Maple Roasted Chicken and Sweet Potatoes

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**Sorry for the lack of posting – things are much different in our house. My kids and I just finished our third week of homeschooling, so I have had to put the blog on the back burner ūüôā I will post when I can! Thanks for stopping by :)**

Quick Post:¬†One of my favorite combinations is chicken and sweet potato – I practically live off of this pairing! This is one of the most simple and cheap dinners I have tried since I changed my eating habits, and it’s just so good. I love how crispy the skin becomes and I eat it unashamedly! ūüėČ Before I put the skillet in the oven, I browned up the skin in the pan on my stove – that’s optional, but I recommend it! Thanks for reading, enjoy!

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Maple Roasted Chicken and Sweet Potatoes – adapted from Honey, Ghee and Me

  • 2-4 chicken pieces (bone-in, skin-on)
  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup (the real stuff-¬†makes a huge difference)
  • 8 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper

Directions –

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Begin by peeling sweet potatoes and chop them into one inch chunks. Chop the onions into a similar size and arrange the vegetables in the bottom of a baking dish. Pour in olive oil and maple syrup and season the chicken with salt and pepper. Toss to coat in the oil and maple syrup, and leave all the chicken and vegetables in one even layer. Top with thyme sprigs and bake for 1 hour uncovered, turning the chicken half way through cooking time.

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Perfect Au Gratin Potatoes

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The name says it all – these really are perfect! They are the easiest potato side dish I have ever made and I’m finding new excuses to make them. We enjoyed these alongside this roast chicken and these garlicky green beans. The leftovers heat up nicely too – if there are any! Thanks for reading, enjoy ūüôā

Perfect Potatoes Au Gratin – adapted from The Pioneer Woman

  • 4 whole Russet Potatoes, Scrubbed Clean
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter, Softened
  • 1-1/2 cup Heavy Cream
  • 1/2 cup Whole Milk
  • 2 Tablespoons Flour
  • 4 cloves Garlic, Finely Minced
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • freshly Ground Pepper, to taste
  • fresh thyme to taste (my addition…so¬†yummy)
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Directions –

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Smear softened butter all over the bottom of a baking dish.

Slice potatoes, then cut slices into fourths.

In a separate bowl, whisk together cream, milk, flour, minced garlic, salt, and plenty of freshly ground black pepper.

Place 1/3 of the potatoes in the bottom of the baking dish. Pour 1/3 of the cream mixture over the potatoes.

Repeat this two more times, ending with the cream mixture. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake for 20 minutes, or until potatoes are golden brown and really bubbling. Add grated cheese to the top of the potatoes and bake for 3 to 5 more minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbly.

Best Grilled Chicken Sandwich EVER

I could eat these weekly! I love grilled chicken sandwiches and there are two things necessary to make these truly amazing. You must marinade your chicken and you must put all this goodness in between bakery fresh ciabatta rolls! I need to find a recipe for these, but I have no hesitation about purchasing these from our local club store. As long as I can pronounce all the ingredients, I will happily pay whatever price!
I love these ingredients for my chicken marinade. It’s so easy and extremely flavorful and it hasn’t failed me yet! Fresh ingredients are best with anything, especially when you’re using those ingredients are the main flavor component. I marinade my chicken for at least four hours, longer if I’m using thighs and I try to watch the amount of acid I use in marinating. If there is too much acid, you can run the risk of “cooking” your meat and changing the texture of the final product….yuck! I don’t measure my marinade ingredients because I have made this so many times, but I will give some estimations of amounts for you. Thanks for reading, enjoy!
Chicken Marinade –
  • 1 1/2 lbs – 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts, split in half
  • the zest and juice of one lemon
  • fresh garlic (2 cloves, roughly chopped)
  • fresh thyme (8-10 sprigs, pull the leaves off if you’d like)
  • white wine (a splash – maybe 2 TBSP)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil (more if needed)
  • kosher salt and pepper to taste

Sandwich toppings –

  • cooked bacon
  • avocado
  • lettuce
  • tomato
  • sliced Swiss cheese
  • split and toasted ciabatta rolls, *once these are off the grill, rub with cloves of garlic*

Place prepared chicken pieces into a zip top bag. Mix all marinade ingredients together and pour over top the chicken pieces. Mush the bag to distribute marinade and place in a glass baking dish. Be sure to mush the bag ever hour or so.

Preheat an outdoor grill. Remove the breasts from the marinade and grill for 6 minutes on each side or until fully cooked. Assemble sandwiches as desired ( you’re going to lose some while eating – there are lots of slippery toppings in these )

Lemon Thyme Chicken


Quick Post: I made this awhile back and forgot to post! It’s from Annie’s Eats, so if you’re a fan of hers, you know that she wont steer you wrong. This dinner is cheap, quick and flavorful and tasted great with this garlic rice pilaf – which is also one of Annie’s recipes. Pair it with a nice green salad and you’ve got a complete meal that is good enough to share with company. Thanks for reading, enjoy!

Lemon Thyme Chicken – adapted from Annie’s Eats

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, butterflied into halves (4 pieces total)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • ¬Ĺ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1¬Ĺ tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp. fresh thyme leaves, minced
  • ¬Ĺ¬†cup dry white wine
  • ¬ĺ cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 3 tbsp. butter

Directions

  • Season both sides of the chicken pieces with salt and pepper. ¬†Place the flour in a shallow bowl, and dredge the chicken pieces in the flour, shaking off the excess. ¬†In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. ¬†Add the chicken pieces to the pan and saute until lightly golden, about 2-3 minutes per side, and an instant-read thermometer reads 160ňö F in the thickest part of the chicken. ¬†(Keep in mind that pieces of different sizes will finish cooking at different times to avoid overcooking.) ¬†Remove the chicken pieces to a plate, tent with foil, and set aside.
  • Add the garlic and thyme leaves to the pan and saut√©¬†¬†just until fragrant, about 1 minute. ¬†(If necessary, add an additional small drizzle of olive oil if most of the oil was absorbed by the chicken.) ¬†Off the heat, add the wine to the pan, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen any browned bits. ¬†Return the pan to the heat and bring the liquid to a simmer. ¬†Stir in the chicken broth. ¬†Reduce until the sauce has thickened, about 4-5 minutes. ¬†Add the lemon juice to the pan. ¬†Add in the butter and whisk until completely melted. ¬†Season with salt and pepper to taste. ¬†Serve immediately, spooning the sauce over the chicken.

Rosemary and Thyme Roast Chicken

Quick Post:¬†Is there anything more comforting than roasted chicken? The smell and flavor were amazing! I am really happy with how this turned out and I will make this again and again. After pulling the chicken of the bones, I placed the carcass in the freezer for more chicken stock later on – it’s liquid gold and worth making! Thanks for reading, enjoy!

Rosemary and Thyme Roast Chicken –

  • 1 – 4 pound chicken, rinsed and patted dry
  • 3 sprigs of rosemary
  • 6 sprigs of thyme
  • 1 garlic bulb, cut in half
  • half a small onion cut into four pieces
  • half a lemon, rolled and pierced with a knife
  • kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper
  • grapeseed oil
  • kitchen string for trussing
  • digital ¬†probe thermometer – it’s been a worthy investment and I highly recommend one
Directions:
1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and cut a piece of kitchen string (*it’s better a little long than too short).
2. Salt the cavity of the chicken and stuff with the onion, lemon, garlic and herbs – don’t be afraid to really pack these in there. Truss the chicken tightly. Drizzle grapeseed oil over the chicken and generously season the skin with kosher salt and pepper. Place a probe thermometer in the breast of the chicken, being careful not to hit bone.
3. Roast until the thermometer reads 160 degrees – mine took about 55 minutes on my convection roast setting. Take out of the oven and leave the probe in for at least ten minutes (*if you take it out sooner, the juices will flow from the hole the probe made*)


Pot Roast with Vegetables

Mmm…yet another recipe that makes me love cooler weather! This was my first time trying this recipe, and it was so good. I paired this meal with thyme roasted carrots and mashed potatoes…M was bummed that the rolls I made for S’s friendship feast weren’t part of the meal but I will make sure to make some next time. This roast has great flavor and the gravy created while it braised for three hours was perfect for spooning over the mashed potatoes. A couple of notes for next time – I added one pound of button mushrooms half way through cooking so they wouldn’t become too mushy, and I will add less water next time. Also, for the mashed potatoes I cooked up almost four pounds of Yukon gold potatoes then mixed them with four ounces of cream cheese, a few tablespoons of butter and a splash of half and half. Everyone enjoyed this and I think the flavor is so much better than the average crock pot recipe I have tried in the past. Thanks for reading, enjoy!

Pot Roast with Vegetables Ingredients – adapted from Tyler Florence

  • 1 (3 to 4 pound) piece beef chuck¬†roast, trimmed of excess fat
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 – 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup water (*next time I will use 1/2 cup)
  • 2 yellow onion, halved
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 bunch baby carrots
  • 2 celery stalks, sliced
  • 1 cup button mushrooms, stems removed and sliced in half
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary (*I used dried)
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves

Directions –

Season all sides of the beef with a fair amount of salt and pepper. In a large Dutch oven or other heavy pot that has a tight cover; heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over moderately high heat. Brown the meat on all sides, taking the time to get a nice crust on the outside. Pour in the tomatoes and the water. Scatter the vegetables and herbs around the pot roast, season with salt and pepper; and drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of oil. Cover the pot and reduce the heat to low. Braise for about 3 hours, basting every 30 minutes with the pan juices, until the beef is fork tender.

Slice the pot roast and arrange on platter surrounded by the vegetables. Serve with the pot juices.