*NB: Some of you may have seen something like this post in the feed yesterday. I was trying to schedule it but it published. Sorry.
I mentioned before, I have a goal of finding a recipe for Shannon Stacey and her family. She’s not a cook – her own words – and her entire family consists of picky eaters. [Again, her.] She’s also quite cagey about what she and her family will or will not eat, so I’m going with the spaghetti method here. (Toss and see what sticks :P)
But first… yesterday HarperCollins made the decision to limit the number of times an e-book can be circulated at digital libraries. I love the digital library collections at my libraries. Their cap? Twenty-six times. It makes my brain cramp. I personally, think it’s incredibly stupid. Courtney Milan quickly had a thoughtful response to this situation, as usual. And I’m sure there will be many more posts popping up. Twitter friends who are librarians also had a lot of great comments: @SuperWendy, @MandaCollins, and @Tuphlos. (I won’t link their feeds because you know, it’s twitter and by the time you check they could very well be talking about pastrami.) Also, there’s a hashtag for HarperCollins, where you can say how you feel about the policy on twitter: #hcod. And since I just commented on the Smart Bitches post I feel obligated to link it :).
Wendy did say, there’s a common misconception – there aren’t “limitless digital copies” at an e-library (usually overdrive) collection. There are wait lists, hold lists, and the like – just as there are for print books. For example, I’ve been patron number 22 on a pre-release title before. I feel sorry for hold number 27 on a HC book now… and I also feel like I have to stalk my library to make it on the pre-cut off list. If my library even continues to buy them…
Ok. So, book/industry rant over. No more head-explodery. [Erm, and in case it wasn’t clear, the Happy Bunny pictures are what I imagine the publishing executives have on their doors… :P] Now we get to Ms. Shannon Stacey. First up recipe-wise… something simple, that I think will have mass appeal. It involves… Pretzel Crisps! Currently not available (at least not the updated version) on Amazon, but I asked [Pretzel Crisps] about it and they said hopefully in a month or two. So, yay! (You can also buy them from the website.)
This is a pretty no fuss no muss recipe, and great stress relief as well. You take your pretzel crisp flavor of choice- I’d recommend Buffalo Wing, or Garlic Parmesan, personally. I figure Tuscan Three Cheese would also be delicious, and possibly Supreme or the Everything pretzel crisps.
Ingredients needed: pretzel crisps flavor of choice, boneless skinless chicken breasts, flour or corn starch, vegetable and/or olive oil
“Tools” needed: food processor [optional], rolling pin and/or heavy/large surface, saran wrap or zip lock bags.
I’d say take 2.5 cups of pretzel crisps, and if you have a food processor, pulse them until they’re a flour-like consistency. Mix this with 1/3 cup either flour, or cornstarch. (The cornstarch is because it’s finer and might stick to the chicken better – but if you don’t have it, flour is fine too.) Basically it’s the workings of chicken piccata, but already seasoned/flavored.
If you don’t have a food processor, fret not. Or, if you do have one, but need some stress relief, here’s the option for you. Dump the pretzel crisps in a freezer size zip lock bag. Depending on how bad your mood is, double, or triple bag it. Then go to town. Smash the hell out of it. Use a rolling pin, cutting board, pan, your hand, throw it on the ground, have your kid do it, whatever. Kill it.
Spread the “flour” on a large plate in a relatively even manner. Set it aside.
Now, for the chicken. Trim it however you like. Either put it in a bag (you can use the pretzel crisp smashing one if it survived), or just cover it with saran wrap. Depending on how you feel about clean up, you can put saran wrap under, and over the chicken breast. This I recommend doing on a cutting board, or if your counters are sturdy, that. Flatten the meat to about 1/4″ – it’s pretty easy, actually. Take said rolling pin, or make shift rolling pin, pan, whatever, and whack away. Obviously if you have a meat tenderizer, you can use that.
If you’re feeling perfectly fine and don’t want to exert yourself, you can halve the chicken breast [or cut them into thirds] – just as if you were going to butterfly it, but slicing all the way through.
Preheat a pan with a large flat bottom, and pour in about 4 tablespoons of oil. You don’t need to cover the bottom of the pan. Medium to medium-high heat is fine. You want to hear a sizzle when you place the chicken in the pan.
Dredge the chicken in the pretzel crisp flour. Pan fry it. Done. [Because it’s thin it should only take a few minutes on each side – the chicken should be a golden brown color – adjust heat as needed. Medium high initially, turn it down after 30 seconds so the chicken gets a crust but doesn’t burn, and then depending on how full the pan is you might want to adjust the heat.]
If the bottom is almost completely dry – add one or two tablespoons of oil as needed.
You can serve it with bread, rice, or pasta, and your vegetables of choice. Done!
And… I got an email from Carrie offering up this suggestion: Ginger Soy Chicken. Carrie says, “We had it this week and was really good. She could easily substitute Chicken tenders for the thighs if she only likes white meat. Very few ingredients and took me less than 1/2 hour to make start to finish.”
Can you tell I’m not much of a recipe person? I’m the “a dash of this and a bit of that” type cook. I very rarely follow recipes to the letter. So, if you have any questions, ask, and I’ll clarify the best I can in the comments. Because we all know one thing I’m good at is talking 😛
What do you think? Gonna try the recipe? Maybe you’ll get lucky and Pretzel Crisps will send you a nice sample. And then… if you want, let’s wade into the whole publishing … muck. Or you know – random weekend! What are your plans? Got a recipe to share? Do you have a stress relief/go to town dish?
Ooooo. Yummy! And I love “spaghetti method.” I’m gonna steal that. 😀
Kay 😛 Wish I could claim it, but I can’t. I’d heard it before, but the most memorable source is the character Abe using it in Shocking the Senator by Leanne Banks. He’s saying he’ll use that method to “court” Nicola. You should read that book. Everyone should. [Nice plug, yeah? ;)]
Oh, and limiting the # of e-book checkouts is crap. The DRM on those things has a time limit anyway, so I don’t see the point.
Agree. A number of authors (surprise? :P) said physical books have a shelf life. That makes sense. (Although the librarians said digital books deteriorate over time as well.)
There’s also the fact that libraries seem to get discounts on print book purchases, but not digital.
Yet more reader/author/librarian lines being drawn. Because this is obviously the major problem publishing should be focused on. *deadpan*
Oh right- and for the chicken? If you dredge it in flour, pan fry it, remove the chicken, toss in capers, some butter, chicken stock, and a bit of lemon juice… you’ve got the sauce for chicken piccata once it cooks down. Which can also be served with bread, rice, or pasta, and your vegetables of choice.
If I can find the Garlic Parmesan Pretzel Crisps (which I’ve never heard of), I’ll definitely try that. Sounds yummy! And I’m pretty sure my whole family would eat it (which is rare).
The Ginger Soy Chicken looks good, too, though I’d definitely sub white meat. I’m not sure my youngest would eat it, but he’s used to having a jelly sandwich thrown at him.
Shannon – the website has a nice “where to buy” page: http://pretzelcrisps.com/shop-landing/ so you can see if they’re available where you are. Or… 😛 you might try nudging them on twitter: @PretzelCrisps and see if they’re nice enough to send you a sample 😀
lol also – you have no idea how excited I was when I first came up with this recipe for y’all. Will keep trying to think of Stacey family friendly dishes.
Also… I think you’d like chicken piccata too, no? And if the capers are a no no you could do without – can’t it’d be too out there since it’s just butter, flour, chicken, olive oil, lemon juice, and chicken stock?
All three of our grocery stores are on the where to buy page! Adding all the ingredients to my shopping list.
I might try the chicken piccata, too. Doesn’t sound too wild and crazy. No capers, though. I don’t know what capers are. Are they little fish?
lol you’re so cute, Shan. Capers are like pickles – just, not cucumbers, of course. They’re often in Italian dishes… especially creamy ones to cut the fat. Er, I should add – they’re tiny and round. Actually a plant part that’s pickled – no dill… and they’re not crunchy either.
Seriously? I’m off to google pictures of capers. I’ve spent my entire life believing capers to be like anchovies or sardines. (Told you I’m not any kind of cook.)
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