Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

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Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby David M. Bueker » Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:27 am

Mid-week dinners have become more and more of a hassle as our working hours have increased. Food boredom has also crept in.

Rather than give in to ordering a pizza or subs, I spent a very modest amount of time on Sunday putting together something that I could heat up with zero fuss on Monday. It was not complicated - just alternating layers of cooked, moderately thin chicken (no breading - just seasoning), cooked spinach, red sauce and cheese. I had meant to use a little of some leftover pesto as well, but sadly forgot about it when putting the dish together.

Overall it was easy and frankly tastier than I thought it would be. Wish I had put in the pesto...
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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:06 am

Sounds pretty good. Was it just a matter of a half hour in a warm oven to reheat?

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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby Jeff Grossman/NYC » Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:40 am

"Sunday cooking" is a well-established routine here: a pot of red sauce, braised short ribs, a roast chicken, whatever... so long as we can get 4, 6, 8 plates out of it. Saves us a lot of time (and hassle) during the week.
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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby Mark Lipton » Tue Feb 26, 2013 12:50 pm

Jeff Grossman/NYC wrote:"Sunday cooking" is a well-established routine here: a pot of red sauce, braised short ribs, a roast chicken, whatever... so long as we can get 4, 6, 8 plates out of it. Saves us a lot of time (and hassle) during the week.


Here, too, where soups take a prominent place in mid-week eating. What we're finding, though, is that our work schedules are less restrictive than our 8 year-old son's schedule. Between evening sports practice and classes for him, he has little time for dinner on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby Karen/NoCA » Tue Feb 26, 2013 4:26 pm

Sunday cooking" is a well-established routine here: a pot of red sauce, braised short ribs, a roast chicken, whatever... so long as we can get 4, 6, 8 plates out of it. Saves us a lot of time (and hassle) during the week.


When I was growing up, that is what my mother did. Every Sunday, we went to my aunt's house for dinner. I spent the day riding horses with my cousins and my mom and aunt cooked. Prior, to going to her house, Mom would spend the morning cooking for the next week. She made such things a a big tamale pie casserole, vegetable soup, spaghetti sauce, enchiladas. Fresh salads and or veggies were fresh everyday.
Even with just Gene and I to cook for now, I always cook more so we have leftovers the next night. On weekends, either Sat. or Sunday I make enough to take care of Monday too. Even though we are both retired, I don't want to spend all my time in the kitchen....too many fun things to do! :)
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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby David M. Bueker » Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:36 pm

Mike Filigenzi wrote:Sounds pretty good. Was it just a matter of a half hour in a warm oven to reheat?


30 minutes at 350 got it hot, and then I put on the broiler for 3 minutes to brown the cheese on top!

Tonight's dinner is left over home made mac 'n cheese that I put together. Made enough for two hearty meals. The french onion soup disappeared last night.

No idea what I am going to do for Thursday! :shock:
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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby Karen/NoCA » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:00 pm

Pasta is always quick if you keep it simple. I have a variety of pestos frozen in the freezer along with home made tomato sauce that I can quickly season to make a variety of things. Small pizzas on an English muffin, or flat bread. If you make meatballs and freeze them, they are ready to go to make a variety of dishes. The trick for me is to keep a well stocked freezer with homemade items your family can use for making or adding to a quick meal. We have applesauce, tomato sauces, compound butters, chicken stock, pesto, roasted hatch chilies, and home made soups that freeze well. Plus, when making certain foods, I make extra for another meal, pack up and store in the freezer. Right now I have Ropa Vieja mix, a pork tenderloin in marinade, and an 8-inch casserole of enchiladas. Comes in handy for those times when we have been busy all day, or just lazy.
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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby David M. Bueker » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:02 pm

Would work even better if we had a chest freezer. :D
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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby Christina Georgina » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:10 pm

I'm with Karen on this. I process all extra summer tomatoes into marinara and freeze. This is very adaptable for anything from soup to stuffed peppers, pizza, pasta, meat braises. Same with processed chard, kale, escarole. When good veal, pork and beef available I mix up a big batch of meatballs then broil them and let them cool and freeze in serving size packages.
I have frozen pestos of ramps, basil, sage, arugula that do not contain butter or cheese for quick pasta sauces.
When I have a ham bone I make a big batch of broth and freeze. It is very easy to add beans, greens and whatever else to make a very hearty soup.
I have 2 fridg freezers- ordinary size.
We NEVER eat chicken as a fall back item. It's more of a luxury item that gets cooked when there is extra time
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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:17 pm

Christina Georgina wrote:We NEVER eat chicken as a fall back item. It's more of a luxury item that gets cooked when there is extra time


Interesting! For us, a standard weekday meal is a couple of breast halves and a couple of leg quarters, dry-rubbed and roasted with some potatoes.

We're terrible about freezing stuff, mostly because our fridge/freezer combo doesn't have a lot of freezer capacity and we don't (yet) have a second freezer.

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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby Karen/NoCA » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:25 pm

We have a fridge with a bottom freezer in the kitchen. In the laundry room is a full fridge, and along side, a full freezer. There is just the two of us here. Since we consume lots of produce, that is what takes up the two crispers in the second fridge, plus I keep dried beans, a few baking chips and sprinkles, panko, other assorted dried ingredients, and all the left overs. It is also used for putting made ahead things when we are having a house full of family visiting. I'd like to have a bigger freezer because my "put up" supply takes up lots of room. So, I cut back on the amount of meat, poultry items I can store. I finally moved the frozen seafood, (shrimp, scallops, and in season fish) into the kitchen freezer which gave me a bit more room.I really don't like going into the grocery store much, so keeping my kitchen well-stocked is a blessing for me. It saves time and effort. If you watch the newspaper, you can usually pick up some nice freezers being sold by someone who has lost a spouse and is cutting back on the amount of food in the house, or seniors down sizing.
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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby Jenise » Fri Mar 01, 2013 1:23 pm

Mike Filigenzi wrote:
Christina Georgina wrote:We NEVER eat chicken as a fall back item. It's more of a luxury item that gets cooked when there is extra time


Interesting! For us, a standard weekday meal is a couple of breast halves and a couple of leg quarters, dry-rubbed and roasted with some potatoes.

We're terrible about freezing stuff, mostly because our fridge/freezer combo doesn't have a lot of freezer capacity and we don't (yet) have a second freezer.


How are the remodel plans going? You've talked about the design work, but I don't believe I've seen you mention the start of the work. Would be understandable if your current medical problems derailed the next step.
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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby Jenise » Fri Mar 01, 2013 1:42 pm

David M. Bueker wrote:Mid-week dinners have become more and more of a hassle as our working hours have increased. Food boredom has also crept in.

Rather than give in to ordering a pizza or subs, I spent a very modest amount of time on Sunday putting together something that I could heat up with zero fuss on Monday. It was not complicated - just alternating layers of cooked, moderately thin chicken (no breading - just seasoning), cooked spinach, red sauce and cheese. I had meant to use a little of some leftover pesto as well, but sadly forgot about it when putting the dish together.

Overall it was easy and frankly tastier than I thought it would be. Wish I had put in the pesto...


I spent most of the last ten days cooking in our little RV. It's only 22 feet total length so the galley is as minimal as everything else: a 3 cf refrigerator, a two burner propane stove, a microwave, and a Coleman grill I can cook outside on. Tools are as minimal as the space I have to store them in--two knives, three pans, etc. So food can't be very complicated, but it can still be good. One-skillet meals that follow or accompany a green salad are godsends, and are actually very much the kind of quick-cooking weeknight meals that many of you with jobs are talking about. For instance, cut one or two skinless chicken breasts into one-inch dice. Toss with a bit of salt and pepper. Saute a bit of onion until transluscent, then add the chicken and toss until most pieces are no longer raw on the surface, add chicken broth (I keep the Swansons chicken stock on hand for it's good flavor and reasonable container for a 3 cf fridge), a few large pinches of dried basil and a small pinch of Herbs d'Provence, and a pat of butter. When that starts to bubble, add a couple handfuls of pasta--I chose orzo--and simmer until the pasta's done. A complete and very delicious meal that takes but one pan and only 20 minutes of your time. Don't worry about measuring--just add about two times the volume of liquid to pasta, and keep the stock handy in case you need to add a little more.
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Re: Last night's dinner - or how to eat chicken yet again

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Sun Mar 03, 2013 5:48 pm

Jenise wrote:
How are the remodel plans going? You've talked about the design work, but I don't believe I've seen you mention the start of the work. Would be understandable if your current medical problems derailed the next step.


Wow - just saw this. We are moving along on this. Design is still not totally complete, but we're down to working out some detail stuff. We're not pushing it because, as you mention, it will be probably middle of summer before I'll be ready to live in the dust and dirt of a remodeling project.

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