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Sunday, September 2, 2012

Chicken + Beer = Yum²

Slow Cooker Beer Chicken
2 LBS boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 Onion, sliced
1 Can or bottle of beer (I used Wolvers IPA)
1 TSP salt
1 TSP garlic powder
1 TBS dried oregano
1/2 TSP black pepper

I just started a new job, so I can really use some extra help around dinner time nowadays.  Using pre-cooked or rotisserie chicken in dishes can make weeknight cooking so much less stressful.  Instead of buying a rotisserie chicken from the market, I decided to make my own chicken that I could enjoy all week. I'm using one additional ingredient to make my multi-tasking chicken extra special - beer!  Using beer as a braising liquid is a brilliant way to add tons of flavor for deliciously moist meat that can be used in countless ways.  Whatever you decided to do with it, make sure you save the braising liquid and onions!

Heat oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat.  Add the onions and saute until soft.  Add to the slow cooker.  Season chicken with salt and pepper and place over the onions; add garlic powder, oregano and beer.  Set on low for 8 hours.  Remove chicken and set aside braising liquid.  Chop or shred the chicken as desired.

Quick Chicken Chili
Adapted from Fine Cooking
1 Onion, diced
3 Cloves garlic, minced
2 Poblano chilies, diced
1 TBS oregano
2 TBS cumin
Salt and pepper
1 Cup corn kernels
2 Cans white beans, drained with some liquid reserved
2 Cups chopped beer chicken
1 Quart chicken broth
1 Cup beer chicken braising liquid (optional)

An ordinary white chili becomes extraordinary with the addition of beer chicken and the braising liquid.  This chili also freezes really well, so you can make now and enjoy later.  

In a large pot or dutch oven heat the oil over medium heat.  Saute the onion until soft, then add garlic and chilies; season with salt and pepper.  Stir in the oregano and cumin and cook until fragrant.  Add the chicken,  broth and braising liquid; bring to a boil.  In the meantime, puree one can of beans with some of the reserved liquid until smooth.  Add to the pot with the other can of beans and corn.  Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes, partially covered.  Serve with green onions, cheese, or any other topping of your choice.

Not-So-Classic Cobb Salad
2 TBS fat free plain Greek yogurt
Juice of 1 lemon
1 TSP dried oregano
4 Cups chopped romaine lettuce
2 Hard boiled eggs, diced
1 Avocado, diced
2 Plum tomatoes, diced
4 OZ feta cheese, cut into bite-sized cubes
6 Roasted baby Yukon gold potatoes, quartered
1 Cup chopped beer chicken
Salt and pepper

The great part about this salad is you can prep almost all of the ingredients before hand, so you can assemble in a snap when you're ready to eat.  This fresh and filling salad is perfect for both lunch and dinner.

To make the dressing whisk the yogurt, lemon juice, and oregano.  Slowly whisk in the olive oil until combined.  Toss the remaining ingredients and add the dressing.  Season with salt and pepper.

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The Hungry Yuppies, Annie and Rich, are a young couple from CT who are self-proclaimed foodies. Annie is the chef, and Rich is her willing taste tester. Juggling a full time job in the city wasn't going to get in the way of Annie's love for cooking. It's about eating well whether you have just 30 minutes on a Monday night, or all day on a rainy Sunday.