Sunday, June 30, 2013

Orange-Balsamic Glazed Chicken

For dinner last night I settled down to a nice Orange-Balsamic Glazed Chicken, some leftover brown rice, and baby carrots with which I dipped in ranch dressing. It was Curry and Comfort's recipe and it was wonderful.

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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Here Come New Ideas for Volunteering

Many of us can profess to leading busy lives. Between working full time, taking care of the family, cleaning the house, and running errands, you probably hardly have any time for yourself.
The Ivoryton Playhouse, Ivoryton, CT
One way to get some time to yourself is to do some volunteer work. I volunteer at the local theater, The Ivoryton Playhouse, as an Usher.  I also help them with some online marketing whenever I can. I enjoy this kind of volunteer work because I love the theater and it is a way to make new friends. My interest in the theater came from my Grandmother, now I continue on the tradition with my Mother. We usher together.

Another way I found gratifying to give back to the community was to volunteer as a Friendly Visitor for the local Assisted Living/Convalescent Home. As people grow older they find many of their friends and relatives pass away over time. Older people also develop more health problems and they need some support or friendship because they become lonely.  This program was created to help give them a better quality of life. Someone other than their family they can turn to talk to and have some fun. They bring in a Friendly Visitor.

I was vetted through an agency in my local, and matched with a person in the Convalescent Home. I told them my likes and dislikes. The Home gave me the rules. I follow the dress code, and follow some safety and cleanliness guidelines. More or less I am there to be a friend for someone who needs a friend.

We play game like scrabble and rummy. You can be matched up with someone who shares you interests. Many people need letters written for relatives for them, or just someone they can talk to. It is a way to pay it forward, perhaps you might have your own Friendly Visitor in the future. It is a way to give back.

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Saturday, June 8, 2013

Simple Chicken Cutlets

Chicken cutlets is a dish I grew up having frequently in my home. It is quick to make, and something obviously any beginning cook should be able to make. In fact, everything on the plate above is very to make and takes just minutes.

I purchased broccoli crowns at the supermarket and cut the up. I steamed them. I put an inch of water with some salt in a half quart pan, and placed a metal steamer inside.
When the water boils add the broccoli. Steam them until they turn a bright green (which is not going to be very long) and fork tender. If you don't have a steamer that is okay, you can cook the broccoli in the pot without the steamer and they will still come out fine. Between 5 and 8 minutes. It may also depend on how much you purchased. It can be as long as 10 minutes.  Butter before placing on the table.

For the noodles you should follow the directions on the package. They are all a little different because it all depends on the thickness of the noodle. A little science knowledge from Alton Brown can go a long way. Water and salt is the keep to good noodles.Always add salt to the water. Make sure you cook the noodles in plenty of water. Butter before placing on the table.

Chicken Cutlets
Chicken breasts
all purpose flour
plain breakcrumbs or panko
canola oil
black pepper
Line everything up in this order.
Clean and prepare the chicken cutlets. Pat dry.
Place some flour on a plate seasoned with salt and pepper.
Beat some eggs in a bowl. If you are cooking 6 or 8 chicken cutlets you will need at least 3 eggs .
Place panko or plain breadcrumbs on a plate.
Start by dipping cutlets in flour. Work to cover thoroughly.
Dip the cutlet in the egg.
Then place the chicken in the panko or plain bread crumbs. Cover thoroughly.
When almost all the cutlets are covered, heat a deep saute pan at medium high heat. When hot add some canola oil.
When the oil is hot and sizzles add the chicken cutlets, cook until the cutlets are browned on both sides, turning once, and make sure the chicken is no longer pink in the middle or 3 to 4 minutes on each side.

Note: For this recipe I used large organic eggs, and organic chicken cutlets, treated with no chemicals.

The chicken cutlets were a hit!

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