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October 3, 2012

Celebrating Three!


My son turned 3 recently, and as soon as I saw this eye-popping cake on Pinterest pinned from Enchanted Mommy's site, I knew it was the perfect one for his birthday celebration!  He fell in love with M&Ms while we were potty-training him this past year (for every successful potty trip, he got 2 M&Ms as reward).  Many thanks to the mommy who originally made this fun and creative cake!

I basically followed the instructions on the site.  They seemed simple enough:  (1) take two bundt cakes, slice and form together to make the number 3, then (2) ice with chocolate frosting, and (3) cover in M&Ms.

I decided to make Martha Stewart's Lemon Ginger Bundt Cake (if you want to keep things really simple, you can purchase two bundt cakes from the bakery or grocery store).  This lemon ginger cake is fabulous!  It has great flavor and texture.  If you're not a fan of ginger, you can leave it out but I love the addition of the flavor (you can find crystallized ginger in the baking section of most grocery stores).


While the two bundt cakes were baking in the oven, I sorted out the M&Ms by color.  This would have been a fun exercise for my boys except I couldn't trust them to leave enough M&Ms for the cake!  I used four 12.6 oz bags of dark chocolate M&Ms to get enough of each color (did you know there are more orange and blue M&Ms than any other color in any given bag?).


When the cake had finished baking and cooled off, it was ready to slice.  Here are the slices I made to form the number 3 (by the way, this would also be a fun 8th birthday cake!).


Once formed, I iced a thin layer of chocolate frosting onto the cake (I used Savory Sweet Life's Dark Chocolate Ganache recipe but canned frosting works perfectly fine!).  The frosting acts as glue for the M&Ms, but beware, too much frosting and your M&Ms will drown in chocolate!


Obviously, the most tedious part was strategically placing each M&M.  It took about an hour to accomplish this.  But the finished product is, oh, so worth it!


This little guy made it worth all the effort.


This cake is perfect for any special 3rd occasion!

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September 26, 2012

Three and Full of Surprises


My sweetest Nathan,

Happiest 3rd birthday to you, darling!  It’s hard to believe 3 years have already flown by since you entered the world and into our lives.  You went from being a peanut that we could hold with one hand to a mini linebacker that can wrestle your brother to the ground!  Can I tell you what a funny child you are?  Even before you were able to speak, you had Daddy and I laughing our heads off.   We can always count on you to say or do something that has us grinning from ear to ear, even if we’ve had a rough day.  It’s your gift.  Your easy-going, sweet, and fun nature helps to bring a smile to so many faces.  You have an infectious laughter and are always full of surprises.


Though we try very hard not to compare you, there are so many differences between you and your brother.  CJ is a spitting image of me, whereas you are a mini-Daddy!  And though the twos were quite terrible with your brother, it was a simpler age with you.  Your personality seems to be much more laid back and easy-going.  You kind of just go with the flow (or maybe it's just that second time around Mommy and Daddy became more laid back!).  You're curious and adventurous, which also means you're more accident prone!  You also have a much heartier appetite, although you don't have quite the fondness for vegetables your brother does.


You started 3-year-old preschool this September and with an October 1st cutoff, you barely made it in!  You are the youngest in the class, but your teacher assures me you are doing just fine and always giving her something to chuckle about.  Your current obsessions at this age include monster trucks, cars, m&ms, lollipops, monster trucks, dancing, rice and soup, Mr. Puppy and Mr. Monkey, Jake & the Pirates, and more monster trucks.


In the past couple months, you’ve really started to increase your vocabulary and ability to speak in complete sentences (as demonstrated in your prayer below).  Sometimes you’ll just ramble on and on, and it’s the most adorable thing.  I never want you to lose your sweet, baby voice, but I know that day will eventually come.  You’ve already lost much of your baby fat – the round cheeks have thinned out and the super chunky thighs have elongated.  You’re becoming a little man.


Record and upload voice >>

But I won’t care how old you are and will be down the road.  You will always be my little peanut.


I thank God for you and for bringing such great joy into our lives.

Happiest birthday wishes, darling.

Love with all my heart,
Mom


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September 24, 2012

Birthday Reflections: A New Song


For my birthday, I had planned on writing a lengthy post reflecting back on the year, particularly speaking about God's faithfulness in restoring my soul after a long and very dark period precipitated by my miscarriage a little over a year ago.  But sometimes words simply fall short.

So in one sentence and one Scripture passage, I'll sum it up:

I am grateful for a life filled with love, God's healing hand restoring my broken soul, a future filled with great hope and promise, and a new song in my heart.


Psalm 96: 1-6
1  Sing to the Lord a new song;
    sing to the Lord, all the earth.
2 Sing to the Lord, praise his name;
    proclaim his salvation day after day.
3 Declare his glory among the nations,
    his marvelous deeds among all peoples.
4 For great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
    he is to be feared above all gods.
5 For all the gods of the nations are idols,
    but the Lord made the heavens.
6 Splendor and majesty are before him;
    strength and glory are in his sanctuary.


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August 8, 2012

Opening Up the Communication Lines


I remember growing up watching “Full House” and envying the scenes where Bob Saget’s character, Danny Tanner aka “Dad”, would sit next to one of his daughters (whichever one was in trouble at the time) and talk about whatever issue was at hand – be it boys, cheating or lying, or being the subject of idle gossip.  Father and daughter would both say their piece, and with the exchange of a warm embrace and “I love you”, all was forgiven and forgotten in the end.

Those scenes would break my heart, because more than anything, I longed for that kind of relationship with my own parents.

I didn’t need the hugs and kisses, per se.  All I wanted was to be able to open up the communication lines.  I just wanted to talk with them.

But as the child of an immigrant family, that was harder said than done.  My siblings and I thought, spoke, wrote, fought and argued in English, whereas my parents did so in their native tongue of Korean.   When there was conflict (which there never seemed to be a shortage of), we really only understood the outbursts of anger in our respective languages.  Or worse yet, the deafening silence.  And none of that got us anywhere except further from one another and deeper in resentment.

My sister, brother, and I began to give up trying to communicate with our parents and just figured they’d never understand us.

But as we all got older and my parents’ English improved over the years (while our Korean worsened), I think we began to realize how much we all desired to understand each other better but just didn’t know how.  The moment we began to communicate - I mean really talk the way Danny Tanner and his daughters did - things started to change.  Walls came down, stories were told, apologies exchanged, and wounds began to heal.

So when I call or sit down with my parents now, I don’t take for granted that I’m able to express myself and have them understand and the vice versa be true.  Not all is understood completely, but we try and make an effort to convey what’s on our minds and our hearts.  And sometimes that’s all it takes – it’s just making the effort, knowing that we care enough to do that.

And this is why my husband and I proudly support an organization which teaches English to a community of individuals and families longing to make those kinds of connections.  The organization is called The Open Door NJNY.  It’s located in West New York and Open Door is not only teaching its students the English language but is equipping them with vital life skills as well.   The program includes an assembly time after class to discuss pertinent topics, a children’s program, and a computer literacy class.  Open Door equips its students to better communicate with their families and within their community.  The organization is made up of dedicated volunteers who give their time and talent to help those with fewer resources.


{ Photos courtesy of The Open Door NJNY }
I sometimes wonder what life might have been like if such a program had been made available to my parents when they first came to the States.   Maybe they would have had an easier time finding jobs and wouldn't have had to struggle as much to make ends meet each month.  And maybe we would have had more of those “Danny Tanner/Daughter” moments where we could say what we had to and all was forgiven and forgotten in the end.

Speaking the same language isn't a guarantee for better communication, but it sure doesn't hurt.

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June 10, 2012

4 Years and Counting


My dearest CJ,

Today you went from being a curious, willful 3-year-old toddler to an incredibly bright, independent, and mature 4-year-old boy.  It's amazing how much you've grown in the past year alone!  Two was a tough age (the infamous "terrible twos" hit pretty much after you turned 18 months), but three was even more challenging!  At three, you clearly knew right from wrong but tested the boundaries anyway.  Your vocabulary grew and excelled, yet you still chose to wail and scream when you wanted to be heard.  You adored your baby brother and yet could not stand to share anything with him.

But three was also a magical age where I began to see you develop and mature in so many ways.

You started preschool at age 3, and you had to learn to be courageous and be on your own for a few hours without mommy, daddy, or grandparents around.  When I went to drop you off, you cried and kicked at our parting every day for almost 4.5 months while the other kids quickly adapted and marched into school without a whimper.  The teacher always reassured me that once the doors closed and I was out of sight, your tears vanished and you were fine.   But it was still difficult to see you cry every morning.  Then magically one day in February, you decided you liked preschool and to my astonishment, was the first one to run inside the school as soon as the teacher opened the door.   The teacher and I both did a double-take, not certain how or why this happened but were extremely happy and proud of you.  Since then, you've always been the first to rush through the door.  What a change!


You've even made friends of your own, and it's quite endearing (at least when you're playing well and sharing with them)!


You have a beautiful, nurturing nature to you.  When your brother was first born, you were extremely kind, gentle, and loving towards him - even though you were only 15 months yourself!  But at 3, I see the way you care and look out for your brother (most times) and those smaller and younger than you (as long as they're not touching your cars), and it amazes me how nurturing you can be.


Your creativity and imagination are operating at full throttle, and I love it!  I love to see the artwork and crafts you create at school, and your ability to tell stories and make-believe never cease to amaze me.  Every day is an adventure for you and a new story to be told.  It's one of the things I want to learn most from you - to look forward to each day and to make the most of every opportunity.


Despite what some people told us, you still love your vegetables.  Some said you would outgrow your love of vegetables by age 3, but let me tell you -  I don't know any other 4-year-old who loves a good salad like you do!  But you also have quite the sweet tooth (much like your mom).  You'll never say "no" to ice cream.


What is most astonishing to witness at age 3 is your ability to ask deep and profound questions about faith and God.  Just recently at bedtime during a Bible story, you asked Daddy if you could go to heaven with him.  He answered, "Yes, of course."  And then you declared that everyone should go to heaven with you.  When introducing you to the Trinity, you asked if Jesus is God, then who is Jesus' father?  "God," Daddy answered.  And you simply accepted it as fact.  Such big concepts for a little boy!

And honestly, your dad and I don't have all the answers.  We won't be able to answer all your deep, profound questions.  But the one thing we want to make sure you know full well is how magnificently and beautifully created you are by the God of the Universe.  The very One who holds the stars and planets that make up our galaxies in the palm of His hands, the One who breathed life into this world simply with a word, the One who sacrificed His greatest treasure to call you His own - He is your maker, Father, and friend.  I can't explain why He would love us so much or go to such depths for us, but never doubt it.  Never question it.  Never let anyone tell you otherwise.

And the world will never stop being a wonder to you as He reveals His love for you in ways that will blow your mind - now and for years to come.

Happiest 4th birthday, my darling sweet boy.




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May 14, 2012

Strawberry Lemonade Cookies and a Mother's Prayer


One of my favorite pastimes is baking with my eldest son (and eventually with both sons when the younger one is old enough).  I'd like to think it's one of my son's favorite pastimes, too.  He's always eager to roll up his sleeves, get in the kitchen, make a mess, sample a taste here and another one there, and be a help to mom (even though most times it ends up being more of a mess when he helps!).

As we were baking strawberry lemonade cookies over the weekend (inspired by these lemon cookies), I started to think about what kind of man he would become one day.  Would he be nurturing?  Generous? Kind?  Thoughtful?  Artistic?  Adventurous?  Strong-minded?  Passionate?  Would he even continue to enjoy baking?


God-willing, if he should become a husband one day, I pray he'd be a great blessing to his wife and family, much the way his own father is.  On days when his wife may need an extra dose of encouragement, I picture this . . .

One day when his wife is feeling down and out, upset, or exhausted, he'll go into the kitchen, search the pantry, and open up a couple boxes of cake mix.


He'll mix each of the batter in separate bowls with eggs, vegetable oil, and lemon extract.  He'll lovingly shape the lemon and strawberry dough into balls, roll them in confectioners sugar, and lay them out on the baking sheet, all the while praying for his beloved.


He'll bake the cookies by the batches and minutes later, he'll present them to his wife.  Her tears are no more.


A couple days will pass and when my daughter-in-law is feeling better, she'll call me and tell me about the awful day she had.

"I came home, hid under the covers, and cried my eyes out.  I told CJ [or "Nathan" when his wife calls] all about it.  And you know what?  He baked me a batch of strawberry lemonade cookies, kissed me on the forehead, and said a prayer for me.  And I knew everything would be okay."

And quietly in my heart, I'll give praise to God.

Is it crazy to dream up this scenario and get all emotional at the thought of my sons getting married and becoming loving husbands one day???  They're not even 4 yet!  But I know how quickly time passes and that these years will go by in the blink of an eye.  It is never too early, nor too late as long as we continue to take breath here on earth, to pray for our children and the building of their character.

My prayers for you, my beloved boys, is that you will know the love of Christ deeply in every facet of your being and that His love will overflow from your heart and in all that you (I pray this also for myself).  May you become men who love, serve, and give selflessly to others just as God Himself gave selflessly to us.  May you become husbands your wives will lean on and in whose presence will always feel safe, protected, and cherished; fathers your children will respect and admire; and a peer your friends can reach out to in their time of need.  

And if the occasion should call for it, that you'll bake a batch of cookies and bless those around you.  :)


Strawberry Lemonade Cookies
{Makes about 40 cookies; Prep time: 15 minutes; Cook time: 10 minutes per batch}

Ingredients:
1 (18.25 ounce) package lemon cake mix
1 (18.25 ounce) package strawberry cake mix
4 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil (for each batter)
2 teaspoons pure lemon extract
2/3 cup confectioners' sugar for decoration

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). 
  2. Pour lemon cake mix into a large bowl and the strawberry cake mix in another bowl. Stir in 2 eggs, 1/3 cup vegetable oil, and 1 tsp lemon extract to each flavored cake mix until well blended. 
  3. Take 2 rounded teaspoons of lemon batter and roll into a ball. Do the same with the strawberry batter. Combine the lemon and strawberry dough to make one large ball.  
  4. Drop the dough into a bowl of confectioners' sugar. Roll them around until they're lightly covered. Once sugared, put them on an ungreased cookie sheet. 
  5. Bake for 10 minutes in the preheated oven, until bottoms are light brown and the insides are chewy. Transfer to wire rack and let cool completely before serving. 
P.S. They're even better the day after they're baked.


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May 8, 2012

Celebrating 7 Wonderful Years


This post is a little late, but better late than never I say (actually, I hate being late but I'll pretend it doesn't matter in this instance).

J and I celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary this past April 24th.  At the beginning of this year, my fabulous sister-in-law insisted we go away by ourselves in April.  She, herself, was taking two weeks off and offered to watch the boys for us the first week of her vacation (I know - she rocks!).  We hesitated because we know our boys can be a handful, but then we finally came to our senses and took her up on the offer.

So we did some research, found an incredible deal on Expedia for a 4-night stay at a gorgeous all-inclusive resort in Cancun.  We were all over that.

I became very sick three days before our trip, in bed with chills, body ache, and 102-103 fever.  We thought we might have to cancel the trip.  But God-willing, the fever broke the night before and we made our flight (of course the boys got sick while we were away; poor babies and Auntie!).

A few short hours later, we arrived in paradise.  This is just what the good doctor ordered.


Words can't describe how beautiful and breathtaking our accommodations at The Beloved Hotel were.  So I'll let the pictures do the talking.


We got to enjoy the local sights.


But the best part was just spending time alone with mi amor, enjoying good food, drinks, swimming, biking, conversation and being together without the distraction of kids (although we missed our sons like crazy and talked about them every day).


People talk about the "7-year itch".  The year when a marriage can become boring and stale, leading one to go astray or walk out on the relationship.  It seems like a pivotal year for many marriages.  Honestly though, we've had harder years (namely our first) and this one has been the most amazing year for us.  We've been through some difficult times (losing a loved one and having a miscarriage), and we've had the challenges and blessings of being parents and I could not ask for a greater partner, friend, or husband through it all.

There is an "itch" and it's an itch to see what's in store for us (the good, the bad, and the ugly), an itch to know this wonderful, loving man in greater ways, and to continue to grow deeper in our relationship as God works in and through our lives -  refining, humbling, and equipping us in our roles as husband and wife.

Looking forward to spending our lifetime, here and for eternity, together.

If you want to see a relationship that has endured and grown through difficult times, you have to watch this video of Ian and Larissa.  The power of Christ's love is amazing, isn't it?




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April 5, 2012

Macaron Madness


My very near and dear friend from college was in town from California this week, and she suggested I make macarons for her after seeing the macaron tower I had pinned on Pinterest.  Seeing as it's been on my list of "to-dos", I figured this was a good reason to give macarons a try!  So we put on our aprons (well, at least I did), grabbed our spatulas, and made an evening out of it.


My friend would like me to clarify she is not being fobby in the photo.  She's giving the sign for number two - our second try after a botched first attempt (we made three in one night).

We had a blast, even though the macarons were a bust for the most part.


Now I understand what they mean by "macaron madness".  It's not that you're mad about macarons,  but rather they'll make you mad trying to get them to be perfect!  Where did we go wrong?  Well, some of the factors included not reading instructions carefully, skipping a vital step (mixing the ground almond with the powdered sugar in a food processor), and laughing too much when we should've probably been watching the oven (it baked quicker than the recommended 10 minutes in my oven).

Out of 50-some shells, only two turned out somewhat decently.  Just enough to make one lovely, first-time effort macaron filled with dark chocolate ganache.


Regardless of pretty or not, I have to say they still taste amazing!  The crumbs on my boys' shirts can attest to that.


I will try again (probably using the instructions from this video and helpful tips from this blog).  In the meantime, we're enjoying eating the "mistakes".

We hope everyone has a blessed Easter!


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April 3, 2012

Pulled Pork Sandwich


I love my slow cooker.  And I love when I can make simple and tasty dishes like this without requiring too much effort on my part.

I was surprised by how easy pulled pork is to make.  Throw a hunk of pork shoulder in the slow cooker with broth, onion, bbq sauce, salt, and pepper for 8 hours, and you've got pork so tender, it melts off the bone and into your mouth.


I found so many wonderful recipes that I had a hard time choosing one, so I incorporated different elements from several of them (including Tyler Florence's Ultimate BBQ Sauce and Pioneer Woman's Spicy Dr. Pepper Shredded Pork).  The end result came out nicely.

I love the added texture and flavors the onions, garlic, thyme, and bacon give the bbq sauce.  I would've loved to make this spicy and add the Chipotle peppers from Pioneer Woman's recipe but kept it mild for the kiddies.

But if you're looking to keep it simple, no need for fancy bbq sauces.  Here's a really easy recipe for pulled pork, and I'm sure it's just as good.

Serve the finished product on hamburger buns topped with Wolfgang Puck's Apple Coleslaw, and you have yourself one delicious, melt-in-your-mouth pulled pork sandwich ready for your next barbecue.


Pulled Pork Sandwich
{Makes: 10-12 servings; Prep time: 30 minutes; Cook time: 9 hours}

Ingredients:
1 (6-8 lb) pork shoulder on the bone
1 onion, unpeeled and quartered
4 cups favorite bbq sauce (recipe below)
1 (12 oz.) can of Dr. Pepper
1 cup water
1 cup chicken broth
Salt and pepper

BBQ Sauce Ingredients:
1 slice of bacon
1 bunch fresh thyme
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 onion chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
2 (16-19 oz.) jar of favorite bbq sauce (I used Guy Fieri's Bourbon Brown Sugar BBQ Sauce)
1 cup ketchup
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika

Directions
  1. Trim excess fat from the pork shoulder.  Layer onion on bottom of the slow cooker and place pork shoulder on top.  Add water, broth, Dr. Pepper and 1 cup of homemade bbq sauce.  Cover and cook on low until very tender, about 8 hours.
  2. Meanwhile, make the bbq sauce.  Wrap the bacon around the bunch of thyme to create a bundle. Heat about 2 tablespoons of oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.  Add the thyme and cook slowly for 3 to 4 minutes to render the bacon fat (this gives the sauce a nice smoky flavor).  Add the onion and garlic and cook slowly without coloring for 5 minutes.  Remove the thyme bundle from the sauce and add the store-bought bbq sauce, ketchup, dry mustard, cumin, and paprika.  Stir over low heat and cook slowly for 20 minutes to meld the flavors. Once the sauce is done cooking, remove 1 cup of the sauce to reserve for serving along side the pulled pork sandwich.  The remainder of the barbecue sauce will be used for cooking the pork.
  3. After pork is done cooking for 8 hours, remove meat and let cool.  When pork is cool enough to handle, pull meat into thin shreds, removing all bone, fat, and gristle.  Return pulled pork to slow cooker, stir in remaining barbecue sauce, and season with salt and pepper.  Cook for 1 hour longer on low.  Serve with hamburger buns and coleslaw.

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March 22, 2012

Bookworm: "I Don't Want to Go" & "Suppose You Meet A Dinosaur"

I had the privilege of reading to CJ's 3-year-old class at his preschool yesterday.  Although he specifically requested that I bring car books (didn't matter which ones as long as they had cars in it), I brought books I thought would be of more value to his class and still be enjoyed by the children.  And quite honestly, I'm tired of hearing about Lightning McQueen and Tow Mater.

The two books I selected were I Don't Want to Go by Addie Meyer Sanders and Suppose You Meet a Dinosaur by Judy Sierra.  The students and the teacher - none of whom had read either books before - absolutely loved them (the teacher jotted them down to order for the class).

One addresses anxiety and the other introduces good manners.

I Don't Want to Go 
by Addie Meyer Sanders

When I saw I Don't Want to Go at the library, I immediately checked it out because it seemed perfect for my oldest son.  Starting at 6 months, he exhibited a serious case of separation anxiety and it was difficult for my husband and I to leave him, especially in the nursery at Sunday school.  We would usually get paged within minutes of dropping him off, and one of us would have to miss worship service to sit in with him.  This trend lasted until he turned 3.  And up until two months ago, he was the only one among his classmates at preschool still kicking and screaming every time I dropped him off.  He would wake up in the mornings and ask where he was going, and if Daddy or I replied, "school", he'd have a nervous breakdown and cry "I don't want to go!"  Of course, when he does go, he has a great time and doesn't want to leave when I go to pick him up.  And now that he's made friends and gained confidence, he's the first one running in the door to get to school! 

So this story about Joey is really about any child who experiences anxiety and fear in new or unfamiliar situations.  When Joey is told he's going somewhere new or doing something he hasn't done before, his mind immediately conjures up frightening scenarios so he decides he doesn't want to go.  But lo and behold - much like my son - when he actually does go, he has an amazing time.  Over and over again, his fears are conquered and he discovers fun in the unexpected.

Suppose You Meet a Dinosaur 
by Judy Sierra

Suppose You Meet a Dinosaur is a fun way to teach simple manners, especially if your child loves dinosaurs like mine do.  The rhymes and illustrations are adorable.  In no time, your children will be using, "No, thank you", "Yes, please", "Excuse me", and other well-mannered phrases.  And if your kids already know these, this book is a great way to reinforce those polite manners.

Hope you enjoyed these reading selections.  I'll be posting more of these regularly.  I love finding good books (for children and grown-ups).

Read anything good lately?  I'd love to get some suggestions for my summer reading list.


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March 19, 2012

Liquid Gold (aka Chicken Stock)

{ Chicken stock from the leftovers of one rotisserie chicken.  
Labels are self-stick notepads from last year's IJM's Global Prayer Gathering. }

Who doesn't love rotisserie chicken (well, besides vegetarians and my mother-in-law who has an abnormal aversion to anything chicken)?  Now our family has been around the block when it comes to store-bought rotisserie chicken.  We've tried one at nearly every location that offers it (including some specialty shops), and we have yet to find one better than  . . . Costco's.  And at $4.99, you can't beat the price!  I always wonder how they can offer it at such a low price and how they keep their chicken so tender and moist (I plan on asking at my next trip).

Anyhow, the thing I love about rotisserie chicken is its many uses.  I love shredding the chicken and using it for all kinds of different recipes (which I plan on sharing later).

The thing is, though, that most people are probably missing out on the best part of the rotisserie chicken.

This:

Most people see this and think "trash."  No!  Not at all.  You don't want to throw this stuff out.  It's liquid gold.

You throw that sucker into a pot with water, onions, salt, pepper, celery, and others herbs and spices, let it simmer for a few hours, and you've got yourself the best chicken stock money can't buy.


I've made some of the best chicken soup with this, and I love to use it in my cooking.


And the boys absolutely love it.  They sometimes like it as plain and simple as rice mixed in the broth.   This soup has helped mend many winter colds.  They'll eat it up and sometimes even slurp it up with a straw (why, I don't know).


So next time you see this:



Think this:


And you won't regret it.

This recipe is for the most basic chicken stock involving 5 ingredients.  It tastes amazing.  But for added flavor, you can include celery, carrots, parsley, thyme, and garlic.

Chicken Stock
{Prep time: 10 minutes; Cook time: 4 hours; Makes: 4 quarts}

Ingredients:
Carcass and remains from 1 rotisserie chicken
18 cups of water
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 onion, unpeeled and quartered

Directions:
  1. Place the chicken carcasds, onion, pepper, and salt in a large stockpot. 
  2. Add 18 cups of water and bring to a boil.  Lower heat and simmer, uncovered, for 4 hours. 
  3. Strain contents, using a colander, into another large stockpot. 
  4. Chill broth overnight and remove the surface fat the next day. Use immediately or freeze in containers for up to 3 months.

 

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