touchdown sweet chicken and bacon skewers

Food, Fun, Friends and Football! They all go hand in hand. The tailgate food featured this week at Cashmere Apron includes our “Bump and Run Baby Bells” and our “Touchdown Sweet Chicken and Bacon Skewers.” Most of your tailgate food can be made in advance and finished up at your tailgate (check out the amazing array of inexpensive portable grills by Coleman). Our last tailgate menu featured the above two appetizers plus beef sliders with caramelized onions and melted cheese, roasted corn and feta guacamole with tortilla chips, beer, margaritas and mini cupcakes. Talk about a food coma! Happy Football Season!

1-1/2 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 lb. package sliced bacon
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 Tb chili powder

Chargers 1

Preheat grill to medium high heat.

Cut chicken into 1-inch cubes.

Cut each bacon slice so that it is big enough to wrap around each piece of chicken.

Wrap bacon around the chicken cubes and secure with a wooden tooth pick.

Stir together the brown sugar and chili powder. Dredge the wrapped chicken in this mixture. Put these into a sealable container and keep cool until ready to grill.

Coat grill rack with oil and place chicken on the grill rack. Grill for about 20 minutes, or until chicken is cooked and the bacon is crisp. Makes approximately 20 appetizers.

Chargers 2Chargers 3

skillet-fried chicken

Lead Chicken

You know how it goes in line at the grocery store…you look at your phone, scan the gum and candy rack, check out what the person in front of you is buying and peruse the latest magazine headlines….it’s a ritual. When I saw the cover of Bon Appetit with the headline, “Best Fried Chicken Ever” and the sub-head, “In Five Easy Steps,” I threw the magazine into my cart. That was the February 2012 issue and I have been making this skillet-fried chicken since. It really is easy, just follow the recipe. Be warned; the recipe calls for the chicken to marinate overnight. I always kick myself when I buy all of the ingredients for a recipe, get everything laid out nicely and then realize I missed a step that requires some sort of overnight treatment. You can’t go wrong with this Skillet-Fried Chicken. Serve it up with roasted corn and flaky biscuits and honey. Your family will love you, your skillet and your fried chicken!

2 Tb kosher salt, divided
2 tsp plus 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 tsp paprika
3/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1 3–4-lb. chicken (not kosher), cut into 10 pieces, backbone and wing tips removed
1 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tb cornstarch
Peanut oil (for frying)

Chicken Collage 2

Whisk 1 Tb salt, 2 tsp black pepper, paprika, cayenne, garlic powder, and onion powder in a small bowl. Season chicken with spices. Place chicken in a medium bowl, cover, and chill overnight.

Let chicken stand covered at room temperature for 1 hour. Whisk buttermilk, egg, and 1/2 cup water in a medium bowl. Whisk flour, cornstarch, remaining 1 Tb salt, and remaining 1 Tb pepper in a 9x13x2″ baking dish. Pour oil into a 10″–12″ cast-iron skillet or other heavy straight-sided skillet (not nonstick) to a depth of 3/4″. Prop deep-fry thermometer in oil so bulb is submerged. Heat over medium-high heat until thermometer registers 350°.

Meanwhile, set a wire rack inside a large rimmed baking sheet. Working with 1 piece at a time (use 1 hand for wet ingredients and the other for dry ingredients), dip chicken in buttermilk mixture, allowing excess to drip back into bowl. Dredge in flour mixture; tap against bowl to shake off excess. Place 5 pieces of chicken in skillet. Fry chicken, turning with tongs every 1–2 minutes and adjusting heat to maintain a steady temperature of 300°–325°, until skin is deep golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of chicken registers 165°, about 10 minutes for wings and 12 minutes for thighs, legs, and breasts.

Using tongs, remove chicken from skillet, allowing excess oil to drip back into skillet; transfer chicken to prepared rack.

Repeat with remaining chicken pieces; let cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.

chicken and rice casserole


PicMonkey Collage

September is National Chicken month so Terry and I decided to dedicate this week’s posts to our fine feathered friends. We are posting some of our favorite chicken recipes like this chicken and rice casserole that was handed down to me. My great-grandmother, my grandmother and my mom all made this recipe for their families over the years. It is a “tried and true” casserole that all kids both big and small will enjoy. I was lucky enough to inherit the original cookbook that this recipe originated from, The Chattanooga Chew Chew Cookbook. As you will see, I have updated this casserole and made a few changes. Before we get to the chicken and rice casserole, check out some fun facts about our favorite bird:

  • Just like cats, dogs, and humans, a chicken is an individual with a distinct personality. Some chickens enjoy the company of humans, while some shy away.
  • Chickens can recognize more than 100 other chickens and remember them.
  • Chickens experience REM ( rapid eye movement) sleep. We wonder what they are dreaming about?
  • When a chicken crossbreeds with a turkey you get a “Turkin.”
  • The fear of chicken is called Alektrophobia.
  • There are more chickens living on this earth than people.
  • Chickens enjoy watching television and listening to music. Seriously, who comes up with this stuff and how do they “know” this?

PicMonkey Collage

Chicken and Rice Casserole

2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 can Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom Soup
1 cup mayonnaise
2 cups white rice (will cook this in the broth left over from the baked chicken)
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped water chestnuts
1 Tb fresh lemon juice
1/2 stick of butter
3 cups crushed Kellogg’s Corn Flakes cereal
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Bake the chicken along with 1/3 cup of water in a covered casserole dish at 325 degrees for 1 -1/2 hours. When the chicken is done, drain off all the broth into a measuring cup and add enough water to make two cups. Follow the directions on the rice box but use the broth/water mixture instead of  only water.  While the rice is cooking, chop up the chicken into bite size pieces. When the rice is done, pour it into a large bowl and add the soup, mayonnaise, cooked chicken, celery, water chestnuts, onion, lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well. Pour this mixture into a casserole dish.

For the topping melt a 1/2 stick of butter in a medium skillet, over medium high heat. Add the crushed corn flakes and cook until well combines and golden in color.

Top the casserole with the shredded cheddar cheese and cover with the toasted corn flakes.

Bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees, covered with foil. Remove the foil the last 5 minutes. Serves: 6-8. Compliments: Chattanooga Chew Chew Cookbook


grilled lemon, garlic and fresh herb chicken


Ok, let’s be honest…. some of you are just plain “chicken” to step out of the box on Labor Day. It seems like everyone wants to grill up a burger. Don’t get us wrong, Cashmere Apron appreciates a good burger but why not prepare something a little different? This chicken recipe is so simple to make, and is packed with flavor and juiciness. Who doesn’t want to show their crew that they care enough to  put a little extra thought into their holiday menu? Simply combine the chicken with the marinade ingredients and let them mingle in a zip-lock bag until you are ready to fire up the grill. The only rule to this chicken recipe is that you use fresh herbs and freshly squeezed lemons. This is a terrific WOW recipe that you can cook up during a busy work week or why not try grilling it up this Labor Day?

3 large chicken breasts with bone and skin
1 Tb lemon zest
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tb fresh rosemary, chopped
2 Tb fresh oregano, chopped
6 sprigs of fresh thyme
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. fresh ground pepper
2 lemons, juiced

PicMonkey Collage

Place all the ingredients into a large zip-lock bag and seal. Rotate the bag so that all the chicken is coated with the marinade. Place the bag in a bowl (in case of leakage) and place in the refrigerator. Marinate for two hours or more.

Preheat the grill for medium hight heat.

Lightly oil the grill grate. Place the chicken on the grill and discard the marinade. Grill the chicken until juices run clear. Chicken breast should reach 165-170 degrees when fully cooked. If you don’t have a thermometer- go buy one! It is sometimes hard to tell when the bird is done and some pieces cook quicker than others. Remove from the flame and allow to rest for 5 minutes under a sheet of foil. Serves:3

* Christi is in love with her charcoal Weber Grill and boasts of it’s cooking abilities. She says that it can hold its own against some of the more superior grills. Let us know what your favorite grilling method is and which grill is your favorite.

PicMonkey Collage


slightly sweet chicken salad


This chicken salad is often requested by my friends and family. Slightly salty with a hint of sweet honey. Baking the chicken results in tender soft meat which is perfect for chicken salad. I like to serve this chicken salad over avocado slices or in a crisp and cool lettuce bowl.

4 skinless chicken breast with rib meat
3 stalks of celery
1/2 onion, cut into 4 equal size pieces
3 sprigs of fresh rosemary
1 cup of celery, chopped small
20 red grapes, cut in half
1/2 cup, chopped candied pecans
1/2 cup apple, seeded, peeled and chopped small
3 Tb light mayonnaise
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
1- 1/2 Tb honey
Salt and pepper to taste

Place the 3 stalks of celery and onion in a baking pan and lay the chicken on top. Sprinkle with rosemary, salt and pepper. Add 1/2 cup of water to pan and cover with foil. Bake chicken in a 350 degree oven for 1- 1/2 hours. Let chicken cool then remove the meat from the bones and chop up. Put the chopped chicken in a bowl and add the celery, apples, grapes and nuts. Gently toss. Combine the mayonnaise, honey and lemon juice in a small bowl. Pour the mayonnaise mixture over the chicken and mix well adding salt and pepper to taste.