Sunday, January 25, 2009

Happy Robbie Burns Day!

Some hae meat and canna eat
And some hae meat wad want it
We hae meat and we canna eat
And say the lord be thank it
Selkirk Grace by Robert Burns

Today is not only Robbie Burns day (technically it's Robert but our family is quite close) it is also my grandmother's birthdate. My grandmother was an amazingly special person. Her parents were from Scotland - so you can imagine the pride being able to share her day with such a Scotland's favourite boy. 

As a family, we celebrated many a Robbie Burns day. My first was with my fave cuz, Margo and Grandma in Vancouver - we were treated by the SFU Pipe Band, great dinner and my grandma pushing Margo and I to dance together. Many more followed - some more fancy than others. We had 3 generations together celebrating the night - it was always a lovely time. Our last 'outing' was at the Scottish Heritage Center - where Marsha, fave cuz, and I were involuntary subject to a woman having the toots in the ladies room. I know - how immature to bring this up - but what followed was probably worse. Fits of laughing during the speeches. Our entire two tables had no idea what we were laughing at, but had to join in. As always, with the laughing, Babs made a run for it, so there were no wet pants. Debbie followed. 

Our last Robbie Burns day, I went to Vancouver to spend the weekend with Grandma, and we headed to Hugh and Sharon's for a pizza dinner and haggis. Again, the family was together, and there were lots of laughs.

I am so incredibly fortunate to have had such a wonderful relationship with my grandma - all of my grandparents actually. Chris didn't grow up with grandparents, so has always been intrigued by the closeness. 

This week, like so many weeks before, will be dedicated to Grandma. I miss her so - her voice, her stories, her laughter, her wisdom, her cooking and so much more. She was an amazing cook - and I will be doing a bunch of her recipes this week. 

Grandma and I laughing as we try to take a pic of us.

Since we are going to Bruce's tonight (I wonder if he'll be serving Haggis?), I am going to post my favourite of all of Grandma's dishes. This dish became my 'birthday' dish for years. 

Chicken Vegetable Bake
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 tsp  salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tbsp paprika
- combine in ziploc bag - reserve 2 tbsp of the mixture

1 - 2.5 - 3 lb chicken - cut into pieces or 12 chicken thighs or legs
Coat 2-3 pieces of chicken at a time in the flour mixture. Heat skillet and spray with 1/4 cup oil. Brown chicken pieces 2-3 pieces at a time. Remove the chicken and place in a large casserole dish. 
Add 1 can of whole onions - I will probably chop up a whole onion and add instead.
1 cup coarsely chopped carrots
1 3 oz can of sliced or whole mushrooms - again you can use fresh - I love the whole mushrooms and remember them distinctly in this dish.
Blend reserved flour mixture, 1 tbsp brown sugar, 1/4 tsp ginger and a dash of salt into the drippings in the skillet. Stir to make a smooth paste. Add 1/2 6 oz can of frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed and 3/4 cup of water. Cook and stir until bubbly. Pour over chicken. Cover and bake at 350 for 1 1/4 hours.

Serve over rice and maybe with a fresh green salad. 

Chris rated this a 5!!!! 

**This is not the most health conscience dish - but I will tweak it a bit tomorrow night when I make it and see if I can 'health it up' a bit. 

I wish you all a happy Robbie Burns day, and send love to you all.  

Hug a Scot!


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