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I’m currently sitting in bed. I’m sitting in bed and I’m trying to take care of myself. It hasn’t been easy lately. Every since having our second baby, I feel like I’m in a constant game of catch-up. I know this sounds crazy, but I’m not sure why having the second kiddo destroyed me as much as it did. OK, “destroyed me” is a little dramatic, but I can’t seem to stay awake past 9pm, which means I average a decent night sleep. And, thank Gd, my kids are pretty decent sleepers. So why am I so tired?

I’ve decided there are tons of answers to this question. Maybe it’s the fact that I over-schedule my day, just like most every other person I know. It also probably has to do with not exercising as much as I should but mostly I think it has to do with the amount of stuff I have reeling around in my head. I appreciate the feminist movement and I consider myself a feminist but I’m not sure the feminist movement of the 70s knew what it was getting into when it rallied for fair and equal employment opportunities for women. But, I am grateful. I used to work in a school whose administration over-valued stress and exhaustion. People were heralded for working long hours; the bags under their eyes their little red badges of courage. Now I work for a school where taking a ‘mental health day’ is understood. I have a boss who openly talks about why she doesn’t want us answering texts and phone calls after working hours — the boundary of work and life firmly in tact and celebrated. But still, I get home after picking up the girls and I still struggle with balancing all my responsibilities. When beloved friend and co-author, Sarah at The Patchke Princess started her Sheet-Pan Dinners Instagram handle, I started following immediately. She’s a lot braver than me when it comes with experimenting with sheet-pan dinners, but nevertheless, she has inspired the recipe in this post. We eat meat at least once a week, aside from Shabbat, and being able to throw it on a sheet pan, combine it with roasted vegetables and the perfect seasoning without having to clean anything else makes me so happy. I mean seriously, it is the little things and no additional cleaning is to be celebrated as a big ‘little thing’. Consider this sheet pan chicken a blank slate for which to experiment for further dinners. I hope you enjoy.

 


 

 

Sheet Pan Chicken

Ingredients:

2 chicken leg quarters, cut at bone and separated

3 carrots, skinned and cut into 1/4-inch rounds

5-6 Yukon Gold potatoes, quartered

1 medium onion, quartered

1/2 pint cherry tomatoes

3 garlic cloves, diced

1/4 cup olive oil

3 tbsp parve Ranch dressing mix powder

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1 tbsp kosher salt

1/2 tbsp black pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 400°F. Place a large 9 x 13″ rimmed baking sheet in the oven while the oven is heating. While that’s heating, combine Ranch dressing mix, mayonnaise, kosher salt and black pepper into a medium-sized bowl. Stir to combine. Set aside.

Clean chicken and dry well. Using a spatula or spoon, coat the chicken in the Ranch mayonnaise mixture. Place the chicken skin-side down on the pre-heated baking sheet. Let that cook for about 10 minutes.

While the chicken cooks, combine all the vegetables into a large bowl. Add olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper to the bowl and stir until well-combined. Once the chicken has cooked for 10 minutes, add the vegetable mixture to the sheet-pan, making sure that none of the vegetables overlap, and cook for another 20 – 25 minutes or until vegetables are soft.

Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

 

Buffalo fried chicken sandwich

 

Oh. Hi. I’m not sure we’ve met yet. My name is Whitney Fisch. A few things about myself:

  1. I have two daughters who are so cute sometimes I scrunch up my face and make a, ‘GAH!’ noise in order to manage the overwhelmingness of the cuteness.
  2. I am a school counselor so I spend a lot of my time hanging with high schoolers, which I never thought I would love but, as it turns out, I do!
  3.  I LOVE BUFFALO WINGS! I WANT ALL OF THEM ALL THE TIME.

Buffalo fried chicken sandwich

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while now, you may have already known the above information. I have written about my love of wings before here. It’s not so much the wings as it about the sauce. I LOVE buffalo wing hot sauce. I love it so much. I want to take a bath in the stuff. As a teenager, a favorite snack of mine was canned corn mixed with my mom’s buffalo wing sauce and blue cheese salad dressing. Also, did I mention that I led a super healthy lifestyle as a teenager?

As a ‘foodie’ and someone who loves Instagram and therefore follows other foodies on Instagram (especially LA-based foodies), I was seeing Chef Ludo’s Buttermilk Fried Chicken Sandwich all over people’s feeds this summer. And then Bon Appetit magazine came out with their ‘most perfect fried chicken sandwich ever‘ and I was done. I needed a kosher-fied fried chicken sandwich and I needed it drenched in buffalo sauce STAT! Conveniently enough, I had bottles and bottles of oil in my pantry as the Chanukah season requires some serious frying. Therefore, I made my own dang buffalo fried chicken sandwich based on Bon Appetit’s recipe and it was AMAZING.

Buffalo fried chicken sandwich

Make no mistake, the sandwich is all about composition. Do not attempt this sandwich without allowing yourself the time to pay attention to the details. This sandwich is the perfect marriage of spicy sweetness mixed with tangy coleslaw and a lightly non-dairy buttered bun. It’s also crispy and crunch while still being juicy! It’s a sandwich to be enjoyed on a Sunday night surrounded by loved ones who will still love you as you sniffle and slop your way through spicy hot buffalo sauce ecstasy. Pass the hand towels, this one is a keeper!

Buffalo fried chicken sandwich

 

 

Buffalo fried chicken sandwich

Buffalo Fried Chicken Sandwich

Chicken

1 tablespoon Diamond Crystal or 2 teaspoons Morton kosher salt
1 teaspoon light brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 skin-on or skinless, boneless chicken thighs

Seasoned Slaw

1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons finely chopped chives
1 teaspoon celery salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 green onion stalks, finely diced (green parts only)
1 tablespoon of Bread and Butter pickle brine
2 cups thinly sliced green cabbage

Buffalo Wing Sauce

3/4 cup Frank’s Hot Sauce (I use Frank’s and have only used Frank’s since I was a kid so have no idea how this would taste with any other hot sauce).
2 tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
1 tablespoon margarine
1 tablespoon brown sugar

Assembly

1½ cups all-purpose flour
⅓ cup cornstarch
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon paprika
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons kosher salt, plus more
1 large egg, beaten to blend
1 cup almond or coconut milk
3 tablespoons hot sauce (such as Frank’s)
Peanut or vegetable oil (for frying; about 8 cups)
4 soft seeded hamburger buns
3 tablespoons unsalted vegan butter, melted
Bread and butter pickles (optional but HIGHLY recommended) plus 1 tbsp brine
Freshly ground black pepper

Directions for Prepping Chicken:

Mix salt, sugar, and baking powder in a small bowl. Season chicken all over with salt mixture (you won’t need all of it). Chill uncovered on a wire rack set inside a rimmed baking sheet or on parchment paper, at least 2 hours and up to 1 day.

Seasoned Slaw:

Combine all ingredients up until the cabbage into a medium-size bowl and mix well. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired. Add in the cabbage and stir to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Directions for Cooking Chicken:

Whisk flour, cornstarch, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, cayenne, and 2 Tbsp. salt in a medium bowl. Whisk egg, almond milk, and 3 Tbsp. hot sauce in another medium bowl. Working with 1 piece at a time, dredge chicken in flour mixture, turning to coat and packing into crevices. Shake to remove excess; return to rack. Pour 3 Tbsp. almond milk mixture into flour mixture and work in with your fingers. Dip chicken into remaining almond milk mixture, allow excess to drip off, then pack moistened flour mixture firmly onto chicken. Gently shake off excess; return to rack. Chill at least 30 minutes and up to 12 hours.

Pour oil into a large heavy pot fitted with thermometer to come halfway up sides. Heat over medium-high until thermometer registers 350°. Working in 2 batches, fry chicken, turning often and adjusting heat to maintain temperature, until deep golden brown, 5–8 minutes per batch. Transfer to a wire rack set over paper towels to drain.

Directions for Buffalo Wing Sauce:

In a medium-sized sauce pan, add the hot sauce and heat over medium flame. Add in Worcestershire sauce, brown and margarine and stir well. Bring to a low boil, stirring frequently. Turn heat to low and let simmer for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste a bit (if you dare) and add more brown sugar at 1/2 teaspoon at a time if you like your sauce a little sweeter. The sauce should taste spicy and sweet with a hint of sour from the vinegar in the Frank’s. Turn off the flame, cover the pot with a lid and keep warm while you prepare the buns and assemble the sandwich.

Directions for Assembly:

Heat a dry large skillet, preferably cast iron, over medium. Brush cut sides of buns with margarine and, working in batches, cook, cut side down, until deep golden brown, about 2 minutes per batch.

Once done, take your cole slaw out of the refrigerator and spread a heaping spoonful onto one of the sides of buns. Add pickles to the other bun.

Pour the hot sauce into a large bowl that is big enough to dip the whole fried chicken in. Working in batches, dip one fried chicken (one at a time) into the bowl and cover with sauce. Let some of the sauce drip off into the bowl and then transfer to the buns. Do this until all chicken is complete. Serve hot and with TONS OF NAPKINS.

Buffalo fried chicken sandwich

 

 

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Have I mentioned that before I met my husband I wasn’t really a meat eater. Before I met my husband I hadn’t had red meat in a decade. I had my last bite of red meat at a bus stop McDonald’s in Beer Sheva, Israel in 2001 after a particularly harrowing camping experience in Maktesh Ramon in which my 2 beloved friends and I decided to go hiking and camping, only we didn’t have enough water or other supplies. We went to sleep that night at the bottom of the crater dreaming of ice cold Gatorade and big, juicy steaks. When we finally reached civilization the next afternoon, we gorged on the first food we could find, which just happened to be a bus station McDonald’s. It was later that afternoon, back at the dorms at Ben Gurion University, where I was studying abroad, that I really started to regret that kosher quarter pounder. I swore off meat all together for about 2 months until I got home and really started craving chicken Philly sandwiches (obvs., this was before I was a kosher-eater), which ended my vegetarianism but began my red meat ban. It wasn’t until 7 years later, back in Israel, this time in Jerusalem, when I slowly, slowly re-introduced red meat back into my diet.

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At first it was meatballs. Then it was maybe a slice of brisket. It took a while for hamburger to be welcomed back into my belly but it too, eventually, made its way back into the fold. And so now its 2016 and I’ve got two little girls who LOVE MEAT SO MUCH. I mean sooooooo much. They take after their father in that respect. I mean if they had their druthers, they’d have meat with a side of meat, rolled up in meat and then dipped in meat. We tend to roll vegetarian during the week because it’s cheaper and better for the environment but come Shabbat, it’s a meat party. Yes we welcome that Sabbath queen with a good ol’ roast chicken or some lamb meatballs and if it’s been an exceptionally good week? Well, that’s when it’s first cut brisket, baby (this has happened once in our 6 year marriage. That stuff is expensive). Therefore, the recipe you have before you is not gourmet or particularly earth-shattering in it’s uniqueness, but it is representative of my family’s favorite little Shabbat indulgence (1st cut brisket aside). It’s literally meat wrapped in meat and then breaded and baked. Sometimes I like to dream big and play around with fancy recipes on Shabbat but sometimes I just really want some good ol’ fashioned Ashkenazi goodness.

Recently, on the Jewhungry Facebook page.

Recently, on the Jewhungry Instagram page.

 

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Chicken “Reuben” Roll-Ups

Ingredients:

(makes 5 roll-ups)
boneless, skinless chicken breasts sliced thin or “shnitzel-style” from butcher
1 cup Thousand Island dressing
1 cup Panko bread crumbs
1 cup Matzah Meal (or regular bread crumbs)
1 tbsp kosher salt
1/2 tbsp garlic powder
1/2 tbsp caraway seeds
8 slices pastrami (cut in half length-wise)
1/8 cup margarine (I used Earth Balance)

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Grease a large baking sheet and put aside.

Make sure your chicken breasts are thin. If need be, place chicken breasts one-at-a-time between two pieces of plastic wrap and pound out with a mallet or the flat bottom of a frying pan in order to get chicken to about 1/4 inch thick.

In 1 shallow bowl,  stir together the breadcrumbs, matzah meal, salt, garlic powder and caraway seeds until well blended. Place another wide, shallow bowl next to your bread crumb bowl and add your Thousand Island.

Using one cutlet at a time, coat each side in dressing. Next, lay one side of the cutlet in the breadcrumbs, gently pressing it into the crumbs so they adhere to the cutlet on one side. Lay 2 cuts of the sliced pastrami lengthwise onto the side of the cutlet that is not coated in bread crumbs. Gently roll up the cutlet and pastrami like a jellyroll, tucking in as tightly as possible as you go. If you have food grade toothpicks on hand, feel free to stick one on each end of the rolled chicken and pastrami in order to keep it sealed while baking. Place onto greased baking sheet with seam-side down. Continued on until you’ve completed all chicken.

Once all cutlets are completed, top with a slap of margarine (eeps!) before placing in oven. Bake for 30 minutes. Let rest before cutting once they are done cooking. Enjoy!

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