My Sweet Marie

Posts Tagged ‘chicken

Camping can be a lot of fun but not if you have to work all the time that you are there! In anticipation of this, I made our foil packs for one of our camping dinners! All we had to do is pop them on the Barbie for 45 minutes and ta-da, dinner was served! Here’s what I did:


  • 4-5 oz per person of meat (beef, chicken, pork, lamb etc)
  • 2 cups per person of  Veggies (carrot, onion, mushroom, peppers, zuch, brocc, cauliflower, etc)
  • potatoes if using,(mini are nice as you can portion easily)
  • seasonings
  • garlic
  • foil wrap
  • olive oil or Pam spray


  1. If you want to marinade the meat, go ahead and do that first. For beef I like to do soy sauce with italian dressing, set aside. Have your meat cut into bite sized portions. For chicken, I usually do garlic and lemon juice but again, you could do Italian dressing. I make my own Italian but any will do.
  2. Have your veggies washed and cut into the bite size you like. If it’s a veg that cooks faster then others, you may want to cut that into a larger size, like cauliflower.
  3. Divide your meat into the number of portions you are working on. Same for veggies.
  4. Take a sheet of foil or parchment, say 8×10 and grease with either olive oil or pam spray so there’ll be no sticking!
  5. Lay your meat on the foil and top with your veggies. At this point you can top the whole thing with a tsp of olive oil and your seasonings. You could do Cajun, Italian, Montreal steak spice or just about any at all.
  6. Seal the foil/parchment so that they are completely sealed. Now double up with another piece of foil.
  7. Now I go over and above and put each package in a large Ziploc and then I put them in the cooler or fridge till ready to use. I usually make these the day before going or the morning of and sometimes they will sit in the cooler (with lots of ice) for 2 days!
  8. Take them from cooler and toss on the Barbie when you get back from the beach all tired and exhausted!

Recently my dear hubby Denis and I were in Playa Del Carmen again.  When we go to Playa we usually rent a condo and do some of our own cooking but usually go out for dinner every night. We are on holidays after all! So, this year we heard of a place in town that serves up the best chicken and it was run by French/Parisienne people, called La Brocherie. This I had to check out. So one day while out on one of our adventures, we found it and stopped in.

We walked in and we were greeted with “Bonjour”, I thought it was a trick so I replied with “Bonjour, comment ca va?” Well, not only did they reply but we proceeded to have a French conversation! I could not believe my ears or eyes! What an amazing thing to be in another country of Spanish decent, but to find French speaking people! I loved that!

So we sat down and Arlette began to explain that their chicken is done in the French traditional way. They marinate it overnight in a certain way, then in the morning they stuff herbs under the skin and cook it slowly on the rotisserie. Let me just tell you, it is worth a flight to Mexico to have this chicken, it is so moist and tasty, truly delicious! I ordered the 1/2 chicken dinner so that I could take home leftovers, and that I did! The 1/2 chicken dinner was only 80 pesos which to me was very worth the dish, that translates to $8.00 Canadian! It came with rice and I think vegetables, to be honest I’ve lost track but I know for sure the rice was very tasty.

While eating our lunch, I read on their menu board that on Wednesdays they do beef bourgignone. I said to Denis, if their beef is half as good as this chicken, we need to come back on Wednesday! So we talked to Arlette about it and she explained the process of the dish and we booked a reservation for Wednesday.

We were greeted by Fabian who sat us at our reserved table and served us a lovely beverage! When the dish came, you could smell it coming, I kid you not. There was a big piece of beef in the middle of the plate, with a few potatoes and carrots, all sitting in this delicious beef gravy/sauce. I’m telling you, it was scrumptious! I cannot think of a word big enough to explain how delicious it was, tender, smooth beef in a perfectly flavored sauce. There was a hint of wine in it, very little salt, perhaps a bit of pepper and likely garlic, absolutely prize winning beef bourgignone. You don’t need to go to Paris for this dish, simply get yourself to Playa Del Carmen!

Let me just tell you that Fabian, the owner/chef is incredibly gifted in the kitchen! The Beef Bourgignon was far superior to any I have ever had. I have made this dish myself countless times but never did it taste like this.

While we were dining, Denis and I were chatting away and I said, Denis listen to our ‘neighbors’, we were surrounded by people speaking French! It was incredible, here we are in Mexico and the language I was hearing was French! Apparently word is out in the French Canadian community that Le Brocherie is the place to go on Wednesday nights! And why wouldn’t it, for $12 you get a top notch dinner and the friendliest service in town!

For the record, Fabian and his wife are the owners of the establishment, Fabian being the master chef with his delicious menu dishes and great recipes. Arlette is Fabian’s mother and is the hostess with a very bubbly personality and warmest of  greetings. She had never met us before, yet spent time talking with us and giving us great tips on what to do and see in Paris for our next holiday.

Fabian and Arlette, I wish you much luck in the future in Playa, I know you’ve only been open less then a year but we’d never know it by your dishes. Keep up the good service, the delicious food and the very reasonable prices and people will continue to come and frequent your establishment!

My dear readers, if you find yourself anywhere close to Playa Del Carmen, you need to head over to La Brocherie on 15th Avenue between 4th and 6th streets.

sweetest greetings,

Sweet Marie

It is -6 out today and I am in the mood for some good, warm comforting food. Here’s what’s on the go today. My co-worker Patty has inspired me to make this as she was eating it yesterday for lunch! She told me how she did it, and I plan to do that but you know me, I’ve got to add my little twists! Here’s what I did:


  • 2 lbs chicken (thighs, legs, breast)
  • 1 28oz can of chick peas drained and rinsed
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 2-4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 28 oz can tomatoes diced
  • 1 lt of chicken broth
  • 1 stalk celery diced
  • 1 carrot. chopped
  • 1 cup green beans, cut
  • 1 cup chopped kale or spinach
  • 1 sweet potato, diced
  • 1 cup mushrooms sliced
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. indian spice rub/mix (look under my spice mixes for recipe)
  • hot sauce, as/if you like…a little or a lot!


  1. In your stew pot, sautee the onion,garlic with the chicken till no longer pink on the outside.
  2. add in your other veggies and sautee a bit more.
  3. Add in the tomatoes, chick peas, broth and spices.
  4. Simmer on the stove till all the veggies are cooked, the chicken is falling off the bone and you just can’t take it any longer!
  5. Serve with cooked brown rice if you like. enjoy!!
  6. ** Can be made vegetarian, omit the chicken!

This is my way of cooking chicken cacciatore. Most Italians would tell you that you need to dip the chicken in flour and pan fry it but a) I am gluten-intolerant and b) I don’t need the added calories of the frying! So I have created my own version and it is delicious and since I don’t dine regularly in Italy, we don’t know the difference! Here’s how I do it in my kitchen, here in London, Ontario!


  • 4-6 chicken breasts or other pieces
  • 1 onion sliced
  • 1 pepper sliced (green, red orange or yellow)
  • 1/2 lb mushrooms sliced
  • 2 cups homemade tomato sauce or canned if you must!
  • 1 cup chicken broth or white wine
  • 3 tbsp. capers
  • oregano, basil, salt, pepper and or chiles


  1. In a large greased casserole, place your chicken. sprinkle it with your spices of choice.
  2. Layer over top the chicken, the onions, mushrooms and peppers.
  3. Mix the tomato sauce and chicken broth together, pour over the chicken and veggies.
  4. Sprinkle the capers over that.
  5. Bake in the oven at 350 for 1 1/2 hours or till the chicken is cooked and sauce is bubbling hot!
  6. Serve with a salad and pasta!

Here’s an easy one for you, throw in crock pot, go to work and come home to a great smelling kitchen! here’s what you do:


  • 2 lbs chicken (thighs, breast, legs, whole, whatever)
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup chicken broth (gluten-free)
  • 3 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 2-3 cloves of minced garlic
  • 2  tbsp. fresh chopped parsley


  1. Rub chicken with the oregano and salt and pepper.
  2. Put olive oil in bottom of crock pot, put on high.
  3. Put the chicken and garlic in and let brown just a bit for about 30 minutes.
  4. Add in the broth and lemon juice. Put on low.
  5. cook for 6-7 hours and stir in the fresh parsley 15 minutes before serving.
  6. Great with a large serving of fresh steamed broccoli with a squeeze of lemon! enjoy!

I like to make my own chicken broth for a few reasons, first, it’s healthier and second I know what is going in it! I like to take short cuts and because it cooks while I am sleeping or at work, it feels like a short cut! It can be changed to beef or turkey broth just as easily too! Here’s how:


  • 3 or 4 lbs of chicken bones (beef,pork or turkey will work too)
  • 12-15 cups water and/or 2 cups wine
  • 1 onion, washed and roughly chopped, don’t peel!
  • 2 stalks of celery, washed and roughly chopped
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic,, washed and roughly chopped
  • 3 carrots, washed but don’t peel, chop roughly also
  • thyme, salt and pepper
  • any other veggie you want, greens(kale, spinach) would good too!


  1. It is not important to chop the veggies all pretty as you will not likely be using them in the soup,they are there for taste and colour, that’s it!
  2. Put your bones in the bottom of crock pot, add all your veggies and spices.
  3. cover with water, you could use some wine here if you’d like (white for chicken, red for beef)
  4. Put on high and let cook overnight.
  5. In the morning, strain out all the veggies and bones. Chill it.
  6. Now, you can puree the veggies if you’d like so as not to waste and add it to your soup or if you have a dog, it’s a healthy meal for them!
  7. Use this broth in any recipe calling for broth. I usually bag it into freezer bags (2 cups) once it’s cooled and store in the freezer and use up as I need it.
  8. ** I buy my chicken bones and beef bones at the Asian market, cheap! they bone whole chickens and save the bones, works for me! You can also use carcasses from chickens, turkeys, chicken legs, thighs, etc or even the meat itself, doesn’t have to be just bones. If you want to use a pkg of chicken, go for it, it’ll be tasty for sure!

I love lemon, and I love garlic and I am always earing chicken so why not lemony garlic chicken? Sounded simple enough to me! I started with a couple of boneless chicken breasts, got out some garlic, got crushing, next thing you know I am squeezing lemons! Can you say yummy? Here’s what I did!


  • 2-4 boneless chicken breasts
  • 3-4 crushed garlic cloves or more
  • 1 large lemon, zested and juiced
  • 2 cups chicken broth or wine or half of each
  • 1-2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 small onion sliced thinly


  1. In your large sautee pan, heat the oil and sautee the onion and garlic. Add in the breast and sear. Cook for 4-5 minutes per side depending on the thickness, just till there’s no more pinkness to the meat.
  2. Add the zest, juice and broth. Stir and scrape up any bits from the bottom of the pan, that is all good!!
  3. If you’re looking for a gravy consistency, you can thicken with a roux or corn starch depending on your tastes. let the sauce bubble and cook up and season with salt and pepper and maybe thyme if you like.
  4. Serve with a nice veggie, and maybe salad or rice!
  5. Enjoy!