God sometimes gives us unexpected gifts. Our gift has been a grandson who enlivens our lives and makes retirement very different than the one we anticipated. He is a special joy. And that's "Casey." In 2006 we fulfilled our dream of living in Italy for a year. It was every bit as wonderful as anticipated. This blog begins in 2005 as we prepared for that experience. Since then we have explored many places together. That's the "Travel." And finally, I am a person of opinions--spiritually, politically, on just about anything and that's the "Other Stuff." Welcome to my blog.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Off The Beaten Track

No--not in Italy--just from my normal postings which offer varying degrees of reflection, observation and experience. Today is functional.

The first is a recipe that I made this week which was particularly easy and good. If you read my blog upon occasion you know that it is not a food blog. Unlike many of my friends, my food obsession is eating not preparation. I prefer to sit down to someone else's labor and passion and then marvel over the talent and creativity. Fortunately, I have several friends in this category--except many live too far away to do more than allow me to enjoy pictures of their artistry.

So--straight away--my contribution to your kitchen:

Chicken Thighs, Roasted with Ginger, Chiles and Soy

2 tbs. minced fresh ginger root
1/2 serrano chile, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 cup soy sauce
1 tbs. vinegar
1 tbs. brown sugar

1 teas. oil
8 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs

Combine all ingredients in a gallon freezer bag or glass bowl. Marinate in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange chicken, skin-up, in a baking dish just large enough to hold the pieces in one layer. Pour all remaining marinade over the chicken and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until skin is crisp and chicken is well cooked. Serve with the baking juices.

This was super good with very crispy, flavorful skin and chicken meat deliciously moist. I actually put it, along with potatoes, in the oven on a delay start time before going to Casey's Little League game--which they lost, unfortunately--and we had an aroma filled house and a good meal waiting for us. I had pre-steamed broccoli and so just needed to toss it with sliced garlic and oil (olive, of course,) heat for a couple minutes and dinner was served.

My second "functional" thought today is the frustrating evolution of secure packaging. I am not at all sure how the truly elderly (not me) or the visually impaired (maybe me) cope with the challenge of opening anything beyond an egg carton these days.

This musing was brought on when trying to open up a well-protected from theft or malicious insertion of poisionous substance package of sunscreen sold at Costco. Fo
olishly I tried tearing at it but soon realized I would have no more nails if I continued. Next came scissors, then bigger scissors before finally turning the project over to a MAN as it was clearly a MAN-size job. Now, according to HIM, he just ripped it--no big deal. I am not sure that is true and that he was not out in the garage with his carton slicer. But, it is open and I can resume my packing for Italy--actually, more thinking about it rather than the doing. We still have 2 weeks 3 days (not counting today and departure day) before we're in the air. But getting ready is fun--sort of!


Judith in Umbria said...

Ahhhh, serrano chili! Had I one I would make this because I like the thighs best of all.

Jane said...

Judith, I would be honored if you liked my recipe--not really mine as it is out of the paper. Surely there is a substitute for serrano chili.

Anonymous said...

As I struggled to remove an item from its hard plastic packaging today the same thoughts crossed my mind. How would my 94 year old mother-in-law manage this? I don't know how she would have opened the package, but I do know that she wouldn't have dreamt of saying the words that I muttered under my breath!


Keep the recipes for non cooks coming!

Jane said...

Dear Sheena........and what is it that Canadians mutter under their breath? As far as packaging, I think the answer is to not make it to 94.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jane, oooh this countdown is getting really exciting. I'm going to try your recipe for chicken. I'm like you...I'd much rather be the adoring recipient of someone else's genius in the kitchen. But I need to gather my recipes since Aria will be coming home with boyfriend and I'll be needing some good ideas for meals. Oh the pressure! I also agree with this really tough to open packaging. The other day I struggled and always have to remind myself to be careful not to slice a finger in my attempts to pry open the cut plastic package. Someone should come up with an easier way to open those things. Good post! Take care. Barb Cabot

Jane said...

Barb, let me know what you think of the chicken. I know you are too excited about Aria and her boyfriend coming--I feel as if I know them already.

Jerry said...

Nice looking chicken recipe. I have some things in teh freezer so I shall give this a whirl! Thanks!

Diane said...

Chicken thighs are also my favorite part of the bird, so I'll make this while we're in N.Y. (8 days away, but who's counting?). Regarding the over-packaging of stuff: maddening isn't it? I get out the scissors, wind up cutting myself on the sharp plastic and say a few choice words. And where does it all end up--filling the landfills. Uggh!

Jane said...

Diane, sure wish we could get our boys together sometime. And...I'd like to get together with you, too.

Diane said...

Jane, maybe, maybe we can head up to your area after boy scout camp is over (end of July). Will you be in Greve? Let's be in touch when we get back from NY (July 17). Will it be difficult to get a local room for a night or two in August, if we wait until then to think about it?