a day every day (I swear, I do!), I rarely blog meal food. When I'm involved, baking can be messy. But cooking can be a downright disaster. Tongs? Who the hell can get good coverage with tongs?


My hands are clean and besides, my family has a natural immunity to Mom-cooties just by virtue of prolonged exposure.

And this is what my kitchen looked like partway through the process.


Not exactly a showcase. You can see not only all of the stuff from the current experiment, but WTH is that canola oil bottle doing there? That's not even in the recipe! I'll tell you...I left it on the counter the night before and never bothered moving it. There. Now you know my dirty little secret. I'm lazy. Are you happy? I admitted it!! LAZY!!

(Shut. Up.)

So, my little soldiers were all dressed and ready to bake.


And they came out looking like this:

It's the BLOB! Um. Some of the topping melted off.
The dog was very happy to help me clean the baking dish later. ;)
Which looked even more appetizing when presented with side dishes, like so:


But not as nice as the professional quality photos I've seen on many other blogs. Which is why I am a mere bumbling wannabe and they are the Goddesses of Blogdom.

By the way, this recipe was freakishly easy (albeit messy, but see above: that may just be a personality thing, LOL) and was universally enjoyed by all. Definitely one for the "make it again" files. Although for the record, mine was not at all *crispy*, as Ms. Drummond's title suggests, but tender with a softish coating. Maybe it was the fact that I used skinless cuts, but I suspect the true culprit was my cheap-ass breadcrumbs.

And lest you think I've gotten all crazy and put the kibosh on the sweets, I also finally tried my hand at Oopsey Daisy's Snickerdoodle Muffins.

No process story with this one; just a photo of the final product.


Mine look decidedly less cinnamon-y than the originals for a reason. I only used like 1/3 of the topping. What can I say...I covered the tops of the muffins. Then I covered them again. Then I decided that the measurements must be off, because the called-for ratio was practically as much topping per cup as batter. So I stopped topping. Then when I pulled them out of the oven, I had that "Oh!" moment when I realized how she got hers so dang crunchy-coating and sweet-looking.

Oh well. Subtle is good too, and they tasted just fine.

6 comments:

  1. I don't think your bread crumbs were the problem! I have used pre-packaged and home-made for various projects (most usually, wanting crunch, in chicken nuggets)- neither really are all that crunchy. Next time maybe grind up some corn flakes?? That always gives a nice crunch!

    I keep toying with the idea of blogging about my baking projects. I am becoming downright famous for my baking at Sam's school. This week, I made pumpkin oatmeal cookies, chocolate biscotti (twice) and today I made an apple pie. Not really someone who takes super excellent pictures, though. Plus, I am too lazy to photograph and then blog the whole process.

    (ps- we have the salt on the counter- always. There is a spot for it in the cupboard- it just never gets put away. So you are not alone!)

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  2. Looks yummy, even if it isn't perfect! ;-)

    Do you have a Foreman grill? I don't make chicken any other way, now--it's fantastic.

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  3. For crispyness, I'd likely carefully fry them first to brown, then put them in the dish.

    I love your idea and may try a version of it!

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  4. Thanks for the comments, girls!

    Actually I don't mind the chewiness vs. crispiness. I liked it quite well the "tender" way and all things considered, I think that would be my preference. So "win" for me! But I figured I'd point it out just as an observation. ;)

    Sarah...I burned myself on my Foreman grill the first time I used it, and immediately gave it away. LOL!

    Rachel...chocolate biscotti sounds awesome. Mind emailing me your recipe?

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  5. To eliminate "club hand" use one hand for coating the food with the wet ingredients & the other one for the crumbs.

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  6. Ah. You assume that I didn't think of that, or that I care about having messy hands. The truth is, I did...and I don't. ;)

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