Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Corn Flake Chicken, Crinkle-Cut Squash Fries, and Shopping List OCD

This morning, after work-work, I tackled the construction of what is now known as "The World's Most Detailed and Complicated Shopping List."  There were lists, sublists, flowcharts, Venn Diagrams...  ((I'm cooking for an event on Saturday and there are eight dishes to prepare.))  I started with an ingredient list by dish, then compiled that into a list that covered absolutely everything (listing quantities for items used in two or more dishes), and then rearranged all of that by store category ((bakery, produce, meat, etc)).  It was actually quite hilarious, but dammit, I have every single thing I need.  Second trips are for losers.  Yes, there was checking and cross-checking and perhaps a form of a rain dance.  Whatever works.

Because I was shopping on someone else's dime, I had to be very careful.  And here is when I had item #347 of proof that people are assholes.  I'm walking through the market, crossing things off the various lists, and I have a calculator where I am keeping track of the total.  Because I don't trust myself, or technology, more so, I was also keeping the total written on yet another list to be sure that I didn't erase the whole thing accidentally and have a nervous breakdown.  This horrible woman with bad teeth and very unflattering pants actually had the goddamn nerve to come up to me and say, "If you have to count every penny, maybe you shouldn't be here and you definitely shouldn't be buying crab."  And that's when I got arrested.

Just kidding.

I actually did manage to hold my tongue and as sweetly as possible ((through the venom that was seeping from every pore)), "Thank you for your concern.  It is unnecessary."  Now OF COURSE I have about 389 come-backs to that, but I decided it would be good karma or something to just move along.  And then tell all my friends on the internet about how fracking unfortunate her capris were and how she really should look into varicose vein removal.  PEOPLE.


Anyway, tonight's menu is Corn Flake Chicken and Crinkle-Cut Squash Fries.

Clean Living
For the chicken:
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts  ((I actually used chicken tenderloins because I'm not eating much meat these days))
1/2 cup of Corn Flakes
Various spices, just a little of each  ((minced garlic, onion powder, black pepper, sea salt, and cayenne is what I used))

Preheat the oven to 350.

Pour the corn flakes into a small plastic baggy.  Add a pinch or a shake or a couple shakes or however the hell much you want of each of the spices into the bag.  ((Here's where it gets fun.))  Seal the bag and throw it on the floor.  Walk on it.  Jump up and down.  Do the choreography to Bad Romance.  ((I know you know it.  Or can at least fake it.))  Now you don't need to pulverize it, but if you are having fun, well then, more power to you.  Keep going.

Recover and breathe deep.  Add the chicken to the baggie and shake it around.  Resist the urge to quote 1980's Shake and Bake commercials.  Add the chicken to a baking dish ((NOT IN THE BAGGIE)) sprayed with cooking spray and throw in the oven for approximately 40 minutes.  ((This might be longer depending on how big your breasts are.  Sorry.  I couldn't help myself.  For 4 ounce, thin breasts, it takes about 30 minutes.  For 8 ounce breasts, closer to 40.  12?  45-50.  You can always cut into the thickest part when it is about time to be sure there is no pink left in it.  There's no shame here.))

Oh cluck.

While that is cooking, make the squash fries.

All you need is a yellow squash, the same spices you used above, and some more cooking spray.  Slice up the squash ((and hope you have the awesome crinkle cut attachment that I have because it looks fancy.))  Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray.  Throw the squash on there in a single layer.  At this point you can either mist or drizzle it with extra virgin olive oil OR you can spray it with the cooking spray.  I swear.  It tastes totally fine.  It also saves between 100-200 calories if you care about that sort of thing.  Then sprinkle the spices over the top.  ((I also added this applewood rub that I got yesterday because I wanted to sample it.  That's why mine looks different than yours probably will.))

When there is about 15 minutes left on the chicken, put the squash on the top rack of the oven.  Keep an eye on them to make sure you don't burn them.  Again, depending on the thickness, the time will vary.  I cut these pretty thinly and let them go for about 10 minutes.  You could also use the broiler if you aren't using the oven for anything else...

Fake Fries

You are a child of the 80's if you said, "And I helped."

Nutritional Info:  Sainthood!  For a 4 ounce chicken breast and making the squash without additional olive oil,  approximately 150 calories and 1 gram of fat.


  1. Thanks for the idea for the yellow squash. I still have one left to try it with. I thought you behaved like a saint with the bluehair.

    1. The restraint literally caused me physical pain, but I go there so much I decided it wasn't a good idea to speak what was really about to come out of my face.

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  3. NOT IN THE BAGGIE!!!!!!