Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Life with an 8-month-old + slow cooker recipe

It's Tuesday again, but for once I'm not in school! I'm currently sitting on my couch, listening to the men in my life snore as they both take a nap. Gotta love Fall Break! Wyatt looks especially cute today in his Halloween onesie that a friend of Kenny's bought for him. I'm so glad, too, considering I looked high and low for a cute Halloween shirt/outfit and couldn't find one in his size! He may be 8 months old, but he's wearing mostly 12 month clothes, and I've definitely noticed a gap in sizes while shopping for his fall/winter wardrobe. Newborn-9 months? Check. 18-24 months? Check. 9-18 months? Yeah, not so much.

I'm extremely tired today, due mostly to the fact that Wyatt kept waking up last night. His top two front teeth are coming in (finally!) and it's definitely upsetting him. Add on top of that the fact that every time he wakes up, he decides to sit Indian style in his crib and bang his head on the wooden rail until I go in and either pick him up or lay him back down. (Kids can be so weird...) The crib bumper isn't tall enough to cover the space between the mattress and the top of the rail, so it looks as if we'll have to lower the mattress again. (And by "we" I totally mean "Kenny.") He's really come a long way developmentally in the last week or so; it's amazing to watch. He can now crawl backwards a good ways, go from sitting Indian style to being on his tummy and back again, and he even stood up using the couch for support for a few seconds yesterday! And then he fell and bumped his head on his bouncy chair and commenced to wailing, but that's neither here nor there... He's finally getting the hang of crawling forward, something he did for the first time two days ago on his 8-month birthday...

Am I a proud momma? You bet I am.

Anyway, as happy as I am watching my little man grow, he's wearing me out! And so even on my day off, I decided to bring out the slow cooker.

I've been on an Asian kick for awhile now in case you didn't notice, so when I searched Allrecipes.com yesterday for meal ideas, this recipe for slow cooker oriental chicken immediately caught my eye. Even better, I already had all of the ingredients!

I decided to stick pretty close to the recipe this time, only adding a teaspoon of orange peel. I also used chicken breasts instead of a whole chicken. (I didn't grow up eating a lot of dark meat, so I tend to shy away from it in my cooking. Plus, white meat is healthier.) The original also calls for sliced almonds as a garnish, which I forgot to buy at the grocery store. Not a major component, so I didn't worry about it.

3 chicken breasts
2 Tbsp vegetable oil (could also use olive oil, or similar)
1/3 c soy sauce (I used lite)
2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp water
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp orange peel

Coat the bottom of a pan with the oil and brown the chicken. Mix together the rest of your ingredients while chicken cooks. Then place chicken in the bottom of slow cooker and pour mixture over chicken. Cook on high for one hour, then low for 4-5 hours.

Several of the reviewers at Allrecipes.com complained of not having enough sauce to accompany the chicken, and they turned out to be right. Like many of them, I mixed the juice from a can of pineapple with a little cornstarch and added this about 30 minutes before mealtime. I added the pineapple, too, just to warm it up a bit. I steamed broccoli and baby carrots and made brown rice. Delicious! And still enough leftovers for lunch tomorrow and Thursday's bento...

Now I'm off to do the dishes. One requirement for our next house - must have a dishwasher!

- Mother Nature Mom

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