Remember Edith Prickley, played by Andrea Martin, on SCTV? She wore leopard prints and crazy glasses and would exclaim, "Mama's cookin'!"
Well, Mama's cooking. I've had a few requests to share recipes. And that, plus a conversation with a very nice trainer at my gym, Jon, who happens to be Flight of the Conchords Bret McKenzie's trainer, when he's in town - okay, you can call him Jon, or you can call him BRET GATEWAY, but honestly, he has his own life, girls, let's be fair, and he's a good-looking dude - these things inspired me to post a recipe. Anyway, Jon was complaining about not having a girlfriend and not having anything to eat and living alone in an apartment with a stove with only one burner. Does your heart not go out to him? So sad! This recipe is dedicated to him, because he is so admittedly clueless about chicken that he didn't even know that chickens have cavities. Yes, they do. Jon, you can roast a chicken, because ANYONE can roast a chicken.
Okay, sidebar rant here: what IS it with all the convenience foods and fast foods? Can you people not just get it together to feed yourselves simple and healthy food at a fraction of the price? I'm here to help.
First of all, make sure that if you're unsure of your oven's ability to hold the correct temp. that you get yourself an oven thermometer. Then when your oven thermometer tells you that the oven's temp. is at 425 degrees, then you can begin. Yes, Jon, you can make a roast chicken with baked potatoes and some nice steamed carrots on the side! All with one burner and maybe a microwave!
RUDIMENTARY SIMPLE ROAST CHICKEN
preheat oven to 425 degrees.
1 3-4 lb. whole chicken
2 T. unsalted melted butter
1 small lemon
salt + pepper to taste
russet potatoes (one per person)
sour cream, butter, and chives for garnishing potatoes
(chop chives finely)
2 cups baby peeled carrots
1 T. butter
1 t. brown sugar
Remove giblets (those are the chicken guts, usually in their own little bag) from inside the cavity of the chicken. Rinse the chicken thoroughly. Pat it dry with paper towels, inside and out. Place breast-side up in a medium shallow roasting pan. If you don't have this, you can buy a disposable aluminum one at the grocery store. Melt butter in a microwave-safe dish. Either use a pastry brush to brush over entire chicken, or simply pour over chicken and use your fingers to make sure that it goes all over the chicken. Once your hands are clean again, salt and pepper the chicken to taste. Using a fork or a toothpick, poke holes all over the lemon. Place it inside the chicken's cavity. (This will help keep the chicken moist.) Place the chicken in the roasting pan in the oven. Rinse your unpeeled potatoes thoroughly and dry thoroughly. Stab all over with a fork. Take about 1 teaspoon. veg oil, olive oil or butter and rub over the potato skin. Place inside oven directly on oven rack next to chicken.Cook both for 1 hour 15 minutes. When you poke the chicken with a fork and the juices run clear, it is done. The potato should be soft when you poke it.
About 5 minutes before the chicken comes out of the oven, steam the peeled raw baby carrots in about an inch of water in your microwave for about 5 minutes. Drain and add butter and brown sugar to taste. Mix in well with hot carrots so that both melt.
Carve chicken as best you recall the manfolks in your house doing it over the centuries, (maybe that's a post for another day...) and serve with baked potato and carrots.
Yesterday I went to the annual L.A. Eyeworks sale. For the uninitiated, LA Eyeworks is the almost-30-year old institution of groovy eyewear here in the city of the angels. Traditionally, one must wait outside in line for the store to open...
and then wait some more because they can only let so many people into the tiny store at a time...
But it's okay because they hand out parasols to shield you from the blazing hot sun, and because everyone is SO EXCITED about the sale.
Once inside, there are about a thousand different styles to try on. Gai and Barbara founded the biz in 1979.
Young and old people crowd the shop...
and the whole place takes on the feeling of a party...a party for only people who wear glasses!
Of course I am doing a cartoon about the whole experience, so I don't want to give away all my material here. The sale continues through Sunday, Oct. 19, at 7407 Melrose Ave. in Hollywood.
I've just added another gallery of pages from the graphic novel I must finish before I die. It's called OVER EASY and it is a fictionalized memoir about my waitressing career in Oakland, California in the late 1970's and early 1980's. It was sex, drugs, and rock'n'roll, or should I say, sex, and enough drugs to make short-order cooks and waitresses think they were rock stars. It all swirls around the main character, our manager, a brilliant, witty, but massively fucked up former latin scholar and poet named Lazlo Merengue, and of course, the character based on me. We all would have taken a bullet for Lazlo. He UNDERSTOOD us. It was years before any of us figured out just how flawed our groovy beatnik dad was, but by then it was too late. I will be adding more pages soon.