Friday, February 6, 2015

Night #1 With Dylan

For whatever reason, Dylan (my nephew) had no school today.  Tonight is his first night with me while his mom goes to Hawaii for 10 days.  It's also my first night watching all four dogs.  Lono doesn't mind, but two are already bummed that my folks are gone and my sister's boyfriend's dog (he's going to Hawaii too) is about to realize that she's here with me for a week.

I've been thinking about quick dinners that have a vintage feel.  Tonight seemed like a great night to try it out.  Around noon, I just had a half day at work, Dylan and I put together an icebox cake.  This is SUPER easy, but like jello, it takes about 4 hours to set up.  My plan for dinner: Chicken Terrapin (from my 1950s Betty Crocker Cook Book).

Icebox Cake

2 large containers Cool Whip
8-12 oz/layer Berries, fresh - amount depends on berry size, usually there are 3 or 4 layers
2 packs Graham Crackers

1. If you are using strawberries, slice them up.  Otherwise, just rinse your berries.
2. Let your Cool Whip thaw until you can spoon it out easily.
3. In a small baking dish (glassware) 8x8 or 9x13, lay out graham crackers in a single layer.
4. Spoon on some cool whip and gently spread this over the graham crackers.
5. Place 8-12 oz of berries over the cool whip.
6. Repeat steps 3-5 until you have 3 or 4 layers of crackers, cool whip, and berries.
7. Refrigerate for about 4 hours.  The graham crackers should be soft when you slice into this dessert.

The pink is just a little food coloring from the eggs.  The one I used popped open when I was hard boiling it.
Quick Chicken Terrapin
1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
12 oz can  Chicken Meat
4 oz Mushrooms, sliced
1 cup Green Peas
1 Bell Pepper, diced
1 Hard-Boiled Egg
2 oz Pimentos (optional)
Noodles, Rice, Biscuit, or Roll

NOTE: Low-Carb or Paleo people: Try using cauliflower, miracle noodles, or broccoli instead of a carb-loaded option like a roll or rice.

1. It takes 10 minutes (once the water boils) to hard boil an egg.  Get the water on the stove and add the egg once the water is boiling.  Be sure to set a timer.
2. In a pot on the stove, mix the cream of chicken soup and canned chicken meat together on low medium heat.
3. Add your mushrooms and green peas to your pot with your chicken mixture.
4. Dice up your bell pepper and add them.  If you're going to use pimentos, add them to the pot at this time too.  Don't let your mixture boil and spurt.  It should get hot, but not messy.  If it seems too thick, add 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup of water and stir.  It should be slightly thick.
5. Chicken Terrapin is served over noodles, rice, biscuits, or a split roll.  Its up to you.  If you have leftover rice, this is a great way to use it up.  Prepare your base on each plate.
6. Once your egg is finished, run it under cold water until it is manageable.  Peel the shell, rinse the egg, and dice it up.
7. Laddle your chicken mixture over your noodles, rice, biscuit, or split roll.  Top with diced hard boiled egg.

My 7 year old nephew devoured the chicken terrapin and the icebox cake.  It probably helped that he was super proud of himself for helping me put the icebox cake together.  The chicken terrapin was a lot like the insides of a chicken pot pie.  For a quick meal, not trying to impress anyone (it's not a looker), this was a great meal.

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