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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Cookin' Up A Storm of Pineapple

Batya of Me-Ander & Shiloh Musings has started the Kosher Cooking Carnival. Coming up this week is the second edition of the KCC, and though I didn't get a chance to join the first time, I'm taking full advantage this time around.

We have lots of guests at SerandEz, and since many are oft-returning ones, we ask what they want us to make - and sometimes, we even listen. Serach usually makes the challah, soup if we're having, and some side dishes, while I take care of the main courses, fish if we're having, and other side dishes. I prefer simple recipes most of the time, as they tend to taste better and they're far easier to make. My mother is an excellent cook, and a lot of the recipes are hers, though some come from my sister Vervel Yeya, my sister-in-law SIL, and my brother OD (who used to do catering on the side - now he doesn't do much of the cooking). My mother is a big fan of doing exactly what the recipe says - and so are all of us. That way, it comes out great every time.

The best part is, my mother doesn't even eat fleishigs (meat products) - or fish. She's a challah and Philadelphia cream cheese with lettuce person, with pasta products and occasionally pizza. She's not allergic - she just doesn't like it. Many shabbos meals include my mother on one end eating cream cheese while the rest of us would be eating potato kugel, chicken (the kind that used to walk!), and salad 'bar'. We could always say what was good or not without having to worry about insulting her - because she had no biases as to what it tasted like. She'd simply say "Okay" and adjust the recipe accordingly. Once it was good, it was written down - and that's it.

Of course, the following recipe is not even from her. It's from my sister, whose expertise is actually her pepper steak - but this was her first great recipe, and is always a big hit. It's very, very simple, and I hope y'all enjoy:

PINEAPPLE CHICKEN

1 chicken, cut up into 1/8ths
1 cup ketchup
1 can pineapple chunks or sliced pinapple
1 cup dark brown sugar

This is really tough. You put the pieces of chicken in a deep pan or pot or something that can hold a bit of liquid. We usually take off the skin, though you don't have to, as long as it's clean. You mix the ketchup, brown sugar, and the juice from the pineapple can in a bowl, then stir in the pineapple. You then pour the sauce over the chicken, cover it, and cook it at 375 degrees for an hour. Then uncover, baste, and cook for 20 minutes uncovered. (Or you could be lazy like me and just do it at 350 for an hour, covered.)

That's it. Prep time: 1-5 minutes. Cook time: 80-90 minutes. Serves: Should be 8 pieces - otherwise, watch your step. Eat time: Depends how many people you're having.

If you want to double the recipe, double the ingredients, but not the temperature or cooking time.

Enjoy!

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