Easy Baked Chicken

For my chicken drumsticks in the freezer, I decided to do something simple.  And I guess it helps that I like the dark meat much better than the white meat.  So here’s what I used:

  • Four chicken drumsticks
  • Olive oil
  • Rosemary
  • Thyme
  • Garlic
  • Black pepper

After covering the baking dish with aluminum foil I spread some olive oil on it to avoid the chicken sticking.  Then I drizzled some more olive oil on the chicken, then added the rosemary, thyme, garlic and black pepper.  I baked it for a bout half an hour.  Here’s what it looked like:




Vegan French Cut Green Bean Casserole

Normally when I think of casseroles, I think of some vegetables, a starch like egg noodles and lots gooey cheese to hold it all together in one dish.  But since I wanted to have these green beans as a side dish for my chicken (which I’ll post about after this), and since I don’t mix dairy and meat, I decided to improvise.  Also, I did not have any mushrooms, cream of mushroom soup, half n half, or cheese in the fridge either.  So here’s a list of what I used:

  • Frozen French Cut Green Beans
  • All Purpose Flour
  • Green Onions
  • Green pitted olives, along with the liquid
  • Tahini
  • Water
  • Lemon Juice
  • Salt, Pepper, Garlic

First I briefly boiled the beans until they were all warm, then I rinsed them in cold (or lukewarm) water.  After that, I cut up several small onions into round slices, drizzled them in olive oil, coated them with some flour and baked them in the oven.  

In another pot, I sauteed a bit more of the onions with the green olives *and* the liquid.  I figured this might be a good substitute for the mushrooms being that I really like green olives.  After that, I added a heaping tablespoon of the all purpose flour and water,  Then I mixed everything together until I got a creamy consistency.  All of this was on low heat on the stove. 

In a separate bowl, I mixed together the tahini, the lemon juice and some water, which I added to the onion, olive, flour, and water mixture on the stove.  This I cooked for about another minute.

Finally I added this creamy mixture which looked like cream of mushroom soup by then, to the beans, and after that to the baking dish.  But before putting it into the oven I took out the baking onions and added them to the top of the mixture.  I would say I had this on bake at 425 degrees for about 20 to 25 minutes.  Here’s what it looked like:


It wasn’t bad at all.  If I do this again, I would probably add store bought soy-based cream of mush room soup.

Mung Bean Soup

I got the idea for this one after trying the middle eastern fava bean dish ful mudammas.  I’ve see recipes for this dish with just fava beans and even one with fava beans and chickpeas.  I’ve had it served with hummus and hard boiled eggs as well.   I made it a few times with fava beans and lentils which was good.  But last night I decided to try it with mung beans.  And I only soaked them for maybe four or five hours at best.  Anyway, I cooked the beans on medium heat until they got kind of mushy.  Then when it got cold, I refrigerated it for today.  So this morning, I put some in a bowl, added water and microwaved it on high for about two minutes.  Then I drizzled olive oil and lemon juice on top, followed by salt, black pepper, red pepper and garlic.  The only difference I noticed with this beans is to add more lemon juice than usual.   Here’s how it came out:


What Are Whisks Really For???

All I know is that they’re for mixing ingredients.  To all you other klutzes out there, this is what I’m posting about:



Looking at some recipes I can’t help just shaking my head.  I mean, I don’t understand why a spoon or fork wouldn’t do.  For example one recipe I read said to whisk together the various spices.   Huh??? Wikipedia says whisks are used for making fluffy egg whites for meringue pies, or just fluffy scrambled eggs (whatever that’s supposed to mean).  But for mixing together other ingredients when you’re not baking?? Come on already.

Pickle Juice Healthy?? Who Knew??

I love kosher dill pickles and the spicy Israeli ones as well.  Not only that, but I also love pickle juice.  On the other hand, I’ve always felt guilty about it since I worry about damaging my stomach lining whenever I take a sip here or there.  But then again, I just read that there are health benefits to the stuff aside from helping with muscle cramps:

5. It contains antioxidants

Pickle juice has significant amounts of vitamins C and E, two key antioxidants. Antioxidants help shield your body from damaging molecules called free radicals. Everyone gets exposed to free radicals, so having plenty of antioxidants in your diet is a good idea.

Vitamins C and E also help boost your immune system function, among other roles they play in your body.


7. It helps control blood sugar levels

A study published in the Journal of Diabetes Research showed the effects of consuming a small serving of vinegar before a meal. The vinegar helped regulate blood sugar levels after the meal in people with type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is associated with being overweight and obese.

Well-regulated blood sugar levels help keep you healthy. Lots of people have type 2 diabetes and don’t know it. Unregulated blood sugar can cause serious health problems such as blindness, heart damage, and kidney damage.

8. It boosts gut health

The vinegar in pickle juice can help your belly stay healthy, too. Vinegar is a fermented food. Fermented foods are good for your digestive system. They encourage the growth and healthy balance of good bacteria and flora in your gut.

A Healthy Salad Dressing Recipe

For the longest time, I’ve stopped buying ready made salad dressings. It seems like every single one I’ve seen in the grocery store has either sugar or high fructose corn syrup, which I HATE HATE HATE.  The taste of anything sweet on my salads just grosses me out. (Sometimes, I wonder who could have ever thought up such a thing.)  So when I’m at work, I’ll drizzle some olive oil, lemon juice and salt on my salad.  But when I’m home and have more time, I like to combine the following ingredients:

  • lemon juice or the juice of some lemon
  • olive oil
  • soy sauce (but NOT the Chinese versions that all have sugar!)
  • miso paste (any color will do)
  • tahini/sesame paste
  • powdered ginger (optional)

Now a little more about soy sauce or any kind of sauces for that matter.  I always read the ingredients.  And if I see sugar or high fructose corn syrup. I don’t buy it.  So some good soy sauce brands to consider are Kikkoman and San J Tamari.



The Klutz Shwarma Recipe

I happen to LOVE shwarma on a warm soft laffa, almost as much as I love sushi.  But luckily for me, shwarma is much easier to make than sushi.  When I post this recipe and others, you’ll notice that I won’t give exact measurements.  I go by what looks right to my eye, and what smells good.  Also, I don’t have the patience to read through a long list of items and their exact measurements.  I’m the same way with appliance directions.  I just like to dive right in and do it.  Feel free to add or subtract to this list

  • boneless chicken breasts or turkey cut up into small pieces
  • Several squirts of lemon juice according to your taste
  • Approximately a tablespoon of olive oil
  • Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • Turmeric
  • Red Pepper or Chili Pepper
  • Green habanero hot sauce
  • Lots of garlic power or crushed garlic
  • LOTS of cumin
  • Tahini/Sesame Paste

Mix everything together in a bowl.  Then add to non-stick pan along with some more olive oil.  Turn the stove on medium heat and start mixing.  I

Here’s the finished product: