Sunday, January 29, 2012

Ms. Klienpeter says “Paint that chicken!”

Ann Kleinpeter of Groves told me she bets I like fried chicken, but not the fat. So she told me to peel back the skin on some chicken, “paint that chicken” with mustard and make a coating of crushed crispy rice cereal. Then you bake it. Now she kept telling me to try it out before I shared this tip, but I can’t imagine it could be anything but interesting and good. She says you can hardly taste the mustard, but I wouldn’t mind if you could. The cereal came into my life the very next day, but I still haven’t rounded up the chicken.


My mother remembered Bookbinder’s as an “up north” restaurant (Philadelphia) that she experienced through the World’s Fair in New Orleans.

I’ve got jars of heat and serve soup from The Old Original Bookbinder’s, established in 1865. I know you’ve got to get past the first thought of book binding “glue,” but do it.

The four new gourmet flavors are:

* Irish Potato-Leek Soup -- A modern version on an old family recipe from the Emerald Isle. I made it my lunch and the first bowl tasted fine. The second bowl tasted even better with a little Slap Ya Mama spices from Ville Platte, La. I found the spices by the microwave I borrowed and it was a Cajun-meets-Irish delight.

* Cuban Black Bean Soup -- Pureed Black beans accented with corn, red peppers, onions, carrots, and garlic, cumin and proprietary spices. Fiber with good taste, they say, and over rice it was a great winter fill-you-up.

* Tuscan Minestrone Soup and Sicilian Tomato-Zucchini are still on my shelf. I’ve also made a breakfast of a flavor from the original line, Zesty Tomato, mixed with rice. Brandywine Mushroom became a sauce for a head of cabbage my diners ate up. January is soup month, but these will work in February and beyond.

A scented kitchen

A friend gave me a box of Alessi then breadsticks made with extra virgin olive oil. The long sticks look great arranged in a glass on the table, but this story isn’t about them. The next day I tried Aircraft Infused Scent Sticks, which aren’t to eat, but sure looked like the other sticks. Sunrise Citrus, billed on the container as “just pure fragrance,” interests me because there’s no flame or plugs. The scent seems real, not like all the artificial stuff that gives me a headache. You can mix and match with Crisp Apple and Forest Berries. The coolest part is the holder, a white ceramic “O” that holds the sticks into a stylish, minimalist “bouquet. My mixing, you can create more than 1,000 scent combos.

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