Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Pineapple-Teriyaki Chicken

Dump Chicken.

It doesn't sound very appetizing, does it?

I found the term while reading a frugality blog that I frequent, and thought, "Uh, that can't be good." I find that many people, just trying to get the job done while not spending a fortune, often resort to meals that, well, I wouldn't choose. But out of curiosity I googled 'dump chicken recipes' and--I won't lie to you--I saw some horrid concoctions with various cream-of-something soups and other throw-together convenience items of which I am not a fan. But some of them looked very good (particularly here), and the concept is a good one. A pound and a half of chicken pieces? Good. A blend of ingredients that can be added to your freezer bag to make mealtime planning easier? Good. Slow cooker option? Good.

I decided to experiment on this for myself, and I have to admit that we've got a winner with this Pineapple-Teriyaki Chicken. Mr.W was tremendously pleased, too, declaring that the flavors are from his favorite Mongolian-BBQ-concoctions. This can be put together and frozen or tossed together just before baking. I'd even try it in the slow cooker--probably with skinless poultry in that case.

I'm sorry to say I don't have a good photo of this meal. I snatched the crisped skin right out of the oven before even thinking about grabbing the camera. Yeah, it was a piggy moment, and I should be embarassed to tell you--but I think we can be honest with each other by now.

The chicken browned to a lovely mahogany, as did the pineapple chunks. The reduced sweet-and-salty juices were fantastic, too.

Pineapple-Teriyaki Chicken
serves 2-4, depending on the kind of chicken pieces you use

1 16-ounce can pineapple chunks in juice
2/3 cup soy sauce
about 1/2 inch knob ginger root, grated (I grate directly from the frozen root and don't bother peeling)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon dark sesame oil
1 jalapeno, sliced (I used the seeds and all--added some nice heat, and the slices allowed you to get or avoid as much heat as you want)
about 10 grinds asian spice blend (this is a mixture of salt, sesame seeds, black pepper, fennel, coriander, garlic, onion, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and aniseed; alternates would be a sprinkle or two of jerk seasoning blend or a dash each of the individual ingredients)
1-1/2 pounds chicken pieces (mine was a half chicken; use whatever your family enjoys)

Combine all ingredients in a 13x9x2-inch baking pan; cover tightly with foil and bake at 350*F for 1-3/4 hours. Remove foil and baste chicken with juices. Return to oven for another 10-15 minutes to crisp the skin. Serve over steamed brown (or white) rice.

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