During December 2011, I experienced 3 gallbladder attacks within a week and a half. Although I don't think my diet was THAT bad before this happened, I decided after the third one to drastically alter my eating habits. So, for at least the next couple of months (until my baby comes), my goal is to seek out and share low-fat, high fiber, and low-sugar recipes. I figured as long as I was figuring things out for myself and my family, I may as well share what's working!

November 4, 2011

The BEST and EASIEST Rolls EVER!

In honor of not posting for SEVEN months, I decided to finally post again!  Yay me. 

The recipe is actually called Overnight Crescent Rolls--but I've changed the name because they are so easy and always receive rave reviews.  By everyone.  My mother-in-law, sister-in-law, and brother-in-law have all already requested the recipe. 

Oh, and last weekend, my mom saw the recipe for the first time and said, "These are Mary Riding's rolls!"  Mary Riding was in my ward (congregation) when I was growing up and always made the best rolls.  I always thought her roll recipe was SO hard to make!  I'm glad to know that they're not hard at all...and that I've been able to master them already! :)

I think these would be a FANTASTIC addition to your Thanksgiving table!  And, since they're mixed up the night before, take a few minutes of attention in the morning, and then rise for several hours, it will free up your time to prep other parts of dinner or read a book...or both.  (As usual, I have no pics--but I'm going to give you a link to the site where I found these beauties to see pics.)

Without further ado, here is the recipe:

Overnight Crescent Dinner Rolls

Recipe adapted from RealMomKitchen.com (click on link for her pic!)
Yield: 2 dozen rolls

1 Tbsp yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup milk
3 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 tsp salt
4 1/2 -5 cups flour
1/2 cup butter

In stand mixer, combine yeast and warm water. Allow yeast to dissolve while you move on.

In small sauce pan melt butter. When melted and starting to bubble, mix in milk and remove immediately from heat. Set aside to cool a little.

In same bowl as yeast, add eggs, sugar, and salt. Drizzle in a little of the lukewarm butter/milk mixture to mixing bowl, while paddle attachment is running.  Continue adding milk mixture a little at a time until all mixed in.

Change to dough hook.  Add flour 1 cup at a time up to 4 cups.  Let the mixer knead the dough for about 5 minutes.  (This will ensure the flour is mixed in and not just on the outside layer of dough.)  You want a very sticky dough, but it should not be runny. If needed, add up to 1 cup of flour, but DO NOT go over 5 cups.

Scrape side of bowl down, so dough is in a ball at the bottom.  Cover with plastic wrap and place in fridge overnight.  (If you want to keep from getting a "skin" on your dough, place the plastic wrap right on the surface of the dough, but leave enough "gathers" on top so the dough can expand.  It won't expand a ton, but will definitely rise overnight.)

About 4 hours before you want the finish product, remove dough from fridge.  Melt remaining 1/2 cup butter.  Divide dough in half and roll 1/2 into a 14-inch circle on a lightly floured surface.  Pour half of melted butter on center of circle and spread within 1 inch of dough edge.  (Butter will stiffen up as you spread.)

Using pizza cutter, cut each circle into 12 wedges. Roll up each wedge starting with wide end rolling toward point.  Place rolls on ungreased baking sheet, point down.  (I have found that the butter on the dough is enough to grease the baking sheet as they bake, but you can spray the pan with baking spray before putting the rolls on it if you want to.)

Cover and let rise for 3-4 hours.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  (If you're using a dark baking sheet, reduce oven temp to 325 degrees.)  Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until golden brown on top.

NOTES: Some people are afraid of yeast recipes--but this one is actually quite easy.  When mixing up the yeast and water, use the hottest tap water you can stand to put your hand in.  And let the butter/milk mixture cool enough so it won't burn you if you stick your finger in.  That way, it won't kill the yeast when you add it to the mixing bowl.  And, make sure NOT to go over 5 cups of flour.  Even if the dough seems too sticky--trust me--it works.

April 9, 2011

Cranberry Glazed Chicken Breasts

A couple of weeks ago, I decided (for who knows what reason) that I needed to put cranberry chicken on our upcoming dinner menu.  I made it a couple of years ago and felt it was time to give it another go. And cranberries just sounded really good.

From what I remembered, the past recipe basically combined a can of cranberry sauce with a bunch of barbecue sauce.  Somewhere in the mixture, the cranberry flavor was lost and the chicken tasted like plain ol' barbecue chicken.  I was determined that this time, my cranberry chicken would taste like cranberries.  (I know.  Who would expect that?)  So, I set off on the search for the perfect cranberry chicken. 

And, whaddya know.  I hit the jackpot on the very first recipe I tried!  Whoa boy.  This chicken was plate-lickin' good.  Not that I actually did that. *ahem* On to the recipe!

Cranberry Glazed Chicken Breasts
Adapted from Cully's Kitchen (Which has fantastic pics of the recipe!)
Servings: 6-8

1 Tbls butter
1 small onion, chopped
1 large shallot, chopped (optional)
6-8 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 cups fresh cranberries **See NOTES**
1 ½ cups sugar
¾ cup water
2/3 cup ketchup

1/3 cup brown sugar
1 Tbls apple cider vinegar
1 tsp dijon mustard

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Place butter, onion, and shallot to 9x13 glass baking dish and bake in preheated oven until onion is translucent, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. 

While onions are softening, combine cranberries, sugar, and water in a medium saucepan.  Bring to a boil over medium heat; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Remove from heat. 

Remove dish from oven, push onions to either end.  Place chicken into baking dish and return to oven. Bake for an additional 10-15 minutes. 

In small mixing bowl, combine ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, and mustard.  Add to warm cranberry mixture.  Remove chicken from oven, scoop onions into cranberry mixture; stir to combine.  Pour cranberry mixture over chicken and return to oven.  Bake until cranberry mixture is slightly caramelized, which should be about 20 minutes, (or until internal temperature of chicken reaches 180 degrees on thermometer). 

NOTES: The shallot is completely optional.  I happened to have one on hand, so I tossed it in.

I only used 4 chicken breasts, but there was plenty of sauce for much more.  I served rice with ours--and the sauce is just as incredible over steamed rice as it is over the chicken.

Speaking of sauce--you can substitute canned "whole berry" cranberry sauce instead of making your own, but I wouldn't recommend it.  My original plan was to do just that.  When I opened the can and saw that mound of gelatinous goop glowering back at me, I wondered if I could go through with it.  Since when does "whole berry cranberry sauce" on the outside of the can translate into "cranberry jelly with a few whole berries tossed in" on the inside?  I've apparently been very spoiled at Thanksgiving in recent years. Thank goodness I remembered the fresh cranberries waiting in my freezer.  Immediately, the canned gel was ziplocked and stashed in the freezer for some other application.  You could use it in this recipe, but it will certainly change the fresh flavor of the dish.  And, tossing your own fresh sauce together is so easy, why would you opt to go the canned route anyway?

In all honesty, I don't really know how long I baked my chicken.  I used our meat thermometer, instead of the timer as a guide.  I did watch the clock, though, and think that my approximate times are fairly close.