Food and Family
Sometimes things like chicken and potatoes can move me. Because they remind me of a trip to visit my family. We’ve only been back for 4 weeks. That seems like an eternity. When we get to see my family just 2 or 3 times a year, the space between visits can stretch into much too long.
We Skype each week. We connect, we laugh, we share about what’s going on in our lives. We talk about what they had for dinner and what we’re about to have. We make funny faces and take screenshots of ourselves. We sing silly birthday songs, we congratulate each other on new opportunities, we make ninjas dance in the message section and laugh with glee when Mom and Dad finally notice. We don’t often talk about how much we miss each other. It doesn’t really need to be said. It’s just there. Always there.
Sometimes when it’s not Skype night and I want to feel closer to my family, I’ll make a meal that reminds me of them. Like this one. On our trip we spent some time with Jake, Jen, and Anja at their home. We had an amazing dinner with their community. I was inspired to make a dinner for us that had similar themes.
I roasted a chicken in the Crock Pot. Simple, just olive oil, salt, pepper, and savory. Halfway through I added some whole mushrooms. I roasted some whole potatoes, small ones. Then I smashed them with the bottom of a glass and roasted them for a little while longer. I made gravy with the pan drippings and added the mushrooms and a bit more savory. The gravy went over the chicken and potatoes. It was comforting, delicious, and made me think of happy memories, of time spent with family.
- 1 1/2 C water
- 1 whole chicken, giblets removed
- 1 T fresh savory
- olive oil
- 1 lb. small mushrooms
- Mushroom Gravy (recipe follows)
- Squashed Twice Baked Potatoes (recipe follows)
- Pour water into a large Crock Pot. Add chicken. Season with olive oil, salt, pepper, and savory. Cover and cook on high for 2 hours.
- Add mushrooms and cook an additional 1-2 hours (or until chicken reaches 180F).
- Let chicken rest 15 minutes while you prepare gravy.
- Serve topped with Mushroom Gravy alongside Squashed Twice Baked Potatoes.
- 2 T all purpose flour
- 2 T olive oil
- 1 1/2 C pan drippings from Crock Pot Chicken (recipe above)
- 1/2 to 1 t fresh savory
- Pour pan drippings from Crock Pot through a sieve. Heat a pan, add oil. When hot, whisk in flour. Add savory, salt, and pepper.
- Add pan drippings, a little bit at a time, whisking until smooth between additions. Keep whisking and over medium heat until thickened.
- Add mushrooms.
- Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
- 8 small potatoes
- 3/4 T olive oil, divided
- Toss potatoes with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Bake at 350F for 30 minutes.
- Remove from oven and gently smush with the bottom of a glass. Drizzle with a tiny bit more olive oil. Return to oven and bake for 15-30 minutes more.
- Serve with Crock Pot Chicken and Mushroom and Savory Gravy.