Friday, January 28, 2011

Day 2 and 3 Week 4 – The Dinner Nazi

I hope you won't consider Tuesday as cheating. It was ladies night with my friends from church and I could not turn down a dinner with the girls. So I decided I would make a quick meal for Steve and the kids so that I could count it as cooking even if I didn't eat it. I looked at my rules and I never said anything about everyone having to eat the dinners that I make. Besides, I polled my friends on facebook and they all said go for it!

So while I was eating a lovely kid and husband free dinner at American Cafe, the family was having chicken soft tacos. Now I remember saying "it doesn't get easier than that" about the stir fry a few days ago. I was completely wrong. Lots of things are easy, but this was so much so that I felt like I wasn't even fixing dinner. I don't even know how to write it out as a recipe.

I just took 2 or 3 chicken breasts. Cut them into 1 inch pieces and threw them in the skillet with a couple of tsp of olive oil. Once the chicken was browned I added about 1/2 packet of taco seasoning. Toss it all around in the skillet and cooked a few more minutes. To go with the chicken have tortillas, sour cream, lettuce, tomatoes, cheese on hand. And of course, chips and salsa. Voila.

Wednesday night I was feeling like I needed to redeem myself a bit after skipping out on dinner Tuesday. So I whipped up the ever tasty Chicken Broccoli Braid. Isn't it just beautiful.... Lets just look at it for a minute.

This beauty has all of the major food groups literally wrapped into one. Bread, veggies, fruit (that's right, red pepper is a fruit. Betcha didn't know that, huh) cheese, chicken, oh and a little fat to round out the pyramid. It also makes up for my poor presentation from monday night's "what can brown do for you?" meal.

This is another recipe I snagged from my Mother in Law. While we were visiting them in Houston she threw a dinner party and served this gem. It had broccoli in it and I ate it...and loved it! For me to eat and like broccoli is huge so I knew right away I had to take this recipe home. I must point out that the recipe originally came from Allrecipes.

Now those of you who are also my facebook friend, you heard that I laid down the law recently telling Amelia "you will sit there as long as it takes to eat your dinner" and I got mixed reviews on that. This is the meal she would not eat. And it is a little fancy for most kids' palettes, but Amelia really does eat a lot of different foods. However, one thing she doesn't like is broccoli (she is her mother's child). Now, I knew that this meal does a great job of hiding the taste of broccoli, because if it didn't I wouldn't eat it either. It is not like I was asking her to eat a giant raw stalk of broccoli like Kevin on The Office. Maybe I was harsh, but at the end of the night she ate it and even half way enjoyed it. Hopefully she wasn't too traumatized by the event. Thursday night she will have pizza to make up for it. Anyway, I still love you chicken broccoli braid for showing me that vegetables (when cooked with enough cheese and mayo) can be tolerable, even yummy at times.

Chicken Broccoli Braid
2 cups diced, cooked chicken
1 cup fresh broccoli, chopped
1/2 cup red bell pepper, chopped
1 clove of garlic, crushed or minced
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1/2 cup mayo
2 tsp dried dill weed
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp slivered almonds (I omit this because I don't do nuts... and yes I see the irony in this statement.)
1/4 cup diced onion
2 (8oz) packages of refrigerated crescent rolls
1 egg white, beaten

1. Preheat oven to 375º

2. In a large bowl, toss together chicken, broccoli, red pepper, garlic, cheese, mayo, dill weed, salt and onion (and almonds)

3. Unroll crescent roll dough, and arrange flat on a medium baking sheet. Pinch together perforations to form a single sheet of dough. Using a knife or scissors, cut 1 inch wide strips in towards the center, starting on the long sides. There should be a solid strip 3 inches wide down the center, with the cut strips forming a fringe down each side.

Spread chicken mixture along the center strip. Fold the side strips over the chicken mixture, alternating strips from each side. Pinch or twist to seal.

4. Brush braided dough with the egg white. Bake in the preheated oven 25 to 28 minutes, or until golden brown.


  1. I cannot believe that THIS is the meal you made Amelia eat!! Bless her sweet heart. Although it looks beautiful and scrumptious on the outside, once you cut into it I can see that I would not have eaten it either. Please tell Amelia that she can come live with me and I will NEVER make her eat broccoli.

    PS..I am proud of you sticking the month out, though. I bet my family wishes I would take this challenge.

  2. Yummy! this recipe looks really good. I'm wondering if Nick would share Amelia's sentiments. It may be worth a try. I sure would LOVE it! Thanks for sharing!

  3. You're's beautiful. I am going to put it on my dinner list for this week.