Today was a fun day in the kitchen. My son is in town and he likes to cook so we made this week’s ‘assignment’ together.


Chicken breasts are poached in a brown sugar, soy sauce, cinnamon, star anise, and rice wine mixture. Then fried to crispyness. Thus the name, “twice-cooked”. This was good. I served it as Donna suggested with some steamed greens and jasmine rice. Donna listed chicken breasts with skin but I never buy them so went with the skinless. It was still nice and crispy because of the sugar in the poaching sauce. The sauce thickened quite a bit so I thinned it with a little extra soy sauce and drizzled some over the chicken and steamed bok choy.

The recipe is on page 120 of Donna’s off the shelf.

If you would like to join us just check the recipes on Wednesdays with Donna Hay and leave a comment there. We would love to have you. No commitment. Just fun.

And to see how the other members liked the chicken – WWDH.

My pick this week. Asian sounded good. And y’all know I do love the flavors of Asian (and Indian, and Mediterranean and Italian cuisine). This chicken is cooked in a foil pouch with sweet peppers, green onions and carrot for a mere 12 minutes so it is a very quick meal


and also very tender. Steamed in a sauce made from soy sauce, brown sugar and rice vinegar then sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds it is full of flavor as well.


You can find the recipe on page 144 of Ellie’s Weeknight Wonders. I also found it on Caroline’s site.

I hope the other Eaters liked my pick. Check them out on he Eating with Ellie website.

I love cooking with Mediterranean ingredients.  Olive Oil.  Olives, Tomatoes. Lemon.  They all add a certain richness and a ton of flavor to just about any dish.  And that includes this Chicken dish from Donna Hay


It is simply baked chicken but baked with olives, lemon zest, parsley, and plenty of garlic (cause I added a little extra).

Instead of using a whole chicken I had one HUGE chicken breast which I sliced In half and baked. I put a little extra garlic under the chicken. It was very good.

This week’s pick is from Peggy. Definitely a repeat.

TO see what the others thought just zip on over to the Wednesday with Donna Hay Website.

And if you would like to join us – WHAT WE ARE DOING! We’d love to have you join in. What we are cooking every week is listed on the site.

I have heard of these sandwiches for a long time. I have wanted to make one for a while. Or try one somewhere. But until now, I really haven’t done it. Until now I didn’t have Ellie’s recipe for a nice healthy one.


What is a bahn mi you ask. It is a Vietnamese sandwich made on a baguette. A baguette because the bread was introduced to Viet Nam by the French. It is still the most popular bread there. The single bread serving is merged with native Vietnamese ingredients to produce a unique sandwich that has become very popular today.

Usually made with Pork it also usually includes cucumbers, pickled carrots, daikon radish, and cilantro. And all of those ingredients are on Ellie’s bahn mi. I made mine with chicken, which is perfectly acceptable for this sandwich. I left off the radish, daikon is just not to be found here. And I cut the hot sauce – Siracha – down some. I was afraid it would be too hot but it was just right mixed with the mayo and yogurt.

I really liked this one. The bite of the pickled carrot combined with the sweetness of the honey/siracha marinated chicken was just right. Definitely something to make again and again. This was Glennis’ pick this week and it was a good one. Thanks!

Check out the other sandwiches over at the Eating with Ellie site.

Unlike many people I know I LIKE sweet sauces on meat. Well, some meat. Chicken. Pork. So I was really looking forward to this recipe from Donna Hay this week.


Unfortunately I was quite disappointed in it. The sauce was quite tasty but it didn’t adhere to the chicken or add any flavor to the meat. That doesn’t mean I won’t make it again. I think if the chicken had been sliced and then poached in the sauce it would have added much more flavor over all.

Donna suggested serving it with roasted parsnips and steamed sugar snap peas. I am not a fan of parsnips and I couldn’t find any GOOD peas so I served ours with some Whole Grain Pasta instead.

You can find the recipe on the Lifestyle FOOD website if you would like to try it.

And to see if the other Eaters liked it you can check them out on The Eating with Ellie blog.

If he recipe has the word CURRY in it you can bet I am going to make it. The word just conjures up far away places and exotic flavors. Kayte’s pick for this weeks Wednesdays with Donna Hay did just that. I opned up new food fast to read the recipe and found I had already made it for IHCC last December and it wasn’t one of my fave dishes.

But I decided to make it again with a couple of tweaks!


While Donna says to simply halve the chicken thighs I cut them into smaller pieces. I also cut the sweet potato into smaller bites. I made only 1/2 the recipe but kept the Red Curry Paste at 3 Tbl. MUCH better. And then I added a touch of salt which brought out the flavors more. I thickened the broth some and served it with some browned rice. Also much better. But…. there is still something lacking to my taste buds. I want to like this but it just isn’t there for some reason.

Did the other Ladies of WWDH like Kayte’s pick? Check out their posts by hopping over to the WWDH Website where we all leave our links.

The recipe is on page 67 of Donna’s new food fast.

And anytime you want to join us for some really good food just leave a comment for one of us or on the website. We would love to have you.

I do enjoy a good mystery. With well created characters.

Greg Iles

    Robert Crais.
      James Patterson.
        Jamie Oliver.

Wait! No! Jaimie doesn’t write mysteries. But he does create excellent recipes. Like this Chicken, Mushroom, Bacon and Leek Pie And it contains 4 of the 10 Mystery Box ingredients for this week’s MYSTERY BOX at I Heart Cooking Clubs.

AND…AND… Today. Is. Pie/PI. DAY!!!! March 14, 2015. Pie/Pi -get it? 3.1415…..


2 boned chicken legs thighs, cut into chunks or strips
1 medium LEEK, sliced
2 slices smoked streakyBACON, cut into small strips
6 chestnut MUSHROOMS, quartered {I used button because I could not find chestnut}
Sprig of THYME, leaves picked
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 tbsp corn starch
2 tbsp low fat Greek yogurt/crème fraîche
Salt and pepper to season
Drizzle of olive oil


Drizzle a little olive oil in a medium skillet. Add the bacon and chicken and cook until they start to brown.
Add in the leek, mushrooms and thyme.
Add the chicken stock.
Stir the cornstarch into a little water until you get a smooth slurry. Add the slurry to the chicken mixture in the pan
When the sauce has thickened remove from the heat and stir in the Greek yoghurt or crème fraîche
Pour filling into a pie dish.
Place the rolled pastry over the pie filling. crimp the edges with your fingers and thumb or a fork and cut off any excess pastry.
Cut small slits in the crust to let the steam escape.
Brush the pastry with a beaten egg mixed with a splash of milk and bake in a pre-heated oven at 200c for approximately 25 mins, or until pastry is golden.

250g plain flour
100g lard butter, cubed
A tiny splash milk
1 large beaten egg
Flour for dusting

Place the flour in a processor. Add in the cubed lard and process until mix resembles corn meal. Add in the egg and milk and process until a ball forms in the processor. Remove and place on lightly floured work surface. Lightly flour the ball and pat it into a flat round, then wrap it in cling film and put it in the fridge to rest for at least half an hour
Lightly flour the work surface and roll out the pastry to about 1/4 inch. Place the pastry over the filling and crimp it around the edges until the filling is covered. You can fold the excess under or over on itself or cut off the excess. Cut slits in the top to allow steam to escape and brush a mix of the egg and milk. Bake about 25 minutes at 390 or until crust is golden brown.
Remove from the oven and let the pie rest for a few minutes before serving

    {Original Recipe}


Absolutely Delicious! The flavor of the thyme is definitely there but not overwhelming. The chicken is nicely browned and cooked. The crust is so brown and flaky. This AIN’T your mama’s chicken pot pie! It’s better because there are fewer ingredients fighting for the limelight. Definitely a keeper.

What did the other cooks/bakers do with their MYSTERY BOX ingredients? Check them out on I Heart Cooking Clubs.

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