Category Archives: Chicken

Junior Week: Miles picks 7 from Babble’s 50 Best Recipes for Kids

After stumbling across Babble’s 50 Best Recipes for Kids, I figured it was time to let Eating The Week, Jr., take a crack at a week’s worth of recipes. Not the cooking – no 5-yo has the patience for 12-hour chicken soup – but the menu selection and taste-testing were all up to him.

As background: Miles is right in the middle of the picky-to-adventurous eater spectrum. He loves kale smoothies, but won’t touch broccoli with a ten-foot pole. He snarfs down plenty of fruit every day, but getting protein from sources other than cheese can be a challenge. In general, he’s interested in trying new foods, so it didn’t take too much encouragement to get Miles to pick 7 interesting choices from the Babble recipe list.

Want to see what he picked, and how they scored on the 10-point Jr. and Mom scales? Head past the jump

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Mushroom Week: tasty little recyclers

We now know that mushrooms are tasty little buggers, adding earthy flavor and filling texture to all kinds of recipes. Nutritional science has also revealed that they are decent sources of B vitamins, copper, and selenium, and a few varieties even boast surprisingly large amounts of vitamin D. But I sometimes wonder, before all that, who first saw a bulbous fuzzy growth atop a pile of decomposing matter and thought, “That belongs in my mouth?”

Maybe we shouldn’t think about that too much, actually; my job of extolling their dietary virtues would become more difficult if we’re fixating on terms like “gilled fungi” or “spore-bearing fruiting body” (thanks, Wikipedia). Instead, let’s focus on melty risotto, savory pancakes, and the recipe that saved my relationship with veggie burgers: pecan mushroom burgers with gorgonzola sauce.

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Speed freak: Eating The Week gets Superfast again

If that title made you worry that I’m going to bore you to death with more off-topic running/marathon nonsense, relax. This week’s speed isn’t happening at the track but in the kitchen, with a trial of seven recipes from Cooking Light’s Superfast collection.

I tried this before and found it was a fun way to explore new dishes and learn some quick-prep tips. So when Cooking Light (via Facebook and Twitter) put out the call for Superfast fans to potentially be featured in the magazine, I grabbed my pretend stopwatch (iPhone app) and got cooking.

In the spirit of Superfast, no rambling musing over each dish this week – just seven quick reports on time spent, changes made, and tastiness achieved.

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Praise for beige: couscous week

I was feeling ambivalent about putting couscous at center stage for this week’s theme. On its own, it just isn’t that remarkable:

But it really shines as a platform for tasty, healthy ingredients. This versatile not-grain (it’s a refined wheat product, basically pasta) can get mixed up with fruits, vegetables, meats, spices, or myriad other ingredients to create a seemingly endless catalog of recipes. You may not look twice at that plain bowl of beige, but you’ll probably stop to coo at the jaunty hats on these couscous stuffed tomatoes, right?

Or check out another eye-catching favorite of mine: cinnamon-lime chicken with raisin couscous. Here, simple couscous is the underpinning for colorful vegetables, fruit, and seasonings, making a subtly spicy, comforting bowl of food.

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Quinweek

Quinwhat? Quinoa! The internets will tell you this pseudo-grain – so called because it is the seed of a non-grass – has been around since the Dawn of People Eating Things. But truth be told, I’ve found it’s still a bit of novelty to most people.


Pronounced keen-wah, this sharp-but-earthy-tasting seed is a nutrient powerhouse. It’s full of B vitamins, manganese, magnesium, iron, and fiber. And I recently learned via nutritioulicious that unlike most other grains, quinoa supplies all nine essential amino acids (the ones your body needs but can’t make for itself). Quinoa is also full of gold-plated unicorns. Ahhhh, just kidding (they’re narwhals), but it’s still a pretty impressive food.

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Meat CSA for February

Folks, start your recipe-search engines. I picked up this month’s meat CSA share from Stillman’s farm today, and now I’m seeking tasty uses for the chicken breasts, ground beef and several pork chops:

The chicken breasts are a no-brainer, and I have several pork chop recipes tucked away from the search related to last month’s CSA. The ground beef might take some work, though; I guess burgers are the easiest choice, but I feel there must be a pasta sauce or a casserole out there just begging for this beef.

I also picked up a carton of their eggs. It was in no small part because I (finally) watched Food Inc this week and was reminded how awful industrial livestock production can be. If you haven’t seen it, you really should. For me, it reaffirmed our efforts to increasingly buy the animal products we eat from farms like Stillman’s.

Meat CSA week

Everyone ready for a 180? Last week, I waxed poetic about legumes and featured a slew of vegetarian-friendly dishes. This week, it’s all about the meat we received in our share from Stillman’s farm meat CSA.

Slowcooker rosemary garlic chicken thigh, with sweet potatoes & veggies

I realize that meat is a major fork in the road toward food-related harmony, so let me first describe where I’ve set up my road-side stand. I eat meat from hooved, winged, and sea-faring animals. While I’m not a vegetarian, roughly 2/3 of my meals are plant-centric and meat-free. I appreciate that a meat-free diet has health and environmental benefits and can provide optimal nutrition, recognizing that supplements are usually required to achieve recommended intakes of several nutrients (such as vitamin B12) that are difficult to obtain from plant-derived foods alone. I agree that, on a societal level, we should be eating less meat and sourcing the meat we do eat from small-scale, integrated producers (as Simon Fairlie argues in his recent book).

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