Feeding the boys can sometimes be challenging. Curt will admittedly eat almost anything, although this has been a recent phenomenon (we won't talk about the two years when ALL he'd eat was cheese toast and applesauce. Luke, on the other hand, could happily subsist on pizza and pasta. Tortellini, macaroni and cheese and ravioli, while yummy, are not the stuff a well-balanced diet is made of.
Sometimes meals aren't as healthy as I'd like them to be, but the boys devour them and get a sampling of protein, vegetables and carbs, all in one meal.
Last night's dinner was a huge success. I do the "barbecue chicken" in the crock pot and usually just toss the chicken in frozen. My crock pot cooks on thermonuclear speed, so I can go from frozen chicken to a completed dinner in about 4-5 hours, cooking on low. I make HUGE batches of barbecue sauce at one time and freeze the extras for meals like this. You can toss the sauce in frozen, too.
Sweet and Spicy Barbecue Chicken Sliders on Buttermilk Biscuits
4 chicken breasts
2 1/4 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup minced onion
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup tomato paste
1/2 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 1/2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 1/4 teaspoons liquid smoke flavoring
2 teaspoons whiskey (optional)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1 tablespoon dark molasses
1/2 tablespoon ground red chile powder (I used ground ancho peppers)
In a sauce pan heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the onions and cook for 5 minutes until slightly softened and the edges start to brown.
Add the remaining ingredients to the pan. Whisk well to incorporate. Bring up to a boil then reduce to a low simmer and allow to simmer uncovered for 1.5 hours or until sauce has thickened, stirring every 15 minutes. After the sauce has thickened and reduced and cooled a bit, I puree mine as the boys aren't fond of "chunks."
Place chicken breasts and sauce in crock pot and cook on low, 6-8 hours (or depending on the thermonuclear speed of your crock pot). Remove chicken, shred with two forks, place back in sauce and heat through.
Serve barbecue chicken on buttermilk biscuits.
2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons shortening
1 cup buttermilk, chilled
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Using your fingertips, rub butter and shortening into dry ingredients until mixture looks like crumbs. (The faster the better, you don't want the fats to melt.) Make a well in the center and pour in the chilled buttermilk. Stir just until the dough comes together. The dough will be very sticky.
Turn dough onto floured surface, dust top with flour and gently fold dough over on itself 5 or 6 times.
Press into a 1-inch thick round. Cut out biscuits with a 2-inch cutter, being sure to push straight down through the dough. Place biscuits on baking sheet so that they just touch. Reform scrap dough, working it as little as possible and continue cutting.
Bake until biscuits are tall and light gold on top, 15 to 20 minutes.
Note: I rarely have "buttermilk" on hand so I just make my own. Pour just under one cup of milk and add 1 tablespoon lemon juice or white vinegar. Mix and let stand for about 5 minutes. Use as needed.