Grilled Whole Chicken & Shiracha Swiss Chard

Editors Note: This should have been posted about 6 months ago. But better late than never.

Whole chickens were on sale at the grocery store for $0.69 a lb. So I thought that it was high time to make a roasted chicken on the grill.

The cooking time couldn’t be simpler for this dirty bird. With the bird directly over the coals, grill 8 mins on breast side, flip, than 8 mins on the back side, finally another 2 mins on each side of the bird (20 mins total.) Then move to the cool side of the grill, with the breasts facing the coals. And let it go for 30-40 mins, until the bird is at 160F.

As for the swiss chard, my crop of swiss chard was a total disaster this year. So I ended up having to bum some swiss chard from my farmer neighbor. As for cooking method, I lightly blanched the swiss chard, along with some green beans for a couple of minutes. And then in a frying pan with a with a little bit of bacon fat, I sautéed the swiss chard and green beans until golden. And then at the end, I gave it a couple of squirts of sriracha for some heat. I might have added just a little too much sriracha (as you can tell from the pics), but I like it hot. Thought it could of used some kind of crunch in the mix, maybe french fried onions or breadcrumbs. But I consider a missing crunch, only a minor detail.

Cyber Monday – Sunflower seeds from BIGS

What a deal, what a deal.

I was just about to head out to the local truck stop, to see what kind of sunflower seeds they carried from BIGS. But when I checked out BIGS website on the Sunday after Thanksgiving, they happened to be running a Cyber Monday special for free shipping on all orders over $10, plus they tossed in a free gift with your order (a branded plastic cup filled with sample bags of flavored sunflower seeds.) So what I ended up ordering was there variety bundle (2 bags each of 6 different flavors, for a total of 12 bags), a bag of the Jim Beam Jalapeno flavored seeds, and a bag of the Jim Beam Barbeque flavored seed, so 14 bags in total for ~$21.89 with free shipping.

So other then being a great deal, in both the cost per bag, and the free shipping. But they ended up shipping the sunflower seeds by FedEx no less, instead of the USPS.

Now you might be asking yourself, “Why would someone buy 14 bags of sunflower seeds off of the Internet?”. Well it boils down to this…..I finally found a brand of sunflower seeds that I like, and BIGS are kind of difficult to find due to limited physical distribution (truck stops, random convenience stores, etc), hence the large internet order.

Many moons ago, the only brand of sunflower seeds that I knew of was from David’s. And the seeds from David’s really didn’t do it for me as a snack food, since I only saw the “original” flavor on store shelves, plus the seeds were tiny as well.

So on a cross country road trip last year, I happened to pick up a couple of pouches of sunflower seeds from GIANT and from BIGS, and it totally changed my perspective on the world of sunflower seeds. But between GIANT and BIGS, I really took a liking to the seeds from BIGS. With the deciding factor being that the seeds from BIGS came in a zip-top pouch, which was a big bonus in my book. Out of all the flavor listed below, I’ve only had the Jim Beam Barbeque and the Frank’s Red Hot before this large purchase, and I enjoyed both flavors.

So as I mentioned above, I though that I would take the full plunge, and order up the 12 count variety pack, that way I would get to try 5 other flavors that I haven’t tried before. And I also tossed in a bag of the Jalapeno seeds, since I haven’t seem them before. And if some of the flavors work out, and others don’t, no big deal (pun intended). I’ll only be out a couple of bucks, but at least I would have gotten a chance to try some different flavors for a change.

Shipment List Breakdown:
1 bag –  5.15oz Jim Beam Jalapeno Sunflower Seeds by BIGS
1 bag – 5.15oz Jim Beam Barbeque Sunflower Seeds by BIGS
2 bag – BIGS Zesty Ranch flavored Sunflower Seeds
2 bag – BIGS Frank’s Red Hot Buffalo Wing flavored Sunflower Seeds
2 bag – BIGS Vlasic Dill Pickles flavored Sunflower Seeds
2 bag – BIGS Sea Salt and Black Pepper flavored Sunflower Seeds
2 bag – BIGS Original Salted and Roasted flavored Sunflower Seeds
2 bag – BIGS Sizzlin’ Bacon flavored Sunflower Seeds

Hot Microwave Oatmeal with Raisins and Brown Sugar – v1

For some reason I have two tubes of Quaker Quick Oats in my pantry, even though I don’t know how they got there. I though about making some oatmeal raisin cookies (maybe as a weekend project.) But since its still freezing outside, I might as well learn how to make hot oatmeal in the microwave.  So starting with the basic recipe listed on the back of the tube, here is what I came up with. Continue reading

Guacamole Recipe – v4

For some strange reason avocados from Chile were on sale at Wal-Mart for $.50 each. So not being one to stare a gift fish in the mouth and take advantage of a food opportunity. I ended up buying about eight of them, which provided me an excellent opportunity to work on a guacamole recipe on the cheap. Since testing out guacamole recipes at $.99 an avocado really isn’t the best use of my grocery dollars. But at $.50 a piece I’m more then willing to throw a little bit of caution to the wind in trying to develop a usable guacamole recipe. Continue reading

Easy Caprese Salad Recipe – v1

This is kind of a late post, since I made this caprese salad in October. But I guess better late then never.

If you don’t know how to make a salad, then you should have no problem in making a caprese salad since it only has seven ingredients. And those ingredients are fresh mozzarella, a tomato, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, basil, kosher salt and pepper.

And putting it all together is just as simple as the ingredient list. Slice the tomato and mozzarella into ~1/4″ slices, and arrange on a plate or platter alternating between the tomato and mozzarella. Finally top with the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, basil, kosher salt and pepper. And that’s it! How much more simple can you get? (Other then getting a bag of mixed salad greens and topping it with bottled salad dressing.)

Side note:
1) Since I didn’t want to get fresh basil from the grocery store. I just used some of the basil that I dried from my garden.
2) If you have some nice salt (black salt, red salt, etc) by all means use it. I just happened to use kosher salt, even though I had some red salt on hand but forgot to use it.
3) For the olive oil, I used some extra virgin olive oil that JRR got for me a while back.

Cream of Cauliflower Soup – v1

I’ve been on kind of a kick lately, in trying to clear out old food from my freezer. At least a year ago, I bought a 1pound bag of frozen Bird’s Eye cauliflower. Why I bought it is beyond me, since I really don’t care for cauliflower to begin with (since it’s easy to overcook cauliflower), but I’ve got to make it into something. Continue reading

Super Fast Fish Fry

So after a 13 hour day at work on Monday, I didn’t get home until 9pm. So having basically worked 8 hours since my lunch break, I was in need of a very quick dinner. All the while utilizing the limited provisions in the refrigerator. Here were my options:

-Fresh brats in the fridge
-Polish style hot dogs in the fridge
-Three piece of defrosted tilapia in the fridge
-1lb of defrosted hamburger meat in the fridge

And the final selection……(drum roll please).… Continue reading

Potatoes Pancakes – My Way

For some reason last week, I was in the mood to have potato pancakes for dinner. I usually don’t like to make them, because I always seem to cut my hand while grating the potatoes on the box grater. So instead of making pancakes from all grated potatoes. I went with a combination of grated and shredded potatoes, with about three quarters of the potato grated, and the nub that is left shredded. Continue reading

Garbage Nachos Recipe – Fridge leftovers edition

Man was I in the mood to have a plate of nachos for dinner a couple of weeks back. Yeah I said it, nachos for dinner. So basically I went though my fridge, and anything that looked like it might go on top of a plate of nachos, was used for these nachos(which included a lot of leftovers from earlier in the week). So here was what I ended up using for these nachos from the bottom up: Continue reading

Making the Hershey’s Kitchens – Ranch Style Shrimp and Bacon Appetizers

Let me start by saying that this recipe despite the title has nothing to do with ranch dressing, unlike the whole salad with chicken thing. But more like “I’ll be spending the weekend at my ranch, branding cattle the whole time.” Continue reading