• Wilted Dandelion Greens

    Following up from yesterday’s Baked Cornflake Chicken in the new Dinner Series on TheLoDown, we have the recipe for Wilted Dandelion Greens.  I love to mix a nice green with any kind of chicken, and when the chicken is baked or fried, a wilted green goes really nicely.  I had never cooked dandelion greens before this dinner to be honest with you, but they were fresh at the farmer’s market and I’m all about experimentin’, so I picked up two bright and full packages.  A tip: always get more greens than you think you’ll need.  They shrink down so much when they’re cooked and everyone ends up disappointed!

    These greens turned out to be a hit!  The dandelion green is bitter by nature, so it needs the vinegar to balance the flavor out so don’t be shy when deglazing the pan with it.  You’ll end up with a bright, healthy, and delicious green you’ll make over and over again.  Another tip: cut off most of the stem and use leaves primarily in this dish.

    We also have the recipe for the other side I made for dinner: the most delicious Mashed Sweet Potatoes you’ve ever had.  Make these all together for a delicious, southern-inspired dinner.  Enjoy!

    MashedSweetPotatoes

    Mashed Sweet Potatoes


    Here’s the recipe for your new favorite greens dish!  Yum, yum, yum, yum, yum, yum.

    [ingredients title=”Ingredients”]

    • 2 large bunches of dandelion greens
    • Half a yellow onion, diced
    • Ghee or butter (to cook the onion in)
    • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
    • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
    • salt and pepper to taste

    [/ingredients]

    [directions title=”Directions”]

    1. In a large pan over medium heat, melt your ghee.  Add your onions and begin to cook.  After about 5 minutes, add your dijon mustard and stir into the onions.  Once the onions and mustard come together nicely, add the red wine vinegar to quickly reduce.
    2. Add the bunches of dandelion greens (wash them of course, and cut off most of the stems).  Fold over themselves into the onions and vinegar until the begin to wilt.  Season with salt and pepper.
    3. Let cook together for at least 5 minutes.  Taste. If the greens are still too bitter, add a bit more mustard and vinegar and gently boil for a bit longer.
    4. Once they’re delicious, immediately serve.

    [/directions]

     

  • Mashed Sweet Potatoes

    Love sweet potatoes?  Great.  Don’t love them so much?  You’ll change your mind with these, trust.  All that goes in to these?  Baked sweet potatoes, thyme, browned butter, salt, and pepper.  Easy, simple, extra delicious.  They go great with my Baked Cornflake Chicken and Wilted Dandelion Greens.  Make them all together for a fabulous, southern-inspired dinner this week and tune in weekly for our new Dinner Series posts.

    By slow roasting the potatoes in the oven for an hour, their natural sweetness really comes into full bloom.  You don’t need to add honey, or maple syrup, or any other sweetener to round out their flavor.  They are good enough as is!  The browned butter lends a nutty, and rich flavor that turns these mashed sweeties into something really, very special.

    Let’s get into this very tasty recipe!

    [ingredients title=”Ingredients”]
    • 4 sweet potatoes
    • 10 sprigs of thyme
    • 1/4 cup melted butter
    • 1 tablespoon salt
    • 1/2 tablespoon black pepper
    [/ingredients] [directions title=”Directions”]
    1. Heat oven to 300 F.  Wrap each sweet potato individually in aluminum foil (make sure they’re wrapped tight).  Place them on a baking sheet and bake for at least an hour.
    2. While the potatoes are baking, remove the thyme leaves from their stems and set aside.
    3. When it’s almost time to pull the potatoes out, melt your butter.  Let your butter continue to cook by stirring it often until it begins to become golden brown.  When the smell begins to change turn off the heat.  Stir in the pan for another 15-20 seconds, then pour the butter into a bowl or measuring cup.  You’ll want to remove the butter from the pan quickly or else you risk burning it from the carry-over heat in the pan.
    4. Once the potatoes are done, you’ll want to use 2 thick kitchen towels to remove the aluminum foil and skin.  I suggest you do this over a trash can, with your mixing bowl nearby so you can quickly drop in the freed potato – they will be very, very hot!!  The skin comes off so easily.  It just peels away.  It’s important that you do this quickly however.  A cooled potato will not result in a very good mash.
    5. Once all the sweet potatoes have made their way into your mixing bowl, grab a hand mixer (or do this in your Kitchen-Aid mixer) and pour in the butter, the thyme leaves, and the salt, and pepper.  Mix on high for at least a minute until all the flavors have combined and the sweet potato is nice a smooth.  I wouldn’t recommend the Vitamix for this job if you have one – they’ll simply get too thin.
    6. Enjoy with your Chicken and Dandelion Greens!
    [/directions]
  • Baked Cornflake Chicken

    Hi guys!  Happy Monday!  With our focus switching more to food in 2016 at TheLoDown we’re starting a new weekly series called: “Dinner Series” (super fancy, I know).  I make dinner all the time for my boyfriend and my friends, so why not share what I’m making with y’all?  We’ll be posting the recipes over the course of a few days at the top of the week, or sometimes all on the same day – just depending on how you like it.  If you have any thoughts on the post schedule (like you prefer all the recipes to go live on the same day) let us know in the comments!

    This week we have an ‘effing classic: Baked Cornflake Chicken like Momma used to make, paired with Wilted Dandelion Greens, and the most delicious Mashed Sweet Potatoes you’ve ever had.  I wanted to create a southern-inspired dinner and boy, did I hit the nail on the head.  It was fantastic.  I’ll be posting the Wilted Dandelion Greens and Mashed Sweet Potato recipes tomorrow so stay tuned!


     

     Wilted Dandelion Greens


    MashedSweetPotatoes

    Mashed Sweet Potatoes


    So without wasting anymore time, let’s get into this easy Baked Cornflake Chicken Recipe.  I used legs and bone-in thighs only (I find the darker meat is better when baked) and this should serve at least 4 people.

    [ingredients title=”Ingredients”]

    • 10 chicken legs (drumsticks)
    • 4 chicken thighs, bone-in
    • 2 cups flour
    • 2 tablespoons salt
    • 1 tablespoon black pepper
    • 1 1/4 cup mayo
    • 3 tablespoons dijon mustard
    • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
    • 2 teaspoons paprika
    • 2 teaspoons ground sage
    • Lots of cornflakes (buy a whole box at the grocery store)

    [/ingredients]

    [directions title=”Directions”]

    1. Preheat your oven to 425 F and cover two baking sheets with pieces of parchment paper (this makes the clean-up much easier).
    2. Rinse your legs and thighs under water and pat dry.
    3. Set up your cornflake chicken station like an assembly line: flour, mayo, cornflakes, baking sheets. Here’s how: In a large dish of some kind, combine flour with salt and pepper.  In another large bowl next to it, combine your mayo with dijon mustard, cayenne pepper, paprika, and ground sage.  Then you’ll want to have your cornflakes crunched up and ready to go in a large gallon size zip-locked bag.  Next to that should be your baking sheets ready to accept your delicious pieces of cornflake coated chicken.  If you’re by yourself this will be a messy process.  You could use a spoon of some kind to help add the mayo mixture to the chicken but I find that using your hand is easier.  Get a friend or your kid to help with the cornflake part if that makes it easier.
    4. Once your station is set up, prepare 3-4 legs or thighs in the flour mixture by rolling it through and making sure each pieces is totally covered.  The layer of flour doesn’t need to be too thick. I like to have a couple of pieces ready to go at once so when I’m putting the layer of mayo on the others just wait for their turn in the flour.
    5. Next, pick up your floured thigh and gently massage some of the mayo mix all over your chicken. Toss it into your cornflake bag until it’s completely covered and then lay to rest on your baking sheet.  Repeat until all your chicken is ready for the oven.
    6. Put the sheets in the oven and bake the chicken at 425 for about 15 minutes.  Then lower the temp to 375 and cook for another 25-30 minutes, until the juices run clear.
    7. Enjoy with your Wilted Dandelion Greens, and Mashed Sweet Potatoes.  Yum!

    [/directions]

     

  • The Cold Buster: Ginger Tea From Scratch

    I just got over a horrible cold.  Actually, it hasn’t even completely left my system and we’re 2 solid weeks in.  Still a little cough, cough going – ya know how it is.  When I was in the deepest, darkest part of my cold my brain was rummaging through itself trying to come up with something, anything that could help.  Finally, a moment of enlightenment: GINGER.

    I always have ginger root in my kitchen. I love anything ginger: tea, the spicy ginger shots at Butcher’s Daughter that seem to clear anything up in an instant, ginger candies.  I remembered an old mate of mine from the French Culinary Institute who once made me the most delicious ginger tea from scratch and how it warmed my insides just right….

    Now, with my nose sniffling and my head pounding, it was my turn to make the most healing and delicious ginger tea from scratch.  Trust me – it seriously helped me feel a lot better, even if it was just for a few moments.  Here’s what you’ll need:

    [ingredients title=”Ingredients”]
    • Fresh ginger root, peeled, and cut into 1 cm slices (about 1/4 cup total)
    • A few slices of lemon
    • Honey or agave syrup (about 1 tablespoon)
    [/ingredients] [directions title=”Directions”]
    1. Boil 4 cups of water to a rolling boil (the water will reduce when you boil so more is better than less).
    2. Add ginger root, 2-3 slices of lemon, and honey, and reduce to a simmer.  Cook for at least 20 minutes until the flavors come together in a strong way when you do a taste test.
    3. Strain out the ginger root and lemon into a small, round colander directly over your favorite mug.  Add a squeeze more lemon and honey to taste.
    4. Enjoy, and feel better!
    [/directions]

     

     

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