the Williams Sonoma Roast Chicken with Blood Oranges and Red Onion

img_0522So this came out pretty good overall. You could taste the orange zest in the chicken. I didn’t make a gravy with the onions although the red onions looked yummy. I cook the whole chicken in a cast iron pan. Being a former vegetarian, I tend to over cook meat but this came out great.

recipe here’s the link.

Hawaii Planner asked about cooking a whole chicken. It’s really so simple and easy. For a family of big eaters, roast 2. It’s just as easy to do 2 chickens and there are lots of leftovers. So, I use either organic chickens or like Marys, or Rocky chicken at Safeway isn’t organic but is natural. So I just put the chicken in my cast iron skillet. I usually cut up an onion to put under the chicken. Then I use a couple of tablespoons of olive oil over it. Then I put a lemon cut up in the cavity with maybe some thyme from the garden. Then I smoosh some butter on the top of the bird, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sometimes I put cloves of garlic in with lemon. Then I roast at 375 degrees for usually an hour and a half. If you’re doing 2 chickens I’d go at least 2 hours and voila you have a beautiful dinner. Of course, paranoid me with cooking to the right temperature, I use a digital thermometer just to check.

So since my husband is still vegetarian, I always grill some tofu up with tamari and butter. I think if I wasn’t too lazy I could have cooked up some red onions and blood oranges with the tofu. I often make the same recipe for him just using tofu.

I oven baked a sheet pan of red onions and organic asparagus that I got at Costco.

Speaking of Costco, I said we were so happy to get the organic queen sheets. So, I washed them and my husband aways makes the bed on sheet day( Sunday). So he tells me later gee, the bottom sheet was kinda big.  So later I pull up the corner and it’s a cal King. WTF, The top sheet is a queen and the bottom Cal king. So now on a rainy Monday I have to ( maybe I can get B to do it), got back to Costco which is 25 minutes away, and get a refund and then go into the store and get another pack and then you can bet in the parking lot I’m going to open them and check.  Well…

Plus we’re in for rain and the wind today. But the worst wind is tonight from 10 pm to about 4 am. This bothers me because of my wind phobia ( mostly wind and trees combined), and it will be at night when it’s dark. Well, whatcha gonna do???

 

Simple Sunday

We went to Costco yesterday and got a ton of stuff. A fire extinguisher we needed, some organic sheets ( yeah.. they were 29.95), lots of food stuff, coffee. I also went to the customer service desk and got a refund on the stuff that my husband bought 3 days before the coupon book came out. I didn’t know they did that. I was pretty impressed. I won’t need to go to Costco for a month at least. Unless I decide to go get veggies and fruit there.

It also wasn’t raining and that was a big plus.  After putting the load away, I made us a brunch of scrambled eggs( our own) and avocado, tomatoes and cheese. Pretty tasty.

This has been a gloomy week with lots of rain and it looks like more is heading in today. Although right now its okay out, no rain. On Wednesday we head to Santa Barbara. B is working the co-ops and I’m going along since work pays for it all. We will pay for my portions of food but hotel and gas are covered. I’m looking forward to it.  I love SB, even though I wouldn’t want to live there. It’s  somewhat locked in by mountains and of course ridiculously expensive. But it’s great to visit and I love the beach trail. Since we’ve been there before we know a couple of great places to eat, plus there’s Trader Joes and Whole foods just to get some snacks and lunch stuff.

Our budget plans are going very well. Paying off the last bit on a CC is going very well. Actually, I way ahead of my schedule. But that may change or slow down since in the next month we need to get wood for the new garden beds and a truck- load of soil. So that will be an extra expense. But the garden gives us food and freezer stuff to so it’s a win.

I did a bunch of paperwork stuff this week. I needed to reapply for my LLS grant which covers my health insurance and copays to the doctor. Nothing diagnostic but it does help. Then I had to update my son’s FAFSA because he plans to go to San Francisco State university in the fall as a senior. I would like to see him get a grant for housing and tuition but we’ll see. They now do the year before ( 2015) and that was the year B sold stock so we had a larger gross amount. So that may impact it. I’m not sure if I could have done 2016 as that was substantially less. But it said taxes from 2015.

Today is a gym day and then I’m going to roast a chicken with a new recipe from William Sonoma that calls for oranges and red onion. Sounds good.

The middle of the week.

I -80 still had westbound traffic closed last night so my daughter spent the night in Truckee. The mudslide was still unstable so they were detouring cars to Nevada City. The night before it took her 4 hours to get home. So, fortunately, Dad has points at Best Western, so she stayed for free.   The doggies missed her. And her cat Ollie.

It’s cloudy again and the rain is supposed to move in tonight. Ugh, I’m sick of the rain.

Walking has been nice without rain gear and an umbrella. Sunrise is getting earlier and earlier. Today it was 6:56 am. We are getting to the park earlier too and it’s light. We haven’t walked in the dark in a few weeks.

We had a nice homemade Valentines dinner a la Julia Child. I made JC’s crepes and did a florentine filling with spinach, mushrooms, and goat cheese/ cream cheese filling topped with a cheese sauce. Then I made an old fashioned chocolate cookie wafer refrigerator cake. (Basically, cookies and whipped cream).  Nice. Actually, we’re having the leftovers IMG_0506.jpgtonight so I’m not cooking.img_0509-1img_0508-5

I forgot to take the put together picture but you put the mixture in the crepe and roll up. Then like enchiladas add the sauce on top. The mixture looks fairly wet but it wasn’t.

I thought of going to town and doing some errands but in the end just stayed home.

Simple sunday

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As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler; solitude will not be solitude, poverty will not be poverty, nor weakness weakness. – Henry David Thoreau

It’s a nice day although I hoped it was going to be warmer. Still, it’s not raining. I’ve been to the gym and did a little workout and now I’m home doing this and that.

I have a crockpot of lentils cooking for soup. I think I’ll make some of those Red Lobster cheese biscuits I still have. I did cut up the chicken pretty well. I couldn’t quite figure out how to get the leg and thigh separated so it ended up one but that was ok. I used from youtube the NY Times how to cut a chicken up.  It was pretty straight forward. I’ll do it again soon as I know practice makes perfect. Then this morning I made a hollandaise sauce from Julie Child. It was yummy and it is science. I only used 2 egg yolks and 1/2 a stick of butter so it started to curdle. Well, I guess the science is there needs to be enough butter to the egg ratio, so I added another egg yolk and voila!! I like it very lemony. So that was fun.

I’m going to do some dusting and washing mirrors and maybe some decluttering. Or at least looking at how things are placed.  This week is the bathroom zone. Since we have one tiny bathroom, pretty easy.

One thing I’ve noticed since the Uber Frugal January month, is I’m fairly reluctant to go spend money especially like at Target. I still haven’t bought the new shower curtains, but keep spraying the bottom with a bleach water solution. And we only have one set of sheets now as the other set ripped. But I’m just not jumping to go into the store.  Will see how this week goes.

Five Frugal Things Friday, oops Saturday

I guess I missed this yesterday so I’ll just do it today. First, though, it’s a miracle. We can see the sun. It’s strange to see that yellow orb in the sky after so much rain. If you missed this on the news, I-80 from Colfax, ( right above where we live) to Truckee, was closed due to a mudslide that went across all lanes. Now that’s serious folks. One lane eastbound is open this morning but all the rest are still closed. Wow, that’s a lot of rain and mud.

So it hasn’t been a frugal week at all.

  • B went to Costco and spent $200. Well, it was stuff we needed and of course some champagne to celebrate my numbers.
  • I went to Grocery Outlet and spent $70 on groceries. so not frugal
  • We’ve had all space heaters off since though, rainy, it has been quite warm @ 52 degrees yesterday to start. So I’m hoping the electric bill reflects this.
  • My daughter and I went to Walmart. I only go to Walmart once or twice a year and that is because they carry the Danskin active wear line. This is what makes up most of my capsule wardrobe. But for the last year, they’ve had nada that I liked. But yesterday I found the pants I like( think yoga pants)so I got the only black they had in my size and a grey. Grey is not usually in my color base but I liked these so I got them.  Overall it wasn’t frugal, but since I don’t really shop very often, I felt okay about it.
  • We ate all our meals at home except my daughter and I splurged on an In and Out Burger.
  • I did put $100 in our Santa saver. So that’s a start.

 

So today I’m going to do some house chores like vacuum unless I can get someone else to do it, go to the gym, then wash a few windows. I cleaned up the sun porch where we have the cockatiels and now the windows need to be cleaned. We took out the treadmill as no one was using it. I’m not sure what to do with it but for now its the black hole of the barn. Boy, is that the next area to declutter. At one point it looked pretty good. Now it’s just a disaster zone. Well, it has been too cold to be out there so soon.

Well, off to start this wonderful sunny day.

Dinner is roast chicken( the Zaycon order) red potatoes from Costco, grilled tofu, and a big salad. I want to learn how to cut up a chicken so I may try that today. I pulled out my cookbook, ‘ The art of French Cooking’ by Julia Child and it shows or tells how. ( I think).

‘100 Essentials’ by Francine​ Jay

I decided to buy this ebook since I’m always looking to deepen my understanding and my practice of minimalism. 100 essentials

I follow miss minimalists blog and enjoy her writings. This ebook is an encapsulation of minimalism. she really has taken this to another level of what minimalism means. I like she says each person will have their own 100 essentials.  I doubt I’d ever have that few but I think I’d still like to have less in our house.

It’s a good ebook and you should check it out. I got rid of a few things that I had multiples and I’m always thrilled to see stuff go.

 

Just Keeping Walking update

Well, it has not been fun walking in the heavy rain and wind these last few days. My umbrella is turning inside out, I’m getting soaked even wearing rain gear. But the update is at the end of January we finished month 7 so we’re beginning month 8. That’s 3 years and 7 months plus 8 days of walking every single day rain or shine or I should say usually in the dark. Normally I don’t mind the rain and we have nifty rain gear called Froggs.  But with the wind blowing it gets a little crazy.

Honestly, the trick is to get up put on your shoes and get dressed. Then just go, well, after a cup of coffee.

Just keep Walking!!!