Last night Zana and I cooked. Zana is learning to cook without boxes and cans, and I am helping. This makes me feel a little pompous and silly, but she asked so there we are. I thought it might be fun to talk about what we are cooking and learning. If you all don't feel like this is useful or relevent, or if it is just boring, let me know and I will quit. That said , background:
Zana asked me to help her learn to cook some simple, tasty meals, and maybe some stuff that looks more impressive later on. The problem with Zana (forgive me, Zana, it's probably the only one) is that she does not like vegetables, she does not particularly like meat, she hates fish, and as far as I can tell she is not crazy about beans either. Or soup. As you can immagine, this makes meal planning difficult. Fortunately, I have a five year old so I have had practice with just this sort of food prefrence.
Last night we made cruncy chicken "toes" and cauliflower couscous. Zana did it. I just found stuff in my kitchen and showed her how to hold a knife. Here are the recipes
Crunchy Chicken "Toes" (from Rachael Ray)
1 cup corn flakes (I use honey corn flakes)
1 cup plain bread crumbs
1-2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon allspice
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 & 1/2 pounds chicken breast, cut into two inch strips
1/3 cup all purpose flour
2 beaten eggs
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Crunch up the corn flakes and then mix them with all ingredients up to the chicken in a bowl.
Put the flour in another bowl and the eggs in thier own bowl too.
Dredge chicken in 1) flour, 2) eggs, 3) crunchy corn flake mix. And then put them on an oiled or covered baking sheet.
Bake for about 15 minutes until crunhy, brown, and free of deadly salmonilla.
(Dip 'em in BBQ sauce if you like it)
Cauliflower Couscous (from my head)
A smallish head of cauliflower
2 or 3 cloves of garlic, minced
onions if you like them.
A cup or two of dry couscous
Enough water or broth to cook it (follow box instructions).
Make the couscous and set it aside
Chop the cauliflower coarsly and then put it in a food processer. Pulse a few times until it is a little bigger than the size and consistency of couscous.
If you like onions chop em up and cook em in a pan with the olive oil. Honestly they are good carmelized, cooked soft and sweet, barely cooked. Whatever you like that day.
When the onions are about three minutes from perfect, put the cauliflower in the pan. And some salt. If you are not using the onions just put them in the hot pan. They cook really quick because they are so small. You want them to be soft but not mushy, and maybe a little brown. Use enough oil to coat them well.
After about two or three minutes add the garlic and cook another minute or so. Then add the couscous and mix it together well.
That it. Delicious. It's good with red pepper flakes too, if you like it spicy. Make sure you add enough salt. It makes a big diference.
Thats it. Zana did it all and she ate it all too. The chicken is especially good, she said. I love the cauliflower, but Zana thought is was just edible. Thats a big step up from eewwww, though. Which is where we started. Cheers!