April 13, 2012

friday favorites and random musings

Hey Everyone! Happy Friday! I wasn't sure I'd have the time or energy to post today but here I am ready to rock it.... or at least type it... so here goes! Random Musings come to you first via Shana and her lovely blog Fumbling Towards Normalcy.

  • Today is Friday the 13th and I have to say every a month has a Friday the 13th in it I get a little excited. My mom's lucky day was always on Friday the 13th and I sort of wish that magic would rub off on me, but it hasn't. I've never had a particularly bad Friday the 13th so I guess I'm doing OK in that respect. I do live in a home where a black cat crosses my path every day too. All that being said I'm still very superstitious, I won't go near a ladder if it's in my way and I will always mark an X on my windshield if a black cat crosses my path in the street. It's not my black cat, which means it's totally different. Touch blue make it true!
  • Yesterday was my mother's birthday. Those of you new to the blog, my mother passed away a few years ago and while I've finally learned to cope without having her here the pain never really goes away. Thankfully I've learned to think of the good times to out weigh the sad that sometimes creeps up in my heart. Last night in honor of my momma I made one of my favorite comfort food recipes that she used to make, Chicken and Waffles. I make mine a bit healthier than she used to but one day when I'm ready to rock a total treat meal, I'm totally frying that chicken. {read Friday Favorites below for the recipe}.
  • I've decided that I hate fabric softener, not the job it does but the smell it makes. It's mostly the liquid version. We use dryer sheets in our house, the smell fades which makes me happy. Two of my co-workers must use it in liquid form because when they walk into my office I almost gag on the smell. Don't get me wrong both versions smell pretty, it's just a bit overwhelming. On the upside, my sinuses must be clear as a bell.
  • Mike posted a really funny story from cracked.com on facebook the other day about The Hunger Games movie and how it could have been much shorter if needed. If you'd like a great laugh, and loved the books, please read this. I am really shocked he didn't get flamed more for it. I literally laughed loudly through 90% of it. P.S. I haven't seen the movie yet and I'm a bit pissed about hearing who gave her the pin in the movie. LAME!
  • Mike is my savior of technology. This week he called to talk with Comcast about down grading our package to basic cable {we're trying to save money and cut cost}. He had a whole plan of how to still watch our favorite shows without needing to have DVR etc. After talking with the Comcast rep, they actually let us keep all of our services and knocked $100 off our bill. It's only for the next 6 months, after that it goes up $25.00 but hell, I can live with that. DVR SHOWS FOR EVERYONE!!!! 
  • Spring is back in Alabama. We went from record highs to having a frost warning the other night. I love the cooler weather - I'm happy I can still wear some jackets and scarves before it gets too insane with the heat this summer.

I get a lot of questions when I mention I'm making Chicken and Waffles for dinner. Most people wrinkle their noses and others will ask me for explicit detail about how I make them. When I was younger my mom would make this meal for me and I never thought anything of it. Chicken + Waffles always ends in AMAZING.  It wasn't until I was older that I realized that this is a dish that many people make but most people add Syrup. Insert me wrinkling my nose. Apparently the recipe my mother always made is a Pennsylvania Dutch style recipe including fried chicken, waffles, mashed potatoes and GRAVY, not syrup. This is how I like to make mine. I am very curious about the syrup version, and will eventually try it, but for now I'm sticking with what I know. Because I'm trying my best to watch what I eat, I decided to share my mom's recipe, lightened up, ever so slightly - there's still gravy mind you but the chicken is boiled, not fried. My mother always fried the chicken so if you have a great fried chicken recipe then by all means, hook it up! One day I will make it fried, and I will also make my own waffles but until that weekend in my life comes I will own the night with my Eggos, dammit!

via foodnetwork.com • Mine did not look this pretty.
A Lightened Up Version of My Mother's Comfort Food
{Inspired by My mother, Margie, the best damn cook and mother ever}

  • 1 Chicken Breast per person eating {I used 4, to make left overs}
  • 2 tablespoons Butter
  • Salt, Pepper, Poultry Seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups {give or take} Chicken Stock
  • Eggo Homestyle Waffles - try not to get SWEET waffles, it ruins the flavor
  • Potatoes {new red, baking, yukon gold, whatever you like for mashed potatoes}
Note: I have not included the mashed potatoes recipe, please make these to go with your meal. If you're going low carb, I'm sorry... there's no hope for you in this recipe darlin'.
  1. Insert best damn fried chicken recipe here if you want to make this sinful. If not keep reading.
  2. Place chicken breasts in a pot, fill with water just over the tops of the chicken breasts.
  3. Add salt, pepper, seasonings of your choice to the water, and hot sauce if you like some kick.
  4. Let chicken breasts boil for 20-25 minutes until they are cooked through.
  5. Remove from hot water and let the chicken rest on a cutting board or large plate.
  6. Once chicken has cooled slightly, use two forks to tear the meat into small pieces and set aside.
  7. In a skillet, melt 2 tablespoons butter. {medium/high heat}
  8. Once melted, add two tablespoons of flour, whisk together slightly and let cook for about 1-2 minutes.
  9. Slowly add the chicken stock and whisk until all the flour is dissolved. 
  10. At this point you will determine how thick or thin you want your gravy. You want it loose enough to incorporate all the chicken you shredded but you don't want it so runny that you are eating soup. If you add too much chicken stock, add in a bit more flour and whisk like crazy. You also might want to make enough to reserve a bit off to the side to drizzle on everything at the end. I like my waffles a little soggy so the more gravy the better in my book.
  11. Season to taste with salt, pepper, poultry seasoning. 
  12. Once gravy is as you desire it {you may have to add more stock and flour depending on how much you want to have}. Add in your chicken and mix well with tongs or a spoon.
  13. While you are doing all this you may want to enlist a helper to toast the waffles for you. It's hard to whisk AND keep a toaster going. If you have a 4 waffle toaster I'm extremely jealous of you.
Place two hot and toasty waffles on your plate {one if you're watching what you eat}, You can add butter if you like but I never do. Then, add a pile of the gravy chicken on top, and if needed drizzle some more gravy over the pile. Wait, don't put down the gravy boat just yet - make sure you get some on your mashed potatoes too!

Grab a fork, and dig in. It's savory and delicious and if you start to feel guilty about the lack of green, then by all means go ahead and toss a bag of frozen green beans in the microwave and nuke them but trust me when I say after 2 waffles, gravy, chicken and mashed potatoes, you won't need them. Correction, you'll need them but won't be able to eat them. Enjoy!


Thank you for reading! I hope you enjoyed my mom's recipe switched around. It's really only lighter due to the boiled chicken vs. fried but in the end it's the perfect go to comfort food meal for a special day.

I hope you all have a great weekend!!!! 

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Tori said...

sounds delish!
I am going to try this!!

I am trying to cook new things and keep our dinners interesting--this will work perfectly ;)

happy bday!

Allyson said...

I am SO spoiled to the chicken and waffles they have at this local restaurant in Lexington called Saul Good. I took Shana and Hutch there when they visited and made Shana get the chicken and waffles just so I could have some. They are so delish and it's literally within walking distance of our townhouse. So, when I'm craving, I just head over there. My wallet just gave me the middle finger.

My hugs and love are with you as you finish up this weekend. I know you miss your momma everyday and to have her birthday fall on the day before her lucky day must have made Thursday and Friday particularly poignant for you. I love what you did to honor her memory. I know she's smiling.

Happy new week! xoxo

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