Making up for a non published post ("Fancier" chicken and fully loaded mashed cauliflower)

I had a post in my wheelhouse from two months ago that I thought about posting this week but decided to just keep it in drafts.  It was supposed to be my usual signature meal, a fancily prepared bone-in chicken breast and a yummy side.  I planned to make that on the evening in question, but it was a bad mood day for me (for valid reasons).  I wasn't into the meal and I had to read Who Moved my Cheese (If you haven't read that yet, get on it!) again that weekend so it was a really mediocre post and dinner.  I decided to make fancier chicken again now that I am in a WAY better state of mind. (Even though I had to step away from typing this just now to kill a roach, with wings, shudder)

I had some leftover mashed cauliflower in the freezer (yes, go ahead and murmur of course you do Missy!) so I used that to make fully loaded cauliflower based on this recipe.  Basically what you would do to make your cauliflower is cut a head of cauliflower into smaller pieces, boil for about 10 minutes until soft and then puree it in the food processor with about a 1/2 cup of liquid (milk, chicken broth, half and half the water it cooks in, whatever tickles your fancy).  I ran out of breadcrumbs, so I used part of a packet of Lipton Golden Onion Recipe Secrets instead.  I usually use about 2 cups of breadcrumbs for 4 pieces of chicken.  Full recipe after the photo montage.

 I am posting this in Meal Plan Monday with Southern Plate and Southern Bite as well!  Link on over!

The fancy bacon is because I need to practice for Hogs for the Cause.
Also, those are regrown green onions!  See how here
Doing double duty, serving to create bacon bits and grease to cook the chicken in. 
Butter and cut garlic.  This is going to be so good! 
Lift up your skin and loosen it. 
Stuff your butter and garlic in there and smile. 
season both sides with seasoned salt
Rub it down with onion mix, or bread crumbs if using those.
This picture is hella out of focus, sorry!
Place in the hot and bacon-laced skillet skin side down for 7 minutes to get a nice crust. 
I was doing double blog duty tonight so I left it on too long and turned this into blackened chicken.
And took another picture out of focus.  I'm blaming the roach! Stick it in the preheated oven.
Shredded cheddar, butter, green onions and bacon bits.  It only this was going on a potato...
Stir in the butter and half of each of the other toppings with the mashed cauliflower and mix 
Add to a casserole dish and place the rest of the toppings on top.  Throw in the oven with the chicken. 
Baked-in goodness.  Who needs potatoes?
The finished product!  Yummy and fancy.  Make sure your chicken gets to 165! *Is a lawyer.
"Fancier" Chicken: (since I made this just for me, just multiply this by how many peeps you have)

Bone-in chicken breast
seasoned salt
one large clove garlic, sliced
1/2 tbsp butter
breadcrumbs or soup mix

Preheat oven to 400. Heat a cast iron skillet on the stove with a tablespoon of fat (or make bacon like I did!) Place breadcrumbs in a small bowl.  Lift the skin of the chicken breast. Add the garlic and butter under the flap.  Season the chicken with seasoned salt and then dip in breadcrumbs and rub to coat.  Place in the cast iron skillet skin side down and cook for 7 minutes to get a nice crust.  Flip over and cook for 5 minutes on the other side.  Place in the oven and cook until the temp registers 165 for about 20-25 minutes.

Loaded Cauliflower: (serves 4) From Food dot com

One head of cauliflower, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup liquid of your choice (see above)
3 pieces of bacon, cooked and crumbled
3/4 cup of cheddar, divided
3 green onions, sliced
1 tbsp butter
1/4 cup sour cream (optional)

Boil the cauliflower until tender, about 10 minutes.  Place in food processor with liquid to mash.  Add the butter, half the cheese, bacon and green onions.  Spread into a casserole dish and top with the remaining toppings.   Place in the oven and cook for 20 minutes.

This was delicious.  The chicken was so juicy and I barely noticed it was cauliflower instead of potatoes.  Bone-in chicken breasts are always a crowd pleaser and just taste better than boneless.  Unlike my current fave, boneless skinless chicken thighs, have you tried them? What's you favorite way to prepare?

Happy cooking!


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