So I am venturing through some ‘hoarded’ recipes… I want to develop a list of PERFECT FOR THE GRILL (but can be cooked many other ways) freezer meals for a summer MEAL APEAL workshop. Last weekend I played with this BOURBAN marinade and also THIS – CHICKEN SOUVLAKI and TZATZIKI SAUCE (HERE) recipe.
I love days when I can just mess around in my kitchen – and they are so few and far between right now… It makes me wonder why I can’t find the perfect job where all I do is shop for groceries and prepare meals for people (with NO clean up) AND to be paid BIG bucks to do so…. Is that too much to ask??
Well at Chez Kelsey, I sometimes get paid in love and kisses – after all I do have 2 doggies that appreciate my skills!! My husband loves all these great dishes but he would be happy with a bologna sandwich and these kids of mine…. They’re all like – aww Mom, can’t we have cereal?!! They just don’t know how lucky they are – oh but I tell them… EVERY SINGLE DAY!!
Seriously though – first the SOUVLAKI (HERE) then this BOURBAN CHICKEN…. Oh me oh my…. BOTH are absolutely AMAZING and have risen to the very top of my recipe file! Both are awesome because you can essentially dump all the ingredients into/onto the chicken and either throw it in the freezer for later, or make it right then.
Here is the Bourbon marinade – I used on 2.5 lbs of chicken breast:
1 small onion, chopped
1 c honey
½ c soy sauce
¼ c ketchup
1 TBS veg oil
1 tsp minced garlic
¼ tsp red pepper flakes
¼ c Bourbon – optional
So easy… dump everything on the chicken and then you can grill it, or crockpot it or even throw it in a skillet with some flour to thicken… I chose the skillet and the thickening… then served over mixed stir fry veggies and rice…
My all-time favorite meal is CHICKEN SOUVLAKI… I order it every time we go out!
I have attempted to “recreate” the pita sandwich at home but it never was quite right… and that is because I was using store bought marinades and they never quite hit the mark… now do not get me wrong… I am no hater on packaged foods… sometimes others have perfected it so well that there is no reason to attempt to make it – hello RAGU and BETTY CROCKER BROWNIE MIX… but I was wasting time and money trying store bought marinade.
You know how something is always better if someone else makes it for you… even a PB&J… AGREED?? WELL – I studied recipes and tried combinations and THIS RECIPE is SERIOUSLY – NO LIE the BEST chicken souvlaki I have ever had.. Sure I wish someone else would have made it for me, but it STILL was that good!!
I took 3 huge chicken breast and sliced them into strips! Then I poured all of this marinade on top of the chicken in a gallon freezer back… This is the point that you could squish the ingredients around, get all the air out and FREEZE this meal for later….
We tossed it into the fridge to marinate overnight and although you could crock pot this, or grill it, or even bake it… I was in a hurry, so I threw it into a skillet and heated it thoroughly – on med. Low heat – for about 15 minutes.
Here is the SOUVLAKI marinade (perfect on 2-3 pounds trimmed chicken breast):
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 TBSP red wine vinegar
1 TBSP dried oregano
1 TSP dried thyme
1 TSP salt
1 TSP black pepper
2 TSP minced garlic
Then because I am sometimes beyond crazy, I decided to attempt Tzatziki Sauce… This is the creamy cucumber-y goodness that totally puts this dish over the top… The ‘internets’ offers up 1,000s of recipes and there seems to be a great controversy over using Greek yogurt or plain sour cream. I have a gorgeous – amazing cook – Greek goddess friend, so I asked her… “Hey Didi… what up with the tzatziki sauce?” (Actually I WRONGLY called it cucumber dressing because I cannot pronounce Tzatziki – LOL) Ms. Didi’s exact response was, “Real Greek yogurt my friend is thick and creamy w/ a little bit of tang. In the US, the Greek yogurt has “a lot” of tang. So you see some subbing because of the tang, using sour cream, which provides creaminess…”
Next it was on to the cucumber… how do I peel and seed and grate and drain… OH my!! Luckily back to the ‘internets’ and my friend Pamela – another gorgeous girl and amazing cook (aren’t I lucky to be surrounded by gorgeous women that can cook!) – Pamela straightened me out on the cucumber… 1 – Buy the English cucumber, you won’t need to peel or seed it. 2 – Just grate it into a cloth lined colander. 3 – sprinkle the cucumber shreds with salt and allow to drip. AND 4- the one I learned on my own… actually set the colander in the sink because one little cucumber produces 18 gallons of slimy green water!!
Here is the recipe I used for the cucumber-y goodness – TZATZIKI:
2 cups sour cream
1 TBSP each: olive oil, white wine vinegar, lemon juice and minced garlic
Season with salt and pepper
1 grated and drained cucumber
1 TBSP chopped fresh mint!
Puree and allow to chill, then indulge!!!
Finally – to set up the perfect SOUVLAKI bar… I made a large salad, plated all of the cooked chicken, warmed pita breads and set out bowls of:
- black olives
- sliced onion
- green pepper
- cherub tomatoes
- feta cheese
My entire family went NUTS – they all LOVED it! AND strangely, every single one of them declared they had never had souvlaki before… even my husband… WHAT??? I totally live in the twilight zone!
So – just as I did again, make a batch of this so you too can have the BEST MEAL EVER this week!! Let me know what you think… I live for your comments!!
My friend Donna makes this dip and for years I would wait to hook up with her at a party just to get some of this yumminess… until it dawned on me that I could actually make it myself… sometimes I am so brilliant that way!!
This dip is just FRESH… every bit of it bursts with flavor and using the requisite BLACK PEPPER Triscuits make it a complete meal!!
- Block of Cream cheese
- 3TBS sour cream
- 3 TBS dry ranch
- Red Onion
- 1 cup Italian dressing (ZESTY)
- Black Pepper Triscuits!
- Chop (finely diced) a tomato, a cucumber and a red onion and pour a cup of ZESTY Italian dressing over it… set aside while you prepare creamy layer
- Blend a block of cream cheese with sour cream and dry ranch dressing… spread in 9×13 or on a serving platter with sides….
- Pour chopped veggies over the creamy layer
- Serve with the triscuits (or any cracker) and dig in!!!
A MONEYMAKER, some FREEBIES and a few CHEAP deals… CVS is well worth the stop this week!
Softsoap Liquid Hand Soap 7.5 oz or Irish Spring Bar Soap 3 pk – 2/$4 (Signature Bar soap is included!)
-$2 Irish Spring Bar Soap Gear or Signature, exp. 5/2/15 (SS 04/12/15)
GET $2 ECB wyb 2 (limit 1)
= $2 MONEYMAKER
Jergens, Curel or All Biore – according to CVS.com, these are included:
biore charcoal cleanser trial size 1 oz – $1.99-$2.19
jergens original scent cherry-almond moisturizer 3 oz – $2.37
Get $5 ECB wyb 2 (limit 1)
Xtra Liquid Laundry Detergent 30 loads – $1.99
-$1 crt (printing for everyone 04/19-04/25)
VO5 Shampoo or Conditioner – 2/$1.50 (Limit 4)
$1 crt (printing for everyone 04/19-04/25)
All Almay Cosmetics B1G1 50% Off
-$4 Almay Product, exp. 4/26/15 (SS 04/12/15) [ETS]