Smoking the meat is my favorite sport but the NFL football is. Patiently, I have to wait for football season to come in so I can watch the clashing of teams on field with my cup of good strong joe. With the kind of weather right now, I am in a good mood to make Indian Signals among my neighbors and stink up next door neighbor–she is a nice lady who loved my cats and hang out with me a few times to make sure I am doing good. She is just a concerned neighbor because she noticed when I am home, there are incredibly silent, beside cat fighting or wrestling or my grunting, my farting and my yakking, in my home until my family comes in…. She will know when my family is home, she will come and chat up with my wife. Anyway, she is a nice lady.

With smoking the meat and drinking good beer, I am a very happy man. Pretty strange, what I did with the meat, there is a spiritual harmony with the nature that something inspired me: Serenity. Without my wife talking to me, or my kid bother me about little cash for her whatever she want. But I don’t mind my pets got loose outside. Having a meat smoking in the smoker, I always get a good book to read because it will take some hours, it will need my supervision to make sure it doesn’t get burned on one side of meat. According to the timing, I might give a big chunk meat to cook on one side for 45 minutes then flip, and cook for 45. Continuing this until the meat are all cooked or finish the meat in the oven after no more heating from coals.

I put big, big, big pork shoulder, seasoned with salt and pepper along with good cumin powder and garlic powder. I like the simple way to smoke rather than having big big big meat marinate or brine. When the coals get really hot, its temperature said “ideal”–that is what I got from the smoker but I checked how hot it is by feeling it on my hand. Then put the meat on and cover for about 45 minutes, then flip and add the wood chunks ( soaked in water for 30 minutes or so), cover the smoker and wait for nice scents of wood smoke to gag my neighbors. Well, I love to gag my neighbors. It helps me to meet someone new.

Just another thought I am trying to do: “Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!” by Henry David Thoreau

Seasoned all over the meat and set aside for about 30 minutes or so to allow the flavor get into the meat with help of salt.
Set the smoker up according to the instruction and cook the meat for some hours or until internal temperature registered at 160 or finish in the oven if no more hot coals.

At times, I will try a new recipe for chicken breast. Something newer than that boring baked chicken breasts. Got sick of “no fat” craps. Last time I did wonder with Simple Grilled Chicken recipe.

With this recipe, Dijon Sauce, I really like how it tasted with chicken. It’s a very good one. It is very simple actually. It is the kind of recipe I had used in restaurant many times. I can change a few ingredients, used clarified butter instead of butter stick. Use olive or coconut oil for canola. Do whatever you want for your health.

Pecan Chicken With Dijon Sauce

  • 4 boneless chicken breasts
  • 1-1/2 sticks of butter
  • 4 tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • ounce of pecans, finely ground
  • 2 tbsp. canola oil
  • 2/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • Pepper to taste.

Place chicken between 2 pieces of waxed paper and pound gently until about 1/4 inch thick.

In a microwavable bowl, melt 1 stick of butter and 3 tbsp. of the mustard until just melted. Whisk to incorporate. Place the pecans on a dinner plate. One by one dip the pounded chicken breasts into the butter/mustard sauce then into the pecans, coating thoroughly.

Melt the half stick of butter in a skillet, add the oil and heat to medium. Saute the chicken for a few minutes on each side to brown and transfer to a casserole dish. Place in a medium oven (300 degrees) for about 6 more minutes.

Drain the pan of oil and deglaze with the sour cream, stirring with a whisk over medium heat. Add the remaining tbsp. of mustard and season with salt and pepper. Place a pool of the sauce on each of four plates and place the cooked chicken on top.

Along with all salads I had eaten, I like simple green salads with good protein on top of it. Nice low calorie food. I have determined thenutritional facts to compare many salads and sandwiches. I have to say that the lunch with salad are better than sandwich if you want to lose your body fat or want to feel healthy halo over your head.  Sorry if I sound little meanie to you but I like the good feeling after acknowledged that I ate something healthy.

I don’t have a good recipe since there are so many thru Google. I usually check the sites like Cookinglight.com, Delish.com, Foodandwine.com, epicurious.com and Relish.com for good recipes. I had noticed that they did better with recipes than most sites I had visited and found these two, Cookinglight.com and Foodandwine.com are very useful in my search for a good salad. I am sure that you knew which one you love to visit and get a recipe from your favorite website.

Let me borrow a recipe from myrecipe.com, Arugula and Pear Salad with Toasted Walnuts by Jackie Mills, MS., RD. I knew it was very simple for satisfying lunch along with chicken breast for good protein.

Arugula and Pear Salad with Toasted Walnuts

Recipe source: myrecipe.com

  • 1 tablespoon minced shallots
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 cups baby arugula leaves
  • 2 Bosc pears, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

Combine first 6 ingredients in a large bowl; stir with a whisk. Add arugula andpearsto bowl; toss to coat. Place about 1 1/2 cups salad on each of 4 plates; sprinkle each serving with 1 tablespoon walnuts.

I discovered the recipe from Roasting, A Simple Art by Barbara Kafka—Big thanks to my spouse, she is first to try the original recipe, Roast Chicken with Crisp Potatoes in this cookbook. I changed a few ingredients and roast in the same way the original recipe suggested. Nice aroma of chicken and roasted garlic. The answer is, I am in Paradise!

I started to learn something new from this cookbook and hope to get to some heavenly food for my family and yea, best tasting bones for my dog. (Don’t tell my dog treat secrets to my spouse, please.)

With this recipe, I hope you keep your oven before you turn it to 500ºF. I have to make sure it is clean or it will smoke up the kitchen and woke the fire alarm up. I had followed the recipe and I like the result as I had visualized that it should be.

With roasting chicken, I have so many pleasant times of tasting the real chicken flavor in its essence. I have many issues with what kind of method of cooking with chicken. Once you discover one better that you fell in love with, keep same method for future reference when you plan to roast your chicken.

In my personal opinions, why so many recipes about how to roast chicken? I don’t know why but I had discovered and love how it tasted. I want to stick to the method so I can roast my chicken same way every time, and it tastes so good every time.

I wish I could teach you how to roast the chicken—personally, I preferred to show you how doing it in person, I think it is better to learn from a Chef or Chicken Connoisseur. With some good instructions from excellent teacher, I want to mention one first from Fine Cooking, Roast Chicken Made Better, Start to Finish at all before I make all the list of good ways to cook chicken, and it is very simple way to roast. This article explained why we need to season to boost its chicken flavors.

Also, lovely recipe from The Pioneer Woman, Roast Chicken. Very good instruction about the ingredients she used on chicken, caused my stomach to growl for a more delicious meal. If you like Martha Stewart, she has a good recipe for roasting chicken, here is Perfect Roast Chicken for you. Nice recipe, Roast Chicken, from Jamie Oliver, too. Or from another blog from Craftysundries.com, Kressely wrote a wonderful article on Spatchcocked and Roasted Chicken with Root Vegetables. I can continue to pile more recipes on this blog and I am sure you know where to find your best roast chicken recipes.

I have to mention one or two things about roasting chicken. One recipe, I already tried and found out it is very delicious. If you are planning ahead of time, here is the recipe for brining a chicken–please follow the instruction. Lemon-Herb Brine for 1 Chicken, whole, or cut into pieces, from Michael Ruhlman. If you want real simple one, one good Simple Brine from CookShack.

Bon Appetit and Enjoy!

Roast Chicken with Crisp Yukon Potatoes and Tender Garlic

  • Total roasting time: 50 to 60 minutes. Preheat the oven at 500º F
  • 5 lbs (approximately) Chicken quarters
  • 1 ½ lbs Yukon potatoes, peeled or not and quartered.
  • 8, or more, cloves of garlic, unpeeled and toss in olive oil.
  • Kosher Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Paprika, granulated garlic, thyme, or rosemary, optional.
  • Olive oil

Coat a large roasting pan with non-sticking spray. Season the quartered chickens with salt and pepper, coat with olive oil. For 10 minutes roasting, move the chicken with spatula to keep it from sticking.

Arrange the potatoes and garlic cloves, that are already seasoned with paprika, garlic, thyme and rosemary(optional) and toss in little olive oil, around the chickens. If any fat oozed from chicken, roll the potatoes if possible. Sprinkle the salt and pepper. Roast for about 35 to 45 minutes, scooping the potatoes to turn them over every 15 minutes.

Some potatoes may stick to the pan a bit, depending on the amount of fat from the chicken. This helps form the surface crust. Just be sure to scrape along the pan with the edge of the spatula to unstick the potatoes.

Have you gotten tired of eating few more ramen-style noodles? I had few sat there–pork, beef and shrimp flavors–in pantry closet for few months. Don’t want to see them sitting for so long.

Few times I will use ramen noodle for wonderful hot pho soup or just new stuff to chicken noodle or just cold noodle salad then toss the flavor packets in basket for future instant flavor when I am out of damn stock base or add something incredible tasty flavor to meats.

One time, all Halloween candies ran out, my wife took all all seasonings, ketchups, mustards and soy sauces packets in basket to get rid of them with my little disapprovals. Next day, I saw some packets are on my lawn, I took and toss them in garbage. Don’t tell my wife about it, ok?

Sometime I wondered what people do with case of noodles that they bought from store but don’t want to ask.

Asian-Style Alaska Salmon Noodle Soup

Serving Size  : 4

  • 1  can  Alaska salmon — (14-3/4 oz.)
  • 1 cup  thinly sliced carrots
  • 1 package  ramen-style soup
  • 2 cups  trimmed pea pods
  • 4 green onions — cut in 1″ pieces
  • 1 tablespoon  fresh ginger root — grated  or 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 2 cloves  garlic
  • 2 teaspoons  low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons  lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon  dark sesame oil — * see note

Drain and flake salmon, set aside. Bring 5 cups water to boil in a large saucepan. Add carrots and bring to a boil. Break ramen noodles into 4 pieces and drop into water. Simmer 1-1/2 minutes. Stir in peas, onions, garlic, ginger and salmon. Simmer 1-1/2 minutes. Gently stir in remaining ingredients, including seasoning package, and serve.
*Found in Asian food section of grocery stores.