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Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

Posted by on Jan 18, 2017 in Blog, Bready or Not, chicken, gluten-free, healthier, main dish, maple | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

You know I love maple-flavored sweets. Maple works in a savory way, too–and creates meaty magic in this recipe for Maple Chicken Thighs.

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

This is some seriously good chicken. It marinates for up to a day in the fridge, resulting in tender, lightly-sweetened chicken. It does not create a heavy glaze and it’s not like teriyaki. It is… just plain delicious.

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

Honestly, I think the leftovers are even better. This chicken is phenomenal cut up in a salad or used with a touch of dressing in a wrap.

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

This is yet another recipe inspired from the cookbook Maple by Katie Webster. (Seriously, if you love maple, get this book.) The original version of this recipe included shallots (which I never buy) and apples and pears (which I knew my husband wouldn’t want with his supper).

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

Give this chicken recipe a try, and discover a new way to love maple!

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

These chicken thighs need to marinate for at least 12 hours, so plan ahead! The sweet-savory marinade penetrates the chicken, creating wonderful flavor and tenderness. The leftovers are phenomenal! Modified from the cookbook Maple by Katie Webster.

  • 3/4 cup apple cider or apple juice
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 3 green onions; white parts only, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 1/2 to 3 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs, each thigh cut into thirds

The day or night before serving

In a medium bowl, whisk together the apple cider/juice, maple syrup, vinegar, white portions of green onions, ginger, thyme, salt, and pepper. In a gallon-size re-sealable bag, place the cut-up chicken. Pour in the marinade and seal the bag.

Refrigerate the bag for 12-24 hours, turning the bag every so often.

To cook

Preheat oven at 425-degrees. Place the chicken in a 13x9 baking dish with all or some of the marinade; the chicken shouldn't be fully covered.

Bake for about 40 minutes, turning chicken once at the halfway point.

Chicken is fabulous fresh and as leftovers! Cooked chicken can also be portioned and frozen.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Maple Chicken Thighs

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Bready or Not: Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad

Posted by on Sep 28, 2016 in Blog, Bready or Not, cheese galore, gluten-free, healthier, main dish, side dish | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad

Bready or Not has featured a whole lot of sweets in recent weeks. Let’s switch to something delicious and healthy instead: Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad.

Bready or Not: Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad

This still has a little bit of sweetness going on. Butternut squash is naturally awesome that way, and a sprinkling of cranberries adds some extra oomph. Add some pecans for crunch and feta because CHEESE, and this creates a bowl of happiness. The quinoa adds protein and kinda enjoys the ride along with all the other flavors.

Bready or Not: Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad

I cobbled this together from several other recipes. I wanted something that I could invest some time in and then use as a quick-fix dinner for several more days. I parcel it into three or four containers, depending on the size of the squash, and my meals are set! Or, you could use this as a gluten-free main dish or side dish to feed a group.

Bready or Not: Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad

I can offer a few useful tips, too. I cook quinoa in my Zojirushi rice cooker. One cup of uncooked quinoa makes a LOT once its cooked, more than my salad recipe requires, but cooked quinoa keeps well in the fridge and can also be frozen and thawed weeks later without any issue.

Bready or Not: Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad

If you’re intimidated by cutting butternut squash, there is a safe and easy way to do it!

Next week’s Bready or Not officially kicks off my October-November tradition of pumpkin and autumn-themed recipes! Time to bust out the stretchy pants.

Bready or Not: Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad

Bready or Not: Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad

A Bready or Not Original! This salad takes some initial work to assemble, but it creates a big bowl of autumnal deliciousness! Serve as a main dish or side dish for a crowd, or use it as a solo meal over several days. This is gluten-free, healthy, and full of happiness.

  • butternut squash (2.5-3.5 pounds)
  • olive oil or avocado oil
  • pumpkin pie spice/cinnamon/nutmeg etc
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • feta cheese

Preheat the oven at 425-F.

Line a rimmed cookie sheet with aluminum foil. Spread out the chopped squash and drizzle with oil. Sprinkle spices of choice and some salt. Roast squash for 20 minutes.

While the squash is roasting, measure out the cranberries and place in a small bowl. Cover the cranberries with water and let them soak. Measure out the pecans.

When the 20 minutes is up, toss the squash in the pan. Drain the water from the cranberries, discarding water. Add the plumped cranberries and pecans to the squash, and season more, if desired. Cook another 10 minutes or so, until butternut squash is fork tender with roasted coloration.

Transfer the pan's contents to a large bowl. Gently stir in the quinoa. Serve hot or stash in fridge for later, and heat with microwave. Add sprinkle of feta just before serving.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad

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Bready or Not: Cato BBQ Rib Rub

Posted by on Jun 22, 2016 in Blog, Bready or Not, gluten-free, healthier, main dish, pork | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Cato BBQ Rib Rub

Today I’m providing my personal favorite, tested-a-gazillion times rub recipe for pork ribs.

Bready or Not: Cato BBQ Rib Rub

How you cook the ribs is up to you. My husband has a smoker, so he smokes these things for hours for delicious, succulent results.

Bready or Not: Cato BBQ Rib Rub

However, using this rub, you could barbecue ribs on a grill, or bake them in the oven. The choice is yours!

Bready or Not: Cato BBQ Rib Rub

The amounts stated in this recipe will cover about 5 pounds of meat. If you have leftover mix that hasn’t been in contact with raw meat, jar it and save it for later. You can also double or triple the recipe with that in mind.

Bready or Not: Cato BBQ Rib Rub

I have made this with several types of paprika. I favor smoked paprika, but all kinds worked well. I have also made this with fresh oregano and dried. You could certainly substitute or add other herbs, too.

Bready or Not: Cato BBQ Rib Rub

Whenever I find ribs on a good sale, we use this recipe. It’s one we often make for when company comes over, too. Everyone leaves full and happy!

Bready or Not: Cato BBQ Rib Rub

Bready or Not: Cato BBQ Rib Rub

A Bready or Not Original! This rub mix will cover about 5 pounds of your favorite pork ribs; baby back ribs are excellent. If you have leftover mix that hasn’t been in contact with raw meat, jar it and save it for later! You can double or triple the recipe with that in mind.

To intensify flavor, rub the meat and stash it in the fridge for a few hours before cooking.

  • 2 Tablespoons paprika, any variety
  • 1 Tablespoon brown sugar, packed
  • 1 Tablespoon dried oregano or 1/2 Tablespoon fresh oregano
  • 1 Tablespoon ground coffee
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

Combine rub ingredients well, making sure to break up any clumps. Coat the meat, front and back.

Cook ribs as desired: smoke, grill, or bake.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Cato BBQ Rib Rub

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Bready or Not: Crock Pot Green Chile Chicken

Posted by on Jun 1, 2016 in Blog, Bready or Not, chicken, crock pot, gluten-free, healthier, main dish | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Crock Pot Green Chile Chicken

My slow cooker is my friend, and in this case my friend heats up some fantastically flavorful chicken that’s good in all sorts of dishes!

Bready or Not: Crock Pot Green Chile Chicken

This recipe is a cousin to my Verde Pork Loin one. Both make a great protein for salads (my preference), tacos, burritos, casseroles, and likely all other sorts of stuff.

Bready or Not: Crock Pot Green Chile Chicken

Don’t be afraid of the chiles here, either. I was for years. A standard can of green chiles is pretty mild and adds a punch of flavor. If you’re feeding people who can take the heat, by all means, use the hot version! We favor the Hatch brand because my husband used to live in Las Cruces, near the Hatch Valley; it’s good to support New Mexico products, in any case.

Bready or Not: Crock Pot Green Chile Chicken

And yes, you can make this with chicken breasts or tenders, but there’s greater risk of the meat drying out. I much prefer to use boneless thighs in the crock pot.

Bready or Not: Crock Pot Green Chile Chicken

Modified from The Perfect Pantry.

Bready or Not: Crock Pot Green Chile Chicken

Bready or Not: Crock Pot Green Chile Chicken

Use boneless chicken thighs to create a flavorful, fantastic protein that’s good on a plate or in burritos, tacos, salads, and more. It freezes well for later eating, too!

  • about 3 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 16 ounce jar verde (green) salsa
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 4-oz can roasted Hatch green chiles, mild or hot

Cut the chicken thighs into thirds and place in a 4 to 6 quart slow cooker. Pour the salsa over them, followed by the garlic, cumin, and canned chiles. Give it a stir then pop the lid on.

Cook on low for 4 to 5 hours; if the chicken was still a little frozen, cook on high for an hour or so to speed the process. Use a slotted spoon to remove chicken pieces, and shred or cut them into chunks. Place back in crock pot to soak in juice for another 20 minutes.

Serve chicken on a plate, or in burritos, tacos, salads, or just about anything. Freezes fantastically for later dining.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Crock Pot Green Chile Chicken

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Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Verde Pork Loin

Posted by on Mar 2, 2016 in Blog, Bready or Not, crock pot, main dish, pork | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Verde Pork Loin

Since March is all about green, let’s start off the month with some colorful meat! This verde pork loin recipe, originally posted at the Holy Taco Church, creates delicious and versatile protein.

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Verde Pork Loin for Tacos & more

My slow cooker is one of my best friends, a friend that cooks up loads of food to feeds us for days. It works miracle when I’m writing on a deadline. This meat recipe reminds me a lot of posole, that luscious green Mexican stew.

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Verde Pork Loin for Tacos & more

This dish, though, focuses on the meat. This lets you be flexible. You can eat it on a plate with a vegetable side. Or on a salad. Shred it in tacos, burritos, or in a nice oozy quesadilla. Throw it on a Mexican pizza, or load it on nachos.

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Verde Pork Loin for Tacos & more

With good, tasty meat, you can find your bliss in many ways.

Plus, this is great to freeze in a larger dish or in personal portions. Make it last as long as possible!

 

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Verde Pork Loin

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Verde Pork Loin for Tacos & more

This slow cooker recipe takes minutes to prepare and makes a delicious pot of green, shredded pork. It’s awesome in taco shells, tortillas, salads, quesadillas, enchiladas, Mexican pizza, etc. Freeze leftovers for later enjoyment!

  • 3-4 pound boneless pork loin (shoulder works, though it's much fattier)
  • 1 15-16 ounce jar salsa verde (green salsa)
  • cumin
  • salt
  • pepper
  • yellow or white onion

Slice onion and place it in bottom of crock pot. Trim excess fat from pork and place it atop the onion. Sprinkle with cumin, salt, and pepper. Pour the full jar of salsa over the meat.

Cook in crock pot for 8 to 10 hours on low, or 4 to 5 hours on high. About 30 minutes before eating time, shred the pork. Make sure it's all submerged in the sauce and keep on warm setting until meal time.

This verde pork is awesome in taco shells, tortillas, salads, quesadillas, enchiladas, Mexican pizza, etc. It makes for happy leftovers, too.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Verde Pork Loin for Tacos & more

 

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Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings

Posted by on Jan 27, 2016 in Blog, Bready or Not, chicken, crock pot, main dish | Comments Off on Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings

There are a lot of slow cooker chicken and dumpling recipes out there, but I sought out one that makes everything from scratch. I made it, tweaked it, and loved it… so here it is!

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings from scratch

There is just something about chicken and dumplings on a cold winter’s day. It is soul food. The recipe I made for years required me to basically camp by the stove for two hours. I wanted something a lot more convenient.

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings from scratch

Most of the slow cooker recipes for this use lots of canned stuff and grocery store biscuits. I found a from-scratch recipe on How Sweet Eats and have tweaked it to use less broth, more seasoning, and boneless thighs. I find thighs work a lot better to the crock pot since they are less likely to dry out over the long cooking period.

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings from scratch

If you’re in need of something to warm your gullet and your soul, make this. The leftovers are darn good for the next few days, too, with or without the dumplings.

Modified from How Sweet Eats.

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings from scratch

This slow cooker chicken and dumplings recipe is both convenient and delicious. This big pot will feed a crowd or provide leftovers for days.

  • 1/2 sweet onion, diced
  • 1 cup baby carrots, whole and halved
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 1/2 - 3 pounds boneless chicken thighs, cut into halves
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon flour
  • 40 ounces low-sodium chicken stock or broth
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 cup half and half or milk
  • dumplings
  • 1 1/8 cups all-purpose flour
  • herbs to taste (parsley, basil, etc)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup half and half or milk

In the bottom of a 5 or 6 quart crockpot, layer the diced onion half, carrots, and garlic. Lay the chicken thighs on top and season them with salt and pepper.

Heat the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once it's melted, whisk in flour and cook for 2-3 minutes to create a roux. Once it's golden in color, add 2 cups of chicken broth. Mix it well as it rises to a boil; it'll thicken considerably.

After about 4-5 minutes, pour the sauce over the chicken and vegetables. Add the remaining chicken broth/stock. Put the lid on the slow cooker and cook on low for 4 hours.

Change the crockpot to high heat. Shred or cut up the chicken; it's okay if it's not fully cooked since it has more time to cook. Stir the half and half into the crockpot, and put the cover on again as you make the dumplings.

In a mixing bowl, combine flour, herbs, sugar, baking powder, salt, and pepper. Use a fork or fingers to crumble in the butter until it's evenly dispersed. Add in the half and half or milk until a sticky dough forms.

Use a tablespoon to dollop the dough into the crockpot. Cover and cook for another 1 to 1.5 hours. The dumplings will expand to cover the top. The dumplings are cooked when they are soft and no longer raw and sticky in the middle.

Serve immediately. Leftovers are fantastic heated in the microwave. If you need to make more dumplings, use the same recipe again and heat the leftovers and fresh dough on the stovetop.

OM NOM NOM!

 

Bready or Not: Slow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings from scratch

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