Feast of Saint Joseph and 5th Friday of Lent

On the National Calendar, March 19th is Poultry Day – a day to enjoy all things poultry, from eggs at breakfast to fried chicken for supper. Poultry actually refers to all domestic birds that are raised for their meat and eggs. Poultry includes chicken, turkey, ducks, geese, quail and even pheasant. The most common farm raised poultry are chickens.

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Christ the King Sunday Supper

Today is the Feast of Christ the King. Christ the King Sunday is recognized by both Catholic and Protestant Churches. That said, I can only share my Catholic understanding and perspective of the day. I am not familiar with the traditions of Christ the King outside my own faith, although I would love to learn.

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Rosemary Pork Roast with Carrots

Not every Sunday equates to chicken, but Sundays gotta have something special. It’s the Lord’s Day after all. As Catholics, we don’t just attend Mass, the Mass is Celebrated. Life should be celebrated. I know, sometimes that’s a tall order. Sometimes there is so much pain and suffering you cannot help but wonder why.

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Scallopini Sunday Supper

I gotta tell you, when I was originally putting this together, it was going to be all about the Pork Chops. But then I realized this is a lovely Sunday Supper and all I needed to make it complete was to share a few more recipes. How perfect!

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Start Sunday Supper on Saturday Night

While I’ve been planning to share one of Hubby’s favorite dishes, I realized I needed to share it on a Saturday for a Sunday Supper. The roast needs to refrigerate overnight for the seasonings to truly blossom, and it takes all day to cook. Hence a Sunday Supper posting on a Saturday Share.

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Slow-Roasted Sunday Chicken with Vegetables

Aren’t crock pots and slow-cookers amazing? Great in the summer when you don’t want to heat up the house. Awesome in the winter when you want a delicious meal that is ready when you are.

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Sunday Roasted Herb Chicken and Potatoes

Thank goodness, it’s Sunday. Sunday in the fall can only mean one thing – roast chicken! Golden, beautiful and just screaming of childhood memories. Many a Sunday we came home from Mass and sat down to a late afternoon supper of roasted chicken. The house was warm and filled with family. Cousins, aunts and uncles. People we weren’t really related to but called family anyway.

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Southwestern Roast Chicken to Spice Up Sundays

Hello beautiful Sunday. Today is the beginning of yet another wonderful week. What’s that you say? What makes this so great? We are alive! Every day is an opportunity to love and be loved. To show kindness and make a difference. Isn’t that reason enough to rejoice?

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Garlic Herb Butter Roasted Chicken

Happy Sunday Morning everyone! I love it when the Good Lord sees fit to bless me with another day. It’s important to remember to count your blessings, big and small. Just waking up in the morning is a blessing all its own.

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Game Hens with Garlic and Rosemary

A true Cornish Game Hen is a young female Cornish chicken about 5 weeks of age, weighing around 2 pounds. These hens are a large-breasted breed of English birds. No longer raised for commercial purposes, true Cornish chickens are raised by backyard enthusiasts and small specialty farms. These are poor egg-layers, bred strictly for their meat. True Cornish chickens are slow to mature, making them undesirable for commercial farms. So what are we buying?

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Fried Chicken with Creamy Gravy

Have you ever had a craving for something old? Something that once was a part of Americana – especially on Sundays in the summer? I can remember my mother frying up chicken in a big black skillet. The sounds of the skin sizzling in hot grease – the wonderful smells floating through the kitchen. I can see my parents so clearly in my mind’s eye – Dad swinging a meat cleaver, cutting up a big, plump broiler chicken for Mom to fry up. We always had our fried chicken with biscuits that Dad made from scratch and fresh corn that we picked that day from the small patch of corn growing out back.

I hadn’t made fried chicken in years. Oh sure, “oven-fried” is one thing, but it’s not the big-skillet-real-deal fried chicken of my simple country childhood. And I wanted some of that. I wanted the chicken I remember as a child, only this time without the bones. For one thing, Kiddo won’t eat chicken that is cooked with the bones. I guess that’s because he’s grown up eating the boneless, skinless variety of chicken that is “healthier”. With a good, double-coating of breading, you can almost achieve that outer “crunch” of the skin-on fried chicken. And that’s what we are really after – that bite into a crisp fried chicken with a tender, moist piece of meat. Yeah, that’s the good stuff!

Fried Chicken and Sunday Suppers go hand-in-hand all year round. Served up with some mashed potatoes and fresh-canned green beans. My oh my – my mouth is watering!

Fried Chicken with Creamy Gravy
Ingredients – Chicken
10 Boneless Chicken Thighs (or 5 boneless Breasts)
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 Cup Crushed Ritz Crackers (finely crushed)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup milk
2 large eggs
oil for Frying

Open thighs flat and season with salt and pepper. Set aside. (Note: If using breasts, cut in half width wise for faster cooking)

Combine cracker crumbs, flour, baking powder, remaining salt and pepper in a pie pan. Whisk together 1 1/2 cups milk and eggs in another pie pan.

Dredge chicken in cracker crumb mixture; dip in milk mixture, and dredge in cracker mixture again. Place chicken pieced on a wire rack and let sit for the breading to adhere to the chicken.

Pour oil to a depth of 1/2 inch in a 12-inch cast iron skillet (do not use a nonstick skillet). Heat oil over medium high heat (more on the high side). Once the oil is hot, fry chicken, in batches, 10 minutes, adding oil as needed. (If chicken begins to burn, adjust temperature).

Turn and fry 4 to 5 more minutes or until golden brown. Remove to a wire rack over a cookie sheet. Keep chicken warm in a 225-degree oven.

Carefully drain the hot drippings, reserving cooked bits and 2 -3 tablespoons of the drippings in skillet.

Ingredients – Pan Gravy
1/3 cup flour
2 – 3 tablespoons pan drippings
3 cups milk
salt & pepper to taste
1 Tablespoon Chicken Bouillon Granules

Carefully drain the hot drippings, reserving cooked bits and 2 -3 tablespoons of the drippings in skillet. Add 1/3 cup flour to the skillet with the drippings. Cook over medium high heat.

Using a whisk mix the flour into the drippings until it starts to brown, creating a roux. If the roux looks to oily and runny you can add another tablespoon or so of flour and mix again. Whisk constantly until the paste becomes nice and brown.

Slowly add the milk whisking constantly and blending the liquid with the flour mixture until combined. Add seasoning.

Let the gravy come to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer until the gravy thickens up. If the mixture thickens too much add more milk as needed until the gravy is the consistency that you want. This could end up being more than the required 3 cups.

Taste and generously season again with salt and pepper as needed.

One-Dish Chicken Supper with Potatoes and Gravy

After Brother Dear’s passing in December 2014, his best friend from childhood created a group on Face Book for those of us that shared the same childhood memories, experiences and “rearing”. We all grew up in the same neighborhood, attended the same schools (for the most part) and shared the same childhood. I had always thought much of what I remembered about my childhood was viewed through Rose-colored glasses, and not necessarily the way it was. That is until this group began to share their memories. Now I realize there can be only two explanations – either we are all wearing the same Rose-Colored glasses or we had a wonderful childhood. I’d rather think it is the latter – that we truly had a magical childhood – one that allowed us to be children.

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Apple Stuffed Roast Chicken

Growing up, there were many things I remember that were “tradition” – something we just did, although I never knew why. Eating roasted chicken on Sundays was one such tradition. Unlike meals during the week, the big meal on Sundays was served earlier in the day, usually around two or three in the afternoon. Growing up in a big extended family, it was not unusual for cousins, uncles and aunts to gather together for Sunday dinner. Sundays were special. And so were roasted chickens.

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Serving up Sunday Supper on a Saturday Night with an Apricot Glazed Ham

Christmas is coming. Okay, so it’s a few months away, but it is coming none the less. Time to test a few new recipes for the Christmas Table. One thing I know for sure – Christmas will include a ham. In our house, it simply would not be Christmas without a ham.

It seems to me that more often than not, when I’m serving up a ham I tend to stick to the “traditional” glazed ham I know so well. You know the one – with pineapple ring and cherries held into place with whole cloves – such a delicious throw-back to childhood memories. I can almost smell my parent’s kitchen at the holidays, be it Christmas or Easter. That distinct aroma of cloves was undeniable. Our house was always bursting at the seams with cousins, uncles, aunts and assorted “adopted” family for holiday meals. On average, there were at least ten to twelve children – little staggered stepping-stones – twice as many children as adults.

The grownups naturally gravitated to the kitchen, cup of coffee in hand, taking up their respective places at the holiday table. For whatever reason, to my ears they all seemed to be chattering at once – the men in English, the women in a mixture of Spanish, English and Tagalog. Everyone was dressed up in their Holiday best, having just come from Mass.

Upon our return from Mass Dad, with a kitchen towel draped over his left shoulder, heads straight for the oven to check on his ham. The ham always seemed to take forever to reach that perfect doneness when the meat was cooked through, all smokey and flavorful, and the fat curled up nice and crisp. Just when it was that Dad popped his ham into a slow oven is beyond me. All I knew with any certainty is that it made its way into the oven sometime between Santa’s visit and our departure for Saint Paul’s to attend Mass. Satisfied that all is well, Dad would pour himself a cup of coffee and joins the others at the table.

Holiday meals were so special. Christmas Dinner was one of three “special” occasions when real butter would be at the table, along with hot dinner rolls and a big bowl of black olives – perfect for sticking onto the ends of our fingers. (Is there any other way to eat black olives?)

Yeah, we’ll be having ham for Christmas, even if I do decide to serve it along side a Christmas Goose. Some traditions will never die. These days it’s not a matter of “if” a ham will be served but more a question of how the ham is prepared. Recipes need to be tested – and in my book that’s as good an excuse as any to serve up a Sunday Ham Supper on a Saturday evening . . .

Apricot Brown Sugar Glazed Ham
1 (8-10 pound) smoked picnic ham (bone-in)
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup apricot jam
1 teaspoon dry mustard powder

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Place the ham cut side down onto a sheet of aluminum foil, shiny side up. With a sharp knife, score the ham to allow glaze to seep into the meat.

Mix together the brown sugar, apricot jam and mustard powder in a small bowl. Pop mixture into the microwave for about 30 seconds to soften and make it more spreadable.

Brush onto the ham using a pastry or barbecue brush. Be sure to brush cut side as well. The ham should be well-coated with about half of the glaze mixture. Reserve remaining glaze for later. Enclose the foil around the ham and place on a rimmed baking sheet.

Roast in a preheated oven for about 15 minutes per pound.

About 20 minutes before the ham is done, apply all the remaining glaze. Roll foil down, exposing the ham so that glaze with thicken, and any skin or fat will brown nicely. (Note: If glaze has thickened simply zap in microwave for about 30 seconds).

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Hold the presses! Dinner was unbelievable! This recipe produced the most tender, flavorful, moist ham I have ever eaten. I don’t know if cooking the ham in my roasting oven rather than the big oven made any difference. I know I have a few more recipes to try . . . yet I have to admit, this was delicious!

 

Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme Roasted Chicken

Are you going to Scarborough Fair:
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme.
Remember me to one who lives there.
She once was a true love of mine.

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