06 January 2010

Flu Season...

There's flu in the grey house on the side of the hill up New Hampshire way... and it has been that way for several days now. Sick people and their loved ones have to eat, though...

Silent Bob thinks-

It sure is a drag when the cook gets sick... suddenly, leftovers are looking really good. After those are exhausted, there's a run on every box of crackers, block of cheese, slab of pate, bag a pepperoni, and container of olives or pickles that happens to be stowed away. Thank God there's peanut butter, a ton of jelly in the cupboard, and bread in the freezer. At least lunches are a done deal.

But wait... she lives! Maybe she can rally long enough to get a real meal on the table tonight! God bless her little pot-stirring soul!

Susan thinks -

Cough, cough ... hack, hack. What on Earth could possibly taste good to me right now? My poor mouth is pickled from the constant ingestion of hot tea. I have no sense of smell, since my nose is stuffed tighter than a can of sardines. I'm hungry, but nothing is jumping to mind that satisfies that old adage about 'feeding the cold'. Think I'll call Mom.

Mom says -

Give your nose some spice...

Susan mumbles-

Hmm. There's chicken in the freezer, cumin in the cupboard, and yogurt in the fridge. Tikki Masala and rice ... might be nice. Minimal effort, maximum return.

A word about these recipes-

I got them from the Internet a few years ago and I honestly don't remember where... I wish I could credit the source, but I can't. I just know that I had a craving for the spiciness of Indian food and there are no Indian restaurants in our corner of the boondocks, hence the Web search. As for the techniques ... marinating in citrus and yogurt really plays with the meat fiber, so don't overdo it. Stick close to that hour noted in the recipe. Spices can be played with depending on your palate. I like spiciness, so I do the measures noted. I also keep all the seeds and veins in the jalapeno. You may think differently.

1 c. plain yogurt
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. black pepper
1 Tbsp. minced ginger root
1 tsp. salt
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
metal skewers for cooking the chicken                                   
chopped cilantro garnish                                                                           

Thread cleaned and dried chicken breasts onto skewers and lay in a long glass baking pan.

Slash the breasts here and there, particularly on the thickest parts.

Mix the marinade in a glass bowl and pour over the chicken. Cover and marinate for one hour.

Preheat the oven to 475 degrees.

Spray a broiler pan with Pam and place the chicken skewers on the pan. Roast until the juices run clear . Watch carefully and turn every so often to cook evenly. Cook time is about 20 –25 minutes.

Place the cooked chicken into a clean casserole pan and drizzle with creamy tomato sauce. Heat in a 300º oven for 10 minutes while you plate the rest of the meal. Garnish with cilantro before serving. Steamed rice and a cucumber salad make nice side dishes.

Creamy Tomato Sauce


1 Tbsp. butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, minced
2 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. paprika
½ tsp. salt
an 8oz. can tomato sauce
1 c. heavy cream

Sauté the butter, garlic, and jalapeno in a heavy saucepan.

Add the cumin, paprika, and salt and continue sautéing another minute to mellow the paprika.

Add the tomato sauce and cream, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

Indian Style Cucumber Salad

Wash and chop into ½ inch cubes:

      1 lb. seedless cucumber, skin on

In a colander, toss the cucumber with

     ½ tsp salt

Set the colander aside for ½ hour , then pat dry and combine with:

     ½ c. cilantro, chopped
     ¾ tsp. cumin seeds, toasted and crushed slightly OR 1/8 tsp. ground cumin
     ¾ c. plain yogurt

Set in a salad bowl and chill well before serving.


  1. Susan--thanks for coming by 990 Square! This chicken tikka recipe looks good! I've always wanted to try homemade Indian, but I've never known where to start.

  2. Hey Beth... thanks for the comment... no photos, as flu is making the full treatment too much for me right now.


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