Thursday, February 28, 2013

Chicken Goulash with Biscuit Dumplings

Earlier this week, I made a recipe from the latest Food & Wine magazine: Chicken Goulash with Biscuit Dumplings. Mine looks a little different than the magazine photo, but still tastes delicious. 

Chicken Goulash with Biscuit Dumplings

3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 2" chunks
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1-1/2 c flour
5 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 tsp baking powder
2-1/2 c chicken stock (I used 2 c water with 2 tsp chicken boullion)
1 c sour cream
1 onion, diced
1 bell pepper, diced (I used half a dozen mini sweet peppers from Aldi)
2 garlic cloves ( I used 3)
1 stalk celery, diced (not in original recipe, but I added for more veggies)
2 Tbsp smoked paprika
3/4 tsp caraway seeds (didn't use this because I didn't have them, but probably wouldn't have used them if I did have them because I don't think the Hubs would like)
1 tsp thyme leaves

Preheat oven to 425. 

In a large (cast iron) skillet, melt 4 Tbsp of the butter and the olive oil. 

Add the chicken, turning a few times until golden and mostly cooked. 

In the meantime, mix the biscuit dough: flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, and cut in the butter with a pastry blender. (Or use a food processor like the original recipe says, if you don't mind cleaning it.)
Mix in 1/2 c sour cream and 1/2 c chicken stock until dough forms. 

Move the chicken to the edges of the skillet, and put the onion, peppers, celery and garlic in the center. Cook until tender, about 3-5 minutes. 

Stir in the spices, then the remaining chicken stock and sour cream, until smooth. Bring the skillet mixture to a boil. 

Scoop the biscuit dough in 3 Tbsp mounds on top of the chicken mixture. Move the skillet to the oven and bake 20 minutes. Then turn on the broiler for a couple minutes until the biscuits are golden. 

Would be better with more veggies. It felt like the dish was mostly chicken and biscuits. 

I make another version of chicken goulash (with gnocchi) that has mushrooms. This has a very similar flavor, and would probably be good with sliced fresh mushrooms. 

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


I waited a couple extra days to see if more pepper seeds would sprout. Only sweet peppers and jalapenos so far. Some tomatillos sprouted.

The broccoli, cauliflower, dill, cilantro and basil are starting to get their first true leaves.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

'Chokes and Leeks

Yesterday, I moved the leeks and artichokes from the heat pad to the grow lights. Good thing I bought two more grow lights, because the existing two lights are getting crowded!

The cilantro and dill are starting to get their first true leaves. Basil is such a slow grower; it still hasn't gotten tall enough to be seen over the edge of its planting container!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Island oasis

This weekend I started priming the kitchen island cabinets. The doors still need a second coat of primer. I'm off next Monday for President's Day, so hopefully I'll finish painting everything next weekend. 

Monday, February 11, 2013

Chuck: before and after

Remember this before picture of Chuck? Well, here's the after picture. 

600 pounds of beef split between me and the Hubs, and my parents. 

Makes you have a whole 'nother level of respect for the animals that end up at the grocery store and ultimately in your refrigerator. 

Saturday, February 9, 2013


Tonight I planted serrano, jalapeno, sweet pepper, and banana peppers. I also started Thai white long eggplant and tomatillos verde.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Cleaning up

At the end of summer, I bought this palm at Lowe's. It was doing ok until we went on vacation and then the leaves started turning pale and dying. I thought maybe it was croaking due to us turning the thermostat so low on vacation, until I flipped over some leaves and found spider mites. Ick. I hate mites. They've taken over my garden in years past and probably annoy me more than aphids.
After some research on treatment for mites on houseplants, I determined Neem oil was a safe remedy. I already had a bottle of it, so I diluted per directions and put in a spray bottle. I put the plant in the shower and drenched both sides of all leaves. Website research, and bottle directions, indicate a second treatment may be necessary in 7 to 10 days. For now, the plant is back in front of the window, hopefully not contaminating other plants...

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Cole sprouts!

The broccoli and cauliflower sprouted. It is a little leggy but I only noticed the sprouts yesterday and I've been checking everyday. We'll see how they do. I usually buy cole crops but thought I'd try from scratch this year.

The only herb that hasn't sprouted is the cumin. I've never gotten this herb to start from seed, but I had seed leftover to try. Maybe it is a slow germinator?

Friday, February 1, 2013

Cole crops et al.

Today, garden fever hit again.

Some days at work are crazy and the best therapy is getting my hands in soil.

At lunch, I visited the local garden store and picked up packages of leek, cauliflower and parsnip seeds. Tonight, I started the leeks (about a month later than the almanac suggests - oops), broccoli (seed from last year), cauliflower, and artichokes (seeds from a couple years ago, Baker Creek seed).

I also set up the growlights and timer for the herbs since some of them sprouted. The cilantro and cumin haven't sprouted yet so they are hanging out on the heat mat with the newly planted seed.

Blooms and sprouts

A couple weeks ago, when I visited a friend in Springfield, we visited a garden store and I bought a Christmas cactus. The buds were set and it bloomed this week.

And those herb seeds I planted last week? They sprouted! Now I need to set up the grow lights.

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