Posts Tagged ‘Lemon’

Desert Lemon Mint Sun Tea

Posted: March 17, 2012 in Snacks
Tags: , , ,

Desert Sun Tea

Since it’s going to be chilly, rainy, and windy here for the next couple of days, I thought I’d post this photo and recipe of my refreshing Desert Sun Tea to remind myself that the sun will be back again soon!

Add 10 mint leaves and the rind of one lemon (you can use a paring knife to cut the rind off in big pieces – you don’t want to grate or “zest” it off) to a gallon of water in a glass container.  Drop about 8 of your favorite type of tea bags into the water.  I like Lipton black tea the best, but lemon and mint will go well with any type of tea.  Then just let it all sit out in the sun to slowly brew over the course of at least three hours.  The longer you can leave it in the sun, the better – I try to shoot for five hours.

Because the tea was slowly brewed in the sun instead of boiled, you should make a point to drink your tea within a day or two just to be safe.  Bacteria or germs or whatever.  But don’t worry, you won’t have any trouble with that.  It’s delicious!

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I set out to make a flavorful paleo friendly salad dressing today after picking up some fresh basil at the grocery store.  Next time I’ll probably add some dried oregano too, but other than that, the ingredients are all listed above: 1 lemon, 1 basil stem full of leaves, 1 clove garlic, red wine vinegar, fresh cracked black pepper, sea salt, and some mustard – preferably spicy or dijon.  Squeeze it, dice it, shake it, eat it!

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If you don’t have one of these handheld citrus juicers, you really should try to pick one up soon!  They’re easier and faster to use and clean than electric juicers, particularly if you only need juice from a handful of fruits at a time.

So I made my little lunch salad – still by the way using my second ever whole baked chicken!  That meat is really stretching a long way.  And then I started wondering… is something missing?  Yes!  I decided to add some fresh grated Parmesan cheese and two pieces of chopped up deli pepperoni.  It would have been a good salad without those last two additions, but it was even better this way!!!

Basil Pepperoni Chicken Salad

Shame on me for not having some green veggies on this plate, but damnit!  I was worn out after cooking my first whole chicken and first spaghetti squash in one day.  It was kind of stressful because I didn’t really know what I was doing.  But I will save you that headache and tell you below exactly how to make these two things together, pretty much stress free.  Cool, right?  This recipe makes enough for probably about six people.  But because we are only two people, we will be eating this again as leftovers tomorrow!  🙂

  • Ingredients:
  • 1 Spaghetti Squash
  • 1 Whole Young Chicken (usually about 4-6lbs)
  • 2 Lemons
  • 2 Cloves garlic
  • Oregano (fresh or dried)
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Pesto (or other herbs/spices for the squash)

1. Preheat the oven to 375

2. Zest two lemons (that means take a cheese grater to the lemons’ skin)

3. Dice two cloves of garlic

4. Combine lemon zest, salt, pepper, garlic, and oregano with some olive oil.  Exact amounts really don’t matter here.

5. When the oven is heated up, pop your whole squash in on a pan.  That easy.

6. Get your chicken out of the fridge and stick your hand up his butt to pull out all the giblets (if your chicken has them still).  Mine did, and it was pretty gross.  But I just kept telling myself that at least I didn’t have to chop this chicken’s head off and feather it, so I should be happy to remove gizzards!  That mostly worked.

7. Quarter one of those zested lemons and shove those quarters up into the chicken’s cavity.

8. Place chicken breast side down into a big pot with about an inch or two of water in it.  Bring water to a boil.

9. When the water is boiling, put a lid on the pot and turn the stove down to just above simmer.  I think this is called parboiling… The idea is that the steam is most of what’s doing the cooking.  I think.

10. Simmer the chicken with the lid on for about 50 mintues.  After 50 minutes, it should be done.  If you want to double check though, stick a meat thermometer into his thigh (don’t touch bone) and it should read 165 degrees.

Now you can go take a break while your squash and chicken are cooking.

11. When your one hour is up for the squash, just take it out of the oven and sit it on the counter or your cutting board or whatever.  So long as you don’t cut into it, it will stay nice and warm for quite a while until your chicken is ready.

12. When the chicken is finished parboiling, maneuver it out of the tall pan and onto the same pan you used to bake the squash.  Turn your oven up to 450 degrees now.  We’re going to brown that chicken!

13. Smear that zesty olive oil rub you made earlier all over the chicken.

14. Pop the chicken back into the oven for another 15 or so minutes until you like the looks of the chicken.  Remember, it’s already fully cooked, so this is just a personal preference thing now.

15. When you take the chicken out of the oven, set it aside.  You’re supposed to let it “rest” for a good 10 minutes so that all the juices can settle.  Or something like that.

16. While the chicken is resting, we’ll move on to the squash!  Chop that thing in half, scoop out the seeds, and then rake out the spaghetti strips with a fork.  Store whatever squash you don’t use right away in a ziplock in the fridge.

17. Mix the spaghetti squash strands with a little pesto (I cheated and used some grocery store in-a-bottle pesto).  Or you can use whatever herbs and spices you want.

18. Time to carve that chicken!  If you don’t know how, go look that up on Youtube.  🙂

19. EAT!

Check out my chicken carcass.  Awesome!  🙂