Today, my lucky friends, we have a guest post from the wonderful Shannon Stacey herself! She told me the recipe didn’t… erm, quite turn out, and I asked her to tell me what went wrong. She kindly detailed it in the post. So without further ado:
As you may have read in the recent blog post titled Feeding Shannon Stacey, Lime’s trying to feed me. And, being somewhat familiar with our excessively finicky nature and my total lack of cooking skills, she went with chicken. If you haven’t read it, take a second to click on that link and check out the easy recipe.
Ingredients needed: pretzel crisps flavor of choice, boneless skinless chicken breasts, flour or corn starch, vegetable and/or olive oil
And look at the ingredient list. Nothing fancy. Nothing I’ve never heard of before. (Hey, did you all know capers aren’t little sardine-like fish? I didn’t know that.) And, while we’ve never actually had Pretzel Crisps before, it looks like every member of my family would eat it. (There are maybe a half-dozen meals that all four of us will eat.)
I’m guessing there are many people who would look at that recipe and think even a drunken monkey couldn’t screw that up. Well, I must have been sucking down the banana daiquiris that day because not only did I screw it up, but I pretty much killed it dead. It all started going wrong with the grocery shopping.
Problem: None of our local grocery stores carry Pretzel Crisps.
Probably not a good solution: I bought Regenie’s Original Pita Chips in garlic parmesan flavor instead. Why? Because I’d already bought the chicken.
Problem: I don’t know what cornstarch is and I don’t know where in the store to find it.
Probably not a good solution: I saw cornmeal and figured it must be close enough, right?
The screwing up process continued in the preparation…
Problem: I don’t have a food processor or a rolling pin to crush the pita chips into “flour”.
Probably not a good solution: I used a juice glass, but it didn’t do a very good job and my hand got tired and I got bored, so I crushed them more into “small cornflake-ish bits”.
Problem: This bit of directions – Dredge the chicken in the pretzel crisp flour. Pan fry it. Done. Well, I didn’t really have pretzel crisp flour at this point.
Probably not a good solution: I dredged the chicken in the weird mixture of semi-crushed pita chips and cornmeal, then pan fried. Done.
I wish I’d taken a picture of the finished product. It was bizarre looking, with the not-crushed pita chips looking like big polka dots and the cornmeal (which I’ve since discovered is not the same thing as cornstarch) giving it a grainy, speckled look.
BUT…all four of us ate it. And all four of us had seconds. For this house, that’s a rare success. So, despite my finickiness and lack of cooking schools and lack of ability to follow a pretty basic recipe, Lime did manage to “Feed Shannon Stacey”!
Whee! Well, kinda. So sorry it didn’t turn out as expected, Shannon, but yay that you all had seconds? I’m all for adapting recipes anyway… The pita chips/pretzel crisps are so you don’t have to buy or worry about seasonings and measurements… I say next time assign SK or TK the task of smashing the pita chips.
But now I’m even more determined to find/create a recipe that you will all eat and that won’t cause you so many problems! And friends, I’d appreciate it if you’d help me on this quest. Suggestions, hints and tips on what the Stacey’s do/don’t eat, you know – gimme the good stuff!
*NB: Shannon asked for a monkey drinking a banana daiquiri, picture wise, so this is the best I could do. She okay’d both – just in case you were ready to be all offended on her behalf. It also amuses me because “the drunken monkey” is a style/form of kung-fu.
Also Shan, I’m thinking I might have to give you my number so you can text or call me from the grocery store on future trips… 😉
And I think you’re being a bit hard on yourself, as obviously it’s a recipe you all were okay with [happy to?] eat!
This is full of awesome. I cannot even explain it…
My family’s fave is enchiladas…for white people. You need corn tortillas, shredded chicken, shredded cheese, tomato sauce and mild enchilada sauce (I like Rosarita’s, if you can find it).
Soften the tortillas in WARM oil (not hot or you’ll get taco shells) put in a little chicken, a little cheese, roll it up. Then repeat twelve or so times until you’ve filled up a glass baking pan.
Mix a small can of tomato sauce with the enchilada sauce (this cuts down on the spices, makes it more mild). Pour on top of your rolled up enchiladas. Add cheese, possibly olives. Bake at 350 for twenty minutes or until the sauce bubbles.
Easy. And even Danger Baby will eat it, and that boy would rather live on cereal and jam than eat real people food.
Maisey – do you *need* the oil when warming up the tortillas? Wondering if it’d work simply without. Or even just popping them in the microwave with a damp cloth or paper towel tossed over them?
I shouldn’t be, but I’m completely shocked you didn’t know what cornstarch is. How can you get through your adult life as someone who has to cook for her family and not know what cornstarch is? I’m agog. Agog, I tell you.
lol I got this message on my phone so read the comment and was like “ohmygosh who said that?” Then I checked and was like “ah, makes perfect sense” 😉
Hey. I know what cornstarch is, but I have NO idea where to find it in the grocery store.
Hubby wanted some to revive some musty books he has. Fortunately, he found some somewhere in the house, because finding it in the store was going to be an adventure.
Shannon, you did a great job of substituting ingredients. I think you demonstrated the fundamental makings of a good family cook.
Angie James’ recipe for Salsa chicken is idiot and drunken monkey proof.
4-6 skinless chicken breasts in a crockpot
cover them in taco seasoning
pour in a jar of salsa
cook til done
serve with sour cream.
(can’t find the link)
Plain old pretzels work well for this too. Just crush with a rolling pin or even a soup can will work. Don’t add any salt though – the pretzels already have the chunky salt on them. I baked mine in the oven to save on the fat.
Joely, ah yes, plain pretzels work too, I just think pretzel crisps with their lighter/thinner texture are more fun/possibly work even better, with the different flavors.
Have you tried them before?
I can’t believe youdon’t have a little food processor…they make cooking quicker and easier. I found the key to fussy eaters is a tiny little food processor that whizzes all vegetables (and pretzel crisps) into teeny-tiny bits. I have worn out two! I bury vegetables into taco mixture, spag bol, chicken toritillas, zucchini slice….you get the idea 😉 Now have two boys who eat anything but from 0-12, not so much.
Fiona, you know, I actually only have an eensy weensy mini food processor that can barely handle 1 cup of anything at a time…
But I definitely think Shannon would enjoy having one – even less prep time/work can only be better, right? ;D
Oh, I’d heard of cornstarch. You put it on rashes instead of baby powder in humid weather. I had no idea one cooked with it though and, when wondering the store, I convinced myself Lime meant cornmeal.
Ayla, I need idiot-proof recipes (obviously), but that butts up against the finicky thing. Only 2 of 4 will eat taco seasonings, only 1 of 4 will eat salsa and 1 out of 4 likes sour cream.
That makes it harder. I not only can’t cook, but we don’t eat anything. 🙂
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