Never quite follows the recipe. Doesn't really measure. Tastes with her fingers. Somehow, it always works.

In which I make a leap

Posted: October 5th, 2008 | Author: johanna | Filed under: Johanna | 43 Comments »

When I was a kid, I remember my mom occasionally making use of her CrockPot. I remember one special dish that she used to make that for some reason was the most delicious thing I’d ever had. I used to ask for Crock Pot Chicken, but of course, I would ask when Mom asked, “What would you like for dinner?” and by then, trust me, it was too late to begin making Crock Pot Chicken.

Today, the original plan was for me to be circumnavigating Manhattan (traffic free, thankfully) on a bicycle, to benefit MS research. However, today dawned rainy and cool, and the idea of a relatively inexperienced bike rider traveling 30 miles in a bicycle in the rain and on wet streets is frightening at best. At worst, it might cause me to never ever want to ride a bicycle again, because I have reasonably creaky knees (result of an unfortunate situation where an opposing rugby player decided my knee needed to go a way that knees do not normally go, plus a lifetime of ballet) in the cool and damp, and it raises the possibility of me getting in a crash, and the weather is still miserable as of this writing.
Anyways. The original plan was for me to be on a bicycle for 30 miles, starting at 7:30am. After I survived the grueling bike ride, I was to pick up my friend Kim from home, and bring her back to my house, where I would recuperate and we would hang out and talk about her upcoming wedding (gleeee!!!!!!!). I figured I would be too exhausted and possibly too sore to stand around cooking dinner, so I decided that we would have Crock Pot Chicken for dinner.

I’m a little frightened of recipes that rely heavily on canned or pre-made ingredients. I don’t like condensed canned soups (with the exception of Campbell’s Chicken Noodle), and I’m not a fan of granulated gravy mixes. This is purely a personal choice, and I don’t judge anyone for using them… I understand that canned cream of mushroom soup is basically an ingredient these days in its own right, and I definitely understand that when you need to get dinner on the table for family and kids post work and pre homework, canned cream of chicken soup, some veggies, chicken and rice is a casserole that requires no thought. In fact, I just came up with ten different variations while typing that sentence.
That being said, I’m not wild about things that can last in a can up to 5 years.

Happily, I’m not riding a bicycle on wet streets for 3 hours this morning. I’ve been awake for 3 hours. I’ve washed several dishes, and I decided to make the Crock Pot chicken becuase I already had the ingredients and I’m pretty sure I don’t know how else to use Cream of Mushroom soup and powdered gravy.

So basically, here is the recipe:
Chicken pieces – this recipe calls for boneless, but I like bone in. I used drumsticks and thighs.
Powdered chicken gravy – 1 packet
Canned cream of mushroom soup – 1 can
White wine or chicken broth – 1 cup
Cream Cheese – roughly 1 package.

You put the chicken pieces in your crock pot and sprinkle the chicken gravy powder over like so:
Then, you mix together your canned soup and your broth (didn’t have any white wine to hand) and you pour it over the chicken business, throw the lid on your crock pot, turn it on low, and walk away. Just walk away. 7 1/2 hours later, you come back and add the cream cheese. 30 minutes after that, you remove the chicken, whisk the sauce until smooth, return the chicken to the rock pot, and serve the lot over rice.

Here is a picture to prove that instead of making a bechamel and mixing in mushrooms, and using poultry seasoning, ground herbs, and real salt, I used canned soup, canned broth, and powdered gravy mix:
I’m excited, nonetheless. I hope this is as good as I remember it. Also, I’m using my brand new rice cooker to make the rice for tonight!!! :) Bonus points for this rice cooker meaning that we can now try making sushi, because while I make bitchin’ risotto, I’m not so good at regular old ….rice. And I’m certainly afraid of making sticky rice for sushi.
SO, here it is. There it is. Everywhere it is.

I’ll be back at a reasonable hour to let you know how the food went! And how Kimmy’s visit went!!! :) GLEEE!!!!


43 Comments on “In which I make a leap”

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