Chicken Legs, Drumsticks, Whatever Recipe

I’m very much of a “show me how to do it” person. I’m without a doubt, a Kinesthetic Learner. That applies to everything from math to hair to recipes. And because I learn by doing, I probably won’t be including the meat crust quiche that is currently in the oven (but you can get the recipe here!) That’s mainly due to my inability to read through a recipe beyond the first step to know that I should have diced the veggies before putting the butter on the stove with the garlic to melt thus meaning I had to cut like a mad woman. No worries – all fingers are still attached.

However, as promised, albeit it a late delivered promise, I do have the recipe for the chicken legs. Or drumsticks. Or whatever you call them. Just call them delicious for ease sake.

It feels silly posting it because it is SO easy, but I’ve had 3 people, multiple times, ask since that photo, so I am now providing it to the masses. With step-by-step photos! The learner in me is pleased.

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Okay so first. Chicken delicious…this is important. I got the small ones from Whole Foods because you know, they sell happy chickens who get killed. That’s your best bet with this recipe. I tried it this weekend with the huge chicken delicious from Tyson who clearly sells the unhappy chickens who get killed. Major difference. The first time, the delicious were cooked to perfection with ultra crispy outsides. The unhappy chickens weren’t as crispy but the outsides were getting slightly burned. It may be because I used more fat. But anyway, doesn’t eating happy chickens mean you’re happier too? I digress.

Preheat your oven to 475. Yep. That’s not a mistype. You want it hot. Like HOT HOT HOT. That helps the outsides get crispy while the insides still say moist. My friend, Maia, says something like because they’re already fatty that helps them stay moist. I know nothing of those such details, but I trust her. She knows her stuff.

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You’re gonna need some fat for these bad boys. I used butter because I had it. But bacon fat (OMG YUM!) or coconut oil (I was out…bummer) would work equally well. But it needs to be in liquid form. So melt your fat. No weight loss pun, intended. I used 3/4 a stick of butter for 6 delicious. Using delicious as a noun is killing the grammar queen in me. But then..go WILD. Seriously. With your spices. I used salt, pepper, garlic powder and oregano, but it’s totally up to you. These are your chicken delicious. What flavors do you want?

Anyway…put that all in a bowl and use your hands to mix it up. Oh…you thought you wouldn’t get dirty in the process? Clearly you missed the part above about me being a hands-on learner. That’s what kinesthetic means.

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The goop won’t stay in true liquid form so it’ll become thicker goop. That’s okay. Just make sure your delicious have it on them.

Put it in the oven.

Oh…this is also VERY IMPORTANT. You must use a baking PAN for this. Not a baking sheet. You knew that…right? The goop will melt and will get everywhere if you don’t use a pan. But you probably already knew that. Just double checking.

So there aren’t photos for these next steps because yawn…who wants a photo of a timer. But you cook these for roughly 40 minutes. And you need to flip them every 10 minutes to make sure each side is getting equal treatment.

AND THE SMOKE. So apparently things start smoking over 400 degrees (thanks Maia!). And by things, I’m pretty sure fat or oil. Yeah…didn’t know that. My entire apartment was a haze of smoke. It burned my eyes every time I opened the oven to flip the delicious. I thought about pulling out my swim goggles. I don’t have a remedy for these…except open windows or doors. But maybe wait until it’s not 10 degrees outside to make these.

When the skin starts to come off the delicious and just in general look brown and crispy, you’ll know they’re done. The happy chicken delicious took about 38 minutes. The unhappy chicken delicious, I probably should have left in for about 3 more minutes, but took out after 40.

And the result?

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You’ll have to trust me. They’re super crispy. Since I essentially only use my phone for my photos because I’ve long given up my dream at being anything more than a sometimes amateur food blogger, it doesn’t show the amazingness.

BUT.

These may be the most delicious things I’ve ever made.

And I’ve made a lot of things.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t eat all of them in one sitting, and I am still unsure of how to reheat them to make them crispy again. Any recos on that?

Okay…so the formal recipe?

You’ll need (INGREDIENTS):

– Package of 5-6 Chicken legs, drumsticks, delicious

– Some type of fat (again, I used 3/4 stick of butter…but whatever coats the delicious)

– Salt

– Pepper

– Your choice of spices – I used garlic powder and oregano, but I’m sure basil, lemon salt, paprika, anything your heart desires would be delicious

You’ll do (INSTRUCTIONS):

1. Preheat oven to 475

2. Melt fat down to liquid

3. Put chicken whatevers with liquid fat, salt, pepper and spices in a bowl and mix

4. Place chicken whatevers on baking pan spread so they’re not touching. Make sure the thickened fat/spices that remains in the bowl gets put on each delicious

5. Open all windows/doors and take out smoke alarm batteries

6. Cook chicken whatevers for 40ish minutes flipping every 10 minutes

7. They’re done when the skin looks brown, crispy and is pulling away from the meat

8. Eat as soon as they’ve cooled down enough to do so.

Julia Child is rolling over in her grave with my instructions.

Oh and that quiche? Here’s a picture of the final product.

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Photo Christmas Catch Up

If I’m behind on updating my blog, I’m really behind on uploading photos anywhere. So instead of giving y’all a verbal update on my life, I’ll give you a visual one. But one quick note…towards the end of the photos, you’ll start to see glasses-less me. I’m climbing the uphill battle of giving contacts a try. We’ll see how that turns out.

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After many childhood trips to South Bend to see my grandfather, I finally made it to a Notre Dame game. And since I can’t tailgate with beer, I figured, why not champagne. Mumm…if you need a spokesperson, I’m available!

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Spotted at Thanksgiving. My all-time favorite photo. This hangs in my grandparents house showing all the cousins that were born by that point. I have always been cynical. 

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The brother and I before the annual Thanksgiving hike. Also before our trip planning to Zanzibar next year.

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Took a weekend trip to DC to see my bestest friend. Much needed quality time.

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And I can’t go to DC without seeing my soulmate, Fou. Unfortunately, all our non-blurry photos are not quite as flattering. This girl was the reason I got through my one semester at Centre.

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The Bengals vs. Cowboys game with my girl Jilly. Always gotta make it to one game at PBS. Even if we did lose.

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A work trip took me to San Jose, Cali, and in case you’re wondering, this is how they put up Christmas lights.

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I’ve been going to the Crosstown Shootout my entire life, and always with this guy. A little odd this year on neutral ground, and our team lost (I’ve got a bad streak going on here), but I have now seen this game played at every major arena in Cincinnati.

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This year, Jordann went with us! 

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My hair and I don’t always get along, and when we don’t, it’s not pretty. The hair to face ratio is just not okay.

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Alice, aka Snacks, one of my co-worker’s daughters came in this week to help us spread some holiday cheer. It’s been a lot of work, but we’re finally starting to bond. 

Food Fight

I have a confession. I’m currently in a fight with food.

For those who know me well, they know it takes a lot to get me mad. Upset is pretty easy, but mad is something that rarely shows its face. It is such a rarity, that when I do get mad, I take people so off guard, they aren’t really sure how to react.

But as of right now, I’m mad. It’s bad enough I can’t have gluten or raisins (that was a more recent discovery…damn you dehydrated grapes!), but now I can’t quite figure out what food is messing with me.

Something I eat is causing me some serious painful bloating. I thought it was milk, but it’s not. Although Greek Yogurt and I don’t get along so well. Neither does cheese. But ice cream…we’re cool. I really need to keep a food journal and track my stomach along with it. But that’s work..and I don’t want to admit that another one of my favorite foods is causing me pain.

Why am I sharing this? Because I’m starting to realize how many negative effects certain food can have on the people around me. And for many, they simply live with the consequences of certain foods causing bodily havoc. You don’t have to live that way. You can have your gluten-free, egg-free cake and eat it too. Once you and your body make friends, your life will become easier.

On a slightly (okay very) unrelated topic, my birthday is coming up, and I still am stuck on a name change. Once upon a time, I thought about actually buying a domain, but things like trips to Asia came up, and I preferred to spend my money that way. So for now, as I turn 24, I’ll stick with 23. Can you handle that?

And since I’ve been so big on including photos in here recently, I thought I’d include some from the past week/weekend. Enjoy!

 

 

1. One of my dearest friends, Lauren, who I met while living in Cape Town, came to visit from Canada, so of course the first thing we did was go to a Reds game.

2. Looking past my need to shower, my dad offers truly amazing tours of Cincinnati. I’ve lived in Cincy my whole life, but every time I go on one, I learn something new. If you’re interested, feel free to contact me.

3. My girls enjoying a Saturday night. Note that I do shower, and I wear a lot of green.

4. There’s a lot going on here, but I’d like to point out the number of rings I’m wearing. Clearly, the more rings you wear, the cooler you are.

5. Dogsitting Nillie, a dog I helped rescue in college. She was the star of the weekend, but I nearly killed her after taking her on a 30 minute walk.

What I ate

Remember when this was a food blog and I talked about what I ate since I can’t have gluten? You don’t? Fail.

I admittedly am much better at talking about myself than food, mainly because I’m not huge into cooking. If you had called me before September ’11, I could have done a blog on baking. I am a baking fiend. My specialty is white chocolate raspberry cheesecake by scratch. But when you’re gluten intolerant and do everything possible to avoid being sick, even baking losing it’s fun. And gluten free baking is messy and complicated and simply not worth it to me.

So what have I been eating? Well, instead of a typical burger trip to LA this year, it became a pizza trip. Burgers without buns make me desperately sad and gluten free bread is the pits. It’s dry, falls apart and makes everything so damn messy. I did have a burger at The Counter, probably one of my favorite burger places in California. The bun was eh at best.

I’m still not sure how I didn’t get this on myself.

I discovered my new favorite sushi while in Santa Barbara. A baked California roll, add cream cheese, topped with spicy creamy sauce. Sometimes known as a volcano roll, always known as delicious. It came right before someone landed on my friend’s car, denting in her roof, quickly halting our roadtrip to San Francisco. That’s really all the details I have about that. We don’t know what happened. We do know that most of our Friday was spent at the police station, getting an estimate and filing an insurance claim. But life happens. And I got Yogurtland out of the deal.

What else did I eat in California? Well…let me show you. And yes. Everything is gluten free. As a fun side note, a surprising thing gluten is in is frozen yogurt. Thankfully Yogurtland told me what flavors had gluten in them and which didn’t. Orange Leaf…learn from them.

 In order:

1. Babycake cupcakes. Chocolate mint, carrot cake and red velvet cake

2. Rooibos tea latte that reminded me of South Africa

3. Pinkberry. It never gets old.

4. Acai bowl from Backyard Bowls. If you’re ever in Santa Barbara, check it out. It’s seriously delicious.

5. Most deserved frozen yogurt ever.

6. Cinnamon roll from Breakaway Bakery that we carried up to the Griffith Park Observatory

7. Last meal of the trip.

I swear I ate other things on the trip aside from the food group known as sugar. I threw in some protein, vegetables and hydration along the way. But for now, it’s back to my grind. While dreaming of frozen yogurt, sushi and Santa Barbara.

The Pain

As I write my posts, I hope that most of you can’t relate.  Ideally, I would hope that food would be a friend for all of you.  But as I know that’s not the case, I hope at least for most of you, food and you are on first name, got each other on speed dial, basis.

Until today, I thought I was getting back to that status.  In fact, last week, I was telling someone I hadn’t had a stomach issue since October.  Well my friends, that streak has ended.

I must have eaten something in the salad I made at Whole Foods that had gluten in it because I’m paying for it today.  I tweeted this once – but if I’m going to eat something with gluten, I’d so much rather know and enjoy it than not know and pay for it later without any knowledge.

The cycle of food allergies goes something like this (for me at least – I can’t say it’s true for everyone):

– eat something bad

– feel a little weird later a few hours later

– very uncomfortable/painful stomach gurglings towards the end of the day

– feel decent the next morning

– about two hours after waking, it starts to hit

– lots and lots of stomach issues

– body shuts down

– lots of stomach noises (like can hear across the room gurgles)

– exhaustion

This is when I don’t think people can relate.  Stomach issues – yeah, everyone has those once in awhile.  It’s the body shutting down.  About 8-24 hours after eating gluten (time depends on the amount I consumed), my body just legitimately begins to shut down.  My brain doesn’t form clear thoughts, it’s almost impossible for me to keep my eyes open, I’m so groggy all I want is bed, but my stomach is so messed up, that’s not an option.

So anyway, I did something kind of radical today because I was so annoyed.  I’m still unsure if I had gluten or some form of dairy that bothered me (dairy – our love/hate relationship is getting old).  But I told my mom I really really really really wanted frozen yogurt, and she said “why not?”

Done.  I haven’t had any form of ice cream/frozen yogurt/my favorite obsession since October.  And since I already felt so sick, I figured it couldn’t get a whole lot worse.  BUT, I decided to get Lactaid and take that, just to see if it helped.

I forgot how much I love ice cream (okay fro yo, but technicality).  So much so, that I got a second helping.  But, just as an FYI – read food nutrition facts before you go because at least half the flavors Orange Leaf had, had gluten (not limited to Chocolate Brownie, Birthday Cake, Red Velvet Cake, Peanut Butter, etc.)  I took a Lactaid after my first bite, as instructed, and after about 5 more bites, I took another one just in case.  After we finished, we sat and talked for close to two hours – and guess what.  I feel fine.  I feel better than before I had it.

So I will now always carry Lactaid with me.  I probably won’t take it every time I have dairy, but anytime my stomach is already slightly on the fritz, I will.  Or any dairy heavy meal.

So those cheese lovers out there, of who cheese will not call you back (or is a stalker), try Lactaid.  Makes life slightly more bearable.

And as for ice cream and myself?  We had a fun run tonight, but for my health, I’m giving it up again.  It’s my achilles heel food, and I don’t want to abuse my body anymore than I have.

New Year, New You

As I sit here drinking tea and watching House Hunters, I can’t help but think about how much my life has changed since my previous post.

Don’t worry, dear readers, I am still very much gluten-free.  So I don’t need to change of the name of my blog, or rebrand myself.

The main area of change is that I am officially done with my cleanse.  Technically I’ve been done since Dec. 15, but beside being busy, I’ve been trying to figure out which foods my body has reactions to.

I went pretty dairy crazy at the end of the cleanse because I was so excited to eat cheese, sour cream, cream cheese, any and everything with milk.  And my stomach got a little iffy on that.  So I’ve really tried to cut back on milk except for cream which I put in my tea.

Otherwise, my body had some weird reactions to foods, not in the sense of my usual stomach issues, but with bloating and weight gain.  As in like 3 lbs in a day without overeating.  I finally found a balance that my body seems to enjoy with a high protein, low carb diet.  I’m not eating sugars or starches, so it’s not that difficult – and it does give me the ability to eat bacon which makes up for the lack of cheese.  I also gave up snacking which my body has reacted well to.  Finally, I take a probiotic daily just to help with food digestion.

My typical meals (since I know you’re gonna ask) are:

Breakfast: Eggs, bacon or sausage and tea

Lunch: Assortment of options – but often a salad with a protein and balsamic vinegar.

Dinner: Protein and some assortment of vegetables

It’s fairly similar to the Paleo diet, just with slight modifications based on my stomach.

I’m planning on doing the cleanse again at the end of January to give my body another period of time to heal from any potential food allergies, as well as because I lost a significant amount of weight this first time – so why not??

I did go off my eating plan for a trip to Chicago for New Years.  No gluten, but I did have some sugars, starches, fast food and alcohol.  I was nervous the entire time I’d have an “episode” but my stomach was fine the entire time.  Even after drinking on New Year’s Eve.  Truly a blessing.

Some other big changes are that I switched jobs.  I’m now working at a market research firm doing digital and social media research for them.  It’s a firm I worked at while still in college, so it’s nice to be back.  I also just found out today that they’re sending me to SXSW in March, so I’m pretty pumped!  Here I come, Austin!

I also got new glasses to take advantage of my old insurance while I still had it.  They’re matching my New Year, New You theme.

Aside from all that, everything else is the same.  I promise to post recipes soon.  I have experimented with this chocolate dessert made with stevia and coconut oil.  It tastes pretty similar to the chocolate coating you get on ice cream that hardens which I love.  Now if only I could figure out how to make it cherry flavored…

And as my word of advice to all my readers – I rarely make resolutions, but this year is slightly different.  This year I’m putting my health as my number #1 priority and making sure I get my stomach issues completely under control.  If there’s something that’s nagging you, take it upon yourself this year to fix it.  If not now, when?