Monday, February 21, 2011

I broke the rules. Like you're surprised.

Alright, people.  I’ve got a confession.  I totally broke the rules tonight.  It’s always been my unspoken rule - for the past 18 months - that on Monday night I make something new.  I don’t do repeats on Monday, because Yummy Monday is for trying new things and going all out.  I have never repeated a Yummy Monday unless it’s a special occasion (i.e. birthday) and it’s requested.
Tonight, I repeated.  Now, before you call me a cheater, listen to my reasoning.  One, This was first posted long, long ago before I “knew” most of you.  And trust me, you don’t want to miss it.  Really.  Truly.  It’s that good.  Two, it technically IS in the Church Cookbook.  Because I put it in there.  So it still subscribes to THAT rule.  And three, I have been craving this since I made it the first time, and though we’ve scheduled it THREE times since then, it has NEVER been made again.  Tonight, I decided, enough is enough.  I NEEDED this meal.  And fourth, I was really determined to not burn the rice this time.
So, I recreated the meal from my post “So this is what AWESOME tastes like.”  This is probably my favorite meal that’s I’ve made, ever.  I know, a bold statement, huh?
Before I go any further, I want to credit the blog this meal came from.  Well, the two blogs, actually.  I first saw this on House of Sarager.  She found it on Favorite Family Recipes.  The meal is a Sweet Pork Cafe Rio Knockoff Salad.  (do you love Cafe Rio?  Gosh I miss that place...)  Every single recipe for the meal itself can be found here.  And you really, really should click on it.  Don’t worry, I’ll still be here when you get back.

Please note that the original meal called for pork, but because of time constraints, I used chicken since it takes less time to cook.
Jackie on House of Sarager also posted this drink (Brazilian Lemonade).  I think the official name for this is actually “Nectar of the Gods.”  At least that’s what I call it.  BUT, I made it wrong on accident the first time, and liked it that way so much I decided to always make it wrong.  But it's a lot less calories if you make it right...
Dessert came from the cookbook, and was contributed by Michelle.  Key Lime Pie is a favorite at our house - even bug loves it.
Now that THAT’S out of the way, you should probably know that it is absolute insanity to attempt this meal in only a few hours.  You need all day or like two days, since a lot of it can be made ahead of time.  Since I never plan ahead, I did it all this afternoon and into the evening.  Would you like to know why you shouldn’t do it all in one night?
Well, I’ve prepared a little “How To” for you, just to illustrate:
Dig all the neccessary ingredients out of the bags strewn all over the floor from grocery shopping today.
Put the chicken in the marinade and slap it in the fridge.
Eat a mini peanut butter cup.  (You need the energy)
Run upstairs to help your 3 yr old find a specific car he must have during quiet time.
Put all the groceries away.
Clean up the kitchen, superficially, from the morning and well, all accumulated piles.
Prepare the crock pot with the sauce.
Prepare the blender with the other sauce.
Run down to check your email.
Get really distracted.
Start a new project/tutorial.
Run upstairs and freak out about what time it is.
Preheat the oven for the pie shells.
Poor the sauce out of the blender into a bowl and wash the blender.
Put the chicken in the crock pot.
Start mixing and cooking the pie on the stove.
Clean the counter.
Rinse all of your cutting/chopping stuff.
Check on the chicken.
Start the pie chilling and begin to make the cream.
Put the oil on for the crispy strips.
Loose your sanity completely and stop taking notes on the order you are doing things in.
Run around like a loony.
Cut the tortillas into strips.
Trip over your 3 yr old who is now up from quiet time.
Finish the cream for the pie.  Check the pie filling.
Put the strips in the oil.
Wash the blender.
Start the rice.
Take the SUPER crispy strips out of the oil.

Take the chicken out and shred it up.  Put it back in with the rest of the sauce.
Throw a bunch of pots and dishes in the sink and clean the counters again.
Start the beans.
Take the forgotten pie crusts out of the oven.
Check the pie filling.
Blend the dressing.  Which is the best dressing IN THE WORLD, by the way.

Finish up the rice.
Poor out the dressing and wash the blender.  Isn’t this the THIRD time you’ve done this???
Check the beans.
Slide on 3 yr old’s matchbox car and nearly break your neck.
 Throw some more pots in the sink.
Ask mr to check the pie filling.  Very little help as he doesn’t know what I mean by “thick but not too thick.”
Start the drinks.
Take the beans off.
Start the cheesy tortillas.
Finish the drinks.
Ask mr to go get the filling.  It is a congealed mess.
At this point, it’s TOTALLY normal to scream in frustration.  I think so, anyway.
Start putting the pie together anyway.
Set up the rice and beans.

Poor the drinks into glasses.
Put the pie out in the garage to chill.
Take the slightly over-cooked tortillas out of the oven.
Put everything on the table.
Collapse in a heap.
And when it is all done, you will have a deliciously amazing meal and beverage that everyone will rave over, and one completely botched pie that is really, really sad.  

Here's my version of the Brazilian Lemonade:

Nectar of the Gods
2 limes
1/2 cup sugar
1 can sweetened condensed milk
3 cups water
1 tray of ice
4 Tablespoons grenadine
Wash the limes.  Cut the ends off.  Cut the limes into 8 wedges.  Put them in the blender along with the sugar, condensed milk, water and ice.  Blend on pulse, pushing it maybe 5-8 times.  Strain through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl with a spout.  Pour one tablespoon of grenadine into the bottom of each glass.  Pour the drink on top (it will mix just enough). (makes four glasses)

I will try the pie over, because I think had I paid more attention to it, it would have turned out just fine.  The taste was all right, the consistency was all wrong.
Here’s the recipe:
Key Lime Pie
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/2 C sugar
1/4 tsp salt
4 egg yolks
1/2 C lime juice
1/4 C water
1 tsp grated lime peel
A drop of green food coloring
4 egg whites
1/2 C sugar
1 C heavy cream
1 9-inch baked pie shell
Mix the gelatin, sugar, and salt in a saucepan.  Beat together the egg yolks (save the whites), lime juice, and water.  Stir this into the gelatin mixture.  Cook and stir over medium heat until it comes just to a boil.  Remove from heat.  Stir in grated peel.  Add the food coloring - one or two drops until it’s a light green color.  Chill, stirring occasionally, until mixture mounds slightly when dropped from the spoon.  Beat the egg whites until soft peaks form, gradually add 1/2 C sugar, beating until stiff peaks form.  Fold gelatin mixture into egg whites.  Fold in heavy cream.  Pour into a baked pie shell and chill until firm.  Top with whipped cream or serve as is.

At bedtime, it’s part of bug’s routine to talk with us about the best part of his day and the worst part of his day.  We think it's helping him to identify his feelings and work through them and start using his words even more.  Tonight, when mr asked him what the worst part of his day was?
“The pie.”  He said glumly, with a very sad frown.
Now you know what a failure it was.

*Be sure to check just below for all the fun parties I link to!


Liberty said...

I'm salivating, girl!!

Unknown said...




Totally worth breaking the rules for.


You are awesome!

Amie {Kitty Cats and Airplanes} said...

Um, can I please come over for dinner?

Jill said...

Yum! I do also like your special instructions! lol I however don't have a 3 year old for those particular steps... hmmmm... maybe I can borrow one.

Jill said...

Yum! I do also like your special instructions! lol I however don't have a 3 year old for those particular steps... hmmmm... maybe I can borrow one.

Meg Luby said...

YUMMMMMMMMMMM! my gosh, thanks for sharing, haha

WobiSobi said...

Everything looks super yummy. and I love your header and button Children's art is the best!

WobiSobi said...

If i am leaving this twice I am sorry, I don't think i pressed post. but everything looks so yummy and I love your header and button Children's art is the very best.

MRMD_GRL said...

omg this looks delish!!!

Thanks for the new recipe!!!

Ashley said...

hahaha this is my favorite post of yours yet. So glad I'm not the only spaz in the kitchen! That pie looks yummy, sorry it didn't turn out. You are so amazing, you made your own tortilla strips?

Anonymous said...

Another brilliant post from Wandering Wednesday! I think that is a great idea not to repeat a meal on a Monday, gives the family a great variety.

CJ xx

Lisa {grey luster girl} said...

Big fan of "the ri" as we like to call it. I am stoked to try the Brazilian lemonade. Love the comment about the pie :), so cute.

Amy @ Chicy-Creations said...

Mmmmmm! I L-O-V-E Cafe Rio!

Annisa said...

Can I get your dressing recipe?? I still haven't found a good one I like! Thanks!!

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