Friday, March 20, 2009

Cooking slump

I have been in a cooking slump lately. I am not sure why, but I needed some inspiration for some new recipes so I did some blog searching and found some great new food blogs that I have posted on the right under the link column. Check them out. They have great photos with all the recipes which make them even more appealing to try.

I made this recipe this week when we were pressed for time. The original recipe was a WW recipe that I tweaked a bit and added more veggies. The sauce in this recipe is great. Be sure to double it in proportion. I used broccoli, carrots and water chestnuts tonight.

Chicken Stir Fry
3/4 c. canned chicken broth,reduced sodium (I use Roundys organic chicken broth)
2 Tbs cornstarch
2 Tbs sugar
2 Tbs low sodium soy sauce
1 Tbs white wine vinegar
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
2 tsp peanut oil (I use canola with a splash of sesame oil. I don't keep peanut oil on hand)
2 medium scallions (optional)
2 medium garlic cloves,minced
1 pound boneless,skinless chicken breasts cut into 2 inch pieces (I use more chicken that what the recipe calls for)
Broccoli, carrots, mushrooms, bean sprouts, water chestnuts. (Add any or all)
Whisk together broth,cornstarch,sugar,soy sauce,vinegar and ginger (I double this portion).Set aside. Heat oil in work or large skillet. Add scallions,garlic and pepper and cook for 2 minutes. Add chicken and cook until brown. Add vegetables and cook until semi soft. Add reserved sauce and simmer until sauce thickens and chicken is cooked through.
Serve chicken over rice.

Today I did some baking and made this recipe for Poppyseed Bread that I have had for years. This makes 2 loaves. Great to keep one and give one away.

Poppyseed Bread
1-18 oz package of yellow cake mix
1 small package of instant coconut cream pudding
4 beaten eggs
1 c. hot water
1 tsp grated orange rind
1/2 c. cooking oil
1/4 c. poppy seeds
Mix all ingredients together and beat for 4 minutes on medium speed
Bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes.
Makes 2 loaves.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Elephant Ear Washer

After looking at the title of this blog post you must think I am losing it. An elephant ear washer you say. What the heck is that? After a trip to the walk-in clinic today I learned something new. No, it was not me who needed the services of the walk-in clinic. It was my son. For several days he has been complaining his ear is plugged and he can't hear out of it. We tried the over the counter ear wax removal drops but to no avail. They did not help and he is so annoyed he can not hear. I myself have had this problem once before and I know how annoying it is to have that plugged feeling in your ear. So off we trotted to the walk-in clinic today to hopefully clear up his ear problem. After determining he had a huge amount of wax build up his ears ("he has tiny ear canals" they said, "makes him prone to wax build up") the nurse came in to flush them out. The Elephant Ear Washer is this spray bottle gadget that flushes water into your ear canal to loosen wax. I had this done to one of my ears a few years ago. The feeling of the water being "sprayed" into your ear is quite strange, but is not painful. We left with two clean ears and a prescription for some antibiotic drops (ear infection on one side). "Come back in 2-3 weeks if you need another flush" they said (one of his ears still had a some wax in it they could not get out) I wondered if I could buy this gadget on the internet and of course you can (can't you buy everything on the internet). I may invest in this $30 ear washer and save myself a $200 visit to the walk in clinic if it happens again.