Roasted chicken thighs with root vegetables

When I first got married, I could not bake chicken for the life of me. No matter what temperature I baked it at or for how long, when I served it, it would still be pink (or even bloody) in the middle. After almost 8 years of marriage, I have finally perfected a baked chicken recipe that is simple and healthy. This recipe can be adapted to accommodate any type or amount of vegetables you have on hand. I served this with the quickest dinner rolls from scratch I’ve ever made before (see recipe here).

Roasted chicken thighs with root vegetables (adapted from here)

The amounts listed below are what I had in the fridge.

Ingredients:

8 chicken thighs (I used skinless, boneless.)
2 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
2 celery stalks, cut into large pieces
2 kohlrabi, peeled and cubed
non-stick cooking spray
5-6 small, unpeeled new potatoes, cubed
1 onion, cut into large pieces
1 T salt
2 t dried thyme
1 1/2 t ground black pepper
1/4 ground nutmeg

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 450°F.

2. Mix salt, thyme, 1½ teaspoons pepper, and nutmeg in small bowl.

3. Spray a 9×13-inch baking pan with nonstick spray. Place vegetables in the pan.

4. Sprinkle half of the spice mixture on the vegetables.

5. Lay the chicken over the vegetables. Sprinkle the remaining spice mixture on the chicken.

6. Cover with foil and bake until the chicken is golden and cooked through, about 45 minutes. Serve.

Comment love: What are you favorite chicken recipes?

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Minimalist kitchen: New uses for the strawberry huller

I love my strawberry huller. It is great for removing the green tops from strawberries without having to waste a lot of the small berry. It’s also great for removing the eyes from fresh pineapples.  If you don’t have one, you should think about getting one.

How many of you are guilty of letting vegetables go past their prime? I had planned to make roasted chicken with root vegetables for dinner tonight (more on that tomorrow) and discovered that my potatoes had “eyed-over”. Pineapples eyes are just like potato eyes, right?

The potato eyes can then be thrown into your compost bin. (For more on how to urban- compost in your apartment, check out this post.)

Comment love: Do you use a strawberry huller? Do you have any other uses for it?

No phone zone

Sometimes I think I was born in the wrong decade/century. While I definitely see the utility in email and texting, and technology in general, sometimes I think we need to make a more conscious effort to disconnect and unplug. Oprah has a campaign to stop texting while driving, but the “No phone zone” should extend to the dining room table and bedroom.

Since finishing school and moving back to live full-time with R, we have informally decided to have a “Year of Yes”. What exactly this means, we are still defining. Four years is a long time to have only spent the weekends together and I’m sure the life experiences we’ve had over these years have changed us. So, we just want to take time to focus on “us” and living life “together” once again.

Anyhow, this “Year of Yes” will hopefully have us saying “No” to one thing.

Here’s the email I wrote to R today:

During the Year of Yes, let’s say NO to phones at the dinner table and right when we wake up. Let’s say YES to more conversations and YES to more experiencing the present!

http://www.realmomnutrition.com/2012/08/16/why-life-got-better-when-my-smartphone-died/

Are you in Dr. Mr. H??!!?

Love,
Mrs. Dr. H

Out of the 2 of us, he’s probably the one who will have a harder time with this, especially at the dinner table. But we’ll see.

I recently read an article about productivity that suggested not checking your email for the first hour of your day. Brilliant. Why didn’t I think of this? I’ve been practicing this for about a week now. It definitely takes discipline, but I think it’s a habit that I’m going to keep around.

Oh, and here’s another reason I should probably spend less time on my phone. I dropped it on my garage floor about a week ago. Nothing like an ugly phone to discourage you from using it.

Comment Love: What about you? Do you find the phone [or insert other technology] invading more and more of your life? Are you constantly and compulsively checking Facebook, Twitter, or the weather just because it’s right at your fingertips? What steps are you taking to “be more present”?

Crunchy Biscoff Bread

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I was first introduced to these delicious crunchy cookies on Delta Airlines. I became to like them so much, that I would often beg ask the flight attendants for extra. My world changed when I discovered that Wegman’s was carrying them and I no longer had to buy a $500 plane ticket to devour enjoy these yummy cookies. Just when I thought life couldn’t get any better, one day while at Wal-Mart, there is was…Biscoff spread in “smooth” AND “crunchy”….wait for it…with a $1.00 off coupon. I could’ve died and gone to heaven. I snatched up those glass jars like I was a contestant on Supermarket Sweep.

Since Biscoff Cookies and Spread went mainstream, life has been a little sweeter around here. I have to admit, even though I’ve seen dozens of ice cream, muffin and bar recipes incorporating Biscoff, I’ve been more of a purist, using only the spread (on toast, apples, in banana milkshakes) or just eating the cookies. After hoarding Biscoff recipes on Pinterest, I finally decided to bite the bullet and bake with Biscoff. This recipe is a simple recipe that makes a sweet, dense bread, similar to a coffee cake.

Crunchy Biscoff Bread (I adapted the recipe found here.)

Makes 2 mini-loaves

Prep time: 10 minutes

Bake time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar (The original recipe called for granulated sugar, but I only had brown in the pantry.)
3 large eggs (I only had 2 eggs, so I just added a couple of teaspoons of water to the batter.)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Biscoff cookies, crushed (I used 7 for batter and 3 for topping. I crushed them in my Vitamix, but you could easily crush them with your hands.)
4 T Biscoff spread (Split between 2 loaves)

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 325°. Spray mini-loaf pans with cooking spray.

Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

Add eggs and vanilla. Mix well.

Gradually add in flour, baking powder and salt.

Gradually add flour mixture. Mix just until combined.

Add in crushed Biscoff cookies to the batter and mix until combined.

Divide batter between the 2 mini-loaf pans. Place about 2 T Biscoff spread on top of each loaf. Swirl Biscoff into batter using a butter knife.

Top loaves with more crushed Biscoff cookies.

Bake for 35 minutes, or until a pick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Cool completely in pan on wire rack (if you can even wait.)

How have you been enjoying Biscoff cookies and spread? Do you like it crunchy or do you like it smooth? Any Biscoff recipes you’ve been dying to try?