So, Patrick being unemployed, I shipped him off to get a job with the Census Bureau. Yesterday, he came home with a most astonishing story: As a Census Bureau enumerator, he visited a house with a whole herd of loudly barking dogs. Specifically, these dogs were mastiffs! When the homeowner came outside, of course the mastiffs just sat down and watched him talk to Mr. Census. When Mr. Census was invited inside, the dogs were quiet. When Mr. Census left, the mastiffs hollered at him, letting him know WHOSE house he had just visited. Naturally, Patrick explained to this man that he was raised with mastiffs, and showed him Thor's picture. A nice visit was had by all!
Yesterday, because I was disorganized, I forgot to take my chicken out of the freezer until 4:00. So, exactly what do you do with a frozen chicken? Thank you, Pam! I spatchcocked it! Seriously, this is a great way to roast a chicken. Despite the fact that the bird was still frozen on the inside, I was able to cut along the spine with my kitchen shears and twist the chicken open. Remove the innards, of course, rinse the inside and salt it, then cut 2 carrots into eighths and one onion into quarters. Slide one piece each of onion and carrot under the skin of the chicken next to each thigh, tuck one piece of carrot next to each wing, then arrange the remaining veggies under the splayed out chicken. Because this was still somewhat frozen, I roasted at 375F for about 1-1/4 hours, and it was absolutely perfect.
I served a side dish inspired by two things with this chicken: First, that I had insufficient rice for the hungry hordes, second, Rice-a-Roni, which I haven't purchased in years.
NOT THE SAN FRANCISCO TREAT
1-1/2 cups rice
1/2 cup broken angel hair or spaghetti bits
1 minced onion
1 minced garlic clove
1 stick butter or margarine
4-1/2 cups water
4 chicken bouillon cubes
2 cups frozen chopped spinach
Melt the butter in a large pan; add the onion and garlic and saute until soft. Add the pasta bits and cook until golden. Stir in the rice, followed by the water and bouillon cubes. After 10 minutes, add the spinach, and cook until all of the water is absorbed. It looks pretty on the plate, and it's a great way to sneak veggies into those picky eaters!
And, while Thor is depressed, because he knows his girl is leaving soon, I have been unable to communicate to him that he has some real excitement coming his way this evening: Jeffrey called me Wednesday night. He had wanted to get on the university sponsored charter bus to get a ride from West Virginia to NYC for a career fair, but was unable to get a spot. After talking to 3 friends of his, he called to see if I would let them all come here for the night. They're driving to New Jersey where they'll catch the train to the city, and return Saturday evening. 3 new friends for Thor! How much better can life get? I'm thinking roast beef and potatoes, because what college guy doesn't love beef and potatoes? And a chocolate peanut butter cake will probably make all of Jeff's friends like me, right?
Happy weekend, everyone!