Crispy Oven Fried Chicken

This is one of my favorite dishes. I love fried chicken, but I don’t want the calories. Who does? This is a great alternative.

12 whole chicken wings (cleaned, rinsed, seasoned with spices below)

Flour/Cracker Mixture (can be lightly pulsed together in a food processor)

  • 1 tube of crushed saltine crackers (white or whole wheat)
  • 1.5 cups of flour (white or whole wheat)
  • salt, pepper, paprika, curry powder, Lawry’s, garlic powder

Egg Batter

Non stick cooking spray (This is important. It keeps the coating on the chicken when it is turned during cooking)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray baking pan with non stick cooking spray. Season the chicken and the flour with the same spices. Dip the chicken in the egg batter. Coat the chicken in the flour/cracker mixture. Place on baking sheet and place in oven. Turn chicken every 20 minutes for 1 hour 20 minutes.

IMG 7450 300x225   Crispy Oven Fried Chicken

chicken in the baking pan, ready for the oven


IMG 7458 300x225   Crispy Oven Fried Chicken

Oven Fried Chicken

The chicken is crispy and comes clean off of the bone. I’ve gotten props from southern friends, so I recommend you try it yourself. I’ve also dipped it in hot sauce and made buffalo wings for football parties!
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January 8, 2013
Food, Recipe


Red Coconut Curry Veggie Soup

This dish should be saved for an afternoon of cooking, shopping, and errands. You’ll need the crock pot for the first half and a food processor and a large soup pot for the second half. You can use chicken to make the stock or simply rely on the flavors of the lemongrass and spices!

6 chicken legs (optional)

Vegetable Curry1   Red Coconut Curry Veggie Soup

Shan Vegetable Curry Seasoning (

4 -5 pieces of 6 inch lemongrass
2 tbsp green tea
3 tbsp diced ginger
3 chilli peppers (I used one red and two green)

Peeled and Chopped

1 can chic peas
1 can coconut milk
2 cups stock additional (I would recommend chicken or vegetable stock)
5 cups assorted veggies

  • Kale
  • Broccoli

Salt, pepper to taste

Put lemongrass and green tea in a coffee filter. Wrap it in twine and tie tightly. place in the crock pot. Add curry paste, shan veggie curry seasoning. Chopped squash, carrots, and potatoes. Add chicken legs and chic peas. Fill crock pot with water. Cook on high 4-6hours.

Remove chicken legs from crock pot. Remove half of the contents from the crock pot and put in the food processor. Add a can of coconut milk and blend.*Transfer the coconut milk mixture and the remaining contents of the crock pot into a larger soup pot. This gives a good mix of creamy and chunky textures. Add additional stock for desired soup thickness.


coconutsoup   Red Coconut Curry Veggie Soup

Red Coconut Curry Veggie Soup served with an Atwater’s Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuit

Pull chicken from the bone (or leave whole and serve in soup bowls later) and add chicken, kale, and broccoli to the soup. Bring to medium boil and simmer until kale begins to soften. Serve immediately. I had mine with an Atwater’s Cheddar Buttermilk biscuit. Enjoy! This pot probably makes 12-15 servings. Don’t be afraid to cut it in half. I usually freeze half of my soup and take it to work for yummy leftovers!

*Coconut milk in a can is high in fat. I scooped half of the cream out of the can. You can also use 2 cups of Silk or Blue Diamond coconut milk. I have done it both ways and I like the flavor of the canned milk but prefer the nutrients of the other milk. Your choice. They are both delicious!

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January 7, 2013
Food, Recipe


Sweet potato “crostini” with roasted beets, figs, cashews and feta


This recipe is great for a gluten-free vegetarian appetizer or party food.  The sweet potato base replaces a cracker or piece of toast in a more traditional appetizer, and the combination of roasted beets, feta, figs or dates, and cashews adds a sweet and salty flavor that is great for the fall or winter season.

sweet potato beet crostini   Sweet potato crostini with roasted beets, figs, cashews and feta


  • 1 large beet
  • 2 large sweet potatoes or yams (I used yams, but sweet potatoes would have been better, I think)
  • about 4 oz feta cheese
  • 1/2 – 1 cup chopped dates or figs (dried or fresh, if available)
  • 1/2 cup cashews or walnuts
  • drizzle of honey or maple syrup for sweetness
  • olive oil and balsamic for roasting the beets


  • Peel and chop the beets and toss in olive oil, balsamic, salt and pepper
  • Wrap beets in tin foil and bake in the oven for ~40 minutes on 400 degrees or until tender
  • Scrub and slice yams or sweet potatoes in 1/2″ thick slices, leaving the skin on

baking sweet potato slices   Sweet potato crostini with roasted beets, figs, cashews and feta

  • Bake sweet potatoes on a lightly oiled cookie sheet (or oiled foil) in the oven for about 30-35 minutes, or until lightly browned on the bottom.  You may wish to brush the tops with oil to brown them as well.
  • In a food processor, pulse the roasted beets, feta cheese, cashews or walnuts, and chopped dates or figs.  I added a drizzle of maple syrup (honey would work, too) to moisten the mixture a bit.  Reserve a little cheese and figs or dates to garnish.
  • Top each slice of sweet potato with a spoonful of the beet mixture, and garnish with feta/figs

feta figs and dates   Sweet potato crostini with roasted beets, figs, cashews and feta

  • Using a salt grinder, add a very small amount of sea salt over each potato slice
  • Drizzle just a touch of maple syrup over the sweet potato / beets and serve warm

If you make extra, keep the beets/feta mixture separate from the potato slices.  Heat potato slices in the toaster oven and warm the beet mixture for 15-20 seconds in the microwave and combine.


sweet potato beets and feta   Sweet potato crostini with roasted beets, figs, cashews and feta

January 6, 2013
Food, Recipe


Vegetable Fritters


With some veggies that needed to be eaten soon, I set to work developing an on-the-fly recipe that would make use of everything available.

This recipe can be modified based on whatever veggies you have.

veggiepatties   Vegetable Fritters  Ingredients:

  • 2 sweet potatoes, boiled
  • 2 green peppers, diced
  • 3 carrots
  • 1 crown broccoli
  • 1 zucchini
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1/4 white onion
  • greek yogurt (optional-for topping)
  • canola or other oil for frying
  • approximately 1 cup flour (more or less, depending on your mixture)
  • 2 eggs
  • Spices: salt/pepper to taste, Indian spices (garam masala.., turmeric, etc. or other mixture)


  • Peel and chop the sweet potatoes and boil until soft
  • Dice onion and saute until caramelized
  • Dice garlic and add to onions, cooking for a few minutes
  • Mash sweet potatoes and add garlic and onion in a large bowl
  • Pulse peeled zucchini in food processor, then remove and squeeze the moisture out as much as possible using a cheesecloth, towel or paper towel
  • Pulse carrots, and broccoli in food processor until they are in very small pieces
  • Dice green pepper (do not add to food processor)
  • Combine all ingredients in a bowl, adding spices to taste.  I used garam masala, salt, pepper, and a small amount of an Indian spice packet.

veggiemixture   Vegetable Fritters

  • Add eggs and flour until mixture is a consistency that can be formed into patties (not too dry)
  • Heat 1″ oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat until hot
  • Add veggie patties and fry until browned, turning once

fryingpatties   Vegetable Fritters

  • Let patties dry on paper towels to drain
  • Serve with a little Greek yogurt!


These turned out to be spicy and delicious, and can easily be frozen for a quick snack (just heat in the toaster oven)!

Food, Recipe


Baby Shower Cake Pops


I rarely bake, but when I do, I start by cheating.  My sister’s baby shower called for going above and beyond and a previous roommate’s cake business had me itching to try my hand in making cake pops.  They are so fancy, delicious, and party-perfect!

Unfortunately for a rookie, it’s a lot of work!  I think once you get the hang of it it’s not so bad.. But I made 66 cake pops or so, and it took all night.

cakepops1   Baby Shower Cake Pops

Blue, white, and brown cake pops make the perfect baby-shower treat!


Cake pop recipe:

  • 1 box cake mix (and whatever is required to make it)
  • 1/2 cup or so of cake frosting
  • lollipop sticks
  • various color candy melts (be sure to buy the most of whatever your base color will be)
  • Sugar and food dye (or colored sugars), sprinkles, etc., for decoration
  • Styrofoam to hold the cake pops for drying and display

For the cake mix, I used whatever brand was on sale.  I tried both a chocolate cake with chocolate icing, and a yellow cake with french vanilla icing.  You can experiment with different combinations of flavors.  For the candy melts, I got chocolate (brown), white chocolate (white), and a white chocolate flavored blue melt.


Bake the cake

  • Bake the cake as directed, and let cool completely.
  • Completely crumble the cake into a large bowl, rubbing between your palms to break up any pieces as much as possible.  Discard any tough pieces that were edges or the tops, if they are not crumbling well.
  • Mix 1/2 cup or so of frosting into the cake mix until it is somewhat sticky.

Make the cake ball lollipops

  • Roll the cake into balls and place on wax or parchment paper and place them in the freezer until cold and no longer sticky, but not solid (about 1 hour)
  • Melt the candy melts per the instructions (be careful, if you get impatient you will ruin the candy melts).
  • Dip the end of each lollipop stick into the candy melt and then insert it about halfway into a cake ball.  This way, the candy melt will harden, holding the lollipop stick onto the cake pop so it won’t fall off.  I began putting the ones I’d finished back into the freezer while completing this step.
  • Let the cake pops set in the freezer for up to 1 more hour.

Make the colored sugar

  • To make colored sugar, you can take plain white sugar and add it to a shaker or tupperware container.
  • Add 1 or two drops of food coloring (depending on the desired result) per half cup of sugar).
  • Shake the container vigorously until all sugar is uniformly colored.  This worked great for me and saved me some money!  This is how I created the baby blue sugar.

Decorate the cake pops

  • Melt the desired candy melt color for the base of your pops in a deep narrow container that still has some room on the sides if you were to put a cake ball in it.  As the candy melts begin to cool you will have to reheat them slightly.
  • Take a cake pop by the lollipop stick and dip it into the  container at a slight angle, and twirl until the cake pop is coated.
  • Remove the ball from the candy melts and twirl it between your fingers to remove excess candy coating, and tap gently on the side of the cup to again remove any excess.  The candy melts go on thick so it’s a bit of work to get the right amount on each cake ball without overusing the coating.
  • Place the lollipop stick into a styrofoam base (flower arrangement foam works well here too) and immediately decorate by drizzling colored sugar, sprinkles, or whatever you wish on top, before the candy coating dries.
  • You can also drizzle a contrasting color of candy melt on top by melting them in a plastic bag and snipping off the corner of it, then squeezing it out as you move the bag back and forth over your cake pops.
  • Continue until all are complete!

You’ll note that sometimes the cake pops crack.. I’ve heard this can have to do with the candy melts being too thick or the cake pop being too cold and then expanding as they warm.  Don’t leave your cake balls in the freezer for too long before decorating.

After you’re done, place them back in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve.  They last for several days at least before drying out, as the candy melt coating keeps the inside moist!

cakepopsclose   Baby Shower Cake Pops

For display, I bought a basket from Michael’s crafts, laid the styrofoam inside at an appropriate height, placed the cake pops in the foam, and then covered the foam with decorative crepe paper.  They look great and everyone loved them!