Who doesn’t love a simple salad? The editors of Simply Delicious knocked one out of the park with 2-23: Grilled Chicken Salad. Combining fresh vegetables with nicely cooked chicken is an easy method for creating a killer salad. My final product didn’t look much like the photo below, but the flavor is totally on point.
I love the bowl of strawberries and fresh baked biscuits behind the salad in the product photo.
In my holiday baking batch from last year (XMAS 15), I included 17-67: Coconut Crescents to offer some variety to the endless types of cookies. 🍪 17-48: Buttery Vanilla Rolls were included in this year’s holiday baking (XMAS 16) for much the same reason, although I think I ended up with a better mix of items this year. 🎅🏼
I liked that these were baked in muffin cups as well–I thought that might make them easier to pack up and distribute/ship as gifts. To make them holiday-ish, I sprinkled them with a bit of red and green decorating sugar while they were cooling. 🎄
Merry Christmas! 🎄 As I mentioned at the end of 17-47: Italian Fruit Bread, the first of my holiday baking entries for this year (XMAS 16), I had a vegan gift recipient this year, so I made a specially adapted version of 17-41: Molasses Oatmeal Bread to replace all the other treats and goodies that weren’t quite vegan-friendly. I gave the other loaf (this recipe made two, and I didn’t multiply it like the others I made this year) to my aunt who loves these kinds of things. 🎁
This recipe isn’t vegan-friendly without a bit of tweaking (swapping coconut-almond milk for regular milk and coconut oil for shortening), but it’s pretty easy to do and still results in a beautiful and tasty loaf of bread. 🍞
This recipe, 6-29: Stuffed Turkey, is the WHOLE reason I originally decided to take on the challenge of cooking Thanksgiving dinner this year (TGV 2016)–when else was I going to get a chance to use the actual Thanksgiving recipe but on the holiday itself? I have cooked a Thanksgiving dinner before, but not in my own house, and not planned/shopped/organized for by myself. It was a fun challenge, and I have this card and project to thank for it.
Of course I made this recipe the day of Thanksgiving (Thursday 11/24), and it includes not only the turkey, but traditional stuffing and gravy as well. I cooked this in the afternoon, after making 17-5: Hot Seedy Rolls and 1-5: Pigs in a Blanket in the oven that morning.
This year’s Thanksgiving was at least 2 weeks ago by the time you’re reading this, but I hope that if you had one this year it was a nice one, and that if you’re reading this sometime in the future preparing for the current year’s feast, that yours is nice as well. Mine was lovely despite what’s been a tumultuous year, and this recipe was definitely a big part of making my first solo Thanksgiving successful. Thanks for taking time out of your day to read even just a bit of what I’ve written, and thanks for participating in my project, even just for this brief moment.
I’ve been working on this project for just under 3 years now, and I’ve got at least that long to go to attempt to finish it–thanks for giving me a reason to keep this project alive, an outlet for writing, a focus for creative energy, art to share with my family and friends, and a priceless set of memories and experiences tied to a set of stinky old cookbooks that have always meant a lot to me, and mean even more now. Thank you.
Pretzels are my favorite snack food, which means that 17-21: Small Golden Pretzels were right up my alley. One of my favorite episodes of the Simpsons is based around pretzels. Making pretzels usually involves boiling the dough in baking soda water.
These golden pretzels are good as an afternoon snack. Saffron gives these pretzels the golden hue.
After staring at the screen for much too long (not the whole two weeks since the last time I posted, but at least some portion of it), I’ve determined that I just can’t think of anything all that notable to say about 17-19: Parmesan Bread. I’ve even made it once before, despite the lack of notations or photographic evidence. It’s just not what I hoped it could be.
The first time I made this bread, it turned out (somewhat) like the one shown in the Simply Delicious picture. This time, it turned out more like savory, vaguely cheesy monkey bread.
Croissants are a culinary item that have been around for well…a really long time. Crescent-shaped rolls are a part of several cuisines–one example would be the kifli from Eastern Europe, versus the well-known Western European version, like 17-1: Croissants. 🌙
Wikipedia mentions that frozen pre-formed croissants are pretty readily available these days (and have been since the 1970s), so making this recipe’s truly a labor of love–it takes a good amount of effort, as noted above.
There was apparently a week in April 1992 (can’t say that without thinking of this) when my mom was on a tear through this book–7-14: Easy-to-Make Pork Casserole is from two days earlier, and there’s a few more coming up from that same time period. 6-17: Chicken Breast with Cheesy Filling seems like something my mom would have been all about–she loves chicken breasts and blue cheese.
Stuffed chicken breasts aren’t new territory for Simply Delicious—6-4: Easy Stuffed Chicken Breasts and 6-25: Salmon-Filled Chicken Breasts are two variations on the concept that I’ve already covered.
Here’s one I’ve made a couple of times before. 17-38: Olive Bread is a nice, easy bread to make, especially if you don’t have a ton of experience with the process. I think sometimes yeast doughs can be intimidating to beginners, but this one hasn’t failed me yet–even when I was still just beginning to make bread. If you’re looking for a more “plain” type easy bread, check out 17-6: Best Ever White Bread. However, if you like those olive batard breads from the bakery section of the market, you’ll love this one.
I’ve made this twice before, once in its intended form (but with more olives because I LOVE olives) and again soon after, but in a smaller bun-size with chipotle peppers & garlic instead of olives. I used them for slider buns for burgers intended for a New Years’ party, judging from the date on the card. What will I change about this recipe this time?
In 8-17: Pan-Fried Steak with Onions, I talked about using a different method to cook steaks than what’s usually written in these recipes–namely, the restaurant method where you sear the meat on the stove and finish cooking in the oven. If you want some practice with that method, 8-20: Juicy Steak with Garlic Topping is a decent (and garlicky) recipe for it.
Honestly, it sounds like even Simply Delicious couldn’t think of anything especially creative or memorable to say about this dish. It’s not much more than steak with some garlicky cheese on top, but if that interests you, read on.