Where do I begin? Both of these recipes became quick favorites and neither takes much prep time. One, I followed to the letter. Well, as much as I ever do. You see, unless you're baking, the science of cooking is inexact, so your grandmother's "a little of this, a little of that" is completely valid, and pretty much an accurate summation for a recipe.
Anyhow, the first recipe I followed closely, but the second went right out the window.
Each of these recipes is yummy on its own, but because they both contain a fair amount of honey, they also pair well.
This fantabulous creation is my favorite slow cooker main dish to date. While I followed the base recipe for the sauce quite closely, I chose to use boneless chicken breasts (2 1/2 lbs.) instead of pork. Yes, this would make an amazing pork roast, or ribs, or butt. But I also knew, just from the ingredients that it would make fabulous chicken breast, or wings, or thighs.
I did serve it, as suggested, with mashed potatoes, but I did not thicken the gravy. Instead, I chose to just leave the sauce as loose as it came out of the pot. (I'm not so big on gravy.) I will warn you, the measurement for the basil sounds like a ton, but it was perfect. And I think I'd rather serve this with a brown rice pilaf than potatoes. (I promise I will eventually get around to posting that recipe.)
This is definitely one of those go to entrees for any time of year. There's no standing over a stove and no turning on the oven during those hot summer months. But it's also great as part of a stick to your ribs winter meal. I matched it with the cold broccoli salad below, but it would be great with oven roasted root vegetables as well.
|original recipe and photo from everybodylikessandwiches.com|
Many moons (nearly twenty years) ago, on my very first trip to Florida, I was dragged on a grocery shopping excursion to WalMart. It was there that I first tried the deliciousness that is broccoli slaw. Yes, the ability of southern chefs to turn virtually any vegetable into a "slaw" astounds me, but I've learned to trust them thanks to this one. It was amazing!
I enjoyed it so much that when I moved to the southwest, one of the first things I did during my first excursion to WalMart was stop at the deli counter and purchase two pounds of the stuff. Then I began scanning recipes on Pinterest to try and find a broccoli slaw that could duplicate it. Alas, I failed to find an exact copy, but thanks to this recipe, I was able to adapt one to fit my own taste and I happen to love it.
Don't get me wrong, this one is terrific, but I prefer the one I use because it's quicker, kind of a cheat, actually. My dressing is based on this recipe, and any other ingredients I use come out of "a little of this, a little of that"-type experimentation.
Quick Broccoli Salad
Chopping an entire head of raw broccoli is a royal pain. Also, blanching your broccoli for this recipe rather than serving it raw is a good idea unless you have time to let it sit overnight so it can soften a bit. That said, I do neither. I buy the chopped, frozen broccoli and thaw it. The texture is perfect and the broccoli is already washed, blanched, and chopped for you.
I also make a ton at once because it seems no matter how much I make, it's not enough. (I actually double this recipe if I plan to take it anywhere even though it's already about doubled from the original.) I like to have this all on its own. It makes a great lunch, but it's also a terrific side dish any time of year. And it's a novel substitute for a basic garden salad.
for the dressing:
1 (6 oz) container of plain Greek yogurt (or about 3/4 cup of homemade)
1/4 c lemon juice
1/4 c honey
few dashes of Tabasco to taste
for the salad:
2 (14-16 oz) bags of chopped frozen broccoli
1/2 red onion, diced
1/4 c of roasted, unsalted, chopped walnuts, pecans, or almonds
1/4 c dried cranberries or raisins (or both)
1/4 c unsalted sunflower kernels
2-4 strips of bacon, cooked until crisp, and chopped or crumbled (optional)
In a large bowl, whisk together all the dressing ingredients
Add salad ingredients and fold together until evenly mixed
Let sit in refrigerator for a few hours or overnight
Make sure the broccoli is fully thawed before serving
If you're not using bacon, you may want to add a pinch of salt to the dressing before you add the salad ingredients.