Saturday, April 3, 2010

Super Easy Whole Chicken

I had heard that buying a whole chicken can be cheaper than buying chicken breasts, i.e. you get more bang for your buck, or in this case, meat.  So I found this recipe on allrecipes.com and it has quickly become a family favorite.  It's called Slow Cooker Adobo Chicken.  Seriously...check it out!  It's got onion, garlic, soy sauce (I use Bragg's Liquid Aminos), vinegar (I use Bragg's Raw Apple Cider Vinegar), and is for the Crock Pot!!  All the meat just falls off the bones!  So easy and SOOO delicious!  It's got all the yummy healthy fat/gelatin in it mixed with the sauce and is great over rice.  *DROOL!!!  I mixed it with a little BBQ sauce and had it on a hamburger bun today.  YUM!  And with warm weather on the rise this won't heat up the house!

And if any of you are clueless as to how to cut up a whole chicken (like I have been!), here's a video on it:


How to Quarter a Whole Chicken Cooking Tips -- powered by eHow.com

It's all about the culinary scissors...I'll be trying this next time! I usually massacre it, pulling the meat off the leg bone while trying to pop a joint.

Also, so you know, Nourishing Traditions has a recipe on turning whole chicken or a chicken carcass into chicken broth! It's delicious!

Friday, April 2, 2010

A Forgotten Prayer

Recently, with my arthritis flaring up, I've had little discussions with the Lord.  I pray for healing, for patience to endure, for a heart of sacrifice...then I pray prayers where I try to reason with Him.

There's a guy in our church, Dave, who has had a lot of medical issues.  (You may remember him from previous posts here, here, and here.)  He calls his medical visits "missions" because every time he's hospitalized or whatever his family tends to meet someone who needs to hear from the Lord and they share with them.  He had made a pact with God stating He could use his health for His good.  Since then God has put him through a lot, but He's always been faithful at healing him and getting him through it all.

Well, in the midst of my pain I told the Lord, "I didn't make that kind of pact!  I don't want to be used this way!" 

Then, this past week, in cleaning out and organizing our back rooms, I found an old journal with the following entry: 

 10-6-04


A few days ago, on my way to work, God really put my dad on my heart.  It's not the first time.  I was thinking about how the only way God got him to pray was by getting my brother in a bad accident.  He only prayed when he felt he was going to lose him and knew he had no control.  If that's the case, Lord, feel free to use me.  If it means a bad accident and almost losing me, do it.  If it means he has to lose everything to be humbled and not self-reliant, do it.  If we'll have to live on the streets, do it.  Even if it means my life...do it.  Just get him living for you.  Help him learn to forgive and accept the church for what it is - people, sinners, hypocrites.  People to support and hold accountable.

How quickly I've forgotten the heart that lead me to pray with such courage and surrender.  In reading it I've realized just how much God has answered that prayer!  My suffering hasn't been for nothing!


With my hands getting worse my dad hasn't been able to hide his concern.  We had a heart to heart about the symptoms I've been experiencing and I think he felt how serious I was and saw the hope had gone a bit from my eyes.  He felt the bumps on my finger joints.  Since then he's been more open about his concern for me.  I think he's realizing I'm mortal and wishes he could control my health.

To me, his concern is a huge step.  I can't wait for the day he completely softens his heart to God and can truly experience His furious love for him.  By blocking out the bad he's blocking out the good, all the joy the Lord wants to give him.  He'll never heal if he doesn't allow the Lord to open up those wounds and help him deal with the fear and disappointment he used to seal up his heart.

It was mostly my perception that he had a hard heart that is the reason I didn't get along so well with my dad when I was growing up.  He wasn't emotional and saw emotion as a weakness.  I remember one day he told me, "to feel good you also have to be able to feel bad so I'd rather not feel at all."  And he raised us that way, all the while my heart getting overloaded with everything I felt I couldn't express.  It was always hard to fully be who I was around him, feeling the bondage of his authority and the fear of being teased.


My dad and I had a breakthrough in college when my heart was overwhelmed to call him up and let him know that I forgive him for all the crap I've held against him (which has been a daily journey).  He didn't really know how to respond, but since then it felt like a wall was torn down between us.  Still, I lived under his roof and his spiritual authority in our house, but I took less offense in our spiritual banter and was moved for his soul.  It was a couple years later that I wrote the above entry.  It wasn't until I began dealing with my broken relationship with my dad that I was able to feel real love and concern for him.  I no longer wanted him to change so I'd have a better life, but desired the Lord to get a hold of his soul so he would desire to become more like Christ.



Lord, continue to open my dad's heart.  Heal him from past scars.  Show him what an emotional God you are, that Your heart broke for him during his childhood, that you wept with him when his dad abandoned him, every time his step-dad abused him, when his favorite aunt was murdered, when his mom died with cancer...Help him forgive You for not saving his mom's mortal life.  Show him Your love and forgiveness.  Break through his logic and vows and touch his heart mightily!

Jesus, help me to stay faithful to You despite my pain and flesh.  Daily renew my spirit to witness to my dad about Your goodness!  Let my hope and Your love be something so strong and intriguing that he has to have it.  Get me back to a place of urgency.  Save his soul! 

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Lovin' Mint

Our garden has practically died except for the rosemary and the mint. Seriously...the mint is ALL over the side of the flower box where the other plants have died. It's like a weed.

Being that I'm SOOOO generous, I called up a neighbor and let her know she could have as much as she wants. She picked up a batch last week and was back this week for more. She told me she'd made iced tea with it and that her guests loved it. Great idea!

Anyone else have ideas for what to do with it??  Ideally desserts!  *;o)

Monday, March 29, 2010

Turning Over a New Leaf

Ha ha!  Get it?!  Cabbage leaf?!

In light of becoming a hippy health food freak I'm continuing on to fermented vegetables! Saurkraut and Ginger Carrots!  (These recipes are also from Nourishing Traditions.)

Saurkraut


The only thing I've really ever had saurkraut on/in is bratwurst and my mom's recipe for saurbraten, which is basically a pork roast with a sliced granny apple, carrots, potatoes and saurkraut, left in a crockpot all day to make a yummy stew. The saurkraut she uses is usually canned, full of preservatives, and not looking very appetising. It's good in the saurbraten, but NOT something I'd want to eat by itself.

The group leader for our Azure order mentioned how she never thought much about saurkraut until a friend from the group had brought her some homemade saurkraut. It was TOTALLY different from the nasty canned stuff that's full of preservatives. With that encouragement I decided to try it out! It takes three days to ferment so it should be done tomorrow.

Side note: I thought it was leaking today so I opened it and once it hit air it started expanding. They're not kidding about the amount of room you're supposed to leave in the jar before sealing it!

Ginger Carrots

I'm making the ginger carrots to use up the organic carrots we've had in the fridge for quite a while.  The cookbook recommended this recipe for those new to fermented veggies and said they're good with spicy foods.  The carrots should be done Wed.  Mmmm! (Hopefully!)

Praise God I got a new food processor!  It was a cinch shredding everything! 

Soon, hopefully, I'll venture in making the beverages kefir and kombucha.  The kids love the flavored kefir from the supermarket, which they call "strawberry milk."  Our Azure leader has some of the kombucha mushrooms and it hoping to find someone with the kefir grains.  Both the mushrooms and grains reproduce as you use them so you can save a bundle if you can just find a friend who has some.