First off, I really want to welcome my new friend Ellen from Grand Blanc, MI for joining my band of followers! She sent me the nicest comments today. I am so glad that she is enjoying following me and is actually trying out some of my creations! It really makes me feel good to know that there are people out there that actually appreciate all my hard work and try using some of my ideas. Thanks, everyone!
I sat down when I got home from work today and tried to think about what to make for dinner....I actually couldn't remember the last time I grilled anything! (probably because most of the last 3 weeks have been in the mid 90s...too hot to grill!) I had gone grocery shopping on Monday and I bought a package of boneless, skinless chicken thighs. These babies are so easy and quick to cook, and are always moist and tender.
I decided to look on line for some ideas of flavors. I found two marinades that sounded really good, with lots of flavors coming through, so I took a little from this one and a little from that one, and came up with an amazing combination. Read on.....
So, I combined all of the following ingredients in my blender:
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (one whole lemon)
3/4 cup wine vinegar
1 tbs sugar
4 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves
2 tbs mayo
Blend and set aside. Now, wash and remove any excess fat from the chicken thighs. Dry off and put in a pan. Pour some of the marinade over the chicken and let it sit on the counter for at least 30 minutes.
So.... I thought, at this point, I should show some of my new followers how this whole blog started! When my dad passed away, he had left me an inheritance. When I met with an amazing high school friend/financial planner, he suggested to me that my dad would have wanted me to use some of what he was leaving me towards something that would make me happy. In other words, don't put it all towards college tuition's and bills, etc.... This was really hard for me, but with his competent guidance, I made a few "buckets". One for the kids, one for "bills", and one for me. One of the things in the "me" bucket was to do my kitchen over. I have always wanted/needed a double oven and an island. I also wanted to to move my refrigerator to the other side of my kitchen, so that I could recess it in to a useless doorway, and gain more floor space. Thanks to my dad, my dream came true. See below....
I really wish he were alive today to see and benefit from all of the improvements! Anyway, once the kitchen was done, I started posting things on Facebook, called "hmmm, I wonder what is coming out of my new kitchen tonight?" After posting a few meals, I started getting comments saying I should really have my own blog. Well......my wonderful 15 year old daughter, Shannon, said no problem, Mom! I'll set it up for you. The rest is history! So, that's how this whole thing started. And, I have to tell you, I am absolutely loving building my blog every day. I look forward to sitting down every night and sharing whatever ideas I come up with!
Ok, so on with my dinner.... I decide to start the wild rice so that it can cook while I am outside grilling. I pour 2 1/2 cups of chicken broth in a pan. I add about 1/2 cup of chopped vidalia onion to the broth, along with about 2 tbs of butter. Once it boils, I add 1 cup of this really cool wild rice and put the cover on. Now it's time to grill.
|I ended up not using the mushrooms because Shannon evidently doesn't like them!|
I cook the chicken for about 10 minutes on each side. Then, I place it on a dish and come inside. I drizzle a little of the reserved marinade over the chicken and cover with foil until we are ready to eat. I just have to finish up the rice. I take a taste and realize it needs some Parmesan cheese and salt and pepper. I also decide it needs a flavor statement....kalamata olives, cut up. Perfect! Exactly what I was looking for. And....how amazing is it that I actually have them on hand! One item to add to the pantry list!!!!
Well, if you hadn't noticed, I didn't make a well-balanced meal.....no green veggies! Once everything got done, some good friends starting dropping by, one at a time, and I didn't get a chance to complete the meal! But, that's ok, though..... the chicken and rice were delicious, and the veggies can just wait til tomorrow night!
As Julia would say....Bon apetit!