Greek Lemon Chicken

I almost always chose lemon chicken from the menu during my trips to Greece in my long ago youth! Lemon chicken with a side of cucumber salad and a hefty helping of Feta cheese was my favorite meal. Although I have not been able to replicate the exact taste treat at home, this is a good substitute and doesn’t disappoint. The recipe is also great for a gluten-free diet and is compliant to following the Whole30 program.

Greek Lemon Chicken

2 whole chickens (or equivalent in chicken pieces)
1 cup fresh lemon juice
3 cups water
1 cup olive oil
6 cloves garlic, smashed and finely chopped
2 teaspoon dried oregano
2 teaspoons granulated garlic
1 teaspoon granulated onion
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Cut each chicken into serving pieces. Place in large bowl.

Combine the rest of the ingredients and test for seasoning re. salt and pepper. Add to chicken pieces and mix to insure all pieces are covered. Marinate for about an hour, turning over the chicken at least once during this time.

Place chicken in large baking dish. Cover tightly with foil and bake at 450 degrees for 30-40 minutes. Remove chicken from sauce, Turn oven down to 375 degrees. Arrange chicken in another baking dish and bake, uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes until nicely browned.

I like the chicken cold the next day, too!

Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole

A fun recipe that is easy on Mom, especially, after chasing down Easter eggs and children all last weekend. A few minutes at the stove and it is in the oven – all in one dish. Serve with a big salad or lots of carrot and celery sticks.

BACON CHEESEBURGER CASSEROLE

Ingredients:
1-2 pounds ground beef
6 strips of bacon, crisply fried anad drained
1/4 cup onion, chopped
5 garlic cloves, peeled, smashed and chopped
8 ounce can of tomato suace
1/4 cup catsup
1/4 cup favorite barbecue sauce
1 teaspoon salt, optional
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
16 ounce can refrigerated biscuits*
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

Directions:
Combine ground beef and flour in skillet. Add onions, garlic, and brown. Pour out most of the drippings. Add tomato sauce, catsup, barbecue sauce, salt and pepper. Mix until heated through. Spread into a large casserole dish. Crumble and top with the prepared slices of bacon. Bake for 10 minutes at 425 degrees. Top with cheese and biscuits and bake for 10-15 minutes longer or, until the biscuits are golden.

*Substitute your own gluten-free biscuit recipe for equally good results.

Chicken Wings . . . Fast and Easy

Although I enjoy cooking, there are the times when I have a minimum amount of time in which to prepare and get dinner on the table. If there is a shortcut that doesn’t involve fast food or over-processed stuff from the grocery freezer, I’m all for it. And, with a budget, many dinners feature chicken in some way or the other. I always watch for sales on chicken wings and stock up in the freezer. When I know I won’t be in the house for long periods of time during the day, I try and think ahead and have chicken wings defrosting in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning, I drain and dry them, cut them into suitable sections, if necessary, and dump them into a seal-able plastic bag. Then, I get creative with whatever I have on hand! Basically, this is what I have on hand and/or use:

Freshly ground black pepper

Freshly ground sea salt

chili flakes

cayenne pepper

1/4 cup brown sugar

garlic powder

onion powder

dried Oregano

dried mustard

tomato powder

dried tarragon 

dried parsley

smoked or regular paprika

1/4 cup olive oil (depending on amount of wings being prepared)

Six cloves smashed and minced fresh garlic

I add, to taste some or all of the listed spices along with the oil. Many of us already have favorites I haven’t listed that would be good. For me, the fresh garlic is a necessity. Seal the bag and toss and shake to evenly distribute the oil and spices. Open and take a sniff to see if it is tangy enough and feel free to add more of any of your favorites. I’ve been known to add a tablespoon or two of Srirracha or salsa to the mix. Put into the refrigerator until you need ti about an hour before dinner.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line baking sheet(s) with foil for easy cleanup later. Vegetable oil spray the prepared baking sheet. Dump the marinated chicken into a colander. Arrange close together but not touching on the baking sheet. For some extra flavor, you can sprinkle on some more garlic power before baking. Bake for about 20 minutes. Turn the pieces over for even browning and bake another 20 minutes or so until done. Good hot or at room temperature.