Monday, April 4, 2016

Food 911, Again?

Last night I put a couple of pieces of chicken in the crockpot to cook until bedtime. I forgot about it, went to bed and woke this morning to the delicious smell of cooked chicken, very cooked chicken that is. After taking it off the bone I was left with about a cup of baby food consistency chicken. Super flavorful baby food, but chicken mush just the same.  Once again I refused to toss it out, so I started thinking of ways to make it palatable.  (Do you notice a recurring theme here?)

My first thought was to chop some scallions, mince ginger and garlic and do some kind of Thai rescue, but the thought of wrapping and steaming everything was more time consuming than I was willing to give to mushy chicken.  Then I thought about stuffing large pasta shells with the mix, but decided the noodles would be too thick for the balanced Thai flavor profile. Instead I monkeyed with a little bolder more forgiving taste that would overpower the noodles rather than the other way around.

                                                            Buffalo Chicken Shells

2 large chicken breasts, cooked and minced or shredded  (Don't overcook like I did)
6 asparagus spears chopped finely (these were loose in the crisper)
1 medium onion chopped fine
2 large carrots, grated (less than stellar carrots but fine for grating)
2 tablespoons Chulula (or your favorite hot sauce)
1/2 cup monteray jack cheese, shredded
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
12 cooked large pasta shells

In a large bowl mix everything but the pasta shells together.  Stuff the shells and bake in a 9x9 pan in a 350 degree oven until everything is bubbly (about 20 minutes)
Serve hot with a salad and call it a night.  Promise yourself you will never leave anything in the crockpot overnight again.  Know yourself well enough to know if that is the truth or (as in my case) probably an empty promise.

Believe it or not this was pretty darn good and did not even look like a rescue attempt, even though before the first bite TheHub thought I had lost my mind and cooked tuna stuffed shells.  The chulula colored it a bit and it did look like tuna, but it tasted like nice peppery chicken. The vegetables gave it some much needed texture.  When I make this again I will add zucchini and spinach (I had neither today) just to amp up the veggie count.

Sometimes I feel like I need a food ambulance to resurrect food I screw up.  I might do something novel and start planning my meals in advance__or not. But I do seem to be playing Russian roulette with our dinners a lot lately and I am getting tired of it.


  1. Excellent save.
    And sigh on the Russian roulette front. How I wish you were alone.

  2. To be honest, though I hate anyone else is in this mess, it is kind of comforting to know I am not the only one.

  3. Admit it. You like the challenge, excitement, and creativity that comes with a food save. You really shine in your rescues and I'm hungry every time I read about one.

    1. I really don't like the challenge, but I have such an unorganized mind that unless I am seriously concentrating on a specific task (like taking chicken from the crock pot and sticking it in the refrigerator) it goes into the dark recesses and important things like " if parallel worlds were plausible would I ever be able to communicate with my parallel self" or "how many sheets of junk mail would it take to shred for pulp to make an 8x11 sheet of homemade paper" come to the forefront.

  4. Everything that live and learn said!
    You rescues are better than my "real" food. Sad.

    1. Fortunately for everyone, tonight there will be no rescue. I actually made sure I know in advance what we will be eating, and have even begun some semblance of prep. Of course when I plan in advance is usually when I burn the crap out of whatever we were going to eat and we wind up having a grilled cheese sandwich.

  5. Very nice. I probably would have gave it to the cats. I'm not a very good or inventive cook

  6. I can usually think of something to do with food but I am tired of the self sabotage.

  7. Very creative rescue, Anne! I probably would have just ate the chicken straight from the crock pot for breakfast! LOL!!