Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tried-It-Tuesday - Once More Unto the Breach, Dear Friends

I know I've been slacking lately. And I can't even lie to you and say that my Tried-It-Tuesday posts just slipped my mind. But I haven't really been trying anything new, and so, in shame, I neglected my post. [Pun intended.]

This week I hadn't really planned on doing a post either, but Monday afternoon, Unka Seesee came crawling up like Swamp Thing, croaking for some pain killers and chicken broth. Apparently he had a bad cold. Wuss! Poor Seesee! So we were on our own for dinner. I decided to make Orange Chicken, and planned and timed it all out so that it would be ready by the time my husband was due home. Impressed yet? You should be. It took a lot of effort to ignore my Farmville cook and plan it all!

Orange Chicken: 
Step 1: Buy frozen Orange Chicken kit at Trader Joe's. Ha ha! Psych! No recipe. But please. Meat and breading and sauce AND rice? From scratch? On the same day? Please.
But I cooked the rice (the bag had instructions, thankfully. Ooo... I threw out the bag when I found the canister of rice and poured the last little bit in... I'd better write it all down somewhere!) and while it simmered for 25 minutes, I preheated the oven to 400 F for the frozen chicken bits, which needed to cook for 18-20 minutes. There were microwave directions [blech. Soggy and chewy. Just like TV dinners!] and frying pan directions, but the stovetop prep involved adding oil, while the baking method didn't. I opted for the lower-fat option. But because I wasn't using the pan to cook the chicken, and thus cooking the sauce in with it, I chose to just microwave the sauce to heat it, rather than get ANOTHER pan out just to heat it up. Just to impress you with my multi-tasking prowess, I would like to point out that I was even able to figure out the timer function on our new stove, so used the microwave's timer for the rice, and the stove timer for the chicken. I like the stove timer. I can actually hear it from the computer room while teaching and/or nurturing my child.
Surprisingly, it all went off without a hitch. The rice was done about a minute before the chicken, and I had to reheat the sauce, since it was all done 5-10 minutes before my husband was due to arrive, and it had cooled. But over all, an admirable effort!
Until Little Z asked if Daddy was home yet, and I said that he wasn't yet. He was due in about 10 minu... wait a sec... I forgot. He had plans. He would be out with friends until late. ARRRRGGGGHHHHHHH! All that effort for nothing. I could have just microwaved up some Angus sliders (frozen, from Costco) for me and the squib, since Seesee wasn't likely to be wanting anything substantial for a while. But, since he was pretty much a captive audience, I forced a bowl on him anyway. Luckily the drugs and broth had improved his outlook on life and he felt well enough to eat.
And then my ineptitude reared its ugly head, since I had made barely enough rice for Seesee and me, plus a little for Z. Seesee and I usually eat more rice, plus I had a bunch of chicken left over, and no rice to go with it. Ah well. I was so excited to have instructions that I never bothered to think about how much rice I'd be wanting! I just did the 1 c rice-to-1 1/4 c water ratio and was all proud of myself. Gah.

Z enjoyed her rice and un-sauced chicken. (The sauce was a tad spicy, and she may not have liked it. So I didn't bother for hers.) I added a butterfly cup with ketchup to dip her "nuggets" into, and she used a ladle-type-spoon we got at the Asian market.
Non-orange Chicken

She was very excited to use her new spoon, as she had picked it out herself. Plus it was a novel shape, unlike other spoons she's used.

So what did you do this week? A new recipe? A craft? Tried a new restaurant? Hair color? Broek your arm for the first time? Link up your post or online photo, or leave a comment telling us all about it!

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