thecookingchook

The personal stories and adventures of a nerdy food lover.

Archive for the tag “dinner”

Salad is totally boring…. Or is it?

I must admit, I don’t have a great repertoire of salad recipes. Sure, I’ve made the odd leafy salad, potato salad, chicken salad, tomato salad but my repertoire doesn’t really extend beyond that. I love a good hearty salad when the weather is warm or when I feel like I need a top up of greens in my diet, but I do get a bit bored with the variety of salads that I make (or lack thereof). So, I was a bit excited coming across a salad recipe in the February 2014 issue of Taste.com.au which ticked a few boxes for me. Read more…

The day when the orange and lamb became friends

I like trying out new and interesting recipes. I think it’s a great way to expand your culinary knowledge and repertoire, and sometimes you discover things you would never have thought up on your own unless you ventured outside what you would consider as your norm. It had been a hot summer’s day and I was looking for something new and interesting to make for dinner one night that was easy to make and didn’t require me to slave away over a hot stove. Read more…

A tribute to Pappou and Yiayia

‘When it rains, it pours’, isn’t that how the saying goes? In my case, this saying certainly describes the last two months of my life. In two months, three people were taken from my world, two of which were my DBF’s grandfather and grandmother – or Pappou and Yiayia as they say in Greek. Sounds a bit excessive doesn’t it. I was surprised at how hard the loss has hit me. I mean, Pappou and Yiayia were my DBF’s grandparents, not mine; however, I still felt a great sense of loss. Upon reflection of my feelings, I began to understand why I felt the way I did. Pappou and Yiayia were the closest thing I ever had to real grandparents. Read more…

Quick and easy roast chicken – the brown paper bag way

I love me a good roast chicken! If you don’t believe me, check out this blog post. In fact, I’m roasting a chicken for dinner tonight but that’s not the topic of this blog post. As much as I love roasting a whole chicken, it does take a while and sometimes I don’t really want to wait that long to eat or I’m not that organised to start prepping for a roast chicken a couple of hours before dinner. So, if I see a recipe that can make my life easier but still give me a delicious meal, I’m more than happy to give it a crack. I was flicking through the most current issue of Taste.com.au magazine (September issue), and stumbled across an interesting recipe. It stated that I could have roast chicken in 30-40 minutes and it involved a brown paper bag. Read more…

When a ‘boy look’ turns out to be a winner

Tell me if you’ve ever had this conversation before:

DBF (Dear Boyfriend): *shouts out from another room* Baaaaabe. Have you seen the [insert random item]?
Me: *shouts back* It’s in the [insert random location]
*a few minutes pass*
DBF: Are you sure it’s in the [insert random location]? I can’t see it.
Me: *Walks to the other room, pulls out item in question in less than 2 seconds* Here you go.
DBF: Hmph….thanks babe.

The situation I’ve just described is known as the ‘boy look’, where your other half fails to see what is right in front of them. This situation occurs with moderate frequency in my household, and I tease my DBF a lot for it. I can’t say, however, that I’m immune from having the odd ‘boy look’ moment myself. In fact, it only happened to me the other day when I was shopping for the recipe in this post. Read more…

Butter chicken without the butter? What’chu talkin’ ’bout, Willis?

I loved watching Diff’rent Strokes when I was younger. I loved watching Gary Coleman’s character, Arnold Strokes, pull that cheeky face of his and say ‘What’chu talkin’ ‘bout Willis’? But this post isn’t about a TV show, it’s about a recipe that surprised my taste buds; a recipe for Butter Chicken. Not a traditional Butter Chicken recipe, but something that is a little bit lighter and quicker to make for those days when you want dinner in a hurry without having to resort to getting take-away. Read more…

The Cooking Chook does gnocchi – Eeeeeek!

I’ll admit that I have the odd foodie fear. I’m reasonably adventurous when it comes to cooking/baking new dishes, and I love a challenge but there are dishes that will give the heebie-jeebies. They usually take the form of either the simplest of all recipes, or really, really difficult recipes. The really, really difficult recipes you could understand why I would be a little scared about attempting them, but it’s the simple recipes that do my head in the most. I call these recipes ‘sleeper’ recipes, and gnocchi falls into this category. You look at the ingredient list and method, and it all lulls you into a false sense of security. What could be so hard and scary about a recipe that involves 2 ingredients and 4 steps in the method? Everything! The biggest issue with gnocchi is making sure it doesn’t end up dense and stodgy, kinda like chomping on hard bubble gum – ewwww. How do you do this? Use a proper Italian Mama recipe! Read more…

What does Ricky Martin and lentils have in common?

Nothing really, except I’m a little obsessed with both at the moment. Ricky Martin is a judge on the Australian version of  The Voice, which is airing at the moment, and I absolutely adore him! Yes, I am a reality TV tragic! He just seems like a really lovely guy, and you can’t help but like him. And what is with the lentils? Well, my favourite food joint in the Uni cafeteria has a penchant for lentils. This place makes some really yummy salads with lentils and I’ve kinda developed a penchant for them too. So much so, that I’ve been actively looking for recipes that I can use lentils in. I’ve come across a lot of soups with lentils in them, which are great for winter but I think I’ve done soups to death. I needed to find a recipe that was more exciting, and maybe a bit exotic, like Ricky Martin! Read more…

Meet my friend the Slow Cooker

I’ve had this blog post on the go for a few weeks now, but because such awesome sweet recipes kept popping up and I felt they needed to be shared post-haste, this recipe was put on the back burner. OK, so back to my obsession with slow cooking. Before I bought my slow cooker (I do believe they are sometimes called crock pots), I did my slow cooking on the stove. I’d chuck my large stock pot on the stove top, turn the heat on low, and let things cook over a low flame for hours. I’d get great results and a wonderful meal at the end, but I couldn’t leave the house for the duration of cooking time. This also goes with slow cooking using the oven. The idea of leaving the house whilst the oven is on freaks me out. As much as I love food, life does go on and I have things I need to achieve! That’s when I decided to get myself a slow cooker. Read more…

Why did the chicken cross the road? To get in my belly!

OK, so those who are vegan or vegetarian might not think that was a funny joke (I wouldn’t really be surprised if my friends thought my attempt at telling a joke was a little lack lustre too), but in all seriousness, I’ve been wanting to cook some sort of casserole using chicken for a while. I’ve cooked many casseroles with beef or lamb, but not so much with chicken. I love chicken and it’s less expensive to buy than beef or lamb, so it’s perfect for me being on a strict Uni-bum budget. The other thing I love is how casseroles can be one pot wonders. Read more…

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