I had a cooking-intensive weekend, but it paid off today as I had a mostly stress-free dinner with my in-laws, not to mention plenty of other good food!
I started my morning with Maple Spiced Oatmeal with Currants before taking my toddler to church for Easter services. Even the kid liked it--she usually rejects oatmeal but she took a few bites of mine before requesting yogurt and a banana. Also before we left, I got started on dinner--Lemon Chicken in the slow cooker. When we got back home, my husband had just put Smitten Kitchen's Boozy Baked French Toast, which I threw together last night, into the oven. Paired with some spiked coffee, it was the perfect way to relax and feel festive before my in-laws arrived for egg hunting and dinner.
Dinner was the aforementioned braised whole chicken, artichoke mashed potatoes, roasted broccoli with crispy prosciutto and balsamic vinegar (from Nom Nom Paleo), and wine--a nice California white blend. I knew we would like the broccoli, but the potatoes were the hit of the table. Even my father-in-law, who isn't a big potato guy, had some. Finally, we topped it off with banana spice cake (bundt style) and cream cheese glaze, the leftovers of which I managed to photograph before my roommates gobbled it up.
I'll take more pictures in the future, but we just had the idea to start the blog tonight and I was so excited about today's food I had to share! I've linked recipes above where I got them online, and the couple from cookbooks are below.
Maple Spiced Oatmeal with Currants (adapted from the Ultra-Metabolism Cookbook)
4 servings, 3/4 cup each
Prep time: 5 min
Total time: ~35 min
- 4 cups water
- 1 cup steel-cut oats
- 1/2 cup currants
- 1/4 cup maple syrup (original recipe calls for 1 tsp. maple extract)
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- pinch allspice
- splash whole milk (original recipe calls for unsweetened soy milk, optional)
I immediately divided it into four containers and now I've got breakfast ready to go a couple mornings this week!
Slow Cooker Lemon Chicken (from Weight Watchers Slow Good Super Slow Cooker Cookbook)
Makes 6 servings
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 3 or 6 hours
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1.5 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. fresh ground pepper
- 1 (~3.5 lb.) chicken
- 1/4 cup chicken broth
- 3 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp. grated lemon zest
Heat and grease a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken breast side down and brown, turning frequently, for 6-8 minutes. Transfer to a 5- or 6-quart slow cooker. Add broth to the skillet and deglaze, scraping the brown bits from the skillet while the broth boils briefly. Add 1 Tbsp. of lemon juice and pour the liquid over the chicken. Cover and cook until fork-tender (3-4 hours on high or 6-8 on low).
About 20 minutes before cooking time is over, stir lemon zest into the remaining lemon juice and pour into the slow cooker. Cover and cook on high until fragrant. Transfer chicken to a platter and serve with the broth as a sauce.
(WW says to use low-sodium chicken broth, to discard the skin and wings from the chicken, and to skim any fat from the broth. I have low blood pressure and don't keep low-sodium anything around, the broth didn't seem overly fatty, and my husband said "the skin's the best part!" so I didn't do any of that.)
Cream cheese glaze (borrowed from here)
- 1 (4 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
- 1 tablespoon butter, softened
- 2 cups confectioners' sugar
- 1 teaspoon rum extract (didn't have any so I used almond and vanilla)
- 1 tablespoon milk