COUSIN MARIE'S CHICKEN & SPAGHETTI (almost like tetrazzini) Serves 4 - 8

This was delicious and can be done in one pot. Marie - sorry about the egg noodles, and using boneless thighs did cause them to break up a bit, but it was so delicious anyway and we needed bread to soak up the sauce. We garnished with a bit of sour cream

      Ok, first, the story.  I was visiting mom and all she could talk about was how she needed Gravy Master (something I haven't used in about 20 years) because my Cousin Marie made this delicious chicken dish that was so amazing, and she had to have the recipe and I had to call Marie and get it immediately, along with the Gravy Master, so she could make it because she was not going to be able to live past her 84th year without it!  OK, who am I to argue?  I got her the Gravy Master, then I got the recipe (Thanks Marie!) and tried it at home.  Mom's right, it was delicious, and easy to make.  I started in my slow-cooker, which also sears and browns, and the end result was perfect.  I'm going to do it again!!
6 - 8 bone in Chicken Thighs (I used a dozen boneless skinless)
1/4 c. Vegetable Oil
1/2 c. Chopped Onion Flakes (I used frozen chopped onions & peppers)
1/2 c. Chopped Parsley Flakes (fresh is ok too)
2 cans (or 1 box) fat free, low sodium chicken broth
2-3 Tbsp Gravy Master
1 Tbsp Worchestershire Sauce
Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper to taste
Water (or additional broth) as needed.
1 lb Spaghetti or linguini, cooked al dente, just before chicken is done. 
        1.  In a very hot deep pan, add about half the oil and brown the chicken, fat side down in an even layer for a few minutes, then turn to brown the other side. (The chicken will not be cooked through.  If all the chicken doesn't fit, brown it in batches, then add it all back in when finished browning.  
        2.  Continuing to cook on high heat, add Onions and Peppers, (I put in a bit of garlic at the end) and let them brown just until lightly caramel colored.  Add the Gravy Master, Worchestershire and broth.  Start with 1 quart (2 cans or 1 box), and go from  there.  Keep adding more broth (or water if you prefer a more subtle taste), and let cook about 20 minutes until everything is screaming hot and bubbling.  [Technically, after about 30 minutes on hight heat, you could be done now, but its not my place to mess with this recipe, so]  Turn down the heat, stir and cover, let cook about 1 - 2 more  hours, depending on how you like your chicken.  
        3. While the chicken is braising (don't add more broth than you need to just barely cover the chicken), boil your Spaghetti (we used no yolks - yes I know, I'm a rebel), and drain.**  Add the Spaghetti into the a large serving bowl, then pour the entire pan of chicken and broth over it.  Done.  
        4.  Mom and Marie - you were right.  Simple and Delicious.   (so sorry the pic is of my egg noodle version, but I did taste the original and it was fantastic!)
**If you used a searing slow cooker like I did, at the end, at another quart of chicken broth and boil the spaghetti right in with the chicken.  One pot & Mmmmm, good!

CHICKEN TIKKA MASALA (in a tomato cream sauce)

1 cup plain yogurt, whisked until smooth
2 tablespoons Garlic Paste
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger (or 2 tbsp dry ground)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 - 2 pounds chicken parts (original recipe recommended boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into large bite-sized chunks)
2 teaspoons olive oil
3 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup Ginger-Garlic Paste, recipe follows (or 6 cloves garlic and 2-inch thumb ginger minced)
2 serrano peppers, minced (seeds removed if you don't want it spicy)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon garam masala
2 teaspoons paprika
2 cans Rotel diced tomatoes w/ chili peppers, drained
2 cans Hunts Diced Fire Roasted tomatoes, drained
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 to 2 cups water
Oil, for grilling
Finishing Ingredients:
1/2 cup sour cream
Minced fresh cilantro, for garnish
Cooked Uncle Bens 90 Second Basmati Rice, (or rice, naan, or crusty piece of bread, for serving)
    For the marinade: In a jumbo Ziploc bag, mix together the marinade ingredients. Add the chicken and toss to coat. Marinate at least 30 minutes, or in the refrigerator up to overnight.
For the sauce: [Note: I have a crockpot with an insert so I can brown or saute as needed, then added the chicken after grilling right into the sauce on slow cook for approximately 3 hours. Add the sour cream & puree with an immersion blender just before serving. Here is the recipe as written but with my ingredient adaptations:] When you're ready to make the curry, place a large skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil and butter. When the butter has melted, add the Ginger, Garlic Paste & tomato paste and/or drained rotel tomatoes. Saute until the tomato has darkened in color, about 3 minutes. Add the garam masala and the paprika and saute for about 1 minute to draw out their flavors.
Add the tomatoes, salt, and 1/2 cup water at a time up to 2 cups if necessary. Bring to a boil, turn down to a simmer, and cook until thickened, about 20 minutes. You may need more water depending on how much liquid the tomatoes give off.
Meanwhile, fire up your grill. When it is nice and hot, lightly brush it with oil. (Don't skip oiling the grill because this marinade will stick). Place the chicken on the grill, shaking off some of the excess marinade. Cook until it's charred, about 2 minutes on each side. The chicken will still be a little uncooked, it finishes cooking in the sauce.
Use an immersion blender (or pour into a blender if you don't have one), and blend the sauce in the pot until smooth. Bring back up to a boil. Add the chicken hot off the grill. Take the heat down to a simmer and cook for about 30 minutes. Add the cream and stir through. Garnish with minced fresh cilantro, and serve over rice, with naan, or a crusty piece of bread


     This very light and flavorful chicken is ideal for a warm summer dinner on your deck of patio. It’s very simple to prepare with just a few key ingredients and is packed with flavor from the marinade. You’ll make this over and over again! Serve with a fresh tossed green salad or roasted potatoes.

1 chicken, cut up (approx. 8 - 10 chicken pieces) (3 lbs) (**I made mine with boneless skinless chicken thighs - less fat & calories)
1 cup lemon juice ( or juice from 6 lemons)*
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
2 tsp fresh ground pepper
2 tsp salt

**Save the lemon rinds for decoration, slice rind into strips and garnish with some fresh parsley.


Combine and whisk marinade ingredients, and reserve half. Put the chicken pieces in a jumbo Ziploc bag and pour the other half of the marinade over the chicken, along with the lemon slices if you used lemon.  Marinate in the refrigerator for 3-4 hours turning over every now and then. 

   When you're ready to cook, pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. 
   Pour the chicken and marinade from bag and place in a baking dish sprayed with Pam.  Discard the bag and any marinade left in it.  Season chicken with salt and pepper.
      Bake chicken for about 45 minutes to an hour, depending upon the size of your pieces, basting once or twice with the reserved freshly made marinade, until chicken is cooked through and juices run clear.  
   Be sure and use all the marinade at the end, as this dish is wonderful over rice or couscous, or even with a salad, using the extra cooked marinade as a sauce or dressing. 

**As you can see, I made my version with the boneless skinless chicken thighs, and we think it came out perfectly, (and did not require any basting except when I took them out).  It was delicious and they're making chicken sandwiches for lunch tomorrow with the leftovers!  If you are going to use boneless skinless breasts instead, be sure to adjust your cooking time down so they don't dry out.


     Chilaquiles is a baked Mexican dish that's often made with leftover shredded chicken, tortilla strips, and cheese. In a more refined version, chef Grace Parisi bakes whole chicken legs with tomatoes, hominy, jalapeños, and tortilla chips.  Here, I substituted based diced potatoes instead of hominy, and the lighter Pop-chips instead of tortillas.  Then we served the tomato mixture over fresh chips alongside the chicken.  It was a hit! 

2 clove(s) garlic, smashed
Kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoon(s) ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoon(s) chile powder
2 tablespoon(s) extra-virgin olive oil
1 can(s) (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, drained well
1 cup(s) diced potatoes
1/4 cup(s) sliced pickled jalapeños
6 cup(s) (6 ounces) lightly crushed thick corn tortilla chips
5 whole(s) (about 12 ounces each) chicken legs
Chopped cilantro and sour cream, for serving.
Preheat the oven to 450°F. On a work surface, mash the garlic cloves to a paste with a pinch of salt. Transfer the garlic paste to a small bowl and stir in the ground cumin, chile powder, and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil.
In a 9-by-13-inch glass or ceramic baking dish, toss the drained diced tomatoes with the hominy, jalapeños, half of the spice paste, and the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Gently mix in the crushed tortilla chips.
On a work surface, cut halfway through the joint between the thigh and drumstick on the underside of each chicken leg. Score the top of each leg 3 or 4 times, cutting to the bone. Rub the remaining spice paste over and into the chicken and arrange skin side up in the baking dish. Roast in the center of the oven for about 30 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.
Leave the chicken in the oven and turn on the broiler. Broil for about 3 minutes, just until the chicken skin is golden and crispy. Transfer the chicken to a large plate and return the baking dish to the oven. Broil for about 3 minutes, until the tortilla chips are lightly browned. Return the chicken to the baking dish, sprinkle with cilantro, and serve with sour cream. 

Photo: Deb's version of Chicken Chilequiles


     At Emeril's in New Orleans, chef David Slater glazes chicken breasts with maple syrup, sherry vinegar and orange juice infused with anise and other spices. Then he serves them with a confited chicken leg, caramelized root vegetables, braised kale and crisp Benton's bacon.
     With this Easy Way Glaze I found in Food & Wine Magazine, chicken breasts are coated with a sweet-tangy blend of syrup and vinegar and and we skip the confited leg and root vegetables, making for a lighter, healthier dish with all the same flavor.
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 cup fresh bread crumbs
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Four 6-ounce boneless chicken breast halves, with skin
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
1/2 cup chicken stock
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1. Preheat the oven to 450°. In a large ovenproof skillet, melt the butter. Stir in the bread crumbs and cook over moderate heat until golden. Stir in the parsley and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a plate and let cool. Wipe out the skillet.
2. Add the olive oil to the skillet and heat until shimmering. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and add it to the skillet, skin side down. Cook over moderately high heat until the skin is browned, 3 minutes. Flip the chicken and roast in the oven for 7 minutes, until just cooked through.
3. Return the skillet to the burner. Add the syrup and vinegar; bring to a boil. Turn the chicken skin side down and cook until richly glazed, about 30 seconds; transfer to plates skin side up. Add the stock to the skillet and boil until reduced by one-third, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom. Stir in the mustard and season with salt and pepper. Spoon the sauce over the chicken. Top with the bread crumbs and serve.


Tender & crisp chicken legs w/ sweet tomatoes, Serves 4 - 6

      I found a recipe for Tender and crip chicken legs with sweet tomatoes. The recipe sounds great and I don't think I'll be disapointed - after all, it is a Jaime Oliver recipe. The chicken gets a crips surface while the rest of it is really tender and it smells delicious and it was!
4 chicken legs, jointed
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
a big bunch of fresh basil, leaves picked, stalks finely chopped
2 big handfuls of red and yellow cherry tomatoes, halved, and ripe plum tomatoes, quartered
1 whole bulb of garlic, broken up into cloves
1 fresh red chilli, finely chopped
olive oil
optional: 1 x 410g tin of cannellini beans, drained
optional: 2 handfuls of new potatoes, scrubbed

   Preheat your oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. Season your chicken pieces all over and put them into a snug-fitting pan in one 
   Throw in all the basil leaves and stalks, then chuck in your tomatoes. Scatter the garlic cloves into the pan with the chopped chilli and drizzle over some olive oil. Mix around a bit, pushing the tomatoes underneath. 
   Place in the oven for 1.5 hours, turning the tomatoes halfway through, until the chicken skin is crisp and the meat falls off the bone. 
   If you fancy, you can add some drained cannellini beans or some sliced new potatoes to the pan and cook them with the chicken. Or you can serve the chicken with some simple mashed potato. Squeeze the garlic out of the skins before serving. 
   You could even make it part of a pasta dish – remove the chicken meat from the bone and shred it, then toss into a bowl of linguini or spaghetti and serve at once.

recipe & photo: Jaime Oliver

Baked Pesto Chicken Serves 4 - 6

   This baked pesto chicken is delicious even with purchased pesto from the store, but if you have the time to have made your own pesto and keep it in the freezer, that will make this dish even better!

6 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut in half (either way)
1 pint pre-made basil pesto
1 cup shredded swiss or mozzerella cheese (whole or low fat)
How to:
   Spray a shallow casserole dish with non-stick spray, then spread 1/3 cup of basil pesto over the bottom of the dish.  Then lay the chicken strips over the top of the pesto and season with salt and fresh ground black pepper.  Spread another 1/3 cup of basil pesto over the top of the chicken strips. (I used a rubber scraper to spread the pesto in the dish and over the chicken).  
   Be sure to cover the dish with foil. Then bake at 375F/190C for 25-30 minutes, just until the chicken is barely cooked through. (Don't cook too long at this stage, or the chicken will be overcooked when the cheese is melted and browned.)
   When chicken is just about done, sprinkle 1/2 cup shredded swiss or mozzarella cheese over the top, and dot with a bit more pesto and bake about 5 minutes more. (If your broiler is separate from the oven, start preheating it at this point.)
    You want the cheese to be lightly browned, so after 5 minutes I switched to broil for about 3- 5 minutes, just long enough to get some color on the cheese. Serve hot, maybe with rice or couscous to soak up the juices.)
adapted from

Scott Peacock's Roasted Chicken Thighs,** Serves 8

8 chicken thighs** (yes, you can do this with breasts instead, just cut down the cooking time so they don't dry out.  I'm using boneless skinless thighs in mine)
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 bag frozen chopped onions, or 3 lg onions, peeled & cut into quarters  
  • one slice bacon, preferably country cured, cut into 1/3-inch dice
  • 4 tablespoons garlic, minced or paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 pound cremini mushrooms (other varieties may be used), cut in half lengthwise
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 3/4 cup chicken stock or water
Preheat the oven to 325 F.
   Trim the chicken (thighs) of any excess skin, leaving just enough to cover the surface of the meat. Pat them dry with paper towel and season generously all over with salt and pepper. Once you salt the meat, you should begin cooking immediately.
   I made a few modifications to the original recipe, to make this a one pot meal.  You will need a large deep sided oven proof skillet.  I doubled the recipe and used a 12 inch deep, 3 inch sides, and it worked fine.  
   In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable or olive oil over moderate heat. Without crowding, place the thighs skin side down in the pan and cook until a deep golden brown--5-7 minutes. this is an important step.The relatively slow browning renders out much of the fat from the skin of the chicken, making for a leaner, more refined dish. And the careful browning develops wonderful flavor and color. Turn chicken and brown the other side, which will take much less time than the skin side. Remove from pan and set aside.
   Pour most of the oil and rendered chicken fat from the pan, leaving behind any browned bits of flavor. Add 1 tablespoon butter, the onions and diced bacon. Season with salt and a few grinds of pepper. Cook, stirring often, until onions begin to soften.  Heat the remaining tablespoon of butter in the skillet and brown the mushrooms, seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. Once browned, add the wine and chicken stock to the pan and bring to a boil, along with adding the garlic and thyme and cook 2 to 3 minutes longer. Taste carefully for seasoning and then add the chicken. Arrange the browned thighs in a single layer, skin side up, and nestle them in the onions.  
      Cover tightly with a double thickness of foil or cover to pan.
Cook in preheated oven for approximately 40 minutes, until chicken is tender. remove foil and parchment and increase oven temperature to 375F. Cook uncovered for 10 minutes or so, basting if needed, until well browned and caramelized.

(I did make this when I originally posted the recipe, and it was excellent)

Creole Chicken & Rice Serves

       I love these one pot meals.  They're quick and easy, don't make a big mess, and the ones like this are adaptable to any kind of taste - so use your imagination here.  Spice it up or spice it down.  If you don't like celery, leave it out, as with most of the other spices.  Remember, its your kitchen. 
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2‑1/4 pounds chicken thighs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper (or 1 frozen pkg of onion & peppers diced)
1/2 cup chopped celery 
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup long grain or converted rice
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
(use Rotel if you like the spice)
1 cup water
Hot pepper sauce (your favorite)
   Heat oil in large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat until hot. Sprinkle chicken with salt, paprika, thyme and black pepper. Cook chicken 5 to 6 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Remove from skillet.
   Add onion, celery, bell pepper and garlic to same skillet; cook 2 minutes. Add rice; cook 2 minutes, stirring to coat rice with oil. Stir in tomatoes with juice, water. Season to taste with hot pepper sauce; bring to a boil.
   Arrange chicken over rice mixture; reduce heat. Cover; simmer 20 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in center and liquid is absorbed. 

Balsalmic & Garlic Chicken, Serves 4

     This chicken turns out really moist and tender, especially when made with the thighs and legsl but it also goes very nicely with the chicken breast (just cut back your cooking time a bit.  It has a delicate sweet and tangy sauce and its really easy to make, you will be making it often.
  • 5 boneless skinless chicken thighs, trimmed of any fat
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Sea salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1 tbsp butter, softened
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup of balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup of chicken broth


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Heat the olive oil in a large OVEN PROOF skillet over medium high heat. Season the chicken thighs with sea salt and fresh cracked pepper. Lay the chicken thighs smooth side down in the pan and cook until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Turn the chicken over and place in the oven. Cook for 8 minutes or until cooked through.

Remove chicken from oven and set aside on a platter to rest with a tin foil tent to keep warm. Return the skillet to the stove over medium high heat (add more olive oil if needed) and add minced garlic. Cook, stirring constantly for 60 seconds then add the balsamic vinegar. Stir, scraping the browned bits from the bottom of the pan for about 1 minute. Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Mix the butter and flour together making a paste. Whisk in the flour and butter mixture and let the sauce return to a boil. Simmer until the sauce gets thick – about 1-2 minutes. Pour the sauce over chicken, serve alongside some rice or couscous, and Enjoy.

Tupelo Style Chicken *adapted from Hard Rock Cafe recipe Serves 4

For Dipping Sauces: 
Honey Mustard: 1/4 c/ Mayonaise, 1/1/2 tsp mustard, 2 tsp honey & pinch paprika.
Apricot Sauce: 2 tsp Dijon mustard, 1 tbsp apricot preserve, 2 tbsp honey

1 c. corn flakes
2 tsps crushed red flakes   1/1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp cumin, 1tsp salt
1/2 tsp paprika, 1/4 tsp onion powder, 1/4 tsp garlic powder, 
1 egg, 1 c. milk, 1 c. all purpose flour
6 cups vegetable oil
12 chicken breast tenderloins
     Heat oil to 350 degrees.  If you don't have a deep fryer, use a deep sided fry pan and check the temperature before you put anything in it!
     Prepare breading by combining corn flake crumbs, red pepper flakes, cayenne, cumin, salt, paprika, onion powder and garlic powder in a medium bowl.
     Beat egg with milk and wisk together medium bowl. 
     Pour flour in medium bowl, then arrange your bowls, flour - egg- breading. 
     Now, bread your chicken by first coating each tender with flour and shaking off excess, dipping each into the egg mixture, then into the crumbs. Be sure each piece is coated thoroughly with crumbs, even if you have to press some on.  Set aside on platter.  Do this with all of your tenders and place in refrigerator abour 1/2 hour to set.  
     Here, I would place all the tenders on a metal baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and bake 15 to 20 minutes.  Lower fat and calories.  However, what follows is the real thing: 
     To Fry, put about 4-6 tenders in pot at one time (not too many because you don't want to bring down the temperature of the oil).  Work quickly as the oil is hot and the chicken should only be golden brown.  Drain on paper towling.  
     Serve with dipping sauces on the side.  

Its the sauces that make the meal here, so make extra.  This recipe adapted from Hard Rock Cafe's Tupelo Chicken, photo by



        Here's a recipe passed down from my mother. This one has been requested for years at all the old family get-togethers. As our family spreads out, it's time we all have the "no longer secret" recipe: 
2 whole chickens, cut up. Or an equal amount of pieces of whichever kind you like. If you prefer to remove the skin, do that now.
3 eggs (can be done w/ egg beaters, but eggs stick better)
1/2 cup milk or water
3 tbs Worstershire sauce
Flour (enough for dredging)
4 c. Breadcrumbs, seasoned Panko or regular
Half stick of butter
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Meanwhile, prepare a bowl of flour for dredging the chicken, and a bowl of the panko crumbs for coating
Mix eggs, milk and Worstershire in a third bowl and wisk until well combined.
Once chicken is trimmed and cleaned, pat dry and season with salt and pepper, or any seasoning you flike. 
Dredge chicken in flour, shake off excess flour, dip in egg mixture, then in breadcrumbs. Place on greased baking sheet or roasting pan. Continue until all pieces are evenly coated.
Now, the secret step: combine the remaining breadcrumbs with the egg mixture to make a stuffing-like patty. Add additional breadcrumbs and water if necessary. Place small handfulls of the stuffing under the breasts and thighs. Once all pieces are in pan, sprinkle with olive oil and bake at 400 degrees for 45 minutes until just about done. Remove from oven and place a pat of butter or butter spread on each piece. Cook 10-15 minutes more and remove from oven. (be sure to check that it's done - when the juices run clear).
**This is soooo good with a side salad of mixed greens and tomatoes.