Saturday, June 26, 2010

Chicken Bakes

And we're back!!!

With all this business of having a baby, moving, and being low on the funds, I've lost myself in the mix. My identity was I'm just surviving. Till yesterday. I FINALLY got the urge and desire to start cooking again. Let me just feels GREAT!!! And lucky for you I'm starting it off with a bang...which means you're going to have to hit the gym...

If you've ever been to Costco, you know what these are. They serve them in the food court there and also in the freezer section. They are VERY delicious! I saw on Justin cousin, Jen's, blog that they made them. I immediately went on the hunt for the "secret" recipe. I'm not exactly sure if these are the same - ingredient for ingredient - but they sure tasted like it! My dad was even raving about them and he doesn't stray much from his basic meat and potato meals. And don't tell anyone, but I sneaked in a little whole wheat flour cause I was a little low on white flour. Nobody noticed and I didn't tell! HAHA!! Jokes on them...

I'm also sure that the dough they use at Costco is the absolute best, but I don't have the funds and live about 40 minutes from one now...not so convenient. So I have a go-to recipe for all of my pizza doughs that is just awesome (don't forget that I added that whole wheat flour and it was delish...definitely a trick I will be using often in the future.)

Double recipe of my homemade pizza dough found here

Cooked, diced chicken (I used rotisserie chicken ironically from Costco)
Ceasar salad dressing (make sure it's a quality kind...I've had a lot of crap in my day)
Shredded Monterey Jack cheese
Shredded Mozzarella cheese
1 bunch green onions, diced
Crumbled bacon (I just used a small bag of real crumbled bacon for ease)
Parmesan cheese

Divide dough into 8 equal pieces. Marinate the chicken in some Cesar dressing, just enough to cover each piece...not drenched.

Roll out 1 dough ball into a 11x5 rectangle. Spread about 1 teaspoon of Cesar dressing on the dough. Sprinkle marinated chicken evenly over top. Top with both cheeses, green onions and bacon to your liking. Roll the 5 inch side over the ingredients into a tight roll.

Place seam side down on a greased baking sheet. Top with another teaspoon of Cesar dressing and then sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.

Makes 8 chicken bakes. (If you think you don't need this many...don't be silly - make them all. They are a cinch to freeze and make the perfect quick and easy go-to lunch or dinner for the manly folk...and the child folk)


Honey Wheat Bread

I've been making this bread for years now and don't know why it's taken me so long to put in on here!! It's the best, most delicious bread I've ever had. I LOVE it. Bryce loves it. My other half loves it. Doesn't it look just delicious cooling on the railing of the porch? Let me just say yesterday when I made these I was feeling like such a home-maker. You know...yeast, rising dough, fresh warm bread...that'll do it to ya.

I got this recipe from my cousin, Jenna, years ago. She made it and I ate it. Then I bugged her daily till I got it. She found it on (which also is a favorite of mine.) The thing that's so wonderful about it is you use half whole wheat flour and half white. This tactic must be used to trick the people eating it. It's got the whole wheat goodness, but the look and texture of a white bread. GENIUS!! I also like how it doesn't use any white sugar, just honey. The flavor is phenomenal! Just try's so easy. If I can do it - you can too...seriously.

3 cups warm water (about 110 degrees F)
2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
1/3 cup honey
5 cups bread flour
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1/3 cup honey
1 tablespoon salt
3 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 tablespoons butter, melted

In a large bowl, mix warm water, yeast, and 1/3 cup honey. Add 5 cups white bread flour, and stir to combine. Let set for 30 minutes, or until big and bubbly. (A little trick I use in situations where I don't have a nice warm porch is I turn the microwave on for 1 minute with nothing in there. Then I open it and put the dough in there for a warm place to rise. I also will turn my oven on and when it gets to about 150 degrees, I turn it off. Then I put the dough in there to rise. Both ways work like a charm!)

Mix in 3 tablespoons melted butter, 1/3 cup honey, and salt. Stir in 2 cups whole wheat flour. Flour a flat surface and knead with whole wheat flour until not real sticky - just pulling away from the counter, but still sticky to touch. This may take an additional 2 to 4 cups of whole wheat flour. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to coat the surface of the dough. Cover with a dishtowel. Let rise in a warm place until doubled.

Punch down, and divide into 3 loaves. Place in greased 9 x 5 inch loaf pans, and allow to rise until dough has topped the pans by one inch.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 25 to 30 minutes; do not overbake. Lightly brush the tops of loaves with 2 tablespoons melted butter or margarine when done to prevent crust from getting hard. Cool completely