40 Cloves and a Chicken

Kirsten’s favorite dish, and really easy to make.

  • Preheat the oven to 350°
  • Take a cut-up chicken, rub the pieces down with olive oil, and salt and pepper them.
  • In a large oven-safe skillet, brown the chicken, a couple of minutes on both sides.
  • Take it off the heat and add a half cup of olive oil, forty peeled cloves of garlic, and top the chicken with about a dozen sprigs of fresh thyme.
  • Cover the skillet and pop it in the oven for an hour and a half.

Yes, that’s right… 90 minutes. That’s the one problem with this dish: it takes forever to bake, so it’s not a quick meal to make on a weekday. It’s totally worth it though, for what you can do when it comes out of the oven:

  • Slice up some French bread and brush one side with the now garlic-infused olive oil from the pan.
  • Toast under the broiler, flip, brush the other side, and toast again.

Grab some of the cooked garlic from the pan and you’ll find that it’s now spreadable. Put it on the toast for the best garlic bread you’ve ever had.


So… A couple of weeks ago, I was laid off from the company that I spent over fifteen years with. Apart from job hunting, I’ve also found a few other things to occupy my time during the day.

I’ve gotten myself in the habit of getting to the gym every morning. Now, instead of battling the after-work workout crowd, or the early-evening classes, I’m just mingling with the senior walkers which is a lot less stressful. I’m trying to get my miles up so I can run the Wisconsin Half Marathon in May.

At home, besides doing the cleaning and housekeeping, I’ve also set a goal of trying to plan some decent meals and try to not ely so much on the prepared and frozen things that we usually have when both of us are home from work and don’t feel like putting together anything too complex before shuttling the kids around to their various after-school activities.

Since I already had this blog in place, I figured that I’d try to keep track of some of the things I make throughout the week and how well they went over with some of the picky eaters in the family.

Earlier this week, I made something that I’ve done before, and while not the healthiest thing in the world, is pretty tasty: Alton Brown’s Baked Macaroni and Cheese.

It’s pretty simple to put together and the ingredient list is straightforward. Everyone loved it except for Thing Two, who only likes his pasta with red sauce. It took a little prodding and a ton of drama, but he managed to choke it down.

Yesterday, Kirsten had her class and Thing Two had Cub Scouts, so I decided to go for quick and easy: Chicken Soft Tacos.

Nothing fancy here: I just cut chicken into small strips and cooked them in a packet of fajita mix per the instructions, but without the peppers and onions. I set it all up as a taco bar with tomatoes, lettuce, refried beans, sour cream, and cheese. For some reason, nobody wanted the Sriracha sauce but me…

Everyone was home early from school today, so I had to make lunch. Per a request from Thing One, I made cashew butter.

I made it per the recipe here, although with plain canola instead of the walnut oil, as it was too strong a flavor the last time I made it.

So that’s it. As I come up with my menus for the week, I’ll try to keep this updated. Since I have a bad habit of taking pictures of all my food anyway, this should be easy!