Thursday, June 17, 2010

Microwave Roast Chicken

This is one of those recipes I have had sitting around for a long time and never got around to trying. I was not convinced that a chicken would actually roast in a microwave and thought it might turn out to be a waste of time.

I was pleasantly surprised. So were a few people at the cooking school. The chicken was quick to assemble with just a few ingredients, cooked much faster than in a conventional oven and turned out moist with slightly crispy skin. Definitely a recipe to keep in mind for a weeknight meal.

My chicken weighed 3.75 pounds and cooked for 34 minutes at full power in a 1100 watt microwave oven.

Microwave Roast Chicken

One 3-4 pound roasting chicken, gizzards removed, rinsed
1 tablespoon butter, sliced
1 lemon
3-4 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
1 small bunch parsley, washed & trimmed
Paul Prudhomme Poultry Magic Spice Mix

Pat chicken dry with paper towels. Place butter under skin of chicken breast. Squeeze lemon juice over bird and rub with cut side of garlic cloves. Stuff lemon, garlic, and parsley inside cavity of bird. Sprinkle Prudhomme Poultry Magic evenly over chicken. Place in a microwave safe casserole or glass bowl and wrap tightly with plastic wrap. Do not vent plastic wrap.

Microwave at full power for 9 minutes per pound. Remove from microwave and carefully peel off plastic wrap. Allow chicken to rest about 10 minutes before slicing.

Serves 3-4.

Very simple ingredients

Butter under skin, stuffed, sprinkled with spice

Tightly wrapped with plastic wrap

After cooking 34 minutes, plastic wrap is still expanded

Roasted, browned and resting

Ready to slice and serve

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Beer Bread with Italian Herbs

We had leftover beer at the Cooking School after our Summer Mexican Grill Party and Beer Tasting this week - a great excuse to make a loaf of beer bread! This bread is so quick to make that it was in the pan and ready to bake before the oven was preheated. Use your favorite herbs or omit for a plain loaf. Serve this warm with butter.

Beer Bread with Italian Herbs

3 cups self-rising flour (purchased or recipe below)
3 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon Italian herbs
12 ounces beer

Preheat oven 350°. Grease a 9x5x3-inch loaf pan.

Combine ingredients in a bowl and mix well with a wooden spoon. Pour into prepared pan and bake 45-55 minutes, until bread sounds hollow when tapped and crust is golden brown. Serve warm with butter. Makes 1 loaf.

To make 1 cup of self-rising flour:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Simple ingredients

Batter is thick

Spread evenly in pan

After baking

Ready to eat - still a bit warm. Delicious with salted butter!