As the holidays are getting alarmingly closer and closer, I am busy picking up extra babysitting hours, Christmas shopping, wrapping, and making my candy. No time for RumGirl's usual gourmet meals. Tonight I decided to try a Chicken zucchini casserole that I found on Allrecipes.com. My husband and I love zucchini. I was going to make the chicken and then a starch and the zucchini as a veggie. I usually saute the zucchini in olive oil with garlic and onions but, tonight I really needed a one dish meal since my counter space is taken up by dozens of chocolate covered delectables. I love casseroles and so does the hubby but most of the recipes usually call for cream of something soup. I try to cut back on the sodium by using low sodium varieties and use milk instead of cream and fat free substitutes such as FF sour cream. I am not a fat free fanatic. I cannot stand the artificial taste of many of these products, plus they are loaded with chemicals. I do try to keep the hubby and myself healthy especially when it is eggnog and cookie season. You can't taste the fat free products when its all combined together in a casserole so this is one of the rare occasions I will use it.
My husband, Rob, loves to rate my dinners. Tonight I am happy to announce I got a perfect 10 on this one! Instead of shredding carrots, I used some left over cooked carrots. If you are not a zucchini lover, you can really substitute any kind of frozen, fresh, or canned veggie. If it is not fresh, I suggest cooking it or defrosting it and draining off the excess liquid. The result was a creamy, crunchy, one-dish meal perfect for a cold and busy night.
The candy making is almost finished. My chocolate covered orange candy slices were such a hit I decided to go with cherry slices dipped in dark chocolate. I also had peanuts dipped in caramel and covered them in dark chocolate as well. They look a little too big and might end up being a cavity puller so I will have to test them before giving them away. The chocolate covered pretzels I drizzled salted caramel over have still not hardened. I am a little nervous about them sticking to the tray when I plate them.
I received a few emails asking what type of chocolate I use. I prefer the Make-n-Mold brand. It is easy to use and inexpensive. I purchased mine at A.C. Moore. A 14 oz. bag is on sale during the holidays for $1.79. Great deal!!! One bag makes about 40 pretzel rods. I usually buy too many bags of chocolate because I never know how much I am going to need. It's better to have more than have to run out 2 days before Christmas searching for places that have not sold out ( yes, been there done that). This was the first year I did not have a problem finding the chocolate. If I have extra I usually use them for candies for Valentine's Day. The chocolate does not seem to stay fresh too long after that.
Nothing rummy to report today, unfortunately. Still have not had a chance to sample an ice cold glass of the rum cream. I hear it calling me from the fridge but hey, I'm busy! Perhaps it would not hurt to have a little night cap before hitting the sack after baby sitting tonight! After all, it is a manic Monday!