Friday, September 2, 2011

September 2, 2011

Are you ready for Labor Day? The last weekend of summer? I know, technically the summer won't end until September 23, but we can all agree that Labor Day weekend typically is the last hurrah of the summer. Have fun at your cook-outs and picnics! If you have any great recipes...send them to me!

This week has been busy, and I knew it would be. So, having picked out a few recipes that called for cooked chicken, I roasted a few split chicken breasts early in the week, shredded them, and had the main ingredient needed for a few dishes already on hand when it was time to cook dinner. Although I didn't take a picture of the roasted chicken, I included the recipe, as well as the recipe I used to make chicken stock from the skin and bones that were left over. No need to let all that go to waste when it could easily become a great stock with barely any effort!

I used the chicken for Chicken Orzo Salad, Chicken Enchilada Soup and Cranberry Chicken Salad. The only new one of that group was the Chicken Orzo Salad, and it was a keeper! This recipe was given to me by one of my dearest friends. I'd had it on my list of dishes to try, but then the summer came and went and I never got around to it. Finally this week I found the time to make it, and it was fantastic! I only had iceberg lettuce on hand so I used that, but you can use whatever greens you have on hand. Don't wait to try this one...I think you will love it!

Our family loves pulled pork, and over the summer I was talking with my cousin who told me about a pulled pork recipe he tried. He couldn't believe the results, and now it is the only way he makes it. I love our quick and easy pulled pork (in the crock pot, couldn't be easier), but after hearing my cousin's raves, I had to give it a try. It isn't hard at all, though it is time consuming. But, rest assured, you don't have to babysit it at all, and the active prep time is maybe 30 minutes. I tried it this week, and from the get-go thought it would be a winner because it called for a Boston Butt. When my son heard that name, he couldn't stop laughing! Out of the gate he was predisposed to like the dinner. We all loved it, and after enjoying pulled pork sandwiches one night, we are having shredded pork tacos tomorrow, and I had enough to freeze for two future dinners! Definitely worth the time and effort -the results were fantastic, and we got 4 full dinners plus a few lunches out of it!

Also, with the start of school, I baked our favorite chocolate chip cookies for the kids' lunches. They freeze well, which is really nice. Not only are the cookies great in the kids' lunches, but also since they are packed away in the freezer I am less likely to eat 10 over the course of one day! This recipe isn't new for me, but I do think it is worth sharing; if you make them I am confident you will love them!

New Recipes

Chicken Stock
Roasted Split Chicken Breasts
Chicken Orzo Salad
Slow Roasted Pulled Pork

Tried and True
The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

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