A few days ago, I asked my hubby to get the 9″x13″ pan out of the cupboard for me. I was fixing chicken quarters for dinner and didn’t want to stop, wash up, and fish it out.
“It’s right here on the dishrack,” he said. “There’s no real reason to put it away. You use it all the time.”
I thought about it, and you know, he was right. Reviewing my menus from December 29 to January 4, I used it for:
Sunday: Bone-in chicken breast for Sunday dinner: Bone in chicken breast braised in white wine, topped with a sauce whipped up from a bit of oyster sauce, balsamic vinegar, spicy hunan sauce, and water. I covered the chicken with foil, baked at 350° for 45 minutes, and then removed foil and baked for 15 more minutes.
Monday: Made a triple batch of chocolate fudge, and poured part of it into the Rectangular Cake Pan to set. Because the pan has an easy-release coating, things like fudge and brownies come right out. (Use a non-metal utensil to cut and remove goodies in the cake pan to keep the coating intact!)
Tuesday: Used the left over chicken breast, veggies, chicken broth along with noodles, mushrooms and cream of mushroom soup to make up a casserole in the pan for dinner. Since there are only two of us, I was able to split the casserole in half, and freeze half for a quick dinner another night.
Wednesday: I had a giant beef chuck roast that was just taking up too much freezer room. After I thawed it, I popped it into the Rectangular Cake Pan along with mushrooms, onions, carrots, red wine, salt, pepper and four cloves of fresh garlic. This one roast made dinner, a couple of lunches and beef hash for breakfast on New Year’s Day.
On Thursdays, our non-profit board meets, so we usually have dinner out. But, on to Friday: Roast Whole Chicken! A whole chicken, stuffed with carrots and an apple to keep it moist, seasoned with salt-free seasoning, baked with celery, mushrooms and quartered potatoes. Again, the Rectangular Cake Pan is the only pan I have that’s big enough to hold a small turkey, a turkey breast or whole chicken. The depth is great, because I can add enough water or wine to get a good start on a stock, and boil up the bones later to make a great broth that I can freeze for future use. Plus there’s plenty of room for veggies, so I don’t have to get another pan or bowl out to cook those.
Friday: Because it was on the dishrack, and I was lazy, I just grabbed the cake pan, threw in some fish fillets, dotted them with dried dill, butter and salt-free seasoning, and topped them with breadcrumbs. Covered with foil, into the oven at 350° they went, and 20 minutes later, they were done, and served with green peas and salad.
Saturday: the aforementioned chicken quarters, which were marinated in red wine, a little honey, garlic, salt and pepper for 20 minutes before baking. Topping the chicken: a sauce of steak sauce, water, a little bit of Italian dressing and salt-free seasoning. (Sides included acorn squash and a spinach salad.)
Guess I do use it all the time. “You use it so much,” my husband pointed out, “that there’s no time to put a cake in it.”
I looked at him. “You know, you’re right. Maybe I need another one.”