Thursday, February 6, 2014

Cooking without a kitchen

We ate homemade food at home last night, balanced on slightly wobbling TV trays, washed down with glasses of water drawn from the bathroom sink.

It wasn't too bad.

Crockpot Chicken Lentil Chili

28-30 oz. can crushed tomatoes

10-15 oz. can diced tomatoes with green chilies

3-5 oz. can chopped green chilies

1 cup dried lentils

½ cup brown rice

2 --1.25 oz. envelopes MSG-free chili seasoning mix

3 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts (2-3 lbs.)

1 quart (4 cups) water

Stir crushed tomatoes, diced tomatoes, green chilies, lentils, rice and one packet of chili seasoning mix together in your crockpot.  Stir in water.  Lay chicken on top (it will sink).  Sprinkle the second packet of chili seasoning mix over the top.

Cook on high for about 2-3 hours.  Reduce to low and cook for another 2 hours or so.  Or just cook on low for 6-8 hours.  When the chicken is fully cooked, shred it with two forks.  You can do this right in the crockpot, in which case you will miss some of the chicken and end up with a large chicken chunk here and there.  If you want it to be uniformly shredded, remove to a plate, shred, and return to crockpot.  Stir to distribute the chicken throughout the dish.

Cook on low for another hour if you have time, to let the flavors thoroughly permeate the chicken.  This is a nice but non-crucial step.

Serve hot with shredded cheese and sour cream or plain Greek yogurt.

If you are not camping out in an upstairs bedroom with only a crockpot and very limited cooking supplies (while your kitchen is torn out for a remodel), you can substitute your own seasoning for the chili seasoning mix.  Try mixing these and dividing into two piles to use in place of the two envelopes:

2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. granulated garlic or garlic powder
1 Tbsp. minced onion
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
2 tsp. oregano
chili powder or paprika as desired

  • If Jon and DJ had been home, this would have made one meal.
  • It was tasty, but I'm not sure I would have liked it without the cheese and sour cream.
  • Stress causes lupus flares, and I am in one.
  • It is virtually impossible to write poetry on MSWord, and even though nobody likes to read poetry, sometimes it is the only thing I want to write.
  • Bwahahahaha.  No.  I do not write for an audience.
  • I am having failures in life lately.  It feels like getting a math exam back, and seeing that I've failed, totally messed up the problem and gotten it wrong, wrong, wrong.  But.  Even though I know I failed, got it wrong, have a red slash and no points...I can't specifically figure out what my mistake was or how to fix it.  Not a good feeling.
  • However, we ate plentifully and fairly nutritiously last night, so maybe I get some points for that?

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