I remember my Mom letting me cook, even at a young age. I must of been four or five and I vaguely remember throwing all kinds of ingredients in a bowl. There was flour, baking soda or powder and many other interesting things for a four year old. With my Mom’s help I put the concoction in the oven and when it came out I remember thinking why doesn’t this taste good? My Mom helped me learn to cook and be creative and that love is still going strong!
As years went by and my wonderful Mother passed away I still continued to cook. Leslie, my amazing step-mother let me cook as well. In Junior High and High School I would cook dinners for the family. I always looked forward to those nights! I did not look forward to the clean up that always followed- just like when I cook today!
When the Food Network came out it helped me be braver in my cooking. I would watch Sarah Moulton make something I’ve never made before and it gave me the courage to try it myself. Chicken Marsala, Chicken Kiev and deserts galore. For some reason I wasn’t scared of trying something new. I thought if she can do it, I can. So I tried. And let me tell you, there were many failures- but there were triumphs too!
I am a very risky cook, and I make some people nervous! If the recipe calls for something I don’t like I just omit it. For example, I always leave out walnuts. I also don’t put egg wash on Challah. Also, I always add more cilantro, lime, chocolate chips, garlic and whatever else I love to recipes. I like to make a recipe my own and make it the yummiest for me. Because of this I go through so many spoons when I cook! I taste a lot to make sure what I am cooking is good. Sometimes it takes a lot of adding of different things to make it just right!
In addition to cooking new things I also still cook family favorites. Baked Brie, Rum Cake, the beloved Challah, dinner rolls, Peanut Butter Cup- and many others. Cooking or baking these things brings me back to my family, even though I am thousands of miles away from them!
Cooking was something my Mom loved, and because of that I feel closer to her when I am in the kitchen. When I am making Challah or Rum Cake I can’t help but think this was something I did with my Mom. It takes me back and makes me smile!
I am going to start posting different recipes on the Kentucky Journey. I will even try some kentucky favorites like fried chicken and pies and post them too- if they turn out!
Chicken Marsala- Abby Style
2 breasts of chicken, 1/4 cup of flour, 1 garlic clove, 1 shallot, 1 tablespoon dried thyme, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon pepper, 1 tablespoon olive oil. 1 tablespoon butter
Pound the chicken with a meat mallet. In a freezer bag combine flour, salt, pepper and thyme. And chicken to the bag and shake. Meanwhile heat oil, butter, shallots and garlic in a large sauce pan. Cook two minutes at medium heat. Add chicken from the freezer bag and discard any leftover flour. Leave chicken on until fully cooked, about six minutes each side. Now put the chicken aside.
Chicken Marsala Sauce
2 tablespoons butter. 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 tablespoon flour, 8 ounces sliced mushrooms, 2 garlic cloves, 1 shallot, 1/2 cup Marsala wine, 2 tablespoons cooking sherry, 3 tablespoons chicken broth, 1 teaspoon salt, pinch of pepper, 2 tablespoons heavy cream
Add 1 tablespoon butter and all of the oil to the same pan used for the Chicken. Add the mushrooms, garlic and shallots. Cook at medium for five minutes or until the mushrooms are slightly browned. Melt the rest of the butter in a corner of pan. Stir in the flour. Cook until light brown- about 2 minutes, stirring vigorously. Now you have a rue! Add Marsala and bring to a boil. Turn it down and simmer for 2 minutes, with stirring. Now add sherry, bring to a boil and simmer 2 minutes, with stirring. Add chicken broth and let simmer 5 minutes, with stirring. Salt and pepper it. Add heavy cream. Put chicken back in the pan and heat through.
This is very decadent, but delicious! It’s extra yummy with mashed potatoes! Enjoy!